The Great Merchant in the Cataclysm - Chapter 29
Chapter 30: Perfect Cooperation
“Lil’ Black, get ready to attack!”
As Zhang Mu yelled in the direction of the Obsidian Beetle, he told Yuan Rui to hide out further back and adjusted his sheath so that it was right in front of him.
As if Little Black had understood exactly what Zhang Mu was saying, it immediately flew from his shoulder, grew big and landed on the ground with a loud thud, sending shockwaves rippling through the surroundings. It wore a ferocious look on its face.
The Obsidian beetle had landed in between 3 abandoned vehicles, and in doing so had blocked the entire road.
In the blink of an eye, the fastest walking dead had already rushed in front of the Obsidian Beetle. Driven by bloodlust, all they could think of was ripping at Zhang Mu’s flesh. They were not deterred by the huge Obsidian Beetle — as long as they could reach Zhang Mu, who had already seated himself upon the beetle’s back. Without hesitation, the walking dead attempted to climb the body of the beetle in an effort to pull Zhang Mu down.
Even though it felt unhappy about being ignored, Little Black did not act rashly after hearing Zhang Mu’s command. By then, the walking dead had already surrounded both of them. After failing to find any other way to break through the Obsidian Beetle’s defence, they decided to climb up the cars that sandwiched the beetle to get better access and from there, they rushed towards Zhang Mu in batches.
As they jumped in the air, Zhang Mu let out a laugh. It was now or never!
He pulled out his Tang sword, stepped on the back of the Obsidian Beetle to gain traction and swung the blade in the direction of the walking dead. A few hard swipes later, Zhang Mu gently prodded the walking dead and watched with satisfaction as the heads dropped to the ground one by one.
No sooner after Zhang Mu left its back, the Obsidian Beetle sprung into action.
The Obsidian Beetle had stayed unmoving like a rock the whole time and had allowed the walking dead to bite him. After gaining permission from Zhang Mu, it immediately exploded, eager to release its pent up anger.
As it stood upright, it blocked off all the walking dead attacks with the sturdy shield covering its huge body.
The walking dead landed on the back of the Obsidian Beetle, one after another. However, no matter how much they tried, none of them could leave a scratch on its perfectly sturdy back. Those that fell at the bottom half of its shell met a miserable fate, for the stingers that erupted from there had directly impaled their bodies.
As Zhang Mu finished off the remaining walking dead that were coming his way, the Obsidian Beetle did not just wait for the fight to be over. Instead, it used its sharp teeth to tear apart the walking dead’s necks and, being the picky eater that it is, chose to only eat the crystals on the back of the walking dead’s neck. Crunching sounds could be heard as the Obsidian Beetle ate with earnest.
It looked at the rest of the walking dead corpses with disdain – it had been spoiled by Zhang Mu and was accustomed to the taste of ham and delicious canned beef. Compared to those foods, walking dead meat was nasty and simply unpalatable.
The beetle could imagine how hilarious the walking dead’s reactions would be if they knew what it thought about them.
The minute Zhang Mu turned around and discovered that the Obsidian Beetle was killing off the walking dead faster than him, he started wielding his s
word with greater speed – the transition between one slash to the next was unbelievably smooth, slicing through the necks of the walking dead without any difficulty. Under his dexterous hands and keen observation, he managed to create what looked like a series of attacks that best suited his skillset.
Zhang Mu had already perfected the art of tearing apart flesh and was able to cut off the walking dead’s heads without spending an extra ounce of effort, which he deemed unnecessary.
To be honest, Zhang Mu felt that there was no need to spend all this time and effort teaming up with the Obsidian Beetle to fight the walking dead. He only did it to ensure the safety of Yuan Rui.
Zhang Mu was afraid that something unexpected might happen to Yuan Rui. For example, a walking dead could attack her at any point in time. They had expended energy earlier trying to execute a body duplication spell and that had pushed the already weak Yuan Rui to deeper levels of danger.
Zhang Mu refused to let anything happen to Yuan Rui.
Determined not to leave any opportunities to the walking dead, Zhang Mu constructed the perfect defence by taking advantage of the terrain and the Obsidian Beetle’s large size.
After Zhang Mu and the Obsidian beetle eliminated the remaining walking dead that came their way, the former wiped his sweat from his forehead and patted the beetle before sending a grin in its direction.
“Wow, I didn’t think you’d be this fast. I guess I didn’t feed you all the crystals for nothing,” he quipped.
“Of course!” The beetle replied smugly.
As the beetle shrank down to its normal size, it began fluttering its wings in an attempt to seek more words of praise from Zhang Mu.
Yuan Rui silently made her way to Zhang Mu and rested her palm onto his back.
Zhang Mu felt waves of energy enter his body from behind. Immediately, he felt his fatigue and muscle soreness slip away to the point where he could not feel it anymore.
Did she just use her healing power?
No wonder everyone treated healing-type evolvers as if they were fragile treasures – it was such an extraordinary power.
“Thank you Yuan Rui. You’re so powerful. It’s like you’ve restored me to my peak state,” Zhang Mu complimented, his tone laced with gratitude.
As he said this, he looked up to the sky and stretched.
Yuan Rui immediately replied, “Uncle, what’s there to thank? You kept me safe and didn’t let me help. I’m happy to be of use to you now.”
Upon realising that Zhang Mu had given her words of affirmation, she couldn’t help but smile, her face etched with pure bliss. Shs started hopping about Zhang Mu, as the latter watched with amusement.
At that moment, the sound of a car door opening followed by the sound of something heavy crashing attracted their attention. A boy and a girl had emerged from that vehicle. The latter, who looked very weak, immediately collapsed. She must have been through a lot, for she had fainted immediately upon contact with the ground.
On the other hand, the man, who was struggling to remain on his feet, staggered towards Zhang Mu.
As the man walked towards Zhang Mu, the latter examined his features. He looked to be in his teenage years – he had short hair and was pretty good looking, though very pale at the moment. Although he looked worn out, he still exuded an aura of extravagance.
After taking a close look at the boy, Zhang Mu was even more certain about his deductions
about the teenager.
By just looking at a person and the things that they carried with them, Zhang Mu was able to
immediately deduce his or her financial background . He had been in this business for a decade before after all.
The boy was not just rich – he was super wealthy.
Zhang Mun could deduce this based on the vehicle that the duo had travelled in, which was
obviously made for combat – the glass windows had not shattered even though it was clear that it had been struck by bullets multiple times. The glass was at least at level 2 on the bulletproof scale. These modifications to the vehicle were very expensive, and out of the financial reach of ordinary folks.
Zhang Mu was certain that the excessive levels of caution when outdoors, along with the aura of arrogance that the boy was displaying earlier was not something that could be honed in a short period of time.
Upon closer examination, Zhang Mu came to a conclusion : lack of nourishment was the
main cause of the boy’s physical deterioration, for he had no physical injuries. The girl, on the other hand, seems to have suffered some form of mental trauma.
Seeing that Zhang Mu had remained silent, Yuan Rui decided not to speak as well. The young man put aside his pride and asked weakly, “Could… Could you please give us something to eat and drink? I, Zhan Hong, will forever be in your debt if you do.”
Zhang Mu was surprised – surely the man called himself Zhan Hong had seen the Obsidian Beetle. If so, how can this teenage boy be so calm when asking him for help, and not view him as a freak?
Zhang Mu asked curtly, “ Aren’t you afraid of me?”
Zhan Hong tried to crack a smile, but winced when a jolt of pain shot through his facial muscles. He answered, “During the two days in the car, I’ve thought things through. The world has changed so drastically – you’re the first person that I can actually hold a normal conversation with. If you’re also the kind that eats humans, I can only say that I’m an unlucky man.”
“Please save my girlfriend first. She can’t hold on much longer,” he continued, desperation clear in his voice.
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