Everyone was relieved after the previous tense moment was proven to be a misunderstanding.
After knowing that the boy did not have any bad intentions, Gregory finally stepped aside.
Audrey handed him the lollipop again with a cheerful smile. “Thank you so much! Now you can eat the candy! This is my favorite candy! It’s really yummy!”
This time, the boy did not reject and took it at once.
Audrey’s smile widened as the boy held the lollipop in his hand.
At the same time, Ashton made a decision and announced, “Let all of them stay and give them financial aid under Madam’s name till they grow up.
Joseph replied in acknowledgement, “Noted.”
Ashton turned to look at Gregory and instructed, “Gregory, bring your sister over here.”
Upon hearing his words, Gregory held Audrey’s hand and led her back obediently.
When both of them were in front of Ashton, Gregory said respectfully, “Daddy, I’ve brought Audrey back.”
“Good,” Ashton nodded and turned to look at Audrey. “Next time, never ever approach any strangers without your Mommy and my permission. Can you promise me that?” Ashton asked sternly.
There was only the usual intimidating indifference on his cold, expressionless face.
Audrey could sense the displeasure in Ashton’s tone. Instead of refuting as usual, she nodded obediently and replied softly, “Alright, Daddy.”
“Let’s go home now,” Ashton said again.
Next, he turned to face us and prepared to leave, letting both Gregory and Audrey walk in front of him.
Gregory obeyed Ashton’s instructions as usual and stepped out at once, with Audrey trailing closely behind him.
After walking forward for two steps, Audrey came to a stop abruptly. She turned to look at the little boy and was reluctant to move forward.
Ashton followed her gaze and knew at once about what was playing in her mind. After pondering for a while, he lowered his head and asked her, “You want to bring him home as well?”
Pouting her lips, her forehead creased into a frown as she gazed at the boy with a look of sympathy. She gulped and said softly, “He’s so thin. If he continues to stay here, he will starve. Aunt Emma ever mentioned that the children in the orphanage are the most pitiful. I just feel like helping him…”
I could sense that she was being tactful with her words, especially her last sentence. She was more like mumbling at that time, apparently fear of infuriating Ashton.
John probably had taught her before that she was not supposed to be rude especially when she was on certain occasions. As a result, she did not dare to make a big fuss despite her reluctance to part with the boy.
Ashton was an assertive person who would not easily change his mind. I thought it would not be an exception this round, and Audrey would end up feeling upset. Nonetheless, he was being sympathetic unexpectedly.
Instead of replying to Audrey right away, he moved forward and looked straight at the front. In a low and stern voice, he instructed, “Come over here.”
He was obviously instructing the boy.
The boy moved swiftly from his current spot to the front of all the orphans.
When he stood right in front of us without anyone blocking his way, we were shocked to see his exceptionally thin figure. Even though he was actually wearing the smallest gown, it was far too loose for him. I even doubted whether he would be blown away as well if there was a gust of strong wind.
My heart started to ache as a surge of sympathy welled up from within me. I truly felt for Audrey. I myself could not resist feeling sad for the boy, what’s more Audrey was just a child. She surely had a stronger feeling than me.
Standing right in front of Ashton, the boy looked helpless like a small tree in front of the enormous mountain.
“I’m giving you two options. If you choose to go home with me, I will raise you well and bear the cost of your education fee. In return, you will need to attend classes together with my daughter and stay by her side all the time, putting her safety as the top priority. If you choose to continue staying here, Fuller Corporation will provide you financial aid, but you will be on your own. Think about it and make your choice. The final decision lies in your own hands.”
Ashton remained indifferent as usual and did not soften at all although he was facing a child.
Within seconds, the boy made his choice and replied firmly, “I choose to go back with you.”
Before Ashton gave his instruction, the boy had approached Audrey. Imitating Joseph, he lowered his head and bent his body as he stretched out his hand to lead the way. “Miss, please walk in the front.”
In a blink of an eye, Audrey’s face brightened up as she trotted out to catch up with Gregory.
Meanwhile, the boy was fully aware of his status and trailed behind them obediently.
Tucking both of his hands in the pocket, John pondered as he gazed at the boy’s figure. So they just let the boy follow them home without a second thought? They are willing to take the risk and raise him even if they don’t have any clue about his background?