RSH Stratagem 20: Enjoy the Act! (1)

Before the curtains were drawn, a ruckus could be heard from outside. Jing He glanced at the door and then turned back to Qiu Ling. “Maybe we shouldn’t have done that. There will certainly be trouble with the person that had this room reserved.”

Qiu Ling turned to look at him, a smile on his lips. “I don’t think you have to worry too much. Those people should be quite used to dealing with situations like this.”

Jing He still wasn’t too sure. Of course, if they had just taken that room on the third floor, then things would be different. With the people there, it might be enough to give a bit of compensation and just downgrade them by one room. But for the people on this floor, that certainly wouldn’t be enough. After all, they were likely regular customers that would come for each Jiyi Festival and knew exactly what kind of room they had reserved. To suddenly want to give them another one … Of course, it would feel like a slap to the face to them.

Qiu Ling could see that Jing He still wasn’t convinced. Thus, he reached over and took his hand. “Look at it like this: They have been running this establishment for many years. Do you honestly believe that we are the first ones to come on this specific day and make a sudden request? I’m sure there will be quite a few rooms still available even if they say there aren’t. They have to make sure that they don’t offend anybody. And … The owner knows who I am now. Even if he can’t figure out who you are, if he heard of that later, don’t you think he would feel ashamed to death if he put you in a mediocre room?”

Jing He continued to look at the door. In a sense, Qiu Ling was certainly right. After all, despite how he acted, he was still the crown prince of the Nine Heavens. Contrary to how things were in the dragon realm, that meant that offending him would be offending the next ruler.

And not even thinking of that: Everybody knew how much his father doted on him. If it came out that he had come here and needed to sit among the crowd or didn’t get a decent room, his father would certainly make a fuss about it. That was almost a given.

So considering these two points, Longjun was certainly right. But at the same time, it was also true that they were occupying somebody else’s room. “What if he isn’t able to handle it?”

Qiu Ling leaned even closer until his breath caressed the skin of Jing He’s neck. “If he can’t … Then I’ll go out there and take care of it. Don’t worry.”

Jing He turned back and froze when he saw the dragon king this close. Just now, he hadn’t noticed at all. It seemed that he had gotten way too used to being close to this man. Feeling a bit uncomfortable, he just nodded and then slightly shifted to lean further away from him.

Of course, Qiu Ling wouldn’t let that happen. He smiled and then flopped to the side, almost lying next to Jing He while he propped himself up on his elbow. “Ah, I sure hope they’ll stop soon. I’m kind of curious about what kind of play they’re going to show. Considering the kind of people that will likely watch here, it should be something spectacular. Maybe even I will know it?”

With the sudden shift back to the previous topic, Jing He didn’t get the opportunity to say anything to Qiu Ling’s behavior. He just glanced at him and then turned back to the curtain, choosing to ignore it for now. Anyway, he could still mention it later on. “They will likely only start after most of the guests have arrived. It might still take some time judging from what is going on outside. If the conflict goes on longer, the acts might be pushed back first.”

Qiu Ling gave a hum, continuing to lie there but finally got up with a sigh. “Alright, I’ll go take care of it.” He wanted to turn around but Jing He already got to his feet and reached out. “Longjun …”

Qiu Ling turned back, his eyes flickering with anticipation. What would it be? Would his beloved hold him back because he was afraid for him? Would he tell him to make sure that he stayed safe because his heart would hurt if he got injured? Ah, the endless possibilities sure made one dream!

Jing He was spellbound when he noticed that gaze. He had actually wanted to hold him back from going so he wouldn’t make any more trouble but with that gaze being directed at him, he couldn’t get a word out.

Qiu Ling smiled happily and then reached out, hugging Jing He’s waist. “What is it, my love? If you’re worried, just say so outright. Even though you don’t have to, it will still make my heart feel sweet.” He reached up, lightly brushing Jing He’s temple, his fingertips brushing over his hair.

Below the mask, Jing He’s cheeks flushed red and he lowered his gaze.

Looking down to discern his expression, Qiu Ling couldn’t help but look for a moment longer. Mn … This moment seemed pretty intimate? They were standing close together, he had already wrapped one arm around Jing He’s body, there was a certain worry that he was sure Jing He felt … He probably wouldn’t get a better moment than this anytime soon.

Thinking like that, Qiu Ling leaned further down, actually holding his breath when he closed in on Jing He’s face. His fingertips traced the edge of the mask and finally, he reached out to take it off.

Jing He froze up completely. He was unable to form a single conscious thought. He just felt that the next moment, that mask would be taken away and then, the dragon king would likely try and kiss him. He just knew that that was what he wanted to do. And the worst thing was that his heart thumped in anticipation. His gaze unwittingly raised to Qiu Ling’s eyes, maybe with a trace of expectation visible in them.

The mask came undone but Qiu Ling still held it close to his face, making sure he didn’t feel too exposed. His beloved was shy. He had been since the moment they met and likely would be for quite some more time. But … That wouldn’t hinder him. He just had to find a way to work with that and right now, he seemed to have found one. Just a bit more …

He pulled Jing He closer until their bodies struck together and then wanted to reach for his own mask.

At that moment, the door burst open. A rich person pointed at them, his face scrunched up in anger. “You —” the person in question stared blankly at the scene inside the room, their fury forgotten for the moment.

Jing He gave a yelp of surprise and wrested the mask back from Qiu Ling’s hands, putting it back onto his face. His face, his ears, even his neck seemed to be burning with embarrassment.

This kind of scene … It had actually been seen by others. The anticipation he felt changed into dread. Just thinking about what would happen if a rumor like this spread outside, if his father somehow heard about what had happened here … He did not want to think of it. If he could, he would leave right now!

Thinking of that, Jing He tried to step out of Qiu Ling’s embrace, and maybe he even would’ve run away. Unfortunately for him, the dragon king was pretty clear about his personality by now. Knowing just how much Jing He would regret having something like this seen, he held onto him even more tightly while he turned to the person in the doorway, his eyes glittered dangerously. “Could it be that your relatives are all dead?”

The man was taken aback. “This … what?”

Qiu Ling’s eyes still blazed with fury. “I asked if your relatives were all dead. Otherwise, I really can’t explain to myself how you could be so rude to actually barge into a room just like this. You didn’t even have the decency to knock. Is that the kind of behavior you should show? Who the fuck raised you?!”

The man was petrified. Looking from the man that was scolding him to the person in his arms, he found back his voice though. “Decency?! You’re the right one to talk about that! What kind of thing were you doing in this room that you’d be afraid of somebody seeing?”

Jing He felt even worse hearing that and turned further away, reaching up to hide his face even though he was already wearing a mask.

Qiu Ling gnashed as his teeth at that. Whatever had happened before, this had definitely ruined any chances he had of making use of today’s opportunity. Now, who knew when he would get the next? This was the kind of setback that he could only dread after everything he had needed to do to get Jing He at least this far. It seemed that somebody would need to pay for making him miss out on pure bliss!

« ToC »

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