Yang Chen and Lin Ruoxi couldn’t get used to his generous greeting, it was as though they never had a conflict. 

Yang Chen nodded without an expression, not intending to talk to him.

Yang Lie didn’t mind it. His smile was relaxed as he walked into the lobby.

Soon, his eyes landed on Lanlan who was in Yang Gongming’s arms, “This must be my dear niece right? Is her name Lanlan? Come, let uncle carry you.”

Lanlan had been looking at him with her round eyes but the moment Yang Lie walked over to carry her, she quickly turned around and held on to Yang Gongming tightly.

Yang Lie’s hands were left hanging awkwardly.

“Lanlan, what’s wrong?” Yang Gongming asked.

Lanlan pouted, “I don’t want to be carried…”

Guo Xuehua smiled at her, “Lanlan, be a good girl. This is your uncle.”

Lanlan shook her head. Panic was evident in her eyes.

Yang Chen and Lin Ruoxi were puzzled. Lanlan was never afraid of strangers and she usually wouldn’t reject a hug like this.

Seeing how Lanlan rejected him, Yang Lie put down his hands and chuckled, “Maybe it’s because I reek of alcohol, kids don’t like it.”

Yang Gongming looked at him deeply before smiling, “Alright, maybe she doesn’t like your smell. Come, let’s go eat in the dining room.”

Everyone nodded. Guo Xuehua thought it was a shame since she was hoping that Yang Chen might start talking to Yang Lie if Lanlan could get closer to Yang Lie. 

Once they were seated in the dining room, Yang Pojun lashed out at Yang Lie, “Rascal, where did you go fooling around this time?!”

“Dad, I was just socialising, I wasn’t fooling around. Besides, if I really did fool around, I wouldn’t be home in time to welcome my brother and sister-in-law!” Yang Lie said innocently.

Yang Gongming signalled his son with his eyes, telling him to keep it down during lunch. This stopped Yang Pojun from reprimanding Yang Lie.

During lunch, everyone had to toast with Yang Gongming but he didn’t really respond to them, being preoccupied with talking to his great-granddaughter.

Lanlan wasn’t afraid anymore once she started eating roast duck. Her mouth was filled with it, causing her lips to be coated in grease. Yang Gongming was entertained by her appetite.

Lin Ruoxi secretly raised her chin at Yang Chen, motioning to him that she made the right choice to adopt Lanlan. Everyone’s heart would be warmed at the sight in front of them.

Yang Chen was pondering about the odd feeling he felt from Yang Lie that he couldn’t focus on lunch. 

Halfway through the meal, Yang Lie suddenly raised his glass to Yang Chen, “Brother, here’s a toast to you. I was insensible in the past and I’ve repented my mistakes. I’m now working in the military and I hope that you’ll help me when I need help.”

Yang Lie sounded modest and there was nothing wrong with his sentence. No matter how reluctant he felt or how corny it was, Yang Chen had to clink his glass with him. 

“You don’t have to be so courteous, I’m not a professional and I only know how to jest.” 

Yang Lie shook his hands, “You can’t say that. You just don’t think it’s worth it to do ordinary stuff. I understand. When Yan Buwen died, I thought about my past actions and I realised that I was too rebellious. You’ve always been lenient to me and I really appreciate that.”

Tears were pooling in Guo Xuehua’s eyes and she smiled at Yang Chen, “Yang Chen, did you hear that? Your brother has grown up. You two are brothers, so I hope that you two can get along well. I hope you can also teach your brother.”

Yang Chen smiled bitterly. Everything felt too good to be true.

“Mom, don’t worry. Brother isn’t petty,” Yang Lie turned and smiled at Yang Chen, “Brother, I met Guo Yue yesterday. He said he’s planning to visit us when he hears that you’re coming back with sister-in-law. He never had the chance to meet you so he asked me to pass on this message”

“Guo Yue? Who?” Yang Chen was lost.

 

Guo Xuehua interjected quickly, “Silly child, he’s your cousin so he’s from my side. Guo Yue is my brother, your uncle’s son. He’s the same age as Lie’er and he works in the Auditing Bureau. He’s quite hardworking.” 

While they were talking, the maid came into the room to inform them about Guo Yue’s arrival.

“Sir, young master Guo Yue is here.”

Yang Gongming chuckled, “He‘s here so early. Youngsters are really impetuous. Let him in.” 

A few minutes later, a man dressed in a white suit walked in with a grin plastered on his face. He was holding a wooden box which looked like a gift box.

His hair was gelled up with no facial hair. Everyone heard his voice before he even entered the dining room, “Ah, my apologies for coming too early. Please don’t mind it, Grandfather Marshal!”

Guo Yue smiled sheepishly as he walked towards Yang Gongming.

Yang Gongming wasn’t surprised as he was used to his behaviour, “Alright, I told you not to call me Grandfather Marshal, it sounds awkward.”

“But you’re the old marshal, my parents have always taught me to learn from you but I never dared to act boldly.” Guo Yue said earnestly.

No one could resist compliments, not even Yang Gongming who was constantly flattered by others.

Even though he knew Guo Yue was using flattery to get something from him, he still felt pleased to hear it

“Grandfather Marshal, here’s a small gift from me. I came in a hurry so I couldn’t buy a proper gift, but I hope you’ll like it.” Guo Yue passed the wooden box over.

Yang Gongming didn’t try to be coy, opening the box immediately. An exquisite box of tea leaf was placed in it and there was only a sentence written on it with no other patterns. 

“Authentic Da Hong Pao from Wuyi Mountains, this is good stuff…it doesn’t look like you prepared this in a hurry!” Yang Gongming squinted his eyes when he recognised the gift.

“I know you love drinking tea so I asked my friend to buy it from Wuyi Mountains, but I never had the chance to give it to you.” Guo Yue passed the box to a maid nearby.

Yang Gongming liked it since Da Hong Pao was the King of Tea, it wasn’t easy to get this even if you were rich.

After flattering Yang Gongming, Guo Yue turned to look at Yang Chen and Lin Ruoxi but he couldn’t avert his gaze from Lin Ruoxi’s face.

Lin Ruoxi felt awkward at his stare. Her face was flushed and even if she didn’t like his attitude, she couldn’t really say anything since he was their cousin.

Guo Yue opened his mouth slightly and a hint of greed flashed across his eyes. Around five to six seconds later, he chuckled and spoke to them, “This must be my cousin Yang Chen and my cousin sister-in-law right? I’ve heard that the prettiest woman in the corporate world of Zhonghai is the president of Yu Lei but I never got the chance to meet you since you were busy. I’m honoured to meet you today, haha. Cousin, you’re really lucky.”

Guo Yue managed to mask the awkwardness from his earlier attitude. 

However, Yang Chen noticed his expression even though it was only for a few seconds. His impression for someone who dared to lust over his wife had dropped to the ground.

“Stop staring at her when you know she’s mine.”

Yang Chen resisted the urge to throw him out for the sake of Guo Xuehua.

Everyone in the room froze at Yang Chen’s words. They never expected Yang Chen to be so rude to Guo Yue, especially at their first meeting. 

Lin Ruoxi tugged on Yang Chen’s pants, feeling embarrassed from the conflict that arose because of her. It wasn’t as though people never stared at her, it just felt especially awkward for a relative to do the same.

Guo Yue turned pale. Yang Chen’s status in the house was evident when he noticed that Yang Gongming wasn’t helping him. He didn’t dare to offend Yang Chen, “Cousin, please don’t misunderstand. I lost self-control because my sister-in-law is too pretty.”  

“Yeah, Yang Chen, he’s complimenting your wife. Be nice to your cousin.” Guo Xuehua helped Guo Yue since he was her nephew but she wasn’t pleased with his attitude either.

Yang Chen ignored them and continued to bite on the crab in his hand.

Guo Yue smiled to please Yang Chen, “Cousin, I actually brought a present for you and sister-in-law, why don’t you go out with me after lunch?”