A hint of annoyance flashed past Xiao Li’s eyes. This time, it wasn’t an act either. No, he really felt vexed at this point. “Sect Master An is accusing me without reason. As is my own lover!” He motioned back to Hua Lin Yu, once again using the opportunity to glance around. “I really didn’t have any nefarious intentions. Originally, I even refused to get together when I heard that there was another man involved. So I don’t see how any of this could be my fault. But, suddenly, I am the bad person here. Isn’t that just because I’m a half-demon?”
An Rong tilted his head, feeling that this one was quite good. If not for his instinct that had been honed throughout life, maybe he also would have trouble seeing through him. “You do realize that I’m a full-blooded demon, right?”
Xiao Li shook his head. “I’m well aware of that. Grandmaster Shen of the Hei Dian Sect told us. But isn’t that precisely why I came here in the first place?” At this, he turned back to Hua Lin Yu. “Xiao Yu, there is one matter that I indeed lied about. When I said earlier that I came here looking for a herb, that indeed wasn’t the truth. But I told you that lie because I didn’t want you to worry. What I actually came here to do was to find Sect Master An.
“What your Master said about him maybe being the person who was looking for you when you were younger really scared me. And then when you had an accident, I couldn’t help but fear that things would only go downhill from there. So I figured that I should use the opportunity to come here and try to reason with him.
“I’m a half-demon. So I thought that if I tried, I might have the best chance to make this work. Unexpectedly, you caught me first. I didn’t know how to explain it to you. If you had known, you definitely would’ve told me to leave. After all, I don’t think that you would have wanted to see me in danger. I do admit that there was a certain risk to this but it’s worth it if I can keep you safe. Please, you have to believe me!”
Hua Lin Yu looked at him, feeling that Xiao Li was getting less convincing with each passing moment. “You know, I could’ve believed your previous statement. It wasn’t the most logical but there was at least a certain plausibility to it so it could have been believed. But this? It makes no sense at all.
“Knowing that I was unconscious and caught in a vision that I couldn’t deal with this, why would you come here? No, a qualified lover would have rushed to my side. He would’ve tried to take care of me. But instead, you ran away.
“Clearly, you’ve never put me in your heart.” Looking back, he realized how true this was. Actually, in all the time he had known him, what had Xiao Li truly done for him? While he had accompanied him, he really hadn’t done much. Instead, it seemed that he was the only one who profited from being together.
Xiao Li would go out on missions, saying that it was so that nobody could say anything bad about their relationship, but he also hadn’t tried even once to convince his Master to let them go out together. It was only when his Master herself suggested it that he was finally allowed to go out with Xiao Li. He hadn’t tried to teach him either. At most, he would sit next to him while he studied.
On the other hand, what about Xin Lan? After they met again, he took him to the dragon realm without a question. He also brought him back to the mortal realm without saying anything after he rejected him.
He quietly waited until things were better between them, trying to slowly repair their relationship but never pressing the issue. He would have done anything for him. He had taught him so much about the world, giving him so much knowledge and so many experiences. Other than getting back together, he had no way to ever return all those favors.
Yes, Xin Lan had always looked at what was the best for him and he had followed that path without a second thought. Even if it caused him pain, he still insisted on going forward with it. Xiao Li … he simply couldn’t compare.
Hua Lin Yu lowered his head, a faint smile on his lips. Well, he had eaten the fruit of the beguiling night tree in the hope that he could once and for all put his doubts about his relationships with these two men to rest. Even though the outcome had been very different from what he had expected, at the very least, it had opened his eyes. He knew what he had to do now.
The right one for him had been Xin Lan from the very beginning. As for Xiao Li … after he got his answers, he wouldn’t care any longer. Yes, he had been deceived, but honestly, he couldn’t be bothered to waste any more time on this man.
He simply wanted to start over with Xin Lan and make the best of their relationship. They still had to get married and there were still many years for them to explore the rest of the world together before they finally settled down somewhere.
Looking back up, he shook his head at Xiao Li. “Let’s not discuss this any longer. I don’t care. You don’t love me, that is alright. Neither do I love you any longer. I might’ve needed too long to figure it out, but clearly, you aren’t the right one for me. Xin Lan is. After this is over, I will return to his side.
“So rather than continuing with this charade, why don’t you just tell me what I want to know? After that, we can go separate ways and never see each other again. Wouldn’t you prefer that as well? Either way, even if you don’t, there’s nothing you can say to convince me that I should get back together with you. So you don’t even have to try.”
Xiao Li narrowed his eyes, also realizing that there indeed was nothing he could say that would change the outcome of their encounter. But then, what he had already been worried about had never been simply breaking up with Hua Lin Yu. No, he was worried about Xin Lan’s retaliation for stealing his beloved. And that was something that couldn’t be changed as easily.
Even if Hua Lin Yu promised him that Xin Lan wouldn’t come after him, he wouldn’t believe it. That man was vindictive. And taking a dragon’s lover from them was the worst you could do to them. So even if Hua Lin Yu promised him and Xin Lan promised Hua Lin Yu, he still wouldn’t keep his word.
No, at the next best opportunity, Xin Lan would come after him. And right now, he knew where he was. Surely, he would be able to find him by retracing his steps. He could not allow that. No, he needed to solve this matter once and for all.