Grandfather Yang looked at the funeral photo that was placed before the coffin. It was a photo of Sheng Xun in his prime, and he looked extremely spirited and handsome.
He couldn't help but let out a deep sigh when he thought back to the sight of Sheng Xun's shrivelled and emaciated body. Even with the help of mortuary makeup artists, he almost couldn’t recognise the body in the coffin.
Grandfather Yang could even remember that year when Sheng Xun fearlessly stood before him and firmly announced that even without his help, he would be able to give Susu a blissful life. He was so high-spirited then. At the time, Grandfather Yang had wanted to see how long Sheng Xun could hold out for and hence, he really didn't help Sheng Xun at all. Even after Sheng Xun established his business, took a detour, and ran into obstacles, Grandfather Yang still did not offer him any help.
As it turned out, his daughter had an eye for men. Sheng Xun was indeed a reliable man, but fate hadn't been kind to them.
Apart from the few business associates who Sheng Xun often socialized with, only a few people from the Sheng Family, Grandfather Yang, Shen Zhining, Lin Yu, and Lawyer Song, actually showed up for the funeral.
Oh. Sheng Xun's capable assistant, who was helping Sheng Xun to manage the company, was also present.
Cao Jian had seen Sheng Xun's parents before. The moment he arrived, he greeted both elders of the Sheng Family and expressed his condolences.
He then looked towards the opposite corner of the room, which was a place reserved for the closest kin, who was taking charge of the funeral arrangements. However, he was startled after taking a closer look. He recognized Sheng Jiaoyang, but she was not somebody he expected to be standing in that corner. Rather, she was somebody he had previously seen on television.
"This…" Cao Jian couldn't help but look towards the two Sheng elders. He hoped that they would introduce her, and let him understand why such a popular celebrity was standing at that spot.
However, he found that the two Sheng elders were glaring silently at her.
Cao Jian found himself in an awkward spot. Since he did not know her identity, he didn’t know what he could or should say.
"She's just a shameless illegitimate daughter!" Sheng Xun's eldest sister-in-law scolded under her breath.
Cao Jian was standing nearby and happened to hear her words. Hence, he was even more astounded. Xu Jiaojiao, who recently rose to fame and became one of the most popular celebrities, is actually Sheng Xun's illegitimate daughter?
In any case, he would still have to go up to greet her.
"Hello, Miss Xu! I work for President Sheng." Cao Jiao approached Sheng Jiaoyang and introduced himself.
Sheng Jiaoyang looked at the middle-aged man standing before her and nodded in acknowledgement. "Uncle Cao, you are finally here." She knew Cao Jian. Cao Jian was Sheng Xun’s classmate, and also his right-hand man that supported him while he was building up his family fortune. When she was young, she had even received a plush toy from Cao Jian.
Cao Jian was surprised by the way Sheng Jiaoyang addressed him. He was certain that he had never met Xu Jiaojiao before. So obviously, Xu Jiaojiao had already done her homework by familiarizing herself with the people around Sheng Xun.
She's really the illegitimate daughter?
"My condolences, Miss Xu," Cao Jian said politely.
Sheng Jiaoyang shifted her gaze from him to the coffin. "As his right-hand man, classmate, and long-time friend, please go in and see him for the last time."
Cao Jian studied her carefully before walking towards the side of the coffin. When he took his last look at Sheng Xun, he was left in extreme shock. He had never thought that Sheng Xun would be reduced to such a state. He knew that Sheng Xun was plagued by cancer, since he had told him the moment he found out about it. Eventually, when he was undergoing treatment at the hospital, he had specifically instructed him and his colleagues not to visit him. Hence, Cao Jian didn't know that Sheng Xun had become so much thinner.
"Rest in peace, brother!" Cao Jian's eyes turned red.
Cao Jian couldn't bear to look on anymore, and he walked away. Then, he saw the company's lawyer, Song Mingqing, and went up to him.
"Old Song, you are here too." After knowing each other for so many years, they became more than just colleagues.
Lawyer Song nodded.
Cao Jian stood beside Lawyer Song and stared at Sheng Xun's memorial photo from afar. With a voice choked full of emotions, he said, "I didn’t expect him to leave so suddenly."
"We all knew it would happen sooner or later." Similarly, complex emotions were swirling around in Lawyer Song's eyes.
"Yeah, we all knew, didn’t we? That year…” Sigh. Cao Jian let out a long sigh.
"This might be a good thing for him. He has finally been relieved from all his troubles," Lawyer Song said in an exceptionally calm voice.
Cao Jian couldn't deny that Lawyer Song was right. Even though Cao Jian understood that it was a relief for Sheng Xun, he was still reluctant to let Sheng Xun go, after their many years of friendship.
Just then, another person walked in. Cao Jian's eyes turned wide with surprise. "You…" He couldn't help but be startled, as he saw that a supposedly dead person was actually alive and well.
"She's Sheng Shiyun." Lawyer Song shot a glance at Cao Jian.
Unlike Cao Jian, who had been busy with many matters in the company, be they big or small, Lawyer Song had a clearer understanding of the situation.
"Sheng Shiyun? Why…" Why does she look like that now?
"She went for plastic surgery recently," Lawyer Song explained in an exceptionally calm tone.
Only after the explanation did Cao Jian understand the truth of the situation.
A stranger tailed behind Sheng Shiyun. The moment Sheng Shiyun entered the room, she headed straight for the crystal coffin, lied against its transparent lid and cried out, "Father, don't leave me behind—"
"She didn't even cry yesterday. What is she trying to achieve by screaming and shouting today?" Sheng Jia grumbled to her mother.
Sheng Jia's mother, Zhou Hong, watched as Sheng Shiyun put on her act and whispered, "She's probably trying to put on a show in front of your grandparents, so that she could at least get some money from them."
Sheng Jia could see the disdain on Sheng Jiaoyang's face. Immediately, she felt that this was a chance for her to enact her own performance, and she immediately dashed forward to pull Sheng Shiyun away.
"Let go of me. Can't I see my father for the last time?" Sheng Shiyun flung Sheng Jia's hand away and continued to cry against the coffin.
Sheng Jia continued to drag Sheng Shiyun away as she blurted, "When Youngest Uncle was sick, I didn't see you take care of him by his side. It's useless for you to bawl your eyes out now. Why don't you just let Youngest Uncle rest in peace? Are you trying to disturb his rest with your incessant crying?"
Sheng Shiyun stopped sobbing, and she felt an unusually strong urge to kill Sheng Jia. Why is she being such a busybody?
"My father had passed away and I can't even mourn for him? Anyone would cry if their closest kin has passed away. Only scheming bitches who are after my father's inheritance couldn't even be bothered to pretend to cry!" When Sheng Shiyun said her last sentence, her gaze was naturally directed at Sheng Jiaoyang.
Compared to Sheng Shiyun's red and swollen eyes, Sheng Jiaoyang didn't seem very sad. In fact, she looked rather calm.
"What nonsense are you spouting? Do you think everyone expresses their sadness on their face? Sometimes, the absence of any expression doesn't mean that one isn't sad. Rather, it could mean that they are too depressed that they can't even cry," Sheng Jia rebuked loudly.
Sheng Shiyun wanted to tear Sheng Jia's mouth off. She pushed Sheng Jia aside and shouted, "You are not fit to say this to me. I want her to talk to me!" Sheng Shiyun directly pointed a finger at Sheng Jiaoyang.
"You…" Sheng Jia was about to retort, when another voice rang out.
"If you want to make a scene here, I can only call for people to throw you out."
At last, Sheng Jiaoyang finally said something, and Sheng Shiyun rushed over with rage written all over her face, "Aren't you pleased now? Pleased that Father didn't leave his inheritance to Mother and I but left it all to you, an illegitimate daughter!"
Sheng Jiaoyang only cocked her head to the side and gestured for someone to bring Sheng Shiyun out.
"Hold on." Cao Jian approached her.
"Yes, Uncle Cao?" Sheng Jiaoyang lifted her head to look at Cao Jian.
Cao Jian glanced at Sheng Shiyun, "She is Sheng Xun's daughter. She has the right to stay here to send Sheng Xun off."
Lawyer Song could feel his eyebrows twitching. When he saw Cao Jian stand up for Sheng Shiyun, he couldn't remain as a bystander any longer. He hurriedly went towards Cao Jian and tried to pull him away.
"Why are you pulling me?" Cao Jian looked at Lawyer Song.
"This is their family matter. Don't be a busybody."
Cao Jian frowned, "She's Sheng Xun's legitimate child. Legally, she is the rightful person to handle Sheng Xun's funeral. You practice law, you should clearly know this."
Lawyer Song felt his eyelids twitch a few more times, and he hurriedly said, "Sheng Xun left a will and specified that he wanted Miss Xu to handle his funeral matters."
"…" Cao Jian turned his neck stiffly and looked at Lawyer Song, "What did you say?"
"Sheng Xun gave almost all his assets to Miss Xu. All of the company's shares that used to belong to Sheng Xun now belongs to Miss Xu," Lawyer Song answered.
"What?!" Cao Jian was shocked. He looked at Lawyer Song and saw him nodding affirmatively. All of a sudden, Cao Jian didn't know how to wrap up the situation at hand.
"Let's go. This is their family matter. Don't be a busybody." Lawyer Song dragged Cao Jian away.
Cao Jian knew, deep in his heart, that he had been sticking his nose in other people’s business unnecessarily, so he allowed himself to be dragged away by Lawyer Song.
"What's going on? Why did Sheng Xun leave all his inheritance to Xu Jiaojiao?" Cao Jian asked as he was being dragged away.
After dragging him away to an isolated spot far away, Lawyer Song finally felt relieved and responded, "I am not Sheng Xun. How would I know what he was thinking?"
"I didn't even know he had an illegitimate daughter!" Cao Jian remarked.
"I don't know if she's the illegitimate daughter or not. I only know that she's your future boss."
Cao Jian suddenly froze. He turned and scanned the surroundings.
Lawyer Song stared at him, "What is it now? Don't go and meddle into others' family affairs again."
"Why don’t I see Sheng Yi around?"
"Why are you looking for him?"
"That kid has been proclaiming himself as the future boss. Yesterday, he even came to the company and said that Sheng Xun has passed away, and that he will be taking over the company. I believed his words then," said Cao Jian.
Lawyer Song shot Cao Jian a look of disdain. "Sheng Xun had never said anything about letting Sheng Yi take over his position. It's not like you don't know Sheng Yi's abilities or lack thereof. How would Sheng Xun let someone with grandiose aims but puny abilities take over?"
"But previously, Sheng Yi had been presenting himself as the future President Sheng, and Sheng Xun didn't object to it either! Didn't his parents want Sheng Yi to inherit the family business?" Cao Jian felt wronged.
Lawyer Song felt too lazy to continue throwing shade at Cao Jian. However, looking at the current situation, Sheng Shiyun must surely have a hidden card to play to pull a stunt like this.
"Oh no!" Cao Jian suddenly exclaimed.
"What's wrong?" Lawyer Song turned to look at Cao Jian.
Cao Jian's face turned pale. "Sheng Yi took away the company stamp yesterday and said he would be safe keeping it from now on."
"…" Lawyer Song took a deep breath, but he couldn't stop himself from lashing out, "Are you a pig?"Previous Chapter Next Chapter
TL: Cosy | Editor: Cookies | TLC: Grace