Chapter 331: Minefield (Part 3/3)
Zhang Yingying didn't let the call go on for too long. She cracked a few jokes with Luo Nan and Crag Burst before hanging up. The data she sent had finished transferring over by now. Luo Nan used the HexaEar to look it up, while Crag Burst smacked his steering wheel in mischievous laughter.
"This sister may be very noisy, but her heart is in the right place."
Luo Nan understood what he meant. He nodded. "I know."
The first time he met Zhang Yingying, Zhang Yingying was lively and quick-witted. She was also not one to give up easily. She had to seize the upper hand before stopping. Yet just now she even made fun of herself, making the atmosphere quite lively and fun. She even gave Crag Burst pretexts to make fun of her as well.
Luo Nan recalled Zhang Yingying's appearance when she wriggled her bunny-ear fingers, and he couldn't help laughing again. He soon collected himself and whispered, "It looks like this time things are pretty bad?"
Otherwise, why did Zhang Yingying, with her temperament, deliberately try to get him to laugh?
Crag Burst chuckled. "It should be because of the pressure, right? It's normal. You're young. If you can still laugh without a care in the world when you're burdened with these things, you really need to go see the doctor."
"Really? This is normal?"
"Of course it's normal. Back when I was in the Coastal Defense Force, every time a tidal rush was forecasted—you know what a tidal rush is, right? It's when large amounts of Mutants use the astronomical high tides as an opportunity to attack the coastal defenses. That's what's called a landslide tsunami, hiding the sky and covering the earth."
Crag Burst started his jeep, and the jeep sped out of the parking lot with a rumble. As the jeep merged onto the magnetic rails of the electronic city, Crag Burst continued, "The time that's the most torturous is after the warning but before the battle. Some people in camp even kill themselves. And of these people, some are experienced and seasoned veterans—ones who are most likely to survive the battle. People... have limits to what they can endure. Those whose limits are exceeded change, and it's over for them. But I can see that this hasn't happened with you. Your limits are far from being pushed."
Crag Burst spread his fingers as he spoke. The distance between his thumb and his middle finger was considerable.
Luo Nan laughed once more, but he sighed after, "I have changed, though."
He did feel that the way he reacted when encountering situations had become a bit different.
They just discovered none other than the dynamo core back at the electronic city! This needed to be emphasized!
His father had used a covert method to send him this magical object, and this object was the key to turn Jack, an Altered Human, into a Burner. The technology of this world was incapable of touching this level of mysterious technology, and it even touched upon the mystical power hiding behind the colossus that was Quantum Corporation.
A month ago, he would have recklessly rushed to the daoguan and seeked the gym master for questioning. He would cling deathly to the gym master to obtain the reason why.
Although right now his conviction to study the dynamo core was set in stone, this road he wound himself on was a long one, and the intense thirst in his heart was on the verge of tearing him apart.
It was probably due to feelings of apprehension. He made enemies time and time again within a short month, and each was a major power of this world to be reckoned with. To do this over and over again… even a newborn calf would find its horn ground to nothing.
Luo Nan saw a faint premonition. What waited before him was a field of deadly land mines. Things would be fine if they were never triggered, but as soon as one went off, not even future opportunities would exist for him.
Asking Worker Zhai to help and first utilize his equipment was a correct decision.
But from another perspective, one must pay a price by lying in wait. His mind couldn't hold back from spawning various thoughts, and these thoughts weaved into a heavy, large, and dense net. Pressure came with it like a shadow following a body.
It was true that he had yet to reach his limits, but the distance from changing was, perhaps, not that far.
As the jeep weaved its way through traffic, Crag Burst shot a few glances at Luo Nan. He grinned in laughter. "Nanster, I need to say a few things to you. We are both men. We all face pressure. We can change our ways of letting out steam, but we can't display it on our faces. We have our pride."
"Letting out steam?"
"Tobacco, alcohol, women…. Bah! I'm saying to learn, learn, and learn! Turn that pressure into energy!"
Luo Nan copied Zhang Yingying and gave Crag Burst the middle finger.
Crag Burst was a bit embarrassed. "These are minor details. Just don't go looking into those things. I'm saying that the weekend is a great time. Don't waste it. I'll arrange a place if you don't have any plans. Everyone can relax."
"Tobacco, alcohol, and women?"
"Kids should learn to be good!" Crag Burst’s rough voice and energy interrupted Luo Nan's vocalized thoughts.
Luo Nan laughed and asked, "Where's Trigate District?"
"It should be between the main city district and Man City. It's around two hundred kilometers away. What do you want to go there for?"
"It's nothing. I saw the material Yingying sent over. The business partner is Trigate Security LLC. They’re registered in Trigate District. I've never heard of them before."
"Oh, this place used to be a garrison camp of Xia City. It was decommissioned not too long ago. The security company you mentioned should have a military background. Not bad. It's easier to make money from the government and military. What kind of work is it?"
Luo Nan read the material out loud, "Native species genetic and ecological preservation…."
"Wha—?" Crag Burst didn't instantly understand.
Luo Nan repeated himself once more, while clarifying the introduction to himself, "It's patrol and scouting work. It has to do with Mutants."
"D*mn. The cheaters!" Crag Burst smacked his steering wheel hard, and the horn blared explosively.
This time it was Luo Nan who didn't understand. "Is this line of business not that profitable?"
"It has nothing to do with the profitability. I'm saying that such work just shows that the government and the military are cheating the common people once again. F***! Why the h*ll did they get rid of the garrison!?" Crag Burst changed attitudes in an instant once he became furious.
Luo Nan thumbed through the material and slowly understood. "Native species genetic and ecological preservation,” this awkward sounding and tediously long name, could be described in a single idiom: Mending the pen after the sheep are lost.
The Mutants isolated in the wilderness and the seas would occasionally break through the heavy defenses of the city due to special circumstances. They would appear in the districts of Xia City. This work entailed none other than searching and killing the infiltrating Mutants to ensure the safety of the city.
Speaking of which, there really weren't that many Mutants within the districts of Xia City. A rich family would raise one or two; it was rather popular to do so nowadays. The Great Maw Basilisk that Rui Wen had slain and the flying devil ray tamed by Luo Nan both belonged to this category.
But these Mutants had underwent strict inspection and quarantine procedures, all of which were recorded on file. The negative influences were decreased to the very minimum.
The fellows who unexpectedly infiltrated the city were different. They usually carried highly pathogenic bacteria and viruses, and some Mutants even broke through the barriers of reproductive isolation. They could reproduce with the native species of the world and create further generations. The proliferation of such species within the city's ecosystem, along with perhaps minute mutations, would likely bring about calamity under the enormous push of numbers.
This hidden destructive power would come even more shockingly than that of the clearcut Mutants.
Crag Burst patted Luo Nan on the shoulder. "The task is an arduous one, yet it is full of honor and glory…. That's what the government and military always say when you wipe their *sses."
Luo Nan snorted and said, "Well, it suits me quite well."
"Yep, a scout. There aren't many people better than you out of all my impressions. However, this kind of work is very time-consuming and requires much patience…. Huh? This job can't be right."
Crag Burst suddenly remembered that Luo Nan was still a student. His extracurricular tasks were also very cumbersome. It was impossible for him to have the leisure time to accompany people in running around the city.
Was Her Majesty Empress Wu urging Luo Nan to cut class?