TL: xDh20, LifeisaJourney
“Zhou BuLiang, will this steel pillar collapse?” Liu Gan interrupted the conversation between Zhou MingLiang and others. 1
“Ah? Seems like it wouldn’t continue collapsing further…” Zhou MingLiang announced, looking down at the base of the bridge.
“Then, would it be a waste of our efforts to climb up?” Liu Gan said in shock. It indirectly caused the death of a player, even though it was the player’s own fault.
“Ah… Sorry, these types of situations are really hard to predict. Even though it deals with complicated principles of structural mechanics, I have to factor in the balance of the bridge, as well as the temperature of the water in the foundation and the geology underneath the water. I also need…” Just as Zhou MingLiang was about to go into details...
“Okay! We are going back down! This is the best opportunity to escape! In the event that this bridge really falls, we couldn’t even escape even if we want to.” Liu Gan proceeded to cut loose from his own rope. He proceeded to the steel ladder and climbed downwards. He knew that in these situations, it was very hard to predict, so he couldn’t blame it all on Zhou MingLiang. Even if there was a slight possibility of it collapsing, he still would’ve taken the people up to the top of steel pillar.
One can imagine from climbing down such an elevated area that the players and survivors—after having finally found a small window of peace—were getting nervous once again. There were some glares that were shot at Zhou MingLiang, as if this whole situation arose because of him.
Zhou MingLiang embarrassingly tried to laugh it off. This half of the bridge hadn’t collapsed, and when would it collapse was very hard to predict. No one knew what had caused it to stabilize. In the event that it hadn’t been stabilized and everyone had not climbed up onto the steel ladder, they would’ve fallen with the bridge deck into the monsters’ mouths.
Even if they hadn’t climb so high up, getting struck by the suspension cables would also be fatal in the case that it loosened up!
After ten minutes, Liu Gan lead the group back onto the bridge deck. Even though the cars had stopped burning, there were dense smoke covering their visibility. In addition, there were burning fleshes of corpses that caused the air around the bridge to smell very pungent.
The players and survivors returned to the bridge deck. They saw the fallen player in the pool of his own blood. Naturally, they all fell silent at the unfortunate player.
During these past few days, they had gotten accustomed to people dying left and right. Every time they saw someone die, they would have the dreadful feeling of who might be next. Would it be themselves? While they were in mid-climb on the steel ladder, a large portion of them became lightheaded. They felt as if their hands and legs had gotten weaker with every climb. Whether or not they would fall was decided in that moment of weakness.
In an orderly single line formation, they tread carefully through the smoked filled area under Liu Gan and Yin He’s guidance. There were nearly over hundreds, or perhaps thousands, of zombie corpses that were piled up in continuous mounts of at least a hundred meters of burnt corpses. This was a scene that deeply chilled everyone as they stepped over the mountain of corpses. If they hadn’t known that the apocalypse had occurred, they would believe that they were in the middle of a massacre of war upon seeing so many corpses. 2
After passing through the large heaps of zombie corpses, the group headed toward the safe end of the bridge. Along their path were crevices that ran parallel to their direction of travel. Ever so slightly, the bridge started shake with each tremor growing wilder in succession. The steel pillar seemed to have tilted even more. The rest of the suspension cables produced horrifying ‘ka ka’ sound at the same time. It seemed like the time has come for the bridge to collapse on this side!
Several of the players that still had yet to recover from the dizziness of elevated height couldn't withstand the immense psychological stress, especially the 19 year old player that cried for his parents. He frantically ran towards the end of the bridge. This led other players to start running as well. In a chain reaction effect, most of the players and survivors also started running out of formation.
Only a few players like Wang DeCheng, Han GuangMing, and a few others had maintained the speed to match Liu Gan, only to be surpassed by those frantic players coming from behind.
“All of you, stop! Maintain the formation! Don't run off separately!” Liu Gan shouted to the players ahead. A large portion of the players who heard his shout immediately halted to a stop. Only the three players in front that had ran for their lives were unable to hear Liu Gan's order. They only heard the wind blowing by their ears.
The moment these three players rushed to the end, they proceeded to get off the bridge. In front of them, a spray of black substance splashed toward them in midair. The smell was pungent to the nose as well. The nineteen-year-old player couldn't dodge the strange substance and was caught completely off guard. He grasped his face and started screaming.
“Ambush!” Shouted the two players that were a few meters behind him. They immediately raised their simple shield to protect themselves as they tugged the nineteen-year-old player backwards. Seeing that a player had been ambushed, they reformed into formation and pulled him back to Liu Gan. The two players suddenly screamed loudly with the wounded player.
Liu Gan was treading carefully forward to take a look, and what he saw next was horrifying. The face of a player was unrecognizable; it was covered in the unknown substance that had been dissolving through his meat. The player’s facial bone and skull were revealing themselves. It was as if he had been sprayed with strong acid.
Even with strong acid, it shouldn't have reacted so effectively…
The clothes on his body had also been dissolved by the black substance. It penetrated through the flesh on his chest, breaking down the meat into mush and exposing the rib bone. By the time the two players had dragged the acid-burned nineteen-year-old player back to the group, his pulse was very weak and he was beyond rescue.
The two players that had dragged the nineteen-year-old player back were originally wearing gloves. The moment their gloves came in contact with the black substance, however, it corroded through. There was enough corrosion to penetrate the flesh and reveal finger tip bones! This was the reason for why they had suddenly screamed out loud, but by the time they had felt the sharp pain, it was too late.
Aside from their hands, their simple-made shield also began to deteriorate as many pores revealed themselves. The clothing on the two players also started spotting in weird places. They were only trying to save their fallen comrade, but they had accidentally come into contact with the black substance and started to spread it.
“Don’t go near them!” Liu Gan felt that something strange and serious was going on. He doesn’t understand the reason behind it now, so he quickly told others to be careful.
“You two, quickly throw your gloves away! Lee Miao shouted from behind Liu Gan.
“What is this substance? Why is it so potent?” screamed the two player as they tried to detach their mushy flesh from the glove. They revealed their painful expression, and one of the player even started crying.
“Toss that glove over to me, let me check it out.” Liu Gan said to the two players. This case was too strange! They still didn’t know what monster had caused them their injuries.