Chapter 154: Desperate Straits
The new ship’s storehouse was supposed to store supplies; thus, it was the most spacious.
In it, the beastified people were laid out in a row.
The dissection had already finished.
Zhen Jin, Cang Xu, and the others left the ship.
“They didn’t have any bloodcores, why is that?” Zhen Jin had been present and watched the entire dissection. The facts were inconsistent with his expectations, increasing his suspicions.
After returning from the discussion in the ship, Cang Xu couldn’t help but sigh: “It’s hard to imagine……but this beastification is not magic, instead it is their bloodline that has been altered. How fascinating!”
“They originally had human bloodlines, but now, all of them are beastmen-human hybrids. Based on the dissection alone, I cannot find any flaws, it is as if these people were born that way!”
Zhen Jin inquired: “So, what caused the transformations?”
Cang Xu shook his head and sighed: “It is currently unknown. I can only perform a simple dissection, being able to determine the hidden causes is normal because I am not a magician.”
“No, even a magician might not be able to determine the cause either.” Zi Di said heavily, “The island master is too incomprehensible. Maybe our guesses were wrong, perhaps those remodeled magic beasts were not created in an alchemy room or bred in a magician tower, rather they were formed on this island. The entire island is his breeding ground!”
“What did you say?” Zong Ge frowned.
“Don’t you feel these beastified people and those remodeled magic beasts are similar?” Zi Di replied.
“Of course, regardless of whether it is the beastified people or the remodeled magic beasts, all of them seem to be combined from various pieces of different lifeforms.” Said Tripleblade.
Zhen Jin knew Zi Di’s opinion, and said with anxiety: “So the most crucial question is, what caused our comrades to change into their current appearances? Zi Di, what have you discovered?”
Zi Di shook her head: “I have no evidence, only guesses. The island master has constructed a gigantic magic spell on this island or made other arrangements. These arrangements forcibly teleport us, form the magic prohibition environment, and even control the weather. Apart from this, it can also secretly influence and change all lifeforms on the island, I fear this is the cause of our comrades’ beastification.”
“Then why haven’t we transformed?” Someone objected.
“Is it individual strength?”
“It can’t be that, both ordinary and bronze level people were beastified and died.”
“Is it something we ate here?”
“Who hasn’t eaten magic beast meat here, who hasn’t drunk the water here?”
“Were injuries the cause?” Someone guessed.
“All of us are wounded.”
“No, I am referring to serious injuries! Maybe it is getting injured in a relatively special way.”
“That doesn’t add up. I can’t even remember all the times I got injured on this island.:”
Hearing everyone’s comments, Zhen Jin’s heart jumped.
He suddenly recalled the fire-poison bees, he was extremely injured at the time, then afterwards, he was imbued with monkey tail brown bear blood.
Cang Xu’s voice sank: “Perhaps all of us have already changed, we simply haven’t attained the qualitative change that results in beastification. Maybe beastification needs the mind to be stimulated to the max, otherwise when we relied on natural barriers to defend ourselves, one or two people would have transformed.”
Hearing Cang Xu’s conjecture, everyone’s head sank.
Cang Xu continued: “Maybe……these remodeled magic beasts were originally not beasts or magic beasts.”
Hei Juan turned white: “What do you mean?”
“Don’t you feel the blue dog fox wolves are too smart? If they were originally people……” Cang Xu looked down through his lenses, his calmness made the people feel dread.
Horror rapidly spread through everyone's heart.
Cang Xu continued: “Imagine this everyone, were we really the only victims? After we all converged, I did my utmost to question many people about the sudden shipwreck. All of the sailors say that evening, the Hog’s Kiss was in good condition, there were no signs of a shipwreck occurring.”
“The island master didn’t need to personally attack us if they had arrangements near the island. Based on their might, destroying the Hog’s Kiss is an effortless affair.”
“If I may brazenly guess again, the Hog’s Kiss is not a special case, nor was it the first victim. If other ships fell into dire straits, where did those survivors go?”
“These people have beastified to varying degrees, some have slightly changed while others have changed dramatically. Maybe this illustrates that beastification does not occur to a fixed degree, rather it is constantly getting worse. If a complete beastification occurs, what would one transform into?”
“Would they transform into a monkey tail brown bear, a crocodile head hammer tail boa, or a blue dog fox wolf?”
Including Zhen Jin, everyone’s complexion grew very ugly.
Xi Suo was continuously blinking while listening: “For the last hundred years, ship technology has been getting better, and every continent deals with each other frequently. Pirates have grown more numerous and active in shipping lanes. The Hog’s Kiss’ shipping route was relatively dependable. I always thought those missing ships did not disappear from great waves but were seized by pirates.”
“But hold on, if these remodeled magic beasts were originally people, then they are also victims. Why aren’t they assisting us in overthrowing the island master?”
Cang Xu shook his head: “Their temperament changed dramatically. It is like the beastified people who tried to kill us, despite being our comrades a moment ago. Maybe after becoming a magic beast, their hearts know they can no longer come back after being transformed, thus they hate us even more. The island master is also probably involved in this change of temperament.”
Despite surviving on this island for so long, the truth was still shrouded in a heavy fog. Cang Xu’s words seemed to blow a corner of the fog away.
However, the truth was cruel and hideous, it made almost everyone shiver in fear.
Hei Juan grabbed his curled hair and cursed through gritted teeth: “I have had enough of this wretched place! After guessing so much, we still need to repair the ship and leave this place as soon as possible.”
“Yes, we must restore it, if we delay for too long, the magic beast corps will return with new reinforcements.” Lan Zao agreed.
Xi Suo shook his head and bitterly laughed, and with a heavy tone, he declared a fact: “The situation is worse than you think, the ship cannot be repaired.”
“How is that possible?!” Many people glared.
“Sigh……” Xi Suo deeply sighed, “Don’t glare at me, I am just like you. Of course, I want the ship’s situation to be better, but it is in a terrible state. Although I am not the boat craftsman, the ship’s situation is clear. Regardless of who you ask, as long as they have some experience, they will affirm this ship cannot sail.”
“Don’t just look from the inside, sure the structure there hasn’t been damaged too much, and it seems only a little of the hull has been destroyed, but nothing in it works! The keel nearly snapped off! We can barely restore it, so it can struggle in a calm ocean. However, it cannot steer through a stormy sea. During our remaining trip, how likely are stormy seas? In fact, compared to the first half, the latter half will have choppier water. Using this boat to sail will bring about our own destruction!”
The ship sank into a deathly silence.
“Build another ship?” After a long time, someone broke the silence.
“We don’t have the boat craftsman.” Xi Suo deeply sighed.
Hei Juan retorted: “But we have the blueprint, we also have many experienced people that participated in the ship building.”
Xi Suo shook his head incessantly: “Too difficult. Do you think building a ship is easy?”
“The boat craftsman’s blueprint was based on the materials available at the time. Perhaps we could amend the blueprint, but what about wood and iron? We need to gather more materials. The rainforest wood is mostly substandard, we need the forest wood. This ship has many materials but dismantling it will take a lot of labor and time. During the dismantling, the forceful destruction will manage many things.”
“We need iron ore and a new kiln. We only have a quarter of the people left, reconstructing a new ship will take too long, and if the magic beast corps attacks us during that time, what can we do?”
“In other words, it's hopeless?!” Hei Juan scowled.
“Perhaps, all we can do is wait for help.” Speaking of this, Xi Suo couldn’t help but look at Zhen Jin.
His implication was clear, if a big character like Zhen Jin fell into dire straits, the Bai Zhen Clan would definitely save him.
Zhen Jin bitterly laughed and shook his head: “There is no guarantee of a rescue, we have no way of sending out a message for help.”
Hei Juan also shook his head, his face was dark: “It has already been several months, yet after so long, there hasn’t been any support. It is clearly abnormal.”
“I know the Hog’s Kiss’ shipping route, the waters have been explored and there are relatively few pirates around. But despite so many ships, none of them found this island.”
“This island can isolate and hide itself from the outside world!”
Everyone discussed for a time, but no one knew what to do.
It seemed there was only one option, wait for help.
“Rest first, we cannot think throughout the night.” Zhen Jin finally spoke.
The new ship couldn’t sail; however, it still made an optimal camp.
The night sky had many stars.
The giant was sleeping on the deck. The front deckhouse hadn’t been built; thus, the giant didn’t have a suitable room.
Zhen Jin sat in front of the giant, each of the giant’s breaths and chest undulations made his heart laugh bitterly.
After experiencing that fierce battle, Zhen Jin was extremely exhausted. However, the worry, doubt, frustration, helplessness, and other emotions didn’t allow him to sleep peacefully.
The boat craftsman entrusted the giant to him on death’s door, but now it was hard for him to ensure his own survival.
Wait for help?
His heart’s intuition told Zhen Jin; no help was coming.
Raising his head to look at the stars, the young knight’s heart filled with misery.
He painstakingly risked his life to survive, but after so many life and death struggles and surmounting so many failures, he still ended up in this plight.
“We almost succeeded.”
“If we had known earlier, we should have sped up a little, curtailed the time allocated, and finished the ship earlier.
Unfortunately, that's how reality was, does the world have regret?
At least Zhen Jin didn’t.
He had no way of starting over.
Lowering his head, he looked at the giant’s broken legs.
He had to admit, right now, they were like those stump legs, they were trapped on this island with nowhere to go.
They were in desperate straits.