Chapter 196: Because of You, I Began to Believe in Fairy Tales Again
The potion was made, but its effects still needed to be tested.
After Lan Zao drank the potion, his entire face turned blue, his hands grabbed at his throat, opened his mouth, and gagged with wide open eyes.
But what made him suffer was that he couldn’t vomit anything out.
“Older brother!” Huang Zao shouted with alarm.
The others were also bewildered.
“It's not serious, this is a normal reaction.” Zi Di said as she consoled everyone.
Not long after, the body double also took the potion.
The body double spat out a big mouthful of blood with ice cubes the size of thumbs mixed into it. These ice cubes issued a strong coldness and had a strange blue color.
In a split second, the youngster’s complexion suddenly changed.
Zi Di’s heart jumped, deeply troubled, she promptly walked over: “Is there something wrong?”
“It's nothing.” The body double shook his head.
“He seems to be hiding something from me, don’t tell me my potion causes problems for beastified people?” Zi Di’s heart was worried.
She didn’t consider the body double’s beastified constitution, for crucially, she was incapable of estimating War Merchant’s beastification transformation methods.
War Merchant was an apex alchemist, while Zi Di was only a minor iron level magician, that’s all.
Apart from this, Zi Di also had an additional worry.
That was the grass.
This discovery was a byproduct of the potion manufacturing process.
As it turns out, the goats were also victims, the truth wealth lay with the grass growing here.
“When I developed this potion, I used much of this grass. This fact is difficult to hide, maybe I can dupe the others, however Cang Xu will definitely guess at this fact to some extent. I fear that the old scholar has already learned the truth. Oh dear……what should I do?”
The sensation felt after taking the potion made the body double overly suspicious, he became even more suspicious of his beastification capabilities. He believed it came from a transformation potion Zi Di inadvertently mixed when she saved him.
That same night, the body double obtained another of Zhen Jin’s memories while in a dream.
In the early morning, he excitedly found Zi Di and quietly informed her: “Good news, I recovered some more memories. I feel my battle strength has increased as a result.”
Zi Di’s face immediately beamed with a smile: “My Lord, your situation is getting better.”
“You’re right, I will test myself now. I will take my leave first.” The body double left animatedly.
Seeing him lift the tent flap, Zi Di’s smile quickly vanished.
The body double’s actions indicated he didn’t doubt Zi Di.
However, this trust, besides making the girl relax, increased many complex emotions.
“That memory is fake, I am deceiving him……”
“Before seeing the truth, he trusts me, does his best to protect me, and accompanies me……”
“If he discovers the truth in the future, how should I face him?”
“Zi Di, what are you thinking?”
“He is only a body double! He is only a tool. In the past, perhaps your life and his were bound together, but now that War Merchant is dead, the contract no longer exists.”
“If he discovers this secret in the future, then he will be executed!”
“Remember Zi Di, you must be rational, you must put the general situation above all else!”
Zi Di reflected on her situation and had a clear plan.
In her eyes, the best outcome was her obtaining War Merchant’s inheritance. But her attempts and influencing failed, this entire group wholeheartedly wanted to escape Mystifying Monster Island.
With just herself, it was impossible to find the control hub or infiltrate the alchemy factory.
Present failures did not represent future opportunities. If that was impossible, after leaving Mystifying Monster Island, Zi Di still planned to accompany Zhen Jin to the White Sands City lordship competition.
“Zhen Jin is still in the dark, he doesn’t know what happened to me.”
“When the shipwreck happened, Mystifying Monster Island’s environmental influence wasn’t around, thus magic and battle qi could still be used.”
“Zhen Jin probably survived and is probably with the larger group.”
“If he unfortunately died, I will be in big trouble!”
Beforehand, Zi Di and Zhen Jin signed an engagement, this magic contract restricted both sides, and neither could conspire against the other. But this contract was tampered with by War Merchant, switching it to a life bound contract between Zi Di and the body double. After War Merchant died, the contract also lost its effectiveness.
If Zhen Jin died in the shipwreck while Zi Di still lived, it would inevitably result in the Bai Zhen Clan suspecting and investigating her, and even settling accounts with her.
Even if the body double could deceive them for some time, he couldn’t do it for long.
Before, Zi Di had faith because War Merchant would have helped the body double’s disguise behind the scenes. Now that the main force was dead, the body double’s beastified person identity was unlikely to deceive imperial investigators.
Last night, Zi Di faced desperate straits in her tent, during it, the body double guarding outside comforted and boosted her.
But at dawn, after the potion was created, Zi Di had calmed down.
Like her father who established the business marvel that was the Wisteria Merchant Alliance, the merchant blood that flowed through Zi Di, regardless of talent or influence, was still an expert at calculating and choosing benefits
At some moment last night, she really was moved by the body double’s protection.
But that emotion couldn’t supersede reality.
The new memory allowed the body double to master long range attacks. The body double also tried to recruit Cang Xu and didn’t hesitate to illuminate him about the grass’ secret.
In the end, he still failed.
But the body double didn’t leave empty-handed.
For his freedom, Cang Xu wanted to contribute his Explosive Blazing Horse Cavalry training method to the body double.
Cang Xu then advised the body double and warned him of the exploration team’s food shortage.
In order to solve this difficult problem, after the body double and Cang Xu discussed, the youngster came to Zi Di’s tent alone.
Zi Di had been resting, in order to mix potion for the entire exploration team, she had endured a large work volume and an inconvenient creation process, leading to her becoming exhausted.
The body double paced outside of the tent, although the problem was serious, the body double didn’t want to rashly disturb Zi Di.
“I need to let her properly rest.”
As the body double was thinking this, in the dusky tent, the sleeping Zi Di’s nose softly twitched as she smelled the body double’s scent, then she slowly opened her eyes.
“Is it you my Lord?” Zi Di’s voice came from the tent.
The body double was just about to leave, but upon hearing the voice he immediately turned around: “It's me, there is something I need to discuss with you.”
The body double informed Zi Di that his recruitment of Cang Xu failed, causing Zi Di to believe ever more that Cang Xu was remarkable.
Regarding the body double’s proposal to use the potion to detoxify the goat meat into food. Zi Di candidly said she couldn’t accomplish this.
Her success was mostly due to a lucky composition. Most of the critical medicinal ingredients had already been consumed and were unable to be replenished.
Zi Di was forced to console the body double, maybe they could find some supplies at a camp she established previously.
The body double’s despair was obvious, and Zi Di heart was frustrated.
It was as if reality was reminding her, without solving the food shortage, the exploration team was still in danger and helpless, how could she speak of looking for the control hub?
Before leaving, the body double’s face flashed with hesitation, however in the end, he still inquired: “Zi Di, do you still have the monkey tail blood from earlier?”
Zi Di gave the bottles filled with bear blood to the body double.
“It seems the body double has always suspected his beastification was because of a body transformation potion. But as a matter of fact, this was an ability he received after War Merchant transformed him.”
“I really wish he could tell me this secret and seek my aid!”
If the body double did this, then it represented his great trust in Zi Di.
Scouts found a flying squirrel community, and after careful deliberation, the body double decided to train archers and eliminate the flying squirrel group, thereby solving the food shortage.
“The entire exploration team is in a life or death moment!”
“Victory brings hope. The body double’s prestige will increase greatly, the group can continue to survive, and we might be able to find the control hub in the future.”
Zi Di skipped sleep and meals as she shut herself in her tent.
After several days, she finally developed some potions.
These potions could deceive the flying squirrels’ sense of smell.
She gave them to the body double, and in his pleasant surprise, he excitedly hugged Zi Di.
Zi Di’s body went rigid, a male had never hugged her so tightly before.
Her rational mind seemed to melt in the body double’s dense and charming aura.
Then, she heard the body double praise: “Zi Di, my fiancé, you can always give me pleasant surprises. Many thanks for your support!”
It wasn’t until the body double left, did Zi Di’s train of thought gradually recover.
“You also support me continuously ……” Her heart responded as she saw the body double’s departing back.
Waiting until she was the only person in the tent, Zi Di calmed down again.
She reached out and slapped her still burning hot cheek, then she warned herself again: “Wake up! Zi Di. He is only a body double.”
“He hid his beastification secret from you.”
“If he learns the truth in the future, how will he treat you?”
The body double’s following display of steadiness and perseverance made Zi Di increase her respect for him again.
“Even when undoubtedly touching air on the edge of a precipice, he still keeps his composure. That is impossible for me!”
Although the flying squirrel hunt was thrilling and had many twists and turns, the people ultimately seized an overwhelming victory.
The body double’s outstanding performance, especially when he transformed his arms to kill the iron level flying squirrel leader with a throwing dagger, awed the people.
Zi Di secretly admired War Merchant’s level of mastery and guessed in her heart: “Don’t tell me the body double can actively control his body, and can control where his beast transformations are?”
“Previously, I found it somewhat odd that the body double’s beastification abilities and his infiltration mission conflicted with each other.”
“But now, it seems this partial beastification is easy to conceal. Especially when combined with battle qi, it is difficult for others to sense it.”
This triumph enormously increased the body double’s prestige.
After the battle, many people publicly expressed that they wanted to follow the youngster.
Because of the second beastification, the body double’s doubts increased. That same evening, he called Zi Di and indirectly asked about the situation.
“What happened? Does your Lordship still feel a hidden danger anywhere? Zi Di inquired.
She really wished the body double could expose the beastification secret.
But to her disappointment, the body double only replied: “It's nothing, I only want to understand. It's getting late and we will be departing tomorrow. You should go back and rest well.”
The teleportation caught everyone off guard.
The sandstorm was like a reaper’s scythe that wanted to harvest the entire exploration team’s lives.
In that desperate moment, Zi Di immediately used a potion to melt a hole in the sand and quickly built a cellar to stay in.
“Body double, where are you?”
Zi Di sprinkled another potion to ignite a white flame in the dark sandstorm.
The white fire was a sign that assembled many people together.
However, to Zi Di’s disappointment, she never saw the body double.
“Get in now, Lord Zhen Jin will surely come!”
“Miss Zi Di, you are in too much danger, hide in the cellar now.”
Under their advice and Zi Di’s faltering persistence, she could only shrink back for the time being.
A good thing didn’t last forever, and the unstable temporary cave quickly caved in.
Luckily Zi Di still had abundant potions, beginning to pour them once again, she attempted to enlarge the space.
Suddenly, the ground below everyone caved in, dropping them into its depths.
“There is a natural tunnel here?”
Everyone deeply breathed, they had been starved for oxygen,
But Cang Xu’s complexion was heavy: “This tunnel isn’t natural, rather it's a passage that beasts walk through. Since there is air, the passage should lead to the surface.
There were distinct beast traces everywhere in the tunnel.
After resting for a short time, the group began to prudently explore.
They found green skinned lizards.
Regarding these beasts, Cang Xu and the others were familiar with them——they had encountered them when they were trapped in the desert.
After killing these lizards, everyone accidently came to a unique cave.
After identifying it, everyone found this was the lizard group’s nursery, inside there were many lizard eggs. Apart from this, there were a few lizard mothers guarding and incubating the eggs.
A fierce battle unfolded, during it, Zi Di constantly used her potions and helped her comrades prevail in the end.
The annihilated all of the lizard mothers, however the situation became more dangerous, because the fight drew in a steady flow of powerful lizards.
These lizards constantly attacked the nursery, and the humans could only use the nursery’s narrow cave mouth to barely maintain their defense.
Zi Di didn’t have enough potions to melt a passage out.
Through dissection, Cang Xu speculated this lizard group was very large.
Without a solution, they could only persevere for a time before dying in the end.
Zi Di was unresigned.
Before this, the body double’s authority was clearly consolidated when the group eliminated the flying squirrel group and solved their food crisis. After one night, they still fell into desperate straits.
She tried to boost morale but was ineffective.
Then struck by a brainwave, she sprinkled the pink compound on the lizards: “When these wounded lizards retreat, as long as they return to the surface, others can see it and we might receive support!”
This method finally gave everyone a bit of hope and stabilized morale.
“Zi Di, you can’t give up yet! I still have a chance.”
Zi Di inwardly encouraged herself while actively searching for another way out.
After an attempt, she discovered the lizard eggs were good medicinal ingredients. She used the ingredients to mix an acidic fog that harmed many lizards.
Cang Xu speculated these lizards went out in the early morning to forage for food.
Zi Di used these potions to help everyone break out, after a thrilling escape, they returned to the surface.
However, they didn’t anticipate the foraging lizard group to suffer the scorpion group’s beating and return to their nest earlier than expected.
Zi Di and the others were chased and surrounded, forcing them to withdraw to the peak of a sand dune.
Relying on the acid fog potion, everyone could barely support themselves.
The lizards encircled them and waited for Zi Di’s potions to run dry.
Everyone gave up all hope, and Zi Di was the same.
But Bai Ya said: Lord Zhen Jin will surely appear in time to save us and lead us away. Because he is a templar knight.
Zi Di’s heart bitterly laughed, since the sandstorm, she especially longed for the body double.
Currently, she couldn’t smell the body double’s scent. It was possible the body double died in the sandstorm.
Hearing Bai Ya’s naive notion, she couldn’t help but recall her childhood fairy tales.
The fairy tale of the princess, the demon, and the knight.
The demon captured the princess and coerced her into marrying it.
But the little princess shook her head: “I won’t marry you; you are a bad demon. My father and mother will dispatch a knight to rescue me.”
Zi Di no longer believed in such fairy tales.
However cruel reality also caused her to secretly admire the little princess’ courage and resolve. Although she was trapped in a predicament, she maintained hope——surely a knight would save her!
“In the end, fairy tales are only fairy tales.”
“I fear this is where my corpse will be buried.”
“Up until now, I still don’t know where the control hub is.”
“Repulsive, father’s enemies and the Wisteria Merchant Alliance……”
However, at that moment, Zi Di heard someone shout: “Look quickly everyone, is that a person?”
This immediately attracted the attention of everyone.
“It’s a person.”
“Who is it?”
“I can’t see them clearly.”
“He is running towards us!”
Zi Di blankly stared, then she too began to gaze out.
Cang Xu narrowed his eyes: There are green skin lizards all around our sand dune, yet this person is still charging in, they are clearly skilled and daring.”
“It’s Lord Zhen Jin, it must be him.” Bai Ya yelled excitedly.
As the person got closer, everyone finally recognized the man’s face.
At once, cheers erupted.
“It’s his Lordship, it really is Lord Zhen Jin!”
For a split second, Zi Di’s heart throbbed, then that strong emotion forced its way into her eyes and transformed into tears.
Her mother’s words echoed: “My little princess, be at ease, you will have a knight that will protect you for your entire life.”
“My knight?” The child Zi Di’s eyes flashed, “Where is he?”
“Eh……your mother doesn’t know. But I can be certain he will appear in your life.”