The brilliance of the brunette's bright green eyes rival that of the scintillating sun as soon as they catch sight of the two of them. With an ear-splitting grin and a loud squeal, she then ecstatically rushes in their direction and spreads her arms wide for a bone-crushing embrace.
Cassidy is more than glad to welcome Aira in her arms. As she bends down a little and holds her, she gets to realize how much she has grown. She really is no longer a toddler just like the last time she has seen her - she is now a charming young lady in her early teens.
"I can't believe it! It really is big sister Cassie!" Aira chirped blithely and hugged Cassidy tighter.
"Ummm... Excuse me, big bro is here too..." Asher chimed in while pretending to pout in dismay, making the two giggle.
"Can I get a hug?"
With a warm smile, Josephine only stands at the side and watches their fun-filled reunion in the narrow hallway of their humble abode. She can't help but see them like a small, happy family - one that she knows Cassidy has always been wishing. It's quite a shame that such a simple wish can never come true because of her ill-fated circumstances.
Still, she believes that she has the determination to see this through - after all, much like her deceased grandfather, she is quite the tough one.
"Why don't we have dinner together tonight? Both of you can stay here as long as you want..." Josephine offered after the three of them finished exchanging greetings.
"Also, Aira... What do you think about going with them back in the city? It's not really good for a youngster like you to be stuck here with me all the time. Besides, my grandchildren are already planning to take me soon."
At the drop of that news, they are struck stunned and speechless.
Yet going by how Josephine is smiling all knowingly, Asher gets to pick up the sign - she is doing this for Cassidy. As expected, she was more than delighted to take Aira with her. Then again, she has long been wanting to reunite with all of her siblings back at the orphanage.
"Of course, I would like to go with you, big sis. However..." Aira trailed off with a timid smile, baffling them a little.
"I thought you already had a family? Would I not be a bother?"
"Goodness, no! You're no bother at all! Besides, I don't have any child yet," Cassidy reassured her.
"But what about your hubby? Isn't he like... super rich and famous?"
"Oh, don't sweat over the details! Just go with me, alright?"
"Well, if you say so... Alrighty, then!"
Asher thinks that what Josephine wants to happen here is not really that bad. Everyone knows that Cassidy loves children. It might do her good to take some time to get some peace by being with those she grew up together with. Aside from that, it would also provide her enough distraction to forget about those she left behind -
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