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    Loves Error

    Shen Li hadn’t figured out how to ask Lu Changting out when he received an invitation to Chu Jinghong’s engagement party.

    The invitation was personally delivered to “Gujiu” by Chu Jinghong himself, and the banquet was scheduled for the end of July at the Chu family villa.

    Shen Li was somewhat surprised when he received the invitation. First, he was surprised that Chu Jinghong and his girlfriend were getting engaged so soon after reconciling, and second, he was surprised that Chu Jinghong would invite him…

    Perhaps good things were coming. Chu Jinghong had a constant smile on his face, and he couldn’t hide his joy in his words. “The sooner it’s settled, the more relieved I’ll be.”

    When they were younger, both he and Su Linlang had gone through several breakups and reconciliations due to their youthful arrogance. After all the turmoil, they realized they couldn’t be apart. Now that they had matured and could understand each other, it was only natural for them to settle down.

    “Congratulations,” Shen Li smiled as he accepted the invitation. “I’ll definitely be there.”

    “Changting’s invitation is also here.” Chu Jinghong handed him Lu Changting’s invitation. In fact, the invitation from the Lu family had already been sent separately. It was just that Chu Jinghong wanted to create an opportunity for these two. “He’s been busy with work lately, and I’ve been busy with the engagement, so since you’re close, I’d appreciate it if you could pass it on.”

    Shen Li was taken aback. Considering their relationship, shouldn’t Lu Changting be the one to pass on the invitation?

    And since Chu Jinghong had time to personally deliver the invitation to “Gujiu,” couldn’t he spare some time to make a trip to Fengchun Villa?

    “I’ll find time to give it to him.” Strange as it was, he couldn’t refuse, so he could only agree.

    “Then I’ll head back now.” Chu Jinghong didn’t linger after delivering the invitation, his tone tinged with helplessness and a hint of pride. “My family is strict, and at this hour, I should be heading back.”

    Shen Li chuckled. “Alright, take care then.”

    After seeing Chu Jinghong off, Shen Li returned to the rest area and sent a WeChat message to Lu Changting.

    Lu Changting had been chatting with him on WeChat these past few days, although it was just simple everyday chatter. But it had comforted Shen Li’s uneasy heart. Lu Changting was busy with work, so Shen Li hadn’t decided whether to ask him out or not.

    In the afternoon, Lu Changting said he had to work overtime, and then he got busy with work and didn’t send any more messages. At this time, Shen Li didn’t know if he had gone home yet.

    [Alcohol Seller: Have you gone home?]

    Lu Changting’s reply popped up after a while.

    [L: Just got home, was about to tell you.]

    [Alcohol Seller: Chu Jinghong gave me an invitation just now.]

    [Alcohol Seller: He gave me yours too, should I bring it to you tomorrow?]

    [L: I’ll come by after work tomorrow to get it, just might be a bit late.]

    Recently, the company was starting a big project, and Lu Shiyang and the board members were busy with it, attending meetings and working overtime. He had been busy for several days in a row.

    Shen Li knew he had been busy with work these past few days, and his replies were squeezed in between his busy schedule. Naturally, he felt sorry for him.

    [Alcohol Seller: I have plenty of free time during the day, I can bring it to you.]

    [L: You need to rest during the day.]

    [L: I’ll come get it after work, you wait for me at the bar, be good.]

    Seeing the word “good,” Shen Li momentarily thought he was seeing things.

    He stared at the screen for a while, his face slowly turning red.

    [Alcohol Seller: Okay.]

    [Alcohol Seller: Then I’ll wait for you.]

    After midnight, Shen Li planned to go home.

    When there were no VIPs or friends to entertain at the bar, he usually went home around midnight. Considering his job involved a lot of socializing, he needed to take care of his health.

    Coming out of the rest area and passing through the scattered tables downstairs, Shen Li saw a couple in an intimate posture—a man holding a young woman in his arms, getting up to leave. The dappled lights shone on the man’s face, revealing a man of about thirty, with downturned eyebrows and a high nose bridge. He had short hair and a slightly chubby face, giving him the appearance of an honest man, and he was holding the woman’s bag on his arm.

    Shen Li’s gaze inadvertently swept over the woman in his embrace, pausing for a moment.

    She was a young and beautiful woman, with long hair styled in big waves. She wore exaggerated hoop earrings adorned with pearls that swayed with her movements. Her lightly made-up face was flushed with drunkenness, enchanting and alluring.

    Two very mismatched people.

    He couldn’t help but take a closer look, furrowing his brows slightly.

    “Excuse me, sir,” he called out to the man in a casual tone, “do you need any help?”

    As he approached, familiar features came into view, especially the beauty mark at the center of his eyebrows. It felt like a heavy stone pressing down on Shen Li’s heart, making his breath catch.

    “No, no need,” the man hesitated for a moment, then smiled innocently. “My girlfriend just had too much to drink.”

    Shen Li stared at his face, not missing the avoidance in his eyes. “Is she your girlfriend?”

    “Yeah…” The man’s tone turned impatient. “What’s it to you who my girlfriend’s is?”

    “Security.” Shen Li called the security guards over.

    “Boss.” The two burly security guards nodded at Shen Li.

    Shen Li also called over two female waitresses. “Xiao Bai, Xiao Ke, come and help this young lady over.”

    “Sir, please give me the young lady’s bag,” Shen Li said coldly, “and tell me her name. If it’s a misunderstanding, I’ll apologize to you.”

    “Dammit.” The man flung the bag in his hand at Shen Li and tried to run amidst the chaos.

    The security at “Gujiu” were well-trained and immediately caught the man, causing quite a commotion.

    “Accidentally let a mouse in.” Shen Li smiled apologetically at the customers. “Please continue, I’ll handle this.”

    “Another idiot causing trouble at ‘Gujiu’?” someone eagerly asked, enjoying the spectacle. “Boss, should I call the police?”

    “No need.” Shen Li nodded. “I’ll take care of it.”

    Considering the frequent incidents at the bar, a room was intentionally left next to the staff rest area on the first floor to handle emergencies.

    The security guards brought the man to the empty room, while the two waitresses helped the unconscious woman into the adjacent staff lounge.

    Sitting down on a chair, Shen Li calmly asked, “Wasn’t she your girlfriend? Why did you run away?”

    The room was spacious, with only a few chairs, dim lighting, and no lively music from the bar, creating a very oppressive atmosphere. With the two bodyguards standing behind Shen Li, the man felt a wave of anxiety.

    “Boss…” He already knew Shen Li was the boss, and the truth was out, so he dared not lie anymore. “It’s just a little fling between a man and a woman. I’m not the only one who comes to the bar to hook up.”

    “Hookups, one-night stands, I can’t control them.” Shen Li frowned. “But it has to be consensual.”

    “But the lady was obviously drunk, unconscious. To put it bluntly, what you did is attempted rape.”

    The man lowered his head nervously. “But I haven’t done anything yet. Please spare me…”

    Shen Li looked at him coldly. “Did she get drunk on her own, or did you spike her drink?”

    The man didn’t answer. Shen Li sneered, feeling no more patience to waste time on him, and turned to the security guards. “Call the police, say there was an attempted rape, and ask them to come and handle it.”

    “Boss! Wait, I’ll talk, I’ll talk, alright?” The man panicked, calling out to him, “I spiked her drink with a bit of sleeping pills…”

    “Attempted date rape.” Shen Li corrected, got up, and pushed the door open without hesitation.

    The man’s panicked voice came from behind the door, separated from him.

    In the adjacent staff lounge, which was much more comfortable than the empty room, the woman lay on the sofa with a thin blanket draped over her. Her handbag was placed on the small coffee table, and the two waitresses were sitting beside her. When they saw Shen Li come in, they both stood up.

    “Boss.”

    “Take her to a nearby hotel,” Shen Li looked at the familiar face with complicated eyes, feeling a lump in his chest, “get a room, and I’ll reimburse you.”

    S City was really small. After many years, he unexpectedly encountered Tang Yao in such a situation.

    “Boss.” Baixu was a little younger than Chen Ke, and more lively. Unable to contain her curiosity, she asked, “Do you know her?”

    Shen Li glanced at her lightly, and she quickly shut her mouth, innocently blinking her eyes.

    Chen Ke picked up the woman’s bag, changing the subject. “Do we just need to take her to the hotel, or should we call her friend?”

    Shen Li simply found it troublesome to make a phone call, so he chose to send her directly to the hotel. Plus, making a call, who knows if the person on the other end is male or female, and if they can be trusted…

    “Leave her a note,” Shen Li sighed inwardly, “just write, ‘Don’t drink strangers’ drinks casually.'”

    Looking at Chen Ke and Baixu helping Tang Yao out the door, Shen Li touched the red string on his wrist.

    The uneasy emotions once again gnawed at his heart, as if held tightly by an invisible hand, squeezing painfully.

    Although nothing had happened yet, and Lu Changting treated him as usual, he had a premonition.

    A storm was brewing.

    His relationship with Lu Changting probably wouldn’t end well.

    Returning home, Shen Li took a shower and came out, then opened his WeChat on his phone.

    “I met Tang Yao.”

    Six words, he typed and deleted repeatedly, but in the end, he couldn’t bring himself to press send.

    He didn’t want to tell Lu Changting, and he certainly didn’t want Lu Changting to see Tang Yao again.

    Tang Yao from high school had a beautiful face, outstanding demeanor, and was also an arts and sports student. Without a doubt, she was also a prominent figure in school. Shen Li had been classmates with Du Heng for a while, and occasionally heard him mention Tang Yao, always referring to her as “my goddess.” At that time, neither he nor Du Heng had thought that Lu Changting would end up with Tang Yao.

    It was unexpected, but seemed inevitable.

    But what Shen Li couldn’t let go of was not that Tang Yao was with Lu Changting, but the “thank you” Lu Changting said to Tang Yao in the infirmary that day.

    Tang Yao was like a thorn in his heart, stuck there for so many years, causing a lingering pain whenever he thought about it.

    He couldn’t accept it.

    Deleting the contents of the chat box, he stared at the phone screen for a while, watching it dim and light up again.

    It was a voice message from Lu Changting…

    Shen Li rubbed his eyes and played the voice message.

    “Why aren’t you sleeping yet?” Lu Changting’s voice sounded as if it was right beside his ear, full of tenderness. “Is there something you want to tell me? It’s been showing ‘typing…’ for so long, I’ve been waiting for ages, but not a single word.”

    Shen Li’s ears felt a bit itchy as he listened to the message again, then slowly typed a reply.

    [Alcohol Seller: Nothing much.]

    [Alcohol Seller: Why aren’t you sleeping either.]

    Lu Changting said, “Can’t sleep, waiting for you to say goodnight to me.”

    Pressing the voice message button, Shen Li softly said, “Goodnight.”

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