QZ Chapter 6
Quality Checker: MochiMochi95
First Published on Ainushi.
Everyone became nervous after hearing Zhi Shang’s words. The word “death” was already too difficult for the children to comprehend, let alone “scattered souls”.
“For every species, infancy is always the weakest, most fragile stage in their life, especially for us Tianxiu people.”
“Because our souls reincarnate, the loss of even a single one of them is an irreversible loss to our entire race. In order to maintain our population, every Tianxiu Adult will protect the lives of Nestlings at all cost, and as Nestlings, you should keep it firmly in your heart at all time that nothing is more precious than your life. Always remember to make self-protection your utmost priority. Should danger arise, escape will be your first choice, and you must not act rashly. Do you understand?” Zhi Shang warned them earnestly.
A strong sense of purpose instantly filled the heart of every student present. They realized for the first time that their own protection was of great importance as well.
“Then what about people on other planets? Without souls or reincarnations, what’s their life like?”
“That’s a good question,” Zhi Shang commended. “All species have their unique reproduction methods. Take the nearest Langxiu people as an example.” He adjusted the projection device, and the 3D projection of the Langxiu people appeared on the empty ground next to them.
“The cubs of Langxiu people are in the form of pure animals. Compared to the cubs of other species, the Langxiu people who were born as beasts are more viable, but they will also obtain higher intelligence at a relatively later stage. During their infancy, they gradually learn the skill to transform, and by the time they reach early youth, they will already be skilled at switching freely between the two forms. Their average life expectancy is two hundred to three hundred years, and the prime of their life accounts for 97 percent of it. Their aging period is very short. Just like their infancy, they can only exist in the beast form, and then meet their death.”
“After a Langxiu person dies, other clansmen will return his corpse to the earth. It’s interesting to think about it. Even though they are of a race of pure carnivores, their belief in the mother earth is actually stronger than any other nation. The food which they depend on lives on grass, and after their death, they will turn into nutrient to fertilize the soil in return. These are people filled with primitive wildness who adore nature and advocate freedom. Right now, they are our Surrenderer.”
“What’s a Surrenderer?”
“It’s a nation which chooses to surrender after being defeated in war. Each year, they will offer tributes at set dates in order to show their submission. There are six more of these nations in our galaxy.”
The students cried out in surprise. “We are actually that strong?”
Zhi Shang smiled, “As for this question, if you have the chance to visit other planets after you become Adults, you’ll find that the difference between us and the other species is not as simple as merely our different ways of reproduction.”
The students listened to him with great interest. “Then, are there other reproduction methods?”
“There are ones like…” Zhi Shang clicked on the remote control, and the content of the virtual projection changed again. “This is the Earth people, who lives relatively far from us. They are born in the form of these little babies.”
The image of an Earth baby was crawling in the air. Occasionally, he would struggle to stand up, tumble, then try to stand up again.
“Woa, how cute!” A lot of girls couldn’t hold themselves back from shouting already.
“The Earth Nestling doesn’t have any memories or the ability to survive, which means they have to learn the most knowledge in the shortest period of time. From the most fundamental ones such as walking, eating, language, to self-protection — all of these skills can only be gained through studying.”
“Wouldn’t it be really tiring for them?”
“It’s tiring, but it also brings you a strong sense of achievement. We, Tianxiu people, probably will never understand this joy of growing up, which is what they call ‘the childhood’.”
After tumbling again and again, the baby was finally able to stand firmly, and gradually learned how to walk without any support, then to run, to jump. His looks changed, his body started growing, and his appearance slowly evolved into one that was similar to a Tianxiu Nestling.
“What everyone sees now is the adolescence phase of the Earth people, which is around the age of fifteen or sixteen. Their standard for an adult is set uniformly by law. The threshold is usually eighteen years old, with a few exceptions. Once they are over that age, that means they are already an adult, regardless of their mental maturity.”
“When an Earth person reaches their adulthood, he can lawfully mate and reproduce. The majority of the countries implements a monogamy marriage system. However, their marriage status can be removed at anytime; it is not as secure as the spousal relationship in Tianxiu.”
The projection continued on, and the students rapidly skimmed through the life cycle of an Earth person as he matures, marries, reproduces, ages, up till his death, then gets cremated and becomes ashes.
“It’s so incredible!” For the first time, they learned that within the boundless universe, there existed a species surviving on such a form. It shocked everyone’s mind.
“The life expectancy of the Earth people is very short compared to ours. Because they reproduce sexually, everyone has family and family members. In their language, these people are called father, mother, big brother, big sister, little brother, little sister…”
The students unconsciously repeated after him in low voices. These words were completely strange to them, but somehow they flew right off their tongues.
“Although Tianxiu people don’t have as huge of a clan system as Earth people do, and much less is the existence of a blood relationship, we do have family.” He looked at Yao Tai with a smile. “Ah-Yao is my family, and each of you will have your own family in the future too.”
“But we don’t have those big brothers, little brothers, big sisters, little sisters…”
Zhi Shang pondered for a moment and asked, “Has any of you ever wondered that since we are all transformed from souls, where did our names come from?”
Unexpectedly, this was the first time they had realized this question, and they had no idea how to answer it.
“The answer is on the energy capsule. After each soul returns, we will place them in order. Every energy capsule has its own last name, and there is a fixed sequence used to generate the first names. We combine our last name and the first name together, and that, is how everyone is named.”
The students finally realized, ‘So that’s how it works.’
“Therefore… Well, actually it’s just me having this secret thought. For those people who hibernate, wake up, and have the same last name as us, aren’t they our brothers and sisters?”
“Ah!” A lot of people felt a light flashing across their mind. “So we already have so many families before even knowing about it. Doctor, can I take a look at the energy capsule I was placed in?”
“Of course.” Zhi Shang smiled, “You may as well take a look at the panel on my right hand side, look up the section where your last name is in, then you can find your capsule in the corresponding section.”
The excited students immediately began to swarm before the search panel. Ling Xiao’s eyes were sharp. He had already spotted within a bunch of last names the section which “Ling” was in, so he began to find his way there following the signs on the road. Only after he started walking by himself did he find out that the main hall was much larger than he had expected. Even the staffs he encountered along the way were moving around in small scooters, which was enough the show how vast this place was.
“Ling, Ling, Ling…” Searching through rows after rows of energy capsules, he finally found the one with the last name “Ling”.
“Here is where I woke up…” As he put his hand on the top of the sealed cover, a warm feeling welled up in his heart.
The side of the energy capsule was densely packed with names of the people who had woken up in it. Ling Xiao’s name stood out at the end of the list, with his ancestors under the last name “Ling” listed before his.
“Ling Yang, Ling Lang, Ling Daoxi… So they are my seniors. Are they still alive now?” Ling Lang said to himself.
The name of the soul currently hibernating inside the capsule was especially eye-catching. Ling Xiao felt an irresistible impulse to read it out, “Ling-Xiao-Lu. So you should be my little brother…”
The word required the tongue to touch the teeth twice  to pronounce, which he felt was very cute, so he said it clearly again, “Little brother, now I’m a person with family too.”
He leaned over the sealed chamber gently and carefully. Pressing his ear against it, he closed his eyes as if he could really hear the heartbeat coming through. “You should hurry and wake up soon… ”
Everything around him fell into silence, and only the steady heartbeat thumped rhythmically. With his eyes closed, Ling Xiao appeared so serene as if he was asleep. This was the sense of security one would feel when they returned to their mother’s body, a feeling that the Tianxiu people could never comprehend, yet at this moment, it seemed so clear in Ling Xiao’s mind.
After a long time, Ling Xiao slowly opened his eyes. A complicated character appeared within his sight. He tried to focus his eyes a couple times, and the blurred image finally gradually became clear, revealing the word “Ying” in the end.
Ling Xiao stared blankly at it for a second, his mind still muddled. ‘This character looks so familiar. It’s like I’ve seen it somewhere before?‘
He looked at the “Ling” on the head of his capsule, and then the “Ying” next to him. All of a sudden, he became alarmed and leaped backward for half a meter. Glancing at Ying Feng out of the corner of his eye, he started to wonder how long the other person had been standing there. Could it be…?
Thinking about his childish act just now, Ling Xiao wished he could scoop up a ladle of water in the Purification Pool and pour it right on the other person’s head, rinsing away his memories about it.
“W-why are you here?” Standing in front of his territory, Ling Xiao asked righteously.
Ying Feng glanced at him as if Ling Xiao was mentally disabled before walking straight to the capsule next to him. The capsule next door also had a soul sleeping in it, and the name tag read “Ying Zheng”.
He finally realized why that character looked so familiar. As it turned out, the capsule next door was actually Ying Feng’s mother chamber. Ling Xiao looked at the gap between the two energy capsules. They were not even a meter away, which was not that different from sleeping on the same bed. So during the ten or twenty years of his hibernation, he and Ying Feng had been neighbors all this time?
Ying Feng ignored Ling Xiao, who was glaring at him angrily on the side. Mimicking the other person’s action just now, he raised his right hand and left it on the top of the capsule. Somehow, Ling Xiao suddenly became nervous. He swallowed subconsciously, wondering whether Ying Feng could also feel that wonderful feeling he just experienced.
Neither of them made another sound. Even the air seemed to have solidified.
A voice broke into the dead silence. “Eh? You are here too?”
As if he was woken by the voice, Ling Xiao turned his head. “Why did you come?”
The person who came was Ping Zong. “I’m in this section too.” He pointed to the big word “Ping” written on the head of the capsule next to him, which was only an aisle across from theirs. “It looks like we lived very close before.”
“Yeah.” Ling Xiao gave Ying Feng a glance. He was still standing with the same posture and hadn’t moved an inch. “How are these sections divided anyway?”
“It should be based on the pronunciation. Didn’t you realize that Ling, Ying, and Ping all sounded very similar?”
Ling Xiao thought about it carefully, realizing that it was indeed the case. He immediately looked at his left hand side and said, “You’re right, the one next to me is Ming.”
“Next to mine is… Jing, and Bing.”
The two of them discovered a new interest point and continued to check one by one, announcing the last name every time they had reached a new capsule. The hall which had been perfectly quiet just now was soon filled with their cheerful shoutings.
“So noisy.” As Ling Xiao returned to the starting point after going around the section, he was just in time to hear Ying Feng’s low voice.
Ling Xiao was about to argue back that it was none of his business, but an ear-piercing alarm suddenly went off over the Base. The harsh, sharp whistles came one after another.
“What happened?” Ling Xiao was alarmed.
“Let’s find the crowd first!” Ping Zong had already broken into a run toward the control center. Ling Xiao closely followed behind him, but as he was halfway through, he became a little worried and looked back. However, Ying Feng was not there.
As he hesitated in his mind, he slowed down his pace unconsciously. Ping Zong sensed his unusualness and asked, “What’s wrong?”
Ling Xiao clenched his fist. “You go first. I’ll meet you soon!”
“Hey!” Ping Zong tried to stop him, but Ling Xiao had already turned around and rushed toward the way which they had come from. His speed was so fast that it only left Ping Zong with a blur.
Ping Zong had no choice but to let him go, while he himself hurried to the main control center with his fastest speed. Only after he had successfully found Lan Sheng did he finally set his mind at rest.
Lan Sheng arrived earlier than him, therefore he more or less had some understanding of the situation. “Astronomical alert. A nearby asteroid disintegrated accidentally. They predicted that there might be meteorites falling into this area.”
Planet disintegration was a common astronomical event here. Ping Zong took a glance around him. Even though the alarm was still on, every staff worked in their positions in order, and none of them showed any signs of panic.
The energy capsule control panel was already switched into an enormous astronomy monitor station. Complicated numbers and signs were flashing rapidly on the projected screen. Lan Sheng and the others knew nothing about them. All they knew was that what appeared in the center of the screen was the most important building on the Tianxiu Planet — The Soul Lighthouse.
Staffs in charge of security evacuated the students to the safe zone. Everyone was tenterhooks, questioning the Adults all at once.
“Will the meteorite hit here?”
“Are we in danger?”
The staffs tried to calm down the students while keeping order, “Don’t worry. This is just a small incident. The Base can totally ensure the safety of the students.”
Ping Zong struggled to make his way to the front of the crowd.
“We’re still missing one… No. There are two students who haven’t come back yet.”
His words drew the staff’s attention. “Where are they?”
“The last time I saw them, they were in section G3.”
The other person quickly passed the information to his colleague through the communicator. After a short conversation, he turned off the communicator and said, “Relax. We’ve already sent workers searching for them in that area. We won’t let anything happen to any student!”
 Chinese word for little brother is “didi”, there’s two ‘d’ syllable