Qiu Ling sighed deeply. Well, that time was long past. He wasn’t a child anymore. Not even that old man of his was alive anymore. And as for this person … He had thought him dead for a long time as well. It had been quite the surprise to realize that he wasn’t. Even now, he wasn’t quite sure what to think about that.
On the one hand, he naturally was happy that he hadn’t died. After all, for a certain time, this had been his most favorite person in the whole world. But on the other hand, he also felt a little angry at him. How could he have pretended to be dead for so many years? If he hadn’t … He never would have needed to be king. The kind of life he led now … It wouldn’t have been necessary. He could have still been somewhere out there, far away from that responsibility he had never wanted.
He stared at the door, torn between what he was supposed to think. The inner self really did a great job with putting what he didn’t want to think about right in front of his eyes, didn’t it? Now, there was no way for him not to confront what had happened and what he actually felt about it. This was … really horrible.
Qiu Ling rubbed his forehead, giving a groan. “What made you think I wanted to see any of this? Honestly, weren’t things going well? This has all been so long in the past. It’s almost not even true anymore.
“Right now, the only thing that should count should be my beloved. And what’s there to be unhappy about? I needed some time to make him fall in love with me. But he’s already done so. We were about to get married when he had to leave for the trial. Now, I’m actually losing out on valuable time with him.
“This here really doesn’t make it better. It’s just another shitty thing on top of everything that already went wrong in my life. I really feel that you could be a little nicer to me.”
He looked up as if he was actually expecting to get an answer to that. Well, that naturally wouldn’t happen. The only one responsible for this shitshow was he himself. Even if he didn’t do it consciously, it was still his subconscious that was creating this. So somewhere deep down, a part of him had to feel that it would be good to confront this. Well, he wanted to respectfully deny that assumption. And if it was anybody else, he’d also like to beat them up for even dreaming of thinking about it!
While he did think so, there was nothing Qiu Ling could do. Complaining wouldn’t change anything. Most likely, the only way to get out of here was to follow through with what his subconscious wanted him to do and just take a tour through his inner self.
And who knew? If he did that, maybe he would even be able to get out of here and return to his beloved’s side. Well, since he didn’t have another way, he might as well give it try. If it worked out, that would be for the best. If it didn’t … Well, he could still think about what other ways he had when the time came.
Qiu Ling wasn’t completely sure where to go though. Whether it had been that hut or now the palace of his predecessor, those seemed to be the most important stations from his younger days. After that … Well, there hadn’t been too much. There had been some years in solitude before he finally returned to become the dragon king and then stayed in that seat for way too many millennia.
In all that time, the only thing that had changed was the last decade after he had met Jing He. As for the rest, it had always been the same. He really didn’t think that his subconscious would be able to make anything out of that.
In that case, what was there still left to explore? He looked around in all directions but considering that he was in a narrow corridor, there wasn’t much to see and nothing to do. With no other hint as to what he was supposed to do, he stepped through the door in front of him, entering the same room as his predecessor.
Right now, that person could still be seen in there. He was sitting at a table, the child on the other side, and happily chatted with him. This time around, Qiu Ling could even hear what exactly was being said. It seemed that despite it being such a long time ago, this still had left him with enough of an impression that he hadn’t forgotten.
Without even himself noticing, Qiu Ling’s lips curled into a faint smile and he stood in the same spot, watching the two of them for a while.
It really was a harmonious picture. This was probably what family should look like. At the very least, he had always given him that feeling.
Qiu Ling sighed and then turned away, leaving the room. There was nothing to be gained from watching this. He could still remember and while it was something that he did fondly remember, it couldn’t be changed that this was overshadowed by everything that had come later.
Thinking back now, the only truly happy memories that he had were probably the past ten years with his beloved. While they had been arduous and while he had needed to work hard to make his beloved budge bit by bit, the memories they had made together were all happy ones. And there hadn’t been anything that could taint that memory. It was just that they still weren’t married yet.
He sighed again and then followed the corridor down and finally made his way out of this palace. He didn’t believe that there was still anything to be had inside there. No, it was time to leave for the next place, whatever that would be.