She only invited Shi Qing. Since Qiao Nan was shameless enough to tag along, she must know her place. How dared she interrupt when they were talking? Had she thought too highly of herself?

Qiao Nan glanced at Shi Qing. She really did not understand. Since Shi Qing knew Qiu Chenxi's temper, why did she bring her here? "The two of you can take your time to talk. Since I am just a guest, I will make a move first."

"Together." Shi Qing, who had been smiling all the while, was not angry. She took her schoolbag and put her hand on Qiao Nan's shoulder, wanting to leave with her.

"Qing Qing, wait a minute. I am asking you out for a meal today!" Qiao Nan could leave, but Shi Qing had to stay.

Shi Qing placed her hand on Qiao Nan's shoulder, refusing to let go. "If Qiao Nan leaves, I will leave with her. If she stays, I will stay as well. Since you asked me out, and not the other way round, I won't stop you if you want to leave."

Qiao Nan, who was dragged along by Shi Qing, glanced at Shi Qing, wondering what she was up to.

Shi Qing lifted her chin, gesturing her to stay if she wanted to know what was going on.

"Qing Qing, are you serious?" Qiu Chenxi stiffened. She felt odd that Shi Qing would bring Qiao Nan along when she only asked Shi Qing out. It turned out that Shi Qing did it on purpose.

Shi Qing touched her face. "Do I look like I am joking?"

Qiu Chenxi relaxed slightly. "Qiao Nan, since you are Qing Qing's good friend, have a seat. Let's have a meal together."

Qiao Nan was not so poor that she could not afford a meal. "No, the two of you are relatives, whereas I am an outsider. Both of you can have a chat. I will go back now."

Shi Qing grabbed Qiao Nan, refusing to let her go. "Don't leave. Qiu Chenxi was just joking with you. It's rare that Qiu Chenxi is willing to treat us to a meal. You have to show due respect for her feelings. If not, just take it that you are accompanying me."

"That's right. Since we know each other, it's not a big deal as it's just a meal. Qiao Nan, take a seat." Qiu Chenxi needed a favor from Shi Qing. Hence, she had to respect Qiao Nan, who was an outsider, as well. If Shi Qing was unhappy, she might leave with Qiao Nan.

Qiao Nan glared at Shi Qing. Since Shi Qing and Qiu Chenxi were out to irritate each other, and she was just an outsider, why did Shi Qing insist that she joined them?

Shi Qing smiled. The reason why Qiu Chenxi came to look for her today had to do with Qiao Nan. She was not an outsider.

Qiu Chenxi ordered several dishes according to Shi Qing's preferences. "Qing Qing, if you feel like having other dishes, feel free to order. You have come to Ping Cheng for such a long time, but I have not treated you to a proper meal. This is to make up for that. We are one family. In the face of difficulties, we must support each other through hardships. You can rest assured that as long as we have time, we can often meet up to chat and have meals together in the future."

Shi Qing ate the dishes and was amused. "It's not easy. I have never had a proper meal at the Qiu family, yet you were able to find out my eating preferences. It seems like you have checked with grandpa."

She was still better than her auntie who bought a stack of cheap clothes to dismiss her.

While Shi Qing and Qiu Chenxi were plotting against each other, Qiao Nan acted as if she was not there and ate her meal.

Although Qiu Chenxi was unhappy that Qiao Nan stayed behind, it was good that she knew her place and did not interrupt their conversation.

Qiu Chenxi thought to herself that Qiao Nan's good scores at school were not for nothing. She knew her limits and to behave herself.

Since Qiao Nan remained silent, Qiu Chenxi talked to Shi Qing as if she was not there. "Qing Qing, I admit that my mom and I have neglected you. But in Ping Cheng, aside from uncle, we are your closest kin. We have upset and hurt you. However, Qing Qing, we are relatives. My mom is uncle's only sister and I'm your only cousin. You have to help me. Since a young age, I have never begged you to help me. This is the only time that I beg you to help me. Please, can you do me a favor?"

Shi Qing, who was happily eating, paused when Qiu Chenxi put on a pitiful act. "What do you want me to help you with?"

Qiu Chenxi was glad that she finally got a response from her. "Qing Qing, do you already know who the woman that Brother Zhai likes is? Did she force you to give up on him? Qing Qing, I have liked Brother Zhai from a young age. The two families have been discussing our marriage. I, I really can't live without Brother Zhai. I can do anything for him. I can give up everything, including my dignity and pride for him. I don't want to live in pain. I want to give another try to fight for my happiness. Qing Qing, since you took the initiative to give up, can you help me?"

One did not allow benefits created by one's own work to accrue to others.

Since Shi Qing had already given up, she should help Qiu Chenxi get such a capable man like Zhai Sheng. She should not let some other women benefit from it.

Qiao Nan's chopsticks halted before she resumed eating.

"One never visits unless they need something. This saying is very true indeed." Shi Qing had a full meal. She knew that Qiu Chenxi had a hidden agenda when she invited her for a meal.

Just like what happened back when Qiu Chenxi coaxed her to come to Ping Cheng, she supposed it was for Brother Zhai as well. "Why should I help you now that I have given up?"

"Because we are relatives. We are sisters. Qing Qing, can you bear to see me being so heartbroken?" Why? She did not need to give her any reason. Brother Zhai was hers originally. She merely wanted Brother Zhai to return to his original owner, which was to return to her side.

In fact, even if she had not made this request, after giving up on Brother Zhai, Shi Qing should have thought of ways to make Brother Zhai return to her side.

Shi Qing had a drink, amused. "Can't bear it? Qiu Chenxi, I can only say that you think too much. The hurt that you felt when you gave up Brother Zhai is equivalent to the pain that I felt back then. It was so painful for me to see you with Brother Zhai." How could she help her love rival gain Brother Zhai's affection? What was Qiu Chenxi thinking? "Qiu Chenxi, do you think that I am without any emotions? Do you think that I will not be upset when both of you are together?"

"How, how could I?" Qiu Chenxi looked guilty. She did not care how Shi Qing felt as long as Zhai Sheng returned to her side. It was not within her consideration.

She did not care about Shi Qing's feelings and was only concerned about herself.

That was why she would find all sorts of reasons to make phone calls to Shi Qing back then, telling her about Zhai Sheng, and that she was blessed to be with such an outstanding man.



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