FXDL V4C1

Can you guys guess what will happen in this volume based on this chapter? :P Also for anyone that has read Residence of Monsters (by same author), this chapter title really reminded me of the chapter titles in that one…

Also, the Character Profiles and Novel Synopses have both been updated to include V4! Beware of spoilers in the novel synopsis.

Translated by: TaffyGirl13

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Chapter 1: The hygiene of the food sold at school fairs is up to free evaluation of evidence

The warehouse in the southeast corner of Shalom’s campus was a brown square building made of brick. It was like an enormous storage box that contained various tools and materials, holding all the junk that Shalom had accumulated since it had been founded.

There was useful junk, seemingly useless junk, and junk with unknown purposes. The piles filled that space in an inexplicable arrangement.

The black-haired boy scanned the scene in front of him and took in a deep breath. As he tried to slowly exhale, the breath became choked up in his chest due to extreme anger. He gritted his teeth and swallowed it back down.

He was a pureblood tengu, a noble race that was not far from a eudemon. His eight hundred years of life placed him at a status similar to an elder. Quite a few of the younger generations of his race even had shrines in their hometowns to receive human worship, revered like gods.

Yet what about him?

“The carpet in the hall should be wine red! A sacred and honourable wine red! What did you all grab white for?!” A juvenile voice let out furious shouts.

The small brownies floating in the air resentfully yelled back.

“Er, Professor Samukawa, they didn’t do it on purpose. They probably didn’t hear it clearly. Besides, I think white is also very sacred and honourable!” A simple-looking dark-haired boy in a uniform tried to help smooth things over with an innocent smile.

The one called Samukawa glared back. “Shut up, He Fu Xing! You can wait until you reach the end of your life to use that and decorate your funeral hall! Tear this down! Bring it back to the warehouse and get a new one!”

The brownies dragged the white carpet with them as they turned around in discontent. They discharged a strong stench at the boy before speeding away with sharp laughter.

Samukawa hacked and coughed, his eyes tearing from the stench.

Damn it…why am I being humiliated like this? If it wasn’t for that damned bastard—

“Are you alright, Professor Samukawa?” Fu Xing worriedly bent over to pat the boy on the back. “Do you need tissues?”

“Get lost! Who gave you permission to talk to me with that pitying tone?!” Samukawa shoved He Fu Xing away.

It’s all because of this damned harbinger of bad luck!

During the war over three hundred years ago, he had been turned into this form by a curse, forcing him to stay at Shalom as a professor. To a tengu, this circumstance was frustrating enough. In the past, he had relied on enchantments and illusory spells to fabricate a dignified and austere appearance to receive the proper amount of respect.

However, three weeks ago, He Fu Xing’s reckless spell had caused a disturbance that made all his illusory spells lose effect. As a result, he was left with his true face exposed. To avoid unnecessary trouble, he had spent the past three weeks hiding everywhere so that outsiders would not witness his true self. He had even holed up in a corner to observe the friendly matches with his face concealed.

So annoying!

As Fu Xing moved the items that the brownies had dragged out from the warehouse, he laboriously gasped, “Why are we doing odd jobs here?” The friendly matches had just ended. Logically speaking, this should be a period of relaxation and celebration!

“Have you already finished dealing with the aftermath of the disaster you caused?” Samukawa scathingly reminded. While the souls in the wrong bodies had unexpectedly returned to their rightful places in the competition, he had been unable to recreate his illusions since the moment he had been affected by the chaotic spell fluctuations. “Before I recover my original appearance, you are obligated to assist me with my work!”

“Oh…” 

But isn’t your current form actually the “original appearance”? 

Fu Xing really wanted to retort.

“Don’t worry, I’ll keep you company,” Rocort chewed as he voiced his comradery with a beaming grin.

“Thank you. What are you eating?”

“This.” Rocort opened his palm to reveal a dozen or so red bean-like balls in his hand. “It tastes sweet and has a bit of a grassy flavour. Texture isn’t bad either. Want some?”

“Sure.” Fu Xing happily took them and popped them into his mouth. “Where did you get these?”

“I found them in a box at the back.”

Samukawa frostily stated, “Those are the eggs of a corpse eel, typically used to inflict poison curses.”

“Pfft!” Fu Xing fiercely spat out the things in his mouth.

“They lose their toxicity after drying and boiling them and are used as medicinal ingredients.” Samukawa scoffed, “Even a dog would sniff something before causing trouble. You’re pretty stupid to not question the origin of an object before putting it in your mouth.”

The childish voice and angel-like face spitting out these words was more vicious than a wasp’s sting. The three combined together increased the destructive power.

Isn’t that too much…Samukawa…

Fu Xing wiped his mouth with his sleeve. “Why is Professor organising goods? I recall that Peiris was the one responsible for the general affairs committee.”

“Because I don’t want this laughable state to be seen by others. The general affairs work lets me avoid people.”

“Why? Samukawa’s very adorable,” Rocort blurted out without a thought.

“That kind of cursed comment is exactly what I don’t wish to hear!” 

A majestic tengu should have descriptions like solemn and imposing, not adorable!

“Yeah…” How disagreeable.

“Chirp, chirp.” Two messenger brownies flew in, handing a paper scroll to Fu Xing before hurriedly rushing back out.

“Ohhh, another new request form.” Fu Xing unfurled the scroll. “2-A wants ten long tables and forty pear-wood chairs transferred over.”

“What do they need so many tables and chairs for! Who approved that?!”

“Erm…it’s Professor Grod. He’s the general manager of the activities committee.” 

“Bastard! That disgusting transvestite definitely did it on purpose!”

“Samukawa’s so fierce.” Rocort, who had accompanied Fu Xing to do labour, automatically placed his palm atop Samukawa’s head. The shrunken Samukawa was currently only as tall as his abdomen. “You’re so cute yet so edgy, just like a chihuahua!”

Samukawa viciously slapped Rocort’s hand away. “Impudent!” He grabbed Rocort’s collar and yanked it down before threatening in a cold and sinister voice, “I have jurisdiction over you two right now. Do you want to be penalised with fasting?”

This threat was extremely effective. Rocort’s complexion instantly turned green, and he obediently retreated into the corner to continue doing odd jobs.

Samukawa smirked smugly.

It looked like he had found a way to suppress Rocort. How gratifying.

“2-D wants four rolls of ward rope and ten large-sized shock-absorbing pads placed on the shelves in I and H regions.” Samukawa lifted his head up from the items list. “Where are the brownies?! Why isn’t there a single one left?!”

“They’re all busy.” There were truly too many general affairs tasks to be dealt with during events.

“Damn it!” Samukawa waved his hand, shooting out ten black feathers towards the ground. When the black feathers landed on the ground, they emitted bursts of green smoke. Once the smoke dissipated, ten black bunnies with wings appeared.

“Go,” Samukawa commanded. 

The winged bunnies hopped to the inner parts of the warehouse at extremely high speeds.

“Ooooh! Bunnies!” Rocort excitedly chased after the winged bunnies, tailing them the entire way.

The sound of objects being flipped through came from the depths of the warehouse, followed by the bunnies’ cries.

“You are not allowed to play with my familiars!” Samukawa bellowed. Then he looked down back at the invoice in his hand as he furiously marked calculations and jotted annotations. Midway through the count, he scratched his head in irritation, causing his originally flat, black hair to stick up in a fluffy manner.

“This amount is wrong, and it doesn’t have an approval stamp!” He muttered a few curses to himself and forcefully drew out a large X on the paper before tossing it to the side. “Hmph…all the forms can be rejected so that they can redo the process…hehe…” His lips curled upwards as he let out a strange, smug laugh.

Fu Xing, who was helping with tidying things up off to the side, was closely watching Samukawa’s chain of actions. He stood there blankly, completely dumbstruck.

Samukawa’s every action, as well as all his expressions, were oddly comical.

Seriously…so cute!

Noticing Fu Xing’s gaze, Samukawa stopped and shot him a sideways look. “What are you staring at!”

“Um, Professor Samukawa…”

“What do you want?!”

“Er, uh…since when did you become like this?”

Samuka glared at Fu Xing.

“Since 370 years ago. Repercussions from a military campaign.” This matter clearly made him unhappy, though his tone carried pride as well, seemingly due to the honour and glory of participating in that battle.

“It’s not because you offended some eudemon?”

Samukawa’s expression abruptly changed. “Who told you that?” 

There were not many that knew the details of the war from over three centuries ago. Aside from the ones that took part in the battle, very few knew the actual situation.

“Oh, it was—”

Right as the name reached his lips, it immediately got stuck and vanished.

Eh, who was it that told me?

Fu Xing tilted his head in thought. The blurry memories that had seemingly just been in his mind a second ago faded away without a trace when he tried to recall them. It was like they had been meticulously wiped clean.

“I forgot…”

Samukawa glared at Fu Xing’s foolish face and let out a quiet string of curses.

“The opponent in that military campaign had been an upper-level eudemon. It was the one that cursed me.” Must’ve been that rotten transvestite Grod running his broken mouth…

Fu Xing nodded. After falling quiet for a beat, he asked, “Then, was tossing fragrant bath balls in the water and leaving little duckies in the tub also part of the curse?”

Samukawa furiously looked at Fu Xing for a few seconds and confirmed that the latter was not mocking him, but seriously asking. He just barely restrained his anger and indignantly muttered, “…There’s no such curse, you idiot…”

“Oh.”

The two momentarily sank into an awkward silence.

 “Ahem, how did the war three hundred years ago start?” Fu Xing hurriedly changed the subject.

“A thousand years ago, an upper-level spirit – also called a eudemon – gave rise to a war in the human realm. The casualties were disastrous, and the special animate beings had to utilise hundreds of elders to make it surrender and seal it into the space rift. Three centuries ago, the seal loosened, and the eudemon’s soul escaped. Fortunately, Sanbi noticed it early and united the elites from every race. Before it could bring about another calamity, it was forced back into its body.”

Thus, this laughable appearance had followed him for over three hundred years since then…

“So that’s what happened.” He hadn’t imagined that such a large upheaval would have occurred in the world of special animate beings. “Professor Samukawa is so powerful! You even took part in such a dangerous battle!”

Samukawa proudly grinned, seemingly happy about the commendation. However, he feigned indifference and confidently snorted, “It’s nothing.”

“You gave such great devotion and sacrifice for the sake of special animate beings; they should include you in a martyrs shrine!”

“Bastard! I’m not dead, why would I be added to some martyrs shrine? Idiot!”

“Sorry, sorry!” Fu Xing found Samukawa’s enraged face amusing. He figured that the reason Grod messed with Samukawa was not out of evil, but purely out of amusement. It was similar to teasing a small animal.

“Eh, um, so the eudemon only created a disaster in the human world? The special animate beings were fine?”

“Yes.”

“Why?”

Samukawa’s expression became a bit conflicted. “Perhaps out of benevolence towards its own kind…It is impossible for a lower being to understand a spirit’s way of thinking.” Extreme goodwill towards one side became malice towards the other…

Fu Xing did not quite understand, but he vaguely felt like he should end the topic here. 

If the eudemon only hurt humans, then wasn’t the special animate beings sealing of the eudemon an act to help humans?

That means…Samukawa actually has quite a sense of righteousness…

Now, Fu Xing suddenly felt that Samukawa was very amazing as a participant of the war. It was like he now had a saint’s halo surrounding his entire person.

The winged bunny familiars hopped back and forth to move junk around. One of them was now in Rocort’s arms.

“Can you give this one to me?” Rocort rubbed his face against the black bunny’s back, and the bunny very unhappily used its rear leg to kick him. “It’s both adorable and fierce, just like Samukawa!”

“Shut up!”

“Can you, can you?” Rocort pranced over to Samukawa and bent down to peer intently into the other’s eyes, their faces extremely close.

“Go away!” Samukawa swung a palm at Rocort’s cheek, which the latter immediately dodged. As a result, Samukawa ended up missing and tumbling onto the floor.

An enraged roar rang out. Like this, it was impossible for one to connect him with an elite that had once participated in a great war.

As Fu Xing read the other request forms from the classes, he thought of his own classmates. He had come to the warehouse to do odd jobs at noon, and it was now dusk, during classtime.

Wonder what 2-C is doing…

Fu Xing checked his watch. It was still twenty minutes before break time; perhaps he would make it in time for the end of class.

I wonder if Zhu Yue is doing well as the new class representative?

While Fu Xing was enthusiastically working hard, the students in Class 2-C were unenthusiastically discussing the school ceremony activities.

“Since Grod is the one responsible for the school ceremony’s event committee, he’s been busy these days. The class affairs have been handed to me to take on. I thank all of you for your cooperation,” Zhu Yue evenly stated from the podium, a smile on her face.

Clap, clap, clap, clap!

As soon as she finished speaking, a “certain person” sitting below fiercely clapped before anyone else, leading a string of scattered applause.

“Thank you, Brad.”

“Mn, you’re welcome…”

“Then I will now report the activities related to the school ceremony.” Zhu Yue flipped through her materials. Ever since the friendly matches, she had become quite a bit more confident in herself.

“The school ceremony this year is somewhat different from the past years. Headmaster Sanbi wants more people to participate in activities to make the school ceremony more interesting. As a result, the only unchanged part of the school ceremony this year is the banquet. The other school-managed activities such as the symposium and concert have been changed to an independent school fair and talent show that everyone is free to attend. There are no restrictions on the number of people. There will be evaluations at the end of the activities, and the highest score can be exchanged for student award points. Any questions? Dan Juan?”

Dan Juan lowered his hand. “May I ask what’s going on with the extra crowd at the back?”

All the way at the back of the classroom were Hai Yue, Zhu Yu, Margaret, and Ryner in their snow-white uniforms. They stuck out on the long bench, not fitting in at all.

“That’s right, that’s right! We’ve already been here for so long, why haven’t you introduced us yet?” Zhu Yu and Hai Yue shouted in discontent.

Zhu Yue eyed the back and smiled in reply. “I originally wanted to ignore you forever. However, since classmate Dan Juan has asked, I will briefly explain. Between the friendly matches and the official end of the school ceremony, there is over a week’s time. The southern campus representatives will stay here and freely join the classes. They will similarly join the activities until the end. Everyone, please get along!”

“Is that so…” Dan Juan turned his head to look at the four in the back, and clicked his tongue in annoyance.

“Before complaining, you should first rejoice about Hu Rong not being here.” Ryner chuckled, “I heard your clansmen are the servants of Hu Rong’s clan? Your master doesn’t seem to have trained you well.”

“Shut up!”

“Tsk tsk, can someone go to the kitchen and grab some onions to give this dog to stop it from barking forever?” Momiji had her head languidly propped up in one hand as she glanced over at Brad. “No offense.”

Brad awkwardly nodded.

“Hehehe, truly a female fox without an upbringing. No wonder Shiroizumi didn’t want to come here and chose to go to Class E by himself instead.” Margaret crossed her legs as she coquettishly threw this mocking remark.

“Is there a sign on the door that says ‘Sluts, Please Come In’? What did you come here for?”

“What did you say?!”

“Quiet! Please do not quarrel!” Zhu Yue raised her voice to stop the argument. “The visitors are guests. Please show them a bit of respect and forgiveness.”

Zhu Yu and the others showed smug expressions.

“Besides, they will vanish in a week. Just treat it as mental training and endure it for a while,” Zhu Yue added.

“Oi!”

“Alright, then let’s not waste any time and return to the main subject. Does anyone have any ideas regarding the school ceremony?”

“Since it’s free to attend, then let’s just not attend.”

“Originally, that would’ve been the case. However, I have yet to hear of any class not attending. Many classes have already started working, while we are only just starting discussions…” Zhu Yue said with faint embarrassment, “In addition, the accumulated student points from when we were first years was just posted yesterday; our class had the lowest total in the entire school. Although the points are allegedly extra credit, being ranked the lowest seems to have made Grod very unhappy.”

“So?”

“‘If you do not join with an activity, the entire class must score full points on the midterm exams. Or else—” Zhu Yue paused for a second. “That is what he said.”

“Or else what?”

“He did not say. He simply smiled and used a knife to slice a human-shaped jimsonweed root into many pieces.”

Ah, a very clear message. If we don’t comply, we’ll end up like that jimsonweed.

“Therefore, if anyone has any ideas, please suggest them. We must choose at least one of the two options: setting up a booth for the school fair or performing at the banquet.”

“Me!” Emerald’s hand shot up first. “Let’s set up a booth! We can sell anything from amulets and magical ingredients to stationery and everyday goods!”

“Why are you still the same as usual?” Margaret sat at the very last row of the classroom, a charming smile on her face as she ridiculed, “Always selling unprofitable things.”

Emerald ignored her and continued on to explain, “I have some goods here. If I need to ship more, it can arrive in three days.”

Margaret smiled thinly to express her indifference. However, a faint trace of loneliness showed from the depth of her eyes.

“How to split the profits?” Momiji lazily asked.

“Eight to two.”

“Rejected.”

“But—”

“Shut up, that’s not the main point. No one wants the booth to become a resource recycler.” Dan Juan cut off Emerald’s refute and huffed, “Besides, you would have to borrow an empty classroom to stock up on merchandise. I’m warning you now, you’d better not think you can place the goods in the dorm.”

“But—”

“Rejected, rejected! Silence, silence!” Brad slammed the desk and forcibly stopped Emerald’s nagging. Then he turned towards Zhu Yue. “Continue with the meeting.”

“Thank you, Brad.” Zhu Yue smiled and stated, “Since the amount of profit will also affect scores, I personally thought that if we wanted to earn the highest profit at lowest costs—” She paused for a second before brightly announcing in an openly happy tone, “We should do a casino.”

Everyone stared blankly for a moment, uncertain how to react.

Seeing that no one was against the idea, Zhu Yue excitedly went on, “We just need some decks of cards and a few dice, and we would be able to open one! If we want to go to a larger scale, then we can request a square table for mahjong, and we can borrow four-colour cards from the third-year seniors. What do you all think?”

“Er, that doesn’t seem very appropriate…” Emerald tried to tactfully dissuade, “This…casino wouldn’t have much costs, but it would need enough funds as bargaining chips. Moreover, if we lose—”

“Relax, there’s no concern about losing.” Zhu Yue stuck her chest out. “When I last watched TV, I saw a type of cards being sold where you can tell from the pattern on the back what suit the opponent is grabbing. The dice too! As long as you pour in some mercury, you can control the numbers from the dice! Isn’t that awesome?”

They all stared blankly once more. Zhu Yue, that’s swindling!

Rachel burst out into laughter; it was a rare sight to see her laughing so excessively.

“Do you have any objections, Rachel?” Zhu Yue directly met the other’s face, no longer fearful like before.

“I appreciate your concept,” Rachel replied with a chuckle. “However, Shalom forbids any games that involve money. Your suggestion is impossible to implement.”

Zhu Yue’s excited face instantly fell, and she hung her head in shame. “Sorry, I forgot to consider the school regulations…”

Although Zhu Yue’s suggestion was rejected, her outburst unexpectedly incited the crowd’s interests, and they began talking amongst themselves. The noise of discussion gradually rose.

“If anyone has ideas, you’re welcome to mention them!”

“How about selling food?” Yayoi, who rarely acted in groups, spoke up and suddenly said with a raised hand, “Things like roasted octopus or yakisoba. Those are sold in Japanese high school fairs or shrines, and they seem to have pretty good sales volume.”

Momiji whipped her head around to glance at Yayoi sitting in another corner.

Ever since Dan Juan and Momiji had switched bodies and the falling out with Yayoi, they had maintained an awkward distance and had yet to become reconciled.

“So you want to sell Japanese snacks?”

“School fairs in America always have hot dog stands and soda,” Tonya chimed in.

“Seems pretty good.” Zhu Yue nodded. “If we sell things ‘human’-style, Peiris will definitely give us plenty of points. Any other ideas?”

“Taiwanese snacks have been very popular recently.” Brad jumped in to add, “There’s a shop open in Germany that specialises in Taiwanese drinks. Department stores have also started progressing with this theme.”

“Sounds amazing, Brad!” Zhu Yue beamed in praise.

“Sounds amazing, Brad.” Ryner copied Zhu Yue’s tone and chuckled mockingly.

“So should we settle on signing up for a stand? With the main subject as various countries’ snacks?”

The students exchanged looks with each other and no one objected.

“In that case, who is most knowledgeable in Taiwanese snacks?”

“Fu Xing, I guess.” Emerald said, “Also Rocort; he’s knowledgeable in basically everything edible.”

“But Fu Xing is currently not here, and there’s no knowing when Samukawa will let him go. Is anyone able to suggest ideas for now?”

“Me.” Contrary to expectations, the one that raised their hand was an outsider, Margaret. “I had some dealings with some Taiwanese businesses a few years ago and went to Taiwan several times. I have a deep impression of a few dishes.”

As she spoke, she observed Emerald. However, he kept his back facing her the entire time.

“Ooooh! That’s great! Thank you, student Margaret. May I ask you to come up and share?”

Margaret walked up to the podium to share her personal experience. 

As a dream spirit, she naturally possessed a fatal sex appeal. Moreover, her bright tone filled with charm immediately grabbed the attention and eyes of many male students. The exception was Emerald, whose head remained lowered from beginning to end as he absentmindedly played with the iPhone in his hands.

Look over here, Emerald…

Just one look. Don’t be so cold…

Whoosh! The door was suddenly opened.

“I’m back!” Fu Xing supported himself with the door as he gasped for breath. Samukawa had released him five minutes ago, and he had immediately dragged Rocort with him to run at full speed back to the 2-C classroom.

Fu Xing felt relief wash over him when he saw everyone still there. 

Good thing I made it in time.

“What were you just discussing? Did I miss anything?”

“Oh, Fu Xing, while you were gone, we talked about themes for the school ceremony.”

“Really? Zhu Yue, you’re awesome!” Fu Xing studied the words on the blackboard and stood there dumbstruck for a few seconds. “Erm, is our booth selling black magic items? Did Emerald suggest it?”

“Not at all,” Emerald retorted flatly.

“I can understand roasted octopus and hamburgers. But…what is mucous intestine with streaked meat?” Sounds like some kind of disease.

“They’re shaped like hotdogs. The outside is rice wrapped by a transparent sticky layer, and the inside is meat,” Margaret immediately explained.

“Eh? Why are you here? And Brad’s brother and the unruly twins!”

“Who are you calling unruly?!”

“They are joining 2-C until the end of the activities,” Zhu Yue succinctly explained.

“Is that so…” Feels like the atmosphere of the classroom is a bit weird, is it because of them…? Hm, whatever. “Anyways, are you talking about small sausage in large sausage? The one that’s a sausage wrapped in a glutinous rice sausage?”

“Yeah, yeah, yeah!”

“And what the hell is that frog ovulation!” Sounds ecological.

“The black little soft balls with white dots in the middle, the ones added in mung bean soup or sweet soup. It’s a bit like bubble tea but not quite the same.”

“You’re talking about frog egg [tapioca], aren’t you?”

“Yeah! That’s it.”

“Ok then, I guess that means blood pudding should be pig’s blood cake.” Feels so novel. Good thing chicken cutlet is still chicken cutlet instead of being bestowed a bizarre name.

“Just selling food seems a bit monotonous.”

“We can add on some games and stuff.”

“Doesn’t Fu Xing have a game console?” Rocort interjected.

“But that’s a handheld PSP, and I only have one. You would need at least two to do battles, right? And I don’t have it on me right now.”

“Alright, let’s put that aside for now.”

The melodious ring of the bell sounded out, marking the end of afternoon class and the beginning of evening break.

“Then we’ll stop here for today and do the work allocation table tomorrow. Everyone, let’s work hard together!”

Once the meeting was adjourned, Fu Xing’s group moved to the student dining hall, happily chatting about the interesting things that had happened in the afternoon and the planning for the booth.

When Fu Xing retrieved his food and was about to head to their seats, he noticed someone hiding behind one of the pillars in the dining hall. The person was peering at the place where he and his friends were sitting.

It’s Margaret. What is she doing?

When he glanced towards their seats, he saw Emerald laughing and chatting with their other companions.

Margaret’s face was filled with envy and jealousy.

When Margaret noticed Fu Xing’s gaze, she stiffened and forced a smile while pretending to naturally touch the pillar. Then, as though nothing had happened, she spun around and left.

Even a dream spirit has a childish side…I wonder what exactly happened between her and Emerald. How much of the things she said to me before the competition were false, and how much were true?

Not long after breakfast time, a sudden Aquarius meeting summoning was sent to the classrooms. Fu Xing, who had been in Advanced Chinese Literature, rushed to the conference room.

“Apologies for summoning everyone now. For the sake of time, I will directly cut to the main topic.” Shiran stood at the front, skilfully guiding them through the process. While his face still showed his usual refreshing and radiant smile, one could find traces of exhaustion upon closer inspection.

“This year’s school ceremony had some changes and innovations implemented. As assistants for school affairs, Aquarius is obligated to put in the efforts to ensure the activities advance smoothly. There is a work table during the activity periods next to all of you. The second-year students are assigned to relatively more important tasks. Your performance during this event will be considered as a key factor in determining whether you will become an official member or not.”

Fu Xing flipped through the document and found both his and Isaac’s names. They were listed as top-class transporters.

Transporters? Isn’t that what the brownies do?

“Flora, what are you doing?”

“School ceremony disciplinary committee. Maintaining order during the three days of activities.”

“We’re top-class transporters, and only have two days of activity.” Fu Xing skimmed as he said, “Hm…on duty tomorrow night and the night of the banquet. The item we’re responsible for transporting is…eh, Shalom’s Star?” 

Such an important object?! Is it alright to hand it to us?!

“Pretty easy,” Flora coolly commented.

“How?!”

“Why don’t you try being a disciplinary committee member instead then. Patrol the booths, stop all actions that violate the rules, mediate and resolve disputes, comfort the drunk on the day of the banquet and clear up the vomit.”

“Er, I’m good…” 

Upon seeing Fu Xing still having misgivings, Flora sighed in exasperation. “Shalom’s Star is contained in a box made of sacred wood, with powerful wards around it. Aside from the people authorised, anyone that touches it will activate an anti-theft mechanism. Losing it isn’t an easy feat.”

“I see.” The pressure dropped a bit. However, he also felt the tiniest bit of disappointment. Originally, he had considered secretly taking it out to test it, just to satisfy an urge.

“Is Flora participating in the [ballot] selection?”

Flora glared at Fu Xing. “Are you mocking me?”

“How could I?!” He vaguely felt like he had stepped on a landmine, so he quickly changed the topic. “Then, who are you going to vote for?”

“The one with the highest bets.” Flora scoffed and then asked Isaac, “What about you? Share your opinions. I’ve never even heard your voice before.”

Isaac went rigid when he was suddenly called out. He stared at Flora with extreme shock evident on his face.

“…”

“What?”

“…None…” Isaac stammered out, then immediately lowered his head.

“He said he doesn’t have any opinions.” 

“I heard.” Flora arched a brow and curiously peered at Isaac. “Why don’t you look me straight in the eye? Is it disdain?”

Isaac did not speak as he slowly shook his head.

“Your natural endowments aren’t bad, but your brain seems broken.” Flora smirked, feeling intrigued. Her eyes were like that of a cat that had just discovered a new marvel. “Fu Xing, lend me him to play with next time.”

“He’s not a toy!”

“Do you know Kyle and Muzter?” Flora went on.

Isaac started, then slowly nodded.

“Those two guys joined my class and mingled together pretty well with the darkbloods there. I heard them mention your name while they were chatting. Are you friends?”

Isaac shook his head.

“Enemies?”

Isaac paused for a second, but still shook his head.

“Do you know their weaknesses? For example, embarrassing pasts that they don’t want to look back on, or things they fear?”

Isaac continued to shake his head.

Flora gave up. “Forget it. I’ll just scout out information myself…You should pull yourself together too.” She casually reached out to pat Isaac on the shoulder.

The instant Flora’s hand touched Isaac, he immediately flinched aside as though he had been scalded by hot water, then jumped back until he was standing at least five steps away.

Everyone was startled by the abrupt action, and for a moment, their gazes were all gathered onto Isaac.

“…Sorry…” Isaac kept his head down as he quietly said, “I don’t feel very well…” Then he left the conference room without a backwards glance.

“What did you do to him?” Fu Xing asked in a low voice.

Having interacted with Isaac for over a year now, Fu Xing knew that he was a good and easygoing person. However, Fu Xing still could not comprehend some of Isaac’s actions and patterns.

“I want to know that as well.” Flora shot a baffled look at her own palm.

Is he…afraid?

Afraid of what? Afraid of cats? Afraid of being touched? Or…

The cat’s lips curled upwards into an expectant and teasing grin.

Very interesting indeed.

Near noontime, in the depths of the dense green woods, atop a hill covered in young and tender grass.

“Feels like it’s been a very long time since I last saw you.” Youny was leaning against a tree trunk, a verdant leaf pinched between his fingers. He held it up to the sun to admire the slender veins of the leaf that showed as the rays passed through it.

“Yeah, before it was because of the friendly matches, and now I’m busy with the celebration portion. I heard that the activities this time will change a lot, so it seems interesting!”

“Are you having fun?”

“Of course!” Fu Xing continued, “Our class is setting up a booth. Apparently most of the classes chose to hold a performance at the banquet. Oh right, do you know Shalom’s Star? The Shalom’s Star ballot event during the banquet. Everyone seems super into it! The dorms, instruction buildings, and main bailey already have multiple participants’ photos posted on the bulletin boards. Youny, are you taking part?” 

He felt that Youny’s looks would definitely get the support of many fans.

“No.”

“I see…” Fu Xing nodded, thinking it was a bit of a shame. “Makes sense. After all, the prize is a bit vain. Apparently, the winner can keep the famous Shalom’s Star as a medal for one entire year. I have no idea what everyone is excited about. Oh yeah, by the way, Isaac and I are top-class transporters. We’re responsible for moving the sealed box hiding the medal.”

“The gemstone embedded in the medal is a royal elf’s gem. Wearing it can bring you happiness.” Despite the claims of it being from the royal clan, the one inlaid in that metal was merely a friendly diplomatic gift that a new wood elf king had given to Shalom when he had first ascended to the throne. The crystal of a young, upper-level elf monarch had limited effectiveness.

“For real? Sounds pretty romantic.”

“That’s the embellished version. The power of a royal elf’s gem isn’t to be used for a senseless young girl’s dreams. The more accurate version is that possessing it is equivalent to holding a stepping stone leading to happiness. Because it contains elevated spiritual waves.”

“What does that do?”

“Creates or destroys high-density wards and spells. The higher the level of the elf creating the crystal, the—”

Youny abruptly cut off midway, his eyes widening as though he had just thought of something.

“What’s the matter?”

“I just suddenly thought of something good.” Youny beamed brightly. “Great job, Fu Xing.”

“Um, with what?”

“You really are my king chess piece, my lucky star.”

A breeze brushed past, and the leaf slipped out from his palm.

The remains of the leaf that had fallen onto the dirt immediately formed a stalk that extended upwards. Fine roots began to spread out below, burying itself into the ground and stretching towards the light. New leaves began to sprout from the branches. It was like watching a compressed film; within seconds, it transformed into a tree sapling.

Fu Xing’s eyes were wide as he watched on.

“Youny, you…” What-what kind of ability is this?

“Oh, I just slipped…” Youny smiled thinly. Before Fu Xing could speak again, Youny used his second finger to tap the space between Fu Xing’s brows.

A faint glow appeared from his forehead, then gradually faded away.

“Go back…”

Fu Xing blankly stood, then turned to leave in a daze.

Make sure to enjoy this brief moment of leisure, Fu Xing.

He could feel it; the door was about to open. The lifting of the curtains to the stage he had prepared was imminent.

The countdown begins.


TL/N: Here are images of the Taiwanese snacks (or more like street food) that were referenced and butchered by Margaret lol. They don’t really have official translated names, which is why they sound so awkward in English.

Small sausage in large sausage (大腸包小腸): 

寶島臺灣的一道街頭美食“大腸包小腸” - 雪花新闻

Frog egg [tapioca]/jelly tapioca pearls (青蛙下蛋):

青蛙下蛋的做法_台湾青蛙下蛋怎么做好吃有弹性-聚餐网

Pig’s blood cake (猪血糕):

台湾猪血糕上榜“全球最怪食物”_夜市


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2 thoughts on “FXDL V4C1

  1. Professor Samukawa has:
    – bunny familiars
    – fluffy fluffy hair
    – little rubber duckies in his bath
    – fragrant bath balls (peach I think)
    – adorable face
    – a sense of righteousness
    – bad temperament

    Liked by 1 person

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