When the rustling stopped, the thread from his mind retracted.
Shao Xuan looked at the stone in his hand once again. What was an ordinary rock was now crystal, as smooth as a hard-boiled egg. The crystal was slightly cold, like the Water Moon Stone he knew.
He was about to move when he felt his vision go blurry. It was probably because he had been squatting for a long time.
He was tired, it would be better to rest first.
He looked at the stone in his head. It looked like the Water Moon Stone although there were minor differences.
Was this really the Water Moon Stone?
Sunlight was streaming into the house.
He closed the windows and the door to darken the room.
If it was the stone, it should glow in the dark.
However, nothing much happened.
While there was a faint glow, it was too faint for it to be useful. He wouldn’t be able to read a scroll in this light.
This glow was far from the Water Moon Stone.
However, it was useful to know that it had similar properties. He did not immediately transform the two other stones for it took some energy just for one.
He planned to rest but someone knocked on the door.
“Elder Shao Xuan, are you there? The chief summons you,” yelled the person outside.
Shao Xuan answered him and put the rock on his table. He opened the windows and patted off the powder left from the stone on his hands.
He stood up to open the door, leaving to look for the chief.
The crystal sat on the table. Sunlight streamed in and poured on the stone.
On the other side, many people were already present at the chief’s house when he arrived. It was the same bunch- Duo Kang, Guang Yi and the other important people. The shamaness was not there.
“Saho Xuan, come here!” Chief Zheng Luo pointed at the seat next to him.
It used to be the shamaness’ seat, no one would sit in it if she wasn’t here. This was the first time Duo Kang and the rest saw another person sit there.
As the Elder, Shao Xuan was qualified.
This time, Zheng Luo held this meeting to discuss the trade with the slave masters later. They were not going to go to the royal city because they had caused trouble there some time ago. As for the rest of the cities, they would still visit them.
Not every person would go. This meeting would confirm the people leaving and the things they had to take note off. Two more meetings would be held before they left. It was a last-minute meeting so they did not inform in advance.
“I heard the demand for white fur has been increasing this year, do you have any? Prepare them well, you may increase the price later,” said the chief.
The hunters usually stored the animal hides they didn’t like- white fur was the least useful one to them. White was stained and dirtied easily, plus it would be too bright to be worn in the forest. Wearing it for a hunt would just be impractical. However, white animals in the forest were rare too. Most of them appeared near winter near the snowy mountains. Who would want to go there?
“Chief, do they still want the spotted ones?” Duo Kang asked, rubbing his palms. This year, his family had kept a lot of spotted furs because it was all the rage among the slave masters last year. The price was high. As for the other colours, they kept them for themselves.
“About that,” Zheng Luo thought for a moment. “I heard they don’t like spots anymore.”
Duo Kang went stiff, his grin hardened. “Why do they change their mind every year?!”
Zheng Luo ignored Duo Kang’s frustration and turned to Shao Xuan. “Shao Xuan, you ‘ve only just gotten here so you don’t have much to sell. But you can go and check the trades out, you can help them.”
Zheng Luo wanted Shao Xuan to familiarize himself with the situation but was worried Shao Xuan had nothing to sell. He might not feel good if all he did was watch other people sell their things happily.
“Don’t worry, I understand,” Shao Xuan said with a smile.
Duo Kang and Guang Yi looked at him without a word.
After the meeting, the chief ate a feast with everyone, celebrating with the meat from the bone beast distributed by Shao Xuan.
While there were not many spices in the area, the tribe was smart in using leaves and fruits as condiments. It was delicious.
“I haven’t had this in years! It still tastes amazing!” cried an older member, smacking his lips.
Another started talking about the year they hunted another bone beast, even telling Shao Xuan about the uses of different parts of the animal.
It was only until sunset when the sky darkened, Shao Xuan returned.
However, he realised there were many people surrounding his house.
“What’s the matter?” he asked.
“Ah, Shao Xuan, you’re back!” Duo Li cried excitedly, squeezing through the crowd. “Elder Shao Xuan, what’s the thing in your house?”
Although the door wasn’t locked, no one dared enter. The windows were open too, and they could have reached inside to take the glowing object. But they would not do such a thing. They weren’t close to Shao Xuan, plus he was the Elder! Who would dare take something from his house without his permission?!
The crowd could only suppress their curiosity as they stared at the glowing rock. Now that he was back, they grew excited again.
“In my house?” Shao Xuan didn’t understand, but when he looked up, he understood. Although there were many people, he could still see the light.
The Water Moon Stone?!
No, it’s not the same. It’s not the usual cold glow, the light from this stone felt warmer.
The rest of the people quickly opened up a path so Shao Xuan could open his door. He entered and picked up the crystal.
Even Shao Xuan was confused. It didn’t look like that before he left. Why didn’t it glow just now? Why is it so bright now? It was as bright as the WAter Moon Stone now.
Then, he looked at the other two rocks. They were still ordinary rocks.
When he looked at the craning necks and excited gazes, Shao Xuan passed the crystal to them.
No one dared touch it when Shao Xuan was holding it but when Duo Li took it, everyone started fighting. Especially the ones who were close to Duo Li.
It wasn’t appropriate to fight like that in front of Shao Xuan’s house… Duo Li quickly explained to Shao Xuan and with his consent, took the rock to an open area, at the same time leading the crowd away.
When the crowd left, it was much quieter.
Shao Xuan sat by his table and picked up the two rocks. He wondered what was going on.