Written by Tinalynge & Blue Jay
Edited by ONI_Ghost
Beta read by OEE
Chapter 22 – Entranced
“Are they dead?” Luo Xiao asked, stunned. Jiang Yao nodded as he looked worriedly at the younger male. Being ruthless was a part of his personality, but for the first time, he cared about what another person thought of him.
“I guess you had a good reason to kill them,” Luo Xiao finally said with a sigh. His face was pale, and his voice trembled slightly, but his eyes were bright. He looked at Jiang Yao with great trust obvious from his expression.
Jiang Yao released a breath of air when he saw how much he was trusted. He nodded and squeezed Luo Xiao’s waist, pulling the younger man closer to him.
“We can move on now,” he said after ensuring that no one from the information center had survived. Even some of the people outside had lost their lives. Everyone who had left the information center since Jiang Yao and Luo Xiao departed had also been turned into ice statues.
Ling Mo stood some distance away as his heart palpitated with fear, and he sweat profusely.
He finally understood that Jiang Yao was truly a cold-blooded killing machine. For him, life meant nothing. Anyone weaker than himself could be trampled on as he wished, and it was not until now that Ling Mo realized what a perilous position he was actually in.
Although he was alive, that was only because he had a certain value to Jiang Yao. Now, he regretted everything he had done, and he wished that he hadn’t shown his true emotions as easily as he had. If he had just held it all in this whole time and sent a letter to the Fourth Prince when he was alone, then he would have been safe and without any problems. Now though, it was clear that Jiang Yao had his eye on him.
“Let’s not stay here any longer,” Jiang Yao said as he rushed forward, still holding Luo Xiao by the waist and hugging him to his body.
Their figures quickly flashed out of the city. When they made it outside, Jiang Yao scooped Luo Xiao up in his arms and carried him like a princess once more. Then he rushed off in the direction of the herb that Luo Xiao remembered from the map.
The harsh wind was unpleasant on his face and made Luo Xiao tear up, so he quickly turned his head and buried it in Jiang Yao’s chest. He reached out his arms and hooked them around the older man’s neck, feeling as safe as he could.
Jiang Yao had a gentle smile on his face. It was obvious that he was incapable of hiding his current happiness, and one couldn’t see even the slightest hint of the malice and ruthlessness he had shown earlier that day when he had killed everyone from the information center.
The trio rushed forward at the fastest speed that they could towards the destination they had seen on the map. Even at this speed, they would have to travel throughout the day and rest at night.
Luo Xiao got more and more familiar with Jiang Yao’s advances. He’d given up on sleeping outside of Jiang Yao’s embrace as he now knew that the older man enjoyed seeing all the various expressions he would often make.
He started feeling comfortable in Jiang Yao’s embrace, feeling secure and pampered. He even pouted from time to time and made demands, but strangely enough, Jiang Yao listened to him a lot more recently. When he insisted on not going downstairs to the inn’s restaurant and instead stay in their room to eat, Jiang Yao agreed. Luo Xiao imagined that if he were to ask for a bath after they had traveled a long way, then Jiang Yao would ensure that there was a hot bath for him and privacy behind a wooden curtain.
Luo Xiao started to feel that he was safe with Jiang Yao and that Jiang Yao was the only person he had left in the entire world. He even began to fear the day they would stop their pretend relationship. When it ended, he didn’t know how he would live without being pampered so much.
It was also for this reason that Luo Xiao decided to try to be of use to Jiang Yao. Jiang Yao was treating him so well which made him a little sad every time he thought about this. Luo Xiao was still under the impression that this treatment from Jiang Yao was because of him having an Astral Soul, so he often found himself thanking the heavens for having made him an Astral Soul so that he had some use to Jiang Yao.
“I wonder why I am so happy whenever I see Jiang Yao,” Luo Xiao muttered to himself while he soaked in a large bathtub after having traveled for the entire day.
He was not exhausted since he had just lain in Jiang Yao’s arms, but he still wanted to bathe every day to get rid of the dust and sand from traveling as much as they had.
“Did you say something?” Jiang Yao’s deep voice sounded from the other side of the wooden screen causing a shiver to run through Luo Xiao’s entire body.
“No,” he hurriedly answered and made sure not to speak out loud anymore.
Jiang Yao was kind to him, and he felt warm all the way to his heart whenever he thought about him. Although he was thin-skinned and disliked being carried like a princess when others could see, he always felt extremely safe in his embrace.
In Jiang Yao’s arms, he slept well and never had nightmares. Even his thoughts about the corpse puppet did not resurface when he was near Jiang Yao.
Luo Xiao didn’t understand his emotions at all. He couldn’t understand why he, a young man, had nothing against sleeping in the arms of another man.
He couldn’t understand his own sadness whenever he thought that Jiang Yao only cared about him because he was an Astral Soul.
There were so many emotions, and he couldn’t understand even a little bit of them. He was confused, and the more he thought about it, the more confused he became.
Luo Xiao laid in the water for a long time. He soaked and enjoyed how his muscles relaxed, and eventually, he fell asleep in the bathtub.
Jiang Yao didn’t dare leave the room anymore when Luo Xiao was in there. In fact, he didn’t dare leave Luo Xiao’s side at all because of the many murder attempts that had occurred since the start of their trip.
He studied the map while Luo Xiao took a bath, and he calmly determined the route of their travels. As he looked over the map, he estimated how long it would take them to arrive.
Suddenly, he realized that the splashing sounds from the water had ceased and there was only silence from the other side of the screen.
Frowning, Jiang Yao gently knocked on the screen. “Xiaoxiao, are you okay?” he asked.
There was no answer, causing Jiang Yao to frown. He was not too worried, but the fact that the young man wasn’t answering made him slightly uncomfortable.
One has to know that he was still a mere mortal. If he fell asleep in the bath, he could easily drown.
“Xiaoxiao, I’m serious. Are you okay?” he asked but there was still no reply, and eventually, he sighed. “I hope you are sleeping,” he muttered to himself, “otherwise I might not forgive you.”
Having said this, Jiang Yao stepped behind the wooden screen and looked at Luo Xiao who was sleeping soundly. He sighed in relief when he saw that he was casually lying down, but the relief quickly turned to admiration as he saw his smooth porcelain-white skin that glistened with droplets of water.
His breath turned rapid, and his eyes widened. Luo Xiao’s entire body lay limp in the water, his eyes were closed, and a few drops of water were still slowly dripping from his long eyelashes.
The warm water had caused his body to flush slightly, so a healthy blush covered it, and Jiang Yao was entranced by what was in front of him.
He had tasted many men and women in his life. He had anyone he ever wanted to have before, but he had never seen a body that attracted him like this.
“Not now,” Jiang Yao sighed as he greedily observed the breathtaking young male in front of him. “Everything has to be done at the right time if I want to keep him by my side,” he muttered to himself. Then he stepped next to the bathtub while looking at Luo Xiao with glistening eyes.
“Time to wake up,” Jiang Yao said as he gently caressed Luo Xiao’s cheek. Luo Xiao’s eyelids fluttered slightly, and he opened his eyes which widened in surprise.
“Don’t sleep in the bathtub,” Jiang Yao said with a husky voice. Although he knew that he needed to hold back, seeing the scene in front of him was enough to make him feel aroused. But, out of respect for Luo Xiao, he held back.
“Ah… Ah ah ah ah!” Luo Xiao was muddle-headed from sleep, yet the moment he realized that Jiang Yao was observing him, he was so embarrassed that he tried to sink deeper into the tub.
“Don’t stay in the water for too long,” Jiang Yao chuckled as he turned around, going behind the wooden screen once more.
Luo Xiao was incapable of speaking. His cheeks were so red that they resembled a cooked lobster and his simply heart would not calm down.
He didn’t know why he was so embarrassed from being seen by another man, but he was acutely aware of himself at that moment.
He quickly glanced around and saw that Jiang Yao really was gone, so he hurriedly stepped out of the water and dried himself before dressing in a clean set of clothes.
He had hoped that his heart would stop beating rapidly after he had waited for some time, but whenever he thought about having to be face to face with Jiang Yao again, his heartbeat quickened.
With a red face, he finally took a deep breath and stepped out from behind the wooden screen.
When he was on the other side, he saw that Jiang Yao was concentrating deeply on the map in his hands, however, when he saw movement, he lifted his head and looked at Luo Xiao.
At that time, Luo Xiao and Jiang Yao’s eyes locked. Seeing Jiang Yao gaze at him, he felt a bolt of electricity run down his body. There was something inside Jiang Yao’s eyes that hadn’t been there before, a sensation that Luo Xiao could not comprehend.
Anyone who was a bit more experienced would be able to instantly tell that the gleam in Jiang Yao’s eyes was lust.
“Done?” Jiang Yao asked, his voice still husky and alluring. It caused Luo Xiao’s face to turn even redder, and he could no longer look at the attractive older male.
He nodded and climbed into the bed. “I’m going to sleep, don’t let me interrupt you. Continue studying the map,” Luo Xiao said meekly, but in response, Jiang Yao just chuckled.
“No need. I already understand it completely; let’s sleep like normal,” he said, and without wasting any time, he reached out his hands, locked them around Luo Xiao’s wrists, and dragged the smaller, younger male into his embrace.
Feeling Luo Xiao’s body pressed against his, he couldn’t help but once again think about Luo Xiao lying naked in the tub, and he had to force himself to calm down.
“Not now,” he muttered to himself again. Luo Xiao, who was completely clueless, looked up at him with big eyes. “Not now what?” he asked curiously, but Jiang Yao just smiled and didn’t answer.
“Let’s sleep,” he said before resting his arms around Luo Xiao’s waist and drifting off to sleep.