By the time the man entered the living room, everyone was either on the ground or on the table without a pulse!
He gave a satisfied nod. “Well done, me! The effects were just as I had expected, everyone is dead ... save for one who's still eating.”
“W-wait, there’s still one eating?!” exclaimed the man in shock, glancing over to a boy tearing a chunk of meat off a drumstick with his teeth. The boy was still blissfully unaware of his surroundings.
This boy was none other than our beloved Ye Lang.
At the moment, Ye Lang hadn’t noticed the life-threatening situation he was in. He thought the others were just piss-drunk, the idea of his comrades dead had not crossed his mind at all!
“Must be the belated effect of my poison, he’ll be dead soon!”
The man thought darkly. Perhaps Ye Lang had only started to eat not too long ago, which would provide a good explanation for the situation. If he had eaten it around the same time as the others, he would be gone too!
Alright, the man decided to wait it out. The mission shall be accomplished when the boy dies!
He waited and waited, waited and waited… The effect had yet to take place, missing two of its probable intervals. Ye Lang was still happily wolfing down more food with no visible signs of distress.
Why was this happening?! He was very sure everything edible was well coated with his poison!
This wasn't supposed to happen! Why was this boy still alive?!
“Hey… when did you start eating?” questioned the man.
Ye Lang looked to the source of the question, parting his lips with the intention to answer him. Oh, right. Ye Lang made a promise to not utter a sentence within the house.
The boy pointed towards everyone else on the floor then towards himself, followed by a shake of his hand. He was trying to tell the man that they had ordered him to stay silent.
“Are you mute?” muttered the man under his breath before continuing his question. “You! Were you eating with them?”
Ye Lang gave a nod as an answer, placing another spoonful of rice into his mouth.
“What? How is this possible?! How are you still alive? Do you have some kind of immunity to the poison?” mumbled the man to himself, brows furrowed.
Ye Lang stared at the man, giving another firm shake of his head.
He wanted to tell the man that he had no such immunity. It was just that his body was so accustomed to poisons that it had no effect on him. This was still a mystery to him too.
Maybe it was all thanks to his practice of neigong, or Internal Work. Maybe it was because of his rich experience in accidental poison consumption when he was growing up. No one knew why.
The man stared at Ye Lang and pondered, this boy was mute and was especially slow in thinking. How could he still feast happily when his comrades were all dead? Amazing. The man decided to let him live.
Oh! He would make a perfect subject for his research! That way, the man could also become immune to all kinds of poisons or he could create a universal antidote to cure all poison. The possibilities were endless!
“You’re Frank, right? Come on Frank, put down your chopsticks. We need to leave this place!” instructed the man as he observed the nameplate on Ye Lang’s chest.
Every mercenary had some form of identification, usually in the form of a nameplate. Often times, their ranks, name and the logo of the group would be engraved on it.
Ye Lang’s nameplate was obviously not his, as his group had mistaken him as Frank. Therefore, the man was only aware of the wrong name.
“??” Ye Lang stared at the man puzzled, still unaware of what was happening around him. He thought that the group had handed him off to this man.
Oh, never mind. It was the same anyways, he could save some money as he no longer needed to hire a carriage for himself.
It had not clicked in Ye Lang’s mind that his comrades wouldn’t have thought of handing him off to someone else. He wasn’t even that important, he was just a rankless rookie!
Just like that, Ye Lang followed the man out of the residence. It wasn’t voluntary as the man was soon annoyed by his lack of action and had physically pried him away from the table.
As soon as they made it outside, the man quickly drew an alchemy formation, setting the remote residence on fire. Something flashed in Ye Lang’s eyes, prompting him to say something-
“The house is on fire! Aren’t you going to call for help?” asked Ye Lang as he stared at the man blankly.
“There’s no need to, let it burn… Wait, aren’t you mute?” the man was surprised to hear Ye Lang utter something.
“Did I say I was mute?” Ye Lang was puzzled.
“Uh… No…” the man was sweating profusely, it was true that the boy did not claim to be mute…
“Then why were you gesturing instead of talking?”
“I made a promise with my comrades to remain silent. They said I was spewing too much bullshit when all I did was pointing out the truth! Also, you look like a bad person!” explained Ye Lang as he pointed at the man’s nose.
The man felt a twitch in his forehead, controlling his urge to slash the boy to pieces.
Hmph, if it wasn’t for his immunity to poison, the man would have killed Ye Lang the moment he spotted him!
It made sense to why his comrades wanted him to stay silent, this boy was genuinely dumb and tactless.
“You should stay silent, it’s better that way. Now, move! Less talking, more working!” ushered the man without facing Ye Lang.
“But, I’m a young master, I’ve never needed to do anything other than talking,” replied Ye Lang honestly.
“Young master?! You must be dreaming, Frank. Now shut up and carry these, be gentle with them!” the man took off his back sack and handed it to Ye Lang. Ye Lang wobbled a little, the sack was heavy!
The man decided to use Ye Lang as his servant. To him, the boy was the best material as a servant, he wasn’t smart and he was obedient.
The man had no need to entrust tasks that required brain work to his servants, he just needed someone strong. Best if it was someone strong with a simple mind.
Frank looked like any other regular boy but he was a soldier so his strength should be excellent, the man thought.
“Alright…” Ye Lang adjusted the sack in his arms then went on to open the flap to peer into its contents. The moment he peered into it, he was welcomed with a piercing instance of light, but it quickly faded away.
“No need to look at it, you wouldn’t understand it anyway,” said the man nonchalantly.
Tsk, it was just some alchemy apparatus, nothing special. The item was unfinished and it required some time to make out what it truly was.
Its unfinished state didn’t pose much of a challenge for Ye Lang to figure it out. At the same time, that had provided him with some revelation that the man was in fact a powerful alchemist, Ye Lang hadn’t seen anything like this before! That fuelled his curiosity and Ye Lang started to wonder what would happen next…