"Yes, Fan Yu adopted a spider as his sister. The situation is slightly complicated. If you have time, do you mind coming over to Jiujiang's Children's Home?"
"Of course, is it okay if I arrive at 6 or 7 pm?"
"No problem. Thank you for your cooperation."
After hanging up the phone, Chen Ge thought back to the last sentence the worker said. "But what if that sister is not a human but a spider?"
Fan Yu was the Haunted House's first special visitor and a poor child. He had witnessed how his father killed his mother and how his aunt pushed his father into the well. Then he had lived for several years under the same roof as the killer.
The boy no longer has any family left on this world. No matter what, I should go take a look.
Chen Ge initially wanted to run out to the sun to spin the wheel, but thanks to the call from the Children's Home, his mood was lost. The lunch break soon ended. Chen Ge busied himself until 5:30 pm, but the number of visitors did not decrease. Chen Ge's team had to delay the closing time until almost 7 pm.
The sky was darkening. Chen Ge did not even have time to do his accounts. After Xu Wan left work, he rushed toward the Children's Home. This was the first time Chen Ge had visited Jiujiang's Children's Home. It was different from the dirty, cold, and unfeeling orphanages that he had seen on television. The decor of Jiujiang's Children's Home was very friendly, and it had its own courtyard that was filled with various flowers.
"Hey, what are you doing here? We do not allow outsiders!" The gentleman who guarded the door blocked Chen Ge.
"Nice to meet you. I'm Chen Ge, Fan Yu's family. This afternoon, a member of staff here called me."
"Fan Yu's family‽" The old gentleman studied Chen Ge, and his attitude changed instantly. "Please wait here for a moment. I'll go ask. Be back in a minute."
The gentleman did not use his phone but ran into the courtyard to yell up the stairs. Not long after that, a woman who looked about Chen Ge's age came out from the building. She was wearing a nurse's outfit, and she gave off a friendly feeling.
"Mr. Chen, you're finally here." The nurse signaled for Chen Ge to follow her. "Let me introduce myself first. I'm Fan Yu's mother; you can call me Xiao Liu."
"You're his mother?"
"Yes, we have adopted many abandoned children and babies here. To make them feel the warmth of home, we normally allow them to call us mother and father. Of course, it's not forced, but most of the children here like it." The nurse was a friendly character, but she was shy. She did not even dare look at Chen Ge's eyes when she was talking to him.
"That's wonderful. I admire that."
Jiujiang's Children's Home was like a big family. It was completely different from what Chen Ge thought an orphanage would be like. The nurse flashed a sunny smile. She was about to say something when the window on the other side of the courtyard flew open, and a middle-aged man who held a tray of tea cups in his hands yelled at the nurse, "Xiao Liu, you're running off again? Get back to your post! Keep an eye on Jiang Ling and Fan Yu! They're getting worse!"
The man's voice sounded angry, but Xiao Liu was not afraid. Instead, she was embarrassed. "Yes, I understand."
The nurse led Chen Ge into the building. The wall was pasted with cute decorations, and the corridor was very clean.
"Who was that? The president?" Chen Ge asked.
"That was Doctor Chen. He can be quite grumpy, but he's a good man. He used to work at a large clinic, but after that, he came to serve here."
"Doctor Chen? There's a specialist attached to the children's home?"
"Yes, we have doctors, nurses, nutritionists, and teachers. Each of us is responsible for different jobs, but we're all these children's fathers and mothers." Chen Ge nodded. Compared to the orphanage that Mu Yang High School's headmaster had built privately, this place was much more official. When they walked down a corridor, one of the doors was suddenly pushed open, and two kids ran out holding a toy between them.
"Jiang Jin, Jiang He! Stop making noise in the corridor-it's past 8 pm already. Get back to your room!" the nurse scolded, and the boys went back to their room unwillingly. Before the door closed, Chen Ge glanced into it. There were two bedrooms and one living rooms, and it housed six children.
"You have quite a good place here. The children have new toys and new clothes." Chen Ge looked at the painted cards on the door. They were written with the children's names. "This is weird. Why do the names of all the children here start with Jiang?"
"They're Jiujiang's children, so we used Jiujiang as inspiration for their surname." The nurse explained and smiled with embarrassment. "Of course, some of the children arrive with a name, so we wouldn't force them to change."
The nurse led Chen Ge to the first room on the left on the third floor. She walked in without knocking.
"President, Chen Ge is here."
There was an old man in his sixties watering the plants by the windowsill. He was wearing a pair of spectacles and looked like a retired teacher.
"You're finally here, please take a seat." The man looked at Chen Ge like he was their savior. This confused Chen Ge even more.
"Sir, what is the problem? Did our Fan Yu create some problem at the Children's Home?" Chen Ge felt like he was attending a parent-teacher's conference for Fan Yu. He was asked to stay until the end because the teacher wanted to have a private chat with him about Fan Yu.
"I'll be frank." The old president gave the nurse a look. As if afraid that they might be overhead, he had her close the door. "You're the guardian assigned to Fan Yu, so you should know about his condition better than us. The boy is not a social person... how shall I put this? He has no knowledge of concepts like family, groups, or happiness. We tried our best to help him, but the effect has been lacking."
Chen Ge knew Fan Yu better than most, so he understood the trouble the Children's Home was facing. "I'm so sorry for creating all this trouble."
The president shrugged. "That's fine. We've seen children who were more introverted. The main problem is that, not only are we unable to fix his problem, he has also managed to influence our other children who are facing recovery."
"What do you mean?" Chen Ge understood why that Doctor Chen was so angry when he saw Xiao Liu.
"It's a sad truth that many children who have faced trauma or been abandoned by their family will have some psychological problems that need counselling." The president smiled sadly. "Fan Yu is a good example, but this boy keeps arguing with the doctor. He not only refuses to accept his treatment but keeps saying weird things to the other children. Some of the children's conditions have worsened after interacting with him. With no other choice, we had to send those children away."