Written by Tinalynge & Blue Jay
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The days on the road were very similar. In the beginning, Luo Xiao was very eager to look out the windows and admire the scenery, while Jiang Yao was much more eager to drag him into an embrace and do unspeakable things.
He was getting more and more touchy, spending his time slowly making Luo Xiao adjust to his touch and his kisses.
He longed to become one with the younger man, but he was afraid that he would scare him, so he could only slowly make him accustomed to his touch and make him enjoy it.
When they were not looking out the windows or doing unspeakable things, Luo Xiao would be seated on the bed, cultivating.
He understood better than anyone that his rank was not high enough, that he was still the weakness that lingered around Jiang Yao, and that it was not only himself who was in danger – his existence was also dangerous to Jiang Yao because he had given his heart to him.
Because of this, Luo Xiao was feeling some pressure, but he never mentioned it to Jiang Yao.
He knew that Jiang Yao did not want to stress him, just as he did not want to make him feel worried. He only wanted the best for Luo Xiao, but the young man was no longer as innocent or as easy to pull wool in front of his eyes.
Luo Xiao saw the world as it was and was aware of his position. Only with strength could one do as they wished.
Although Jiang Yao was strong, he could not be by his side twenty-four hours a day, and he was also not willing to use his lover as a crutch. He wanted to stand proud by his side, not hidden in the shadows beneath him.
It was during the time that Luo Xiao was sitting on the bed, his hands clenched tightly as he was cultivating, that the caravan suddenly stopped, all the carriages were abruptly stopped in their tracks, a bump causing Luo Xiao to be dragged from his state of cultivation.
Frowning, Luo Xiao looked out the windows but could not see anything. He could, however, hear the sounds of yelling and clashing weapons.
Curious, Luo Xiao opened the door to the carriage and began walking to the front of the caravan.
On the way, he saw many of the mercenaries that had been hired to look after the caravan’s safety, were drawing their weapons, their muscles taut, and their expressions solemn. Even though they were curious, they did not leave their posts.
Luo Xiao and Jiang Yao were not hired by the caravan to protect them, so they could move as they pleased, and they slowly made their way to the front of the caravan.
Here they were greeted by a battlefield!
Bandits had appeared, all of which were fierce and bloodthirsty. They were fighting with their lives on the line for the sake of treasures.
Birds die for food while men die for treasures.
This idiom proved to be accurate, the bandits were numerous, but the mercenaries and merchants were not pushovers either. The battle was bloody, and the heavy stench of blood was permeating through the air.
Luo Xiao paled slightly, but he bit his lip. He would not allow for himself to become weak just because of the scent of blood. He needed to get past his trauma to advance.
Looking at the battle, the two sides seemed evenly matched. No one was more likely to win than the other team, but if Jiang Yao intervened, it was clear that the bandits, no matter how numerous they were, stood no chance.
Just as Jiang Yao was about to raise his hand and end it for the sake of a much more pleasant and eventless journey, Luo Xiao grasped his hand in his own.
“Don’t help them,” he said suddenly, his eyes gleaming.
“I am going to fight and use this battle to hone my skills. If you make a move, I will have no chance to try out my own skills, and that will be a real shame.”
“Okay,” Jiang Yao agreed readily.
“You are not allowed to help me,” Luo Xiao said again, his face solemn. He knew Jiang Yao well. If he got just the slightest wound, everyone would be buried three feet underground.
Hearing what Luo Xiao said, as expected, Jiang Yao frowned, He was not willing to see his love get wounded.
“Jiang Yao,” Luo Xiao called out his name with a solemn voice. “I will never improve if you do not allow me to. Let’s agree that if I am close to death, then you can intervene, but if it is merely a flesh wound, then you have to let me deal with it myself.”
Looking at the steadfast and stubborn eyes of Luo Xiao, Jiang Yao knew he could not let him down.
He was also aware that Luo Xiao was doing everything in his power to improve his strength so that he could rightfully stay by his side. Although he was proud of his lover, his heart ached for him.
He was also puzzled. Was it really necessary for Luo Xiao to be strong and stand by his side, was it not enough to be pampered by him?
“You want to protect me,” Luo Xiao said with a sigh as he looked at Jiang Yao and recognized his thoughts. “Is it so strange that I, too, want to protect you?”