Jing Yi looked around, not sure what to say. The dragon realm’s palace was … huge. He had seen a few big houses in the Long kingdom’s capital city and had also been to the palace of the Yun Zou Sect’s Sect Master but this building was on another scale. After just a few turns, he had no idea where he was. There were several halls, corridors leading in all directions, doors leading outside to a plethora of courtyards and gardens, and hundreds of rooms. He had no idea what to compare this to or what to ask about this place and could only follow Qiu Ling in stunned silence.
Qiu Ling, on the other hand, didn’t think much about it. He had grown up in this place and had returned here long after he turned an adult. Since he had spent most of that time evading people, he knew every nook and cranny of the dragon king’s palace like the back of his hand. He might even know some of the rooms better than the people actually living there.
The two of them finally arrived in front of a door and Qiu Ling nonchalantly opened it, leading Jing Yi inside.
Jing Yi looked around, not quite understanding what they were doing here. Up until now, they had just walked through the corridors, sometimes crossing through one of the courtyards or gardens or entering one of the halls just to end up in yet another corridor. This time, it was different though. There was another door leading to a garden outside but Qiu Ling ignored it and instead pulled him over to a table, making him sit down.
Jing Yi glanced around, puzzled. “This is …?”
“My chambers.” Qiu Ling looked at him expectantly. Wasn’t this the moment where his beloved should look around, get familiar with the place and then tell him how much he loved it and that he could imagine spending the rest of his life here?
Jing Yi did indeed look around but he didn’t catch Qiu Ling’s drift. He just felt that … this place didn’t look very much like a place where he could imagine Qiu Ling living. “This room … did you … I mean did you live here for a long time?”
Qiu Ling nodded with the same excitement. “Mn. Since I became king.”
“And it looked like this … from beginning to end?”
Qiu Ling nodded again, making Jing Yi even more confused. If Qiu Ling had only just moved in, he could have understood but … “How long have you lived here then?”
Qiu Ling pondered. “A few thousand years?” Alright, maybe it was rather a few ten thousand years but it wasn’t that important, was it? He didn’t want his beloved to think that he was old.
Jing Yi felt startled. Several thousand years? Then why did this place look so … nondescript? If anyone had asked him how he imagined Qiu Ling’s place to look like, he would have answered ‘total chaos’ without missing a beat. This was just the image Qiu Ling had in his mind: He did things his way, not bothering about what others thought, abandoning one thought for something better at the drop of a hat.
He really would have thought that the place where Qiu Ling lived would be reflective of that with things lying around or having a hodgepodge of different decoration styles or furnishings in the same room.
Strangely enough, this room was the complete opposite. From the carpet to the beams at the ceiling, everything looked as if it had been made all of a piece. There was nothing out of order either, with everything looking as if it had been put precisely in the place where it was supposed to be, following some unwritten rule.
Jing Yi was in a daze, unable to ask any further questions. He really couldn’t understand. Well, maybe he had just misjudged Qiu Ling? Just because he behaved like this, it didn’t mean that his room definitely had to show that side of his. Maybe he had just encountered another side of his fiance. Wasn’t that also good?
Jing Yi nodded to himself before he turned back to Qiu Ling, now slightly calmer already. “The place is nice. It’s rather empty though. I would have thought that there would be a lot of people around. I mean there must be a lot of things to do in a palace, right? And in a whole realm …” To be honest, even though he knew that Qiu Ling was the dragon king, he still had some trouble imagining how that would look in everyday life. Would he finally be able to witness that now?
Qiu Ling blinked his eyes. “Uh … Well, it is. In the dragon realm.”
Jing Yi looked up in confusion. “What do you mean?”
“I mean this … The two of us and the old geezer and my old man are the only people here, right? As I said, it’s not the real dragon realm.”
Jing Yi tensed up. Right. Qiu Ling had said that before. This was only … He shook his head. “I’m sorry. I just thought about how this was the place where you lived all the time so I … I somehow thought it’d have to be exactly the same as in the dragon realm.”
Qiu Ling didn’t mind at all. He inched closer and grabbed Jing Yi’s hands. “I don’t mind. I’m happy you’re so excited about seeing how I live. In the future, I’ll bring you to the dragon realm and let you see for yourself how it is there.”
Jing Yi nodded. “Alright. I’ll be waiting for that then.” He glanced around and smiled to himself. Well, in that case, he probably shouldn’t think too much about this place. The nondescript way it looked might just be because Qiu Ling had created it in a way that resembled its original state. Who knew how his real chambers looked like? He might as well wait until he could set foot into the dragon realm for real in the future.