When Lu Lingxi and Yan Yue arrived at Lingshui Village, they were just in time to see Uncle Li carrying bones to feed the dogs in the plant nursery.
Before the car could even stop, Xiao Baiwan sniffed and excitedly pawed the car window, looking in the direction of the courtyard. As soon as Yan Yue opened the car door, Xiao Baiwan rushed out like an arrow, his figure as fast as a black lightning, straight to the bones in Uncle Li’s hands.
Uncle Li was startled by Xiao Baiwan’s presence and hesitantly held the basin, not knowing whether to put it down or not. Xiao Bainwan couldn’t take his eyes off of Uncle Li and his saliva was dripping all over the ground.
Lu Lingxi ran over immediately, couldn’t help but feel soft in his heart and told Uncle Li to feed Xiao Baiwan this pot of bones first. During this period, Xiao Baiwan was eating vegetables every day, and it was estimated that he was craving for meat. With Lu Lingxi’s words, Xiao Baiwan ate three pots of bones in one breath and ate the dinner of all the dogs in the plant nursery.
Uncle Li looked surprised: “This Tibetan mastiff is too good at eating, right? You really can’t afford to raise such a Tibetan mastiff without money.”
Xiao Baiwan squatted lazily at Lu Lingxi’s feet after eating and drinking, and rubbed against Lu Lingxi’s body affectionately like Dahei. Lu Lingxi originally wanted to say that he had eaten too much, but Xiao Baiwan’s big hairy face was really cute to look at like this. Lu Lingxi unconsciously cocked the corners of his mouth and touched Xiao Baiwan’s head like he did with Dahei.
After dinner, Lu Lingxi and Yan Yue discussed the idea of going to the river to dig up some eelgrass. There wasn’t much wind this evening, and it wasn’t cold outside at all. After helping Lu Lingxi put on his down jacket, Yan Yue took Lu Lingxi by one hand and carried a small bucket in the other, and slowly wandered with Dahei to the Lingshui River.
Xiao Baiwan had been suffocating at home for the past few days, so when he arrived at the river, he took off on his own. Lu Lingxi didn’t notice it before, but now he realised that Xiao Baiwan was really fast; in a short while he couldn’t be seen. Lu Lingxi called out from afar to Xiao Baiwan, who ran in a circle and came back. Seeing that Xiao Baiwan was having fun, Lu Lingxi stroked Dahei’s head and said, “Dahei, you should go too.”
Dahei gave a low bark and squatted calmly by Lu Lingxi’s side. As long as it was outside, he would not leave Lu Lingxi easily.
“Good Dahei.” Lu Lingxi understood what Dahei meant and complimented him with a smile. While he was talking to Dahei, Yan Yue had already taken out all the tools from the small bucket. Lu Lingxi followed him with the flashlight, shining a light on the ice and finding a place where the ice looked relatively thin.
“How about here?”
Yan Yue nodded as he took a small hammer and knocked.
The ice was soon broken and the water beneath had been purified, shining with a sparkling silver glow under the moonlight. As the water surged, the stems and leaves of the eelgrass in the water stretched out in a very graceful manner. The two of them had prepared their tools before they came, picked the eelgrass in the river and shovelled it into a bucket with a small shovel, taking the mud and the plants together. Yan Yue was now very familiar with this kind of work and did it very smoothly.
The two of them didn’t return to the courtyard but walked in the direction of Songjia. Lu Lingxi wanted to test to see if another ecological community of eelgrass could be formed upstream. If it was possible, then the section of the Lingshui River from Songjia Village to Lingshui Village could be purified without transplanting too much of the evolved eelgrass. As long as this section of the river was within the entire ecological community, the eelgrass within it would naturally choose to evolve homogeneously, which would also save the effort of cultivating eelgrass.
As they made their way upstream, the water quality in the Lingshui River got worse and worse. The plastic factory at Songjia had been dismantled, but the pollution from before had already been caused. The whole river was black from Songjia onwards; even if the water from upstream kept washing away, it was only a difference in the shade of black. Especially in winter, a layer of ice was formed on the surface of the river, and all the black sewage was frozen. The bottom of the river couldn’t be seen through the ice, which was somewhat creepy.
They heard from Uncle Li that since the last poisoning, it was as if the people of Songjia had realised the importance of the environment overnight. Even if the city didn’t grant money to purify the Lingshui River this time, the people of Songjia Village would have raised money to find someone to purify it themselves. They were really afraid.
Thinking of this Lu Lingxi stopped in his tracks, “Let’s do it here.”
He and Yan Yue were now out of the boundaries of Lingshui Village and about a few hundred metres away from the first eelgrass ecological colony. Yan Yue quickly cut the ice, and Lu Lingxi took a small shovel like last time and cleared away the stones and broken glass near the area where he was going to transplant the eelgrass, and shovelled the silt nearby to dig a few suitable holes. One, two, three, four, five… The eelgrass in the bucket was evenly distributed along the bank of the river. The white panel floated out and two lines of green letters showed below.
Eelgrass ecological community formed, water purification +50%, bonus plant heart +500
Choose to evolve the plants of the common origin homogeneously?
Without hesitation, Lu Lingxi quickly chose yes.
When the panel floated out, there was a faint scent of grass and leaves coming from Lu Lingxi’s body. Yan Yue looked at him with a gentle gaze and asked, “Is it done?”
Lu Lingxi nodded, a little excited. His guess was right, this would save them a lot of trouble. As the thought flashed, Lu Lingxi was about to put away the panel when he suddenly froze as a new change appeared on the panel. The two eelgrass ecological communities were displayed on the panel together. As with the changes in the big willow tree last time, two green dots, one large and one small, represented different eelgrass communities. A green line linked the two together, and the newly formed eelgrass ecological community started expanding in both directions at a speed visible to the naked eye.
Lu Lingxi’s eyes widened in surprise as an idea vaguely appeared in his mind.
“What?” Yan Yue saw Lu Lingxi’s strangeness.
Lu Lingxi thought about it and decided to try again. “Big Brother Yan, let’s go back and dig up a few more eelgrass.”
An hour later, Yan Yue parked the car by the river. This time the two of them were farther away from Lingshui Village, and if they had to walk, they would probably walk until the early hours of the morning. The two cracked open the ice like before, one, two, three, four, five… The last eelgrass was planted and a new eelgrass ecological community was formed. After the panel’s reward prompt, a third green dot appeared in front of Lu Lingxi’s eyes. Lu Lingxi vaguely caught a thread and told Yan Yue about his guesses.
The two of them went back and forth to Lingshui Village again and again, from Lingshui Village all the way to Songjia, forming seven eelgrass ecological communities along the way. When the last eelgrass ecological community appeared, seven green dots of light lit up on the panel and the complete Lingshui River appeared on the panel.
Primary river ecological community formed, reward plant hearts +1000, power of nature +5.
Lu Lingxi’s eyes lit up and his sight was quickly drawn to the five points of the power of nature. He still owed the panel five points of the power of nature, so he finally had a chance to pay it off. Sure enough, the panel quickly deducted the five points of the power of nature reward, and at the bottom right of the panel, the power of nature marker changed from a red -5 to a green 0.
Lu Lingxi smiled and again looked at the Lingshui River. Previously, the panel had shown that the colour of the Lingshui River had been black, but with the appearance of the green light dots, the black colour of the river gradually faded away and a light blue undertone faintly appeared. Lu Lingxi guessed that this process was the purification of the Lingshu River, and when the panel showed that the colour had changed back to blue, it meant that the purification of the Lingshui River was complete.
He let out a slight sigh of relief and put away the panel. With the purification of the Lingshui River and the reward of the power of nature, Lu Lingxi had solved two problems in one night, and relaxed and fell asleep on his way back.
He slept straight to 8 o’clock in the morning. When Lu Lingxi got up, Yan Yue was no longer next to him. He faintly heard Yan Yue talking to Uncle Li in the courtyard, seemingly asking whose land was across the Lingshui River.
Lu Lingxi put on his clothes and washed up briefly. He didn’t bother Yan Yue but went around to the courtyard. He intended to go to the plant nursery to have a look. After turning a corner, Lu Lingxi suddenly stopped in his tracks. Not far ahead, Dahei was nimbly biting Xiao Baiwan, easily tearing a mouthful of hair with every bite.
Xiao Baiwan roared angrily, but Dahei, with his quick body, didn’t fight Xiao Baiwan hard at all, but kept biting off wisps of his hair.
Lu Lingxi: “……”
He seemed to have some understanding of what was going on with Xiao Baiwan losing his hair.
The first one to notice Lu Lingxi was Dahei, who immediately stopped halfway through his lunge and moved in Lu Lingxi’s direction with a bashful frown, looking guilty as if he had been caught doing something bad.
Lu Lingxi flicked his finger at his head and waved at Xiao Baiwan.
Xiao Baiwan rushed over, aggrieved, and Lu Lingxi took a look at Xiao Baiwan. The condition of his body was exactly the same as when he lost his hair a few days ago. This discovery left Lu Lingxi speechless for a long time, and when he thought that Xiao Baiwan had been forced by him to eat vegetables for more than a week, Lu Lingxi didn’t know whether to laugh or to cry. He finally understood why he had felt strange about Dahei and Xiao Baiwan getting along before.
Dahei twitched his ears and let out a whimper.
Lu Lingxi let go of Xiao Baiwan and patted Dahei’s head in amusement. “No more bullying Xiao Baiwan in the future.”
Dahei nuzzled his head against Lu Lingxi’s palm. Lu Lingxi’s heart was soft, and there was nothing he could do about Dahei. However, he quickly thought of one thing, “Did Big Brother Yan know about this long ago?”
Dahei shook his head rather righteously, not betraying Yan Yue.
Lu Lingxi didn’t believe it and scratched Dahei’s chin, “Don’t think I don’t know, Dahei, you’re just lying to me along with Big Brother Yan.”
“Who’s lying to you?” Yan Yue asked with a smile as he walked over from afar.
Lu Lingxi glared at him and held out his hand; in his palm was a strand of hair that Dahei had bitten off.
Yan Yue stopped, the smile on his face deepened and he laughed aloud.