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413 The Morning In New Infanta Settlement, The Story of Pearls Ruin

 Day 71 - 7:01 AM - New Infanta Settlement, Barangay Banugao, Infanta, Quezon

Since they reached the settlement, everyone felt more relaxed to rest for the night. Added that they arrived late, most of them ended up waking later than usual. It was even though the beds they could use here was way worse than those back at the mansion. What mattered the most was security for everyone to be able to relax enough.

Mark, of course, was different. He was used to not sleeping too long, and his Emphatic Abilities would not allow him to sleep any longer. It was better during the night when most people were asleep. Once they woke up, however, the time that they all woke up was the time for Mark's sleep to get disturbed.

Unfortunately, he could not leave the bed yet. It was because Mei clung to him firmly while she slept deeply. He did not want to disturb her sleep. As for the little girls, they were in the next room sleeping. Since these temporary dwellings were small, everyone would not fit inside one place.

It became an opportunity for Mark and Mei to sleep together.

Since he could not leave yet, he just decided to ponder about things.

Before returning last night, he looked for the narcissist to see his current state.

Then, he was surprised. Unexpectedly, Prince was isolated from the rest of their group. Since his face and manhood were ruined, his mind started to deteriorate. From being unable to satisfy the needs of his reigning trait, he was going crazy. It also caused him to faint every time he woke up. His mind could not keep up with his current state.

Unlike others like Dominador, who longed for domination, and Harold, who wanted a higher position than everyone in his group, Prince's trait was more of a material one. None material traits like domination, loyalty, leadership, or being a socialite, they only needed to slowly fulfill these traits. Even if they failed once or twice, as long as they were alive, no restrictions were stopping them from achieving the goals of these traits.

For Prince, however, no one would be able to fix his face. Prince, himself, knew that subconsciously. Because of that, his mind was like a computer program that was missing a crucial code to run correctly and ended up facing an error.

When he checked on Prince, he was placed in a secure place in the laboratory. He heard from the workers there that Prince ran amock after waking up. It was different from before since he did not end up fainting, but had to be tranquilized. The soldiers had no choice to do so because Prince already showed signs of transforming into his mutator form to attack everyone around.

As for being placed at the new laboratory, it seemed that the scientists wanted to know about something. One was the reason for the deterioration of Prince's mind. The other was the reason for his face to fester.

For something, most likely wounds, to fester, there should be bacterial colonization on the infected area. That triggers the immune system to react causing inflammation and tissue damage. It also causes Serosanguineous Drainage in the wound in most cases.

What the scientists were baffled about was that... Most of the common harmful bacterias had gone extinct after Mutagen invaded earth. A lot of microorganisms were not able to contain Mutagen and ended up being eradicated. If there were no bacteria to trigger the reaction Prince was having, what was happening?

Mark could only shrug his shoulders learning about that. After all, it was all his fault. It was not like he was going to tell them what was happening. As such, he left. He already knew that it was the end for Prince. Even without him doing anything, he would end up dying by himself.

Well, once that happened, Mark would be sure to be there. Prince was still a Mutator. His personality might suck but his Mutator ability was still a high-level one.

Mark would not let that one go to waste.

\"Uhn...\"

While Mark was thinking, he heard the soft voice of someone waking up. He looked beside him and saw Mei who was rubbing her left eye.

\"Good morning.\"

Mark said which made Mei's sleepy eyes look at him.

Then... Mei closed her eyes and went back to sleep. She did not forget to snuggle closer to Mark as she did so.

Mark smirked as she pinched Mei's nose making her open her eyes abruptly.

\"Stop playing around. We still have to prepare things before we leave tomorrow.\"

They already finished the mission given by General Perez. Furthermore, they finished it with an SS rating. IT should be SSS but they had a few delays during the journey. Of course, all this nonsense was Mark's view of the mission.

Mark's group could go to his base at any time they wanted. Immediately this day if possible. However, Mark had some business to finish before going back.

First, he needed to attend a meeting with the officials of this settlement. There, he could gather some information about the surrounding areas of New Infanta Settlement. He would also hand over the things that he was asked to deliver to the General. It was the research papers and the seeds of [Energy Rice] developed by Chervil.

Second, he needed to meet the Salvador Family. He would not let go of the opportunity to bring them to his base. Annica's powers were too useful to pass by. They already told Mark their plans before so he just needed to inform them to prepare.

Next, it was about Kate's request to join. He would try to see the situation first before talking to her. Even though her trait might be a bit troublesome, she did not seem to be a bad person.

Furthermore, Mark could tell that their group was already on the verge of disbanding. Harold was not satisfied with his group anymore. Especially because of how he saw Mark's group. Mark's group was filled with usable and talented people while they only had imbeciles. Harold would surely abandon the people he made to rely on him. How savage.

Lastly and the most important thing, to meet Edzel and Pearl. It was bound to happen and probably, the first thing this morning. He already knew what it would be about, but there were some things he wanted to as Pearl before accepting her.

After Mark pinched her nose, Mei snuggled on his body, even more, making him sigh.

\"Don't go all Dandere on me just because we are alone.\"

Mark revealed a troubled look.

\"Dandere?\"

Mei asked as she was not familiar with the term.

\"You're mostly silent and keep things to yourself. But you become like this when we are alone. That's what a Dandere is.\"

Hearing that, Mei blushed. She could not deny that all. However, she really liked snuggling beside Mark like this, especially when they were alone.

Mark could sense what was going on in her mind. He could only sigh.

\"Alright, I'll spend more time with you when we get to the base. Just bear with it a bit more.\"

\"Promise?\"

Mei looked at Mark with puppy eyes.

\"I promise. So, off the bed now.\"

Hearing that, Mei immediately sat up and went to do things she needed to do. She looked as if she had not just woken up at all.

\"Why do I feel like I've been cheated.\"

Mark muttered as he watched Mei go out of the room to wake up the little girls.

***

Day 71 - 8:17 AM - New Infanta Settlement, Barangay Banugao, Infanta, Quezon

They were having breakfast when Edzel arrived. Of course, he had Pearl with him. She looked too awkward and afraid. It was obvious that she was scared that she would be discriminated against because of her current appearance.

It seemed that it had been a normal occurrence to her in this settlement and became engraved in her heart and mind.

\"Boss... Everyone, good morning.\"

Edzel greeted as he entered the room where Mark, Mei, and the little girls were eating. Aephelia, Amihan, Jaeya, and Odelina with her children were also here.

As for everyone else, they were in the proper dining area for breakfast.

Since Mark was expecting Edzel, he decided to eat separately. It was not necessary to divulge Pearl's circumstance to everyone in the group.

\"Boss, you see...\"

After Edzel entered with Pearl, he was about to talk about the details. He was kind of awkward as he knew that Mark saw what happened to them before. Before he could continue, however, Mark cut him off.

\"You don't have to say anything. I knew what happened.\"

Edzel had a complicated expression. He did not know whether he should be surprised about this or not. On the other hand, Pearl felt even more scared. Mark spoke with a nonchalant expression. She felt that what Edzel wanted would not happen.

Then... Mark turned to Odelina.

\"Odel, bring the children out first. We have to talk about something.\"

Without hesitation, Odelina brought the children out.

Mark then turned to Pearl who was covered with her ragged cloak while hiding behind Edzel.

\"Step forward. Don't hide behind Edzel. Also, don't cover your face.\"

The scared Pearl looked at Edzel who nodded. Slowly, she stepped forward while holding Edzel's hand tightly. She then removed the hood of her cloak and swiped away her hair that covered most of her face.

Mark and Mei had no reaction to her appearance. Of course, the others were shocked and felt pity.

\"I want to ask,\" Mark spoke. \"What happened after you left with the Cristobal Family during the evacuation in East Port Settlement before?\"

Pearl shivered even more. It was a memory she did not want to remember anymore. She did not want to say what happened at all.

\"You don't have to say the specific details.\" Mark knew what he should ask and what should not. \"Just tell what you can.\"

Finally, she spoke.

***

Back then, she did not know much. However, during the evacuation, she heard that the Cristobal and Ruanto actually had a secret alliance. That was why the two families left together abandoning everyone else on the verge of the disaster.

There was not much infected on the road at that time. However, she noticed that the noise from their vehicles was actually attracting the infected nearby causing them to block the road behind.

When they reached the town in Dinahican. The vehicles stopped by the orders of Former Mayor Jacob Ruanto. Then, the Cristobal Family learned the awful truth.

The alliance of Ruanto family to them were nothing but lies. The real allies of Ruanto Family were the forces of Death Valley Settlement. Thus, with their futile resistance, everyone in Cristobal Family was captured to become slaves. Including Pearl.

However, that was not the worst part. Trying to save himself, the young master of Cristobal actually tried to sell his girls off. That was when the first time she regretted her dumb decision.

And the torture ensued after that. The men of Death Valley settlement were like hungry wolves. Inside the vehicles used to transport them, Pearl and the other women were already treated as toys for pleasure.

Arriving at Death Valley, the torture for her became worse. As a young girl with good looks, a middle-aged woman had taken fancy on her. However, not because the middle-aged woman was a homosexual, but because she hated young women with good looks.

At that short time, Pearl was taken under that middle-aged woman's roof, she let her boy toys play with her while she ruined Pearl's appearance slowly.

Pearl could still hear the middle-aged woman's laugh even now in her sleep. The laugh she heard as she was being tortured using different devices.

She heard the boy toys muttering about Pearl being killed afterward. At that time, she did not care anymore. But in the middle of her torture, gunshots echoed. The middle-aged woman escaped with her boy toys leaving her chained in the basement.

At that time, she passed out from blood loss. The next thing she knew, she was being transported by soldiers inside one of their vehicles while her wounds were being treated.

Hearing this part, Mark nodded.

It was something he knew. In fact, Mark still remembers the middle-aged woman Pearl was talking about. For sure, it was that cougar he bisected with her boy toys.

In fact, Mark knew that Pearl was there all along in the basement as he took Alaula from the top floor of that building. However, how could he care for a slut like her? That was why he did not do anything and proceeded to do with the things he needed to do.

Hearing all these, for sure, Pearl was just lucky to survive those things.