He Jichen thought maybe Ji Yi went to the restroom, so he didn't think too much of it. He nonchalantly averted his eyes towards the waitress who brought him a glass of wine before he leisurely clinked glasses with everyone in the room.
After greeting everyone, He Jichen then pulled out a chair and took a seat.
The people in the room endlessly tried to find topics to talk about with him.
He Jichen never liked these kinds of lively situations, yet it wasn't a responsibility he could avoid. Having to face each person there, he either nodded or said a few polite words in response.
He seemed evidently more distant than the friendly people around him, but that was fine. The livelier the atmosphere in the room was, the less likely it would be silent and awkward.
After a while, everyone's conversations slowly moved away from his appearance.
He Jichen used that opportunity to pull out a single cigarette, lit it up, and out of years of habit, he didn't smoke it. Instead, he put it between his fingers and every now and again, he tapped the ashes into the ashtray.
Sitting next to He Jichen was the main actor for "Three Thousand Lunatics," Lu Nan. After Lu Nan and the casting director finished their conversation, he turned his head and exchanged a few words with him every now and then.
He Jichen only listened but didn't answer.
The third time he raised his hand to flick the ashes, he looked up and scanned the people around the dining table as though he just thought of something. Then he realized that since he arrived about twenty minutes ago, Ji Yi still hadn't returned.
He Jichen furrowed his brows, shifted over to Lu Nan, interrupted his rambling on how many times he'd read "Three Thousand Lunatics" and said, "How come I haven't seen the leading actress and supporting actress yet?"
"Qian Ge left long ago since she had something to do at the last minute. The supporting actress..." Lu Nan probably forgot Ji Yi's name, so he called her by her role. As he replied to He Jichen, he looked around the room like he was looking for her. "...I didn't pay attention to her. If she's not in the room then she's probably in the restroom?"
After he said this, Lu Nan's eyes hovered over the empty seat next to He Jichen and said in astonishment, "Huh? Mr. Lin hasn't come back yet?"
What Qian Ge said in the underground parking lot suddenly wandered into He Jichen's mind. His fingers clasped onto the cigarette, and abruptly trembled for a moment as an awful feeling climbed into his heart.
He had been there for about twenty minutes now, yet the two of them hadn't shown up. It couldn't be that Qian Ge's words to Lin Zhengyi actually worked and messed up thoughts came over Lin Zhengyi?
As the smoke slowly fell, three words slipped from He Jichen's mouth practically without hesitation as though asking for confirmation, "Lin Zhengyi?"
"Yeah, Mr. Lin went to the restroom half an hour ago, but he hasn't come back yet..."
Before Lu Nan could finish, He Jichen put out the cigarette in his fingers and suddenly got up.
It was so sudden that it caught everyone's attention. Someone cried, "Mr. He?"
He Jichen ignored them and kicked the chair back as he rushed out of the private dining room.