The Book of Hibernation - 4
Kanai noticed the look in Dong Ji’s eyes, and he smiled and said: “Don’t worry about your brother, I think Aldin likes you better. Although he prefers blond hair, and your hair color is not golden, this is not the most important thing…By the way, it seems that your mother also had this light-colored hair.”
Dong Ji looked up at him: “Have you seen my mother?”
“I haven’t seen her.” Kanai said. “I was not born when she was in Hilda Academy. I just saw her portrait.”
“She has never held a position above assistant, how could she leave a portrait?”
Kanai said: “The reason is a bit ridiculous -It’s because she was too beautiful. When I was in the school, I once organized the old archives with my mentor. There were many things hanging on the wall of the archive room, such as an important authorization letter framed, a map of a certain underground ruin, and many portraits. It is said that these were collected from the old office, and it is useless now, because they are old objects of the teaching institute and cannot be thrown away. It was at that time that I saw the portrait of your mother. She did not look like a mage in the painting, but more like an ordinary elven lady. I asked my mentor who she was, and from that point on, I learned something about your mother.”
Dong Ji asked: “Who painted that portrait?”
Kanai said: “It’s said that Haman, the refiner at that time, specially invited a painter to make a portrait of his elf assistant. When he was doing research with his female assistant, the painter was drawing beside him. Later, the elven lady left the school and the painting was finished. Then Haman hung the painting in his office.”
“I see…” Dong Ji smiled. “Have you seen Haman? Does the academy have a portrait of him?”
“No. Haman left the school after he became famous. I have heard many things but never witnessed it personally. What about you? Have you ever met your father?”
Dong Ji said: “No, my mother brought me back to the edge of the Limitless Forest and raised me alone. I’ve never met Haman.”
“You haven’t seen Haman, but you claim to have Haman’s spell book?”
Dong Ji said: “It has nothing to do with whether I have met him or not. Although people say it’s ‘Haman’s research notes’ and ‘Haman’s spell book’, in fact, most of the research results were from my mother. She was an elf and hated to deal with worldly chores, so Haman’s reputation was much greater than her. You have lived in the Academy, and you should have heard the subtle rumors about her and Haman.”
Kanai nodded and said: “Yes. I’ve heard some rumors about her. That’s why I didn’t regard you as a pure liar when I met you in Saint Dillian and you claimed to be the half blood son of Haman and his assistant.”
“Even if I’m a liar, you have a way to check and expose me.”
Kanai said: “Of course. I went to your room at dinner yesterday.”
Dong Ji was not surprised by this: “I thought so. You must have checked Ryan’s sword?”
“I checked all items with enchanting or storage properties, including that sword.” Kanai said. “It used to be a very mediocre sword, which large workshops sold to the village guards in bulk.”
Dong Ji smiled and said: “Isn’t it? it was given to him by Ryan’s swordsmanship teacher.”
“But now it is very special. There are three types of advanced arcane protection enchantments on the sword, which will not rust or become dull. In addition, I noticed that you also added a storage rune to it, and the spellcaster can cast spells on it as needed, changing its elemental properties…did you do all this?”
Dong Ji shrugged: “No one else can do it, right?”
‘No one else can do it’ sounds arrogant, but Kanai was very clear that what the half-elf was saying is the truth.
On the surface, there are many spellcasters who know how to enchant weapons. The enchantment on this sword was not too exaggerated. However, the key to the problem is not the strength of the enchantment effect, but what you can enchant.
Kanai propped his elbows on the table and folded his hands: “According to the current technology, this weapon… this kind of mass-produced ordinary weapon cannot be enchanted at all.”
Dong Ji raised an eyebrow with a little pride. Kanai’s expression was much more serious than him.
Kanai continued: “Enchanted weapons must be crafted separately, with the collaboration of craftsmen and spellcasters. Pre-set runes must be added at the beginning of forging. After the runes have stabilized, they can be formally enchanted. This is the basis of artifact enchantment. And your brother’s sword… I’ve detected it, and it doesn’t have any runes. It’s impossible to enchant this kind of weapon. It’s as incredible as getting a man pregnant.”
Dong Ji smiled: “Your analogy is terrible.”
Kanai’s expression was very serious: “If ordinary weapons can be enchanted at will, then other artifacts can be used, even many daily necessities. This is not only a major breakthrough in academic research, it may also affect many, many things…It’s hard to imagine. Back then, people said that Haman had achieved research results in this area, and it didn’t take long for him to die. Even his research notes were missing.”
Although he was talking about his father’s death, Dong Ji did not say a word, but stared thoughtfully at the tea cup in front of him.
Kanai sighed: “Yesterday I checked the sword several times before finally believing that you are not a liar… You are really the child of Haman and that elf lady, and you really have the research notes left by them.”
Dong Ji asked: “You didn’t completely believe that I wasn’t a liar until yesterday? When I met you at San Dilian last year, and every time we corresponded… Did you think I was a liar?”
“I’m just being cautious.” Kanai said. “Every spellcaster knows how valuable the ‘Haman’s Spell Book’ is, and you actually want to sell it to the Trading Company… Of course I have to contact you slowly, and I didn’t believe you in the first place.”
“Now you believe me, how about it, do you want to buy it?”
“Buy it? I haven’t seen that book yet.”
Dong Ji pointed to himself: “You saw it. It’s right in front of your eyes.”
“If you think about it, will I keep a thick copy of a large volume and travel around with it? At that time, my mother did get it, but she didn’t care where did it go. In her words, these things are all left over by her. They are very old, and there are a lot of mistakes that are not corrected, and it is not interesting to keep them. Therefore, the physical research notes are not the ‘book’ that people really want. “
Kanai was silent for a moment and said: “I understand what you mean. But you have to prove it to me.”
“Of course, I will.”
“I want to know why?” Kanai stared into the half-elf’s eyes. “Why did you approach me and reveal your secrets?”
Dong Ji said: “Because I want to sell myself to you.”
“I know that. I mean, why do you want to do this?”
“The reason is very simple.” Dong Ji smiled, spread his hands and put them on the edge of the desk.
His fingers were slender, and his nails were short and neat. His hands were clean, but far from beautiful. There were a lot of barbs on the edge of his fingernails, and his skin was a little rough.
Dong Ji said: “When I met you in San Dilian last year, I was lying next to the canal, dipping my hands in the cold, not very clean water. You got out of the carriage and came over and asked me, “Are you crazy?”, remember?”
Kanai chuckled: “Of course I remember. I smelled the familiar scent of a potion, and I found a broken wooden door behind you. I understood at the time that this was a refiner who had an accident in an experiment.”
Dong Ji said: I told you at that time that I was not crazy. I had to soak my hands in cold water, so that even if the crystallization of the skin surface caused by the toxicity could not be reversed, the symptoms would not develop into the bones. Even if my hands were damaged, they will not be completely destroyed. At that time, you immediately pointed out that in this case, I only need to spray a layer of gentian powder solution. Soaking in cold water is a temporary cure, not a permanent cure… But the problem was, I didn’t have gentian powder solution at all. I knew how to make it, but I couldn’t afford the ingredients.”
As he said that, Dong Ji raised his hand and turned the back of his palm.
“Thanks to your kindness, you took me on the carriage to the post station in an hour and gave me the solution. Otherwise, even if these hands are still working, I must wear gloves to see people.”
When Dong Ji said this, Kanai couldn’t help but look down at his hands.
Unlike Dong Ji’s hands, Kanai’s hands were white and delicate, and he had not experienced more pain than a ‘teacher’s ruler’. Even during his more difficult teenage years, his elder brother Aldin would protect him and not let him suffer too much.
Dong Ji put his hands back on his knees and looked at Kanai: “So, if you ask me why I want to ‘sell’ myself to you, the reason could not be simpler. Because I want to do what a refiner should do. I need to study the things I’m interested in, I need money, I need all kinds of spellcasting materials, I need a stable laboratory, I need a secure life… I need strong allies to protect me.”
“In that case, why don’t you go to your mother’s country, or go to the Arcane Federation to get a qualification as a refiner?”
Dong Ji said: “My mother has done some things… so the elves will not accept me. As for the Arcane Federation, they have a lot of restrictions on refiners, and you must understand this. If you want to do research, then If you want to be unrestricted, it is best to cooperate with the Ten Sails Street Trading Company. As far as I know, you have the most prosperous trading system for spellcasting materials in all countries.”
Kanai nodded slightly: “I understand. By the way, does your brother know you want to stay in the Trading Company?”
“He doesn’t know.”
“Not at all? He’s been traveling with you for so long, day and night, doesn’t he know? “
“He doesn’t know.” Dong Ji repeated, and then went on. “Well, to be more precise, he knows I want to be close to the Trading Company, and he wants that too. But he didn’t know the arrangements I made. He and I have different purposes. “
“What is his purpose?”
Dong Ji said: “He suspected that his father Haman’s death had something to do with the trading Company, because at that time, the trading company sent people to talk about cooperation with him, and then they parted unhappily. It didn’t take long before Haman died.”
“I’ve also heard this rumor.” Kanai said. “If you have evidence, I can really help you find out. But the trading company is huge, and the people in charge are different, and the matter is also different. It’s been too long…I may not really be able to help you.”
Dong Ji waved his hand: “No need. You ask me what Ryan’s purpose is, so I told you. Actually, you don’t need to worry about him.”
“Don’t worry about him?”
Dong Ji said: “Ryan is a good boy and will not cause trouble. We have already said that the grievance between the trading company and Haman is just a rumor, and there has never been conclusive evidence. If we can find evidence, we will talk about the next step. I can’t find evidence, Ryan won’t accuse anyone easily. Don’t worry, I’m watching him, and he’s also educated by the temple, so he’s very sensible.”
Kanai looked at the half-elf and slightly narrowed his eyes: “In other words, your brother wants to investigate the truth of his father’s death, and you don’t want to help him?”
“Because those are his thoughts, not mine.” Dong Ji leaned back in the chair with a tired smile. “I have never seen Haman. To me, Haman is just a stranger. I don’t want to worry about things that happened so many years ago.”
Throughout the day, Dong Ji and Kanai had been in the study and laboratory, and they finally came out before sunset.
It was also at this time that Aldin asked his servant to give Ryan a short letter, and asked him to take him to the dock. His guard work will begin tonight and will not end until the cargo procedures are completed and leaves the city.
Ryan stood at the entrance of the manor, looking like he was packing up and grooming, but in fact he kept looking at the yard with a hesitant appearance.
After a while, Dong Ji came out. He hurriedly rushed to look at Ryan up and down, and asked him if he had brought this, and if he was ready for it… In short, he was worried. When he saw Dong Ji, Ryan was also obviously relieved, and he had a young warrior’s look in his yes.
Across the vines, Aldin sat on the porch, with fruit and large silver cups on the small round table on his left. From time to time, servants came to fill him with cold drinks.
Originally, he was reading an account, but now the light dimmed, and he couldn’t see clearly. He raised his head and looked through the light and shadowy garden, his gaze falling on the half-elf at the gate.
The half-elf warned him thousands of times, and the young knight walked two steps and waved back.
“It’s terrible, I suspect that they are not brothers, but mother and son.” Aldin said with a sneer.
Kanai just walked out of the promenade and followed Aldin’s gaze. “It’s a coincidence, I told them the same today.”
Aldin handed the cup to Kanai, and Kanai shook his head and refused: “There must be wine in your drink. I will read a book later.”
“Just a little bit.” Aldin retracted the cup and took another sip. “Kanai, you didn’t say much to the half-elf about the dock, did you?”
“Of course not. If he knew too much, he would definitely stop Ryan, and Ryan would not want to go.”
Aldin said: “At first, I was a little hesitant, this matter involves a trainee knight, will it be a bit troublesome… Then I suddenly figured it out, in fact, this is better.”
Kanai smiled and said: “Did you just figure it out? Of course it’s better. After all, we have no idea about the cargo. We just recommended a short-term bodyguard. The person we recommended is even an apprentice of the knights of the temple, this further highlights our ‘ignorance’ of everything.”
With that, the two brothers looked at each other with a smile.
In the distance, Dong Ji came back from outside the courtyard. Kanai turned and left, his back disappearing into the depths of the corridor.
Aldin stood up and greeted the half-elf: “Are you so worried about him?”
Dong Ji looked up, and the first thing he saw was the python tattoo on Aldin’s chest. After listening to Kanai’s words during the day and seeing Aldin, he suddenly felt that the atmosphere was a little delicate.
But Dong Ji didn’t show this, he just nodded slightly, and replied: “Of course I am not at ease. I heard Lord Kanai during the day that the situation seemed quite serious.”
“What did Kanai say?” Aldin asked.
“He just said that the warehouse might be robbed. Now there are a few guards. I wanted to go with Ryan, but Lord Kanai said no.”
“He’s right.” Aldin stood beside Dong Ji, took the half-elf’s shoulder with one hand quite naturally, and led him under the vine pergola. “Kanai’s meaning is also what I mean, and I don’t want him to let you go. You are not a battle mage, you will get hurt.”
Dong Ji sighed: “That’s why I thought that the situation must be very serious. You must have speculated that an accident is not just ‘possible’ in the dock warehouse, but ‘almost certain’.”
Dong Ji’s complexion was calm, but his body was a little stiff. Aldin’s palm was just covering his shoulders, and he could feel tightness and slight tremors under his palm.
Is it because you worry about your brother, or are you nervous about my approach?
Aldin looked sideways at the half-elf, with a meaningful smile on his face.
Aldin took Dong Ji to the side of the wicker chair, pressed his palm lightly, motioned him to sit down, and then sat beside him.
“How was today?” Aldin asked. “Is everything going well?”
Dong Ji looked a little confused, and Aldin added: “Didn’t you go to Kanai’s laboratory to work? How about it? Are you tired? Kanai is not fierce?”
Dong Ji was amused: “Lord Kanai treats me kindly, how can he be fierce.”
Aldin propped one arm on the small round table, leaning toward Dong Ji: “If you are not tired, after dinner, come out with me.”
“Of course. Do I need to prepare?”
“No need to prepare.”
After speaking, Aldin pondered for a while, then changed his words: “Prepare a better-quality mage robe.”