A car engine firing up sounded. Ran Feng Ge looked out from the second floor window and watched as Su Yi Mo drove away from the mansion. Absentmindedly, Ran Feng Ge seated himself at the piano, his fingers dancing across the keys to play an impromptu song.
His eyes were looking but not seeing as nostalgia filled him, bringing back memories.
Why a body double…?
If there had been a choice, who would willingly reject an ordinary life? He was born into a good family; he had the chance to willfully spend his days lazing around like a typical second-generation rich young master.
However, life doesn’t always follow the path we would choose for ourselves.
Ran Feng Ge’s mind became preoccupied with things that transpired a long time ago.
When he was younger, he took his mother’s last name. The Ran family was renowned and had a good reputation; his maternal grandfather was a high level official in G City and both of his uncles had military backgrounds. His mother having been the youngest child, was pampered greatly by everyone else while her son, Ran Feng Ge, reaped the benefits. He was well-loved by his maternal grandfather to the extent that the old man made the decision for him to have the family name.
Ran Feng Ge’s father had no choice but to obey whatever the elder Ran said.
While growing up in the Ran household, Ran Feng Ge always accompanied his grandfather and uncles, learning all sorts of practical skills from them while his socialite mother taught him how to play the piano, how to dance and all sorts of skills deemed necessary for the upper class.
Ran Feng Ge had always been smart as a child. He was able to grasp knowledge quickly and on top of that, he was incredibly quick-witted. His cute antics were always making the people around him laugh thereby earning their adoration.
As far as he could remember, Ran Feng Ge never saw his father. His mother would always tell him things about his father though. How his father was young, very competent, and was made to do great things. When his father first married into the family, everyone said he did so to benefit from marrying into a powerful family. In actuality, his parents were very much in love. After Ran Feng Ge was born, his father made the decision to continue expanding his business and knowledge overseas. Unfortunately, his grandfather and uncles forbade his mother from following her husband out of love. Therefore, both mother and child were left behind in the care of the Ran family.
Everything changed the year Ran Feng Ge turned eight.
That day, he had just arrived home from school when he found their house in a mess. His grandfather appeared to have aged ten years and both his uncles were slumped in the corner sighing deeply while muttering curses under their breaths.
His mother looked petrified as she sat unmoving like a statue, staring blankly into space.
Little Ran Feng Ge watched with his soccer ball in one hand as uniformed men came by to slowly remove all the things from his home.
Both his uncles were framed and sentenced to jail while his grandfather fell ill and was hospitalized. Soon after, his mother fell into depression. Ran Feng Ge was still too young to fully comprehend what had happened. How was it that in a span of one night, everything had changed for the worse?
He remembered that as his uncles were being taken away by the police, both of them were glaring and cursing at him, calling him an illegitimate child. Then they cursed at his father who was never around, calling him an ungrateful scheming bastard. Lastly, they scolded his mother for causing her own family’s destruction.
Everything that was before– the family bond that seemed unbreakable, the unending love and concern– disintegrated in the face of money.
In a single blow, the Ran family was destroyed. Everything was liquidated and confiscated by the government, both his uncles were thrown in jail, and both his grandfather and mother were confined in the hospital. They were in a situation where even paying for the hospitalization fees was difficult.
It was then that Ran Feng Ge finally understood. His so-called ‘father’ had another wife and kids overseas. Him marrying into the family, the love between his mother and father– everything was just an elaborate lie!
His father’s only intention had been to make use of the Ran family’s power to build his own empire and then to exact revenge on said family.
This was because a long time ago, the elder Ran had done something that caused the An family, his father’s family, to crumble into nothing.
Yes. The An family. His ‘father’s’ last name was An.
Even though Ran Feng Ge wanted to try to raise some funds to pay for both his grandfather’s and his mother’s hospital bills, there was only so much an eight year old child could do.
First of all, not a single place in the world would hire a child laborer. It was fortunate that his school took pity on him and helped him by allocating a small subset of donation to him as allowance.
Another thing is, Ran Feng Ge was brought up as a pampered child. He had never been through anything his family could not weather for him. Other than some measly practical skills he learned from his grandfather and uncles, he only knew how to sing, dance and play the piano– all of which were useless in real life.
His mother was a very sheltered woman. After finding out that she was in fact the third party in a relationship, the man she had loved had a legitimate wife and children, and to add fuel to the fire, that man had been the one to destroy her family, she could no longer take it. Every time she looked at Ran Feng Ge, she was reminded of the fact that he was that man’s son, a harbinger of doom; she should never have given birth to this devil. In addition to beating him whenever she could, every word that came out from her mouth now was to curse at Ran Feng Ge.
It was afterwards that the doctor finally diagnosed his mother as having been traumatized to the point that her mental capability was affected.
In the beginning, his grandfather didn’t blame him for everything that went wrong. It all changed though when he found out his precious daughter had gone insane because of Ran Feng Ge. Whenever he looked at his grandson now, there was a sense of loathing and isolation.
Deep down, the elder Ran knew that Ran Feng Ge was blameless– this child was actually the most innocent one of all. Seeing his daughter’s suffering, however, he could not help but put all the blame onto the little boy.
Ran Feng Ge may still be very young but he was very bright. His observational skills drastically improved because of everything that had happened. After seeing the change in attitude his most beloved grandfather had towards him, little Ran Feng Ge could not help it when his heart steeled itself.
Hiding in the bushes near the hospital, little Ran Feng Ge hugged his knees to his chest and cried the entire night. When exhaustion finally hit him, Ran Feng Ge closed his eyes and fell asleep in the same position, his little face wet with tears.
When the sun rose the next day, Ran Feng Ge wiped the remnants of his tears off his face and continued on his task to find a way to pay for the medical bills.
Walking past the parking garage, Ran Feng Ge eyed a branded luxury car and his eyes twinkled.
Both his uncles were car enthusiasts so they introduced different models and brands to little Ran Feng Ge. At five years old, Ran Feng Ge was already able to recognize a large number of car logos. His uncles had made him a promise then that when Ran Feng Ge grew up, they would buy him the best car available in the world.
Due to this, he was able to recognize the car brand.
The owner of this car must be someone very rich! If I could meet someone rich, then… then grandfather’s and mother’s medical bills can be settled!
Ran Feng Ge immediately made his way towards the car until he caught sight of another car– a black Jaguar.
In the passenger seat of the Jaguar sat a boy who appeared to be of similar age to Ran Feng Ge. With an air of importance and a face full of concentration, the boy held an open laptop computer in his hands, acting so much like an adult.
Ran Feng Ge quickly changed his mind: This one!
He was only a child and so his thinking process was of course childlike. Seeing another child in the car made him consider that the driver of said car would not be driving fast. If Ran Feng Ge were to pretend to be knocked down by this car and if perhaps the other boy saw this, he would be more inclined to get the driver to stop.
Making up his mind, Ran Feng Ge quickly hid himself near the opening of the car garage. He clutched onto his soccer ball tightly, steeling himself before kicking the ball towards the oncoming car as a warning to the driver in an attempt to not let himself actually get hit.
Everything went according to plan.
Upon seeing the ball followed by a child right in front of him, the driver abruptly stepped on the brakes only to see both the ball and the boy disappear under the car.
Ran Feng Ge laid himself down on the ground and shut his eyes, keeping himself as still as possible while tightly holding onto his soccer ball.
It was given to Ran Feng Ge by his beloved grandfather so he could not bear to lose it.
At the sudden stop, the little master inside the car could not do anything but watch as the laptop computer slid off his lap while he jerked forward. He raised his head to look out the window and saw a little boy lying stock still before the car.
The driver had already scrambled out of the vehicle to assess the situation. The little master picked his laptop computer up and placed it carefully on the armrest beside him. He then removed his safety belt and exited the car as well.
Only after seeing that the little boy was unharmed could the driver release the breath he had been unconsciously holding. The only problem was, no matter how much he called, the child would not wake up. The boy seemed to have fainted from the fright.
From the side, the young master could not help the little smirk that formed on his lips as he eyed the boy’s twitching eyelids and the death grip on the soccer ball.
“Young master, please get back inside the car. There is too much traffic here, they might hit you. I will bring him to the hospital first and will be back shortly after.”
“No need. Let’s just take him home with us!” The little young master said, his facial features rearranged into one of seriousness. “There is nothing wrong with him; he simply fainted due to fear. Let’s just bring him home and let him recover there.”
“Understood,” The driver replied as he carried little Ran Feng Ge and placed him across the back seat.
Ran Feng Ge was panicking internally. Should he or should he not open his eyes and declare he was okay? Being taken home by a stranger was not the smartest thing to do, was it?
Once his panic subsided, Ran Feng Ge began to internally process the situation and thought, ‘What could they possibly do with a child?’ This was better anyways; he could go into their house, meet the grownups and see if they were willing to sponsor him with regards to the medical bills.
Ran Feng Ge silently cheered himself up while calming his frantic heart.
In the passenger seat, the little young master stopped playing with his laptop computer. Instead, he turned towards the backseat every now and then to look at the little boy pretending to be asleep. He was very curious as to what this little rascal was planning.
In fact, he actually caught Ran Feng Ge snooping around a while ago, eyeing the cars from the car garage’s entrance. Once the little rascal spotted his car, a look of determination settled upon the boy’s face as though he had made his mind up to do something.
Hmph, looking at things now, it seemed the boy decided to fake an accident. What is his purpose? Blackmail?
What a tricky little liar! See what I will do to you once we get home!
Ran Feng Ge initially pretended to have fainted but because he had spent the majority of the night crying– only managing to sleep right before dawn– and he was lying down in the backseat of a comfortable car driven by a superb driver, it was no surprise that Ran Feng Ge drifted off to sleep.
Even while dreaming, the little brows on Ran Feng Ge’s face were still furrowed and his small lips were tightly pressed together, an expression of pain and indescribable worry etched into his adorable features.
Proofreaders: Jinny, Lyrick