Francine suddenly caught a whiff of the excessive perfume on Sherlyn’s person and retched. When one of the maids saw that, she pushed Sherlyn out of the way and said, “Move aside! Our young miss doesn’t have the time to talk to you right now!”
“Young miss, are you okay?”
Francine had retched to the point of collapse, and she required the help of the maids before going in.
Sherlyn was incredibly annoyed that she was pushed aside before even getting her questions answered. Unfortunately, she did not dare to mess with whoever lived there.
The Holdens’ driver lowered the window and gave her a word of advice. “Be on your way now. You shouldn’t be poking your nose around a place like this.”
Sherlyn turned her head and asked, “Are you the driver of this family? Could you tell me who’s staying here?”
The driver replied cautiously, “I can’t disclose that information to you, but I heard that the family just recently recruited a new group of maids. Your sister might be one of them.”
‘Is Corinne here to be a maid?’ Sherlyn thought to herself. ‘Isn’t she an intern at Alpha Enterprises?’
Sherlyn wanted to ask further, but the driver had already driven the car into the garage. The entire situation was getting more confusing with each passing thought, so she called an old classmate who worked in Alpha Enterprises to find out what was up with Corinne. Through that conversation, she learned that Corinne had been fired.
‘Fired? Is that why Corinne is working as a maid in this household? All that talk about finding a house to rent was a lie! She just had to move here because she has to work twenty-four hours a day as a maid! That’s all she’s capable of, and that expensive suit jacket she wore home was probably stolen from the owner!’
Sherlyn was absolutely elated when she connected the dots, and she finally felt ready to go back home and inform her father of her discovery.
At the Holden manor’s second floor, Corinne leaned lazily by the floor-to-ceiling window and smirked as she watched Sherlyn leave with a pompous gait.
At noon the next day came, a graceful old lady was helped out of an extended Humvee and into the house. When Francine saw the old woman, she ran toward her and said, “Grandma! You’re here!”
“I had someone book the earliest flight today after I received your call.” Pamela Holden, grandmother to Francine and Jeremy, appeared to be heartbroken when she looked at her granddaughter. “Francine! It’s been a while since I last saw you, but you seemed to have lost a lot of weight.”
Francine said lamentably, “Grandma, Jeremy’s new wife tried to assert her dominance in the house with me right after the marriage. I ended up vomiting so badly and was hospitalized after what she did…”
Pamela, being the hale and hearty old woman that she was, had a sharp glimmer in her eyes.
“I’m interested to see what’s with this new granddaughter-in-law of mine, and where she found the courage to bully my precious granddaughter. Can someone bring that Corinne girl down, please?”
Francine helped Pamela onto the sofa and snuggled up to her while saying all sorts of sweet words. ‘Corinne’s going to get it today! I can’t wait to see Grandma teach her a lesson!’
After a while, Corinne was brought down by the housekeeper.
“You’re Corinne?” Pamela looked at her from head to toe.
Corinne nodded. “The one and only. Can I help you with something, old lady?”
Pamela’s expression seemed hostile. “I heard that you bullied our Francine so badly that she had to be hospitalized. Do you think you can act like the woman of the house right after getting married to Jeremy?”
Corinne had a rough guess as to who the old woman was, and she had some idea of how Francine twisted the facts to her advantage. She ventured forth and explained herself in a manner that projected neither dominance nor submissiveness, “Ma’am, I’m sure you’ve heard the saying ‘an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth’. Miss Francine splashed a basin of stinking water on me yesterday, and I dunked her head in the toilet bowl to get even. The question of whether or not I bullied her doesn’t arise.”
Pamela turned to look at her granddaughter. “Did that happen, Francine?”
A teary-eyed Francine shook her head. “Don’t listen to her lies, Grandma! There were a lot of servants at home yesterday, and they can all testify for me!”
Francine gave a signal that prompted several of the maids to vouch for her.
“I can testify that the young miss has never provoked the young madam.”
“I can vouch for it too!”
Pamela’s austere gaze turned to Corinne once more. “Do you have anything else to say now?”
Corinne frowned helplessly as she glared at the maids.
No explanation could cut it if all the maids followed Francine’s orders.
“Ma’am, I’ve said everything I need to say. If you don’t believe me, then there’s nothing more I can do.”
The old lady snorted coldly. “Are you still refusing to admit your mistake? I suppose your family has never taught you how to act like a proper person, so in that case, we’ll teach you! Somebody, get a copy of the Holdens’ house rules for her. Make sure to copy everything a hundred times. You’ll only get food once you’re done!”
Corinne was speechless, and she wondered why both grandmother and granddaughter were so inclined to teach other people how to behave.
“I’m so glad you’re here to get justice for me!” Francine leaned smugly on Pamela and picked up a pastry from the coffee table. “You must be hungry after getting off the plane. How about some pastries for your empty stomach? I’ll have the kitchen prepare your favorite lunch in the meantime.”
Corinne immediately tried stopping her. “Wait, you can’t eat that!”
Francine shot back unhappily, “It’s our house, Corinne. My grandma can eat anything she wants.” She then turned to Pamela and said, “Ignore her, Grandma. Go ahead and take a bite.”
Before Corinne could do anything to stop them, the old lady had already taken a big bite of the pastry that her precious granddaughter fed to her.
Francine taunted Corinne. “Why don’t you start copying the house rules? Don’t forget, you need to do it a hundred times!”
All of a sudden, Pamela’s face suddenly turned blue, and her eyes bulged out as she opened her mouth wide and gasped for air.
Francine was taken aback. “Grandma? What’s happening to you?”
Upon seeing that something was wrong with the old woman, Corinne quickly stepped forward to check on her.
Francine pushed her away in disgust. “Scram! Don’t you lay a hand on my grandma!”
“Her life is in danger right now. Don’t get in the way!”
“Danger? You’re the one who’s a danger to my grandma!” Francine stood in front of Pamela and fought tooth and claw just to keep Corinne from approaching.
In desperation, Corinne slapped Francine, sending the latter tumbling over to one side. Then, Corinne immediately went over to Pamela, helped the woman up, and hugged her abdomen while jumping up and down vigorously.
Francine covered her face as she got back up and screamed in horror when she saw Corinne torturing her grandmother. “Ah! Corinne has lost her mind! She wants to kill Grandma! Why are all of you just standing there? Save my grandma!”
The Holdens’ male servants surrounded Corinne, but they were wary of making any rash movement because Corinne was still holding Pamela.
“Don’t come any closer!” Corinne took a few steps back while still hugging Pamela from behind.
“Release our madam!”
“Don’t do anything crazy!”
All of a sudden, a stern voice questioned, “What’s with all that commotion?”
The air pressure seemed to have dropped suddenly when Jeremy walked in.
Francine threw herself into Jeremy’s arms like he was her savior. “You need to save Grandma! She’s about to die in Corinne’s hands!”
Jeremy frowned. He looked at Corinne as she held his grandmother hostage. “Why did you have to lay a hand on an old woman?”
Corinne was about to explain, but Francine interrupted again, “She made Grandma angry, and she punished her by telling her to copy the house rules. She’s getting her revenge on Grandma because she can’t accept having that kind of punishment! Jeremy, that woman is insane! You should divorce her right away!”
Jeremy pushed the troublemaking Francine away and handed her to Tommy. His danger-laden eyes stared intently at Corinne as he ordered, “If you want to live, you’d better let go of my grandmother right now.”
Corinne said, “Wait!”
Jeremy was getting impatient. “What for?”
Pamela started to cough violently, and it was then that Corinne finally let go of the old woman. The Holdens’ servants immediately surrounded the old lady and helped her.
When Jeremy saw his grandmother coughing violently and gasping for breath, he grabbed Corinne’s neck and questioned, “Where did you get the guts to do something like that to my grandmother?”
“I…ack…” Corinne’s feet were dangling in the air and her face reddened. She could sense the dense murderous aura through Jeremy’s scarlet red eyes.