OMF V2C77 The Bitter Truth

For a moment, Jing Yi couldn’t help but wonder if Qiu Ling had some motive telling him such an absurd story. Maybe he’d tell him that it had only been a joke and then tell him the real story because he thought that he wouldn’t be as shocked by whatever had really happened? But the way Qiu Ling hugged him a little too tight and how he was unable to meet his eyes told him that he was serious. It really had happened like that.
Silence engulfed them and Jing Yi could observe how Qiu Ling gritted his teeth and tightened his facial muscles.
He must be really afraid how I’ll react.
With that insight, Jing Yi put one hand onto Qiu Ling’s shoulder and cupped his cheek with the other, turning Qiu Ling’s face back toward him. “You don’t have to be afraid that I’ll run away. I said I wanted to know, so I’ll listen until the end. Don’t you want to tell me why?”
“You really want to listen? You’re not … disgusted with me?”
“I … can’t really comprehend why you would do something like that. But knowing you, even though it’s only been a few days, I’m sure that there has to be some sort of reason. I should at least listen to that, shouldn’t I?”
Qiu Ling smiled slightly. “You’re too good to me.” He sighed and looked at the celebration going on around them. It seemed to be the wrong place to talk about all that but when he saw Jing He’s figure between all these people, he calmed down. This had been the day he finally felt like he saw the light again. Being engulfed in this memory … wasn’t that a good place, after all?
“Back then …” He stopped and shook his head, lowering his gaze to the ground. “I was old enough to already know that something was wrong between my parents. I just … never …” He laughed and shook his head again. “Never in my life would I have imagined just how wrong things were between them.
My father never loved her. From beginning till end, there was another person in his heart. He even advised me to pay attention in the future so that I wouldn’t make a mistake when I was an adult and marry the wrong person. Like him. Well, he never compared it to himself but it was obvious if you observed for a while.”
“Then why did he marry her?” And was that already the reason for what Qiu Ling’s mother had done? Had she been unable to bear the lack of love in her relationship?
Qiu Ling raised his brows. This whole story was so ridiculous he didn’t really want to share it but how else would he explain it? “It was an accident. Me, too, actually. You don’t know this but where I come from marrying isn’t that complicated. You just … take the person you love to bed and that’s it. When you get up the next morning everyone will think of you as a married couple.”
“Oh.” Jing Yi felt his cheeks growing hot but thankfully, Qiu Ling wasn’t paying attention at that moment. He was completely immersed in his memories of that time.
“My father, who knows what hit him that day? He got dead drunk and the next morning he woke up with a wife. He might still have left her but a few weeks later he found out that he would also have a child soon. So, they stayed together.
Actually, if it wasn’t for how much I resemble him I would suspect that he wasn’t my father at all.”
“I don’t think I can follow your thoughts.”
Qiu Ling sighed and leaned back, slightly easing his grip on Jing Yi. It seemed like his beloved really didn’t want to run away. “It’s pretty easy. Back then they were still living in the capital. My father was something like the right hand of the king. He had a lot of influence on him and together they were able to assure that the people had a good life.
Unfortunately, their relationship soured very fast after my father got married. I don’t know the details myself but it seems the old gee—” Qiu Ling coughed. “Er … our honorable king suspected my mother to have ulterior motives for getting close to my father.”
Jing Yi’s expression fell. “You don’t believe that your mother wanted to kill your father from the beginning, do you? Don’t do that! She probably really liked him at the beginning! It’s just that sometimes, people —”
“You’re too naive. Unfortunately, my father was the same. He didn’t listen to the warnings of the king and in the end, he left the capital with us. We moved to that shabby hut you’ve seen and we lived there until the day they died.
My mother … You’re right with one thing: She probably didn’t want to kill him at the beginning. But the king was right, too. She had ulterior motives. Her first motive was to separate him from the king which … was really too easily achieved. Heavens!” He snorted. “I can’t believe how easily those two were played! Even I did a better job.”
Jing Yi raised his brows. He couldn’t understand that last part once again but he decided to keep quiet. He should just let Qiu Ling explain in his own tempo.
“Her second motif was probably to spy on him. My father knew a lot and all those things he told her in good faith were certainly used adequately.”
“Your mother … She certainly wouldn’t have spied for herself, would she?”
Qiu Ling smiled. “Naturally. That’s the thing you’re wrong about: She never loved him. In fact, just like him she already loved somebody else when she married my father.” Qiu Ling snorted again and shook his head. “My father was at least drunk. What’s her excuse? She willingly got married and pregnant for that guy, living with someone she deeply hated for so many years. She even raised that child!”
“She … She was your mother. She probably loved you, even though she couldn’t love your father.” He gently stroked Qiu Ling’s cheek, trying to placate him but Qiu Ling only smiled wryly.
“Oh, yes, she did. After she had killed my father, she actually proposed to bring me back to live with that other man. She most likely never would have thought …” His gaze grew distant when he remembered that day and his breath hitched. That day. He had wanted to forget it. More than anything else he wanted to forget those things from back then. Why were the memories still so vivid after all those years?
“She stood there, a few steps away from him, that bloody dagger still in her hands. She had turned her back toward the direction I came from so I couldn’t see her face but I saw his. He looked … utterly defeated. Not because he was going to die but because at that moment, he finally understood that he had thrown away the life he had wanted. He had wasted his precious time on a person who didn’t love him and whom he didn’t love and gave up on the person he had wanted to marry originally. And thanks to the fact that he had let his guard down around her, he wouldn’t even live to crawl back to that person and ask for his forgiveness.”
Qiu Ling snorted and shook his head. “I feel like that person would have forgiven him. If he told him, honestly told him, how much he had missed him in all those years and how much he regretted what he did, then he would have taken him back.” It was a no-brainer. He had just needed to take one look into Jinde’s eyes when the old geezer talked about his father and he knew at once that that guy still loved him deeply. Most likely he had staged his death and come to the Yun Zou Sect to recuperate and wait for that guy to be reincarnated.
“The person my father loved, his identity was quite special. If my mother succeeded, he most likely would have been harmed. So, the last thing he did in his life was to turn his head toward me and give me a look. I saw his lips moving and I understood that the word he was silently saying was the answer to the question what had happened to him. And his gaze said ‘You know what to do. Show me that I didn’t teach you how to use the sword for nothing. Kill her. Kill her and end this! We can’t let them win!’
But that person was my mother. He might not have loved her but I did. How could I do it? But … I also understood that I had to. She had killed him, her husband of many years, the man she had birthed a child for. She would do more than that. She would stop at nothing to help that man achieve his goal.
I didn’t know that much back then but I understood my father pretty well. He wasn’t cruel. He wouldn’t have asked that of me if it hadn’t been inevitable. Thus … I took up the sword he had given me. I stabbed it into her back before she had the time to turn around. She was shocked.”
He shook his head once more and silently rubbed the ring on his hand. “She screamed and backed away but I just followed her. She … she tried talking to me. ‘Ling’er’, she said and she sounded so pitiful, so aggrieved as if all that was my fault. ‘What are you doing?’, she asked next. ‘I’m your mother! Now that your father is dead I’m the only family you have left! Put that thing down. Let’s bury your father and go. I still have some family. We can go there. You’ll like it, I promise!’ I didn’t know what she meant with family back then. I only found out much, much later.”
He closed his eyes and sighed. “I didn’t listen to her. I registered her words unconsciously but I didn’t really pay attention. I just remembered the things my father had taught me. And I cut her down. No, I … I didn’t just cut her down. I did, at first. But seeing her lie there I couldn’t believe … Couldn’t believe she was really dead. So I … just …” He voice broke and stopped talking but Jing Yi didn’t dare to say anything. He didn’t know how much time had passed since then but Qiu Ling obviously hadn’t been able to overcome this experience.
It was to be expected. If he imagined someone would demand of him to kill his mother … He wouldn’t be able to do it. But Qiu Ling had been able to. He had killed her. Just that it had hurt him very deeply.
Jing Yi leaned forward and hugged him, still not saying anything. He felt like it would be the best to just show Qiu Ling that he was here with him. As long as Qiu Ling knew that he hadn’t left, he should at least feel a bit better.

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