An Bai was waiting patiently even though his heart was filled with panic. He wasn’t any less of a fighter compared to other dragons just because he was a scholar. Having to guard the body of your king’s lover was able to add quite the burden though. If he failed, he didn’t even want to imagine what it would mean.
When Ye Yang reappeared, An Bai heaved a sigh of relief. “Did you manage to bring them back safely?”
Ye Yang nodded. “Yes. Although that fallen god almost scared me to death.” He shook his head but didn’t lose any time and picked Jing Yi up again. “Let’s go.”
An Bai didn’t make things difficult and reached out himself. The next moment, the two of them vanished from the spot and returned to the courtyard.
Over there, Xiang Yu was staring at Jinde who had pulled Jin Ling back into his arms and was still sobbing, inconsolable. Xiang Yu looked up, his gaze very much begging for help.
Ye Yang sighed. He really wasn’t sure how to talk to a fallen god. In the end, he simply handed Zhong Jing Yi’s body to An Bai. “I should get back to the battlefield. With how things stand, they need every help they can get.”
An Bai nodded but furrowed his brows. “This won’t stop though. Not for a long time. Yong Hai … he wants this war and those following him do as well. They have no reason to retreat unless the majority of them have fallen. I’d wager the battle will go on for a few days at least.”
Ye Yang gave a hum. “You might be right.” He didn’t say more and simply looked at An Bai’s face.
The little dragon seemed stressed which wasn’t typical of him. No matter what was happening, he had never seen him like this. Not even when he had been imprisoned in the dungeon of the demon king’s palace. Clearly, this was because he saw the danger all of this meant to his people.
Thinking about that, Ye Yang felt that it was a pity. No beauty should be put in this kind of situation. A beauty should be able to enjoy the things they loved without being disturbed.
He reached out and cupped An Bai’s cheeks, his eyes turning determined. “I will deal with it.”
An Bai’s widened and he stared at Ye Yang in a daze. He wasn’t sure what surprised him more: the fact that Ye Yang was simply touching him without asking or that he was making this kind of promise in such a situation. Considering they technically weren’t close, both seemed odd. Coming from a demon when his people were attacking the dragons made it even more so.
Before An Bai could make up his mind, Ye Yang already let go, stepped back, and left the courtyard in a cloud of black smoke.
An Bai looked on in a daze but finally shook his head. No matter what, there were more important things to take care of. He turned to Xiang Yu who had crouched down next to Jinde, still unsure of what to do. Obviously, while they could let him guard Jinde, the two bodies, and the child, he wasn’t equipped to deal with the rest of the situation. He seemed distressed just watching for a few moments.
An Bai pondered. The one who could deal best with this would be Leng Jin Yu as Jinde’s husband or maybe Qiu Ling considering how close he was to him. Unfortunately, neither of them was available right now so he could only try and take care of this himself.
He crouched down as Ye Yang had done before but then hesitated. What to say in this type of situation? No matter what, his words seemed lacking. In the end, he could only sigh. “Do you want to move him inside or … anything else?” He didn’t know how to comfort him so he could only go about this in this way. Maybe doing something would help Jinde deal with this as well. Not that it was strange that he was in this state after it had just happened.
Jinde looked up and shook his head. “No, I …” He didn’t know what he wanted. Well, other than that he wanted his child back but that wasn’t a wish anyone could fulfill. “He should be buried.”
An Bai nodded. “We will. It’s just something we can only do after the battle is over.”
Jinde rubbed Jin Ling’s cheek and nodded. “I know.” He looked at him for a while longer before raising his head and looking throughout the courtyard. He vaguely remembered that his husband had spoken to him before. Now, he couldn’t see him. “Jin Yu …?”
“He is still out there, sticking to the king’s side. He isn’t doing well either.”
Jinde’s gaze fell on Zhong Jing Yi’s body. Looking at it, he felt empty inside. This wasn’t his first battle and they weren’t the first people he had lost but it felt more significant. The friends he had let go, those brave soldiers under his command … he had grieved them but not like this.
He lowered his gaze again and shook his head. “It’s alright. You can go and join them again. I … I just want to stay with him for a bit.” He knew he should also be out there. He should support Qiu Ling and his husband and all the other dragons out there. But he couldn’t bring himself to let Jin Ling out of his arms.
This child … he had failed him. He had back then when he allowed Jian Heng to influence him to that degree. He had when he exiled him from the dragon realm and refused to meet again. And today, he had failed him for the final time. After all of that, how could he simply let go of him? It just … didn’t seem right.