Illusions, Lies, Truth Volume 2: Human Doll Contract Part Two
Original novel in Chinese by: 御 我 (Yu Wo)
Chapter 5: Contract Between Human and Doll… Part 3—Human Doll Contract—translated by lucathia (proofread by Trespasserby)
After returning home, Jiang Ziya actually felt like it had been a lifetime. Out of the blue, he had discovered that everyone around him was problematic, from his neighbor, to his classmate, to his boss. He was mentally and physically exhausted and only wanted to collapse onto his bed and sleep, but he knew that coming home so late meant that he would have to face his sister and brother-in-law’s questions.
Contrary to his expectations, Jiang Qibing and Jiang Yu were actually already asleep. Only Jiang Jiang stood in the living room to welcome them back. Once she saw that the two of them had returned, she immediately nodded and turned to head to her room to sleep.
I disappeared, yet Sis and Jiěfu were still able to sleep peacefully? Jiang Ziya relaxed. It was evident that Jiang Jiang was behind it, which was really great. He truly didn’t want to come up with an excuse to deceive his sister and her husband.
Dragging his tired feet, Jiang Ziya slowly approached his own room, but he was stopped.
“Hm?” Jiang Ziya turned his head to look at Xiao Xue. He smiled and asked, “Want to bathe with me?” Even though he was so tired that he didn’t feel like bathing—he wanted to go straight to sleep—he had been active the entire day. He was really stinky!
Xiao Xue’s eyes lit up. She immediately nodded and said, “Yes!”
Hand-in-hand, the two of them went to take a bath together. Jiang Ziya helped Xiao Xue wash her hair and shower. After that, they got into the tub together. It was so relaxing that he really wanted to fall asleep just like that.
Xiao Xue said softly, “Yaya-gēge, I made a promise with Yu Shu, that I’ll go over to live at her place from now on.”
Jiang Ziya was confused for a while before his mind was able to comprehend those words. He nearly sprang out of the tub.
“What do you mean? Why do you have to go live over there for no reason?”
Xiao Xue told him everything in full detail. Jiang Ziya grew furious from listening. He growled, “How could Yu Shu threaten you like that?! Don’t pay her any attention!”
“I already agreed to her invitation.”
“I’ll tell her to cancel it!”
Xiao Xue dropped her head and mumbled, “I want to go.”
Jiang Ziya froze. Never in his wildest thoughts had he considered that Xiao Xue would want to go. This little girl obviously wanted to become true twins with Jiang Jiang. She wanted to become a true part of this family!
“Why do you want to go?”
“If I stay here, Jiang Jiang won’t be able to forget. She won’t be able to become a real girl. If she hasn’t forgotten by the time we go to kindergarten, and I haven’t become true either, then we will both be in grave danger!”
Xiao Xue’s eyes glimmered with tears, but she tried her best not to let them fall.
Jiang Ziya opened his mouth, but no words came out. His sister needed her kids. But if having two of them was too dangerous, was it better to at least have one remain?
He couldn’t make that decision.
“Have you thought it through?”
Xiao Xue froze. She nodded hard, but after she nodded, tears immediately began to fall. She pounced on Jiang Ziya and cried, “Gēge, you have to come visit me!
“Jiang Jiang and Māma won’t be able to come see me. They have to forget about me, so they can’t visit.
“Gēge, you’ll be the only one left who remembers me. You have to come visit me!”
“Okay, I’ll visit you every day. Every single day!”
Jiang Ziya’s eyes felt wet, too.
So be it. Sis has no choice but to stop loving this girl, so I’ll make up for it. Whether I’m to be her gēge or bàba, it doesn’t matter!
Jiang Ziya entered the apartment.
Jiang Yu was setting the table. When she saw Jiang Ziya, she thought it seemed odd. She asked, “Don’t you have to go to Jiu Ge today?”
“Boss is closing the store for a few days, something about taking Fu Jun out to relax.”
Jiang Ziya didn’t dare to recount his boss’s original explanation.
I’m going to take Xiao Dong out for a good bout of training, so he can become my right hand man much sooner. A true Dong Jun!
He didn’t know what a true Dong Jun was like, but from Fu Jun’s terrible complexion, it most definitely wasn’t going to be a pleasant trip.
“I see.” Jiang Yu nodded. Then, she frowned at the food on the table and said, “Next time, call home beforehand. I made too little like this.”
“I only found out when I got to Jiu Ge, so I didn’t have time to tell you about it. Don’t worry, I bought some buns on the way back.”
Jiang Yu nodded. Afterwards, she went and brought out another bowl and a pair of chopsticks.
When Jiang Ziya took a look, he saw that there were only four bowls set out on the table. It made him wince, and he quickly said, “I’m heading to the neighbors’ for a bit. I’ll be back soon.”
But it’s time to eat! Jiang Yu was stunned, but for some reason, she couldn’t manage to say this.
All she could do was watch her brother rush out, while she, she also had the urge to rush out with him.
Jiang Jiang walked over, looking at Jiang Yu with large eyes.
“What’s wrong, Jiang Jiang?” Jiang Yu hurriedly knelt down to lift her daughter up.
“Why is Māma crying?” Jiang Jiang asked in confusion.
Why am I crying… I’m crying? Jiang Yu touched her cheeks. They were indeed wet.
Why indeed, why am I crying?
Knock, knock, knock—
House Keeper went to open the door. Jiang Yu held a box and entered with a smile.
Yu Shu looked at her lazily and said, “What are we having for afternoon tea today?”
“A blueberry pie I made myself!”
“I’m going to go change.”
The two of them chatted. Truthfully, more than half the time, it was Jiang Yu who did all the talking, but Yu Shu also liked listening to other people chatter. To some degree, the two of them clicked together.
Jiang Yu had gotten so excited in her conversation that she had even picked up her dessert fork and waved it around, yet she had forgotten that there was still pie stuck on it. As a result, blueberry jam and butter or something along those lines sprayed everywhere. Even Yu Shu’s shirt hadn’t escaped from the fray.
“S-sorry!” Jiang Yu said frantically. She tried to use napkins to wipe Yu Shu’s shirt.
“It’s fine. I’ll go change my shirt.”
Yu Shu wasn’t very bothered. After all, she was at home. Changing her tank top wasn’t hard. She wasn’t even the one who did the laundry, so there was even less of a reason to worry.
However, when she finished changing, Jiang Yu wasn’t in the living room anymore.
At this time, House Keeper had only just walked into the living room with cleaning supplies. Obviously, it would be no use asking him.
“Has she left?” House Keeper asked, a bit surprised. From his observations over this period, Jiang Yu did not seem to be an impolite person. To think that she left without a single word.
Yu Shu didn’t answer. Expressionless, she turned and headed toward the study. When she opened the door of the study, Jiang Yu stood with her back to the door, looking at one of the sections of the bookshelf.
Placed there was a doll with white hair, blue eyes, and snow-white skin.
Yu Shu had purposely kept it away from the living room, as well as her room. She did not allow guests to enter her study.
“This doll is mine.”
Looking at the doll before her, Jiang Yu spoke calmly.
Even though this doll wasn’t the only one of its kind, the scratches and marks on it were completely unique. She definitely wasn’t mistaken.
There was a small crack on the ear from when she had accidentally dropped the doll.
There was a scratch on the neck from when her brother Jiang Ziya had gotten angry at her and purposely used a pencil to draw on the doll. He had only wanted to sneakily draw one stroke, and then use an eraser to erase it, but who could have known that he would use too much strength. While the pencil mark had been erased, the scratch could not be removed. Because of that, she had given Jiang Ziya three days of silent treatment.
And there was the dark splotch of blood in the corner of the dress that couldn’t be washed off, left behind from the car accident. That was their mother’s blood.
That was why she had put away the doll, unwilling to look at it, all for the sake of forgetting that car accident.
Mountains. Dad was driving. Her naughty brother fought to sit in the front. Mom sat with her in the back. Her brother even turned to the back to talk with her.
Sis, Sis, don’t look at that doll anymore. Look outside and see how pretty the stars are!
She turned to look out the window, but she didn’t see any stars. Instead, she only saw a strong beam of light. Then, she heard her mom shout. Arms held her. The entire world spun. Amidst the panic, she seemed to hear her brother’s voice, but she couldn’t remember what he had shouted—
The tears in Jiang Yu’s eyes fell.
No matter how much she had loved this doll—she had even given the doll a name and said that she would forever be her mother—she had still locked the doll away in a box, never again daring to take her out.
“Yu Shu, you can’t return this doll to me, right?”
Yu Shu looked at Jiang Yu calmly. The latter knew the answer. She just needed someone to say something to strengthen her resolve. However, Yu Shu chose not to speak.
Jiang Yu received no answer. Her heart pained, she mumbled to herself, “Jiang Ziya and I are twins, so I also wanted a pair of twins. How lonely would it be to only have one? Isn’t two better?
“I got pregnant, but then she was lost, yet she soon came back to me.
“But one isn’t enough. I wanted another…
“It was all because I was too greedy. I want twins, just like Ziya and me. I want twins so much…”
She turned and begged, “Yu Shu, won’t you return this doll to me?”
Yu Shu said indifferently, “As long as you’re willing to risk your other daughter for this one, who am I to stop you?”
Jiang Yu stayed silent. It was unknown whether she had understood what Yu Shu had said. She only lifted her head to gaze at the doll in the box.
Tears actually fell from the doll’s eyes, as if she knew Jiang Yu’s choice, as if she knew what would happen to her.
Jiang Yu extended her hand and gently wiped away the doll’s tears. She was so gentle, it was like she was taking care of a child.
“Xiao Xue, don’t be afraid. This time, I won’t put you away in a box, unwilling to look at you. Come home with Māma!”
She had arrived a lonely mother and returned as a pair of incomparably happy mother and daughter.
Yu Shu told House Keeper indifferently, “Give me a cup of coffee.”
For once, House Keeper didn’t express any opposition and straightforwardly followed her command to make coffee.
Abilities, especially strong ones, have always been hereditary.
Families with the power of truth, historically, have never lived happily ever after.
Yu Shu drank her coffee, a mouthful of bitterness.