We only needed to load food and necessities onto the boat over the next few days. However, it wasn’t a simple matter. Mommy Vyvyan stepped up to provide us with the most perfect assistance. She helped us prevent food from going stale. Due to having to stop at the port in the South, we needed to have sufficient food supplies. Wine may not spoil easily, but it wasn’t food that; it couldn’t replace our sustenance needs.
Mommy Vyvyan used time magic to seal the food inside the chests. The spell remained active even after opening the chests. The hygiene and taste also wouldn’t be impacted thanks to the time magic.
The last step was to pack luggage with my wives. I could tell Lucia was very skilled at packing, as she swiftly packed her luggage into a bag. Nier should logically be as swift as Lucia, since she was a Valkyrie for so long, but she was at a loss for what to do when she had so much stuff. As a result, I had the head maid help Nier pack. However, I felt that I gave the wrong order. What I meant was for her to help Nier pack, not to move whatever Nier said to move! When I saw the maids struggling to move a pot, I knew it was Nier’s genius idea… She didn’t seem to understand we were going on a vacation. Not moving houses.
Before we left the Imperial Palace of the North, I wanted to go and visit Ling Yue. Ling Yue had been pregnant for a long time. She was scheduled to give birth in just three to four more months. Therefore, she didn’t join us. With that said, I needed to make a trip to her place to see her. I couldn’t let Lucia and Nier be all smiles outside, yet not inform Ling Yue. Thus, I had arrived at the entrance to her estate. Evelyn happened to be at the door. She met me with a smile: “Greetings, Your Majesty. Are you here to see Miss Ling Yue this time?”
“Yeah. I’m here to see her.”
I gave the White Deer King a few pats on his face. He curiously inspected Evelyn. It was the first time he wore such a gentle expression. That made me a little sad. It was the first time he was friendly, yet it wasn’t with me, who went through life and death with him… Evelyn walked up to him and touched his head. She then said, “I am very sorry, Your Majesty, Ling Yue said that she does not wish to see you right now. More precisely, she does not want to see you until she gives birth, so you need not come.”
“But I want to talk to her. Lucia, Nier and I will be going out to the ocean. Ling Yue can’t come with us, since she’s pregnant, but I, at least, need to tell her. I want to see her before I head out. Can’t I?”
Evelyn sighed: “I think that it is best that you do not see her now. She does not wish to see you right now, either. How shall I put it…? She is very aggressive right now. Ling Yue is… similar to a frightening wild beast at the moment… That is precisely why she does not wish to see you nowadays. I believe that Ling Yue will be very pleased to know that you came specifically to keep her company before going out to sea. Therefore, it is better for you to return now.”
In a serious tone, I replied, “Ling Yue is my lover no matter what she has become. I want to see her now. Evelyn, you don’t need to stop me. Ling Yue is never with me, and I haven’t received any letters from her, so I must see her. I don’t care how Ling Yue is now. I must spend a day by her side even if she is very dangerous. If you don’t let me in today, I shall stay here for the entire day.”
Slightly distressed, Evelyn responded, “Your Majesty, please do not make things hard for me. I am not allowing you passage, because it is Ling Yue’s wish. I live with her… If I let you through, how am I to explain myself to her? It would not be good if I did not allow you through, either…”
“Let me through, then, Evelyn. Do you genuinely think Ling Yue doesn’t want to see me?” I smiled and touched the White Deer King.
Evelyn slowly made way and let out a heavy sigh: “Okay, okay, Your Majesty. I do not know anymore. Go on and see her. But remember: do not let her hurt you.”
I nodded, and then left the stables. Ling Yue only had four horses at her place. The White Deer King snorted, and then buried its head in the haystack of the others: “Make do with it for now and eat some of this.”
From behind, Evelyn softly stated, “Ling Yue is at the rear of the house. Be careful, Your Majesty.”
I truly didn’t know how Ling Yue is dangerous. I strode the rear of the estate. As soon as I reached the corner, a heavy breathing sound froze me. I also heard the something thud against the ground. Dust blew along with the rhythm of the smacking. The sounds of the thuds were heavy. It was clear that it was a huge beast. I’d believe you if you told me there was a dinosaur in the backyard…
My tension rose. I walked over and was met with a moist, hot mist. My vision was instantly obstructed by a gust of dirt, and I smelt a rancid stench. I felt a heavy pressure from head to toe. Before I could react, my legs went weak as though something was pressing down on them. Immediately after, I felt an aggressive swing. It was the first time I experienced how it felt to prepare to take flight. I flew through the air and crashed into a wall, which left me feeling as though all of my bones had snapped.
It took me a long time before I crawled to my feet from the ground. The world appeared to be spinning. I looked up to see the dust descending. I slowly raised my head to see what exactly smacked me. As soon as I raised my head, though, I was met with blood-red eyes akin to a lantern. She blew moist, hot air from her black nose. She revealed her fangs with saliva stretched between her bottom and top row.
It took a second before I realised I still had a foot on my back. She pinned my back down using her large paws. She watched me from the ground. She had shed a fair bit of fur, so her ears that I liked were virtually furless, revealing her pink flesh underneath. Her appearance rendered her dispirited.
The huge fox looked into my eyes. While she had her paws pressed down on me, she didn’t cause me any harm, since her thick flesh acted as padding. She looked at me and revealed her fangs before blowing out a breath of air.
“Why did you come?”
She pressed down on me and spoke through her teeth.
“Because I’m about to head out…”
“Then, why come? I told you I don’t want to see you in my current state! I look very ugly right now, and I’m very aggressive. I don’t want to let you see this look of mine.”
I looked into her eyes and sincerely told her, “I don’t mind. You’re still Ling Yue. You’re still the Ling Yue I love even when you’re in this state. You transformed into this state due to your pregnancy, right? You’re in this state for our child. This is another side of you. I love you, so I love everything about you, and so I love you even in your current state! I insist on telling you before I leave.”
After listening to everything I had to say, she slowly moved her front paw off my back and placed it aside, consequently revealing her bulging belly. She narrowed her eyes: “… Come closer.”
I walked over slowly and sat down at her chest. I leaned onto her furry chest, and she lay down with her eyes shut. In a soft voice, she told me, “Since you’ve come, I’ll do something with you.”
“I’m happy as long as you’re by my side.”
“… Up to you, then.”
Ling Yue appeared to not care on the surface. She gently wrapped her front claw around my chest, nevertheless. I pressed my hand onto her front paws. I then quietly chuckled and leaned onto her body. We literally didn’t say anything. We just let out a carefree chuckle every now and then. In saying that, I noticed that her tail cheerfully wagging around behind me despite no longer being smooth…