Chapter 27: Another Group
“That’s daylight robbery!” Cui Xueren wanted to spit on Sun Yuan’s face.
How dare he try to fleece me!
“Honeydew mushrooms aren’t easy to find. 10,000 points each is a fair price!” Sun Yuan chuckled.
“The most I’m willing to pay is 1,000 points each.” Cui Xueren immediately pushed the price down by 90%.
Zhen Yu’s heart skipped a beat as she felt fortune coming their way.
“Not possible!” Sun Yuan said as he shook his head.
“Then you should just leave!” Cui Xueren snorted, “Look over there; we have many people in the volunteer group. It’s only a matter of time for us to collect enough mushrooms.”
“All the best to you then.” Sun Yuan walked off.
Zhen Yu was startled; why did you leave?
Didn’t you say that we’re going to make a killing?
“Fine, 2,000 points each. I really can’t go any higher.” Cui Xueren quoted a higher price when Sun Yuan left.
With the ease of how he obtained his points, Cui Xueren didn’t cherish them. He only offered a low price because he was a stingy person.
“Do you see the tallest mushroom over there? I’ll be resting there for the night. Feel free to visit me if you change your mind!” Sun Yuan left after saying his piece.
Zhen Yu quickly followed him. After walking some distance, she looked back and asked, “2,000 points aren’t a small amount. Why didn’t you sell the mushrooms?”
“Trojan mentioned that we only have 72 hours to clear the tower. It has only been half a day so far; hence they aren’t worried. Just wait, when they still can’t find the mushrooms tomorrow, that’s when I sell them!” Sun Yuan explained.
Those who are used to living in a city wouldn’t be able to adapt to the wilderness overnight. Besides food and water, they didn’t even have a place to shelter them from the elements.
Before Sun Yuan moved into a dorm, he spent the night at a train station to save money. He could vividly recall that feeling of destitution when he couldn’t even bear to spend money on a room for the night.
Not to mention that there was also the pressure of death from failing the tower attack.
“Let’s go; we should rest.”
A distance away, in the 10 o’clock direction, stood a huge mushroom towering into the clouds. Sun Yuan planned on setting camp there.
Typically speaking, most people would choose to stay near a notable location when they were in an unfamiliar place.
It was likely that other people would gather there too.
As expected, there were already people there when the duo arrived.
A dark-skinned fourth-year senior was currently roasting a pheasant and its fragrance filled the area.
Five female students crowded around the campfire.
“It’ll be ready soon!”
Xu Qingshan looked at Zhao Siyu with adoration.
He grew up playing in the mountains and had low self-esteem because he came from a rural area.
Other students wore Adidas and Nike while he wore something cheap. The cloth shoes on his feet were hand-sewn by his mother; it was very lame.
Although he liked Zhao Siyu, he didn’t dare to pursue her. The Haagen-Dazs she frequently eats cost more than two days of his allowance.
Xu Qingshan understood that she would always be out of his reach. However, the world was gamified, and he was randomly chosen by Silver Trojan to attempt the tower attack.
In this primeval forest, the only thing that differs from his childhood was that there were giant mushrooms instead of trees.
He was skilled at these things, from catching pheasants to setting up a campfire and even constructing a temporary shelter from the wind.
He soon caught Zhao Siyu’s attention.
The words they had exchanged in an afternoon exceeded that of the past four years of his university life.
He almost fainted with happiness.
He felt that the gods had finally blessed him with happiness.
His high vigilance over his surroundings detected movements when Sun Yuan and Zhen Yu were still more than 30 meters away. He abruptly stood up with his sharpened wooden spear in hand.
The five ladies were shocked and tensed up.
“S-Siyu don’t worry. I-I’ll protect you!”
Xu Qingshan felt a surge of adrenaline at the opportunity to play the hero. He felt as though he could easily kill a tiger.
“We’re third-year students from the faculty of foreign language.”
Sun Yuan stated his origins to indicate that he wasn’t hostile, “We’re planning to camp near this giant mushroom tonight. Is that okay with you?”
“S-sure, go ahead.” Xu Qingshan smiled at Sun Yuan’s politeness, “I don’t own this land; you can stay wherever you like.”
“Thanks!” Sun Yuan nodded and stopped 30 meters away from Xu Qingshan, “Is there anyone else nearby?”
“There is!” Xu Qingshan kept his words concise and got back to roasting his pheasant.
He couldn’t afford to burn it because it was for Zhao Siyu.
Clearing the dead branches and rotten leaves on the ground, Sun Yuan was stopped by Zhen Yu when he wanted to clear the place to start a fire.
“Senior, you should rest. Just leave the chores to me!”
Zhen Yu wasn’t dumb. She knew that she had to contribute if she didn’t want to be abandoned.
He didn’t refuse her offer. Instead, he sat down and watched Zhen Yu busy herself.
It was a test.
If she complained or displayed a lazy attitude, they would be parting ways.
Zhen Yu was a hard worker and would occasionally tease Sun Yuan when she had the chance.
As a famous streamer, she had received a fair share of teasing from her fans which led her to be well-versed in teasing others.
Xu Qingshan, who was observing from a distance, couldn’t stand it anymore.
“Schoolmate, how can you be like this?”
He was an upright man who was taught that he had to be honorable and conscientious from a young age. A lazy man like Sun Yuan who rested while the woman worked would have been clobbered in his village.
“Qingshan, leave them alone.” Zhao Siyu quickly said when she saw that Xu Qingshan was butting into other peoples’ matters.
“But the girl is too pitiful.” Xu Qingshan frowned.
“Hey, are you feeling bad for her?” A round-faced girl who sat beside Zhao Siyu teased, “She is very beautiful. If I was in your shoes, I would also want to be the hero who saves the beauty.”
Her name was Xu Jing, and she was a snarky person.
“No, I’m not. Stop talking nonsense!” Xu Qingshan’s face flushed, and he looked toward Zhao Siyu, embarrassed as he stumbled over his words to explain himself.
“I know that you’re a good man, but you shouldn’t interfere in other peoples’ business,” Zhao Siyu persuaded.
She had evaluated the guy; he was tall, handsome, and extremely calm.
Many students were flustered when thrown into an unknown location, but he wasn’t.
“Don’t offend him; he has a weapon!” Zhao Siyu was worried.
A baseball bat was sticking out from his backpack. While it poses a low threat, he also had a lethal silver spear which seemed as though it could kill with a thrust.
“Haha, I’m confident of winning if we’re talking about a fight.” Xu Qingshan flexed his biceps as he called out to Zhen Yu, “Hey, do you want to come and eat with us?”
Taking Sun Yuan to be a bad person, Xu Qingshan didn’t address him.
“Why are you inviting another person when the pheasant isn’t even enough for all of us?” Xu Jing was unhappy.
“It’s a small matter; I can go catch some more.” He had promised them that no one would go hungry with him around.
“Schoolmate, it’s a misunderstanding. I volunteered to do the chores myself; senior Sun treats me well,” Zhen Yu explained.
“Uh…” Xu Qingshan didn’t think that he would end up meddling in someone’s business. The redness that had just faded from his face crept back again; he was so embarrassed that he wanted to die.
He sat down with his head lowered and thought that everyone must be laughing at him.
“Qingshan, you should think before you act,” Zhao Siyu sighed, “Did you notice that the guy had two pheasants?”
“W-What about it?” Qingshan didn’t understand.
“It means that the girl wouldn’t be hungry if she follows him!” her gaze landed on Zhen Yu’s face, “Don’t you feel a sense of worship from how she interacts with him?”
“Really?” He couldn’t tell.
“Even the girl in question might not have realized it herself!”
Zhao Siyu was from the literature faculty and was sensitive to delicate feelings.
The most crucial point was that they were all exhausted from spending the whole afternoon searching for honeydew mushrooms.
When the lookalike mushroom exploded, throwing soil into the air, everyone was dirtied, distressed, and tired.
On the other hand, the baby-faced girl in a high school uniform was clean save for a few tears in her black thigh-high socks. Neither did she look tired.
It was telling that she had a comfortable and stress-free afternoon.
And that was only possible due to the guy there.
“That’s enough talk about them. We should quickly eat and rest up; we need the energy to search for the mushrooms tomorrow!”
Xu Jing had worked up an appetite from her activities today.
Her words dampened the mood; everyone was quiet, worried, and anxious.
It couldn’t be helped when they only managed to find a single mushroom on the first day. When would they be able to complete the game’s mission and proceed onwards at the rate they were going?
“Senior, I’ll go forage for some firewood to start a fire!”
Zhen Yu took 15 minutes to tidy up the temporary camp. They kept the center empty to start a campfire to warm themselves and keep wild animals away.
Sun Yuan praised her because he was satisfied with her work. He then stood up with two pheasants in his hand and walked towards Xu Qingshan.
“What do you want?” Xu Jing eyed him warily.
“I can’t help but notice that the six of you don’t seem to have enough to eat. Why don’t you help me forage for some firewood, and I’ll compensate you with a pheasant?” Sun Yuan suggested.
Xu Qingshan’s group was stunned and wanted to ask if Sun Yuan was right in the head.
Anyone with hands could forage for firewood, but catching pheasant required skill and luck.
Didn’t he see that even a mountain kid like Xu Qingshan only managed to capture one pheasant?
“No takebacks!” Xu Jing stood up abruptly, “Hand me the pheasant, and don’t even dream of taking it back when it’s roasted!”
“What do you take my senior for?” Zhen Yu was annoyed, “Do you need to kick up such a big fuss over one pheasant?”
It was because you didn’t know what hunger felt like!
Xu Jing lamented in her heart.
“Schoolmate, you’ll cook these two pheasants; how about it?” Sun Yuan looked toward Xu Qingshan, “You won’t suffer a loss with this deal, right?”
“No loss! None!” Xu Qingshan stood up and wiped his hands on his trousers, “No worries, leave it to me. I’ll wash and defeather the pheasant such that there wouldn’t even be a single feather left!”
“Quick, come on, let’s get to work!” Xu Jing pressed.
Only four of the five girls stood up. The last one didn’t move because she was injured. A bloodied cloth could be seen wrapped around her right hand.
It was apparent that she was caught up in an explosion when picking mushrooms.
“Zhao Caiwei, get up and go gather some firewood!” Xu Jing ordered.
“Forget it, just let her rest; she’s injured.” Zhao Siyu sighed.
Xu Jing wasn’t happy.
Why did she get to have special treatment because she was injured?
Zhao Caiwei’s injuries resulted from her own carelessness; it wasn’t as if she was harmed by someone else.
She should be happy that they were willing to feed and bring her along.
Sun Yuan, who wanted to learn how to wash and defeather a pheasant from Xu Qingshan, frowned at these words. While looking at Xu Jing, he said, “Zhen Yu, you don’t have to look for firewood. You should stay here and keep an eye on our stuff, make sure not to lose them!”
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