Chapter 30 West City Broken

TN: I know I said I would aim to have the next double post for Valentines Day… I lied.

Have a double post for the start of February! °˖✧◝(⁰▿⁰)◜✧˖°


Luo Xun went into the bathroom and had a nice shower, which used water from the large tanks on the roof. Usually the distilled water was gradually added as he was afraid to directly use water from the pipes.

He toweled his hair while walking out. Yan Fei had cleaned up the living room table and put two pieces of paper on top.

“What is this?”

Yan Fei responded as he exited the kitchen. “It was posted on the door a few days ago, about water safety. The radio reminded people all day to visit designated locations to collect water purification tablets.”

Luo Xun skimmed through – it really was about the use of water safety. Water needed to be boiled for at least 15 minutes before use. It had to be left for at least a day to precipitate if from pipes. Only take the upper layer of water and use water purification tablets in separate containers etc..

Luo Xun was secretly relieved, he had already been using these methods to deal with drinking water as a result of his past life survival habits. He did not expect the base to find the problem now and immediately take countermeasures.

Yan Fei stared at Luo Xun and only spoke after the other was done reading. “I have been dealing with the water at home according to your instructions. It was similar to the ones given in the notice.”

Luo Xun idly continued drying his hair. “No harm in being careful, I was afraid that not going outside would not mitigate the chance of becoming a zombie. If one does not pay attention to the small things, woe unto them.”

Indeed these methods were very cumbersome, but using one’s brain one would realize they were effective. Yan Fei since living in Luo Xun’s home had found that he was particularly careful in this respect. It was no wonder he exhibited cautious behaviour.

Yan Fei smiled and asked. “You used to do outdoor survival? Or you like camping outdoors?”

Luo Xun stiffened and looked to the side. “I was an otaku…”

Military otaku, survivalists, those who stayed at home all the time (hikikomori?) could all be called ‘otaku’. Although the term usually had a common meaning, Yan Fei and Luo Xun associated completely different meanings, a person’s mind was very flexible.

Apart from a reminder on water safety, the notice was also a recruitment ad for active base participation, especially collecting resources and rescue missions.

After the apocalypse began, some people quickly fled and luckily reached the safety of the base early on but many others were trapped in city buildings unable to escape.

The people trapped in nearby buildings were now mostly rescued but there were more trapped deeper in the city. Most of the people on base had family living deeper in the city and many people with status sent out distress messages.

They had been too busy building the base to rescue those people. Now that everything had finally settled down, it was time to resume rescue operations. Since every dead person was a threat to current survivors – most of the deceased became zombies soon after!

Luo Xun was not ready to go out soon. Recently Yan Fei had used up almost all the metal in their home to make large and small crossbows, arrows with bomb type heads he designed along with spiral shaped arrowheads. Luo Xun wanted to wait and discuss with everyone.

The five university students next door were the same, they wanted to study the precious data left by WasteWoodHouse. They wanted to ready some pots, nursery boxes or something.

Of course whether it was Luo Xun, Yan Fei or the five students, all wanted to go out on another trip. For clothes, seeds and other missing resources. Luo Xun and Yan Fei also needed things to furnish the room next door.

After a full five days stuck on a roof, Luo Xun fervently believed that there was nowhere more comfortable than his own bed at home. The mattress was a hard one, which was not as comfortable as a soft one but less likely to break. Also if he needed to go out for some time then sleeping on the hard ground would be less of a hardship. Besides the big bed in his apartment was already very comfortable.

Luo Xun climbed into bed and quickly fell into dreamland. He did not notice Yan Fei quietly watching him from behind then gently slipped into bed.

The next day Luo Xun woke up and lazed in bed for a while. He felt sore everywhere – it was winter and cold wind had blown the nights the group had spent on the roof. The fact that he did not catch a cold showed his good constitution.

Luo Xun yawned and went downstairs to see the puppy near the sofa playing around with Yan Fei’s slippers. He had already replaced the ones Puppy had used as a table. Even if he was not a neat freak he could not endure that big patch of grease. In addition, there had been a lot of drool on top. Last night he took off and threw himself into the bath to clean off.

At this time, the puppy energetically fluttered around Yan Fei’s feet. Yan Fei would flick the puppy’s forehead who would jump back, the redouble her efforts to bounce around.

The man and dog looked very harmonious, Luo Xun could not help but chuckle.

The puppy realized that Luo Xun had come down and immediately abandoned Yan Fei. She galloped over, her tail wagging side to side.

“Awake? There are frozen dumplings and buns you left in the fridge before leaving. I just ate four, I’ll heat some up for you?” Yan Fei asked as Luo Xun descended.

“I’ll have four dumplings as well.” He had been outside these days.

His appetite was not small since he consumed a lot of energy moving things yesterday. The first four dumplings would cushion his stomach.

Ready made food in the fridge and kitchen were meant to be consumed in peacetime. Luo Xun could cook but when tired, who would want to cook? During his free time he would cook a big pile of food. Luo Xun’s ultimate dream was to pass a month without needing to light a fire.

He had only cooked everyday because the apocalypse had not arrived. His heart had soared seeing all the rich ingredients, while others would only cook when there was someone sick in the house.

Not only dumplings, Yan Fei also got up early to boil white rice congee. The rice that remained was placed in the kitchen. When Luo Xun was not at home, Yan Fei could use the stove to cook for himself.

Luo Xun lifted a spoon of overly thick congee, glanced at Yan Fei’s sunny face and sensibly did not ask how much water to rice he used. He lowered his head to eat the stew.

The radio was on the table, broadcasting the lastest news. Yan Fei did not want to hear about or listen to  the current state of peace, this kind of pandering talk. He adjusted the frequency and incidentally avoided Luo Xun’s strange expressions while eating the rice porridge.

The puppy was not eating at the moment so she put her chin on Yan Fei’s foot and used his shoes as a pillow while staying close.

While Luo Xun was eating his third dumpling, Yan Fei had tuned in to a new channel but the signal was not clear. He tried to fine tune in order to hear the contents.

Suddenly Luo Xun froze, food in hand. Yan Fei also stopped and the two looked at each other and the radio. This time the staticky voices could be clearly heard!

“…Broken. A lot of survivors turned into zombies! Help West base! Zombie attack in base! A large number of ordinary people turned into zombies! West base asking for help…”

The sound came from the radio again and again for 20 minutes.

The two looked uneasily at each other, generally speaking even if there was danger they would not use civilian signals to send distress calls. It seemed whatever had happened at the west base had caught the people near the radio off guard, who directly called for external help.

Luo Xun thought for a moment then suddenly went to the balcony. He picked up his telescope and looked towards army headquarters. The artillery regiment had moved over soon after the apocalypse and started to build base walls while troops expanded. The wall was quickly built and seemed closer to the neighborhood then before.

At this point he could faintly see a military vehicle driving towards the main road in the distance.

“What’s the matter?” Yan Fei asked after Luo Xun lowered his telescope.

“The troops are mobilizing.” Luo Xun suddenly turned to Yan Fei. “Where did you say your family lived?”

Yan Fei’s eyebrows twitched and his face sank. “…West.”

Luo Xun took a deep breath and glanced out the window. Yan Fei took the telescope  to look out, sure enough troopes steadily filed out in all kinds of military vehicles including land rovers and tank cars that belonged to the artillery regiment.

Luo Xun tried to comfort Yan Fei. “Although it was sudden, the other bases received the message and should quickly send support.”

Yan Fei’s heart was upset, he did not have any affection for his parents, he did not care if they were dead or alive. He knew that with the rapid establishment of shelters and bases near A-city that his family would rush to one of the five bases.

He could not help but get a headache hearing the west base was in trouble. He also did not want Luo Xun to worry, even if they were alive, Yan Fei would not shed a single happy tear.

“The radio said that west base survivors suddenly became zombies?”

Luo Xun paused before nodding with wrinkled brows. “…I think…it’s maybe related to the water.”

“Water?” Yan Fei froze, then glanced between Luo Xun and the kitchen.

Luo Xun shrugged. “I’m only guessing, who knows what’s actually going on? We can only wait for the base rescue. Wait and see if any survivors escaped.”

There will be survivors even though the zombies had attacked the western base. The number of living people should be more than the zombies in the base. The greatest danger would actually be how many zombies were attracted over by the commotion.

Luo Xun said there would be survivors escaping the western base because many of the people he knew in his previous life had survived multiple bases collapsing. In the beginning A-city had a total of five official bases, with the exception of the east and southwest bases, the rest were soon overrun in the apocalypse.

The cause was a large of number of survivors in the base suddenly becoming zombies and biting people, expanding the danger sphere. Then even the eastern base fell from an internal outbreak of zombies and a zombie siege.

At the time, the east base wall was at least 20 meters and access was very strict, usually limited to one door. As a result, people could not escape the internal zombie outbreak. The loss of the eastern base was the most brutal of the four lost bases.

How the hell was the area overrun? Why was there a sudden outbreak of zombies in the base? Was it man-made or an accident?

Luo Xun was unclear of the specifics, but he remembered that A-city hygiene standards had reached trivial grinding stage. People may have gotten lazy and reaped the results.

“We just got news to use water purification tablets and more boiled water. I am afraid its related somehow.”

Yan Fei stared deeply at Luo Xun but did not say anything. His gut instinct said that Luo Xun was probably correct, not to mention the laborious water purification system at home.

The two men had not spent too long thinking when an announcement sounded outside. The broadcast issued an emergency notice to the crowd – urgently recruiting staff to expand the southwest base.

Recently the outside was not peaceful and everybody tried to explore as far out as possible. Even if going out meant a possible death at the hand of zombies.

The current level of zombie could not run, though some people found more fast, flexible and powerful zombie variants. It was somewhat common to find something inside the zombie’s head. The research institute on base had not yet studied the purpose of the strange shards so there were few kept on base.

Most of the people who took part in clearing zombies acted together with the military. The military personnel could finally count how many zombies a team could kill.

This method of operation always had a loophole that could be exploited so the reward was not much. Most people were afraid, when they heard of more construction work, they decided those tasks would be less dangerous and more cost-effective.

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