Qiu Ling reassured himself and his lips continued to wander further down the side of Jing He’s neck, finally brushing the edge of the lapel of his robe. He finally let go of his hair, instead circling his shoulders, and then trailed the fabric down to where Jing He’s clavicle was hidden.
He didn’t say anything. For one, he didn’t know what to say. His actions should really speak for themselves. And two … well, he didn’t quite trust his voice right now. There was whispering sweet nothings to his beloved while they were both fully closed and a step apart and then, there was also being on the edge of taking off that pristine white robe as part of a demonstration while closely embracing.
Qiu Ling reached up, his fingers trembling faintly with excitement as they grabbed Jing He’s lapel and slid down toward his belt. Needless to say, he wouldn’t actually take it off. They were still in the garden and even though Jing He’s palace was in a remote place and there were hardly any people around, he still remembered the two guards in front of the door on the other side of the palace.
If they heard something, they’d come to check it out and he didn’t even want to imagine the aftermath of that. Not even mentioning whether they’d attack him, Jing He would absolutely be uncomfortable being seen like this. Wasn’t that what he was currently trying to make clear to him? Since he felt that Jing He wouldn’t even be able to take it for their actual wedding ceremony, then he was naturally convinced that there was no way he’d be able to reconcile being seen in this way by two guards while out in the garden.
Thus, the belt would have to stay in place and so would the robe but he naturally didn’t have to mention that. No, this was about what Jing He believed would happen. So as long as his act was convincing enough, it should give Jing He a good estimate of what their wedding ceremony in the dragon realm would actually look like and whether that was something he wanted others to witness.
Qiu Ling finally gave the belt a sharp tug that didn’t change the tight fit in the slightest but made his beloved stumble closer into his arms. He took a faint breath to calm himself before his lips traveled back up, lingering beneath Jing He’s chin for a moment. “You wouldn’t mind me taking off your robe, would you?”
Jing He would have swayed on his feet if not for Qiu Ling holding onto him tightly. He already felt dizzy, unable to really tell where he was or what was happening. They seemed to have been speaking about whether he would be willing to let these things happen in front of others on their wedding night but … why did it seem like Qiu Ling was about to make true on everything he said right this instant?
Jing He’s breath hitched. The ceremony of the dragon realm was simple enough from what Qiu Ling had told him. So if this continued … then in a short while, on this very day, they would count as married spouses in the dragon realm. The thought made his lashes flutter and his fingers grab tightly onto Qiu Ling’s belt.
His spouse. That was what he wanted to be. He had desired this for several years even though he had only admitted it to Qiu Ling shortly before his trial and even though he had only dared to say so out loud in front of his mother and uncle today. Now, the title of Qiu Ling’s spouse was right within reach. He only needed to nod his head or give a faint response and let Qiu Ling go ahead. After that … no matter what anyone said, this couldn’t be taken from them. It was … truly too tempting.
Qiu Ling noticed Jing He’s non-reaction and glanced at his expression, wondering if he had gone too far with this and should stop now. Seeing his flushed cheeks and his fluttering lashes that barely hid his beautiful eyes, he suddenly felt that he had had the worst idea in years today. And yet, he somehow didn’t regret it.
He let go of Jing He’s belt and instead circled his waist again, straightening up to give him a kiss on the lips. Most likely, Jing He had already understood. There was no reason to take this any farther. He should just … well, make use of the opportunity to strengthen their bond a bit and then have a calm discussion again later on when Jing He had calmed down. Because right now, he really didn’t seem like he’d be able to register much of what he said.
Qiu Ling reached up to cup his cheek, his lips still lingering on Jing He’s. He knew that he had likely come on too strong just now so he couldn’t help but soften his approach, the kiss turning slow and steady.
Jing He gave a faint sound, not sure whether it was a response to what Qiu Ling had asked before or the quiet seduction at this moment. He couldn’t even put into words how their current kiss felt. It seemed sweet compared to the fiery behavior before but at the back of his mind, it also made him question whether his reaction before had been wrong. Was Qiu Ling pulling back now that he hadn’t enthusiastically reacted as soon as he proposed to take off his clothes? Then … should he encourage him to go further?
Jing He felt torn but the fear of losing Qiu Ling if he didn’t do the right thing made him cling tighter to him, his fingers brushing over his chest in an attempt to get closer. The next moment, he felt himself being thrown to the ground.
Jing He made a sound of surprise but Qiu Ling didn’t have time to care about that. He ducked to not be hit by the wind blade coming from behind and cursed under his breath. Why did this attack seem so familiar? And why was it coming at this moment of all times? How come his luck was always so bad?!