The First Order – Chapter 337

Chapter 337 Sniping is a natural talent

“Sniping is a natural talent.”

Yang Xiaojin laid prone behind a mound, hiding herself completely within the cover of some bushes. Unless someone were to look down from above, it would be near impossible to notice that someone was lying there.

Yang Xiaojin said to Ren Xiaosu, who was also prone next to her, “In our training, your sense of balance and the steadiness of your advanced neural activities determine your ‘ceiling’ from the day you’re born. These terms might not match the scientific expressions used in biology, but we’re used to calling them that.”

“It’s not just talent alone, thought. There’s also your personality, which is difficult to foster and change.” Yang Xiaojin said, “In a personality assessment, there are 16 possible types based on the assessment of a set of judgment criteria. The first criterion is introversion and extraversion. On a scale of zero to ten for snipers, zero represents introversion and indecisiveness, while ten represents risk-taking and bravery. For a sniper, one should have a score between five and eight, inclusive, with the most ideal score being eight.”

Ren Xiaosu asked, “What’s your score?”

“Eight,” Yang Xiaojin answered.

In fact, her answer was what Ren Xiaosu expected. Since she had Perfect Firearms Proficiency, she should be perfect in every aspect. If there were any flaws, it wouldn’t be called perfect.

“Let’s talk about the training method we’ll employ for the day after tomorrow.” Yang Xiaojin said, “You’ll have to keep your body steady and learn how to breathe evenly. All of that is done to ensure that when you finally pull the trigger, the bullet hits where you want it to. In that moment, all of the hormones secreted by your body should be at the bullet’s service. All of this can only be achieved with a long period of training.”

“There’s also biofeedback[1] training to go through. When a sniper encounters a situation, they can’t have their heart start racing and start sweating profusely like a normal person would,” Yang Xiaojin said.

Ren Xiaosu was taken aback. “How do you train that? It goes against your instincts, doesn’t it?”

It was no wonder Yang Xiaojin felt a little aloof. Upon careful observation, it was a calmness behind the powerful self-control that allowed her to completely restrain her instincts.

It was just like how she had covered Ren Xiaosu from the top of that building. Seeing the Experimentals about to get to her, she could still continue calmly pulling the trigger and only left at the last possible moment.

Luo Xinyu was scared to death on that day as she thought she would not get Yang Xiaojin out of there.

Yang Xiaojin said, “There’s some methods to train your biofeedback. For example, one of my old training routines was to immerse my arms into two buckets, with one containing cold water and the other hot water. After training to a certain extent, I can even increase the temperature in just one hand by two degrees through mental suggestion.”

Ren Xiaosu said in surprise, “You can even do that? Can you do it now? Let me touch your hands.”

Yang Xiaojin rolled her eyes at him. “The purpose of this training is not to control the temperature of your hands, but to let the sniper master their instincts. When they want to take a deep breath, their heart rate will immediately slow down.”

Ren Xiaosu realized the difference in their sniping level was not just a small amount. Yang Xiaojin’s success was only achieved after she put in many years of effort. How could it possibly be duplicated with just a Basic Skill Duplication Scroll? It was no wonder that even the Perfect Skill Duplication Scroll could only copy up to master-level skills. You had to put in a lot more effort if you wanted to break past your limit and achieve perfection. Of course, his skill to annoy people was an exception. It seemed he was born with it and did not require any training.

Curious, Ren Xiaosu asked, “How did a girl like you get into firearms?”

“I like them.” Yang Xiaojin said, “They have a power I can use to protect myself with.”

Yang Xiaojin’s words made Ren Xiaosu realize that only those who lacked a sense of security would seek strength to protect themselves with.

“Was it tough?” Ren Xiaosu said with a sigh.

“It’d be a lie if I said it wasn’t tough.” Yang Xiaojin said, “But I enjoy it as well.”

“Why did you come out into the wilderness to practice your marksmanship?” Ren Xiaosu said.

“For desensitization training.” Yang Xiaojin explained, “It’s so I would not be affected mentally after seeing corpses, blood, and death.”

Ren Xiaosu stared blankly at Yang Xiaojin and wondered what this girl had been through.

Yang Xiaojin wondered, “We’ve already been waiting for a day now. Why aren’t any bandits passing by yet? This used to be a necessary route for bandits to take.”

They had been lying here in wait for the entire day. On one hand, Yang Xiaojin wanted to see if Ren Xiaosu possessed the right qualities to be a sniper. On the other hand, they could observe the movements of the bandits from here.

As a result, Yang Xiaojin realized Ren Xiaosu seemed to have as high an endurance as her. Although they had been lying in the bushes for more than eight hours, Ren Xiaosu did not even change his posture once. But what surprised Yang Xiaojin most was that even though Ren Xiaosu did not change his posture or even move a little, she could clearly feel him tightening and relaxing his muscles all the while. This was to help his blood circulation so that his muscles would always remain in a relaxed state.

Yang Xiaojin had no doubt that if danger appeared, Ren Xiaosu, who had been lying here motionlessly all day, could quickly engage in a high-intensity battle. She wondered how this young man had trained himself to such a state.

She slowly got up from the ground. “Let’s go. Something might have happened to the bandit lairs around here. Let’s go and check them out.”

Then Yang Xiaojin walked off in the direction she remembered. An hour later, she stood in a mountain gap and frowned as she looked at the white skeletal remains there.

They were surrounded by mud shelters[2] that had been dug out by the bandits. Wooden tables, chairs, and benches were placed inside of them, but they were discolored and covered in a solidified layer of black matter.

Black matter was what blood would become after being left out to dry for a long time.

“Someone ransacked this place.” Yang Xiaojin said, “I wonder who did it. There are bullets and empty shells lying around on the ground, while the firearms and motorcycles have all been taken away.”

When Ren Xiaosu looked at the skeletons on the ground, he noticed some teeth marks on them, suggesting that wild animals had been here as well. “Are there any women in the bandit lairs?”

“Most of them have some. The bandits head into the towns or factories and abduct some of the women back,” Yang Xiaojin said.

“There’s no skeletons of women or children in here,” Ren Xiaosu said.

“This place must’ve been plundered by other bandits. Strange. Why would anyone target such a poor group of bandits?” Yang Xiaojin said, “It seems the valley is no longer as peaceful, and something must have happened within the circle of bandits. They didn’t kill each other in the past because the people funding them had always maintained a certain kind of balance from behind the scenes.”

“Someone is trying to consolidate the valley bandits? Is that even possible?” Ren Xiaosu asked.

“It’s possible, but we still have to head to the other hideouts and investigate them before we can be sure of it,” Yang Xiaojin replied. “Let’s go, there’s nothing more to see here.”

The two of them continued going northwest. Mt. Daban was right in front of them now. Based on Yang Xiaojin’s memory, they would come across the first small human settlement there.

[1] Biofeedback is the process of gaining greater awareness of many physiological functions of one’s own body, commercially by using electronic or other instruments, and with a goal of being able to manipulate the body’s systems at will. |

[2] A yaodong (Chinese: ?a; pinyin: yáodòng) or “house cave” is a particular form of earth shelter dwelling common in the Loess Plateau in China’s north. |




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