(She is a menace to me)
Meanwhile, Emily and Jacob were waiting at the door. When they saw Joan coming out, they were jumping to ask her questions, but Joan stopped them by shaking her head.
Emily's heart skipped a beat. She followed Joan quietly to the living room, and then couldn't help asking, "Miss Joan, what do you think about my Beryl..."
"Beryl has a very sharp mind. Obviously, this incident has left a big scar on her mind. Now she is refusing to get close to anybody as a defense mechanism. It would take a lot of work to open her heart again," Joan answered.
"So what can we do for her?" Emily bit her pale lips and continued, "She's still so young..."
"Give her some time. You can try to bring her out of your house and let her play with the other kids. Remember not to force anything on her or be too hard on her. Otherwise, it will backfire on you. And I would advise against giving her medicines. After all, she's not in good health."
"Okay, I see. Thank you, Miss Joan." Even after Joan had left, Emily couldn't shake off the sense of worry from her chest.
Jacob put his hands around her shoulders and said in a soft voice, "Don't worry too much, Emily. We will find a way to bring our Beryl back. At least we've found her and she's safe now."
"Yes, you're right," Emily replied, as she calmed her nerves. She suddenly remembered what she wanted to talk to Jacob about and asked, "What about the people from the Tao clan?"
"You can rest assured, I'll handle that," Jacob comforted.
"No, I want to send Tina to hell with my own hands."
Emily narrowed her eyes with determination.
If she had fulfilled her plan earlier than expected, Tina would not have gotten the chance to hurt Beryl. Now Emily was hell-bent on making Tina pay for her vicious actions.
Emily had no intentions of letting Tina go for what she had done to her parents.
The whole purpose behind Emily's return to Z Country was to exact her revenge upon Tina and naturally, she had done a lot of preparatory work. Over the years, she had gathered evidence that could put Tina behind bars on charges of killing Emily's foster parents.
Now the time for putting everything out on the table had come. As soon as the evidence against Tina appeared on the Internet, it immediately became the headlines of every newspaper publishers in Jingshi City.
Almost everyone in Jingshi City knew the truth—Emily and Tina were exchanged by their families after birth. When Tina found out that she wasn't the real daughter of the Tao clan, she killed her biological parents, who also happened to be Emily's foster parents, with her own hands because she was ashamed of them. What a horrible and despicable woman she was! Moreover, she had committed countless other crimes.
Some of those crimes alone were incriminating enough to keep her locked up behind bars for life, condemned by history.
This news exploded without warning. Like a sudden plague it swept through the whole city. Mark tried his best to stop this news from spreading, but Jacob's influence was far superior to his.
As a historical clan, even though the Taos had some influence in Jingshi City, their stock price plummeted and most of their partners stopped cooperating with them after the allegations on the news. All in all, the Tao clan had suffered a great loss.
Before long, the police verified that the evidence against Tina was compelling enough to warrant an arrest.
However, by then, Tina had escaped abroad with the help of Mark. The police could do nothing for the time being but take Mark back for further investigation.
"She ran away again..." In the office, Emily stood in front of French windows and looked down at the traffic, as disappointment flooded her eyes. She couldn't help but clench her fists, and she grew mad with anger.
Indeed, the world was inherently a cruel and unfair place.
Good people died young, while the scum lived on, roaming the earth freely.
'Tina, even if you run to the ends of the world, I'll find you out and send you to the hell, ' she vowed to herself.
Suddenly there came a knock on the door from outside. It was her assistant, who said with great care, "Miss Lu, some people from the Tao clan have come to visit you."
"I see. Just let them wait."
"Yes, Miss Lu."
Emily left her visitors alone for almost an hour, before she slowly walked to the reception room. She feigned surprise when she saw there were three people sitting there and said, "What brings you here? I'm honored to see you waiting for me."
Bess looked at Emily, her eyes widened with surprise, and she shouted, "Emily! It's you! I knew it was you!"
Emily's eyes fell on her haggard face. It was her first time to meet Bess since she returned to Jingshi City. "So what?
Maybe I am, maybe I am not. What's it to you? You've never cared about me. What do you want now?" Emily sneered.
After Emily came back, she had been involved in many high-profile projects that had attracted the whole city's attention. If they were really concerned about her, they would have taken some initiative to meet her. But none of them showed their faces to her until now. The reason they showed up here today was because they wanted to save their company and to beg forgiveness for their wretched children.
If the Tao clan didn't need anything, they would have never come to see Emily again. How ridiculous! Although, they all lived in the same city, they didn't have any contact with each other, as if they were strangers.
Bess looked at Emily with an anxious face. When she noticed the indifference in Emily, she got more anxious and she spoke in an inquisitive tone, "You were behind everything, right? Why did you do that? Now your sister has become a fugitive on the run, and your brother was taken to prison. Are you satisfied with that? You cold-blooded woman!"
"Of course I am. Look at yourself," Emily sneered, "You are like a bear with a sore head. This is the first time we've seen each other in four years. Mrs. Tao, you didn't even ask me how I was. Even though I'm your real daughter, you don't love me at all. You only care about Tina. Clearly, you love the fake one more."
Bess was cut to the quick with Emily's harsh remark. For a time, Bess did not know what to say. She couldn't deny that she preferred Tina, who had been her daughter for more than 20 years. Bess raised Tina with her own hands and poured countless efforts and love into her from her infancy to her adulthood. Since, Bess didn't raise Emily herself, she thought that her preference of Tina over Emily was justified.
They were like two roses. One was carefully planted in the garden by herself, and the other grew and flowered outside. Anyone in Bess's place would prefer the first to the latter.
Was she wrong to do so? Bess also tried to be a fair mother, but she could not control herself from being biased towards Tina.
"Tina's not a fake, she's my daughter, and so are you. You are both my daughters.
Why can't you live together peacefully? Why did you have to do such ruthless things to drive her away from me?" Bess said as she slowly broke down into tears.
"I never asked you to be a fair mother, but when you found out Tina had hurt me and even my daughter, did you do something to stop her? Or did you just turn a blind eye?"
"Emily! I tried to make it up to you for your unhappy childhood! But you said you didn't want anything from me! You refused to go back to the Tao clan. It's not my fault anymore!"
"You wanted to make up for my unhappy childhood? Really? All you did was ignoring Tina's malicious actions towards me again and again. But when I taught her a lesson, your heart ached for her, and you couldn't hold back your anger towards me."
Emily felt cold all over her body. Her hope and feelings for Bess had completely disappeared.
The needle stung Bess exactly the way Emily hoped it would. Bess got angry from embarrassment, and said, "In any case, Mark is your brother, and Tina is your sister! No matter what happened between you, we should have resolved our problems among ourselves. How could you tell the whole world and even the police about what Tina had done? Why are you so merciless? They are your family!"
Family? When Mark and Tina hurt her and her daughter again and again, did they ever think of her as their family?
This word was the funniest thing Emily had ever heard from Bess.
"I don't have a brother or a sister." Emily felt that it was meaningless to argue with Bess anymore, so she said dismissively, "Even you, I don't think you are qualified to be my mother. You weren't the one who raised me. You never even loved me. You just gave birth to me and then abandoned me right after."
Although Debby and Andrew were far from being the perfect parents, at least they took care of her and sent her to college. In her heart, they were her real parents. Unfortunately for them, right after they found their real daughter, she murdered them without remorse.
"If you didn't pamper and spoil Tina, she wouldn't have become such a vicious woman. Not only are you unworthy of being my mother, you are also unworthy of being Tina's mother. Tina is in such an awkward predicament now because of your over-indulgent love," Emily said without mercy.