Heng Rui’s hands and mouth were oily from eating. The oil even seeped onto his clothes.
As a person who had extreme concern over cleanliness, Dong Haoyang could not stand this. If he followed his previous behaviour, he would have immediately stepped forward to kick the little run. However, since he had already accidentally kicked the little runt just now, he was at a loss on what was the right thing to do. The only other option was to talk about it.
“What happened to all the manners that I taught you? How can you eat like this?” Dong Haoyang looked at the little runt as if his whole body smelled of roast chicken then took two steps back in disgust.
At this point in time, the little runt only had one chicken leg left. He listened to Dong Haoyang and took a bite.
A pair of dark eyes veiled his emotions.
He devoured the chicken leg in a single mouthful and then rushed towards Dong Haoyang. Due to his dislike of the little runt’s eating behaviour, Dong Haoyang was standing sideways to avoid the image. In the end, the little runt pounced with such ferocity that Dong Haoyang was unable to react in time and he was thrown into his arms.
The little runt’s cheeks were bulging with food and he was relentlessly wiping his greasy hands on Dong Haoyang’s clothes.
The strong smell of roast chicken engulfed Dong Haoyang, and his once smiling face instantly cracked.
His eyes widened immediately, and he reached out to push the little runt away. However, as soon as his hand touched the little runt’s shoulder, his hand met the little runt's greasy one. Dong Haoyang instinctively retracted his hand.
At this point, goosebumps appeared all over Dong Haoyang’s skin as he tried very hard to avoid contact with the cub, but the cub kept latching onto him. While dodging, Dong Haoyang fell directly to the ground, rolling into a ball with the little cub.
The little runt released his pent-up anger on Dong Haoyang and rubbed him with both hands before finally wiping his hands directly on Dong Haoyang's face. Dong Haoyang was shocked. This time, he did not care about the oiliness of the little runt's hands, and he instantly caught the two messy little hands of the little runt.
The little runt struggled twice. After realizing that he could not escape from Dong Haoyang's grip, he snorted angrily. At last, his eyes lit up and he spit out the chicken leg he stored within his mouth. He raised his head and rubbed it against Dong Haoyang's cheek.
Heng Rui’s greasy mouth then immediately pressed against Dong Haoyang’s soft cheek.
Feeling the stiffness of the person under him, Heng Rui exerted more strength in his actions. Suddenly a trace of malice flashed in his eyes, as he took advantage of Dong Haoyang’s carelessness and slammed onto Dong Haoyang's lips and quickly rubbed twice.
Dong Haoyang felt the slippery sensation of lips rubbing all over his face which instantly petrified his whole person.
Just when the little runt had the audacity to push his own tongue into Dong Haoyang’s mouth, he was violently pushed away by Dong Haoyang. In a flash, he disappeared from the courtyard.
Looking at the disappearing figure, the little runt finally allowed himself to exhale.
Heng Rui’s dark eyes conveyed a touch of assuaged hatred, as well as hints of disappointment.
He raised his hand to gently touch his lips to grasp the person’s remaining warmth.
The little runt’s facial expression darkened with the realization that he weirdly missed the person in an inexplicable way. He bitterly kicked the chicken leg on the ground to the side.
The first thing Dong Haoyang did when he returned to the house was to have somebody draw him a bath. He removed the greasy and chicken-smelling clothes with speed and grace and plunged straight into one end of the tub. Even after washing himself thoroughly for about an hour, Dong Haoyang could still feel the lingering scent on his body, especially in his mouth. Such a thought made him extremely uncomfortable.
At last, after nearly washing off a layer of his skin, Dong Haoyang got out of the bathtub and put on some new clothes.
After allowing the servants to come in and take away the smelly clothes on the floor, Dong Haoyang’s peachy eyes closed slightly, and the lines of his mouth curved upwards.
A sense of coolness washed over his body.
The next day, Dong Haoyang arrived on time in front of the little runt, looking languid and amorous with his slightly raised lips.
The little runt grew wary and stared straight at Dong Haoyang, carefully watching his next move.
Dong Haoyang chuckled slightly, his peach eyes radiated with an interest that was noticeable under the reflection of the sunlight.
The little runt’s figure stopped suddenly.
Dong Haoyang did not seem to care about the little runt’s reaction, he simply put the day’s portion of food on the table. The little runt looked at him vigilantly. After seeing that he was doing nothing, he slowly moved towards the food, staring at Dong Haoyang as he ate with haste.
What surprised the little runt was that Dong Haoyang did not react until he finished eating. When the little runt stuffed the last bite of food into his mouth, a violent gale assaulted him.
The little runt picked himself up and dodged, but the next moment, he was pinned to the ground by somebody’s leg, and his face was planted straight in the soil. Specks of dust floated around him, causing him to cough as he was getting up. Before he could spit out the dust that he had accidentally swallowed, he was hit by another round of flying kick attacks. This time, the little runt’s reactions were quicker than before, and he rolled to the side with agility, dodging Dong Haoyang's attack.
However, he was hit by yet another string of kick attacks.
This time, the little runt crashed into the wall.
The little runt’s initially full stomach began to feel queasy.
“Your martial arts skills are acceptable. It seems that you have not forgotten them in the last two days,” Dong Haoyang reclined in his chair lazily. He spoke in a laid back manner, “However, your handwriting is too untidy, write out two hundred characters and hand it in to me tomorrow.”
The little runt stiffened suddenly.
“The old rules,” Dong Haoyang’s peach eyes were shining. He seemed to be in a good mood, “We will decide on what meals you get for the day after tomorrow based on the quality of your submission.”
The little runt’s facial expression became very ugly.
The next day, the little runt slapped a pile of papers onto the table with a face of death. Dong Haoyang flipped through the papers in a good mood, “This is written well, better than your previous handwriting. We won’t be writing any more big characters for today.”
The little runt’s eyes lit up.
“We shall learn some Yuan Ning History!” Dong Haoyang continued.
The little runt’s face turned ashen instantly.
Another year passed in a hurry, and Dong Haoyang's current body had reached the age of fourteen. In this year, Dong Haoyang often mentioned to Mrs Dong all of Dong Wenbai's faults. He showed no restraint in expressing his deep disappointment in his poor excuse of a father.
At first, Mrs Dong was a little bit heartbroken and hesitant, attempting to persuade Dong Haoyang to be more tolerant of his father. Later, Mrs Dong was moved by Dong Haoyang’s words, casting Dong Wenbai aside along with any remaining hope she originally had for him.
To protect her child, Mrs Dong tried to toughen herself up. Crimes committed by servants within the household were met with detailed investigations and harsh punishments in accordance with the rules.
The servants in the mansion used to believe that the mother-in-law of the house was weak. Although greeted her respectfully, many people never saw Madame Dong as a real person of importance. When they broke the rules on occasion, all they needed to do was shed some tears in front of her to soften her heart for leniency. Therefore, the servants became more and more perfunctory when serving Madame Dong.
But all this changed when Madame Dong began to enforce the rules resolutely. The servants looked into Madame Dong’s eyes and became more frightened. Thus, Madame Dong started earning their respect and they no longer served her in the perfunctory way that they did before.
Madame Dong’s status as the firm mistress of the house was slowly being established.
While enforcing the rules, Madame Dong felt something was off.
Dong Haoyang noticed that Madame Dong had some things on her mind, so he encouraged her to share her thoughts with him. Madame Dong hesitated for a while, but she then told her child what was on her mind.
“I feel something off about some of the servants here,” Madame Dong furrowed her eyebrows, “Even though I can’t tell what it is, I keep feeling that they’re talking to me in a weird way.”
Madame Dong could not share her speculations with Dong Boyu, but for some reason, she could not let go of this issue.
Dong Haoyang looked at her, a different kind of brilliance began to shine from his peach eyes.
After he asked who these servants were, Dong Haoyang said, "Mother, you should send someone to spy on these people. There is no way such feelings could come without reason. We haven't had a poisoning attempt in our house before. We still haven’t found out the truth about this incident up till now. Although they claim that the poison was properly identified, the mastermind behind this is still lurking behind the scenes. It is uncertain when he will try to harm us again."
After listening to this, Madame Dong’s expression became more cautious, “Alright, I’ll definitely pay close attention to these people.”
While Madame Dong found somebody to investigate this matter, Dong Haoyang found these people and observed them secretly. He too, realised that there was something off about them. Regardless of their facial expressions or their manner of speaking, their behaviours always came off a little unnatural to him and their eyes looked a little hollow.
Taking advantage of other people’s lack of attention, Dong Haoyang set his sights on one person and observed him carefully before finally finding some clues.
He could not help but chuckle, his eyes full of interest.
“You did not see me today,” Dong Haoyang looked straight into the person’s eyes and enunciated each word slowly with a convincing tone in his voice.
The person’s eyes looked dazed for a while before nodding his head slowly, echoing Dong Haoyang’s voice in a stiff manner, “I did not see you today.”
One month later, the Dong House prepared to celebrate Dong Boyu’s fiftieth birthday.
The house was full of guests, and there were decorations everywhere. There was a very lively atmosphere in the house.