Chapter 488: Contrasting Attitudes
Nodding at her, Chen Zhizhong sipped his wine and smilingly said, “Xiaoxue, after I return to Star City with Master I’ll mention the matter of me going to Jingmen Island with him. If Master agrees, I will probably go to your place to dine, but you don’t need to entertain your Martial Uncle yourself, though.”
With a faint smile, Gu Xiaoxue replied, “Then, Xiaoxue will arrange everything in advance to welcome Martial Uncle’s arrival.”
“All right!” Chen Zhizhong nodded slightly.
“Martial Uncle, if you have no other instructions for me, I’ll take my leave first. I’m not accustomed to this environment,” said Gu Xiaoxue again.
“Go on then!” Chen Zhizhong smilingly replied.
Standing at the side, Ouyang Lulu couldn’t help but roll her eyes. She thought that Gu Xiaoxue had come to dine. It turned out that she came only to see Chen Zhizhong. She knew the matter pertaining to Chen Zhizhong and Gu Xiaoxue, since they had met each other in Beijing when Tang Xiu got injured. She looked at the leaving Gu Xiaoxue and reluctantly sat back on her seat. Then, she shifted her vision to Chen Zhizhong and said, “Big Boss Chen, since you are Sis Xiaoxue’s Martial Uncle, you should persuade her to give up living such a boring life. By the way, she should listen to your words, right?”
“Well, she only listens to Master’s words,” said Chen Zhizhong with a forced smile.
Stunned, Ouyang Lulu stared blankly, and immediately painted a “you’ve been defeated” look on her face.
At the same table, a shocked and astonished light glinted in Zhang Yueming’s eyes. Just as Gu Xiaoxue’s figure vanished in the front door of the banquet hall, he immediately picked up his glass and got up from his seat, circling around toward Chen Zhizhong’s position. After he came to his side, he smilingly said, “Brother Chen, I have heard that your Endless Virtue Pharmaceutical has a medicinal herbs business that is particularly thriving, yet I have never been able to meet you all this while. This is kind of a pity. So, today, I would like to pay my respects you with a cup of wine.”
What’s this situation?
Chen Zhizhong was dumbfounded.
Given Zhang Yueming’s prominent status, which was far higher than Chen Zhizhong’s, would he even care about Chen Zhizhong? What was the most particular was that he actually left his seat and stood by Chen Zhizhong’s side, giving a toast in quite a humble manner… This was simply unreasonable, no?
In a matter of seconds, Chen Zhizhong came back to his senses, quickly got up and replied politely, “You’re too polite, Brother Zhang. Your distinguished name is just like thunder reverberating in my ears. I’m simply unable to contain my joy of getting the chance to meet you today. Come, I’ll accompany you drinking a cup.”
“Brother Chen, let’s have toast!”
The smile on Zhang Yueming’s face turned brighter. He and Chen Zhizhong drank a glass of wine together, yet he didn’t immediately leave the seat and smilingly said instead, “Dear Brother Chen, I’m a local snake here in Shanghai. Since you’ve come to this place, you should also befriend the local landlords. Do you have free time tonight? If so, would Brother Chen like to visit my place and accompany me to dinner? The least I can do is play as a good host for you.”
Chen Zhizhong hesitated. He forced a smile and said, “Brother Zhang, your offer is certainly welcome. But, I must accompany my Master later, and I don’t know what arrangements he has for me this evening. About your invitation… I apologize, I can’t accompany you.”
Zhang Yueming’s expression slightly moved as he smiled and said, “Since your Respected Master have some matters to handle, then let us forget it for now. To be honest, I was planning on drinking a few cups with him before. But he doesn’t seem to like lively scenes, unfortunately. Please give my regards to him.”
“Brother Zhang, you know my Master is…” said Chen Zhizhong curiously.
“So to say, I have a bit of friendship with Tang… with your Respected Master,” said Zhang Yueming smilingly.
Chen Zhizhong understood in a flash. His attitude toward Zhang Yueming obviously turned better, and he said with a smile, “Brother Zhang, please quickly go to your seat. If my Master doesn’t have any arrangements for me later, then I’ll visit you. If I’m too busy, then Zhizhong will surely pay a visit whenever I come to Shanghai again.”
Zhang Yueming smiled in satisfaction. After returning to his seat, he filled his glass with wine and raised it toward Chen Zhizhong before he drank it up.
Their exchange made everyone present shocked and confused. Even Ouyang Lulu had never expected that Tang Xiu would actually be acquainted with Zhang Yueming, more so being friends with him. All the more important was that she could see that Zhang Yueming was evidently showing goodwill toward Chen Zhizhong, which was obviously because of Tang Xiu.
How could this fella know so many powerful local tycoons?
Ouyang Lulu secretly mumbled to herself. She then raised her glass and smilingly said, “Come, everyone, Lulu wants to express her thanks to everybody present. Please accept my toast of respect.”
After the glasses had been dried up, Wang Tao’s vision turned to Chen Zhizhong and said with a curious expression, “Boss Chen, I don’t know who is your Respected Master. Did he come today as well?”
“Well, my Master is the one who participated in cutting the ribbon, Tang Xiu,” said Chen Zhizhong with a smile.
Everyone present at the table, except Ouyang Lulu and Zhang Yueming, had incredulous looks on their faces.
“Boss Chen, what kind of joke are you playing? That Tang… he’s still very young. How could he possibly be your Master?” Asked Wang Tao with disbelief.
“Mayor Wang, there’s a saying that we can never measure the sea with a bushel. Likewise, men cannot be judged by their looks. Though my Master is indeed young, he’s much more skillful and powerful than I am in various aspects. Reciting an ancient saying, whoever has reached a mastery of something can be someone’s master. The matter of me take him as my Master is not something worthy of surprise, is it?”
Wang Tao looked vacant, yet he immediately grinned awkwardly and said, “Truly, I’m so parochial and narrow-sighted. Anyhow, do you mind if I ask what you are learning from Mr. Tang?”
"Kung Fu!" Chen Zhizhong replied without trying to conceal it.
Suddenly realizing something, Wang Tao smiled and said, “Chinese Wushu is precisely the essence of our country. To think that Boss Chen can put aside the concept of seniority and can really implement the philosophy of ‘whoever reaches the mastery can be one’s master’, is truly rare. Come, let us have a drink.”
“All right!” Chen Zhizhong complied with a smile.
Having drank the Gods Nectar in his glass, Wang Tao stopped chatting with Chen Zhizhong. Although he spoke beautifully on the surface, he himself actually didn’t approve inside. After all, given Chen Zhizhong’s identity, taking a youngster in his 20s as his Master was truly taking lightly about a major issue. If Chen Zhizhong wanted to practice Wushu, given his wealth and identity, he could have directly hired someone rather than going so far as to formally take him as a Master, which was akin to lowering his own status.
Tang Xiu was someone who he had never heard of prior to this, neither did he know from whence he came from. Nevertheless, for him to actually participate in the ribbon-cutting ceremony of the Paradise Manor and become Chen Zhizhong’s Master may prove that he did have some real abilities at that young age. Unfortunately, just that was not enough to make him go to a larger stage.
Something suddenly crossed his mind, as he immediately leaned toward Ouyang Lulu. He toned down his voice and said, “Lulu, can I ask you something?”
“What?” Asked Ouyang Lulu back with a strange expression.
“Though Tang Xiu is Chen Zhizhong’s Master and your friend, yet it shouldn’t be enough for him to participate in such an important event such as today’s ribbon cutting ceremony, right? Does he have some other prominent identity or something?” Inquired Wang Tao.
Ouyang Lulu pondered for a while, yet she didn’t answer Wang Tao’s inquiry as she whispered back, “Uncle Wang, you and my father are friends, and can even be said as old buddies, am I right?”
Despite being clueless as to where Ouyang Lulu was going with this, Wang Tao still nodded and answered, “Yeah, that’s right. Our friendship does go far back, and we have cooperated in many things before. All the more so as your Ouyang Family and my Wang Family are also related by several marriages as well.”
“If so, then I won’t conceal anything from you. But, please don’t tell even a word to anyone else what I’m about to tell you,” said Ouyang Lulu with a nod.
Wang Tao nodded, “Okay, tell me!”
With a voice that only both of them could hear, Ouyang Lulu said, “Tang Xiu is the offspring of the Tang Family from Beijing. He’s the biological grandson of the Tang Family Head.”
The Tang Family from Beijing?
Wang Tao gently nodded, yet his complexion drastically changed all of a sudden. He abruptly got up and exclaimed, “What did you say? He, he, he… He is that…”
Ouyang Lulu hastily got up and grabbed his arm with both hands to interrupt him, and forced him to sit back down.
“Uncle Wang, do you need to make a fuss over nothing like this?”
The shocked expression Wang Tao’s face didn’t reduce in the slightest, however. He looked up to Chen Zhizhong and finally realized as to why Chen Zhizhong would formally take Tang Xiu as his Master. The recently discovered offspring of the Tang Family from Beijing was absolutely not someone of no particular talent! From some forces the Wang Family had a relationship with, he had heard the news that the outcome of the recent last game of thrones between the Tangs and the Yaos in the South had made the Yao Family end up miserably and badly beaten by the Tang Family. It was thanks to Tang Xiu who had come late. He employed some powerful means that caused the Yao Family to suffer a big defeat and massive losses.
As of now, the forces from ordinary families may not be aware of these matters; the top families in Beijing, however, had all learned about this matter. The Old Yao Family Head was even rumored to have raged after learning about it.
Wang Tao took his wine glass and went toward Chen Zhizhong under Ouyang Lulu’s curious gaze. The man then gazed at Chen Zhizhong and said, “Boss Chen, though I did meet Mr. Tang before, I didn’t greet him due to many matters getting mixed in between the event. Anyhow, I’d like to offer you a toast, hoping that you would convey him my regards later. I’ll come visit him some other time later.”
Once again, Chen Zhizhong was paralyzed, and the rest was dazed.
Everyone present had an inconceivable expressions when they looked at Wang Tao. They didn’t understand. Why would he mention that young man called Tang Xiu again? Even his attitude this time was obviously different.
While trying to suppress his confusion, Chen Zhizhong lifted his wine glass and said, “With all politeness, I’ll convey your message.”
After drinking the wine, Wang Tao said, “Boss Chen, Shanghai is an international metropolis, and Chinese medical knowledge is almost replaced by Western medical science. But we all know that Chinese medical knowledge is a quintessence product and precious knowledge passed down by our ancestors. If your Endless Virtue Pharmaceutical is willing to expand your business to Shanghai, please contact me directly. I’ll give you my private number, and will be waiting for your call. I will personally assist you with the legal documents.”
Never had Chen Zhizhong imagined that Wang Tao would publicly show his goodwill on this occasion. This commitment, in and of itself, was very rare.
As if fearing that Chen Zhizhong didn’t believe him, Wang Tao said again, “Boss Chen, I, Wang Tao, have always kept my words. I always had the wish that the Chinese medical science can make a comeback with the medicinal herbs provided by your Endless Virtue Pharmaceutical.”
With a grateful expression, Chen Zhizhong looked at Wang Tao and said, “In this case, I would like to express my gratitude first to you. I will definitely contact you if I plan to expand here in the future.”
Wise and astute as he was, he could tell that Wang Tao’s change in attitude was because of his Master, Tang Xiu. His puzzlement also quickly vanished after he recalled that Wang Tao was someone from the government; whereas his Master, Tang Xiu, was an offspring of the Tang Family from Beijing.