Undead

Chapter 23
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Chapter 23

Bang!

The bullet shot through the zombie’s head that was wrapped up in bandages, and out puffed a cloud of dust.

Bang!

The zombie staggered, but still continued pressing on.

Ten metres, five metres, three metres.

Bang bang bang! Three more shots, and Si Nan threw away the empty Type-64 handgun. Exhaling a heated breath tinged with the taste of blood, he swung his fist at the zombie’s temple!

When a person was at a critical moment in time, they would usually find an astonishing strength within themselves. Si Nan’s punch was comparable to that of a professional boxer, and it slammed into the zombie’s forehead without any restraint.

If this head belonged to a human, it would already have been split apart. However the head of this zombie that smashed out from the coffin only tilted to one side. It grabbed Si Nan, and threw him out!

With the sounds of things falling, Si Nan’s body flew out over ten metres and crashed into the wall. As he landed, he knocked over some equipment, falling heavily on the ground covered in glass and metal shards.

“...” Si Nan swore silently. With bloodshot eyes, his vision was unclear, and in a haze he could see the zombie walking step by step towards him.

This zombie was wrapped entirely in thick, greyish-yellow bandages, looking just like a mummy. Its facial features were completely concealed, only revealing bloodstained teeth in a gaping mouth. Although it was not very nimble, it did not look as stiff-jointed with dry, cracking flesh like the ordinary zombies outside. Instead it had an unimaginable extreme strength, and even a bullet shot at its head could not cause any damage to it.

Si Nan shook his head slowly. What exactly was this thing?!

In the round, underground testing site, other that an elevator that was cut off from the power supply, there was nothing else that he could use to climb out. Am I about to die here today?

The zombie drew closer, and Si Nan struggled to get up. In his panic, he saw a row of glass tubes about the width of a finger under him. They had essentially been crushed by him, and a dark red serum exploded over half his body, looking just like blood.

He did not have the time to contemplate what this liquid was. Dodging the iron claws the zombie swung at his head, he lunged to the side in a flash.

Howl—

The zombie’s speed was even faster than he had expected. It caught his leg, dragging him towards it. Si Nan was thrown into a panic. Fortunately for him, the power in his kick was greater than that of his punch, and he actually managed to escape a second before he was bitten. Instantly, he clambered up and rushed forward.

He was unable to run out of the testing site, and could only run along the alloyed metal walls with the zombie chasing behind him. There were several times when Si Nan could feel the zombie’s hands at the back of his clothes, but he forced himself away at the critical juncture. With the aid of the large-sized equipment strewn about the site, he was able to barely evade the zombie’s pursuit.

The zombie was after all not alive, and in the midst of the mess of equipment, it was very clumsy, knocking apart various items with crashes. In the dim lighting, one was in pursuit while the other escaped, and like this they ran around the testing site the size of a football field seven or eight times. Si Nan’s energy was completely spent, and towards the end he was running and coughing blood at the same time. Suddenly, he was tripped by a cable that extended out from nowhere, and he tumbled over.

Under the zombie’s foot, a metal chair shattered. The stench of decay was right behind Si Nan.

A dagger in his hand, Si Nan was like a fish out of water. Bonelessly, he flipped over and stabbed the dagger right into the zombie’s throat.

The zombie looked down and roared, its teeth almost scraping across Si Nan’s head. However, the dagger still did not pierce its throat!

Never in his life had Si Nan been so close to death before. Every second of the stalemate dragged on like a year. The veins on his arms bulged out, and because of the amount of force he used, the base of his fingernails started bleeding.

The mouth of the zombie came closer and closer, almost pressing right into Si Nan’s eyes!

Just at this time, a voice was heard above him. “Si Nan!!”

Yan Hao!

Yan Hao had a knee on the ground, and he had his assault rifle aimed at the zombie. “Quick, get away!!”

Si Nan dropped to the ground. Leveraging the force exerted by the dagger on the zombie’s neck, he slid across the floor a few metres away from the zombie.

The zombie got up, wanting to chase after him. At the same time, Yan Hao pressed the trigger—

A 9mm armour-piercing bullet was fired, hitting the zombie accurately, and throwing it back!

This timing was perfect. Yan Hao had a good shot, and he immediately handed the assault rifle over to Zhang Yingjie. Retrieving a rope, he tossed it down into the pit. “Si Nan, come up!”

Si Nan gasped a couple of times, getting up with much difficulty.

He was covered in blood, and even his ears were blocked with blood clots. His pheromones would definitely be exposed to anyone within ten metres of him.

— However, to think about this matter now would be unreasonable. Si Nan stumbled across the testing site, heading towards Yan Hao. Just as he was about to reach out and grasp the rope, a beast-like figure lunged at him from the back.

Bam!

Si Nan was knocked right over his head!

Because of the bullet, the parts of the zombie were bursting apart. It was extremely enraged, and with a slight movement, it grabbed hold of the rope and yanked Yan Hao down the pit at lightning speed!

With the abrupt change in situation, they were at a loss. Zhang Yingjie did not have any time to even aim and fire, and Yan Hao tumbled down the pit a dozen metres deep, falling right into a humongous centrifuge.

This was not the end.

The other end of the rope was tied to Yan Hao’s waist. When the zombie yanked savagely on the rope, Yan Hao did not even have the time to yell, and was dragged all the way out!

Zhang Yingjie roared, “Yan Hao!!”

His finger touched the trigger, only to move away as though he had been shocked — the zombie had caught hold on Yan Hao. If he were to fire now, the bullet might not be able to kill the zombie, but it would definitely turn Yan Hao into paste!

Si Nan suddenly jerked his head back. “No...”

His pupils constricted and then expanded rapidly, a glint appearing in his eyes.

Aiming at Yan Hao’s carotid artery, the zombie bit into it!

Yan Hao’s pained cry rang aloud. Blood gushed out, swiftly painting half the zombie’s face in red.

Making his way across the ground covered with sharp metal fragments, Si Nan lunged over. Pushing the zombie’s body that was as heavy as steel away with one hand, he grabbed at Yan Hao with his other. In the chaos, Yan Hao pushed Si Nan away fiercely. With a trembling hand, he pulled out a hand grenade, shoving it into the zombie’s chest—

Four seconds of silence, then an earth-shaking tremor!

Yan Hao, his arms protecting his head, was thrown outwards. The zombie fell against the wall, rolling across the ground.

“Fuck your ancestors—!”

Taken over by bloodlust, Zhang Yingjie shot another armour-piercing bullet into the zombie, and the zombie’s body bounced up under the light of the fire. Without waiting for it to land, Zhang Yingjie again reloaded the rifle, taking another shot and bursting the zombie’s chest open!

Si Nan called out with a shaky voice, “Yan Hao!”

Yan Hao’s eyes were unfocused. In a pool of blood, his body was convulsing, countless of bones broken, and his chest caved in terrifyingly.

The scent of an Alpha’s pheromones burst into the air, surrounding the place in seconds. The masculine smell was so thick it could not hide its traces. When Si Nan smelled it, he staggered back, dumbfounded. However, with the rapid decline in Yan Hao’s life, the Alpha pheromones swiftly faded away.

Kneeling down next to him, Si Nan shuddered as he removed his jacket, pressing it forcefully against Yan Hao’s bleeding neck.

“...” Yan Hao mumbled, but no sound could be heard.

His ears, nose and throat were all blocked with blood. His consciousness drifted about, as though it was sinking down a warm, deep sea. Someone was pressing hard on his throat, and he knew that was Si Nan.

I’m sorry, he thought.

We lied to you, but...

“Don’t speak,” Si Nan wheezed. “It’s fine, don’t move... don’t speak.”

Four armour piercing shots had been fired, and Zhang Yingjie knelt on the ground, breaking open a new box of ammunition. However, by this time, the condition of his body could no longer keep up. As he was reloading the rifle, his hand shook, and the bullet fell onto the ground.

He hurriedly went to pick it up, and in these few moments without suppressing fire, the zombie shrieked, and again stood up, stumbling!

Half of the zombie’s chest had basically disintegrated, a few bits of flesh dangling off its left shoulder. However, it still was not dead, and charged right at Si Nan’s back like a tank!

With a click, the rifle was loaded. Zhang Yingjie raised the rifle, but he was unable to aim accurately.

His vision was already very blurred, and from his distance, the target looked like it was doubled. If his aim was just a tiny bit off, he might end up shooting at Yan Hao and Si Nan.

— Fuck!

It was as though the last drops of blood all rushed up to his head. Zhang Yingjie breathed heavily as he stood up.

I’m about to die already, what am I still afraid of?

Fuck, it’s not like there’s anything that I can be afraid of now!

Holding his breath, he leapt down, carrying the rifle, like a furious lion!

As the zombie made its way through the site, it was thrown to the ground by Zhang Yingjie who landed on it and made a series of strange calls. Next, Zhang Yingjie crouched on its body, the zombie’s deafening roars piercing his head, and he shoved the barrel of the rifle right into its mouth!

Bang! The zombie’s bandages fell apart.

Bang!! Blood ran from all seven orifices of the zombie.

Bang!!!

The zombie gave a shrill cry, and with a swing of its arm, it swept Zhang Yingjie away!

Zhang Yingjie crashed onto the mess on the ground, unmoving.

The zombie was like a pile of clattering, rattling bones. Its skull almost completely broken, its scrambled brains exposed to the air, its eyes, ears, nose and mouth all squished together. It stood there, looking confusedly around its surrounding, seeming as though it could not find its target.

“You...” Si Nan stood up, his vision darkening, his pale face stained with blood. In that moment, he was like an uncannily savage monster. “You need to die—!”

Si Nan threw the dagger. It spun around midair, and pierced heavily right into the zombie’s brain!

With a splash, the brain fluids splattered around. The zombie finally twitched a couple of times, crumpling onto the ground.

***

The testing site was silent. Si Nan knelt onto the ground, falling as he looked up to the heavens.

There was a moment when he too felt that he was dead.

His eyelids had never felt this heavy before, as though once he shut his eyes, he would immediately fall into a peaceful sleep. Once he shut his eyes, he could immediately be free from the heart-rending pain, the weight of being parted by death, the devastated world.

The eyes covered with blood slowly fell shut.

Five minutes later, he coughed unexpectedly, and once again opened his eyes.

Enduring his pain, Si Nan flipped his body over. A pair of hands dripping with blood pressed upon the metal and glass shards on the ground, and he could feel some sort of thick, sticky liquid flowing past his fingers. At first, he thought that it was blood, but quickly discovered that it was not.

That was the red fluid in the test tubes that he had broken just now.

In that instant, the atmosphere thickened. Si Nan stared blankly at the three remaining test tubes made of metal. In his confusion, fractured images flashed through his mind.

The plane jolted about. Screams of terror sounded, and the seats were dyed with blood.

The door of the cockpit slammed shut, and the swarm of the living dead vanished behind the door. A blood red syringe fell out from the refrigerator...

Si Nan shivered, his brain suddenly blanked out, and an immense pain tore through his head!

“... Ahhh...”

Hugging his head, he curled his body. His memories seemed to appear as though rising up from the depths of the sea, but then, in a blink of an eye, they all disappeared into clean air!

“The serum,” He mumbled. “Serum, serum, serum...”

In the dim lighting, it was as though Si Nan was possessed. He picked up the test tubes, feeling out a syringe from the mess of instruments on the console. Crawling his way to Zhang Yingjie, he did not even check if he was breathing before he injected the entire serum into his jugular vein.

He then repeated his actions, stumbling over and kneeling by Yan Hao who was taking his last breaths, injecting his arm with another full vial of serum!

Minutes ticked by very very slowly, but it felt like seconds to Si Nan.

He knelt there, a wound on his forehead, blood drying on his chilled face. His arms, his legs, his stomach, they were all dyed red. The dried portions of his clothes were maroon, and the wet portions a bright, fresh red. Damp, they clung onto his body, looking like a red canvas of varying shades that were due to poor dyeing techniques.

Bundling up his jacket to press it against Yan Hao’s bleeding wound, he had never used so much strength in his life ever before — it was as if he was in a race with fate that hung invisible in the air, as if he was desperately, tightly, gripping the scythe of the grim reaper.

“... Ah... Ahhhhh... Ah...!”

Si Nan wrenched his head towards Zhang Yingjie.

The serum was reacting rapidly in Zhang Yingjie’s body, but it was the worst case scenario — all his blood vessels were bulging out, turning bruised. It was as though someone was strangling him, and his eyes were fixed looking up.

Next, under Si Nan’s hopeless gaze, Zhang Yingjie’s body bowed upwards, the last spurts of bloody foam escaping his mouth, and he collapsed back down, motionlessly.

— He was dead.

He was staring into the endless darkness, his eyes empty and void. However, his face was turned slightly towards Si Nan and Yan Hao, as though he wanted to see his comrades-in-arms for the last time.

Until the last moment when his life elapsed, Zhang Yingjie had maintained a human’s awareness and pain. There was no sign of him turning into a zombie.

Si Nan did not make a sound. He held the empty syringe he had just on Yan Hao tightly, his neck turning inch by inch with much difficulty—

Behind him, Yan Hao’s death struggles suddenly intensified, and became exceptionally distinct.

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