Chapter 303 – The End of the Wedding
At this banquet table, Grandfather Wei was the oldest and held the highest seniority. Setting aside their identities, both pairs of newlyweds should have toasted to him. Indeed, Wei Chen and Wei Hua had a falling-out with Grandfather Wei before, but on this occasion, they were willing to show him respect.
So, among the two pairs of newlyweds, the first toast at this table was still directed towards Grandfather Wei.
Grandfather Wei felt somewhat awkward inwardly, observing the two pairs of newlyweds toasting to him. He bravely drank the contents of the glass with a show of generosity. However, only Grandfather Wei knew that the taste in his throat wasn’t the sharpness of alcohol but bitterness, magnifying his regret.
Nevertheless, Grandfather Wei had battled in the business world for many years, and he concealed these emotions well without showing them. Yet, in the next moment, he felt quite embarrassed.
When the previous two pairs of newlyweds toasted to the main table, the elders receiving the toasts had given substantial red envelopes to the couples. Grandfather Wei hadn’t taken this wedding seriously earlier and hadn’t prepared any red envelopes. Now, after receiving the toasts from the newlyweds, he felt a bit at a loss.
Fortunately, Housekeeper Zhang had foreseen this situation and had prepared red envelopes after assisting Grandfather Wei inside. Seeing Grandfather Wei in a daze, Housekeeper Zhang promptly presented the red envelopes.
Grandfather Wei gave a rare grateful glance to Housekeeper Zhang, handed the red envelopes to the two pairs of newlyweds, and thus diffused the awkwardness.
The two pairs of newlyweds, unaware of Grandfather Wei’s recent discomfort, accepted the red envelopes and turned to toast their respective fathers.
Sheng Jiaqi and Chen Yunlan knew a bit about Grandfather Wei’s background. Seeing he hadn’t even prepared red envelopes, they felt somewhat angry, but considering it was a joyous day, they didn’t show it. They accepted the toasts from the two pairs of newlyweds and handed over red envelopes.
Apart from Grandfather Wei and the two fathers, Chen Shijing and Chen Shixian from the Chen family were also seated at this table. When the two pairs of newlyweds came to toast, Chen Shixian’s voice rang out, “I heard Yunzeng mention a remarkable young man named Wei Chen from Changfeng Group. I didn’t expect to meet him in such a way today. Speaking of which, Chen Li is still my great-nephew. Having such outstanding younger generations, I’m quite proud.”
Chen Shixian, being a military man, had a booming voice, and at this moment, he didn’t hold back at all. Everyone nearby could clearly hear his words, and he was right. He and Chen Shihuai were cousins; Chen Shihuai was Chen Li’s grandfather, so naturally, he was Chen Li’s great uncle. In terms of blood relations, he was indeed Chen Li’s great uncle.
However, his loud declaration about this relationship had caused quite a stir among the people present.
“The Chen family and the Qu family? Weren’t they at odds? How did they become in-laws?”
As people murmured and speculated, Chen Yunlan stood up. He walked over to Chen Shixian with a smile, raised a glass toward him, and before Chen Shixian could drink, he said, “General Chen, our Chen Li really can’t measure up to your Chen family’s connections. Today, we’ll politely decline your favor.” Chen Yunlan inverted his cup, indicating that he had finished the drink.
Chen Shixian’s previously jovial expression instantly froze. He had been considering using his family’s status to exert pressure on the Sheng family. Moreover, it was a joyous occasion; surely the Sheng family wouldn’t want to create a scene? Surprisingly, it wasn’t the Sheng family causing a commotion; instead, it was their own Chen family member, Chen Yunlan.
Chen Shijing intervened, suppressing Chen Shixian’s attempt to respond, and with a fake smile, he looked at Chen Yunlan. “Yunlan, what you said isn’t appropriate. There’s no such thing as measuring up or not. Chen Li is already a part of our Chen family.”
Chen Yunlan smirked, a disdainful smile forming on his lips. “Since when did Xiao Li become a part of your Chen family? In the past twenty years, have you even met Chen Li once? Don’t just because you’ve heard Chen Li is now the grandson of Old Master Qu, claim he’s part of your Chen family. Why didn’t you say it earlier?” Chen Yunlan seemed quite unreserved, not caring about the setting being a wedding. The Chen family had intended to embarrass them first, so why should he compromise on everything just because of a wedding?
Chen Yunlan’s words were somewhat indirect, but anyone with a functioning brain could sense his implication: the Chen family was now aiming to connect with the Qu family!
Chen Shijing and Chen Shixian naturally caught on. They never expected Chen Yunlan to be so audacious. Now, they felt a bit cornered. Chen Shixian was hot-tempered, his fists clenched tightly, veins bulging, and if Chen Shijing hadn’t restrained him, he might have taken action against Chen Yunlan!
Before Chen Shijing could say anything, Old Master Qu from the main table stood up and spoke, “This is a younger generation’s wedding, not a family reunion. You, as the elders, should show some restraint.”
His words were simple, yet they solidified the Chen family’s attempt to establish connections.
Old Master Qu’s status was undeniable. Neither Chen Shijing nor Chen Shixian could refute Old Master Qu. They had to sit back down, feeling a knot in their hearts.
Chen Yunlan returned to his seat, looking composed as if nothing had happened just now.
The Chen family’s attempt to leverage Chen Li’s identity had been countered only by Old Master Qu’s authority.
The two pairs of newlyweds didn’t dwell on this incident, but during the toasting, they skipped over the Chen family.
The guests, unaware of the backstory, felt an itch of curiosity, but with the possibility of involving Old Master Qu, the Sheng family, and the Chen family—three prominent figures—they suppressed their curiosity and refrained from discussing it. With over a hundred tables at the banquet, it was impossible to toast everyone. After toasting the important guests, the two pairs of newlyweds left for their rooms upstairs to rest.
Meanwhile, the banquet hall, crowded with these influential figures, had naturally turned into a social hub. People were eager to approach and network with these prominent figures.
The pairs of newlyweds had left, and the main table guests achieved their purposes. Due to their status, they didn’t linger much either and departed shortly after the couples left.
Other guests who were preparing to approach felt a bit disappointed when they saw the influential figures leave but respectfully bid farewell as they departed.
Chen Shijing and Chen Shixian had no intention to stay either. However, when they left, they left behind their two sons, Chen Yunqi and Chen Yuntang.
After all, there were many big shots from the business world present, which was a rare opportunity. Letting Chen Yunqi and Chen Yuntang network a bit more could be helpful for their future endeavors.
As night fell, the wedding banquet concluded. Guests dispersed, the excitement faded, and Sheng Jiaqi and Chen Yunlan were among the last to depart. They glanced at the mess in the hall and sighed deeply.
Their sons had finally entered the realm of marriage, and the person they loved had now replaced them, becoming the closest person in their sons’ lives.
Feeling a sense of loss and melancholy, this might be what every father feels at this moment, right?
The two empathetic fathers shared a deep gaze, sighed again, and then left the banquet hall.
Just as they pushed open the door, a little munchkin bumped into Sheng Jiaqi. “Grandpa, Grandpa! Dad and Uncle said they are going for their wedding night; they asked me to find you!”
Seeing the chubby Little Biscuit, Sheng Jiaqi immediately scooped the child up. Any complex emotions vanished entirely. “Alright, Little Biscuit. You’ll sleep with Grandpa tonight.”
Little Biscuit nodded vigorously, completely unfazed about sleeping with Grandpa.
Sheng Jiaqi headed home, but Chen Yunlan, thinking about his grandson waiting for him, also felt his heart drawn back home. There was no lingering sadness or emotions from before.
However, just as Chen Yunlan was about to leave the hotel, he was intercepted. Chen Yunlan’s gaze turned cold as he looked at the two people blocking his path: Chen Shihuai and Chen Yunsheng.
The father and son looked at Chen Yunlan, hesitating as they spoke.
Chen Yunlan gazed coldly at them, devoid of any emotional connection. To him, they were like strangers.
“Yunlan, is Qu Ran Old Master Qu’s son?” Chen Shihuai asked after much internal struggle.
However, Chen Yunlan didn’t want further entanglement with them and chose not to answer their question. Attempting to bypass this father and son to leave proved futile. They intercepted Chen Yunlan, unwilling to let him go so easily. They had caught Chen Yunlan, preventing his departure.
“What do you want?” Chen Yunlan knew they wouldn’t let him leave this time, so he asked coldly.
“Yunlan, I raised you. Have I ever deprived you of anything? Have I not provided for you? I knew you liked painting, so I nurtured that passion. Your achievements today—dare you say they have no connection to my role as your father?” Chen Shihuai stared at Chen Yunlan, playing the emotional card.
Yet, Chen Yunlan remained unmoved. “So what?”
“It’s time for you to repay us! Repay the Chen family!” Chen Yunsheng lacked Chen Shihuai’s composure, yelling at Chen Yunlan, “Do you truly believe you’re not part of the Chen family? You grew up in the Chen family. Now that we, the Chen family, are in trouble, you should help us! It’s what you owe the Chen family!”
Chen Yunsheng’s expression was twisted, his eyes filled with rage.
“Owe the Chen family?” Chen Yunlan chuckled. “I’ve repaid everything I owe the Chen family. But what about what you owe Qu Ran? What about what you owe Chen Li?”
Chen Yunsheng faltered, unable to respond.
He knew how Qu Ran died, why Chen Li’s autism was worsening. So, when Chen Yunlan posed those questions, Chen Yunsheng found himself at a loss for words.