Fang Lei couldn’t have imagined that the gift Yan Yue mentioned would be a cat. Of course, the gift was Yan Yue’s unilateral words and the choice still belonged to the big grey cat.
Fang Lei looked curiously at the grey cat that was lying in the courtyard, squinting his eyes in the sun. The grey cat looked lazy and very relaxed. “You say his name is Xiaohui?” As Fang Lei talked to Yan Yue, he intended to reach out to pet the cat. Fang Lei had just stretched out his hand when Xiaohui, who had seemed quite drowsy a moment ago, suddenly waved his front paw. Fortunately, Fang Lei’s many years of working as a police officer counted for something, so he dodged it very quickly. He looked at the cat, who had turned from leisurely to alert in a second, and his tone became a bit odd, “Where did this Master Cat come from?”
Yan Yue was amused by his tone and chuckled. “Picked him up in the village.” He focused on emphasising the words “picked up” and added lightly, “Xiaohui even dared to fight Dahei.”
Fang Lei’s eyes immediately lit up. From Dahei to Xiaohei, those who could be picked up by Lu Lingxi were not ordinary animals. Especially if this cat dared to fight Dahei; it was quite impressive. Unlike other people who liked to keep docile pets, Fang Lei thought it was better for his pet to be more powerful because of his special occupation. Of course, it would be better if a pet was as docile in front of the master as Dahei, and even more powerful in front of the enemy.
Yan Yue’s words aroused Fang Lei’s interest. He simply moved a small bench, sat in front of Xiaohui and asked Yan Yue for a slice of ham to tease Xiaohui.
Xiaohui glanced at Fang Lei with contempt, showing no interest whatsoever in the ham he was holding.
Lu Lingxi and Uncle Li returned from feeding the dogs and both laughed at the scene in front of them. Uncle Li kindly reminded Fang Lei, “This cat is very fierce, be careful of it scratching you.”
Fang Lei smiled and waved his hand, “It’s okay, I’m not afraid of scratching.”
Uncle Li shook his head helplessly, thinking that he couldn’t understand the young people nowadays.
Leaving Fang Lei to guard the yard, Yan Yue and Lu Lingxi followed Uncle Li to the big willow tree. Uncle Li circled around the willow tree and picked out a few branches that were 2-3 years old and instructed Yan Yue to cut them off. These branches would be the cuttings that Lu Lingxi intended to transplant to the Qiu Tian plant nursery.
As the power of nature wasn’t easy to obtain and Lu Lingxi’s limited power of nature was used to purify the soil in Fengcheng City, the Qiu Tian plant nursery had not been purified. Initially, when the area was re-planned, Yan Yue had dug up a lot of soil from Lingshui Village, including some for the vegetable greenhouse. However, this didn’t have a lasting effect and Lu Lingxi couldn’t wait for the purified soil from Lingshui Village to slowly expand. He was inspired by the eelgrass ecological community and wondered if he could form a whole new community of willow trees over there at the Qiu Tian plant nursery.
After cutting the branches, Lu Lingxi cut them all to 15-17cm, planning to make a trip to the Qiu Tian plant nursery now. He and Yan Yue went back to the small courtyard, where Xiao Shi had brought Ah Huang to see Fang Lei. When he saw Xiaohui, Xiao Shi immediately became nervous and commanded Ah Huang to hurry and chase the cat away.
Fang Lei stopped him and asked him what was going on. Xiao Shi angrily told him about the bullying of the village dogs by Xiaohui. Fang Lei’s eyes lit up after hearing about Xiaohui’s valiant deeds and he made up his mind to lure Xiaohui to follow him home no matter what. When Xiao Shi heard that Fang Lei wanted to keep the grey cat, he was furious. This cat was so bad, always bullying the village dogs, and Uncle Fang actually wanted to keep it?
His little face puffed out in anger while Xiaohui’s golden eyes narrowed and his whiskers curled slightly as he leaped gently onto Fang Lei’s shoulder and squatted there safely, meowing provocatively at Xiao Shi.
Fang Lei: “……”
Lu Lingxi didn’t know what to say when he saw the scene in front of him. Yan Yue smiled, thinking that Xiao Shi had accidentally done Fang Lei a favour. If Fang Lei had to trick the big grey cat with that ham sausage, who knows how long it would take. But with Xiao Shi stimulating him, the big grey cat looked at Fang Lei with interest and got closer to him.
Yan Yue smiled and shook his head, telling Fang Lei that they were now going to the Qiu Tian plant nursery. The plant nursery here had Uncle Li, so Fang Lei could stay here with Xiao Shi.
“I don’t want to stay with Uncle Fang, I want to go to the plant nursery too.” Xiao Shi immediately drew a clear line with Fang Lei. He didn’t want to be with that bad cat.
Fang Lei didn’t know whether to laugh or to cry when he heard Xiao Shi’s “the friend of my enemy is my enemy” words. He reached out and rubbed Xiao Shi’s head, saying with a smile, “Then I’ll go to the plant nursery and have a look too.”
Xiao Shi looked at Fang Lei, pouting, and Fang Lei laughed.
Yu Xiaojuan was worried that Xiao Shi would cause trouble for Lu Lingxi and tried to stop Xiao Shi from going to the plant nursery. Lu Lingxi put in a good word for Xiao Shi, thinking that it was time for Xiao Shi to go out and let off some steam since he had been a good boy at home recently.
Lu Lingxi didn’t mind, so Yu Xiaojuan stopped saying anything but still dragged Xiao Shi aside before letting him go and told him not to make any trouble outside. Yan Yue and Lu Lingxi got into the car first; Xiao Shi wanted to go with Lu Lingxi but was carried by Fang Lei into his car.
“One car can seat four people. Count Yan Yue, Xiao Xi plus Dahei, there is no space left to squeeze you and Ah Huang.”
Xiao Shi puffed up in anger and kept quiet, pouting and glaring hard at Xiaohui on Fang Lei’s shoulder. From the time they said they were going out, Xiaohui hadn’t moved and looked like he was going to go along too.
Fang Lei amusedly carried Xiao Shi to the passenger side and rushed both Ah Huang and Xiaohui to the back. The cat and the dog each occupied one side of the car, confronting each other warily. Fang Lei looked in the rearview mirror and shook his head in amusement.
The Qiu Tian nursery wasn’t too far away from Lingshui; it was only a thirty minute drive. The first place they passed when they arrived there was the Yongchun vegetable greenhouse. When Tiger saw Lu Lingxi and Yan Yue coming over, he greeted them with a smile. Lu Lingxi entrusted Xiao Shi and Fang Lei to Tiger, and he and Yan Yue went to the nursery. The nursery workers had already dug the holes in advance. They were all experts at planting trees, so there was no need for Lu Lingxi to intervene at all.
When the last cutting was inserted, the white panel floated out and a dozen green dots of light flashed on the panel, with a green line faintly linking these dots one by one. Lu Lingxi’s heart moved slightly, knowing that the next step should be to form an ecological community of willows. Sure enough, as the green dots of light were all strung together, he felt a jolt of something in his mind. The soil within the green circle of light seemed to be alive and began to change, turning from light brown to transparent little by little in front of Lu Lingxi’s eyes.
“Willow ecological community formed, soil purification successful, reward plant hearts +500”
Lu Lingxi breathed a sigh of relief and chose “yes” without hesitation to the panel displaying the question of whether to choose the plants of common origin to evolve homogeneously. He remembered that the first time he tried to establish a new ecological community after the eelgrass ecological community had been formed was a failure, and it had not succeeded until some time later. He was a little worried that the same thing might happen with the willow ecological community, but perhaps because the branches were cut directly from the old willow tree, it succeeded the first time.
This would also mean that the willow ecological community could replace the power of nature in the purification of the soil. And different willow ecological communities could also be linked together to form a higher level ecological community. Lu Lingxi was somewhat impressed. If he established a few more willow ecological communities around Fengcheng before spring began, wouldn’t the entire soil of Fengcheng be purified?
Yan Yue guessed Lu Lingxi’s thoughts at a glance and asked in a low voice, “Is it done?”
Lu Lingxi let out an “en”.
Yan Yue reached out and rubbed Lu Lingxi’s hair, bringing him into his arms and saying softly, “Does Xiao Xi want to just stick willows all over Fengcheng now?”
Lu Lingxi’s eyes widened in surprise and he nodded obediently.
Yan Yue laughed softly and patted Lu Lingxi’s back soothingly, saying softly, “The improvement of Fengcheng’s environment is certainly a good thing, but we need to take our time. If the change in environment is too sudden, the secret of the panel’s existence will probably be discovered soon.”
Lu Lingxi understood what Yan Yue was saying and leaned into Yan Yue’s embrace without speaking. After a short while, the pattern on the panel changed again. Two green lights, one large and one small, lit up, and a light green line extended a little bit from the spot in front of Lu Lingxi to the spot in the distance. The moment the two light spots were connected together, the image of the big willow tree appeared on the panel.
Plant name: Second-class weeping willow
Plant needs: none
Plant vitality: very high
Plant status: Second-level peak
Plant evolution conditions triggered, do you choose to evolve?