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732 Lucky Girl

 Gu Nianzhi quietly digested Huo Shaoheng's words and slowly pieced the situation together. "When I went missing in Germany, Gu Yanran told someone I wasn't Gu Xiangwen's biological daughter?" Gu Nianzhi seemed to mutter to herself.

Huo Shaoheng nodded. "Yeah, that's what happened."

"Under what circumstances did she say those things? And then what happened? What goal was she trying to achieve?" Gu Nianzhi's detailed brain began to work again as she asked a series of questions like she was debating in court.

Huo Shaoheng glanced at her with a hint of a happy smile on the corners of his lips as he replied coolly, "I'm not yet sure what goal she wanted to achieve. At the time, my father happened to mention your disappearance in Germany and that we were using the highest specifications to rescue you. She said that you were a lucky girl because even though you weren't Gu Xiangwen's biological daughter, he loves you as much as he loves her..." He told her everything honestly. As expected, he spied a flash of surprise on Gu Nianzhi's face, along with a tinge of disappointment in her eyes. Huo Shaoheng sighed quietly to himself and couldn't help touching her head. "What are you thinking? You have me."

Gu Nianzhi looked down and pressed her lips tightly together. Her full and luscious curvy lips nearly flattened into a thin line to reveal a trace of pink. After a long silence, she finally said, "She thinks that means I'm lucky? What a strange thought. If she really saw me as a sister, shouldn't she have worried about my safety first? She knew that I had disappeared in Germany, and even a national defense department was going to come forward to rescue me. But her first reaction was to say I'm lucky... After that, did she say she blurted it out accidentally, and that she didn't know the military wasn't aware I am the Gu's foster daughter?"

Huo Shaoheng laughed and looked at her with praise. "Yeah, you guessed right."

Gu Nianzhi was sullen for a while, then finally shrugged as she muttered, "Very well, then. I didn't know how to get along with that father and daughter, anyway. This is a good thing." If they were really biologically related, then she still had to constantly stop herself from burning the bridge with them since they could be her only family. Now that she knew she wasn't biologically related to that father and daughter, she couldn't help but feel relieved.

"Then where are my real parents?" Gu Nianzhi murmured to herself and sighed against the window. She mindlessly drew thin lines on the glass, and Huo Shaoheng's heart ached. This was probably the first time he heard Gu Nianzhi mention her real parents. Because Gu Nianzhi lost her memories from before she turned 12 and grew up with Huo Shaoheng and his men, it was almost like she had been with them since she was born. There was no place for her real parents in her daily life. Now she finally wanted to know where they were.

Huo Shaoheng drove quietly as he recalled when Gu Nianzhi was unconscious and once called out, "Dad, Uncle." She told him her dad was Gu Xiangwen, but who was her uncle? If Gu Xiangwen was her foster father, then the only memories in her head were from when she was adopted by the Gu's? Huo Shaoheng felt his eyes get foggy. He thought that he was investigating one thing, but it somehow pointed in an unexpected direction. Also, they had once compared Gu Nianzhi and Xie Qingying's DNA to prove they had a solid biological relationship. As for Xie Qingying's mother, Huo Shaoheng knew that she was Gu Tian and allegedly Gu Xiangwen's younger sister. This was the biggest doubt in Huo Shaoheng's head when he learned Gu Nianzhi and Gu Xiangwen's DNA didn't match. Either Gu Tian also wasn't the Gu's biological daughter, or the Gu Xiangwen they knew wasn't actually the real one. But if Gu Tian wasn't the Gu's daughter either, then why would her daughter be related to Gu Nianzhi? Could there be a biological relation between two generations of foster daughters in the Gu family? What a coincidence... A string of doubts swirled around Huo Shaoheng's head and gradually pointed in a certain direction. They should still verify the authenticity of this Gu Xiangwen.

...

Huo Shaoheng and Gu Nianzhi were both lost in their own thoughts, so they didn't speak the entire way back to campus. It was already noon when they arrived at Gu Nianzhi's dorm building. Huo Shaoheng parked the car and got out. "We haven't had lunch yet. Let's go together."

Not only had Gu Nianzhi not had lunch yet, but she hadn't even had breakfast. She overslept that morning and rushed around to get ready. She didn't have time for breakfast at all, and afterwards, Huo Shao, Zheng, and Chen Lie shocked her twice, so she was already starving. It would have been fine if Huo Shaoheng hadn't said anything, but as soon as he mentioned food, her stomach grumbled.

"You really are hungry." Huo Shaoheng nodded. "Should we go to a Cantonese restaurant or a Hubei one?" Both of them were near B University, so it was very convenient.

Gu Nianzhi shook her head and appeared a little sullen. "I'll just grab something from the cafeteria since I'll be going to Qiqi's house in a bit." Suddenly, Gu Nianzhi recalled she hadn't gotten any gifts for Ma Qiqi's parents yet.

Huo Shaoheng seemed to know what she was thinking. "Then let's have lunch first, and then go to the warehouse supermarket nearby to buy some gifts for Ma Qiqi's parents."

Gu Nianzhi forced a smile. "No thanks. I'm going to put my things down in the dorm and eat something at the cafeteria. I can go to the supermarket near campus to buy the gifts later. You can go back to work. I'm fine."

Huo Shaoheng stared at her for a while more and felt her underlying resistance. He didn't continue insisting. "Ok then, you go ahead. Call me when you get there."

Gu Nianzhi squeezed the cloth bag in her hand and objected. "That's not polite, right? I'll be at someone else's house."

"Ok, suit yourself." Huo Shaoheng took out his phone to check. "I'll be going now." He turned back to the car and didn't seem to linger before quickly starting the car and speeding away. Soon after, he disappeared from Gu Nianzhi's eyes. She didn't know what she was feeling. Turning around to look at the tall graduate students' dorm building, she thought about how she was still an unmarried young woman when she left this morning. But when she returned, she was already a young wife. Although Huo Shaoheng said he would delete all traces of records if she was still unwilling to be with him in three years, that could deceive others, but she would still know the truth. She knew that she had been married. Also, she thought she had already confirmed her past when she left, but now her brain was a total mess when she came back. Shaking her head, Gu Nianzhi headed to the dorm elevator.

...

Opening the door to her dorm, Gu Nianzhi looked up to see Ma Qiqi sitting in the room, chatting with a man. The man heard the door and turned around, his shimmering sultry eyes hinting at a smile. It was He Zhichu.

"Nianzhi, where'd you go?" Ma Qiqi waved at her with a smile. "Did you have lunch yet? Professor He said he would come home with us for dinner!"

Gu Nianzhi didn't know what to say.

"What is it? Nianzhi isn't welcoming me?" He Zhichu rose and smiled subtly at her.

Gu Nianzhi was wearing a bright red cashmere dress, the loose bell sleeves made her appear even more delicate and charming. However, she was a bit pale. "Oh, not at all. I don't mind as long as Qiqi doesn't mind. I'm a guest, too." Gu Nianzhi smiled slightly and suppressed the rolling unease in her heart.

"Of course I don't mind. It's our family's rare and great honor to have Professor He over for dinner!" Ma Qiqi replied happily and went over to pat Gu Nianzhi's shoulder. "Have you eaten lunch yet?"

Gu Nianzhi shook her head. "I was about to go to the cafeteria. What about you?"

"I just ate." Ma Qiqi turned to ask He Zhichu, "Professor He, did you have lunch yet?"

He Zhichu glanced at Gu Nianzhi and shook his head. "I didn't get a chance to eat yet, so I'll go the cafeteria with Nianzhi. Qiqi, make sure to tell your parents you have another person coming!"

"No problem! I'll call them right now." Ma Qiqi waved at them with a smile and went back to her room to make the call.

Gu Nianzhi set down the bags she had been carrying. She only took her keys and meal card as she said to He Zhichu, "Professor He, you really didn't have lunch yet?"

"Of course not. I originally wanted to ask you out for lunch." He Zhichu walked next to her. "I knew you were going to Qiqi's house for dinner tonight, so I was hoping you could have lunch with me." He had gone to her dorm and chatted with Ma Qiqi for a while before she had invited him and Gu Nianzhi to her house for dinner. He Zhichu went with the flow and agreed.

He Zhichu had seen Gu Nianzhi the entire week she had been back, either in class or during discussions about her work as a teaching assistant and legal assistant. Sometimes they even had lunch together. As a result, Gu Nianzhi easily agreed to He Zhichu's suggestion, and they went downstairs together. They walked to the No. 1 cafeteria and ordered two lunches before carrying the trays to a quiet corner on the second floor.

When he had finished half his food, He Zhichu said he needed to go outside for something and left Gu Nianzhi to eat alone. She didn't mind and waved at him so he could suit himself. Unexpectedly, He Zhichu returned shortly after carrying a cake box. He set it in front of her and smiled. "Nianzhi, happy birthday."

Gu Nianzhi didn't know how to react to the pink cake box and the little princess figurine on top. She nodded at He Zhichu. "Thank you for remembering, Professor He." No matter what, this was her first slice of birthday cake for the day. Gu Nianzhi opened the cake box and sighed in relief to see a small, palm-sized slice of cake. "This cake looks very good." Gu Nianzhi picked up a spoon to dig in. The smooth, rich flavor immediately enveloped her mouth. This was certainly the most delicious thing ever! Gu Nianzhi squinted happily as she enjoyed the tasty flavor. Her gloomy mood gradually improved.

"I ordered it from someone. It's an exclusive recipe." He Zhichu gave a half smile as he moved the cake box aside and glanced at Gu Nianzhi's satisfied expression. "Looks like you still really like this kind of cake."

It was that suggestive tone again. Before, Gu Nianzhi didn't want to ask He Zhichu about her past, or perhaps she wouldn't have trusted him back then. But after what happened in Germany, she had gained a new level of trust towards He Zhichu. She glanced at him and used a napkin to wipe her mouth before leaning back in the chair and looking at He Zhichu quietly. "Professor He, did you know I'm not Gu Xiangwen's biological daughter from the beginning?"