Release that Witch Chapter 829
The Mathematical Olympiad textbook itself did not bear much significance, but the premonition attaching to it did. During the initial exploration of the Dreamland, Roland had discovered that the books that he had never read were all blank, and this theory applied to both the books on bookstands and those in the library. Most books were nothing but blank sheets topped with a cover. He even speculated that those book covers were productions of some thin threads of his memories fading into oblivion. If he had never seen a book, it would never exist in the dream world.
But the Mathematical Olympiad textbook on Zero's desk debunked his theory.
He wondered why he had not noticed the peculiarity at the beginning. Had he overlooked it during the exploration in the first two or three months, or it was actually a change that occurred later?
If it was the latter, he had to probe into it.
If the Mathematical Olympiad textbook could come out of thin air and gradually restore its original appearance, would other books do the same trick? What about things he had never beheld?
Roland tried to figure out the connection between the three events, which were the strange power he had obtained, the extermination of Fallen Evils, and the release of the Force of Nature. He was eager to find out if they were the driven factors of the changes to this world.
Nightingale's voice interrupted his train of thoughts.
Roland looked down and found that he was stroking Nightingale's feet with his hands without noticing it. The thin fabrics of socks did not prevent him from touching Nightingale's smooth skin and dainty toes.
Nightingale looked a little embarrassed. "I changed my socks, but since I couldn't take a shower on the ship, I'm probably still a bit dirty... Would you mind if I taking a shower first?"
Roland was abashed. He did not know why he did that when his mind was apparently on some serious matters.
Plus, the equivocal remark "take a shower first" seemed to contain some unintended meanings, but his action was absolutely unintentional!
While he was rummaging for an appropriate answer, the knocking on the office door greatly alleviated his trouble. After Nightingale vanished in the Mist, Roland cleared his throat and said, "Come in."
Agatha came into the office. After an unceremonious bow, she asked, "All the samples from the Great Snow Mountain have been transferred to the Third Border City. Do you want to take a look?"
Roland managed to calm himself down in the guise of contemplation. He then gave an approving nod. "Of course, let's go now."
Agatha replied a "yes", but she soon turned around at the door and asked, "Are you not feeling well?"
"Why did you say that?" Roland was a little surprised.
Agatha answered in a serious tone, "Your voice sounds a little weird, which is a typical symptom of a cold. Although the Months of Demons has passed, it's still the coldest time of the year when snows melt, and people are most vulnerable to diseases at this time around. You aren't a witch, so you should take care of yourself, not only for you but for the whole human race. Do you understand? Before we take off, I suggest sending for Lily and asking her to check on you."
The physical examination did not take long, but Roland drank a bottle of "anti-illness water" made by Lily in great amusement. Under the protection of both his guards and the witches, Roland descended to the bottom of the Impassable Mountain Range.
He was a little relieved when he saw the Taquila survivors.
Since all of them were frequent visitors of the Dreamland who had experienced the pleasure of the Dream World except Pasha and Alethea, they looked more approachable. The visitors included Phyllis a.k.a. "No. 76", Faldi a.k.a. "Magic Bug Nest", Dawnen a.k.a. "Matte Curtains", and Ling a.k.a. "Shadow Walker". Among them, Phyllis was the only one who had a female appearance.
Alethea ventured, "I've heard that you plan to raise those unknown bugs in our hall and tame them? Mortal king, I have to say you're as bold and crazy as those researchers in the Quest Society. You know one day, your curiosity will eventually destroy you. Those are species left by enemies from the deep ocean!"
Roland shrugged carelessly. "That's why I want you to guard them. The captured bugs aren't aggressive. They can't even drill holes. One secret chamber would be enough to confine them. Plus, according to Agatha's observation, these bugs don't have self-consciousness but the instinct of feeding and reproduction. There's a chance that the multi-eyed monster regains its control over them. However, if Neverwinter is so defenseless that even a creature as stupid as that can approach our city wall, we would probably have been wiped out long before."
"Isn't Agatha also a member of the Quest Society?" Alethea swayed her tentacle disapprovingly. As she had also been a higher ascendant before her conversion, she did not pay as much respect to the Ice Witch as Phyllis did.
Agatha, who happened to become the subject of their conversation, simply twitched her lips, apparently having no intention to involve herself in this altercation.
"If you really want to make a fuss about it, Celine is also a member of the Quest Society. If she hears you say this nonsense, she'll certainly go against you." Pasha came forward and apologized to Roland, "Alethea meant no offence. She's just worried that those mutated bugs will have negative impacts on Neverwinter."
Roland waved his hands. "That's fine. Let's go take a look."
He knew that Alethea's fear was not baseless, but what Agatha and Lightning wrote in their reports carried a significant meaning. If he exterminated the bugs because of some potential risks, it would be like throwing out a child along with the bath water. Placing them at the bottom of the mountains was already a safety measure.
"OK. Please follow me." Pasha nodded.
Across the spacious hall and a narrow corridor, they found themselves in an empty room almost as big as four or five castles. In the light of several Stones of Lighting in the wall, they detected the obscure outline of the room. Littered with loose soil, the ground underneath appeared to be excavated thoroughly. On the other side of the room, they could hear interminable patters of running water.
Pasha introduced the room to the visitors, "This is a culture room newly set up by Fran. It's absolutely safe in here, for there's only one exit and the underground water was the seepage from the rocks. Are you... really planning to grow mushrooms and mutated bugs in here though?"
Agatha further explained, "Because those huge mushrooms were exactly what the bugs feed on. If they can grow in here like they normally do in the natural environment, we can obtain a large number of mutated bugs effortlessly.
If they could not transplant the mushrooms, they would have to resort to Lily's artificial cultivation method. Roland thought It was a pity that the mushrooms down the ruin at the snow mountain were not edible because of their poisonous nature, for from their size and quantity, they were definitely high protein food that could serve as a meat substitute.
"What are those bugs for?" Phyllis asked out of curiosity. "If you want to study them, just grow a few and that should do."
Roland eyed Agatha and answered, "They'll probably play a big role in the development of Neverwinter if the report is correct."
Agatha responded with a nod. She picked a strange bug crawling on the mushroom and dropped it to the ground. Then, she nailed the bug with two ice pitons in its joints on its head and around its waist.
The bug soon became motionless after a fierce struggle.