Dominion’s End Volume 6: The Unknown Elite
Original novel in Chinese by: 御我 (Yu Wo)
Chapter 2: The Strong Don’t Walk Alone—translated by Simone (proofread by Arcedemius; C/E edited by lucathia)
I dug a pit to bury the bodies of the five soldiers, deliberately burying them next to the roots of a large tree. Expressionless, I watched as the tree roots reached out and trapped the corpses. Only then did I finally cover them with dirt.
Although non-aberrant trees didn’t eat people, they did rely on nutrients from decaying organisms. I intentionally buried these corpses beneath the tree in the hope it would seize them and prevent aberrants from digging them up and eating them, which would increase their strength.
If these soldiers hadn’t died, would any of them have become strong ability users?
Don’t think about it!
I took a deep breath. Compared to these soldiers, I was much more convinced that strong ability users would turn up in the Jiang Dominion!
We absolutely can’t allow the Shangguan family to snatch away our base, and more importantly, we have to keep the number of casualties as low as possible. As long as we have the Zhanjiang Garrison, with its ideal location that is both easily defendable and hard to attack, and slowly advance on Lan City, kill aberrants, eat crystals, and expand our territories, the Jiang Dominion will become the strongest for sure!
“Xiaorong, help me tie these guns together.”
I had gathered all of the firearms of the five soldiers. Our luck wasn’t bad, as there were two AK-47s. There were no M4 carbine rifles, but compared to our previous luck, I was satisfied with two AK-47s.
With Xiaorong serving as rope, I dashed back through the forest, running for quite some distance before halting. I lifted my right hand to the corner of my mouth and made a strange animal sound. Xiao Sha had told me that this was an owl’s hoot, often heard in the forest.
Eight people silently rose from the underbrush. I calmly untied Xiaorong’s rope, then threw the guns over, except for the two AKs, which I gave to a single person, the captain of the Ice Spears, Wen Jianuo.
Awareness struck Wen Jianuo. He looked at the number of firearms and asked, impressed, “Five soldiers?”
I nodded and said, “Keep two guns and send someone to take the rest back to the base.”
“We’re demoted to delivery service?” Chen Yanqing grumbled, “Xiao Yu, you’re powerful, but you also have to give others a chance to show off!”
“It’s not yet your turn to take the field.”
I shook my head and said, “Your powers aren’t suitable, and though you’re experts with a gun, the sound of gunshots will draw the attention of most of the troops. Our only option would be to flee, unless you’re able to wipe out the enemy in a sneak attack without using guns, to the point that they’re unable to even open fire or call for help.”
Wen Jianuo frowned and said, “If the only goal was to annihilate, we can be sure that the eight of us can succeed with a sneak attack against five soldiers on patrol, but to completely prevent them from opening fire or calling out, that we can’t guarantee. Our opponents are also soldiers, so they’re quite skilled.”
I had figured the same, which was why I had gone alone. With my ice ability and the right timing, I was able to achieve a perfectly soundless execution!
“Everything is going according to plan. You only need to lie in wait here. I’ll go on my own first to kill those patrols, until the enemy senses there’s something wrong or I don’t manage to keep them from making noise. At that moment, I’ll draw the last wave of people here. You will gun them all down from afar and then run. Don’t mind me, and don’t get caught up in a fight!”
Hearing this, Wen Jianuo looked somewhat conflicted.
Beside us, Xue Xi interrupted, “Should we really not mind you? Even if we make it back to the base, Leader will still slaughter us!”
Sliding on my feet, I moved to Xue Xi’s side seemingly in an instant, and leaned toward his ear to say, “Even if I give you a minute head start over me, I won’t be at a disadvantage. Who says you’ll be the first person to make it back to the base?”
Xue Xi was almost dripping with cold sweat, but the weather was cold and there was an ice ability user standing beside him as well. His sweat didn’t drip down but instead froze against the side of his face. He desperately nodded, and in the end simply hid behind Xue Huan, looking pitiful and too afraid to speak. I was unsure whether he was acting or not. Maybe he always goofed around like this.
Going by Xue Huan’s cold expression, she’s accustomed to it. I believe there’s a 99% chance that he doesn’t take things seriously!
Chen Yanqing couldn’t help but say, “If you’re in danger, we really can’t consider the situation and turn back to help you?”
Hearing this, I glanced at Wen Jianuo, who was frowning and probably wondering the same. This really warmed my heart. These soldiers truly didn’t have the intention to leave me behind.
Before leaving the garrison, I actually still had a lot of doubts about Wen Jianuo and the other soldiers. They were soldiers, and the troops of the Shangguan family were as well. Who knew whether or not Wen Jianuo would think the Shangguan family had better prospects, which would allow him to command more soldiers?
Before we left, I had questioned everyone, to avoid having them betraying us halfway. That would really be a fatal blow to the Jiang Dominion!
At that time, it was Wen Jianuo’s answer that truly convinced me to trust him this one time…
Tai Wen only brought Zhang Jing with him to the meeting, but Wen Jianuo brought the whole Ice Spears.
As soon as he saw me, Wen Jianuo couldn’t help but say, “You finally returned. If you hadn’t, Cain would have gotten a lot more tanned.”
Chen Yanqing stepped closer and said, “However, he said that with your personality, the day you’re willing to obediently stay at home must mean you’ve been replaced by someone from an alternate universe!”
“…” Hasn’t that already happened?
I shot a glance at Cain, telling him get to the point, as we had no time to waste.
“We have a big problem.”
Cain explained the situation in full detail, not even trying to conceal the military might of the Shangguan family, as he didn’t have the slightest intention of lying to those about to go into battle.
During this time, I carefully observed Tai Wen and Wen Jianuo. So far, they seemed trustworthy. Under normal circumstances, I would have chosen to slowly break them in. Whether it was trusting each other or working well together on the battlefield, both took time to build up.
Once these people were with the Jiang Dominion for a good period of time, they would become senior members, which would greatly decrease the chances of them betraying us. After all, if they left and joined another faction, not only would they have to start from scratch to build up trust, they also definitely wouldn’t be treated as well as in the Jiang Dominion.
But now we’re already running out of time!
Tai Wen’s expression looked quite ugly as he frowned, deep in thought. When he didn’t respond for a while, Zhang Jing became restless, but as he glanced at Tai Wen from time to time, it was clear only Tai Wen could take the lead.
“This battle can’t be won.”
Wen Jianuo calmly said, “The difference in strength is too great. Perhaps we should let this place go and build a base somewhere else.”
“We can’t surrender!” Cain snorted coldly and said, “Retreat once and we’ll be doing it again. The Shangguan family is laying siege to our base, and their mind is set on the entire city. If we yield once or twice, we might as well leave the city, find some village, and become chief there.”
Wen Jianuo scratched his head and said, “If we don’t have to surrender, then I don’t want to either. The location of the base is very good; it’s easy to defend and difficult to attack. Such a place is hard to come by, but this is a battle we really can’t win.”
Xiao Sha shook his head and said, “We don’t need to win. It would be enough to hang on until Leader returns, so we just need to delay them for three days.”
Wen Jianuo nodded to indicate he understood. Though his expression was subtle, he seemed to think it was impossible, but he didn’t want to say anything that called our might into question again.
Cain looked at the others—Tai Wen and Zhang Jing.
Calmly, Tai Wen said, “As long as there’s a chance to hold on, we will help. Our side is all ordinary people, while the Shangguan family has so many professional soldiers. They would look down on us. To us, staying with the Jiang Dominion is much better compared to staying with them.”
After stating this, he changed course and said earnestly, “But if it’s as Captain Wen said, impossible to defend, we hope you won’t force it. We’ve exhausted all our efforts and sacrificed many people along the way to get out of Lan City. We don’t want to die in a fight that’s destined to be lost!”
Cain rubbed his nose. Even though he knew we couldn’t afford to lose, it seemed like he didn’t know how we could win either. He even glanced at me out of the corner of his eyes.
I nodded at him. He understood, no longer stealing glances in my direction but staring openly right at me.
This move caught the attention of the others. One by one they looked over, each of them with an expression of confusion, not understanding why Cain was looking at me.
“We won’t lose!” I calmly said, “Tonight, I will take the first step and go to buy us time. But before I leave the base, I want to be sure you are ready to stand and fight with the Jiang Dominion.”
Tai Wen stared at me and doubtfully asked, “You’ll go and buy us time? What can you do to buy us time?”
I calmly looked at Tai Wen and Zhang Jing, slowly walking toward them. Step by step, I gradually gathered the energy within my body. Tai Wen’s expression clearly changed, while Zhang Jing looked a bit uneasy, his reaction not as obvious as Tai Wen’s.
Sure enough, I’d guessed right. Tai Wen’s ability was stronger than Zhang Jing’s, which meant he could feel the power I was gathering, while Zhang Jing merely felt uneasy.
At that time, Guan Weijun gave all the crystals to this guy, so this Tai Wen can’t have a useless ability, right?!
Perhaps it’s more helpful than any of us is expecting!
As the cold air gathered, the surrounding temperatures dropped below freezing. Tai Wen’s face lost its color, and Zhang Jing started shivering from cold all over. The two wanted to flee, but didn’t dare to move due to the pressure of my ice power.
Seeing that I’d intimidated them well enough, I took the final step and released the ice cold air in one blast. The whole hall turned into a palace of frost as ice crystals covered the floor, the walls, and even the windows. Sharp thorns even spread along the outer walls. If someone actually attempted to break through the wall, the hall itself would be able to withstand it like a castle.
This trick exhausted all the energy in my body, but that didn’t matter, since my pockets were filled with crystals from Dàgē and Jin Feng.
Tai Wen and Zhang Jing didn’t dare to move at all. A large number of ice thorns had erupted from the ground close to them, completely surrounding them. Countless sharp thorns pointed in their direction. They only had to make the tiniest movement, and they’d be stabbed full of holes.
The both of them looked at me with panicked expressions.
Wen Jianuo and the others had already seen and experienced this ice prison scenario, but they still looked a bit pale, watching me in awe and with even more caution than before. They had probably eaten more crystals and had become even better able to assess the strength of my ability than before.
Cain raised his hand and ignited a fire, which was the sole spot of warmth in the room. Yunqian tactfully pulled my Junjun closer beside it. A table a little further off, where Auntie and Uncle were busy drawing up maps, was also warmed by a fire. While Cain was outwardly brash, he was actually quite a thoughtful guy.
With a wave of my hand, I demolished the ice thorns separating me from Tai Wen and took a step forward to face him.
“Can you tell me now what your ability is?”
Tai Wen stared at me. His eyes were full of uncertainty and he opened his mouth, but didn’t know what to say.
“Ha, he’s so scared of you he’s too afraid to say anything!” Cain grinned, exposing his white teeth. He raised his thumb and said, “Now you finally know, Shuyu is our Jiang Dominion’s number one! Even Leader cannot defeat his own little brother!”
Zhang Jing exclaimed, “How is that possible? Not even ‘that Leader’ can defeat him?”
We haven’t even fought before! How could you know I would win?
I snorted coldly and didn’t say anything, holding up the air of an expert. I don’t know whether I can defeat Dàgē or not. For now, I just have to pretend I’ve already defeated him!
Tai Wen let out a long sigh and said, “It’s really hard to imagine that it’s actually you who’s the head of the Jiang Dominion.”
Eh, classmate Tai Wen, aren’t you misunderstanding something?
The Jiang Dominion really is my dàgē’s mercenary troop. I never said anything about being the head. Before the apocalypse, I wasn’t even a member. I’m just a family member, that’s it!
Cain, Yunqian, and Zheng Xing all looked a bit bewildered, but they didn’t say anything to refute it. I was forced to explain myself, “Dàgē is actually the leader of the mercenary group.”
With a slight smile, Tai Wen said, “The leader and the head can co-exist.”
The corners of my mouth twitched. I didn’t feel like paying attention to this guy and the drama he was spinning in his mind.
“Will you finally tell us what your ability is or not?”
Tai Wen nodded and confessed honestly, “My power is…”
As I listened, my eyes widened. This ability was like getting a pillow when you’re falling asleep—amazing!
Who said the Jiang family has bad luck?
It definitely wasn’t me!
After hearing about Tai Wen’s power, I really became a lot more confident about defending the Zhanjiang Garrison. This way, that guy would actually be easy to defeat. From the corner of my eyes, I glanced at Wen Jianuo and tossed a single question in his direction. “So, will you fight or not?”
Unexpectedly, Wen Jianuo immediately made a military salute.
“I, Captain of the Ice Spears Wen Jianuo, will go into battle with the vice-captain tonight!”
I stared at him.
Chen Yanqing quickly added, “I’ll go too!”
Even the other members of the squad said, “We’ll go, we’ll go!”
Yang Xi’s eyes gleamed as he straightforwardly said, “I must go and witness the might of the vice-captain!”
Xue Xi even shouted, “Follow the vice-captain and kill everyone!”
His not so cute sister Xue Huan looked at her twin brother with a caring yet mocking expression.
I got the faint feeling that the members of my Ice Spears might be the most invincibly airheaded of the Jiang Dominion.
As I came back to my senses, the Ice Spears in front of me didn’t look like airheads. Each of them had such an imposing manner, they totally were professional soldiers. These stern expressions also carried a hint of concern for me. I really couldn’t be more satisfied.
“Unless I look like I’m about to keel over, don’t mind me and just run.”
I didn’t dare to talk about dying. What if at that time I really need help?
Perhaps a few bullets could be enough to allow me to escape, but if they didn’t dare to turn back and help me because of my orders, then wouldn’t my death be in vain? Ugh!
Why am I saying these ominous words? I’m the one who will become the Ice Emperor in this life!
After I spoke, I wasn’t sure whether I misunderstood, since Wen Jianuo smiled even more pleasantly.
Wen Jianuo promised, “We won’t get in your way, and when the time comes, we won’t abandon you. Trust in my judgment!”
I nodded and actually believed him. Despite the differences in numbers and weapons, this group had been willing to follow me out on a night raid, so I knew they wouldn’t abandon me no matter what.
Especially since Wen Jianuo often looked at me, always with an unbearably guilty expression. He looked like he was watching a child brutally forced to labor day and night!
After getting through this crisis, I really should get to know the members of my squad better. They were capable and loyal. If I didn’t do my all to make them mine, I would definitely be promoted in rank from an invincible airhead to an eternal airhead!
Wen Jianuo selected some weapons, and explained as he did so, “We’ll keep these guns. We’ll wait for you to bring back a couple more and let Ah Qing take them all back at once. He has the capacity, and moreover, our current strength is high. He can carry all the guns back by himself. This way we’ll have seven people left and still enough firepower for a final attack.”
Before we departed, Wen Jianuo had listened to my plan with a conflicted expression, like he was witnessing child labor. However, he still arranged everything perfectly, not even demanding they take the larger guns with them. He only had the squad members restock their bullets, and then they set out, carrying a few pitifully small pistols.
As he said, just steal an enemy’s gun!
I nodded, checked the time, and immediately left to go on another hunt. Even if the number of people one person can kill is limited, just the disappearance of one patrol after the other might make them worry about this forest, slow down their march and, I hoped, even cause panic.
What followed were three hunting trips in a row. During the first and second one, I encountered patrol squads of five people. I used practically the same trick as before to wipe them out, bury the corpses, and take their weapons.
After that were two teams of six people each. The first time, I was unsure of success and didn’t act, hoping I would meet another five-man team. By the second encounter, I realized I didn’t have the luxury of choice, and set out decisively—
As I sat down, leaning my whole body against a tree, I was only accompanied by corpses scattered on the ground—no, there was also Xiaorong. One of his main branches had broken. If I compared him to a human, it would probably be his right hand. Miserably, he held his snapped off right hand and gently stroked it.
I smiled and tossed a few crystals over. The little tree immediately didn’t even want his right hand anymore, and pounced on the crystals. He hurriedly threw them in the hole in the center of his body, like he was throwing the crystals in his mouth to eat them.
This little tree was becoming more and more human, with four limbs and even three holes in the center of his body, like a person’s eyes and mouth.
In the beginning, Xiaorong had chosen the wrong evolution path, growing as tall as a skyscraper. When all the aberrants in his small territory had been eaten or had fled, he had been too big to move. He could only let his whole trunk dry up and die, and form a tiny sapling looking for survival.
Right now, perhaps he had seen that my figure was pretty good, so he was imitating a human body in his growth?
This way wasn’t bad. At the very least, he had a lot more freedom of movement. After he completely evolved, perhaps there’d be a race of tree people?
Xiaorong would give birth to a bunch of little Xiaorongs, and we’d be rolling in little trees. Just thinking about it made me happy.
Whether the tree people would be a threat to humans… Hehe, the world is filled with new races, how many belong to that branch?
As I let my imagination run wild, my time almost ran out.
Just after I had defeated the six-person team, I’d eaten a few crystals and sat down to digest them and replenish my strength and power. It was mostly my power that was restored, as the effect of the crystals with regards to stamina wasn’t that good at all.
I quickly checked. It wouldn’t be long until the moment Wen Jianuo had calculated.
In a while, the main troops would discover that some patrols hadn’t returned to report on time. According to Wen Jianuo’s understanding of the army, since the enemy had sufficient soldiers, they wouldn’t sit around and do nothing in response to the disappearance of their patrol teams. Instead, they would send out even more people to comb the area and prevent any threat from getting near the camp. Though they wouldn’t send as many as a hundred, around forty or fifty would be likely, which was a high enough number of armed soldiers to deal with the majority of aberrants.
Fifty people would be just right. Just a bit more and it would be too difficult for me to escape. Just a bit fewer, and it wouldn’t help in the battle to defend the base even if we wiped them all out.
I’d already taken out around twenty soldiers. If we could dispatch these fifty people all at once too, it would be like taking a large bite out of the four hundred man army. Not only would it hurt, it would be a great blow to their morale.
I buried the six corpses, feeling a bit disturbed. It seemed that I would never get used to killing people.
Plus, since I had also been reborn into this body, I feared that each wrong move might kill someone in the early stage of the apocalypse who was supposed to become stronger later, making the plight of humankind even worse.
I pursed my lips. After this, the first task was to build up the base, so when people saw it, they wouldn’t dare to attack it so easily. We wouldn’t be forced to kill people to defend ourselves and make ourselves miserable again.
“Xiaorong, take the weapons and then go with Chen Yanqing to transport the guns back to the base. There’s no need for you to return.”
I watched as Xiaorong dragged the pile of guns in the right direction—it actually looked more like the pile of weapons had grown legs and run away. Only then did I turn toward my goal, the enemy’s camp.
Even though the plan was only to wipe out the search party of fifty people, this didn’t stop me from infiltrating the camp first to see if there was a chance to take out that guy—Wu Yaojin!
I ran quickly. I actually wasn’t far from the camp and was unafraid of revealing my whereabouts. After only a few seconds, I reached the camp of the Shangguan family and hid in the place Xiao Sha had picked last time, quietly observing the situation in the camp.
The densely packed tents all looked the same and were standing very close together as well, making it really difficult for someone to hide. I frowned. Just now I figured I’d use an enemy’s uniform to infiltrate, but I immediately thought of my own face. I was too young and too good-looking. I would stand out instantly. I wouldn’t fool anyone!
It seemed like I had to return empty-handed. Though avenging the Ice Emperor was important, the most important thing now was to save the base and protect all of our people. The Ice Emperor would surely agree with my choice.
Just when I wanted to turn and leave, I saw from the corner of my eye a white-cloaked figure step out of one of the tents. I immediately stopped on the spot, drawing my gun to aim at that person.
That moment, though, another person exited the tent, wearing a long-sleeved, lake-blue shirt with a high collar. His clothes were very stiff, in line with his tall, straight figure, but the thin material wasn’t suited to the bitterly cold weather at all. On the left side of his chest, he wore the symbol of the Molecular Organic Research Center, and he actually wore a mask as well!
The mask looked a bit familiar, and it was actually somewhat similar to the one I was wearing. But though his mask was also emitting a blue glow, his had a metal-like quality and wasn’t made from ice.
As soon as I noticed the blue-collared man, I didn’t even see Wu Yaojin anymore. The entire world had become gray and unremarkable, except for the glaring lake-blue color of that person.
That man is very dangerous!
As if to prove my suspicions, the blue-collared man turned, facing precisely in my direction. I didn’t dare to think it was just a fluke. That person noticed someone hiding over here. It really wasn’t a coincidence!
I felt bursts of pain in my temples, and a strong sense of danger hit me. I wanted to flee, but since I didn’t know what the ability of my opponent was, turning my back to that person wouldn’t be a wise move.
He looked at me, the corners of his mouth curling, but then he turned toward the completely unaware Wu Yaojin and said, “Time to go. Our transaction has already come to an end. The affairs here no longer concern us.”
Even though he spoke to Wu Yaojin, there was no doubt that he said it so I could hear him.
What he said was quite believable. In my previous life, the MORC only sold things and never got involved in any major power struggles.
So, the MORC had been selling goods this early?
Sure enough, it was as the Ice Emperor had said, there was something extremely fishy about them. It had only been half a year since the apocalypse. The world was a complete mess. After the black fog, almost all long distance communications had failed, and even national machinations had inevitably come to a halt. By contrast, the MORC had not only set up a laboratory to study aberrants, but had also started doing business within half a year?
Even until ten years into the apocalypse, I hadn’t heard of the MORC doing anything apart from selling things. Clearly, they’d been doing research on aberrants ever since the beginning of the apocalypse. Was there really any chance they hadn’t done anything?
Could they be responsible for the great mutation ten years in the future—wait, the great mutation?
I frowned. Where had this phrase come from?
I had died because Xia Zhengu had pushed me into that mass of aberrants. At that time, invasions of aberrants were common, and we didn’t call them great mutations. There was only that one time, when it was on an unusually large scale and accompanied by a tremendous noise never heard before, so deafening it seemed like the whole world was blasting an air-raid siren.
The world had been overrun by a group of never before seen insect-like aberrants. Everyone fled. No one thought of resisting… but why was that?
That time, people should have already gotten used to fighting aberrants. It was unlikely there was no one to rise up and fight. Could it be because of the overwhelming numbers?
There was a sudden wave of energy close by. I startled as if a bullet had been fired, only narrowly grabbing a tree so I didn’t fall down.
I immediately glanced at where the man with the blue collar was standing. His mouth twitched as he turned and walked away with Wu Yaojin.
Seeing that he didn’t have the intention of attacking again, I let out a sigh of relief. I glanced in the direction of the energy wave. There was a hole in the center of a tree, and there was something very odd about it.
I couldn’t resist getting a bit closer to have a look. It was a three-dimensional circle, like there had been a sphere inside of the tree that had now disappeared, leaving a ball-shaped hole in the heart of the tree.
How is that possible?
What kind of ability can create these kinds of ball-shaped holes?
It would’ve been impossible to cause such damage from the outside…
I reached out my hand to touch the sphere-like hole, and felt the remnant of the other’s energy. The stabbing pain in my temples became even more intense. That person really was stronger than me.
I could only be glad I wasn’t in time just now to open fire on Wu Yaojin. Whether or not he would’ve died, I would be dead for sure.
Even though the MORC didn’t get involved in power struggles, if anyone dared to steal their things or kill their people, they would all die an ugly death.
If the MORC didn’t have the power to look down on other people, and instead only created weapons able to harness the crystals’ energy, they might be overtaken in one swipe. I had actually thought that my rebirth would give me an advantage over them, and that I could eliminate them before they were able to get stronger, but I really had been too naive!
After understanding that my hands were tied, I had no choice but to leave, frantically gliding back to where that first patrol team had been. I couldn’t control the intense waves of energy radiating from my body. Along the way, the trees recoiled, withdrawing their trunks and branches. If they were strong enough to pull up their roots and flee, this would become a clearing instead of a forest.
Seeing this, I tried my best to suppress my emotions and settle the fluctuations; otherwise, these intense energy waves would alert even a regular person, let alone soldiers who were even more astute.
After calming my mind, I hid in a tree, in a spot where its foliage was the densest. Almost at the same time, the patrol appeared. Their number was high. Even if there weren’t fifty, there were at least forty. Wen Jianuo’s estimation had been quite accurate.
I initially wanted to quietly wait for them to pass and mount a surprise attack from behind to kill a few of them, but they were on high alert. The rearguard was practically walking backwards. Attacking from the front or the back wouldn’t make a big difference. In this case, of course, I should fire some shots from afar and then quickly flee to let them chase me.
The first few shots would have a high chance of killing someone. I didn’t choose the soldiers at the front, but targeted the ones in the middle. If I guessed right, one of them had to be the leader.
The bullets whizzed out, and two people fell to the ground. One went down without a sound, but the other was hit in his shoulder. After he fell backward, he was dragged bodily by his fellow soldiers.
After aiming these few shots, I began to carelessly fire at the front line, and when I’d emptied the entire magazine, I turned and ran.
That moment, the enemy responded and started frantically firing their guns. Just now it was only because they were unable to figure out their enemy’s exact position and couldn’t aim that I was able to empty my magazine and gun down their front line. However, it didn’t take them long to discover where I was and to start shooting all their bullets at me.
Discarding the empty gun, I’d turned and fled, gliding at lightning speed. Despite my high speed, I couldn’t glide as fast as a bullet, so I had no choice but to create an ice shield behind me to ward them off. The surface of the shield was rounded, which easily let the bullets slide off. This way, it was very unlikely the ice shield would break easily.
I still had to give Uncle credit for this useful knowledge. I had initially only asked him and Auntie to design a practical armor that would make it easier to increase my defenses without affecting my movements. I hadn’t expected them to come up with one useful bit of advice after the other. Knowledge really is power!
But with my current strength, a hastily created ice shield still couldn’t withstand heavy gunfire no matter how much knowledge I possessed. Fortunately, one broken shield still meant I had countless shields left. I covered my back with three layers of shields total. As soon as one broke, I immediately added another. Though my energy was draining like running water, at least my back wouldn’t be shot full of holes like a honeycomb.
As soon as I managed to gain some distance, I immediately turned and shot an ice blade. I could only shoot one each time, because it was a blade of compressed ice, very thin and incomparably sharp. Not only would it be unlikely that the troops’ armor could block them, as soon as it pierced a human body, it would freeze the surrounding area. If it hit someone’s head or chest, they were practically already dead. After all, no one could survive with a frozen brain, heart, or lungs.
None of the enemy soldiers were able to ward off the ice blades. Regardless of where I shot at, they were rendered immobile. The Shangguan family clearly hadn’t developed their powers at all, and their energy level was extremely low. It seemed their involvement with the MORC really didn’t go very deep; otherwise, they would have had some powers at least.
I turned again to shoot an ice blade. A soldier fell down, exposing the person behind him, who was holding a huge, silvery metal gun. Its model and ammunition seemed very futuristic, like an advanced weapon from a science-fiction movie. It had neither a magazine nor a hammer, but instead a metal energy tube and several thin conveyor tubes.
My eyes widened and in an instant, I ducked. An energy beam hurtled toward me, completely shattering my three ice shields to bits. If I hadn’t dodged, I would have been seriously injured, after which I’d be surrounded by a heap of soldiers, shooting me full of bullets until even Shujun wouldn’t be able to recognize me!
The MORC’s crystal energy gun!
…. Fuck, there must be someone in the MORC who knew the apocalypse was coming!
We’re only half a year into the apocalypse. Even a powerful family with a military background like the Shangguan family hasn’t acquired strong ability users through eating crystals, but the MORC has actually produced crystal energy guns already?
If they didn’t have foreknowledge, I’ll swallow that crystal energy gun whole!
I cut a sorry figure as I straightened back up. I didn’t dare to be careless again. I took my flight seriously now, using my power solely for defense, setting up no less than five ice shields. However, the enemy seemed to know I was afraid of that gun and kept shooting.
Unfortunately for them, though the power of this energy type firearm is high, its shooting speed cannot be compared to a bullet. On top of that, I was able to feel the incoming energy beam. It was actually not likely I would get hit, just that if I wasn’t careful, my five shields would be destroyed in one hit. If I wasn’t able to get new shields up in time and got hit by bullets as well—luckily, I still wore a layer of ice armor!
Occasionally, bullets grazed some unprotected spots, but these were only small wounds that wouldn’t be a hindrance and wouldn’t impact my movements. Again, thanks to Uncle’s power of knowledge!
That moment, I suddenly felt two waves of energy coming my way at the same time. Right away, my face became pale. Could it be a second crystal energy gun?
At this point, I had no choice but to flee into the woods. Initially, in order to get the best effect out of the gunfire of Wen Jianuo and the others, I had specifically run along the main road, where there were no trees, so the soldiers chasing after me would also have to follow the main road. Because of this, there wasn’t anything shielding me or anything to hide behind, and I could only rely on dodging, my ice shields, and my ice armor to carry me through.
But now that a second crystal energy gun had appeared, I really couldn’t carry on like this. I had no choice but to duck into the woods. What a shame about the whole night’s arrangement. The effectiveness of the final gunfire will probably be cut down to at least half of the original.
I must be fated enemies with the MORC in this life!
In the shelter of the trees, the pressure on me was reduced a lot. As the enemy kept using the crystal energy guns to shoot up the trees, they eventually angered the forest.
When a bullet hits a tree, it can still look at the large number of opponents and endure it. In any case, it can deal with a few more holes in its body. As long as there’s no frantic gunfire, a tree can take it!
However, they cannot take a hit from a crystal energy gun, as they’ll be smithereens after just one hit. To still tolerate that means turning into a mushy log of wood!
As they were attacked by the trees, my opponents had to divert some of their attention to defend themselves. Fortunately, they had the crystal energy guns, and they were still professionals, or else these soldiers might have retreated because of this, and my set-up for this night would really have been in vain.
I saw that I had almost reached the spot Wen Jianuo and I had agreed on. Right when a wave of energy hit, I turned and shot down a soldier with an ice blade. The energy wave instantly broke the five ice shields, and a few bullets slipped through the cracks and grazed my leg. A large part of my pants was immediately dyed red with blood.
Dragging my injured leg, I leaned weakly against a tree and created an ice shield to hold them off, but it was broken once more, after which this process was repeated again and again…
They slowly came closer to surround me, firing with all their might as if I was simply a huge, frightening monster—perhaps they really thought I was an aberrant and not a person from the start. What kind of person could take so many hits and still not die?
I half knelt on the ground, creating an ice shield again to stop the endless stream of bullets. The enemy came close and closer. They didn’t dare to be careless, and the bullets didn’t stop for even one second.
In the end, the soldiers were no further than ten meters away from me. The two crystal energy guns were at the very front. From such a short distance, perhaps they’d really break right through my five shields and directly kill me…