Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 401
“Huh? What’s going on, here?”
Staying out of the way by the side of the road, Leila and the others watched what was happening in shock.
A veritable fleet of expensive cars lined outside the karaoke bar. A throng of people swarmed about the place.
“Something must have happened! Gosh… could it be that rascal Gerald’s gotten in over his head?” Douglas wondered aloud.
“Must be. I mean, who else in Serene County could stir up this much of a fuss? I should’ve known better than to bring that guy here, no matter what anyone said. Now look at this mess: The moment something major goes down, we’re gonna get dragged into it—Mr Lourdes knows very well he’s with us!” The guys whispered amongst themselves, their outlook seemed bleak.
Cindy had gone pale, hearing their words. If what they said was true, then Gerald’s life might be in extreme danger!
No, she had to go in and see for herself. If things were really that bad, she’d call the cops! Thinking thusly, Cindy threw open the car door and ran for the karaoke bar.
Gerald had left a good impression on Cindy. They’d only just met, so it was still too soon to talk about any real feelings between them… but she just felt that he was a really nice guy, down-to-earth. What’s more, in order to save everybody, he’d taken the whole thing onto himself.
Abandoning him without a second thought, like Leila and the others had done… that was something Cindy simply couldn’t do. She couldn’t just sit this one out.
“Cindy, are you crazy? Get back here!” Leila had gotten out of the car as well, shrieking hysterically.
Cindy was her best friend. Leila couldn’t allow her to do this. Seized by terror, she chased after her, desperate to stop her.
As for Douglas and the rest, they remained right there inside the car, just smoking and keeping watch from afar.
“Holy hell, it’s a bloody mess in there! I don’t know who Mr Lourdes pissed off, but he’s been beaten to a pulp!”
“Anyone else wants to go next? Oh, the horror… but what a twist! Mr Lourdes thought he was the biggest cheese around—never imagined he’d bump into someone even more powerful than him… ahahaha!”
Some young men and women passed by in front of Cindy, chattering noisily about what had happened. Overhearing them, first she was shocked by the news of Mr Lourdes’ tragedy…
But what about Gerald?
Anxiously, Cindy stopped them to ask about the situation within. This allowed Leila to catch up.
Aroused by the sight of these two ravishing beauties, the guys scrambled to recount what had happened back at the bar.
“Hey, babes… I guess you weren’t there, so you wouldn’t know—but of course you’ve heard of Mr Louie Lourdes, the richest kid in all Serene County!” One of the guys was so excited he was sputtering. “Just now, a whole gang of black-clad bodyguards beat him within an inch of his life! Totally brutal, and I hear they’re from Mayberry City! Just take a look at all these cars they brought here! Incredible!”
The other guys were eager to contribute as well:
“As for Louie, when he started shouting for someone to get Big Dolph over here, I thought the tables had turned, you know? I was expecting Louie would clean all their clocks out! But when Big Dolph arrived, he was suddenly bowing and scraping for those two, offering them smokes and drinks… Mr Lourdes’ face was a nasty sight, then!”
“The other big players in the room all knew whose side to take, then!”
“But I’m not asking about Louie Lourdes!” Cindy wailed. “I’m asking if there was some other young man who also got hurt! Did Louie… hack up some other guy in there?”
“Huh? Some other guy? Well, Louie and someone he called ‘Uncle’ caught a bloody good thrashing… but no, no one else was hurt… Oh! Louie’s own bodyguards were knocked out cold instantly—but I wouldn’t have called any of them a ‘young man’…”
“How could this be? What about Gerald? Is there any possibility you might have made a mistake?” Leila blurted out in disbelief. “Are you absolutely sure the one who got roughed up was Louie Lourdes?”
“Of course! We’ve all seen his picture before!” Hooting and jeering, the group wandered off.
“Does this mean… Gerald’s alright?” A massive weight in Cindy’s heart was suddenly eased—but then she added, “But why would all these wealthy people suddenly turn on Louie? Leila… do you think Gerald might have summoned them to his aid?”
Thinking back, she’d just remembered how, as Gerald was clearing the way for them to escape, he’d also said something about calling his own people to come deal with Louie.
Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 402
He’d meant summoning people to help fight Louie Lourdes.
At that time, Cindy hadn’t paid much thought about it. She’d assumed Gerald was just stalling for time.
But right here right now, were a whole horde of people whom, sure enough, had attacked and vanquished Louie.
What Cindy was suggesting sent a tremor through Leila’s entire body.
“Impossible! That guy? I don’t know much about him, but isn’t he just some penniless loser? How could he have so many rich and powerful friends? Don’t you fall for his nonsense, Cindy!”
Heaven’s sake! If it turned out to be true… Leila might as well just ram her head against the nearest wall.
But no, haha, it was simply not possible!
Leila turned to gesture for everyone back in the car to come over and join them, where she then shared with them what had been learned. Everyone was gobsmacked by the news that Louie had been wiped out clean. They gazed with admiration at the magnificent cars lining up along the street outside the karaoke bar.
“Look! Isn’t that Gerald?” Glancing around, Leila suddenly spotted him in the Western restaurant next door, dining at the window seat.
For a moment, she doubted her own eyes.
“It can’t be… no, but it really is him!” Douglas was every bit as stupefied.
Everyone had been convinced that Gerald was dead meat. Instead, he was in a fine restaurant nearby, sitting at their premier table?
This… how… what…
“Gerald’s okay after all! Leila, maybe he was really telling the truth! Maybe all these guys really did come here to back him up! Maybe Gerald really is friends with lots of rich people!” Cindy seemed delighted by this.
“No way, no way! I refuse to believe it!” Leila was stamping her feet in agitation. “Douglas, we’re going over there to get to the bottom of this. Anyway, can you believe that tramp can afford that class of fine dining?”
Someone she held so much contempt for, turned out to be someone so amazing? That would be a right slap to the face!
“Right! Let’s get over there! You, send the drunk ones home first!” Douglas issued this command to one of the boys, ignoring the fact that he wasn’t completely sober himself.
Earlier, quite a few of the guys had downed an entire bottle. Now the alcohol was running its course, and some were no longer able to stay on their feet.
Douglas himself had quite a high tolerance—and anyway, he couldn’t bear to walk away from such a momentous affair, so he would just grit his teeth and bear it.
Leila and Cindy were by his side as he walked straight into that restaurant.
In the grip of a terrible rage, Leila stormed across the floor. “Gerald, do my eyes deceive me? So it really is you… Huh! You came into a place like this, but ordered nothing, just sitting here… Don’t tell me you just slipped out from there, and just needed some place to sit down?”
She’d been a little worried—worried that Gerald might actually turn out to be someone of wealth and influence. However, now that she was standing at his table, she was able to breathe a sigh of relief.
Most likely, he’d only ducked in here to find shelter.
“Leila, perhaps you’re not aware of how exclusive this restaurant is. It’s considered a first-class establishment, with their main branch based in Mayberry. Common folk generally don’t dare to trespass in here—so you could hardly have found a safer hiding place, Gerald! Hahaha!” Douglas added his own mocking comments to the mix.
Gerald just sat there mutely.
Back in that karaoke room, when his bodyguards were giving it to Louie and his grunts, Gerald had watched for a while, but then lost interest.
It was enough just to teach that fool a lesson. There was no reason for him to hang around. That sort of thing wasn’t his style.
Anyway, he hadn’t had much to eat for lunch earlier, so by now he was starving, and had come out looking for a bite to eat.
But after he’d placed his order, and was taking a moment to contemplate how he’d handle things from here on out…
… Unexpectedly, Leila and company had come charging back into the fray.
What was this? Hadn’t he gotten rid of them already? Gerald couldn’t even begin to imagine how he’d explain himself now.
At the corner of his eye, he saw six restaurant staff form into a line, trays of food in their hands. And then, they began making their way towards Gerald…
Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 403
“Excuse me, miss!” The waitress in the lead smiled at Leila, who stared with mouth gaping wide as a feast was laid out upon the table before Gerald.
“Huh? What?” Leila stuttered for a moment, then exclaimed, “Hey, hey, hey! There must be some mistake—you’ve got the wrong table!”
Anyone could tell that it was a sumptuous meal worth a small fortune—at least five hundred dollars or more—and it was meant for Gerald?
Leila had always held him in contempt as a man with nothing to his name. One time, she’d let slip that their fathers had been arranging for them to be married, and it had made her a complete laughing stock.
“Hey, Leila! Somewhere on a far away farm, your fiancé’s waiting for you!” She could still see those mocking grins vividly at the back of her mind.
It had been the greatest source of misery in her life. She never spoke of it, but it was always on her mind. As a symbol of her humiliation, she utterly despised Gerald Crawford.
And yet, Gerald was eating so well right now…
“How could there be any mistake? Mr Crawford here ordered our most expensive menu, prepared by the hand of a master chef from France! It costs a thousand dollars in total!” The waitress offered her another sunny smile, then bowed to Gerald, and left him to his meal.
“What? One thousand dollars!” Leila stood stunned. Never had she ever indulged in such luxury!
“Gerald, what are you up to? No one’s poorer than you, and yet you’re burning money like nobody’s business… French cuisine? Are you out of your mind? Have you never thought about taking that one thousand bucks and doing something useful with it?” Leila harangued him acidly.
“That’s right, that’s right,” Douglas joined in. “The poor sure like to act like they’ve got money to spend! Who am I, and who are you? My handphone costs as much as this meal you’re eating here! Did what happened just now scare the wits out of you?”
Truth be told, here in Serene County, a five-hundred-dollar smartphone was a substantial status symbol—but Douglas was one step up: With his thousand-dollar phone, it showed that he was really somebody.
But now, it was nothing more than the price of one meal for Gerald. No one would take this without comment.
“Gerald, it’s not that we’re trying to make you feel bad… But wouldn’t it be better to take this money and buy yourself some nice clothes, or a decent phone, or maybe some kind of makeover… Instead, you’re just… urgh!” Leila shook her head at him in disgust.
Compared to Douglas, whether in terms of manners or intellect, Gerald fell far short.
Bzzt! Gerald’s phone was vibrating. He pulled it out for a quick glance. It was an unknown number calling.
Leila and Douglas stared with eyes as wide as the plates on the table.
Due to the awkwardness of the current situation, Gerald didn’t take the call. Terminating the connection, he tried to shove the phone back into his pocket.
At the end of the day, she was still Uncle Jung’s daughter, and he shouldn’t cause her too much offence.
“Hold it right there! Let me see that phone!” Seized by a sudden frenzy, Leila snatched it over, and murmured, “This model, it’s…”
“It’s the latest model to hit the market, four thousand and five hundred dollars apiece. This is your phone, Gerald?” Besides Leila and Douglas, even Cindy was shocked to see it.
“Haha, I borrowed that from a classmate! Just for appearances, you know!” Gerald disparaged himself.
“Hmph! Tell the truth, or else!” Cindy rolled her eyes at him. “Don’t you think I can’t tell that this belongs to you?”
Leila was no longer able to speak, now.
How could this be possible? The man she hated so… how could he be… Did this mean all those guys back there had truly been summoned here by him?
“Alright, alright… it’s just a phone. You guys were only drinking back there—you haven’t had anything to eat… How about I treat you all to some French cuisine?” Gerald attempted to change the topic with everything at his disposal.
“Oh, that sounds good! I’m famished—and I’ve never had a thousand-dollar French banquet before! Hahaha! This will be your treat, Gerald!”
Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 404
Stony-faced, Leila snapped, “Cindy! Have you forgotten what you came here to ask about? And, and… weren’t you so worried about Gerald, just a moment ago? Aren’t you curious why he’s unscathed?”
“Oh, right! Gosh, in my excitement I quite forgot. Gerald, tell us. How are you still in one piece? And are all those guys outside your people?”
“Indeed… how am I still in one piece?” Gerald answered dumbly.
“We’re asking you!” Leila frowned, glaring at Gerald.
Then Gerald clapped a hand to his forehead. “Oh, I remember now. Just as I was about to come to blows with Louie, the patrons from next door burst into the room, and maybe they had some kind of grudge against Louie, because everyone started fighting on sight! In all that chaos, I managed to slip away.” Gerald finished with a laugh.
Leila was so mad that words failed her.
Gerald was obviously lying. Slipped away? Like, out of the karaoke bar… and into the restaurant next door, for a spot of fine dining? Who’d believe you!
Ah, forget it! She was too angry now, too agitated!
“Why don’t the two of you stay for dinner, too? It’ll be my treat, okay?” Gerald said pleasantly to Leila.
To be honest, seeing the mouth-watering feast that had been served, Leila felt extraordinarily tempted. All girls are gluttons, aren’t they?
But with the way things were between Gerald and her, how could she accept?
What about her pride?
“Hmph! No need—if we wanted to eat, we’d order something ourselves!” Folding her arms, Leila glanced towards Douglas.
Oh, how she wanted to order something.
Douglas peeked into his wallet. A thousand bucks per pax… he’d started the night with a thousand five hundred on each person. He’d picked up the tab for karaoke earlier, to the tune of a whopping one thousand and two hundred dollars. There was no way he could afford to whip out another couple thousands for an impromptu feast…
His family held influence—but not so much affluence…
“Um, well… Perhaps next time, Leila. My treat! It’s just… I’ve had too much to drink tonight!”
“You…” Leila could also tell that it was beyond his means.
She sighed wretchedly. Douglas felt the same.
They stood up to leave, but as they turned to go, they ended up knocking over a vase of flowers on a side table.
With a crash, the vase shattered on the floor.
Ah, crap! Douglas froze. A moment later, a waitress hurried into view, having heard the noise.
“Sir, this vase…” she began in a whisper.
“Just a bunch of lousy flowers, barely worth looking at. I’ll pay for them, alright? Here, one hundred. Is that enough?” Fishing out a hundred-dollar bill, he slapped it down on the table.
How’s that for cool?
He glanced at his woman. “Leila, let’s get out of here!”
Swooning for him all of a sudden, Leila nodded submissively.
“Hold a moment, sir!”
“What’s the matter?”
“That was an artistic flower arrangement… Rather than a hundred dollars, it’s worth a thousand five hundred!” The waitress declared with a smile.
Douglas was paralyzed on the spot. “What? A thousand five hundred?”
Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 405
“That’s right, sir. One thousand and five hundred dollars!” The waitress beamed.
Douglas’s face was a sight to behold. At first, he’d thought to just toss down a hundred bucks, and then swagger out of there. He’d never expected that bunch of flowers to be worth so much!
If he called his father over to make some noise…
No, that wouldn’t do. This restaurant chain was owned by a powerful figure over at Mayberry. Whatever clout his family had counted for nothing in here!
But neither did he have a thousand five hundred on him right now!
“Hmph. So it’s a thousand five, so what? No big deal!” Leila sneered. She was this close to slapping the money in that waitress’s face.
Gerald was watching. No matter what, she had to have the last word in this!
Leila glanced towards Douglas. He’d definitely be able to do something about this!
Patting his pockets, he leaned in close to whisper to her, “I’ve only got a few hundred left on me… I can’t pay!”
“Ah?” Leila had been expecting Douglas to still have around a thousand left, just like her. That way, they’d be able to pool their money and fumble their way out of this mess somehow… but he barely had any cash on him at all!
Now, this was embarrassing…
Gerald hadn’t planned to get involved, until he saw them whispering furtively amongst themselves, and realized that Douglas was probably broke. “Hey, waitress! Add it to my bill! I’ll pay in their stead for now!”
Leila was wearing an absolutely hideous expression on her face right then.
Although those two had been very rude to him, Gerald nevertheless couldn’t bear to see Leila caught in such a plight. Anyway, when they’d encountered each other again earlier, he’d mentioned something about counting on him in case of any trouble—that was why he spoke up now.
“Hmph! Douglas doesn’t need your money! He’s got friends, you know?” Leila snapped.
But who was going to lend Douglas a thousand five on short notice? What’s more, his dad would hear about it, sooner or later… and then he’d be in for it.
This was his way out. He’d be a fool not to take it.
“Alright, Gerald!” Douglas said. “Just cover for me this time, and I’ll pay you back tomorrow!”
“No problem—but you’ll have to write me an IOU!” Gerald chuckled.
The waitress produced pen and paper for them.
His face a portrait of misery, Douglas nevertheless wrote out that IOU and presented it to Gerald.
Then he took back that hundred-dollar bill on the side table, and stuffed it back into his wallet, before making his escape with Leila.
Outside, Douglas decided to get back at Gerald a little. “Hmph! Leila, it would have been silly not to take advantage of that fool, back there! I’ve been disgraced in front of him this time, but heh! When he comes calling for me to pay back that IOU, well, fat chance! It’s not like that worm’s got any kind of clout!”
Hearing him speak like this, Leila felt like she didn’t even know who he was anymore. Was this really the man she’d taken as her boyfriend?
What a piece of trash!
That’s what Douglas looked like to her right now. There was a time when Leila used to believe that money wasn’t the most important thing. Having been raised in the lap of luxury, she’d never wanted for money herself. As such, she’d decided that she needn’t find a boyfriend who was totally loaded—as long as he could treat her to a little something once in a while, that’d be fine!
Douglas was well-connected, and had an amazing job, so he’d been her preferred choice. After all, everywhere he went, people looked up to him.
However, after what had happened today in that restaurant, Leila’s worldview had been changed completely.
Someone who could give her a little treat, once in a while? Forget that! Without money, they wouldn’t even be able to get anything worth eating!
Leila wanted to be at that table with Gerald right now, partaking in that sumptuous feast—but Douglas couldn’t afford it.
He couldn’t even afford to pay for a broken vase of flowers.
Someone had bailed him out, and now he was plotting revenge against that someone.
Was this her type of guy? Leila shook her head.
“Leila, come on! I’ll drive you home!”
Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 406
Douglas called out to her, but Leila replied, “That’s alright. You go on without me. I’ll find my own ride home!” With that, she hailed a passing cab, and departed—leaving Douglas dumbfounded by the side of the road.
He already knew what was wrong—and he blamed Gerald for it!
Some time later, Gerald and Cindy finished their meal together, and exchanged their contact numbers. Then he called for a cab to send her home.
Gerald stepped into the karaoke bar next door to have a look. Everyone had left, and the bar had closed for the night.
He hadn’t expected this to be such an eventful day. He was exhausted.
Hailing a cab for himself, he returned to the hotel where he was staying. The moment he stepped into his room, his phone rang again. It was that unknown caller who’d tried to reach him while he was at the restaurant earlier.
Who could it be? Curious, Gerald took the call.
“Gerald, what’s going on? Why didn’t you pick up?” It was a lovely, feminine voice. Gerald was taken aback when he recognized who was speaking.
“Giya? It was you calling?” he exclaimed, baffled.
It had been half a month since term break started. Gerald had spent most of this time in the hospital looking after Mr Winters. Perhaps because of what had happened on the first day of term break, Giya hadn’t spoken to him at all since.
Gerald had been thinking that it was just as well. And so, they’d severed contact with each other.
He hadn’t been expecting to get a call from her.
“Hmph. Surprised? I’m calling you from the landline phone in my room. So what am I to make of you not contacting me all this while? Are we not friends anymore?” Giya grumbled.
“Nothing like that… I’m just shocked that you called me!” Gerald responded wryly.
“And just what’s wrong with me calling you?” Giya asked teasingly.
“Well, I’m not some rich guy… just a poor loser with no money!”
“I won’t allow you to talk about yourself like that!” she snapped.
“It’s true! Most girls say that about me!”
“Most girls. I’ve never looked down on you—if anything, I think more of you than all those rich brats. I know you were only treating me that way for the sake of your girlfriend. If not for her, you’d be much nicer to me, isn’t that so?”
“Something like that…” For lack of anything better to say.
Truth be told, a girl like Giya, gorgeous and charismatic, with a heart of gold… Any man would be lucky to have her as their girlfriend.
But Gerald already had Mila. Though he admired Giya… it wasn’t like that.
“Was there some reason you called me?” Gerald inquired.
“I can’t call you without a reason? Well then… No, no reason! Hang up, won’t you?” Giya’s tone was sharp as a knife.
Doot… doot… doot…
As instructed, Gerald hung up. A moment later, she called back.
“What the hell? Why did you do that? You’re killing me, here! Look, something’s come up, alright? Something big!”
“What is it?”
“I’ll pay you a visit tomorrow at your place—and then I’ll need to stay for a few days. Is that cool? Hello, Gerald? Can you hear me?”
Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 407
“What was that?” Gerald couldn’t believe his ears.
Stay a few days, at his place? How would he be cool with that? He talked to Mila every day, and on that note: He was spoken for right now—just that his girlfriend was abroad at present—and yet he’d be living together with another woman?
Even if the rest of the world was cool with it, Gerald certainly wasn’t! What madness was this?
“No way, forget it!” he answered.
“Oh… haha, it’s alright… I thought someone would be willing to help me, but I get it now…” Giya’s voice was barely more than a whisper.
“Has something happened over there?” Gerald asked, intrigued.
Come to think of it, Giya was hardly the sort of girl to suddenly run off to crash at some guy’s place for a few days without rhyme or reason. Had she fallen for him?
Hah! As though Gerald thought that highly of himself… He was only asking out of curiosity.
After a pause, Giya suddenly announced, “I’m getting engaged!”
“Oh, congratula—” As Gerald began to respond to this, he suddenly realized there had been something odd in her tone. Changing tack, he instead tried, “That’s wonderful news! Who’s the lucky fellow?”
“Yacob Lincoln. My dad’s business has recently hit some rough waters, so he’s hoping to win the patronage of the Lincoln family to help us get through this. Meanwhile, Yacob’s been after my hand, and when his dad brought up the subject of us getting married… well, Yacob’s dad helped save my mom, too—so my dad said yes! Now I’m engaged to Yacob!
“But I don’t want to be engaged to anyone, you know? This whole thing feels like a nightmare! I had so many plans… I didn’t think I’d even consider marriage until I was thirty! But here I am, not even finished with university yet, and already engaged to somebody—somebody I don’t like! I just don’t know what I should do!”
“I’m looking for a place to hide—but Yacob knows all my friends, and he’ll definitely be able to find me through them—that’s why I came to you, but you’re leaving me out to dry!” Somewhere along the way, Giya had started sobbing.
Gerald felt he more or less understood, now. Indeed, it was a heavy burden for anyone to have to bear. Furthermore, it wasn’t as though her predicament had nothing at all to do with him…
After all, when Giya’s mother was saved, the one behind it had actually been Gerald. He’d kept quiet about that, in order to minimize his involvement with Giya.
Turns out, the Lincolns had taken full credit for it, and had been holding it over Giya’s family. In that sense, it was also Gerald’s fault that Giya had now been forced into her current dilemma!
So, now what?
It was obvious that Giya was seeking asylum somewhere—and that, by running away from home, she hoped to apply pressure upon her father. That was why she’d sought him out.
If he turned her away, would she be forced into that marriage, after all? To be perfectly honest, a girl like Giya falling into the clutches of a guy like Yacob, it was akin to feeding caviar to pigs. Even Gerald himself considered it a crime against nature.
If he agreed to help her… how would he explain it to Mila?
But he already knew that he’d never forgive himself for abandoning Giya now. He’d planted these seeds himself—now he had to reap the harvest!
“Alright, you can come stay with me,” Gerald said, “But I’m not at my family home—I’m staying in the city. Also… Once this matter has been settled, out you go!”
Since he was the one to blame for all this, it naturally fell to him to resolve the problem. The solution was simple: He’d reveal his true identity! Problem solved.
It would be okay to let Giya come over, because he had it all planned out.
Giya was jubilant. “Alright! You got it! Thanks, Gerald! You’re the best! Don’t worry, I’m only doing this to give my daddy a scare! Once he annuls the engagement, we’ll be in the clear!”
After the call ended, Gerald had some thoughts about the nature of impropriety.
Well, too late for regrets—he’d already said yes!
Anyway, he was renting a suite here, which was convenient for having guests over—besides taking care of Mr Winters, he also had to meet with Zack Lyle and the others regularly. It wasn’t merely a one-bedded room.
Gerald had decided to drop the ruse with Giya, and let her know who he really was!
First thing the next morning, Giya arrived by train. Gerald drove to the station in his Mercedes-Benz G500 to get her. If not because he’d left it behind at the Mountain Top Villa, he would have taken his Lamborghini instead.
If he was going to reveal his big secret to her, as part of helping to resolve this matter, Gerald was sure that all he needed to do was show off a little.
Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 408
He parked the 4WD outside the train station. As expected, it attracted a lot of attention. There were even some girls coming over to snap pictures on their phones.
After all, this was a car that cost over three hundred thousand dollars!
“Oh, wow! A G500 here in Serene County? Who’s inside? Must be some rich kid!”
“Gosh… Hey, how do I look? What if he gets off the car, and falls for me at first sight? What will I do?”
“Hahaha! Get over yourself!”
“Girls, let’s go over there and say hi!”
The girls whispered amongst themselves, giggling out loud every so often.
Just then, an old woman of eighty approached the girls and said, “Whoever owns that car must be loaded, I guess?”
“Of course! The G500 goes for over three hundred thousand dollars! What’s up, grandma? Hoping to catch a big fish? He’s probably some young lordling, though…” The girls chortled with laughter.
“So what if I’m old? I’ve still got just as much right to flirt around. Hmph!” the old woman replied flippantly.
Saying so, she began to hobble towards the car. The girls followed after her.
A crowd was growing outside the train station. More and more people were gathering to look.
Inside the car, Gerald sucked in a deep breath. This should be the first time he’d ever made such a show of himself.
He’d always kept a low profile before this. He admitted to some excitement over the occasional moment in the limelight.
How would he describe these feelings? He’d been waiting three years for a moment like this. He was going to make a statement—not about how great he was, but about how he was going to get back everything he’d lost!
Gerald put on his sunglasses, and withdrew the car keys from the ignition.
Time to make his debut.
Wham! When he opened the door, he seemed to hit something. A moment later, there was a cry of agony.
A white-haired old woman was sprawled across the ground outside, her cane still rolling away from her.
Good heavens! Gerald stared in shock.
“Young man, ahh… I hope your car’s alright…” the old woman mumbled in fright, still prone on the ground.
“What’s happened here?” Someone arrived on the scene immediately. The crowd surged forward.
“Hah! What do you think happened? When that young man opened his door, he knocked that old woman down—but I saw that she was lying in wait beforehand… and rushed forward just as he was getting out! It’s a scam!”
“So that’s how it is!”
But other onlookers continued to arrive, ignorant of what had really happened.
“Goodness, how could that guy be so careless? Repairing a G500 is gonna cost an arm and a leg!” someone remarked.
Annoyed, Gerald stepped out of the car to help the old woman to her feet.
“Don’t touch me! It’s no concern of yours! I fell down all by myself!” the old woman wept. “I live all alone by myself, no sons or daughters… I simply can’t pay you back for your car!”
“Hmph! Don’t you worry, ma’am! Being rich doesn’t make him untouchable! Even a rich man has to pay for injuring somebody! He opened the door and knocked you down, isn’t that right? Rest assured, ma’am—we’ll get you justice!” There were some hot-blooded youths, hollering with fury.
Soon, the police arrived on the scene, and dispersed the crowd.
Although the old woman had tried to set him up, it couldn’t be denied that he’d knocked her down with his own hand. She was sent to the hospital, and Gerald was brought to the police station so they could take down a statement from him, that sort of thing.
Gerald was on the verge of tears. Why was any of this happening?
It took forty minutes to settle everything. Gerald even gave some money to the old woman.
Leaving the police station, he got a call from Giya: “Didn’t you say you’d be picking me up from the station? Where are you?”
“Oh! I’m on my way right now!” Gerald spluttered.
“Forget it! I’m already in a cab, heading to your place!”
Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 409
“Gerald, I bought these fruits for you. I’ve already washed them, so come over and eat them!”
Giya set a tray of fruits down upon the coffee table, then took an apple herself and began munching on it as she watched the television.
Rather than a runaway fiancée escaping an arranged marriage, Gerald thought she looked more like she’d come for a pleasant holiday.
He’d returned half an hour ago. After helping Giya get settled in, he’d gone to take a bath.
At the moment, he wasn’t sure what to say about this relaxed, untroubled mood she was in. Regarding the luxurious suite he was in, Gerald had only mumbled some throw-away excuse so far.
His earlier attempt at theatrics had flopped, and now he was no longer in the mood. Imagine bringing it up out of nowhere…
Gerald took a seat. “So, about your engagement… I think it’s best to talk things through with your father. Certainly, you can’t keep running away from it forever. The trouble with his business will ease in time—surely it’s not worth sacrificing his daughter’s happiness forever?”
Anyway, if the Quarrington family was facing any financial issues, he could simply make an investment in their interests.
“I get that… but it’s not as simple as you think! Gah, I finally managed to calm myself down a little—could you not keep bringing that up?” Giya sulked at him.
Then, with a simpering smile, she said, “Gerald, I haven’t seen you in a while… Your skin’s turned fairer, and you’ve become so handsome now!”
“Is that so…” Gerald chuckled dryly.
That was when Giya’s phone rang. It was easy to see that she didn’t want to pick up, but after a moment, she did.
“What is it? I already said I’m not going back! Don’t try to find me, either! I’m not coming home until you call this whole thing off! There’s no way I’m marrying him! I don’t like a single thing about him! In fact, I despise him! And I don’t plan to get hitched so soon, whatever you say! I’m doing just fine over here! If there’s nothing else, I’m hanging up!”
Giya tossed the phone down on the table, in abject misery.
Gerald had heard it all. That had most likely been her father, trying to persuade her to return.
And then Giya’s phone rang again.
“Argh, so annoying!” Giya testily snatched up her phone once again. “Didn’t you hear me? Oh, it’s you, Tammy…” Giya eased off a little. Setting the phone to speaker mode, she laid her hands on her lap, and her head on her knees, and the two girls began chatting.
“Giya, you didn’t really run off to Gerald? You know, just now your dad even called my dad, asking if you were here! He’s asked all the girls from our dorm, too! He’s worried sick!” Tammy burbled.
“Yeah, I’m with Gerald right now. Let him worry… as long as he knows there’s no way I’m marrying that guy!”
“Mm-hmm… Hey, I’ve got nothing going on right now. I know some people over in Serene County, too. How about I come over there to hang out with the two of you? Now that the two of you are an item, Gerald owes us all a treat, surely… Hahaha, you know… for Gerald to become your boyfriend, it’s truly a case of scattering pearls before—”
Tammy was spilling all the beans right now! Giya turned off the speaker in a hurry—and then, with infinitesimal care, she stole a peek over at Gerald, who sat there in stunned silence.
Indeed, Gerald was thunderstruck! Exactly when did he become Giya’s boyfriend? What had this girl been telling everyone?
Some moments later, Giya finished with her phone call, then came back.
Sheepishly, she said to him, “Gerald… they all know I’m with you right now. I didn’t want to raise a scandal, so I also told them that you’re my boyfriend. You don’t mind, right?”
Gerald shook his head. “Not at all!” What else could he say?
“Also, Tammy said she’d be swinging by in a bit. She’s got a relative staying in these parts—let’s all go out and have some fun together! I mean, if you don’t go, then they might start to think…” Giya was pleading with him.
“Alright, I’ll go!” Since he’d already promised to help her, he couldn’t very well refuse.
It was almost noon when Tammy arrived with a younger cousin sister—a high school girl from Mayberry.
Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 410
Tammy’s car was a handsome Camry.
The very first thing she said to him was, “Hmph! Gerald Crawford… to think that a bottom-feeder like you could snare yourself a goddess like Giya—what a dream come true for you!”
“Yes! Yes, indeed!” Gerald nodded.
“Huh? Tammy, this guy is Giya’s boyfriend? Ah… what is this world coming to?” Tammy’s cousin clutched her forehead, staggering in place.
After all, anyone who knew Giya, knew that she was a beauty among beauties, a goddess among goddesses. No one would have expected her to find someone like this to be her boyfriend.
It seemed that Tammy and her cousin were of like mind. They stood there now, scowling contemptuously at Gerald.
‘Wipe those dirty looks off your faces!’ Gerald thought to himself.
“Alright, that’s enough,” Giya cut in. “Oh, Tammy—didn’t you say you had a bunch of distant relatives here in Serene County? Are they not joining us?”
As she said this, she hugged Gerald’s arm tenderly… and also rolled her eyes at him, as though to say, ‘There, you see! Everyone thinks you hit the jackpot, scoring a girlfriend like me! But some people don’t seem to appreciate their good fortune!’
“Oh, they’re coming. I just got off the phone with them—they were asking me where we’d be eating, you know? Gerald, what have you got planned for lunch?” Tammy’s tone was kind of sharp as she posed this question, as though Gerald’s relationship with Giya came as some sort of affront to her.
As though she held some sort of grudge against him.
Indeed, Tammy didn’t hold Gerald in high regard. She grew up in the cosmopolitan city; he was a country bumpkin. He was simple and poor, a lightning rod for ridicule.
The thought of him becoming a mainstay of her inner circle… she just couldn’t stand it!
With a grimace, Gerald replied, “On the subject of lunch… just leave that to me! There’s a decent place here in Serene County, called Mead Hall. Let’s eat over there!”
“Hmph! You should have told us that earlier! Come on, Giya! We’ll go in my car!”
And so they found their way to Mead Hall, the finest restaurant in Serene County, frequented mainly by the rich and powerful.
When they arrived, Tammy announced with a mysterious air that she needed to find a place to park her car, and wanted Giya with her. Gerald was to go ahead and reserve a table for them.
Since that had been his intention all along, anyway, Gerald went inside and asked for a table for eight. Rather than having any private dining rooms to offer them, all the patrons were seated in the same enormous hall together.
Just as a table was found for them…
“Oh, gosh! Is that you, Gerald?” someone called out.
“It really is him! What’s he doing in Mead Hall?”
A group of young men and women, halfway through their own meal, exclaimed with surprise when they spotted him.
Gerald turned when he heard someone calling his name, and saw six or seven people sitting together over there. Not just anyone, either—they were his classmates from high school, including Morgana Lopez and Cameron Laver.
What a coincidence! Almost as though…