In love, never say never chapter 1001
I had almost forgotten about Ann. For a fleeting moment, I looked at Amy, didn’t know how to answer her. After a moment’s silence, I said, “Amy, maybe Ann didn’t come to the city. She’s married.”
“No. Ann said she wouldn’t marry that idiot. So, she will definitely make an effort to escape. Ms. Stovall, will you help me to find Ann?”
Amy sounded very insistent on finding Ann. It seemed like she was sure that the latter would escape from her husband.
Unwilling to strike Amy with the truths, I nodded in response and replied, “Of course. I will get someone to look for her. And, I will bring her here if I find her.”
Amy nodded when she heard my words. “Yay! I don’t need to worry that Ann will get lost when she comes to the city anymore,” said Amy as though she had gotten a load off her mind.
She was so sensible that it made me feel sorry for her. Holding her in my arms, I said, “Amy, we have to go to your hometown to visit your parents. Can you go with me?”
At that, she looked at me with her eyes wide opened and queried, “Ms. Stovall, are you trying to send me back? Am I not good enough?”
I shook my head. “No. You are not registered as a citizen yet. So, I want to bring you back and ask your parents to help in this matter. After you’ve registered as a citizen, you can have the surgery legally.”
Upon hearing that, Amy nodded with a clueless face. The way she looked at me told me that she couldn’t understand much of what I had said. At that, I smiled at her while thinking about Hailey.
The next day.
I had told Cameron that I wanted to drive myself to Amy’s house, which was located in the countryside, beforehand, and she was worried after knowing that. In the morning, just as I stepped out of my house, I saw Boris standing beside the car in the yard.
He was an old man, but his appearance was well-maintained, so he looked middle-aged. When he saw me, he flashed me a faint smile and said, “Mr. Moore was worried about you. He wanted me to bring you there.”
I shrugged. “I should have known this.”
Without giving more thought to it, I got into his car with Amy. When he realized I brought many clothes and shoes, he frowned and queried, “Will we be gone long?”
I shook my head. “No. These are the clothes that Ashton bought for me every season. I rarely wear them. When the season changes, he will ask his men to send them to the recycling centres. So, I am thinking of giving them to Amy’s mother so that the clothes won’t go to waste.”
Then, he started up the car and said, “You’re so attentive, but that woman doesn’t deserve it.”
Upon hearing that, I frowned slightly and asked with a tone of disapproval, “Do you think that she is by no means a good person because she is cruel to her daughter?”
He nodded as he took a peek at Amy and replied, “She treats her children so badly. She is not fit to be a mother.”
Sighing slightly, I said, “When I was a kid, I lived in an alley in R Province with my Grandma. In the alley, there was a family of four. The man of the house was very hardworking. At that time, people in R Province relied on farming to make a living. Every day, the man left early for work and returned home late. Maybe because he had overstrained himself and his body became weak, one day, he fainted at the lake that supplied water for farming. That lake was not very deep, but he drowned. After his death, his wife left with their son, leaving their daughter at R Province. Back then, I didn’t understand why that woman did this. The little girl was more thoughtful than the little boy, but why didn’t that woman bring the former along? After that, the little girl lived with her grandmother. Her grandmother was a harsh person. She always beat and scolded the girl and starve her. I had seen her crying under the bridge a few times. My Grandma always asked me to bring her some food. But, that was not a good idea because sometimes, she would still have nothing to eat.
“One day, she borrowed some money from me. I gave her all the money that I had, just the two coins. I thought she wanted to buy something that she really wanted. But, never would I have expected that she had bought pesticide with it. She brought the pesticide to her father’s grave, drank it, and lay in front of the grave. I remember that she said this to me back then, ‘Some people are born without a choice. Everyone wants to show their best side to others, but to some people, life itself is a struggle. They can’t even make the effort to put on a show.’“
Hearing that, Boris remained silent. However, after we got on the highway, he suddenly spoke up, “Your parents didn’t stay by your side these years. Did you hate or blame them before?”
I was shocked when I heard his question because I was under the impression that he wasn’t a person who liked to ask about people’s internal affairs.
Then, I smiled faintly and replied, “It’s impossible that I don’t hate them at all. But more than the hatred is gratitude. I’m grateful that I was raised by Grandma, and I’m glad that I can marry Ashton. Although our lives are not the best, I am willing to strive hard to live. For these reasons, I should thank them for giving birth to me. Humans are no saints. I think they abandoned me for a reason. Maybe they faced some difficulties back then. So, I don’t blame them anymore.”
In love, never say never chapter 1002
Staring at me, he said with remorse, “I am responsible for the incident that happened back then. I shouldn’t keep it from Mr. Moore. If he learned of your existence, maybe he would bring you back to the Moore family.”
To me, that was all in the past now. Hence, I let out a faint smile and replied, “Boris, there is no such thing as ‘if’ in this world.”
Smiling, he took a quick glance at Amy, who was sleeping on my legs, and said, “This child will have a different life after encountering you.”
I shrugged in response and remained silent. It was too early to jump to conclusions now. No one could tell if this was a good or bad thing.
After about eight hours, we arrived at the village. At that time, all of us were exhausted. Although we departed early in the morning, it was late when we reached the destination.
The cold spell hit the village in December, causing a drastic dip in the temperature. Just as I got out of the car, I shivered because the cold wind blew toward me. After a while, Amy woke up and opened her eyes slowly. Looking at the environment that she was familiar with, she said, “Ms. Stovall, we’ve arrived.”
I gave her a nod and grabbed hold of her as we walked toward her house with the bags. Her house was not too far from our car, but the road was not easy to walk. Luckily, there was no rain recently. The soil was dry and hard, so it wasn’t that bad.
By the time we reached Ronald’s house, the sky was already dark. Hence, I couldn’t find the entrance. Looking at the dark house, I was a little worried. It’s already nine! Why there’s no one here? Where did they go?
Luckily, Amy was familiar with this place. She stood outside the door and called out to her parents. Not long after, someone opened the door slightly. A meek voice was heard coming from the inside, “Amy, is that you?”
After a short pause, Amy replied happily, “Ava, it’s me! Ms. Stovall brings me back.” At that, she rushed into the house happily.
There was no light in the house. Hence, Boris turned on the torchlight. When he saw a seven-year-old child, he furrowed his brows unwittingly and queried, “Where are your parents?”
Ava held onto Amy’s hand and replied, “They work at the farm and haven’t come back yet.”
At that time, the light from the torch lit up in the house, and I could see a pot of vegetable stew on the cement floor. The dish looked like it had turned cold. Besides, the fire in the coal stove that provided heat to the house was almost extinguished.
I turned to look at Ava, who was trembling from the coldness, and asked, “It’s so cold, and you’re only wearing so little? Why don’t you burn more coal?”
She tugged on Amy’s arms and touched the latter’s clothes in envy as she replied, “Mom told me not to waste the coal when they are not home. I just need to cover myself with the blanket to keep warm. I will start the fire after they come home.”
Hearing that, I was overwhelmed by an inexplicable feeling. I think that doesn’t seem appropriate, but I did not say anything else. Then, I asked Boris to take all the food from the car and bring her a heavy jacket. After putting on the jacket for a while, she took off the jacket and kept it.
I was confounded. “Why don’t you wear it? The weather is cold. You’ll catch a cold if you don’t wear a few more layers.”
She shook her head and answered, “I want to save it for Christmas. If I have new clothes for Christmas, no one will make fun of me anymore this year.”
At that, Boris stood up and passed her the jacket again, and said in a serious manner, “Just keep it on. Ms. Stovall will give you some new clothes too for Christmas.”
Upon hearing that, Ava was excited and put on the jacket as instructed.
About half an hour later, a sound came from outside. Ronald and his wife came back from work. Seeing that, Ava started the fire to heat the dishes up while Amy helped the former to add the firewood.
On the other hand, Boris and I walked out of the house. At the sight of us, Ronald was stunned before he could react. After that, he wore a wide grin and nervous expression on his face and queried, “Ms. Stovall, what makes you come here? Did Amy cause trouble to you? Don’t worry. Everything can still be discussed!”
I frowned at what he said. It seemed that to them, the children were always wrong. Looking at him, I said, “Don’t think too much. Amy didn’t cause any trouble to me. We are here to discuss something with you.”
Ronald’s wife listened to our conversation as she unloaded the dried grass and radish from the car. The children were helping her too.
Upon hearing my words, she heaved a sigh of relief.
As night had fallen, I didn’t tell him the purpose of my visit until the next morning.
The next day, Ronald’s wife got up very early.
She brought a huge basket and left the house with her children, saying that she wanted to collect radish at the nearby field.
Ronald knew I had something to discuss with him. So he woke up early too. I said bluntly to him, “It’s like this. I knew you haven’t register Amy as a citizen. So, I want you to get citizenship for her, and we will pay for the fee. This will definitely bring benefits to you and Amy in the future.”
In love, never say never chapter 1003
He was stunned. “Why did you insist on registering Amy as a citizen? Are you planning to use this to threaten me in the future? All the while, the kids who leave our village had bever been registered, but their families got paid. I heard if I were to register my child and got forced to sign some agreement, I won’t get a cent even if you harm my child! I’m not a fool!” he declared.
I was speechless at how ridiculous his conclusion was. Frowning, I told him in all seriousness, “Don’t you worry. I will pay you what you deserve. I want you to register Amy as a citizen for her own future. She’s your daughter. You won’t want her to stay in the mountains forever, right? Without a proper status, she wouldn’t be able to survive out there.”
Ronald remained unfazed. “No worries. She will marry someone from the neighboring village. Why would she need to go out there? This is her life, her fate. I won’t register her as a citizen. If you disagree, just send her back to us.”
I couldn’t understand what was going on in his mind. After a brief hesitation, I offered, “If you agree to register Amy’s birth, I’ll pay you an extra fifty thousand. Your son is in high school, right? I believe you want him to succeed in the future. If he is capable enough, I can offer him a job so he can make your family proud. How does that sound?”
Clearly, my offer caught his attention. He paused before answering. “No. The girls are going to earn money for me. Well…”
“Damn it! I’ll teach her a lesson the minute I find her!” someone was cursing outside. Soon, Ronald’s wife hurried in frantically. “Frit’s family are saying that Ann killed him after a few days! She’s missing now. The Wolfsens are coming to our family to demand an explanation!”
Ronald stood up in shock. “Killed him? Who’s dead?”
“Who else? Her mentally retarded husband! Hurry, shut the door. They are coming to kick a fuss up!” Ronald’s wife locked the door to their house hastily.
Worry spread across Ronald’s face. As he sweated profusely, he muttered, “What should we do? She killed him, so they won’t forgive us. We’ve already spent the money. What should we do?”
Seeing how anxious her husband was, tears rolled down the woman’s cheeks. “Damn you, Ann Weeder! You’re nothing but trouble!”
That piece of news took me by surprise. I thought Ann would give in instead of killing her husband and escaping from that household. Looks like I’ve underestimated her determination.
As a commotion sounded outside, the villagers gathered around Ronald’s house brandishing weapons such as sticks and knives. They yelled, “Ronald Weeder, your daughter killed my son! Come out now! I want my son back! If you don’t come out, I’ll burn your house down!”
The deceased’s parents and the rest started hurling curses at Ronald. As they criticized Ronald’s doings, I pieced together bits and pieces of accusations I had overheard.
The deceased’s name was Fritz Wolfsen. He was born with an intellectual disability, so he had a low IQ as an adult. As he was in his thirties without a wife, his parents collected and borrowed around one hundred thousand to buy him a wife from the neighboring village—Ann Weeder. The reason they were willing to spend that much on her was so she could give birth to Fritz’s offspring, but to their dismay, she kicked up a fuss and even accidentally killed Fritz. Immediately, they hurried to Ann’s family to demand an explanation.
Ronald was scared out of his wits. He sat in the chair and bit his filthy fingernails nervously.
Meanwhile, his wife urged, “What should we do? Huh? We’ve spent all the money they gave us, so there’s no way we can pay them back now. That b*tch just spells trouble!”
Ronald had spent a few hundred thousand so his son could go to school in the city.
No wonder he rejected my fifty thousand earlier as it was too little for him. Initially, I wondered why he was so frugal after selling his daughter. It was because he had spent all the money on his son.
I didn’t see his son even though I had been here twice. Clearly, he had sent his son away before I even got here. I could understand why, though. Every parent wished only the best for their children. They hoped their children would lead a different life from theirs.
In love, never say never chapter 1004
As the yells grew increasingly impatient outside, Ronald trembled in fear while holding his hands together.
“What should we do? Are they really going to burn our house down?” his wife inquired uneasily.
Ronald was at a loss now. His gaze landed on me as he implored, “Ms. Stovall, please help us!”
I pursed my lips instead of replying at once. Seeing how jumpy he was, I parted my lips and spoke. “I can help you with one condition. Register your kids as citizens of the country. If you agree, I can pay the money at once.”
Upon hearing my words, he hesitated. His terrified wife took my arm anxiously, but Boris pried her hand off and furrowed his brows. She staggered back in fear before pleading, “Please, Ms. Stovall. You’re our only hope. We have no other choices. Please help us!”
Boris’s lips thinned as he shot them a warning glare. “I believe Ms. Stovall has made herself clear. Nothing is free in this world.”
Ronald pondered for a while before saying, “Ms. Stovall, we’re from different worlds. You might think I’m exploiting my children and destroying their future, but this is their fate for they are born here. No one can change that fact. I can register Amy as a citizen, no problem. But I won’t agree to register my other kids’ birth. You need to give me your word that you’ll pay me in full for Amy after I registered her birth. After that, you can do anything you want. I won’t ask questions.”
I frowned upon hearing Ronald’s answer. Suddenly, it occurred to me that he wasn’t as stupid as I thought he was. He seemed like a foolish but greedy man, but actually, he had his own plans. He was playing the innocent card. If it got leaked out, he would be portrayed as a farmer who got tricked by a businessperson. Everyone would pity him.
Ah, I shouldn’t have underestimated him. I flashed a slight smile. “Why are you so confident that I would agree to your condition?”
After calming down, he explained, “Rich people like you don’t like trouble, so you will agree. A few hundred thousand is nothing for you. People like you are willing to spend money to solve the matter. Even if you refuse to pay, never mind. Mr. Dumphy doesn’t know about you coming here to ask me to register Amy’s birth, right? If I inform him about your arrival, your daughter’s operation might be delayed further. I believe you know it better than I do.”
I chuckled. He’s right. I shouldn’t have thought he was a fool. Shrugging, I replied, “Well, looks like you have the perfect plan.”
He stared at me. “Ms. Stovall, that’s all I have to say. We know what we both want, so we should be honest with each other.”
Ronald was right. Alas, he didn’t know I hated being strung along. Immediately, I responded, “You’re wrong. Yes, Amy’s bone marrow is a match for my daughter, but she’s not the only choice I have. I can afford to wait for another suitable donor to come along. Your situation is different, though. Trouble is already knocking at your door. If you said nothing and accepted my offer, I wouldn’t have said anything. But since you mentioned it, I don’t feel like going along with your plan. I’m not the one in hot water, anyway.”
The people outside were trying to break in by now. The wooden door, which was originally flimsy, fell to the ground after a few burly men threw themselves against it. The villagers outside promptly rushed in with their weapons.
Ronald’s wife almost fell to her knees as she pleaded, “Ms. Stovall, please save us. We have no other choice. If you agree to help us, we will agree to your condition. Please!”
I pursed my lips as I couldn’t help but sympathize with her. Boris stopped me and stood in front of me in a protective stance. “She can’t help you. Yes, we can afford the money, but your daughter had murdered someone. It’s useless to ask for her help.”
Realization dawned on me when I heard what Boris said. Ann had killed someone, indeed. If it was something else, I could help them with the compensation. However, someone had died here.
Earlier, Ronald’s words caused me to focus on the money instead of the matter itself. Fritz’s death couldn’t be settled by offering compensation.
The Wolfsens wouldn’t give up easily as their son was dead.
I heaved a sigh of relief. If Boris hadn’t mentioned it, I would’ve forgotten about Fritz’s death.
In love, never say never chapter 1005
Ronald’s expression was grim. “Ms. Stovall, I agree to register my children’s birth. I will agree to any condition you state.”
With a frown, Boris replied before I could. “No need!”
As we were talking, the crowd scurried into the house. Boris pulled me aside and stood in front of me protectively. As the house was tiny, only a few men stormed in.
“Ronald Weeder, why are you hiding? Your daughter killed someone. Hand her to us before we take action!”
“Let’s not waste time. Find that b*tch now so she’ll pay for killing Fritz!” With that, the men started ransacking the house.
Soon, the house was in shambles. The farmers couldn’t find Ann, so they changed their target to Ronald instead. As Ronald’s house was too small, they brought him out.
Immediately, the crowd surrounded Ronald’s family and began abusing them verbally. Fritz’s mother would’ve given Ronald a beating if someone hadn’t stopped her.
The loud commotion caused the crowd to grow bigger and bigger. Some tried to persuade the Wolfsens to discuss instead of resorting to violence; some supported their decision to avenge their son’s death. It was utter chaos. Ronald and his family were slumped on the ground in dejection.
Life was never perfect, but this hurricane rendered me helpless. Ronald knew there was nothing else he could do to turn the situation around, so he said nothing and allowed the crowd to curse and hit him.
Suddenly, someone grabbed my arm. I looked down and realized it was Amy staring at me pitifully.
“Please, Ms. Stovall. Save my parents,” she begged.
I knitted my brows. “Amy, I can’t.”
Kindness was rare nowadays as most people had ulterior motives for doing something. I wasn’t far off. Hearing my answer, Boris sighed in relief and said, “You can’t interfere. Remember, you’re still pregnant. Don’t get yourself into trouble.”
I knew that well, hence I rejected her without hesitation.
After venting out their anger, the Wolfsens stopped beating the Weeders up. They sat down and demanded arrogantly, “A life for a life. Ronald Weeder, your daughter isn’t here, so you should pay us back. We don’t need the money back. In return, give me your second daughter.”
Ronald’s eyes widened as he roared, “Kurt Wolfsen, how dare you?”
Kurt scoffed. “Your daughter killed my son and escaped. I’m being nice cos I didn’t kill your entire family to avenge my son. Why would you think I don’t have the guts to do so?”
Ronald’s wife hurriedly implored, “Kurt, please spare us. You can have my daughters if you want. My husband will find Ann for you so you can avenge your son. Don’t hurt him, please.”
My brows furrowed up as I could neither understand nor accept the woman’s peace offering.
Kurt seemed pleased at her words. “Your second daughter is fourteen, right? My son’s dead, so she shall give birth to my children. Find that b*tch for me. Otherwise, I swear I’ll kill you, Ronald Weeder.”
With that, he stood up and gazed at the girl protecting her siblings. “You’re Alma, right? Your parents gave you to me. Come, follow me home and bear me a son.”
The girl, who was still a teenager, blanched as she shook her head profusely. She didn’t have a clue what was going on, but her instincts told her a more horrible fate would await her at the Wolfsen household.
Alas, Kurt ignored her wishes and dragged her away by the hair. Immediately, she bawled and cried for her parents to save her.
At the sight, my frown deepened. Clearly, they couldn’t be bothered about their children.
“Wait a minute!” It was Boris. He looked straight at Kurt and inquired, “How much did you pay them?”
Kurt Wolfsen was a plump and lecherous man in his forties. He eyed Boris suspiciously before answering, “One hundred thousand. What’s wrong? Did you take a liking to this girl, too?”
Boris’ lips pressed together in disgust. “I’ll pay the money. Release her!”
Suddenly, Kurt guffawed before his face contorted. “Oh, you’re trying to be the hero here. Mister, my son died. I want this girl so she can pass on my family name. Are you trying to take her away from me? If you took a liking to her, you can have her. But Ronald has other daughters. Do you think you can save them all?”