She was so straightforward and blunt with her words.
“I didn’t hear clearly, repeat what you said,” he said, keeping his eyes fixed on her. It had never occurred to him that she would ever mention a divorce, especially within such a short period of time of them getting married.
An Xiaoning looked away from him and repeated herself, “I said I want a divorce, as soon as possible. Are you clear now?”
“I don’t agree to it,” he said firmly.
“Do you still remember the agreement we drafted together earlier? It’s stated that you would grant me any one wish of mine, as long as I could keep my job on set for an entire month. If I failed to do so, I would then have to be your slave for a hundred days. I still have the agreement with me, kept intact. I hereby ask of you to grant me my wish, as agreed upon previously, and allow me to divorce you,” An Xiaoning said slowly.
All of a sudden, Jin Qingyan began to recall the existence of the agreement.
Little did he expect that her wish would be to get a divorce with him.
Little did he expect…
At this juncture, his disapproval had proved to be of zero significance.
Mr. Jin brought Mrs. Jin to visit An Xiaoning at the hospital ward. Although she had felt ashamed to face An Xiaoning, it would be rather inappropriate of her to not pay her daughter-in-law a visit at the hospital.
As soon as she entered, she was greeted with the sight of her son appearing extremely upset while An Xiaoning laid on the bed with a blank expression on her face.
“Xiaoning, I’ve let you down and done you wrong,” Mrs. Jin said shamefully.
There was no change in An Xiaoning’s expression, though she had sounded rather distant and aloof as she spoke, “I don’t blame you, Mother. Please have a seat.”
Mrs. Jin felt as if a weight was lifted off her chest upon hearing her words.
“Since you guys are here, I’ll just let you know now. I’ve already mentioned to Qingyan that I’d like to get a divorce,” said An Xiaoning without any consideration of how upset he was.
“A divorce?” Mrs. Jin gasped in astonishment and disbelief. Although such an unfortunate incident had indeed happened, no one had wished for it to. Mrs. Jin thought to herself that An Xiaoning seemed to be overreacting by demanding a divorce because of this reason.
“Xiaoning, it was your father and me who decided to save Qingyue instead of you. I had tied Qingyan up during that time and he had no say in the final decision.”
“I know, I don’t blame him, nor do I blame you guys. I understand that you were put in a difficult position. In hindsight, we got married in the spur of the moment, and it happened all too quickly, before I had even considered it carefully. We became husband and wife when we didn’t even have any feelings for each other, it was really too hasty. Marriage had never been solely between two parties, but rather, it was the union of two families. Now that things have already come to this, I really can’t bring myself to treat you guys like my own blood and kin. I understand that you were stuck in a dilemma, but trust can never be regained completely once it’s broken,” An Xiaoning said calmly.
Mrs. Jin hurriedly tried to persuade her to change her mind. “Xiaoning, don’t be so quick to make a decision. Give it some thorough thought and consider it carefully. Once you get a divorce, you and Qingyan will no longer be husband and wife. I believe you two definitely have some feelings for each other, after having spent all this time together. So, can you bear to watch Qingyan marry someone else in the future?”
An Xiaoning felt her heart wrench in sorrow at the thought of him marrying another woman, almost losing her composure. However, she forced herself to continue putting on a strong front and answered coldly, “Once we’re divorced, we’ll have nothing to do with each other. He’s free to marry whoever he wants, it’s none of my business anymore. Likewise, it wouldn’t concern him who I end up marrying. I’ve already gotten the divorce agreement printed. After the divorce, I’ll take his house off of my household registry account, taking only what’s mine and my bank account card. I won’t bring a single thing belonging to the Jin family away with me.”
Surprised to see how much of a backbone she had, Mrs. Jin said, “We’ll leave this matter to the both of you to decide. Your father and I are staying out of it.”
In the presence of Mr. and Mrs. Jin, An Xiaoning retrieved the agreement from the envelope as well and signed her name in a small designated box on both copies with a pen. She then slid the agreement to Jin Qingyan and said, “It’s your turn.”
“Are you really in such a hurry?” Jin Qingyan hollered, boiling with an anger that was about to erupt like a volcano.
“Yes, I don’t wish to stay any longer in this marriage, not even for another minute. I just want to be free right now.”
“An Xiaoning! Have you really thought it through?” Jin Qingyan bellowed in frustration.
“Yes, I have. If you choose not to sign it, I’ll file for a divorce in court,” she said, facing away from them as a teardrop streamed down her face onto the pillow.
“Since you’re so insistent, I shall grant you your wish,” Jin Qingyan answered, grabbing the pen and both copies of the agreement.
He picked up the pen and vigorously signed his name on the same designated box. After he was done signing both copies, An Xiaoning grasped the agreement and said, “Once I’m discharged, I’ll make a trip down to your place to collect my belongings. Afterwards, we’ll head to the Civil Administration Bureau together.”
Jin Qingyan stood up and left, without uttering a single word.
Mr. and Mrs. Jin followed closely behind.
An Xiaoning held the agreement in her hand and began perusing its content. Just like she mentioned herself, the agreement was indeed very standardized.
Within less than half a year, she was divorced again.
It should not matter much to him since he did not truly love her anyway.
Or so she thought.
However, the agony was still rather unbearable, especially during the times when she was all by herself, with no one to hide her true emotions from. She could only allow time to heal her wounds.
Failing to catch up with Jin Qingyan’s car, Mr. and Mrs. Jin had no choice but to head home.
“Father, Mother, did you go to the hospital?” asked Jin Qingyue as she made her way downstairs, hand in hand with Shi Shaochuan.
“Yes, I’m so depressed right now,” Mrs. Jin lamented in frustration.
Assuming that her mother had received a scolding from An Xiaoning, Jin Qingyue remarked, “Didn’t I already tell you? You should’ve visited her in a few days’ time. She’s too emotionally perturbed at the moment.”
“No, she appeared rather calm and spoke to me in a gentle manner. However, she has already signed the divorce papers with your brother and they’ll be going ahead with the official procedure once she’s recovered and discharged. She says she doesn’t hold it against us, but I know she definitely does deep down,” said Mrs. Jin, clutching her chest in sorrow.
“What? A divorce?” Jin Qingyue turned to look at Shi Shaochuan before continuing to ask, “Was she the one who initiated it?”
“Obviously. Your father and I saw it with our own eyes. She got someone to prepare the agreement and your brother signed it. She seemed to be pretty resolute and stood firm in her decision. There was no way she would give salvaging their marriage a shot,” Mrs. Jin said with a sigh.
“What’s there to salvage? Brother has never loved her anyway, you and Grandma were the ones who set them up. They got married as soon as they met. Obviously, their marriage wouldn’t last long,” Jin Qingyue retorted, finding their divorce to be not a bad idea at all, for she would not have to worry about feeling guilty whenever she saw An Xiaoning in the future.
“I don’t care anymore. If she wants a divorce, so be it. Your brother is such an outstanding and great catch anyway, it won’t be hard to find him another wife. Besides, she chose to leave the marriage with no property or possessions, out of her own accord. We didn’t force her,” said Mrs. Jin as she stood up and walked towards her bedroom.
Jin Qingyue held onto Shi Shaochuan’s arm and walked towards the entrance, while Mr. Jin sat on the couch and smoked a cigarette solemnly, ignoring them.
As soon as they stepped outside of the house, Jin Qingyue applauded excitedly and exclaimed in joy, “Marvellous!”