Everything happened so fast that the Hatchers had no time to react.
By the time Stephen rushed out, he saw Anthony preparing to get into his car and drive off. However, he had not been in time to see Gilbert brushing the snow off Lilly and picking her up from where she had been kneeling by the gate.
“My goodness! It’s Mr. Anthony Crawford!” Stephen plastered a bright smile onto his face and greeted the other cheerfully. “What brings you here? It’s an honor to have you visiting our humble abode!”
By then, Richard, Paula, and some of the Hatcher servants had hurried out to join Stephen as well, their faces wreathed in smiles of welcome.
When they saw Anthony’s stern, aloof countenance, they became even more fawning and obsequious.
Anthony Crawford was the current head of the Crawford family’s business empire and the CEO of Crawford Holdings!
The Crawford family was one of Clodston’s four influential families; everyone wanted to butter them up and curry favor.
A true aristocratic family like this with old money and such deep ties to Clodston was rare. The Crawfords were an elusive, mysterious entity; they kept themselves out of the limelight. The only thing anyone in Clodston knew for sure was that the Crawfords had eight sons, but even then, few had even set eyes on them.
Anthony was occasionally featured in the headlines of the financial news, which was why the Hatchers had recognized him.
“Mr. Crawford, please come in! It’s freezing out here. We’d love to have you stay a little while if you don’t mind such humble surroundings,” Richard said enthusiastically.
“Yes, yes, please do come in and have something hot!” Stephen chimed in, smiling.
Now that they were in the presence of a truly distinguished person, all the Hatchers could not help trying to ingratiate themselves with him.
The Ador Hatcher Corporation was in dire straits; for the Hatcher family, this was a catastrophe.
However, just a word from Anthony would revive their flagging fortunes!
If luck favored them, they might even become one of Clodston’s top ten influential families…
Anthony’s face betrayed no hint of expression; instead, he studied Stephen with keen eyes.
Was this Lilly’s father?
Still without expression, Anthony declined Richard’s offer coolly and enigmatically. “Very well, Mr. Hatcher and family.”
Without another word, he got into his car and drove off.
The Hatchers stood there, confused and dazed, watching him leave.
Paula was the first to speak. “Mr. Crawford said very well… Does that mean he’s intending to help us?”
Richard frowned. “Given his expression, I don’t think he meant anything complimentary.”
and taken Lilly away, and that a man in black had stripped off his coat and wrapped it around
was thunderstruck. Suddenly, everything
eight sons and a daughter. However, the daughter’s health was frail, and she had never appeared in public
had rescued four years ago was
the Crawfords’ daughter… hurry, we need to
kneel in the snow if
her like a goddess and worshiped at her
well; when he recalled how he had disciplined Lilly so harshly, he felt
going to get her back? Do you think we can walk in and take
blood relations. We’re her grandparents, after all! The Crawfords can’t deny that, no matter how angry they are. Then again,
they had wanted to do was to teach Lilly
the better of him and had disciplined her more severely than he should
Crawfords. All they had to do was to have
Clodston after rescuing Lilly, the Crawfords
best hospital was now
raise their voices. The atmosphere was extremely tense, punctuated by the
with the help of his walking stick. “Why are they still in there?”
at the time, then gently told
as soon as they reached the hospital.
room, Gilbert examined Lilly’s bruised body
bones were the worst thing that could happen in cases of severe frostbite. A more detailed examination revealed that Lily had been badly beaten; in fact, her arms, ribs, and shins had
numerous patches of frostbite all over her body. Some of the areas were so severely frostbitten they would
Uncle Gilbert. Can you hear me? If you can, please
eyes were tightly closed, but she had the oddest sensation of her body feeling very light and warm all over. It was the first time she
a voice by her ear that constantly murmured, “Lilly…Lilly dear…little Tulip…Can you see me? Can you
to open her eyes,
to reply that she could hear this person talking to her as well, but she could not make a sound, no matter how
was out of danger,
girl was wheeled into a hospital room, IV tubes plastered all over
he handed Anthony the report from Lilly’s examination. When the Crawfords read it, they were
these Hatchers! They even
check on the Hatcher family. In a frosty voice, he replied, “The Hatcher family’s business goods are under suspicion of being contraband. The company is in pretty desperate straits. Recently they’ve been
can count themselves lucky if I don’t
to tear the entire Hatcher family