Luo Xun was not happy at this moment, being gossiped about by others. He really wanted to find a rope to hang Zhang Yi in the corridor, let him reflect for a day! He needed to go to work? The base could delay for another day!
Yan Fei took Luo Xun’s hand, glanced at Zhang Yi and went downstairs. Zhang Yi raised an eyebrow with an increasingly bright smile. He knew Yan Fei would not take action against him, after all they were neighbors. Luo Xun and Yan Fei’s relationship would have been exposed sooner or later.
Rather than waiting to be found out, which might cause resentment in the five honest kids. Instead they were guided in an alternate direction. The methods were suspect but the result was good.
Luo Xun only felt alive again when the group of people drove to the barracks. Seeing Li Tie and company behind him, Luo Xun suddenly experienced a deep sense of life’s vicissitudes.
Yan Fei locked the car and patted Luo Xun’s shoulder – the latter’s body had not fully recovered. Thus, today Yan Fei had driven the car.
Seeing Yan Fei carefully looking at him, Luo Xun slightly shook his head. He was not afraid of being known to prefer men – was there anything wrong with it? People could laugh at him now but wait two years, how often would they see women around the base? It would too late to wait until there were only men around!
He was a little uncomfortable because of the sudden attitude change after getting along with Li Tie and the others, plus Zhang Yi could stir up trouble at home…
“Let’s go, get in the car and rest.” Seeing Luo Xun had recovered his spirit, Yan Fei smiled and gestured towards the barracks door.
“Why are there so many people?” Luo Xun was surprised to see quite a few people, vehicles blocked the entrance and people did not know what to do.
“It seems like the families rescued by the base are moving today.” Yan Fei glanced around and pulled the edge of his hat down. He was still wearing a mask and thus not afraid to meet people.
The two men successfully found the truck they had to ride every day. The driver greeted them before getting on the bus. It was not long before the captain joined with his team. After they got on the bus a few familiar soldiers smiled at seeing Luo Xun today. “You’re better today?”
Luo Xun smiled and nodded. “Yesterday I had a bit of a cold. Much better after resting for a day.”
“For the moment don’t push yourself. Don’t be stubborn in the face of danger.” The captain also advised him. After all, the situation was not too dangerous and a healthy body would be more useful in the future. There was no need for Luo Xun to exert himself while not a full health.
Luo Xun nodded, he knew there was plenty of manpower. No surprises meant he did not have to rush ahead. He just had to keep near Yan Fei as usual and make sure no zombies rushed the crowd.
Inside the base gate, the crowd and number of tents had slightly lessened than before. It was estimated they scattered to other places, perhaps some people had moved to the newly cleaned out buildings.
A few cars were parked in the area they were responsible for. They started their daily work routine, Yan Fei was in the middle of resting when the captain seeing the situation was okay, suddenly remembered some prior news. He walked over to Yan Fei and asked. “Ah, I heard yesterday a base leader surnamed Yan was looking for his son. Was about your age or something? Are you from the city?”
Although the base had recorded demographics, but those were all filled by hand. It was not easy to find a person in a vast sea of people from only a surname and the other parties did not take the initiative to declare their identities.
The base information network had only just been set up and people involved hurriedly filled lists. Many once gorgeous notes turned into illegible words that who knew what had been written? It was possible that there were mistakes, but who could confirm what was correct?
The flow of people in the southwest base was very large, people were coming and going. Some of the original people were registered but later on they might have died outside of base, who could confirm their information?
Even if the base survivors were clearly divided into homes, some people would take advantage of others and force them out. The mess became clear of the people involved with the occupied place lost their identity cards.
In general, the base was still managing the mess, which was one of the main reasons that Li Tie and the others were busy working overtime.
It was not easy for Yan Fei’s parent’s to find him. What was more, they were not looking for someone – in their minds, if their son was alive and arrived at the southwest base, he would first thing ask the authorities for help, say the parent’s family and get the best deal, just like them.
Unfortunately they did not understand their son’s personality at all. Even if there was no Luo Xun, Yan Fei could protect himself and find a way to stay in the base. He would not seek help from the military, he had finally escaped his numb life before the apocalypse and would rather pit himself against the zombies outside. Yan Fei wanted to make a life with his own two hands instead of continuing his previous stagnant, lifeless days.
Yan Fei faintly smiled and responded with a slightly regretful tone. “Luo Xun and I are from F-city. Came to A-city a few years ago for work. If I had relatives who were part of the upper ranks…” He shrugged. “I would have went to find them earlier.”
The captain and some of the soldiers laughed. Right? If there was a connection, there would be a way to find military help, just like the new people hovering around the barracks.
The captain patted Yan Fei’s shoulder while laughing. “The superior called when he heard the name of an ability user that I worked with.”
The captain, while thinking some more, felt like Yan Fei was not the person he was looking for. After all, Yan Fei was a bit arrogant but he did not seem like a young master from a rich family. If he really had a connected father, he would find work in the base and not go out to repair the wall?
After saying this, the captain went to do something else. Luo Xun did believe what Yan Fei had said before had been true and looked at him with confusion and worry.
Yan Fei smiled and patted Luo Xun’s hair. “I’ll tell you back home.”
Luo Xun nodded, knowing it was inconvenient to dwell on this now and he believed that Yan Fei would not lie to him.
Everyone was already familiar with the process of building a wall with crystal nucleus usage, the morning period was used extremely efficiently.
Back at the barracks the two brought out their lunch boxes and checked out the third canteen. Along the way they met a lot of people but no one listened deliberately to what others were saying.
At this time, Yan Fei mentioned his home situation. When the two people had first met, both Yan Fei and Luo Xun had circumstances to conceal. But now the two people were really together. Yan Fei decided that for this to continue there are words that must be said and understood.
Of course, if his ‘wonderful’ parents had not come here, perhaps he might not have talked about his former life, just as he knew Luo Xun also concealed his past.
Explained a few sentences about his family, his attitude resembled when he spoke to Zhang Yi about his mother. Yan Fei had a chilly smile. “That day we saw their cars with the military camp, I knew they were fine, so I did not mention them.”
Luo Xun quietly walked with a lowered head. After a while Yan Fei was worried that Luo Xun felt disatisfaction at the cold attitude towards his parents. Luo Xun suddenly looked up. “You don’t want to meet them.”
Yan Fei paused, then slowly nodded.
Luo Xun suddenly laughed. “You decide, I have no opinion. If you do not want to see, I will help keep you concealed along with Li Tie and the others.”
Luo Xun was not like those people before the end of the world who thought that blood was thicker than anything else. He had experienced things, when one’s life was endangered, blood might betray each other.
Perhaps it was only people who survived the apocalypse who had such a dark mindset and the real good guys were dying in the face of danger. It was impossible for those to get up anyway.
Perhaps in the early end days, there was a kind of family, sacrifice themselves for love, fighting for other’s survival but when they make this decision, their life was basically forfeit.
In his last life, how many sons and daughters had Luo Xun seen launched by the mother to block against zombies, a betrayal from loved ones? Was Zhang Yi not deliberately hurt and abandoned by his previous companions as bait?
Yan Fei’s decision or behaviour did not harm anyone but he was clear from the beginning. If his parents did not become zombies, they would be able to quickly find power to protect themselves. Decided not to be with them until sure they were safe, alive and well.
Yan Fei also understood his parents, with Zhang Yi before, with the captain’s attitude, Luo Xun knew that Yan Fei’s parents did not exert every effort to find their son. How common was the surname ‘Yan’? How many people could have this last name on base? If they had asked, they would soon know that there was a man in the army with that name. How difficult would it be to take chance and take a look to see if he was their son?
Yan Fei’s smile gradually warmed, pulled Luo Xun’s hand so the two walked forward together. He did not need any relatives, what affection from family, having Luo Xun alone was enough.
The two people walked together into the third canteen, which had more people than the fifth. They circled around the windows and found there was indeed a lot of food. Yan Fei and Luo Xun whispered to each other.
Luo Xun: “Have not eaten noodles for a long time. The noodles here seem pretty good, grab a portion?”
Yan Fei: “Okay, you get noodles. I’ll get a pot of dumplings for a change of taste. There are no seats in the canteen, we’ll go home and eat after ordering.”
Luo Xun looked around, found that there were almost no vacant seats and nodded in embarrassment. “Will the noodles end up softened?”
“Tell to have a shorter cook time. Their noodles seem harder, should be no problem if we stir evenly back at home.”
“Okay, let’s split!” Luo Xun hugged a big lunch box and rushed to the noodle window while Yan Fei turned to the dumpling selling window.
No doubt, the third canteen food was good and the portions were big! Seeing two people come with their own lunch box, the chef raised a spoon and stuffed rice, the two boxes could almost not cover the lid. Recently all military soldiers were desperately building, orders were to let everyone eat their full and well. So although the food quality varied across canteen, all had big enough portion sizes to avoid people coming back for seconds.
They packed their lunch boxes in front of the windowsills. Once ready, the lunch box was covered in a plastic bag before going into the backpack. Luo Xun wanted to carry the weight on his own but Yan Fei took the load with a smile. His lover’s body was not fully healed, how tired would he be?
The corners of Luo Xun’s mouth lifted involuntarily, they walked out hand in hand.
Just as the two exited, several people came from the opposite side. The first seeing the two had his eyes brighten. “Yan Fei, Luo Xun!” Unexpectedly it was Li Tie and his friends.
“Are you done?” Luo Xun smiled and greeted the group.
Suddenly saw a jeep near the third canteen, a woman looked up towards their direction, her facial features…Why did they seem familiar?
Thinking, Luo Xun drifted to Yan Fei – sure enough, that woman had similar features to Yan Fei!
His heart made the connection after the two had just spoken about Yan Fei’s parents. Luo Xun guessed that the woman would be Yan Fei’s mother!
His mind had a thought. She looked over when she heard Li Tie and the other’s saying “Yan”, his heart could not help but be disturbed.
Yan Fei did not his parents to find him, but if they recognized him it would be bad for him. What if they found out that Luo Xun has a relationship with their son?
Luo Xun’s mind flashed to those evil mother-in-law plots from pre-apocalypse dramas. He, Li Tie and company greeted each other. The woman by the jeep only saw two people talking and looked away. She felt slightly relieved – perhaps she had guessed wrong?
“Then you go back to eat. We are here to order some good food and eat back at the workplace.” Han Li smiled warmly.
Luo Xun and Yan Fei nodded in farewell and saw He Qiankun with shiny eyes rush towards the rice basin. “There seems to be ribs today! I’m going to eat that!”
Holding hands Luo Xun pulled Yan Fei down the steps. Luo Xun breathed a sigh of relief as that woman did not look again. He whispered once they walked past. “I thought that woman was your mother.”
Yan Fei chuckled. “The one beside the jeep with brown hair?”
“Yes, you saw?”
“Yeah, that’s my mother.”
“….Ha?!” Luo Xun jumped with wide eyes.
Yan Fei raised his arm to hug Luo Xun’s shoulder. “Rest assured, even if I walk up to her, she would not recognize me.”
“…Because you’re wearing a mask?” Luo Xun frowned, were his mother’s eyes bad?
Yan Fei chuckled again. “She and I only meet once a year. One year we did not see each other because she went to France for spring festival shopping. Don’t forget, I just had my hair cut.”
Luo Xun tilted his head and looked at Yan Fei’s head – it was not so cold today so Yan Fei was not wearing a woolen cap at the moment. His hairstyle was a bit shorter than earlier but…there was no big difference?
Yan Fei patted him on the shoulder, continued on. “Hurry home, careful so the noodles don’t get bloated.”
He was currently wearing a large down jacket (which fit perfectly) that Luo Xun had specially bought before the end of the world. Hairstyle was something done by Luo Xun. Yan Fei was wearing a white mask which he had never worn in the past. If she could recognize him, it would be strange.
“Let’s go home then!” No need to worry about this, the son neither recognized nor acknowledged the mother.
Yan Fei’s heart relaxed as he hugged Luo Xun. His footsteps were exceptionally brisk.
The two people drove home, climbed to the 16th floor. Upon opening the lunch box the fried dumplings were soft and the noodles were okay.
Luo Xun used some chopsticks to taste, still okay, not too soft.
The two of them split the noodles after stirring, if they returned home quickly the noodles could maintain their flavor. Not to mention there was soup inside the dumplings and certain parts other than the bottom were still crisp.
The pair ate a lot, the priority was to finish the noodles, some dumplings were eaten but the rest were left in the kitchen for the evening. They would eat those together with some boiled porridge.
Had to say, the third and fourth canteens were indeed stronger than the fifth. The couple had discovered a declining pattern in the dining halls. The third was great, the fourth was decent, as for the fifth canteen? They had been completely thrown to the clouds.
The days were unceasingly busy, Luo Xun finally felt that the place was finally somewhat comfortable. The base perimeter wall would completed in good time, only strengthening and thickening was left. The seven storey small building next door to Wang Jing along with several newly built buildings in the inner city were successfully finished. The poor were finally assigned living space, the one year mark was around the corner.
Luo Xun stood in the 1603 living room with both hands on his hips. “Very good, the wall is thoroughly dry. We can brush again during these two days of holiday!”
The outer wall work had temporarily ended, the base gave the two of them two/three days holiday, could go home for Chinese New Year. Afterwards would continue to the outer wall and thickening/heightening the metal walls.
They knew that on one hand the work was done, on the other hand – there was enough metal on the base. The military would take the opportunity to send out some staff during these few days to collect all sorts of metal items to bring back to strengthen the wall.
Compared to earth ability users, whose material was easier to find. Even if there was no concrete, they could use sand or soil to cover a wall instead.
Anyway these days were carefree, so Luo Xun and Yan Fei decided to continue scraping putty using this rare chance.
Yan Fei had no opinion, the two had been afraid for a while that someone would kick them out but that no longer seemed like an issue. What was wrong with making their circumstances more comfortable?
It was the 29th, Luo Xun and Yan Fei had their holiday starting today, the five students and Zhang Yi did not have the fortune to rest at home. Li Tie and their home had been renovated, the past few days they had been busy with a variety of software and hardware. No way around it, because the apocalypse came so suddenly the military had not prepared many things. Many statistics and information processing software had to be rewritten.
Some experts had arrived on base recently, fortunately the group of students were honest and kind people, with good temperament. Although they had no practical experience in this aspect, they had cooperated with the military people for a long time, who were naturally willing to keep them busy. These days, the number of professionals could be counted on one’s fingers.
They also got two days off for Chinese New Year, but it started tomorrow so today they still had to continue work in the barracks.
As for Zhang Yi…as having one of the most important jobs during the apocalypse, one of the doctors, getting rest time during this holiday was thanks to the military leaders.
The couple cheerfully took a day to scrape the walls of 1603 – no way, that was a coincidence.
After looking at the situation Luo Xun was ready to wait for this to dry. If the wall ended up having no problems, he decided to skip the third layer and save the remaining putty for future wall problems. So long as the walls dried with some latex point they could pave the floor and create a large greenhouse!
The two people worked all day, returned to have a hot bath. The sound of metal was heard as they exited the bathroom.
Li Tie and company dragged their tired bodies up to the 16th floor. Seeing the two come out, they waved at them.
Wang Duo cried bitter tears. “Finally don’t have to go to work tomorrow, aiaiaiai….”
“I’m sleeping until 12! No can stop m e!” He Qiankun waved two fists. Wu Xin and Han Li repeatedly nodded in support.
Luo Xun smiled at the group of five. “We found the walls were dry today so we scraped the wall again.”
Li Tie and company instantly turned mute, then with eyes of despair held their heads and wailed, “Forgot we had to also paint the wall! Oh my God! This holiday will not let people live?!”
An unknown voice came from the 15th floor. “What’s going on?! Who’s yelling? Not letting anyone sleep!”
The five people hurried past the big iron gate.