Kangtong ran over from the entrance of the school and pulled open the door of the passenger seat, only to find that it was the chauffeur. Lian Jue was seated in the backseat and gave him a little nod. Sticking out his tongue, he greeted Uncle Liu then he dejectedly closed the car door behind him, climbed into the back seat, and sat next to Lian Jue while holding his schoolbag.
“Dad, are we going to the big house for dinner?”
Kangtong puffed out his cheeks and nodded. He returned a hum in understanding but didn’t continue to speak.
As soon as the car turned into the big garden, Kangtong became nervous. Both of his hands were twisting the hem of his clothes as he glanced outside the window.
The car slowly drove through the garden and stopped in the parking lot outside the villa.
Before they got out of the car, Lian Jue noticed that Kangtong’s collar got scrunched up when he took off the child’s seat belt then he raised his hand to help him smooth it out. Before Kangtong could turn his face, he had already retracted his hand and pushed the door to get out of the car.
Behind him, Kangtong spoke in a low voice, “Thank you, Dad.”
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Chen Chulian twirled the cup and took a sip before saying to Kangtong, “Child, come here.”
Lian Jue comforted him by pressing on his shoulders then he gave him a gentle push on his back.
“Just relax.” Lian Jue’s low voice came from above his head. Although it was gently spoken, it was also a little imposing.
Kangtong forced himself to summon his courage and walked over.
Chen Chulian wasn’t as scary as he thought. On the contrary, he was unexpectedly kind to him. He grabbed a handful of pistachio nuts from the plate at the tea table and put them in his hand. Kangtong couldn’t take it all, so he had to put it on the table for the time being then Chen Chulian took him to sit down on the sofa next to him.
“What’s your name?” Chen Chulian asked in a gentle voice.
He was about to answer ‘Lian Kangtong’ when Lian Jue came over and answered for him.
“His name is Kangtong.”
Chen Chulian didn’t say anything to him, he just looked at him. Kangtong covered up the slight disappointment in his heart and repeated his words, “Hello, Sir. My name is Kangtong.”
Chen Chulian smiled, “Boy, you should relax. Although you’re still young, don’t hide behind the adults.”
Kangtong nodded, “Thank you, Mr. Chen. I understand.”
Chen Chulian smiled and patted Kangtong’s hand then he casually talked with Lian Jue.
The topic of their small talk was all medical terms that Kangtong couldn’t understand. His head was lowered on the side, he didn’t say a word nor did he make a noise. He just listened quietly to the adults. But after a long time, he got bored. Kangtong glanced at the pistachio nuts that Mr.Chen had given him just now and reached out his hands to take them.
Since he didn’t have a pocket, Kangtong could only put a large handful of pistachio nuts he was holding on his lap before slowly peeling them off.
After peeling a few pistachio nuts, Kangtong accidentally saw Chen Chulian looking at him and was surprised for a moment. He raised his head and handed him the freshly peeled pistachio nuts, “Sir, do you want some?”
Chen Chulian shook his head and smiled softly, “The child is sensible.”
Kangtong was a little embarrassed, he blushed and buried his head. Chen Chulian retracted his gaze, glanced faintly at Lian Jue, he sighed and said:
“Being sensible is sensible…… but it’s still not as good as having your own baby. Such a pity.”
The freshly peeled pistachio nuts in Kangtong’s hands fell, and Chen Chulian frowned slightly.
Lian Jue’s expression didn’t change. He was smiling slightly but he didn’t speak. He quietly gathered over Kang Tong’s shoulder, and then he called a servant to clean up the pistachio nuts that fell on the ground. Although this action was nothing, the uneasiness in Kangtong’s heart seemed to be soothed. He blinked his eyes and resisted his urge to cry from the grievance he felt.
No one spoke for a while and it was abnormally silent.
“Ningxue will return home the day after tomorrow. Did she tell you?” Chen Chulian said all of a sudden.
Lian Jue paused and said, “En. I will pick her up the day after tomorrow.”
A smile finally appeared on Chen Chulian’s face, and shook his head, “So you’ve already discussed it. Then if she goes to trouble you, I don’t need to worry anymore.”
Lian Jue nodded, “You’re too polite, it’s not troublesome.”
They stayed at Chen Chulian’s place for dinner. After several people took a seat, a beautiful woman came downstairs, stroked Chen Chulian’s shoulder, and sat down beside him.
“Xiao Jue is here?” The woman called out Lian Jue first. When she saw Kangtong, her eyes curled up and she smiled gently, “Tongtong? Is it Tongtong?”
Kangtong didn’t know how he should call her, so he nodded. After that, he looked at Lian Jue as if asking for help.
“Mrs. Chen,” said Lian Jue.
Kangtong learned it quickly and said, “Hello, Mrs. Chen.”
The woman glared at Lian Jue unhappily, “Messed up teachings, what do you mean by Mrs.? Tongtong, just call me auntie.”
Kangtong hesitated for a while before speaking. Chen Chulian frowned and said in a low voice, “You’re the one teaching messy things and messing up the seniority in the family.”
“What seniority in the family?” The woman casually lifted the scattered curly hair behind her ears. Then, she looked at Kangtong with a smile, “Tongtong, you can call me whatever you want, so ignore them.”
Since he was younger, he was keenly aware that the relationship between this family didn’t seem to be simple. Kangtong didn’t dare to speak anymore. He just nodded his head politely but didn’t dare to lift his head again. He could only continue to ear as if he didn’t understand anything.
At their home, the aunt made Chinese food most of the time to take care of him. However, the dinner at Chen Chulian’s house wasn’t the same. The dishes were all Western style. The wine glasses were arranged in a row and three sets of cutlery were lined up from inside and outside. Together with the bright lights shining on the dazzling cutlery, it made him completely at a loss.
Kangtong didn’t know how to use a knife and fork. When he was cutting the steak, there was a harsh sound coming from the metal knife slashing on a porcelain plate.
Chen Chulian took a sip of wine and ignored the sound. He turned his head and asked Lian Jue, “How old is the child?”
Lian Jue replied, “Ten years old.”
Kangtong silently commented to himself that he hadn’t passed his 10th birthday yet.
Chen Chulian placed down the wine glass. His tone was still the same but his eyes were expressing the parents’ unique dissatisfaction. “Already at this age but he still can’t eat his food properly?”
Kangtong was startled and the knife and fork in his hands fell on the table, the collision made noise.
There was a sudden silence around the dining table.
Kangtong helplessly lowered his head. Then he saw that the muscles on Lian Jue’s arm were tightened, making him panic even more. He immediately put down his hands from the dining table, sniffling through his nose lightly.
In the end, the woman next to Chen Chulian couldn’t stand it anymore, “Just eat when eating. What are you doing scaring children?”
Lian Jue’s voice was colder than before, “I’ve been busy recently and haven’t spared a time to teach him. Let’s eat.”
Kangtong didn’t dare to touch the knife and fork again. His two hands under the table were twisting the tassels hanging from the edge of the tablecloth. He was worried that he might embarrass Lian Jue, he didn’t dare to shed a tear that filled his eyes.
He was sniffing very quietly, trying to hold back his tears when there was a napkin handed to him.
He whispered, “Dad, I didn’t cry.”
Lian Jue didn’t speak. He just placed the napkin on his lap and retracted his hands. Kangtong blinked, took the napkin, and wiped his eyes when he saw that no one was paying attention. Before he lifted his head, he saw Lian Jue put something in front of him.
“Eat.” Lian Jue took the napkin he had used in his hand and threw it into the trash can next to him.
Kangtong looked at the steak that had been cut in front of him, then he raised his head to say thank you. Lian Jue had already turned his head away and had resumed his conversation with Chen Chulian.
After the dinner, they didn’t leave right away. Lian Jue and Chen Chulian went upstairs to the study to talk about work, leaving Kangtong to sit alone on the sofa in the living room to watch TV.
The TV channel was changed to the news station and the broadcasts were all about national events. He watched it for a while but eventually found it boring. However, he didn’t dare to change it to the children’s channel, let alone run around, so he could only force himself. All of a sudden, his feet felt itchy. Kangtong lowered his head and saw that it was a very small Pomeranian, biting the slippers on his feet.
He rarely had come in contact with puppies before. When he saw the Pomeranian that looked like a snow dumpling, he liked it so much but he was a little scared. When he saw that no one was paying attention to him, he took the opportunity to poke the puppy’s head with a finger cautiously. As a result, the puppy raised its head and barked at him fiercely. He was shocked and quickly withdrew his hand.
A woman’s voice sounded next to him. “Aiya, don’t be afraid. It’s just pretending to be fierce and it doesn’t bite.”
Kangtong turned his head, “Mrs. Chen.”
“I told you to stop calling me Mrs. Chen, it sounds very old.” The woman smiled helplessly. She sat down next to him and held the puppy in her arms. Seeing that he was a little scared, she turned the puppy over, facing Kangtong with its butt.
“Do I look old?”
Kangtong shook his head. He hesitated for a while but decided to tell the truth. “……You’re like a sister.”
These words made the woman happy. She beamed in delight and stretched out her hand to pinch Kangtong’s face. “You’re really well-behaved!”
Kangtong had no concept of a woman’s age. He only thought that she was young and was gentle-spoken. She was currently smiling which made Kangtong slowly put down his guard, so he boldly asked, “Do you have any children?”
Only women with children could be called aunts, this was what the aunt at home had taught him.
The woman touched the puppy’s head. “Chen CHulian hopes that I have. Did he not count the quality of his own sperm?”
Seeing the child’s confused expression, she noticed that she had said something wrong. She hurriedly smiled and said, “Don’t mind it. Do you like puppies?”
Kangtong nodded and looked at the puppy in her arms. He wanted to touch it and asked hesitantly, “Will it bite?”
The woman took his hand and placed it on the puppy’s back. “It’s very docile and won’t bite you.” After thinking about it, she said, “But you can’t touch puppies outside casually, maybe it will bite.”
The fur on the puppy’s back was very soft, and he couldn’t help touching it for a while. The woman smiled and said, “If you want to play with the puppy in the future, you can ask the driver to send you over. Anyway, your father is very busy.”
Kangtong quickly withdrew his hand and shook his head gently.
The woman was stunned. When she reacted, she sighed. “Are you afraid of Chen Chulian? Aiya, it’s okay. He just has that stinky temper and serious face all day long. Just like your dad, he’s actually not a bad person. Besides, even if you come, you might not be able to see him. Don’t be afraid.”
Kangtong said that they weren’t the same at all.
Although Lian Jue always had a serious expression, Lian Jue wasn’t fierce at all….he was also very gentle.
The conversation downstairs went smoothly, but it was different upstairs. When Lian Jue came down, Kangtong had already fallen asleep, leaning on the sofa and was covered with a pink houndstooth blanket.
Lian Jue didn’t call to wake him up, he just picked up the child from the sofa. He politely bid farewell to the servants of the Chen family, and then he asked the driver to drive back to his own villa residence.
There were thousands of lights outside the window. As the car moved drove forward, half of his face was hidden in the shadows.
The child slept very deeply and never woke up until they got home. Lian Jue carried Kangtong all the way into the bedroom and put him on the bed.
The auntie followed after them, she glanced over at Kangtong, and asked in a low voice, “Is he asleep?”
“En.” Lian Jue helped the child take off his shoes.
The auntie came over and said, “I boiled honeysuckle water downstairs. Go down and have a drink to relieve your hangover, Sir. I’ll take care of him.”
Actually, he didn’t drink much wine tonight, but Lian Jue was indeed a little tired.
Interacting with Chen Chulian was too exhausting. Even after so many years, he still couldn’t adapt to it.
But today’s matters weren’t over yet.
Just after taking a few sips of the honeysuckle water, the assistant in charge of investigating the mysterious man sent a test report. Lian Jue didn’t really want to see the various tests and tricks, so he asked him to explain. However, the assistant also said that he couldn’t elaborate it with just a few words.
Lian Jue dialed his number to call him, “What’s the matter?”
“There’s no major problem in the test report, but some of his hormones have exceeded the standard. These are all written in the report.” The assistant heard that his Lian Jue had drunk some alcohol and his voice was tired, so he said seriously, “Chief Lian, you can check the specifics tomorrow. The specific reasons for his hormone abnormalities are still unclear.”
Lian Jue pressed the bridge of his nose, “Could it be caused by drug abuse?”
“There’s no trace of the drug in the preliminary test. On one hand, there’s no drug content in the blood test. On the other hand, the drugs on the black market will only reduce the hormones in the human body. However, it can’t be ruled out whether he has abused the use of other drugs, which caused this result.”
“What drug is it?”
“I can’t make a conclusion for the time being. This needs specific analysis and testing, Chief Lian. In fact, it’s best to act the person involved directly……In addition, are you sure that Mr. Shen drank a lot of alcohol last night?”
“What’s the matter?”
“……No. Chief Lian, the blood test report shows that the alcohol content in his blood is 0. Mr. Shen…he should’ve never drunk any alcohol.”
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