Almost as soon as they sat down, Qiao Ya — who managed to snatch the spot between Mo Fang and Tong Lan — attracted a fat Persian cat. She squealed in delight, picked up the ball of fluff, and started to pet it.
Next to her, Tong Lan laughed. “Oh, look at that! His Majesty is actually coming over of his own volition without needing to be bribed. You should consider yourself special for receiving this honor.”
Qiao Ya laughed, her eyes sparkling. “What about the other pets?” She really liked fluffy animals. In fact, if not for the fact that she also felt that it was distressing, she might have wanted to work with animals instead of humans. Unfortunately, whether it was working at the vet or a shelter, she’d cry if she had to see those animals who were in a bad condition.
Tong Lan could only sigh. “I’m afraid you won’t have much look to do more than see them. When His Majesty comes over, everyone else stays far away. Well, other than one of them.” She turned to look around and finally spotted the pet she had thought of on a bench in front of the window. Pointing at the fluffy buttocks, she turned back around to Qiao Ya. “That one there. He’s the only one who doesn’t get that His Majesty likes all the attention to be on him.”
Qiao Ya glanced over and saw a little corgi. As if noticing the attention it was getting, the dog turned around, and then happily rushed over to the table, sniffing at everyone. It actually came to Qiao Ya first and also pushed the fat cat with its snout but His Majesty only swatted at him with his fluffy tail. Finally, the corgi went to the next person until it landed at Yu Xin’s side.
The person who had been feeling sad that he wasn’t sitting next to his sister picked him up, thinking that at least they were now the only two people with a pet in their group. In a way, that was also a special connection, right?
Mo Fang’s lips twitched when he saw Yu Xin like that. He could imagine what he was thinking but he didn’t expose him. Instead, he turned to Qiao Ya and explained how Si Tao had opened the pet cafe for Tong Lan back then.
Qiao Ya’s eyes lit up. “Really?! That’s so awesome!” This just went to show that you should be a bit pickier with your boyfriend. Even though Si Tao seemed to be a bit quirky, he was clearly also a man that cherished his girlfriend very much and would do a lot for her.
Si Tao nodded. “Yes, it’s all true. By now, she hasn’t been working here in a long time but it’s a place full of good memories for us and people liked the cafe as well so we kept it. Ah Lan has her own career now though which isn’t tied to me in any way.” Saying this, he looked really proud.
Before, it had been a bit of a problem that he was well-established while Tong Lan had barely finished her studies. In such a situation, she couldn’t bring herself to marry him for fear of getting trapped. He wasn’t happy about it but he also understood so he patiently waited for her to fulfill the dreams she had outside of this relationship. Now, it seemed like it wouldn’t be much longer until the two of them actually held their wedding.
Si Tao’s feelings for Tong Lan radiated from every word he spoke, making Qiao Ya feel even more that they were such a sweet couple. She happily stroked the Persian cat and then started asking about Tong Lan’s work.
Yu Xin also listened quietly. These two were Mo Fang’s good friends so he naturally wanted to know more as well. The short conversations earlier hadn’t been able to let him know them well enough.
Soon, the topic turned to Qiao Ya instead and she started to talk about the organization she was currently working at. “I had a good life at home but with my mom gone, I also always knew that I was different from the others. My dad tried really hard to raise me without her but with one less parent, life can be harder.
“Often, it’s just simple things like having somebody home less often or not another person there to talk to if you feel troubled by something. It doesn’t seem like a big matter on the surface and maybe it isn’t but it still impacts your life.
“Since I experienced that myself, I think I just want to help others who are in similar situations or have it even worse. I mean, my dad always had a good job for as long as I can remember and he was never laid off. So at least when it came to money, we never suffered. There was no problem paying rent and if there was something I needed for school, it also didn’t put us in a difficult situation. If I needed more tutoring at the side, he wouldn’t even blink before he paid someone to help me out.
“But I was lucky. And after realizing this, I guess I just couldn’t ignore it. I know I can’t do much since I’m just one person but I feel like I should help somewhere. It’s not going to pay much but it’s the kind of job that somebody has to do because it’s good for everyone, you know?”
Yu Xin nodded. He came from a household with two parents with high-paying jobs and had never been lacking in resources. Originally, he hadn’t realized how privileged that made him either. It was only thanks to his older brother that he finally found out that not everyone was this lucky. So, he really admired people that were willing to make their own life harder for the sake of others. Well, he’d make sure that his sister wouldn’t suffer too much financially. That was what Yu Ting would have wanted. Speaking of which …
He turned to Mo Fang and his eyes sparkled. “Right, Xiao Fang, since you gave up modeling, weren’t you looking for something else to do? How about working together with Xiao Ya? I’m sure the two of you would make a great team!”
At that, Qiao Ya blinked her eyes. “Eh? You gave up modeling?” She hadn’t heard of that yet!