This might be the first time someone’s teaching me how to behave like a squirrel! Before, when I was way younger, whenever I acted like how a normal squirrel would, I would always be scolded: don’t walk up the stairs using your hands; don’t keep food in your cheeks for the whole day; stop peeing on the wooden fence. Very reasonable things that’re somehow unacceptable for humans to do. Ahem, anyway, moving on, my squirrel form is perfect!
“Compared to his squirrel form, anyone’s squirrel form would be perfect.”
And, boy, am I glad for that. The ruler was right. Having Mrs. Mu’s lackey as a comparison really does make me feel awesome. He can’t even properly control the tail he made out of spiritual energy. It’s just hanging there, limp. Maybe it’s because he hasn’t seen many squirrels, but the legs he made are strangely shaped, a bit too long and a bit too thin. I think we were making him self-conscious by staring because Mrs. Mu’s lackey frowned and asked, “What am I doing wrong?”
“The basic concept is there,” the ruler said. “It’s the details that need to be worked out, but it shouldn’t affect the effectiveness of your escape technique—although you will look pretty ugly while doing it.”
He looks pretty ugly even when he’s not using the escape technique, but I’m not going to say that out loud. He might get discouraged and give up before we even start. Speaking of which, all the ruler really did was make us grow front legs out of our arms; she didn’t teach us any escape technique, no qi or spiritual-energy-circulation method to do anything. Well, that probably comes next.
“Now that both of you are ready,” the ruler said and waved her hand. A giant stick appeared out of nowhere, and when I say giant, I mean giant. The stick was ginormous! If it fell out of the sky onto a random neighborhood, it would probably smash more than three houses. “It’s time to learn the first movement of my escape technique: zig.”
Uh, she’s not going to swing that stick at us, is … she!? Holy cr*p! She is! Dodge, dodge, dodge! I might be an immortal capable of creating flaming armor out of spiritual energy, but I’d still be in a world of hurt if I got hit by that thing!
Surprisingly, when the stick hit the ground, the sound it made wasn’t loud at all, but the ground did ripple and toss me into the air. Luckily, it didn’t seem like the ruler had any plans to swing the stick at me while I was up here, but just in case, I’ll teleport back onto the ground. Now that I think about it, isn’t teleporting an escape technique? Ha-ha, what do you know, Teacher? It looks like I’ve learned one. Perfect! We can stop now. …Please? My tail was stiffer than a dead cat when that stick was coming down.
“Your instincts as a squirrel aren’t bad,” the ruler said as the stick rose back up, leaving a massive shadow on the ground next to me. The interior of the drawer had a sky and no ceiling, but for some reason, when the stick reached its maximum height, the whole place shook like something bumped it. “I didn’t even have to give you any pointers, and you’ve already mastered zig. Now, try executing the second part of my escape technique: zag.”
Zig and zag? Why do I feel like the ruler’s messing with me? Regardless, I have to move or I’ll get squished! How’s Mrs. Mu’s lackey doing? I didn’t see him zig with me earlier. Oh. I think he was squished by the stick because there’s only a little mound of hair where he used to be. He’s not dead, is he? Bah! Why am I worrying about him when that could be me next if I don’t run as fast as I can! Mm, running on all fours is a lot easier than I thought it would be. I thought I’d suck at it because I hadn’t done it before, but it actually feels really nice, a little like I’m stretching a sore muscle. These must be the squirrel instincts the ruler was talking about.
“Not bad, not bad at all,” the ruler said while lifting the giant stick again. I’m pretty sure it’s a branch of the world tree. No other stick can grow that big. “As expected of the White-furred Tyrant’s disciple, you’re already proficient at zigging and zagging.”
Zigging and zagging? I knew it! This isn’t an escape technique; this is plain-old running for my life!
“What do you think an escape technique is?” the ruler asked. “In essence, all escape techniques are plain-old running for your life.” The ruler pointed at the clump of hair buried in the ground. It used to be a mound of hair, but now only a few strands were visible. They almost looked like black grass. “If you weren’t good at the escape technique, you’d have ended up like him.”
It’s a good thing the ruler brought Mrs. Mu’s lackey here as well. If I didn’t see the effect of zigging and zagging, I would’ve thought she was messing with me! Ah? Mrs. Mu might get revenge on me if her lackey dies here? That’s not an issue. In the first place, Mrs. Mu is very lenient; she’s not really a punishy type of person. In the, uh…, second! Yes, in the second place, the ground is very soft like a giant glob of jelly. Even if Mrs. Mu’s lackey gets hit one or two times, he’ll be perfectly fine. Mm, but still, aren’t escape techniques supposed to be fancy? I’ve seen people transform into lightning before to run away. I’ve never seen someone transform into a squirrel to flee.
“You think turning into lightning is more impressive than turning into a squirrel?”
The ruler might be reading my mind, but there’s no need to comment on thoughts that make me look stupid! I don’t think up what I think. My brain does all my thinking for me. If anything, the ruler should direct that amused glance towards my brain instead.Previous Chapter Next Chapter