The Cambrian Explosion
After surviving the scorching sun, night finally began to fall on the seventh day.
The Violet Ray Flower still lived peacefully in the ocean. By now, it had grown accustomed to withstanding the alternating five thousand years of light from the sun and moon.
At the same time, along with its massive propagation, the significant increase in photosynthesis of these hydrophytes in turn brought about a considerable increase in the oxygen content of the ocean water. The conditions suitable for the birth of marine animals were already in place.
In the world of nature, if there were no aquatic plants in the water and the water could not flow, it was difficult for oxygen in the air to be absorbed and integrated into the water. There was no way such a pool of stagnant water could produce an environment suitable for marine animals.
Soon, the spores, which were unicellular organisms in the ocean of the sandbox world, began to evolve. The first to appear was a group of black beetles, similar in shape to the ancient marine species of the Paleozoic Era, known as the Eurypterids.
Marine animals had now made it onto the historical stage of the evolutionary era.
“The sandbox I created in my world… Marine animals have finally evolved from the unicellular organisms. I’ve waited for you for a long time, through two mass extinctions.”
The moment he saw animals appearing, Xu Zhi broke into a gratified smile. His tired body that had gone without rest for a day and night finally could not take it anymore. He went straight back to his room, lay down and fell asleep.
When he woke up, it was already the eighth day of genesis in the sandbox where the evolution of spores was taking place.
Those who had studied biology knew that the ocean was where life originated. But Xu Zhi found that there were already marine animals that had started to feel unsatisfied with the fiercelypetitive ocean environment. They gradually evolved toes, skin, and scales, and then evolved into amphibians and relocated to the barren coast to live.
Having made this observation, Xu Zhi turned to page after the one on which he had described the Light Cambrian period. Then in his clear and beautiful handwriting, he began recording again.
Xu Zhi named this third era of evolution, where there should beplete rebirth after the mass extinction, the Cenozoic Era:
The Cenozoic Era was the era that ushered in new life. It saw the explosive birth of various kinds of animals, and the first batch of marine animals appeared. This species thrived and prospered, and the males vied for the attention of the females. The invertebrates relied on their hard carapaces to dominate the sea for a time, briefly bing the overlord of that era. But they did not dominate for long. The vertebrates were born and with their superior dexterity, they defeated the invertebrates and became the overlord of the Cenozoic Era. They have crawled out of the ocean and will be in reign for a long era!
Xu Zhi finished writing everything down and closed the book silently.
The eras on Earth were the Cambrian period, the Ordovician period, and the Silurian period.
And Xu Zhi’s eras were the Dark Cambrian period, the Light Cambrian period, and the Cenozoic period.
“That was really fast. I only slept for a night and now the spores will soon be ready to walk out of the ocean and evolve into a species of terrestrial organisms…”
Suddenly, Xu Zhi’s brows twitched, and he said, “But for them to evolve into intelligent creatures, who knows how many long eras it will take? Since the ecosystem has appeared, why don’t I…”
He was in the mood for some fun and played with the idea of cutting himself as he looked at his fingers. He wanted to drip some blood onto some of these organisms and allow them to absorb his genes so that they could quickly evolve into humanoid intelligent creatures…
Would the clan of beautiful mermaids, the Naga, appear in the ocean of the sandbox in the orchard of his yard?
Would the clan of strong Neanderthal, the Tarzan, appear on the mountains of the sandbox in the orchard of his yard?
“Just the thought of these make me so excited; to have a miniature sandbox world in my yard.”
But after some thought, he rejected the idea. He was somehow resistant to experimenting on humans to evolve intelligent species. “I remember there is a zoo on the outskirts of the city. I can sneak out some gorilla fur, acquire some genetic templates, and make something happen…”
He immediately headed out.
A few hours later, Xu Zhi entered the zoo. He was surrounded by many couples lost in their own little world as they displayed their affection for each other. There were also families of three with loving parents, basking in each other’s affection who had brought their children to the zoo to play.
He was a lone, miserable single man, and he stood out in a very conspicuous manner.
After all, who woulde to the zoo alone to see the monkeys? It was just the easiest way to be seen and treated like a monkey instead.
A family of three was furtively whispering among themselves.
“Dad, quick, look at that uncle… He’s balding, and he looks so strong!”
“Don’t talk about people like that. He’s balding and he doesn’t look strong. He’s probably sick. Otherwise, he wouldn’t look so old. No matter how you look at it, he’s a pitiful man. For a seriously ill person to visit the zoo alone, with no one to apany him…”
Xu Zhi was only a young man in his early twenties, but the strong side effects of chemotherapy were obvious. He looked far older than he was. His hair was also thinning, but to say that he was pitiful…
He might have been quite pitiful before, but now, he was enjoying himself and was having a great deal of fun. The evolution of species was pretty cool.
“Haha, this balding young man will evolve a head of long black hair in two days’ time. I will modify the genes of evolution to cure myself of cancer and restore my youth. Do you believe it?”
“But I don’t even believe it myself. The rate of evolution is too slow. In my orchard, the ocean and continents are still in the Paleozoic Era.” He studied the gorillas in the exhibit for a while and singled out a male gorilla that looked the healthiest of the lot. Without further ado, he sought out the manager of the zoo. Very simply and curtly, he introduced himself as a medical student from a nearby university and explained he had a research project assigned to him by his mentor. As such, he required the blood of a gorilla to write his graduate thesis.
“Young man, you say you’re the assistant of a laboratory professor, and a gifted and aplished student, and you’re highly knowledgeable… I believe you.” The older man looked at Xu Zhi’s thinning hair and responded with face that was filled with sorrow and pity. “But it’s impossible for me to give you the blood of this gorilla that I’ve raised with my own hands. He’s like a son to me. Even if you threaten me, shove money in my face, bribe my superiors, it’s still impossible for me to…”
“A tube of blood.”
Xu Zhi took out three thousand yuan and placed it on the table.
The middle-aged manager’s eyes shone brightly. This was one month’s salary. He could not help but jump to his feet and say, “Just one tube of blood? I can provide you with a few more tubes.”
“Brother, I only need one tube.”
Xu Zhi chuckled.
He ran his hand through his head of thinning hair and smiled like a devil whose purpose was to lead one to self-degradation. Then he said, “Don’t worry. I won’t tell your boss. If possible, I will need your cooperation again in the future. For example, I’m also very interested in the blood of the peacocks and cranes in your zoo.”
“Good, good.” The older man rubbed his palms together excitedly. “Supporting college students in their research on topics related to biology is a very meaningful thing to do to.”
A moment later, Xu Zhi left very calmly.
After dealing with the financial aspects of his orchard, he still had several hundreds of thousands of his savings left. He was a frugal man who did not splurge for the purpose of enjoyment. So long as he did not spend extravagantly within a short period of time, the amount he had was more than enough and could bepletely used up.
He had the money to dominate and live ostentatiously. His balding head was him getting stronger! He already had the power of money, and that was why he could be that arrogant!
Then he thought about it for a moment and picked up a few white ants that he happened to see on the side of the road. After all, the white ants had infinite strength and their genes were free too…
Late in the afternoon, at around 5:00 pm, Xu Zhi had just arrived back at his front gate when he suddenly heard someone call out to him.
“Hey, are you Xu Zhi?”
Xu Zhi turned his head to look at the rural roadside. A pretty girl riding a battery-operated electric car was looking at him.
“I’m Chen Xi, the one who used toe over to your house to play when we were kids. I recently noticed the light in your yard was on at night. Are you really back for good?” The girl could not help feeling a little shocked as she asked, “How did you be like this? You weren’t like this before…”
Xu Zhi began to remember her. “It’s all because of gastric cancer. Hair loss and depression alle with chemotherapy.”
“You’ve got cancer? How could this be…” Her eyes widened as she looked at Xu Zhi, too shocked to speak for a moment.
She suddenly said, “Last year, I made it into college. The same one that you went to…”
“All the best.”
Xu Zhi nodded, only now remembering that it should be the summer vacation. She hade home for the holidays. That was why she was here.
The thought passed quickly as Xu Zhi was in a hurry to return home. After all, he had been away for half a day. Who knew what those insect species, with their extremely terrifying capability to propagate, would have evolved into when left to their own devices?
He had been quite desperate before and had waited for death in silence. But now, he felt that this boring life of his had be so unpredictable and interesting.
He was feeling so unbelievably high right now!
Propagating species, creating life; it felt like being on drugs, where he could even keep himself entertained.
“You’re leaving?” Chen Xi did not stop him. The feelings she had were somewhatplicated.
Pursing her lips, she looked at the idol she had used to chase after years ago, who was now clearly trying to run away from her. All that optimism he was showing now was merely him putting on a false front.
After all, he was balding!
He had gone bald, yeah!!
With this sorry amount of hair, it had to be hurtful to just think about it!
Chen Xi suddenly felt that the dream that she had been chasing after all this time had collapsed. But they could still be friends. From a distance, she called out loudly, “Hey! Come over to my place sometime. If there’s anything you need, you can alwayse over to discuss things with us.”
Xu Zhi had a headache.
“Why is everyone staring at my head and making such sad faces filled with reminiscent expressions? I’ve made it clear that this was the aftereffect of chemotherapy. It is perfectly normal, alright?”
Even if his cancer had not been cured, now that he had stopped with the chemotherapy, as he gradually recover, his hair would still grow back!
“Haha, it’s time to evolve a powerful species that is naturally bald. Let them have a taste of the terrifying power of baldness!” Xu Zhi scratched his head and returned to his yard to look into the pond.
At this moment, another half day had passed.
After the species had climbed ashore, they reproduced at an extremely terrifying rate, spreading out to fill practically the entire 100 Mu of land in the miniature sandbox world. The mountains were full of greenery, and the plains were also filled with trees of strange shapes. There were even animals swimming in the rivers.
“There are even freshwater fish now. The fish have left the salt water of the sea and adapted themselves to freshwater rivers.”
“They have only been evolving for ten days and have gone from unicellular organisms to be suchplex multicellular lifeforms, achieving biodiversity and evolving an entire ecological world. That is simply a terrifying rate of reproduction and evolution.”
Up to now, this was just a small sandbox ecological world. If it were not for the Insecta nest limiting the area of reproduction, hence preventing them from venturing out of the sandbox, it was highly likely that they would have staged a species invasion of the Earth.
“So now, let me start randomly picking a lucky one and carry out a round of genocide. I’ll treat them by administering the genes of gorillas and ants. Those who survive will be reborn and be the bugape race of the Paleozoic Era in this sandbox I’ve constructed in my yard…”
Xu Zhi put on the blue plastic shoe covers that he had bought and walked into this huge 100-Mu experimental field. Along the way, he trampled on so many ant-sized plants, trees, and animals that he simply lost count.
And he could not care less either.
“Those who can adapt to life are chosen to survive. This is natural selection, the survival of the fittest. Being trampled to death by me only means that you were unlucky and have been eliminated by nature.” He squatted down and examined the various species in silence. “I’ll select the one with the most potential and allow it to evolve into a species of intelligent apes.”
He thought about it, then added.
“Well, preferably a bald one.”
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