Written by Tinalynge & Blue Jay
Edited by ONI_Ghost
Beta read by OEE
Chapter 18 – Abnormal
The group set out once more. Ling Mo was in a horrible mood, but he said nothing the entire day. He didn’t fly ahead like usual, he just stayed by Jiang Yao’s side the whole day.
As night descended, they found another small village where they settled down for the night.
Once more, Jiang Yao rented two rooms – one for Ling Mo and one for himself and Luo Xiao. As always, Luo Xiao blushed until he looked like a ripe tomato when the staff heard about their sleeping arrangements, and they sent curious, suggestive glances towards him and Jiang Yao.
It was as if being stared at was an everyday occurrence for both Ling Mo and Jiang Yao, neither of them reacted to the many glances, but Luo Xiao was rather thin-skinned,
“I don’t want to go and eat. Can’t we eat in the room today?” Luo Xiao asked Jiang Yao when they had settled into their room and were on their way to the ground floor where the inn’s restaurant was.
“Why don’t want to eat downstairs? I’m sure it’s much better than eating in this small room,” Jiang Yao said.
“But they’ll stare at me,” Luo Xiao muttered. “I don’t like to be stared at like that. I’m not some monkey in a cage, and I’m not abnormal either.”
Jiang Yao raised an eyebrow, and a dangerous smile appeared on his lips, “Abnormal?” he asked, and Luo Xiao felt a shiver run down his spine as if his body were telling him he had said something terrible.
“What do you mean by abnormal? Why would they consider you abnormal if you go to their restaurant?” Jiang Yao asked with a smile that dripped with sweetness but caused Luo Xiao to tremble like a leaf in a storm.
“Well… You know…” Luo Xiao’s voice was getting lower and lower as he tried to speak. “It’s just, that men and women being together is normal, unlike men with other men. They heard that we are sharing a room so they will probably make fun of me… They will think I’m abnormal…”
“So you think it’s abnormal to be with another man?” Jiang Yao asked, and although Luo Xiao almost answered yes, he didn’t dare do so. Jiang Yao’s dangerously low voice seemed threatening, and it made him feel cold all the way to his bones.
“No, I think that what matters is love,” he finally muttered. His father had always told him that love was the most important, that it could overcome anything, but he still felt it was weird.
“Good answer,” Jiang Yao said. He seemed satisfied with this answer as he looked at Luo Xiao with tender eyes.
“What matters is that you love one another, and right now you are supposed to love me unconditionally,” he said with a sneaky smile on his face. “Remember, right now you are my lover, so you’d better consider how to please me rather than how to avoid others’ gazes. But don’t worry, if anyone insults you then I will absolutely not take it lying down.”
Having said this, Jiang Yao dragged the young man down to the first floor of the inn, and he held his hand with an iron grip, not releasing it before he found a table for them.
Not long after, Ling Mo joined them. As before, he said nothing, he just sat there continuing to look at Jiang Yao and Luo Xiao with eyes full of hatred but also anticipation.
He couldn’t wait to finish this trip so that he could return to the Tiansong Empire and inform the other royals about Jiang Yao’s weakness.
Jiang Yao was aware of what was on his mind but said nothing. Instead, he thought of ways to kill him without breaking his promise to Luo Xiao.
While the two older men were deep in thought, Luo Xiao ordered some food and drinks. He knew what the two older men liked now, and it was easy to guess that they would drink wine while he had some tea.
Soon food arrived at the table, and Ling Mo dug in with a healthy appetite. His mood had clearly improved drastically after the previous night. He felt that he had found the perfect solution to his problem of Luo Xiao.
He had already planned everything. The first one he would tell would be the Fourth Prince. He was the most vicious of them all, and it was known that he was the most ambitious as well.
He would do anything to succeed their father’s throne. He would even throw his own family away to get want he wanted, and he was greatly worried about his brother’s, Jiang Yao’s, performance.
Although he was older than Jiang Yao, he was weaker. He was naturally talented, but he was not as gifted as Jiang Yao, and he didn’t put as much effort into his cultivation as Jiang Yao. The result was that he was not even close to his younger brother’s strength.
The three were all thinking deeply. Jiang Yao thought about how to kill Ling Mo while Ling Mo felt pleased with the thought of how the Fourth Prince would torment Luo Xiao. Meanwhile, Luo Xiao, himself, was trying to be as unnoticeable as possible so that he could quickly finish eating.
Jiang Yao sighed and placed his focus on Luo Xiao instead of Ling Mo. He realized that he had not been bold enough before. What he needed to do was trigger Ling Mo’s urge to kill Luo Xiao so much that he couldn’t hold it down any longer. When this happened, he would attack in a wild frenzy of rage.
“Xiaoxiao, you should try this,” he said as he raised his chopsticks with a prawn in between. “Uh,” Luo Xiao said. His eyes widened as he realized what Jiang Yao was doing.
Wasn’t this an attempt to feed him? But they had never done such a thing before. Wouldn’t this cause Ling Mo to lose his cool? Wouldn’t this make things more dangerous for him?
Thousand of thoughts flashed through his mind in less than a second, but ultimately, he knew that he couldn’t refuse Jiang Yao. The older man’s eyes seemed to be laughing, but there was a menacing air to them, saying that if he said no then it would become even worse for him.
Luo Xiao’s face turned beet-red once more, and he slowly opened his mouth. Seeing how obediently Luo Xiao behaved, Jiang Yao smiled even wider, and he started feeding him random things from the table.
“This is your favorite right? Try it.”
“Xiaoxiao, you need to eat vegetables as well. Here have some of these.”
“You’re so skinny so you need to eat a lot! Here try this as well.”
Luo Xiao was so embarrassed that he wanted to dig a hole and hide in it, but he had no way of escaping from this evening meal either. Thus, he could only do exactly what Jiang Yao told him to.
Ling Mo, who had been enjoying the thoughts of seeing a miserable and wrecked Luo Xiao was now frozen. His eyes almost burst out of his head in anger when he saw the intimate gestures of Luo Xiao and Jiang Yao as if they were the only ones in the entire world.
It was not only Ling Mo who was shocked, but the entire restaurant also turned completely quiet. Everyone stared at the red-faced Luo Xiao and the older Jiang Yao that seemed as if they were acting out their own little play.
“I can’t eat anymore,” Luo Xiao said after being fed for almost fifteen minutes, “make sure you get something to eat too. You are the one working the hardest when we travel. You have to make sure you have enough energy.” He couldn’t help but nag Jiang Yao slightly, but this nagging sounded like a cute wife nagging her newlywed husband, and both Jiang Yao and the audience felt it was incredibly sweet.
Jiang Yao’s eyes softened when he looked at Luo Xiao, and he nodded. “I will make sure to eat too,” he promised as he ate a few bites of food. He didn’t bother to tell Luo Xiao that he had reached a realm where his body was sustained by the essence of the heavens and the earth, so he didn’t need to eat food any longer to stay healthy and strong.
“Disgusting,” a voice suddenly spoke out. This voice was neither high nor low; it was just loud enough to be heard by everyone present in the restaurant.
Although everyone heard the words, it was impossible to determine where they had come from, but moments after, a big, burly middle-aged man stepped out from the crowd and looked at Luo Xiao with disgust in his eyes.
“I came by to have some food, but this display has utterly ruined my appetite! What a disgrace! That kid might be prettier than most women, but he will never be one! To think that you want to display your disgusting sexual preferences in front of me!” said the man.
Jiang Yao, who had been looking tenderly at Luo Xiao, suddenly turned serious when he heard these words. He looked at the man with eyes so cold that the man couldn’t help but shiver from the glance alone.
“What did you say?” he asked. His voice was calm and unhurried while also being as cold as ice. The shivering man felt as if a knife were slowly cutting off his flesh.
Luo Xiao had just said that he didn’t want to be mocked because of this act, but now someone stepped forward to mock him. Wasn’t this simply asking for death?
“Jiang Yao, leave him,” Luo Xiao said with a sigh as he wrapped his arms around Jiang Yao’s arm to calm him down. “You can’t kill every idiot you come across. If you tried, you would never have time for other things,” he said, trying to convince the handsome immortal. But when Jiang Yao looked down at Luo Xiao’s arm that was around his own, he felt that he too was trembling in anger.
Luo Xiao didn’t want to be mocked, that was true, but more than that, he didn’t want Jiang Yao to be ridiculed and have his reputation ruined because of him.
“Don’t worry,” Jiang Yao said as he used his free hand to gently rub Luo Xiao’s head. His action seemed so natural and gentle that the ones who saw it knew that this was a gesture he had done multiple times in the past.
The man who had spoken out had been fearful at the start, but when he heard the girly boy plead for his life, he calmed down. He was calm even as Jiang Yao lifted his hand and a ray of light shot out. The attack penetrated the middle-aged man’s skull.
He never even noticed what had happened; his eyes were open in wonder as he collapsed to the ground. He had been killed with a casual wave of the hand!
This middle-aged man was the strongest cultivator within the village, but he had been killed so casually.
Moments after, Luo Xiao felt nauseous as he looked at the corpse. He felt no pity for the man, but he felt sick to his stomach because every time he saw someone die, he was reminded of his trauma.
Ling Mo was silent. He never had any hope that this man could cause any problems. He knew his death was assured. Everything had gone exactly as he had expected, but he had to thank the man for helping him.
Had he not jumped out the moment he did, then it was likely that he would have lost his calm and been the one who caused a ruckus, ending in his death.