She said it like that, but upon reflection, it surprisingly made some sense.
That night, Guan Xi had a dream. In the dream, the biological daughter returned, and Guan Xi was kicked out of the house with nothing to her name.
In order to survive, she rushed to Jiang Suizhou's home and sold the high-fashion clothes and various designer items that she had received as a girlfriend. She exchanged them for a large sum of money.
In her dream, she gleefully held the money and lived a lavish life. However, upon waking up and staring at the ceiling, she suddenly remembered something terrifying.
That was, she had almost never bought anything for Jiang Suizhou!!!
What the heck?! Was she really that stingy? How had she never spent any money on this dog of a man?!
Guan Xi earnestly tried to recall.
Wait, she remembered that she had given him cufflinks once before. But that time, when he opened the gift, he simply said it was so-so, which infuriated her.
Yes! After that time, she stopped giving him presents because she felt that he didn't appreciate her taste.
So, it wasn't her fault!
It was already noon; Jiang Suizhou had already left.
Guan Xi got up from the bed and went to take a shower. When she came out, her phone on the bedside table rang. It was her good friend, Lang Ningyi.
She answered the call while walking out of the room, "Morning."
"Morning? It's already noon!"
Lang Lingyi asked, "Did you sleep at Jiang Suizhou's place last night?"
"Where else would I have been?"
"Alright," Lang Lingyi lowered her voice, "Is he with you right now?"
"No, he left early in the morning. I heard him say he had a business trip today, so he should be on a plane by now."
Lang Ningyi breathed a sigh of relief, "Then, I'm coming to your place. We need to talk."
Guan Xi sat on the couch and said, "No need. Find a place to go out for lunch."
Jiang Suizhou was extremely particular about this; he didn't like it when she brought other people to his house.
Lang Ningyi agreed, "Alright, I'll send you the address in a bit."
Guan Xi hung up, picked out an outfit from the closet, and applied makeup meticulously. Then, she went down to the garage and drove off in one of the cars Jiang Suizhou kept there.
Lang Ningyi chose a restaurant they often frequented, and when Guan Xi arrived, her friend was already there. She quickly pulled her to sit down and whispered, "Are you going to tell Jiang Suizhou about these matters?"
Guan Xi looked at her in surprise, "How could I?"
Lang Ningyi said, "That's good. You absolutely can't tell him about this."
"Rest assured, I haven't gone insane."
She and Jiang Suizhou were originally bound together because of their compatible social status and shared interests. If the Jiang family were to find out that she wasn't the real Guan family heiress, well... nobody could predict how things might unfold.
"Regardless of whether that girl returns or not, in the eyes of outsiders, you are still Guan Xi, only now you have a sister," Lang Ningyi assured her.
"I know, I'm just..."
"Just afraid of gradually losing your position," Lang Ningyi said.
Guan Xi looked at Lang Ningyi for a moment. Lang Ningyi continued, "I've known you for many years, yet I am still puzzled by your character. In the past, anyone who dared to snatch things from you would have their lives torn apart by you. But now, you're trying to snatch your parents' wealth and assets, and it seems like you have almost no chance of success."
Guan Xi's face turned darker, "Can you speak a little more pleasantly?"
"Now is the time for pleasant words?!" Lang Ningyi said, "Let me tell you, maintaining your position and not getting ignored by your parents is relatively easy. You just need to keep Jiang Suizhou close. Oh, and it's not enough to just keep him close; you need to pull him closer."
"Then, being his girlfriend is not enough. You should just get a marriage certificate with him."
Guan Xi immediately protested, "It's impossible. We agreed that we wouldn't get married before I turn twenty-eight."
Lang Lingyi said, "No, it's not about that. If you're planning to get married anyway, why not do it earlier? Besides, you know how much your parents love Jiang Suizhou. You don't want to be completely ignored by them, or worse, have a public scandal one day and be gossiped about by those sycophantic women. You need to have some leverage. Look, if you marry Jiang Suizhou, even if you were to unluckily lose your status as the Guan family's heiress, you would still be part of the Jiang family as their daughter-in-law. Who could look down on you then?"
After mingling with such families and social hierarchies for a long time, one would see that the world was driven by mixed interests, and having power and influence was paramount.
Guan Xi stayed silent for a while, propping her chin with her hand, "You're right, but—"
"Remove but," Lang Lingyi interrupted, "Your parents are businesspeople; they're more calculating than you think. You and Jiang Suizhou have collaborated on various matters involving both families, and your parents profited a lot from it. As long as you stay with Jiang Suizhou, you're their cash cow. Tell me, have you ever seen anyone neglect a cash cow?"
Guan Xi gave Lang Ningyi a glare and was about to say that her parents had been very good to her all along, pampering her all the way. How could they treat her as a mere cash cow?
But as she opened her mouth, she remembered the look in her mother's eyes when she spoke about her biological daughter.
Guan Xi fell silent again.
At least a cash cow could still provide financial benefits.
If she lost this advantage, would she still be able to live without worries in the Guan family? Would she still have a place in the company's future? What if the biological daughter didn't like her? Would her parents marginalize her?
Just thinking about her potential future, where she might have to bow and scrape to that girl, sent shivers down Guan Xi's spine.
"What you're saying is..." Guan Xi downed the red wine in her tall glass, "I need to improve my relationship with Jiang Suizhou, yes, build a strong relationship with him. I need to make my parents feel that I'm extremely important, that they'd suffer a massive loss without me!"
"Exactly! Don't worry. Even though you currently have the script of a female supporting character in a novel, I'm on your side!"
Guan Xi choked on her drink, "What?"
Lang Ningyi said, "A female supporting character script, your situation is something I've seen a lot in the novels I read. After the poor female lead reclaims her position, the female supporting character resorts to all kinds of scheming to maintain her status. But don't worry, you won't end up as miserable as the second female lead in those stories!"
After finishing the meal with a sullen face, Guan Xi left the private dining room. Since she had some wine, she intended to call a designated driver. She had just opened the app when someone called her name from behind.
Turning around, she saw a group of young men and women coming from the hallway. Among them were two people she was very familiar with: her uncle's son and daughter, Wei Xiuyang and Wei Zihan.
Guan Xi felt an instant aversion to Wei Zihan, and the feeling was mutual. As soon as Wei Zihan saw her, she didn't even give her a sidelong glance as she headed straight for the exit.
These two had been at odds since childhood, with a long history of resentment between them.
However, Guan Xi got along well with Wei Xiuyang, making her wonder how two siblings from the same mother could have such different personalities.
The one who had just called her was Wei Xiuyang. He walked up to her and asked, "You were eating here today too?"
Guan Xi kept her head down, fiddling with her phone, and replied with a simple En.
Wei Xiuyang glanced at her phone and remarked, "Calling a designated driver? You've been drinking?"
"No need to call one; I'll give you a ride back."
Guan Xi glanced in the direction Wei Zihan had walked off, "Doesn't your sister need you to drive her too?"
"No, she drove here herself," Wei Xiuyang gave her a sidelong look. "Besides, you're also my sister."
Guan Xi's hand, holding the phone, paused. While it had never bothered her before, she now felt a bit disheartened realizing that this brother had no blood relation to her.
A few minutes later, Guan Xi got into Wei Xiuyang's car.
"Go to Jialin Garden."
Wei Xiuyang reached out to fasten his seatbelt, "Are you going to see Jiang Suizhou?"
Guan Xi replied, "He's not home today."
"So why are you going to his place? Why not go home?"
Guan Xi, gazing ahead with her head propped up, said lazily, "Why do you care so much?"
Wei Xiuyang furrowed his brow, casting a sideways glance at her.
She was probably a bit tipsy, her eyes glazed with intoxication. At the moment, she languidly tilted her head, and the hand propping her head caused her sleeve to slide down, revealing her delicate wrist, which looked exceptionally white in the car's lighting.
Wei Xiuyang averted his gaze and started the car, "Why don't you break up with him?"
Guan Xi retorted, "Why should I break up with him?"
"You've been together for several years, but does he really like you that much?"
Guan Xi glared at him, "Wei Xiuyang, do you believe that I'll punch you right now?"
Wei Xiuyang replied, "I'm just saying as to is. You're the only daughter of Aunt and Uncle. If you don't want to, they won't force you to marry anyone. You don't have to marry Jiang Suizhou for all these messy business interests."
Guan Xi's hand trembled slightly. The only daughter...
That was no longer the case.
"Are you even listening to me?"
Guan Xi turned away, feeling somewhat frustrated, "You don't understand."
She couldn't be without Jiang Suizhou now.
An army can be raised in a thousand days, but it takes only one day to use it. Jiang Suizhou, that guy, needed to be used.
Break up? Break what up? Even if a meteor struck the Earth, she would walk hand in hand with Jiang Suizhou into a new era!
Later, Guan Xi and Wei Xiuyang parted ways, but she had gotten used to his temper.
Her cousin, Wei Xiuyang, was actually the same age as her, only a few months younger, but she had always been the one to take the lead. They were classmates throughout junior and senior high school. Over the years, Wei Xiuyang had never seen eye to eye with Jiang Suizhou, but she had her share of the blame for that.
When they were kids, she often spoke ill of Jiang Suizhou in front of Wei Xiuyang, and he ended up being influenced by her words. But after Wei Xiuyang developed a strong aversion to Jiang Suizhou, she ironically ended up with him.
So, it wasn't surprising that Wei Xiuyang was annoyed by this situation.
The next day, Guan Xi woke up early.
She had spent the night contemplating and felt that she needed to forget the horrible memory of the time she gave a gift to Jiang Suizhou but was left disappointed by his reaction. She decided to be a perfect five-star girlfriend, showing affection and care; when he returned from his business trip, she would surprise him with gifts to deepen their relationship which hadn't progressed much in almost three years.
If possible, she hoped that not too long from now, he'd happily return home one day, grab his household registration booklet, and go to the Civil Affairs Bureau with her.
Of course, this was a five-star difficulty task, and she didn't have high hopes.
Jiang Suizhou's flight was scheduled to arrive at 6:00 PM, so he would probably be home around 7:00 PM.
Before that, Guan Xi had called a few people to help her "beautify" the living room and the path to the living room, with flower petals, balloons, candles – nothing was left out.
Additionally, she had chosen twenty-eight gifts that had been neatly wrapped and stacked on the coffee table, forming a small mountain.
At 6:30, the helpers left, and Guan Xi sat on the couch and poured herself a few glasses.
As the alcohol started to take effect, she gazed at everything in her house, feeling overwhelmed by her own effort.
Wow, what kind of heavenly girlfriend was she? If she were a man, she would marry herself!!
Guan Xi had told Jiang Suizhou before he boarded his flight that she would be waiting for him at home. So, he returned right on time at 7:10 PM.
She hastily put down her wine glass and stood up.
Jiang Suizhou was entering his security code while on the phone, and he had no idea that he would encounter this scene when he opened the door.
The floor was covered in flower petals, forming a path from the entrance to the living room. Along the sides of the petal path were neatly placed lit candles, and at the end of the path, there were floating balloons and a pile of gift boxes. Guan Xi stood there, gently smiling at him.
Jiang Suizhou's eyes slightly paused. He ended the call with the person on the other end, "Let's continue this conversation tomorrow," before hanging up.
He stood in place for a moment, somewhat perplexed, "You—"
"Are you surprised, or should I say, pleasantly surprised?" Guan Xi stood in place, a warm smile on her face, "Today is our anniversary, and I thought, in the past, you've always given me gifts. So this time, I should express my love for you."
Jiang Suizhou, with rare confusion in his eyes, asked, "What anniversary?"
Guan Xi extended a finger and calculated it quickly, "Today is the 880th day of our kissing anniversary. Don't you remember?"
What a lovely day.
"Doesn't matter if you don't remember; what's important is my intention," Guan Xi hiccupped slightly, shamelessly smiling, "Jiang Suizhou, I love you, love you so much I can't live without you."
After a few glasses of wine and a few dishes, she had become like this.
Jiang Suizhou raised an eyebrow slightly, with a hint of a smile in his eye, "Guan Xi, have you fallen in love with another limited-edition bag?"