Chapter 47 – Astray Demon Lord’s Son (5)


After a brief silence, Zhou Ji asked, “Did someone else give this to you?”

Chen Luosong responded casually, “You could say that.”

After finishing the pastries, it was already getting late. He stood up and went upstairs to rest, carrying two lanterns.

Zhou Ji dutifully walked beside him, supporting him as they went upstairs. His gaze lingered on the other lantern, and he finally suggested, “Why not throw it away?”

The lantern he had given was enough; something from a stranger was just a burden, better to discard it.

Then, his hand supporting the other person was lightly slapped. He looked at the person beside him, initially intending to say something, but then noticed something and his gaze rested on the other person’s long dark hair hanging down completely.

Chen Luosong slightly turned his head, his hair sliding off his shoulder with the movement. He said, “Are you looking for the hair ribbon? I probably lost it today.”

Only then did Zhou Ji withdraw his gaze.

The inn was situated by a bustling street, and the lively sounds continued into the night. It wasn’t until late at night that the noise gradually faded away. Street vendors left, the overly bright lights disappeared, and the place returned to its usual tranquility.

Early the next morning, they needed to leave the capital. Sunlight streamed through the paper windows, and after a simple wash, Zhou Ji naturally went to the next room.

He skillfully helped Chen Luosong get dressed and then tied his hair. With the usual hair ribbon gone, he used another dark blue ribbon he carried with him.

After washing up, the two of them had a simple breakfast at the inn.

During the meal, a group at a nearby table was chatting, saying that the heir of Prince Duan’s manor had fallen into the water yesterday, possibly because he encountered some rumored supernatural being at the pavilion in the middle of the lake.

Chen Luosong slowly took a sip of his porridge.

Not wanting to stay in this place any longer and having no interest in unrelated rumors, they left the inn after breakfast and Zhou Ji led the way back.

They set out early in the morning, and by the time they returned to the town, the morning was already half over. The pharmacy was open when they arrived, and it was a quiet time with few customers. The shop assistants greeted them with smiles, their gazes frequently shifting as if looking for something.

Their curiosity was rewarded when they leaned forward slightly and easily spotted the tall, long-legged person holding two lanterns. The old man helping in the shop stroked his sparse beard and then, realizing something was off, asked, “Why does the young master have two?”

It seemed like some people, despite their youthful appearance, were quite flirtatious.

Not only was the number of lanterns unusual, but so was the expression of the person holding them. Despite holding two lanterns, the person standing at the door had an unusually sour expression, especially upon hearing the words “two lanterns,” which made his eyelids droop heavily.

Facing the stare from the shop assistant, Zhou Ji finally said, “They’re not mine.”

There were only two people who had gone to the capital, so if they weren’t his, they had to belong to the other person.

In an instant, all eyes in the shop turned to the person who had quietly sat down in a corner.

Under the collective gaze, Chen Luosong propped his face with one hand and turned to smile.

After some meticulous questioning, the shop staff finally understood that one of the lanterns was from the young master, and the other was from a stranger.

Instinctively and cooperatively excluding the young master from consideration, everyone else’s focus shifted entirely to this other stranger. When they found out the stranger was a man, they paused briefly before quickly accepting it, saying, “A man is good too. He can do heavy work and take care of people.”

Given Chen Luosong’s condition, needing medicine regularly, a man might indeed be more suitable.

Zhou Ji, listening on the side, felt increasingly stifled in his chest. He placed the things in his hand aside, strode forward, and before anyone could say more, declared, “I can do heavy work too, and I can take care of people.”

He stood in front of the seated person, looking down, and said, “Brother Chen has me by his side; that’s enough.”

Though he often fought, he never laid hands on anyone in the pharmacy. Ignoring the low pressure around Zhou Ji, the others waved their hands dismissively, saying, “The kind of care we’re talking about is different from what you’re offering.”

They wanted to probe further, but Chen Luosong, having rested enough, showed no intention of continuing the conversation. He stood up, leaned on the railing, and headed upstairs.

And with that, the topic was considered closed.

After their return, life resumed as usual with no notable changes, and the matter of the lanterns gradually faded from memory.

It wasn’t until the end of the month that the pharmacy received a letter addressed to Chen Luosong.

The letter, from the pharmacy bureau, informed him that the medicine he had requested had arrived and could be picked up soon.

Due to his numerous minor ailments, he needed a lot of medicine, some of which was hard to obtain and required considerable effort to find. He had entrusted the pharmacy bureau to help, and from the time of the request to now, nearly half a year had passed, and the needed medicines had finally been gathered.

The pickup location was the same as before, still in the capital. Upon hearing that another trip was necessary, Zhou Ji immediately insisted on going along.

However, his request was denied.

Two of the shop assistants recently had family issues and couldn’t come in, just when extra hands were needed, so Zhou Ji had to stay and help manage the pharmacy.

Although he couldn’t accompany Chen Luosong, he received a small, chicken-shaped pastry.

Chen Luosong patted Zhou Ji’s head, smiling, and said, “I’ll be back as soon as possible.”

The cool touch was fleeting. Zhou Ji looked at the hand that had just left his head, noting how it quickly disappeared into the wide sleeve. He instinctively wanted to reach out but realized what he was doing halfway through and pulled his hand back, scratching his neck absentmindedly. He replied with a simple “Okay.”


On the day of the midsummer festival, Qi Ming had fallen into the water. After being pulled out by friends, he developed a fever that left him dazed for two days before it subsided.

When his mind cleared, the first thing he did was find the hair ribbon he had fallen into the water with. It was then that he suddenly realized that besides the person’s name and appearance, he knew almost nothing about them. He had revealed so much about himself.

He didn’t know what the person did, where they lived, and they hadn’t arranged to meet again. In hindsight, his mind seemed to have been bewitched at the time, completely blanking out on questions he should have asked. He just watched the person leave.

After recovering, his friends came to visit, mostly to tease him. He tolerated their teasing this time and asked about the person he saw that day.

None of his friends recognized the person. Some tried to investigate but couldn’t find any such person in the capital. They inquired in nearby towns as well but received no feedback. After several days of fruitless searching, his friends concluded that he was either deceived or had encountered some supernatural being from the rumors. They advised him to give up and not continue to be confused.

Qi Ming thought it wasn’t true. After recovering from his illness, whenever he had time, he would go out to the pavilion in the middle of the river or wander around nearby, hoping to get lucky.

It seemed luck was hard to come by. He went several times intermittently but never encountered the person he wanted to meet. The locals also said they had no recollection of such a person.

His friends, fed up with him wandering the streets whenever he had free time, secretly discussed it among themselves and decided that next time they were free, they would take him to the archery range in the suburbs for a day of fun to distract him.

Fortunately, although he seemed to be in a daze, he still agreed to their invitation as he always had.

On the agreed-upon day, the weather cooperated. After days of rain, they were greeted with a clear day that was neither hot nor humid. Many people went out to relax, vendors appeared, and the streets were bustling.

Several carriages passed by on the road, causing pedestrians to step aside and look up at the high horses.

The curtain of the carriage window was slightly lifted and then dropped. The person inside, who had just touched the curtain, withdrew their hand and said, “I saw disciples of the Immortal Sect again.”

According to past practices, during major festivals like the midsummer festival, the Immortal Sect would send disciples to strengthen security and prevent the demonic cultivators from causing trouble. After the festival, they would leave. But this time, many days had passed since the midsummer festival ended, yet these disciples were still patrolling the streets, the reason unknown.

The person sitting beside them was carefully wiping the arm of a bow. Hearing the comment, they looked up slightly and said, “My father mentioned to me a while ago that someone sensed demonic energy here, suggesting that the demonic cultivators might have infiltrated. So these disciples stayed behind and will probably leave once they trace the source of the demonic energy.”

As he spoke, he didn’t seem particularly afraid. Although they couldn’t handle the demonic sect themselves, they had specially trained guards around them. Besides, if the demonic sect really wanted to strike, they wouldn’t be the first targets.

“What do you think, Qi Ming… Qi Ming?”

Both of them looked at the person sitting across from them and couldn’t help but twitch their mouths.

The person across from them, dressed in narrow-sleeved archery attire, was leaning towards the window, lifting the curtain to look outside. It was clear what he was doing.

Even now, he was still trying to find someone in the crowd. It was hard to say if he was focused or distracted.

Hearing his name called, Qi Ming turned his head and said, “You go on, I’m listening.”

After speaking, he turned his head back and continued scanning the busy street.

The one who first brought up the topic made a simple comment: “This person is indeed bewitched.”

The person next to him, who was now wiping the tip of the bow after cleaning its arm, nodded in agreement and said, “We almost wore out the roster looking for that person and still couldn’t find him. How could he be on this kind of street…”


As they were talking, the person opposite suddenly called out. Both of them were startled and looked up to see that Qi Ming, who had been sitting relatively quietly, was now leaning out, ready to step out of the carriage door, wearing a smile they had never seen before.

Dressed in splendid clothes, Qi Ming jumped down from the carriage, landing right in front of the pharmacy. Passersby and people in the store looked over, their eyes filled with surprise and doubt.

The person inside the shop, holding a teacup, turned his head. Long hair slid over his shoulder, and his light-colored eyes, still carrying a trace of a smile, looked over with the same clarity as when they first met.

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