Time slowly passed by in the mortal realm. Whether it was Jinde and Leng Jin Yu or Hua Lin Yu and Xin Lan, they managed to travel unhindered, not needing to deal with too much trouble. At most, they would run into some unruly travelers, but as soon as they showed a bit of their strength, those people usually ran away straightaway.
At the same time, the days in the immortal realms seemed to go by in a flash, as if there could never be enough of them.
Qiu Ling and Jing Yi had followed what they had talked about on that first night and were dedicating some time each day to stroll through the city while the rest was spent on going to the Tower of Wisdom, reading a few books there, and then taking a few more back.
Whenever there was something that Jing Yi didn’t understand, he would ask Qiu Ling. And if he didn’t know an answer, he would then go and speak about it with An Bai. Qiu Ling’s adviser still preferred Jing He over him but he had to admit that Jing Yi wasn’t as bad as he had feared at first. In any case, if he actually had the time to grow into himself, An Bai was pretty sure that he would also make for a decent partner for their king. Unfortunately, with each day, the threat of Jing Yi’s death came closer.
Over in the building that the two of them had been given by the Court of Justice, Jing Yi put down the book and looked out of the window where the sun was currently setting, dyeing the sky red like blood.
Qiu Ling had been sitting on the other side of the table, dealing with some official documents. Since he had made the promise to An Bai and Xiang Yong, he had actually started to behave like a diligent king once again.
Nowadays, one of his two advisers would return to the dragon king’s palace every few days, gather whatever needed to be done, and bring it over to the Nine Heavens so their king could take a look. There were still a few things that they dealt with themselves but it wasn’t everything anymore.
Needless to say, the two were ecstatic about this change. They would have been even happier if things finally progressed in regard to the Son of Heaven and his reincarnation so that their king could have his wedding and return to the dragon realm with his partner. Then, it really would be perfect. But they also realized that this would still take some time.
In any case, at this moment, Qiu Ling had noticed that Jing Yi had paused. He looked up himself and gave his lover a questioning look. “Is there something that you don’t understand?” He put down the brush in his hand, willing to take however much of a break would be necessary to explain to Jing Yi.
Jing Yi shook his head though. “It’s the end of another day. By now, more than a week has gone by. I just feel that one of these days, they will probably send somebody over to tell me that it’s time for me to leave.”
Qiu Ling’s expression turned complicated. He also knew that this would happen sooner or later. It wasn’t something that he looked forward to, however.
Jing Yi shook his head and turned back to him, giving a faint smile. “I’m sorry. I know I shouldn’t bring it up. There’s nothing you can do about it and I know that. Everything that needed to be said was already said long ago. Just … continue.” He picked up the book that he had been reading, but his thoughts couldn’t help but stray.
With each day, he was getting a little more flustered. No matter how much he learned, it wouldn’t change anything. He couldn’t manage to find out more about the Nine Heavens, their rules, and laws, and history than a trueborn god that had grown up here would know.
By now, he may manage to measure up to a child in terms of knowledge. But that would never be enough to find a solution for himself. There was definitely no chance he would be able to find out enough to convince the God of Justice to let him go.
And, well, he would be lying if he said that that wasn’t his goal. He wanted to find a way to survive. Most likely, nobody would think differently if they were in his situation. Who didn’t want to live?
Qiu Ling hadn’t turned back to his documents yet and was still watching him. Seeing Jing Yi’s expression, he knew pretty well what was going on. “I asked An Bai about it and they haven’t found anything yet. So for the time being, I don’t think you need to worry. It will probably be another few weeks at least.”
Jing Yi nodded, but he couldn’t help but inwardly think to himself: What were few weeks? That wasn’t enough. A few years was more like it. If he spent every waking minute focusing on finding out whatever he could, then maybe he would have a chance.
The problem was that he was one person working against not only the God of Justice but a whole team of people working for him, as well as Qiu Ling’s adviser who was a scholar. He definitely couldn’t measure up to most of them.
Just looking at the book in his hands, he realized every now and then that there were words he didn’t know. He had learned to read late in his life and had only been taught by Qiu Ling. And even though Qiu Ling had done a rather good job, he never taught anyone before. His way of teaching somebody was a bit sloppy. He couldn’t deny that. Now, that really wasn’t helpful.
Qiu Ling continued to look at him but he wasn’t sure what to say. Jing Yi was right in that there wasn’t anything he could say to change things. “Is there anything else I can do for you to make things easier?” This was really the only thing he could come up with. It might not help much, but it was better than nothing. At the very least, it would show Jing Yi that he cared and wouldn’t make him feel like he had been rejected by everyone.