Looking at the ground surrounded by the tall wooden piles in front of them, the leaders and chiefs looked at each other. They were elated.
It was rare to encounter food that the green-faced fanged beasts loved. Before all this, they had already made cumbersome preparations for feeding and keeping the beasts. How could they not be happy to see the beasts finally satisfied with what they found?
If the seven green-faced fanged beasts were indeed all looking at the big white cabbage planted inside, it was indeed worthy of celebration. After all, they transplanted a lot of large and small cabbages because it was a significantly unique plant. It was different from other crops and the people from the Flaming Horn tribe were intending to label the plant with their mark. They took good care of these plants from day to day and even sent specific people to guard over them.
When these cabbages were first transplanted, their leaves were incomplete and they grew slower than usual. After a period of time, they adapted to the environment and became totally different. Initially, when they were first transplanted, these cabbages only grew to their knee level, but now it was half their height. As long as there were sufficient water and nutrients, they could ensure that the cabbage would grow steadily.
The two shamans originally planned to wait until the end of winter to use these cabbages to prepare for the commemoration meal after the sacrifice, but if these cabbages were indeed what the green-faced fanged beasts were interested in, the original plan had to be changed.
In any case, they had to first make sure if the seven beasts were actually looking at the cabbages.
Shao Xuan signalled the soldiers standing around the cabbage field to pluck out a few pieces of cabbage leaves, and told them specifically to “first pluck the old leaves that were growing on the outside, and then pluck the leaves on the outer layer of the cabbage.”
Besides the ball-shaped cabbage that grew in the middle, there were leaves that extended outward from the sides. Shao Xuan was referring to these leaves.
When the green leaves arrived in Shao Xuan’s hands, the beasts all turned to look at the leaves on his hand, but they still turned over to glance at the vegetable field from time to time.
When they saw the cabbage leaves on Shao Xuan’s hands, the seven green-faced fanged beasts indeed opened their mouths and chewed on it. They seemed to like it. Although it was probably not their favourite, for these picky eaters all accept the same type of plant was enough to make those from the Flaming Horn tribe happy.
After they finished eating the old leaves that were not part of the ball-shaped cabbage, Shao Xuan handed out a leaf plucked from the ball-shaped cabbage. This leaf was much fresher and tender compared to the previous ones. Obviously, the seven green-faced fanged beasts prefer the latter. It wasn’t just them. The people from the tribe also preferred the latter, but the thought of feeding the leaves from the ball-shaped cabbage to these beasts and eating the old leaves that grew on the outside themselves made them feel uneasy.
“Let them finish the old leaves before giving them the ball-shaped cabbage.” Shao Xuan said.
The other chiefs and leaders also shared the same thought. According to what they already knew, this was the first time they encountered a situation where beasts ate better food than them. There were still many members of the tribe who couldn’t afford to eat this.
Plus, the old leaves could not be picked recklessly. The cabbage still had to grow. They depended on these broad green old leaves that grew on the sides to survive.
Fortunately, they had achieved their goal of the day. After they walked around the farmland and did some calculations, the food that could satisfy the beasts were only the cabbage and a few other crops. For the other crops, each of the beasts had their own preferences, but it didn’t matter. If they lacked cabbage, they could still use other crops to make up for it since Shao Xuan had already recorded each beast’s preferences. He even used paint to mark the seven beasts, so people who fed them later could tell which was which.
Everyone was finally at ease after they had solved the food problem. It was because the green-faced fanged beasts had a bad temper. Therefore, the tribe decided to raise them in another place. There were many mountains near the tribe with caves of various sizes. One of the caves was excavated by the tribes and divided into several small rooms. The end of each cell was blocked by a stone pillar with the other end opened.
Green-faced fanged beasts preferred living alone if they were not hibernating, so they dug out seven small rooms to allow each of them to have their own territory and to prevent fights. This time of the year was still their hibernation season, so if they wanted to continue hibernating, they would prefer to sleep together.
The other end of the seven cells would lead to the same empty room.
They didn’t know what the inside of the caves looked like. After the excavation, they put in some hay and made the appearance similar to that of the animal pen. Of course, compared to the hay in the tribe’s animal pen, the grass was much better where the green-faced fanged beasts were raised and were carefully selected for the purpose.
According to the tribal people’s thoughts, they could eat a little worse, but their weapons must be better. Therefore, the grass used in the animal pen was lower in grade. For the sake of casting bronze weapons, they had to make sure the seven beasts were living in comfort because their precious blood had to be used for casting. If they became sick, the animal blood might affect the casting process.
The seven green-faced fangs were now placed in a new location, but they were still not used to it. In their minds, they didn’t care too much about the cave problem. They cared more about their bellies!
So, when the leaves and grains were put in their troughs, they didn’t care about anything else and went straight to eat.
The first time Shao Xuan saw the green-faced fanged beasts eat, he noticed that they didn’t look pleasing when they ate. They ate way too fast. What amazed him even more, was how their bellies inflated as they ate. The amount of food they ate was not a lot, but there was something special that would never have happened to any other beasts or humans. The way they ate made it seem like they ate way more than the actual amount that was there.
This reminded Shao Xuan of the one with the broken fang. Back then the reason it was stuck in the entrance of the cave was its round belly. Shao Xuan initially thought it was because it ate too much. But now it seemed to him that their food intake was less than he thought.
Fortunately, after the seven beasts had their meal, although they grew fatter, their bellies were not yet round like a ball. Without food, the seven beasts became angry for a while. They even pushed over the stone trough and pierced a few holes in it.
After they vented their anger, the seven beasts ran to the innermost room covered with hay, squeezed together, and started sleeping.
Shao Xuan went in there to check on them. After about half a day, their bellies shrunk. It was similar to the situation he saw in the forest before.
After sleeping for a day, the seven beasts got up and ate again. This time Shao Xuan fed them nearly one-third more food than last time, and after they ate, they slept even longer. After all, this was still their hibernation season.
Fearing that it would be difficult to keep these beasts alive, Shao Xuan did not extract more blood from them and decided to delay his sustainable development plan. For such a plan to succeed, patience was necessary. As the saying goes, “Sharpening the axe does not slow down the process of chopping wood.” It was a better decision to keep them alive and healthy before all else.