condition anymore, but I still occasionally take it upon myself to help others cleanse their brains.”

Jiang Ming shielded his face with his hands.
“Dad, I was just having some fun with that woman, and he tried to scald me to death!” His voice was hoarse.
“He showed absolutely no regard for you, his father!”

1

Their father eyed Jiang Ming.
His face and neck were flushed from the attack.
He couldn’t even defend himself, only whine and complain.
How shameful!

The elderly man took a seat and fixed Tang Qiu with his gaze.
“What’s your name?”

Tang Qiu lifted a brow at his unconcealed disdain.
“Are you talking to me?” she asked flatly.

Her father-in-law snorted coldly.
“Are there any other outsiders here besides you?”

It had been obvious ever since they arrived that Jiang Shaocheng’s family had little love for him.
Naturally, they were reluctant to acknowledge his wife.
But when she thought of her husband, in his ailing state, having to endure family like them, it brought a tinge of sorrow to her heart.

“My name is Tang Qiu.
I’m Jiang Shaocheng’s wife.”

The old man’s sharp eyes bored into her.
“The woman Jiang Ming found to be his brother’s bride was named Feng Lu.
Who are you?”

Had he come to settle scores with her? Tang Qiu wanted to reply that she had been a substitute bride to replace her sister Feng Lu, but she worried that it would cause her husband to lose face.
Who would want their wife to admit publicly that she had been forced to marry him?

Tang Qiu lowered her head and glanced at Jiang Shaocheng.
“I’m Feng Lu’s… cousin.
I liked my cousin’s fiance very much, but she didn’t want to marry him.
So I decided to take her place.”

The old man cast a mocking look at the burn scars on his son’s face.
“What was there to like about him?”

1

“His gentleness.
His attentiveness.
The way he treats me with kindness.” Tang Qiu spoke without thinking, but her face was serious.
“Everything about him.” She added, “Besides, it isn’t always clear what it’s like to have feelings for someone.”

So she does like me. A smile tugged at Jiang Shaocheng’s lips.
She had just been shy earlier this morning, then…

Jiang Ming couldn’t hold back any longer.
“Such pretty words, Tang Qiu,” he mocked, voice rough.
“What about your boyfriend from school, though? You have the nerve to say you like my brother after cuckolding him?”

1

“I did nothing of the sort!” Tang Qiu bit back, enraged.

1

Jiang Shaocheng’s brow creased.
He stared at Jiang Ming with daggers in his eyes.
It seemed that his brother hadn’t learnt his lesson yet.
“You ought to have evidence before accusing someone.”

Jiang Ming looked smug.
“I know the truth is hard to bear, brother.
But I heard it from the Ning family’s son, Ning Mufan, himself! He said that Tang Qiu was his girlfriend! If I didn’t have proof, do you think I’d dare to say such a thing in front of my elder brother?”

3

Jiang Shaocheng returned his brother’s gaze, ice swimming in the depths of his dark eyes.

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