Xu Youran laid her head onto the ground; she was shivering from head to toe uncontrollably and at a complete loss for words.
Because she knew that Military Commander Xu was speaking the truth.
Although there was no way she could deny the truth anymore, she still tried to defend herself, “Father, regardless of what happened, I really did treat the Xu family as my own. I saw all of you as my closest kin. This is absolutely true. I’ve been treated poorly since young by the Jin family, far worse than how they would treat a servant. My life was practically a living hell. Why would I want to continue living with them? Father, I promise I won’t bring any more trouble and disaster to the Xu family. Please believe me, I won’t dare to do that ever again. I really won’t!”
Madam Xu had almost lost her voice from all the crying. “Youran, get up,” Madam Xu said in between sobs.
“Get up on your feet, no one’s chasing you out,” said Madam Xu, whose words did not sit well with Xu Cai.
“Mother, since Youran is not a part of our family, what’s the point of keeping her here? She’s already married and no longer related to us anyway. We have to continue searching for Sister,” Xu Cai protested.
“That may be so, but Youran has been living with us for so many years. She may have gotten into a lot of trouble, but we’ve already developed feelings. To make things clear beforehand, Youran, you may continue being a part of our family, but you have to promise never to create trouble again. Otherwise, your Father, your brothers, and I will never help you again. Just bear that in mind.” Madam Xu then stood up and said, “I’m tired, I’m going to get some rest.”
“Thank you, Mother!” Xu Youran exclaimed with tears flowing freely from her eyes like a tap. No one knew just how terrified she was to be chased out of the Xu family. It was an unprecedented fear within herself that she only discovered moments ago.
Military Commander Xu stood up and placed both hands behind him before returning to his bedroom as well.
Xu Yang and Xu Cai looked at each other in dismay and rose from their seats one after another.
“We used to be so tolerant toward your brazen and atrocious deeds in the past only because we thought you were really a part of our family. But from now on, no one will clean up the mess you create if you dare stir up any more trouble. Xu Youran, you’d better watch out and know your limits,” Xu Cai warned.
Xu Youran froze in terror, unable to recover from the shock. She did not even know how she made it out of the mansion and into her car, from where she stared intently at the entrance.
Her mind had sunk into a trance.
Why did the unhappy events of the past, which she did not wish to be reminded of, cross her mind all of a sudden?
She recalled herself scrambling out of the Jin family mansion, after which she quickly took flight and expended every bit of energy in her to flee far, far away.
Her utmost fear was being caught and locked up again by the Jin family.
Fortunately for her, she almost bumped into the car of Madam Xu, who initially thought that she was a beggar. Upon hearing that she had been held captive and had escaped on her own, Madam Xu decided to bring her back to the latter’s own home.
In order to gain the sympathy of Madam Xu, Xu Youran lied about being an orphan and claimed that she had snuck out of the Jin family mansion after her adoptive mother, who was a servant for the Jin family, was beaten to death by them.
Furthermore, the Jin family did not go about searching for her and instead pretended as if nothing had happened at all. Even though Jin Qingyan had also been conducting a search for her, he could only do it secretly for he feared that he would upset his mother.
Afterward, she went on to live with the Xu family for a long while. One day, she accidentally overheard the conversation between Military Commander Xu and Madam Xu about their missing daughter, whom they had been searching for fervently. An idea crossed her mind since.
She took the initiative to remark that she saw Madam Xu as her own mother and claimed that she had never enjoyed any parental love since she was young.
To make matters worse, there were several relatives who had pointed out the possibility of Xu Youran being their missing daughter and suggested that they get a DNA test done.
The Xu family had proceeded to carry out a DNA test, thinking that there was no harm in doing so.
Xu Youran could still clearly remember everything that had happened, even until this day.
On the day that the DNA test was going to be carried out, she snuck inside Xu Yang’s room and found a strand of his hair on his pillow. In order to make herself become a true-blue member of the Xu family, she had stealthily swapped the strand of Xu Yang’s hair with the sample of hair her mother had plucked from her scalp.
No one had seen through her devious scheme because her hair was as short as a boy’s back then.
The Xu family would definitely chase her out if they were to find out that the error in the DNA test results was not due to a mistake committed by the test center but because she had swapped the hair samples.
Without a doubt.
However, she still did not find any fault with herself for she felt that there was nothing wrong with wanting to be protected by a family.
Xu Youran could not help but feel disappointed now that she had been exposed.
Perhaps it was because she knew that the Xu family would no longer treat her like their own from now on.
They would be a family only on the surface.
Madam Xu decided to visit the mountains after waking up from her nap.
Military Commander Xu accompanied her because he was too worried.
Madam Xu visited the Reverend again and told him that Xu Youran was not her biological daughter but that the set of birth characters she had given him previously indeed belonged to her biological daughter.
The Reverend let out a long sigh and said, “This is your destiny. If fate allows, you will be reunited with her again. Otherwise, it just means that you two are not fated to be mother and daughter in this life. It all depends on Heaven’s wishes.”
“Reverend, can you tell if she’s living well now from her birth characters?”
“Madam, your daughter may be born in an inauspicious month, but she’s destined to have a blessed life full of riches. She’s going to enjoy wealth and authority, as well as a significant other who dotes on her dearly. In addition, I can tell her personality traits based on her birth characters. She’s a strong-headed person who’s also kind and passionate about upholding justice. She’ll meet many eminent people who would aid her greatly in her life.”
Madam Xu continued to ask several other questions about her daughter, which the Reverend refused to answer.
Madam Xu and her husband then left the mountains, remaining silent throughout.
Once they arrived home, Madam Xu said, “I’m really so much more at ease now after hearing the Reverend say that our daughter is leading a good life. Well, at least she’s still alive, which means it’s only a matter of time before we find her.”
“Don’t dwell on it anymore,” Military Commander Xu said.
“By the way, do you think An Xiaoning could be…” said Madam Xu as an idea crossed her mind.
“How could it be…” Military Commander Xu answered.
“Why not? Didn’t Commander-in-Chief Jin say that she’s also born on the 15th of July? It’s not every day that something so coincidental happens. Look how well she’s living now. Maybe she really is our daughter. Besides, she’s also an orphan who hasn’t found her biological parents yet. That’s another coincidence. Now that I think about it, it really seems very likely,” said Madam Xu.
“Do you know that An Xiaoning hates our family to the core?” Military Commander remarked, hitting the nail on the head.
“That’s a separate matter. Shall we look her up and try getting a DNA test done with her samples?” Madam Xu suggested.
“That’ll only work if she’s willing to cooperate. I doubt she will though.”
“We have to try no matter what. Let me give Xu Yang a call to ask for An Xiaoning’s mobile phone number.” Madam Xu hurriedly alighted from the car and gave Xu Yang a phone call.
After obtaining her phone number, Madam Xu immediately gave An Xiaoning a call, which managed to get through.
Madam Xu was filled with nervousness the moment An Xiaoning answered.
“Hello, is this Ms. An?”
“You are…?” An Xiaoning asked, finding that Madam Xu’s voice was rather familiar though she could not figure out who it was.
“I’m Xu Yang’s mother.”
Upon realizing who it was, An Xiaoning’s tone became colder and more stern. “May I ask what you called me for, Madam Xu?”
“Here’s what happened. We conducted a DNA test using your father-in-law’s and Youran’s samples today. The results proved that Youran is not our daughter.”