Pearl Throat
Pearl Throat: Chapter 16

16: Gene

“Xie Hou!”

Shen Cizhu’s breath hitched, and even though his ears were covered by Xie Hou’s hands, his eardrums felt the piercing sounds of the explosion. His heart was suddenly electrocuted and torn apart.

“Let’s go,” Xie Hou said in a low voice.

Shen Cizhu could hardly hear anything.

In the darkness of the night, Shen Cizhu was on the brink of collapse. His heart pounded forcefully as invisible hands squeezed and twisted it mercilessly, causing increasing pressure and suffocation.

The aftermath of trauma brings insurmountable pain. At this moment, Shen Cizhu was losing the ability to breathe. When Xie Hou led him into the escape passage, it was pitch black, and he couldn’t see anything.

His five fingers clung to Xie Hou’s arm as if they were gripping onto damp and sticky, ice-cold blood.


The sixth floor was blasted again, and countless glass fragments fell down.

Xie Hou protected the back of Shen Cizhu’s head, pressing him against the wall. Shen Cizhu was acting abnormally, muttering incoherently. He no longer had the confusion brought by alcohol and fever. He was still hysterical.

Xie Hou allowed Shen Cizhu to grip his injured, bleeding forearm. When the tremors and explosions finally subsided, Xie Hou covered Shen Cizhu’s nose and mouth.

He said to Shen Cizhu, “Breathe slowly.”

Shen Cizhu’s breath was rapid and faint, with shallow, almost imperceptible fluctuations due to an innate fear and dread of the disaster, which left him disoriented.

“Xie Hou…” He looked into Xie Hou’s eyes.

Xie Hou loosened the hand covering Shen Cizhu’s mouth and nose.

There was still a blaze in the corridor. The fire cast a wavering, warm light on Xie Hou’s eyes. It seemed to have a temperature.

Suddenly, Shen Cizhu became fragile in this place resembling a ruin, a place that he would naturally despise due to his personality. It was narrow, dark, and dangerous.

“Let’s wait here for a while; I’m out of energy,” Shen Cizhu’s forehead rested weakly against Xie Hou’s chest. He choked up, almost trembling. “I…”

In the dead silence, Xie Hou patiently waited for Shen Cizhu to calm down. He said in a calm tone, “It’s okay.”

Shen Cizhu raised his eyes. His green irises were filled with tears, despair, and a longing for touch.


Could Shen Cizhu be pitiful?

It’s all an act.

“Let’s go,” Xie Hou withdrew his hand, and their eye contact dissipated. He was indifferent, unaffected, and impassive, as if Shen Cizhu’s breakdown, despair, and the destitution that didn’t belong to him meant nothing to Xie Hou.

The aftermath and the collapse gradually peeled away from the wall. Xie Hou released his hand and distanced himself a bit from Shen Cizhu. He turned and went downstairs.

The controlled explosion had damaged two floors. The intense blaze set off sharp alarms, and it alarmed all the residents in the neighborhood. Sirens echoed immediately, and fire trucks arrived swiftly for firefighting and rescue.

It could be considered a narrow escape. Shen Cizhu remained unscathed, but Xie Hou was not as fortunate.

When Xie Hou had jumped with Shen Cizhu, carrying him down from the window, a large shard of glass had remained lodged in his flesh, right at the junction of bone and skin. The intense movement and friction had driven it deep into the flesh and bone, causing excruciating pain.

Xie Hou’s lips turned paper white, and his fingers involuntarily let blood trickle down, like a torrential rain.

The fire was still raging, consuming everything in its path. The police, after questioning the two of them, fell silent. Recent events in the imperial city had been frequent, and an invisible hand was orchestrating everything. If they didn’t eliminate all obstacles that could unveil the truth, more people would be at risk.

Soon, Shen Cizhu’s family arrived to take him home. A private physician provided emergency first aid to Xie Hou. He sat on a bench in the safe area beneath the residential building. He didn’t utter a word when cotton swabs entered his wound. His forehead was covered in cold sweat, and his black T-shirt was soaked with it. His figure was beautiful yet aloof.

Xie Hou closed his eyes, clenched his teeth, and swallowed the pain of his torn flesh.

At that moment, a Mercedes-Maybach S-Class worth 6.82 million RMB entered the neighborhood. It stood out conspicuously in this place that resembled a slum. Like a black wolf, a wild beast, it was arrogant and indifferent, just like Shen Cizhu.

The new bodyguard opened the rear door for Shen Cizhu, and as he did, Shen Cizhu cast a glance at Xie Hou’s back.

This glance was devoid of the pity induced by the recent traumatic stress, and it carried an air of self-confidence, constantly holding the upper hand, and advancing step by step. He never pitied, and he never broke down, unless he wanted to. Unless it was a facade, unless he sought the mercy of the prey. From the looks of it, the prey was much more restrained and clever than imagined. At least it hadn’t fallen into the trap easily.

Shen Cizhu actually felt a bit of admiration for Xie Hou. His fingers lightly touched the extravagant and cold car door, and in the midst of the chaos and the fire disaster, his eyes sparkled with a magnificent and pathological light. Just below his iris, the blood-red mole shimmered slightly, following his enchanting smile.

He tilted his chin slightly, his exquisite jawline still depicted a life of luxury. He could never blend in with poverty.

Under the shelter of high and mighty power, he deliberately created a divide between himself and Xie Hou, as if mocking, probing, and contemplating.

The bodyguard held up a long-handled black umbrella for him.


Raindrops descended along the curved frame of the umbrella.

The rain was falling, showing a miserly pity as it touched the earth. The sacred benevolence was no longer present, and the long, boundless night stretched on. The rain, like the chilling fangs of a monster, pattered down, as if it were devouring all the joys and sorrows of the world.

“Xie Hou,” Shen Cizhu’s voice meandered through the night rain, like scattered starlight.

Xie Hou cast a faint glance. In the pouring rain, his ankles felt tender, as if gently cradled by the embrace of hell.

They locked eyes from a distance.

He heard Shen Cizhu say, “Goodbye.”

The car headed for the Shen mansion.

Once inside the car, Shen Cizhu cracked the window open just a bit. A cold breath infiltrated the car, and he was attended to by his servants as he put on shoes and socks. All traces of their stay in a slum-like area had been completely erased.

His long hair, like a cloud, wound around his fingers, coiling on his skin like a snake.

The secretary had finished organizing the documents and began her report.

“Mr. Shen, this is the information you wanted me to investigate. Forgive me for being straightforward, but Xie Hou’s identity is by no means simple; he is far more dangerous than we initially thought.” The elite secretary respectfully presented all the information about Xie Hou.

“Dangerous?” Shen Cizhu lowered his eyelids and glanced casually at a few lines.

Xie Hou, male, born on February 4, 2006. Since childhood, he had been the undefeated champion in various international science competitions, a true young prodigy. He had skipped grades continuously, and at the age of fifteen, he was admitted to the Young Scholars’ Program at Beijing University. At seventeen, he dropped out of school due to family reasons, and then a private high school in China offered him seven million RMB to repeat his senior year.

Xie Hou was currently eighteen years old, with a one hundred percent chance of becoming the national champion in science for this private high school in China.

Why did he drop out of school? The reason was clear: debts. To repay the debt, Xie Hou returned to high school and participated in the college entrance exam again to obtain that seven million RMB. But that amount was just a drop in the ocean.

Moreover, someone was targeting Xie Hou himself. Everything that happened tonight made Shen Cizhu realize the danger.

“Mr. Shen, the murder at the Luyue Club tonight and the explosion in the residential area were both targeted at Xie Hou. We don’t know who Xie Hou has offended or who the people behind him are,” the secretary said.

The murder case at the Luyue Club had already been solved. The victim, Zhang Wu, had been killed out of vengeance by his enemies due to high overseas debts. The suspect was already in prison.

Tonight’s arson case also had a person who voluntarily confessed.

But was it all true? From the mysterious explosion of the charity cruise auction on the Danube not long ago, to now, all these cases were like pieces of a spider’s web neatly laid out.

But the spider had not yet appeared. It was still waiting for all the prey to arrive. But who was left for prey? Besides Xie Hou, who else?

The Shen family.

Shen Cizhu slowly raised his eyes, thinking of the gang of criminals who had joined hands with Wen He to try to take over the Shen Group.

What if this is the same group? What if Shen Cizhu and Xie Hou are being targeted by the same people? Why are they being targeted?

“There’s one more piece of information about Mr. Xie Hou… The accuracy is still uncertain,” the secretary hesitated for a moment.

She leaned closer to Shen Cizhu and softly shared a piece of information she couldn’t confirm:

“Mr. Xie Hou is the son of a murderer.”

Shen Cizhu looked at her, his fingers slightly clenched. His pupils turned to her, expressionless.

The secretary cleared her throat, trembling, and said, “Xie Hou’s mother killed his father.”

“Mr. Shen,” the secretary looked into Shen Cizhu’s gradually icy eyes, “Xie Hou has the genes of a murderer. I don’t think he can be controlled by anyone. I’m worried he will betray you someday…”

“So I think we don’t need to cooperate with him anymore,” the secretary said. “The Shen Group doesn’t need help from outsiders, and you don’t need to have any dealings with him.”

“Is that so?” Shen Cizhu’s serpent-like eyes were fixed on her, and then the Maybach entered a tunnel. After a shadow passed, it was back in the light on the highway.

“Being the son of a murderer doesn’t mean he is a murderer,” Shen Cizhu smirked. He pinched the document in his hand and tore it into pieces methodically. “Even if he has inherited that gene, we can tame him before that.”

The secretary paused for a moment, and then said, “You’re right.”

She thought for a moment and asked, “Should we inform Mr. Xie Yan about these events tonight? After all, Xie Hou is his younger brother.”

Hearing that question, Shen Cizhu found it somewhat amusing.

Younger brother, huh?

In the quiet night rain, Xie Hou stood under a streetlamp, holding an umbrella and silently gazing at a parked extended Lincoln nearby.

His phone vibrated at this moment, and Xie Hou’s wrist moved slightly as he answered the call.

“Have you made up your mind?” On the other end was the mechanical voice of an unfeeling man, no fluctuations. “Xie Hou, return to your real family, and I will resolve all your troubles. You will get everything you want.”

“But if you choose to betray your family, I will not be as lenient as I was tonight. I will kill you completely, even if you are my only son.”

“Father,” Xie Hou’s voice remained icy. Sweat, caused by severe pain, congealed on his chin and dripped onto the red mole on his throat.

“I’ve said that I have no intention of inheriting your family. Your family is too dirty, and your threats aren’t enough to make me fear. I survived tonight, and I will survive tomorrow night,” he said, tilting his head slightly, looking at the dark extended Lincoln not far away, like an abyss.

“You can’t kill me. Before that happens, I will kill you.”

Xie Hou’s pupils flickered with a cold, indifferent vertical line of luster.

The man on the other end of the phone laughed heartily. “Good luck, my son.”

Then, after the extended Lincoln in front of Xie Hou drove away, he hung up the phone.

After pulling out the SIM card, he crushed it and threw it into the trash.

The wind raised his hair gently, and the moonlight cast shadows on his face. A graceful arc outlined his slender neck.

His clothes swayed slightly, and he passed by a Maybach.

The Maybach and him were heading in opposite directions.

He continued walking further away.


Certified member of the IIO(International Introverts Organization), PhD holder in Overthinking and Ghosting, Spokesperson for BOBAH(Benefits of Being a Homebody), Founder of SFA(Salted Fish Association), Brand Ambassador for Couch Potato fall line Pajama set.

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