OMF V1C81 Selling Cuteness

Thankfully, Qiu Ling didn’t know what his beloved was thinking. He was just happy that he could spend time with him. “Come, come, have a seat.” He pulled Jing Yi onto the chair beside him and pushed the plate with the snacks over. “Have something to eat.”
Jing Yi looked at the snacks and grabbed a cake too. He hadn’t eaten anything that morning since all his thoughts were focused on going to the teahouse and accomplishing his mother’s request.
Qiu Ling smiled even broader seeing Jing Yi accept the snacks from him. “And? How is it? Tasty?” He was just as excited now as Mister Zhong had been when the first guest entered the teahouse. “You can have more if you’d like. Just take it.”
Jing Yi nodded but didn’t say anything else.
Qiu Ling didn’t mind. Quite the contrary, he liked this atmosphere. If he blended all those extraneous people out, it would be like in the Nine Heavens.
In fact, this really reminded him of that day he had gifted something to Jing He for the first time. They hadn’t been an official couple back then so he had waited with bated breaths if his beloved would accept or not. If he did, then this would have been the first step of them becoming a couple. If he didn’t … Qiu Ling would have needed to court him even longer.
Thinking back now, Jing He had looked a bit troubled. He had clearly hesitated but finally accepted his gift. Not only that, he had even secured it in a chest and put it in a place not that easily seen by others. He obviously didn’t want to share even its sight!
Ah, he must have been so touched!
Thinking of this distant memory Qiu Ling’s grim expression that had already wavered for quite a while collapsed and made way for a silly smile.
Madam Zhong who observed everything from the door of the preparation room furrowed her brow. Maybe it wasn’t such a good idea to send Jing Yi over? That man seemed a little strange.
Before she could dwell on it, the second customer graced their teahouse with their presence. It was a middle-aged woman. She wore simple, yet elegant robes and a friendly smile showed between the faint wrinkles on her face. She stepped in and waited. Just one step behind her, another woman entered. She was about half the older woman’s age and seemed more serious. The warm color of her dress balanced the impression though.
Madam Zhong hurried past her husband to greet the new customers. “Dear guests, welcome to our teahouse! Would you like a table on the lower floor or do you prefer a room on the upper floor?”
“How about a room on the upper floor, mother-in-law?” The young woman put her hand on the older woman’s arm and smiled. “There will probably be more people down here later. It’ll be quieter on the other floor then.”
The old woman started to nod but then stopped. Her gaze had landed on Qiu Ling and Jing Yi. Well, mostly on Jing Yi. “Let’s stay on the lower floor!” She didn’t wait for her daughter-in-law’s opinion and made her way through the room. It seemed like she wanted to go to the back of the room, so Qiu Ling didn’t pay her any mind and instead concentrated on Jing Yi.
Ah, this was heaven! He should come to the teahouse every day from now on. How nice it would be when Jing Yi had finally grown up. He’d bring over some snacks and tea and sit down beside him when there were no other customers. If someone came, he’d reluctantly part with him, his gaze lingering on him while he had to go. And then he —
“Oh, what an adorable little boy!” The older woman bent down in front of Qiu Ling’s table and smiled at Jing Yi. “Is this yours?”
Qiu Ling snapped out of his thoughts and instantly the frown reappeared. “Yes!” Yes, that’s mine, so shove off!
Madam Zhong’s eyelids twitched. She had followed the new guests and heard Qiu Ling’s words. Dear guest, although I sent my son to you to lighten up your mood that doesn’t make him your son, right? She really wanted to say so but this was the first day and they couldn’t risk losing any customers. Thus she cleared her throat and went over to her son. “This is my son, Jing Yi. I wanted him to experience how it is to work in the teahouse.”
“Oh! So this is your husband?” The old woman looked from Madam Zhong to Qiu Ling.
The dragon king looked at her miffed. How could she even think that?! The only person he’d ever marry was his Jing He!
“Er … No.” Madam Zhong smiled wryly and shook her head. “My husband is over there.” She motioned to the counter.
The old woman looked over. Mister Zhong perked up at his wife’s cue and smiled that goofy smile of his. “Oh. Well, your son looks a lot like him.” But her gaze still slipped back to Qiu Ling for a moment.
Madam Zhong herself couldn’t understand why that guest had said something like that, so she could only pretend not to have heard him. She turned to her son instead. “Jing’er, why don’t you come with me and accompany this Madam and her daughter-in-law to their places?”
Jing Yi leaped down from the chair and grabbed his mother’s hand. Of course, he’d rather go with his mother than stay with that strange uncle.
“Don’t forget the tray.”
Jing Yi took the tray and followed the three women over to the other side of the room.
Qiu Ling clenched his fists. Damn. What are you doing, mother-in-law? At least leave the tray, so my beloved will have a reason to come back here!
Of course, Madam Zhong wouldn’t do that. Instead, she felt like it was a good thing those two women had come. There certainly were strange people in the capital. It seemed she couldn’t let Jing Yi run around alone. Who knew if someone would really try to take him home?
The two guests settled down at the last table. The table that was the farthest from where Qiu Ling sat. The dragon king could only gnash his teeth in anger and deliberate if it would be too much if he changed to another table now. There weren’t any other customers yet. He could do so.
Madam Zhong seemed to hear his thoughts. She patted Jing Yi’s shoulder and motioned to the table. “How about I get you some snacks first? My son will accompany you. You can tell him if you want something else.”
“That sounds great, thank you.” The daughter-in-law smiled and turned around to the older woman while Madam Zhong hurried to the kitchen. “What about the tea, mother-in-law? Is there something you’d like?”
She didn’t get an answer. The older woman patted the chair next to her and smiled at Jing Yi. “Come, have a seat, little one. It must be exhausting having to run around the whole day working here in the teahouse.”
Jing Yi sat down but shook his head. He had just come here today and hadn’t run around much.
“Ah, what a well-behaved child! Zhi’er, you really have to hurry up! How long do you want to let me wait for my grandchildren?”
The younger woman’s lips twitched. Had they come here for the tea or for the child? But, unfortunately, she couldn’t say that out loud. “Of course, mother-in-law. You certainly won’t have to wait long.”
Meanwhile, Qiu Ling’s face was as black as a pot. What were they still talking over there?! If they wanted their own children, they should just go home and make them! They should give his beloved back!
He furiously gulped down the tea that Nie Huang had brewed meticulously, not tasting anything but vinegar. This should have been his lucky day! Why had fate taken back his chance to spend time with his beloved? This was unfair!
Unfortunately, all complaints wouldn’t help. Rather, his troubles had just begun because right then the next visitors stepped into the teahouse and these people spelled major trouble.

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