When the two of them made their way back over, Jinde was sitting on his husband’s lap, one arm slung around his neck while he held a book in the other hand, slowly going through the pages. He looked up when steps sounded and raised his brows. “Back already?”
Qiu Ling nodded and then motioned to the main room. “I’ll put everything I found down there then you can go through it. I’ll send back whatever you don’t need and then I’ll go get the ingredients that can be found in the capital city.”
Jinde gave a hum, grabbed his husband’s hand, and made him hold the book, keeping his thumb between the pages. “Remember for me where I was.” He gave him a kiss on the forehead and then got up, walking over.
Behind him, Leng Jin Yu shook his head, grabbed an empty jade slip from his spatial ring, and put it between the pages before following Jinde out. Right now, he didn’t want to leave him alone. While Jinde might look alright, there was no saying how the previous matter had affected him. Of course, he was hoping for the best but since this was his husband, he’d rather make sure and stay close to him.
Qiu Ling gave them a look but didn’t say anything and just took out the things he had found for Jinde to look at.
The first few items were Jinde’s personal ones. Seeing them, his gaze couldn’t help but turn nostalgic. He picked up the carved knife and turned it between his fingers before facing his husband. “Remember this? You made it for me. That was before I even came of age.”
Thinking back to that time, his smile couldn’t help but turn sweet. At that time, he hadn’t known how Chun Yin felt about him. Getting a gift, that was something he naturally cherished. Especially one that was this thoughtful.
At that time, he had only recently picked up refinement. His Master was rather uninterested in the matter, probably feeling that it was a waste but Chun Yin had never said anything like that. Instead, he had quietly encouraged him to do what he wanted.
By now, with the knowledge of many more years not just between them but also to his life in general, he also knew that it had probably been a sign of Chun Yin’s feelings for him. He had seen that it was something that he liked and had tried to take advantage of that, cultivating good feelings. At the very least, that was his guess.
Leng Jin Yu stepped forward to pick it up, his fingers brushing over the handle. “It took me a whole month to make. Master mentioned that your learning refinement wouldn’t lead anywhere and just be a waste of time. He said that as dragons, what would we need something like that for?
“But I figured that you were talented with your magic and that refinement would come naturally to you. You probably wouldn’t need much time and even if, what did it matter as long as you were happy? It wasn’t Master’s time you were wasting.” He shook his head when he thought of those times he had seen Jinde smile and the memory of the last hints of childishness on that face made his heart flutter. “You were so happy when you had your first successes, downright radiant. How could I not try to do something to support you? I didn’t know much about refinement though and making equipment that you could use was difficult. I was afraid of creating something that’d blow up in your face. It really wasn’t easy but I finally figured that a knife should be harmless enough while still showing the sentiment.”
Jinde faintly raised his brows, a bit surprised. “I figured you just did that casually.”
Leng Jin Yu shook his head and handed the knife back, tilting his head to the side to give Jinde a kiss on the cheek. “Nothing that concerned you was ever done casually.” Well, that was probably a bit of a lie. There had also been many moments when he casually decided to do something. But then again, he had always put his whole heart into those actions as well. In a sense, this also meant that it hadn’t been casual, right?
Jinde chuckled and put the knife into his own spatial ring before turning to look over the other objects one by one. With his personal ones, there was a story behind each of them. Finally getting to see them again, holding them in his hands and taking possession of them once again, that was something that naturally filled him with memories. He didn’t have much time but he couldn’t help but look them over one by one, thinking back to those times.
Qiu Ling didn’t hurry him and just sat down, pulling Jing Yi to his side while he watched the two of them. Jinde … there was a lot about his life that he had no idea about.
The relationship between Jinde and his father had already worsened a lot by the time he was old enough to remember. Even though the feelings between them had been obvious, love had been intermingled with hurt and resentment. Because no matter what they did, every wrong action, each wrong word was just another pain inflicted on the other side.
It wasn’t conscious, it was just the result of the situation that did not seem as if it could have any positive outcome. Without wanting to, they had tormented each other again and again, driving themselves and the other person a step closer to the edge with everything they did.
Now, he actually had the chance to see the sweet side of their relationship, the things that tied back to the years before his mother had ever appeared in front of his father. To see this … to be honest, it gave him some hope.
No matter what happened, no matter how cruel fate might be, there was always a chance to have matters work out in the end. It might not be easy, there might be sacrifices that needed to be made, and maybe for a time, you wouldn’t even be together, but in the end, you could always find a way back to the other person if they were your other half.
Jinde and Leng Jin Yu were proof of that. From one life to the other, they had still found back to each other and were now the couple that they had not managed to become back then. If they could do it, then shouldn’t he and his lover be able to do so as well?
He kept his thoughts to himself and just quietly watched on, waiting for Jinde to make his choices when he got to the objects that had no relationship to him but that still needed to be used.