The next day, Fang Zhao and Zuo Yu boarded Su Feng's flying transport and headed for Muzhou together.
Four Elephants Foodstuff's growth had been relatively good. The influence of Polar Light's image was on the rise because of the SilverLight team and the world's No. 1, Fang Zhao. This had enabled Four Elephant's products to do better than other Muzhou brands and thus be more popular among youngsters. After all, younger people tended to play games or know more about the gaming circles.
"This year's Memorial Day gifts have already been sent out. You guys at Silver Wing have a share too and should receive them tomorrow. How nice that your department will be back to receive them." The Memorial Day gifts Su Feng had sent out this year were more abundant. As profits were great, he naturally wouldn't be stingy.
As they talked about Fang Zhao being AliveAfter500Years and the high price of the team attire, Su Feng mentioned the happenings at Dongshan Farm.
Su Feng laughed. "Oh, that fella Su Hou was recently given a beating by his dad."
Su Hou had been keeping Fang Zhao updated on the goings-on at his side as well as the farm's progress, but lately, Su Hou had only been sending text messages, not video ones, and whenever Su Hou called, he did not enable video mode either.
"An argument?" Fang Zhao asked. What went on in the Su family was no secret. Muzhou's entertainment journalists loved to report on the conflicts within the Su family.
Su Feng's grin was especially wide. "Mmhm. Su Hou got into a fight with his half-brothers. Can you guess what happened?" Not waiting for Fang Zhao to reply, he continued, "I heard that neither side brought their bodyguards, but the other side had two people: one around the same age as Su Hou, and one older than him. Su Hou received some small wounds, but the other people were more severely injured. Because Su Hou had brought a dog! Hahahaha!" Su Feng convulsed with laughter and nearly fell out of his chair.
"The one he brought along was that little Curly Hair. He really deserves to be called a champion dog. It's fighting strength is quite impressive."
During their conversation, the flying transport had already arrived at Dongshan Farm and was descending to the parking space. Su Hou, who had received the news, was already waiting.
There were no longer any marks on Su Hou's face from his father's beating.
Curly Hair ran over like the wind, encircling Fang Zhao and wagging its tail vigorously, showing that he was excited to see Fang Zhao.
"You seem to be in high spirits." Fang Zhao picked Curly Hair up and examined him. There were bits of grass on Curly Hair's body, but closer to the skin, it was still relatively clean, and he had been well taken care of. Curly Hair had probably just been playing in the grass and so had bits of grass and soil sticking to him.
"Master Zhao! Long time to see!" Su Hou's tone was excited. Previously, Fang Zhao had just been a cooperative partner and someone who had helped him escape a dire predicament. Su Hou had been very grateful for that, but now he totally worshipped Fang Zhao.
Su Hou had been underage for "Battle of the Century," but he had been following the game's news closely. When Fang Zhao had unveiled himself as AliveAfter500Years, Su Hou had been equally shocked, but after the shock had come delight and excitement. Other people would find it hard to even see AliveAfter500Years, but he could speak with Fang Zhao over the comms every week, even though it was only about farm matters.
Before, Fang Zhao had only seen the changes of the farm through video. Now that he was here, Su Hou led the way, telling Fang Zhao what each piece of land was for.
"The soil has already improved, the seeds we planted there have already sprouted and should be able to survive winter, so there is no need to apply antifreeze. Over there is still empty. When spring comes round, we will plant some new seeds my brother has given me. The crop was cultivated in a space laboratory. Actually, it has been cultivated for quite some time already, but they held it back to ensure the fruit was entirely safe. Now, it has been confirmed to be safe, and what I have is the first batch..."
Su Hou professionally introduced Fang Zhao to every place on the farm. Now there were cultivated fields, pastures, and an extended building for the workers to stay in.
Su Hou was also no longer that ignorant little fatty he had once been. He had indeed worked hard at farming.
As they strolled along, a pack of dogs started barking and ran over.
The few large dogs at the head of the pack seemed familiar. There were not from Wu Yi's farm. Those few competition dogs from the previous year had all been returned to Wu Yi. Only Curly Hair remained here.
"Are these the dogs left behind by the previous owner?" Fang Zhao asked as he looked at the lively and well-built dogs at the head of the pack.
"That's right, it's them."
When the dogs neared and saw the unfamiliar faces of Fang Zhao and Zuo Yu, they started barking. However, Curly Hair gave a low growl and they all stopped.
"A while back, they were too lazy and had no vigilance at all. The professional dog trainers I hired were not effective. The trainers even said that these dogs had already been raised to waste away and no amount of training would improve them. However, ever since Curly Hair came, all of them have changed..." Su Hou was in high spirits and rambled on and on about the dogs to Fang Zhao.
Normally, when Su Hou called Fang Zhao, they mostly talked about the farm. He had also mentioned the situation with the dogs before, but he had not gone into much detail. Now, though, Su Hou finally had to chance to go into extensive detail with Fang Zhao about all this. This was also the place he was most proud of; he had flaunted it many times. Take a look! Even the dogs that the trainers gave up on are gradually improving on my farm!
Thesee dogs had been really useless in the past. Why else had Su Hou needed to borrow Wu Yi's dogs? But now they were no longer as dispirited as before and were more vigilant. At the start, they had all followed after and learned from Curly Hair. When Curly Hair barked at strangers, they did the same. If they didn't do so, or they barked wrongly, Curly Hair reprimanded them. Slowly, as time went by, these dogs had begun to understand a few simple things. They now knew how to bark at strangers—when familiar people were with strangers, they should selectively growl. When they didn't understand, they should bark first. Besides, if it was wrong, the owner would stop them.
"Although they were still far from Curly Hair's standard and still could not compare with the dogs on Wu Yi's farm, compared to the way they were before, it is already a big improvement. Now, they can do basic guard duty and are learning how to herd sheep. I don't have any hope of them taking part in competitions, but they are at least capable of simple guarding and are halfway there to being proper working dogs." Su Hou did not set very high bars for his dogs, so he was very satisfied with their current standard.
Actually, these dogs were all being trained by Curly Hair. Sleeping when it was time to run? Bite! Roaming around when you were supposed to be standing guard? Bite! Not following the rules during feeding time and messing up the bowls? Bite! Excitedly running over to suspicious characters? Vicious bite!
Hearing Su Hou say all this, Fang Zhao felt that Curly Hair was just treating these few dogs as younger brothers and teaching them, or maybe it was finding some fun.
"These few puppies are the ones I told you about. I went to buy them from other people and I'm intending to train them for competition use. There is championship blood running through their veins. I spent lots of hard-earned money to purchase them." Muzhou dogs were expensive, especially the descendants of champion dogs!
In other continents, youngsters from aristocratic families liked to buy cars with the money they had in hand and changed them often. Here in Muzhou, the aristocratic youngsters loved buying dogs. Even Su Feng, who did not take part in sheep-herding competitions, also bought dogs that he had good feelings toward.
The few pups on the farm, as well as other pups that Fang Zhao had placed orders for but had not arrived yet, had cost almost all of the money that Su Hou had put together. Money from advertisements, prize money from competitions, and red packets from other Su family members and others had all been used to exchanged for dogs. Luckily, he had Fang Zhao as an investor and the farm's constructions had never ceased.
"This year, there is no need for rat extermination. There are totally no rats or mice in the farm's area. I heard that there were some rabbits and other small wild animals in the surrounding area, but I have never seen any..." Su Hou had just thought about this and was airing his thoughts.
Fang Zhao shot a glance at Curly Hair, who was following beside his feet. Curly Hair raised his head, made eye contact, then drooped his ears and retracted his gaze.
Back when they were on Wu Yi's farm, Curly Hair had gone with Bingo and the other dogs to hunt field mice and had even eaten them. Fang Zhao suspected that all the field mice on that farm had all been eaten up. Perhaps the wild rabbits in the farm's vicinity might have had such a calamity befall them as well.
Su Hou led Fang Zhao to a newly constructed courtyard. This was the courtyard of the owner's house.
"This house has been specially prepared for Master Zhao. You don't have to worry about not having a place to stay whenever you come," Su Hou introduced.
Fang Zhao pointed at a room in the corner where a "No trespassing or unauthorized personnel" sign was hanging. "And what is that over there?"
"Oh, that is my own gaming room. Oh, right, my dad said he would send me a 10th-generation console. I should be receiving it some time today, if not tomorrow." Su Hou seemed pleased.
Su Hou's father had given a piece of farmland to one of his illegitimate sons. Su Hou had not just argued with his dad for wrongly accusing him of releasing a dog to bite his half-brothers but also because of this matter. Although it was a small farm and could not be compared to Dongshan Farm and the land he'd received for winning the championship, Su Hou still felt displeased.
After Su Hou had received the beating, with his face full of bruises, he had run to the cemetery and sat in front of Su Mu's grave, complaining. The next day, Muzhou's entertainment news had all been about the internal conflicts in Su Hou's family and how they expected to see a brilliant and excited aristocratic family feud.
But in no time, whether Su Hou's dad had clarified the truth of the dog-biting matter or if his conscience had acted up or if it was pressure from the family heads, he had given Su Hou a 10th-generation console, something Su Hou had been longing for. After that, Su Hou had went to get treatment for his bruises on his face and temporarily stopped butting heads with his dad.
In the eyes of Muzhou audiences, Su Hou was just an idiot—young, ignorant, and childish. His dad was of a higher level and settled the internal feud easily with just a gaming console.
The majority of Muzhou people did not really pay much attention to video game consoles. Instead of buying the expensive-as-hell 10th-generation console, why not purchase the ninth generation, which was sufficient to play the latest games, and the money saved could be used to buy new breeds of seeds or dogs.
Among the 12 continents, Muzhou had the lowest standards of e-sports competition. It was not that the people were not capable of playing or had no time, but that instead, when compared to crops, soil, and dogs, gaming was not that important. It was just a pleasurable activity. Choosing between watching a gaming competition or a sheep-herding competition, most people from Muzhou would choose the latter.
The reason why everyone said that Su Hou was foolish was because, comparing a video game console to a farm, which of the two was more important? Giving up the feud over a farm for a video game console was totally not worth it!