32 How We Used to Be 2

When Su Zhinian first moved in with the Song family, her father had told her the same thing. At the time, she was fuming, blaming her father for siding with an outsider. She even used it as her talking point whenever she quarreled with her father. But now, after her brother's death and her father's sickness, she knew she did not have that right anymore; she even had to sacrifice herself for the Song family.

Song Qingchun tried her best to force a smile for her father as she nodded and said, "Dad, I understand."

Song Menghwa might have been feeling better, but overall, his physical condition was still lacking. After their short talk, he fell asleep from tiredness.

Her sister-in-law, Fang Rou, had been taking care of her father, so Song Qingchun had her go home to rest and she would stay in her place to accompany her father that night. Before Fang Rou left, Song Qingchun followed her out of her father's room saying she wanted to walk her to the entrance. It was not until they were some distance from the sickbay that Song Qingchun said to her, "Big Sister, I will be moving out next month."

"But why are you moving out so suddenly?" Fang Rou asked in shock, but as she did so, she seemed to have thought of something and instead she asked, "Are you moving in with Su Zhinian?"

"Yes," Song Qingchun answered softly and added after a short pause, "Please don't tell Dad."

Fang Rou was silent for quite some time before saying, "Qingchun, I'm sorry."

Song Qingchun stayed at the hospital for two days before switching back with her sister-in-law. It was only seven pm when she reached home, but Song Qingchun felt unusually tired. She crawled into bed without having dinner.

Ever since Song Cheng's suicide, Song Qingchun had not had a good night's sleep. Now that Song Empire's crisis was going to be solved, she could finally relax. Her sleep was incredibly deep, so much so that the housekeeper had trouble waking her even though she tried to multiple times.

Perhaps it was due to the phone call from Qin Yinan, Song Qingchun had a long dream about her childhood.

When Song Qingchun was just a child, Song Menghwa's business had not taken flight and Song Empire still didn't exist. At the time, their family of four stayed at a modest courtyard house 1 in a cul-de-sac on the western side of Beijing.

One of the four families they shared the courtyard house with was Qin Yinan's family.

Qin Yinan and Song Cheng were born on the same month in the same year. Song Qingchun's mother and Qin Yinan's mother were pregnant and were carrying their first child when they lived at the courtyard house. Therefore, it was natural that they had a close relationship.

The two mothers were so close that when Song Qingchun was a bit older, Qin Yinan's mother told her, when they were pregnant, they had made a secret deal among the two women that if they had a boy and a girl then their children would grow up to marry each other, making it an arranged marriage. Alas, both gave birth to a healthy young boy. The two mothers were so disappointed they couldn't be in-laws that tears were shed.

When Song Qingchun heard this story, she did not feel sorry but instead felt thankful, thankful that Song Cheng was a boy.

At the time, Song Menghwa was the most educated among the families living at the same courtyard house while Qin Yinan's father did not even finish his primary education, therefore both names, Qin Yinan and Song Cheng, were given by her father.

Song Cheng and Qin Yinan shared the same baby cots and grew up to be close friends, like brothers in fact. There were even a few years when Song Qingchun thought she had two older brothers.

Song Qingchun loved to trail behind Song Cheng and Qin Yinan ever since she learnt how to walk. A compound with traditional chinese houses of greybricks and tiles built around a courtyard.