“Fine, if Second Uncle and Aunt insist, then so be it! Second Uncle and Aunt, remember not to forget your words today! I, Sang Yufei, swear on my name, that I will never again step foot into your house!” Sang Yufei vowed, “My neighbors, just as you’ve seen, it isn’t I who isn’t being filial, but because Second Uncle and Aunt are much too outrageous!”
“You, how dare you!” Sang Pingliang and Li Shi could no longer wait and they hurriedly went to pull Sang Yufei to be on their way to Li Zheng’s house.
Sang Pingliang suddenly stopped in his steps before glancing coldly at Sang Hong and said, “In your family, only Sang Wan’s the good apple! Only Sang Wan, that child, deserves fondness. As for the rest of you, hmph!”
After hearing those words, Sang Hong and Sang Yufei became frustrated. Because Sang Wan had married into a good family, Second Uncle would certainly acknowledge her. But even so, her brothers were nothing in his eyes!
How could a person show such favoritism and be this shameless!
“Alright!” Sang Hong smiled bitterly, “In that case, our families shall cut our ties! From today on, we will be strangers! Second Uncle and Aunt will have no need to discipline us anymore in the future!”
For Sang Hong to have said such words, it really made everyone else sigh helplessly.
“That’s even better to hear, and I’m just about getting tired of worrying for all of you since no good deed goes unpunished!” Sang Pingliang grunted coldly before stating clearly, “From today on, I will only acknowledge my only niece from your family! Only Sang Wan that child is worth doting over!”
The crowd who were previously trying to persuade them immediately stopped as they watched with eyes of contempt.
“Only Sang Wan is worth doting?” In the past when Sang Wan had yet to marry into the Shi family, when had they ever showed any care for her? In fact, they were the most against the marriage, gossiping about how she would one day be abandoned by the Shi family and how she should first look at her own family situation before ever thinking about marrying into such a family. Words like such were most gossiped from none other than Li Shi’s mouth!
The crowd could not help but think that those two could not be considered humans. It was definitely for the best that the two families broke their ties with each other. That way, there would be less gossip to listen to, and who knows maybe that was the beginning step to success? As such, the crowd followed the two Sang families closely as they headed for Li Zheng’s house.
Sang Pingliang and Li Shi, to express their stand, pranced in the front while the two brothers and Fang Shi walked slowly behind. For the two families to have made such a decision, who wouldn’t want to watch? Before even arriving at Li Zheng’s house, almost everyone in the village already got wind of the news. Those who just joined the crowd would ask those who were already present, and then it would become their responsibility to explain to those who joined after them before letting out a sign altogether.
“What are you dawdling for? Move quickly!” Sang Pingliang stopped and glanced behind before shouting coldly at them.
“I must say, Second Uncle ah, are you really not going to give this a second thought?” Fang Shi smiled, “After all, we’re one big family. But if Second Uncle has already decided, then don’t blame us for returning the favor fifteen folds!”
“Cut with your nonsense!” Li Shi grunted, “We’ve had enough of being burdened by your family! What else do you want? Let me make it clear to you, there’s no room for regret now!”
“Sister-in-law, you’ve said enough already,” Sang Yufei said faintly, “We’ll just go with Second Uncle and Aunt’s wish! I, Sang Yufei, has already vowed never to be involved with their family after today!”
“You better!” Sang Pingliang sneered, “You’re just like your father, stubborn and self-righteous! Hmph, is being an official that easy? If you can, then I’m sure I can become a saint!” With that, he lifted his foot continued forward while urging repeatedly.
Already, those with the news had already rushed over to Li Zheng’s house and knocked on his door. Briefly, they let him on the details.
“What a mess! That Sang Pingliang isn’t young anymore, so how could he propose something so outrageous!” Li Zheng could not help but frown before letting out a sigh.
Although Sang Pingliang was unreliable in his eyes, but he was the only elder of the Sang family. He felt it was better to at least have an elder within the family during times of trouble as the authority they have were definitely greater than those of the younger generation.
His decision was made with good intentions for Sang Hong and his brother.
Li Zheng waited furiously in his house, while Sang Pingliang and the crowd hustle and bustle over.
Without waiting, Sang Pingliang snatched the chance to speak his intention with Li Zheng first. Pointing at the two brothers, he blamed them for not being filial, and in order to avoid getting driven mad, he wishes to break ties with them so that his family and theirs would no longer hinder each other’s road!
Li Zheng was entirely familiar with the Sang Brother’s conduct, as well as Sang Pingliang’s talent to overstate. Sighing all to himself, Li Zheng could not help but urged, “Since you’re all one big family, why don’t we have the two brothers apologize and cease this absurd situation? Their family does not have a senior to help them make decisions, and you’re their uncle ah, couldn’t you take pity of them? Why bother quibbling with the younger generations?”
Li Zheng’s words were both to persuade Sang Pingliang and to hint at the Sang brothers to make the apology. As he said it, his gaze signaled at Sang Hong to take the opportunity to initiate an apology. If he apologized, Sang Yufei would surely follow. Then with a little more coaxing by him and the crowd, this matter would be over.
If it were in the past, Sang Hong would have given an apology and not let matters escalate. But for the sake of his brother’s future, and after witnessing his uncle’s cold behavior towards them, numerous memories of how his uncle treated them in the past flashed in his mind. Forget it, it’s much better to not have this kind of senior! As such, Sang Hong pretended not to have seen Li Zheng’s gaze.
From Sang Pingliang’s view, it was evident that Li Zheng’s words emphasized his importance and he felt even more pleased. Slanting his eyes, he glanced at the two brothers and snorted haughtily, “You want me to forgive them? Sure, grovel before me and knock your head three times on the floor while swearing never to talk back to me! And Yufei, don’t continue dreaming and start working in the fields. Ah, and give me a bank note of two hundred silvers, then I’ll stop quibbling with them!”
The crowd could not help but let out a sigh from those words. Swearing, groveling, and two hundred silvers? His greed sure isn’t small!
Even Li Zheng was at a loss of whether to laugh or to cry. Never had he thought that Sang Pingliang would be so outrageous to such a point.
“I think just an apology will suffice, they’re your nephews after all! Brother Sang ah, your family only has two daughters, you’ll have to rely on those two young men in the future!” Li Zheng urged. He was hinting at Sang Pingliang that with only daughters and no sons, he’ll need to rely on his nephews to give him the final send off! Would there be anyone else he could rely on when his daughters and sons-in-law belong to another family?
His heart immediately went into distress after hearing so and he thought to himself: Oh no! This relationship, it’s better to cut it off else won’t these be after my assets?
At the thought of his empty house after his two daughters married off as well as his entire fortune; house; and field ending up his nephews’ hands, Sang Pingliang heart began to ache and he secretly made up his mind.
“Li Zheng, thank you for your kindness, but I know my family’s matter by heart so there’s no need for you to worry! I would still have to ask you to help me out by producing the documents to sever our two families!” Sang Pingliang cupped his hands and said.
Fang Shi could not help but grabbed the chance to say, “Yufei’s studying expenses are provided by us, so why should Second Uncle worry when we haven’t even said a thing? Or, is Second Uncle jealous and afraid that Yufei might pass all the examinations to become an official, and make our family proud?”
“What nonsense is this wicked woman speaking!” Startled that his little secret was picked on, he glared at Fang Shi before stressing his point at Li Zheng more strongly, “Did you see that? Just look at how unfilial they are! How dare they talk like that to their senior! Li Zheng ah, you’ve to fight for my justice today!”
Such a behavior cannot be encouraged. Li Zheng frowned and scolded Fang Shi, “Fang Shi, there is no place for you to speak. Now, apologize! Sang Hong, control your wife properly!”
“Yes, I understand. Li Zheng, I will give an apology for not being sensible and for speaking nonsense!” Before her husband could speak, Fang Shi quickly acknowledged her mistake before bowing to Sang Pingliang with a smile, “Second Uncle, it is my bad for offending you and making you mad. Please forgive me and not keep my words to heart!”
It was clearly an apology, but Sang Pingliang’s rage did not die down after hearing so. Instead, it became even more ablaze and he grunted, “Ignorant woman! Bickering with you will only lower myself! Fine, I’ll make myself clear today. In the future, if Sang Yufei were ever to become the head of our country, I, Sang Pingliang, will absolutely not ride on his coattail! Hmph, everyone, please open your eyes to remember this!”
Fang Shi smiled without a word and silently retreated behind Sang Hong.
“Li Zheng, please help us with this matter! Even if they were to beg for forgiveness and give me money, I’ll still never forgive them! I still want to live a few more years longer without driven mad into my grave!” Sang Pingliang puffed.
Seeing that the Sang brothers had no slightest intention to mend their relationship with their uncle’s family, Li Zheng finally gave in. Since they had already steeled their hearts, why bother complicating things even further? Recalling how Sang Pingliang and his family had treated Sang Hong’s, Li Zheng could not help but wonder if he was pedantic. Perhaps, the Sang brothers would have fewer troubles to worry about after the relationship was broken!
“Alright then! Since you’ve all placed your trust with me, then I’ll help! Follow me into my house, I’ll write the documents.” Li Zheng finally nodded.
“Ai, thank you so much!” Sang Pingliang glared at the Sang brothers before being the first to follow Li Zheng into the house.
Once the documents had been written, Li Zheng read it all over again before asking them whether they would like to reconsider. Without the slightest hesitation, Sang Pingliang placed his fingerprint on them, “There’s nothing to reconsider, thank you Li Zheng!”
Sang Hong and Sang Yufei pressed their fingers on the two copies thereafter and the two families each held onto one.
Sang Pingliang shook the thin sheet of paper that was held firmly in his fingers before saying to the Sang brothers, “Look at this clearly, from today on, I am no longer your uncle! Don’t ever think about eyeing our family’s things!”
Sang Hong and Sang Yufei exchanged glances with each other, confused as to what he was saying! Eye his family’s things? When had they ever done that?
“Second Uncle, when—”
Sang Yufei had only just opened his mouth to speak when Sang Pingliang rudely interrupted him, “Don’t call me Second Uncle. I do not have a nephew like you! Call me Mister Sang!”