Chun Yin nodded as well, picked up Leng Jin Yu’s robe, and put it on. “Alright. What do you want to know first?”
“Why her? Why did you decide on her in the end even though you knew that I would have taken you back?”
Chun Yin’s lips twitched. “You really like to go for the difficult ones first, don’t you?”
Jinde couldn’t help but laugh. This was such a typical thing to say for Chun Yin. “Is it really that much more difficult to answer than the others?”
Chun Yin gazed at him and finally shook his head. “I guess everything is right now. As for the answer to this question …” He fell quiet for a moment and then sighed. “I guess I felt like I had to because of Qiu Ling. If not for him …”
Jinde closed his eyes again, his brows drawing together in obvious pain. “You’re basically repeating what you told me back then. It’s even starting to be the same words.”
“I’m sorry.” He kept quiet for a moment, trying to think of something else to say. “I mean it. I’m sorry. For what I said just now, for what I said back then, for … what I did. For everything. I was wrong.”
“Of course, you were wrong! You should have known that I would have raised that child with you without complaining, without loving him any less than if he had been my own son. So why?”
“It seemed wrong of me to get a woman pregnant and then take her child from her. It … might have reminded me of my own parents.”
Jinde looked up at the ceiling. To be honest, he hadn’t known Chun Yin’s parents well. Well, he hadn’t even known his own parents well. From the bit that he remembered though … he had liked both of them. One was a strong general that led the dragons into battle, never shying back no matter how strong the other side was and the other had been much more gentle, a caring person who could soothe anyone with just a few words. “I’m afraid I don’t understand.” He could see no connection at all. It actually made him wonder if Chun Yin was saying the truth. Then again, what reason would he have to lie at this point in time? In fact, even if he lied now, Leng Jin Yu would just tell him the truth later on. Pretending made no sense at all.
Chun Yin didn’t seem to mind to explain further. “You don’t know about this but Lin Cai was not my actual mother.”
Jinde raised his brows at that. He had at least seen her a few times and while Chun Yin hadn’t really resembled her much, he had figured that it wasn’t too strange to resemble one parent more than the other.
“Yuan Yin was though. As for my father … I don’t know much about him. My mothers wanted to spare me the details I guess. I only know for sure that he can’t have been a good person. From the bit they told me, it seems my conception wasn’t quite voluntary on my mother’s part, and afterward, he did not care about me at all.
“It was only several years later, after my mothers were long married, that he finally showed an interest in me. Who knows if it was Heavenly retribution but he and his official partner had struggled to conceive no matter what they tried. It was only at that time that he remembered there was still that child he forced on another woman.”
Chun Yin fell quiet for a moment before he sighed. “In fact, it was because he was harassing them that they finally decided to have me become Master’s disciple. Otherwise, I likely would have learned under my mother instead.”
“You never told me about that.” Jinde couldn’t help but feel a little lost. He had met Chun Yin the day they were both taken in by their Master so this should have been a recent thing at that time. He would’ve thought that Chun Yin would have shared it with him since they had a good relationship but instead … he only heard of it now after Chun Yin had been dead for a longer time than he cared to calculate.
Chun Yin smiled faintly. “In the beginning, I didn’t know the whole story. They only told me bits and pieces over time and when I finally had the full picture …” He shook his head. “I guess I was embarrassed as well. In the end, I was not the son of a proud general but of a man whose name I didn’t even know. That’s not the type of thing I’d like to admit in the face of the person I love.”
Jinde couldn’t help but chuckle. Yes, this was very much like Chun Yin. He had always been proud. Something that marred his image … naturally, he would feel unhappy about it and might instead just pretend.
Chun Yin couldn’t help but smile gently when he saw Jinde chuckle like that. It was the first time he saw a semblance of some kind of happiness since he had gotten this short chance of seeing him again. It … made him happy as well.
He took a deep breath and forced the smile down, reminding himself that there was no time for this. “I’m sure you have other questions as well. Ask them. I don’t know how much time I’ll actually have. That husband of yours isn’t weak. I might not have all the time I thought I might have.”
Jinde’s smile faded and he couldn’t help but look at Chun Yin with some sadness. “You … Do you regret it?”
“Not having more time?” He shook his head, only to shrug his shoulders afterward. “Well, who wouldn’t like an actual second chance? But it’s too late. I’ve made my decisions. They happened to be wrong but … that’s nothing I can change anymore.”