99 - Treasure
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Baiju spent a long time on the bottom of the sea. Fortunately, he told Xiao Yao and Qu Lang before he went to sea, and the two didn’t rush to find him.
The little Xuanwu called itself Lingzhuo, a very delicate name. The old white dog stared at them for a while, but couldn't tell whether the little guy was a male or a female.
Maybe they had a differentiation period like A’Song the little shark. THe old white dog guessed randomly and didn't pay much attention to this small problem, finding a safe corner for the little guy to hide in, and then entering the wreckage of the palace through the small opening at the dome.
Xuanwu were amphibious and Lingzhuo's eggshell shrouded a large space. It wasn’t entirely water, but there was a lot of seaweed circling a large lantern-like shape, separated by a layer of transparent film and inside was fresh air, rich in oxygen.
Baiju opened the air bubble and got in, and saw that there were still many mussel pearls hidden inside, which looked delicate and shining under the faint blue firelight, like stars on the seabed.
Laughingly, he touched the pearl, Baiju moved his finger, and found a few transparent and translucent objects in the pearl pile, some gems and diamonds, and some glass, probably all things Lingzhuo the “baby” occasionally collected in the sand beside the shell.
Lingzhuo, this little guy, even with his small treasury down here, still dared to let him down and wasn’t afraid that he would take everything away.
Although he had no interest in coveting these...treasures.
After coming out of the air bobble, Baiju didn't waste any more time. After observing the layout of the entire palace, he had a rough idea and after calculating the direction with his fingers, the old white dog went straight to the apse without hesitation. In the northern Xuanwu corpse, its center was naturally also the north fulcrum of the entire building.
The palace wasn’t too big, but not too small. Baiju bypassed many broken pillars, beams and rubble, observed the surrounding situation, and was a little concerned.
A Xuanwu was a huge divine beast, so naturally the size of its hatched cubs was larger than that of the palace, this was also the reason why Lingzhuo's eggshell could cover the whole palace.
Given that this little guy hatched in the Southeast China Sea, Baiju guessed that Lingzhuo's parents knew early on that their child's attributes had changed, so the palace was most likely beaten into eggshells before Lingzhuo hatched. Their intent should be to protect Lingzhuo from worry, after all, according to the survivability of Xuanwu, even if the cub didn’t eat for hundreds of years after hatching, it wouldn’t starve to death. After a few hundred years, the cub would suffer, but at a young age, it could protect itself to some extent, and wouldn’t die immediately if it went out.
The palace could then also serve as a small golden nest, in short, it shouldn’t be as dilapidated as it was now.
It was a pity...seeing Lingzhuo's ignorant appearance, Baiju didn't expect the little guy to know anything, so he could only secretly pray that Xuanwu's power center hadn’t been affected.
Pushing aside a mess of seaweed, Baiju rubbed a cold plaque with his thumb, knowing that he had found something.
The two golden characters of "Xuanming" were branded on the black plaque of unknown material, and the deeply dented marks weren’t particularly smooth. The paint that should have been filled with gold had been mottled and fallen off, and only a few bits and pieces remained to reveal the past scenery of this palace.
The plaque was the face of a mansion and the core of this separate courtyard.
Baiju inspected the centre of the plaque, feeling the steady and abundant power inside, and couldn't help but breathe a sigh of relief.
The source of power of Guihe Island...was this plaque.
The plaque at the edge of the basalt egg divided the entire eggshell into two parts, the sea in front of the plaque, and the universe behind the plaque.
However, it wasn’t a wise move to take someone's plaque when he went back up, it was too special. The gate where the plaque was placed remained intact, so it was likely this plaque was still used for something else. It would be bad if it was rashly destroyed.
Baiju carefully straightened the plaque, then let go of his hand, descended to the bottom of the sea, and stepped into the Xuanming Hall from the doorway below the plaque.
After passing through the seemingly non-existent barrier on the first floor, Baiju found that the small courtyard behind the plaque was actually dry, similar to that on land. A lot of fresh air circulated in the hall, and the small courtyard that he’d entered by the door was very dry. In the courtyard there was even a fruit tree of some variety. The tree was covered with ruby-like fruits, and the soft branches bent down.
It looked like a study.
Baiju walked in a few steps, thinking to himself, if it wasn't for storing something that should not be wet, the Xuanwu wouldn't have to create a dry room... Just as he was thinking this, Baiju brushed the dust off the door inside. It squeaked as he pushed open the old wooden door with a slam, and he saw bookshelves full of books, with dense bamboo scrolls and silk on top, and a few scattered pieces falling to the ground.
It was really treasure.
Baiju raised his eyebrows, he didn't have time to look at all of the bamboo slips and silk, so he moved his fingers and collected them all into his small storage space, he would naturally return them later to little Lingzhuo.
After emptying the house, he dug up the strange fruit tree and added it to his storage with its roots and mud. It took Baiju three or four minutes in total to clear out again and remove the plaque neatly.
The moment the plaque was detached, the well-preserved courtyard rotted into mud.
Baiju stepped on the water, paused slightly, and sighed.
It's a pity it's rare to find such a nice thing.
Xuanming's plaque replaced Lingzhuo as the carrier of strength in the eggshell, protecting everything inside the eggshell. If he’d left there with the plaque and Lingzhuo, the eggshell outside and the remaining palace wreckage inside would also be lost, as rotten and scattered as that small courtyard.
Turning around and swimming in the direction from which he came, Baiju quickly found Lingzhuo who was standing there. He stretched out his hand and rubbed the scales on Lingzhuo's head, Baiju said, "I found it, it's the Xuanming plaque. I have taken out everything that was inside, but unfortunately the courtyard disappeared after the plaque was removed."
The white Xuanwu had a curved neck, and wasn’t very accustomed to the action but still naturally put its head on Baiju’s palm, and hissed, "It's okay, I have seen everything in the small hall, all of which are the manuals of cultivation of the merpeople, its of no use to others. The fruit tree wasn’t bad, but the fruit on it wasn’t edible for me, so it was wasted there."
Baiju was stunned when he heard the words, and before he had time to think about the fruit tree, his mind was filled with the words "manual of the merpeople", "...Is there a code for merpeople in there?"
Lingzhuo blinked, "The merpeople are a big clan in the sea, of course there is a code."
The old white dog twitched his fingers in a bit of a daze, and spread out the plan in his mind to help the merperson A’Song differentiate into a male. He felt that if he had a suitable code at hand, he would save 90% of his effort, and the code here in the Xuanwu’s palace was definitely more reliable than the one in the hands of the River Dragon King.
After calming down, Baiju didn’t hide his intentions, so he asked, "Lingzhuo, there are a group of merpeople living in this sea outside, but there aren’t many. The latest generation of little merpeople is facing differentiation, but it’s possible not any of them will successfully differentiate into males.
"If possible, could you please lend me some of the merpeople's manuals for reference?"
Lingzhuo tilted his head, not quite understanding why a dog on land had to bother to help a fish in the sea, but just slowly paddled the water and swam around Baiju, "Okay, no problem, after all, these manuals were kept in the water and I don’t have much use for them. But the merpeople have to pay.
"I want shark fat."
Most of the water races were misers.
They didn't necessarily regard the manuals as treasures, but they absolutely loved shiny things. Pearls, shells, gemstones, and gold were the hard currency of the water races.
Lingzhuo didn't know whether this dog liked gold and silver treasures, but when it heard the name of the merpeople, a lot of treasures quickly flashed through its mind.
Pearls and night pearls were all trivial matters, and sharks weren’t particularly rare things. What really tempted Lingzhuo was the shark fat in the flesh of the merpeople, or in layman's terms, it was the lamp oil of the ever-bright lamp.
Shark fat could burn on land and in water for thousands of years with only a lump the size of a pigeon egg. If it could get some candles, it wouldn’t be difficult to light a palace for a hundred years. There was a slight hallucinogenic effect, but a resplendent treasure room could show its most wonderful face under the light of burning merperson fat.
But shark fat was rare. The fat on the dead shark must be peeled off as soon as possible, and it could only be used through condensing magic, otherwise it would be useless once it started to corrode. The fat of a living shark was even more rare. The side of the fish tail had to be cut all the way up to the waist, so that a little bit of shark fat could be pulled out from the gap between the flesh and bones.
A juvenile merperson like A’Song, even if they cut open their entire body, could only pluck out two handfuls of shark fat the size of a pigeon's egg.
Lingzhuo's words almost required that a merperson would die.
Baiju licked the tip of his teeth and thought that he was indeed an ancient divine beast. Even if he wasn't a natural martial god, he really wouldn't put the life of the little merperson in his eyes.
The little white Xuanwu, innocent and cruel, a natural superior.
In the end, this matter was brought up by Baiju, and it wasn’t the same as protecting Lingzhuo, where he could find the River Dragon King to take over, this was about the safety of the little merpeople, and Baiju couldn't make a decision by himself. So he took a step back and said, "About the little merperson. I have a certain degree of guarantees about their differentiation. The merpeople's cultivation manuals could be used as a complete guarantee, but it’s not necessary."
"However it's not my decision in the end. I'm afraid I still have to let the merpeople decide."
Lingzhuo nodded, not caring about the coming and going, and said indifferently, "Then I'll ask about it when I see the merpeople."
Sharks were ferocious by nature and obsessive in nature. Once they had a goal, most were willing to pay a great price. An adult merman was powerful, and their willpower was enough to completely dissect himself and take the fat. The main point was if it would help the merperson first, and after the differentiation was completed, let the merman give the reward.
Lingzhuo's little abacus was beating loudly, completely unaware that its strength couldn't beat an adult male merman who had completed their differentiation.
Baiju looked at the little Xuanwu, and always felt that he could see this guy's thoughts from the little snake's face.
He sighed in his heart, it was a good thing for him that Lingzhuo wasn’t familiar with the world, which meant that the old white dog could snatch a bunch of treasures from Lingzhuo without paying a price.
But the old white dog was a conscientious old dog, and he didn't want to bury a real auspicious beast like this. After thinking about it, he thought that he should find the River Dragon King as soon as possible to be a backer for Lingzhuo, otherwise this little Xuanwu would be torn apart and stewed into a pot of eight treasures soup in minutes.
Xuanming's plaque had been obtained and the power of Guihe Island was also obtained. The little Xuanwu had to settle down first, then he could solve the other matters.
Baiju stretched out his hand and patted Lingzhuo's head, "Do you have an artefact for storage? I’ll give you the things in my storage first, then I’ll take the Xuanming plaque with me, and seal it back at the bottom of the sea when it is used up."
Lingzhuo turned around and nodded at his back armour, the lines on it were slightly bright, "Put your palm on my shell, and you can put things in."
Okay, Xuanwu, a mythical beast with its own RV, it seems that it is not uncommon for tortoise shells to be used as storage instruments.
Sorry for the wait, I was meant to upload this chapter last Friday....