Chapter 7: Substitution (4)
Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
Another day passed, and the police were still unable to find Qiao Jiuyin’s whereabouts. Fang Mu’s men also found nothing.
Without any news of Qiao Jiusheng, Qiao Jiuyin felt uneasy. She could not sleep the entire night. Fang Mu could not stand it anymore, so he got the doctor to prescribe some sleeping pills. He secretly mixed the pills in the water that Qiao Jiuyin drank. After Qiao Jiuyin drank the water, she fell into a deep sleep.
At two o’clock in the afternoon, Qiao Jiuyin groggily woke up. The moment she opened her eyes, she saw Fang Mu’s handsome face. Unlike the arrogance it usually had, Fang Mu’s handsome face was abnormally quiet.
Qiao Jiuyin stared at his face for a long time before uneasily asking, “Brother Mu, is there any news of my sister?”
When he heard the word sister, Fang Mu’s eyes flashed with heartache and uneasiness.
“Xiao Sheng.” Fang Mu’s voice became less cold and exceptionally gentle.
His tone made Qiao Jiuyin’s face turn even paler. “Is it my sister…”
“Your sister is dead,” Fang Mu bluntly said. “Her body was found fifteen kilometers away, by the grassy bank. When the police found her—” Fang Mu suddenly shut his mouth. He could not bear to tell ‘Qiao Jiusheng’ that when the police found ‘Qiao Jiuyin,’ ‘Qiao Jiuyin’s’ body had been in a miserable condition. The river had swept her body too far away, and the repeated collisions along the way had completely destroyed her face.
Qiao Jiuyin was stunned.
Disbelief and grief instantly took over her beautiful face. However, at the next moment, Qiao Jiuyin came back to her senses and roared at Fang Mu as if she had gone mad. “You’re lying! You’re lying to me, right? My sister is still alive and well!”
Fang Mu did not even frown when her fists hit his chest. He sat upright and let Qiao Jiuyin vent her anger on him, being very tolerant.
After Qiao Jiuyin had vented enough, she weakly collapsed on his chest. “Brother Mu…” she called out and started to whimper.
Her crying voice was filled with grief and despair. Fang Mu’s heart ached when he heard it.
He hugged Qiao Jiuyin, caressed her back, and comforted her. “Don’t cry! I’m here with you.” A man of few words was not good at saying sweet nothings. Fang Mu only said a few words to comfort his lover, but it was enough to warm Qiao Jiuyin’s heart.
All the crying had exhausted Qiao Jiuyin, so she lay on the bed in a daze. She silently and motionlessly looked up at the ceiling. If not for the slight rise and fall of her chest, Fang Mu would have thought that she was dead.
Dead! The word made Fang Mu’s heart flutter.
He suddenly held Qiao Jiuyin’s hand and said, “Xiao Sheng, don’t be like this. I’ll accompany you in the future.”
Qiao Jiuyin’s gray eyes lit up.
In the blink of an eye, half a month passed.
Due to the death of her ‘elder sister,’ everyone realized that Second Miss Qiao had become very haggard and depressed. She had lost a lot of weight.
Qiao Jiusheng and Qiao Jiuyin lived in the same villa. Now that ‘Qiao Jiuyin’ was dead, Fang Mu worried that ‘Qiao Jiusheng’ would feel lonely and miss her sister if she lived alone. Therefore, he brought her to his own courtyard. Every day, he asked the chefs to make exquisite and delicious food to take care of her, but Qiao Jiuyin was getting weaker and weaker by the day.
This matter troubled Fang Mu very much. Since he had to go to work during the day, he did not have time to accompany her. So, he asked ‘Qiao Jiusheng’s’ friends to accompany her. ‘Qiao Jiusheng’ was cheerful and had many friends, so she was not lonely. However, at night, the servants in the courtyard often saw Second Miss Qiao crying.
Everyone thought that Qiao Jiuyin was losing weight because of the death of her sister, but the truth was shockingly different.
That night, Qiao Jiuyin sat alone on the swinging chair in the backyard of the courtyard. She looked up at the sky, her eyes filled with worry. Qiao Jiusheng’s whereabouts were still unknown; she was nowhere to be found, dead or alive. This made Qiao Jiuyin very uneasy. She could not figure out why and how Xiao Sheng would suddenly disappear from the hospital.
Did she leave the hospital by herself or did someone take her away?
If she left on her own, what was her motive?
Did she see through my plan?
Qiao Jiuyin felt uneasy at the thought of this possibility.
She had indeed orchestrated the car accident half a month ago. It showed her smartness and courage. She was sure that no one would suspect that the car accident was not so simple when it had implicated both her and Xiao Sheng.
The reason she hatched this plan was to remove Qiao Jiusheng from Fang Mu’s side. Qiao Jiuyin’s original plan was to use the disfigured female corpse to replace Qiao Jiusheng, then imprison the real Qiao Jiusheng. She did not really want Qiao Jiusheng to die, but she would not let her regain her freedom either.
Once Qiao Jiusheng ‘died,’ Qiao Jiuyin would have enough reasons to get close to Fang Mu. She believed that love would grow between them over time. On top of that, she looked exactly the same as Qiao Jiusheng. If she stayed by Fang Mu’s side for a long time, Fang Mu would definitely love her.
However, on the day of the incident, when she saw Fang Mu rushing over toward her, a vicious thought had suddenly come to her mind. She was going to imprison Qiao Jiusheng and hold her captive for the rest of her life. And she looked the same as Qiao Jiusheng. Therefore, she could totally replace Qiao Jiusheng’s identity and live on as her. As long as she played the role of ‘Qiao Jiusheng’ well, Fang Mu would be hers.
The idea was risky and bold.
In fact, even after half a month, Fang Mu had not discovered the truth that she was not Qiao Jiusheng.
Everything was perfect.
However, there was one thing that happened out of Qiao Jiuyin’s expectations. The seriously injured and unconscious Qiao Jiusheng had suddenly disappeared from the hospital!
The missing Qiao Jiusheng had become an invisible time bomb in Qiao Jiuyin’s heart. Once the real Qiao Jiusheng appeared, all the good things that now belonged to Qiao Jiuyin would disappear! Her family and friends would hate her, and the law would not let her off. As for Fang Mu, she did not dare to think too deeply about it.
Clenching her fists, Qiao Jiuyin made up her mind to find Qiao Jiusheng first and make her disappear.
After Fang Mu got off work, he rushed home without having dinner. He let his butler take his briefcase and asked, “How is Xiao Sheng today?”
The butler replied, “It’s fine when she has friends to accompany her during the day, but at night—” Before the butler could finish his sentence, Fang Mu saw Qiao Jiuyin in the backyard. She was dressed in a grayish pink deer antler jacket and black tight pants. Her skinny figure made Fang Mu’s heart ache.
Qiao Jiuyin’s legs were propped up on the rocking chair. Her arms were wrapped around her knees, and her head was resting on them. Her long curly hair covered her face. Fang Mu could only see her perfect and beautiful side profile. He stood up, looked at Qiao Jiuyin for a while, then called out, “Xiao Sheng.”
Qiao Jiuyin quickly looked up with eyes full of sadness.
Fang Mu sat down beside her and tightly held her slender left hand in his palm.
Qiao Jiuyin took the opportunity to lean her head on Fang Mu’s shoulder. Fang Mu did not speak, but he sat upright, afraid that a single action would make Qiao Jiuyin uncomfortable. Silence spread between the two of them. As a gust of evening wind blew past them, along with the sound of the wind, Fang Mu’s voice traveled into Qiao Jiuyin’s ears. “Don’t hold it in. You must say it.” After a pause, he said, “I’m not anyone else.”
Qiao Jiuyin fell silent, and her eyes gradually turned red.
Holding back the tears that were about to flow out of her eyes, Qiao Jiuyin tirelessly said, “For more than twenty years, my sister and I have lived together. We look the same and like the same things. We have the most intimate relationship in this world.”
Fang Mu quietly listened without interrupting her.
“We once agreed that we would live together for the rest of our lives. Even if we grow up and have children in the future, we would still live together in a house.” As she said that, two streams of tears flowed down Qiao Jiuyin’s face. Fang Mu used his not-so-smooth thumb to gently wipe away the tears from her face.
The two sisters had agreed to live together for the rest of their lives.
At this moment, the tears on Qiao Jiuyin’s face were not just crocodile tears. She also had feelings for Qiao Jiusheng, but these feelings could not match her determination to get Fang Mu. Fang Mu only noticed that her tears were gone, but he did not notice the flash of guilt in those eyes.
Qiao Jiuyin sniffed and said, “Brother Mu, I miss her so much.” Her tense emotions collapsed instantly. Qiao Jiuyin, who had been holding on for many days, could no longer control her emotions. She hid in Fang Mu’s arms and cried her heart out.