Chapter 21 – Lakewater Problems
Zhao Hai woke up at dusk. The sky was pretty dark at this time and Maylin and others had returned. In order to conserve the supplies, Maylin and others wouldn’t go out at night. Even without the use of magic stones, using torches or oil lamps to light the way would need oil as well. They still had to conserve every bit of resources available for time being.
When Zhao Hai woke up, the slaves had already eaten. Until the time came for them to sleep, they could still roam around in the castle. There was no need to worry that they would escape. Letting them relax a bit would be good.
The slaves were chatting around while sitting in the castle garden. Compared to other places, their lives here were simply like in heaven. They could fill their stomachs everyday, they didn’t need to work too heavily, and they also rested enough everyday. They liked living these days too much.
When they came here, they were still in despair. They may be slaves but they had heard of what Black Wastelands was about all the same. Nothing grew here. Just a barren land that was a mountain away from Rotton Corpse Swamp. This was a land of death. They always thought that they would surely starve to death after coming to this place.
But they never expected that after just 2 days of coming here, they saw it clearly how their master was simply too capable. He could use amazing magic to turn the unplantable soil into a fertile field. There would be no worry of starvation again.
These people were just slaves, and there was no way they had seen people use magic before. In their impressions, there was nothing mages couldn’t do. Magic was always amazing beyond compare.
A better living standard than before, the attitude of treating them like common people, the temptation of leaving the status of slavery, plus incomparably amazing magic, these things put together were enough to make the slaves absolutely loyal to Zhao Hai. Without shape and form, the loyalty turned into a very large gathering power. Now the slaves weren’t working passively, but actively thinking about working more than usual, leaving the status of slavery sooner.
Zhao Hai stood inside the castle as he watched slaves outside quietly. He wanted to go and talk to the slaves, but he knew that now was not the time. These slaves had always been oppressed. When they saw nobles, they would become incredibly nervous. Forget about conversation. They might kneel down again without the courage to raise their heads.
Changing a person’s identity is easy, but changing the thoughts is very hard. It takes a long process to let them change their thoughts little by little. That’s why Zhao Hai didn’t approach the slaves now. The time was not yet here.
There’s a gradual order behind doing anything. Too urgent, and things might go bad. Even if it’s a success, the foundation might not be stable.
Undoubtedly, the improvement of the soil and the hope of leaving the status of slavery had let the lives of the slaves become filled with hope. They would also not be as dead tired as they were when they came here.
Zhao Hai liked to see the slaves performing this way very much. Only people filled with hope are creative and will unleash the greatest extent of their own abilities.
Just then, the door was knocked. Zhao Hai turned around and said, “Come in.”
The door was pushed open. Meg stood in front of the door while looking at Zhao Hai, “Young master, dinner is ready. It’s time to eat.” Blockhead and Rockhead were still standing outside the door, keeping guard.
Zhao Hai nodded. He also knew it was about time to have dinner, but he was a little sorry about things. In these two days, Maylin and others not only had to busy themselves with the slaves, they also had to make him dinner. It was too tiring.
Zhao Hai knew how to cook, but he didn’t have the courage to. Let’s not forget that his current identity was a playboy with a silver spoon in his mouth, and who didn’t wear clothes himself. How would he know how to cook? He could explain having the space as a special ability, since this was a continent with magic and battle auras, and there were a lot of characters with different abilities. His abilities wouldn’t be too eye-catching as a result. But if he suddenly knew how to cook, then it would raise Maylin’s and Meg’s suspicions.
When the few of them arrived in the dining hall, Maylin and others had already put the food on the table. They were still breads and vegetables, plus a meat and a pot of soup.
Actually speaking, a native born Chinese wouldn’t really get used to eating such things, but Zhao Hai couldn’t help it. Even if he wanted to eat Chinese meals, no one knew how to make them. Only he knew, yet he didn’t dare to. What a bind.
After eating a few mouthfuls of food, Zhao Hai spoke, “Granny Maylin, I think we’re getting too far ahead of ourselves today. It’s better that we don’t modify the soil tomorrow.”
Maylin was stunned, and she looked at Zhao Hai in confusion, “What’s wrong, young master? Why do you say that? Is it because you can’t improve the soil anymore? What will we do if that’s the case?”
Zhao Hai understood her meaning and he immediately replied, “I think you misunderstood, granny Maylin. It’s not that I can’t, it’s just we can’t improve the parts near the castle. Just think about it. Our current power is too weak. If we let ‘those fellows’ discover that we can turn this land into plantable ground, will they let us off? We’ll be finished.”
Maylin was also someone who had been through large tides. Today she was simply overcome by the joy of improving the soil, so she didn’t think about this aspect at the time. Now that Zhao Hai reminded her, Maylin immediately knew what he meant. He was very right. If the nobles of the empire discovered that they could improve the soil here, the nobles would surely come after them, and that would be their end.
Even though Buda family had signed an agreement with the empire, it was under the pretext that if Buda family had an heir. If a noble family no longer had an heir, then the family’s titles would be taken back by the empire, and naturally, the fief along with them.
‘The poor man committed no crime, but he was criminalized for having a jade’. That’s the moral.
Maylin put down her knife and fork, then nodded, “You are right, young master. We’re haven’t thought this through and we’re preoccupied with improving our lives. We forgot that those nobles wouldn’t simply let us go. What do you suggest, young master?”
Now, Maylin had increasingly emphasized Zhao Hai’s opinions because of the many things he did in the recent days. Everything was done thoroughly, and with his unique ability, made Maylin and others think of him as their axis without being aware of it.
Zhao Hai also put down his utensils and used the napkin to wipe his mouth lightly, then spoke, “Modifying the soil is still needed, but we can’t do it around the castle. It’s too obvious. Other people can see it if they come here. I want to see if there’s anywhere around here that’s very well hidden and can be improved. It doesn’t have to be too large. Just around a few thousand acres will satisfy all of our needs. It won’t be easily discovered this way.”
Maylin nodded, “You’re very right, young master. I’ll have people search around tomorrow and see if there’s anywhere suitable. Are we going to raise blue-eyed rabbits and scaleless fishes, young master?”
Zhao Hai replied, “Yes, we are. Scaleless fishes are very easy to raise anyway, and those people won’t discover a thing. Blue-eyed rabbits even more so. They will just think that we’re making a vain struggle. They won’t mind it.”
Maylin nodded, “Alright, but the water has some problem. I found out that our moat doesn’t seem to have fishes. Even the lake in the cave doesn’t have them. It doesn’t seem right.”
Zhao Hai was startled. This was also the first time he thought about this problem. He was just a homebody before, not a professional fisherman, so he never paid attention to this. On the other hand, Maylin the water mage had noticed this.
Zhao Hai was somewhat confused. Supposedly, the moat and the lake in the mountain should have a lot of fishes. The water didn’t have any problems. It was analyzed by the space. How could there be no fishes?
Zhao Hai asked Maylin, “Granny Maylin, do you know why it’s like that? I examined the water, and it had no problems. It’s an excellent source of water, totally suitable for fish to live in. But now we’re seeing no fishes. It doesn’t add up does it?”
Maylin frowned for a moment and replied, “Usually if a water doesn’t have fishes, there are only 2 possibilities. One is that there’s poison in the water, making it unsuitable for fishes to survive. The other is that there’s a ferocious water type magic beast in the water which ate all the fishes. If it’s really like what you said, young master, then there’s only the second possibility. That there’s a ferocious water type magic beast.”
Zhao Hai thought deeply and also thought that Maylin had a point. He remembered that when on Earth, he saw a news that a fisherman’s fish pond had a couple of powerful carnivorous fishes slipping into it. They ate all the fishes in the pond in the end. In here, it might be possible that there was that kind of magic beast. If it were really like that, then it’d be a troublesome matter.
Maylin looked at the frowning Zhao Hai and knew what he was thinking. Maylin consoled him as she said, “Actually young master, it’s not that hard to solve. If the water is toxic, it’ll be hard for us to do anything. If there’s a magic beast in the water causing a ruckus, we’ll just have to find it and kill it.”
Zhao Hai made a bitter smile. His thoughts were the exact opposite. If there’s poison in the water, he could easily use space water to detoxify it, but if there was a magic beast in the water, it would really spell trouble.
Maylin looked at how Zhao Hai was unhappy and she smiled, “Don’t worry, young master. If there’s really a magic beast in the water, I will kill it for sure. It won’t affect your grand plan of fish raising.”
Zhao Hai did a double take when he heard that, but then he understood. This wasn’t Earth. It’s not easy for you to go into the sea to kill a deep sea monster on Earth. But this was Ark Continent. There were powerful magics here, and Maylin just happened to be powerful water mage. Perhaps she might really have a way to exterminate the magic beast in the sea.