Chapter 367 - I Am Hikari, and Hikari Is Me
Alice, the Hero, had already helped the treants solve a big problem by uncovering the source of the treant settlement's pollution.
Logically, it would only be a matter of course for the treants to bring out a block of Living Wood to take care of this problem.
The treant elder was also well aware of the treants' behavior toward humans.
To put it bluntly, the Hero could have simply ignored the treants' problem instead of going out of her way to help them.
After all, their attitude toward humans honestly couldn't be considered good.
They remained distant even toward the Hero.
So, the fact that the Hero was willing to help them solve their residence's pollution problem could already be considered an act of repaying hostility with kindness.
There was no reason whatsoever for the Hero to help them for free on top of that.
Not to mention, Alice had requested the block of Living Wood to use to solve the source of pollution.
So, they had even less reason to be stingy with their Living Wood.
The Hero had already done them a huge favor by uncovering the pollution source and coming up with a solution.
They couldn't possibly ask the Hero to help them think of an alternative solution that didn't involve the use of Living Wood, right
Thinking up to this point, the treant elder sighed.
Although he felt reluctant, he had no choice but to supply the Hero with a block of Living Wood to ensure the treants' living environment remained undisturbed.
While Living Mood might allow their race to give birth to future generations with better potential, it wouldn't matter how talented their descendants were if their living environment was destroyed.
It would also be difficult for them to find a new place to stay.
Originally, they had planned to use the Gryffin Forest outside the Gryffin Kingdom as a backup residence in case something happened to their residence in the Kalu Forest.
However, according to what they heard from the human guards stationed outside their settlement, nearly half of the Gryffin Forest had disappeared, and several large mountains took its place.
So, they had no alternative homes left.
Since you are willing to help us, it wouldn't be right for us to ask for a foot after getting an inch.
The least we can do is provide the materials."
The treant elder let out another sigh.
The birth of Living Wood was rare and random.
The process of producing Living Wood was by nourishing trees under the aura of treants across long periods of time.
In doing so, there was a tiny chance for the covered trees to give birth to an irregularly shaped block of Living Wood in their trunks or branches.
Currently, there were only four blocks of Living Wood in their stockpile.
So, losing even one was a huge loss.
However, sacrificing a block of Living Wood could still be worthwhile if they could recover their normal living environment.
"Here is the Living Wood."
Under the treant elder's instruction, a moderately-sized treant went to retrieve a block of Living Wood.
The wooden block wasn't particularly large.
It was roughly the size of a mobile phone box only, and Alice couldn't help but suspect that the treants had chosen the smallest block in their stockpile to give her.
Fortunately, this block of Living Wood was enough to create another figurine with, so it didn't matter even if the treants had given her their smallest block.
Though, Alice couldn't help but wonder how the treants would react if they learned that she was going to turn this block of Living Wood into a figurine.
Although Alice was curious to see the treants' reaction, she naturally wouldn't create such trouble for herself.
After receiving the Living Wood from the reluctant-looking treant with her left hand, Alice walked up to the Pollution Roulette and pressed the Living Wood against it.
Then, she opened a gap in her power armor's left palm and sneakily slipped it inside.
From the treants' perspective, it looked as if Alice had pressed the Living Wood into the Pollution Roulette.
Although this feat could be replicated using spatial magic, the use of spatial magic would give off obvious mana fluctuations.
However, since the treants didn't detect any mana fluctuations, Alice managed to sneak a block of Living Wood without anyone being the wiser.
After putting the Living Wood away, Alice pressed her right hand onto the Pollution Roulette and opened a gap in the power armor's right palm, letting her real right hand come into contact with the Law-grade weapon and regain control over it.
Immediately afterward, she expanded the collar and had it fly up and beyond the giant tree.
Then, the Pollution Roulette shrunk into a normal-sized collar and descended into Alice's hand.
"Do you need this" Alice asked, smiling as she offered the Pollution Roulette to the treant elder.
However, the treant elder knew his limits.
He knew that he definitely couldn't keep such a powerful source of pollution under control.
So, he hurriedly took two steps back and frantically shook his head:
We can't handle this thing, so please take it away, Hero."
Alice had expected such an outcome, so she wasn't surprised by the treant elder's reaction.
After all, the Pollution Roulette might seem harmless for the moment after being "neutralized" by the Pollution Roulette, but it was still a pollution source in essence.
Not only did the treants have no use for it, but they also had to worry that it might become active again in the future.
There was no way they would dare to keep such a ticking time bomb.
After nodding and putting the Pollution Roulette away, Alice said to the treant elder, "Since I have already taken care of matters here, I will be taking my leave.
I suspect this tool is related to the demon realm, so I need to head back to investigate further.
If I manage to find any important information, I will also return to inform you."
Alice had said these words to justify her visit to the treant settlement.
Her words would imply that she had only visited the treant settlement because she had noticed an item related to the demon realm.
That way, the treants wouldn't mull over "why the Hero would suddenly appear in the treants' territory for no reason."
The treant elder seemingly understood the point Alice was trying to get across.
However, he still shook his head and said:
"We are grateful that you are willing to help us to such an extent, but you don't have to go out of your way to inform us of any information you find.
We do not wish to participate in matters relating to humans and demons."
It would seem that the treants truly had zero intentions of getting involved with matters outside their settlement.
Although Alice had already guessed something like this would happen, she still couldn't help but inwardly sigh when she heard the treant elder's response.
Based on the treants' previous behavior, Alice could already tell that even though they were aware that a human had snuck into their territory and left a pollution source behind, they never had any intentions of pursuing the matter.
In reality, if the treants decided to pursue the matter, the Rhine Kingdom and the Ymir Kingdom would have placed significant importance over it.
After all, if this situation was mishandled, it could lead to the treants taking revenge on the humans.
Even if the treants would eventually fall to the human armies, it would still create a big problem for the two kingdoms.
So, the reasonable choice would be to help the treants search for the culprit responsible for the treant settlement's pollution.
However, the fact was that the treants had never mentioned this matter to the Rhine Kingdom and the Ymir Kingdom.
Otherwise, this incident should have been recorded in Collins' document.
Alice shook her head helplessly.
Since the treants did not wish to have any involvement with matters outside their settlement, Alice wouldn't force them to do so.
After bidding the treants goodbye, Alice left the settlement by herself.
She suspected that the treant elder had already noticed the strangeness in her behavior.
The treant elder might have also suspected that the Living Wood wasn't essential in dealing with the Pollution Roulette.
Yet, he never brought up his suspicion and simply had one of his people retrieve a block of Living Wood for her.
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Honestly, Alice felt that the treants' way of living would bring terrible consequences to them.
However…she didn't have the qualifications to dictate how they should live their lives.
Let's just forget about this matter and find someone to carve this Living Wood into Andusia...wait, no, into a Hikari figurine.
After leaving the treant settlement, Alice dismissed her power armor and held the Living Wood in her left hand.
Andusia's been wearing Hikari's face for so long that I nearly mixed up Andusia and Hikari's appearances.