Chapter 34: Refusal to Marry (2)
Nyoi-Bo Studio Nyoi-Bo Studio
When Xu Weilai reached home, the housekeeper was shocked by the swollen red hand mark on her pale face and said, “I’ll get some ointment for you, Miss Weilai.”
“That won’t be necessary,” Xu Weilai replied.
Xu Weilai headed upstairs into her room and sat on the couch. She pulled her knees to her chest and wrapped her arms around her legs as she curled herself into a small bundle.
With her face buried between her knees, her shoulders quaked as she sobbed.
After some time, her phone rang.
She slowly raised her head and wiped the tears off her chin. She picked up her cell phone, and when she saw the name of the caller on the screen, warmth enveloped her heart. She took a deep breath to suppress the lump in her throat and recovered her natural voice before pressing the “answer” key.
The caller heard her voice and knew immediately that something was wrong. “Sis, are you crying?”
The boy called her bluff. “I can see through your lie.”
3Xu Weilai changed the topic immediately. “Wang, isn’t it the middle of the night for you? Why aren’t you asleep yet?”
Xu Zhanwang was her biological younger brother. The names of both her and her brother had been picked by their now-deceased grandfather. She was Xu Weilai, and he was Xu Zhangwang. Together, they were “zhang wang wei lai,” which literally meant “looking into the future.” It had been his hope that the two siblings would join hands to take the Xu family to even greater heights and create a lasting dynasty for the future generations.
2Xu Zhanwang had just come of age this year and was currently overseas studying.
Xu Zhangwang ignored her question, and continued, “I know of everything that happened today, including the fact that Dad slapped you. Sis, does it hurt?”
“No, it doesn’t.”
“You’re lying to me again.” The boy’s voice was laced with unhappiness. “If it didn’t hurt, you wouldn’t be crying. You’re always saying that because you don’t want me to worry. But, Sis, I’ve already grown up. I’m no longer a little kid. I have the ability to protect you!”
The tears that Xu Weilai fought hard to hold back started pooling in her eyes again.
She sniffed and tried to control her voice as she said, “Yeah. I know. My little brother has grown up.”
“Sis, listen to me. If you don’t want to marry, then don’t. Don’t give in to Dad and Mom anymore. At most, the family will file for bankruptcy. I can always defer my studies and find a job. I will work hard to earn money–lots and lots of money, and I’ll take care of you, Dad, and Mom. I won’t let you suffer.”
1After disconnecting the call, the tears fell freely from Xu Weilai’s eyes.
Her younger brother was so considerate that her heart ached for him. At his age, he was supposed to live a bright and carefree life, and not be sacrificing his future for her sake.
Xu Weilai spent the whole night tossing and turning restlessly. Only when the sun finally rose did she manage to fall into a fitful sleep.
But she didn’t manage to sleep for long before her maid woke up with a knock on her bedroom door.
She arose to open the door, only to be met with the maid’s panic-stricken face. The maid said, “Bad news, Miss Weilai! Madam just called to say that Master is in critical condition! She wants you to go to the hospital right away!”
Xu Weilai didn’t have enough time to change. She simply wore a long coat over her pajamas and dashed off to the hospital.
When she finally reached, she saw her father lying motionlessly on the bed. His breathing was shallow, and doctors were surrounding him in an emergency effort to save him. Her mother was standing to the side, sobbing uncontrollably.
She rushed forward and hugged her mother.
When Mrs. Xu saw her daughter, it was as if she had found her lifeline. She grabbed on to Xu Weilai’s hand desperately and said, “Weilai, your dad is refusing surgery. He said that if you won’t agree to the marriage, he’d rather die! I’m begging you. Please agree to it! I’m begging you!”
2Her younger brother, mother, father, the whole Xu family… for a moment, she was crushed under their weight.
She had assumed that she had a choice. But the truth of the matter was that there had never been another option!
Xu Weilai picked up her cell phone robotically and dialed it. She said, “Grandpa Gu, I’ll do it.”
After the surgery, Xu Weilai exited the hospital in a daze. All of a sudden, a black sedan zoomed toward her, stopping mere inches away from her body.
She looked over, startled, and saw Gu Yu sitting emotionlessly in the driver’s seat.