The mark of the Houdie family did not appear at birth, it was only when the cub was a year old that it started to show.
The mermaids in the Houdie family all had a light golden mark on their forehead. One just had to look at the photos from Connor branch to see that without exception, every mermaid cub bearing the Houdie name had this golden mark on their foreheads.
Among the employees, Xia Qi was the first to join Yunbao Branch. It could be said that Xia Qi had watched the little mermaid cub grow up from the moment that kind man had brought the cub to their club.
The mermaid cub did not have a mark at first and although she later discovered a very shallow golden patter on the cub’s forehead, Xia Qi had not thought much about it at that time.
Coming across this huge information now, Xia Qi felt as if her brain had been stirred and could only sit down in her seat for a moment, absentmindedly staring at the comments under the forwarded post.
With a sluggish spirit, Xia Qi then picked up the connector and left the office in a hurry.
In the living room at the cub house, several adults were currently playing with the cubs.
Xie Tao raised his eyes when he heard someone enter and noticed that the expression of the other person who walked through the door seemed unnatural. As he had many fluffy cubs presently trying to climb his body, Xie Tao only threw an inquiring look at her.
“I don’t know how to… It’s better if you see for yourselves.” Xia Qi’s mind was still a complete mess. She therefore simply held the connector up in front of everyone and closed her mouth.
Looking at the content shown on the virtual screen, the expression on the surrounding people’s faces immediately changed. This was especially true for the three people aside from Xie Tao, who could only look at each other in dismay. They obviously did not know how to deal with the massive news they had received.
When it came to the Houdie family, the present people’s knowledge was limited to the extent that they had only barely heard of the name before. After all, they were not a member of the mermaid race.
It was true that the family was prestigious among the mermaid race, but it was not easy to have one’s name spread throughout the universe and have it reach the ears of the many other races.
However what was important was not to think about that family but what their family, the club, would do now that they knew who the mermaid cub’s family was.
Xie Tao first coaxed the cubs clinging onto his body and told them to play next to him, leaving the Knox cub lying quietly on his shoulder. He then took the initiative to break the silence, “Actually, I don’t think we need to think too much about this.”
“Little Gale was deliberately abandoned here on Gaia. We have already confirmed this. Nothing has changed.” Xie Tao voiced his thoughts, the tone he spoke with was calm, but his attitude was undoubtedly serious.
Hearing the youth’s words, the surrounding people whose heads had been filled with various thoughts and worries, suddenly changed expressions and calmed down a bit.
The mermaid cub had been abandoned. Xia Qi had been thinking about this from the very beginning and felt that if the cub truly was born in the Houdie family, then it was even more likely that he had been intentionally abandoned by his family.
If that wasn’t the case, wouldn’t a big family like that intently look for their lost cub? How come that there had been no movement from the other these past years?
The only way for it to make sense was if the family didn’t want to find the cub.
“Ah Tao is right. We just need to take good care of little Gale like we always have. It doesn’t make any difference whether we know who his family is or not.” Xia Qi was the first to react and agree with the words of the youth opposite her.
The mermaid cub belonged here at their club now. They were no longer short of funds, so of course they would continue to raise him.
No one in the club had any objections regarding this. However, seeing their carefree attitudes Zheng Zhou felt that he had no choice but to bring up a scary possibility.
On the assumption that the cub was intentionally abandoned, they did not intend to contact the cub’s family on their own accord. This, however, did not mean that it was entirely impossible for the Houdie family to come looking on their own.
“If no one comes for little Gale, we will of course do as Xia Qi said. But if people from the Houdie family want to take Gale back, no matter if they are sincere or not, we don’t have the right to stop them…” Zheng Zhou calmly analyzed the situation and the conclusion he came to was not very optimistic. “If they publicly recognize Gale as one of them and demand him back, they will not let little Gale stay at our branch. If not, how would that look to the public?”
On that Xingyou page, Zheng Zhou had seen that there were already a few hundred comments below the forwarded post. He estimated that most of the people debating over it were from the mermaid race.
Originally, it was still impossible for Zheng Zhou to say whether the Houdie family would hear about it just from this. However, soon thereafter, he had seen someone go directly to Connor’s official home page to leave a message for inquiry, and he now felt that there was a very high possibility that the Houdie family would learn about this matter…
“They deliberately threw away their cub on Gaia, which is so far away from Haliumite, how can they have any of speck of sincerity left in their hearts?” Xia Qi bluntly retorted.
If the Houdie family really sent people to take the mermaid cub back, Xia Qi felt that it would only be to publicly save face. However, she had to admit that what Zheng Zhou said was very likely to happen.
But how could they let the cub go back to a family who ruthlessly abandoned him?
What kind of interstellar joke was this?
“I don’t know. We can only continue to take care of little Gale, there is nothing more to say about it. If they want to take him, then unless they can give a 100% reasonable explanation for him being abandoned on Gaia, we will not let them.” To simplify the problem, Xie Tao summarized what they needed to do and at the same time tried to reassure the surrounding people who were obviously a little anxious.
But how would they stop them? Although no one said anything, Zheng Zhou was a person who liked to prepare for the worst.
Their club’s mermaid cub had developed a rare variant ability and if the people of the Houdie family got word of that, they would surely try to take the cub back with all their might…
Even though they each had some concerns, they all still agreed with Xie Tao’s words and temporarily ended the subject.
Apart from the president who was not as involved with the club’s matters these days, Zarad was the last person in the club to know about it. It was only when Xie Tao approached him the next day that he got to hear about it.
Although he had a lot of experience and knowledge, Zarad was not familiar with that Houdie family’s mark. After the youth informed him of the situation, he couldn’t help but move his eyes to the forehead on the mermaid cub swimming nearby in the pool.
Not aware of what had happened, the mermaid cub, with both of his hands clinging to the edge of the pool, gently swayed his blue tail and gazed up at the human youth standing to the left. His happy mood could be heard through the sound he made.
While together with the youth, he would be selectively ignored by the mermaid cub, Zarad could only silently accept this.
After getting an overview of the matter, Zarad was 90% certain that the mermaid cub had been deliberately abandoned by that family.
He couldn’t be completely sure until he got more information, hence the missing ten percent. But, to be honest, Zarad felt that it was very likely.
The mermaid race was known for their captivating and intoxicating, utterly beautiful voice, which was used as a medium for their abilities. A mute mermaid, who could not sing, was destined to be despised by the mermaid race.
It would be very disgraceful for a family to have a cub who could not speak. This was especially true for a big family like the Houdie, as it was not just the cub’s parents, but the whole family who would be criticized for it.
Together with the fact that they did not take action after losing the cub and that the cub was found on Gaia, which was far away from their planet, it all gave Zarad enough reason to trust his judgment.
“We should prepare in advance, don’t you think?” Having worked together for some time now, Xie Tao felt that the person next to him was quite knowledgeable. He therefore wanted to ask the other for advice this time.
The only thing they could do right now was to gather evidence to prove that the cub had been abandoned. Zarad knew this and he did not believe that there was nothing to be done about the situation. But there was another way to look at.
“Actually, if the Houdie family were to take the cub back, he would not be treated badly. Even if it is just for outsiders to see, the fact remains that the cub would live a good life.” Unless those other people were shameless, Zarad’s way of thinking was quite accurate.
“Furthermore, the cub has developed an ice ability, that alone is enough assurance that he won’t be mistreated when brought back to his family.” Zarad was speaking objectively, he was now looking at the matter from a purely beneficial perspective. “There are very few people with variant abilities, having one shows a very high innate skill. If the cub is brought back, he might very well become the future master of the Houdie family.”
This was not a joke. Zarad was extremely serious, especially when he said the last sentence.
Due to the rarity of variant abilities, there was not one family out there that did not want their cub to have one and neither was there a family who wouldn’t pounce on the chance to obtain one, should the opportunity be presented. Even if the Houdie did not take action at first, once the news of little Gales ice ability spread, there was no doubt that they would come knocking.
In his heart, Zarad did of course not want to let the Houdie take the cub back.
But if he considered the benefits the cub would get, Zarad did not know what to think. Maybe the little mermaid would prefer to be the Houdie family’s master in the future?
The Houdie family’s name held a lot of weight in the mermaid race. For the mermaid cub in front of him, the golden mark on his forehead was almost equivalent to having a golden crown on his head.
Zarad explained this alternative way of looking at it to Xie Tao, while standing in front of the cub. When he said these words, he thought that the mermaid cub could not understand, but he was wrong.
Just as he was considering what would be best for the cub and what he would want, a weak sound rang out, and then, in the next moment, the mermaid cub’s response completely dispelled any doubts they had about keeping him in the club.
“Pah… Pa, Papa-Papa!” The mermaid cub hastily reached out and tightly grabbed onto the trouser leg of the human youth standing by the pool. As if afraid that the youth would not want him anymore, the cub called out to him with great effort, trying to make louder and louder sounds, one after another.
From a whisper to weak syllables, to then truly coherent and clear words.
Like a flower bud stubbornly growing from cracks in the pavement, a beautiful flower eventually blossomed.
Oh, bl-god. This was so touching. Our little Gale~
As I was translating this chapter I got so pissed off at those Houdie people for abandoning our precious Gale like that, sentencing him to a slow death, that my brain suddenly decided to become sassy and I just couldn’t stop reading Houdie as Ho-u-die, you know, cough, “Hoe you die”, haha.
Anyway, on another note →
Yesterday I discovered that a lot of ads had started showing up on my site, in mid-text. I didn’t enable it so I don’t know when it started but I was probably a bit slow to notice. I contacted wordpress support and it seems that they are testing inline ads. Anyway, since I can’t turn them off or choose how many are shown, I have asked to be excused from the test.
So, to summarize, only the two ads at the bottom should now show like usual.
They shouldn’t get in the way of your reading experience, so if you want to support my translations please test turning off your ad blocker while viewing my site. ^^
Also, many thanks to all of you who already do that ♥︎
Editor’s note: This brought tears to my eyes (>﹏<)(>﹏<)(>﹏<)