197. Why Won’t She Think of the Future
Jiang Hua’s mouth was left hanging as the words fled from his mind. Miao’s eyes went wide, as if she’d just seen a ghost. Still simmering, Yan Hui and Yan Yan nearly burst out laughing at Bai Yan’s words. A tiny chuckle escaped YiHan’s pursed lips. Even JingYuan who had a gloomy face on turned to look at Bai Yan.
“Brother, don’t be like that,” JingYuan said after a pause of serious consideration. “How can we be split in whether we’re married off or not? If I marry into the Bai family, wouldn’t we have united our two families then?”
“I said I’ll be married off into Jiang Hua’s family,” Bai Yan said, rolling his eyes. “I didn’t tell you to marry into the Bai family.”
“That won’t do,” said JingYuan. He paused before continuing, “Actually, it’d be fine if we unit our two families.” He then turned to YiHan. “HanHan, what do you think?”
YiHan didn’t think his lover would join in on fooling around. What was there to compare and compete with here?
“I don’t need you to marry into my family,” YiHan said, covering his face with his hands. “We’re fine just as we are now.”
“HanHan says no,” JingYuan said, looking back up at Bai Yan. “You’re not allowed to be married off either.”
“HanHan objects because he doesn’t think you’re worthy,” shot back Bai Yan. “What does it have to do with my marriage?”
YiHan: …I don’t think JingYuan’s unworthy. Brother, how can you lie like that? Are you trying to pick a fight?
“Anyway, you can’t do it,” said JingYuan. “We’ll talk about this when we’re home.” My HanHan isn’t the lesser of anyone. Whatever everyone else has, he must have it too.
Miao was absolutely stunned. These two men were the heads of powerful families. A single twitch from them can change everything. How could they speak of such matters without care? Were they all so shameless?
JingYuan looked at Miao. Then, as if he could read her mind, he coldly stated, “Not everyone in this world is like you, Madam He. You think that dignity, face, is greater than anything else in the world. Furthermore, one’s pride and reputation doesn’t depend on who’s marrying who or who’s being married off. As long as one can be honest and respectable, there’s nothing to be ashamed of. Conversely, those who are disloyal to their partners, selfish, cold and only ever speak in a barbed manner? They are the ones who should be ashamed.
“Madam He, no matter what happens in our marriages, we won’t be living in your home. Please don’t bother yourself about us. If you have the time, Madam He, you should take care of your own family first.”
Her family? What could be wrong with her family? Miao coldly sneered on the inside. Her husband loved her. Her children were good, smart kids. Everyone in the city admired and envied her. What did she have to worry about? Had the man run out of words to say?
When Cheng saw his sister opening her mouth to speak, he hurriedly piped up, “Mr Mu, Mr Bai, please pay no mind to her blabbering and be kind. My father and I spoiled her so much that she never thinks before she speaks. Please ignore her.”
Miao’s anger burned brighter upon hearing her brother speaking badly of her. However, she didn’t have the courage to say anything just then. All she could do was pinch He Yuan on the arm, hard. Hmph, this coward! These men were all fighting on behalf of their lovers. Only this man was hiding in the back, too afraid to speak at all!
He Yuan felt a stinging pain in his arm. It made him furious as well. This stupid woman was foolish enough to criticise the Little Master Bai right before Mu JingYuan and Bai YiHan. Her brother was being kind in calling her someone who doesn’t think before she speaks! Miao had started a disaster and now she’s venting her anger out on him! If she wasn’t a daughter of the main Yan family, he would’ve slapped her all the way out of the city! She wouldn’t have a chance to terrorise him then!
“You’re too polite,” JingYuan said with a faint smile. “Madam He must be in a bad mood and pushed her anger on my YiHan.”
Cheng drily smiled. “She wouldn’t have. Who in this city would dare to vent out their anger on YiHan? It won’t be just you two, Mr Mu and Mr Bai, who won’t allow it. My father wouldn’t either.” As he said so, he glanced at He Yuan.
When He Yuan saw the glance, he hurriedly tapped Miao on the arm and said to JingYuan and the rest, “Mr Mu, Little Master Bai, Mr Bai, our sincere apologies. Miao-Miao is feeling unwell today. Please forgive us. We’ll be heading back first.”
The first time He Yuan reached for Miao’s arm, Miao struggled out of the grip right away. She shot him a glare but gave into her husband’s pleading eyes. It would do her no good to stay anyway. Hence, when He Yuan grabbed her by the arm again, she didn’t struggle away. With her head held high, she decided to follow him out.
JingYuan’s thin lips pursed into a line. As his stare followed Yan Miao out, his eyes squinted.
Bai Yan turned to look at Yan Miao as the corner of his lips twitched up into something that vaguely resembled a smile.
Yan Cheng looked at the two men and sighed. His sister’s one move just so happened to kick the “reverse scale” of JingYuan and the Bai family. She didn’t just offend two men either. She started a chain reaction. From the looks of it, Mu JingYuan and the Bai family won’t be letting things go so easily. Even if he wanted to help her out, he was helpless. If only his sister listened to their father and kept her temper in check a little more, she wouldn’t have offended so many people in one go. It was fine if she offended other people. The Yan family can still make them stay back. Now, however, both of the families she offended were families who could stand on equal grounds with the Yan family. He still hadn’t counted in the Chen family, the Bai family’s ally through marriage.
Yan Cheng looked at Bai XueQing who was smiling beside the Young Master Chen. Once she knows of this, she would explode. Did no one remember what happened to Feng Qun at his father’s birthday banquet at the beginning of the year? This girl didn’t care who was right or wrong. She wanted to strangle Feng Qun to death on the spot!
The Young Master of the Chen family has been infatuated with Bai XueQing for years. Even if she committed a murder, all he would do was fight for the right to bury the body. When XueQing broke a fingernail, Chen TianYang broke three of Feng Qun’s bones. It was clear to all just how important Miss Bai was to him.
The Chen family was also going through a change of leadership. The current head of the Chen family was slowly handing down his power to his son. The young man now had nearly the same influence and power as the head of the Chen family. He won’t sit aside if Bai XueQing was upset.
Of the five great families in the city, Miao had offended three with just a simple sentence. This didn’t include his two sons who’d gone green with anger. A few days ago, his father told him they’d spoiled his little sister rotten. No matter what troubles she started, she always had the Yan family to help her cover them up. This might not be good as it fed her ego. The day that she stirred up some trouble the Yan family can’t help her with, all that she’d be faced with was death and destruction.
Thankfully, she merely spoke in an unpleasant manner this time. Even if Mu JingYuan and the Bai family wished to make her pay for her words, they wouldn’t hurt her to the core for the old Mr Yan’s sake. Cheng would take this as a chance to teach her a lesson and hope she could be more thoughtful in her actions and words in the future.
Yan Cheng glanced at his two sons’ frosty faces once more. On the inside, he let out a bitter chuckle. No matter how much he planned and acted for his sister’s sake, she never seemed to think about him at all. If she had even the smallest sliver of respect for him, her older brother, she would never have spoken that badly of his sons and sons-in-law. She’d most likely bear a grudge against his wife and sons for what happened today. Maybe even against him. It didn’t matter that he was helping her the whole time.
Ah, thank goodness his father was upstairs. He would be apoplectic with rage if he heard Miao’s words. Cheng didn’t know how to let the older man know of what had happened in his absence. Hopefully, his father’s body wouldn’t collapse from anger.
Cheng’s sister only cared about the present. She never once considered the future. When the father and brother who adored her had grown old, it’d be his sons who’d take over the Yan family. She had now made enemies of them. Her words were always filled with contempt and distaste whenever she spoke to, or of, Zhang Su and Xu YouRan. His sons’ faces would be overwhelmed with frowns at the mere mention of her calling the family. If it was possible, they would likely love to never see this aunt ever again. Right? It would be good news if they don’t start attacking her and her family after they took control of the Yan family. How can they ever be expected to cater to her wants? There was also Pei-Pei, the daughter of his younger brother. During Miao’s previous call, Pei-Pei was visiting. When the girl heard it was a call from Miao, her lips twisted so far to the side that they weren’t centred anymore. It was certain that the young girl wouldn’t be nice to her aunt in the future.
Not only that, but Cheng could also feel his brother distancing himself from their sister. True, Miao had never acted like an aunt. She would even steal the limelight away from Pei-Pei. The little girl had been pushed to the brink of tears from upset countless times since her birth. How could Pei-Pei’s mother not be upset with Miao for that? Cheng’s brother had a strong bond with his wife. Pei-Pei was his only daughter and the apple of his eye. Miao never cared for what her second brother had done for her and would always try and compete with him in everything. It was natural for their brother to distance himself from Miao. Frankly, it wasn’t as if Cheng hadn’t ever distanced himself from Miao over the past few years. No matter what kind of relationship it was, one cannot clap with only a hand.
Even if they were to ignore all the above, Miao’s brothers and father were all getting on in age while she was still young herself. The city’s future lay in the hands of the younger generation. All of the old folks in the five great families were letting go of their power. They were in a period of transitioning between different generations. How could Miao not feel any danger? Cheng and their father had given her explicit and implicit hints to be more careful. How could Miao go on brashly attacking Yan Hui and Yan Yan? She even thought their rebukes and hints were because they favoured the boys more than her. Did she think they would unconditionally make way for her forever just because she was their aunt? If not for Cheng and their brother, the two boys would’ve targeted her long ago!
If Cheng wasn’t afraid of that happening, he would’ve wanted to retire earlier. Every day, he’d be spending time in the gardens or raising a pet. He could spend more time with his father while the man was still healthy. Then, he could compensate his wife for all the years he’d ignored her wants due to his work. Unfortunately, his sister would never realise just how much he was sacrificing. It has been years. His love and passion started to die down.
The instant Miao left, the air was lighter. JingYuan and the others went through some polite niceties with Yan Cheng before finding a corner to chat with YouRan and Yan Yan.
“YiHan, I’m sorry,” said YouRan. “Because of me, you had to hear such unpleasantry aimed at you.”
Yan Yan guiltily wrapped an arm around his lover’s shoulders. He was so useless. Did his YouRan not also experience such unpleasant criticism?
“What does it have to do with you?” YiHan laughed. “Please stop taking on all of the blame?”
When YiHan noticed JingYuan’s upset expression, he gently nudged him with an arm and said, “Alright, you. What are you upset about still? We have our own lives. We can’t control what other people think. What do their opinions matter to us? You don’t need to be angry because of someone’s opinions. Anyway, I didn’t expect her to say anything nice in the first place. I am shocked that she’d just blurt it out though.”
Only 1 update this week due to family plans taking over half the week. I’ll make up for it next week.