Chapter 29: Sense of security
Liu Gan then came up with another theory to what might have happened. He thought that maybe, the female store-owner was the only survivor, and the male store-owner was infected when the plague started. He started to change into a zombie, but the female store-owner couldn’t bring herself to kill him, so she tied her husband onto the bed on the second floor. Even after the male store-owner completely changed into a zombie, the female store-owner left him tied to the bed.
Instead of her husband, it had been the female store-owner who had gone to the minimart earlier to scavenge for food and water. Then later that day, while the female store-owner was cooking a pack of instant ramen, her zombified husband managed to break free from the rope, rushing to the third floor.
For the last few days of her life, the female store-owner had this bad feeling that her zombified husband would struggle free from the ropes. Therefore, she prepared an escape route from the third floor bedroom window so that she could escape whenever her husband broke free and attacked her. However, she was not able to execute her plan, and she was eaten before she knew it. What caused her death was ultimately the love she had for her husband.
Whatever had actually happened, Liu Gan had found out the reason for the female store-owner’s escape. He also managed to find out why there was a zombie in the hardware shop in the first place.
Liu Gan’s purpose to find out the truth was not because he had nothing to do and felt bored, it was so that he could confirm that the three storey building was indeed safe and there were no secret entrances. All of this was done so Liu Gan and his squad could have a first peaceful and safe night in The Trembling World.
After checking the second floor, Liu Gan went down to the first floor of the hardware shop. The layout of the shop was as followed: a counter at the front, display cases in the middle and a small warehouse at the back. The counter, small warehouse and display cases were filled with hydro-powered commodities. There was no sign of any zombies and it was very quiet. The building felt very safe.
The metal grated gate on the first floor was still locked. This type metal gate is opened from the inside and a key was needed. Even though Liu Gan could use brute strength to force open the metal grated gate, it might lead to very loud noises which would attract any nearby zombies in the vicinity. Furthermore, once Liu Gan force open the gate with brute strength, the metal grated gate would become useless. A gate with a gaping big hole in the middle would compromise the safety of the building.
Hence, Liu Gan went back to the third floor, released the rope down the window and climbed down to the first floor. After he landed, he held his breath and mustered up his courage before he rummaged through the disgusting pile of dead bodies for the key. He manage to find a key in the chest pocket of a zombie and another bunch of keys hanging on the belt of a different zombie.
The zombie that has the keys hanging on it’s belt had rope burn marks on the wrist and ankle. These marks pretty much confirmed Liu Gan’s deduction of what happened. Hence, he guessed that this zombie was the male store-owner of the hardware shop and the keys hanging from his belt should be able to open the metal grated gate.
Theoretically, the female store-owner should also have the keys for the metal grated gate. So the extra set of keys should be in the brutally torn females clothes that got eaten by the zombies. However, the stench and filth caused by the rotting of the flesh and intestines was very disgusting and Liu Gan was not willing to use his hands to search for her set of keys.
As Liu Gan walked back towards the street in front of the main gate, Pan Hua and LuLu were still hiding in the previous place, hugging each other and trembling in fear. When Liu Gan appeared in front of them, they were shocked and almost screamed out loud. When they saw that it was Liu Gan and heard him whispering to them, they finally calmed down.
“See, didn’t I tell you that Boss would not abandon us and escape?” Pan Hua whispered to LuLu. It was obvious that they were suspicious and afraid that Liu Gan left without them. They were contemplating whether to run away after Liu Gan left for such a long time.
“The hardware shop is safe. I found a few keys, I need to see whether we can open the metal grated gate or not. If it’s not possible, then we have to climb up to the third floor using the rope.” Liu Gan told Pan Hua and LuLu. Liu Gan then walked to the metal grated gate and inserted the keys to open the gate.
One of the keys was indeed the correct one. Amongst the five zombies, one of them was indeed the male store-owner of the hardware shop. What Liu Gan deduced from the clues in the hardware shop was also correct. Perhaps what had happened was exactly how Liu Gan had inferred.
Liu Gan lifted the metal grated gate by about one meter and threw the bag and the boxes of mineral water into the hardware shop. After which, he went in and Pan Hua and LuLu followed him in.
After the three of them entered the building, Liu Gan pulled down the metal grated gate and locked it from the inside.
After the gate was lowered and locked, Pan Hua and LuLu subconsciously heaved a sigh of relief. After feeling afraid, nervous and danger for such a long time, they finally had a trace of safety and calmed down.
“Tonight, we will be sleeping here. We will take turn to sleep and be on the lookout. The moment there is any disturbance, the one on duty must immediately wake the other two people up.” Liu Gan told them as he lead them up to the third floor.
“Okay.” Pan Hua and LuLu hurriedly nodded their heads and agreed with Liu Gan.
One of them is obese and the other is a fragile weak girl, Both are not fit for combat. After what happened to Wang ChangShun, they know now that if they don’t follow Liu Gan, it will be very difficult to survive in this world.
“When we stay here, we are not allowed to have any lights on or make any sounds. Dark clouds were gathering in the sky so heavy rain will soon come. There is a chance that nearby zombies would be alerted by the sound of thunder and emerge near the building from the dark.” Liu Gan instructed Pan Hua and LuLu. Even though he did not have any encounters with zombies in his previous world, he was pretty familiar with them after watching numerous zombie movies, series, and playing numerous zombie video games.
“Roger.” Pan Hua nodded and assured Liu Gan.
Liu Gan checked his backpack and discovered that not a single item was missing. Hence, he took two packets of biscuits and two bottles of mineral water out and then threw it in the direction of Pan Hua and LuLu. Previously after eating their biscuits, because of the gruesome sight of Wang ChangShun, they vomited all the content in their stomach out. If they were not given more food to eat, their hunger would affect their rest, which would lead to a lack of spirit and strength the next day.
“We are eternally grateful Boss!” Pan Hua was surprised by Liu Gan’s generosity and quickly thanked him after taking the biscuits and water from him. Pan Hua and LuLu were indeed famished and they were so weak that they were dazed.
“We are now a team, until we find new food and water, we need to ration our resources. The two of you must understand that what I am doing is for our own good.” Liu Gan told them.
“Yes, of course.” Pan Hua hurriedly nodded his head.
“As the leader of our group, I need to kill the zombies and protect you. I also need to risk my life to look for food and water. Therefore, I need to make sure that I am always battle ready . If I am not in my best state, we might fall prey to the zombies and perish in this world.” Liu Gan continued telling them. Pan Hua and LuLu were smart people who could understand simple logic. Furthermore, this was a temporary group and making clear of the rules and regulations was necessary.
“Yes Boss, we understand and will definitely follow accordingly.” Pan Hua once again nodded and agree with Liu Gan. Whereas for LuLu who was still dazed, she just followed suit and nodded her head.