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“This is my new chick. You two used to know each other, didn’t you?” said Bai Duocai, sounding like he was flaunting his new possession, as if to say, “Your had-been godsister has now become my partner in bed.”

“No, we didn’t,” Ye Xiaotian said casually.

Sun Weiwei remained silent throughout and stood quietly beside Bai Duocai.

“Where’s your wife?”

“That’s none of your business,” Ye Xiaotian hissed before standing up to leave.

Ye Xiaotian completely disregarded him even though he was Bai Ranran’s brother.

Bai Duocai stared at Ye Xiaotian’s receding figure and scoffed, “That damned bastard. My sister sacrificed so much for him back then. How dare he speak to me like that. What a heartless jerk.”

Sun Weiwei did not chime in and instead watched as Ye Xiaotian left.

Jin Qingyue forcefully dragged Jin Bao’er home a few days later.

That was her only resort because she realized that calling her daughter to come home did not work at all.

She missed her daughter dearly. Yet, the latter had been brainwashed by Shi Shaochuan into forgetting about her mother.

Jin Qingyue had no choice but to go down to Shi Shaochuan’s place personally to bring Jin Bao’er home. Meanwhile, Shi Shaochuan only allowed her to do so because he was getting a little sick of taking care of her.

However, Jin Bao’er did not speak a word to Jin Qingyue at all after coming home.

She did not wish to eat either.

The helpless Jin Qingyue decided to try and coax her nicely, “Bao’er, you won’t be healthy if you don’t eat, and if you’re unhealthy, you won’t become pretty. Do you want that to happen?”

Jin Bao’er stared at her and said, “I want to be with Daddy.”

“Tell me why you want to be with Daddy so badly and not with Mommy. I was the one who raised you single-handedly. Did you forget that?”

“Because I want Daddy to make up for all the lost paternal love. Besides, Mommy, I’m happier with Daddy than I am with you. Daddy takes me out to play every day. You don’t. Daddy also said that girls don’t have to attend school and receive an education. He said that I can live well as long as I’m pretty.”

Jin Qingyue was dumbfounded by the absurdity of what she had just heard.

“Your father is wrong. How are you going to learn how to read and write or receive formal education if you don’t go to school? You can’t get away with being a bimbo who has empty brains, no matter how pretty you may be,” Jin Qingyue retorted, infuriated by the twisted ideology Shi Shaochuan had instilled within their daughter.

“Mommy, why don’t you want to marry Daddy again? Are you thinking of finding another man?”

“Even if I remain single for the rest of my life, I will never marry your Daddy again.” Jin Qingyue did not quite know how to explain some complicated matters to her young daughter since the latter would not understand them anyway.

Jin Bao’er hung her head low and remained quiet.

“Go eat with me,” said Jin Qingyue, dragging Jin Bao’er by her hand to the dining table.

Jin Yiheng was almost finished with his meal when he saw Jin Bao’er walking toward the dining table reluctantly. “Auntie, since Bao’er doesn’t wish to eat, just leave her be and let her starve,” said Jin Yiheng.

Jin Bao’er stared at him wide-eyed and scorned, “Are you trying to starve me to death?”

“You’re the one who doesn’t want to eat anyway. What else could happen other than starvation?”

“Who said I’m not eating? I’m going to eat a lot,” Jin Bao’er retorted, after which she picked up her chopsticks and began helping herself to some dumplings.

Just as Jin Qingyue heaved a sigh of relief, Jin Bao’er said, “Mommy, after I’m done eating, send me back to Daddy’s place.”

“What if I don’t?”

“Then I won’t like you anymore, Mommy.”

“…”

Jin Qingyue turned around and ignored her.

Jin Yiheng and Jin Bao’er were left alone at the dining table. Jin Yiheng wiped his mouth after finishing his food. Just as he was about to get down from his chair, Jin Bao’er yelled to stop him.

“Hey, stand right there.”

“What do you want?”

“Could you bring me to find my Daddy?”

“Your Mommy was the one who raised you and your Daddy has only taken care of you for a few days. Why are you so attached to him?” Jin Yiheng questioned.

“That’s none of your business.”

“Then don’t ask me to bring you out. It’s none of my business either,” Jin Yiheng sneered and left the dining table.

Jin Bao’er remained in her seat to finish her food, after which she stealthily went to the living room and dialed Shi Shaochuan’s number, which she had already memorized.

The call was picked up in no time.

“Daddy, it’s me.”

Surprised to hear that it was his daughter who called, Shi Shaochuan answered, “Bao’er, have you had your meal?”

“Yes. Daddy, bring me away. Not only did Mommy scold me, she even hit me too. I want to be together with you.”

Shi Shaochuan hit the roof upon hearing her words. “Your Mommy scolded and hit you?”

“Yes, she slapped my face several times.”

“Okay, Daddy will come now to bring you home. Wait for me.”

Jin Bao’er expressed assent and hung up the phone.

Jin Qingyue came out of her room to see that Jin Bao’er was sitting quietly on the couch. “Have you eaten?” she asked.

Jin Bao’er nodded.

Noticing that she seemed to have snapped out of her tantrum, Jin Qingyue said softly, “Bao’er, you’re Mommy’s little baby. I don’t want to marry your Daddy again because we don’t have feelings for each other anymore. There’s no way we can go back to being husband and wife. But we’re still your parents, and that’s a fact that will never be changed. My love for you will never change either. Do you understand?”

Jin Bao’er nodded again.

Jin Qingyue lifted her up and placed her onto her lap. “My Bao’er is five and a half years old now. You’re almost too heavy for Mommy to carry.”

They then sat there quietly for a while. Moments later, Jin Qingyue’s phone began to ring.

After taking a look at the caller display, she put her daughter down and went outside to answer the call.

“Hello.”

“Jin Qingyue, I’m right outside your gate. Bring Bao’er out.”

“Why should I do that?”

“Are you still fit to be a mother? Bao’er is still so young, yet you actually had the heart to hit and berate her. Are you even human?” Shi Shaochuan snapped in a tone of disdain.

“I didn’t do that. Who did you hear it from? Shi Shaochuan, I’ve yet to question you. What are you teaching our daughter? Why did you tell her that she doesn’t have to attend school as long as she’s pretty? Are your brains fried?”

“Hah… who did I hear it from? I heard it straight from the horse’s mouth when Bao’er called me just now. Cut the crap and bring her out. I’m right by the entrance,” Shi Shaochuan scorned.

“Keep waiting then.” Jin Qingyue hung up the phone and strode back inside quickly. She sat down beside the landline telephone in the living room and picked up the handset to see the previous dialed number, only to find that it indeed belonged to Shi Shaochuan.

At this very moment, she was utterly disappointed.

“You’re only five years old, yet you already know how to lie and frame your mother! You actually told your Daddy that I hit and scolded you? Since when did I do that?” Jin Qingyue hollered, staring at the daughter she gave birth to and raised single-handedly, tears welling up in her eyes.

“Who told you to forbid me from looking for Daddy?”

“You…” Jin Qingyue did not know what else to say and thus stood up and returned inside the guest room without uttering another word.

Jin Bao’er followed suit.

She stood by the door and craned her neck through the crack to take a peek. Realizing that she had upset her mother by lying to her, Jin Bao’er called out softly, “Mommy…”