OMF V1C30 Trick Him!

Jing Yi hurried back to the shrub where he had hidden when his father took him to the forest. He sat down and looked around as if waiting for the old man to appear.
Qiu Ling observed him from behind, sighed and transformed once again. His perfect plan had been thwarted. He had to get it back on track! And … he had to tell Jing Yi that waiting in the forest like this wouldn’t be of help if he was looking for a person. Who knew if a normal passer-by would still be there after a whole day?
“Oh!” Qiu Ling stopped hiding his presence and like the day before, he bent down and peered into the shrub. “What’s in there today? A little animal?”
Jing Yi turned around and his face lit up when he saw Qiu Ling. He didn’t stay hidden in the shrub this time and instead rushed out and looked up at Qiu Ling.
“What is it, little boy? Did something happen?”
“My mommy said she was a girl too!” His gaze was accusing.
Qiu Ling felt a stab in his heart. Ah, why had he planned something like that? Now his beloved looked at him as if he had done something wrong! Would it be even worse when his Jing He woke up in the Nine Heavens and remembered everything that had happened in the mortal realm? He’d certainly blame him for being heartless!
Ah, no, his beloved wasn’t like that. He would very, very happy to see all the things he had done for him! Just imagining how his beloved would show his happiness Qiu Ling almost smiled. He had to try very hard to suppress it and stay in his role of the sagely old man.
“Uh … and?” He pretended not to understand what this was about. For now, he had to mislead Jing He’s mortal reincarnation and then adjust his tale a bit. There was no turning back now anyway.
Jing Yi pursed his lips. The old man didn’t seem to understand? “Mommy can’t be a mud monster!”
“Of course not!” Qiu Ling pretended to be surprised he’d even think about that.
“But …” Jing Yi furrowed his brow. “You said all girls were mud monsters! Mommy was a girl too. But mommy can’t be a mud monster!”
Qiu Ling blinked innocently. “Did I say that?”
Jing Yi looked thunderstruck. The old man hadn’t said that?
“Er … I must have misspoken.” Qiu Ling hung his head. “I’m really sorry! What I meant was that every mud monster can transform into a human girl! Of course, not every human girl is a mud monster. Your mommy certainly isn’t one!”
Jing Yi perked up. So it was like that! Everything was just a misunderstanding! The old man didn’t lie!
Qiu Ling pressed his lips together. Why did that expression look so familiar? Had he really tricked him successfully? No need to give any proof? That was really too —
“Then how do I know which one is a mud monster?”
“Uh … Through … careful observance.” Qiu Ling looked away. “Why do you ask?”
“Mommy said if father hadn’t played with her, I wouldn’t be here. So if I don’t play with the girls, will I disappear?”
Qiu Ling looked at him, stunned. How did he arrive at that conclusion? He slowly shook his head. “No, you won’t.” The boy looked at him questioningly, clearly not understanding why. Qiu Ling frowned. How to explain that? “It’s like this: You are here because your father married your mother. Whatever you do won’t change that.”
“Then I don’t have to play with the girls?”
“You don’t. In fact, I would advise you not to do so. You know they could be mud monsters, after all. And even if they aren’t: If you always play with one of them, your mother might just take a liking to her! Then you wouldn’t be as important to her.”
Jing Yi imagined his mother liked another child. He scrunched up his face, ready to cry the next moment.
Qiu Ling patted his head. “Don’t worry. Nothing will happen if you’re cautious!”
“Oh.”
“Mn … Maybe you should try finding out which of the girls is a mud monster. Just to be sure …”
Jing Yi looked at him expectantly. Qiu Ling coughed. He was about to lie to his beloved again. Hopefully, that wouldn’t become a habit. Ah, Jing He, I promise when you grow up I’ll never lie to you again!
“It’s really easy! A mud monster has to return to his natural environment now and then. A place they’d love to go to would be the river bank or the path near the edge of the forest.”
“So if they go there, they’re mud monsters?”
Qiu Ling nodded. “Yes, indeed. And you’ll see: They’ll transform back if they go there! You basically can’t be wrong with this method! Just go and have a look.”
Jing Yi nodded eagerly and stood up, ready to go and start with his ‘careful observation’. Qiu Ling reached out and pulled him back. There was still another thing he had to do.

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