Once Lily was in her room, she closed and locked the door behind her. Knowing that there were still guests in the house, Lily didn't take her time to wash up. She took a quick hot shower and changed into her pajamas before walking out of her room.
Seeing that Mrs. Arison was no longer in the living room, she instantly relaxed and walked towards the kitchen to grab some crackers. "Eh? Why are you still here?" she furrowed her brows when she saw Renren laying out some plates on the table.
"Miss Li received a call earlier and said that she needed to go out," Zhuo Jingren answered with a straight face. "She asked me if I knew how to cook and I said yes." That was a lie. Li Shanshan did leave because of a call but she did not ask Zhuo Jingren to cook anything. However, Zhuo Jingren was not planning to miss the opportunity to spend more time with Lily. Moreover, didn't she promised to reward him earlier? How could he leave without receiving his reward first?
Lily nodded at his words. As a director, it was not uncommon for Li Shanshan to be called upon to attend an emergency meeting from her producers. It was also in Li Shanshan's character to make sure that Lily ate her meals well. Hence, Lily didn't think that anything was amiss. "What are you making?"
"Beef stir-fry with broccoli in oyster sauce," he casually answered while giving Lily a pair of chopsticks and then taking a seat across her at the table.
"Where did you get the beef?"
"From the fridge." Another lie. The moment he found out that there was nothing in Lily's fridge that he could use to cook, he immediately asked Secretary Go to buy some beef and broccoli over to Lily's apartment. For someone who had been living alone for years now, Zhuo Jingren was very good at household chores, like cooking and cleaning. He even does his own laundry. The reason why he does all the household chores himself was because Zhuo Jingren was an extremely private person. He did not like having other people in his house and touching his things.
"Alright," Lily said, secretly salivating. 'This beef with broccoli looks so appetizing ah.' This Renren, this was only his first day of work and yet he was already cooking for her. For some reason, Lily's internal radar sounded. This man should be up to something!
"It's not poisoned," Zhuo Jingren said, unaware that Lily was already suspicious of him. He used his chopsticks to pick some of the dish and transferred it to his bowl. Then he picked up a slice of beef, blew at it elegantly before putting it into his mouth, savoring it in front of Lily. "See?"
Lily looked at the appetizing food before her and swallowed another mouthful of saliva. "Alright. Give me your bowl," she said and the latter obliged without a word. He even included his chopsticks.
Without any reservation, Lily accepted his bowl and chopsticks and began stuffing food into her mouth. She closed her eyes and savored the food inside her mouth. "This is so good," she thought out loud before eating another mouthful of rice with beef and broccoli.
It was already past eight in the evening and Lily hadn't had her dinner. Needless to say, she was really hungry right now. She took another mouthful of food before she remembered the man across her. She looked up and caught Renren staring straight at her. The latter seemed to be staring at her mouth. Lily didn't think that Renren was acting weirdly but immediately assumed that he was just hungry.
"Sorry. You can start eating now," She said before lowering her head again to continue eating. Lily felt comforted by the savory home-cooked meal before her. Being health-conscious, Lily can be rather particular about her diet. She would also find the time to work out and exercise. Unfortunately, cooking was not her forte.
When Lilian Facci, her maternal grandmother, was still alive, she made sure that Lily ate well, didn't miss her meals and ate on time. She would get her personal servant to deliver food from home just to make sure that she ate nutritious food.
After Old Madam Facci's death, there was no one to cook nutritious and delicious food for her anymore. Remembering her grandmother's constant reminders in the past to eat well and healthily, Lily found a way to make it happen. Lily knew that cooking was not an option for her so she started making vegetable and fruit juices. It wasn't difficult to operate a blender. Moreover, the 'meal' could be taken on the go and consumed quickly, saving time! She could just drink all the goodness in one go!
Lily patted herself on the back for her brilliance!
"Since you are my security personnel, I will be arranging for you to lodge in the flat below my apartment," she stated as an idea started to form inside her head. Since this man is such a good cook. Maybe she could…"You know, I will double your salary if you are agreeable to cook all my meals starting tomorrow."
"No need for the additional salary, I will cook for you starting tomorrow," Zhuo Jingren answered almost immediately. "However, I cannot stay in the flat below. For security reasons, I want to stay inside your apartment. This way, I could assure your safety and…"
"Absolutely not," Lily interrupted. "There is no way that I will let a man stay in my apartment," she firmly said, staring straight into Zhuo Jingren's eyes. However, she quickly realised that meeting the man's eyes was a bad decision.
For some reason, the more Lily stared at Zhuo Jingren, the more uncomfortable she felt. The two of them continued to stare at each other until...
"Miss Qin?" his low voice echoed inside her head as flashes of memory surfaced in her mind, memories that she had buried and long forgotten. She did not answer him but continued to watch him intently. She watched as Zhuo Jingren swallowed, his adam's apple bobbing. She watched as the corners of his pinkish lips curled into a small smile.
Those lips… That Adam's apple…
It was as if a lightning hit Lily's head. Her eyes quickly found his eyes again. At first glance, his eyes look dark brown. But at a closer look, she could clearly see that it was lighter, sprinkled with honey colored specs. It was beautiful yet also haunting.
"I ummm… I am not feeling well." She rose from her seat. "Please leave after you have cleaned up the kitchen," she said before leaving the dining area. Her face paled and her brows scrunched into a frown.
How could she not have recognized the man whom she slept with all those years ago?