RSH Stratagem 17: Expect Setbacks after Successes (3)

Jing He had never seen his father with such a dark expression. Well, it wasn’t a wonder. He had never gone against his wishes before or at the very least, not to this degree. This time, he had gone completely against all rules of good manners.

Jing He’s hands trembled and he pulled them back into his sleeves, hoping to hide his fear. He distinctly felt that things would become even worse if he showed his true thoughts right now.

The Heavenly Emperor looked at his son and wife, a storm brewing in his eyes. Taking in the way that his son looked right now, his whole body trembled in anger. He had originally thought that he had done a very good job at keeping that damned dandy away from his precious son in the past few months but it seemed that he still hadn’t been careful enough. When he looked away for just a moment, that guy had sneaked in and used the opportunity to take liberties with Jing He. How could he accept it?!

He furrowed his brows and went over, forcefully taking Jing He’s hand and looking him over before he grabbed his chin and peered at his face. His poor son looked completely spooked. Obviously, he had suffered very much. Ah, to think that he had allowed something like this to happen! He had failed as a father.

“Father, I …” Jing He wanted to explain himself but his father already interrupted him.

Rong Su patted his son’s cheek and gave him a strained smile. “Don’t you worry. I’ll make sure he won’t be able to bother you again. You just stay in here and go about your day as usual. Your father will take care of everything else for you.”

Jing He wanted to speak up but in the end, he didn’t dare to do so. He had indeed made a mistake yesterday. Even though nothing had actually happened, that was only because deep down, the dragon king was still a gentleman. If not because he held back, things could have been different. In that case, wasn’t his father justified in being angry?

And since he was able to make such a mistake once in front of the dragon king, it might happen again. Maybe it would really be better not to see each other in the future. Even though he did indeed want such a husband that would treat him the way that Longjun had treated him yesterday, being in love was also dangerous. Maybe he should listen to his father in this.

Seeing that his son obediently nodded his head, the Heavenly Emperor felt gratified. He nodded and then turned to look at his wife but finally just patted her shoulder. “Jing He has suffered such a shock. You should stay with him a little longer.”

Bai Fen pursed her lips tightly together, just barely holding back from scolding her husband. What suffered a fright? Her son hadn’t suffered any fright until his father suddenly appeared and said such things. In fact, he had just been on a good way to finally accept the dragon king’s advances. That was something to be happy about!

But now, her husband just had to ruin it again. How long would it take for Jing He to open his heart up once more after this was over? And if her husband tried to make things even worse, then would the dragon king have any chance to continue to seduce her son? She really couldn’t imagine it. It had already been difficult enough for the two of them to meet yesterday. Her husband was really going overboard.

She wanted to scold him but held back with a glance at her son. Jing He was so easily embarrassed. How could she argue with her husband in front of him? He wouldn’t know which side to pick and would be put in a tough spot. Also, discussing what the dragon king had or hadn’t done with him while he was asleep would certainly embarrass him down to his bones. Then maybe he wouldn’t dare to see that man at all anymore. Wouldn’t she be the one who had sabotaged his future then? No, she couldn’t let that happen!

Thus, in the end, Bai Fen just gave a strained smile and nodded, patting her son’s hands. “Don’t worry about it. I’ll accompany him.” She watched her husband leave and then turned to Jing He. “Don’t think too much about it. Your father’s being too serious in this matter. I’m sure it’ll be sorted out in no time. Anyway, it’s not like the dragon king did anything forbidden.”

Jing He slightly furrowed his brows. “He didn’t. It’s just that … My behavior was improper.” He couldn’t help but chastise himself, feeling that he really hadn’t paid enough attention in the past. He should rethink his behavior and make sure that something like this would never happen again.

Bai Fen didn’t need to be told any of his thoughts. Just one look at his expression was enough to realize that things would indeed go downhill from now on if nobody intervened. “Jing He, my dear, you’re being too hard on yourself. That man … intends to marry you. And the chances are good that he will, isn’t that so? What is wrong with appearing a bit defenseless every now and then in front of somebody who could become your fiance?”

Jing He’s cheeks started to burn immediately. His … fiance? That … “Mother, I don’t think it can be said like that.” Just because the dragon king had proposed to him, that didn’t make him his fiance. It just made him … a suitor. That was all. As for anything else, that still depended on whether or not his father would accept it. Since he hadn’t and since he was completely against it, there was no way to twist this into anything else. His mother was just trying to make him feel better.

Bai Fen watched her son’s expression turn complicated. “Even though he isn’t officially your fiance, do you really think you will be marrying anybody else in the future? Even if you have that intention, I doubt the dragon king will accept that.

“If anybody dares to step out at this time after he has been pursuing you for so long, he would definitely have something to say about that. He would probably harass that poor person to death. Do you really want that to happen?”

Jing He tried to escape her gaze but there was no way to hide. “That’s … I would naturally have to try and tell him not to do so.”

“But the only way to do so would be to reject him in public. Could you really bring yourself to do so?”

Jing He furrowed his brows. Just trying to imagine how he would stand in front of that proud man and tell him to his face in front of others that he would not be marrying him … He really couldn’t bear the thought. He would have had trouble doing so even in the beginning, not to speak of now when … “Well … It is not my decision. Father —”

Bai Fen immediately shook her head. “Don’t even try that with me. The dragon king will never accept your father’s rejection and you know that. He will only ever accept yours. So if you don’t want him to pursue you, then you will have to say the word. If you don’t … Then he will never get married. And neither will you.

“This is the only choice you have, Jing He: Either you accept his advances or you tell him off and let somebody else take that spot. You should think about that thoroughly.”

Jing He didn’t know how to answer that. In a way, his mother was right. Longjun had proven time and time again that he didn’t care at all what the Heavenly Emperor had to say. He had already made up his mind. He wanted to marry him. And the only person who would be able to tell him that that was not going to happen was he himself.

But would he really be able to pluck up his courage and do so? Even if his father stood next to him, urging him on, he probably wouldn’t be able to say the words. After all … he was not completely indifferent to the dragon king anymore.

Over the years, that person had touched his heart. Now, if he was just considering his own wishes, Longjun was the one who came closest to what he imagined his husband to be. He had proven that he would be able to treat him the way that he desired. Who else would be able to do so?

Jing He tried to imagine being the same way with any god but he couldn’t. Even if there was somebody who came forward to woo him, that person would likely bow down to his father.

How was that the same? Longjun only had him in his eyes. He did not care for anybody else’s opinion. That was the kind of lover he wanted. A man who would not listen to anybody else, who would only think of him, cherish him and care for him for all eternity despite any obstacles that might stand in their way. A man that was strong and assertive, able to protect him and give him a sense of security.

Longjun was all that. He was willing to make that future come true for him. How could any god compare?

« ToC »

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