Translated by Addis of Exiled Rebels Scanlations
An Jin looked at the virtual screen full of pictures of dishes, and the more he watched, the more he craved, and suddenly he felt very sad for the Siao people.
With the level of Siao’s technology, Siao people could enjoy their meals, but because the food had impurities, they couldn’t even eat the food and could only taste it in the holographic world.
“What do you want to eat?” He looked to Norman and offered an invitation. “Let’s have dinner together to celebrate the chef’s new job!”
Norman thought the expression “new job” was so cute since he felt a hint of human kindness, and a smile flashed in his eyes. “Okay, you order.”
An Jin suggested, “We’ll pick two. Each one of us will pick two.” He raised his pretty eyes and said seriously, “You pick what you like, and not for me!”
Norman was taking too much care of him, and he was worried that Norman would choose the dishes he liked.
Norman nodded in agreement, and made the same request. “You too.”
The little mermaid remembered his tastes well and was so thoughtful that he didn’t want him to take his tastes into account.
An Jin’s little head immediately nodded up and down, and the two of them agreed to order two dishes each, and negotiated an order of apple juice. After they ordered, the chef immediately received a work order, and the intelligent system quickly analyzed the required ingredients and placed an order for them.
Norman’s terminal received the chef’s automatic reply and said to the little mermaid, “It will take twenty minutes to make.” He looked at the little mermaid’s tail and suggested, “Back to the pool for a while?”
An Jin shook his head, eyes shining with excitement. “I want to wait for the food to be delivered and make it tasty so they’ll make a better dish!”
He tested that the taste of the crab cooked and then having the impurities removed was not as good as the taste of the crab when the impurities were first removed and then it was cooked.
Since coming to this world, this was the first time he was eating food in reality, and he wanted to do his best. Norman saw the little mermaid with an expectant face, so he accompanied the little mermaid. He stood aside, and his eyes fell on the little mermaid’s long blue hair. His heart moved, and he reached out. “See if you like it?”
In his palm he was holding three hair bands: blue, white, and black. The style was a simple circle with no extra accessories.
Norman said, “This is a hair band. You can tie your hair up, so that your hair does not go everywhere.” He looked at the little mermaid. “Since you do not like hair accessories, I bought the simplest model, and the style with stones and pearls, if you like…”
An Jin didn’t wait for him to finish before he rushed to say, “These would be great! Thank you.”
He was touched in his heart. He didn’t expect that he had said once that his hair was messy and Norman remembered it.
Norman saw the little mermaid’s serious face and felt even more that the little mermaid was easily satisfied. “It’s good that you like it.”
An Jin took the three hair bands into his hands and thought of something. He looked at Norman. “I want to buy a mirror,” he said awkwardly, “but I don’t know the address here.”
He had tried to buy the mirror himself while he was shopping at the mall this afternoon, but he didn’t know the delivery address, and it was very strange that he couldn’t locate it. He voiced his confusion, “I don’t know why, it keeps showing a location failure.”
Norman explained, “This is the palace, and no permission terminal can locate it so you need to fill in the address. The courier can only be delivered to the gate, and the orderlies will only deliver to the villa after testing the security.”
An Jin was more puzzled. “A marshal lives in the palace?”
Norman looked at the little mermaid’s blue eyes, and after a second of silence, explained, “I am also the emperor of Siao.”
An Jin was so surprised that his eyes opened slightly and his head was full of shock. Norman was actually the emperor of Siao! Soon, he calmed down. He was sensitive to the fact that Norman did not seem to like to talk about this topic.
It was just as the butler brought over the dishes the chef had bought, so An Jin changed the subject and removed the impurities from the food, and from all the condiments in the kitchen, by the way. Then, he stood at the kitchen door and watched the chef cook the food.
Seeing the chef’s sharp movements, he couldn’t help but marvel, “Its knife work is amazing!”
He wanted to order a steamed fish, but when he flipped through the menu, he first saw the Mandarin squirrel fish and wanted to eat it at first glance, and finally gave up on the steamed fish. He was worried that the chef’s knife work was not fine enough, but to his surprise, the chef took the knife and quickly cut the fish at the chin, sliced it flat along both sides of the backbone to the tail, then chopped off the backbone to pick out the thorax, and made a diamond-shaped knife pattern on the flesh side of the fish with the knife; the whole process was fast and precise.
The little mermaid’s eyes were slightly open because of the surprise, looking straight at the chef, looking a little dumb.
Norman looked at him, recalled the chef’s movements, and said, “It’s not that hard, I can do it too.”
An Jin was even more surprised and turned his head to look at Norman. “You’re amazing!”
Norman maintained his serious face. “Do you want to see me do it once?”
An Jin shook his head and his eyes curled. “No, the chef will do it.”
Three minutes before the meal was ready, Norman’s terminal received a reminder from the chef. He looked at the little mermaid and asked, “Where do you want to eat?”
“The dining room!”
The two arrived at the dining room next door, which was large, with a rectangular marble table top and a very cold, hard style. An Jin parked the mobility scooter next to the seat and put out one hand to feel the texture of the cushion, and if it was not slippery, hold the back of the seat and slowly move to the bench.
Unexpectedly, the fishtail stood very unsteadily, and his body immediately lurched when his hand let go of the handle. He was startled and immediately tried to put his hand back on the handle, but before he could put his hand back, his waist tightened and was held firmly by Norman. He exhaled lightly and slowed down, only to find that he was almost in Norman’s arms, the right side of his face completely pressed against Norman’s chest.
His cheeks were cold and covered with scales, and the temperature of Norman’s chest was even hotter, causing his heart to race and his ears to redden. In addition to embarrassment, he also felt a little humiliated. He put his right hand back on the handle and looked up at Norman, his blue eyes showing a little embarrassment. “Thank you, you let go, I can stand.”
Norman’s breath stuttered as the little mermaid pressed against him, and when he looked up, his cheek brushed against his chest. Because of the scales on his cheek, even with a layer of clothing between them, the sensation was extraordinarily pronounced.
Slightly cool, and smooth.
An inexplicable sensation spread from the friction, and he stiffened for a moment, before returning to his senses. He held the little mermaid’s slender waist and waited for him to stand completely straight before releasing him, saying seriously, “You’re welcome, be careful in the future.”
An Jin nodded with red ears and obediently responded, “Mn.” He reached out and tested the texture of the cushion, then looked up with blue eyes at Norman and politely said, “Could you please carry me to the bench?”
Norman’s brown eyes flickered slightly, thinking that the little mermaid was so good and soft, not to mention that he was such a small thing. Even if it was something else, he couldn’t refuse. He gently pinched the little mermaid’s slender waist with both hands, gently lifted the little mermaid, and then placed him on the seat.
An Jin hurriedly held the edge of the table, looked up to Norman, and said, “Thank you.”
Norman looked at the little mermaid’s tail and asked uneasily, “Can you sit still?”
An Jin’s tail swung gently. The seat was padded, the scales were next to the padding, and it was not slippery. He nodded. “Yes.”
Norman let go of one hand first, and then let go only when he saw that the little mermaid was sitting very firmly, but he was still not quite sure, and sat down next to the little mermaid.
The chef soon put dinner on the table: squirrel fish, braised prawns, sweet and sour pork, stir-fried vegetables, and apple juice, a very generous meal.
Norman’s eyes swept over the steaming dishes.
This was probably a scene that only appeared in Siao’s films and movies, and usually, around the table to eat, were family and friends. He couldn’t help but drop his eyes to the little mermaid’s face.
The little mermaid’s pretty nose shrugged, his small Adam’s apple rolled up and down, obviously already craving, but still with two hands on the table, he turned his head to look at him. “Let’s eat!”
An Jin’s tone of voice carried excitement; although he had eaten food in the holographic world, the real world had a completely different meaning!
And today was the first time he had removed impurities from raw materials and cooked them into a gourmet meal. The previous boiled crabs were not really cooking.
He had not eaten good food for too long, and was especially craving food.
“Eat up,” said Norman, pouring a cup of apple juice for the little mermaid and placing it in the little mermaid’s left hand.
An Jin smiled at him and took a chopstick of Mandarin squirrel fish, the sweet and sour taste exploded in his mouth. The tender fish meat was very fragrant and there were no bones at all, so he swallowed it in two chews.
“It’s delicious, you should try it.” He highly recommended it to Norman and then ate it quickly.
Norman tasted the taste of the Mandarin squirrel fish, and his eyes couldn’t help but fall on the little mermaid’s face again, his eyes very soft.
An Jin noticed his gaze and quickly said, “I ordered the fish because I wanted to eat it, not because you like sour food!” He sounded serious. “I kept our agreement, don’t get me wrong!”
The corners of Norman’s mouth rose unnoticeably. “Mn, I didn’t misunderstand.”
An Jin met his deep eyes, listened to his familiar and tolerant tone, twisted his head to eat, and whispered, “Liar.”
Norman’s fingers twitched, wanting to poke the little mermaid’s slightly puffed cheeks, but finally resisted the urge, not wanting to disturb the little mermaid’s food.
Although An Jin felt that sitting on the cushion was not slippery, but after all, since the lower half of the body was not able to stand on the fishtail, he was still worried about the tragedy of slipping to the bottom of the table the whole meal, and had not forgotten to use his left hand to grasp the edge of the table.
Seeing this, Norman used his chopsticks to give the little mermaid some food.
At the end, An Jin had eaten too much. He leaned back like a salted fish, holding his bulging stomach in his hands, satisfied and in pain.
Norman was a little worried. “I’ll have the doctor look at you, there should be medicine for mermaid digestion.”
An Jin hastily refused. “No.” He was already embarrassed that he ate so much, and didn’t want more people to know about it. He said with a straight face, “I’m fine, I’ll just swim slowly in the water later.”
Norman smiled. He leaned down and picked up the little mermaid, walked him back to the mermaid room, and put him directly into the water. An Jin floated on his back in the water, his tail wagging up and down.
Norman was not so sure. “If you don’t feel well at night, contact me in time.”
An Jin nodded. “Okay.”
Norman put away the pure food on the shore and remembered the question Mu Chen asked him to help ask. “An An, do you have a way to persuade Little Silver to share the pure food with Mu Chen?”
An Jin thought back to Little Silver’s obsession with food and shook his head. “I don’t think so.”
Little Silver sings to food solely for the sake of eating delicious food. How would he be willing to give it to others?
But…he thought of the energy particles that automatically traveled to Mu Chen’s spiritual sea when Little Silver sang. Mu Chen was special to Little Silver. If he was not special, there would not be so many energy particles passed to Mu Chen’s spiritual sea.
For example, Norman was standing next to him, and Little Silver’s spiritual power did not pass to Norman at all.
An Jin thought this and said, “I can help convey Mu Chen’s meaning, but I don’t know if Little Silver is willing to do so.”
“With Mu Chen’s character, he will bring Little Silver over tomorrow.”
An Jin’s eyes curled. “Then I’ll have the chef make some snacks in advance.”
He froze for a moment and then smiled. Making preparations like this was like entertaining a child who came to play at home. With this in mind, he became even more excited. When he was a child, his parents were very strict and did not let him play with other children, nor did they allow other children to play with him, so he was always alone in the villa.
He was always envious when the other kids talked about visiting each other.
At last he could entertain his friends too!
Norman saw how happy the little mermaid was, and his eyes flashed with thought. Was the little mermaid always alone and bored? Maybe he should take the little mermaid to the mermaid center more often.
He thought back to his schedule, made up his mind, got up and said to the little mermaid, “An An, good night. See you tomorrow.”
“Wait a minute,” An Jin shouted.
Seeing Norman standing still, he opened his mouth to sing. His spiritual power was close to full, and it would be a waste not to pass it on to Norman through singing. And he was about to go to sleep; at night time, his spiritual power would go back to full.
Norman was slightly surprised that at the end of the song, his spirituality was back to thirty percent, not only replenishing the spirituality consumed during the day, but also increasing it to almost full value.
Norman said seriously, “Thank you, An An.”
An Jin smiled, raised his hand, and waved. “See you tomorrow.”
In the morning, An Jin washed up, changed into a light blue T-shirt, and returned to the pool to float. He opened the terminal, looked at the various kinds of breakfast, once again with a difficult choice.
I want to eat them all!
When Norman pushed the food cart into the mermaid room, he saw the little mermaid staring at the screen with a torn face.
An Jin saw him and smiled at him. “Good morning.”
“Good morning, An An,” Norman greeted.
An Jin subconsciously held his breath, already knowing the full meaning of Norman’s entire sentence when he introduced himself earlier, and waited for Norman to finish. After two seconds, Norman still did not speak, as if he had already finished. His heart moved, looking at Norman, his eyes flashed a thought.
Norman is forgetting? Or because of something else he is not introducing himself?
Norman met the little mermaid’s eyes, saw his eyes were a little dull, and could not help but worry. “Not comfortable?”
An Jin came back to his senses and shook his head. “I’m fine.”
Norman looked at him, and An Jin smiled at him.
Norman saw that he looked good, withdrew his eyes, and set up the food on the cart one by one.
An Jin wagged his tail and swam from the top of the long side to the top of the other side as Norman moved. Norman stared at the food, trying to determine what the little mermaid wanted most for breakfast by seeing the reaction to the raw ingredients.
Norman set up the food and the little mermaid swam right up to him. He rubbed the top of the little mermaid’s head. “Want to eat the food here, or have the chef make it?”
An Jin already had an idea of what to eat as he surveyed the raw materials. His taste was influenced because he was a mermaid, and he was extraordinarily partial to aquatic products. When he saw shrimp and crab, he wanted to eat food made from these two raw materials.
He opened the terminal and when he saw the shrimp dumplings and the crab dumplings, he couldn’t stop his mouth from watering just by looking at the pictures, so he ordered the steamed shrimp dumplings and the crab dumplings. He looked at Norman. “What do you want to eat? We can have breakfast together later.”
“I have nutrients,” Norman said, “the more food you order, the more spiritual power you consume.”
An Jin smiled at him. “It’s okay, it will replenish anyway,” he paused, “and it’s boring to eat alone, it’s more atmospheric to eat together.”
Norman saw what the little mermaid was trying to say and didn’t refuse his offer. “Okay.”
Thinking of the little mermaid’s gluttonous face just now, he ordered the same breakfast as the little mermaid, but with double the amount.
After breakfast, An Jin saw Norman ready to leave, pulled his sleeve, and pointed to the food on the shore. “You can send a little more food.”
Norman was slightly stunned. “Will you use up too much spiritual power?”
An Jin shook his head. “No.”
Norman looked at the food that took up a lot of ground and asked after some thought, “An An, do you deliver the same amount of spiritual power to each plant?”
“No,” An Jin said, “more impurities require more spiritual power, and if there is not enough spiritual power, there will be impurities remaining, which is very difficult to eat!”
“That is, if the food has less impurities, the more pure food you get by consuming the same amount of spiritual power?”
“That’s right.” An Jin nodded his head.
Norman took out an ordinary nutrient. “This is the staple food of the Siao, a nutrient containing impurities, but with less impurities than the food.” He asked, “Can you transmit spiritual force to the nutrient?”
An Jin nodded. “Yes.” He understood what Norman meant, and his eyes swept past the few impurities in the nutrient. “I can make a lot of pure nutrients in a day.”
Norman’s eyes lit up slightly. “In the future, I will send the nutrients directly over, and let the chef make the food you want to eat directly, and the raw food chef can handle it.”
An Jin thought he had a great idea to maximize the benefits of spiritual power. And the food was placed by the pool, he always could not resist taking and eating it.
During the apocalypse, he was so hungry that just seeing food made him want to eat it. If he got food, he had to eat it immediately since he did not know whether they would be robbed, or encounter any unexpected events, and not have food.
If a bunch of good food was within his reach every day, he would definitely become a fat fish!
Norman pointed to the food. “Is the food here to stay here, or to be taken away?”
An Jin thought for a moment. “I want to keep one crab,” he whispered, his blue eyes on Norman, “for a snack.”
With just one crab, he could totally consume it while practicing his ability without gaining weight!
“Okay.” Norman, knowing a few things about the little mermaid’s tastes, suggested, “Save another shrimp?”
An Jin was so impressed that he poked the tip of his nail in his finger and firmly refused. “No, I don’t think so.”
Norman then asked the robot to take the food away and send it to the kitchen to be made into nutrients, and then placed an order in the mall and bought ten boxes of nutrients. The nutrients were very high in calories, almost ten pounds of food to only one, and could provide the energy of an adult meal.
Soon, the nutrients arrived, and Norman opened a box and put it in the farthest corner from the little mermaid’s range of activity. The remaining nine boxes, he put next to the shelves.
An Jin was on the shore, stretching his neck to measure: ten across and ten down, a total of one hundred.
Norman once again reminded the little mermaid, “Do what you can, don’t make yourself uncomfortable.”
An Jin felt his concern, his eyes curved, and he nodded his little head. “Okay.”
After Norman left the villa, An Jin looked at the nutrients, thought about it, picked one up, and used his ability. He observed the changes in the spiritual sea and found that the amount of spiritual power consumed by one nutrient was equivalent to the amount of nutrients needed for one pound of food.
Before, he purified almost sixty pounds of food, and Norman made six nutrients. With his ability upgraded, the spiritual power almost doubled. He silently estimated that his spiritual power to purify food can be at least one hundred and twenty pounds, which is one hundred and twenty sticks of nutrients.
Of course, this was a conservative algorithm; when purifying food, his spiritual force was often in a state of fullness. But now, his spiritual force still needs to exercise his ability, so he calculated and decided to purify a box of nutrients a day. He thought about it and purified twenty nutrients first, then put on his helmet and went online to work.
He saw Arlo again, and as soon as Arlo saw him he greeted, “An An.”
An Jin greeted him and then went to work, purifying the meat skewers and condiments. He hadn’t seen Duran for two days, so he thought about it and asked Arlo, “What time does Duran work every day?”
Arlo said, “He comes at nine in the morning to marinate, and then at twelve noon to grill the skewers.” He explained, “He doesn’t know your abilities and thinks you are studying well in reality, and if he sees you, I’m afraid he will guess something. You don’t want to be exposed, so the fewer people know, the better.”
An Jin pursed his lips, remembering that Duran was a little weak, but he didn’t know the real Duran, so he didn’t intend to tell Duran the truth. Because he did not want to expose it, the holographic company had already issued an announcement that the effect of food restoring spiritual force was a bug. In case it was known, would it not be a waste of Norman’s arrangement?
Arlo saw the teenager’s appearance and knew what he was thinking, and said squarely, “Knowing too much is not good for him.”
An Jin hmmed and smiled, thanking him for the comfort.
After handling the food, he went offline.
He opened his terminal to study word recognition, and when he got tired of learning, he went to the garden to exercise his water ability. When he moved his mind, a five-meter water dragon rose from the pool; the whole thing was crystal clear and looked very nice. He blinked, and the water dragon opened its mouth and sprayed a delicate mist of water at him, and he immediately smiled away, his eyes curved.
The water dragon circled around him twice and abruptly dispersed, turning into six high-speed spinning water arrows that circled around him, two at the front and two at the back. An Jin stared at the trunk of the tree from not far away. Facing it for two seconds, he gave up on trying the water arrows on the tree. He looked at the ground again, saw the green grass and flowers, and still gave up.
The water arrow power was different from before. If it was still shot to the ground like before, it would leave a big crater, and if it was next to the green grass and flowers, they may suffer.
If only there were wooden stakes or stone slabs.
Suddenly, his heart moved. He could go to the holographic world to exercise ah!
Norman finished his military business, checked his next schedule, and decided he had enough time to go to the training ground. When he had nothing else to do, training had become almost an instinct for him. But before he met the little mermaid, his training mainly focused on exercising himself, increasing his strength and reaction speed.
After the little mermaid sang, his spiritual sea state was getting better and better, and he was able to practice mecha again like he did at the peak of his spiritual power. Thinking of this, Norman’s heart moved. He pondered for a moment and opened his terminal to the shopping mall.
The little mermaid was so well behaved, and he didn’t know how to be good to the little mermaid except to buy things for him.
From his observation, the little mermaid was easily satisfied, and every time he bought something, the little mermaid was always very happy. He wanted to buy something for the little mermaid to make the little mermaid happy. He thought about it and searched for toys suitable for water play, and finally sighted a cartoon image of a swimming ring and inflatable ride.
The little mermaid was so cute, and should also like these cute things, right?
He picked the top ten rides on the list and placed an order.
Just after paying, the deputy knocked on the door, and he closed the terminal. “Come in.”
The adjutant came in. “Your Majesty, the deputy minister in charge of this year’s live broadcast is looking for you and wants to confirm the process with you.”
“Send him in.”
The deputy minister, who looked to be in his thirties, gave a military salute before reporting, “The live broadcast starts at eleven o’clock on the morning of the third and ends at one o’clock in the afternoon, mainly showing Your Majesty’s daily life when home.” He looked at Norman and asked, “Are you going to invite guests?”
Norman pondered and said, “No.”
The deputy minister was in a bit of a quandary. Without a guest, just His Majesty, he already anticipated how difficult the broadcast would be, after all, His Majesty was known to be a man of few words. He asked, “Your Majesty, what are you going to do when you go on air?”
“Tell us about your program?”
The deputy minister said, “We think it will be better to have a live atmosphere with guests, and it will be easier to show Your Majesty’s affinity.” Then they told him their plan.
Norman considered for a moment. “Let’s shorten it by one hour, as you have planned.”
The deputy minister dithered for a moment. “…Yes, the flow chart will be worked out this afternoon.”
After the deputy minister left, Norman contacted the chief escort. “Set up live arrangements in the palace chambers, you make preparations.”