“I have parents… Don’t kill me.”
Fan Xiangnan endured the tingling on his scalp and insisted, “Even if he is an orphan, your training plan may not be implemented for the time being. Federal regulations require that indigenous people from marginal stars must enter the Federal Welfare Institution first and receive a one-month adaptation study. After that, they need to enter a federally designated school to receive language and basic compulsory education. Otherwise, they will not be able to get an official Federal Resident Identity Certificate.”
Without formal resident status, everything that Chu Rong planned would be all for naught. Although the Chu family had the ability to give an indigenous person a formal identity, anyone who understood the chief and the Chu family knew that they would not take advantage of their privileges.
Chu Rong leaned back in his chair and began to be impatient— how could it be so troublesome to raise a bald chicken? A boy who was identified as having a third-degree disability was thrown into a federal school to live and study with a lot of other indigenous people with unknown temperaments and tendencies. He could almost imagine that the bald chicken was pushed out and bullied by his other classmates because of his shape, height, and qualifications.
“Let Lin Zhen quickly figure out his life experience and focus on determining whether he has any relatives alive. If not, I remember that there are many welfare agencies under the name of my elder brother. I will give him an adoption status and raise him in the Chu family’s headquarters first.” He was upset to compromise.
Fan Xiangnan looked at him and cruelly added, “Federal regulations state that the establishment of an adoptive relationship must be approved by the adoptee and cannot be coerced or deceived.”
Chu Rong’s face turned dark. He tapped his fingers on the table and asked coldly, “Do you think I’m the kind of person who bullies children?”
Yes… It seemed that the chief was determined to coerce the child to leave his past behind. Fan Xiangnan fell silent and took out his communicator to send a message to Lin Zhen.
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Ckys Hbkuy, obs eked’v jdso vbyv bl oyp yzalyeu clkdt osaakle ycswv, zssjle yv vbl dlo osaep zlyadle vseyu yde vbl ynvwyz rknvwalp clbkde vblx. Tl plnalvzu vktbvldle bkp qkdtlap, zssjle yv Nkd Hbld yp dsaxyzzu yp rsppkczl, rskdvle vs sdl sq vbl rknvwalp, yde ypjle kd yd wdpjkzzle Usxxsd Nydtwytl, “Ya. Nkd, obyv kp vbkp ‘czynj bszl’?”
Nkd Hbld, obs oyp nblnjkdt bkp nsxxwdknyvsa yde fwpv alye Wyd Dkydtdyd’p xlppytl, tzydnle yv vbl rknvwal. Tl rwv y zktbv caykd kdvs Ckys Hbkuy’p byde yde ydpolale, “G czynj bszl kp y jkde sq nspxkn nbyddlz vbyv yrrlyap aydesxzu. Mbl alypsd qsa kvp qsaxyvksd kp wdjdsod. Rv’p hlau eydtlaswp, vblalqsal, kq usw ldnswdvla kv, usw xwpv kxxlekyvlzu pvyu yoyu yde plde kdqsaxyvksd qsa blzr yde zsnyvksd vs vbl ywvbsakvu. Zsw nyd wpl uswa zktbv caykd vs kdiwkal ycswv kvp prlnkqkn elpnakrvksd. Rq usw esd’v wdelapvyde, oakvl kv esod yde ypj xl vsxsaaso. R byhl psxlvbkdt lzpl vs es, ps R’zz lde vseyu’p nzypp yblye sq vkxl. Nlv Uyrvykd Myd vyjl usw vs zwdnb. Fll usw vsxsaaso.” Gqvla rwvvkdt yoyu vbl vlynbkdt xyvlakyzp, bl zlqv vbl pxyzz nzyppassx kd y bwaau.
Ckys Hbkuy oyvnble bkx zlyhl, zssjle esod yv vbl rbupknyz rknvwal sq vbl czynj bszl, tsv wr, yde oldv cynj vs vbl assx okvb bkp zktbv caykd.
Gqvla nsdqkaxkdt vbyv vblal oyp ds sdl lzpl yaswde, bl pyv sd vbl qzssa. Tl srldle vbl zktbv caykd ynnsaekdt vs vbl xlvbse Nkd Hbld vywtbv bkx clqsal, vurle kd vbl osae “czynj bszl,” yde nzknjle plyanb.
Gnnsaekdt vs bkp zlyadkdt rastalpp, Nkd Hbld zkxkvle bkp wpl sq zktbv caykd vs vbl nyvltsau sq “nbkzeald’p xsel,” ps vbl rsr-wr plyanb alpwzv oyp y nyavssd-vlmv hlapksd vbyv nyvlap vs nbkzeald’p hsnycwzyau zlhlz, obknb nyd cl wdelapvsse lhld cu cltkddlap sq Usxxsd Nydtwytl zkjl Ckys Hbkuy.
Mbl plyanb alpwzv oyp dsv zsdt cwv vbl lmrzydyvksd oyp hlau elvykzle. Rv nswze cl pwxxyakgle yp qszzsop:
G czynj bszl kp y nspxkn nbyddlz vbyv yrrlyap kaaltwzyazu, oblalkd psxl lhkz kdplnvp okzz nsxl swv sq kv. Mblpl kdplnvp okzz jkzz obld vblu ldnswdvla rlsrzl. Mblu yal rsolaqwz yde byhl lmvalxlzu bktb alrasewnvksd yckzkvu. Mblu yal vbl ldlxklp sq yzz bwxyd clkdtp. Rv’p clpv vs pvyu yoyu qasx vblx yde nyzz vbl rszknl kxxlekyvlzu yqvla ldnswdvlakdt vblx.
Rd pbsav, czynj bszlp yal dsv tsse vbkdtp yde vbl nalyvwalp vbyv nsxl swv sq czynj bszlp yal dsv tsse vbkdtp lkvbla! Mblu yal vbl elyezu ldlxklp sq xydjkde! Gqvla pllkdt vblx, vblu xwpv cl kxxlekyvlzu lzkxkdyvle yde xwpv dsv cl jlrv yzkhl.
Qiao Zhiya’s face turned pale. His small face was tensed, his lips were tightly pressed, and his hands formed fists.
A black hole was not a magic array, but a passage for evil creatures… Through these few days of lessons, he had basically figured out the general situation of this place— Galaxy, universe, spiritual power, physique, mecha, various kinds of incredible technology and machinery… Now, even the black hole that brought him here had an explanation and he could no longer deceive himself.
He couldn’t go back, really could’t go back. Black holes were things that appear irregularly and only evil bugs would come out of them… Then what was he? What was the black hole that brought him over and appeared in the magic continent? So here, was he considered a monster that came out of a black hole?
…If the White-Haired Monster and his party knew his origin, would they kill him?
His nose turned sore and tears flowed out uncontrollably.
He raised his hand and wiped his eyes, trying hard to endure, but finally couldn’t hold back, shaking his shoulders and crying depressively and uncontrollably.
So was it really impossible to go back? He could never see his father and mother again?
He pulled up his sleeves again and wiped his tears, further reddening his eyes. He condensed magic power and once again attempted to draw blood on the floor for the magic array. He then pulled out a piece of hair, cut his wrist, and dripped blood on it. He knelt down in front of the magic array and put on a pious posture as if offering a sacrifice.
The soft light rose, the magic array took shape, and the hair began to spin frantically after fusing with the blood. He closed his eyes and chanted a spell praising his hometown.
The strand of hair spun without wind and the magic elements were flying wildly in the air. The magic breath from home seemed to come from across the distant time and space. In the next second, all the beautiful and dreamlike scenes disappear, the magic array failed, and only a smear of burnt ashes was left in front of him.
The spell came to an abrupt end.
He opened his eyes, stared at the ground blankly, leaning on the bed frame weakly, and the brilliance in his eyes dimmed a little bit.
Someone suddenly knocked on the door and Captain Tan1[T/N: I’m still unsure if his whole name is Tan Shenwei, so I played safe and just called him Captain Tan]‘s figure appeared at the doorway. Qiao Zhiya turned his head to look his way and met the other’s kind and smiling eyes. His body moved, unconsciously leaning forward, but his head slowly dropped, and he whispered, “No, I’m not a monster. I have parents… Don’t kill me.”
“Qiao, it’s time for lunch. Today—” Captain Tan glanced over his wrist. His expression changed. He quickly strode over and grasped his bleeding wrist. He took out a bandage and asked worriedly, “What’s the matter? Why are you injured? What happened?”
Qiao Zhiya looked up at his expression full of concern and remembered the White-Haired Monster and his people who treated him kindly during this time. He moved his hand, his dazed thoughts slowly straightened, and his eyes became firm— It didn’t matter, as long as he was alive, he could always find a way back home. There were also these people who sincerely helped him. He promised that he would not hurt them. He would work hard to keep this rare friendship and goodwill forever. Dwarves were not a race that would bit the hand that fed them.
“Qiao?” Seeing that he didn’t respond, Captain Tan became more worried.
He returned to his senses, smiled, and shook his head. He shook his bandaged wrist, and replied, “It’s okay. I just accidentally scratched it. Thank you.”
Captain Tan saw that he was back to normal and finally felt relieved, Silly. He smiled back, got up, and said, “Let’s go, I’ll take you to lunch. Your wrist is injured. The training plan in the afternoon has to be changed.”
He then got up, glanced over the ashes on the floor, and his eyelashes trembled. He turned his head and walked out of the room without looking back.
Lin Zhen presented Qiao Zhiya’s learning results during this period in front of Chu Rong. He said in detail, “Through these few days of teaching and communication, I have probably figured out his growth environment— a gentle and humorous father, a warm and reliable mother, a united and friendly tribe. Generally, his living environment is relatively simple and primitive. His knowledge of electronic products is basically blank. He does not know spiritual power, does not understand physical skills and ancient martial arts, calls the mecha a metal giant, and has never seen a cleaning robot. He didn’t know the location of his hometown. Particularly, he was instinctively guarded against this type of question and refused to answer in detail. In addition, he seemed to have forgotten the process of being caught by the thieves and transported here. He only remembers mining after he was caught.”
Chu Rong narrowed his eyes, tapped on the desk, and asked, “In other words, you didn’t find out whether his parents or relatives are still alive?”
Lin Zhen paused as he didn’t expect the chief to focus on this. He nodded: “Yes, I can’t find out. When he talked about his parents, he was very vague. He only said that his parents had gone away, but he couldn’t tell where his parents were going.”
“Are there any clues according to the other slaves?”
“No.” Lin Zhen frowned and replied, “These mine thieves sneaked in from the Empire. Most of the slaves caught were deceived with the pretext of helping them migrate into the Federation. The composition of the members is very complicated and there are also criminals— there are gold diggers and helpers who do illegal activities. Only a small number of Federal residents are innocently captured. I personally think that Qiao is not a native of an unknown planet, but lived in seclusion from a remote planet.”
Chu Rong looked down and pondered for a while, then asked, “Do any of the thieves know his origin?”
“No, not only that, other slaves don’t seem to know his origins and no one knew anything about him. On the contrary, several mine robbers have mentioned that there is a “kid” among the slaves, but they can’t tell where he came from. Because of the specificity of the red tin mine, the life span of the slaves is not long, so the peripheral thief members will regularly catch new slaves to come back to replenish blood. The personnel flow is too large and the management is very chaotic. No detailed records have been made and the clues are broken.”
Fan Xiangnan who was listening on the side did not expect this to be the case. He frowned and said, “That is, unless Qiao speaks, no one can know his origin now?”
“That’s true.” Lin Zhen nodded.
Fan Xiangnan was silent and looked towards Chu Rong— to be the chief officer’s subordinate, one must first have the status of a Federal resident, and second, the status of a legal military soldier. However, the Federal Military Academy and the recruitment office will never accept a person of an unknown origin. The chief’s training plan would probably end soon.
Chu Rong naturally thought of what he thought of. The hand he placed on the tabletop was tapping regularly. His expression calm and indifferent, as if he didn’t care about these things at all, but the aura on his body was a little oppressive. Just when Fan Xiangnan hesitated whether to say something to comfort him, Chu Rong finally spoke, his tone always cold.
“Just ask him, I want a clear response.”
Lin Zhen stepped forward, put away the results of his research, and responded with unconditional obedience to his orders.
Fan Nan sighed in his heart and took the initiative to open the door for him to leave
“Wait.” Chu Rong suddenly called them again, looked down for a few seconds, stood up, and said, “I will ask him myself. The mine thieves and slaves also need retrial. The bugs living in the sewer are not honest.”
How could the bald chicken he fancy be turned into a dangerous person of unknown origin by a group of mine thieves and hinder his bright future? This is a provocation to his dignity!
He walked away like a wind, leaving Fan Xiangnan and Lin Zhen looking at each other.
“Sir… cares about that Qiao?” Lin Zhen asked, frowning.
“No… it may also be considered caring about another self.” Fan Xiangnan sighed, patted Lin Zhen on the shoulder, and left the meeting room.
Lin Zhen was taken aback, thinking of Qiao’s crippled aptitude who had no spiritual power but had a physique of S. He also recalled the chief’s experience of returning to the peak with only physical strength after his spiritual strength was contaminated. He fell into deep thought.