Blossoming flowers resembled an embroidered tapestry. Hundreds of butterflies uniformly danced. It was an intoxicatingly beautiful spring day.
The fishing boat neatly split the water as they passed the flowers that were in full bloom. The water was gleaming underneath the sunlight. The blue sky was empty of clouds. Everything was peaceful and soft as if time had ended.
Tired from rowing the boat, Qing Qiao decided to stop here and rest.
Shao Yi was already sleeping. His long eyelashes were hanging low and he was evenly breathing. Qing Qiao propped up her cheek in her hand and looked into the distance.
"Why did you go with me?" At some point, Lu Zi Zheng had opened his eyes and was looking at her with a judging expression.
Qing Qiao turned her head. His long hair was down, his skin was suffused with silver white radiance, and his peach blossom eyes were enchanting beautiful. His beauty could steal away a person's soul.
Buddha, Jade Emperor, and Holy Mary, I want to file a complaint. Your favoritism is too outrageous. How can a man look like this? This is truly too sinful!
"Because..." Her mouth and tongue felt dry. She couldn't resist licking her lips, "... Although you're rather strange, you can still be counted as user friendly…”
Lu Zi Zheng raised an eyebrow before laughing, "You always like to say words that I don't understand. Never mind. It’s fine."
With his hand as his pillow, he comfortable and joyfully looked up at the sky. He seemed to be really enjoying himself, "Regardless if you believe me or not, I'm very happy that you came onto this boat."
He gently closed his eyes. "I've never felt this happy in my life before."
Peacock, that can't be true, right? You're that happy just because I boarded this boat with you? Were you solitary even as a child?
Qing Qiao didn't know what to say and could only mumble, "... Happy is good. As long as you're happy it's good.”
"Oh right, what do you think of the scenery here?" Lu Zi Zheng suddenly asked a question that didn’t seem to have any reason behind it.
"... Looks good." Qing Qiao looked around. It was beautiful day with a clear sky. There were reed flowers fluttering on the surface of the water. It was good enough to be paradise.
"This kind of life... perhaps, it's not bad." She didn't know what he was thinking about. His gaze seemed to be blurry as he looked at the horizon, but he retracted his gaze a moment later and his eyes once again returned to their usual radiance.
"Unfortunately, this world is too small for me. It can't tolerate me." He stood up at the brow of the boat. His long hair fluttered like inky sleeves, "Rather than depending on the blessings of heaven to live, it would be more freeing to directly compete with heaven!
Qing Qiao looked at his back figure and couldn't help thinking of the words, "Independent of the world."
Lady Li's ending wasn't very good. She furrowed her eyebrows.
(T/N: Independent of the world is a line from a poem that praises Lady Li about her peerless beauty. Lady Li was Emperor Han Wu Di’s most beloved concubine and she died at a young age after giving birth to a son.)
She couldn't help slightly changing her opinion about this peacock. So, even he could have a moment of being heroic.
They proceed along the river until the evening. Qing Qiao was too tired to continue rowing.
"Older brother Si Kong, will we have to continue drifting on the river?" She pushed the row away and sullenly mumbled her complaints, "I'm hungry and tired. I can't row anymore."
"We can go ashore!" Lu Zi Zheng turned around and brightly smiled at her. "The chasing incense that this little young master was carrying was already completely gone four hours ago. We could have gone ashore a long time ago."
"... Why didn't you say this earlier?" Qing Qiao was furious. Her teeth were making a sound as she grinded her teeth.
"Aiya, wasn’t it because you looked like you were enjoying rowing? I couldn't bear to stop you. Who could have known that you would continue rowing for long without making a sound?" Lu Zi Zheng tilted his head as he looked at her and playfully pouted, "You're good at many things, but your mind is too honest and sincere!"
Qing Qiao was speechless. She could only tilt her head back 45 degrees and look up at the sky with a poetic look of sadness.
The three of them finally found a place to dock the boat and went ashore. Lu Zi Zheng was in an exceptionally good mood. He turned his head, waved his hand at them, and said, "Come, older brother will bring to eat delicious food. Young sister Ding Ding, what do you want to eat the most?"
Qing Qiao only felt that her arms ached endlessly. With drooping shoulders, she was walking like a gibbon ape, "... Anything is fine as long as it's close."
Hatefully, Lu Zi Zheng didn't listen to her words. He led them on meandering walk. They didn't enter an inn until the moon was up in the sky.
"Customers, what would you like?" A plump waiter came out to greet them. He had a round panda face. Short, tanned, and ugly. He could be described with these three words.
Originally, Qing Qiao was so tired that she was about to collapse. As soon as she saw the young man, her spirit couldn't help feeling excited. Oh my! Wasn’t this Young Master Cong Cong from “Record of Pugilist World's Revenge”? Hero, why have you transmigrated here?
(T/N: Below is a picture of this character. “Record of Pugilist World's Revenge” is Chinese drama from 1991.)
"Prepare a table of food for us and two rooms." When Lu Zi Zheng smiled at the waiter, the rest of the people in the inn blankly stared at him as if they had been electrocuted.
"... Okay! I'll do this right way!" The waiter returned to his senses and eagerly ran off using his short legs.