Chapter 185 - Cherry Enters The Grand Manor
His question stunned Joel. "What?"
Pete glanced at a cowering Mia and said sincerely, "She likes dancing very much. Restricting a child's hobbies and interests is not something that a good father does."
Seeing that Joel's expression had tensed up and that he wasn't speaking, Tanya beckoned to Pete and said, "Come on down now."
Pete hopped off the car.
The two of them entered the Andersons' villa hand in hand.
The car door slowly closed as they disappeared at the door. When the car started once more, Joel finally looked at Mia.
He beckoned to Mia, who went over to him docilely at once. She tried to please him and said cautiously, "Mia doesn't like dancing, Daddy…"
Her eyes flickered as she spoke, and there was a bit of panic in them.
Joel's heart ached for some reason. He asked, "Was it your mother who forbade you from learning how to dance, Mia?"
Mia nodded, but then shook her head again. In the end, she lowered her head and said uneasily, "Mommy said that Daddy hates someone who dances, and told me not to learn to dance. Don't worry, Daddy, Mia won't dance!"
Her words made Joel's eyes widen in shock.
Joel had always wanted to know Mia's interests and preferences while she was growing up, but he found that everything that the girl liked to eat and play with were all things that he liked.
He had always thought that she had inherited those traits from him.
Little did he expect that they were actually all a result of Hillary's training?
Joel's expression darkened. "Daddy doesn't dislike dancing."
Mia's eyes lit up at once, and she asked, "Then can Mia learn to dance with Ms. Turner?"
Joel looked at her. His jaw tensed up as he asked, "Do you like Ms. Turner very much, Mia?"
Mia gave him a timid smile and replied, "Yeah."
She lowered her head and twiddled her thumbs as she said, "Ms. Turner dances really beautifully, yeah. I secretly watched her a few times. She also really likes to smile. I like her very much… But Mommy doesn't like Ms. Turner…"
She looked rather depressed at this point. Then, she added, "Besides, Ms. Turner also doesn't like Mia."
The disappointed girl said, "She refused to teach me today."
Tanya had refused to teach her… It must be because she really didn't want to have anything to do with him, right?
Joel's long, slender fingers balled up slightly, and the look in his eyes turned even frostier than before. He rubbed Mia's head gently. After a short silence, he said, "It's okay. I'll think of something if you want to learn dancing."
At the Andersons'.
Nora had just come out of the bath when Pete got home. The woman, who was wearing a silk nightgown, let out a lazy yawn and collapsed onto the bed.
Pete greeted her. "Hi, Mommy."
Nora waved and said, "Yeah. Do your homework yourself."
Pete went to the study after that. Nora was about to go to bed when her cell phone suddenly rang. Cherry's young and tender voice rang out on the phone when she answered the call.
"My dearest Mommy, have you found out where Sponsor Grandpa is?"
They had been chatting on Messenger for more than a month. Their spark of friendship had been getting stronger and stronger, but their chat had been inactive the whole day the day before.
Why hadn't Sponsor Grandpa come online yet today?
Cherry was panicked.
As though her actions were right and justified, Nora replied, "Oh. I forgot about it."
Cherry sighed. "Then are you willing to look him up for me now, Mommy?"
"No, I'm not."
Cherry was so mad that her little chest was heaving up and down. She silently told herself that she was her biological mother… She could only grin and bear with it and ask, "Then when will you be free to look him up for me?"
Nora raised her eyebrows and replied, "When I wake up, I guess. Alright, I'm hanging up!"
She was really sleepy now.
Beep… beep… beep…
The disconnected tone made Cherry's heart go cold. Her little shoulders drooped as she looked up at the big villa in front of her, on the brink of tears.
She was staying with her father at the Hunts' family home at the moment.
The family home was actually a manor.
By right, since Justin was the head of the Hunts, he should have been living in the manor. However, because the Hunts were all living together, this meant that his second uncle's family was also living there. Moreover, there was also that incident with the elderly Mrs. Hunt previously. Thus, Justin had taken Pete with him and resided elsewhere instead.
As Justin had taught his second uncle's family a good lesson and also gotten something on them after they made that mistake, they had become much more well-behaved and didn't dare to come over anymore. Coupled with the fact that the two of them were staying in the main house, this meant that Cherry still hadn't met anyone from the Hunts yet, even though it had been two days since they moved back.
In the midst of her thoughts, Justin strode into the room. He looked down at her and asked gently, "There's a family dinner tonight. Do you want to join them?"
A family dinner?
Cherry loved lively places the most.
Moreover, several of her elders would also be there, which meant that she would gain a few more people that doted on and loved her. Thus, she nodded and replied, "Yeah, I wanna go!"
Justin smiled at her. Had it been his son instead, he definitely wouldn't have wanted to go. As expected, his daughter's personality was different. She was much livelier and more cheerful than his son.
He bent over, picked up Cherry with one arm, and carried her downstairs.
The Hunts hosted a family dinner every month. All the Hunts were required to attend it as long as they were in New York—this was a rule in the family.
By the time they went down to the main living room, the spacious living room was already full of people.
His second uncle, Roger Hunt, sat quietly in the corner.
Roger's son, Fatty, was playing with his cell phone with his head down. Apart from them, the other Hunts in the family were also present. The elderly Mrs. Hunt had already been discharged from the hospital and was currently seated on the chair next to the master seat.
The master seat belonged to the head of the family.
The moment Justin came down, all the Hunts stood up. Even if they were his elders, they were still required to show the head of the family courtesy.
Mrs. Hunt, who was the oldest there, said, "You're here, Justin."
Justin nodded and greeted his grandmother. Then, as if he was teaching his child manners—even though he was, in fact, giving his daughter a reminder—he said, "Say hi to your Great-Grandma, Pete."
Cherry looked at Mrs. Hunt eagerly.
So, was she the Great-Grandma who'd had a fall some time back, causing her brother to be accused of pushing her?
Mrs. Hunt was also looking at her.
She had come to know what had happened after she regained consciousness after the operation. The old lady had felt rather distressed that her son and his family had used her against a child.
Pete was not like other children; he was mildly autistic and didn't like to talk.
After that incident, the relationship that they had built after so much effort must be almost all gone by now, right?
Mrs. Hunt heaved a sigh at the thought and looked at Cherry cautiously. Knowing that her great-grandson probably didn't dare to approach her anymore, she said regretfully, "Never mind… Let's not make things difficult for the child anymore!"
"Yeah, that's right! Don't make things difficult for Pete anymore. He has mild autism, you know!" said Raymond Hunt, Justin's second uncle. He sounded as if he was echoing Mrs. Hunt, but in truth, he was embarrassing Pete in front of all the other Hunts. He added, "He doesn't like talking!!"
How could a child that didn't talk possibly inherit the company in the future?
Even if he was currently stripped of authority, once Justin became old, wouldn't the company still be theirs in the end anyway?