Chapter IV : 144 VI

Chapter IV : 144

“ The Town at Night “

One moment with sunlight quickly passed by. The day ended and soon afterwards, the sky was filled with beautiful colors of the aurora once more. At night, 144 was no less lively. People wandered the streets and chatted as if it was still daytime. Even the snap dragons, which usually slept when people went to sleep, were still awake and they occasionally tried to gobble up passers-by. Early that night, Steel had his fill of fuzzyworm soup after which he headed out for a stroll with Ochre. They had many things to talk about, and his young companions understood.

“ Rina, are you done with this? “ the guard said when he noticed the half-eaten fuzzyworm egg.

The historian just nodded as she continued to read and re-read her book’s pages. Rina squinted and frowned every now and then, but at other times she smiled and nodded.

“ Hey, if you want to go out, it’s fine, “ Thyme spoke to his brown-haired friend without looking at him.

“ Won’t you be bored here? “ Hunter asked, “ Since she’s still preoccupied with that book. “

“ What’s the difference? You still hate my face and won’t talk to me that much, “ the guard shrugged.

He was right, so Hunter took his own journal and headed for the town’s streets. It was illuminated by the colors of the aurora and by the light of honey mushrooms. Back in 27, the humans made candles from animal fat; they rarely used any plants or animals to light their way in the night because life in the town slowed down around dusk. Once sunlight disappeared beneath the horizon, Town #27’s humans stayed inside their houses. 144 was different from the place where Hunter grew up. Honey mushrooms, which were small, defenseless and relied heavily on oak trees’ kills, lit the way. There were no animal carcasses beside the mushrooms, therefore the tamer thought of only one explanation: the Overlord made the mushrooms grow and sustained them in a way that only she could do.

“ This is amazing, “ Xing’s son muttered under his breath.

When he turned a corner, the boy narrowly avoided a snap dragon which made him bump right into Steel.

“ Whoa! “ the farmer seemed a bit jumpy, “ Ah, it’s just you. But darn it, I swear, these snap dragons are more annoying than the ones that I’ve dealt with before. “

“ Did it eat your head too? “ Hunter snickered.

“ Twice! So don’t go down that alley, “ Steel pointed to a path behind him, “ The snap dragons there are massive! “

“ Why do people keep those things anyway? “ the boy wondered.

The farmer shrugged, then he gestured towards the other direction and Hunter followed him, away from the large snap dragons.

“ Because they’re tame and entertaining. They’re easy to feed too; you just need to put some blood near their roots. Oh, but, “ the greyish-haired man, “ Don’t piss them off. They have this thing in their flowers, when it sparks… ohoho. You should run. “

Hunter couldn’t clearly understand what Steel meant, but it sounded serious.

“ Note to self: Don’t piss them off, “ the tamer said out loud.

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