Chapter 290 – Meeting People
As the night faded, dawn broke.
The servants of the Sheng family had already risen and were preparing dinner in the kitchen. Grandfather Qu sat in the main seat, holding a newspaper. A servant brought a bowl of congee and placed it in front of Grandfather Qu.
Within about ten minutes, the dining table was filled with people. Everyone was awake; it was a workday, and there was no time for them to sleep in.
Except for Cookie, who was still in bed. He had a habit of sleeping in, and now, being pregnant, the desire for sleep enveloped him even more. The bed and blankets sealed him in; there was no way he could get up.
Therefore, Wei Hua took over the task of taking Little Biscuit to school today.
Breakfast quickly ended. Grandfather Qu took a wet towel handed by a servant and wiped his mouth. He said to Wei Chen and Chen Li, “Today, I’m meeting up with some old friends. You two come with me. I’ll introduce you to them so you don’t struggle recognizing them later.”
Chen Li nodded, unaware of the identities of Grandfather Qu’s old friends.
“Alright,” Wei Chen nodded, showing no change in emotion. He maintained a poised demeanor. “Thank you, Grandpa.”
Given Grandfather Qu’s status, Wei Chen naturally knew the caliber of Grandfather Qu’s old friends. He also understood Grandfather Qu’s intention—it was to expand their connections.
Of course, Wei Chen understood that Grandfather Qu’s gesture was solely because of Chen Li, so it wasn’t something to boast about.
Grandfather Qu was quite pleased with Wei Chen’s response. Shortly after breakfast, he took Wei Chen and Chen Li out. Qiuqiu, accompanied by Chen Yunlan, remained calm and didn’t fuss.
The location Grandfather Qu chose for this gathering wasn’t overly high-end, but its security was undoubtedly better than any upscale club or hotel. After all, the people coming in and out of this gathering spot were all influential and respected figures in the capital.
Grandfather Qu arrived last. As he entered, everyone seated stood up, looking towards him. Grandfather Qu led Wei Chen and Chen Li in. Chen Li felt a bit nervous seeing these strangers, but with Wei Chen by his side, he drew strength and could face these unfamiliar people calmly.
Today, Chen Li and Wei Chen weren’t the only young ones present. The elderly attendees had also brought their grandchildren, with the same intention as Grandfather Qu—to introduce the younger generation and pave their way.
Grandfather Qu was the oldest among them, and these people had bonds forged in battle. Yet, there was no stiffness; Grandfather Qu smiled and introduced Chen Li and Wei Chen to these esteemed figures, people whose slightest nod could cause ripples throughout the country.
“This is my grandson, Chen Li, and this is my grandson’s partner, Wei Chen.”
They all knew about Grandfather Qu’s missing son and were aware that Grandfather Qu had recently acknowledged his grandson. Grandfather Qu hadn’t changed his grandson’s surname, a decision made for his own reasons.
When many saw Chen Li, they all seemed to breathe a sigh of relief for Grandfather Qu. Before this, they had heard Grandfather Qu mention that Qu Ran had left him a grandson, whom he had now acknowledged. These old friends of Grandfather Qu had genuinely worried for him. Even though they knew Grandfather Qu wasn’t one to be swayed by emotions, this was his soft spot. Who knows if someone might take advantage of that vulnerability to deceive him?
But now, looking at this young man named Chen Li, it was almost certain he was Grandfather Qu’s grandson. His face was practically a replica of Qu Ran’s.
Grandfather Qu introduced Wei Chen and Chen Li to these old people. Chen Li didn’t know the identities of these elders, but Wei Chen did. As they met these individuals, Wei Chen grew increasingly apprehensive.
Not to mention if all these elders acted together; even if just one of them made a move, it would shake the whole nation!
However, although Wei Chen was anxious, he didn’t show it on his face. He respectfully greeted these elders without being servile. Afterward, he led Chen Li into the circle of young people.
Due to their family backgrounds, these young people were somewhat arrogant. They knew Chen Li was Grandfather Qu’s recently acknowledged grandson and likely looked down on him.
Wei Chen sensed their disdain but chose to ignore it. As long as these individuals didn’t provoke him, he wouldn’t trouble himself with them.
“Are you Chen Li?”
However, some people were short-sighted and, despite knowing Chen Li’s status, still approached him.
When Chen Li heard the voice, he looked at the person and sensed their malicious intent. His hand instinctively grasped Wei Chen’s clothing, feeling tense. Despite the nervousness, he didn’t show any fear this time and bravely locked eyes with the person.
Wei Chen gave the person a faint glance and held Chen Li’s hand.
“Your grandfather’s surname is Qu. How come your surname is Chen? Could it be fake?” The person smirked, amusement evident in their eyes.
No one echoed his words, just coldly observing.
“This doesn’t concern you,” Wei Chen’s icy gaze fell on the person, stating coldly.
“You’re Wei… what was it?” The person frowned. “Sorry, can’t remember the names of insignificant people like you. I asked for Chen Li, got anything to do with you? Or is it because you’re living off others that you’ve gained some confidence?” At this moment, the disdain in the person’s eyes intensified.
Wei Chen looked at the person coldly and said, “Confidence? Let me show you what real confidence is!” With that, he grabbed a beer bottle from the table and slammed it forcefully against the table, causing the beer to splash everywhere due to the sudden impact.
“What? Dare to aim that bottle at me? If you dare, I’ll recognize you as a brother today!” The person pointed at his own head, speaking harshly to Wei Chen. He was certain that Wei Chen wouldn’t dare to act, hence his bold words.
After all, his grandfather was in the adjacent room. If Wei Chen injured him, Wei Chen’s entire life would be ruined. He believed Wei Chen wouldn’t risk his own future.
Just when the person thought Wei Chen would back down, feeling embarrassed, Wei Chen unexpectedly wielded the sharp beer bottle towards him. His eyes were icy, devoid of any emotion. The immense intent to harm could be felt!
Wei Chen was really going to harm him! Wei Chen was really daring!
For some reason, this thought suddenly struck the person’s mind. Hastily, he took a step back, barely avoiding Wei Chen’s bottle. Finally, Wei Chen spoke with a chilling tone, “Want to see if I dare or not.”
Now, the one feeling trapped and embarrassed was the person. He was truly frightened; the sharp glass was close, and he could even hear the bubbles in the beer on the glass. He truly believed now that this man before him, with his cold demeanor and lack of humor, would indeed thrust the bottle into his head!
As the person contemplated how to escape, a pair of hands grabbed Wei Chen’s wrist. A deep voice sounded, “Wei Chen, jokes should end here.”
Wei Chen turned to see who held his wrist—it was Jiang Ye, a bit surprised.
Before this, Wei Chen hadn’t seen Jiang Ye among these privileged young men.
Seeing Wei Chen’s confusion, Jiang Ye explained, “I just went out to take a call and came back to see you and Young Master Han playing around, so I came over to join the fun.”
In one sentence, Jiang Ye effortlessly categorized the recent conflict as a joke, providing Wei Chen and the other, Young Master Han, a way out.
“It indeed was a joke,” Wei Chen followed this line of retreat, although his gaze remained chilly.
Young Master Han wasn’t a fool either. He followed suit, “Young Master Jiang, is this your friend?”
Now he understood it all. Wei Chen’s actions were just an act; there was no way he would actually strike him with the bottle. It was merely a scare tactic. His retreat just now meant his loss. Wei Chen had anticipated someone stepping in to intervene, even if it wasn’t Jiang Ye, it would have been someone else. He noticed others in the room making motions to intervene as well.
Damn it, he had been played by this freeloader! This time, he lost a lot of face!
Jiang Ye nodded, “He’s my Brother. Thanks for Young Master Han’s warm reception to my brother here.” He emphasized the word ‘warm.’
Young Master Han felt a bit embarrassed. He understood that Jiang Ye was supporting Wei Chen. Given Jiang Ye’s influence in their circle, he couldn’t do anything to Wei Chen and Chen Li today.
With Jiang Ye mediating, Wei Chen and Chen Li quickly blended into the group.
In the other room, several old men were fully aware of the commotion but didn’t step in to stop it. They knew even if tensions escalated, these youngsters wouldn’t cause any trouble in their presence.
“Old Qu, is that your grandson?” One of the old men sitting next to Old Qu inquired.
This elderly man used to be in charge of the Cultural Propaganda Department in the nation. He had seen Chen Li’s paintings during the National Day exhibition. As the exhibition could be sponsored by the Cultural Propaganda Department, he was the one who finalized it.
At that time, while the minister of the Cultural Propaganda Department was discussing work with him, he had earnestly looked at those paintings. They had moved him somewhat, but he hadn’t decided to sponsor the exhibition just yet.
Coincidentally, on that day, Old Qu was visiting his house and mentioned that it was his grandson’s artwork. That single statement sealed the decision.
Firstly, those words indeed had the power to secure the sponsorship from the Cultural Propaganda Department. He had planned to delay a bit to see if he could gain additional advantages. But since it was Old Qu’s grandson’s artwork, why delay any further? He decided on the spot to sponsor the exhibition.
Secondly, he was genuinely moved by the paintings, and the significance of the exhibition after its display was exceptional. Therefore, the decision to host Chen Li’s exhibition was not only due to Chen Li’s excellence but also largely because of Old Qu. If it weren’t for Old Qu, whether the sponsorship for the exhibition would have been finalized so swiftly remained uncertain.