Warlord – Chapter 30
The fire was burning and illuminating the darkness of the night. The soft but cold winds of the night gently blew through the flames. The spars twisted like the dancers and flew out. The brought dazzling light and flashed out as they got extinguished.
The green car was parked in a farm about 50 kilometers away from the Silver Tree City. They were planning to stay there overnight and continue their trip the next morning.
John and other men cleared out an open space. The grasses within the farm had long withered. There were few trees that had survived. Because of the cruel environment of the new age the genes of the plants had changed too. The ones in the farm were about two meters tall. They looked like giant umbrellas.
Their roots went about ten meters deep into the soil if you dig them out. They went down so deep to avoid the heat of the ground and swallow little water that was beneath the earth. It was a struggle for survival too.
John and others dug the soil under the tree and found some of those roots. The roots that were buried deep in the ground contained water and were full of starch. They would peel them and boil them in a tin. It felt like eating potatoes from the old era. The taste of the root was bitter and there was radiation mixed in it. But they didn’t care about such small things.
Zero silently watch John and others. Although they were able to find food but they weren’t greedy. They cut off one-third of the roots. They didn’t want the trees to die. The sight was ironic in a sense. In the old era the earth was rich with resources but people didn’t care. Now, the resources were poor and lacking but people tried to stock them up.
The roots were boiled into mud and everyone was assigned a bowl.
Zero and Leah were sitting in a corner. Ted brought them two bowls. The driver’s eyes fell onto the revolvers on Zero’s waist: “Brother. Is that alright if I check them?”
Zero took the bowls and handed the pistol to Ted.
Ted felt stunned as he felt the heavy metal in his hands. It was different form the other pistols that he had seen. He thought that the recoil and rebound from the shots would be big too.
“Are you an ability user?” Ted handed the revolver back to Zero.
Zero didn’t answer. Ted knew that Zero’s temper was a bit strange and eccentric so he didn’t continue to press on. John and Ted were aware of Zero’s intentions. They knew that Zero went into the convenience store on his own because he wanted to integrate into their team. They knew that it would be beneficial for them if a warrior joined them in their trip to Remit colony.
“The roots of the umbrella tree are rare. Eat them. We will grab more roots for the trip. However I think we will be able to eat dry food later on as we won’t be able to find proper food. The water will be a problem too. I hope we will find supply along the way. God will bless us, won’t he?” Ted blinked as he said. Afterwards he left.
Zero put down his bowl in front of Leah.
Leah hadn’t taken off her hat from her head even though it was evening. She said in a gentle tone: “I can’t eat that much.”
“Eat it.” Zero continued: “It’s good for your diseases. You gotta eat more.”
“What about you?”
Zero took out a piece of chocolate from his pocket. He had found it in the convenience store. He took a block of it for himself while gave the rest to John. He tore off the outer packaging of the chocolate. There were a layer of gray bacteria covering the chocolate. Zero removed the gray fungus with his finger and began to slowly chew it.
It felt bad to eat a chocolate which had expired long time age. Zero felt that he was biting a piece of wood but he still continued to chew. Zero had given all the food to John. Except nobles and wealthy people no one cared about the taste of food in this era.
That’s why even though the food had expired but people were ready to eat them. It may be possible that the toxic substances within the food wouldn’t be excreted but would be suppressed in their bodies. The toxic substances would be collected until the body couldn’t accommodate them anymore.
Zero wasn’t concerned about this issue. His body was automatically extracting the energy source from the food and keeping it for a longer period within his body. The toxins were excreted from his body with the sweat.
Leah’s heart was moved as she looked at Zero who was eating an outdated chocolate while giving up his food to her.
The temperatures dropped at night and people get back to the car to sleep. Leah was no exception. They bought a blanket from Ted for two dollars and Leah was wrapped in it.
Zero didn’t sleep but sat in front of the fire with John and a white man called Pan.
“Do you want a cigarette?”
John handed out a cigarette as trio sat quietly around the burning fire.
Zero took the cigarette and lit it directly from the burning fire and took a deep breath. The smoke of tobacco cycled in his lungs and sprayed out from his nose. He smiled as the bitter taste infiltrated his mouth.
“It’s not a good thing but I think cigarettes are God’s blessings to us.”
John and Pan also lit their cigarettes. John closed his eyes as he quietly enjoyed the smoke.
“I agree with that.” Zero replied shortly.
John opened his eyes and looked at Zero: “Is she sick?”
There was a trace of icyness and ruthlessness in Zero’s eyes as he looked at John.
“Hey, don’t get nervous. I’m just asking.” John waved his hand: “Except those nobles who is not sick in the wilderness?”
Zero relaxed after hearing John’s words. John looked at him: “Do you want to take her to doctor at Remit?”
“Yes.” Zero replied concisely. However the next moment he felt needles piercing his skin. It meant that there was danger.
John’s face changed as he saw Zero. He wanted to explain but his mouth was covered by Zero.
“Don’t make noise and wake everyone up. There are guests.” Zero heard the sounds that were echoing from afar.
Zero stood up and sprinkled sand onto the fire to put out the flames.
At the same time on the other end of the road several figures appeared.