Guo Yaning’s studio was too far from the Houhai Orphanage, and Tao Mu did not have a car. So Li Xiaoheng had to drive to pick up Tao Mu first, and the two would go back together.
During the period, Tao Mu also called his Xiao Qi Dad, apologizing for forgetting the promised dinner when he was busy with work. By the way, he also brought a friend back to dinner. Because it involved Li Xiaoheng, Tao Mu put the phone on speaker.
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The reason why dean Tao suggested that everyone go back to the orphanage to eat dumplings was to comfort Xiao Tao Mu. Everyone around Tao Mu knew of Tao Mu’s habit of forgetting to sleep and eat as soon as he started to work. If it was in normal times, they would definitely call to remind Tao Mu. But today’s situation was different. If Tao Mu could forget the bad news on the Internet because of his focus on work, it would be a good thing for everyone.
However, this kind of habit of forgetting to eat when working must be criticized.
Li Xiaoheng drove on the side. It was already eight o’clock in the evening, and they had missed the evening rush hour, so the vehicles were speeding on the streets. While driving, Li Xiaoheng secretly glanced at Tao Mu from the corner of his eye. The dazzling neon lights converged into flickering light spots, and the brilliant nightlife was reflected on Tao Mu’s face, making his outline appear more gentle and deep.
“Is dean Tao the dean of the orphanage where you stayed?” Li Xiaoheng never avoided sensitive topics when talking to Tao Mu, not because he didn’t care about Tao Mu’s mood. On the contrary, it was because he cared very much, so he was always blunt.
“I feel this dean Tao soumds like a very amiable person.”
Tao Mu smiled and said, “En. The children in our orphanage like to call her Grandma Tao.”
“I heard about what happened on the Internet.” Li Xiaoheng steered the steering wheel, turned right along the lane, and after turning the corner, he continued, “You must be very unhappy.”
Tao Mu didn’t say a word. He didn’t know what to say.
“When you are not happy, think about happy things. I have a gift for you.” Li Xiaohang suddenly changed the subject, and signaled Tao Mu to pick up the two contracts he had the lawyer prepared for a long time: “Although I say it is a gift, actually it is a reward you deserve. Just don’t blame me for presenting the Buddha with borrowed flowers.” (TN: idiom meaning to win favor or influence using someone else’s property)
What did he mean?
Tao Mu opened the folder suspiciously, then his gaze paused——it turned out to be the contract for Tao Mu becoming a business partner of Xiaoheng Capital. It clearly stated that after Tao Mu became a partner of Xiaoheng Capital, he would get 5% of the shares, belonging to technology shares.
“This is too much.” Tao Mu frowned. He didn’t finish looking through the contract and handed it back directly: “Brother Li, you don’t need to do this.”
“I think it is very necessary.” Because of the chat, Li Xiaoheng slowed down the speed of driving slightly and said: “Before you refuse, you should think about how much money you have made for Xiaoheng Capital in the international futures market in the past six months. There is an attachment in the contract. The table records the return on earnings of Xiaoheng Capital in the third and fourth quarters. We shorted oil in July and at that time, the price of oil was about 148M yuan per barrel. By now, the price of oil has fallen below 40M gold. In other words, your joining has allowed Xiaoheng Capital to increase its assets by dozens of times in just six months. Now the entire Wall Street is looking for you, the chief analyst. Don’t you think I should act first and directly recruit you over to my side, a short-selling genius, and firmly tie you to Xiaoheng Capital?”
Tao Mu became more guilty as he listened. He was well aware of his own affairs, he was not a stock market genius at all: “…..I am at most just luckier than others. Maybe if I change to another field, or in a few years, I will have no inspiration and there is no way for me to accurately predict the price trend.”
In a word, Tao Mu admitted that he did not deserve this. He originally agreed to Li Xiaoheng’s invitation to cooperate in order to make friends with the future capital boss and on the way, let his starting capital churn in the futures market a few more times. But now that Li Xiaoheng invited him to become a partner of Xiaoheng Capital, Tao Mu was a little dumbfounded. He was worried that Li Xiaoheng would find out that he was not a stock market genius after ten years, and he would become angry with him at that time. He was afraid that they wouldn’t even be able to remain friends.
Besides, about the matter of business partners, when you make money, you are naturally happy and everyone is happy, but when it came to dividing the money, once or twice was fine, but then too many times and it would be hard to guarantee that Li Xiaoheng would not feel unhappy because of the money being shared out. In particular, Tao Mu planned to focus more on the entertainment industry in the future. As for the financial market, at best, he would make some money when the market was good. It would not be like now, staring at the market constantly with regard to day or night. His body wouldn’t be able to handle it.
Li Xiaoheng might be happy making the decision now, but he might feel distressed at that time. He might feel that Tao Mu didn’t do anything, or had put limited efforts into Xiaoheng Capital, but still had to divide away such a large amount of money, and as a result his mood might feel unbalanced.
Tao Mu had seen many business partners and even relatives who had turned against each other because of money in his last life, and he never shied away from figuring out people’s hearts from the most evil angle. In order to avoid these bad things, he felt it necessary to make a clear distinction in advance. Sometimes, good positioning was more important than good work.
“Brother Li, don’t worry. I don’t know other people on Wall Street, nor can I trust them. And I think the cooperation between us is very pleasant. Even after this stint on the market, I will allocate some funds to maintain the normal operation of FlyNews while keeping the other half of the funds in Xiaoheng Capital, and you can help me take care of it. As for the financial market, no matter what you consult with me, I will tell you everything I know. But I will not put too much energy in the financial market in the future. After all, I am an actor. I will film in the future, I will set up my own studio, and possibly my own film and television company. I don’t have enough energy to pay attention to the financial market as well.”
Tao Mu’s attitude was sincere and earnest, and he did his best to dispel Li Xiaoheng’s doubts: “As for this division of shares, didn’t you hire me as your personal consultant and chief analyst? If you think my suggestions are not bad, you can follow Xiaoheng Capital’s analyst’s revenue share rewards to pay me. Just like we did before. I think this way of cooperation is already very good.”
Cooperating one time and ending it there. The price was fair, and there was sincere treatment to all.
“And I think, brother Li, you can’t completely attribute Xiaoheng Capital’s increased return in the second half of the year to me. At best, I have only done several analysis reports for you. The specific trader is you and your team. Besides, even if you didn’t have me, didn’t you also decided to go short on oil. So my existence is actually not that important.”
“No. Your existence is very important.” Li Xiaoheng ignored Tao Mu’s heart-to-heart confession, and said very solemnly: “I don’t know why you are so unduly humble. The fact is because of your existence, Xiaoheng Capital’s rate of return has been at least ten times higher than I expected. This is all your credit, and you deserve to be rewarded.”
Tao Mu smiled bitterly: “I’ve already got the reward I deserve. The money I saved in Xiaoheng Capital has been doubled dozens of times. And the income share I got is also very impressive. Add it up together and it is also $200 million, right? Converted to the Chinese yuan it is one billion. Just half a year ago, my principal was only ten million yuan.”
“I said it already. This is all deserved.” Li Xiaoheng suddenly changed the subject: “You were worried that your inspiration was limited, and you think you may not be able to accurately predict the price trend of stocks or futures in the future. Then how long do you think your inspiration will remain fresh?”
Tao Mu thought about it a little bit, and felt that this kind of thing could not be lied about——after being reborn ten years in the past, of course his inspiration would be kept fresh for ten years. If he lied and fooled Li Xiaoheng at this time, yet he himself would make big money in the financial market in the future, he was afraid that it would make Li Xiaoheng have ill-feeling. This didn’t conform to his original intention of making friends with Li Xiaoheng.
“Probably only ten years.” Tao Mu hesitated and told the truth.
“Then fine. Our partnership will be changed to a ten-year period. Within ten years, you will be a partner of Xiaoheng Capital and enjoy a 5% share of the revenue you deserve. Ten years later, we will base it on your performance to decide whether to continue the contract. During this period, all you need to do is to call me at least three times a week. Or meet once to discuss in detail our various views on the financial market.”
Li Xiaoheng spoke concisely: “You won’t refuse such a decision, will you?”
Tao Mu smiled bitterly when he heard this, and said frankly: “Brother Li, in fact, you don’t need to be like this. We are friends. If you have anything to consult with me, I will tell you everything I know. Xiaoheng Capital is your painstaking hard work, and I also have my own career. I think for the sake of our long-term friendship, we had better not get too involved in each other’s career.”
In Tao Mu’s view, a quick deal was the best state of cooperation.
“On the contrary.” Li Xiaoheng said: “I think friends should be open and honest with each other, and have a clear distinction of interests. In fact, your mindset is easy to lead into trouble. As the saying goes, inequality rather than want is the cause of trouble. If I always ask you for advice in the future on financial matters, and because of this, I have made huge profits, but am not willing to share it with you and even delay your own serious business because of this. Will you still be as willing as you are now?”
Nonsense, this was the future capital boss. He was already eager to hug the golden thigh, how could it be possible to blame the boss for not giving him money.
Tao Mu’s two-life experience made him accustomed to the mode of giving first and then asking for something in return. Especially when working with bigwigs, he would rather his interests suffer a bit in the beginning than for the other person’s heart to have ill-feeling towards him. He had always been someone who had no problem making compromises for his purpose. No matter who he was working with, Tao Mu was accustomed to letting the other party see the profit first and taste the sweetness first.
However, Li Xiaoheng’s acting style was different from that of most people he had met. Li Xiaoheng had studied in M country for many years, and he had set up his own career in the working atmosphere of Wall Street where people squandered money like dirt or haggled over every cent. He had become accustomed to the cooperation model of “depending on how much you help me, I will give you equal repayment”. He liked to handle everything, including feelings, in a clear and organized manner. He also knew what an inspired financial genius meant to an ambitious financial institution that was on the rise——it was a priceless treasure whose value could not be calculated by simple addition and subtraction.
It was not that 1+1=2, but a wonderful evolution of 1+1= at least greater than one hundred. This time, the performance in the international oil futures market had perfectly confirmed this.
Li Xiaoheng knew Tao Mu’s abilities well, so he would not do the kind of stupid thing such as “exchanging friendship for profits”. Not to mention that this stupid approach was not in line with his style of doing things, and just to discuss matters, he did not want to exchange his friendship with Tao Mu for profits. Even if it was a huge profit, it was not enough to buy the friendship between them.
Or in other words, Li Xiaoheng clearly had a method that satisfied all demands. Not only could he satisfy his expression of appreciation and reward for Tao Mu, but it could also further win over Tao Mu and tie this little genius firmly to Xiaoheng Capital. So why must he consume the friendship between the two, and take great risks to try that model of one man’s loss being another man’s gain when getting along with each other.
“If you are unwilling to accept this invitation and share in fees due to our relationship, then how will I have the face to talk to you about the financial market from time to time?” Li Xiaoheng slowly tempted Tao Mu and described to Tao Mu what might possibly happen in the future according to Tao Mu’s method: “I will be too embarrassed to look for you from time to time, and dare not call you when I encounter a problem——after all, you just said that you will put more energy on your acting career in the future and that you have to devote yourself to the entertainment industry and run your own business. Then if I call you, I will have to consider whether you are free, and will my call cause trouble with your work? When this happens too much, maybe it will delay our time to deal with business matters and maybe our friendship will even cool down as time goes by.”
Li Xiaoheng’s eyes were very sharp, and he had already spotted Tao Mu’s desire to make friends with him. The direction of his persuasion immediately shifted from the discussion of etiquette to the long-term relationship between the two. The so-called attacking the heart barrier, he felt that Tao Mu seemed to care more about the friendship between them.
This little discovery really made his happy.
Tao Mu found that the ability to trick and persuade investors he was so proud of when used in front of Li Xiaoheng seemed not to work as well. This future financial tycoon seemed to have better negotiating skills than him. At least after this conversation, he actually felt that there was nothing wrong with Li Xiaoheng’s statement. He really should accept this partner’s invitation and this generous revenue share.
“Perhaps brother Li, you are right.” Tao Mu said this, and suddenly felt that his refusal just now seemed particularly pretentious.
——It was estimated that brother Li was likely already slandering in his heart about his dawdling and indecisiveness.
Tao Mu also vehemently reflected on his mentality that he couldn’t help but worry about gains and losses every time he met a bigwig. He felt that he could not continue to be like this——after all, he would be a bigwig from now on as well.
While Tao Mu shamelessly fantasized, he also decisively signed his name on the contracts, and then accepted his copy of the contract.
Li Xiaoheng was very pleased to see Tao Mu’s actions. While waiting for the red light, he couldn’t help reaching out and touching Tao Mu’s head, and said with a warm smile: “Now that’s a good boy.”
Tao Mu was stunned for an instant, and his whole person looked dazedly at Li Xiaoheng, as if he was an alpaca whose three views had been greatly shocked.
Li Xiaoheng forcibly suppressed the corners of his mouth that was about to rise, and forcibly pressed his eager paws on the steering wheel. The two fell silent, one focused on driving, and the other silently looking out of the car window. However, the atmosphere in the car had become inexplicably relaxed and warm.
When the two finally arrived at the orphanage, it was almost half past nine in the evening.
Dean Tao and the children of the orphanage, as well as Liu Yao, Meng Qi, Gou Rixin, Qin Miaoru, and Da Mao and Xiao Pang had already finished their dinner. Hearing the noise of a car at the door, a large crowd of people swarmed out. Their eyes were dazzled by the low-key, luxurious and self-possessed Maybach that was parked in the alley, and only then did they notice Tao Mu and Li Xiaoheng who got out of the car.
Da Mao and Xiao Pang both startled, and immediately thought of the meal they had together back in H Town, as if they could still feel that fear of being dominated by a stern and dull parent. In their hearts they inexplicably rejoiced, fortunately, they had finished their dinner already, otherwise the meal would be really impossible to eat.
Liu Yao and Meng Qi also remembered Mr. Li who spoke justice for them during the out of court settlement. They instantly smiled and said: “It turned out to be CEO Li. I also mentioned to them, I wonder what friend Xiao Mu will bring back.” They had all guessed before that it might be Guo Yaning, after all, Tao Mu went to shoot the MV for Guo Yaning. The large group of fans and movie fans who had never seen A-list superstars in person were quite excited for a while. Byt who knew thay Tao Mu came back and didn’t bring that charming star. Instead, he brought a grown man who was almost 1.9 meters tall and looked like a Wall Street elite.
Qin Miaoru and the others who didn’t know the identity of Li Xiaoheng curled their lips subtly, and could hardly hide their disappointment. Of course, even if they knew the identity of Li Xiaoheng, they would probably still regret that the person Tao Mu brought back was not a big star.
Although in real life, the power of capital was much greater than that of celebrities. However, in the minds of ordinary people, it was estimated that the presence of stars was more eye-catching.
After all, the dazzling brilliance of stars could wash their eyes, but the money in the capitalists’ pockets would not be shared with them.
The group of particularly realistic friends gathered around Tao Mu and his friend and ushered them into the orphanage. Dean Tao went to cook the dumplings herself and said with a smile: “Tonight’s dumplings are stuffed with leek, shrimp, and egg, and stuffed with green pepper, cabbage and pork. I wonder if Mr. Li has any diet restrictions?”
Li Xiaoheng glanced at Tao Mu, then said with a smile, “I can eat anything.”
Tao Mu said, “Dean, you should still cook in two pots. Brother Li may not eat leeks.” He at least had a few meals with Li Xiaoheng, but he never saw him eat leeks before.
Not only leeks, but also all the strongly flavored ingredients such as onion, ginger and garlic, Li Xiaoheng didn’t eat much of them either. Although Li Xiaoheng ate garlic lobster and garlic scallops.
So Tao Mu inferred that Li Xiaoheng was not unable to eat these heavy-tasting spices, maybe he just didn’t like them.
But Tao Mu himself liked to eat dumplings stuffed with leeks and garlic, and occasionally ordered two skewers of roasted garlic cloves when he went out to eat barbecue. His extremely serious idol baggage was always so unprincipled when it came to eating.
This point was also laughed at by Wen Bao and the others.
Thinking of this, Tao Mu realized that he had forgotten to call Wen Bao and the others. In the afternoon, Tao Mu was busy taking pictures of Guo Yaning and had muted the phone. Later, when he saw a series of missed calls, he adjusted the ringtone back easily, but forgot to return the calls.
Wen Bao probably guessed that Tao Mu might be busy, and they didn’t call Tao Mu afterwards. Now it was a bit late——
Tao Mu checked the time, and it was already 10pm. Don’t know if the three roommates were asleep or not.
Tao Mu thought about it for a while, and dialed Du Kang, who often stayed up late to play games. After less than two rings, it was picked up: “Oh, Xiao Mu? Where are you now? Do you need us brothers to accompany you? Wanna go eat barbecue? I’ll treat you.”
Du Kang was the cheapest among the four guys in their dormitory. Let him treat others once, and it would be a huge loss of blood for him. In order to force him to treat them to a meal, Wen Bao and Chu Sui’an had piled on top of him on the bed to extract a promise but even that was still ineffective. This time, Du Kang actually offered to treat him, apparently in order to comfort Tao Mu, who was very unlucky recently.
Tao Mu smiled slightly: “I’m fine. I’m eating dumplings in the orphanage. Do you want to come together?”
Today was Saturday and tomorrow was Sunday. There were no classes anyway. Du Kang discussed it with the other two roommates and said: “Okay. We’ll go there now. We’ll just stay at Grandpa Song’s house for the night. Let’s play Mahjong all night?”
Even though he would be filming the MV for the big star tomorrow, Tao Mu still smiled and said, “Okay. Come on over. Call me when you arrive at the alley and I will pick you up.”
You c an fi nd t he la te st cha pte rs at ( th e ir on tr ee bl oo ms. c o m )
After hanging up the phone, Tao Mu returned the missed calls to Yun Yi, Long Tianao and others one by one. Yun Yi was on duty and couldn’t make it, and the rest, such as Long Tianao and others, loved to join in the fun. In the end, the people invited over grew more and more, and it was really not too far from becoming a party.
However, Tao Mu was probably the first one to have a dumpling party in an orphanage.
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