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376 Returning to Bay City, The Last Help They Will Give The Settlemen

 Day 59 - 3:02 PM - Radial Road 1, La Huerta, Parañaque, Metro Manila

Mark and the rest were finally returning to Bay City. The previous day, night, and the morning were rather eventful.

Inside the vehicle, Jaeya sat beside Abbygale. She wanted to hug her niece and make her sit on her lap. Unfortunately, the little girl with a nose as sensitive as a cat did not want to. It was because she reeked of bad smell. Analynn only smelled of dirt and sweat, Jaeya's had a way worse source. It was already good that the little girl did not run away from that.

Still, it was a surprise that the woman who Mark brought back was actually the blood relative of the calm little cat girl in their group. Even Mark had not expected the fact.

To some extent, he could use the mental energies of people around him to judge people who were possibly relatives. These energies and emotional waves had distinct similarities between blood relatives. The similarities grow more substantial as the two people had closer blood ties.

On Jaeya's case, however, it was kind of hard to tell.

Like the individual, herself acknowledged, she had a broken mind. Mark also acknowledged that fact because he could tell how chaotic her state of mind was. It was already good that she was not someone that had gone crazy. Her consciousness was still clear to some extent. There were a few things to watch out though.

Nevertheless, everyone was shocked when Jaeya started to communicate with them through their minds. They now understood why Mark brought her back and called her a convenient human radio.

Although handheld radios were great communication tools, these items still had discrepancies. The signal between radios could be greatly affected by environmental factors. A good example just happened recently when Mark and Mei were inside the blood bank.

With Jaeya's presence, this issue could be addressed to a large extent. All that was left was further testing on this. She would become a good asset to Mark's group. It was also very unlikely for her to leave Mark's entourage considering that her only relative left saw Mark as her father and Mei as her new mother.

Right now, Jaeya was feeling down and quietly sat on her seat. She asked Abbygale about her mother which was actually Jaeya's older sister. Hearing the story from the little girl herself and how she witnessed her mother's death the Aunt felt sad and confused.

Sad because her beloved sister was gone and in the most brutal way, to save her daughter. Confused because of how the little girl calmly narrated everything as if what happened had nothing to do with her. The changes her lovely niece had were baffling her.

However, that state of Jaeya did not take too much time. As her chaotic mind affected her state, she instantly recovered.

Now, Mark could not help sigh at how his group had two mentally ill patients now.

***

Aside from those things, the rest of their journey went well. The highway had less infected than other areas because of the fences and walls that isolated most parts of the highway.

There were not many events going on, aside from one thing.

"They are really following us weren't they?"

Odelina said as she took a glance at the side mirror of the vehicle.

There should be just two vehicles and a huge infected in their convoy but about several dozens of meters behind them, another vehicle followed.

"Just let them be. We have no time to deal with them."

Mark spoke.

Those people behind riding the vehicle were not new to him. They were the same women that were imprisoned in that condominium building. It seemed that some of them had their way around that place and took one of the vehicles that were left behind. By the looks of it, they took the opportunity to use Mark and his group as a shield and guide to follow.

Nevertheless, those women seemed to not have any idea that the devil their ignored to escape and Jaeya was in this convoy.

"Why didn't you help them?"

Karlene asked.

"Because there is no point to." Mark shrugged. "We are not some rescue workers or part of the military and police. If they ask me for help, I will want something in return. I'm not asking much, even just some useful information will do."

Mark then tilted his head.

"The main problem is unlike Jaeya, they didn't even ask for my help. Why should I bother?"

"Alright then..."

Karlene shrugged her shoulders and accepted the reason.

This, however, made Analynn quite bothered. Not even one person in this group contradicted his answer.

"We are quite heartless, aren't we?"

Mark spoke which made Analynn shiver as it was exactly what was in her mind.

"We are in the apocalypse right now. Sympathy can get you or the people around you killed. You should have already learned that the hard way."

That made Analynn look down. He was right. Their sympathy towards other survivors before led to the current state of Emi. It was just her not digesting the fact properly.

Thinking about this, the people following them were not exactly good people either. To follow behind strangers and use them as a shield to clear the path was not good behavior.

As Mark said, there was no need to bother with them. Stopping because of them would just be a waste of time.

***

BOOM!

As they left the highway and closed near Bay City, explosions could be heard along with faint sounds of guns shooting fiercely.

"Looks like we returned at a bad time."

Karlene voiced out hearing the commotion from afar.

Because of the noise, Mei climbed unto the sniper dome where she had a higher and clearer vantage point.

"Mei'er, can you see anything?"

"No, Gege, were are still too far to see anything. I'm just looking if there are any flying infected around, but there don't seem to be any."

"Probably, there's just ground infected this time. But for the military to use explosives, the number of infected should be quite large."

Odelina assessed.

That should have been an accurate assessment of the current situation. It was until...

"Hmm? What is that?"

Spera who sat at the front beside Odelina spoke.

It was because she saw something covered in flames fly up in the air.

SCREECH!

BAM!

Odelina kicked on the breaks as the flaming figure landed in front of them.

The landing of the figure was quite unsightly. It was obviously humanoid but its hard drop left it in the middle of the road unable to get up.

Mark went out of the vehicle to check while signaling everyone to stay inside the vehicles including Edward's group inside the ambulance behind.

As Mark inspected the figure, however, the figure, despite its crippled legs, it was scrambling towards him.

This made him frown for different reasons.

The figure covered in flames was nothing else but a Mutated Infected. Nevertheless, it was just in its initial stages. The most concerning thing were how it was covered...

With the flames of Gar'Vlam.

"No, it's quite off."

He murmured. There was no sign that the infected was a psychic and the energy that reeked out of its body was rather weak.

"Don't tell me..."

SHING!

Using Flam, Mark beheaded the infected and looked forward. This was not the only one but in the distance, several more flaming figures were flying towards the direction of the Bay City.

No, rather than actually flying, they looked more like being tossed away by something.

Mark entered the vehicle once more.

"Gege, what is that?"

Mei immediately asked as she was concerned about the deep frown on Mark's face.

"Odel, continue driving and contact the military about the situation."

Mark ordered the servant first before going back to his seat.

"Yes, Master."

"Everyone, ready for should get ready for battle." Mark sat and spoke. "That thing that crashed just now should be infected that were affected by the residual energies with the battle with Auraboros."

Analynn and Jaeya were confused since they did not know about it but Mark had no time to deal with their confusion. His greatest concern finally happened.

Both him and Gar'Vlam rather went all out in that battle. The residual and scattered energy around the settlement was rather thick at that time.

The lack of infected attacks these past days was also suspicious. Now, Mark a theory. The lack of attacks should have been the result of the infected taking in the residual energies and mutating into something else. Since the infected finally finished their initial mutations, they were on the move once more.

It did not take long to drive on that straight road until they were able to see the walls of Bay City Settlement. Aside from the walls, however, a sea of infected could be seen in front.

As for the estimated number, there should be several thousands of infected in this area alone. For sure, the other areas had more.

The most concerning thing was that the infected were all standing and around and were not blindly walking unto the moat in front of the walls. A lot were standing at the edge of the moat but they all stopped there like they knew what was about to happen.

And the worst part...

Four meters tall bulky infected were standing here and there among the horde. And their duty, it was to scoop the other infected around them into their hands and throw them into the walls of the settlement. These large mutated infected were the once causing the flying infected they saw before.

Their throws were mostly inaccurate and messy but it still instilled chaos inside the walls as the infected landed inside the settlement.

"Miss Odelina, this General Perez. The situation is not optimal."

As Odelina asked for the current state using the radio mounted in front of her, it was General Perez that personally answered.

"The settlement is under siege on all sides. When I say, all sides, the Manila Bay area is included."

The initial information Mark's group received was not good at all.

It seemed that a large group of infected had appeared around the settlement early this afternoon. The infected came from all directions with [Armor Types] leading the front. An overwhelming number of flying infected were also apparent.

There was also a large number of what they called [Catapults], the newly seen infected mutation that was apparent in this horde. The [Catapults] were those large infected that were throwing other infected around them to attack. They seemed to be impervious to bullets and even rockets could barely damage them.

The once they called [Burners] also appeared for the first time. They were those infected with flames covering their bodies without their bodies being scorched. This was really strange as they all looked normal infected for the most part.

From the sea, infected animals, mostly enlarged aquatic insects, were attacking. Sea spiders even started to climb unto the settlement which the soldiers were pressing hard to suppress.

Despite the military's scouts spotting the horde on land early, they had no choice but to deal with the flying infected first. Even though they managed to kill all the flying infected already, it caused the ground infected to travel towards the settlement easier.

That led to the current situation.

"We cannot open the gates currently so please, find a safe place to settle. At our estimate, we needed to hold out for several hours more before this ends."

The General added.

"Master, what are we going to do?"

Odelina asked as she stopped the vehicle.

"I already said it." Mark smiled. "Get ready for battle. Mei'er, we'll go first to survey the area. Odel, you and everyone else wait here and watch out for my instructions."

Mark then opened the door and jumped out. Mei swiftly followed behind him.

"We can help them one last time before we leave this place. They will take care of our friends that will stay behind after all."

He said before his and Mei's wings opened and the two of them flew off.

***

"Gege, this attack looks odd."

Mei spoke while looking at the infected below.

"I know. Even the military surely noticed. This is not a random attack but an organized one."