Today at Oak Tree Tavern, the number of guests was two-thirds greater than usual. These extra guests were all residents that were usually rather idle. Having heard the rumors of the beautiful and strange magician, they pushed forward their nightly drinks to midday.
Truth to be told, it’s not that they really had to see Lin Qi himself. People always liked to flock towards places bustling with gossip, and so created the scene right now.
The barkeep was naturally absolutely gleeful over this tiny incident. The bit of resentment garnered from this morning when he was woken up by Lin Qi to run errands disappeared without a trace.
The crowd drank ale while guessing at the origins of the beautiful magician. All the way till noon, the barkeep remembered that Lin Qi did not order food ever since he got up this morning, and so found an excuse to go knocking on the door upstairs and enquire if Lin Qi needed lunch. Seeing no reply after knocking for a bit, he took out a spare key to open the door. Seeing that the room was empty inside, he recalled the magician self-proclaiming his fancy for switching rooms to sleep in. He opened another door but it was also empty.
At this time, Lin Qi and Yi Longlong were already walking on the streets of Vanilla Town.
Well to be exact, it was Lin Qi walking by himself. He bore a giant wooden crate that had just been completed on his back. On top of the wooden crate was a four sided partition covered by a layer of white linen curtains, with a set of extremely miniscule plush bedding placed inside. Because they were stuffed with lots of cotton, it was totally soft and comfy. Yi Longlong was currently reclined inside. It kept the sun out and also saved effort. She could see the things happening outside by looking through the hollow patterned decors on the partition, however people outside may be unable to clearly see her.
Lin Qi tied up his black hair that had reached his waist with a hair tie. He also changed into light, ordinary clothes. Although his good looks still stuck out from the crowd, it was no longer filled with the vacant and peaceful allure from this morning.
The same rules still applied. Yi Longlong reminded Lin Qi how to do things, and moreover, when they needed to ask for directions or buy things, one of them lip synced while the other dubbed. After coordinating many times, they gradually became skilled at it.
On the way, they bought some vanilla cookies specially produced in Vanilla Town. Lin Qi held a thick paper bag that still gave off steam in one hand, walking while leisurely eating. He took out two pieces and handed it to the side of the crate on his back. Two small, white paws reached out like lightning from within the curtains. After grabbing the cookies, it shrank back like lightning, and following that, tiny sounds of kachi kachi rang out behind Lin Qi.
Yi Longlong had formerly wanted to find the library, but in a small town like Vanilla Town, there were no facilities similar to a library, so they could only head towards the temple. This was a place within the town that could still be considered to have a rather cultured atmosphere.
The majority of people on this continent worshipped a god named Aldin. The church had powers widespread in several countries. Their influence was so great that it could practically administrate in all departments. In nearly every district, the church would build a temple and send a priest towards that place to impart their teachings and strengthen their influence.
Because priests also simultaneously knew the divine arts of healing, in some places they could also work as a doctor, especially in a place like Vanilla Town that did not have any good doctors.
Vanilla Town was located on the outskirts. The priest in charge for this district was named Levi1. He was sent from the Royal City three years ago. From other people’s descriptions of him and also from asking the people from the town, Yi Longlong learnt some things about him.
That grey haired priest who was with the palette squad was a local from Vanilla Town. He was initially a youth that enjoyed reading books. Other than being hard worker, his talent was utterly mediocre, yet Levi turned him from being an ordinary person into a certified priest with just a year’s training.
Usually speaking, becoming a priest isn’t a matter too difficult. They must have widespread knowledge, understand the religion’s theology, as well as go through systematic training in the divine arts. Based on the usual process, it takes at least ten years of training, yet the crash course priest from Vanilla Town used only just a year and passed the official examinations at the temple of the Royal City.
In addition to that, there were also rumors saying Levi was originally a great priest2 candidate with boundless prospects, but due to a case of illicit affairs, he was demoted from the prosperous Royal City to the outskirts. Some kind soul even went so far as to advise Lin Qi while looking at him with worry, “If you have to go to the temple, it’s best to be careful. Although you’re male, rumors have it that priest Levi doesn’t mind the sexes…”
Furthermore, there were also people who called Levi “the pride and shame of Vanilla Town”.
After being scared along the way, by the time Lin Qi arrived in front of the temple located in the east of the small town, as Yi Longlong looked at that majestic building, she already had the false impression of looking at a tiger’s den.
The temple was built out of stones. It had a particularly heavy atmosphere; a carving of a grandiose and benevolent god was on top of the temple’s entrance in front of them.
“Oi.” Yi Longlong stuck a paw out from the gaps of the partition, gave Lin Qi a tap and discussed in a very small voice, “Or else, we should still withdraw, I just have the feeling that it’s very dangerous.”
Lin Qi still held the half-finished bag of cookies in a hand. He stared at the temple, brows wrinkling. For some reason he wasn’t too at ease in his heart. Yi Longlong’s suggestion was right there with his intentions. “Okay.”
Having said that he turned around, but at this moment, a youth wearing a white robe came out from within the temple. When he saw Lin Qi, he hurriedly walked over and warmly asked with courtesy what he needed, was it for a prayer or for healing.
The youth’s appearance could still be considered handsome. On his face were several shallow pock marks, but his manner and bearing was extremely refined, making him look very easy on the eyes.
Yi Longlong probed with a question, “Who may you be?”
The youth faintly smiled, lifted his right hand with two fingers together and pressed them on the pattern embroidered on the left shoulder. “I am an apprentice priest from the temple, studying under teacher Levi. I hope I can become an official priest.”
Oh, so the temple did not only have one person.
Seeing the apprentice priest’s peaceful manner, Yi Longlong relaxed. She felt the rumors from the town’s residents may have been exaggerated, just like today how a crowd of people were packed downstairs waiting to see Lin Qi.
Just as before, Yi Longlong imitated Lin Qi’s voice, “I want to take a browse at the collection of books within the temple; may I please receive permission for it?”
The apprentice priest faintly smiled while making an as you please gesture. “Of course you may, please follow me inside.”
Under the guidance of the apprentice priest, Lin Qi entered the temple and arrived inside a book room. As the apprentice priest was about to leave, he offered Lin Qi several precautions, such as don’t damage the books, not allowed to take them away and so on.
Soon after, only Lin Qi himself and a dragon remained inside the book room.