Chapter 199 - Demonstration

Jiaoyang, what should I do?

Sheng Jiaoyang didn't know what should be done. She never thought she’d feel so torn when she finally found out why Lin Yan didn't return her feelings.

"I don't know…" She was at a loss too.

Lin Yan stretched out his hands to grab hold of her, not allowing her to retreat as he asked, "Do you love him?"

By ‘him’, Lin Yan was naturally referring to Shen Zhining.

Sheng Jiaoyang was stunned. Do I like Shen Zhining? That was even tougher than answering the question, ‘Did she still like Lin Yan?’ Her feelings towards Shen Zhining were complicated. She was a little terrified of him, but she had a lot of trust in him. She felt comfortable when they were intimate, and even when grandfather had mentioned them marrying in the future, she wasn’t repulsed by that at all and accepted it readily. But, to say that she loved him…

She looked at Lin Yan. Although her heart would skip a beat and her face would blush when she was with Shen Zhining, it was never the same feelings she had when she was crushing on Lin Yan. Thinking of Lin Yan would make her happy, seeing him would make her excited, her heart raced faster when he was close to her, and she’d get emotional when he seemed aloof.

"You don't love him," Lin Yan said in an affirmative tone.

Sheng Jiaoyang went silent.

The corners of Lin Yan's lips raised slightly, but he swiftly retracted his smile and said, "Jiaoyang, you must follow your own heart, don't make do with things. You have a whole new life now, so you should live it the way you want."

Sheng Jiaoyang understood what he meant, but she hesitated at the thought of breaking up with Shen Zhining. While her feelings for Shen Zhining hadn't reached the point of love, it had reached the point of like. Moreover, Shen Zhining's previous reaction when she’d asked to break up had caused her some psychological trauma, and she was afraid that he’d do something more outrageous.

Of course, most importantly, she’d already lost the impulse to forget about herself just for Lin Yan.

"Lin Yan." Sheng Jiaoyang looked at him and said seriously, "Everything that I do now is according to my heart, including dating Shen Zhining."

Lin Yan was shocked. "You…"

Sheng Jiaoyang slowly withdrew her hand from his warm palms and sighed. "It’s very easy to develop feelings for someone. When I was sick, he sent me to the hospital. When I woke up, he was the first one I saw. When he placed his jacket over me…I probably developed feelings for him unknowingly. I admit that I don’t love him yet, but I believe that in time, I’ll fall in love with him."

Lin Yan's gaze landed on his hand, his empty palm feeling like a reflection of the emptiness in his heart.

"Can you really give up on the six years between us?" Gloom crept up his face.

"I can't bear to."

Lin Yan looked up at Sheng Jiaoyang in surprise, but he noticed her calm countenance. The glimmer in his eyes dimmed. Looking at her expression, he knew what she would say next.

Indeed, she continued, "So, what if I can't bear to? I'm already exhausted and don't wish to chase after you anymore."

"Then, let me do the chasing this time."

"No, you can't do it. The responsibilities that you carry make it impossible for you to do it.”

"I haven't even started, so how do you know that I can't?"

Sheng Jiaoyang sighed and asked, "Will you give up the fight for your family inheritance?"

This time, it was Lin Yan's turn to go silent. This wasn't something that he could give up at will. He’d already set foot on this path and there was no turning back.

"Thank you, Lin Yan, for your birthday present today. It's late, so I’ll be heading home." Sheng Jiaoyang stood up imperturbably.

"I'll drive you back." Lin Yan followed suit.

"It's okay, my driver is waiting downstairs. Lin Yan, have a good rest. Good night!"

Sheng Jiaoyang didn't let Lin Yan drive her back, and she was adamant about leaving.

Hearing the sound of the door closing, Lin Yan shut his eyes. His hands were clenched into fists by his sides.

Only the sounds of the television filled his ears.

It was Sheng Jiaoyang's voice.

"You didn't treasure me when I was beside you and ignored me for your so-called important matters. Now, I’m exhausted. I don't want my life to revolve around you anymore, and yet here you are pestering me. Say, aren't you despicable?”

Say, aren't you despicable?

Lin Yan's eyes shot open instantly. On the TV screen, the girl with the short black hair was looking straight at him, or rather, she was looking in the direction of the camera. But, at this moment, he felt as though Jiaoyang was looking at him.

Very soon, the scene on the television changed and a boy's face appeared. The man had a determined look and was completely unfazed by her words.

I’m willing to become even more despicable to get you to return to my side." The boy's eyes were shining bright with streaks of gentleness and persistence.

"It's up to you whether you want to be despicable. Anyway, I’m not willing to accept a despicable person," the girl spat out coldly before she turned and walked away heartlessly.

The boy stared at her departing silhouette and stated determinedly, "Then, I’ll pester you until you accept me."

Lin Yan stared at the television in a daze and didn't move for a long while.

Meanwhile, Sheng Jiaoyang was already in her car. Through the car windows, she stole a glance at the brightly lit hotel lobby. Eventually, she slowly rested her head against the window as her eyelids dropped, hiding the thoughts in the recesses of her eyes.

It was already very late by the time she reached home.

Aunt Zhang, who was watching the television, and Xu Ping, who was browsing her phone, were the only ones left in the living room. The others had clearly gone to bed.

"You’re back," Xu Ping heard the door and lifted her head, greeting Sheng Jiaoyang when she saw her.

"Why aren't you guys asleep yet?"

"Many people are asking about your schedule.” Xu Ping waved her phone.

"Just ignore them."

Xu Ping looked at her helplessly and said, "Some people can't be offended, unless you don't wish to be in this industry any longer."

"Aunt Zhang, why haven't you gone to bed yet?" Sheng Jiaoyang looked at Aunt Zhang, who was engrossed in watching television.

"I haven't watched the newly released episode yet."

Sheng Jiaoyang leaned over and took a look. To her amazement, it was ‘Redeeming my IGD Boyfriend’, the drama series she acted in. She didn't know that Aunt Zhang enjoyed watching such dramas too.

"Don't sleep too late, I’m heading up to my room to rest," Sheng Jiaoyang said with a smile.

"Eh…" Xu Ping lifted a hand when she saw Sheng Jiaoyang walking towards the stairs.

"Yes?" Sheng Jiaoyang halted and turned to look at her.

A glint flicked across Xu Ping's eyes and she placed her hand down. "Nothing, good night."

"Good night." Sheng Jiaoyang gave a soft smile and headed upstairs.

Pushing open her bedroom door, Sheng Jiaoyang removed her jacket as she walked towards her walk-in closet. After a few steps, she suddenly sensed that something was amiss.

Currently, Xiao An slept with his little buddy, and she was the only person sleeping in this room. Yet, when she entered just now, the lights were already switched on.

She whirled around and met the eyes of a certain man.

"You finally noticed me," he said in an ambiguous tone.

"Why are you back at this time?" Sheng Jiaoyang asked in astonishment.

That's right! The man casually leaning against her bedhead and holding her book was Shen Zhining, who was supposedly at Aureate manor and celebrating Chinese New Year with Grandfather Shen and Grandmother Andy.

"If I was away for any longer, would you forget that you have a boyfriend?"

"How is that possible? Didn't I call you that time?"

"That time?" A smirk appeared on Shen Zhining's face. “When was that?"

Sheng Jiaoyang parted her lips and looked up. When was the last time I called him?

"Do you need me to help you remember?" Shen Zhining had already gotten off the bed and was slowly approaching her.

Overwhelmed by his aura, Sheng Jiaoyang took a step back and said embarrassedly, "It's okay."

Shen Zhining was already in front of her. He looked at her and said sarcastically, "So, is this how you miss me?

"I, this isn't…”

"What excuses are you going to use to brush me off this time? Hmm?" Shen Zhining lifted his hand and cupped her chin lightly, forcing her to meet his eyes.

Sheng Jiaoyang wanted to cover her face, but she couldn’t lose now. She lifted her chin and questioned him in return, "Then, why didn't you call me these last few days?"

Shen Zhining let out a chuckle, yet there wasn't any trace of joy in his eyes. "I was waiting. Someone said that she missed me, and I wanted to see how many days it would take for her to miss me."

That was why they said to never lie. After cooking up a lie, you’d have to cook up hundreds, thousands, and millions of lies to cover the first lie.

At this moment, Sheng Jiaoyang was like a wilting eggplant struck by a snowstorm.

"When you saw me just now, you were shocked. It seemed like you didn't want to see me," Sheng Zhining said quietly, emanating an eerie feeling.

"I-I was just too surprised!" Sheng Jiaoyang thought that she could still try to salvage the situation.

"Oh?" Shen Zhining replied nonchalantly.

Seeing his look of disbelief, Sheng Jiaoyang could only play her trump card and whined, "Zhining, I’m ecstatic that you rushed back at this time. Really!"

"Ecstatic…" he repeated skeptically. "Why can't I see that?"

Sheng Jiaoyang was perplexed. How am I supposed to show that I’m ecstatic?

Sheng Jiaoyang rolled her eyes behind her glasses, lifted her hands to place them on his shoulders as she stood on tiptoes, and gave him a peck on the corner of his lips.

Shen Zhining raised an eyebrow. "That's it?"

"Huh?" Sheng Jiaoyang blinked.

"I don’t think you meant what you said. You don’t seem like you actually want to see me," Shen Zhining said.

Is he complaining that I didn't kiss him properly? Sheng Jiaoyang looked at him, her gaze scanning his face before finally landing on his lips.

She went on tiptoes again and placed a gentle peck on his lips.

But, her actions only gained her a single word response.

"Perfunctory!"

This is still considered perfunctory? Sheng Jiaoyang parted her lips and said, "How was it perfunctory?"

He glanced at her. "Not enough passion."

"You’re an actress now, such acting skills won't do."

Hearing the contempt in his voice, Sheng Jiaoyang's stubborn temper flared up.

"Why don't you demonstrate if you’re so good at it?!"

Shen Zhining's lips curved upwards, a smile of success appearing in the recesses of his eyes.

Sheng Jiaoyang's heart skipped a beat upon noticing the slight changes in his expression. Before she could defend herself, she was pushed back and…

Fell onto the sofa bed.

At the same time, a shadow covered her.

"Wait, umm…"

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xYuna's Thoughts

TL: Cosy | Editor: Purpledragon | TLC: Grace