Dianxia Qingcheng - Chapter 153
Chapter 153: Pei-gege, You Won’t Bully Me Again in the Future, Right?
March 3, 2023Merchie
Qi Changyi still didn’t know what had happened outside. His head was buried in Pei Zheng’s chest, and only the sound of a furious gale whistled past his ears. The exposed back of his neck was cut several times by the sandstorm.
Then, a cool hand pressed against the back of his neck, blocking the sand pelting his skin.
Pei Zheng squinted his eyes. If he opened them just a little, he would be blinded by the flying bits of sand. He tried his best to look up, but all he could see was a yellow haze.
The wind was still growing stronger, and slowly enveloped the two figures.
The muddled Qi Changyi was suddenly hit with a pang of dizziness, before he promptly lost consciousness.
Who knew how long had passed before their surroundings finally quieted down. The silence was still; it was as though there was not a shred of life left in the world.
Qi Changyi’s lashes trembled, and he slowly opened his eyes.
The first thing that caught his eye was the vast, clear blue sky that was dotted with wisps of gold-rimmed clouds.
Once the sandstorm had passed, even the sky had brightened up quite a bit.
Qi Changyi wiggled his finger; they were currently clutched tightly in someone else’s hand. He tilted his head to see who it was, and spotted the man lying beside him.
Pei Zheng still wasn’t awake yet. One hand clutched the small man’s, while the other was protecting his neck.
Qi Changyi slowly turned over, and his entire body ached painfully; he felt as though he had fallen from a great height.
He shook off the sand blanketing his body. Then, with great effort, he propped himself up to check on the man beside him.
Pei Zheng’s eyes were closed. There was a bloody cut on his cheek. Blood was still seeping out of it, but it seemed like he didn’t feel it all; he didn’t move, even his breathing couldn’t be heard.
Qi Changyi’s heart filled with panic. He reached out and gently prodded Pei Zheng’s chest a few times.
But the man beneath him didn’t show any reaction.
Qi Changyi was both anxious and terrified; his eyes had reddened. His little hand wiped the blood off Pei Zheng’s face.
“Wake up, please don’t be hurt, you can’t be hurt… don’t abandon me, I’m begging you, please wake up…”
There wasn’t a single other person nearby. In this borderless, endless desert, it seemed that the two of them were the only ones left.
Qi Changyi was afraid that Pei Zheng had really breathed his last. He stretched out a shaky hand; he wanted to check if Pei Zheng was still breathing.
He had just reached over, when his hand was suddenly clasped by another.
“What, were you afraid I was dead?”
Pei Zheng’s voice was a bit hoarse, but his tone was light; there wasn’t a trace of panic in it at all.
After Qi Changyi heard that familiar voice, the taut string in his heart snapped. He really had been utterly terrified just now, and tears began to flood uncontrollably out of his eyes.
The little prince pressed his lips together and didn’t speak, but his tears continued to fall like beads sliding off a cut piece of thread.
Pei Zheng lifted his hand and wiped the tears away from the corners of his eyes, “All right, be good, don’t cry. I’m awake now, aren’t I? I won’t abandon you.”
I will never… abandon you again.
Why did these words feel so familiar?
Qi Changyi tried his best to recall. A figure appeared in his mind, but he couldn’t make out its face.
Pei Zheng retracted his hand, and suddenly coughed a few times. Then, the taste of blood surged up and filled his throat, before he managed to shove it back down.
The small man heard Pei Zheng coughing, and noticed that his complexion looked quite bad; all of his worry and fear was saturated in his gaze.
Although he still hadn’t forgiven Pei Zheng, he still didn’t want anything bad to happen to Pei Zheng. His innocence and kindness were carved into his bones; this was one thing that would never change.
And Pei Zheng knew exactly how to take advantage of his tender heart.
“My hand hurts so much,” Pei Zheng looked at his hand that was covering the back of the small man’s neck, “I think it’s broken.”
As expected, the small man immediately looked over in nervousness.
“Try to move a bit, you have to be gentle.”
Pei Zheng cooperated and moved his hand a bit. It wasn’t broken, but it was numb from being squashed, so it was a bit floppy.
Qi Changyi carefully touched his hand, and lifted his gaze, asking, “Does this hurt?”
Pei Zheng looked at his watery eyes, and his heart jumped a few times. It had been so long since the small man had looked at him with those eyes.
“It hurts, it hurts a lot, it’s terribly painful.”
Qi Changyi hurriedly pulled his hand back in fright, “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to… What do we do? You can’t move around. First, we have to fix your wrist in place…”
As he spoke, he tore off a bit of the gauze bandaging his wound, and quickly wrapped it around Pei Zheng’s hand.
Pei Zheng stared at his skillful movements; he had forgotten Shen Shijiu’s memories, no? Yet he was still able to retain his knowledge of medicine.
After he finished wrapping Pei Zheng’s hand up, Qi Changyi asked, “Does it still hurt? Does it feel a little better?”
“It feels… a little better.”
Pei Zheng continued with his charade and gingerly moved his hand; at this point, even the numbness had already faded.
“But it still hurts so badly… Unless,”
He suddenly reached out grabbed the small man kneeling in front of him, causing the small man to collapse right into his embrace. Then, he leaned into his smooth, jade-like ear and said in a low voice.
“… Unless you let me give you a kiss.”
Those fair earlobes instantly flushed red.
Qi Changyi pressed his hand against Pei Zheng’s chest, and he gave him an indignant shove, before he straightened up and was about to stand. In the end, he lost his footing and fell right back toward the ground. It was only because of Pei Zheng reaching out to support his body that he was able to steady himself.
That hand was holding the small man’s waist. Although Pei Zheng was injured, he was still able to firmly support the little prince’s body weight.
“Your legs are numb?” Pei Zheng’s sharp eyes narrowed slightly. He appeared to be in a great mood, and even began to chuckle.
In truth, he merely wanted to joke with the small man, in order to make him forget about his nervousness and fear.
Pei Zheng clutched his chest and sat up. He had been using his internal energy to protect the person in his arms all night. His own body still hadn’t fully recovered; blood churned and surged back up.
However, he couldn’t spit blood out in front of the small man, he couldn’t frighten him.
Pei Zheng stood up, concentrating as he surveyed the area.
There wasn’t a trace of anyone from the convoy; there weren’t even any tracks left behind on the sand dunes.
In this desert, being separated from the main group was no different than walking down a path of disaster.
The two of them didn’t have any food or water on them. On top of that, they were both injured; who knew how long they would last out here.
Pei Zheng stretched his other hand out to the small man who was still sitting on the ground, “Here.”
Qi Changyi stared dumbly at his hand.
Pei Zheng simply leaned down and pulled him up, before he gripped his hand, and slowly began to trudge through the sand.
Pei Zheng had a faint recollection of where the guide mentioned the oasis might be. Using the sun as a compass, he walked in that direction.
In the beginning, Qi Changyi tried to tug his hand away a few times, but Pei Zheng would respond by gripping it even tighter. After just a few steps, he was a bit out of breath, so he hardly cared whether Pei Zheng was holding his hand or not.
The sun shining above their head became more and more intense, burning the small man, who was trying his best to keep up, till his cheeks were alarmingly red. His body was immediately soaked in sweat.
Qi Changyi’s vision became blurrier and blurrier, and his consciousness was drifting away. His footsteps were extremely wobbly. He gazed at Pei Zheng’s back, and reached out to touch it, but he was tripped by a sandpit, and was about to collapse to the ground.
Someone crashed into Pei Zheng’s back. He hurriedly turned around and caught the small man’s limp body as it fell.
Qi Changyi’s eyes opened into slits. His body was exuding a faint heat, and his lips were extremely dry. By this time, he should have drunk his medicine a long time ago, but not only had he not drank any medicine, he hadn’t even been able to drink water.
Pei Zheng lifted him onto his back.
“Don’t fall asleep, you hear me? I know you’re very tired and very sleepy, but for now, don’t fall asleep. Talk with me, won’t you?”
Pei Zheng carried the small man on his back, walking step by step through the sand, leaving a string of lonely footprints in his wake.
This desert seemed to have no end. After walking over one sand dune, they would encounter another sand dune that looked exactly the same as the last.
Continuous and endless.
Qi Changyi laid limply over Pei Zheng’s shoulders and neck. His eyelids were already quite heavy, but Pei Zheng told him not to fall asleep, so he tried hard to keep his eyes open.
He called out in an incredibly soft voice, but Pei Zheng paused.
He knew that the small man’s mind probably wasn’t lucid at the moment, so he tried his best to keep any peculiarities out of his voice.
“Mm. I’m here.”
“Pei-gege, I feel like I haven’t seen you in so long, where did you go?
The corners of Pei Zheng’s lips twitched, “I… didn’t go anywehre. I’ve been waiting for you at home this whole time, you’re the one who didn’t come home.”
Qi Changyi pouted, “I didn’t go home? Why didn’t I go home? But, but I don’t even have a home…”
“Who said you don’t have a home? Your home in in the Imperial City, the royal palace is your home. The Prime Minister’s Manor is also your home, you have two homes.”
Pei Zheng said, “Once you get better, I’ll take you back home, okay?”
Qi Changyi nodded obediently, “Okay, but… will you stay with me? I’ll be scared… alone…”
“I will, I will stay with you. I’ll protect you. No one will ever dare to bully you again.”
Qi Changyi seemed to have relaxed a bit, but he seemed to recall something, and asked, “Then what about you? Pei-gege, you won’t bully me again in the future, right?”
“I… I won’t, I will never bully you again.”
“Liar,” Qi Changyi’s eyes turned wet with aggrievement, “You… married someone else, I-I don’t want to see you guys again… I want to go that cliff, it’s very cold up there, it’s so dark, and it snows, and the snow is red…”
Pei Zheng halted in his footsteps, and placed the small man who was mumbling to himself back onto the ground. He had him sit on the sand, before he leaned down in front of him.
As he stared into his tear-filled gaze, Pei Zheng felt a sharp, stabbing pain in his heart. He lifted one hand and gently covered the small man’s eyes, while pulling him into his arms with the other.
“I didn’t marry someone else. There’s never been anyone else.”
Pei Zheng grabbed one of the little prince’s hands, and placed it over his own heart, before he said softly, “The one inside here is you, it’s always been you. In the future, it will still only be you.”