Rong Su’s face fell. "Are you kidding me?" His voice sounded flat but Qiang Yan chuckled.
"He would certainly be very interested in having a look at how Jing He’s trial is coming along. He probably can’t wait for him to come back. He’d be thrilled if you —"
"Over my dead body!" Rong Su leaped to his feet and paced up and down behind his desk. "I’d rather surrender my realm to the demons than to give that dandy a chance to see my precious son!"
Qiang Yan sipped the wine and refused to comment. The dragon king was indeed quite vain. He couldn’t argue against that.
"Argh, just thinking about it makes me want to strangle him!"
"That could prove difficult."
Rong Su swiveled around and narrowed his eyes. "How can you even bring up something like this?"
"It would be the logical step to take. You both want to know how Jing He is faring and Longjun has no reason not to send someone or — considering his personality — go himself."
Rong Su froze. "What did you just say?"
Qiang Yan looked up, hesitating a little but finally still told him. "I said that considering his personality it wouldn’t be strange for him to descend to the mortal realm himself to have a look at Jing He’s mortal fate."
Rong Su’s eyes grew wide. "I have to send someone down there now!" He hurried to the door but Qiang Yan leaped to his feet and barred his way.
"Slow down, slow down. Why would you want to send someone down now?"
"Isn’t that obvious?! That guy will certainly descend and try to seduce my poor innocent son! He might have already started his despicable plan!"
"Calm down, brother-in-law. It’s only been nine days. Jing He is only a mortal child of nine years right now. What could Longjun do in such a case?"
"I should still send someone. They can have an eye on him while he grows up. I’m sure that guy won’t wait long. He definitely has something planned."
Qiang Yan drooped his head and sighed. His brother-in-law really was a mother hen. Did he seriously think the dragon king would be able to get close to Jing He if the boy was totally averse to the idea? It was obvious that Jing He didn’t mind the dragon king’s courtship. Shouldn’t his brother-in-law start to accept that fact? After Jing He returned, those two would marry sooner or later.
Even though he thought so, Qiang Yan knew that this was better not directly brought up in front of the Heavenly Emperor. The dragon king had a long way to go before he would be acknowledged by his future father-in-law.
"Whether he has something planned or not, why do you care? We’re speaking about Jing He’s trial here. It’s not like seducing his mortal self would have any effect on Jing He himself."
"What do you know? My Jing He has never been in love. Who knows if he won’t be swayed when that bastard whispers some sweet things into his ears down there? He might wake up and still have lingering feelings."
Qiang Yan sighed. "How could that be? And hasn’t the Fate’s Scribe already written his fate for the trial? What are you so nervous for?"
"Indeed!" This agreement came from the entrance and with it, the Heavenly Empress walked in. She smiled at Qiang Yan and ushered him back to his seat. "Is he going on about Jing He’s trial again?"
"He is. I heard you already forbade him from sending someone down there?"
"I did. But it seems my husband does not take me seriously anymore." She threw Rong Su a reproachful look.
"No, no, of course not, my dear!" The Heavenly Emperor sat back down and forced a smile. "We already said we wouldn’t send anyone. So of course, I won’t do that." He threw Qiang Yan a glance but the God of War poured himself another cup and ignored him.
"Brother, what did he really say?" Bai Fen turned toward her brother and raised her brows.
"It’s way more interesting what I had to say. I told him to ask Longjun to have a look at what’s going on there."
"And he didn’t like that."
Qiang Yan shook his head. "Not one bit."
"Qiang Yan! How dare you tell on me?! Who’s your emperor?"
"Well, that would be you. But I guess family comes first? Anyway, I still think asking Longjun would be the best idea if you really want to check on Jing He. He’d gladly go and take a look." He put down the cup and stood up. "I’d better get going now. There are still some things I have to do and I wouldn’t want to get in your way." He blinked at his sister and left, leaving Rong Su alone with his wife.
"So. You wanted to ask my brother to send someone to our son behind my back."
Rong Su smiled wryly. Of all people to find out, it just had to be his wife.
"I can tell you right now: No need! Longjun is already down there, guarding our son. He didn’t miss even one moment of his mortal life."
"That bastard!" Rong Su leaped to his feet again, clenching his fists. "No! I have to tell Qiang Yan to send someone down. I can’t leave my precious son to that dandy!"
The Heavenly Empress shot him a glance that let his zest for action wither in an instant. He sat down again. If his wife said so, then he really couldn’t do anything. But Jing He … My beloved son, I’m so sorry! I’ll have to surrender you to that bastard. At least for a while …
Bai Fen smiled satisfied, although she couldn’t help but worry at the same time. Qiu Ling had to use this chance in the mortal world to assure that husband of hers that he was the right choice for their son. She couldn’t do more for him than giving him this opportunity.