RSH Stratagem 25: The Perfect Spouse (2)

Back in the room, Jing He wasn’t quite sure what to say. The perfect spouse … Unwittingly, he thought of a certain person. But he knew that he shouldn’t do so. Even though he had fallen in love with this man, he also knew that it was still impossible between them. This is had just become apparent again when his father reacted this harshly to seeing Longjun sitting with him. It was clear that he still had a problem with him. Maybe he would have had the same problem with any other man but Jing He couldn’t say so for sure. For now, he only knew that the dragon king was off-limits.

Ah, what bad luck that his father was exactly against the one man he had finally fallen in love with. But he should have known. Hadn’t his father warned him of the dragon king right after they first met? Naturally, he wouldn’t have changed his opinion. He had even reminded him several times over the last few years that the dragon king was no good. Yes, he had known all this time that his father would not accept this man. There was no surprise in that.

It was just … despite his father’s reminders, his resistance had slowly been whittled away. Just remembering how he had been so intimidated by the dragon king at first … it was unimaginable to him by now. This man was so caring, so gentle. Why would he be overwhelmed by fear when seeing him? Obviously, there was no need to.

At Longjun’s side, he could be without worry. He could let himself fall and just trust that man to keep him safe. Hadn’t that been proven many times already? Nothing had ever happened to him while he was with that man.

Jing He’s expression turned a little subtle. He had only recently come of age before he met Qiu Ling. Naturally, things should have changed with that. So maybe it had nothing to do with that man at all. But even if that was the case, it didn’t change that he felt different with him. If he could, he would have wanted to stay at his side forever. It was a pity …

Rong Su raised his brows when his son didn’t answer for a long time. “What’s the matter? You can’t think of anything?”

Jing He gave a faint smile, trying not to look guilty while he pushed all those thoughts of the dragon king away. Yes, he knew how his perfect spouse should be. He knew who it should be. But he could not say so. “I am afraid I haven’t given it much thought yet, father, so any answer I could give you might be lacking. Most likely … the perfect spouse for me should be somebody who has the acknowledgment of my parents?”

The Heavenly Emperor’s face immediately lit up when he heard that. He grabbed his son’s hand and patted it with satisfaction. “That is a very good point. I knew that you were sensible. Yes, the person we finally decide on as your partner should definitely be somebody both your mother and I are satisfied with. How could you find lasting happiness with somebody that is disliked by your parents? Such a thing would never work out.”

Jing He nodded while Qiu Ling on top of the roof pursed his lips.

This guy! Didn’t he dislike him? Then how was he supposed to marry Jing He? Well, at the very least, the Heavenly Empress liked him. It was better than nothing. He could probably work out something on the other end. In any case, his mother-in-law had promised to help him out when that time came. He shouldn’t worry about it yet. Rather than that, he was curious what else his beloved would have to say about his ideal spouse.

Ah, why couldn’t he ask him himself?! It would be so much better if he didn’t have to hide on the roof and spy on a private conversation. He really should have brought this up himself. Maybe he could have asked him out to go and do something nice, and then, while strolling down a street in the city or admiring the beautiful scenery outside, he would bring it up casually before giving him a deep look when they both realized that he perfectly fit his beloved’s image of the perfect husband … Mn …

Back in the room, the Heavenly Emperor was already wondering if he should let the matter go now. Since Jing He was still behaving as sensibly as always, there wasn’t a reason to insist on him thinking about it any longer. In fact, it might not be a good idea to have him think about this too much. After all, the less he thought about getting married, the better it would be.

He really didn’t want to lose his son to some other man anytime soon. It would be good if Jing He could spend another two millennia just being his precious darling son who would accompany him for at least a few hours every day. Yes, yes, that was much better.

Unfortunately, in the end, he still couldn’t help but bring it up again though. After all, while it was true that Jing He understood that he should find somebody who his parents accepted, the dragon king likely wouldn’t give up easily and would continue to bother him. Jing He was too shy to reject him with the necessary insistence so he had to make sure that that man didn’t get any chances in wooing Jing He after all. No, he had to make sure that Jing He understood what kind of qualities a man needed to be a good spouse. “Well, your parents’ approval is naturally only one point. What else do you consider important in your spouse?”

Jing He felt a little uncomfortable with his father’s interrogation. If he could, he really would have liked to end matters here. But he also knew that it was impossible. Since his father had already brought it up, he was naturally insistent on seeing things through. As his son, how could he refuse? He had to give him an answer no matter how unwilling he was. “If father insists on me naming another quality a future spouse should have, then I’d have to say that I would prefer somebody who would love me no matter what, just like you and mother so that we may have a marriage just as blissful as yours.”

Rong Su was put into an even better mood when his own precious son declared him and his relationship with his wife to be relationship goals. Didn’t this mean that his son looked up to him very much? Obviously, it meant he had done a splendid job as a father! “Yes, yes, very good! That’s exactly how it should be.” He nodded, and happily brushed his beard. It seemed he really hadn’t needed to worry. Ah, his beloved son was so sensible!

Jing He kept the same smile on his lips but his thoughts were a different matter altogether. His father might not realize but these two things might be mutually exclusive. After all, hadn’t his father married his mother against the express wishes of his own father back then? He had refused to wed his original fiancee and instead chosen his mother despite the possible consequences.

Obviously, back then, he had still thought that their own love should trump the approval of his parents. So now, how could he expect him to be any different? Maybe in this regard, he was actually similar to his father. Maybe he would also be willing to defy him for the love of that man.

Jing He lowered his head at this kind of frivolous thought, and gently pulled back his hand when his father wasn’t noticing, retracting them into his sleeves. How nice it would be if he truly had the courage to be as daring as his father had been and could just go ahead. Living at the side of the dragon king … it would certainly be bliss. Right now, it was even the only thing he wished for.

Unfortunately, this wish would not come true. He was trapped in this cage his father had built and that he had helped to shape by all the actions he took in the past. Each time he acted according to the image he deemed desirable, he had fortified those bars. Each time he refused to speak his mind to not seem unfilial or ungrateful, he had added another lock. By now, there was no way to escape anymore. He would have to spend the rest of his life in this cage. His gaze turned dim when he thought of that but there was no way to change things.

The Heavenly Emperor didn’t notice the change in his son. He sat down again, already much calmer than before. “I can see that even though you haven’t put much thought into it yet, you already know what is most important. I’m sure that we will be able to find somebody for you that can make you happy.”

Jing He nodded faintly, his heart squeezing in pain. “I’m sure that father will spare no effort to find the right person for me. With you expending so much effort on my behalf, how could I ever be unhappy?” But his eyes stung a little when he said so.

« ToC »

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