Chapter 2: The Engagement Proposal
Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
“Master and Madam?” Upon hearing this, Hong Dali’s heart jumped. He thought, They must be this body’s biological parents? Then, wh-what kind of emotions should I bear toward them?
One could not blame Hong Dali for hesitating.
He had been an orphan back on his previous world. At a young age, his parents had perished in an accident. From a young age, he had lacked the love and care of his kin. Now that he had arrived in this world, and with a new body to boot, he had gained a pair of biological parents. This left him with very complex feelings.
Was he happy? Yes, he felt very happy. After all, having parents to call his own was something that he had only been able to dream about in the past. However, it wasn’t only happiness that he was feeling right now; there was also a sense of perturbation. After all, he was unfamiliar with his “new” parents. He didn’t know their names or their attitude toward the original owner of this body. More importantly, he couldn’t bring himself to call people he was meeting for the first time “father” and “mother.”
This conflicting feeling of both expectancy and apprehension caused him to feel rather perturbed. On the other hand, he still bore the mission from the Great Prodigal System—to splurge 100,000 yuan within four hours—and the only source of money that he had was from his “new” parents…
It looked like there was just no running away from meeting them.
Hong Dali was distracted in his thoughts for a while. Then, he tidied up his grooming a little and followed the maid out.
Along the way, although Hong Dali stayed silent and quietly followed the maid, his eyes were actually busy screening his surroundings. A three-story villa with a large atrium at the center. There is transparent stained glass above, and the stars in the sky are observable through it. The entire first level is a super-luxurious living room. The condition of the third level is still unknown, and my room is located in the eastern part of the second level. The total area of this villa structure seems to be around… 3,000 square meters in size. Overall, it looks like this body’s original owner’s family is quite well-to-do. They would probably be considered a family of top plutocrats.
This was definitely good news, as it meant that Hong Dali had a basic source of wealth to squander so that his attribute points could be raised.
Therefore, his mood lightened up, as he did not have to worry about acquiring money for now. Very quickly, he saw two men and three women in the living room. One of the couples sat facing east, with the man wearing simple home clothing. But even that could not conceal the air of majesty on his face, especially his bushy eyebrows, which emphasized his sense of dignity. The lady by his side was dressed in a light-purple nightdress as she idly rested on him. There was a light smile on her face, and her lips were gently pressed together, exuding a sense of grace and elegance.
They should probably be my parents in this world? Hong Dali thought in his mind.
As for the others in the living room, they were obviously a family of three. The man looked to be in his mid-forties. He was wearing a greenish-gray vest and had light stubble above his lips. In his hand, he was holding a bronze-colored smoking pipe, and his short, shiny black hair was neatly combed to the back of his head. His wife was wearing a black evening gown, and her long, beautiful black hair was bunned high up on her head. Her legs were placed close together with a slant to the side. She looked quite beautiful and sexy.
The last person was a teenage girl around 17 or 18. Her skin was as fair as snow and looked very soft and supple. She wore a white one-piece dress that revealed her white jade-like calves. The girl’s hair reached her shoulders and contrasted with her white dress, which made her hair look even more beautiful. He couldn’t help but stare intently at her. For a moment, Hong Dali’s eyes were bedazzled. He felt like he was in a dream, and his heart thumped like crazy. At the same time, the girl turned her head and saw him approaching. However, she reacted with a frown and turned her head away slightly.
What is this family of three doing here so late at night? Could something have happened? Hong Dali was unsure of their motives for being here, so he didn’t dare to behave unusually, in case he raised anyone’s suspicions. He nodded at the three visitors and looked toward his parents. Walking over, he thought, It’s already 8 PM, yet these visitors chose such a late time to visit. They must be here because they need some kind of help with something. I was even specifically called out here, and there’s a girl who is around my age. Judging from the ambiguous looks of both families and how my parents keep looking at the girl… Pondering up to this point, Hong Dali took in a deep breath. Could it be… that they are here to propose an engagement? In order to seek help with something?
Upon arriving at this conclusion, Hong Dali unwittingly glanced at the girl a few more times. Feeling his gaze, the girl looked a little unhappy about it. She sulked and looked down to play with her fingers.
This girl doesn’t seem to harbor a favorable opinion of me—or rather, the original me. It looks like these two people already know each other, but their relationship isn’t that good. Ah, I had better be careful, thought Hong Dali.
When he saw Hong Dali coming down the stairs and walking toward them, Hong Dali’s father smiled and introduced them naturally without any sign of deliberation. “Haha, Dali’s here. Come and greet your Uncle Tang and Aunt Tang.”
He spoke in a very gentle tone, immediately causing Hong Dali to warm up to him a little. It was obvious that this father doted on his son. Comparatively, he would definitely treat Hong Dali well in the future too. Although he still had memories of his past life in the other world, being able to have someone love and care for him now still made him feel very blessed.
“Hello, Uncle. Hello, Aunty.” Hong Dali wasn’t sure what the character of this body’s previous owner had been like. The scattered fragments of memories in his mind only contained very minimal information, such as the previous owner of this body’s splurging ways.
In order to not raise any suspicion, Hong Dali reached his hand out toward his mother the moment he sat down. “Give me some money; I want to go out and splurge!”
“Cough, cough, cough!” Hearing what Hong Dali had just said even before his own mother had expressed anything, Uncle Tang, who was to the side, coughed violently. After his coughing subsided, and with an expression that seemed to suggest that he was at a loss as to whether to laugh or cry, he smiled and asked, “Ah, Dali, well, Xinxin and you have known each other since you were young, so the of you can be considered childhood friends. But I wonder, what kind of feelings do you have for my Xinxin?”
Needless to say, these three visitors were Tang Ruisi and his family.
Hong Dali was still unsure of how close he was with the Tang family. Therefore, keeping a slight distance from them right now was his best option. Ultimately, he could not afford to let anyone realize that he was a stranger who had taken over this body, the consequences of which he couldn’t even begin to imagine. Therefore, he only nodded slightly and said, “Not bad, she’s quite good looking.”
Although Hong Dali was the infamous prodigal, Tang Muxin couldn’t help but blush when he complimented her.
However, Hong Dali’s compliment ended there as he again said to his mother, “Give me some money, I want to go out and splurge!”
His mother helplessly shook her head, smiled, and then gently helped Hong Dali straightened out his hair which was still messy after his sleep. She gently said to him, “Silly boy, your Uncle Tang is here to propose a marriage between you and Muxin. You and Muxin were betrothed to each other before the both of you were even born, so this is not something that you can object to. There is no rush in going out to splurge. Your father and I still have some talent in making money, so our wealth will eventually be yours.”
Hearing this, Hong Dali nodded and sat down obediently whilst secretly collecting and consolidating information. Uncle Tang’s family and mine seem to have had a close relationship in the past. At least, it was so during my grandfather’s generation. It is very likely that my grandfather and Uncle Tang’s father were war comrades. This girl’s full name should be Tang Muxin, and her pet name is Xinxin. We were betrothed to each other before birth, so that means she’s my fiancée. Mother said that their wealth will surely be passed on to me in the future, so that means I am the sole child of this family. It’s no wonder that I am so adored by them.Considering further, he thought, But this body’s previous owner only knew how to squander his money. He was definitely not a good candidate to consider for a son-in-law. This Tang Muxin is so pretty, yet she has willingly followed her father here to get engaged. This shows that their family must have run into some kind of difficulty. They probably need to seek help from my family. In this case, they either have problems with their business’ cash flow or have gotten into a feud with someone more powerful than them. The first situation is the more likely one.
With these few pieces of information in hand, Hong Dali started to observe Tang Muxin secretly.
Speaking of which, this Tang Muxin was really such a beauty. Previously, he hadn’t been able to see her clearly, as there had been quite a distance between them, but now, at close range, he could better see just how wonderfully beautiful she was.
She was from a prestigious family, after all. Being still young and having yet to set foot into the outside world, she naturally radiated a sense of purity and innocence. Her big, black eyes were full of life, and her eyelashes were very long too. However, due to their current situation, she had no choice but to get engaged to Hong Dali. In her heart, she had yet to fully resign herself to her fate. This predicament made her look especially delicate, and it aroused a sense of pity in those who saw her. Seeing her in such a state, Hong Dali even had the urge to hug her close and comfort her.
Of course, he only had an urge to do so. It was something that he would never do—he couldn’t possibly forget about the fact that his health attribute was only 39 points. This meant that he could easily die from agitation or overexcitement.
Everything was very clear now: the Tang family was indeed here to propose an engagement. All that was needed now was a word from him. To have such a beautiful fiancée was definitely not a bad thing, so Hong Dali’s reply was very straightforward. “I have no objections…”
Hearing him say that, Tang Muxin’s body noticeably shuddered a little.
Seeing how Hong Dali had no objections, his mother immediately said, “Dali, why don’t you show Xinxin around the house. Both of you should get to know each other a little better. Without us around, the two of you will feel more at ease.”
“Oh… OK then…” Hong Dali gave Tang Muxin a look. Without needing him to say anything, this lass naturally knew what she had to do. The two of them went to a study room on the first floor of the villa. Immediately upon entering the room, Tang Muxin said, “I am warning you first, although I am your fiancée, you are not allowed to touch me. You piece of garbage, you prodigal, don’t come near me. Stay away from me!”
It looked like the original owner of this body was not held in high esteem at all. Even a young lass like Tang Muxin dared to order him around.
It was a good thing that this body was now occupied by someone else. Hong Dali shrugged nonchalantly at her. “That’s fine with me. You can have it your way. Actually, what I wanted to ask was, do you know how to squander? If you don’t know how to do that, you are not qualified to be my fiancée. Even if you want to marry me, I might not necessarily want to marry you.” Young brat, I already figured out what is going on in your mind just from your speech and actions. Isn’t your motive just to get some money from my family so that your family can overcome the current crisis you’re facing? Once your family’s business gets back on track, your family will have the authority to renege on the engagement. I am not so silly as to give you the chance to “come back stronger than before,” so I might as well intimidate you first and show you who’s the boss now.
So what if you are gorgeous and talented? What I need is a woman who can splurge with me. Only then will I be able to gain more attribute points and complete the missions that the Great Prodigal System assigns me. If I were to marry a thrifty wife, then how could I splurge as I want!?