Chapter 226 – Shocking
Tianjing City served as a convenient location for transit, containing a large interchange for armoured trains to refuel and people to change trains. The cabin the squadron was allocated was empty. Upon entering, the four from the Prodigy Society automatically took the outer seats, leaving the window side seats for the seniors who had people sending them off.
The seniors had to suppress their excitement as they received encouragement and tips from their elders. It was not long before the armoured train started it departure and after giving furious waves of goodbye out of the train windows, the entire cabin quieten down.
“We’re finally free! It’s time to party, people!” Hymin was the first person to become unruly when presented with freedom. After crying so much with her mother, she was just wanted to pull herself out of the depressing hole the great demon, her mom, placed her in. And the only way to do that is to party!
“I’ve decided!” Lily announced while opening her giant backpack, revealing various types of goodies and snacks. “I’ll stop my diet for the next three days on the train!”
“We can’t just play a random game! It has to be a group-themed game!” said Milami, pulling everyone back to reality. “We’ve to cooperate with one another! Afterall, it’s more fun with more people, right? Wang Zhong, as our captain, you’ve to think of such a game!”
Looking at the faces full of anticipation, Wang Zhong scratched his head before replying, “Let’s play cards then. We need three leaders, and the others will form groups around them. The losers will have a small paper stuck to them!”
“I’ll group up with big brother Wang Zhong!” declared Emily, immediately after jumping to Wang Zhong’s side. With a wide smile, Barran also took the chance to side with Wang Zhong, announcing to the group his decision. “I also choose our captain!”
in the first second, Emily had already jumped to Wang Zhong’s side. With a simple smile, Barran took to chance to head over, “ I also chose our captain!”
“I have experience with this game. Count me in as well.” Colby wasn’t a man of many words. Within the squad, he was the one that many often neglect. However, as his teacher in the assassin faculty had once said, avoiding detection was the true hallmark of an assassin. Colby’s character was extremely suitable to take up the path of an assassin. However, his bloodline talent was not suited for it. Additionally, he was only a commoner, leaving him without a good foundation and environment to bring his talents to its prime. It is a pity for someone with so much aptitude and heart of a true assassin.
“Is this Sheng Ji (chinese card game)? I know it.” Scarlet said with a smile. Milami immediately joined her as her group member.
“You guys dare to play Sheng Ji against me!” yelled Hymin while rolling up her sleeves. “Don’t you know that your elder sis is the number one gambling god in Tianjing Academy? I’ll simply trash all of you! Grai, come and form a group with your elder sister, and I’ll guarantee that you will not lose!
“Alright, senior sister,” consented Grai. After all, Grai was known as the “shining and radiant male that never rejects anyone” and as such, did not mind whichever group he ended up in.
What happened next was the ultimate card game!
It was with utter despair that Hymin discovered that her title as gambling god was in fact too presumptuous. Among the four groups, only Scarlet held a weaker position than her. However, it was just a slight bit. Supplemented by luck, Scarlet’s losing rate was even lower than hers.
As for Wang Zhong, he had not much experience playing cards. However, one cannot rule out his scary intellect. In fact, playing cards on a competitive level required high intellect. It involves the culmination of not just simple logic, having a good memory and fast processing abilities to calculate probabilities are quintessential. Four deck of cards, totalling to 208 cards. Upon understanding the rules, Wang Zhong had managed to calculate using probability the hand each group received, and from there on, rendering him almost undefeated. After playing for an entire day, his group had only lost three sets.
However, the most terrifying one was the usually low profiled and inconspicuous Colby. This guy…
Hymin felt that if Colby had so wanted, he could definitely change careers to become a full-time gambler. Wang Zhong was the type to rely on memory, logic and quick calculations. However, his way of playing cards was predictable. On the contrary, Colby’s way of playing cards completely left people in awe. The three losses that Wang Zhong had suffered was all due to him and his usage of numerous subtle tricks. As for himself, he didn’t even lose a single round.
After a day of playing, paper covered almost every inch of the faces of Grai, Hymin, Scarlet and Milami. By Wang Zhong’s side, Emily and Barran were still advising him in excited tones. Comparatively, on Colby’s side, Lily was already munching on her snacks in boredom. As he was clearly on a much higher level than them, there wasn’t much of a show to watch.There’s no need of an inept advisor for a capable general. If an entire group can be taken down by a single person, it goes to show how deep the disparity was.
The journey was undeniably enjoyable. The first day was more enjoyable, everyone playing cards while chatting about anything under sun and admiring the cascading scenery pasting by them.
The windows of the armored train were completely shut. What they did not see was that as they travelled along at high speeds, a mutation formed from the radiation in the air that came into contact with the armoured train. Although it was not considered much to most new humans, no one was willing to test it out for the possibility of turning into a pile of ashes.
Through the windows, the scenery outside was simply breathtaking.
Much of the vast wilderness still remained unexplored in the world. Even in the continent of the hundred city Federation where there was already quite a lot of freedom, the area that the cities take up amounted to less than a single percent when compared to the wilderness. The large majority of the wilderness were barren and desolated, with dried vegetation and weeds strewn all over the place. Occasionally, one would see solitary mutated beasts staring vigilantly at the armored train that howled past. Upon feeling the rush of kinetic energy from the train’s fast travel, they would all flee in differing directions in fear.
For every hundred kilometres of so, one would see a camp situated close to the tracks, just like the one that teacher Grace had brought them to for their group training. The primary objective of these camps was to survey and make sure none of the mutated beasts were within a hundred kilometre radius of the tracks by killing or herding them away. Naturally, the combat strength of most of them weren’t strong, having no Heroic Soul soldiers among them. Some of the camps even had unawakened some ordinary humans amongst their ranks. They would generally clear out small mutated beasts, and lived generally idle and leisurely. However, if they were to meet against unusually strong mutated beasts or gigantic beastial tides, it would be disastrous for those camps. If one was fortunate enough, they would be able to contact the higher ups and request for the elite force that were specialised for that duty while hiding somewhere till the danger passed. On the flip side, against high grade mutated beasts and beastial tides, the only thing that they would be left but death and destruction.
Along their journey, everyone saw a camp that had recently been destroyed. The garrison troops seemed to have already dealt with the cause of the destruction, and the camp was already in the process of being rebuilt. However, there was a pile of charred bodies, along with the remains of people that had suffered the attack and the uneven ground of the camp that seemed to be caused by being pounded by a giant numerous times. When faced with such a scene, it was hard not to feel shock and astonishment.
After seeing that scene just mere miles away from them, everyone had ceased all talk. Humans were still far, far away from ever ruling over the Earth. From the dark era onwards, mankind no longer stood at the top of the food chain, no less Earth. In the academy, days passed by without much issues but in the wilderness outside, everyday is a cruel experience enough for many to hope for death. All of these were things that everyone had to face in the future. Maybe, one day, they might become one of those bodies being cremated right now.