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374 The Blood Armored Devil, Putting His Upgraded Abilities to Tes

 Day 59 - 1:09 PM - Kamagong St., Barangay Pamplona Tres, Las Piñas, Metro Manila

"Miss Emi! Miss Emi!"

Analynn's voice rose as she held Emi's shoulders and tried to get her attention. Surely, she was shocked by Emi's sudden action. It was very likely that it was the very first time she witnessed this.

"Karlene, you should stop your friend. Emi is already back to normal. Your friend is just hurting her like this."

Mark spoke.

"Lynn, calm down."

Karlene gently held Analynn's hands and made her let go of Emi.

"But Karlene, Miss Emi... She is... She..."

Analynn looked at Emi's face. There was nothing but a blank stare though. Realizing that Emi was still the same, Analynn broke into sobs.

The two might not have known each other for a very long time. However, the bond built in a short time they spent in a life and death crisis weighed heavier than the bond formed for years in the day of peace.

While Karlene pacified Analynn in her arms, Mark stared at Emi.

As for how sudden her smile was made, that was also how sudden she returned to normal.

No one in this vehicle could understand what happened. Not even Mark.

Emi might not respond to anything, but, she was awake all this time. To be precise, her consciousness was awake. She could see, she could understand and she could hear what was happening around her. Nevertheless, her body would not respond to any of her wishes. It was like how doctors advised the relatives of coma patients to keep talking to the patient because, despite their state, they could still hear the sounds and voices around them.

Emi's state was not that different, albeit, more complex.

The mysterious thing, however, that smile had nothing to do with Emi's consciousness. It was the sole movement that came from her body.

Not only it was mysterious and strange. It was also a bit creepy. The feeling was like a still doll suddenly turning her head towards you as she smiled. It was as if something else made her body act like that.

Nevertheless, Mark could not detect anything that could, possibly, do it.

If she was possessed, Mark should be able to tell as there would be two conflicting consciousness in her body. It would result in her behaving violently contrary to her current state. He could tell that it was not the issue though.

There was also no strange energy around her or Mark who became rather sensitive to such energies after he was able to wield miasma would also feel it.

"What a headache..."

Mark scratched his head. With his current knowledge and capabilities, he could not make out any reason about Emi's strange actions.

In any case, there would a lot of time to observe Emi.

***

Day 59 - 2:23 PM - Carlos P. Garcia Ave. Ext., Barangay Pulang Lupa Uno, Las Piñas, Metro Manila

The way back took a shorter time than before. Since they followed the same route they took when going to the university, the only things they needed to deal with was the infected on the streets. Still, with the presence of Gifre and Logan, it became easier to traverse the infected filled streets.

It was unfortunate that despite being an [Alpha Infected], Gifre was not a [Leader Type]. If he was, things would be a whole lot easier.

At this moment, their vehicles stopped by the side of the highway extension. It was the same area where the roads were blocked by Dark Greed, Gifre's band of bandits.

Everyone was out of the vehicles. Especially the ambulance, they needed to check the damage because unlike the [Exceed: Personnel Carrier], the ambulance was just a normal vehicle that was poorly modified. Even with Gifre and Logan around, there would still be some of the infected that managed to slip in to attack the vehicles.

"What are we going to do here?"

Karlene asked. Although she knew that this place was where the other members of the enemies that attacked them last night were holed up, she did not know what Mark would want to do here.

"No." Mark replied. "I'm the only one who is going to do something. Everyone else stays here."

"Huh?"

Karlene was confused. Before she could say anything else, however...

POOF!

Mark vanished and all they could see was the trail of black mist moving towards the condominium buildings upfront.

"Say... Are the members of this group really human?"

Analynn asked. That was the question that not only she had but the other members of the survivors from the University. Not only that they had a vehicle that could traverse a sea of infected without getting a single dent, they even had two monsters on the leash. There were even two little fairies flying and slime-like creatures bouncing around the three little girls of the group.

Before Karlene could answer her friend's question, infected started to come towards their temporary encampment. As Aephelia was about to send Logan to intercept the infected, Miracle and Abbygale already charged forward.

That small number of infected was taken out in no time... Just by two little girls...

"Okay... Just don't answer my question..."

Those were the only words Analynn could say after witnessing that. Karlene could only smile bitterly as she witnessed the world of her friend going upside down.

***

Day 59 - 2:27 PM - Paseo Verde, Diego Cera Ave, Barangay Pulang Lupa Uno, Las Piñas, Metro Manila

Mark stood at the center of the compound where the condominium buildings were located. The place was quite large and surprisingly, the Dark Greed managed to secure the whole of it and even some of the streets outside. Their set up was not bad at all.

The streets were blocked with different kinds of things like vehicles, appliances and barbed fences which could block normal infected. Then, the Mutators in their group would deal with the mutated infected that would be able to get past the blockades.

Then, the walls of the compound were equipped with barbed wires which made it for most mutated infected to traverse without breaking the walls. Furthermore, the east side of the walls was a deep creek that became natural protection for the walls on that side. The insides of the compound were also heavily guarded.

In Mark's estimate, there were already thirty people on the lookout just at the walls while there were also separate lookouts on the rooftop.

Closing his eyes, Mark concentrated to feel the people in the area. No wonder Gifre could send that large number of men last night. They still had about a hundred and fifty people left here to guard their base.

Then, there were quite a several people in a certain room at the higher floors of the main building. With their mental states, they were surely the prisoners in this place. No, rather than prisoners, they were playthings.

"Time to go wild then." Mark sinisterly smiled. "I just have to make sure that I don't accidentally kill those women there. Well, if they accidentally died, then that's it."

Mark was not here to save them or fight the people here without reason. What he wanted to do here was to try the thing that he had not shown Mei in the Medical Center.

Before, he could only use his blood to transfer adrenaline into specific parts of his body. On his upgrade, however, his blood alone already had the same properties his adrenaline could bring. Still, it did not mean that his [Adrenaline Rush] was already unusable.

What if... He used both abilities at the same time?

PUMP! PUMP!

Mark's heartbeat became stronger and faster. The glow on his veins spread throughout his body. And... His muscles were being strengthened by his Adrenaline.

BURST!

His skin burst with deep wounds and cuts as it was not able to hand such immense strength. However, his devilish regeneration kicked in repairing the damage.

"Yep, it is dangerous." Mark smiled bitterly while enduring the pain. "Mei'er will panic if I show her this."

However, it was not the end of it. As the repair of his body continued, the new muscles and tissues being generated started to adapt to the strength in his blood paired with his adrenaline. The injuries started to lessen and the pain started to disappear.

Then, his blood started to cover his body. It was not on Mark's control but it started to form naturally.

"Ooops..."

Mark murmured.

He overdid it. One more thing that made it dangerous was that he would feel the same predatory sensation he had when he faced Rihanna in the Medical Center. If poorly handled, he could lose control of himself.

His eyes glowed red and his wings burst open on his back. Unlike the normal appearance of the bat wings, however, the wings right now were covered with red glowing veins. And it was larger than before.

"Hah..."

Mark panted. He managed to stop going out of control by channeling the strength evenly throughout his body. Nevertheless, his whole body was not covered with a devilish armor that he did not even think of wearing. It looked like the armor he wore when he left his body on the control of Mutagen while fighting the flame demon but was more elaborately designed. Even parts of his wings were covered with this armor.

Still, while Mark did not go berserk, the thirst for violence was left.

His eyes fell on the lookouts of the compound. None of them knew that death was literally staring at them from above.

PAAM! CRASH!

Mark flapped his wings which created an explosion of air around it. The unstable wind immediately broke the windows of the nearby room.

That sound of crashing glass alerted the lookouts below and looked above them.

BOOM!

They did not see anything above aside from falling shards of glass. Yet, they heard a loud crash behind them.

THUD!

One of the lookouts fell on the ground with his head rolling away from his body.

The remaining lookouts froze as they slowly turn their heads towards the strange silhouette of a devil appearing behind them.

"This is quite hard to control."

Mark complained.

He only wanted to sweep down and behead one of the lookouts with his claw before flying back up. Nevertheless, while he managed to behead his target, he ended up crashing unto the pavement.

"One more time."

Mark said as he turned his head towards the remaining lookouts. His glowing red eyes were particularly eye-catching despite how the sun was up in the sky.

The lookouts panicked and raised their guns. That was when another burst of air and dust in front made them close their eyes. Only to close their eyes forever. Those who managed to open their eyes at the last second could only see how their headless bodies looked like before everything went black.

***

Chaos ensued in the condominium compound as a devil rampaged about.

A devil with reddish-black armor, sharp claws, sinister-looking wings, and glowing red eyes. The devil made everyone shed blood in the worst possible way while mumbling how hard it was to control.

At first, the members of Dark Greed still poured in where the enemy had infiltrated them but that soon turned around. When the remaining ones saw the headless, limbless and crushed bodies of their comrades staining red blood on the ground, their confidence to thwart the enemy turned into absolute fear.

When the devil's eyes landed on them, they could not help but shiver. The moment they felt fear, that was the last thing they felt in their lives.

***

On one of the rooms on the highest floor, the windows were covered with metal bars. It was to imprison those that were inside. Grief-stricken at their fates, the best thing they could do was to look out the window and think how it was better to be eaten by the infected than to be eaten by a bunch of hungry wolves every single day.

Now, however, they were watching something else on the ground below. They saw the devil and they were happy. They would not bother if the devil also killed them but they were delighted how the wolves were being slaughtered like pigs.