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(Lose Control)

Xi Xiaye stood under the tree and watched Xi Mushan gradually move further away. Suddenly, a lump formed in her throat. She only managed to push the feeling back with a ton of effort.

She looked down at the gift in her hand. Without needing to open it, she already knew what Xi Mushan had given her mother: a peach blossom hairpin!

Shen Wenna loved peach blossom hairpins. She collected tens of them in her drawer, but she had never let her daughter see them. However, Xi Xiaye unintentionally discovered them when she helped her pack up.

She also knew that of all those peach blossom hairpins were mostly gifts from Father to Mother.

She remained silent for a very, very long time before she turned to walk up the staircase with the gift in her hand. When she returned to the room, the dishes were already prepared and they were waiting for her to begin eating.

“Where did you go?” Mu Yuchen handed her a handkerchief.

Xi Xiaye tightened her grip on the paper bag in hand. Glancing at Mu Yuchen, she then looked at Shen Wenna beside him. Then, she hesitated before handing the gift over. “Father gave this to you. He was afraid that you wouldn’t be happy, so he didn’t come up…”

Startled, Shen Wenna looked up at Xi Xiaye for a long time. Then, she stared indifferently at the gift in front of her and said in a calm tone, “I remember telling you not to send his gifts over.”

“Mother, I’m just…”

“If ever there’s a next time, tell him to take it back with him,” Shen Wenna said coldly. She took the gift and casually set it aside. “Let’s eat.”

Xi Xiaye did not mind. Last time, she seemed to have said this too, so…

“Sit.” Mu Yuchen did not say anything either. He just pulled a chair out for Xi Xiaye and whispered softly into her ear, “Next time, be frank. Just bring him up.”

Xi Xiaye rolled her eyes at him. She ignored him and picked up her bowl to get some soup.

Throughout the meal, Shen Wenna seemed to eat without tasting the food. She only had a few bites before she declared that she was done. She left her seat early and went to the study room, seeming very lonely.

When she heard the study room door shut, Xi Xiaye sighed sorrowfully. She looked to Mu Yuchen and said, “Don’t take offense. Whenever it’s this time of the year, Mother will be like this.”

As she said this, she put the chopsticks in her hand down and stared at the paper bag. Finally, she reached out to open it and very quickly took a delicate box out. She casually opened it.

Inside lay an exquisite, blush-colored peach blossom hairpin. The light-colored petals enveloped the light tassels. It was very beautiful and very worthy of a second look.

“I’ll go take a look at her. You eat first.”

Then, she took a deep breath and tightened her grip on the peach blossom hairpin before quickly getting up and making her way to the study room.

At this moment, Shen Wenna, who was in the study room, was sitting quietly before her study table, looking out of the window past the muslin curtains without a word.


Xi Xiaye reached Shen Wenna’s sides in a few steps. She handed the hairpin to her. “This year’s hairpin seems to be prettier than last year’s…”

Shen Wenna turned to look at Xi Xiaye. A while after that, her gaze then moved down to the hairpin she handed her. Breathing in, she slowly took it.

“It’s all already in the past. What’s the point of sending these gifts?” Shen Wenna’s slightly raspy voice rang out. One could vaguely hear the sadness in it. “He’s forever so self-righteous… Still thinking that I’m still the same as I was!”

“Mother, if you really can’t forget Father, can we…?”

“Who says I can’t forget him? He’s so sure that I won’t be able to let him, is he? He, Xi Mushan, is so sure that I, Shen Wenna, wouldn’t be able to live without him in this lifetime, eh?”

Before Xi Xiaye could finish, Shen Wenna’s expression suddenly tensed up and she tightened her grip onto the hairpin in her hand. “The oath of eternal love we once had has now all become a preposterous joke because of his betrayal. Does he think I’d forgive him just like that? Impossible! Xiaye, I’m telling you, I’ll never forgive him!”

Shen Wenna was suddenly very emotional. Her whole body trembled as her clear eyes revealed sparkles of tears that she had long endured. The scar that had fallen silent in her heart was brought back up to the surface again. It was so painful that she felt like she was suffocating.

“Back then, I gave up on everything. For him, I even severed ties with your grandfather. We were self-indulgent and unruly with our love… and then, in the end, I still had to pay a heavy price for this unruly banishment. Xiaye, I haven’t been willing to tell you about my unbearable past because I hope that you won’t know about all these ugly things… because you don’t need to be burdened by these. I hope that you won’t be affected by my misfortune too. I just want you to know that even though your father and I are divorced, we still care about you as we always did. That is all. Do you understand?”

When she said this, Shen Wenna suddenly inhaled and suppressed the emotions that she was about to divulge. She paused for a moment, then continued, “I’m afraid your father and I will never be able to go back to how we were. I know that you’ve been holding onto a sliver of hope for us, but I’m telling you that there’s no way.”

“Why not? If Yue Lingsi can steal Father from you, can’t you get him back? Why can Xi Xinyi justifiably hog Father’s love, hog the fancy of Grandfather and Grandmother, while I’m left with nothing?”

Xi Xiaye suddenly could not stop herself from self-mockery as she said, “Do you know that every time, every single time Xi Xinyi spread rumors about me, I’d ask why? When bullied, she can go looking for Grandfather, Grandmother, and her parents. And me? Who can I go to?”

As Xi Xiaye burst out about this, Shen Wenna instantly turned pale. Her hand that held the hairpin started to tremble slightly.

“I’m sorry. Consider it a slip of the tongue…”

When Xi Xiaye saw Shen Wenna’s expression darken, she felt her heart ache. With a deep breath, she pushed all of the bitterness in her throat back, then she said slowly, “I’m not blaming you for anything. I’ve already gotten used to it all these years anyway… When I see someone else’s harmonious family, I just feel a little envious. That’s all…”

“I’ve always respected you, Mother, and I’ve always been proud of having a mother like you, but I hope that you can be braver for the things that you should fight for. You should… You and Father aren’t young anymore…” Xi Xiaye lamented.

Actually, for a long time, she had not dared to tell Shen Wenna that she hoped she could help her get her father back. She wanted to give Shen Wenna the courage as well, but at that time, she did not even have the courage herself, so how could she offer it to Shen Wenna?

Shen Wenna did not say anything. She just watched Xi Xiaye silently, the hairpin clutched tightly in her hand. Xi Xiaye could seem to see her struggle in her eyes.


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