LWS Chapter 59 Take Me Home

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Nie Chang came back with a smile on his face. „Alright. We can go now. I’ll drive you home.“
„Mn.“ Su Yan wanted to follow him out but before he could take a step out of the room Nie Chang had pulled him into a hug. „Ah! What are you doing?“
„Hugging you.“
„Hah? Why?“
„It’s so that you can be sure that I love you very, very much.“ He pecked his cheek, making Su Yan blush.
„You … Honestly, stop this! We’re in the hospital!“
„Mn … I know.“ Nie Chang kissed his other cheek before he finally let go. Well, at least he stopped to hug him. He quite naturally took Su Yan’s hand, though, and led him out of the hospital with a satisfied smile. Ah, it really was great to be an official couple.
He thoughtfully opened the door for Su Yan and helped him fasten his seatbelt before he started the engine. „Ah, do you have anything to eat at home? Maybe we should grab something on the way?“
„Mh-mh, no need. I’ll just call delivery.“ He reached into his pocket but froze. „Eh? Where’s my phone?“
Nie Chang looked over and sighed. Thinking back now, he still felt scared. Mister and Madam Su had been so preoccupied with their fight that they hadn’t even noticed that their son was hurt. What if something had happened to him? He had been so dizzy. Just one step wrong and he could have fallen down the stairs and break some bones or even worse!
„You dropped it back at your parent’s. I’ll drive you there.“
„Oh. Thank you.“ They both grew silent after that.
Nie Chang focused on driving, after all, there was someone really important in his car now. He couldn’t let him suffer any harm. Especially after he had just come out of the hospital.
Su Yan, on the other hand, just didn’t know what to say. Nie Chang might have said that everything would just be the same between them even though he was his boyfriend now but he definitely didn’t feel that way. Ah, he had no idea what he was supposed to do now. What were lovers supposed to be like?
They arrived at the residence while Su Yan still pondered that question. He only looked up when Nie Chang parked the car.
„Do you feel good enough to go up yourself or should I do that?“
„I … Uh, maybe it’s better if you go. I … I don’t want to see my father right now.“
Nie Chang reached over and lightly stroked his hair. „In the end, what exactly happened?“
Su Yan shifted in the seat. He didn’t know how to say it but he wanted to talk about it. He felt … misunderstood. The only one who could probably understand him was Nie Chang. „He had some photos of us. From the park when we were … He said I was sleeping around.“ He lowered his head and frowned. What sleeping around? He hadn’t slept with anyone! And that kiss with Li Ming really had been an accident but his father hadn’t even listened.
Nie Chang sighed and hugged him. „I’m sorry. It’s my fault.“
„Indeed!“ Su Yan lifted his head and glared at him. „What was this all about? Kissing me in the park like that, giving me that heart-shaped chocolate. Why didn’t you just say it directly?“
„I guess I was afraid how you’d react. What if you … rejected me? Then you wouldn’t become my boyfriend and most likely … we wouldn’t even be friends anymore. I thought … maybe it’s better if I take it slowly and make sure it’s alright with you before I tell you. I only dared to do it yesterday.“ He smiled and kissed Su Yan’s temple. „I’m happy, really, really happy that we’re finally together. Had I known in the beginning that you’d take so long to figure it out maybe I would have told you sooner.“
Su Yan averted his face. „What taking long? I only took a day.“
Nie Chang sighed. „Mn, you only took a day. It’s all my fault.“
Su Yan pouted. If Nie Chang said it like that, then he felt like it wasn’t that way. Maybe he really … Well, he had sometimes felt like things were strange between them. But he had always managed to find an explanation. Never would he have thought that his intuition wasn’t wrong and that there was really something changing between them.
„Alright. I’ll be back as soon as possible.“ Nie Chang kissed his cheek and hurried to the residence. He hadn’t thought of locking the door back then so he went right in. The house had already reverted to silence.
Nie Chang silently followed his memory to where Mister Su’s study was located. Indeed. Su Yan’s phone was lying not far from there, right next to the wall. Su Yan had probably propped himself up since he couldn’t hold his balance and was unable to pick it up.
Nie Chang sighed. Really, he always had to worry about that idiot. Mn, maybe it would get better now that they were a couple. He picked the phone up with a smile and hurried outside. He, too, didn’t want to meet Mister Su. That man was his future father-in-law. It would be bad if he couldn’t hold back when he saw him and accidentally punched him.
He got into the car and handed Su Yan his phone.
„So … Do I bring you home or do I take you home?“ He looked at Su Yan through the rear-view mirror and observed how he blushed. Ah, being a couple would be pretty fun. Now he could finally pay him back for all those years of waiting.
„Uh … Then …“ Su Yan bit his lower lip. He wanted to tell him to bring him home but then he thought of that happy smile of Nie Chang’s. Most likely … he would be even happier when he went home with him?
„Then … Take me home?“
Nie Chang who had already driven down the gateway nearly went off the road. He turned around and stared at Su Yan. Baby, can you cut down on such surprises while I’m driving? Otherwise, I’m afraid we won’t live through it.


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OMF V3C17 A Challenge To A Duel

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The first thing Qiu Ling saw when he neared the place where he felt the dragon mark was a black-robed man who was trying to shamelessly take advantage of his beloved. Qiu Ling frowned, hurried over and picked the guy up by the collar before throwing him aside.
„My love!“ He sat down next to Jing Yi and gripped his hand, pulling him in for a kiss. „Mn, I missed you!“
Jing Yi wanted to take a look at Niu Hai but Qiu Ling gripped his chin and turned his head back. Jing Yi sighed. „It hasn’t been that long, has it? Only a few hours.“
„Ah, just one hour without you is like an eternity in the darkest depth of hell. I feel terrible just thinking about it. Ah, my love, you have to heal me!“
Jing Yi leaned forward and circled his neck. „And how would you have me do that?“ He smiled indulgently. It wasn’t that hard to imagine what his fiance would ask of him.
„With a kiss.“ Qiu Ling pressed Jing Yi’s hand against his chest and embraced his waist. „How about it?“
Jing Yi cupped his cheek and lightly pecked his lips. „Better?“
„A little. How about another one?“
Jing Yi looked up into those dark eyes. „You won’t be satisfied even after another kiss, will you?“
„You know me too well.“ Qiu Ling pulled him closer and this time, he didn’t let him pull back after just a peck. He held him gently and their lips met in a lingering kiss until both of them were short of breath.
„You can’t complain now, can you?“
„Mn. Aiya, let’s just make sure I’m alright.“ Qiu Ling bent forward but just then a blade was thrust in his direction. He spun around, lifted a hand and caught the weapon. It turned out the idiot he had thrown away had come back. „What, you still haven’t gotten enough?“
„Who are you and what are you doing with Junior Martial Brother Jing?“ Niu Hai frowned. This bastard! How dare he make a move on the cute junior in front of him!
„Why do you care? It’s none of your business.“ Qiu Ling twisted his hand and the blade broke in half. „Hmph.“ Qiu Ling ignored him. He might pay a little attention to someone like that Grandmaster Shen but a human such as this wasn’t worth it. „Mn, my love, why didn’t you wait for me? Did I take too long?“
Jing Yi sighed and turned to Niu Hai. „I’m sorry. This is … Long Jun. My fiance. He’s a little short-tempered sometimes.“
Qiu Ling’s eyes glittered. Ah, his beloved had actually introduced him as his fiance! Well, it was right that he did so since he was indeed his fiance but still! He felt so lucky right now!
„Your … your fiance?!“ Niu Hai’s expression derailed. The cute Junior Martial Brother actually had a fiance? This couldn’t be! „Since when?“
„Uh … Last year?“
Niu Hai staggered back. How was this possible? He had just fallen in love and now this happened! No, he couldn’t accept this!
Niu Hai lifted his chin and tried to stare down at Qiu Ling. „You! I’m challenging you to a duel!“
„On account of what?“
„I don’t think you’re a match for Junior Martial Brother Jing. He’d be way happier with me. So I challenge you to a duel. If I win, you’ll leave him!“
Qiu Ling blinked. Ah? He was being challenged to a duel over his beloved? He turned toward Jing Yi and silently observed his face. This was too strange. Even in the nine heavens, nobody had challenged him to a duel over Jing He. Why was it happening now?
The gods would have stood a slight chance of winning against him at least, though he doubted that anyone other than Jing He’s uncle Qiang Yan, the god of war, would have been able to even manage a draw. And now a human actually had the guts to try something like this? This was too peculiar!
Qiu Ling slowly turned around. He felt like smacking the guy to death just on account of the fact that he had delusions about his beloved but then again it might be more worthwhile to leverage this situation.
„Alright. But … You see we just arrived here yesterday. I don’t know much about how duels are done here but I feel like we shouldn’t do it half-heartedly. If I duel you, I want the whole sect to watch!“ That would teach all those idiots who thought they might be a match to his beloved a valuable lesson. Nobody would dare to think of his Jing He inappropriately after they saw his strength.
„That’s alright with me!“ Niu Hai smirked triumphantly and turned to Jing Yi. After he thoroughly humiliated this idiot this cute Junior would certainly leave that guy and choose him instead. „Don’t worry, Junior Martial Brother Jing, you’ll soon be freed of this bastard!“
„Tch.“ Qiu Ling didn’t even give Jing Yi time to respond. „You’re taking the words right out of my mouth! My love!“ He gripped Jing Yi’s hands again. „Don’t you worry. Whether it’s this idiot or anybody else I’ll make sure they won’t dare to bother you anymore in the future!“
„Hmph! You just wait!“ Niu Hai looked at their interlocked hands and frowned, then he turned around and stalked away, his fists clenched. He wouldn’t let that shameless bastard succeed. Those two still weren’t married. It wasn’t too late to open Jing He’s eyes to what type of person this so-called fiance of his was.
He hurried back to the division of blades and recounted the whole story to his Martial Brothers.
„So, you just have to wait for me to defeat that guy in the duel. Then I’ll bring back a cute Junior Martial Brother.“ He smiled smugly but the others just exchanged some doubtful glances.
One of them unsheathed his sword and held it in front of Niu Hai. „Brother, grip onto this.“
„Huh? Why?“
„Just do it.“
Niu Hai gripped the blade and looked at him questioningly.
„Now, break it in two.“
Niu Hai glowered at him and let go. „What are you talking about? How would I be able to just break it in two?“
„Exactly.“ The other sheathed his sword again and patted his shoulder with a sigh. „It was nice knowing you.“
The others nodded. „Yeah, it was.“
„Maybe you should train a bit more. If you’re lucky, he’ll just break your arms and legs and lets you live.“
„Heh, you!“ Niu Hai slapped the hands patting him in consolation away. „What are you talking about? Who says he’ll win?“
The first of his brothers sighed again. „Isn’t it obvious? That guy just casually broke your blade while you yourself know that you can’t do it. He’s obviously at a much higher stage than you. Unfortunately, it’s too late to take it back now. You’ll have to compete and I doubt he’ll let you off lightly after you dared to go after his fiance and then challenged him in front of the boy. If it was me, I’d definitely mop the floor with you when it’s time for the duel.“
The others nodded again. „Yeah. I’d totally make an example out of you to warn all those other idiots out there.“
„Woah, Brother Niu, you’re going to be famous soon.“
Another round of shoulder patting started but this time Niu Hai didn’t have the strength to slap them away. Shit. He had actually thought he could flatten that guy since he was new. Who would have thought it would actually be the other way around? It seemed this time he had really brought trouble upon himself.


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LWS Chapter 58 I Love You

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The first thing Su Yan saw when he woke up was a tuft of black hair. The first thing he felt … was a pair of silky lips on his.
Huh?
He blinked and his brain seemed to crash. What was going on? Hadn’t he just been with his father? How come someone was kissing him now? He squinted at that black hair and tried to figure out who that person was. He couldn’t tell, though, but instead, he noticed the white ceiling above them. It seemed … he had ended up in the hospital somehow?
He took a deep breath to find out if there was that awful smell of sanitizer in the air but instead he got a whiff of a familiar aftershave.
Huh?
Su Yan blinked again. This time he was sure his brain had crashed. Something had to be wrong. Why did it seem like this person kissing him right now was Nie Chang?
„Ah Yan …“ That person whispered at his lips, his breath tickling Su Yan’s skin.
Su Yan gulped. „Nie Chang?“
Nie Chang jerked up. It seemed his friend had already woken up? He shifted awkwardly but then frowned. Why was he reacting like this? Su Yan had obviously wanted him to hug him back before. So that had to mean he liked him, too. There was nothing to be embarrassed about!
„You’re awake“, he murmured and leaned down once more, pecking him on the lips.
Su Yan’s eyes went wide. „What … What are you doing?“
„Hugging you.“ Nie Chang sat down at the edge of the bed and smiled. „I remember a certain someone extending his arms as soon as he opened the door and then complaining when I carried him into the car and drove him to the hospital instead of hugging him back. So I felt like I should fulfill your wish now that you’re feeling better.“
Su Yan’s gaze flitted about. Oh god! Had he really done that? Wait. If he had and Nie Chang didn’t want to hug him back …
Nie Chang could practically see how Su Yan’s thoughts were going awry. He reached over and put a finger to his lips. „Sh. Don’t think anymore. You’re just going to get it wrong again.“
Su Yan wanted to protest but Nie Chang just shook his head.
„I love you. Is that clear enough for you?“
Su Yan stopped struggling. That … had been really direct. „You … Why didn’t you say so sooner?! Going around in circles like that … Did you want to drive me insane?“
Nie Chang patted his hand. „I really wonder who is driving whom insane here. So. What about your answer?“ He looked into Su Yan’s eyes, intent on not missing even a second of his expression. He had to engrave this moment into his heart and remember it in the years to come.
Su Yan couldn’t take that kind of gaze. He averted his face and looked out the window. He couldn’t really remember what had happened after he went to his father’s study but it seemed like Nie Chang had once again been there for him. It had always been like that. Whenever he felt bad or when something happened Nie Chang had always been at his side, silently hugging him or uttering some words of comfort. Without realizing it their relationship had probably already changed with the years. What use was there in pretending?
„I like you, too.“
Nie Chang broke out into a beautiful smile. He bent down again, scooped Su Yan up into his arms and gently kissed him. „I guess that makes me officially your boyfriend then.“
„Oh.“ Su Yan looked up at him and blushed.
Just how had this happened? A week ago he had still had a normal best friend and was working at a service point at the train station and now he had somehow become said friend’s employee and boyfriend. Why did it seem like everything in his life was changing?
„Don’t think too much. We’ve … we’ve always gotten along well, haven’t we? Whether we call it being friends or lovers nothing will change about that.“ He stroked Su Yan’s hair back and smiled.
The satisfaction in his expression gave Su Yan pause. He suddenly remembered those photos. Nie Chang had looked just as satisfied back there. He … should be really happy now, shouldn’t he?
„Eh, Ah Chang, do I have to stay in the hospital for long?“
„No. You can probably leave already. Wait a moment. I’ll go and talk to the nurse.“
„Mn. Thank you.“
Nie Chang smiled, bent down once more and lightly kissed his brow. Ah, it really felt good being able to do that overtly. His lips lingered for a moment before he stepped back with a heavy heart. He really wanted to lie down with Su Yan and just hold him to his chest for a while. Well, that would have to wait until later. „Alright, I’ll be back soon.“
„Mn.“ Su Yan looked at his leaving figure. Nie Chang paused in the doorway and looked back at him, giving him another smile before he left.
Su Yan sighed. His best friend had confessed to him in the hospital and he was still so happy. He felt like he had let him down somehow.
„Mn. I should probably see that I make it up to him somehow.“ It was just that he had no idea how to do that.
„Boyfriend …“ He tried to remember the conversations between his former co-workers. It seemed Zhi Bao Yu had once said that she wanted to surprise her boyfriend but didn’t know how? They had discussed for quite a while what could be done.
He hadn’t really paid any attention, after all, that was a bunch of women talking. What did it matter to him? He was a man himself. He had actually felt that he shouldn’t listen to that. What if he got a girlfriend later on and she also wanted to surprise him? Wouldn’t he ruin her surprise then?
Now he felt that it was a pity. He could have gotten so many ideas! Mn, at least, he could remember the final conclusion! The girls had asked for his opinion in the end, after all.
It seemed like the best thing to do in this kind of situation was buying nice clothes and wearing them for your boyfriend! So, he should probably go shopping tomorrow?


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OMF V3C16 He Sure Is Interesting

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Elder Shan watched in horror As Qiu Ling and Grandmaster Shen clashed. The energy that was released pushed him out of the hall and nearly toppled him. He had to stem his feet against the ground so as to not lose his balance. How could this disciple be described as a mere talent? He had actually managed to withstand one attack of the Grandmaster! Even if the Grandmaster hadn’t used his full strength, that was still much more than a lot of people could say about themselves! Even he himself wouldn’t dare claim that he would be able to do that!
Elder Shan was in for a surprise, though: Qiu Ling naturally wasn’t satisfied with just defending. He was intent on giving this person no way out so that he would need to tell him where they had brought his poor beloved. He clenched his teeth and continued to slash at the Grandmaster.
Shen An De frowned a little. He had expected this person to be good after what Elder Shan had said the previous day but he wouldn’t have expected him to be this good. He was entirely on the level of one of their Elders! In fact, he could just go and tell the Sect Master to exchange the Elder in charge of the division of blades with this youth and nobody would be able to raise a fuss as soon as they competed with him!
„How old are you?“
He was honestly interested in the answer to that question but Qiu Ling naturally misunderstood. „Are you mocking me?! I’ll show you!“ He put on a burst of speed and tried driving this shameless bastard back. He, too, wasn’t using his full strength in face of the fact that the person in front of him was a mere human. He couldn’t hurt him too much or he wouldn’t be able to answer his questions anymore. How would he find Jing He then?
The Grandmaster countered all of Qiu Ling’s attacks but didn’t initiate any of his own. He wanted to see how far this new disciple would go in order to save his lover. The two of them fought across the hall and back again without any of them gaining the upper hand. At least it seemed that way to Elder Shan. The longer he watched the more anxious he got. As unbelievable as it was, it seemed like Grandmaster Shen wasn’t able to win against this disciple. He had to do something!
Elder Shan secretly raised his hand and channeled his Qi. A wall of earth sprang up behind Qiu Ling, attempting to trip him and provide an opportunity for Grandmaster Shen.
Qiu Ling frowned and glanced at Elder Shan. Seriously? They really expected him to trip because of such a lousy magic trick? Tch. He’d show them! How dare they underestimate him?! He raised his hand and threw a spell at Elder Shan. The cultivator was thrown out of the hall once more. Qiu Ling smirked. Serves you right! He didn’t pay him any attention after that and turned back toward Grandmaster Shen, narrowing his eyes. You’ll be the next one!
Before he had the chance to strike, Grandmaster Shen had lowered his weapon, though. „It seems you’re really as talented as Elder Shan said.“ In fact, he felt like this new disciple was even more talented but he wouldn’t admit to that in front of him lest he became complacent.
„Who cares about that? Where’s Jing He?!“ Qiu Ling glowered at him without lowering his weapon. This man wasn’t bad. He could probably attack him harder without having to fear that he would die. If he still didn’t want to talk …
„Jing He … That should be your lover’s name?“ Shen An De smiled amicably. He still felt like everything was some kind of misunderstanding. That bubbly sister-in-law of his certainly wouldn’t kill anyone. Maybe someone had given this man false information and led him to believe that it was the fault of Hong Bao that his beloved had nearly come to harm. It was understandable that he was wary in that case. He himself would have reacted just the same had someone hurt his wife.
„Don’t you dare pretend! Where did you bring him?“
Shen An De sighed. He’d just take that as a yes. „I don’t know where he is. And neither I nor my wife or sister-in-law had anything to do with this. Are you sure someone kidnapped him? You just arrived yesterday. Maybe he just wanted to have a look around?“
Qiu Ling paused but then shook his head fiercely. „Impossible! He promised me to wait until I’m back.“
Grandmaster Shen took a look at the Elder that somberly nodded. So that was indeed the case. This wasn’t good. It would be beneficial for the Hei Dian Sect to take in such a talent. If his lover came to harm shortly after arriving here, there wouldn’t be any opportunity for that, though. It was imperative that they found him as soon as possible!
„Alright. Then we’ll help you search for him. Is there anything special about him that could help us to identify him?“
Qiu Ling paused. Wait. Something special about his beloved that could help identify him? How could he have forgotten! His beloved carried the mark of the dragon! He just had to look for that and he would know instantly where his beloved was! Why hadn’t he thought of that immediately?
Qiu Ling’s face fell. He had been too anxious before. He could only hope that nothing had happened to his beloved while he was wasting his time here.
Without another word, Qiu Ling turned around and hurried out of the hall once more. Elder Shan and Grandmaster Shen looked at his leaving figure, unsure what had just happened.
„This new disciple sure is interesting. I’ve never seen something like this.“
The Elder smiled wryly. He hadn’t seen something like this either but he would have preferred it if it stayed that way. The Grandmaster might still think it interesting now but what if he changed his opinion in a few days? He had admitted that troublemaker to the Sect! Wouldn’t he also be the one to blame if something even worse happened? Damn. In hindsight, he should have pretended not to be home yesterday then maybe this cup would have passed from him.


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OMF V3C15 Prying For Information

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Meanwhile, Grandmaster Shen had turned toward Elder Shan that was standing in the doorway, shaking like a leaf. In all his years as an Elder of the Hei Dian Sect, he had never seen such a disciple! No, it should be said that he had never seen such a daring person. Who had the guts to talk to the Grandmaster like that? Even seeing how the Grandmaster was looking at him right now elicited the urge to flee in Elder Shan.
„Elder Shan.“ The Grandmaster narrowed his eyes while looking at the doorway. He had to make sure that he didn’t miss out on this opportunity. „What do you know about this new disciple?“
„Uh, that … not … not much, Grandmaster.“
„Mn?“ Shen An De slightly arched his brows.
The Elder’s shaking got worse. As amicable as the Grandmaster looked, those who were old enough knew that he could be downright demonic if you got on his bad side. Elder Shan was old enough to have seen his fair share of the Grandmaster paying back grudges. „Well, he only arrived yesterday. As I’ve said before I didn’t have the time to ask anything. He brought his lover with him and asked for the dwellings almost immediately. I didn’t dare keep him back in case he really is as talented as he seemed.“
„You said he was a practitioner?“
„Indeed and a highly talented one at that. At least it seemed that way when he demonstrated his strength yesterday.“
Grandmaster Shen nodded slowly and pensively tapped his knee. Although he hadn’t seen this disciple in action yet he had also thought that he was pretty good. At least he had had that aura about him that a lot Of highly talented practitioners shared.
Mn. Looking at it that way it probably wasn’t surprising that this man might have something to do with his sister-in-law’s memory loss. At least he would have the power to erase her memory. Then again he shouldn’t have any reason to. Moreover, he hadn’t seemed like he knew that Hong Bao had lost her memory. Instead, it seemed like he carried a grudge against her because she had killed someone. That person … could it be the lover Elder Shan had mentioned?
Grandmaster Shen looked at the Elder again. „That lover of his, what do you know about him?“
Elder Shan shifted on the spot. Now that the Grandmaster seemed to have taken an interest in this manner he really felt like kicking himself. Why hadn’t he tried to pry for more information yesterday or asked some simple questions on the way to the estate? „There isn’t much to say about him. He seemed to be about sixteen or seventeen years of age but he had only attained the seed stage. There was nothing remarkable about him.“
„Then what did you think about their relationship? Did they seem close?“
Elder Shan nodded. „As I said the first thing he asked about after being admitted to the sect were the dwellings. I thought they would be preoccupied for a few hours so I didn’t bring him over yesterday. Who knew that they would still be doing it when I came by this morning?“
Grandmaster Shen raised his brows. If that was the case, this probably had to do with his lover. He couldn’t imagine why his sister-in-law would try to kill someone like that but that seemed to be the most likely case.
„Was there anything else you noticed? Any details about them?“
Elder Shan pondered everything that had happened since Qiu Ling and Jing Yi arrived at the sect grounds. It didn’t seem like he had forgotten to tell the Grandmaster anything. There were just the details of what these two had done in the morning and the Grandmaster certainly wouldn’t want to know about that. „Ah! There is one thing! I don’t know if it will help, though. His lover called him Qiu Ling.“
„Qiu Ling?“ Grandmaster Shen frowned. He felt like he had heard that name before. He just couldn’t remember where.
„Indeed. I’m sure that it was Qiu Ling.“ Elder Shan nervously stood in the doorway and looked up at the Grandmaster. He really didn’t know what to say more than that. That new disciple hadn’t been exactly forthcoming. In fact, it wouldn’t have been wrong to say that he had only mentioned what was required. This was probably the most difficult disciple he had ever encountered in his life.
Grandmaster Shen nodded. „I see. You may go now. If you see him again —“
Before the Grandmaster could finish his sentence a black-robed figure dashed into the hall once more, the expression on the young man’s face just as grim as before. This time he even held a sword in his hand and he looked like he was going to use it any moment now.
„Where did you bring him?“ Qiu Ling was fuming with anger. That bastard had actually managed to separate him and his beloved. He had to find him now before they could do anything to him. Rather than searching for Jing He himself, it would probably be much faster to just have this Grandmaster spill the beans directly.
Grandmaster Shen raised his brows once more and stood up. He was a patient man but he wouldn’t tolerate someone waving a sword in the estate where he lived with his family. „I don’t mind fighting you but wouldn’t you think it better to talk this through instead?“
„Hmph. What is there to talk about? You kidnapped Jing He! You better tell me now where you brought him or I don’t mind trashing this whole place!“ He stared at the Grandmaster and gripped his weapon tighter. He certainly wouldn’t allow anyone to harm his Jing He! This guy had chosen the wrong opponent.
Grandmaster Shen took out his own sword from his interspatial ring. He didn’t see any reason to fight this disciple but he didn’t mind testing how talented he really was. „Well then, let’s see if you are strong enough to demand an answer from me.“
Qiu Ling didn’t wait for his opponent to make a move. He dashed forward and brandished his sword while he called onto the wind at the same time. His thoughts were with his beloved, though. Just wait for me, Jing He, your fiance will soon be at your side again!
He had no idea that his fiance was waiting for him on the other side of the chasm. Exactly like Jing Yi had no idea that his wish of Qiu Ling raising a fuss would be fulfilled in this way.


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LWS Chapter 57 As Rotten As You Want

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Nie Chang looked over and frowned. There was blood on Su Yan’s temple and cheek and even his hair was stained. It looked gruesome and who was to say if he didn’t have a concussion? In that case … He shook his shoulder. „Ah Yan, what happened? Did your father say anything?“
Su Yan’s eyelids fluttered and he slowly turned his head. Nie Chang clenched his hands. This really didn’t look good. Just what had happened?
„Ah Yan —“
„You didn’t hug me.“
Nie Chang sighed. „I’m trying to figure out if you’re hurt. If you want me to hug you, then wait until we’ve been in the hospital and the doctor says that you’re alright. I’ll hug you as much as you want then.“
Su Yan observed his expression and frowned a little. „Really?“
„Really. So now tell me: What happened back there? Your mother was screaming at your father. Did he do something to you?“
„No … Not really. He just … showed me some photos?“
Nie Chang really didn’t know what to say anymore. They were getting nowhere with this. „What Photos? How did you end up bleeding because of some photos?“
„Of us.“
„Huh?“ Could Su Yan be any vaguer?
Su Yan turned to the side and looked at him but didn’t say a word.
Nie Chang sighed again. „Alright, we’ll be there soon. Just wait a bit. You can tell me everything when you’re feeling better.“ He sped up as much as he could and hurriedly parked the car. By the time he opened the door to the passenger seat, Su Yan had fallen asleep. Nie Chang cursed under his breath, picked him up and ran into the hospital.
One of the nurses looked up and hurried over as soon as she saw Su Yan’s blood-covered face. „What happened?“
„I’m not too sure. He probably had an accident at home. He called me to ask for help but he wasn’t really responding to questions and seemed dizzy. Then he fell asleep in the car just now.“
„Come with me.“ The nurse waved him with her and hurried to an unoccupied room.
„He’s going to be alright, isn’t he?“ Nie Chang put him down and sat next to the bed, grasping Su Yan’s hand. He waited with bated breath until the medical examination was over. „How is it?“
„Mn, there’s no need to worry. He seems to have a mild concussion but he isn’t badly injured. We’ll keep him here for a few hours but he can go home after that.“
„Alright. Thank you.“ Nie Chang nodded and gazed at Su Yan’s face.
After the blood was gone it indeed didn’t look that bad. He gave a relieved sigh. So everything was alright. Su Yan would be alright. „You really made me worry this time.“ He gently stroked Su Yan’s hair and smiled.
Honestly, what kind of situation was this? He had driven to the street next to Su Yan’s apartment as soon as Madam Su ended her call, just in the hope of being a minute or even a few seconds earlier when Su Yan called. He finally wanted to end this period of waiting and hoping and finally make him his. But when that call he had longed for connected something had already gone wrong. It was as if the universe didn’t want them to be together.
He gently lifted Su Yan’s hand and kissed its back. „I’m sorry, Ah Yan. It seems it’s my fault.“ He didn’t know what exactly had happened but now that he knew that Su Yan was alright he had calmed down enough to understand that it somehow involved him and that it wasn’t something that could be easily explained away. Mister Su probably knew that he had been trying to seduce his son.
There was only one thing he didn’t understand: Why Su Yan? If his father had found out, then shouldn’t he have gone after him instead of his son? After all, he was the one at fault here. Or had Mister Su somehow misunderstood?
Or, no, maybe he hadn’t misunderstood anything. Maybe Su Yan had really figured it out by now and was even reciprocating his feelings. His reaction at the park and at the workshop had suggested as much. And then he had convened with his mother. If his father had heard … he’d naturally flip out.
Su Yan was the only son of the Su’s, their only child even. Thanks to that his mother had spoiled him until the point where he felt it was normal to be treated like a prince and couldn’t figure out when people were friendly to him because of some other reason.
His father, on the other hand, had placed all of his hopes on this child. It was a pity that Su Yan didn’t feel like living up to those expectations. Instead of going to the business school his father wanted him to attend he raised a fuss about wanting to decide his own life, moved out and started working at a service point for a more than average salary. Naturally, his father was disappointed.
His only hope had probably been that Su Yan would reconsider in a few years and start working hard. Then they’d be able to laugh about this ‚rebellious phase‘ of his. If he didn’t, then it would still be alright as long as he got married to a nice girl and had a son that could someday take over. His father might have been able to transfer his hopes this way.
But if he found out that this son of his was gay … Wouldn’t that shatter all of his hopes? Not to mention that Mister Su was traditional. Two men getting together, he might never be able to accept that.
Nie Chang frowned. He could understand where Su Yan’s father was coming from. But that was no reason to treat his son like this. Someone like Su Yan … he should be treated with the utmost care.
Nie Chang gave a low chuckle and kissed the back of Su Yan’s hand again. „I’m afraid … I’ll be exactly like your mother and spoil you rotten.“ He stood up and bent over Su Yan. „Never mind. As long as you stay with me … you can be as rotten as you want.“ Then he leaned down and kissed him.


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OMF V3C14 The Only Available Link

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„Grandmaster Shen! Ah, the disciple … the new disciple … you wanted to see …“ Elder Shan took a deep breath and tried to calm down. „I brought him over.“
Shen An De gave an amused smile. So this was how it looked when the Elder brought someone over. „I see.“ So that was indeed the new disciple. That didn’t explain what kind of grudge this young man had against him, though. He had clearly felt some killing intent from him just now before Elder Shan had entered the room. Well, whatever. He’d just take it step by step. There might be a misunderstanding somewhere.
„You might wonder why I’ve called you here.“
„No.“ The reply came prompt and was delivered in a flat tone and with a deadpan expression. This might prove to be a difficult conversation.
Shen An De raised his brows again. „No?“
„No. I know exactly why you’ve asked me here.“ Qiu Ling frowned. He’d have to be dumb not to notice. What did this guy take him for?
Shen An De grew even more confused. If this disciple knew that he had taken an interest in him because of his talent, then why was he reacting like this? Shouldn’t he be happy instead? Ah, this was pretty interesting … „Oh, then do tell me about it. I’m curious just how much you know.“
„Hmph. It’s obviously because of that woman.“ Qiu Ling raised his chin, his gaze saying that he knew exactly what was going on.
Grandmaster Shen had no idea what he was talking about, though. „That woman?“
„Yes! Don’t think I wouldn’t know! I’ve seen you together when I came to get that fruit. You’re obviously in league with her!“
Shen An De closed his eyes. This was just too much information at once. He needed a moment to sort everything. It seemed like this disciple had come to the sect to get a fruit even before he called him over. The fruit in question could only be one from the Beguiling Night Tree considering that that was one of the prized possessions of the Hei Dian Sect. Most likely that incident had even happened before he came to the sect officially since plucking the fruits was forbidden for the disciples and he hadn’t heard that one had gone missing. Besides himself and the Sect Master, only the Elder in charge of the Alchemy division had the rights to take them and he would report to him immediately if the fruits were used.
Since the Elder kept a close eye on the tree to make sure nobody tried to circumvent this rule Shen An De had no problems guessing when this new disciple had stolen the fruit: It should have been roughly a year ago. Back then one fruit had disappeared without anyone noticing the thief.
Furthermore, the day that the Elder reported the missing fruit to him was one day after he and Hong Ai had noticed that stranger creeping around who had uttered her sister’s name. So, the woman this disciple had seen him together with could only be his wife. Judging from his reaction back then it might be that he had mistaken her for her sister Hong Bao, though.
Shen An De had no idea how those two should know each other and it might prove difficult to find out. For now, he could only ascertain that this man somehow seemed to have something against her and thought that she was planning something that he was helping with. The question was: What did he think they were up to and why?
Shen An De crossed his legs and leaned back. This was indeed getting interesting. His sister-in-law couldn’t remember some years of her life even though she herself didn’t seem to miss any memories. The Chun Feng Sect that had taken her in hadn’t been able to find out anything and neither had he. If this man wasn’t connected to the Chun Feng Sect but knew her from before that … Wouldn’t that make him the key to figuring out what had happened to his sister-in-law? He had to make sure! Hong Ai had been worried sick because of her sister’s memory loss.
„So, how did you get to that conclusion?“
„Hmph. Do you think I’m dumb? She already tried to kill him once! And now you’ve lured me over to —“ Qiu Ling stopped speaking and his eyes bulged. „Oh shit!“ He turned on his heel and left, hurrying back to the building where Jing He was supposed to wait for him. He barged inside and … found it empty. His beloved wasn’t there. He had disappeared.
Qiu Ling’s mind went blank. He felt like he heard the angry roar of the Heavenly Emperor again: ‚Are you satisfied now? You nearly got our son killed!“
It couldn’t be … Had he once again brought danger upon Jing He? But he had tried so hard not to interfere with his trial! No! It wasn’t his fault this time. This time it was purely that servant girl’s doing. She was obviously in league with that Grandmaster and the demons. Just take a look at that guy’s face! That guy was definitely connected to the demons!
So, that bastard Jin Ling had probably found out about Jing He’s trial in the mortal world and now he was trying everything to make sure that Jing He wouldn’t be able to pass it. Then, wouldn’t he be punished by the heavenly law when he returned? The demons wouldn’t even need to do anything to Jing He himself! They could just wait and see. And hurting a mortal was so much easier than hurting a god. If they managed to kill him so that his trial would end sooner, then this plan would definitely succeed.
Oh no … He had once again underestimated that despicable bastard. He had actually already managed to separate them and now he would certainly try to kill Jing He’s mortal reincarnation! No, he had to prevent this! He couldn’t let anything happen to him! He had to make sure Jing He could pass his trial in peace.


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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.

OMF V1C109 Getting Away with It

At the teahouse, Madam Zhong faced Li Bo and his two lackeys, her eyes blazing with fury. „You killed my husband!“
Faced with her accusation, Li Bo’s servants both took a step back. Shit! This wasn’t supposed to happen!
„That …“ Xiao Guo looked at the other one. „It wasn’t us!“
„How was that not you? Everyone here saw!“ Madam Zhong motioned to the women in the back of the room.
Xiao Guo gulped, but Xiao Nuo didn’t want to give up so easily. „We might have punched him once but obviously, one wouldn’t die just because of that.“
„You punched him and now he’s dead! How can you say one would not die because of that?“ She didn’t want to argue with those men but those three had come to make trouble and her husband was dead now. She didn’t know who they were but she could guess that the obese man’s identity was extraordinary considering how he dressed and behaved. She had to chase them out now or this would get even worse. She didn’t even dare to think of making them pay for what they had done to her husband.
She only hoped that she could save herself and her son and avoid further trouble for now. It wasn’t what her husband deserved but what could a lone widow do? Especially if she had only come to the capital for a few months? She didn’t know anyone besides her husband’s family. She had no way to make them pay however much she would have liked to do so.
„That …“ Xiao Nuo looked at his master. There was really no way to counter what she said.
Li Bo pressed his lips together. „This lady, how can you make such irresponsible remarks? Has anyone actually seen my servants punching your husband?“ He looked at the women hiding at the back of the room. He had seen most of them at some sort of gathering before and knew their husbands. Would any of them dare to rat him out?
Unfortunately, Li Bo was right with his assumption. None of the women dared to speak up. They liked the Zhongs but not enough to endanger their own families. Li Bo smiled and looked at Madam Zhong smugly. „You see? It’s all your misconception, Madam. But it’s alright. I won’t blame you. You just lost your husband. It’s expected for you to be a little … addled right now. I’ll give you some time to adjust to your new circumstances. After that, I’ll return and we can calmly talk about how you’ll compensate me for the loss of my horses.“ He smiled, waved at his two servants and turned around, leaving the teahouse behind.
Madam Zhong looked at the guests accusingly. All of them had gotten to know her and her husband over the last few weeks. Some had come to the teahouse every single day and talked to them and their son for a good time. But now nobody stepped forward to help.
Madam Zhong shook her head and knelt down beside her husband again, smoothing his hair that had just started to gray. What could she do about it, though? If they didn’t want to, she could plead however much she wanted. They still wouldn’t do it. She could only silently bury her husband and hope that that man wouldn’t remember her and her son.
Unfortunately, Li Bo was dead set on ruining her. After leaving the teahouse, he sat inside his carriage complaining. „Aiya, all this trouble for one small child! You better be right about him being able to boost my business, Xiao Nuo!“
The servant nodded eagerly. „Don’t worry, boss! It’s definitely accurate. That Zhong Gang had a good and steady income with his restaurant before but the teahouse became an instant success and even furthered his earnings from the restaurant after some days. The child is the only explanation. There’s nothing else that makes the teahouse special and the people I asked all said that the women mostly talked about the children. So having that boy in your restaurant would definitely help you a lot, boss!“
„Mn.“ Li Bo nodded sedately. „I’m just afraid that woman won’t give him up so easily. And with how good their business has been until now she might be able to pay enough. Even the justice court can’t do anything about it then.“
The servants exchanged a glance but didn’t know how to help.
Li Bo pondered and finally waved at them. „Go spread the message that they’re at odds with me. Let’s see how long these guests will dare to go there. If business dwindles down she won’t have any other possibility but to comply with my demands. Heh heh.“ He laughed and rubbed his thighs. He could already see all those coins entering his pockets. And getting that boy would probably not be difficult when the family started losing money.
And yes, the next day his dirty scheme already seemed to come to fruition: Some of the women were having a guilty conscience because they didn’t help and wouldn’t have dared to come anyway but the rest had been scared away by the rumors flying around. Especially since they knew how true those rumors were. If Li Bo didn’t think much about killing a law-abiding citizen in broad daylight, would he be any more merciful to their families? Certainly not!
Madam Zhong looked at all the empty tables and sighed. Jing Yi, who had still followed her to work even though Madam Zhong was afraid he might suffer harm if that man came back, looked up at his mother with a worried gaze.
„Why is there nobody here today, mommy?“
„Who knows? They all knew your father so maybe they are sad he’s gone now and wouldn’t be able to take their grief if they came here.“
Jing Yi nodded and gripped her hand, smiling sweetly at her. Madam Zhong smiled back, though her smile was strained, and patted his head. „It’s alright, Jing’er. Your father … Who knows? He might be reborn as a really important person.“ After all, hadn’t that daoist master told them that souls really reincarnated?
After burying her husband’s body the previous evening this was the thought she clung to. He had passed away but his soul lived on and would someday return. Maybe … Maybe they would see each other again in another life.
Thankfully, Madam Zhong had no idea that that was already impossible.
„Well, let’s just hope the guests miss us and sister Nie Huang’s tea and return soon.“
Jing Yi nodded but the only person to run over to the teahouse that day was Shao Hai who wanted to see if Jing Yi was alright. It seemed like hard times were imminent for Madam Zhong and her son and they had no way of countering the culprit. They could only wait and see and hope that the situation would miraculously solve itself.

OMF V1C108 What Happened to Father?

Madam Zhong sat next to her husband’s body and cried. Nothing could be heard in the teahouse except for her heart-wrenching sobs. Jing Yi struggled out of Shao Hai’s embrace and ran over to his mother’s side, hugging her neck. „Mommy!“ He looked at his father with a frightened expression, unable to understand what had happened.
Madam Zhong turned around and hugged her son back. That’s right. She couldn’t lose herself in her grief. There was still their son to take care of. And Ah Lei wouldn’t want her to cry. He had always loved her smile.
She wiped away her tears with the back of her hand. With a frighteningly calm expression, she stood up slowly with Jing Yi in her arms and turned around to Qiang Wei. This man … If she had understood it correctly, he was that person’s subject. If it concerned Jing Yi, he would probably help.
„Please, bring my son back home.“
Qiang Wei nodded and took Jing Yi from her. The boy didn’t want to leave his mother, though. She had only ever cried once and that was when they had met that bandit in the forest. Remembering this he had a sudden sense of crisis.
„Mommy!“ He flailed his arms and tried to get back to her but Qiang Wei decisively left the teahouse.
„Be good. Your mother has to do something difficult right now. You’re helping her if you’re not there. Let’s go home, alright? You mother’s going to come over after she’s finished.“
Jing Yi didn’t want to go. Especially since he didn’t even know this strange man. But then again … His mother had entrusted him to this man so he should be a good person, no?
Jing Yi looked up at him with limpid eyes. Qiang Wei smiled. „What is it, little one?“
Jing Yi tilted his head. That manner of speaking to him … „Do you know grandfather?“
„Grandfather?“ Qiang Wei hadn’t seen Qiu Ling’s sagely-old-man appearance and couldn’t understand what the boy was talking about.
„Mn!“
„Who’s your grandfather? I thought you only had your parents and your uncle and aunt.“
Jing Yi shook his head. „No, there’s grandfather, too.“ He pursed his lips, leaned in closer and lowered his voice. „You know, grandfather’s a dragon!“
Qiang Wei’s lips twitched. Grandfather is a dragon? That should mean … ‚grandfather‘ was His Majesty? Did their king know he was addressed like this? Considering his vanity … He might go insane hearing this.
Qiang Wei would probably be stunned silly if he knew that his king had fabricated this ‚grandfather‘ himself. Though, he hadn’t expected that manner of address to develop either.
After getting over his mental shock, Qiang Wei smiled. „If he’s a dragon, I probably know him. There aren’t that many dragons, you know?“
„So you’re a dragon, too?“
„Mn!“
„I thought so!“
„Oh? How come?“
„You’re nice!“
Qiang Wei’s smile stiffened. Please, little boy, never repeat these words in front of His Majesty. You’re going to get me killed this way! „I’m certainly not as nice as your … ahem … grandfather.“
„That’s true.“ Jing Yi pursed his lips. „So … What happened to father?“
Qiang Wei looked at the boy and sighed. „I’ll tell you when we reach your home, alright?“
„Alright.“ Jing Yi just hugged Qiang Wei’s neck and let him carry him home.
Qiang Wei put the boy down in his room and sat before him on the floor. „About your father …“ He prepared to explain but hesitated. How to tell something like that to a child? He couldn’t just say ‚Your father is dead, he won’t come back ever again‘, could he?
„Mn … Let me tell you a story first, alright?“
Jing Yi really was a patient child. He just nodded and waited what Qiang Wei wanted to tell him.
„So … many, many years ago, we dragons had a king we loved very much. He was really powerful and inspired awe in everyone who saw him but he was also really caring to his subjects. All the dragons were looking up to him. The males wanted to be like him and the females wanted to marry him.“ He paused and looked expectantly at the boy. Unfortunately, he didn’t get a reaction.
Qiang Wei smiled wryly. Little boy, shouldn’t you inject something at this point? Like asking what happened next? Or at least ask for the king’s name! But Jing Yi still waited, even though Qiang Wei made quite the long pause.
Qiang Wei finally couldn’t take it any longer and coughed in embarrassment. „Anyway … One day the demons attacked. In fact, they didn’t really attack the dragons but the gods instead. But the gods have … quite the close relationship to the dragons so when the gods seemed to be losing the war our king set out to help them. He battled with the demon king for four days and four nights and finally managed to kill him.“
Qiang Wei said so but his face fell. „Unfortunately, the demon king had managed to hurt the dragon king with the cursed weapon he wielded. Though the wound seemed to heal, the dragon king got weaker and weaker as time passed and finally … he took his last breath.“
Without knowing how Mister Zhong had died, Qiang Wei had somehow brought up the story involving the very same weapon to explain his father’s death to Jing Yi. Was this fate at work? Maybe. Or maybe it was because the previous dragon king’s death had just been as mysterious to the dragons as Mister Zhong’s death was to Qiang Wei now. They had taken a long time to figure out it was related to the demons’ soul-devouring dagger and maybe they never would’ve realized had it not been for the fact that quite a few of the gods who had fought in the war died under such mysterious circumstances, too.
Jing Yi still only looked at Qiang Wei, patiently waiting for the end of the story.
Qiang Wei sighed. „We were devastated when the king died. Many of us thought that it might be the end of the whole dragon race. But then …“ He smiled unconsciously remembering that day. „When the demons had already elected their new king and were trying to take revenge on us for their loss, somebody stepped forward to save us. He was …“ Qiang Wei shook his head not knowing how to describe what he had seen that day.
„He was no less awe-inspiring than our previous king. When he slightly lifted his hand the winds roared and the clouds gathered above our heads bringing heavy rain and rumbling thunder and flashes of lighting that scorched the earth and charred those vicious demons to a crispy black. And amidst all this chaos he just picked up some sword that someone had dropped and plunged into the fray, chopp— er … defeating that new demon king and saving us dragons once again.“
Qiang Wei patted Jing Yi’s head. „That man became our new king and even though the old king’s passing was still bitterly bemoaned, we were satisfied. So, what I want to say is: Little one, your father is like our old king. He fought valiantly for the sake of his own people — that is you and your mother — but finally, he lost. He won’t be returning.“
Jing Yi looked at him with a pale face, understanding dawning in his eyes.
Qiang Wei tussled his hair. „It’s alright. He was … He certainly was content to be able to help the people closest to him even if he had to give up his own life for it. And you don’t have to worry. Someday, when you require help, someone will come to your aid just like our new king appeared when we needed him the most and you’ll find that other people can become just as important to you as the people who passed on. It’ll still hurt not having them at your side anymore but … There will be other good things. So, don’t be too sad. Your father wouldn’t like that either. He’d certainly like it more if you still smiled and continued on with your life to become such a great hero like he had been one.“
Jing Yi nodded slightly. He didn’t understand everything but the last things the man in front of him said were pretty easy. So, I should smile and become a hero. Remembering these words, Jing Yi started to mull over what a hero was. He would definitely do what his father expected of him!