The First Order – Chapter 206


Chapter 206 Middle of nowhere

The military transport truck slowly drove through the vast wilderness towards a mountainous region. Here, the mountains were not very high.

While the platoon sat in the back, Ren Xiaosu silently took note of their current position. This should be a place several dozen kilometers away from Stronghold 108.

When they passed by several factories along the way, Li Qingzheng introduced the place to them. “These are the Li Consortium’s oil refineries, and our outpost is just up front. Our daily responsibility will be to observe any signs of approaching enemies. If there are, we have to report it immediately through the satellite phone.”

Ren Xiaosu asked, “What do we do after reporting

it?”

This question stumped Li Qingzheng. The higher-ups had not mentioned what actions to take after reporting an intrusion. Were they supposed to defend the place until reinforcements arrived or should they retreat?

It seemed like their task was just to keep watch and function as an early warning system.

But Ren Xiaosu felt they would be risking their lives by keeping watch here.

They were not issued with any uniforms or firearms. An entire platoon consisting of 30 people only had 11 automatic rifles and just over 20 magazines with them. What else could they be other than cannon fodder?

However, Li Qingzheng was not too worried about that. “Just think about it. A large contingent of soldiers from the combat troops have already been deployed to Stronghold 109. If there’s any danger, they’ll be the ones to handle it. What do we have to worry about?”

“What if other organizations start a war?” Ren Xiaosu asked.

“That won’t happen.” Li Qingzheng waved it off and said, “How can there still be wars in this era? I’ve never witnessed a real war since the day I was born!”

When Ren Xiaosu heard that, he did not say anything more. Even the refugees were used to living in these peaceful times. Everyone always thought that war was something very far away from them, and even Ren Xiaosu also had such thoughts.

But Ren Xiaosu felt that something was not right. What if the Li Consortium initiated an attack on others? What if those frontline troops of the Li Consortium couldn’t beat back the Experimentals?

If war was not coming, the Li Consortium would have no reason to mobilize so many troops. Moreover, the various organizations would also have spies planted inside the other strongholds. If the Li Consortium started ramping up its war preparations, that would make the other organizations nervous as well.

It was like they were all tied together by a single rope. If someone pulled too hard, it would tighten around the others. Once the rope snapped, war would break out.

“We’ve arrived!” Li Qingzheng shouted excitedly, “This will be our outpost from now on!”

When Ren Xiaosu jumped out of the truck, he was stunned after looking around at the place. He could only see a row of small, one-story houses standing on the hilltop in front of him with a big mountain behind. This was the middle of nowhere.

No one was in the outpost. It seemed like Eighth Platoon of the Iron Second was going to have this outpost all to themselves. It was no wonder Li Qingzheng could speak so pompously back then.

Li Qingzheng pointed at the top of the mountain as he stood on the flat ground of the outpost. “Every day, five of you will be on sentry duty on a rotating basis in the watchtower up there where you’ll check for any signs of the enemy. If a situation crops up, report it immediately to the higher-ups.”

“Is that all?” Ren Xiaosu asked.

“Right, there’s nothing else.” Li Qingzheng said with a smile, “Supplies will be delivered to us regularly, so we don’t have to worry about anything at all. All we need to do is to keep a close eye on this direction.”

“Who will come from this direction?” Ren Xiaosu asked.

“How would I know?” Li Qingzheng was amused. “No one goes into those mountains, and neither will anyone come out from there. So we can all just rest assured that no one will attack us.”

Ren Xiaosu made a rough guess of their current position. They should be situated at one of the northernmost outposts in the area controlled by the Li Consortium. Which organizations were to the north? The Qing Consortium or the Yang Consortium?

Ren Xiaosu asked him, “Do you know where Stronghold 88 is?”

Li Qingzheng was surprised. “I don’t know.”

Alright, Ren Xiaosu would just have to ask someone else when there was an opportunity. He should have asked Yang Xiaojin back then…

After everyone unloaded the supplies from the military transport truck, Ren Xiaosu estimated their supplies would only last the 30 of them seven days at most. He wondered if the subsequent resupply would be delivered on time. Seeing as the Li Consortium was busy on all fronts, who knew if they would forget about them over here.

When Li Qingzheng saw Ren Xiaosu’s expression, he said with a smile, “Bro, I know y’all are looking to leave this place. But in the current circumstances, even if you escape back to town, you might not be able to leave with the others. There are many military bases stationed all over town, and there’s so many of you as well, so how are you going to leave? Y’all will probably get caught and interrogated before you can even step out of there.”

Ren Xiaosu realized that even though Li Qingzheng looked rather stupid, he was well aware of the situation. He clearly knew that Ren Xiaosu’s mind was not present.

Li Qingzheng added, “I suggest you just stay here for now. If there’s an opportunity in the future, I’ll try to transfer you back to the town. Then you can get together more often with your relatives and friends.”

Ren Xiaosu knew Li Qingzheng was hinting at more money, but he still thanked him anyway. “OK, I’m counting on you then, Platoon Commander Li.”

“Haha, no need to be polite.” Li Qingzheng said with a smile, “You can just stay at this outpost with no worries. If enemies really do come, I’ll chase them away with my boxing. There’s nothing for y’all to be afraid of.”

Li Qingzheng had also found out that Ren Xiaosu and his group used to be students from Stronghold 109 and that Ren Xiaosu was the class monitor of the group. To him, it was normal that a group of students would feel afraid coming to such a place. As a big brother, he had to comfort them a little.

The students beside them did not say anything as they unloaded the supplies. They did not know what expression to make when they heard Li Qingzheng’s words.

Right at this moment, Li Qingzheng laughed, “Y’all don’t have to do this work. Just let the stronghold residents do it. Didn’t they used to despise us refugees? It’s time we let them experience the life of a refugee.”

The students looked at Ren Xiaosu, who said to Li Qingzheng with a smile, “Let’s work together instead.” Although he also did not really like the stronghold residents, it was not enough to make him want to order the seven escapees around.

Li Qingzheng said with a smile beside him, “You students are really kind, but it’s a shame you didn’t pass the synchronization test. I heard that those who passed the test will become true elite troopers who can fight against a 100 opponents.”

Ren Xiaosu was still skeptical about the idea of one person fighting against a 100. To be honest, he had his own path to follow. So he was not envious of those who had passed the test. The only problem was that he felt a little uncomfortable when he saw the compassionate look in Chen Wudi’s eyes.

Suddenly, Ren Xiaosu looked up and saw the majestic Wolf King standing on the summit of a mountain and watching him quietly. He was shocked to realize the wolves were still following him.

When the Wolf King saw that Ren Xiaosu had noticed it, it did not avoid his eyes. After a while, it disappeared into the mountains. Li Qingzheng followed Ren Xiaosu’s gaze and looked at the mountain as well, but he saw nothing there. “What are you looking at?”

Ren Xiaosu smiled. “Just enjoying the scenery.”

Suddenly, wolves howled. Everyone jumped up in shock. Li Qingzheng said in panic, “There’s actually wolves in those mountains?!”

But Ren Xiaosu did not feel any fear this time.

 

 



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