Chapter 224 Meat is our staple food
When normal soldiers came to this outpost, they would be ferried in military transport trucks. But these nanosoldiers who were all at least first lieutenants had arrived in over a dozen off-road vehicles.
Ren Xiaosu checked out how many of them there were and counted 48. If this number of nanosoldiers who had gathered here was only serving as support for those at the next outpost, then how many people were in the main force over there?
The outpost’s soldiers stood at the side, not daring to utter a word. Only Li Qingzheng went over to the officers to ask if they needed any assistance and if they wanted to eat lunch here.
However, Lin Qi proudly laughed and said, “We’re on official duty here, so how could we have time to eat lunch here? We usually carry our own rations when we’re out on a mission. If we eat anything unhygienic here at your place and get the runs, none of you will be able to answer for it.”
“Yes, that’s right.” Li Qingzheng pretended to smile and said, “You’re absolutely correct.”
In reality, Lin Qi’s resentment was mainly focused on Ren Xiaosu. After all, he did not have anything against the rest of the refugees. Just based on the difference of their statuses, he was quite satisfied.
But during their escape, Ren Xiaosu’s group really had it too easy while the rest of them had to endure starvation. Now that he was elevated in status, he naturally wanted to compare.
Of course, Ren Xiaosu could also understand this.
At this moment, Lin Qi said, “I heard that the rice supply sent here was mixed with sand. I had heard about how the living conditions of those of you who were recruited by the private army during the expansion isn’t too good. Do you usually have enough to eat?”
“It’s not too bad.” Li Qingzheng said with a smile, “We’re still able to pick some wild vegetables to add to our meals sometimes.”
He couldn’t possibly tell them that they had meat to eat, right? There was no such thing as not having enough to eat around here, but it would definitely intensify the conflict if he said that now.
However, Lin Qi continued, “You won’t have enough strength if you just eat wild vegetables and not have a staple food. Don’t let it get in the way of performing your sentry duty.”
Chen Wudi asked Ren Xiaosu at the side, “Master, what does a staple food mean?”
Ren Xiaosu thought for a moment before giving him a short answer. “Food that you always eat.”
When Lin Qi heard the conversation between Chen Wudi and Ren Xiaosu, he said to Chen Wudi with a laugh, “You’re such a crazy fool. A staple food refers to food like rice and noodles.”
Chen Wudi shook his head. “That’s not right, our staple food is meat.”
Lin Qi: “???”
Li Qingzheng and Ren Xiaosu realized this was going to be bad. That fool of a kid had somehow spilled the beans. However, they then discovered that Lin Qi did not seem to believe what Chen Wudi had said. They heard Lin Qi say with a sigh, “You’re even turning to lying in order to boost your pitiful self-esteem, I see.”
But even though Lin Qi did not believe it, the other officers started getting suspicious. “You all have meat here?”
Ren Xiaosu’s heart sank. Some of these people were quite astute. Li Qingzheng laughed and replied, “Haha, he was just kidding. How could we possibly have any meat here?”
But that soldier did not let go of the matter just because of Li Qingzheng’s explanation. He went towards outpost. “There’s something off about your outpost.”
Ren Xiaosu said calmly, “So you’ve found out?” Ren Xiaosu then headed to one of the houses in the outpost. He opened the door of that house with everyone looking… only to reveal Hu Shuo inside!
It was obvious that Hu Shuo was a high-ranking official in the stronghold. How else could he command a group of elite soldiers comparable to those the consortium had?
Since this old man was planning to spend the Lunar New Year here, Ren Xiaosu brought him out to shield them from any further trouble during a crisis!
Hu Shuo looked calmly at Ren Xiaosu, and Ren Xiaosu looked calmly at Hu Shuo as well. Hu Shuo got so angry he almost laughed. He had specifically gone into the house to avoid meeting these people!
One of the officers said in surprise, “S-Sir, what are you doing here?”
Hu Shuo slowly stepped out. “Oh, I’m here to investigate something, so my little friends here at the outpost are providing me with some assistance.”
“Sorry, we didn’t expect you to be here. I’m a soldier of the 7th Brigade and have been assigned to the Divine Arms Battalion,” the soldier said humbly while bowing deeply.
For a refugee like Lin Qi who had only recently been recruited into the combat troops, he definitely would not know who Hu Shuo was. But this officer had been a soldier of the Li Consortium for a while and recognized Hu Shuo immediately.
When Ren Xiaosu saw this unfold, he nearly gasped. Just who was this Hu Shuo supposed to be? This nanosoldier was behaving so arrogantly just now, so what made him become so humble all of a sudden?
If only Chen Wudi could explain it more clearly; then Ren Xiaosu could have at least figured out how strong this Hu Shuo was.
Hu Shuo smiled amiably at the officers and said, “You guys have work to do, so I won’t waste your time.”
That soldier immediately stood to attention. “Yes, sir!” Then he ordered the others to quickly unload their gear from the vehicles and wear it.
Ren Xiaosu observed them and discovered there wasn’t much of a difference between these nanosoldiers’ gear and what the ordinary soldiers wore. They were all standard-issue combat uniforms and individual weapons of war, while one of the officers was carrying a portable radio transceiver. After all, the distance between the outposts were some dozens of kilometers away from each other, so they needed to use the radios to communicate and share intel.
The only difference was that these soldiers were each equipped with a long saber that was sheathed in a black leather scabbard. Ren Xiaosu could not tell what kind of material this sword was made of. But if it was something the nanosoldiers carried, it probably wasn’t any ordinary weapon.
Someone asked that soldier while they were donning their gear, “Who’s that old man?”
That soldier’s expression changed. “Don’t ask. Let’s head into the mountains and get out of here.” He sounded terrified of Hu Shuo.
When Ren Xiaosu saw this, he couldn’t figure out what was so scary about Hu Shuo.
Everyone at the outpost watched as these officers fell silent en masse before hurrying off deep into Mount Kun. After they left, Ren Xiaosu laughed and said, “I won’t ask you any questions for the next three days.”
When Hu Shuo heard this, the annoyance of getting “betrayed” by Ren Xiaosu lessened a little…
Ren Xiaosu followed up with a smile and said, “You see, it can’t get out that we have all this meat here. Otherwise, you’re not going to have a peaceful New Year either.”
“Don’t take this undeserved gain for granted,” Hu Shuo snapped at him.
“But I’m curious about something.” Ren Xiaosu asked, “I know that Lin Qi too, and he didn’t used to be a soldier. He only joined the army for a few days, but they’re already sending him out on a mission?”
Hu Shuo shot him a look. “What are you trying to ask?”
“Soldiers are required to train for a long time before being deployed.” Ren Xiaosu said in seriousness, “Whether it be their discipline or combat skills, those are not qualities that can be instilled quickly. So I’m curious why the Li Consortium is so anxious to deploy them. They can’t even be considered recruits, right?”