In reality, all four brothers had genuinely taken her in as a little sister. The people of the Cao Family protected and valued the importance of ‘family’ more than outsiders would expect. Although her surname wasn’t Cao, she had lived with them since she was fifteen. They thought of her as more than half Cao at this point.
That was why none of them had any designs on her at all, and it was the same both ways.
Because of this, she had never been conscious about their sexes when speaking to the brothers.
She believed their relationships were as close as siblings, minus only the blood relation.
Hu Xuan wanted to vomit blood. Translated by The Novelst
“You! Y-You, you, you!” He was so angry that he used his finger to poke Xia Rou’s forehead.
That poke hurt so much she had to take a deep breath and remove his finger. “What! Speak properly!”
“You’re driving me crazy! Why can’t you just believe me?” Hu Xuan felt pain for his liver. “Xia Rou, I’m warning you – ever since I was young I was taught by my grandfather that the first rule to follow is to be wise and play safe.”
“If I wasn’t doing this for you, why would I dare say these things out loud? If Cao Yang hears about this he’d probably kick me to death with just two kicks! If this isn’t for you, do you think I would carelessly say these kinds of things to others?”
“Aiyo, my god, I’m so pissed my heart is aching!” Young master Hu began to clutch at his chest and scream in pain.
Hu Xuan was a bad kid.
Xia Rou knew this very clearly.
But strangely, at that moment, she felt that… Hu Xuan was really worried for her.
Just as he had said, these kinds of words would definitely offend Cao Yang. He was smart enough that he probably wouldn’t have said it aloud.
She couldn’t define what she was feeling inside.
“I didn’t say I didn’t believe you. Hu Xuan…” At the end, she put both her hands into her pockets and looked him in the eye. “Thank you.”
Hu Xuan finally felt the pressure on his heart ease up, before he heard Xia Rou continue, “But you don’t have to worry. Those things that you’re thinking of definitely will not happen.”
Hu Xuan: “…”
Just let me spit out all my blood and die!
Xia Rou, of course, was certain that the things Hu Xuan worried about would not come to pass. But the things that he was telling her about, she didn’t just listen with one ear and let it out the other.
She actually put those words to heart.
She knew that Cao Yang and the others wouldn’t look at her as a woman, but… what about others? People like Wang Man?
She couldn’t help but recall the cold gaze that her sister-in-law had leveled on her in the past.
If she was to look from Wang Man’s perspective, how would it seem?
Then she began to think about the past chit-chat with her colleagues at work, when everyone was discussing men.
“I can’t stand it! I definitely will never stand for it. I won’t allow my boyfriend or husband to have a soulmate or childhood friend around!” Some girl had spoken loudly and obtained the group’s agreement.
At that time she had also nodded along, since she hadn’t seen herself in that situation.
But if she were to place herself in that situation… what was she?
From Wang Man’s perspective, she was someone that lived in his house. What was worse that she troubled her husband from time to time, making him worry after her and clean up any messes she got herself into.
If she was his real little sister, or even his little cousin, then it would still be alright.
Of all the situations… Just as Hu Xuan had said, she was someone that had no blood relation at all with Cao Yang… A beautiful woman.
Just thinking of it, she felt awful for Wang Man.
How would Wang Man have felt during all that time?
She was such an arrogant person, how would she have been able to stand it?
Xia Rou tossed and turned all night, unable to fall asleep.
Her mind kept going over and over it.
What if Wang Man was unable to stand it any longer, what would she do?
“If it was me, I would definitely chase that soulmate or childhood friend off!” That would be her colleague’s response.
That was right. Everyone present had agreed that the soulmate, the unlikeable existence, must be eliminated!
Then would Wang Man request that her big brother keep a distance from her? Or would she make her leave the Cao Family?
And if she really asked that of him, then big brother, he…
Xia Rou was in pain just thinking about it. There were no ‘ifs.’ Even if Wang Man had asked him that, big brother would never have promised her!
Because in the end, the result was that big brother had divorced her. He didn’t push Xia Rou away, nor did he stop caring for her!
So in the end, the reason that big brother and Wang Man’s marriage didn’t work out was because… of her?
Xia Rou felt like she was choking on the realization.
Cao Yang and Wang Man – they were the perfect couple.
They excelled at life, had the same confidence and arrogance.
They attracted each other and chose the other to be their lifelong companion – this was entirely reasonable!
Looking at the entire city, she couldn’t see anyone else as perfect a fit as them.
Cao Yang and Wang Man should have lived a life that others envied.
In the end they had parted ways, like the shrike and the shallow flying in different directions!
Was it her fault?
It was she who had clung to Cao Yang.
It was she who had obstructed Wang Man.
Before, she had looked down on Cheng Wan.
But it wasn’t that Cheng Wan was unable to obtain the title of being Cao Xiong’s wife. The reality was that she had never intruded on a marriage.
At the time she had met Cao Xiong, he had been a widow for seven or eight years then.
But what about Xia Rou?
What did she look like, back then?
She was living in someone else’s home, relying on someone else’s husband.
She was at ease back then, thinking it all natural.
Even after she had moved out of that house, she’d felt aggrieved inside.
She felt that Wang Man was being unfair to her. That she had taken advantage of her good family background, excellent education, and looked down on her.
But that wasn’t the case!
She hadn’t… Translated by The Novelst
It had been a long time…
Two years had passed since Xia Rou’s rebirth, and she had never felt like this…
The cuts of pain digging into her as she relived her past…
Proofread by: Hannah