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   Chapter 3 Hypocrisy

Heart Desires: Find You In Love Maze By Meng Xinyu Characters: 11083

Updated: 2020-07-21 00:06

Gregory had grown bored of the silence at the breakfast table; it was time to spice things up. He got up from his chair and slid into the seat next to Elli's, dangling the omelet she had wanted before her eyes. "Alright, open up. Let me feed you. You want the omelet, don't you?

You used to beg me to feed you like this, remember?" With that, he placed the omelet in his mouth and smirked at her.

Elli was furious. She glared at him for a long moment before finally saying, "Are you nuts? Do you know what you're doing? Don't cross the line."

"Keep your voice down. Do you want the servants to see us like this?" Gregory frowned impatiently.

Elli turned a deep shade of red as she trembled all over with humiliation and anger. Her family business was on the line, and her father's medical fees were being paid for by the Mo family. She had to keep her relationship with Gregory a secret; if anyone found out, her family would be ruined forever.

"Be a good girl and behave." There was a tinge of affection in his otherwise icy voice.

Elli frowned. She was caught between a rock and a hard place. Suddenly, her eyes lit up as she hit upon a third option: escape. She rose from her chair, but in her hurry to get away, she lost her balance and fell heavily onto his lap.

"What's this? Are you throwing yourself at me now?"

Elli flushed with embarrassment. She tried to get up, but he wrapped his powerful hands around her waist and held her in place.

The tension between them was palpable.

"Gregory! Have you lost your mind?" Elli was so nervous she hardly knew what she was saying. Paralyzed with fear, she could only sit helplessly on his lap as she tried to get her limbs to function again. Suddenly, she felt a cool breeze on her face, and when she turned to look, he kissed her on the lips.

Ring! The sudden ringtone startled the both of them. Gregory froze, and then let go of her as he nonchalantly answered his phone.

The color returned to Elli's face as she scrambled off his lap. She was finally able to breathe again, but she knew better than to let her guard down. She watched Gregory closely, afraid that he would pick up where he had left off.

After a brief conversation on the phone, Gregory ended the call and put on his suit jacket. It was obvious that he would be leaving the house to attend to other business.

The tension went out of Elli's shoulders as she let out a sigh of relief.

All of a sudden, Gregory whirled around to look at her, and Elli tensed again. He arched an eyebrow at her as the devilish smirk reappeared on his lips. "Be a good girl and wait for me to come back."

With that, he walked out the door without another word.

Come back? Was he planning on continuing? Elli shivered at the thought. She didn't remember Gregory being such a depraved pervert. He frightened her, and she wished she could have the old Gregory back.

Gregory's actions had made her lose her appetite. She called for Alma to clear the plates and went back to her room.

As soon as she was back in her room, Elli reached for her pajamas, fully intending to change out of her dress and catch up on her sleep. Before she could do so, however, Jean walked in.

"Elli, I know you're probably tired, but can you spare a minute? There's something I'd like to discuss with you." Jean had a youthful face for someone her age, but now she looked unnaturally thin and haggard. She looked as if she had aged several years overnight.

Elli put a hand over Jean's shoulder. She didn't know what to say to comfort her mother-in-law, not when Jacob's death was still fresh on their minds. She said gently, "You don't have to ask for my permission, Mom. I'd be honored to hear what you have to say."

She helped Jean over to the edge of the bed, where they both sat wordlessly. The silence was beginning to feel awkward to Elli when Jean finally said, "What do you think about me? Have I treated you well?"

"Yes, of course," Elli answered truthfully.

"What do you think of the Mo family? Have we been good to you?" Jean's eyes narrowed imperceptibly as she skillfully lured Elli into the trap she had prepared. Elli nodded wordlessly in reply, but Jean needed a vow of commitment from her daughter-in-law. She put her hands over Elli's and said, "I want to hear you say it in your own words. Have we been good to you? Be honest with me now."

Elli fidgeted uneasily under her mother-in-law's searching gaze. Had Jean noticed the odd tension between her and Gregory last night?

"Mom, what's wrong? I know Jacob's death was really sudden, and all of us are still reeling from the shock." Elli paused, before adding carefully, "But you have nothing to worry about. I'll take care of you and love you like my own mother. Don't be sad."

"You're so sweet and considerate. I'm so grateful to have you as my daughter-in-law. There's no one else I can trust in the Mo family." Jean pretended to wipe tears from her eyes. After a moment, she sighed and said, "To tell you the truth, I don't think Jacob's death was an accident."

Elli stared at Jean, bewildered. "What do you mean?"

Jean looked at Elli steadily, as if weighing her options. Finally, she said, "I believe that Gregory is responsible for Jacob's death."

"What? That can't be right! Why would he do that?"

"Why not? The Mo family is rich and powerful. Everyone wants a piece of the Mo family fortune. Gregory has only been back a few days, and now Jacob's dead. Does this look like a coincidence to you?" Jean s

aw the dubious look in Elli's eyes, and knew she needed another push. "I know what you're thinking. Gregory is the son of my husband's ex-wife. It doesn't make sense for him to kill Jacob when he's already entitled to the Mo family fortune. But greed has no limits. If Gregory can have the whole pie without having to share it with his brother, well, I'm sure he'd be tempted."

"Mom, I know how you feel, but we don't have any evidence that Gregory did it!" Elli knew Jean had a point, but it seemed irrational to jump to conclusions.

"Oh, we'll see. In any case, the gods have been horribly unfair to my poor Jacob. With Jacob dead, the entire Mo family fortune will be Gregory's one day, and when that day arrives, he'll make our lives a living hell." Jean's tone was calm and indifferent. Suddenly, an odd look came into her eyes as she said without warning, "To be perfectly honest, I know about your relationship with Gregory. I looked into your past before you married Jacob. But I didn't know he was actually my husband's long-lost son until a few days ago. You should stay away from him. I know his type. He's a schemer, and if you don't watch out you'll fall into his trap."

Elli paled. Had Jean misunderstood what was going on with her and Gregory? "Mom, I can explain..."

"You don't have to explain, I believe you. I wouldn't have told you to be on your guard around him if I didn't trust you. I'm just worried about you, Elli."

"Mom, what do we do now? We can't let him take over the Mo family," Elli said anxiously.

Jean thought for a long moment. "Well…"

She trailed off uncertainly.

Elli grabbed her mother-in-law's hands, unable to contain her curiosity. "Mom, what is it? If you have a solution, let's hear it."

Elli knew she was doomed if the Mo family fortune fell into Gregory's hands. He hated her guts, and would never lift a finger to help her or her family.

Jean and Elli were now in the same boat when it came to the Mo family fortune.

There was a sinister curve to Jean's lips, too subtle for Elli to notice. Her voice sounded concerned as she said hesitantly, "I thought about it all night, and I have a plan. But I need your help, and I'm afraid it would be horribly unfair to you."

"Mom, what do you have in mind? Tell me." Elli's face brightened at the thought of a solution. "I'm your daughter-in-law, and I'll willingly do whatever it takes to help you."

"Oh? Is that so?" Jean smiled with satisfaction and relief. She put her hands over Elli's and said earnestly, "There's only one way to keep the family fortune from falling into Gregory's hands. You'll have to have a baby."

Elli stared at Jean, dumbfounded. Jacob was dead. How was she going to have his baby?

"Mom, I only met Jacob once, and that was at the wedding. The accident happened right after that. How am I supposed to have his baby?"

"Oh, you don't have to worry about that. I have everything planned out!" A secretive smile flashed across Jean's kindly face, and was gone before Elli could puzzle it out. "My nephew Pierce is a good candidate. I know it sounds degrading, but if you're willing to sleep with him and have his baby, I'll say that the baby is Jacob's and no one will question me. Once we've secured the family fortune, your family will be safe, and I'll be able to enjoy the rest of my life in peace and quiet. I'll treat your child like my own grandchild. It's a win-win situation for all of us, don't you agree?"

Elli's eyes widened. Had she heard her correctly?

Pierce Cheng? The playboy who spent his days drinking and partying with women? How was he "a good candidate" for anything?

Elli stared at Jean. Had her mother-in-law lost her marbles?

"I want you to think it over carefully. Which is more important to you, your dignity or your parents' company? If we lose the Mo family fortune, your family will be ruined. I won't force you, but I want you to think it over before you decide." The look of obvious reluctance on Elli's face had displeased Jean. Her voice was still warm and gentle, but the lines on her face hardened, and as soon as she finished speaking she abruptly let go of Elli's hands and swept out of the room.

The sound of the door closing made Elli jump. Her mind was still reeling from the outrageous plan Jean had come up with, and she couldn't help wondering if her mother-in-law wasn't really as kind and gentle as she pretended to be. She had said she wouldn't force her into her plan, but it was clear from her tone and sinister implications that Elli had no other choice.

Elli hugged herself. What had she done to deserve this?

She had broken up with Gregory for the sake of her family, and for what? Her husband was dead, her marriage had ended before it had even begun, and now her mother-in-law wanted her to sleep with a playboy and have his baby.

It wasn't fair!

Why were the gods so cruel to her?

It was too much for her. She flopped onto the bed, exhausted. Tears began to stream down her cheeks, but she wiped them away defiantly. She had to be strong. She wasn't going to let her horrible luck defeat her!

'Maybe I should just run away.' The idea came into her mind unbidden, but Elli rejected it at once. Running away was out of the question; her family would be doomed if she ran off.

As she was mulling this over, the door swung open again. Elli sat up quickly, expecting to see Gregory, but it was only Jean with a tray of food.

Elli blinked. Jean had only just left. Why was she back so soon?

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