"Tell him the specific details," The female general instructed the caretaker of the beast park.
"Okay." The man nodded his head and sized up Ren Baqian. Ren Baqian could clearly see the bewildered look in the other party's eyes.
By this point in time, Ren Baqian was already immune to people looking at him like this. He was now more concerned with the situation of the white bear now.
This could be related to the question of whether or not his head would stay in its rightful position.
"This bear is gifted to us by Xia Nation. Its lifespan is around the same as a human lifespan, approximately 60 years. It symbolizes the friendship between our nation and the Xia Nation. As long as the bear is still alive, the two nations will not wage war against each other," the man spoke with a solemn tone.
The corner of Ren Baqian's mouth twitched. Was it really a polar bear? When he saw the bear lying motionlessly in the brook, the more he felt it was a polar bear.
Sending a polar bear to such a hot place and not telling them how to rear it… the friendship between Xia Nation and this nation was indeed… laughable!
Don't they know this polar bear won't survive for more than one year? Don't you guys know Xia Nation is prepared to start a war with you?
They don't even need to find an excuse to do so.
They sent you a bear that symbolizes the friendship between the two nations, and yet, you kill it in less than a year. What will they say about it? Did you do it on purpose? Are you trying to start a war with them? These are the words that they will be saying.
Ren Baqian mocked the two nations in his heart.
"What's its condition now?" Ren Baqian asked.
"When it just arrived, it was still looking good. However, after the people from Xia Nation left, this bear became very inactive. Everyday, it will just lie in the water. No matter what we fed it, it only ate a bit of it. Now, it has become very weak. If we don't think of a solution soon, I am afraid it will die very soon," the caretaker said worryingly.
Following which, his face turned solemn, and he continued, "It's my fault that it's in this state now. If it really dies, I will seek death as a way to repay Her Majesty's benevolence."
Ren Baqian was speechless when he heard these words. Don't you guys know Xia Nation is trying to make a fool out of you? You are going to die with the bear now? Don't you know the people from Xia Nation will laugh themselves to tears if your really do that?
After hearing what the caretaker said, Ren Baqian felt the environment was indeed hot.
Even he himself could not stand the hot environment, let alone the bear. It was no wonder that it did not feel like eating at all.
To prepare for any eventualities, Ren Baqian still had a few more questions to ask. "When did this bear arrive?"
"One month ago."
"Did they say anything when they delivered the bear here?"
"They said this bear comes from the northern part of Xia Nation. This species is extremely rare and precious, and therefore it must be taken care of properly."
"Is Xia Nation situated in the north?"
"Yes." The caretaker gave Ren Baqian a duh look.
"Have you seen snow before?"
"Alright, I understand." With a thoughtful look on his face, Ren Baqian stood there in his red underpants and nodded his head.
"As long you can settle this issue, Her Majesty will not be stingy with her rewards for you. However, if you fail…" The female general, called Xin Zhe, placed her hand on her sword. She absolutely did not care what Ren Baqian understood. It seemed like the act he put on was for nothing.
"No problem." Ren Baqian's face was filled with joy. At least his life wasn't at risk anymore. He did not expect to encounter such an easy problem. This pair of red underpants was rather useful after all.
(Things that are red in color usually signifies luck for Chinese)
"I have two requests!" Ren Baqian raised one finger. "First, give me a set of clothes! I don't think this is too much to ask for, right?"
Xin Zhe did not care about him and asked, "What's your second request?"
"Get me some saltpeter," Ren Baqian replied. As long as he had saltpeter, he could make ice and the problem would be easily solved. Polar bears could stand cold but not heat. Giving it some ice would better its condition.
However, the best way was to seal up this place and fill it with ice.
"Saltpeter? What is that?"
"..." Ren Baqian went to a deep thought. What is saltpeter? This is indeed a good question.
He only remembered saltpeter could make ice but he did not know how it was made.
He also remembered it could be easily found in ancient times.
"Do you have ice?" Ren Baqian changed his request and asked.
Everyone looked at Ren Baqian as though he was an idiot. This place did not have ice even in winter, let alone summer. Ice and snow could only be found in Xia Nation.
"Get me a set of clothes first. Give me five days and I can definitely solve this issue," Ren Baqian said helplessly.
Fortunately, he could go back to Earth and buy some saltpeter. Saltpeter could be bought almost everywhere. He could also search for it online.
"Alright, I will give you five days. If you can't solve this issue… you should know the consequence."
"I know, of course I know. Five days are enough for me to solve this issue," Ren Baqian assured.
"He will stay here for these five days. Both of you will be responsible for keeping watch over him. If anything goes wrong…" Xin Zhe warned the other two soldiers.
"Yes, Subordinates understand! If anything goes wrong, we will bring our heads to you," the two soldiers replied in unison while standing perfectly straight.
"Give him a set of clothes, I am going to report back to Her Majesty." After instructing the two soldiers, Xin Zhe left without even casting a glance at Ren Baqian.
Fearing that he might make a slip-up, Ren Baqian stared at the white bear to see if there were any more problems with it. When he went back to Earth, he could do some research online or consult a vet.
This, after all, involved his life and he could not treat it lightly.
After a while, the caretaker returned with a set of old clothes for him. They were made up of a coarse material, causing abrasions on his skin. However, it was still better than wearing just a pair of underpants.
"What's wrong with it?" the caretaker asked. After Ren Baqian said that he was confident of solving the issue just now, the caretaker wanted to know his opinions.
"It's feeling hot," Ren Baqian replied.
"Feeling hot?" The caretaker was stunned.
"If I make you wear a fur coat and throw you under the sun, I bet you won't have the appetite to eat anything," Ren Baqian answered casually.
"Ahhh. A sharp-toothed tiger also has a layer of fur but it doesn't seem to face this problem. This applies to other wild animals as well," the caretaker remained unconvinced.
"Are their furs as thick as this bear's?" Ren Baqian pointed at the white back. Its fur was at least the length of one finger. At this point in time, its fur was damp and sticking to its body. The fur on its back had been dried by the sun. It rolled in the stream, made its body wet, and continued lying there.
The white bear subsequently remained motionless, looking utterly listless.
When Ren Baqian saw this, he was certain that this fellow was overheated.
Then, when he saw the caretaker was about to ask more questions, he waved his hand and interrupted, "Forget it, you will know what's going on in a few days' time. You can just keep watch over it."
That night, Ren Baqian stayed in one of the houses in the beast park. All of the odd-job workers stayed in these houses. Even though the living conditions of these houses weren't very good, they were still better than those of the dungeon.
For the next two days, Ren Baqian continued to spend most of his time looking at the bear. Occasionally, he would stroll around the beast park and look at those animals that looked somewhat similar to Earth's.
Soon, it was the third night. If Ren Baqian's conjecture wasn't wrong, he would be returning to Earth tonight.
Before he entered his room, he told the two guards, who did not say anything and had been following him closely for the past two days, "During these two days, I have thought of a solution that can save that white bear. Don't disturb me tomorrow and let me make the necessary preparations. You can place my food at the front of the door. If both of you cause any problems that lead to a last-minute failure, I will drag you along with me even if I die."
After finishing his sentence, Ren Baqian entered his room and closed the door without looking at them. The two soldiers looked at each other and stood guard in front of the door.
They did not care about what Ren Baqian did in the room. As long as he stayed inside, they were fine with it.
At the same time, in one of the palace halls, a red-dressed lady lay on a couch with a teacup in her hand. Every now and then, she would raise her head and take a sip of her tea.
"How's the situation at the beast park?" The lady asked, looking as though she suddenly thought of something.
"That man said he will solve the issue in five days' time. So far, three days have passed. For the past three days, he has been strolling around the beast park. I feel that he is trying to stall for time."
Xin Zhe, who was clad in a full body armor, took two steps forward, cupped her hands and reported to the red-dressed lady.
"Alright, there are still two more days, keep a close watch on him. If he fails…" the lady turned silent and then continued, "Behead him on the spot."
After finishing her sentence, she raised her head and took another sip of her tea.
Ren Baqian tossed and turned in his bed, unable to fall asleep. He was afraid that he couldn't return to Earth. If that really happened, he would be in deep trouble.
After tossing and turning in his bed for an unknown amount of time, he finally fell into a deep sleep.
After some time, he suddenly woke up with start. He extended his hands and touched the bed beneath his body. This bed was much more softer than the one in that world. With the light shining through the window from outside, he was able to see a familiar sight. Ren Baqian finally put down his heavy heart.