Tonight, Madam Zhao’s birthday banquet was ruined. Everyone from the Zhao family was in a bad mood.
Zhao Mo had been sent to the hospital.
Zhao Yuan, Zhao Zhanhuai’s secretary and his manager had all rushed over.
When his parents found out that it was Young Master Fu who had been the one to inflict such damage on Zhao Mo, they immediately pulled a long face. It was impossible for them to win in court if the opponent was the Fu family. Thus, they had no choice but to settle it privately.
Aside from this, the two of them also found out something that was even more shocking.
Outside the compound of the police station.
Madam Zhao wrapped the windbreaker around herself. Her whole body was swaying. She could not wrap her head around nor understand what Zhao Zhanhuai had just said. “What do you mean Mingxi wants to sever all ties with our family?! Explain it to us. What in the world is going on?! Didn’t she just want to run away from home?! You even visited her several times in school! What are you saying right now?!”
Zhao Zhanhuai looked extremely tired. He rubbed the center of his forehead and said, “Actually, ever since she ran away from home, I have been unable to coax her to come back. I was just afraid that you guys would react like this when you find out, hence why I kept it a secret. But it seems like I can no longer hide this.”
Mr. Zhao’s complexion was pale. “What happened at home while I was away?! How could it end up like this?!”
“Can you not ask me about this?” Zhao Zhanhuai couldn’t explain himself. He almost lost control over his usually calm expression as well. “How would I know why things have developed to this point? Shouldn’t the both of you ask yourselves first if you have ever cared about Mingxi?”
Zhao Yuning squatted by the side. He felt similarly frustrated when he heard the three of them argue.
“She is just acting like a child. Now that she has caused such a ruckus and everyone came to see her, she has managed to attract everyone’s attention, so she should be happy.” Madam Zhao was certain. “Since you can’t get her to come home, I’ll do it myself!”
Zhao Zhanhuai frowned. He then made a gesture inviting her to go ahead.
Before Madam Zhao could take even three steps towards the police station, Zhao Mingxi walked out.
A few tall boys were following behind her. The one in the lead was the guy who hurt Zhao Mo to the point that he had to go to the hospital. His short red hair seemed especially cold at night. He appeared arrogant and bossy, the corner of his lips covered with a band aid.
When her parents saw this, a flame was ignited in their hearts.
However, due to the other’s status, they could only control and suppress their rage.
Mingxi took a glance at the people outside the compound. Then, she turned to Fu Yangxi and said, “Please wait for me for a moment. There are matters which I must settle.”
Ke Chengwen said with a tone of worry, “Zhao Mingxi, you can’t really be trying to cut off all ties with your family—”
Even after she does so, she is still a student. Where can she go? Besides, her family members were merely being biased.
Ke Chengwen felt that she didn’t need to go to this extent.
But before he could finish, he was cut off.
“Stop right there,” Fu Yangxi said. “Don’t try to give such ambiguous advice. As the saying goes, only those who drank the water would know its temperature. If a stranger tries to butt in, they will only appear even more annoying. Zhao Mingxi, don’t listen to what other people have to say, including me. Make your own choice. So long as you have thought it through, any decision is a good decision.”
Mingxi looked at Fu Yangxi and gave him a firm nod.
“Do you need help?” Fu Yangxi pointed at the lawyer behind him.
Mingxi shook her head. “I want to deal with this myself.”
Fu Yangxi looked over Zhao Mingxi’s head. He scanned through that whole family with cold eyes. He didn’t feel comfortable about this, but he still understood that he had to give Little Mask some space for her to settle her own problems.
He thought for a while before taking her bag in his hands. Then, he reached out a hand and said, “Alright then. Your phone.”
Mingxi took out her phone from her pocket.
Fu Yangxi said again, “Thumbprint.”
Mingxi used her thumb to unlock the phone.
Fu Yangxi quickly opened her phone app and typed in his phone number.
After that, he stuffed the phone back in her hands and said with a surprisingly steady voice, “I’ve set your phone to always be unlocked. Later you’ll just have to press a number and once you give me a call, I’ll be there.”
Ke Chengwen said, “We’ll be there too.”
Mingxi nodded. Then, she turned and walked towards her family.
Although the night winds were cold, she could feel a strong and sturdy wall behind her.
When Mr. Zhao saw how Mingxi walked over with a cold expression along with eyes which were looking at them as if she was looking at a bunch of strangers who were trying to pick a bone with her, the veins on his forehead started to throb.
“Stop looking for me.” Mingxi spoke first. “Again and again. It’s really annoying.”
Before Madam Zhao could speak, she was taken aback, her mind going blank instantly.
Annoying? Mingxi said that they were annoying?
She suddenly realized that what Zhao Zhanhuai had been saying all long was the truth— Mingxi really did seem like she wanted to sever all ties with them.
Madam Zhao’s expression started to change. Her body was slightly trembling due to her disbelief. “Zhao Mingxi, what in the world are you saying? Since the matter of your classmates beating up your er ge was merely a misunderstanding, we won’t blame you for it. Come home with us right now! Did you know that you haven’t been home for a month now? Come home and we’ll talk things through!”
“Do you still not understand what I’m saying?” Mingxi said coldly. She tried her best to make herself even clearer so that everyone in this family can understand her in one go. “Severing all ties. In simpler terms, it means that you guys no longer have to raise me. And when you guys are old, I do not have any responsibility to take care of you as well. In legal terms, it means that we no longer owe anything to each other.”
Madam Zhao: “...”
Mingxi took out a card and tossed it to Zhao Zhanhuai.
Zhao Yuning, who was at a corner, stood up immediately.
Zhao Yuning said, “Jie—”
“Don’t call me jie.” Mingxi directly cut him off.
Zhao Yuning choked up.
Zhao Zhanhuai looked pale as he took the card, “This is—”
Mingxi said, “This is a sum of money I borrowed from He Yang. 13,000 yuan as a repayment for all the money the Zhao family has spent on me for the past two years. I can slowly return He Yang her money, but I don’t want to owe anything to you guys. As for what you guys owe, I’m too lazy to ask for it.”
Mingxi paused to think a little before continuing, “Oh, there are still a couple of things that I want returned to me. My photos. Please delete them from your phones, or even cut them out. Don’t use my photos for illegal transactions. I only have around 10 days before I become an adult, so I will have the right to ask for my things. Please delete all my photos and messages.”
“As for your photos, I’ve deleted them a long time ago.”
There was a moment when Madam Zhao almost couldn’t breathe. She panted and held her chest as she said, “Today is your mother’s birthday. Do you have to throw such a tantrum on my birthday?!!”
Mr. Zhao looked at Mingxi in disbelief. He couldn’t help but to scold Zhao Zhanhuai and Zhao Yuning, “What in the world happened when I was not around?!”
Zhao Zhanhuai’s heart was aching in pain. He had a feeling that if they fail to coax Mingxi home today, they will really have nothing to do with her in the future. He couldn't help but to add on, “Mingxi, at least for today, you shouldn’t throw such a tantrum on mother’s birthday—”
“I’m not throwing a tantrum.”
Why did they all think that she was merely throwing a tantrum? Were they so certain that she could not leave their family? Or were they sure that she would definitely want to suck up to them?
Mingxi inhaled deeply and said, “I was wrong from the beginning. I shouldn’t have placed hopes on my birth parents, shouldn’t have looked forward to a new life in this place with all of you, shouldn’t have tried to covet things that did not belong to me. Now that I’ve moved out, there will no longer be anyone who would make you decide uncomfortably between me and Zhao Yuan nor would there be anyone bothering you anymore.”
“Please just take this as your last time carrying out your duties as a family. The last time to treat me better. Let me go. Stop bothering me. All right?”
The air became eerily quiet for a moment.
The sound of the wind seemed to carry a hint of wailing.
Their parents were originally angry when Mingxi first came out of the police station, but at this moment, their minds were completely empty.
They spent a long time searching for their biological daughter. After they found her and brought her home, they thought that they would finally be able to fill up the gap of regret in their hearts.
Who would’ve thought that she would want to sever all ties with them.
Sever all ties.
Even the mere mention of these words, be it true or false, was like a knife slicing again and again at a person’s organs.
Madam Zhao’s heart was as if it was wrapped by a huge pair of hands and it was squeezing so hard that it hurt. She never would have thought that there would be such a moment today.
The moments that she had spent with Mingxi suddenly swept across her mind— When she tried on clothes, Mingxi was always patiently waiting and said that she looked good. Mingxi was the most patient one out of everyone in this family; when her shoulders were aching Mingxi would take the initiative to massage them; when she complained about the absence of her husband, Mingxi would give her ideas...
And at this moment, these little instances had all combined to result in Mingxi’s cold gaze.
How did it end up like this?
Madam Zhao scrunched up the front of her dress, speechless. She could only stand there stiffly as if she had lost her voice.
Mr. Zhao’s head was buzzing as well. He got caught up in so many things after his return so it was natural that he could not react in time. He could only subconsciously walk towards Zhao Mingxi, trying to bring her home.
However, when Mingxi saw what he was doing, she took a step back.
Her act of taking a step back hurt them immensely.
It means— Don’t come near me.
Two years ago, she was still a girl who was trying her best to run towards them, but now she was retreating as if she merely thought of them as strangers.
Both the hearts and minds of Zhao Zhanhuai and Zhao Yuning were aching.
Right now, they have already run out of things to say.
Mingxi was no longer paying attention to them.
After 10 seconds, Mingxi called the number in her phone.
Moments later, a never seen before silver colored cross country motorcycle drove over. A few cars were following behind it.
In the midst of roaring engines, Fu Yangxi took off his helmet. His features were sharp and handsome; his red hair arrogant.
He bent down and placed the cold helmet on Mingxi’s head.
When Mingxi saw him, she felt relieved.
I’ve finally severed all ties with them.
The huge rock on her shoulders had finally fallen to the ground. Maybe she should have done this earlier. She was merely blinded in her past life.
However, when her back was facing the Zhao family, her eyes still went red.
Mingxi stubbornly refused to admit that it was due to her own weakness. She was only willing to admit that she felt dejected due to having wasted eight whole years on them.
She muttered to Fu Yangxi, “Thanks.”
Fu Yangxi buckled the clasp around her chin. Then, with a flick of his finger, he wiped away the small tears at the corner of Zhao Mingxi’s eyes.
“Are you that happy to leave that hellish place?” Fu Yangxi raised his head and frowned at the direction of the Zhao family. “Hop on. We’re leaving.”
Since they don’t want Little Mask, Little Mask will be his.
On this windy night, the hearts of the Zhao family members were as heavy as rocks. They watched as that motorcycle drove through the wind. They went along with the neon lights, across the bridge and finally drove across the river.
Zhao Mingxi’s dark hair was blown with the wind as she went farther and farther away from them.
Not once did Zhao Mingxi turn back.
ray's note: finally, the long awaited scene! i was so excited to read this. let me know how you guys feel about this chapter in the comments~