Yi Tu gritted his teeth and clenched his pale hands. Yi Tu didn’t make a sound or defend himself while Hao Yan Che whipped him.
Yuan Gun Gun held onto Hao Yan Che’s arm.
‘Che, don’t hit,’ Yuan Gun Gun pleaded.
Hao Yan Che pushed Yuan Gun Gun’s hands away, and continued to whip Yi Tu.
Yuan Gun Gun knelt at Hao Yan Che’s feet, and she held onto his leg.
‘Che, don’t hit,’ Yuan Gun Gun said. ‘You’re going to kill big brother Yi Tu. Che, I’m begging you don’t hit big brother Yi Tu.’
‘Move out of the way,’ Hao Yan Che said. ‘Later it’s your turn.’
Hao Yan Che whipped Yi Tu’s ear. Yuan Gun Gun let go of Hao Yan Che’s leg, and she knelt in front of Yi Tu to protect Yi Tu. Yi Tu hugged Yuan Gun Gun and protected her from Hao Yan Che’s whip.
Hao Yan Che immediately pulled back the whip. He was worried it struck his wife.
Yuan Gun Gun freed herself from Yi Tu’s embrace. She knelt in front of Yi Tu and begged Hao Yan Che again.
‘Che, don’t hit big brother Yi Tu,’ Yuan Gun Gun said.
‘What?’ Hao Yan Che said. ‘Is your skin itchy?’
Yuan Gun Gun shook her head.
‘Young master…’ Mrs Chen called.
Hao Yan Che raised the whip. Yuan Gun Gun covered her face, and waited for the whip to strike her. She waited a while, and nothing hit her. She uncovered her face, and didn’t know how Hao Yan Che wrapped the whip around her without hurting her.
Hao Yan Che slung Yuan Gun Gun over his shoulder, and he carried her to their bedroom.
Mrs Chen sighed in relief. She was relieved Hao Yan Che loved Yuan Gun Gun and wouldn’t whip Yuan Gun Gun.
Jia Tu helped Yi Tu stand.
‘How are you feeling?’ Jia Tu asked.
‘I feel loved,’ Yi Tu said sarcastically.
Jia Tu rolled his eyes.
‘How can young master punish you this cruelly?’ Mrs Chen asked. ‘Jia Tu, help bandage Yi Tu’s wounds.’
‘Not all the lashes were painful,’ Yi Tu joked. ‘When Gun Gun was protecting me, young master’s whip felt like a feather scratching me. Young master sure plays favoritism.’
‘Are you young master’s wife?’ Jia Tu asked sarcastically.
In the master bedroom, Yuan Gun Gun was tossed on the bed and still bound.
‘Young master… husband… Che… I’m scared,’ Yuan Gun Gun said. ‘Don’t hit me.’
‘You know how to admit you’re wrong quickly,’ Hao Yan Che said. ‘But you know how to cause trouble quicker.’
‘But I didn’t know my mummy would come here today to take me out,’ Yuan Gun Gun said.
‘Are you saying I misunderstood you?’ Hao Yan Che asked.
‘I’m saying I didn’t intentionally leave,’ Yuan Gun Gun said.
‘There’s never a time you intentionally disobey me,’ Hao Yan Che said. ‘But every time I ask you to do something to keep you safe, my words fly out of your ears.’
‘No,’ Yuan Gun Gun said. ‘I didn’t want to go out. It’s because mummy looked sad, and I agreed to go out with mummy to cheer her up.’
‘Is that why you chose to forget my words and went outside?’ Hao Yan Che asked.
Yuan Gun Gun closed her mouth. She knew her husband was extra angry that day.
‘What do you think would have happened if you didn’t meet Long Liu Bao today?’ Hao Yan Che asked. ‘Don’t you know what would have happened to you if you were kidnapped? How many times have I told you that it’s OK if you’re not smart as long as you listen to me and stay safe? Do my words reach your heart? Or is it if I don’t let you do something, it makes you want to defy me?’
Hao Yan Che thumped the bed a millimetre from Yuan Gun Gun. The rope flew off Yuan Gun Gun’s body. Yuan Gun Gun jumped off the bed and hid in a wardrobe.
‘Come out,’ Hao Yan Che said.
‘I know I was wrong,’ Yuan Gun Gun said. She whimpered in the wardrobe. ‘Don’t hit me.’
‘Come out,’ Hao Yan Che said. ‘Don’t make me say it a third time.’
Yuan Gun Gun opened the wardrobe doors. She hid in the corner behind clothes, and looked pitifully at her husband.
Hao Yan Che carried Yuan Gun Gun outside the wardrobe.
‘Don’t forget Yi Tu was punished because of you,’ Hao Yan Che said. ‘If you don’t want the people around you that you care about be punished then you need to be good. Understand?’
Yuan Gun Gun nodded her head, and Hao Yan Che wiped her tears.
‘Che, the truth is big brother Yi Tu didn’t do anything wrong,’ Yuan Gun Gun said. ‘Big brother Yi Tu made me promise not to leave while he went to buy food for me. I didn’t listen to him. I went out to eat lunch with mummy. I thought I would be back home soon. I didn’t think those scary men would capture me and mummy. They hit me. I was really scared. I didn’t want to die, because I haven’t given birth to your baby yet.’
End of Chapter 138