Sheng Jiaoyang dragged her suitcase out, but she didn't see Zeng Huan's car.
That was strange. From the moment she’d arrived, it didn’t take long before she came out again. Why didn’t Zeng Huan wait for her?
She called Zeng Huan, and the latter repeatedly apologised to her, saying that something had happened at home.
If that was the case, then Zeng Huan wasn’t to blame. Sheng Jiaoyang had to let her take care of her family matters first. When the call ended, she dragged her suitcase and walked further ahead, ready to hail a taxi outside.
The taxi stopped by the roadside and just as Sheng Jiaoyang was about to get in, she felt a flash behind her. She turned around and saw a passer-by running away in a panic.
If you want to take a picture, then take one. Why are you running away? Sheng Jiaoyang withdrew her gaze and got in the taxi.
Not long after, she received a call from Grandfather Yang.
"Grandfather," Sheng Jiaoyang called out.
"Is everything okay on your end?" Grandfather Yang warmly asked.
Sheng Jiaoyang glanced at the driver in front of her and fixed her mask as murmured, "Grandfather, luckily you called!"
"Did Zhining bully you?"
"No." She touched her neck and thought: She’d better not talk about it, lest her grandfather worry about her.
"That's good then. Are you coming over now?"
Sheng Jiaoyang thought about it for a moment, but declined in the end.
"In that case, accompany me to the bank tomorrow. Your mother left you something in the bank vault. I'll pick you up tomorrow morning."
"Okay. Grandfather, you should rest early. Good night!"
"I will, you should go to bed early too. Good night!"
After hanging up, Sheng Jiaoyang looked out of the window and fell in a daze.
When she got home, Xu Qing and Li Weiqi weren’t back yet. She went straight to her room to wash up and rest.
As she brushed her teeth, she raised her chin in front of the mirror. There were some bruises on her chin and her neck.
Hateful Shen Zhining! Sheng Jiaoyang ground her teeth in anger.
The next day, Sheng Jiaoyang noticed that the bruises had darkened to purple. She cursed Shen Zhining under her breath a few times before fishing out a powder foundation. She then proceeded to cover her bruised chin and neck, but even so, she couldn’t hide them completely. Thus, she had no choice but to put on a turtleneck sweater.
"Why are you up so early? It’s the weekend, so you don't have classes today, right?!" Xu Qing saw Sheng Jiaoyang all dressed up and asked in surprise.
"No, but I have some business to tend to, so I'm leaving first. You two can enjoy your sweet time together with me out of the way," Sheng Jiaoyang teased on her way out.
Xu Qing blushed.
Sheng Jiaoyang went downstairs and got into the car that had been waiting by the roadside downstairs.
"Grandfather, are we going to the bank now? It's still early, only seven o'clock." Sheng Jiaoyang glanced at her watch.
"No need to rush, let's have breakfast first," Grandfather Yang smilingly replied.
"Oh, okay," Sheng Jiaoyang raised an eyebrow.
Grandfather Yang examined her from top to bottom. Sheng Jiaoyang’s current appearance was completely different from what he was used to seeing, but ever since he’d learned that she was Jiaoyang, he found his granddaughter good-looking no matter how many times he looked at her.
"In the past, you didn't need to wear glasses. Are you used to wearing them now?"
Sheng Jiaoyang pushed the frames up a bit and smiled, "I wasn’t used to it at first, but I’ll feel even weirder if I don’t wear them. It's uncomfortable to wear contact lenses, so I normally wear glasses. When I first started wearing glasses, I lost my glasses somewhere one day, and everything I looked at was blurred. It was so nerve-wracking and scary back then when I had to walk around without my glasses."
Grandfather Yang tenderly caressed her cheek and said, "When you have time, you should go get LASIK surgery."
"I’ve already asked around. If I get LASIK surgery with my current eyesight, it can easily bounce back and it might even worsen, which is why I didn’t go for the surgery yet."
"It's fine even if you wear glasses. Jiaojiao with glasses is also the prettiest."
Listening to his doting tone, Sheng Jiaoyang recalled the saying ‘Every potter praises his own pot’, and she couldn’t help but laugh.
An Jing, who was driving in front, looked into the rearview mirror and witnessed the joyous and harmonious scene in the back. Seeing how happy Grandfather Yang looked, he didn’t say anything and continued driving conscientiously.
When they arrived at a Cantonese restaurant, Sheng Jiaoyang pulled up the neckline to cover half of her face.
She pushed Grandfather Yang's wheelchair and followed the waiter into the private room. However, the moment she entered the room, her heart skipped a beat. Grandfather didn't tell her that Shen Zhining was coming…
"Zhining, did you wait long?" Grandfather Yang asked.
Shen Zhining was staring at Sheng Jiaoyang, but he retracted his gaze soon after and answered, "No, I just got here."
"Have a seat!" Grandfather Yang urged.
Sheng Jiaoyang naturally sat down next to Grandfather Yang while An Jing, Grandfather Yang’s personal attendant, sat down on the other side. As a result, Shen Zhining sat next to Sheng Jiaoyang.
Sheng Jiaoyang didn’t dare to look to her right, but the table wasn’t that big, so she would still catch a glimpse of him from time to time.
What made her restless was the fact that Shen Zhining was staring at her.
"Don’t you guys need to greet each other when you meet? If I recall correctly, you two are currently dating," Grandfather Yang said as his eyes wandered between Sheng Jiaoyang and Shen Zhining.
Sheng Jiaoyang cast a sidelong glance at her grandfather. Seeing that the latter was making fun of them, she felt discouraged in her heart.
"We broke up!" That was all she could say.
"Oh? Really?" Grandfather Yang looked at Shen Zhining for an affirmation.
Shen Zhining retracted his gaze and turned to Grandfather Yang. Seeing the understanding yet teasing look in the latter’s eyes, he softly replied, “Yes."
"Why did you break up?"
Hearing this, Sheng Jiaoyang cast a meaningful glance at Grandfather Yang. She didn't understand what grandfather was trying to do by asking about their ‘relationship’. All she knew was that she was feeling very awkward at this moment! Very awkward!
Grandfather Yang, on the other hand, ignored his granddaughter’s gesture.
Shen Zhining saw the interaction between the two, yet he didn’t bat an eyelid. As for Grandfather Yang's question, he replied, "There’s no specific reason."
Sheng Jiaoyang was worried that Grandfather Yang would continue asking more questions, so she promptly suggested, "Let's order."
"Jiaojiao, are you feeling cold?" Grandfather Yang asked before turning to An Jing and saying, "An Jing, turn down the air conditioner."
"No need, I’m fine. I'm not cold," Sheng Jiaoyang hurriedly replied.
Grandfather Yang looked at how she’d wrapped half of her face with her sweater and slightly raised an eyebrow, seemingly wanting to ask: Are you sure you’re not cold when you’re wrapped up like that?
Sheng Jiaoyang had no choice but to lower her neckline some more, just enough to cover her chin.
"You'll get your collar dirty if you eat like that. If you're cold, we can turn down the air conditioner," Grandfather Yang remarked.
"I'm really not cold!" Sheng Jiaoyang then lowered the neckline again. This time, covering only her neck.
Because of what she just did, everyone's eyes were on her.
"What happened to your chin?" Grandfather Yang narrowed his eyes and pointed at her chin.
"I accidentally bruised it last night," when Sheng Jiaoyang said this, she couldn't help but stare at Shen Zhining. When their eyes met, she instantly retracted her gaze and no longer looked in his direction.
Grandfather Yang's discerning eyes wandered between Sheng Jiaoyang and Shen Zhining, but he remained silent.
This was probably the most awkward breakfast Sheng Jiaoyang had ever attended. She felt as if everyone was looking at her. Shen Zhining’s indiscernible gaze particularly gave her a lot of mental stress.
After stomaching a bit of food, Sheng Jiaoyang announced that she was full. She then excused herself under the pretext of washing her hands and walked out of the private room.
Meanwhile, Shen Zhining straightforwardly asked, "Grandfather Yang, you believed her words?" He was referring to what Xu Jiaojiao had said about Jiaoyang visiting her in a dream.
Grandfather Yang's eyes lit up, and he thought that Shen Zhining was starting to doubt Jiaojiao’s identity. "It’s a fact and it has been proven, so I have no choice but to believe her." Because An Jing was also present, he didn’t point it out bluntly.
"Grandfather Yang, why did you bring Jiaojiao here?"
Hearing this, Grandfather Yang ascertained that Shen Zhining didn’t know about Jiaojiao’s identity. So, when Zhining had asked that question earlier, with ‘her words’ he wasn’t referring to Jiaojiao coming clean about her identity, but it was related to what Jiaojiao had told him last night. Jiaojiao must’ve fobbed Zhining off with some random excuse. He knew his granddaughter better than anyone, so he immediately understood.
However, he was optimistic about Shen Zhining.
"Aunt Yang left behind two gifts: one for you and one for Jiaoyang."
"But, what does that have anything to do with Xu Jiaojiao?"
Grandfather Yang, who’d initially thought that he’d made things very clear, couldn’t help but sigh. However, he could understand why Zhining was reacting this way. After all, he’d grown up abroad in Germany and was deeply influenced by the rigorous education from there. He certainly wouldn’t believe in mystical and paranormal things.
As such, Grandfather Yang had to put it more bluntly. "Because, what Jiaojiao sees, Jiaoyang will also be able to see."
An Jing lowered his head and pretended to be eating. In fact, he was trying to hide the shock in his eyes.
On the other hand, when Shen Zhining heard Grandfather Yang's words, he thought: Grandfather Yang must miss Jiaoyang to the extent that he was starting to have the illusion that Jiaoyang didn’t pass away. And, Xu Jiaojiao's words probably made him think that Jiaoyang would visit her in a dream again.
But, something as absurd as visiting someone in a dream wasn’t scientific, and it was unknown whether Xu Jiaojiao was telling the truth or lying. Grandfather Yang putting his trust in a suspicious person was obviously very dangerous.
When Sheng Jiaoyang returned, she noticed that everyone was staring at her oddly.
What is the meaning behind Grandfather’s helpless gaze?
Why is An Jing looking at her as if she’s a freak?
And, why is Demon King Shen staring at her like that?!
Did something unexpected happen while she was away?
Sheng Jiaoyang pushed her doubts to the back of her mind. She will ask Grandfather later when she gets a chance.
When they arrived at the bank, Grandfather Yang took out everything that Yang Xiansu had stored in the safe. There were two boxes with two people's names written on them; one was Sheng Jiaoyang and the other was Shen Zhining.
Grandfather Yang gave the pair the boxes accordingly.
He stared at the two boxes with a nostalgic expression. When his daughter had prepared the two gifts back then, she was already on her deathbed and he’d deposited them in the bank vault at her request.
As a result, Sheng Jiaoyang’s eyes moistened. In the past, she didn’t like to cry and she couldn’t cry because she was afraid that grandfather would worry about her. Even though she was sad, she would store all the sadness she felt at the bottom of her heart. However, ever since she’d become Xu Jiaojiao, she would cry easily. Maybe it was because the lacrimal glands were too well-developed, but even when she scraped off just a little bit of skin, she would cry in pain.
At this moment, Shen Zhining was no longer in the mood to pay attention to someone else's movements. He dedicated all of his attention to the box.
Aunty Yang’s gentle smile suddenly appeared in his mind. She was one of the people he’d respected the most besides his close relatives. When his parents passed away, Aunty Yang treated him like her own son and took care of him attentively and tenderly. Every time he made Little Jiaoyang cry, Aunty Yang wouldn’t get angry with him. Instead, she’d coax Little Jiaoyang and ask her to sympathise with him.
Shen Zhining stared at the box with a gentle expression. Grandfather Yang had told him that this was the wedding gift that Aunty Yang had prepared for Sheng Jiaoyang and himself. What was stored inside?Previous Chapter Next Chapter
TL: Yuna | Editor: Purpledragon | TLC: Grace