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   Chapter 1999 Something Amiss

The Substitute Bride By Mi Lu Characters: 9871

Updated: 2019-12-16 00:16

Try as she might, Sheryl could not stop the curved smile that came to her lips at the sight of Clark and Isla working together so perfectly. She planned to keep up her facade of anger, but even so, she knew that it wouldn't work. Having no other resort, she continued to watch them with a small, resigned smile.

Isla was doing her best to steer clear of the issue. She kept talking to the children about the most mundane of topics, effectively burying the graveness of the matter beneath these, at least for a while.

Sheryl was aware of what Isla was doing. She knew that it was for her sake.

It was as if she found herself at a crossroads. The children knew nothing of the divorce. On the one hand, she wanted to tell them and explain–it was the right thing to do. And yet, she did not know how to begin. How does a mother tell her children that their family was no longer whole? No matter what words she used, it would all go back to the same thing: their home was broken. And now, here was Isla, coming to her rescue, delaying the inevitable shattering of their peace.

Isla knew the conflict that was eating at Sheryl's insides. She had two reasons behind her actions: the first one being that Clark already knew, and the second was a matter of timing. She did not think that telling them now would be good.

After Isla's persistent waylaying, Sheryl did not attempt try to bring up the matter again.

All was well. The two women played with the kids for a while after dinner, and for a moment, the heavy burdens were forgotten, with the two of them carefully bearing the delicate balance of the house. Soon enough, the kids succumbed to the contentment of sleep, and Isla followed Sheryl to the living room.

"Joan, it is getting late. Go and get some rest," Sheryl said, feeling apologetic at the sight of Joan still waiting for them.

"Alright, Miss Xia. Then, I will be going back to my room. Please let me know if you need anything. Good night," Joan gave Sheryl a small smile and made her way to her bedroom.

The moment she left, Sheryl looked Isla straight in the eye.

Her gaze pierced through the other woman with such intensity that it created in Isla a growing awkwardness. Unconsciously, she touched a hand to her head and smiled at Sheryl. "What?" she asked, feigning ignorance.

Sheryl's gaze remained fixed on her despite her visible discomfort. "You did that on purpose, right? Why did you stop me from telling the kids?" The children were young, but they were entitled to the truth. She could not keep it a secret forever.

"Sher, do you really think this is for the best?" Isla reasoned, meeting Sheryl's eyes.

Sheryl fell silent at the question. Truth be told, she did not know the answer herself.

Indeed, was it really for the best? Was the truth always absolute?

She had already felt confused. Now, in the face of Isla's question, it was as if her doubts were doubled.

And then, there was also

hesitated for some moments before she answered. "I'm shopping with my friends. Is something the matter?"

"No, nothing important. I just wanted to know when you will come back." The call ended abruptly after his reply. Charles did not say anything more as he heard that Melissa was with her friends and hung up right away.

The end of the phone call left Melissa feeling confused. She did not know why he suddenly called her, but one thing was for sure–it was not good.

It was dinnertime when Melissa finally arrived at the Dream Garden.

Their meal was heavy with silence. Charles raised his eyes to look at her on some instances, but otherwise remained silent. He simply continued to eat his dinner with an unreadable face.

This cold silence from him had all but confirmed Melissa's earlier inkling. Something was amiss.

She tried coaxing him to talk throughout dinner, but was met with passive responses of "Hmm…" or "Ah..."

After a while, Melissa stopped trying altogether. Clearly, Charles was in no mood for conversation.

She was on the edge of her seat. After dinner, she headed straight to the stairs, wanting to flee on the spot. However, she was stopped by Charles.

"Mother, please come to my study later," he said, providing no further explanation. Charles walked straight towards his study after he spoke to her.

Melissa could only stare at his back. No doubt, something was wrong, but what? She could not figure it out. Hurrying downstairs, she immediately went to Nancy. "What happened?" she asked.

"I don't know, Madam. Is there something wrong?" Nancy grew confused as she saw Melissa's troubled expression.

"Nothing. Charles just seems a bit strange today. Did he say anything to you when he called me earlier?" Melissa pressed further. She was unable to relax at this situation.

Nancy shook her head in response. But, as Melissa was about to ascend upstairs, she stopped her, remembering something all of a sudden.

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