OMF V1C110 Becoming Family

Madam Zhong sat in the preparation room with Nie Huang, talking and drinking tea. There was nothing else they could do. A teahouse without customers was like a cart with a broken wheel. But this wheel couldn’t even be repaired. So what else could they do besides waiting?
Jing Yi and Shao Hai were sitting at the counter. Shao Hai had hugged Jing Yi to console him and was repeatedly stroking his back. „You don’t have to be sad. I’m still here with you, Xiao Yi. I won’t leave you.“
„Mn.“ Jing Yi just nodded. He didn’t have any concept of death since this was the first time he was confronted with it and Qiang Wei’s story had given him a new goal that he could single-mindedly pursue. This was diverting his attention so much that he didn’t really think about the fact that his father wasn’t there anymore.
Speaking of which … There was one problem he could still not solve despite thinking about it long and hard. He looked up into Shao Hai’s eyes with confusion written on his face. „Ah Hai, what is a hero?“
The older boy was dumbfounded. Why is he asking me this? He pursed his lips and pondered and finally found an explanation: When that Li Bo came and acted all sneakily Jing Yi’s father had stepped in front of them to protect them and lost his life because of that in the end. Jing Yi probably wanted to make sure that his father was a real hero?
If that was what Jing Yi wanted, then, of course, Shao Hai would fulfill that wish! „Your father is definitely a hero!“
Jing Yi nodded. That man yesterday had said the same. „But why?“
„Uh … Well, because he saved us from the bad guys!“
„So, one becomes a hero if he saves someone?“ Jing Yi thought about it. So his father had been a hero and his grandfather was a hero, too. He had saved them from the bandits, after all! But those were the only heroes he knew. How could he become like them?
Shao Hai pursed his lips, unsure if that was really true. In the end, he nodded though. „I think so!“
„Oh.“
Shao Hai felt like Jing Yi wasn’t satisfied with his explanation. „We could go and ask my father!“
„Does he know about heroes?“
Shao Hai nodded. „I’m sure of it! You know he’s a merchant. He was traveling a lot over the years and has met many, many people. There should have been some heroes among them.“
Jing Yi’s eyes shone. This was exactly what he needed! Speaking to someone who had met a lot of heroes!
Shao Hai smiled contented. It seemed like Jing Yi liked his idea. „Come, let’s ask auntie if you can come home with me right now.“ He took Jing Yi’s hand and pulled him over to the kitchen. „Auntie!“ He smiled sweetly at Madam Zhong. „Can Xiao Yi come home with me?“
Madam Zhong smiled back at them and patted their heads. „Of course, he can. Just be careful on your way. If you’re running late this evening have someone sent him home, alright?“
Shao Hai nodded earnestly. „Don’t worry, auntie! Nothing will happen to Xiao Yi as long as he’s with me!“ Shao Hai pulled Jing Yi toward the entrance.
The boy looked at his mother and waved. „I’ll be back soon, mommy!“
„Mn. Have fun!“
The two boys hurried through the streets of the capital. After living here for some months and spending most of his time with Shao Hai Jing Yi was already quite familiar with them. He didn’t need to be pulled along or trail behind though Shao Hai still insisted on taking his hand when running alongside him. Every now and then he’d even turn around and smile at Jing Yi.
Had a certain dragon king been there … Well, it’s better not to think about it. Luckily, he was still in the nine heavens complaining to his mother-in-law so Shao Hai had nothing to fear. Not that he knew of this love rival of his that had stayed hidden most of the time when in the mortal realm.
Jing Yi and Shao Hai reached the Shaos’ home in a few minutes. Mister Shao was in the courtyard speaking to a supplier while some servants moved products onto a cart standing beside them.
„Father, father!“ Shao Hai ran over with Jing Yi in tow and smiled.
Shao Chen patted his head and tussled Jing Yi’s hair. „So you’ve brought your little friend over again. How have you been, Xiao Yi?“
„Good. Thanks, uncle Shao!“
„Mn. Wait a moment. I need to finish this first.“ He turned back to his supplier.
„Come on. Let’s wait inside.“ Shao Hai pulled Jing Yi with him into the house. „Sit down, sit down. I’ll get you something to eat.“ Shao Hai ran away and hurried right back with a tray with some snacks. Then he disappeared again, only to return with some tea a moment later. He sat down beside Jing Yi and took his hand.
His heart beat wildly. They were completely alone at the moment and sitting so close together. He could feel the warmth coming from Jing Yi’s body and smell that fresh scent of his. He wanted to hug Jing Yi but didn’t dare to do so. He didn’t want to scare him away just because he was too direct.
He really, really liked Jing Yi. If he and his mother couldn’t hold on alone he was thinking about asking his father if they could take them in. Shao Hai had decided that he would marry Jing Yi anyway in the future. What difference would it make if his bride-to-be moved in with them a bit sooner? He hadn’t asked his father for permission yet, though.
Just when Shao Hai thought of this, Mister Shao returned. Seeing his son nearly glued to Jing Yi once again, he laughed, went over and tousled the boy’s hair. „Nice to see you again, Xiao Yi.“ His son had told him about what had happened at the teahouse yesterday. At first, he wanted to say something about it but then reconsidered. The boy was probably sad enough and was relieved to not have to be at the teahouse were everything remembered him of his father’s death. They should distract him while he was at their home. „So, what brings you here? You even ran over all the way to greet me.“
Jing Yi looked at him with sparkling eyes. „Uncle Shao, Ah Hai said you’ve met real heroes. Is that true?“
Shao Chen was a little taken aback. He would have expected a lot of things but certainly not this! „Well … You could probably say so …?“
„Then, what are heroes like?“ Jing Yi leaned forward eagerly. He didn’t want to miss any clue as to what he should do in the future!
Shao Chen laughed and sat down opposite the children. „Mn, a real hero … Let me think for a bit.“ He wanted to pour himself a cup of tea but noticed that his son had only brought one cup for Jing Yi. Haish, how biased! In the face of first love, family counted for little.
Well, he didn’t mind it though. Jing Yi was such a cute boy. It was better his son fell in love with him than with some girl like that spoiled Guanyu. Even though he wasn’t a girl, Shao Chen would rather have Jing Yi marry into his family. There would be less trouble that way.
Thinking of that, he couldn’t help but smile before he remembered their actual subject. A hero, hm? Well, it couldn’t be that hard to explain, could it? The best thing would be if he could help his son become a hero in Jing Yi’s eyes. Ah, that would really be nice.

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