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248 Surprising Circumstances, Another Meeting at the Settlement and the Arrival at the Mountain Base

 Day 37 - 5:03 PM - Meeting Room, Military Headquarters, Port of Real Settlement, Barangay Ungos, Real, Quezon

Inside the meeting room, the military officers along with several other people essential to the settlement were in a closed meeting. Although it was said that all people essential to the settlement, it did not include the politicians who only manage the side pertaining to the refugees and survivors. This meeting was something they do every other day to monitor the things happening in the settlement, to discuss the reports of the previous events and prepare the information to be released to the public.

Normally, it was just a military meeting along with a few scientists led by Professor Suzuki but this time, there were two people that joined this meeting. The first person was the mercenary, Jones Galley who ended his espionage at the Death Valley Settlement earlier than expected and returned yesterday while the second person unexpectedly was Karlene's suitor, Joash Villiania. Furthermore, Joash was sitting beside General Faustino indicating that his status among the people here was only next to the general.

They had just finished discussing the reports about the horde, the number of casualties, the expenditure of supplies and the damage to the properties of the settlement due to the event. As for the next topic...

"Jones, how did the interrogation of the two spies go?"

General Faustino asked.

In response, Jones stood up from his seat and distributed several folders for everyone to read the contents.

"The interrogation went rather well." Jones spoke. "The guy was quite a pain but the woman immediately talked. Both of their statements matched as you can see in my report."

In the report, it was stated that both the spies did not know each other but were brought together because of the order they were given. Apparently, they were given an order personally by someone who was wearing a mask. The person was another spy who directly received orders from the Death Valley Settlement. Unfortunately, none of the two spies caught knew the identity of that person.

The other details were common information and some were things they already knew from Jones who did espionage in that settlement for some time but what caught everyone's attention was the reason why and how a woman became a spy of that settlement that treated women as nothing but entertainment. Unexpectedly, compared to the male spy who entered this settlement later on, the female spy was a resident of this settlement since the time it was established. It was just that she hid her abilities as a Mutator and posed as an Evolver. She was even part of a survivor group. Unfortunately at the time that she was injured and had to stay while her group scavenge outside the settlement, her group never returned. Her sister and the only family member she had left had been among that group's members.

"The first case of missing people isn't it?"

"It's probably the same thing that almost happened to us."

Captain Garcia and Joash voiced respectively.

The statement of Joash was the closest as the spy wearing a mask appeared in front of her one day saying that she needed to work as a spy in order to see her sister once more. In other words, she was blackmailed and in the miniscule chance to see her sister once more, she followed the orders even if it endangered the settlement.

"If that is the case, we also have responsibility in this."

Major Bautista said which made the other military officers nod. Even if they did not want to admit, they were late to avoid letting the outlaws of Death Valley operate in their area of jurisdiction causing some of their people to be caught.

In any case, the woman's sentence could become lighter while the man was sentenced to public execution as there was nothing that could back up his alibis. More than that, Jones found records of that man being a notorious drug dealer in this area before the outbreak.

"Jones, you can sit down. Let's end this topic here for now. We can decide on the sentence we will give to that female spy later." General Faustino said before he turned to Professor Suzuki. "Professor, you have an important thing to report right?"

"Yes general."

Professor Suzuki answered and distributed his report to everyone. Unexpectedly, the report contained the research results of the bodies of the Mutators killed by Mark that night.

"We found a strange thing about the bodies. For some reason, the concentration of Mutagen in their bodies especially their heads were very low for a Mutator."Find authorized novels in Webnovel,faster updates, better experience,Please click www.webnovel.com for visiting.

"What do you mean?"

General Faustino frowned and asked.

"What I meant general is that those people supposed to be Mutators, am I correct? However, the concentration of Mutagen in their bodies was very low that it looked like that they were nothing more than dead Z-types, furthermore the common ones. It was like they were stripped off their abilities."

"How did that happen?"

Even Captain Garcia could not help but ask.

"We don't know either but we have an assumption." Professor Suzuki said making everyone listen closely. "Mark surely had something to do with this. Do you all remember the ability of Drake?"

"It was something like [Dragonification]. I saw it firsthand."

Jones said before he froze. Not only him but everyone inside the meeting room froze.

"I think everyone here realized what I am pointing to. Drake's ability and that dragon. Even if we have no way to confirm, it was safe to assume that Mark can strip a Mutator of his ability and transfer it to someone else."

"That's..."

Everyone fell silent. A plethora of thoughts were present in their minds.

"Uncle Alfonso, is it really safe to leave Karlene to someone like that? What if he does the same and kill her to gain her ability?"

Joash said to Major Bautista but it was Professor Suzuki that answered him.

"Mr. Villania, that's a personal matter to be discussed here."

"As if you're one to talk, you also pushed Alana into following him right?"

Joash almost bellowed.

"Joash, stop it." General Faustino said in a stern tone. "Although your family was the ones that funded the establishment of this settlement, you have no right to dictate people in their personal matters. You're father left you to me so you have to behave."

"Yes General."

Joash was obviously still unsettled but he shut his mouth.

"Besides, why are you too contradicting with Mark anyway? It is very likely that you and Mark will likely become relatives in the future so be sure to settle your thoughts?"

"General, what do you mean?"

Not only Joash and everyone became wide eyed due to that information.

Major Bautista then slapped his forehead in realization and spoke.

"Mark's current lover supposed to be your cousin."

"What? Mark is a man and I only have one female cousin of age in my mother's side... HAAAH??? No way! NO WAY! THAT CAN'T BE TRUE!"

The topic about Mark was set aside for a while until Joash finally managed to calm down.

***

Day 37 - 5:39 PM - Mountain Range, Real, Quezon

"I never really thought that I will be able to ride on a dragon... It's like a dream..."

Alana said as she sat on the back of the Dragon with Karlene and Mark.

"Just how many times did you say that already?"

Karlene giggled but her face also looked excited despite the fact that they had been riding the dragon for quite a while already.

It had been more than two hours already after they left the settlement. Normally, they should have arrived at the mountain base already but Mark made several stops every time he something interesting below. If he saw fruit bearing trees, they would land, if he saw some interesting establishments, they would land and if Mark saw a rather strange infected or animal below, he would land.

Right now, aside from several bags that contained things Mark traded with [Mutagen Stone] from the settlement before they left, he also collected a sack of loot from their stops. The sack contained mostly saplings, fruits, vegetables and vines that could be planted along with several things that interested him. Of course, Mark did not forget the house with enlarged sweet potatoes. They were heading that way right now while flying over the smaller mountain range. The Marikina-Infanta Highway was already in sight from their current position.

"Amihan, you still fine?"

"Yup! No worries! I will shield everyone from the strong winds until we make it back home!"

Mark asked Amihan on his shoulder and received quite an assuring reply. He then turned at the front and tapped the neck of the dragon they were riding.

"Chaflar, land there."

He pointed at the highway in front of a house and received a rather timid roar.

"RAA."

Chaflar, it was the name Mark gave the dragon he created. It was the combination of the letters in the words "Chaos" and "Flare". The name was not bad in Mark's view and Alana also agreed. It was also the same composition of monster names in a certain game. They ignored Karlene since she was giving name suggestions that could be lined with cat and dog names. She did not have the naming sense of Otakus.

After gathering more than a dozen oversized sweet potatoes and a lot of vines to plant, they set off to continue their travel.

Flying near the river, Mark ordered Chaflar to fly low. He wanted to see if he would be able to have another lucky encounter with a stray [BloodChild] but he was disappointed. They saw some red residues on some parts of the river but they were all dried up.

Soon, they arrived that the part of the Ungos River Mark and Amihan recognized. They then left the river and flew north west following the direction of the familiar steep mountain peak that could be seen back in the village before he base was established.

Finally, they saw the base.

"That's your base?"

Alana asked with amazement while Karlene only stared down at the base. They never thought that Mark was able to establish a safe place in the middle of the dangerous mountains. Not to mention that the base looked amazing with those black sturdly looking walls.

Not different from the two girls, Mark and Amihan watched the base as they flew closer and closer.

The metal walls were no different from before but atop the walls, several structures like watch towers were already built. Unexpectedly, the foundation, walls and the roofs of the small watchtowers were also made of [Blood Metal].

"Mark? Are those tents part of your base?"

Alana asked since she saw half a dozen tents quite a distance from the gate outside the base.

This made Mark frown. Although there were also new and unfinished structures inside the base, there was still a lot of space to build on. For sure, those tents were not the work of anyone from his base. It seemed that people managed to find their way to the base and Nicole and Halley that were left in charge of the base did a good job not to let them in withou his permission.

Mark then noticed that there were people outside scrambling away while a few people climbed up the walls seemingly ready for battle. He expected this already since seeing a dragon fly towards your base would surely intimidate everyone. However, the expected rain of arrow sized needles did not come.

RINGGGGGG!

He froze. The [BloodChildren] inside his bag were the same. With his enhanced sight from being his second level of evolution, Mark saw a strange thing running atop the walls towards his direction. It was a girl about three years old that was moving nothing like her age. She was really happy and was waving at the dragon. Mark could tell how happy she was.

How? Because her thoughts were connected with Mark and she was calling him with a very happy voice.

Inside his mind, he heard.

"Father!"