Chapter 73: Nutritious Meal

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“You mean to say your ship can fly?” → Shen

Shen looked with big eyes at the engines inside Bururiba’s ship. They were stupidly huge and one could tell the ridiculous amount of energy needed to lift this thing from atop the sea.

“Indeed~. As the king, you can get such ships by simply snapping your fingers. Let’s do it this way. After we arrive, let’s sell your cruise ship and buy you a beauty like this one, what do you think?” → Bururiba
“Aren’t the flying ships only given to the higher royalties for military purposes? How come even pirates can get their hands on them?” → Sylvia

Sylvia asked surprised while looking with the same eyes as Shen at the engine.

“They are?” → Shen
“They are?!” → Bururiba
“…”

Shen and Bururiba asked together, making Shen turn at Bururiba and stare with a dumbfounded face as if saying;

And you’re the one asking?

“Let me explain.” → Tian

Tian interjected.

“It seems that a lot of nobles come toward this World of Pleasures in their free time to “relieve some stress” or maybe even win easy money. On the Pirates Peninsula, one can buy almost anything, from other living beings to the rarest materials or the most cursed objects. Putting aside the fact that is the most corrupt place in this world, it’s also the only place where one can get whatever he wishes as long as he has the money. Everyone is against such a place but from behind they support it by selling them even military products. Every captain from the list of top sea-dogs has at least one such a ship.” → Tian
“And Bururiba is such a Sea-dog?” → Shen
“I am on top of the sea-dogs!” → Bururiba

Bururiba said with pride.

“Oh really.” → Shen

Shen said with a ridiculing smile, making Bururiba feel the chills.

“So if I wish for such a ship I need to be on the top list? Then if I defeat you I can buy more than just one such ship?” → Shen

Shen asked with a grin, his green eyes shining.

“…You don’t really need to defeat me, okay? There are more people on that list! And besides, as long as you have the money I can get the ships for you.” → Bururiba

Bururiba hastily found a way to get out from the troubles.

“Is that so? Then get me 10.” → Shen

Shen said and took out a staff. It was one of the Epic ranked ones with a huge emerald on top of a green wood staff.

“4 of such things should be enough, right?” → Shen
“!”

Bururiba and Tian looked together at the wand, their eyes as wide as possible.

“E-epic ranked?! This is the first time I see such items outside the Raising Seas! Even there, such good stuff is barely put on sale!” → Tian
“Ho~? Then I should get a little bit of money out of this, no?” → Bururiba
“If we put them in the auction house then we might get more than enough. I can’t tell how much you’ll get by putting this up for sale but it should be enough to buy only with one staff at least 4 ships!” → Tian
“Eh. ‘That much’?” → Shen

Shen looked backward at Sylvia, waiting for more explanations about the mundane world.

“I told you. You don’t even know the value of what you’re carrying around.” → Sylvia

Sylvia shakes her head, holding in a laugh.

“The Auction house is open once every week. It should open the day after tomorrow.” → Tian

Tian explained with some expectations.

“So we have two days together with this one? Then how much till we get to the Pirate’s Peninsula?” → Ashura.

“Hmm… Even if we fly with my ship, it should take more than 6 days. God damn what a bad timing.” → Bururiba
“Then we can only stay at the port till it’s open, nothing we can do.” → Sylvia

Sylvia felt like taking a break from sailing. She wanted to stay on the solid ground at least for some days.

“Ugh… A corrupted place like that is bound to have the air filled with perfume, alcohol, and smoke. I need pure air, clean water, and fresh food. I can’t stay in such a polluted place if I wish to recover.” → Shen

Shen felt like crying. To repair his meridians he needed a clean environment and rich in energy. Going to such a polluted place was the same as throwing him in a pile of a dump, he’ll get filled with impurities.

“Ugh, well. I can let you stay on my ship a little bit further from the peninsula. But you said your body is crippled? Who will take care of you then?” → Bururiba

Bururiba said with a teasing tone.

“Little s**t, think I can’t beat you up even crippled?” → Shen

Shen had a vein pulsating on his forehead.

“Just leave me with food and water, I’ll be able to take care of myself even like this.” → Shen
“Okay, okay. What kind of food?” → Bururiba
“Hmmm… It must be mostly plants, legumes and fruits. Also, see if you have any kind of oils and different types of milk. Repairing the meridians is the same with making my body rebuild a replica of itself, I need to let it absorb whatever it needs to recover. I don’t really know what is more essential so I might as well eat everything and see what my body doesn’t reject.” → Shen

Shen said with a matter-of-fact voice.

“W-we can’t do that. You might poison yourself. But I think I know what you need. I was taught at the church. If you wish to grow a strong and healthy body then you need fruits and legumes in a balanced manner and also oily and milky types of foods. I know exactly what you need~.” → Sylvia

Sylvia said with a happy smile.

“Pffft!”

The others tried their hardest not to laugh and anger Shen but he still felt like bashing their faces. In the end, Shen sighed exhausted and said.

“To be taken as a baby even by my own wife, have I fallen so low?” → Shen
“Eh?” → Sylvia

Sylvia was dumbfounded. She didn’t know what he meant at first.

“Pffaahahaha!”

Bururiba, Tian and Ashura couldn’t hold it in any longer and started laughing, even the high-elves were shaking, still trying to keep themselves from bursting in laughter. Luckily for Shen, his two little disciples were playing around with the other pirate fairies, not being aware of the embarrassing moment their master is suffering from.

“Ah.” → Sylvia

Sylvia finally understood the mistake she did by saying what she said so she tried to repair her mistake with a forced laugh.

“S-Shen? You didn’t think I was serious, right?” → Sylvia

She turned slowly only to see a miserable and depressed Shen with his head supported on the wall.

“S-Shen?! Are you alright?!” → Sylvia
“Yeah… I’m just questioning my existence…” → Shen

For a prideful man like him, such humiliation was worse than death 10 times over.

“Seriously… Just end me…” → Shen

He walked slowly toward the cafeteria with heavy steps, his eyes soulless.

“Ah! Wait! Please, I’m sorry! Argh~! You guys are horrible!” → Sylvia

She screamed at the five then she ran after Shen.

“Aw man, that must’ve been a huge blow for him.” → Bururiba

Bururiba said while cleaning the tears from his eye-corners.

“Yes, it did. Sir Shen is the most prideful man I know. Being crippled is already horrible but the idea of having someone take care of you like taking care of a baby is 100 times worse than death for him.” → Tian

Tian said after calming down, shaking his head with a smile.

“True. But even so, let’s not forget that Sir Shen can exhibit powers comparable to a Spiritual when he’s serious. Even if it’s for a short period of time, this amount of power is no joke.” → Oliver

Oliver said with a serious face, while his brother Evan still covered his mouth with a dark face, trying to look serious but covering a crooked smile.

“Spiritual? What is that?” → Bururiba

Bururiba asked confused.

“In this world, there is something called ‘The Rank of Power’. The bigger the power you can show, the bigger the rank you’ll possess. From weak to strong they are:: Normal Person→ Disciple→ Energy Fighter→ Great Fighter→ Core Warrior→ Great Warrior→ Master→ Energy Master→ Grandmaster→ Saint→ Great Saint→ Semi-God→ Spiritual→ God→ Elder God. Shen can show power’s comparable to Spirituals for a period of time, while when he’s in his crippled mode he’s weaker than a Normal Person.“ → Evan

Evan explained with a calm smile on.

“Oh nice~. So that’s why people would call me ‘Saint’ when I was preparing to fight? I thought they took me for a goody-two-shoes, I got mad for nothing.” → Bururiba

Bururiba scratched his nose embarrassed.

“You’re in this world for more than 3 months already and you still don’t know? And I thought I’m the ignorant type.” → Ashura

Ashura shakes his head helplessly.

“I am to blame too. I didn’t know he was such an idiot.” → Tian

Tian did the same.

“Wah?! Screw you guys!” → Bururiba

While the five talked and laughed on the deck, Sylvia was able to calm Shen down and started to make a list with the needs they had to buy.

“For my Meridians Repairing Meal, I especially need plants which contain spiritual energy, the stronger the better. However, they shouldn’t be at the level of the plants from the World Tree, I would explode. For fruits, some berries would be the best because these have a balanced amount of almost any kind of vitamins and some minerals. Then some bananas for energy-boost and some pineapples for more manganese…hmmm, I’ll do need a lot of liquids and the most watery fruit should be the watermelon, right? Now as for legumes, the most energy-full should be the rice…this one I really can’t eat it crudely, I’ll have to cook it. A lot of greenery like green onions, lettuce, parsley and dill for more vitamins A and C, some mushrooms for carbohydrates and vitamin B would do well and maybe also some spinach for iron. I think this is what I mostly need for now when it comes for food, can I let the medicinal plants in your hands? For example, to boost the meridians in my brain I’ll prefer some gingko and walnuts, for the lungs eucalyptus and onions, for… Sylvia, you’re still with me?” → Shen

Shen was surprised to see Sylvia look at him with hollow eyes as if she were in a trance.

That’s how I normally look when the teacher presents us a boring lesson in class…

“… Shen, were these words from your world?” → Sylvia

Sylvia looked with big eyes at him, she couldn’t follow with what he said at all.

“What are Vitamines? And magnesium? And why were the letters ‘A, B’ and ‘C’ appearing in the conversation? Was he making some kind of an example with an “A person” and “B person”? → Sylvia

Sylvia was too dizzy to understand what Shen tried to say, asking a little bit unsure of herself.

Sigh~ Yes. Sorry, it’s my fault, I forgot I’m in another world, you’re bound to not understand a word from what I said. Sorry for that.” → Shen
“Please don’t be, I understand your wish to return home.” → Sylvia

Sylvia said with a serene smile.

“…”

The smile was beautiful but a light of sadness was still visible for Shen. He patted her head and said.

“If I had to choose, I would never leave this world.” → Sylvia

She was surprised at first but accepted his touch and smiled back, she was able to tell that these were his true feelings. Even so, one thing was still unclear for her.

Why did he say ‘If I had to choose’? Is he bound to get back in his world sooner or later…? → Sylvia

“…”

Shen was able to feel Sylvia’s feelings. It seems she understood his words better than he thought. He hastily changed the subject and asked.

“S-so! Do you have any ideas which could help me with my meridians?” → Shen

Sylvia woke up from her thoughts and then asked back.

“So what you really need at the moment is something that can fill you up with enough energy for you to repair your meridians? We have a lot of power-herbs that might help you with that, even though you have no cultivation, you should be able to digest most of them then turn them in useful energy for you to use. Some wild sponge dried at the sun for a week, be it salted or pickled should help you with the energy-loss, I recommend it simply dried though. I agree with the berries, they’re very useful, especially the dried wild strawberries. I also recommend some honeycomb with pollen. The most important should be the Cedar milk, this one should be drunk in slow sips or you might get full too fast.” → Sylvia

This time, it was Sylvia’s turn to talk and let Shen look at her with big eyes.

“…”

That’s even more exotic than what I wanted. Well, she must know more than me when it comes to this so, I should listen-… did I hear Cedar milk? → Shen

Shen felt his brain short-circuit for a moment.

“Excuse me, Sylvia… But how does one must… milk the cedar-tree to get milk…?” → Shen

I mean yeah, I’ve heard of milk being made from different kinds of nuts but I never really knew how those are made… Especially the one from Cedar!? → Shen

“Simple! By smashing the cedar seeds we make some kind of oil, blending this oil with spring-water which is the most energy-full type of water, one can get the most consistent and nutritious type of milk there is.” → Sylvia

Sylvia said with a beautiful smile, making it seem incredibly simple.

‘Simple’ my foot…  If it were that simple someone should have been thought of this kind of recipe in my world, too. I think there must be something that’s harder than it seems. → Shen

“Can you tell me how this milk is made?” → Shen
“Oh sure. First, you need to thoroughly smash the seeds and at the same time you must be sure the amount of energy is not lost by controlling it with your aura and-” → Sylvia
“And there is the problem…” → Shen
“Eh?” → Sylvia
“No, nothing… Then this should be the list with what’s needed to be bought. I trust you to take what’s needed and sorry again for not being able to help… Even though this is for my shake.” → Shen

Shen felt depressed again. He really hated to depend on others.

Having my wife take care of my sorry butt… A lot of people said it feels nice but why do I feel like I’m losing something every time it happens? Ah, I think it’s my manhood… slowly evading me. → Shen

“I-it’s fine! Please don’t feel so down. I’ll finish the preparations and rush back so you can repair your meridians.” → Sylvia

Sylvia took the list and looked through it to see if there were anything missing. While reading she sighed and looked at Shen with warm eyes.

“Just helping the others without receiving any help yourself is not normal, Shen. It’s really funny, everyone I’ve met before you and Ryu asked only for help without helping back, the ones who actually helped were few and far in between. I could see some modest characters which preferred to do things on their own with no help but you’re the first one to dislike the idea of being helped so much. Why is that, Shen?” → Sylvia

Sylvia was really curious as to why Shen wanted to do things on his own if possible, and he’ll rather burn himself than get a helpful hand.

“…There are more reasons, but each one of them has at the root the same reason, my pride. It’s just a matter of character, that’s how I am and I’d rather not change, especially this part.” → Shen

Shen said with an annoyed face as if he remembered something he’d rather forget.

“Hm~, if you say so. Then I’m leaving, I’m going to prepare something nutritious for you to eat until we reach the peninsula, any preferences?” → Sylvia

Sylvia thought that, if Shen didn’t want to talk about it then she won’t ask, he might say it on his own later.

“Whatever there is, your cooking is the best. I’ll come and help this time. I need huge amounts of food so I can refine it in energy.” → Shen

Shen said and walked beside Sylvia.

“Oh~? Think you can help?” → Sylvia

Sylvia asked with provocative eyes.

“I might not be a cook but I can cut some vegetables at least, no?” → Shen

Challenge accepted. → Shen

They started cooking together and it took half an hour more than normal to finish, mostly because they screwed around with the food, making jokes and telling stories, rather than seriously cooking. The end result was a table full of messily arranged plates with food.

“… I think it’s alright…?” → Sylvia

Sylvia smiled wryly, she would’ve been able to make a much better lunch on her own but Shen still insisted to help. Even so, she had her fun.

I never expected for Shen to have such a childish side. Trying to cook with two slices of cucumber on his eyes, saying ‘Is good for the eyes. I must be handsome to stay beside such a beauty like you, no?’ That was hilarious. → Sylvia

Sylvia felt like laughing again.

“Maybe it doesn’t look the best but the taste must be something else.” → Shen

Shen took a spoon of rice with the legumes and started eating.

“Haha~ as I thought. It really tastes good.” → Shen
“It does! But why? We made so many mistakes while cooking.” → Sylvia

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Sylvia tasted the food and was surprised by how good it actually was.

It might actually be even better than when I did it alone? It’s because of Shen? → Sylvia

“Don’t misunderstand. It’s not because I did something special or anything like that, it’s just because I was keeping you company, making the mana and energies around vibrate in harmony. My mom taught me: ‘When working on something with your hands if the soul is relaxed and the heart is brimming with energy, everything you do will come out the way you wanted.’ The same is for cooking, if you cook with a fulfilled heart then the food will taste better.” → Shen
“Oh? But I always put my heart in what I cook.” → Sylvia
“Yes. But this time there was one more heart here.” → Shen

Shen said with a laugh while pinching her nose lightly.

“I see…” → Sylvia

Sylvia smiled and sat down beside Shen, leaning on him.

Both of them ate with blissful faces. While eating, the two of them continued to talk about magic, future plans, and some more idle things.

“Ah right. Weren’t you unable to taste the food before? How come you were so good at cooking even before I healed you?” → Shen

Shen remembered something that was on his mind for a while.

“Ah. When I was at the temple, I learned some cooking from the sisters. They would take me with them and cook together. I learned the concentration of spices and salt I needed to put in every portion. At first, it was quite awful but after more practicing, I was able to cook something good enough for everyone to be able to eat. Even though I wasn’t able to taste it, there were others to taste for me.” → Sylvia

Sylvia said with a smile, remembering the few good times at the temple.

Let’s wish nothing happened to the poor priests and monks that tried the first batch of food. → Sylvia

“It’s still amazing. I bet you had it rough at first, do you like cooking that much?” → Shen
“Ahaha~. Yes, a lot of monks had to visit the toilet after I served them the dishes I made but they still left me to try again and again. And yes! I love cooking, seeing the happy faces of the ones who eat the food I make is extremely satisfying.” → Sylvia

Shen patted her head then continued to eat. After they finished everything, they continued to talk for a while more, finally having more private time just for themselves, then go their separate ways toward their rooms.

After Shen arrived inside his room, he hastily sat in a meditation position, trying to enter in a trance to repair his own meridians.

Alright. First, let’s see how the lower Dantian is. If this one is broken, then I’m as good as dead. → Shen

Shen focused and tried to visualize his meridians and chakras. The meridians looked as if he circulated blades and not energy. They were in shreds and ruptured everywhere while the chakras were filled with cracks and holes.

Oho~? The Chakras are still standing, that explains why I’m still able to use my mental energy for magic, it seems the World Tree was able to heal me up quite a bit. But something like freely using mana is out of discussion while circulating chi would simply be suiciding, it would rupture my already weak organs. What I need first to do is to repair the lower Dantian so I can transform the food into energy. After that, with the mental chakra, I can order the energy to heal up the meridians and the other Chakra-. Hmm…? S**t. → Shen

Shen’s face paled. He visualized his kundalini and saw it entangling itself around his chakras, healing them at the same time with the little energy it got from Sylvia. Even so, what terrified Shen wasn’t the unexpected bonus but the little black snake that was spitting black chi in the cracks, right before the Kundalini could heal them.

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