The Ultimate Evolution - Volume 6 - Chapter 26
Chapter 26: Severed finger in the belly.
Translated by: Chua
Edited by: TN and Elkassar
The ladder was crafted with a commonly seen vine and could hold the weight of 3 people. But it looked rather antique, and slightly decaying. Grabbing and tugging it, a tense creak could be heard, as the soil rolled off the ropes and dissolved into the lake. Sheyan cautiously began to ascend the rope, like treading on thin ice, finally ascending it without a hiccup.
The similar sight of a mountain valley clamped in by a towering precipice greeted them, the same sparse pine trees grew here. It was already daylight. Due to the trauma of their previous poisoned experience, they felt a rush of anxiousness to their heads. Not daring to delay due to fear and panic, they sprinted crazily forward.
Only when Sheyan finally heard the chirping of birds, and realised that there were soft pine shoots on the ground did he halt his footsteps and collapse to the ground. Panting deeply and heavily for a long time, he finally recuperated.
Compared to the deserted and forsaken pine forest from before, this pine forest was brimming with life. After being dragged up the snowy peak, they hadn't eaten a single thing except for that half a fish the previous night. Their energy had been thoroughly exhausted;and since they had escaped from the danger zone, they instantly felt the gastric pangs of hunger.
As they walked and searched, they found several pine nuts. These pine nuts were birthed out of the extremely harsh winter climate, its shell was tough and ordinary people had to smash it with rocks. Instead, this was as easy as peanuts to Sheyan and Reef. They barely filled their bodies to recover some strength, before regaining vigor to search for other prey.
Reef had previous experiences with hunting in the present world. While Sheyan was still trying to scheme against a skinny looking bird, Reef returned after capturing a plump as hell, snow badger.
The snow badger was incredibly vicious;to capture one in the present world, a shotgun would be necessary. During the hunting process, it was hard to tell if you'd be the one hunting it or becoming its meal. Fortunately, Sheyan and Reef weren't ordinary people. Reef directly twisted its neck, very easily snapping it off without a drip of blood. They didn't bother draining the blood, allowing it to remain in the meat would give it a savoury roasted taste. (In the present world, there are many that like to butcher pigs without draining their blood, producing a more flavourful gamy taste for the meat.)
Reef's eyes radiated with hunger, cutting away furiously at the snow badger. The table salt and tinder they acquired from the uruk-hai's corpses were finally beneficial. They devoured the greasy meat ravenously, not even bothering to chew properly. Finally, they were full, their body status had recovered to roughly 80%.
After eating, the two hurriedly disposed of the blood traces, bones etc. Naturally trying to avoid the rotting stench from attracting other wild beasts, to prevent unwanted troubles.
As they buried the remains, Sheyan suddenly claimed in surprise. Amidst the organs of the badger, was a bloodied mutilated object. After identifying this object, their faces changed.
It was a shocking freshly mutilated finger!
The two glanced at each other, their filled bellies churned. With an ashen face, they continued rummaging through the organ mess, but discovered nothing else.
With this sudden occurrence, a tremendous doubt appeared amongst the mysteries and vileness of this place. Looking at the freshness of this finger, perhaps there were humans ahead? How would they dare to continue staying here foolishly, they hurriedly continued advancing.
After several kilometres, the forest became sparser. Suddenly, Reef who was scouting ahead abruptly prostrated to the ground, before a leopard crawling behind a pine tree. Sheyan instantly reacted upon seeing Reef's movements, immediately hiding with Melody.
As they two hid cautiously for a brief moment, nothing happened. Casting a confused expression towards Reef, Reef signalled over with a heavy expression. Sheyan then crept forward, instantly waves of chills swept through him.
Just a few hundred metres away from them, a simple yet crude campsite appeared. Although the campsite was carelessly constructed, one could clearly tell from its style, that it was done by the movements of uruk-hais and the ocean-freaks. Inclining by the side of the camp was a sturdy looking uruk-hai, who seemed to be vigilantly on guard. 7-8 other uruk-hais were currently resting within the camp, leaning randomly and disorientated around.
After a cautious and sneaky surveillance, they discovered an identical uruk-hai campsite to their west. The location of the two campsites completely sealed off the narrow mountain valley, nothing could slip past it. It was impossible to try and sneak around the campsites, to probe and explore further.
Sheyan and Reef had braved through tremendous risks and adventure just to escape from the pursuit of the uruk-hais. Yet in a cruel twist of events, they actually encountered such a huge scope of uruk-hai encampment once again! It seems that there were at least several dozen of uruk-hais who had established a temporary camp here! No clue as to how they traversed through the previous desolated pine forest!
They both held their breath, unwilling for even a tiny breath to escape. Sprawled flat on the ground, they inched backwards. But at this moment, the elf maiden that was placed not far away suddenly unintentionally twitched;knocking against the pine tree beside her!
The tree wasn't huge, its crown accumulated with numerous snow. After Melody's accidental knock, the snow crumbled down resoundingly, creating a slight ruckus. Within this peaceful and still pine forest, unless the uruk-hais were all blind and deaf, they definitely wouldn't miss out this sudden commotion. Their faces turned deathly pale as they laid on the ground without daring to move.
After a long precautionary pause, they could only hear the rustling of the pine trees. Ahead of them was the lonely forest, the uruk-hais hadn't the slightest bit of movement. Sheyan's heart stirred, as he raised his head to probe. He then issued a low voice.
’’That sentry didn't even move.’’
Reef suspiciously raised his head to look, curiously asking.
’’Right, is he asleep?’’
Sheyan then continued.
’’Even those uruk-hais laying around in the camp, not even a twitch of movement.’’
Sheyan's eyes glittered with a crazy glow. He stood up and started to creep closer towards the campsite. Reef murmured to himself.
Sheyan's face exposed a surreptitious sneer as he approached the campsite without disguise. Still, the sentry remained motionless. Sheyan strolled to his side, stretching his hand to pat him. The sentry maintained its vigilant posture, its rigid self horizontally crashing to the side;before shattering in fragments, just like a toppled ice sculpture.
The two campsites, were fully filled with rock-solid frozen corpses, a hollow rattle emitted when they knocked against them........
These uruk-hais should've been in the same predicament as Sheyan. After cruising through the lake, they hooked up a rope ladder up and set up camp here. After Sheyan and Reef inspected the area thoroughly, they discovered a peculiar triangular shaped wound on these corpses.
Oddly, these wounds were sustained on the lateral sides of the corpses. Though deep, the wounds weren't located at vital spots. According to the norm, these wounds couldn't possibly be fatal to these healthy and mighty uruk-hais.
They glanced at each other. Despite uncovering the truth of the two campsites, they had once again sunk into the tremendous mystery. Looks like, mystery was the title of this adventure. Reef suddenly realized something, frowning as he sincerely exclaimed.
’’There's a survivor here!’’
Sheyan's pupils shrank, instantly recalled the crux of the matter. That was the mutilated finger they discovered earlier! The corpses here seemed to have died a long time ago, they were all frozen solid, their skin as tough as steel. The corpses had no indications of being ravaged by wild beasts. Yet even if the snow badger was here, those icy cold fingers couldn't have possibly returned to its fresh bloodied state.
Fear lodged deeply in their hearts. They then carefully rummaged through the camp. The most beneficial items were some warm leather coats. Though torn and tattered, it provided some warmth as they uncourteously stole it for themselves.
In a wooden chest, they also found two pouches of spirited alcohol - authentic alcohol not polluted by blood. Drinking them down felt like a tiny dagger slicing down into their throat, their boiling intensity sizzling into their limbs.
Apart from that, they discovered another unusual wooden product. This thing had an appearance of an overturned stool, with its 4 legs pointing towards the sky. Two long wooden clubs were tied parallel to it, as though trying to support something. After deliberating for a while, they were still perplexed and couldn't find a reasonable reason to it. Mystery, everything was a mystery....