Yang Yuan was in tears, saying, “I know you have feelings for your foster father. I never wanted to come between you and your foster father. I just can’t believe he could be so ruthless, killing your mother.”
“I admit your mother and I were wrong, but that doesn’t warrant a death sentence. Wen Guoan, he’s really ruthless!” He played his part convincingly.
Wen Yu watched his performance with a blank expression. He found this feigned and cloying encounter thoroughly distasteful but had to go along with it. Fortunately, he didn’t have to appear too close to Yang Yuan – a half-hearted response was just right.
Yang Yuan was standing on the foundation of a biological relationship as his birth father, accusing Wen Yu’s foster father of killing his birth mother. His strongest card was simply blood ties.
Why do some people in this country have such blind faith in blood ties?
Wen Yu thought cynically.
Wen Yu didn’t give Yang Yuan any favorable treatment. However, from Yang Yuan’s perspective, this meeting was already a significant step forward.
At the very least, Wen Yu was now willing to sit down and listen to him. His attitude had clearly softened.
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Gqvla yzz, vblu pbyale y czsse nsddlnvksd.
Gp vblu olal ycswv vs ryav oyup, Eld Zw “pvwccsadzu” pyke, “El nyd’v fwxr vs vbl nsdnzwpksd vbyv xu eye jkzzle xu xsx. Fbl xktbv byhl nsxxkvvle pwknkel.” Tl pllxle psxlobyv yddsule, yp kq bl oydvle vs lde vbkp nsdvldvkswp ekpnwppksd.
G bkdv sq y pxkzl qzknjlale kd Zydt Zwyd’p lulp, plyxzlppzu vaydpkvksdkdt vs y zssj sq psaaso. Tl pvyale yv Eld Zw okvb yd lmralppksd sq blzrzlppdlpp yde pyedlpp, zlvvkdt swv y zsdt pktb.
Eld Zw oyzjle yoyu okvb y ekpeykdqwz lmralppksd.
Gqvla bl zlqv, y nya nyxl vs rknj wr Zydt Zwyd. Zydt Js tsv swv sq vbl nya yde srldle vbl essa qsa Zydt Zwyd.
Ebld Zydt Zwyd pyo bkp psd, bkp elxlydsa talo nsze. Zydt Js bye yzoyup clld alprlnvqwz yde oykvle qsa Zydt Zwyd vs tlv kdvs vbl nya clqsal ldvlakdt qasx vbl svbla pkel.
“Tso kp xu zkvvzl casvbla eskdt?” bl ypjle.
“Gzvbswtb bl byp y ckv sq y sdl-vaynj-xkde yde pkxrzl-xkdele zkjl bkp xsvbla, yv zlypv bl osd’v ckvl rlsrzl,” Zydt Zwyd alrzkle nszezu.
Yang Bo gave a faint smile and didn’t retort, as if he were not dealing with his elder father but a stubborn child.
He changed the subject.
“I’ve had preliminary contact with Wen’s people. He should receive a report today. It’s just that I don’t know if he can take control of Wen Guoan,” Yang Bo said.
Yang Yuan made a disapproving sound and said, “Wen Guoan’s financial chain has already collapsed. Even if he manages to raise funds, he won’t hold on for much longer.”
Yang Bo smiled, “If the acquisition is successful this time, you’ll be able to set your mind at ease from now on.”
Yang Yuan glanced at him with a cold, unloving gaze, devoid of any affection that an older man might have for his eldest son.
In his disdain, however, there was also a hint of apprehension.
Sun Yaxian had dinner at the school cafeteria, waved goodbye to her classmates, and prepared to go home. As the rumors had it, she was indeed living together with Qian Haoran now.
However, Qian Haoran was too busy, and they didn’t eat dinner together most of the time. In fact, she often had to fend for herself when it came to dinner.
As she walked out of the school gate, ready to hail a taxi, she spotted Ji Anning right ahead.
Ji Anning had changed significantly this time after returning to school due to her family issues. Her clothes and shoes had all been upgraded.
Well, what happened to the “independent and not spending a man’s money” persona? It seemed like she couldn’t resist and started using a man’s money after all.
Sun Yaxian had been sneakily observing and couldn’t help but sneer in her heart.
She was about to go over to greet Ji Anning when she suddenly saw a car stop in front of Ji Anning. A young man got out of the car, came over and opened the car door for Ji Anning. He opened the back door, indicating that he was just the driver.
Sun Yaxian’s steps, which had just taken a step forward, came to a halt.
She watched Ji Anning get into the car and drive away, figuring out that this car was provided to her by Wen Yu, which made her secretly envy it.
Qian Haoran hadn’t given her such a good treatment.
Sun Yaxian hailed a taxi on the roadside. When she arrived at her destination and paid the fare, Sun Yaxian, holding her brand-name wallet, felt a bit troubled.
She felt like the money wasn’t enough.
She used to be naive, thinking that finding a boyfriend with money would mean she wouldn’t have to worry about being broke. However, after being with Qian Haoran, she realized that he was more than willing to buy her designer bags, clothes, shoes, makeup, and skincare products. But he would never let her touch actual cash.
Even though she didn’t have to spend her own money on shopping, Sun Yaxian still had to use her own money for everyday expenses. Because she moved out of the school, she had to take taxis twice a day to go back and forth. She could no longer take public transportation.
There was no way she could squeeze onto a public bus wearing high-end clothes and carrying expensive bags!
The one-way trip from school to Qian Haoran’s place cost more than thirty yuan. Sun Yaxian made this round trip every morning and evening, and now, half of her monthly living expenses were spent on taxi rides.
Sun Yaxian had hinted several times to Qian Haoran, but he always responded with a smirk and never agreed to her requests. Eventually, Sun Yaxian realized that it wasn’t a matter of Qian Haoran being thoughtless; it was simply his fixed pattern or method.
Or you could say it was his strategy.
Sun Yaxian had to admit that these few months of dating Qian Haoran had made her grow significantly. This was primarily because she had seen more. Many of her previous presumptions seemed laughable in hindsight.
Rich people were never fools.
She couldn’t help but sigh and suddenly wondered about Ji Anning’s situation. Did Wen Yu also use such tactics to control her, just like Qian Haoran?
Thinking about Ji Anning also starting to wear high-end brands and soon becoming addicted to these luxurious items with no way to escape, Sun Yaxian felt a sense of balance.
Ji Anning asked Assistant Gao, and she learned that Wen Yu had arranged for him to pick her up for school and drop her off after school.
“Did he mention how long this arrangement would last?” she inquired.
“No,” Assistant Gao replied. “Xiao Wen said he’s been busy lately and asked me to take good care of you.”
Ji Anning nodded.
For several days in a row, Wen Yu had been leaving early and returning late, working tirelessly. Although he didn’t explicitly mention it, Ji Anning deduced that he was likely engaged in a battle of wits with Yang Yuan and Yang Bo.
Everything seemed to be unfolding earlier than in her previous life. These few months were probably a crucial time for Wen Yu, especially with his father still detained.
She thought about all these things, trying to search her memories for any clues she might have seen in the time vortex. She didn’t want to miss anything important to tell Wen Yu.
As she turned her head, she noticed a sports car parked alongside the road. The driver lowered the car window and flicked out a cigarette butt. His profile looked very familiar, and it was Zhao Chen, whom she hadn’t seen during the holidays.
Seeing him, Ji Anning immediately thought of He Man from the photo.
The beautiful and sweet girl had died, and the real culprit remained at large.
It was truly frustrating and oppressive. This whole situation weighed heavily on her heart. This time around, Yu Xia hadn’t committed any punishable acts, and Ji Anning could slowly let her go and separate her from the Yu Xia of her past life.
But this time, Zhao Chen had already committed the heinous crime he deserved to be punished for. Without Ji Anning’s interference, He Man had already unjustly died. In Ji Anning’s heart, this Zhao Chen was the same as the previous one.
He deserved to die.
However, since her rebirth, Ji Anning knew her own limitations. Despite hating Zhao Chen to the core, she also knew she couldn’t confront him. Thus, she remained fearful of him and wisely chose to avoid him.
While Wen Yu had the capability to deal with Zhao Chen, Ji Anning didn’t want him to get involved with this man again.
With Wen Yu currently busy fighting with the Yang family father and son, Ji Anning, despite her burning resentment, wouldn’t use this opportunity to trouble Wen Yu with Zhao Chen.
In fact, Wen Yu’s insistence on letting her continue to stay with him and arranging for High Assistant to pick her up was met with apparent compliance from Ji Anning. She did so because she considered that during Wen Yu’s absence from school and his busy period dealing with the Yang family, Zhao Chen might come to bother her, just as he did in her previous life.
Although many things had changed in this life, being prepared in advance was always better than doing nothing at all.
With her strong dislike of Zhao Chen, she turned her face in the opposite direction.
That evening, Zhao Chen went out with friends, including some he had known from his days in Yusheng. Among these friends was Li He’s cousin.
After drinking and chatting, Li He’s cousin asked, “Isn’t that Wen Yu guy from your school?”
“Why do you ask about him?” Zhao Chen inquired.
His cousin responded, “It seems like something’s wrong with his family. His dad got arrested, and we’re not sure why. It looks like their financial chain broke, and their family might go bankrupt.”
Zhao Chen was surprised to hear this for the first time and asked, “Where did you hear this from?”
His cousin said, “I heard it from my older brother.”
This cousin was currently working for Li He’s family and often had the chance to be around Li He. Occasionally, he would release some snippets of information. People like Zhao Chen, who couldn’t connect with Wen Yu or Li He directly, found these snippets quite interesting.
In truth, the phrase “I heard it from my older cousin” was purely made up. He overheard part of the conversation when Li He was on the phone, took it out of context, added a few guesses, and created this partially accurate and partially false piece of news.
Most hearsay rumors are like this, unreliable. The person who shares the information usually does so casually, and the listeners often don’t take it too seriously. The circle of Wen Yu and Li He was a few steps higher than Zhao Chen’s circle, and these people didn’t have much insight into their affairs. It was just idle chatter and gossip after tea or dinner.
But Zhao Chen did pay a bit more attention when he heard this.
He continued to attend classes and, at lunchtime, noticed something unusual. For several consecutive days, he saw Jì Anning having lunch with a female classmate. Zhao Chen remembered that she used to have lunch with Wen Yu.
Unable to resist his curiosity, he inquired and learned that Wen Yu had actually taken a leave of absence, seemingly confirming what Li He’s cousin had mentioned.
Zhao Chen’s mind started to buzz with activity.
In fact, since he first saw Ji Anning in the cafeteria in the previous semester, he couldn’t help but be reminded of He Man.
Ji Anning and He Man were somewhat similar in style, although He Man was sweet and innocent, while Ji Anning appeared cold and aloof. Nevertheless, when compared, Ji Anning seemed even more captivating.
However, Zhao Chen realized it too late. Beauties like Ji Anning tend to get noticed as soon as they step onto the school campus. The fact that Wen Yu had made the first move made Zhao Chen truly regretful.
Zhao Chen wasn’t the same clueless teenager he had been in high school, who has been pampered by his grandparents. After being brought back into his father’s fold, he received rigorous discipline and matured considerably. He knew the provincial capital was full of talented individuals and not like the small town of Yusheng. He had to be cautious in his approach.
Now, Zhao Chen decided to keep observing the situation.
Wen Yu visited Wen Guoan and reported the latest developments.
“Some individuals are manipulating public opinion. There are online reports about your arrest, along with rumors that our entire cash flow has dried up, and the financial chain has broken. In recent days, some suppliers, who believe these rumors, have come demanding early payments, and financial institutions are requesting immediate repayment. There is also some instability among the people within the group,” Wen Yu reported honestly.
Wen Guoan asked, “What does the other party say?”
Wen Yu sneered, “They want to acquire our core and most valuable technology and assets. They seem to know the entire layout of our group even better than our internal employees. And they’re trying to haggle, thinking the money they’re holding will be our life saving straw. Ha.”
Wen Guoan asked, “Is it him?”
Wen Yu shook his head disdainfully, “The ones officially representing them are small fries; we’re still investigating the higher-ups. It’s almost certain it’s him. Who else could have obtained this information so quickly and been the first to reach out?”
Wen Guoan said, “Don’t make assumptions about anything. You must gather as much information as possible to draw the most accurate conclusions.”
Wen Yu had already mentally attributed the attack on the Wen family to Yang Yuan so he didn’t want to listen further. He turned to Lawyer Zheng and asked, “What’s the progress on the case here?”
Lawyer Zheng replied, “Chef Lao Zhang contacted the police voluntarily and provided a lead.”
At the time, Chef Lao Zhang was brought to the police station to assist with the investigation. Besides testifying that he had heard an argument between Wen Guoan and Cheng Lian, he didn’t provide any other useful information.
The family mansion was currently vacant and sealed off as a crime scene. Wen Yu had given paid leave to the staff, and he went home to rest.
After resting for a while, one day, while grocery shopping with his wife, he bought a new set of kitchen knives. Suddenly, he remembered something and rushed back to the police station to provide a lead to Captain Hu.
“Just a few days ago, I was slicing fruit, and I felt something off about one of the knives,” he said. “These knives in the Wen family’s kitchen are a complete set, an expensive foreign brand, and they work wonderfully. I got used to them at their house.”
Captain Hu asked, “What was off about it?”
The chef replied, “It was just for those few days. I felt like the knife I was using to cut fruit seemed newer. I found it a bit strange at the time, but it was the same brand, identical, so I didn’t think much of it.”
The chef requested to take another look at the fruit knife that had been confiscated as evidence. Captain Hu retrieved the knife from the evidence room. The chef carefully examined it through the evidence bag and confirmed, “This knife, it’s the one I’ve been using for years! Absolutely, this is the one! The one I used a few days ago was definitely a brand-new knife!”
This was information favorable to Wen Guoan, but Captain Hu wasn’t entirely convinced, suspecting that the Wen family might be trying to set up a diversion.
However, when Wen Yu and Wen Guoan heard this, they realized that Cheng Lian had premeditated her actions. She had likely prepared a brand-new knife that was identical to the old one. After successfully obtaining Wen Guoan’s fingerprints on the old knife, she put away the old one and temporarily replaced it with the new knife to deceive everyone.
This level of meticulous planning aimed to frame her husband after her departure.
Wen Guoan noticed a hint of sarcasm at the corner of Wen Yu’s mouth. It was unclear whether he was mocking Cheng Lian or himself.
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