The Record of Unusual Creatures - lightnovelgate.com
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"Let me have a look." Vivian grabbed the object. Her voice had a tinge of concern in it. She played around with the object, trying to discern its origins. Looking at her actions, Hao Ren asked curiously, "You’ve seen this before?""...I'm not very sure but, it does look familiar..." Vivian frowned. "Not exactly the same object but, I've seen the markings on the surface before. Where did you get it?""I don't know..." Hao Ren ruffled his hair. "I do remember having this when I was very young, around four or five. Back then, I was a brat. I could remember it being missing from my toy box. I remember clearly that I picked it up somewhere and I treated it like treasure. Just couldn't bear to throw it out."Vivian clearly looked unsatisfied with Hao Ren's response. She held the metal piece tightly and brushed her finger against the marking. It took her a good couple of minutes before she recalled something. "I remember seeing this symbol. It's been a very, very long time ago... At least 1000 years ago, give or take? I don't remember the details though. You know how it is with me and my memory. I can't recall anything too far back."Hao Ren gulped. He totally missed what Vivian said except the part about '1000 years'. He yelped excitedly. "You mean, this is a piece of antique? A thousand-year old antique?"Vivian rolled her eyes. "Well, you could try selling it at the antique fare."Hao Ren laughed awkwardly. He knew his old habits had emerged again and they left the subject at that. He stored the metal piece back in the box carefully. Valuable or not, it did not really matter when it gave an old hag like Vivian a scare. That itself was golden.The both of them continued cleaning the basement. There was not much junk to begin with and Hao Ren cleaned the place rather frequently,.So, it only took a moment before they were done with it and all the junk was moved to the storeroom next door. They also took the chance to clean out whatever useless junk that should have been discarded years ago.Within a few moments, the basement had turned into a clean, new bedroom. It came furnished with the necessary furniture, it even had an internet port and best of all, it was devoid of the sunlight, which Vivian hated. There was only a small window in the western part of the wall, half buried in the house’s layer of foundation. Only by dusk did rays of light permeate through the window port. It suited Vivian perfectly.Hao Ren still felt bad about letting a pretty lass like Vivian (please remember that vampires are eternally 17) stay in the basement. However, seeing that the room had become spick and span, he did not feel as guilty as before. Most importantly, Vivian looked extremely pleased. She even dusted off the dirt that had gathered on Hao Ren's shirt during the course of the cleaning. "Mr. Landlord, you're too kind. No one has treated me this nicely before. That other time..."Well, it would have been centuries before Vivian would finish recounting her sob stories. All we need to know is, Lily finally felt like she had found paradise after living in hardship and poverty for about 1000 years. Surprisingly, Vivian was easily satisfied and that was a plus point. It made her an easy person to support.Y'zaks on the other hand, took a few days to get used to his new life. So did Vivian, who was the home chef. She had to contend with two big eaters at home. (The first one being Lily who could wolf down three bowls of noodles in one go). Hao Ren noticed that new tenant seemed to be getting along well with the rest. The demon was a content creature and had a surprisingly good temper as opposed to the stereotype. This at least, reassured Hao Ren that his life would not become even more haywire than it already was. Heaven knows with Vivian and Lily around, another tenant with a grumpy mood would have probably sent Hao Ren sleeping on the streets. With everything in the household settled for the moment, Hao Ren moved on to the most pertinent matter at hand: Meeting Raven 12345. They had not met for a good few days and Hao Ren had even more questions to ask now.Hao Ren took off to Bastard Barrio the next morning in the usual rickety bus. After a while, he got off near the grand looking place: Heaven's Office on Earth or HoE for short.Raven 12345's luxurious mansion looked the same as it always had, perpetually stuck in a pocket of space and time where it was eternally a misty dawn. Around the perimeter, a cloud of seemingly impenetrable mist swirled about. At times, Hao Ren wanted to see what was beyond the mist. Perhaps he could have seen what 'heaven' looked like. It never actually happened though and Hao Ren did not have the guts to even bring it up to Raven 12345. Who knows, the crazy Goddess may not have taken too kindly to his curiosity and proceeded to off him right on the spot.A cerulean elemental slave led Hao Ren to Raven 12345's office. Upon opening the door, he saw the Goddess focusing on a holographic image floating above her desk. A frown appeared from time to time, followed by a look of deep thought. Hao Ren was surprised. He never thought Raven 12345 would have a serious moment while working.By then, Raven 12345 sensed that someone had entered her office. She looked up and greeted Hao Ren loudly, "Yo, Hao Ren! Haven't seen you for a while. Looking fine there I see. Got rid of your jet lag already?""Oh, I'm okay." Hao Ren just could not take the Goddess seriously enough to treat her with reverence. As time passed, his attitude towards her had transformed into something like running into a superior in office. "I'm here to―""Hold your horses! I need you to give me a full AAR of the mission." Raven 12345 waved her hands "The stuff you told me the other day was too brief. I can't write a report with that."Oh, that was just bloody rich. A Goddess needing to submit a report...Hao Ren cleared his throat and recounted what happened in England two days ago. He also made mention of the wraiths beneath Yorkford Castle and Nangong, the demon hunter. He felt that they were the biggest surprises of the mission and thought they were worth the mention. Raven 12345 hesitated for a moment after listening to Hao Ren's account of the events. She asked, "What do you think was the biggest obstacle during the mission?"Hao Ren looked down thoughtfully and finally spoke, "My mortal body. I seriously can't deal with this god forsaken job. I mean... I need some sort of combat or survival ability. I almost died trying to keep up with Lily in the crypt. Most of the time, I wasn’t even fighting the creeps. It was more like me trying not to get beaten up by them. I could have seriously died from that! The strengthening of the body did work but it's not sufficient to keep me alive. Maybe try not to give me such a doomed mission?""Uh... that was one of the easiest missions around. The other’s to negotiate a peace treaty in Mintaka. You're up for that?" Raven 12345 rolled her eyes. "But it's true that you do need to strengthen your body. Conditioning will only give you the basics but combat prowess requires training. How about this... I'll give you―"Hao Ren quickly interjected before Raven 12345 could finish her sentence. "You're giving me a Secret Skill Compendium isn’t it? There's actually something like that?!""Hehehe..." Raven 12345 glanced at Hao Ren. "You've been reading too many fantasy novels. Do you think that you'll be invincible with just the Skill Compendium? Even that takes time to master. Most people take months to even get the spell casting sequence of a fireball right. A high level spell would require an even more complex mathematical algorithm. Do you think this is a game? Double clicking a skill book is gonna allow you to shoot frost bolts from your hands? Hah, good luck with that. You think that someone who moans at a simple mathematical equation can survive studying a tome of forbidden spells? The first chapter itself would probably put you to tears. So... do you still want the Secret Skill Compendium?"Hao Ren could only look on in silence.