“Mother!” Jing Yi leaped up and ran to his mother’s side as if he had seen his savior.
Sure enough, the one who had been bullied must’ve been her son. Madam Zhong gave Qiu Ling a probing gaze but the person in question just looked at her with the same pitiful expression as if he could never do anything wrong. Madam Zhong sighed and turned back to her son, gently cupping his cheeks and giving him a good look. She felt that after not seeing him for five years, she couldn’t look at him long enough. “How does it feel to be home again?”
“Great.” Jing Yi smiled brightly at her, indeed feeling that he was finally home. Even though he was very happy at the Yun Zou Sect with Shao Hai and Xiao Dong around, it couldn’t compare to being home with his mother. She was the person he loved the most. Not seeing her really hadn’t been easy. So now, he finally felt that regardless of what happened, it would be alright. That was just the effect she had on him.
Behind them, Qiu Ling pursed his lips. He also knew just how much Jing Yi loved his mother. After all, he had had front seats to this very same show for ten whole years. Right now, he wasn’t even feeling jealous about that. When Jing Yi had been small, there had been no difference in the way he gave somebody his affection. But now, he was already at an age where there was a difference between the way he loved his mother and the way he would fall in love with somebody else. So as long as he was the most important person in the other way of love, he wouldn’t feel too neglected. Alright, maybe he would feel neglected but he wouldn’t be jealous. It would be stupid.
Qiu Ling told himself so but he still couldn’t help but send another look that way. Ah, he also wanted to get such a hug. Unfortunately, his beloved had just told him off so he had to behave. If he made a blunder, then wouldn’t Jing Yi become angry? He didn’t want that. He still wanted his beloved to be happy. Naturally, he would prefer it if he was happy with him but as long as he couldn’t have that, he’d just make sure that he was happy in all other ways.
Madam Zhong glanced at the person that was still sitting at the table, looking miserable and felt that she shouldn’t make things too difficult for him. She turned to her son and patted his head. “You’ve come here earlier than me. Did you already see your uncle and aunt?”
Jing Yi shook his head. “No, nobody was there when we came in. I wasn’t sure if it would be good to go and search for them since we haven’t seen each other for so long. Do you think they’ll be angry?”
Madam Zhong shook her head. “Nothing of the sort. I just saw your aunt and told her you came back. She’s happy to see you again. We’ll be eating in a bit. Why don’t you bring Qiu Ling with you and sit down already? I’m sure the two of them would also love to hear what you’ve experienced in the past five years.”
“I hope so.” Jing Yi turned to Qiu Ling and gave a smile. “Would you mind? I know you don’t know either of them but they’re very friendly people. I’m sure you’ll get along.”
Qiu Ling leaped to his feet, his expression lighting up when Jing Yi finally paid him attention again. “Your family is —” He stopped and awkwardly looked at him. His gaze darted around and he finally cleared his throat. “If your family is anything like you, I’m sure I’ll get along with them very well.”
Jing Yi looked at him in confusion, before his smile got broader. “Is that so? Then I’m sure it’ll be a nice evening.” He turned to his mother and then followed her out of the room, pretending he hadn’t heard Qiu Ling’s slip up. Inwardly, he was very happy that Qiu Ling had really paid attention to what he said before. Slipping up every now and then was normal but at least, he had tried. That was already very good. It seemed he could trust him not to make too much trouble in the future.
Qiu Ling caught the way his beloved smiled at him and his mood instantly turned better. Ah, it seemed they were slowly making progress! He should keep at it so that they would be able to marry as soon as they came home from this one year journey.
The three of them left the room and went to where Zhong Gang and his wife had already gathered.
Zhong Gang looked up, his gaze switching from Jing Yi to Qiu Ling, not quite knowing what to think. It had already been five years since the boy left. Now, he had grown up quite a bit and the resemblance with his parents could be seen much more than before. Actually, he looked more like his mother than his father but there were some things that did remind him of Zhong Lei.
Ah, if his cousin could see his son now, he would probably be very proud. His son had actually made it into a deity sect! That was very good. His prospects were boundless with that kind of background. Even if he didn’t want to stay there in the future anymore, even having been there for only a while was very good. And seeing how he had managed to bring somebody back that looked quite a lot like the cultivators that always came when they were recruiting new talents, it seemed that Jing Yi did indeed have some actual backing in that sect.
Zhong Gang got up and then walked over, patting Jing Yi’s shoulders. “It’s good that you’ve come back.”
“Uncle.” Jing Yi nodded and gave him a smile before looking at Mi Fan. “Aunt.”
Mi Fan also got up and came over, taking a closer look at Jing Yi. Seeing him, her expression lit up. He had grown up quite well. She had already expected as much when he was a child but now that she saw the result, she felt that it had worked even better than imagined.
Now, she could only hope that her daughter would also realize that and not keep being hung up over that boy she had met in the teahouse five years ago. Since that one had already vanished, it was much better to transfer her feelings onto another target. And wouldn’t it be really great if it could be somebody from their family? Anyway, they shared the same surname and after all the time she had spent with Jing Yi’s mother, she also felt that it would be a good idea to help them out a bit. Marrying Guanyu would certainly be beneficial to him.