Say you were bullied by someone as a kid, and they see you years later and say or do something in front of you in a way to remind you of the past, without directly doing or saying it to you. (But they know you will overhear it.)

How do we say this?

They did it in a __________ way


You could use taunting as an adjective:

They did it in a taunting way.

According to Oxford:

taunt (n.) a remark made in order to anger, wound, or provoke someone

Taunts are often made directly to the person; however, if someone is deliberately saying something to someone else mostly to annoy or provoke you, that could still be described as a "taunt".

Another possibility would be:

They did it in a provocative way.

Again, according to Oxford:

provocative (adj.) causing annoyance, anger, or another strong reaction, especially deliberately

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