Chapter 215: Illness
Song He didn’t know much about the Mind Corridor. After Jiang Baimian asked a few more questions, she led Shang Jianyao and the others back to the hotel camp. They entered their respective rooms and slept.
Jiang Baimian woke up in a reverie. She felt her forehead burning, and her body was sore. She felt weak and uncomfortable.
I’ve fallen ill? She propped herself up and placed the pillow behind her back.
When she reached out to touch her forehead, she swept her gaze and saw Shang Jianyao sitting by the other bed. Using the sky’s glow outside the window, he held a needle and thread and seriously sewed up the coat with multiple bullet holes.
This was a necessary skill every Pangu Biology employee who had carried out missions in the Ashlands for a long time was equipped with.
Back when she first formed the Old Task Force, Jiang Baimian had planned on having a special lesson on this matter. However, she realized that Shang Jianyao was more skilled than her.
Upon recalling that Shang Jianyao had lived alone after the age of 15, she came to a realization and stopped mentioning such matters.
“What time is it?” Jiang Baimian retracted her hand from her forehead and confirmed that she was really sick. She didn’t even have the energy to look at her watch.
Ever since she survived the critical period stemming from genetic modification, apart from the inflammation caused by her injuries, it had been ages since she had fallen ill.
Was it because my heart was overloaded last night and also because of the electric shock? I didn’t rest in time after that, resulting in my illness? As Jiang Baimian thought about it, Shang Jianyao put down the needle, thread, and clothes and flipped his wrist to look at his watch.
“It’s almost one.”
“It’s already so late?” Jiang Baimian was slightly surprised. She didn’t feel hungry at all.
“You seem to be sick,” Shang Jianyao pointed out.
“How did you notice?” Jiang Baimian subconsciously asked.
Shang Jianyao stood up, took out the small mirror he carried with him to ‘mislead’ himself, and handed it to Jiang Baimian.
“Your cheeks are very red, and your lips are dry. You even spoke in your dreams when you were sleeping. You seemed to be calling ‘Mommy’ and ‘Daddy’…” Shang Jianyao described every detail that supported his inference.
“Stop!” A force surged out of Jiang Baimian’s body and forcefully stopped Shang Jianyao from continuing.
She felt that her image as a hardened female warrior had been seriously damaged.
After saying that, she felt weak, and her mouth was dry. She stretched her hand toward the bedside table, which was filled with junk, and tried to pick up her waterskin.
Before she could complete the series of actions, Shang Jianyao had already walked over quickly. He picked up the waterskin, unscrewed the cap, and brought it to her mouth.
“Whoa.” Jiang Baimian was shocked.
She didn’t refuse and gulped down a few mouthfuls of water before smiling. “Is this an act of repentance for acting on your own last night?”
“This is what companions should do,” Shang Jianyao replied without changing his expression.
Jiang Baimian glanced at him and took the opportunity to ask, “Why did you rush out back then?”
Shang Jianyao replied seriously, “If I didn’t finish off that Awakened, all the Redstone townsfolk would’ve died.”
Jiang Baimian looked at his dark-brown eyes and realized that they were limpid.
“Sigh, at least you remembered to inform me in advance this time.” Jiang Baimian sighed helplessly.
“Why aren’t you sick?” At this point, she suddenly felt a little angry. It would only be fair if both of us are sick! Furthermore, Shang Jianyao is the one who should fall sick. He might even take the opportunity to crack the Island of Diseases.
Shang Jianyao thought for a moment and said, “I wasn’t close to fainting back then.” This meant that the load on his heart had yet to exceed its limits, nor had he suffered any subsequent electric shocks.
Jiang Baimian exhaled and fell silent for a moment. “That’s true…”
She then said, “Quick, boil some hot water and get a towel. I need to apply it to my forehead. Regardless, you have to be punished for your independent act last night!”
Shang Jianyao had no objections. He skillfully boiled the tap water, adjusted the temperature, and wrung a towel before passing it over.
Jiang Baimian began instructing him to do all kinds of things, including but not limited to communicating with Bai Chen and Long Yuehong in the room next door, helping the patient to the bathroom, changing the towel, sewing clothes, and filling the waterskins.
As she watched Shang Jianyao busy himself, Jiang Baimian suddenly came to a realization. He’d already become familiar with such matters back when his mother was sick.
With this in mind, Jiang Baimian’s eyes lit up. She patted the edge of the bed and said, “We were in a blind spot previously!”
“What?” Shang Jianyao looked like he was trying to understand.
Afraid that his train of thought would go in a strange direction, Jiang Baimian didn’t keep him in suspense and directly explained, “Haven’t we been considering how to resolve your fear of diseases? Actually, with your attitude toward life and death, you shouldn’t be so afraid of diseases.”
Shang Jianyao thought for a moment and said, “Diseases will make me unable to do anything or be unable to do anything in time. I’m still afraid.”
Jiang Baimian replied in exasperation and amusement, “That’s not the point.”
She then said, “I think your fear of disease is mostly fear that it will take away the people around you and that it leaves you helpless.”
Shang Jianyao fell into deep thought and didn’t speak for a long time.
Jiang Baimian smiled. “I’ll show you what it means to have a strong body and how illnesses mean nothing! If the company’s genetic enhancement technology becomes widespread and genetic modification is no longer that dangerous and becomes controllable, humans will then be freed from the threat of most diseases.”
With that said, she leaned against the pillow and said in satisfaction, “When I recover, you can give it a try from this direction. Alright, get me something to eat; I’m starting to feel hungry. This is a good sign!”
After lunch, the responsibility of interrogating the Subhumans was handed to Shang Jianyao and Long Yuehong because Jiang Baimian was sick.
According to Jiang Baimian’s instructions, they first headed to the Vigilance Church and invited Harbinger Song He to join in on the interrogation.
This was to use the other party’s amiable ability to prevent Shang Jianyao from exposing his Inference Clowning.
Song He had just woken up not long ago. Despite being an old man at his age, he didn’t show any signs of discomfort after staying up all night. His body was indeed well-maintained.
He happily accepted Shang Jianyao and Long Yuehong’s invitation. He led two Church guards, rode his car to Redstone Collection, and entered the lowest-level’s Public Security Department.
With the Harbinger in the lead, although Han Wanghuo was still resting and didn’t come over, Shang Jianyao and the others easily entered the interrogation room and saw the captive with the lightest injuries.
He was a murloc. His body was covered in grayish-black scales, and gills trembled from the bottom of his ears to his neck.
In Long Yuehong’s eyes, all merfolk looked the same. They could only be distinguished by their height and weight.
After they took their seats, Shang Jianyao hurriedly asked, “Who’s the murloc that can suffocate others?”
The captive behind the iron railing glanced at him with his protruding eyes, lowered his head, and fell silent.
At this moment, Song He smiled and said, “It’s not like it’s a confidential matter.”
The murloc thought about it and realized that it made sense. His attitude quickly softened as he looked up and hesitantly said, “He’s the Oracle.”
“Oracle? Which Kalendaria’s oracle?” Long Yuehong was very polite and only asked after receiving Song He’s permission.
“Not a Kalendaria.” The murloc shook his head. “He was originally our third priest. We believed in the Old World’s Christian God; later, he made us change the way we called him to Oracle.”
Merfolk language evolved from the Red River language. Long Yuehong found it difficult to understand him, and it took him a while to understand the murloc.
On the other hand, Song He had clearly learned the local Subhumans’ language by himself and eloquently asked, “When was this?”
“Less than a year ago.” The murloc seemed to be conversing with a friend.
“What else happened back then?” Song He asked.
Respect and fear appeared in the murloc’s eyes. “H-he became very, very strong—very terrifying. He was like an embodiment of a deity. He could easily kill a person or wipe out an entire army.”
Shang Jianyao asked with interest, “What about before? Was he strong?”
The murloc glanced at the fellow in the monkey mask and reluctantly said, “He had some superpowers, but they weren’t too powerful. He could make a person unable to open their mouth or eat. He could also make a person easily tired like they lack oxygen…”
After hearing the murloc’s description, Song He gently asked, “Did he do anything before becoming an Oracle? Or did you encounter anything?”
The murloc sank into his memories. After a while, he said, “We landed on the largest island in the Lake of Wrath. My great-grandfather said that there was a town there and several villages. We were busy protecting ourselves, surviving, farming, and fishing in the beginning, but we kept thinking about it and wanted to get it back. We had never paid attention to their situation.”
When he said ‘get it back,’ his emotions fluctuated a little as if he no longer trusted Song He, but he soon became sufficiently friendly.
“We recuperated after we were repelled the last time. Many young people have become interested in that large island because they have been idle for too long. That island is much larger than the one we live on. The roads are well-preserved, and there are abandoned farms everywhere. We were very curious about where the humans on the island had gone; they shouldn’t have been attacked by outsiders.
“After searching for a while, we found the town they used to live in. We found some records.”
Unfortunately, Team Leader didn’t come. She must be very interested in these matters… Long Yuehong gradually adapted to the merfolk language.
The murloc continued, “From those records, we know that the people on that island quickly believed in a deity named Yama Tiger after the Old World was destroyed. He claimed to be the King Yama from Ashlandic myth. With this deity’s blessings, the people on the island didn’t suffer any disasters and lived very well. Just as they gathered some strength and planned on occupying the area around the Lake of Wrath, the deity fell asleep and never woke up again.
“After losing the deity’s protection, a large-scale Heartless outbreak quickly erupted on the island. The remaining humans probably didn’t last long before they were all killed.”
Large-scale Heartless outbreak… Long Yuehong’s scalp tingled when he heard this description.
At this moment, Shang Jianyao asked excitedly, “You found the sleeping deity?”
The murloc’s lips quivered for a moment before he said, “Yes. We discovered the temple ‘He’ slept in.”