On her way back, she wept silently.
After returning to her room, she went to the bathroom and took off her clothes. Then she turned on the hot shower and stood under it. The hot water kissed her body, soon filling the bathroom with steam.
Emily slumped into a state of torpor as if nothing could cheer her up.
The hot water flowed through her whole body, scouring every inch of her skin.
Emily was a traditional woman, and she had thought that she would be committed to Jacob only. However, after being tricked by Jack into believing that she had sex with him, her world came crashing down around her. She felt eternally stained, as if nothing in the world could wash away the filth off of her body.
"We both know that the thing Jacob hates the most is betrayal, be it mental or physical. If he finds out that you've slept with me, do you think he will still love you?" Jack's words reverberated in her ears.
Every word was like a hammer hitting at Emily's heart.
Emily's mind scrambled, wondering when Jacob would come back, and how she would explain to him, and what she could do to deal with all of this.
Emily kept washing herself over and over until her skin turned red due to the heat of the hot water. When her body went numb, she went out of the bathroom and slowly put on her clothes.
Although she didn't want to break up with Jacob, Jack blackmailed her with a picture he had on his phone that could easily cause a misunderstanding between her and Jacob. Jack threatened to send it to Jacob if she did not comply with his demands. Moreover, since she couldn't come up with any reasonable explanation to give to Jacob, she decided to hide away in shame before he was back.
Emily knew that running away from her problems would only make things worse, but at this moment, she just wanted to lock herself away from the rest of the world.
She didn't want Jacob to know about the horrendous incident she had suffered.
After taking a bath, Emily packed up her clothes and moved back to her previous apartment. While she stayed there, she did not receive any calls from Jacob, so she assumed that he must have been too angry to call her, but on the other hand, she also felt relieved.
Although Emily left Tyrone Mansion quietly and there were only a handful of people who knew this, soon Jack learned about it from an informer, as did the Tao clan and Emily's foster parents.
Andrew and Debby were the first two people who came to visit her.
After all, they had raised her. Emily could not go against her conscience to shut the door on her foster parents. She opened the door and let them in.
"Emily, what happened between you and Mr. Gu? Why did you move out of his house? Did you have a fight with him?" Debby asked anxiously.
Knowing that Tina showed no inclination to take care of her and her husband, made Debby sad, but she never complained about her biological daughter. Instead, she changed her mind to focus all her attention towards Emily, showing her care and love.
As strange as it were, she didn't sincerely repent and earnestly reform herself. From the bottom of her heart, she only cared about how much money Jacob would give her if she pretended to be a good mother.
Emily looked at their wrinkled faces, feeling helpless from her heart and soul. She said in a weak voice, "Dad, Mom, I've broken up with him. I'll find you another house. Just go back and move out of Jacob's house."
"Broke up?" the couple gasped.
Andrew got angry in an instant, glowering at her, then he raised his voice to scold her, "Are you out of your mind? How can you break up with Mr. Gu? He is so rich and powerful! You will never find another man like him. Why would you break up with him? Don't be silly and petulant, or you will lose everything you have come to own, and so will we!"
Debby also began to lecture her, with a hint of accusation in her tone, "Emily, I have to say, you've been very wayward these days!
You'd better get along well with Mr. Gu and keep your relationship with him. Don't act out impulsively, otherwise, you will lose more than you've gained."
Emily listened to their words quietly, watching them act like two ridiculous pigs, and she got a deeper understanding of their endless greed. Then, she burst into laughter and asked in a sarcastic tone, "What's wrong? Did you hit your head on the way here? Both of you wanted me to break with Jacob, remember? Now I have granted your wishes. Shouldn't you be happy and satisfied?"
"Now the situation has changed. We are only trying to do what's best for you! We love you!" she answered Emily. Debby spoke with a lot of confidence, without the trace of doubt on her face, as if she was looking at everything from Emily's perspective and thinking about her future only.
"Even if you have broken up, you can't leave so easily," Andrew said, with a greedy expression on his face. "The least he could do is pay you a large sum of money as alimony!" he added. Andrew's lack of legal knowledge and education shined brightly through ridiculous claims.
Emily bit her lips hard, as if she was using all her strength to control her temper, and not let loose a torrent of abuse towards her parents. After a pause, she said, "Please go back home. I will deal with this in my own way."
"Emily, why are you being so stubborn..." said Debby. Having lost all patience, Emily rudely interrupted her mother by simple walking away. She ran to her room, and shut the door behind her.
"Emily, please come out! We need to talk to you!" Andrew and Debby yelled from the outside, hammering at the door— "Bang, bang, bang"
Emily covered her ears with her hands. She slowly slipped down the door panel and sat on the floor, frustrated and exhausted. Her joyless eyes were a pitiful sight.
Hearing her foster parents yelling outside the door, drove tears out of her eyes, like pearls from a broken string.
Emily once had a complete family, a lover and her own career. But now, her life was so different she could barely remember what was good about it.
Andrew and Debby were not her real parents. To Emily's disappointment, they loved their biological daughter more. Moreover, she had been forced by Jack to break up with Jacob, whom she had loved more than any other person in the world. Emily had become the living embodiment of the word 'loner'.
'Emily, how did you burn everything in your life to ashes?' she asked herself, feeling alone and despondent.
Owing to Emily's silent resistance, Andrew and Debby grew tired for hammering and shouting. Finally, they decided to leave her alone, reluctantly.
Soon, things simmered down in the apartment, and there was a haunting stillness that took over the atmosphere. Emily's loneliness was consuming her, like a hungry, merciless monster, eating away at her soul, piece by piece.
As the sun went down, the lingering light was obliterated by the rapidly falling night sky. Soon she was surrounded by the darkness, as her breathing sped up rapidly. The eerie darkness of her nightmares seemed to be taking shape again, as if it had never really left her.
With a rush of panic, she stood up abruptly. Since she was leaning awkwardly the whole time, when she got up she suffered from pins and needles up her legs. Before long she was brought to the ground against her will.
Emily incurred injuries on both knees when she landed on them before falling to the ground. She clenched her teeth tightly to keep herself from screaming. Pain stabbed at her knees and she wondered at the extent of her injuries. She braced herself and drove upward, as her body shook with the effort. With the last reserve of her strength, she dragged herself and switched on the lights.
"Jacob..." Emily muttered, looking at the lamp overhead, with tears in her eyes, her nose twitching as she sniffled.
Not long after she separated from Jacob, she began to miss him like crazy.
Emily didn't want to break up with Jacob at all. However, reality had given her a devastating blow—she had had sex with Jack, albeit, it was only her mere conjecture, but she was totally convinced by Jack's deception. So when Jack coerced her into breaking up with Jacob, she compromised. Soon after, everything in her life had spiralled down into the abyss.
Considering Jacob's character, he could never forgive her transgressions. Although, he was now on business abroad and could not communicate with her face to face, if he came back soon, how would she deal with his anger and disappointment?
Emily sank into despair. Hope. Life. Happiness. All gone. Eradicated. Once where there was light, now only the ghost of imagination remained.
Pain throbbed so violently around Emily's skull that she wondered why it didn't just crack open. At the same time, she put herself in a quandary and did not know what to do and how to come up with a solution.
This night was doomed to be a sleepless one for several people. Emily could not go to sleep, nor could Jack.
Jack drove to Emily's apartment and parked his car downstairs. He stayed inside, smoking quietly and focused his eyes at Emily's bedroom window, still and motionless.
Jack was under the impression that he could see through the glass and concrete to find Emily's soft figure. However, it was a pathetic way of deceiving himself.
Jack knew that Emily was suffering from despair and melancholia. His heart ached for her, but he also felt somewhat delighted. Although Emily didn't want to be with him at this point, it was better than her being with Jacob.
Jack acknowledged that he had done something villainous and devious. Regardless of what his goals were, he did not achieve them through fair measures. He rationalized his actions on the basis that the ends justified the means.
'I don't regret any of it. If I had to do it all over again, I would do the same thing.
Just as long as I can tear her apart from Jacob's arm and bring her back to me, I am willing to pay the price, even if the price is my conscience.
I have sacrificed so much for Emily. I love her very much, even more than Jacob. Why have I not received anything in return yet? It's not fair, ' thought Jack.
When Jack thought of Jacob, and how he had stolen the girl of his dreams from under his nose, his eyes grew dark, thick with jealousy and hatred. But soon his thin lips slowly twisted upwards with malice.
'Jacob, do you still think you're the all-mighty bastion of the Gu clan?
I wonder how it must feel to rot away in a foreign jail, unable to return to your home, your kingdom. I am going to take your place and trample you under my foot! I swear it!' Jack vowed in his heart.