Peach Fairy Arc #5
Like you, like you, like you…
Su Tang’s head was filled with these words, his heart racing as his face became more and more red. He felt as if Qian Zhu had fed him a sweet candy — his whole mouth was sweet, and after he swallowed it into his tummy, his heart was sweet as well. Even the air he exhaled was sweet.
He didn’t know what was happening to him, but this feeling was far too strange. He wanted to escape, yet couldn’t move a single step because of Qian Zhu’s gaze. It was like a spiderweb had entangled him.
“What nonsense are you saying?” Su Tang pushed Qian Zhu, but the other didn’t budge. Instead, he himself lost his balance and took a step back.
Qian Zhu, upon seeing him like that, was unable to repress a smile. He only felt the other was silly and adorable, as if every move that Su Tang made touched his heart.
He used his hand to pull Su Tang and smiled at him. Su Tang felt ashamed and remembered how Qian Zhu admitted his feelings for him, and yet now Qian Zhu was making fun of him. Su Tang felt wronged and mad. He gave the other an angry glare and complained, “You’re a big liar. You said you liked me, but in the end, you made fun of me.”
Qian Zhu was shocked and hurriedly said, “I didn’t laugh at you.”
“You laughed, I saw it.” Su Tang finished, staring at the other in a way that seemed to say, ‘Look at how big my eyes are, I can’t possibly have seen wrong.’
“I did laugh, but I laughed because I find you cute.” Qian Zhu said, before he recalled the previous event and added, “Especially cute.”
Su Tang lost all his confidence and lowered his head as if he didn’t hear what the other had said. Still, his heart was a little messy, and his ahoge1Ahoge, a Japanese slang, is an exaggerated cowlick (click here to see). According to Wiki, it adds cuteness to a character and is usually indicative of character traits like airheadedness. swayed around like a puppy’s tail.
The atmosphere once again turned silent; Qian Zhu stared at Su Tang while Su Tang stared at the ground. The Immortal Realm surrounding them was covered in mist, and a few Immortal Birds flew over from time to time, scattering the sunlight. It was like their feelings, so complicated and hazy.
Su Tang pondered for a moment and wanted to find a question to change the topic, however it was as if a greedy little chick had eaten all up the thoughts in his head. There was nothing left. It was empty, and he couldn’t think of anything.
“Still not going?” He asked.
“Not going.” Qian Zhu replied.
Su Tang was stunned. He hadn’t expected Qian Zhu’s reply at all. The words he’d previously thought of couldn’t be said, and so he turned into a little mute.
Qian Zhu seemed to be a very persistent person; as long as he wanted something, no matter what methods needed to be used, he would spare no effort to get it. Now he persisted with the topic and naturally asked Su Tang, “I like you very much, do you like me?”
Su Tang didn’t answer him. His whole face was red, and he wanted to stall for time, so he said, “Do you understand what like is?”
“Do you?” Qian Zhu retorted.
“Of course I know.” Su Tang replied.
“Since that’s the case, do you like me?” Qian Zhu once again fired back with a question.
“I’m a boy ah.” Su Tang was about to cry in a panic.
Qian Zhu nodded his head, calmly saying, “I know.”
“I…” Su Tang couldn’t speak anymore. He looked pathetically at Qian Zhu, his head spinning around. The other’s tempo was far too quick, and he also loved to play straight balls; if Su Tang couldn’t think through this question, the next question would leave him stupid.
His current self was a pitiful little bunny while Qian Zhu was a cruel big wolf. Qian Zhu blocked the entrance of the bunny’s cave and cornered said bunny. The bunny was nervous and afraid, and its ears were even folded down, but the big wolf just wouldn’t give up.
“I like you, but not that kind of like.” Su Tang replied unhappily, before he added on, “I see you as an older brother. The like I have is the like little brothers have towards their older brothers.”
Qian Zhu got the answer he wanted to hear. The corners of his mouth lifted upwards, and he stretched out his hand to rub Su Tang’s head, saying, “Me too. I want to be your big brother; I’ll always protect you from now onwards.”
Su Tang heaved a sigh of relief. He remembered the direction his brain had previously moved in and couldn’t help feeling ashamed of himself. But in the blink of an eye, his previous emotions were replaced with joy. Qian Zhu said he liked him, wanted to be his big brother, and even said he wanted to protect Su Tang forever. Su Tang… he really liked it.
As if lit by a match, his heart was filled with warmth. Su Tang lifted his head, his face red, and locked gazes with Qian Zhu before revealing a smile.
Qian Zhu pinched his cheeks and then carried Su Tang, saying, “Let’s go. Big brother will carry you home.”
The world seemed to have no boundaries. Everywhere they passed had different scenery, with each palace looking magnificent; some were reflected on the surface of the lakes, and that scene looked like it was straight out of an exquisite painting.
Su Tang took it all in with big eyes, not tired of doing so no matter how much he looked around. Only when Qian Zhu’s footsteps stopped did he realize they were out the front of his palace.
Yu Qing Palace’s front gate was empty. It seemed like no one lived there, and the courtyard grew an unknown type of tree that was extremely tall and wilful in its growth, as if it wanted to stretch into the skies. All its leaves were lush, and there were small, light yellow flowers blooming on its branches. Stars seemed to be situated within the flowers, shining from within. The fragrance of the flowers was everywhere, and when the wind blew, some of the yellow flowers were scattered on the ground.
On the other side of the courtyard was a winding corridor. Below that corridor was a clear mist and blue waters that reflect the carvings on the red bannisters2I think the author is referring to this., which were covered in a layer of yellow flowers. When the flowers fell, they would make graceful circles before landing on the ground.
“It’s so pretty.” Su Tang couldn’t help saying as he stretched out his two hands – the action like someone catching snowflakes in winter – to seize a few yellow flowers. With his hands cupped together, he closed his eyes. When he reopened his eyes, the flowers in his hands turned into two butterflies with fluttering wings. (Magic!)
“A gift for you.” Su Tang said to Qian Zhu.
One butterfly landed on Qian Zhu’s fingertip and flew around for a short moment. When Su Tang’s mana inside it disappeared, the butterfly finally faded into yellow lights and vanished without a trace.
Su Tang’s face was red while Qian Zhu was very happy. He waved his hand and two butterflies that looked exactly like Su Tang’s flew around in the air.
“They won’t disappear anymore.” He said, as if he was making a promise.
Su Tang nodded his head and said his thanks before Qian Zhu carried him past the corridor and into the hall.
Cold and lonely. When Su Tang saw this, these were the words that popped up in his mind.
The hall was glittering and translucent, not a speck of dirt anywhere, yet it appeared lifeless. It obviously didn’t lack anything, but at the same time, it felt like the hall lacked everything.
“Have you always been living here?” Su Tang asked.
“En.” Qian Zhu nodded his head.
“No one came to accompany you?” Su Tang asked again, his heart sour.
“Correct.” Qian Zhu nodded his head, just like he did before.
Su Tang suddenly realised he seemed to have poked the other’s wound and instantly regretted it. Qian Zhu didn’t seem to care, only asking, “Cold?”
“A little.” Su Tang replied.
“Come, I’ll bring you somewhere.” Qian Zhu held Su Tang’s hand and led him towards the inner hall.
Although the palace was big, its layout wasn’t complicated. Su Tang looked around as they walked and was brought to a hot spring.
Qian Zhu took out two sets of clean clothes, placed them at the shore, and then said, “The water here is warm.”
Su Tang nodded and glanced at Qian Zhu before looking back at the hot spring. He hesitated, “This…”
“En?” Qian Zhu indicated for him to speak.
“Are we bathing together?” Su Tang finally mumbled his question.
“Yes.” Qian Zhu paused. He then spoke again, “Put your clothes by the shore.”
“Okay…” Su Tang reluctantly nodded his head. He slowly took a few steps back and undid the knot at his lapel. Then he saw Qian Zhu naturally take off his robe, revealing his thin inner clothes and neck. Su Tang’s face quickly reddened once more.
He wanted to turn away but realised Qian Zhu was already staring at him. His face was puzzled, and he moved closer to ask, “Uncomfortable?”
“No ah.” Su Tang held the string at his lapel tightly, not daring to look at the other’s body.
“Then why is your face so red?” Qian Zhu inspected him for a while, thinking hard before he asked, “Is it that you don’t know how to take off your clothes?”
“I can, who said I can’t?” Su Tang was momentarily shameless, wanting to prove himself. He pulled at the collar of his clothes. As a result of using too much strength and grabbing the wrong area out of nervousness, there was a tearing sound. He’d ripped open the collar.
Two people stared at each other before Qian Zhu sighed and said, “If you can’t, just say you can’t. I won’t make fun of you.”
“I didn’t…” Su Tang felt he had some bitterness he couldn’t mention and still wanted to perform a bit. Qian Zhu hurriedly grabbed his hand and said, “Don’t rip it anymore. I’ll take it off for you.”
“I really…” Su Tang couldn’t continue because Qian Zhu had already helped him open his collar.
Qian Zhu was much taller than him, so for the sake of convenience, he was half-kneeling on the ground. He did everything seriously, and taking Su Tang’s clothes off was the same. His ink-coloured eyes were as calm as water and without any distracting thoughts; this helped to calm Su Tang.
Just as Qian Zhu was about to take off Su Tang’s last article of clothing, Su Tang rejected the other’s goodwill. He turned around and took off the last of his clothes before rushing to jump into the hot spring.
The water was warm, and Su Tang submerged his whole body, swimming underwater. His mind was constantly replaying the previous events. He thought for a minute and kept feeling that he’d overreacted. He’d let down Qian Zhu’s kindness and so he decided to thank Qian Zhu.
He abruptly stood up in the water. Just as he was about to open his mouth, he realised Qian Zhu was staring at him with amusement in his eyes.
Both were shocked. Qian Zhu hurriedly turned his head but was too late to avoid getting soaked with water.
Dreamy here~ Thank you for reading, lovies! <3 See you next Fri!
p.s if you see any mistakes, please remember to @LP on the dummyt discord in the typos and errors channel!