Ding Qing was not only Gu Long's student, they were also congenial companions. Ding Qing had once written in his memorial piece called "Me and Gu Long", how his once rebellious, loose character whom everyone cold-shouldered was welcomed with open arms by Gu Long.
He guided Ding Qing onto the right path in life; taught him the ways of life, how to write creatively and even taught him how to conduct oneself.
This close teacher-student relationship was indeed rare in this world. He infected Ding Qing with a great part of himself. They would often go out drinking and discuss martial arts together.
It was only during those times that Ding Qing really understood Gu Long's character. He understood that Gu Long was not a cold-hearted person, and that Gu Long does not favour superficial and material happiness, as it was the intense, deep-hearted happiness that he pursued.
Despite having negativity that people criticised about, he was still a righteous, chivalrous swordsman, who walked the earth with only a sword in hand but his sword has never hurt anyone. Gu Long's friends come from all walks of life. He did not choose friends by their reputation or status.
Be they guest poets or pawnbrokers, they're all equal in Gu Long's eyes. He would often have gatherings at home, with guests such as editors (publishing), authors, directors (motion picture), stars and also chivalrous underworld guests and martial arts experts. They would drink and play word games for entertainment.
He had a few other good friends other than Ding Qing, Jin Yong and Ngai Hong are two friends Gu Long admitted to having. Once when they were having a drink together, Gu Long came up with the first half of a couplet, but he couldn't think of the last half and asked Jin Yong and Ngai Hong to complete it.
Both couldn't either and after much thought Jin Yong said, this couplet is nonsense! They laughed and then made a pact that whoever could complete the couplet would receive a signed book from the other two.
This episode was mentioned in the annotation of one his novels, which included his views on his two friends. He described Jin Yong as a deep thinker of wisdom, and Ngai Hong as a quick-witted genius.
He even humorously added that his characters Ximen Chuixue [Sai-Mun Chui-Suet] and Lu Xiaofeng [Luk Siu-Fung] are well known, but Jin Yong and Ngai Hong are even more popular amongst contemporary readers.
Gu Long and Jin Yong had regular written contacts where they would discuss swordsmanship and martial arts. He describes Jin Yong as a well-versed novelist.