Chapter 96: Battlefield
Translator: Letty Editor: DarkGem
The reason why he fled the scene was not only because of the beetles, but also because of the gunshots that were fired by the soldiers under panic. There was one more reason too—the gene-altered soldiers might be able to get rid of the beetles soon.
After all, the predators that he lured there weren’t the superior ones. His biggest threat, the gene-altered soldiers, was only troubled without incurring any actual damage. That’s why he decisively ran as fast he could. Chang wasn’t a matching opponent for any of those soldiers once they got away from the beetles. The gene-altered soldiers were superior in speed, and Chang would never be capable of outcompeting that. His only advantage was his high familiarity with the jungle and a deep understanding of the nature of the predators that lived within it. He knew those things by heart, and now, was able to utilize his knowledge to defend himself.
As for the other unstable factors, Chang couldn’t do anything but put hope in the commander’s irrationality and the low intelligence of the gene-altered soldiers, so that he could get away.
Tearing through the jungle, Chang didn’t look back.
On the other side, where the troop rested at, the soldiers faced their most terrifying nightmare upon the arrival of the beetles.
The gene-altered soldiers weren’t injured because of their scaled skin, but to the normal soldiers, it was a catastrophic disaster.
The beetles had become venomous from the rapid evolution, and the number of them was overwhelmingly large. A bite would benumb the surrounding neurons, and there were hundreds and thousands of the beetles. One word to describe the character of these beetles was bloodthirsty. Firstly, they would inject the disabling venom into their prey, and then tear off their skin and muscles bit by bit.
The troop was now confronting the deadly and aggressive swarm. The tremendous amount of beetles was undefeatable. Some smarter soldiers immediately dropped their weapons and veered from the battlefield, but most of them were drowned in the buzzing. They collapsed and became a pool of blood and flesh soon after they were covered by the beetles.
It was merely a swarm of beetles, which were probably the weakest predators in the jungle. Yet, they crushed the armed troop effortlessly. The troop was as expected, losing their rational when grappling with these unknown enemies—some scurried away like frightened rats, and some attempted to shoot in desperation at the shrouding “dark cloud”, but neither of the two choices helped them escape their fate.
A flamethrower might be a good choice at exterminating these beetles, but none of the soldiers was equipped with this heavy weapon as they were executing the mission in the city. The order from the inst.i.tute was to capture two targets, ending up in the jungle wasn’t part of their plan.
Thus, the troop haphazardly fled, few of them getting away. Most ended their short lives in this ghastly land.
The hooknosed woman and her adjutant were the first few who escaped. They had watched the disaster from afar as they were too powerless to stop the tragedy. Upon reuniting with the three gene-altered soldiers, the hooknosed woman led her remaining subordinates away from the scene with fear lingering in their hearts.
“What the heck… It was such a simple trap and most of us fell for it. How dangerous can this jungle be?” As they left the swarm, the adjuntant swore in a low voice. “We lost too many soldiers, and I don’t think the deserters will return to the military. We really messed up the mission!”
“I know, even if we catch the other target by ourselves, punishment is awaiting us.” The woman was worried as well. “We don’t even know where he is now.”
“Since we failed this mission, why don’t we...” The adjutant lowered his voice again as he spoke. “Why don’t we abort the mission and be deserters ourselves… After all, with your ability, the military will have a hard time finding us, and the target...”
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A fist swiftly and violently flew at the adjutant before he had even finished his request. Its force smashed his head, making his voice vanish in the air. His brain scattered, and the headless corpse was propelled for over ten meters. It didn’t stop until it hit a tree.
And Chang kept creating troubles for them along the way.
The jungle was terribly dangerous. Chang didn’t dare to go into the center as he was afraid of getting lost, yet he didn’t slow down in case the soldiers caught up. Therefore, he was spinning around the edge of the jungle.
Because the woman didn’t have an enhanced physique, she could only keep tailing him while distinguis.h.i.+ng his scent in the air. She chased with the gene-altered soldiers at her full speed, but Chang’s shadow was still nowhere to be seen.
Time pa.s.sed by with this ongoing chasing game.
By the afternoon, the woman had completely experienced the horror of the jungle. In only a few hours, she had almost died from many incidents—leeches went under her skin, slurping her blood, thin vines hanging down from branches strapped around her neck, attempting to suffocate her. She even got bitten by some venomous beetles at the ankle, and there was also one time, when half of her head got almost chopped off by a strange animal camouflaged as dead wood.
The pursuit covered her body with scratches. If she hadn’t been accompanied by the gene-altered soldiers, she would have died more than a couple times.
On the other side, Chang’s experience with the jungle wasn’t much easier than the woman’s. He too ran into a few dangers, but he managed to get away from them relying on his calculation ability. As he was also an EM in the physical category, his enhancement kept him alive till dusk.
At that time, Chang reached the limit of his physical capabilities—aided by the sunlight, he was able to avoid dangers with his exceptional vision. But without illumination, his chances of survival were minimal. He knew that he couldn’t waste any more time in the jungle. If they didn’t have a final battle now, he wouldn’t be surviving this night.
While traveling around, he planned his final destination for this battle—they were going to fight at another place that he knew. In the den of the spiders, who trapped the gigantic millipedes. Hopefully, those monsters could surprise the low intelligence gene-altered soldiers.
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