Illusions, Lies, Truth Volume 1: Human Doll Contract Part One
Original novel in Chinese by: 御 我 (Yu Wo)
Chapter 1: Xiao Xue Part 3—Twins—translated by Raylight
Once Jiang Yu and Jiang Ziya returned home, they were faced with two enraged little girls and a father with his arms crossed over his chest. The three of them looked like a panel ready to judge him for his crimes.
“Gēge is a meanie!” Xiao Xue shouted while pouting, the first to start the wave of attacks.
“Meanie!” Jiang Jiang joined in too.
“It’s Jiùjiu, Uncle, not Gēge,” corrected Jiang Qibing. However, he was resigned to the fact that the two little girls had already identified Jiang Ziya as their brother. Since young, they had been calling him “Gēge.” Moreover, Jiang Ziya himself liked being called that, and would always refer to himself as “Gēge.” The result was that the two girls had become fixed in their habit.
Faced with three people ganging up to accuse him… Oh, that’s not right. He still had to add in his sister, who was behind him. So faced with four people, Jiang Ziya could only summon up his courage to apologize, “S-Sorry. I didn’t do it on purpose.”
“Really, just what is the matter?” Jiang Qibing had a gentle nature, and since his two daughters had stayed at home obediently without getting into any sort of trouble, he couldn’t find it in himself to stay angry for long. Confused, he asked, “You weren’t like this in the past. Didn’t you dote on Jiang Jiang and Xiao Xue a lot?”
“Jiěfu, think about it! This one here is called Jiang Jiang, but the other is called… Xiao Xue? Don’t you think that her name is strange?”
Jiang Ziya tried to get his brother-in-law to snap out of the illusion. According to what Yu Shu had said though, there was also a problem with Jiang Jiang. Still, Jiang Jiang at least resembled a human. Xiao Xue, on the other hand, was a doll. Therefore, he would prefer to get rid of Xiao Xue rather than Jiang Jiang.
Jiang Qibing froze for a moment, and then scratched his head as he said, “What are you talking about? Did you forget that Xiao Xue is called Jiang Xue? It’s just that Jiang Jiang and Xiao Xue are easier to pronounce, so we have always been calling them that.”
So it was like that…No! Why are you having a sudden burst of realization? There wasn’t any such matter! Jiang Ziya knocked on his own head.
Jiang Yu walked forward and rubbed her little brother’s head, feeling a bit of heartache as she reproached, “What did you hit yourself so hard for? Ziya, you’re being really weird. Have you fallen sick?”
Jiang Ziya could only use that excuse to step out of the limelight, mumbling, “I guess so. My head kind of hurts today.” Actually, it’s more like I’m so stressed that my head hurts.
Jiang Yu placed a hand on his forehead, and after confirming that he didn’t have a fever, nagged, “Then, go rest already!”
“Okay.” He had just finished speaking when he felt someone tugging at the corner of his pants. He looked down and saw Xiao Xue standing right by his feet.
“Gēge, bath!” Xiao Xue shouted. Following that, Jiang Jiang also threw herself at him, for fear of being abandoned.
Jiang Yu reproached the two little girls, “Don’t play around. Gēge has a headache!”
It’s Jiùjiu! At the side, Jiang Qibing could only shake his head helplessly. Even his wife was calling him that. It was a given then that the children would continue to call him Gēge non-stop… Forget it, forget it, just treat it as if you’ve gained an extra son! He sat on the sofa and opened his laptop to continue his unfinished work.
Jiang Ziya lowered his head and looked at Xiao Xue. Her cheeks were snow white and delicate, and she was so cute that she didn’t look human at all. Her body should also be as perfect and flawless, right?
As he imagined this, he felt goose bumps crawling all over his skin. He was just about to reject her when Xiao Xue grabbed onto the corner of his pants again. She stared at him with large eyes, as though she had something to say.
Is this the so-called “eyes that you can get lost in?” Jiang Ziya felt a little at a loss for words. Other people used the phrase to describe beautiful ladies, but he could only use it to describe a ghost doll. The difference between these two was way too large!
“That’s enough! Let go of your Gēge now!” said their mother, giving them a final warning.
Jiang Ziya took a deep breath, and then said, “It’s fine! I was about to shower anyway, so we might as well all bathe together.”
“Is it okay? Doesn’t your head hurt?” asked Jiang Yu, a little worried.
“That was then. It’s much better now!” Jiang Ziya fibbed casually, “Just treat it as my atonement for leaving them at home. Otherwise, who knows what I would have to do to get the two of them to forgive me.”
Jiang Yu observed Jiang Ziya’s face. Only after confirming that his complexion was normal and that he wasn’t in pain or feeling sick did she nod and agree.
As he brought the two little girls into the bathroom, Jiang Ziya didn’t feel as afraid as he did before. After all, Jiang Qibing and Jiang Yu were both right outside. Moreover, if something really were to happen, at most he would just drag his sister and brother-in-law to Yu Shu’s place opposite theirs!
The adult butler, who is also a doll like her, should be able to defeat a little girl, right?
Come to think of it, to actually hope that the big doll living in the apartment opposite would defeat the small doll in my home, should I feel lucky that there’s a big doll opposite or should I cry because there are dolls everywhere, both inside and outside my home? As Jiang Ziya thought this, he felt a bit like crying, though he had no tears to shed.
Shutting the bathroom door, Jiang Ziya lowered his head to look at the two girls. The two girls lifted their heads and likewise stared at him. The three people stared at each other with six eyes. He hesitated, and then started to help the two of them undress. Of course, he started with Jiang Jiang. Then, with his skin crawling, he helped Xiao Xue undress.
Thankfully, if he didn’t specifically use his left eye to look at her, Xiao Xue’s body still looked relatively normal. She looked like a pale and delicate little girl, and was even extremely cute!
Jiang Ziya heaved a sigh of relief. Following the same procedure as he usually did for giving Jiang Jiang baths, he too removed his clothes and filled the bathtub with water. Then, he picked up the shampoo to wash the two girls’ hair. Being able to stay composed like this is really not a good thing.
“Sit on the stool. I’ll shampoo your hair.”
As Jiang Ziya rubbed shampoo into their hair, he grieved over his level of composure that had increased by leaps and bounds.
As he rubbed their hair, he thought, Though Xiao Xue’s hair color is a little strange, her hair feels soft and fine, no different from Jiang Jiang’s hair. With this, Jiang Ziya felt more and more reassured.
After all, Xiao Xue looked like a little girl. Her mouth didn’t suddenly rip open all the way to her ears, nor did her nails suddenly extend to killer lengths. Therefore, he grew increasingly unafraid of her.
“Gēge… Xiao Xue won’t hurt Bàba and Māma, and also won’t hurt Gēge.”
From the front, a quiet child’s voice rang out, and it even sounded shy. Jiang Ziya fell silent for a moment. He felt that something wasn’t right. The previous ordeal had already reduced his fear by half. Now, hearing Xiao Xue’s pitiful voice, he couldn’t help but feel overwhelming sympathy for her…
I really want to slap myself! Jiang Ziya sighed inwardly and asked, “What about Jiang Jiang? Can you guarantee that you won’t hurt her and won’t want to replace her?”
Xiao Xue turned around and immediately scolded, “Gēge is an idiot!”
“Idiot!” Jiang Jiang giggled, a slightly devious expression on her face. However, because she was a little girl, that kind of expression was still extremely cute.
Jiang Jiang’s expressions seem to have become much more animated? Jiang Ziya was a little surprised, but this made him feel more at ease. He even purposely rubbed the girls’ soap bubble-covered heads, and started to play with them. He shouted, “How am I an idiot? To actually say that your Gēge is an idiot, realize your crimes~.”
Jiang Jiang laughed merrily and said, “Jiang Jiang is more powerful than Xiao Xue! So Xiao Xue cannot harm Jiang Jiang!”
F***! Yu Shu was right. Something is wrong with Jiang Jiang as well.
Jiang Ziya felt a little helpless, but his hands continued to busy themselves, helping the two little girls wash away the shampoo in their hair, and then with lathering soap and showering…
“Xiao Xue, you look kind of weird. Could you change your appearance a little?”
While the three of them were soaking in the bathtub, Jiang Ziya finally admitted to himself that he couldn’t do something as evil as “stuffing a little girl into the garbage truck.” Therefore, he could only start to accept her as part of the family. Just treat it as if I’m raising a pet!
Xiao Xue didn’t seem to understand what he meant as she asked, “What’s so weird?”
Everything is weird! Jiang Ziya grabbed a lock of white hair and explained, “Take your hair color for example. In Taiwan, there aren’t any little girls with white hair! Look at Jiang Jiang. She also has black hair!”
Xiao Xue seemed to understand yet not understand at the same time. She nodded her head, saying, “As long as it’s black, it’s okay?” As she finished speaking, her white hair actually turned black.
Jiang Ziya’s eyes shone. This way, Xiao Xue really looked much more normal. Immediately, he suggested, “Eyes a little smaller, mouth just a bit bigger, skin not that white, and slightly yellower. Not that kind of banana yellow! Look at Jiang Jiang’s skin color… That’s right, you might as well change your appearance to look exactly like Jiang Jiang’s. You two are the same age, so you can be twins!”
This way was much simpler for him, saving him a lot of time and effort. Xiao Xue nodded, and her appearance gradually became more similar to Jiang Jiang’s. In the end, the two girls had become a pair of twins.
Seeing how Xiao Xue finally looked like a normal Taiwanese child, Jiang Ziya heaved a sigh of relief. However, once he relaxed, he couldn’t help but feel unsure whether to laugh or cry. Why did he feel like he was adjusting a character’s looks while playing a game?
After helping the two girls dry and put on their clothes, Jiang Ziya then discovered that the two pajamas were almost identical. The only difference was that one was pink and the other was a baby blue.
“Why are there two matching sets of clothes?” He was a little doubtful. “Could it be that these also ‘appeared?’”
Jiang Jiang shook her head and answered, “Jiang Jiang likes pink and blue, and always buys two sets of clothes!”
He truly didn’t know about this. Now as he tried to recall, he didn’t seem to be very clear on the specifics regarding Jiang Jiang… Jiang Ziya shook his head. No matter what, he didn’t want to suspect Jiang Jiang. This was his sister’s only child!
Only child… He looked at Xiao Xue. The two girls were currently having a great time playing. Now it has become “only two children.” He momentarily felt a little weak.
As he lay in bed, reading a storybook to the girls, a thought abruptly hit him. Not only did I not burn Xiao Xue, I helped disguise her, and even coaxed her to sleep. Yu Shu won’t choke me to death, will she?
Hmph! A person raising a ghost doll as a butler isn’t qualified to choke others!