Chapter 5 – The Miser
After giving some guidance to Little Black Dragon, Su Muluo remembered that Zheng Hechun and a few others were still standing at the door. He slightly stepped aside and said, “Please come in.”
Zheng Hechun thanked him and led the others into the room. Their faces were calm, but their movements were cautious, as if they were not entering an ordinary rented house but a place filled with hidden dangers.
Su Muluo had initially thought about making tea for his guests, but he realized he didn’t have any tea leaves. However, he had a few cans of milk. So, he asked, “Would you like some milk?”
Zheng Hechun waved his hand and smiled, saying, “No, we’re not thirsty, so you don’t need to trouble yourself.” They didn’t dare to let this gentleman pour water for them, especially since the real dragon in his hand was coldly watching them.
Su Muluo didn’t insist and simply nodded, then sat down with Little Black Dragon.
The living room fell silent for a moment, and Zheng Hechun spoke again with a smile, “Is this your first time in Lin City? I don’t recall seeing you before.”
He had noticed the wristband provided by the Bureau of Extraordinary Beings on Su Muluo’s wrist and knew that only young talents who had recently arrived in the human world for less than a year needed to wear such magical monitoring devices.
Su Muluo replied, “Yes, I registered with the Bureau of Extraordinary Beings just yesterday.”
He wasn’t afraid of the Bureau discovering his true identity because the Phoenix and Dragon clans were long gone from the human world’s perspective. With the power of these human cultivators, they wouldn’t be able to see through his true form. When the old Rabbit Yao helped him sell feathers, they only claimed they were feathers from a thousand-year-old demon, as publicly revealing himself as the last Phoenix might cause trouble. Now that Little Black Dragon had just hatched, revealing his true identity would undoubtedly stir up trouble once again, which would be detrimental to him and his dragon.
Zheng Hechun was slightly surprised but quickly understood the coincidence. He realized that the Bureau of Extraordinary Beings wanted to show goodwill to Su Muluo and was inclined to cooperate with him. Su Muluo’s earlier words indicated his willingness to accept this overture because he also had a request for the Bureau.
With this understanding, the situation became much clearer. Zheng Hechun’s smile became more sincere as he said, “Usually, when supernatural beings want to open a shop in a human city, they have to go through several inspections. But since it’s your request, we will expedite the process for you. You don’t need to worry about any formalities, including obtaining your human identity card.”
Su Muluo nodded slightly and said, “Thank you. You’ve helped me, and in return, if you ever need assistance, I’ll be there.”
He didn’t plan to join the Bureau of Extraordinary Beings, but now that Little Black Dragon’s identity was exposed, the Bureau would undoubtedly keep an eye on them. In such a situation, it was better for both sides to show goodwill and cooperate amicably.
Zheng Hechun was pleased with this outcome. It was the best result they had hoped for, as Su Muluo’s commitment included not only himself but also the real dragon he possessed. They had no intention of recruiting Su Muluo into the Bureau, but having this commitment was more than enough.
Although humans and supernatural beings had lived in peace for many years, there were still hidden undercurrents at play. However, due to the balance maintained between the two sides, these tensions had not erupted into major conflicts. Now, with a real dragon in the mix, that balance might be disrupted, and opportunistic individuals might manipulate the situation, leading to renewed conflicts and hostilities. The consequences of such a scenario were unimaginable.
That’s why the Bureau’s headquarters wanted to establish a positive relationship with the real dragon. They believed that as a potential disruptor of the balance, the real dragon, as long as it didn’t interfere with that balance, could help maintain the peace between humans and supernatural beings.
Now that they had obtained the commitment, Zheng Hechun bid farewell to Su Muluo, promising to deliver the identity card and ensuring that all procedures for opening a shop would be hassle-free if he decided to go ahead with it.
Su Muluo thanked them and escorted them to the door. As they walked out of the ordinary old housing complex, Zheng Hechun let out a sigh of relief, realizing that he had broken out in a cold sweat at some point.
“Let the headquarters know,” he said, feeling relieved. “The one who accepted our goodwill, the danger has temporarily passed.”
A fellow cultivator beside him asked, “Should we withdraw the people who were staying nearby?”
“Not for now. After all, that’s a real dragon, and we mustn’t take it lightly.” Zheng Hechun looked around the area and continued, “Of course, I believe he has noticed too, but since he hasn’t shown any aggression, it means this is within his tolerance.”
The fellow cultivator nodded, somewhat contemplative. “It seems we still don’t understand supernatural beings well enough. We thought we had a good grasp of their power, but suddenly, such a being emerges. Is this what creatures with hundreds or thousands of years of lifespan are like? They’ve hidden themselves very deeply.”
After a few seconds of silence, Zheng Hechun shook his head and sighed, “It’s an unavoidable situation. In any case, we need to be even more cautious from now on.”
“Zheng Bureau,” at that moment, a female cultivator who had been lost in thought since leaving the rental property suddenly spoke up. “I have a question.”
Zheng Hechun turned to her, and she continued, “I checked the records before we came. It seems that a being of similar scale to today’s events appeared about 1,800 years ago, and it’s eerily similar. You see, the only beings on the same level as a real dragon are phoenixes.”
Zheng Hechun’s expression changed, and the female cultivator paused before lowering her voice. “Could it be that the one we met just now is the legendary phoenix…”
“No, that’s impossible.”
Zheng Hechun took a deep breath, ran a hand over his forehead, and realized that he had broken into a cold sweat again, unnoticed.
“If it were a phoenix, he would never tolerate the existence of a real dragon, and the same goes for the dragon.” He said, “The Dragon and Phoenix clans harbored deep hatred long before their fall, and they wouldn’t just settle for breaking bones and shedding blood. How could they coexist peacefully under the same roof?”
The female cultivator fell silent for a moment, then nodded and said, “My mistake. I completely forgot about that.”
“No, you’ve been attentive enough; it’s just that our understanding of supernatural beings is still limited.” Zheng Hechun said, “Let’s go. We need to report back to headquarters, and as for what happens next… we’ll figure it out later.”
Inside the rental property, Su Muluo removed the wristband provided by the Bureau of Extraordinary Beings. Before leaving, Zheng Hechun had told him that he no longer needed to wear it, a sign of the Bureau’s trust in him.
Of course, on the surface, it was trust, but Su Muluo didn’t believe that the Bureau would completely leave him alone. At least for some time to come, there would be many hidden eyes on him.
Currently, he had only made an agreement with the Bureau, and neither side fully trusted the other. As for what would happen next, it was a step-by-step process.
However, Su Muluo wasn’t afraid of those people; at most, he found them troublesome. He looked down at Little Black Dragon, poked it and said, “Look at you, a little troublemaker.”
Little Black Dragon whined in response, then hugged its own Phoenix’s hand.
Su Muluo patted its head, took out his phone, and messaged the coffee shop owner to inform him that he had decided to rent the coffee shop. Since he could only collect his ID card the next day, they agreed to meet again tomorrow afternoon.
With the coffee shop plan settled, Su Muluo opened the supernatural beings forum he had visited the day before and entered one of its sections.
While browsing the forum yesterday to find a quicker way to obtain his ID card, he had stumbled upon a special section for supernatural beings seeking assistance.
In this section, supernatural beings could post requests to hire other supernatural beings for various tasks. For example, if they had been mistreated by a powerful demon and needed help retaliating, or if they had a deep-seated grudge with another supernatural being and wanted someone to resolve the conflict… Although supernatural beings couldn’t harm humans, disputes among supernatural beings were left unchecked.
Moreover, due to the hiring nature of these requests, the compensation offered was usually quite substantial. Su Muluo even thought that if the coffee shop didn’t do well, he could take on some challenging tasks and, in addition to receiving compensation, ask the client to visit his coffee shop and help with free publicity.
If he couldn’t earn human money, he would earn supernatural being money. After all, it was all about making money!
Thinking of this, Su Muluo was brimming with confidence. He said to Little Black Dragon, “Once we start making money, we can buy a big house.”
He had spent a few days in the human city and had begun to like it. He was willing to stay longer, and buying a new house with money he earned would be quite satisfying.
Little Black Dragon whined and made a sound of agreement. Su Muluo watched it crawl up his sleeve and perch there, observing as the Phoenix made a beef stew.
Although this was the first time he was formally cooking in the past few days, Su Muluo learned quickly. After reading the recipe once, he was able to get started. After more than twenty minutes in the kitchen, a bowl of beef stew was ready.
The color was a bit strange, but other than that, everything seemed fine.
Little Black Dragon: “…”
Su Muluo said, “Don’t you want to try it?”
Little Black Dragon glanced at the peculiar-looking bowl of beef stew, then back at Su Muluo. Su Muluo urged, “It smells really good. Won’t you try it?” He pushed the bowl toward Little Black Dragon.
Little Black Dragon: “…”
Little Black Dragon reluctantly made a soft sound, then slowly lowered its head and took a sip of the beef stew.
And then, it took another sip.
Surprisingly, it was delicious!
Little Black Dragon was exceptionally thrilled, burying its head in the bowl, drinking with its tail wagging and its deep golden dragon pupils narrowing in satisfaction.
Su Muluo raised an eyebrow, looking at the tiny wagging tip of Little Black Dragon’s tail and couldn’t resist reaching out to touch it.
Then Little Black Dragon retracted its tail.
Su Muluo: “?”
He said, “Can’t you let me touch it?”
Little Black Dragon protested.
Su Muluo said, “Just once, a little touch.”
Little Black Dragon hugged its tail tip tightly.
Su Muluo: “…Tsk, so stingy.”
And he took the beef stew away.
Little Black Dragon: “???”
Su Muluo said, “It’s because you didn’t let me touch your tail.”
But despite what he said, he wouldn’t let Little Black Dragon go hungry, so he brought the beef stew back.
Little Black Dragon stared at him for a few seconds, then discreetly hid the tip of its tail, continuing to drink the soup.
The amount of beef stew was generous, and after finishing a bowl, Little Black Dragon’s belly was round, and it lay on Su Muluo’s palm, letting out a small satisfied burp.
Su Muluo rubbed its belly, and Little Black Dragon made a contented sound, snuggling affectionately in his hand.
Su Muluo watched this little dragon for a while, and a smile crept onto his lips. “So, you need to grow up quickly. When I was born, I was even bigger than you.”
Little Black Dragon grumbled and buried its head in Su Muluo’s hand, pretending it hadn’t heard.
During the night, Su Muluo took a bath and returned to bed. He saw Little Black Dragon crawl out from under the blanket. When he had entered the bathroom, it had even tried to hide in his pajamas and accompany him, but he unceremoniously pulled it out and tossed it onto the bed.
Su Muluo lay down under the cozy covers, watching Little Black Dragon curl up happily beside him. He thought for a moment and said, “I feel like you shouldn’t sleep beside me. What if I accidentally roll over and squash you? After all, you’re just a small dragon, and it could be dangerous.”
Little Black Dragon immediately grabbed his fingers and let out a little sound, indicating that it wasn’t afraid of getting squashed.
Su Muluo, watching this, couldn’t help but feel like he was the one being taken advantage of. While he and this dragon were officially partners, they hadn’t gone through a formal bonding ceremony yet.
No ceremony but already cohabiting and even sleeping in his bed!
This couldn’t continue!
When he turned off the lights, Su Muluo thought about this.
And when he finally had the chance, he would make the dragon sleep on the couch.
With this thought in mind, Su Muluo closed his eyes and fell into a deep sleep.
—However, he didn’t know if it was because he had thought about Little Black Dragon before going to sleep, but he had another dream that night, a dream about the man with an obscured face but those deep golden eyes.
The man was once again sitting beside him. Though Su Muluo couldn’t see the man’s face, he could tell that the man was in a good mood, his intense gaze never leaving him.
Su Muluo didn’t want to see him, so he tried to move away. However, the man was faster and immediately grabbed his wrist.
Su Muluo: “Let go.”
“No,” the man’s voice contained a faint smile as he watched Su Muluo for a few seconds and then said, “Let me touch your feathers.”
Su Muluo: “?”
Were they close friends or something?
Was he crazy?
The man said, “Just a little touch.”
Su Muluo was cold and ruthless. “No, get away from me. I don’t want to talk to you.”
His feathers were delicate and precious; he couldn’t let anyone touch them casually.
Upon hearing this, the man clicked his tongue, then as if he had prepared for this moment, eagerly said the second part of his sentence, “So stingy.”
Su Muluo: “…”
He paused for a moment.
Suddenly, he realized why this phrase sounded so familiar.
The man continued, “Can’t even let me touch your feathers. So miserly.”
Su Muluo: “…”
The words he had once said were now being spoken by this person, and for a moment, he found it hard to argue.
T/N: Hey there! There is plenty more where that came from, so stay tuned! And stay healthy! Straighten your posture, so some stretches and drink some water before continuing hehe~
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