Your Distance - 76
Ting Shuang stared at the messages on the screen for a long time, knowing that this time, he had already won, but he didn’t feel much happiness from it.
He touched the paper shredder. It was hot.
What Zhu Wenjia promised him, he hadn’t done; and what he’d promised Zhu Wenjia, he could no longer do.
“What are you thinking about.” When Bai Changyi came back, he realised that Ting Shuang’s face looked pale.
Ting Shuang did not tell Bai Changyi about how he’d asked Zhu Wenjia to get the personal seal. He stepped forward to wrap his arms around Bai Changyi’s waist, “Just thinking about the company. But if you signed a non-disclosure agreement, I won’t talk to you about it. I’ll do the rest by myself.”
Even though some things had not been sorted out yet, after tomorrow, everything would come to an end.
On Monday, it rained heavily.
Outside the window, thunder rumbled and lightning flashed. The morning sky was as dark as night.
Ting Shuang put on his formal attire, tied his tie, picked up the folder of documents, and said to Bai Changyi, “I reserved seats on the top floor of the hotel. Seven o’clock tonight. Wait for me to come back.”
“You really don’t need me to come with you?” Because of the time difference, Bai Changyi had a video conference with his graduate students early in the morning. As Ting Shuang was about to leave the house now, he’d suspended the meeting.
“No.” Ting Shuang joked, “You’re too handsome, you’ll steal my limelight too easily.”
Bai Changyi had already waded through a lot of muddy waters for him, it was enough.
Ting Shuang went downstairs. The water level on the roads outside was not shallow, and the rain was heavy. It quickly wet his trousers, leaving him a bit cold, and a bit dirty. He raised his head and looked at the hotel window, thinking about how at this time, Bai Changyi’s feet should be dry and warm.
He recalled them standing on the roof of the LRM building a few months ago. It was a midsummer day, when Bai Changyi asked him what he thought university was.
—— A place that pioneers mankind.
It was an ideal, but oh, handsome old man, not everyone can live to become a pioneer of mankind.
The rain was too heavy, so Ting Shuang hailed a taxi to the RoboRun headquarters.
It was two minutes to nine.
“May I ask who you’re looking for?” asked the front desk.
“I’m here for a meeting.” Ting Shuang took out Ting Yun’s power of attorney from the folder of documents, “I am the trustor(1) of these shares.”
The front desk took a look at it and said, “Wait a minute, I’ll call Secretary Wang.”
“Secretary Wang said that this shareholder does not participate in any company affairs.” The front desk said to Ting Shuang.
Ting Shuang said, “Then please ask Secretary Wang to produce a written document proving that my trustee had indeed given up her relevant rights and interests. Also, please tell Secretary Wang that my surname is Ting.”
Before long, Wang Aiqing walked out of the elevator.
“… Lil’ Shuang.” Wang Aiqing said, “Auntie will tell you something that’s always been in her heart. When you’re schooling, focus on doing well in school. Adult matters will be taken care of by adults.”
Adults? Did that refer to Zhu Ao, who was now lying in the ICU, or Weng Yunyi, who was preparing to sell the company using a falsified power of attorney?
Ting Shuang smiled politely as he passed the power of attorney to Wang Aiqing, before adopting a tone that made it seem like he was very cultured and refined, but in reality his voice held no emotion, “Secretary Wang, I am the trustor of the shareholder Ms. Ting, you have no right to interfere with my rights. If you prevent my trustee from exercising her rights on behalf of RoboRun, then I will sue both you and RoboRun.”
Wang Aiqing looked at Ting Shuang for a while before sighing and swiping the card to bring Ting Shuang through the wing gates.
The two of them took the same elevator up, and Wang Aiqing said, “Lil’ Shuang has grown up, you really are different now.”
“I think it’s good that I’ve grown up.” Looking at his reflection in the mirror, Ting Shuang straightened the golden tie clip on his tie. “After all, no one listens to children, right?”
The elevator door opened to the eighteenth floor.
Ting Shuang walked to the closed conference room and heard faint voices from the inside. He knocked on the door, and the voices inside the room paused, but no one opened the door. After a few seconds, they sounded again. He twisted the doorknob, but the door was locked from the inside, and could not be opened from the outside.
If he smashed the door open, it would be too barbaric.
He cleared his throat and shouted, “Fire—”
All the doors on the entire floor opened, including those of the meeting room.
“Where is the fire?”
“Has the fire emergency button been pushed?”
“I’m sorry, I saw wrong.” Ting Shuang said nonchalantly, and strode into the meeting room, flashing Ting Yun’s power of attorney, “Sorry everyone, I’m late.”
“What are you doing here? We are having a meeting here, a very important meeting.” Weng Yunyi seemed like she was educating an ignorant child, “There must be a limit to mischief. Isn’t making your dad angry bad enough?”
“Ms. Weng, I would also like to tell you, that there is a limit to mischief.” Ting Shuang tried to ignore Weng Yunyi’s last sentence, “For an impromptu shareholders meeting, all shareholders should be notified at least fifteen days in advance, but my trustee did not receive any notice. So logically, any decision made at this meeting today is an invalid one. Isn’t this a waste of everyone’s time?”
The shareholders looked at each other.
Weng Yunyi said, “Ting Yun has never participated in any shareholder meeting in the past 20 years, and no one notified her of all the previous impromptu meetings. So all the decisions made during the previous meetings are now void?”
Ting Shuang said, “According to ‘The Company Law’, I can’t sue the company if it had happened too long ago, but I can indeed file a lawsuit and revoke the decisions made during a meeting that happened within the past 60 days. For example, today’s meeting.”
Weng Yunyi was annoyed, “You–“
Yan Liqian waved his hand to Weng Yunyi, looked at other shareholders comfortingly, then stood up with a smile and said kindly to Ting Shuang, “Lil’ Shuang, your mother has never involved herself in company affairs. Everyone knows that. Yes. You like to delve into the law. That is a good thing, but don’t dig at the words. Although your mother didn’t sign a written agreement, back then, when she made the decision not to participate in company affairs anymore, there were quite a few witnesses present. Not only written documents have legal effect. If you file a lawsuit, the shareholders present then are all witnesses.”
He walked up to Ting Shuang and patted him on the shoulder, saying cordially, “Lil’ Shuang, your mother doesn’t understand the current situation of the company. You were abroad, so you don’t know it either, right? You are still young. Visit the R&D department and study with other young people. For now, leave the meeting room to us old people who understand the company’s situation, is that okay?”
As if he’d felt something dirty on his shoulder after being patted by Yan Liqian, Ting Shuang brushed off his shoulder with a hand, then said slowly, “Mr. Yan, so you mean to say that I, who holds a power of attorney for 15% of the company’s equity, cannot participate in today’s event. Meanwhile, Ms. Weng, who is not a shareholder, has the right to attend today’s shareholder meeting?”
“I have the power of attorney for 36% of the company’s equity that your father holds,” Weng Yunyi said.
Ting Shuang said, “Oh? Really? Can I see it?”
Weng Yunyi said, “On what basis? I’ve already shown it to all shareholders, how could it be fake?”
Seeing that she refused to take out the power of attorney, Ting Shuang took out a document from the file, “I don’t want to doubt you, but I too happen to have a power of attorney for my dad’s equity here.”
Weng Yunyi was taken aback, and her eyes widened for a moment, “Impossible.”
Ting Shuang faced her straight-on, not letting any change in her expression slip by, “How do you know that it’s impossible? Because my dad’s personal seal is in your hands?”
Weng Yunyi’s eyes flickered, “Because my copy of the power of attorney was personally written for me by your father himself.”
“Really.” Ting Shuang flipped open the power of attorney he’d just taken out of the document file, “But my power of attorney has my father’s signature.”
“Impossible, that’s impossible.” Weng Yunyi looked at the power of attorney. Since yesterday until today, Ting Shuang never had the opportunity to get Zhu Ao’s signature. “The signature had to be fake, and so had to be the power of attorney. Would you dare send it for a verification of the handwriting?”
Ting Shuang also glanced at the signature.
Of course it was false. He had signed it himself the night before. The last time he’d forged Zhu Ao’s signature was when the teacher had asked him to get his parents’ signature on a test paper that he’d failed. This time, he had wasted several sheets of paper before he had been able to produce this one signature.
It would be weird if he could pull the wool over everybody’s eyes with this(2).
“I can’t do a handwriting verification,” Ting Shuang didn’t wait long enough for Weng Yunyi to rejoice, and then said, “It’s not like you don’t know that my dad is hemiplegic now. He can’t move the right side of his body, so he signed this with his left hand. This wasn’t written with the same hand as before, so tell me, how would you do a handwriting verification?”
“Your power of attorney cannot be authenticated, but mine can.” Weng Yunyi couldn’t help but take out her power of attorney to show the seal on it. “You can get any appraisal agency to verify the seal on my power of attorney.”
Ting Shuang took the power of attorney and looked at it before saying, “Even if the seal is real, it doesn’t mean that the person who stamped it has to be my dad, right. Be it seal or signature, the most important thing is for it to represent the trustee’s real intentions. Now that my dad is awake, we just have to ask him. Then, wouldn’t everyone know which copy of the power of attorney is real and which is fake?”
Weng Yunyi choked, and was unable to speak for a while.
“Things can’t be as you said.” Yan Liqian said with a smile, “Why do documents need a seal or signature on them? Isn’t it just to prevent changes in the agreement? Signatures and seals are all legally binding. You can’t just verbally go back on the agreement after signing or stamping your seal.”
After speaking, he reached for Weng Yunyi’s power of attorney that was in Ting Shuang’s hands, “Let the shareholder committee keep the power of attorney for now.”
Ting Shuang took a step back, “Before handing it over to the shareholder committee, at least verify which is real and which is fake.”
Seeing as Ting Shuang refused to let go of the power of attorney that he was now holding on to, Weng Yunyi called the security department, “Is the security department? Someone here stole important documents from the company and is disrupting the shareholders’ meeting. Send someone over immediately and take them away.”
“Hey, no need, no need.” After Weng Yunyi hung up, Yan Liqian started acting like a peacemaker, “It’s your own child, why call security?”
Soon after, a dozen security guards rushed to the 18th floor, but they didn’t know what to do after arriving at the door of the conference room.
Everyone in the conference room was dressed appropriately, and no one seemed to be causing trouble.
Weng Yunyi stared pointedly at Ting Shuang, and said to the security guards, “Why are you still in a daze?”
“Hold on.” Ting Shuang gestured nobly and elegantly like Bai Changyi, and the group of security guards hesitated.
Before the security guards could act, he took out his phone and dialed a 3-digit long number, “Is the Public Security Bureau? Someone here forged documents in order to commit fraud. Please send someone over immediately and take them away.”
Yan Liqian’s face, which had previously been as calm as Mount Tai, suddenly changed. He immediately reached out to grab the power of attorney in Ting Shuang’s hands.
“No one move,” Ting Shuang pointed to his tie clip and smiled, “It’s a camera with Wi-Fi. This is being broadcast live on the Internet.”
(1) This is 委托人 (wei tuo ren) in Chinese, and I’m not exactly sure how to translate it into English because I’m not a law student hehe. Google gave me consignor..? too?? But I’m going with trustor/trustee… if you know the proper term for it please let me know!!
(2) the original phrase here was 瞒天过海, which literally means like,, deceiving the heavens to cross the sea. But i thought I’d just replace it with an English proverb.
The chapters have been quite seriousss,,, unlike the vibe of the story at the start.. I hope you’re still enjoying though!!