Chapter 142 – Pre-Dinner Turbulence

The A Zone project in Shanghai was the focal point of the city this year, and it was also one of the first fires lit by the newly appointed Municipal Party Secretary. In reality, the likelihood of the Wei family securing this project was extremely slim due to their lack of expertise in the field. The Municipal Party Secretary was well aware of this fact and thus excluded the Wei family from the beginning.

Old Master Wei was well aware of this, understanding the difficulty of the situation. That’s why he used this as a condition to negotiate with Wei Chen.

If Wei Chen managed to secure this project, it would present an opportunity for the Wei family to get close to the newly appointed Municipal Party Secretary. If they established a connection with the Secretary, the Wei family wouldn’t have to constantly be constrained by the Chen family as they had been before.

However, if Wei Chen failed to secure the project, then it would be time for Wei Chen to fulfill his promise. Initially, Old Master Wei used this challenge as a means to persuade Wei Chen to divorce Chen Li. However, he had never imagined that after negotiations, not only did Wei Chen not back down from divorcing Chen Li, but he also managed to turn the situation around and get Old Master Wei himself entangled in the matter, agreeing to Wei Chen’s proposed conditions.

At this point, Old Master Wei had to admit that his own grandson, raised under his guidance, had surpassed him in certain aspects. This was something that brought both pride and a hint of sighing for Old Master Wei.

If there was anything that Old Master Wei remained dissatisfied with regarding Wei Chen at this point, it would only be the matter of Wei Chen’s marriage.

He had never imagined that Wei Chen would become so deeply involved in his marriage with Chen Li. Watching Wei Chen’s departing figure, Old Master Wei sighed deeply in his heart. Well, since Wei Chen was so invested in this marriage, he would let him be. Eventually, Wei Chen would realize the importance of a marriage that was a good match for his career.

When that time came, he wouldn’t need to intervene negatively. Wei Chen himself would want to conclude this marriage, especially when the person Old Master Wei had identified for Wei Chen turned out to be supportive in various aspects.

Housekeeper Zhang entered the room, not interrupting Old Master Wei’s contemplation. He quietly stood behind Old Master Wei.

“Old Zhang, do you think it was right or wrong to have Wei Chen marry Chen Li back then?” Old Master Wei asked once he knew Housekeeper Zhang had entered.

“I wouldn’t dare to make a hasty judgment,” Housekeeper Zhang replied. “I only know that after being with Young Master Chen Li, Young Master Chen seemed to come alive.”

“Is that so?” Old Master Wei’s gaze turned heavy, evidently not finding that answer satisfactory.

Housekeeper Zhang didn’t speak further. He felt that his previous words had irritated Old Master Wei. So, he stood behind Old Master Wei and gently massaged his shoulders, relieving the old man’s fatigue.

In truth, many times, Housekeeper Zhang couldn’t quite fathom Old Master Wei’s mindset. If he liked Young Master Chen so much, wouldn’t it be good to see him happy? Often, Housekeeper Zhang had the feeling that Old Master Wei didn’t seem to want Young Master Chen to be too happy. No, perhaps it was that Old Master Wei didn’t want Young Master Chen to be overly emotional.

Old Master Wei didn’t say anything more either. He closed his eyes and appeared to doze off until a servant came up to announce that the New Year’s Eve dinner was ready. With Housekeeper Zhang’s support, Old Master Wei got up from his seat, descended the stairs, and made his way to the dining hall.

As Wei Chen returned to his room, he saw Wei Hua happily giggling while holding his phone. Without much thought, Wei Chen knew it was probably related to Cookie.

Passing by Wei Hua’s room, he said a quick “Thank you” before entering his own room.

Wei Hua’s task was completed, and he hummed a tune while descending the stairs. His features were all uplifted, a clear indication to anyone that his mood was quite good at the moment.


In his room, Chen Li was painting. During the time that Wei Chen and Old Master Wei were in conversation, Chen Li had managed to paint nearly an entire piece. The subject of his painting was Wei Chen, his gentle gaze fixed upon him.

This was the first time Wei Chen had seen himself portrayed with such tenderness. The softness in his eyes and brows was entirely different from his usual stern expression. He stood behind Chen Li, observing.

When Chen Li added the last stroke, he realized that Wei Chen had returned. Turning his head towards him, he said, “You’re back?” His eyes curved, accompanied by a faint smile.

Wei Chen leaned over, encircling Chen Li. His fingers lightly brushed the painting before him. Under his touch, the lines blurred slightly but didn’t disrupt the overall beauty of the artwork. “You’re painting me again,” he remarked.

“Yeah, I enjoy painting you,” Chen Li admitted candidly. In fact, their study at their home in the capital was adorned with Wei Chen’s portraits – happy or sad, stern or angry. Each painting reflected the spectrum of emotions Chen Li had slowly come to understand in him.

“I enjoy you painting me too,” Wei Chen tilted his head and left a light kiss on Chen Li’s cheek, his words carrying a playful tone.

At that moment, a servant’s voice came from the doorway, notifying them that dinner was ready, and the New Year’s Eve feast was about to begin.

Family members from the Wei household, scattered near and far, gathered together. In total, there were three long tables, quite a crowd, and the clamor was unavoidable. The children treated this space as their own world, running around without any consideration for the adults’ feelings.

The servants carried the dishes with utmost care, ensuring the children didn’t come into contact with them. Spilling the food might be minor, but scalding one of these precious young masters or misses would be a major issue. Every servant was on edge, putting in their utmost effort, stepping as if they were treading on landmines. They safely placed the dishes on the respective tables.

In fact, the children had their own separate table. To avoid disrupting the adults, this table was set up in a nearby hall. However, if the children could be well-behaved, the term “troublesome kids” wouldn’t exist in this world.

Wei Wei, although not the strongest or eldest among them, had become their king. More or less, other children’s parents had at some point cautioned their own children in front of Wei Wei. He truly was the young master – untouchable, unscoldable. His wishes were to be followed.

Children didn’t understand all the intricacies behind this, but the ideologies implanted by their parents had a significant impact on their worldviews. They now believed that Wei Wei was a level above them, the person their parents feared.

Now, these dozen or so children gathered together under Wei Wei’s command. Wei Wei, with an air of a little adult, stood tall among the kids. He looked into the distance, and upon spotting Chen Li’s figure, he turned to the others and said, “Do you see that fool? When he comes over later, throw stones at him. It’s okay, he’s a fool, he doesn’t feel pain.” Wei Wei remembered well how he’d been taught a lesson by Wei Chen for the same reason last time.

“Okay,” the children nodded. Some of the older ones already had a grasp on the concepts of right and wrong. They wanted to object but recalled what their parents had told them and simply nodded obediently.

“Also, if you get caught, don’t mention that I told you to throw the stones,” Wei Wei cautioned, his young face turning serious. “If I find out who betrayed me, I’ll have my grandpa kick you out of my house.”

This threat immediately worked its magic because these children’s parents had also used similar warnings. They had told their children that if the family got kicked out of the Wei household because of them, their legs would be broken!

The few reluctant older children had no objections now. Each of them went to hide, clutching several stones in their hands. Some of these stones were as big as an adult’s fist. If one of those hit, it wouldn’t be an easy time for Chen Li.

Neither Wei Chen nor Chen Li were aware that a group of children was lying in ambush, waiting for them.

To reach the dining hall in the main building from the Wei residence, one had to traverse a winding cobblestone path bordered by low shrubs. An adult might easily notice someone hiding there, but for children, these bushes were the perfect hiding spot. If you didn’t search intentionally, you wouldn’t find them.

Luckily, children were not known for their patience. Plus, among these troublemaking kids, there were a few sensible ones.

Wei Lili was a little girl from the Wei family’s branch. She was twelve years old now. She actually didn’t like coming to Shanghai for New Year’s because she didn’t feel at home in this family. However, she couldn’t understand why her parents insisted on bringing her to Shanghai for holidays, making her play with other kids, and even listen to a younger child’s words.

Like now, Wei Lili was hiding behind a bush, looking at the stones in her hand. Soon, she and the other children would be using these stones to pelt an older brother. Would it hurt a lot when all these stones hit him?

Wei Lili knew this was wrong. She wanted to run out and tell the older brother who was approaching not to come. But thinking about what her parents said, she felt scared. Would her parents really break her legs?

Wei Lili struggled within herself. She watched as the older brother approached the area. She forgot about her stones, stood up, and yelled towards Wei Chen and Chen Li, “Big brother, don’t come here. There are people here with stones, ready to throw them at you.”

Wei Chen and Chen Li stopped in their tracks upon hearing her words. Wei Chen’s expression turned even grimmer. He addressed the bushes, “Come out.”

Even children, who were already frightened by Wei Chen’s imposing appearance, threw down their stones and timidly emerged from the bushes. Wei Lili also stepped out, lowering her head, feeling somewhat afraid.

In the face of Wei Chen, these mischievous kids appeared as if they had encountered a natural enemy. They lined up in a row, heads bowed. Their usual rambunctiousness was gone. None of them dared to utter a sound.

Wei Chen’s expression didn’t soften in the slightest due to the children’s crying. However, his tone grew even colder. “Who told you to do this?”

Finally, one of the younger children couldn’t hold back and burst into tears. Children’s crying was contagious, and once one started, the others followed suit, their sobbing ringing out. The sound of crying reached the dining hall, prompting the adults to rush out to see what was happening. After all, in an era of mostly only children, any incident was unsettling for the parents.

Yet, when these parents came out and saw Wei Chen standing there with a stern face, his gaze icy as he looked at the children, and the children crying, they were taken aback.

After their initial surprise, these adults felt that Wei Chen was going too far. Regardless of the reasons, these were still children who didn’t understand much. Was it necessary for Wei Chen to contend with them in this manner?

Although these parents criticized Wei Chen in their hearts, no one stepped forward to say anything. Even though Wei Chen was now a discarded son, he was still a direct descendant. It was better to stay out of his business.

Wei Chen’s expression didn’t soften in the slightest due to the children’s crying. However, his tone grew even colder, “Who instructed you to do this?”

Some of the children were already crying so hard they were out of breath. The slightly older ones timidly looked at Wei Chen. But as they recalled Wei Wei’s threat, they dared not utter Wei Wei’s name.

The parents of these children were anxious now and stepped forward, accusing Wei Chen one after another.

“Young Master Chen, they’re just kids. We parents are here to teach them. You don’t have to bother, Young Master Chen.”

“Yes, Young Master Chen, as an adult, you should show some leniency. Please spare my child. He’s still young.”

Although they didn’t explicitly say that Wei Chen was bullying the children, these parents were subtly mocking and criticizing him.

In their eyes, Wei Chen was just a discarded son, and they didn’t have to fear him much.

As for Wei Wei, he was still a child. Wei Chen would surely discipline him properly!

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