OMF V1C20 Duping a Child

Qiu Ling lifted his hand, his magic surged and his robes once again seemed to change form. This time they didn’t look like the robes of a Daoist cultivator though. Instead, they seemed like the clothes the ordinary people in the countryside wore because they were convenient to move around in. If one didn’t look at the face, Qiu Ling might have been one of the men from the surrounding villages. Well, and one should also ignore the fact that there wasn’t even a single speck of dust on his clothes which certainly wasn’t normal.
After the trouble from the last time, Qiu Ling considered these problems. He couldn’t do anything about the dirt since his beloved hated it but with another wave of his hand, he changed the rest of his appearance. His long hair turned as white as snow and his body aged until his face was scrunched up in wrinkles.
Qiu Ling summoned a water-mirror and appraised his new appearance. It wasn’t very handsome and he normally wouldn’t let himself get caught like this even if he was dead but today he would bear this insult to his beauty. After all, this was for making sure that his beloved wouldn’t be snatched away by somebody else!
Right now, he was going for a ‘sagely old man’-look, someone that seemed trustworthy and easy to talk to. A friendly grandfather kind of person. Even a shy child like Jing Yi should open up to such a person! Only that way could his plan be implemented.
Qiu Ling picked up a branch, transformed it into a walking stick to complete his disguise and made sure nobody but Jing Yi was around. Then, he let the spell surrounding him fall so that mortal eyes might see him again and stepped out from his hiding place. He slowly made his way over in Jing Yi’s direction.
Some steps short of the shrub he stopped. “Aiyo! What’s this?” He bent down a little and tilted his head to the right. “Something seems to be sitting in this shrub! Could it be some small animal?”
The boy in the shrub tensed and searched for the animal that might attack him any moment. Qiu Ling suppressed a smile and took another step while the child wasn’t looking. Jing Yi couldn’t find any animal and turned back to the old man, his gaze confused.
Qiu Ling bent down a little further. “Oh! Isn’t that a child?”
Jing Yi’s eyes went wide. Is that grandfather talking about me?!
“What is your name, little boy?”
Jing Yi hid deeper in the shrub, not intending to come out and also not intending to answer the old man.
Qiu Ling didn’t mind. Jing Yi hadn’t talked much since he learned how to talk. In fact, even back in the Nine Heavens Jing He had been a quiet and reclusive person. Not talking was fine. He would just do the talking. Between them, it had been like that for most of the time. He was already used to it.
“Little boy, you should be careful! Did you know that a terrible monster is living over there?” Qiu Ling vaguely pointed in the direction he had come from.
Jing Yi looked over and hesitantly shook his head. He didn’t know but this seemed important.
“Mn. There is, there is. Shall I tell you about it?”
Jing Yi tilted his little head and then nodded. It was still better to know about something like that!
“Yes? Do you want to come out?”
Jing Yi didn’t move so Qiu Ling just sat down in front of the shrub.
“The monster isn’t all that big. In fact, I think it might just be as tall as you.”
Jing Yi lifted a hand to his head as if to check how tall he had grown. He seemed a little more at ease finding out that he wasn’t all that tall yet.
Qiu Ling nodded slowly like the sagely old man he pretended to be. “It’s not tall but it’s fast! And that is even more troublesome. Do you know why?”
Jing Yi shook his head. He waited for Qiu Ling to continue but just met with a calm gaze. Jing Yi debated with himself, then crept a little closer. When the old man still didn’t explain he couldn’t help but ask. “Why?”
Qiu Ling bent forward and lowered his voice. “It’s because they live in the earth and are muddy all over!”
Jing Yi’s eyes bulged. Muddy?! He remembered the girl from the day before. It had already been so horrible when she had only gotten her dress dirty. And now there were monsters in the forest that were completely muddy?!
Qiu Ling’s lips twitched. If this was still the Jing He from the Nine Heavens, he’d never be able to dupe him like this! He should cherish this opportunity and brag a little about it when Jing He came back from his trial.
Qiu Ling coughed and averted his face so as to not let the boy catch this telltale sign of his lies. He couldn’t mess his plan up at the last moment himself! “Yes, yes, indeed. It sounds shocking, no? Actually, they aren’t that rare. They live almost everywhere on this continent. And if one encounters them, it might lead to a terrible disaster!”

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