The outside temperature was still a little low in the morning; Sheng Jiaoyang shuddered as she walked out of the manor.
Shen Zhining naturally and swiftly draped the suit jacket on his arm onto her shoulders, wrapping her in it.
Jarrett, who was walking behind, was blinded by the public display of affection. The current Shen Zhining is constantly refreshing my understanding of him.
I thought that Shen Zhining would never ever do something like draping his clothes around a woman. In the past, he was known to be indifferent towards women. Or rather, to everyone. Other than close friends like myself, he was supercilious toward others.
Don’t talk about draping his clothes on a girl; even if a girl were to fall down in front of him, he wouldn’t even try to catch her despite being close enough. In fact, he would pretend to not see her and walk right past her. Shen Zhining was a distant and aloof person by nature.
Others have discussed amongst themselves in private that even if this dude were to get married in the future, his wife would probably have to take the initiative to get on top of him and, ahem… my thoughts have run too far.
Anyway, now that he finally has a tender heart for the fair sex that all men should have, he doesn’t seem so unfathomable anymore.
“Are you guys really not gonna stay here for a few more days?” Jarrett asked as he watched them board the car.
Shen Zhining shot a glance at Jarrett and replied in a flat tone, “We are both very busy.”
Are you saying I am very free?! Jarrett pursed his lips and waved goodbye, “Go on! Leave!”
The corners of Shen Zhining’s lips twitched as he bent down and entered the car.
Just as the car was about to drive off, Shen Zhining lowered the car window and said to Jarrett, “Get rid of the bed sheets and linen that we slept on.”
“Sure. I will get someone to burn them,” Jarrett knew that it was Shen Zhining’s mysophobia at it again and hurriedly replied.
Shen Zhining then winded up the car window.
Sitting by the side quietly, Sheng Jiaoyang shot Shen Zhining a glance.
Prior to their departure, Sheng Jiaoyang and Shen Zhining had lunch with Lina and George.
As Sheng Jiaoyang had a part to play in them patching up, George’s gaze towards her was much friendlier than before. He even initiated a toast of wine to Sheng Jiaoyang.
“Congratulations. Remember to inform me once the date is confirmed.”
“Of course, anyone can be absent from my wedding but you,” Lina answered with a smile.
“You are wrong, your groom is the one that cannot be absent,” Sheng Jiaoyang wiggled her index finger. She looked at the green monster, George, and thought to herself: Mei Niu, please have more tact. You clearly know George turns green with jealousy at anything. You should pay more attention to your words and actions!
Lina understood the overtone in Sheng Jiaoyang’s words and leaned against George saying, “My words came with the precondition that my darling is always beside me.”
George felt as though a thousand flowers bloomed in his heart and a huge smile appeared on his face.
After the meal, Sheng Jiaoyang and Shen Zhining returned to the hotel to pack their luggage to return home.
But this time, they landed at Beijing’s airport because Shen Zhining’s maternal grandfather was celebrating his 75th birthday soon.
“Is your grandfather fierce? Will your grandmother not like me?” Alighting the plane, Sheng Jiaoyang and Shen Zhining were linked arm in arm as she felt somewhat uneasy.
She had never seen the two Ning elderlies. Though Shen Zhining’s maternal uncle and auntie were reasonable people, she still felt somewhat anxious. This was different from meeting Grandfather Shen and Grandmother Andy. To her, Grandfather Shen and Grandmother Andy were like half a close-kin, while Shen Zhining’s grandparents were basically strangers.
“What if they don’t like you?” Shen Zhining didn’t answer her and asked in return.
Sheng Jiaoyang was momentarily stunned before she lifted her hand to push her spectacles' frame up and replied nonchalantly, “So be it then. I can’t force everyone to like me. Moreover, you don’t live with them; I highly doubt it will affect me any bit.”
Shen Zhining laughed silently. She’s still so magnanimous.
“By the way, I suddenly thought of something. It’s been a long while since I saw Ning Xiaoruan. What has he been up to?” Sheng Jiaoyang asked.
Speak of the devil.
As soon as they walked out of the exit, Ning Xiaoruan approached them speedily with four bodyguards.
After not seeing him for a few months, Ning Xiaoruan looked much suaver now.
His tailor-made suit didn’t have a crease on it, his hair was combed back, a pair of gold-rimmed glasses framed his face and his exposed wrist revealed an expensive watch.
His current appearance was completely different from his usual lazy and unkempt style back when he was beside Sheng Jiaoyang.
“Xu Jiaojiao, you…" Ning Xiaoruan studied Sheng Jiaoyang the moment he stood before them, “…became prettier.”
Ning Xiaoruan was slightly astonished. The tall girl standing intimately with his cousin had fair skin with a rosy tint. The naivety between her brows had dissipated and was replaced by brightness and beauty which made one impossible to turn their eyes away and exuded a sense of sophisticated beauty. With shoulder-length hair and a pair of black-rimmed glasses on her fair face, she looked even prettier than when she was all dolled up in makeup; it was as though she was glowing.
“Ning Xiaoruan, watch how you address her,” Shen Zhining reminded him placidly.
“What’s wrong with the way I addressed her? She…" Ning Xiaoruan saw his cousin’s expression and immediately swallowed his words. Alright, even if I am no longer the same Ning Xiaoruan from before, I am still traumatised from my cousin’s oppression in the past.
“I get it, now that we are family, I cannot address her by her first and last name.” He then asked tentatively, “Then I shall address her as Jiaojiao?”
Shen Zhining’s gaze swept across the sturdy Ning Xiaoruan. “Is that how you should address her?”
Ning Xiaoruan wanted to revolt and retort Shen Zhining. “Why can’t I address her that?” But then, he thought of Shen Zhining’s influence in the family and quietly bowed down towards the evil forces. He gloomily looked at Sheng Jiaoyang and greeted her softly, “Sis-in-law.”
They had clearly broken up. I had clearly said that I wanted to pursue her, but now it’s all back to square one.
No, not just square one. This time, I can clearly feel Cousin’s attitude towards her.
His cousin was clearly radiating possessiveness - “this is my babe and no one is to even lay a finger on her.”
Ning Xiaoruan suddenly felt that he had missed a huge drama.
I am so curious about what happened between Cousin and Xu Jiaojiao. What did Xu Jiaojiao do that Cousin willingly made himself her loyal dog? cough cough cough…
“You are still the same,” Sheng Jiaoyang laughed and remarked when she saw Ning Xiaoruan choking on his own saliva all of a sudden.
No matter how prim and proper Ning Xiaoruan looked on the outside, it didn’t change the fact that he was a dum-dum at heart.
“The same? Don’t you think I have become more handsome?” Ning Xiaoruan puffed out his chest, his face looking solemn and his gaze intense.
“Stop joking,” Sheng Jiaoyang then called in a low voice, “Idiot Ning.”
She then laughed and headed outside with Shen Zhining.
Ning Xiaoruan stood rooted to the ground in complete perplexity.
What?? Am I hearing things? No, I must have misheard!
What did she call me? Idiot Ning?!!
“Young Master Ning, are we leaving?” The bodyguard at the side couldn’t help but remind him.
Ning Xiaoruan took a deep breath, gritted his teeth and chased after the couple.
Boarding the stretch limousine, Ning Xiaoruan stared at Sheng Jiaoyang sitting opposite of him as he spat out his words one a time through gritted teeth. “What did you call me just now?”
A glint flashed across Sheng Jioayang’s eyes. She tilted her head to look at Shen Zhining beside her and said deliberately, “Zhining, what did I call him just now?”
Shen Zhining held her hand in his as his unconcerned gaze swept past Ning Xiaoruan and spoke in an unclear tone, “You didn’t increase your capabilities and now your hearing ability has degenerated instead?”
“… " Being hit by a double whammy, Ning Xiaoruan could only silently protest that he was tired and didn’t wish to speak with those two anymore.
Sheng Jiaoyang almost burst out in laughter. She said to Shen Zhining, “If I recall correctly, you asked him to be my personal assistant for a year previously, didn’t you? I counted the days, he didn’t even work two months.”
“Cousin, I am one of the board directors in the company now, how can I continue being her little assistant!” Ning Xiaoruan was truly terrified. If Cousin really heed this pillow talk and tasked me to be a personal assistant again, should I reject it?
If I don’t reject it, I, the successor to Ning Corporation, will actually have to serve a little starlet as her personal assistant! How embarrassing!
If I reject it… Ning Xiaoruan looked at Shen Zhining. I’d better not challenge Cousin’s authority, I’ll die a terrible death.
Currently, Shen Zhining’s favouritism had no bounds. He studied Ning Xiaoruan for a few seconds as though he was scrutinizing the worth of a product, and caused Ning Xiaoruan’s hair to stand.
“Tell me, what do you want.”
Hearing his cousin’s infuriating words, Ning Xiaoruan took a sharp gasp. His intuition told him that his cousin would be selling him away at a dirt-cheap price.
A beautiful maiden lands a country in ruins! Xu Jiaojiao is definitely a siren in disguise!!
“Xu… Sis-in-law, see, we are about to become a family. We shouldn’t be calculative over such matters, should we?” Ning Xiaoruan decided to save himself. He was no longer the naive boy from before. He might not have become an expert in dealing with people in the corporate world, but he did learn something.
A man can be flexible; when faced with unreasonable people, he can lower himself for the time being.
An exceptionally warm smile blossomed on Sheng Jiaoyang's face as she affectionately said, “Younger Cousin, we are about to become a family. You wouldn’t bear to watch me suffer losses, right?”
I shall tolerate you, I shall tolerate you till the end! Ning Xiaoruan felt suffocated.
“My assistant is supposed to help me out, take care of my daily life and help to grow my career. Say, if you stop being my assistant, how much loss would I have to suffer?”
The corners of Ning Xiaoruan’s lips twitched involuntarily, “Then, Sis-in-law, what do you think can make up for the loss?” His words squeezed through his gritted teeth.
Sheng Jiaoyang replied with a smile, “That would depend on your sincerity.”
Great. In Ning Xiaoruan’s eyes, her trademark smile had successfully advanced to — the smile of a demoness.
Ning Xiaoruan felt his heart sinking into the icy pits.
I must be blind then, to see the demoness as an innocent white rabbit. How could I have underestimated a character who was able to conquer Cousin’s heart?”
He stared at the couple before him leaning against each other as though he was looking at two thousand years old demons. Damn, even those old cunning foxes on the board couldn’t manage to instil such a deep sense of powerlessness in me.Previous Chapter Next Chapter
TL: Cosy | Editor: Grace | TLC: Grace