Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
Qiao Dongliang could not control Ding Jiayi and Qiao Zijin. He had to save as much money as he could on his own.
Except for family expenses, Qiao Dongliang, as a grown-up man, had managed to reduce his expense to five yuan a month. He did not even dare to buy protein dishes for his lunch. He only ate vegetarian dishes and simply ordered one dish for every meal.
As the head of the family, Qiao Dongliang was very worried, yet he was embarrassed to tell the three ladies at home.
Qiao Dongliang always thought that the person who cared for him the most in the family was his wife, Ding Jiayi. No one knew it was actually his younger daughter, who was usually the quietest and did not talk much, who cared the most.
“Nan Nan, you… Is it because you know Dad is very worried about money that you decided to go to Ping Cheng High School?” Qiao Dongliang pinched his nose and sounded stuffy.
“Yes, if both my sister and I are going to college, I know that both Mom and you can’t afford it.” Qiao Nan replied without showing much emotion. “I know I am different from my sister. Dad and Mom favored my sister since young. I know what Mom meant when she previously insisted that I find a job. It was not easy for Dad to support me in continuing my studies. Although I cannot earn money now, I can help lessen a bit of your burden at the very least.”
“Nan Nan, isn’t Dad quite useless? I wanted daughters but was not capable of raising them.” Qiao Dongliang’s tone was full of bitterness. So the younger daughter knew all along but did not say a word. Instead, she silently endured everything. “Nan Nan, are you suffering?”
“Initially, I was. I do not understand why Sister and I are treated so differently though we are both your daughters. But after a long time, I do not feel anything anymore.”
The more indifferent Qiao Nan was, the more Qiao Dongliang blamed himself. The child had suffered for so long that she was already numb to it. She did not have much affection left for her parents.
No wonder neither did Qiao Nan say a thing nor persuade them to stop each time he quarreled with Old Ding in the recent year.
“Dad, leave for your work. You do not ever need to worry about this again. You still have two years to save up for my sister’s college fees. As for mine, let’s talk again in the future.” At the thought of the Qiao family’s financial situation, Qiao Nan’s head was also in great pain.
Actually, she could really find a vacation job with her current situation, and she would definitely be able to earn more than Qiao Zijin.
However, she did not want it to become a habit for her family. They would think she knew how to earn money and could settle everything on her own. If that was not enough, they might even ask her for money when they met with any financial problems.
She had already had enough of being her mother and Qiao Zijin’s mobile ATM in her previous life.
“Okay, it is finally the summer vacation period. You should rest more too. Don’t always read books, it’s not good for your eyes.” Qiao Dongliang perked himself up. Nan Nan had spared considerable thoughts for him. If he did not get his act together, he did not deserve to be called ‘Dad’ by Nan Nan.
“Old Qiao, you are in quite a good mood today.” When Qiao Dongliang arrived at the factory, his colleagues greeted him with smiles. “How is it? Has the problem been resolved?”
“Is it so obvious?” Qiao Dongliang touched his chin.
“Yes, but you should also know how sharp your brother’s eyes are. Have you settled the issue regarding the money for your daughters’ studies?” The colleague was well aware of Qiao Dongliang’s situation. He knew that Qiao Dongliang had two daughters; both were studying and were only one grade apart from each other.
Education would cost more as it progresses toward its completion.
“My younger daughter’s grades are good and could most probably attend The High School Affiliated to Renmin University of China. If she is eligible, has a good ranking but chose to attend Ping Cheng High School instead, the tuition fees will be waived and she will also receive a scholarship.”
“Really? Your younger daughter is so capable!” The colleague was surprised. “She will rather study in Ping Cheng High School than The High School Affiliated to Renmin University of China. Old Qiao, you are so blessed. No wonder the elderly always say that daughters are like a little jacket. If only that lousy son of mine is more diligent and make me flare up less for his grades, I will consider him filial. At this age, having a son is no better than a daughter.”
“My family’s Nan Nan is quite sensible.”
“But Old Qiao, isn’t your elder daughter from The High School Affiliated to Renmin University of China as well? Why didn’t she do the same previously? If she also did that and entered Ping Cheng High School, then your two daughters’ high school education would be free of charge. When they are in college, money will flow out like running water; there will be more expenses than earnings. One should save as much as possible during the high school days.”
Qiao Dongliang’s expression changed. “My elder daughter is not as considerate as my younger one.”
Rather than helping him save money, Zijin spent all the money in the family instead. Only then did she have the opportunity to study in The High School Affiliated to Renmin University of China.
Nan Nan had the opportunity to enter The High School Affiliated to Renmin University of China, but she would rather attend Ping Cheng High School in order to save money. Zijin did not meet the mark, yet insisted on entering the school.
Comparing the two daughters, Qiao Dongliang became a little apprehensive.
Raising children was akin to preparation for old age. As he did not have a son, he wanted to take in a son-in-law for Zijin so that she could remain in the family. However, with that character of hers, could he rely on her in his old age?
Looking at the current situation, Nan Nan was obviously more filial than Zijin.
“I see. But it is already good enough. Both your daughters are cut out for studies. For you to have one that is so sensible is also a blessing. Having raised such a daughter is much less worrying than having a son.” Patting Qiao Dongliang’s shoulders, the colleague went back to his work.
His colleague’s words pulled the strings in Qiao Dongliang’s heart and triggered a thought. He secretly assessed this possibility.
If he really had to pick a daughter to remain by his side, he would certainly pick a better one—one that was more capable than a son.
When they were young, Zijin seemed bubblier than Qiao Nan. She also had a sweet tongue and was active in interacting with others.
But looking at the current situation, although Nan Nan was often silent, she was very clear-minded and able to assess what was right and wrong.
Qiao Nan did not know that the plan she had decided long ago would change Qiao Dongliang’s mind. To save the tuition and miscellaneous fees, she really did not want to attend The High School Affiliated to Renmin University of China. Most importantly, she wanted to stay further away from Qiao Zijin to avoid being plotted against and bullied by her again.
Never did she expect that Qiao Zijin also had the same thoughts. She unknowingly granted a huge favor to Qiao Nan and allowed Qiao Nan to mercilessly gain a strong foothold in Qiao Dongliang’ heart, establishing the image of a model daughter with three important virtues: good in studies, life attitude and health.
At this point, Qiao Dongliang only had one thought in his mind. If he wanted to raise a daughter, he would prefer to have one like his younger daughter.
Qiao Nan, who was still at home, was stunned as she stared at the empty house.
It was really rare that Qiao Zijin left the house earlier than her since the vacation started.
There was no one at home. Did she still need to revise at the Zhai’s residence?
“Is anyone at home?” Before Qiao Nan could decide on whether she was going to the Zhai’s residence, she heard a stranger’s voice coming from the door.
“Who’s that?!” Qiao Nan’s sense of alert heightened. She did not dare to just open the door for anyone.
Qiao Nan walked to the side of the window and looked out. She saw a big, tall blurry figure and was puzzled. Who was this?
When Qiao Nan vaguely saw the man’s facial features, which she found slightly familiar, she realized who the person was. “It is him. Why did he come?”