By the time Xin Lan and Jing Yi arrived back at the palace, Qiu Ling had also returned there and was currently working on some documents.
When Xin Lan stepped into the room and actually saw him seriously doing something, he looked back to the door, wondering if there was something wrong with the way he had entered the room. Usually, he would use the opportunity to mock him but considering that he was in a hurry, he just got right to the matter at hand. “Where is Jinde?”
Jing Yi looked at him in confusion. Since Xin Lan had asked about Qiu Ling, he had expected him to actually be looking for him. Not like this. But, well, this was also a matter he probably shouldn’t get involved in. In fact, for a moment, he wondered if he should just go back but then again, it might also look strange so he stayed where he was.
Qiu Ling looked at Xin Lan and then shook his head. “Not here. Last I saw him, he was on his way to the Palace of War to see his husband. I can’t tell you if they’re still there though.”
Xin Lan clicked his tongue and was pondering if he should go there when he realized that since he was now together with Qiu Ling, it shouldn’t be a problem to just contact Jinde himself. He took out his transmission stone and imbued his spiritual energy, hoping that with this, a could spare himself from wasting more time on the way.
Over in the Tower of Wisdom, Jinde made a faint sound and then took off his necklace, handing it to Leng Jin Yu. “It’s probably Xin Lan. You take it.” In any case, with this veil, it was always a bit difficult to hold this kind of transmission. He’d rather give Xin Lan the clue that he wasn’t able to talk freely right now.
Leng Jin Yu didn’t ask any questions and immediately accepted, establishing the connection.
When Xin Lan saw him, he narrowed his eyes. “Where are you right now?” For sure, Leng Jin Yu would be with Jinde if he answered this transmission.
“The Tower of Wisdom. He … wanted to look something up. You are …?”
“At the place where Qiu Ling is staying. Can you come over here? I guess it wouldn’t do to talk over there.” He knew where the Tower of Wisdom was so he could go over but this was something that he didn’t want to discuss in public.
On the other side, Jinde had already started to pack the things they needed as soon as he realized that Xin Lan must have arrived. He handed them to his husband and got up from his seat. “Let’s go then.”
Hearing Jinde’s voice from the side, Xin Lan nodded. “I’m sorry for bothering you with this. Thank you for taking the time though.” He knew that he shouldn’t hold much hope but he also realized that most likely, Jinde had gone to the Tower of Wisdom to have a look for solutions there. That was definitely something that would take quite a bit of effort. He naturally appreciated that Jinde was doing this for him.
Jinde leaned closer to his husband and gave Xin Lan a smile through the veil even though he couldn’t see it. “Don’t even mention it. In any case, between the two of us, who knows who owes whom? I’m just happy that I’m able to be of help. Now, let’s not waste time. We’ll be there in a moment.”
Xin Lan nodded and then cut the connection, sitting down opposite Qiu Ling.
Deep down, he was actually anxious. He wanted a solution as fast as he could. After all, he still had to return to Hua Lin Yu’s side and explain himself. And he would feel much better about this if Jinde was able to do something about how his face looked.
Qiu Ling looked up at him, not quite sure what this was about. He somehow felt that he probably shouldn’t get involved in it though. “Well, make yourself at home. Xiang Yong is also somewhere around here so you probably don’t have to worry that somebody will just barge in. The gods wouldn’t dare with all of us around.”
Xin Lan nodded. “Well, that is somewhat of a relief.” Even though most people would be able to figure out that there was something wrong with his face considering that he never took off his mask, he didn’t necessarily need any of them to figure out the extent of this matter.
Not wanting to talk about things, he couldn’t help but motion to the documents in front of Qiu Ling after all. “You’re actually working? I didn’t think you had it in you.”
Qiu Ling smiled faintly. “Well, what am I supposed to do? It’s not that easy being king. Even though I would love to just fool around all day, I’m afraid I can’t do that forever.”
“You were alright with that for a pretty long time.”
Qiu Ling nodded, unable to refute his words. “For much too long if we’re being honest. But maybe it’s time to change that. In any case, it is what it is.” He pondered for a moment and then put down the brush he had been holding, looking over to Jing Yi. “I guess you haven’t changed your mind about staying here tonight, have you?”
Jing Yi shook his head. “I haven’t.”
Qiu Ling nodded and then got up, stretching. “Well, a moonlight stroll sounds lovely right about now. How about I bring you back? I feel like these three will likely want to be left alone with whatever it is that they had planned. I wouldn’t want to interfere.”
Originally, Jing Yi really wanted to reject but looking at Qiu Ling’s expression, he couldn’t bring himself to do so. So in the end, he just sighed and nodded. “Well, let’s do that. But I want you to turn around before we reach the gate.”
Qiu Ling raised his hands in a defensive motion, hoping to signal that he had understood already. Right now, he really couldn’t make any demands. Jing Yi being alright with him coming along that far at least was already a huge win. He’d rather not risk getting even that by trying to force more.