Dianxia Qingcheng - Chapter 154
Chapter 154: I’ll Hug You A Little Tighter, Okay?
March 5, 2023Merchie
Pei Zheng felt a wetness in the center of his palm. He retracted his hand.
The small man’s eyes were closed. A teardrop was hanging on his trembling lashes, shaking, shining and ready to drip down.
Pei Zheng leaned over and lifted the little prince’s chin. He gently kissed his teary eye, lapping up that little teardrop with the tip of his warm tongue.
His tongue slid downward, and he kissed the small man’s cheek, before their noses touched as he leaned in.
The small man’s eyes were still closed, but his cheeks were now covered in a red flush.
The skin beneath his hand was emitting a bit of heat. Pei Zheng knew that he had likely gotten a fever again.
“Open your eyes.”
His voice was hoarse yet alluring.
The small man obediently opened his eyes. A layer of mist still glazed his gaze, innocent yet bewitching. Especially with his weak and sickly-pale condition, it only made one want nothing more than to cradle him in the depths of their heart and take good care of him.
Pei Zheng gently squeezed his chin and placed a kiss on his dry mouth. His tongue moistened the small man’s lips, and they finally regained a bit of their redness.
At this moment, the sky had already darkened completely, and the temperature had dropped as well.
Qi Changyi unconsciously shivered. His eyelids were also growing heavier and heavier.
Pei Zheng knew that the day had been too exhausting for him; right now, he couldn’t continue forcing him to stay awake.
He took the small man behind a sand dune. Pei Zheng untied his robe, and wrapped the small man tightly against his chest, but the little prince still couldn’t stop himself from shivering.
Pei Zheng stroked his hair and leaned against the sand dune, coaxing him in a gentle voice, “I know it’s cold. Does it feel a little better when I hug you? I’ll hug you a little tighter, okay?”
As he spoke, his arms around the man in his embrace tightened a bit.
Qi Changyi gripped the lapel over Pei Zheng’s chest, his eyes shut. He voluntarily huddled into this source of warmth.
This speck of land between heaven and earth was accompanied only by a river of silver stars.
In this uninhabited desert, the moonlight and stars were much brighter than in the Imperial City. They resembled little pearls and diamonds scattered over deep black satin. The sight was so beautiful that it was dizzying.
Pei Zheng gently squeezed the little hand clasped in his palm, resting his chin on the little prince’s head.
“Be good, look up.”
Qi Changyi’s little head popped out of his arms as he lifted his head to look up at the night sky. Then, he was also stunned by the river of dim red stars filling his gaze, and his eyes lit up in excitement.
None of them said a word. They quietly embraced each other until the small man was too exhausted to stay awake and passed out.
Pei Zheng also closed his eyes, but he couldn’t relax.
The small man was in quite a wretched state. Pei Zheng could feel the burning heat emanating from the person in his arms. On top of that, it seemed as though the small man was feeling cold; his arms were tightly wrapped around Pei Zheng’s waist.
As he slept, the small man’s lips had gone dry again. He muttered unconsciously, “Water… I want to drink water…”
But there was nothing but sand dunes around them; where would they find water?
“Thirsty… Want water…”
Pei Zheng retrieved a short dagger form within his robes and sliced into his finger with the sharp edge of the blade. A cluster of blood droplets bubbled up at the cut.
Pei Zheng’s throat was also dry with thirst. He used his bloody finger to wet the small man’s lips.
Those blood-soaked lips looked strangely bewitching.
The small man seemed to sense it. He stuck out the tip of his tongue and licked his lips a few times. His pink tender tongue immediately shrank back into his mouth, before it popped out again and licked a few more times.
He finally stopped mumbling about wanting water and fell silent.
But Pei Zheng didn’t sleep a wink the entire night.
The next morning, Qi Changyi still hadn’t woken up. Pei Zheng lifted him onto his back. Who knew how long they had been walking for.
He walked extremely slowly, but every step with filled with determination.
Pei Zheng clutched his wound. The pain kept his mind clear. He lifted his eyes and looked; he couldn’t see any signs of hope in front of him.
The person on his back moved slightly. Pei Zheng walked over to a nearby sand dune and set the small man down.
Qi Changyi hadn’t actually woken up; he felt unwell, so he shifted a few times in discomfort. His lips had already dried out to the point that they were cracked and bloody.
Pei Zheng squeezed his finger, but blood no longer beaded up at the cut. He sliced into another finger, and droplets of scarlet finally surfaced.
He wetted the small man’s mouth and sat down beside him.
If they couldn’t find the others from the convoy soon, the two of them wouldn’t last much longer.
The small man appeared to have already reached his limit. If Pei Zheng collapsed again, they wouldn’t even make it through the night.
Pei Zheng closed his eyes and summoned all of the internal energy in his body, before he stood up again.
Everything in front of him spun a few times. He took a deep breath and calmed his mind, before he bent over and placed the small man onto his back once more.
They continued walking through the desert as the sky gradually dimmed.
For the whole day, not once did Qi Changyi wake up. Pei Zheng carried him on his back in silence, but he would occasionally say a few words to him. Although no one replied, Pei Zheng didn’t give up and continued to talk to him.
“Do you still remember the plum blossoms in the back garden? They should be in bloom by now, it’s unfortunate that no one’s around to admire them.
Don’t you like lotus lanterns? We didn’t find any on this year’s lantern parade, are you unhappy? Later, I ordered people to make a bunch of lotus lanterns and hang them on the little pavilion, it was covered with them.
And the tattoo, didn’t you say those bite marks were ugly? Then I’ll match with you, okay? You should give me a bite too.
And that little black cat. When you’re not here, it’s even more difficult to serve it. No one can touch it, if anyone touches it, it’ll scratch them, but it loves sticking to me all day. When you go back, help me teach it a proper lesson, won’t you?”
The small man continued to sleep quietly; it seemed that he hadn’t heard a thing.
After night fell, the weather grew chilly again.
Pei Zheng stopped. He hugged the small man like he had last night, before he closed his eyes and calmed his heart.
Suddenly, a strange sound echoed in the serene darkness. It resembled rugged panting that was purposely being suppressed.
Pei Zheng’s eyes suddenly flashed open, and he looked to the side.
A pair of green glowing eyes was staring back at him through the darkness.
On the sand dunes no more than ten meters away, a large desert wolf was lying on the ground, staring unblinkingly in their direction.
Pei Zheng’s arms around the warm body in his embrace tightened.
Right now, they absolutely couldn’t make any rash moves. Otherwise, it was likely that they would startle that wolf, and it would attack swiftly.
Pei Zheng’s fingers quietly curled around that dagger before he placed the small man lying over his chest onto the sand beside him, his movements extremely slow and gentle.
Unexpectedly, at this moment, Qi Changyi seemed to show some reaction. His brow creased; it seemed that now that the warmth had withdrawn from his body, he felt a bit cold. He latched onto Pei Zheng’s cuff and wouldn’t let go.
Pei Zheng said softly in his ear, “I have to go for a bit, I’ll be back soon, be good.”
But Qi Changyi still refused to let go.
Pei Zheng shifted his gaze and glanced toward that sand dune not far away. It seemed like that wolf was still lying there and hadn’t moved. It also appeared to be observing the two of them.
“Be good and listen to me. Let go of me for a moment, okay? You’re the most obedient one, aren’t you?”
Under Pei Zheng’s gentle coaxing, the small man finally let go of his cuff.
Pei Zheng placed a soft kiss on his lips.
But when he looked back again, the area near that sand dune was empty.
Pei Zheng’s heart tightened. Wolves were extremely brutal and cruel beasts. They would never release the prey they had locked onto for no reason. How could that wolf simply leave without making a sound?
Suddenly, he whipped the dagger out of its sheath, raising it into the air and slashing fiercely behind his back.
A dark figure brushed past Pei Zheng’s back. The dagger had sliced a long cut into the wolf’s stomach, coating its fur in blood.
It was enraged now; it arched its body and bared its teeth, which were both sharp and long.
Pei Zheng stood up and touched his back, smearing up a handful of warm stickiness.
He couldn’t see anything under the dim moonlight, but the pungent scent of blood penetrated the air. He had been scratched quite deeply on his back.
The wolf howled, and it suddenly charged over.
Pei Zheng concentrated his internal energy into the dagger. The dagger was like an arrow flying from the string, shooting through the air toward that wolf.
The blade and the wolf were entangled with one another. Cold light flashed a few times, before that wolf collapsed into the sand.
The dagger also fell with a clatter; it was covered in the wolf’s blood.
Pei Zheng couldn’t suppress the bloody taste that rose up, and he coughed a few times. The, a line of scarlet flowed out of his mouth, before he roughly wiped it away with the back of his hand.
The small man lying on the sand still had no idea what had happened and was sleeping soundly.
Pei Zheng slowly walked over. The blood seeping out of his back continued to flow onto the sand, dying patched of it crimson.
The desert wolves never lived alone. Since one of them had appeared, that meant that there were probably two or three nearby.
Pei Zheng leaned down and lifted the small man up.
There was a wound on his back, so he couldn’t place the little prince onto it. He could only hold him in his arms.
They had to leave this place as soon as possible. With the scent of blood being so strong, who knew how long it would be before even more wolf packs were attracted to the area.
But Pei Zheng didn’t realize that the blood on his body had smeared onto the small man’s face, which caused the small man to awaken in a daze.
The moment he opened his eyes, he saw Pei Zheng’s firm, sharp chin.
Qi Changyi blinked, before he slowly became a bit more lucid.
One of his hands was drooped behind Pei Zheng, and when he lifted it up, he felt that it was soaked in an unknown substance.
Qi Changyi lifted his hand and stared at it under the moonlight. In the darkness, he couldn’t see anything clearly, but he gradually realized what the substance on his fingers was.
It was blood!
“Blood, you’re bleeding, there’s so much blood…”
Qi Changyi anxiously tried to struggle out of Pei Zheng’s embrace in order to see where all the blood was coming from.
Pei Zheng held him by the waist and didn’t allow him to move, “I’m fine. Don’t move, we have to leave quickly.”
“No, you’re not fine, there’s something wrong,” Qi Changyi knew that if he was bleeding this much, he had definitely sustained a severe injury. His eyes reddened.
“Pei-gege, let me down, let me see your wound, please?”
His tone was gentle and soft, carrying a sense of sincere entreatment.
In the end, Pei Zheng halted in his footsteps and put him down. The small man was extremely weak, but he still held himself up and stood firmly.
Unexpectedly, the moment the small man was placed back onto the ground. Pei Zheng’s stance became wobbly. His body began to sway, before he collapsed toward the bottom of the sand dune.
Sigh, he was doing so well, and now he’s back to licking him.