666 gave a helpless sigh: “Master, don’t be too reckless. Don’t forget your role here. You are just a delicate beauty, who can’t do anything.”
Jian Xingzhi was unwilling but he still took a deep breath and surpassed the feeling of wanting to hack the system to death. He obediently went back to Qin Wanwan and said, “You can catch the spiritual beasts, I will gather the spiritual herbs.”
“Brother Aotian really has the courage.” Bai Suiyou, who also entered the Secret Realm with them, suddenly appeared and said. He smiled at them as he opened his mouth again, “It’s just that the top-level spiritual beasts are not easy to catch even for the people who are over Jindan stage, let alone the people who only formed a Golden Core. Brother Aotian has passed Foundation Establishment, right? How about we work together? Two of us can go gather herbs and the other two can catch spiritual beasts.”
“Fellow Daoist Bai has given a wonderful idea.”
The voice of Bai Suiyou just fell, when they heard a clear and cold voice sounding behind them. Qin Wanwan and Jian Xingzhi turned their heads and saw Su Xiuxue was standing behind them with a scroll similar to theirs.
As soon as she came forward, Nan Feng straightened the antennas on his head and immediately responded, “Greetings to Su-xianzi!”
Su Xiuxue ignored Nan Feng, and put the scroll into the pocket of her sleeve. She walked to Qin Wanwan and suggested, “There are ten places in the Sword Mound where spiritual herbs and beasts are found most. Other people may have already teamed up. How about the few of us team up? We can gather points like this together.”
Jian Xingzhi just opened her mouth to refuse when Qin Wanwan interrupted him and immediately spoke, “No problem, let’s work together!”
Everyone agreed to team up. After successfully forming the team, Su Xiuxue and Qin Wanwan began to develop a plan.
“The top spiritual beasts are too risky for our level,” Su Xiuxue opened ‘The Grass and Beast’ directory and discussed with Qin Wanwan, “Why don’t the five of us work together to round up some high level demon beasts? Spiritual herbs usually grow around the demon beasts. We can pick up the herbs after we defeat the beasts. The five of us need a total of five hundred points, so we need at least fifty demon beasts to capture.”
“Indeed,” Qin Wanwan pretended to be high in knowledge and blowed through her nose*, “Fellow Daoist Su is really smart and extraordinary.”
[T/N: Pretend to be prideful.]
“Then let’s start catching high-ranking demon beasts.”
Su Xiuxue looked up to the rest of the people after discussing with Qin Wanwan. But Qin Wanwan, being the scaredy cat she was, immediately suggested, “How about picking the spiritual herbs first?”
“Why do we have to pick up spiritual herbs first?” Su Xiuxue was puzzled, Qin Wanwan reluctantly smiled and explained, “this is my first time entering the Secret Realm, so I’m a little confused. I think it’s better for us to start from something easy before facing the spiritual beasts. Besides, spiritual herbs are easy to gather, what if everyone picked them before us without leaving anything?”
Everyone agreed to this point, except for Jian Xingzhi. But he couldn’t even protest because of the system. He stared at them with reluctant eyes as they took out the map and started looking for the nearest location of the spiritual herbs nearby.
Qin Wanwan took a look at the map and confirmed the location and the species of spiritual grasses before heading towards it. The spiritual herbs they were going to gather was-
Seeing this familiar name, Qin Wanwan felt a little emotional. Although she was in a different world, the preciousness of the same plants were different. Cactus, which was considered nothing but a useless plant in her former world, was considered as a top-quality spiritual herb in the immortal cultivation world.
Seeing the unfamiliar plant ‘Cactus’, Bai Suiyou was puzzled. He looked at everyone with puzzled eyes and asked, “I don’t know anything about this spiritual herb. What speciality does it have?”
“It’s ordinary herbs,” Qin Wanwan said with confidence, “I’ve seen this thing before, so I’m familiar with it.”
Everyone looked at her in admiration. But Jian Xingzhi who was beside her frowned and immediately spoke out: “But it can be different.”
“It seems that this ‘Cactus’ has a spiritual sense and will try to protect itself.” Bai Suiyou observed the plant carefully and said.
“This is after all a high-ranking spiritual herb.” Su Xiuxue said unsurprisingly.
Qin Wanwan was the one who was least worried. She patted her chest and said, “Don’t worry, trust me. It’s just a cactus, nothing to fear.”
The group walked to the location marked on the map with ease.
It turned out that the place where the cactus was actually a big mountain with a huge cave on it. Some strange and familiar sounds could be heard coming from the cave.
The crowd looked around the cave but found no plant similar to the one they were searching for. Su Xiuxue looked at everyone and suggested, “we can only go into the cave to explore.”
“We all can’t go together, there might be dangers lurking inside.” Bai Suiyou said with a frown. He looked at everyone before declaring, “I’ll go in first.”
Qin Wanwan volunteered bravely, “I’ll do it!”
“Suddenly so brave?”
Jian Xingzhi was incredulous. But Qin Wanwan’s confidence didn’t die down as she declared, “A mere cactus can’t do anything to me.”
“Then let’s leave it to Fellow Daoist Qin,” Bai Suiyou was worried but still supported her decision, “But please be very careful.”
Qin Wanwan nodded.
Jian Xingzhi was uneasy the moment he saw her brimming with confidence. If something happened to her, who knew what the system would do to him. This time, he might be electrified into a fried fish. Before Qin Wanwan could step forward, he volunteered to go with her, “I will go with you.”
Qin Wanwan had no objection. She entered the cave with Jian Xingzhi while feeling braver than she was.
The cave was very dark, without a single ray of light. Qin Wanwan pulled out a luminous pearl to light up the long way. Although she knew she was just dealing with a cactus, she couldn’t help but feel a little nervous in the darkness.
Jian Xingzhi, who was walking beside her with his hand behind his back, looked at the Qin Wanwan who was filled with confidence a moment ago behaving like a fearful animal now. He had a question he wanted to ask a long time ago but couldn’t because of the presence of others. Now that they are alone, he voiced his doubts immediately, “Why do you think the system gave us such an aggressive task this time? What could be the catch?”
Qin Wanwan didn’t reply, because all her attention were around the darkness that seemed to envelope them completely. But Jian Xingzhi wasn’t afraid and continued to speak.
“It wasn’t a good decision that we teamed up. It could bring us danger.”
Qin Wanwan suddenly heard strange sounds coming from the depths of the cave and leaned towards Jian Xingzhi in fear. She grabbed his sleeves subconsciously as her breathing became heavier. Jian Xingzhi looked at her small movements but didn’t push her away. Listening to her gulping in nervousness, the tone of his voice softened without him knowing, “We have to be prepared for any danger. This cactus may not be anything lethal but it has long thorns outside its body. We have to pray for it to not be a threat to us. When the next time comes going forward, don’t volunteer like now. Let me go check first.”
“Okay. Whatever you wish.”
Jian Xingzhi nodded unsurprisingly.
As the two got closer, the sound became more and more obvious. Jian Xingzhi frowned at the strange sound, “What the hell is this sound?”
Qin Wanwan listened carefully for a moment, before speaking with uncertainty, “Mahjong…… mahjong?”
Jian Xingzhi didn’t believe it. But when they went forward, the cave which was dark a moment ago seemed to light up at the front. They went forward a few more steps and saw a three-meter-high wooden door in front of them. Qin Wanwan’s heart started to beat faster, she could not help but lean closer to Jian Xingzhi and began to speak in whisper, trying to borrow some courage from him.
“Someone must be living here. When we go in, don’t show such an unfriendly attitude and be polite to them. If we ask them about the cactus, they might show us the way.”
The words just fell when the sound of mahjong inside stopped. Qin Wanwan who was too nervous continued to talk in a whisper, “When we go in, find a hoe, or shovel. Are you not very good at digging things? Start digging the cactus and uproot them. They grow very long, once we get them, we can share the point.”
After saying that, the two stepped to the door.
Jian Xingzhi seemed to know something, he hooked the corners of his mouth and looked at Qin Wanwan who was shivering from head to toe and clinging to him.
“Knock on the door.” He said, hiding the smile in his voice.
Qin Wanwan took a deep breath, plucked up enough courage before knocking on the door and speaking very politely: “That, hello. We are sorry for disturbing you. We were just passing by ……”
Her words couldn’t finish when the door opened.
The first thing Qin Wanwan saw after the door opened was a pair of green, short, thorny legs that looked like a cactus. She froze and stared at the pair of legs before moving her gaze upward slowly and found a huge, muscular cactus standing in front of her, holding a barbed knobstick* in its hand.
[T/N: Knobstick or Cudgel is a kind of weapon with a round head and long body. It’s mostly seen used by goblins in fantasy movies or games. For more information, click here.]
This humanoid cactus didn’t seem to be alone. When she peeked behind its thorny body, she saw more than a dozen cacti sitting around a mahjong table. Every one of the cacti held a weapon in their hands, when her eyes met with them, they gave a fierce look at Qin Wanwan.
“Just now,” the cactus at the door carried the knobstick to his shoulder. His strong muscles bulged as he moved them freely. He glared fiercely at Qin Wanwan and asked, “Was it you who wanted to uproot us?”
Qin Wanwan gulped, she pretended to be calm and stepped back before bowing her head and apologizing seriously, “I’m, I’m sorry.”
After saying that, she threw away Jian Xingzhi’s hand, turned around and ran at full speed!
As she was running, she didn’t forget to inform the people outside, who were eating snacks and waiting for them: “This cactus is big, run ah! Run!!!”
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