The Qingming Festival holiday break arrived in the blink of an eye.
Li Shaoyao couldn’t return to the Ji house with Ji Zhinong—he was ordered to go home to worship his ancestors, and the Li family hadn’t recognized him as the son-in-law, so it wasn’t suitable for Zhinong to go and agitate them.
Zhang Yunan relaxed after seeing that Li Shaoyao hadn’t come along.
The first day of the break, the entire family worshipped their ancestors harmoniously. Wen Che didn’t have any emotions towards the Ji family ancestors; instead, he was thinking about what his gravestone looked like that day. It was probably surrounded by lots of fresh flowers. He also pitied the original Ji Zhinong as nobody realized that he had disappeared from the world, much less yearned for him. He grabbed a bunch of flowers and put them on the wide, grassy expanse as tribute for the original Ji Zhinong.
The second day, Qin Kaiyu came over early in the morning and brought many generous gifts for the Ji parents, keeping up appearances for Zhang Yunan.
So everyone sat down to discuss the details of the marriage. Zhang Yunan had a very good way with people and made a lot of requests. Every request was a standard for the ruined wedding.
Ji Qingshan personally arranged the wedding a year ago. It was luxurious, so it was clear how much importance he attached to Zhinong even though he didn’t show up personally. As a result, the Ji family relatives didn’t dare to delay it and all came as necessary.
But Ji Qingshan didn’t even ask about Zhang Yunan’s marriage.
When they were discussing the details, Ji Zhinong was sitting on the sofa lazily. He held his temples in one hand and stared meaningfully at Zhang Yunan, who was talking nonstop. He didn’t say a word the entire time, being a spectator who was watching the show.
Ji Zhinong was staring at Zhang Yunan, but Qin Kaiyu was staring at Ji Zhinong.
They didn’t have many opportunities to meet. Normally, they would have a quick encounter coincidentally every few months, but Qin Kaiyu was always stunned by Zhinong. He didn’t know how Li Shaoyao was raising Ji Zhinong, but he looked better and better looking every time, making him unable to look away.
In addition, Ji Zhinong’s career quickly recovered in the past half year, so now he appeared to be shining radiantly, completely different from the country bumpkin whose head was always lowered from two years ago. It was like he’d turned into a different person.
Seated between the Ji family members, Ji Zhinong didn’t look out of place like a country bumpkin seated between his masters would. Instead, he fit in perfectly, his aura even surpassing Ji Tianjun’s. Even if he didn’t say a single word, he kept attracting everyone’s attention like he was born with this charm.
Zhang Yunan, who was chattering endlessly, became dim in comparison to the quiet Ji Zhinong.
In the past half year, Zhang Yunan had become sensitive and suspicious. He had to win the advantage in everything to be satisfied, forcing Qin Kaiyu to find collaboration partners and resources. Qin Kaiyu’s patience was almost running out.
He regretted breaking off the engagement back then. If he hadn’t given up on Zhinong, his ears would’ve been spared, at the very least. He would’ve been able to see Zhinong’s face, which was pleasing to look at, every morning, at the very least.
When the details of the marriage were set, Zhang Yunan touched Qin Kaiyu’s elbow softly. Qin Kaiyu only snapped out of it then and shifted his gaze away from Ji Zhinong’s face. He asked symbolically out of politeness. “Does anyone have any objections?”
Ji Rugui was depressed, and Ji Ruzhang shook her head in disagreement.
“I have a question,” Ji Zhinong said in his first words. “Did you set the list of invitees? Are you sure they’ll come?”
“Of course.” Zhang Yunan said with certainty, “They will definitely arrive on time. I won’t be like you, someone who can’t even invite a single friend.”
Ji Zhinong laughed and said, “Yunan, I’m not doubting your people skills. I’m just giving you a friendly reminder. You have to carefully check the guests who arrive. If anyone is absent for no reason, I suggest you call the police immediately.”
Ji Tianjun asked in confusion, “Why?”
“Did you forget so quickly? Wasn’t Yunan absent for no reason that year and went to jump into the sea?”
After he said it, the entire living room fell into an awkward silence. The air almost froze.
Ji Zhinong carefully went through his old scores like an accountant would an account book. “Good thing Yunan called personally to tell all of us that he was going to jump into the sea and commit suicide.” He looked towards the Zhang Qin couple. “If not for that, wouldn’t you two be separated by life and death?”
Qin Kaiyu: “…”
“Zhinong, what are you going through old scores for?” As expected, Ji Rugui was the first to get anxious. “It was because you suddenly showed up last year and forced Yunan to die. And now you have the face to mention it? What, do you think you were wronged and feel like settling old scores now?”
“Why don’t you say how exactly I forced him? You guys forced the engagement on me. You two knew that this engagement existed, but you still fooled around behind my back. That isn’t immoral? If Zhang Yunan really wanted to die, then why would he call?”
Zhang Yunan put on his weak and gentle appearance and started sobbing. Ji Zhinong hmphed coldly. “Yunan, you only act well at home.” Ji Rugui clenched his fist and stood up violently from the sofa. Ji Zhinong knew what he wanted to do and turned to ask Ji Tianjun without sparing Ji Rugui a single glance. “Dad, look at him. He looks like he’s going to devour me. Don’t tell me that you’re going to gang up and bully me?”
Ji Tianjun immediately pulled Ji Rugui away from the sofa and ordered him to go back to his room and stay there.
Ji Zhinong: “That’s it. If there’s an evil dog that bites people at home, you have to put a leash on it.”
Mother Ji caught the sarcasm in his words. “He’s your brother!”
“Mom, have you recovered from your sickness?” Ji Zhinong glanced at that woman. “If you’ve recovered, don’t get angry so often. Your health is important. Besides, I was just making a comparison, so why did you admit that he is one?”
“Enough! Sit down!” Ji Tianjun pulled the woman back to the sofa. “They don’t get along, so as the mom, don’t meddle. Rugui’s so hostile all because you spoiled him.”
Qin Kaiyu tried to be the mediator. “Zhinong, I can explain what happened then. I can explain. It’s okay if you want me to apologize, but I didn’t expect that you haven’t let this matter go yet.”
“Stop. Don’t get all playboyish.” Ji Zhinong felt disgusted from just looking at his hypocritical face. “Don’t worry, I won’t be like Yunan and threaten someone with suicide during your wedding. It was really just a friendly reminder. If you two kept any secrets about your dating history from each other, it’ll get ugly during the wedding.”
“He’s slandering me…” Zhang Yunan cried while complaining in Qin Kaiyu’s arms.
Qin Kaiyu could only comfort him, but the group of small celebrities he’d been involved with quickly flashed through his mind. He confirmed that he broke off ties to them cleanly before he felt at ease.
He did play around a lot in the past, but he gradually became more reserved to connect with the Ji family through marriage.
Ji Zhinong’s words gave him a wake-up call, but he never imagined that his words were actually meant to be for Zhang Yunan.
Early on the third morning, Qin Xiaohuo drove over to pick Zhinong up. The car had just driven out of the villa when a yellow car suddenly stopped horizontally at the intersection ahead. Ji Zhinong didn’t know what was up until he saw Qin Kaiyu get out of the car.
Qin Kaiyu came up with an excuse that morning and said he had to return to the company to deal with company matters. Leaving Zhang Yunan at home, he caught up to Ji Zhinong’s car.
Since Qin Kaiyu intentionally came to intercept him, Ji Zhinong could only get out of the car and chat with him.
“Did something happen to Mr. Qin’s car?”
“No, I came to stop you on purpose. Let’s talk.”
“Talk about what? We don’t have anything to talk about.”
Seeing Ji Zhinong reject him so much, Qin Kaiyu was intrigued. “If I were to talk with you before, you would embrace me very happily.”
“…You want me to hug you right now? ”
“If you’re willing, I don’t mind.”
Ji Zhinong smiled and pointed at Qin Xiaohuo, who was standing close by. “Do you know who he is?”
Qin Kaiyu: “Your chauffeur.”
“Accurately speaking, he’s the bodyguard Li Shaoyao gave me. One punch of his can shatter your nose.”
“What does that have to do with me?”
“Of course that has to do with you. If you speak insolently to me again, watch your nose.”
Zhinong was about to leave after saying it, but Qin Kaiyu grabbed his elbow hurriedly. “Zhinong, I don’t mean to be rude to you. I just wanted to ask if you really cared so much about me breaking off the engagement.”
He shook off Qin Kaiyu’s hand. “If I said I don’t, it would be a lie.”
Wen Che thought, ‘Your breaking off the engagement indirectly killed Ji Zhinong. Nobody has the right to accept Qin Kaiyu’s forgiveness in his place nor can anyone free him.’
Qin Kaiyu thought what Zhinong meant was that he still had feelings for him and tried to explain. “That day, I was just so scared by Yunan’s phone call. I only found out that everybody abandoned you after he was saved. I truly was very guilty after I heard that your heart disease relapsed and there was no family member to sign for you when you were rushed to the hospital.”
“You were guilty? After I woke up, the first thing you said to me wasn’t ‘sorry’ but to draw a line between us. Is that your guilt, Mr. Qin?”
Qin Kaiyu couldn’t justify him and asked him in response, “Why are you so aggressive now? You weren’t like this before.”
“If I were still naïve and sweet while getting played by you guys like that, I would have died a hundred times over.”
“It’s true that I was thoughtless about the past matters. I thought that you had already let go of the past after getting together with Li Shaoyao. I didn’t expect you to be so agitated when you mentioned it yesterday.”
“I was only agitated out of anger. There’s no other reason. Don’t overimagine.”
It was like Qin Kaiyu didn’t understand the human language. “I was thinking that it would’ve been great if I hadn’t broken off the engagement back then.”
If he hadn’t broken off the engagement, Ji Zhinong wouldn’t have died, and Wen Che wouldn’t have had the chance to be reborn.
Wen Che didn’t know how to respond.
“But now you look like you’re glowing with health, and everything you’re using is the best of the best. Li Shaoyao probably treats you well, and I’m happy to see you living well.”
He changed the subject: “But Li Shaoyao isn’t a simple person. Did you know that his older brother died because of him?”
Wen Che instantly understood what bad intentions he had just from hearing the beginning because it was such a low-level trick. He didn’t let him continue and cut him off. “Qin Kaiyu, stop acting in front of me. It wasn’t enough to smear me? Now you have to smear Ah Yao too?”
Clearly, he knew lots of inside information.
Qin Kaiyu was anxious to explain. “De Yu Ent. didn’t treat you well, that’s true. But in the past six months, I haven’t meddled with your career either.”
“That’s because you’re afraid of Li Shaoyao and because you didn’t have the guts to, not because you didn’t want to,” Ji Zhinong exposed him mercilessly. “The reason why you broke off the engagement was not because you felt guilty and not because of your conscience. It’s because you got lustful.”
“…..” He hit the nail on the head.
“I know perfectly what filthy thoughts you’re having behind that mask of yours. I won’t expose you, so don’t disgust me.”
“And don’t think that I still have feelings for you. How many times have I said it? I really look down on you. If Li Shaoyao is a pearl, then you aren’t even a brick.”
“May you and Zhang Yunan have a happy and long life together. You have no idea how big of a surprise your Yunan has prepared for you.”