“We can save him. That’s all right…” Barney tries to comfort them. The Bushmen put toxic tree sap on their spears and they can kill something like a gazelle or a wild ox. Barney is afraid that if a conflict happens, the four of them will die here.
One of the Bushmen is watching them with alert. Soon, some come and take the sheik away. They drum Lin Luoran and others out of their tribe.
Although there are three cultivators, Lin Luoran cannot cast any spells to deal with these poor people. Wen Guanjing is called “ST” or “sticker” by some foreign cultivators, but he is not doing anything as well. He is not a malicious person.
They don’t have any option now that the sheik has passed out and the Bushmen don’t allow them to rescue him. They can only wait until the sheik wakes up and then they can ask him about the murals.
The Bushmen keeps the fire burning all night. Keeping away the beasts is one reason. Another reason is that the temperature difference between day and night is actually big. They will feel cold if they put out the fire.
Barney is a conscientious and qualified guide. When they go back to their SUV, Barney picks a lot of firewood and stacks them next to the car. They will make it through tonight.
Lin Luoran looks at him piling up the firewood and suddenly realizes that they have bought everything except for matches or lighters — they don’t have to, actually, but with Barney here, the cultivators cannot cast spells…
Baojia gloats. She hasn’t learned to cast spells anyway, so it is funny for her to watch the two people are “forced” to do nothing even though they can do everything.
What Barney does, however, makes Lin Luoran feel that the money Wen Guanjing paid is worthwhile. With “hands tied up”, the three cultivators just watch Barney. Barney picks up a block of wood with a hole on it and puts some dried grass in the hole. Then he picks up a fine wood stick and “performs” in front of them “drilling wood to make fire”.
… Is that real? Baojia pinches on her arm. This is very technical and she decides to watch carefully.
Barney seems to be professional. He moves the stick quickly and friction generates heat soon. Under Barney’s patience, there is smoke soon. As there is more and more smoke, Barney slows down his movement. He puts some leaves on the dried grass and blows air. Suddenly, fire is up — finally, they have fire!
“Drilling wood to make fire” like this with no aid at all seems to be common to Barney. Some of the beef they bought is in the trunk. They take the beef out and make roast meat for dinner.
The bonfire is burning slowly. Adding wood becomes technical. If the fire is small, it cannot resist coldness, but if it is big, they don’t have enough wood. As beef is getting golden-brown on the fire and emanating nice smell, they understand why Barney is so good at it.
Barney is a Bushman, but he comes from a tribe close to the city. The local government made the area in which they hunted a reservation. Being forbidden from hunting, those Bushmen didn’t know how to grow plants, so they could just wander in the city. Barney’s parents become unskilled labors and they lived a hard life. However, they sent Barney to school. Although he just finished middle school and is now working as a cashier and living an unhappy life, he is still doing better than ordinary Bushmen.
However, he never forgets the living skills he learned when he was a child. It is fortunate that he speaks English as well. Thanks to him, their trip is easier.
Beef seasoned by salt alone is not very tasty to Lin Luoran, but Barney eats it with satisfaction.
After eating, Wen Guanjing and Barney leave the car to the ladies. They decide to sleep next to the fire and let the girls sleep in the car.
There is dust everywhere in the SUV. Baojia is not a spoiled girl, but she has never dealt with this kind of circumstance before. The mosquitos are bothering her as they keep biting her all the time.
Lin Luoran is resting at the front seat and Baojia stays at the back. Hearing Baojia swatting mosquitos, Lin Luoran is about to cast a “Cleaning Spell” when she hears Baojia whispering,
“Luoran, I have always felt that my life is hard as I have never met my parents… I have brought you and grandpa a lot of trouble when I grow up… However today, I see a kid getting thirsty and he can only drink from the root of a tree. How is my life hard compared to his?”
Lin Luoran is speechless. She remembers when she first met Baojia. Baojia was an offbeat girl from the capital. She was always showing a cold face and she didn’t let anyone come close to her. Although she was rich materially, how about spiritually?
People will say that it is important to be rich spiritually, but that should come after keeping alive, shouldn’t it? Here, deep in Africa, the Bushmen don’t have enough food or clothes. Lin Luoran cannot understand why they are still living happily.
Does it have anything to do with satisfaction?
Does it mean that the more you have, the more you want? Compared with cultivation in a hard way, Lin Luoran prefers to her life now.
Lin Luoran sighs. She decides not to think about the philosophical problem and returns tranquility at the front seat — it is full of fire Reiki in the desert and Wen Guanjing should be happy about it.
Baojia looks at the window, counting mosquitos. She has the nature of water and wood, so it is impossible for her to cultivate here. She cannot fall asleep, either. Seeing Lin Luoran and Wen Guanjing in tranquility, she opens the door slightly and wants to go out for some fresh air.
Lin Luoran stays alert with her spiritual mind. She can rescue Baojia anytime if she is in danger, so Lin Luoran doesn’t pay much attention.
Baojia is sitting on a sand dune, staring blankly. Suddenly, she makes a curious sound “En?” and runs towards the other side of the dune. After a few steps running, she mysteriously disappears in the desert.
Lin Luoran suddenly loses track of Baojia and opens her eyes. She gets off the car and runs towards the dune. The wind blows at night and there is sand everywhere. In the chirp of owls, Lin Luoran looks at the desert and finds no trace of Baojia at all.
She hears the “En?” and gets off the car. She is very fast already but Baojia just disappears in a few seconds!
Lin Luoran is about to run into the sand when she is suddenly held by someone.
Wen Guanjing has been woken up already. Seeing that Lin Luoran is going deep into the dune desperately, he stops her,
“Sister Lin, something is wrong… If we go in recklessly, we may not be able to save her!”
Lin Luoran is blinded by her concern about Baojia. With Wen Guanjing’s words, she now realizes that worrying will only make things worse. They discuss next to the bonfire and wake Barney up.
Hearing that one employer is missing, Barney is worried as that might have a bad influence on his reputation. He attaches great importance to Baojia’s missing as well.
“Taken away by the sand…” Barney recalls something and his expression changes. Lin Luoran asks him about it several times and he finally tells them about a curse popular among the Bushmen, something related to demons of wind and sand. However, he cannot recall the details as he was very young when he left the tribe.
“Go find the sheik!”
Lin Luoran and Wen Guanjing speak with one voice. They both remember the look of the sheik when he saw the photo. It seems that he passed out because of fear.
There has to be a connection between the photo and Baojia’s missing… Lin Luoran gets extremely worried and she cannot consider the feeling of their “international friend” anymore. She sneaks into the tribe and takes out the sheik, who is still asleep.
He was just shocked, so there is no need to use any spells to heal him. Barney gives him some cold water. The sheik is choked and he wakes up soon.
With the light of the fire, the sheik recognizes that the two people standing in front of him are Lin Luoran and Wen Guanjing. He is still in shock and he says something pointing at Wen Guanjing’s bag — where he took out the photo.
Barney translates his words with fear. It turns out that the sheik is repeating the same phrase, “Curse from the demon!”
No way… It is the mural they saw underwater with the halo and cultivators flying towards the halo. It is about the disappearance of masters on the level of Gathering Vitality. How can it be a “curse from the demon”?
Seeing that the sheik cannot express himself clearly, Lin Luoran doesn’t want to push him. She frowns and talks to Wen Guanjing, “I think there must be a connection between Baojia’s missing, the murals and this so-called curse from the demon… Where was your photo taken? Let’s go and find it on our own!”
Wen Guanjing feels embarrassed, “It was taken by an experienced field worker. He couldn’t identify directions in the desert and he almost died in his way out. However, he can never find the place again… I won’t keep it from you that before we are here this time, I have searched this region on my mission, but I haven’t found the place… I think no one other than the owner of this place, the Bushmen, can help us find it.”
Lin Luoran is shocked. However, she cannot blame Wen Guanjing as she is the one who got excited and forgot to ask about the source of the photo.
Looking at the sheik who is warming himself by the fire and who is still in shock, Lin Luoran makes up her mind to persuade him to help!
The curse from the demon?
That sounds terrible. Lin Luoran hopes that nothing bad happens to Baojia, or she will be guilty for the rest of her life.