Lately, the weather seemed to be getting hotter and it would only rain every few days.
If they went by the old calendar, it would already have been spring. Ever since the world had started to mutate, winter had ended in the blink of an eye.
“This is the Beijing People’s Radio Station, this is the Beijing People’s Radio Station! We are broadcasting to the survivors around the world… As of today, we can no longer receive any signal from Africa or Australia. On the other hand, the signal from most regions in South America, part of Europe and South East Asia is intermittent; the conditions are rather worrying…”
“…This is a war between humans and nature. The survival of mankind is being greatly challenged and the conditions are getting worse. Under the leadership of the government, China has built large defense stations in Beijing, Tibet, Qinghai, Urumqi and Takla Makan, and is changing its war strategy. If any survivors hear this news, please spread it. Reporting again…”
“Now reporting the international news. America and Canada have officially signed an ad hoc agreement on war strategy to develop an ice field on the northern part of Canada. This agreement also means that other than the few important local military bases, the whole population of America will be moved.”
“Russia’s capital, Moscow, discovered a constant high-energy source which lasted for 6 minutes and 15 seconds before it disappeared oddly this morning from satellite images. Moscow is currently temporarily out of contact…”
“According to the news we received from Japan, the vice president, Yamamoto Ichirou, who visited China on February 27, was killed when a plane crushed on the surface of the sea…”
Listening to the sounds transmitted from the cellphone’s radio receiver, Luo Yuan became serious.
It had been a short winter and human beings had been retreating towards the highlands, the desert and the ice fields, where humans and most living things could not have survived during the old days. Apparently, the situation was worse than Luo Yuan had imagined.
Suddenly, a heavy tremor came from outside.
“I was worried I wouldn’t find you, but now you’re here!” Luo Yuan raised his eyebrows and removed the earphones. He put his cellphone on the table, grabbed his Zhanmadao and rushed out of the house as everyone looked at him uneasily.
He strode quickly, each stride about 3 meters long, until he reached the origin of the tremor after a few minutes.
It was a huge beast that looked like a lizard. It was 3 meters tall and about 6 meters long, tail included. Its body was emerald green and its head had a spiral-shaped black taper horn that was not mature yet. It was very small in size, barely half a foot long, and looked weird compared to its otherwise large body.
The huge beast had been lingering near the district for two days. It had been hesitating, but that day it had finally decided to move closer.
It breathed heavily and occasionally jetted out white mist. Its ferocious giant claws tramped impatiently as it howled defiantly.
The previous day, Luo Yuan had found the reaction of the huge beast strange, but now he finally understood. This district had originally been occupied by the haunted locust tree. All the mutated beasts in the area had possessed about the same kind of strength, so peace had been possible to maintain.
After the haunted locust tree had been chopped off by Luo Yuan though, its breaths had become weaker, and the mutated beasts nearby had started to expand their territory.
This was the first mutated beast to come over.
For a blue rank mutated beast that had recently been chased out of its territory, it was very lucky to find an unoccupied territory in this city.
The abject mutated beast’s body was filled with various wounds and many of its scales had dropped off. Some were recent wounds, and its body was still bleeding from them. Apparently, stray life was not easy.
However, the beast was very vigilant and seemed extremely prudent. He was sure that it would retreat as soon as it sensed that something was wrong. Besides, it was very fast too. Luo Yuan had wanted to kill it the previous day but it had run away before he was able to do anything about it.
Maybe it was its strategy to survive by wandering and hunting around the territories of other mutated beasts.
Luo Yuan had been worrying that he would fail his mission, but it had come back again.
In order to avoid frightening the beast off once again, Luo Yuan creeped on the ground while he slowly moved forward. He even minimized his body aura, just to be safe.
After howling a few times, the beast stopped. It looked like it was observing its surroundings. After a few seconds, it seemed slightly relieved and walked forward into the district.
It howled towards the sky excitedly. All of a sudden, it seemed to intuitively sense the danger. The prism-shaped scale on its tail was slightly open, forming a sawtooth-like shape while its body lowered, its tusk exposed slightly as it gave a warning howl and retreated.
It seemed to have felt something and suddenly turned back. That’s when it noticed a small creature heading its way fast. It did not understand and could not believe that these little creatures, which had become its only food source lately, could bring such an immense feeling of danger.
It seemed offended and angry. It even forgot the feeling of danger it had just experienced.
It howled, moving its four limbs wildly and sprinting towards the small creature as the earth around it rumbled.
While it rushed over, it thought that the creature would be like those it had met previously. It expected it to collapse to the ground shaken, but hopefully not excrete. The beast was not particularly picky about food, but the taste was just not as good.
The creature ran very fast.
The beast had limited intelligence, so just at the thought that the little creature had entered its range of attack, it stretched out its neck and bit in that general direction. A stone nearby was crushed into powder.
It instinctively felt that something was wrong as it did not feel the fragrant, sweet taste of blood flowing down its throat. Before it could react, it felt something cool on its front claw and thought it saw a creature slip through while it was still in a state of stupor.
Its broken claw was so painful that the beast howled loudly.
As it dropped off, a large amount of blood burst like a spring from the wound.
Luo Yuan’s eyes looked completely ruthless. With the help of the heart of the haunted locust tree, his 14-point Willpower allowed him to protect himself without relying on anger to form an invisible light membrane on his skin. As the air on the surface of the membrane was slightly twisted, he appeared unreal and vague if seen from afar.
The light of the Zhanmadao had also grown about a foot long, and made the sword tougher and sharper.
After Luo Yuan had chopped off the front claw of the huge beast, he did not stop moving. He flexibly slid under its stomach, vertically raising up his Zhanmadao, and taking a few quick steps so that the blade cut through the beast’s tough skin, tearing it like a cloth. A big wound formed from the beast’s chest to its stomach.
Unfortunately, the beast was too tall and he had only torn open its skin surface because he’d had to lower his center of gravity in order to run faster and maintain his body balance. Otherwise, the giant beast would have been killed.
Before it could howl again, Luo Yuan moved briskly from under its stomach.
Luo Yuan’s actions were dazzling. It was only the first round, but the giant beast was already severely injured.
The fight was not over yet, though. Walking on tiptoe, Luo Yuan stepped on its giant leg the size of a bucket and, using both his hands, he flipped and stood up on the back of the giant beast. He could control his strength to a micro extent. Combined with his high-speed reflective neurons, Luo Yuan could step into the air and walk for about five steps. He could climb about three meters high on a smooth wall, let alone on this giant beast with the numerous scars and a skin surface as coarse as sandpaper.
The beast finally felt the danger and howled in fury as it shook its body violently, trying to shake him off.
It felt like an earthquake, and any normal person would have fallen.
Luo Yuan remained calm though, lowering his body and shifting his center of gravity in sync with the quake. His body was as stable as a tree with strong taproots into the ground.
Suddenly, a sharp hissing sound came from the back. Luo Yuan had predicted it and he quickly stepped backward, moving aside slightly while he swung his knife sideways and upwards, cutting the giant beast’s sawtooth-like tail into two.
He lost his energy balance for a while, and he swayed before taking a deep breath and slowly stepping forward, gradually increasing his speed. Although he was still stumbling at first, his body became more stable as he moved forward.
It took Luo Yuan only a few seconds to reach the beast’s head. It could not shake him off, no matter how hard it tried.
Luo Yuan raised his Zhanmadao, which had a sharp light on its edge, and emitted a strong aura that unexpectedly suppressed the terrifying beast.
He could feel its body start to shiver. Just as Luo Yuan was about to kill it with his knife and take some of its meat back to the villa though, the giant beast reacted oddly.
It suddenly lay down with its head close to the ground and whimpered for mercy. Under the oppressing fear of death, it had stopped resisting, like a weak prey surrendering itself to its opponent.
Luo Yuan was shocked. He had never thought that a mutated beast could have such a reaction. He had never seen such a thing.
He hesitated and jumped down from its head. Meanwhile, he looked at the beast vigilantly while he thought of ten different methods of counteracting.
In fact, Luo Yuan was not worried about the beast. After all, he had just chopped off part of its leg and half its tail, and there was a severe wound on its stomach, so it could hardly run away.
The beast was not moving, but its shivers became more intense as it seemed to sense Luo Yuan’s gaze.
“Maybe it’s surrendering?” Luo Yuan said to himself while he rubbed his chin.
“It seems to have totally given up. Shall I just kill it?” Luo Yuan couldn’t decide. If the mutated beast had kept resisting, Luo Yuan would have killed it off right away, but under the circumstances, he felt uneasy killing it.
Yet, he was reluctant. Double the EXP would be deducted if he failed the mission. He would need to complete at least two E Level Missions to compensate for the lost EXP. Worst case scenario, he would need to complete three.
“Alright, I’ll just kill it. After all, there’s no morality between humans and mutated beasts. Besides, killing a mutated beast would save thousands of human lives. There would be one less mutated beast eating humans.” After Luo Yuan weighed the pros and cons, he no longer hesitated.
There was a light on the blade of Zhanmadao as he walked towards the giant beast.
The beast seemed to feel its imminent death; it shivered intensely while it shrunk into its own body. Once someone had lost the courage to fight, it was difficult to get it back. Both humans and mutated beasts were alike that way.
The giant beast had given up the fight and was only waiting for its death.
Suddenly, there was a system notification.
“The blue rank creature Giant Jungle Lizard has paid obeisance to you, Keep as a battle beast, Decline/ Accept?”
Luo Yuan was shocked for a while. He thought he must have been mistaken. When he recovered from the shock, he accepted the request and the body of the Giant Jungle Lizard started to shake while its head swayed.
He opened his attribute table and discovered that there was a new option for battle beasts at the bottom. The drop-down box had an attribute table exclusively for battle beasts, too.
“Battle Beast: Giant Jungle Lizard”
“Level: 0 (Blue)”
Strength: 18 (10)
Dexterity: 12 (10)
Physique: 17 (10)
Intelligence: 3 (10)
Sensory Perception: 4 (10)
Skills: Pouncing and Biting 14, Tail Attack 15, Field Survival 18
Special Abilities: Instinct for Danger
Loyalty: 55 (May rebel or run away if less than 50, Maximum 100)
Unassigned AP: 0
Unassigned SP: 5
Its attributes were indeed valiant. 18 points of Strength were almost 7.5 times higher than his and 16 times higher than a normal person’s. Its Physique was 3.3 times higher than Luo Yuan’s and 10 times higher than a normal person’s. Its Dexterity was lower, but it was still much stronger than the average person’s. Of course, that was excluding its secondary attributes.
It seemed that the beast could level up just like him. However, Luo Yuan wondered why it needed more EXP than Luo Yuan in order to level up. When he considered the size of its body though, it made sense.
Frankly, he was not clear on how the EXP system worked: Was it based on body size? On separate attributes? Or was it based on overall attributes? Luo Yuan’s overall attributes surprisingly reached 76 points. Although the Giant Jungle Lizard’s separate attributes were great, its overall attributes reached only 65 points, which was only 5 points higher than average. Luo Yuan guessed that the system might judge based on overall sophisticated factors, which would involve a more complicated formula.
However, he did not remain excited for long as he heard the failed mission notification ring.
“Level E Mission: Kill Giant Jungle Lizard failed, deducting double the basic rewarded EXP, Total 3,200 points.”
Fortunately, Luo Yuan had more than enough EXP, so he did not have to worry about downgrading.