As the setting sun disappeared into the horizon, the ocean was once again calm. A long time passed and no sound could be heard. The waves brought in many of the spider crabs’ corpses, and occasionally, there were even living ones with their claws and pincers ripped off.
These, for the ability users, were all great targets.
“Carry one back for Professor Lin… What’s the deal with your ability? Can’t you even freeze a corpse?” Captain Hao anxiously said. He had no intention to spend the night there.
A few people scrambled for the beach, carrying off one of the dead spider crabs as quickly as possible with the help of their abilities. This corpse-filled shore was indeed horrifying; even the stench carried by the wind felt like an ominous sign.
There was a merman amongst the sea monsters…
This sea monster named ‘Siren’ was capable of raising humongous waves— perhaps the legends of it bringing forth storms were actually true!
A very strange crab was also amongst this group of sea monsters.
Furthermore, they’d managed to hear several new names apart from the ‘Thaumas’, ‘Siren’, ‘Eurybia’, ‘Abyss’, and ‘Ceto’ that they had on record, but the only clear sound had been a ‘Xiayi’. All of the ability users, including Captain Hao, were slightly dazed. Though they didn’t see the battle that had occurred underwater, it was clear that the sea monsters had won. They were strong enough to kill so many spider crabs with merely a group of less than ten creatures.
Everything that had taken place was almost beyond their wildest imaginations— how was it possible for these ability users to remain calm?
Without daring much of a second glance back, they hurried away.
Abyss was half-floating and half-swimming, completely exhausted, with tiny gashes littering its body. Eurybia wasn’t in any better state— this was the unfortunate reality that came with being physically gigantic. The oarfish was doing a lot better though. Gululu, meanwhile, was devoid of any injuries, and it continued to wave its pincers impressively.
The only thing was that it was now on the back of Thaumas as the squid had no energy to carry it around.
【This is insane. By the time I got over, you guys had already finished.】
The sea turtle mumbled, still agitated. Those damn spider crabs had almost killed it! Thaumas had been leisurely wandering the oceans for many years and no longer had any natural predators, nor did it fear anything. This time, however, the sea turtle was really caught in terrible luck!
【Killed most of them. Maybe a few have run away, but there will not be such a large group within the next three to five years.】
Siren casually swam over onto Thaumas’ back. A number of scales had been scraped off his tail, bleeding red at the missing areas. A long gash had also ripped through it at one point, while one of the sash-like fins on his elbow had broken a protruding bone, and the fins on his wrist had been completely ripped off— even sea monsters needed to pay a price in order to annihilate that group of spider crabs.
No expression of pain was evident on Siren’s face, and all Abyss did was flip over in the water because it was uncomfortable. For violent and wild creatures, a body full of injuries was nothing much to worry about. They just needed to leave this unclean part of the ocean and wait for the wounds to heal on their own.
Being covered in cuts and bruises was common in nature, whether it be for hunting, escaping, or even attempting to attract a mate.
In fact, upon seeing Xia Yi come close, Siren happily reached out his arms and hugged the human around the neck.
If it wasn’t for Xia Yi, this definitely would’ve been a dragging and troublesome massacre; there was no way it would have turned out as simple as it did. Each of the sea monsters understood this, and despite being tired, they were all quite exhilarated. Standing at the top of the marine food chain, it was rare to find a species that dared to attack sea monsters.
Panting slightly, Siren curved his body tightly around Xia Yi.
There was no deeper meaning behind his actions, just like how a pride of lions would resume their relaxed play after chasing away an intruder, or a pack of wolves would help to lick each other’s wounds…
At the moment, Siren just felt that the sensation of hugging was this good.
It was more comfortable than hugging Abyss’ tentacles, softer than Thaumas’ back, not as flat as Ceto (no duh), and it was warm. Unlike how there was a dense layer of water between them in the deep sea, his fingers were now touching skin, his neck against the other’s, and their chests so close together he could feel the rhythm of life… once… twice… their hearts beating from two different tempos into one— it was a magical process.
【This is mine, only mine…】Siren murmured and tightened his arms even more.
Seeing Siren’s current state, Xia Yi had come over out of panic, wanting to take a closer look at the merman. Instead, he ended up having the breath squeezed out of him. Turning his head, Xia Yi noticed that the deep wounds stretched across Siren’s smooth back were still oozing crimson blood, the red droplets dissipating in the water the second they were formed.
Xia Yi was a little lost on what to do. Where was he supposed to find hemostatic drugs and gauze in the ocean?
And also, could injuries be exposed to water? Especially when this was salt water?!
His mind was in a flurry, paying no attention to what Siren was saying.
Only then did Siren snap back to reality. Frowning, the merman peered at the shredded fins on his elbow before raising his arm and gently licking the wound. His rouge tongue combined with a careless raise of his eyes, and Siren’s bewitching charm almost caused Xia Yi to lose his cool.
Meanwhile, the Lion’s Mane Jellyfish came up beside the octopus.
Abyss immediately let out a howl.
【Nereus, keep your stingers further away! They’re poking my injuries!】
【Eh, but wouldn’t that stop them from hurting?】The jellyfish’s venom directly affected the nerves and had a numbing effect.
【Piss off! Will you be dragging me when I can’t swim then?】
Thaumas lifted its head and looked at the squid, which was swimming rather slowly. Since everyone had come to save it, the sea turtle felt a little embarrassed. Still, it asked,【Eurybia, how are you?】
The squid nibbled on its own tentacles and mumbled,【Not very well!】
【Huh?! Where did you get injured?】Thaumas was immediately alarmed. Eurybia was a little stupid and lived in Antarctica, where very few violent creatures settled down. Even its diet consisted of only krill. Other than being strong, the squid didn’t have many advantages, so it could’ve been seriously hurt.
But what the squid did say after spitting out a gush of ink was nothing more than,【Hungry!】
What? Was there anything wrong with needing to eat after a severe workout?
【Also, it’s too hot! I’m burning!】
Having intensely fought in a place that was especially hot and without the promise of food or cold water, Eurybia felt very wronged.
The sea turtle twitched and turned away. Going by human customs, Thaumas swore that if it ever cared about this damn squid again, it’d be a turtle who went ashore!
However, Eurybia’s words reminded Xia Yi of something.
Siren jolted and flicked his tail, almost pushing Xia Yi away and glaring at his human.
His tail was key to controlling his speed and was also the most sensitive spot on his body.
Except Xia Yi was unusually stubborn and pressed his hand back to the injuries on the merman’s tail. This time, Siren didn’t flinch and felt the wounds shrink in as a cold, prickling sensation enveloped them.
Losing too much blood was also damaging to one’s physical wellbeing.
That being said, it wasn’t as if sea monsters didn’t have a good way to stop bleeding. Thus, Siren curiously stared at the injuries while Xia Yi became more and more anxious.
The waters they were in were over ten degrees celsius in temperature – most definitely not the deep sea – which meant that the frost melted almost as quickly as it appeared. Even if Xia Yi could just barely control it, Siren had too many injuries decorating his body; it wasn’t like Xia Yi could freeze the merman’s entire tail in a chunk of ice!
Yet there were still some effects after several attempts, seeing as how the shallowest gash had already turned into a thickish red line.
Such powers of healing—
Of course, Xia Yi knew that this wasn’t his doing and could be credited to the merman’s biological genes.
Siren allowed Xia Yi’s fingers to trace up his tail, waist, back, and neck. Though they were cold, it almost seemed as if a strange heat was burning from within. It felt like the warmth came from Xia Yi’s fingertips. But how could it be that when they brought frost to wherever they touched, the places beside the injuries would flush with heat?
The pain and exhaustion gradually overcame the merman. Tucked beside Xia Yi’s body, Siren suddenly felt a wave of sleepiness.
But a fear that came from his dreams, his instincts, prompted him to tightly grasp Xia Yi’s other hand.
So much has happened for this to occur, to have… This can never be lost…
Eurybia darted over and happily began relaxing its body when Abyss’ tentacles dragged the squid away in a flash.
【What are you doing? It’s finally cold!】
【A complete idiot…】The octopus whacked Eurybia’s head with its tentacles.
Thaumas accelerated the speed at which it was paddling through the water and kindly asked,【Siren, do you need to find a good place? How long do we need to leave for?】
Three days later, the ability users finally returned to the base in Beijing. The team had come across a number of difficulties on the way back because it wasn’t easy to carry such a thing, ensure nobody saw it, and keep it frozen and undamaged at the same time. Absolutely drained, the first thing the ability users did was collapse on their beds and sleep. When they awoke, they immediately wrote up their reports based on what they remembered.
As for the infrasonic waves they’d heard, they could only roughly make out the meaning and couldn’t distinguish the minute differences between the sound waves. Therefore, they had no way of telling exactly which sea monsters said what. Adding on the fact that they’d witnessed the appearance of a prehistoric-looking monster, the ability users were all traumatised. The reports they handed in all had errors in various places, but the main point highlighted by everyone was the fact that they had seen a merman! This was a creature that truly existed and was extremely fierce! So much so that it could directly go into combat against a group of spider crabs.
The other thing was the infrasonic wave that had admitted to the creature’s control of the sea.
The name ‘Xiayi’ was re-added later on when they went over the report again. Since the ability users hadn’t been able to see what had happened below the surface, they’d all gawked at the octopus-ferris-wheel in disbelief. In the midst of being stunned, they had then heard that infrasonic wave, which sent them into an even greater state of shock. Before they’d left for the mission, the Academy had already educated them on the sea monsters; as a result, they all automatically associated the declaration with the most appropriate creature— the siren rumoured to stir up storms in order to tip over ships.
“So this was the most important discovery of your mission?”
An old general almost threw the report back at Captain Hao’s face.
‘Discovering the existence of a merman’ and ‘there’s a siren that can control the winds and waves’— what kind of joke was this?
Oh, and that ‘there was an oarfish that looked like a Chinese dragon but had a terrible sense of direction’.
Everyone remembered Ceto’s stunning appearance and the infrasonic waves that had followed.
The Logistics Officer1Logistics Officers provide the various means of transportation, equipment and supplies for the movement of Armed Forces members and all types and sizes of cargo throughout the world. was even more frustrated!
“What are you guys doing?! High-power binoculars are now extinct products of the past! You people went out once and managed to break two?!”
T/N: I’m terribly sorry for all the delays of chapter that has happened for the past months; however, I am now on a long overdue break, meaning that I’ll have more time to organize and translate. In the next two months, updates will be sporadic and published whenever a chapter is available. This will most likely be more than the usual chapters releases and I will try my best to make up for my previous missed updates as much as possible.
- 1Logistics Officers provide the various means of transportation, equipment and supplies for the movement of Armed Forces members and all types and sizes of cargo throughout the world.