Chapter 46: A mysterious death
Translator: Legge Editor: Legge
These people hadn’t even believed that Ren Xiaosu was the only doctor in town because they had a preconceived notion of him. When they first met him, he was still living in a shack, so how did he become a doctor just a few days later?
Why weren’t you practicing medicine if you had actual skill?
But right now, everyone just felt desperate. There’s an old saying that can perfectly sum up the current situation: “Desperate times call for desperate measures.”
However, Ren Xiaosu’s answer shocked them. What the hell is a witch doctor?
“Get up.” Liu Bu brushed Ren Xiaosu aside. He then went to the injured driver and asked in concern, “Are you alright? Does it hurt?”
Ren Xiaosu looked around. They had started with five off-road vehicles and a pickup truck in the convoy, but only four vehicles remained.
From the look of things, it would be quite difficult to fix the two damaged vehicles. But as Ren Xiaosu did not have any knowledge of automobiles, he would have to wait and see what the private troops had to say about it.
Second Lieutenant Xu Xianchu led some of his men over to inspect the vehicles. They found that it would be impossible to repair the vehicle that had been thrown upside down by the huge deer as there were several holes in the engine.
But the huge deer did not get away completely unscathed either. Ren Xiaosu saw a small segment of its antler on the ground. It looked like it had been broken off by the recent impact.
Liu Bu went up to Xu Xianchu and asked, “Can they be repaired?”
“We’ll have to take a look at the flipped vehicle first.” After checking the vehicle, Xu Xianchu said, “This vehicle is definitely beyond repair. But the damage on that one isn’t too serious since it didn’t hit the tree that fast. The only thing we can do now is salvage parts from the flipped vehicle to fix this one.”
“Only one of them can be repaired?!” Liu Bu was taken aback. “What should we do then? There are so many of us here!”
Xu Xianchu thought for a moment and said, “There’s still some space in the pickup truck bed….”
Ren Xiaosu raised his hand. “I’ll go!”
“Go to hell!” Liu Bu said angrily.
This time, Liu Bu would rather sit in the bed of the pickup himself than let Ren Xiaosu sit there!
Xu Xianchu quickly had his men grab some tools to repair the vehicles. While they were carrying out the repair works, he ordered the soldiers under him with a frown on his face, “Stay alert to your surroundings, everyone. If any unknown creatures approach us, shoot to kill.”
Perhaps there was a deeper sense of bureaucratic order among the troops as everyone was focused on carrying out repairs. However, Xu Xianchu didn’t seem like he was an idiot either. If he didn’t remind everyone to stay alert at a time like this, it might be too late if any large creatures approached them while they were repairing the vehicle. That could very well result in many deaths for them.
Ren Xiaosu was squatting beside the vehicle and watching the private troops make repairs to it. He wanted to understand how a vehicle worked as he has always been very eager to learn about more things. In his eyes, “large machinery” like off-road vehicles held a unique charm.
All of these details represented the essence of humanity’s knowledge in the rebuilding of civilization.
Beside him, Liu Bu folded his arms and sneered, “Do you even understand what they’re doing?”
Ren Xiaosu turned around and asked him, “I don’t, but do you?”
Liu Bu was taken aback. In fact, he did not understand either.
“Look here, you and I both don’t understand what they’re doing,” Ren Xiaosu said slowly. “So what are you jabbering about?”
Ren Xiaosu ignored him. The repairs on the vehicle went on from morning til afternoon. In the meantime, Liu Bu and the others discussed how to divvy up the seating arrangements and the defense strategy they would adopt from here on out.
Someone said that if they encountered such creatures again later on, they should just shoot them. But someone else asked about what would happen if the gunshot startled the creatures instead. Judging by the sheer size of that huge deer, bullets might not even pierce its skull unless someone could shoot it in the eyes. But who here had such good marksmanship?
That required a score of nine and above for a standard moving target, right?
Ren Xiaosu thought to himself, ‘Seems like these people don’t know that Yang Xiaojin has Perfect Firearms Proficiency. No one could achieve it other than her.’ Ren Xiaosu was currently 60% confident that he could successfully shoot the huge deer through its eyes with a pistol from 50 meters away. As such, he felt that Yang Xiaojin would have at least a 90% chance of doing so, perhaps even a 100% chance!
Ren Xiaosu furtively observed Yang Xiaojin’s reaction. But while the others were discussing how to deal with these beasts, she kept quiet throughout as though it were none of her business.
However, everyone also felt a little relieved at the fact that the huge deer was just a herbivore. If it had been looking for food, there probably would’ve been three or four deaths in the team.
Xu Xianchu said, “It’s mostly just large herbivores living in the woods. Otherwise, they would’ve been identified and eliminated as key targets when the stronghold perimeter was first established. We should stay vigilant when we encounter this kind of creature again and try not to alarm them. But if we encounter a carnivore, shoot to kill. Alright, the repairs are finished. Let’s get ready to set off.”
Liu Bu followed up with, “Now that we’ve lost a vehicle, we need to reshuffle the seating arrangements.” He said to a band member, “Xu Xia, you and Cheng Donghang will sit in the bed of the pickup. Please bear with it for the time being.”
The two band members, Xu Xia and Cheng Donghang, looked at Ren Xiaosu, hurt. They could have made Ren Xiaosu sit in the pickup truck bed by himself, but Liu Bu had to worry about Ren Xiaosu eating all the crackers and food. As such, he had to make his own people watch over them.
Xu Xia and Cheng Donghang grumbled as they climbed into the pickup truck bed. Suddenly, Xu Xia let out a piercing scream and fell out of the pickup truck bed. On hearing Xu Xia’s scream, Ren Xiaosu turned around in shock and saw him holding his neck while wailing.
Xu Xia’s face had already reddened and swelled up. It was as if he were experiencing tremendous pain that he had never experienced before in his life. In just ten seconds, he was already lying motionless on the ground before anyone could react. He was foaming at the mouth, and his face was turning black and blue.
Xu Xianchu cautiously approached him with his gun ready. After finding no anomalies nearby, he put a hand under Xu Xia’s nose to check for breathing. He turned around and said solemnly, “He’s not breathing anymore.”
Everyone stood expressionless in their spots. How could a person die just like that?
Liu Bu trembled as he asked Cheng Donghang, “What happened to him?”
Cheng Donghang leaned against the cargo bed and said in horror, “I don’t know. When we hopped on together, he suddenly shrieked, scaring me. I didn’t notice anything strange either.”
The rustling in the woods started to sound a little eerie. The trees were still the same, but everyone’s mood had changed.
This was the first time that one of their people had died on this expedition. Liu Bu shouted at Ren Xiaosu, “What route are you taking us on? Why didn’t we encounter a situation like this last time? Is there something wrong with the route that you’re taking us on?”
“There’s no problem with the route that I took.” Ren Xiaosu looked calmly at Liu Bu. “Although you people live in the stronghold, you should know about how the wilderness has been getting stranger. I don’t know why exactly you want to go to the Jing Mountains, but my advice is to turn back immediately and return to Stronghold 113.”
“No.” Xu Xianchu said coldly, “It’s an order from the higher-ups that we can’t defy this time. We can’t go back until the mission has been completed. And that includes all of you as well!”
Ren Xiaosu felt that something was amiss. There was no way Xu Xianchu would risk his life just to complete a mission. There must be some other reason!