Yan Fei’s expression was neutral, he had spoken with Luo Xun about mutations. They had raised their animals with preparations made well in advance.
Most of the mutated animals would have a strong instinct to attack humans. But if an animal was well-cared for, a better relationship would preserve a certain intelligence. They would have a similar state after mutation, so the pet would accompany their owners and protect them.
Luo Xun had raised Puppy with this mentality in mind – after all the majority of animals that survived the apocalypse had mutated, so odds were very high. But if the puppy went crazy, it would very dangerous for their homes.
By then, Luo Xun was afraid he could not bear to put down his own…
Unfortunately, Luo Xun was not aware of how animals mutated. Was it similar to how people became zombies or developed abilities, woke up one day suddenly changed? Or could they prepare themselves in advance…
The car drove to the outer city wall while they were in thought. The ten meters deep foundation was basically done. Yan Fei and the others were tinkering with the construction demands in case a wind zombie tried to fly over like last time.
They climbed to where they worked yesterday. Looked down and found some cars parked near the moat. One curiously pointed, “What are they doing?”
“Could they be fishing?”
“These days, how could there by live fish in the river?”
Everyone laughed and joked before getting to work and looking over from time to time.
After the first zombie siege, the base was determined to increase their defenses. The outside protective measures were upgraded again. The scope was also increased, the land to west, north and south west originally prepared for farming had various traps added.
Yan Fei and team had been recently working on creating steel needles, spikes and so on. Those things were to be used in traps outside the base.
Once the metal spikes on the walls were done, using up most of the metal brought by the crane, the metal users busied themselves continuing with the metal overpass. Who knew where the base got so much metal? Would there be enough for other future projects?
Luo Xun held a transparent, explosion-proof while Yan Fei worked at the wall’s edge. In fact, due to the increased outer protection, this role and equipment was not really needed. But out of caution and previous dangers, they kept their guard up.
Luo Xun casually looked out and was surprised, “Eh? They drained all the river water?”
“Why? Didn’t they just deal with it before?”
People worked and looked. Suddenly, a sharp-eyed person pointed down, “There’s something flopping in the river.”
“The bottom of the river?”
“It’s a fish! It’s like I said that day, there was a fish in the river!”
There were indeed fish in the river, but it was not something edible. They would attack people who fell into the water, zombie fish.
As the group gathered around on the walls, the men responsible for handling the dead fish showed up. Several ice users and fire users, the former froze then the latter roasted. A few zombie fish had actually mastered water gun. The water projectiles were vicious with penetrating power.
Two people not paying attention to the situation were hit by a water arrow! One man’s shoulder blade was cleanly shot through!
The onlookers were surprised to see someone actually hit with a water arrow. They sucked in a cold breath seeing the blood spray out – the fish were attacking! And zombie fish could use such a threatening long-distance attack!
“Could a water ability user have a strong attack?” A soldier fearfully rubbed his chest.
The value of water users had surged due to water shortage on base, but everyone saw them using soft water balls and creating drinking water. If the water users on base could have such a strong attack, how would they miserable?
Luo Xun thought of an explanation, “Should be related to living their entire life in water.”
“The arrows are worse because they lived in water?” Captain Guo was confused.
Luo Xun nodded his head, “There’s water resistance, if they wanted to use long distance attacks, the water attack would not be enough to hit the target. This was the result of long time use and practice.”
The ability users and zombies all lived on land, even if they manipulated water, it was in the air. In particular, the water users were categorized in a ‘logistics’ position, producing water for everyone to drink and did not pursuing offensive moves. Without the environment to exercise, of course their ability to control water would not be as strong.
People sighed for a moment, not long after the zombie fish were quickly cleaned up. There were not too many fish corpses in the moat, spread in various areas, the job was not difficulty.
The earth users cleared the battlefield – churned the riverbed to dispose of the contaminated sludge. When all this was done – water user created water would cost points, but it was better than attracting zombie fish from the river?
There were quite a few people who fled to A-city’s base. No one ran to the river to clean wounds or draw water. If a zombie fish appeared, the consequences could not be imagined.
After a day’s work, the pair drove back to their neighborhood. The main building had been filled, the former barracks was now a militarized fortress. Surrounded by tall, dark walls, they were taller and stronger than the rest of base.
To the west and southwest of the barracks, large tracts of farmland were enclosed by earth user created fences. The walls were three meters high, with barbed wire that were scary enough to stop the growing number of thieves.
Northwest of the base was the planting building that stood before the apocalypse. Now there were some newly built buildings that were specially made for planting vegetables. Now many base people worked the crops to feed their families.
In addition to the northwest planting building, there were factories. Some were already functioning, such as paper-making and clothing/shoes. However, the paper produced could not compare to before the apocalypse. Whether it was the quality or toughness, the paper had a rough texture due to being made from leftover plants. There was little toilet of printed paper, enemies wished they did not have proper supplies.
Apart from this place, the rest of the base was most residential. The base now had no large areas of vacant space. All the larger areas were used by the military to build a variety of housing. The streets were lined with makeshift shacks, tents or all kinds of cars. Many of these cars had become shells, barely unable to travel, its new purpose was now to be used as a shelter. A lot of things looked like car shells, when you passed by – they had no wheels.
The two drove down the increasingly crowded streets to return home. They slowed down – a group of people were carrying a pile of boards, cabinets and shelves. It seemed that someone new was erecting new accommodations in an empty area.
The people in front were walking slow enough that Luo Xun had no way but to temporarily slow down as well. Although having a car was a good thing, mobility was convenient but with traffic congestion, had to wait for pedestrians. Fortunately their destination was not far, they could stop for a while without worrying.
“Eh?” A voice came from Yan Fei’s window side.
The pair turned and was startled – it was the same group that they had saved before. This man was the one who almost got together with Luo Xun in his past life, but now lived with another young man.
Yan Fei rolled down the window and asked, “You just came back to base?” The young man was carrying a backpack, looked ready for a trip.
The person smiled in embarrassment, “I did not leave base, recently found a job on base. You just came back?”
Yan Fei lightly nodded, although they were living in the same neighborhood they did not cross paths often. This was their second time meeting since the first they met at the gates.
Luo Xun carefully looked out the window. Seeing an unknown man looking at his car, he asked, “Are you with him?” He was not someone who had been rescued, perhaps someone who worked on base and happened to live in the area?
The other person was slightly uncomfortable and smiled self-deprecatingly, “Remember the base had an instrument that could identify one’s ability? He found out he had one, moved out after directly joining a power team, he has not contacted us since…” He shook his head then introduced his new companion, “Now he and I live together, we are ordinary people who not abandon each other, live together on base and pass our days.”
After he smiled at the person beside him. The expression was more than regular friends, with an ambiguous feeling.
Luo Xun’s face had stiffened, Yan Fei casually asked, “Where do you work now?”
“The planting base, was introduced by a former companion…you probably have not heard of him, surname Chen.”
The two men walked into the third building while waving. Luo Xun and Yan Fei went back to where they lived.
Luo Xun could only chuckle, “That is..living together.” It was true that living together existed, but if something changed – for example one of them finding an ability…Immediately abandoned his former companions and went on to better prospects for an improved life.
Now that he thought about it, what his biggest regret? Even if that man had fled to the southwest base with him, Luo Xun was afraid he would have left is he found out he had an ability.
Yan Fei hugged Luo Xun’s shoulder, softly laughed while pinching his ear, “They are living together, we are also living a good life.”
Luo Xun turned and stared with one eye. He pecked Yan Fei on the lips and grabbed the keys. “Home.”
Others having a good or unhappy life was unrelated to him. He had been reborn, all he needed to worry about was ensuring his own life was bright and happy!
They looked at the 15th and 16th floors covered in metal – that was their home, their base. They would not easily give up the home they had built themselves!
How busy was spring ploughing? This busy harvest was twice as labor intensive – this was the feeling of all the Otaku Squad.
To be able to go out of base at the end of the month, they had to seize the time after work to deal with the vegetables at home.
Therefore, Luo Xun had prepared a variety of pickle jars and containers. All the glass jars, porcelain mugs, wooden barrels all came in handy.
Thorough clean, high temperature disinfection, the various colorful vegetables were washed and dried using salt.
In addition to these, Luo Xun and company were ready to use their freshly harvested soybeans to make mayonnaise and other things. Although it was more difficult to make and one had to be careful of mold. But in consideration of enriching their diet, if they were successful they would be able to eat this every year.
In order to make these things, they cleaned out the kitchen, steamed the soybeans and left the vegetables to dry on a grate. Then they took a clean pickle jar and placed the dried cowpeas, radish, cucumber, pepper, cabbage and so on inside.
A large basin to the side was boiled and then cooled, filled with spiced water containing ginger, salt, pepper, sugar and liquor. Placed these vegetables, put some cold water. Seal the lid and then could eat after a few days.
These foods could be directly eaten, but also stir fried with other spices and vegetables. Luo Xun looked at the altar of jars with some regret – it was a pity, if there was meat at home, these foods would be extra delicious.
This method of pickling could be used with a lot of vegetables. The pickles would be sour and crisp yet delicious. The flavorful peppers could be even more spicy.
In addition to this method, Luo Xun was ready to make some spicy radish with everyone. This could be paired with rice, or as a crisp, salty snack alone. There was only a slight issue when drying the radish, it turned into a cylindrical brick.
The harvested radishes were cut into finger sized pieces and left to dry at the window until there was barely any water left.
The night before yesterday, Luo Xun and company had made a bunch of radish strips, hung them out for a long time. The strips were placed in water, sprinkled with some salt and pressed together. The next day the process would repeated then after a week the process would be finished.
They could be layered on top of noodles, the radish would be chewy and was tasty with rice or bread.
In addition to making these pickles, Luo Xun also dried a bunch of vegetables.
Smelling the food, Li Tie and the others squatted in the corner. “Should we still eat from the dining hall? Our pickles are much more delicious! Here are so many fresh vegetables, how could the pot in the cafeteria compare?”
“But…we have no meat at home. Although the dining hall has dropped in quality, in the end…you can eat some minced meat.” He Qiankun said while involuntarily staring at the row of jars.
“Don’t forget that those are past the expiry date! How could that meat be better than our vegetables?”
The expired meat, plus the large output of bad tasting mutated vegetables, the military dining hall was only to fill one’s belly. Delicious food was only a pipe dream. What was more frightening, other than the highest level dining hall, other places could only taste scraps! Even more places had no meat at all!
He Qiankun’s face wrinkled, this was a really difficult decision…
Luo Xun did not pay attention to the other’s quandary. Not eating at the dining hall was simple to say but a big decision in the end. If you cook at home, you get more delicious meals, but the catch was – you had to be able to cook!
Even Luo Xun himself, although he could cook, if he had to bring lunch, he would need to prepare food the night before. Considering that the place they worked was basically outside, there was no place to heat up food. If one prepared in advance, they needed foods that would not easily spoil and still taste good even in cold weather.
With all these problems, they decided to eat with the main force. Even if the food was a little bad, it was better than nothing? With such a lunch, Luo Xun would be scolded if he brought out food. This was the effect of relative comparison, the actual junior chef would seem like a five star chef!
Li Tie and the other students, people who had never entered the kitchen, would waste so much food if they suddenly cooked at home every day.
Xu Mei and Song Lingling could cook, but they were only responsible for their and Yu Xinran’s portion. If they helped Li Tie cook…it would be too much pressure. Don’t forget, they had to care for all the plants in the house during the day.
The next day after work, the couple returned home early – today they would process the radish again, while also taking time to deal with the fully grown vegetables. Tonight, they were going to teach Li Tie and the others how to process cucumbers.
The two quickly climbed up the stairs. The opened the door and Song Lingling rushed out of 1502 and waved. “Quick! Come in!”
“What’s the matter? What’s going on?” Luo Xun was puzzled. He followed Song Lingling inside.
“You see! Look at this!”
Song Lingling pointed at a plastic box in the room. These containers had been recently harvested of vegetables. The box she pointed at was relatively empty – there was nothing except one amazing thing.
“A…mushroom?! A normal mushroom?!”