Chapter 481 A-rank mission
A middle-aged man and a young man were riding their motorcycles and heading towards Stronghold 63, which was more than 300 kilometers away from Stronghold 61.
The two men were covered in a layer of dust as though they had been sleeping out in the wilderness for several days. But even so, the middle-aged man’s eyes were brimming with a radiating vigor. He looked extraordinarily energetic.
Traveling eastwards from Stronghold 61, that yellowish tinge of brown between the prodigious mountains could hardly be seen anymore. The landscape was starting to be covered in greenery, and rivers could be seen running from time to time. The scenery of the wilderness refreshed those who saw it.
It was said that this place was a large sanctuary for birds before The Cataclysm, with an excellent ecological environment as a conservation park.
It was the birds that needed human protection at that time. But when humans encountered birds now, they needed to protect themselves.
Although birds rarely initiated attacks on humans, they bore grudges. There was someone in the past who had stolen some eggs in the wilderness and ate them. As a result, he got chased by a flock of birds for more than a 100 kilometers. In the end, that person was covered with peck wounds and a thick layer of bird droppings all over him.
The bird droppings were plastered all over his body and it made him look like a statue.
After parking their motorcycles in the wilderness, they camouflaged themselves with a green tarp. It would be too eye-catching if they rode their bikes for the rest of the journey from here, so they could only proceed there on foot.
Enjoying the scenery of the mountains, the middle-aged man suddenly said emotionally, “I see in lush mountains such charm allure, I expect they see the same in me!” 
The young man next to him opened his mouth and thought of asking his master if he had quoted the poem in the wrong situation, but he did not dare to speak up in the end.
The middle-aged man continued, “Disciple, do you know why I bought a new cell phone this time and gave it to you instead of your junior brother? You should know that this phone is truly a treasure. Without it, it would be really quite pointless to be a hitman. If you can get into the Anjing House with it someday, that would mean you’ve really succeeded!”
“I don’t know,” the young man answered honestly and shook his head.
“It’s because you don’t talk nonsense,” the middle-aged man praised. “Your junior brother always likes to talk back to me. I’ll be sending him to the construction site to hone himself.”
“Master, are we here to carry out a mission this time?” the young man asked.
“Of course.” The middle-aged man said proudly, “It’s mainly to let you see the world and gain some experience. You’ve been my disciple for many years, and now that you’ve learned how to kill people, you naturally have to carry out a mission on your own. For now, Master will bring you along to do a few D-rank missions. You should learn as much as you can as we go along!”
“Master,” the young man said meekly, “will the missions be too difficult?”
“Difficult?” The middle-aged man laughed and stroked his handlebar mustache. “How can it be difficult when I’m a C-rank hitman doing a D-rank mission? Do you know that some hitmen remain at D-rank their entire lives and are unable to advance to C-rank?”
The young man’s eyes lit up when he heard this. “Then when will Master be promoted to B-rank?”
The middle-aged man looked at his disciple and hesitated. “Soon, I’ll get there very soon.”
“Master, if you’re already this strong, how powerful are the A-rank experts?” the young man asked as he was always curious to find out about such things.
The middle-aged man suddenly sighed and replied, “A-rank hitmen are all superhumans or extremely terrifying characters, so I definitely don’t stand a chance. I once witnessed an A-rank expert killing someone, but I didn’t even understand how they did it. Of course, even among the A-ranked hitmen, there’s only a small number of superhumans.”
As the two of them talked, they arrived at the town outside Stronghold 63. The middle-aged man sneaked a glance at his cell phone. “We’ve just received a mission. It’s at a factory nearby! Let’s go, we have to set off immediately! There will be people competing for these D-rank missions!”
They dashed to the nearby factory. The young man was still a little worried. “Master, the target is already in the factory. Shouldn’t we infiltrate after it turns dark? We’ll be seen easily if we go in like this.”
“What’s there to be afraid of? How have I always taught you? Don’t worry, it would be a joke if a C-rank expert like me can’t even complete a D-rank mission!” The middle-aged man sneered with a haughty expression on his face.
But as they were about to arrive at the factory, someone suddenly called out to them, “Hey… are you two here for a mission?”
The middle-aged man immediately turned around and fired a pistol fitted with a silencer without hesitation. But in the blink of an eye, he saw the masked youth who had spoken a moment earlier disappear. He did not even manage to land a shot at him!
“It looks like you’re really here for the mission.” The young man said with a laugh from behind them, “You two should rest for a bit. I’ll be confiscating your cell phone so you won’t fight with me for missions in the future.”
After that, a gust of wind blew from behind the middle-aged man. He immediately realized the young man had gone to their rear to try to knock him out!
Although he realized it, his body couldn’t keep up with the events!
The opponent was a superhuman! This speed was beyond the limits an average human could reach!
The middle-aged man found that his body couldn’t keep up with his opponent’s movements even after he had trained for so many years. The young man was simply too fast!
However, this middle-aged man was also considered a veteran. He had placed a thin layer of steel plate around the inner collar of his shirt. First, that could prevent someone from slitting his throat with a dagger, and second, it could stop them from targeting his carotid artery!
In order not to kill them, Ren Xiaosu held back from using his full strength. However, he realized the middle-aged man did not pass out and was only grimacing in pain after landing a blow!
Meanwhile, his disciple had already fainted. The middle-aged man turned around and made a run for it.
While Ren Xiaosu was surprised, the middle-aged man nearly wanted to curse out loud. How was this a fucking D-rank mission? Huh?
Didn’t the Anjing House verify the hitmen’s identities before distributing the cell phones? Had they fucking gone crazy to hand a D-ranked cell phone to a superhuman? What the hell was wrong with the Anjing House?!
Besides, why would a superhuman come and attempt a D-rank mission? Just how much more shameless could you get? Did you lack this bit of money?!
However, his opponent did not seem to be going all out for the kill. Otherwise, he could have just killed them instead of knocking them out. The middle-aged man knew his opponent had held back.
Thinking of this, the middle-aged man did not even try to resist anymore. He immediately shouted, “I have money, I can give you money!”
But as soon as he said that, his vision went dark and he lost consciousness.
Ren Xiaosu squatted down next to them and started searching their bodies. To his surprise, he actually found two cell phones on them. This was a great harvest.
Ren Xiaosu decisively placed the cell phones into his storage space and continued to wait for more victims.
When the middle-aged man came to, he found another four or five people lying next to them. He quickly slapped his disciple to wake him up and then patted himself down to see if his opponent had left him anything.
The middle-aged man was overjoyed when he realized his money was still there. Could it be that this superhuman was not after money?
But a moment later, he was dumbfounded. His two cell phones were gone!
At this moment, the middle-aged man finally understood this superhuman was actually guarding the mission so he could seize everyone’s cell phones!
It was over! They were all done for!
To think that he even bragged to his disciple that it would be a simple mission. In the end, they did not even get the chance to lay eyes on the target for the mission. Just which goddamn superhuman had come to pull this prank on them!
All of a sudden, Ren Xiaosu noticed a text message on his cell phone: “The targets in Stronghold 63 are from the Pyro Company’s Midnight squad. They are currently located in the residential building at 476 Xianyang Street. A-rank. Reward: 500,000 yuan. Up to three people can work in a group for the mission, and all will receive rights to use the safe house and be protected by us upon being pursued by the enemy.”
 This is a line from a poem entitled “Woe Is Me” to the tune of “Congratulations to the Bridegroom” by the poet Xin Qiji.