While Qiu Ling was dealing with official matters, Jing Yi stood in his room, not sure what to do with his time either. He knew that he should better not try and leave this room. If he did, he felt like his relationship with Qiu Ling would deteriorate even further. And even though he had been angry at how everything had worked out in the last weeks and, well, actually for the last thousand years, he still loved him. He didn’t want to completely break up with him.
In fact, he had also done this because he wanted to have a life with Qiu Ling, one where his time wasn’t borrowed from somebody else who would then take back his own rightful place at Qiu Ling’s side, getting the happily ever after that he never could. Of course, the main part was that he didn’t want to give up his own life but he couldn’t deny that their relationship was a big part as well. That was … adding insult to injury.
With nothing better to do, Jing Yi started to look around the room. Unfortunately, there really wasn’t much to see. It was pretty much what he would’ve expected from a palace: The furniture looked to be of high quality even to the untrained eye, the decorations were beautiful, clearly well-made, and everything was maintained perfectly, not a speck of dust in sight.
But at the same time, this place was incredibly impersonal. There wasn’t a single thing of Qiu Ling’s that he could find here. In fact, even when he started to open the drawers, there was nothing inside that hadn’t likely already been there at the time this place was furnished. Some standard tea set, some stationery that was to be expected, but not even a single piece of knick-knacks, in fact, there weren’t even clothes.
He probably shouldn’t be surprised. Qiu Ling had been living with him for a thousand years in the mortal realm. Before that, he had spent most of his time in the Nine Heavens. And from the bit that he knew about his past, most of the time before that hadn’t been spent in the dragon realm either, or at least not in the palace but somewhere outside, traveling around. So really, where would anything personal come from that he kept in here? He was carrying those things around.
And he was sure that this was Qiu Ling’s room. Because no matter what, things between them probably still hadn’t changed. No, despite what he had done, he was sure that Qiu Ling wouldn’t just cast him aside. He couldn’t. That was the one saving grace about this whole matter.
He went to sit down on the bed, looking around in boredom. After a while, his thoughts couldn’t help but wander. He had only thought of what he could gain if his plan worked out but he hadn’t stopped to think what would happen if he didn’t make it. He also hadn’t taken the fallout into consideration even if he succeeded.
And now, while he had actually managed to get out of the Nine Heavens just like he had wanted to and was even in the dragon realm with Qiu Ling, he wasn’t even sure if it could be counted as any kind of win. He didn’t even know when he would see him again.
Qiu Ling had left right after bringing him to this room. The message behind that was clear: He didn’t want to spend time with him right now. He didn’t even want to see him. And to be honest, even without thinking for more than a minute, he knew why: Even though he was angry and hated the thought of Jing He coming back to life, it was something that meant a lot to Qiu Ling.
And maybe he was wrong to be this difficult in regard to this. In any case, he had the guarantee that the gods wouldn’t kill him before a solution had been found. Maybe there wasn’t even a solution. Maybe things would just continue as they had before until the day he died naturally. Then what?
Was it so much better to have Qiu Ling stay alone afterward? Did he want him to never find happiness again? Did he want him to follow him in death because he had already taken the one person away whose body this soul could return to so that Qiu Ling could live on?
Because that was what would happen, right? He knew exactly that Qiu Ling had bound his soul to Jing He. So, if he died after he had killed Jing He, then Qiu Ling would lose his partner for real, and most likely, he would die after that.
Jing Yi furrowed his brows, realizing that he had acted without thinking enough. Now, he started to regret it. Not because of Jing He. Honestly, he still didn’t feel any better about him. But he regretted it for Qiu Ling’s sake. Because, yes, he would want him to be happy. It hurt to know that it would be with Jing He, the person he had always felt second-best to, but he still wanted him to survive and be happy.
But even though he realized that now, it wasn’t like he could make up for it. There was nothing he could do whether that was in regard to Qiu Ling or the people in the Nine Heavens that could make up for what had happened. This was a scar that would remain long into the future.
He reached up to cover his face, wondering if there was a chance to go and see Qiu Ling so that they could maybe talk things through. He knew that it wouldn’t make much of a difference but maybe Qiu Ling would be willing to give it a try at least.
He probably didn’t deserve that but it would be better than nothing. It was just that he didn’t think that Qiu Ling would come by anytime soon. No, he would stay away for at least a few hours but probably rather a few days.
He would do whatever else he could do before he would come and confront this matter. Because seeing him right now would likely remind him of that moment when he almost lost Jing He. And, well, that was his own fault, wasn’t it?