Chapter 47 - Nora's Mother's Secret
Nora looked around the place after she entered.
The Quinn School of Martial Arts was located in the heart of New York. The fact that they could take up such a large building for their martial arts gym in a place like this went to show just how deep and rock-solid a background the Quinn School of Martial Arts had.
The disciples in the gym were divided into several classes and were currently shouting energetically as they trained. Which part of it even looked like the 'withered and dying out' state that the old man had claimed it was?
Thus, upon hearing him trying to trick her again, Nora picked at her ears and said, "Tell me what the secret is and I'll decide after that."
Quinn was at a loss for words.
Everyone else was begging to be taken as disciples, so why was it simply so difficult for him to find a successor? He had finally found that woman's daughter after so much trouble and on top of that, she was even a talented girl, yet all she did was sleep!
Fortunately, these two children inherited her good physique.
Quinn's gaze flicked over to Cherry and he thought of Pete, who was in the martial arts gym, again.
To be honest, it was true that the Quinn School of Martial Arts' style suited boys better. After all, there was no one else who would be as crazy talented as little Nora.
After weighing the pros and cons, he suddenly realized that taking Pete as his disciple might actually seem like a better deal? And a safer one?
Thus, Quinn coughed and said, "Forget it, I'm not telling you anymore."
Nora just knew this would be the case. After that, she accompanied Quinn to the inner courtyard where he lived.
Quinn was wearing a white martial arts uniform. Despite being advanced in years, he was thin and energetic. Although his voice was rough, there was a sense of careful attentiveness within. If not, he wouldn't have become a master of the art, either.
When the two entered the inner courtyard, Quinn looked at her, stretched out his hand, and gestured at her. "Come on, let's see if you've made any progress lately?"
As he spoke, Quinn went on the offensive.
Nora stepped back quickly and evaded the attack. Then, she counterattacked and started to spar with Quinn.
Every move and every action carried a subdued but sharp and fierce momentum.
The pair had a good time sparring. Toward the end, even Nora broke out in a light sweat and she felt refreshed all over.
After they were done with the sparring, Quinn loosened his wrist muscles and remarked, "To think you can attain a level of skill like this despite slacking off. You're a crazy one indeed. If you practice well, you'll definitely surpass me."
Nora gave an "Oh" and replied dispassionately, "I'll also be able to surpass you when I'm your age."
Quinn was rendered so speechless by her retort that he couldn't be bothered to be mad anymore. Nevertheless, he couldn't help but ask persistently, "You really don't intend to have Cherry pick up martial arts?"
Nora shook her head. "There isn't any need for her."
She had practiced martial arts back then in order to train and strengthen her body. However, Cherry was healthy and had always been strong and sturdy since she was a baby. Besides, Cherry was a little princess. The way her aunt raised her had turned her into a very delicate little girl who couldn't take any bit of discomfort at all.
If Nora made her practice martial arts, she would probably burst into tears and start wailing.
So, why bother?
Seeing how stubborn she was, Quinn could only give up. He complained, "Why do you also have your mom's temperament?"
Nora's interest was suddenly piqued. She asked, "Old man, do you know my mother? Can you tell me about her?"
Quinn stroked his white beard and smiled as he replied, "Your mom… She's a legend in New York!"
Nora was taken aback.
Quinn pointed to the table in the courtyard. Nora followed him and walked over. Although she was cheeky whenever she talked to him, after sitting down, she obediently picked up the teapot and poured him a cup of tea.
Quinn sat on the bench and took a sip from his teacup. "During your mom's younger days, she was amazingly talented and brilliant, and she was known as the most talented woman in New York. At that time, many people proposed to your mom and the Andersons were totally in the limelight. Even the Hunts thought it would be an honor if they could have her marry into the family. Unfortunately, she rejected the number one family in the end. Heh heh, she had backbone, alright. I, for one, don't think much of the Hunts, especially that disciple of Irvin's…"
Quinn and Irvin would always quarrel whenever they met.
Nora listened with great interest. When she noticed that Quinn had finished his tea, she poured him another cup and pressed, "And then?"
Quinn let out a "hmph" and went on. "At that time, I had just achieved some success in my training and made a name for myself in the circle. I wanted to take a disciple and took an interest in your mom. However, she didn't want to and rejected me… After that, she disappeared."
At this point, Quinn stroked his beard and said, "As for why she suddenly ran away from home? I don't know. Some say that she was kidnapped for her beauty and was imprisoned, but that's all nonsense. Given how fierce she was, who would have been able to kidnap her?
"She then came to me two years later. She asked me to take you as my disciple once you're five or six years old, and train your body for you. At that time, she said she was dying."
Quinn sighed and said, "By the time I found you with the information she gave me, she was already gone.
"You don't have to be sad, though. Although your mom only lived for a short period of twenty years, her life was exciting and fulfilling. She led a life well-lived! But if you were to talk about her life, she did indeed let someone down."
A curious Nora sat upright. "Who was it?"
Quinn put down his teacup. "Have you heard of the Smiths from New York?"
Nora shook her head.
All she did every day was sleep, so she didn't know much about wealthy and influential powerhouses like them.
Quinn said, "The Smiths and the Hunts are equally powerful, and they were vying for the title of the number one family back then. The previous head of the Hunts was actually inferior to that fellow from the Smiths. Your mom also got engaged to that Smith fellow in the end, so when I heard that your last name was Smith, I had thought that she was pregnant with his child, but that unfortunately was not the case. Speaking of your father, he's a typical male chauvinist pig. Your mom was so picky her entire lifetime, so why did she marry a scumbag like him in the end?"
Nora had no words to that. She was also just as puzzled.
"We digress. Anyway, the head of the Smiths at that time was a very ambitious man. With him leading the family, the Smiths nearly managed to surpass the Hunts. But when your mom went missing later, he fell into an irreversible slump. This stabilized the situation, and the Smiths and the Hunts became equally ranked again. After that, when Justin Hunt took over the family, he led the Hunts to completely surpass the Smiths and become the veritable No. 1 again."
Quinn shook his head. "That kid from the Smiths is considered your elder. After he retired, he got a nephew of his to lead the Smiths. He also remains unmarried even now."
Nora was astounded by what she heard. "My mom had indeed let him down."
Quinn strongly agreed with her.
Nora suddenly asked, "What's his name?"
Quinn smiled and answered, "Ian!"
She suddenly thought of the company that her mother had left behind. Its name was Idealian Pharmaceuticals…
Then, Quinn spoke again. "By the way, I heard that he became seriously ill recently. It seems that he won't be able to live past this year. What a shame. He was quite the hero back then."
After he finished, Quinn stood up and said, "Alright, you can rest here for a while. I'll go and take a look at what the two children are doing."
He had spotted Cherry and Pete secretly meeting up just now. He was itching to hurry up and take Pete as his disciple.
After Quinn left, Nora sat there and thought carefully about her mother's past. However, she suddenly realized something with a start.
The two children?
Who was the other one apart from Cherry?
She stood up abruptly and walked toward the martial arts gym at the front.