422 The Storm

    Silence dominated Phecda's headquarters. A section of the big monitor had turned black. That was the feed from the drone. Based on the report of the on site agent, the drone was consumed by the locusts. And on the screens of the cameras outside the mutated area, the locust swarm was so heavy that it almost leaked out from the screen. They kept appearing from the border but none of them flew out from the mutated area. Even if they did, they would disappear once they crossed the border just like that strange, multi-colored cat.

    It was Elder Tong who ordered the five agents to retreat earlier. The loyalty of the cat was in a grey area and they still could not discern the relationship between the cat and Wu Siyu. Now, the situation was even harder to understand. If not for the strange cat's warning, the five agents would be dead already. However, the writing left behind the strange cat did indeed exude the darkness of a cultist and could corrupt people's mind. First, many people at headquarters felt discomfort as they were read the twisted words; when the agents turned to look at the writing in person, their opaline stone glowed red. This was a signal of mental corruption. It was why the headquarters had decided on the action that they did.

    The stance of the cat blurred but another problem clarified.

    "These locusts appear to have entered the mutated area from another space and they could only return back to that space. It is the same with those radioactive substances. There is a kind of barrier that they can't break through..." At the command centre, the technical worker analyzed the flight trajectory of the locusts and the videos recording the cat's appearance and disappearance repeatedly. Elder Tong came to the same conclusion as did the One. The mutated area was like a junction, all roads could lead to the centre but the roads themselves did not overlap. They were one-way only. At least that was the case for now. If one day they overlapped, then...

    This supposition gave many people apprehension. The mutated area appeared to be the point of intersection for many spaces. The nuclear explosion did not happen in this world but in another world. Some of these speculations derived from the term written by the cat, 'multi-worlds'.

    "I witnessed God, I am his incarnation in the human world'.

    "This city is being buried, this world is edging towards death. The energy of life will depart from some, while strengthening others. All the questions will be answered, but due to the weakness of your mind, even when the answer is boiling under the sun, burning in the night, you will never witness it or interact with it.

    "Unless you are the chosen ones. Fact is they will witness truths that you can't.

    "I can hear them, the sound of their approach. They will crawl out from the ground and descend from the sky. They will arrive from the multi-worlds. The storm is imminent, insects and worms shall ride the wind; The flood is imminent, mayflies shall ride the waves..."

    These words that the cat left behind appeared to share the same origin as Headmaster Chui's last word, but with more dark predictions or revelations. 'What is this God? Does it refer to these locusts?'

    The day had just started but it was fated to be a long one. After a discussion between Elder Tong, Yao Sinian and the other commanders, they decided to attempt an attack. If the mutated area was a junction, then they would try their best to stake their control over it.

    The One arrived at the scene. It took the swarm less than one hours to cover up the entire mutated area. They flew at an incredible speed of 80 km per hour. Their collective flapping wings sounded like the gushing of water. The swarm swallowed everything in sight.

    Lou Xiaoning, Sam Watt, Ivan Nikolov led a group of Action Department members and posted themselves near the border with flamethrowers. The target was so ubiquitous that they did not even need to aim. They aimed the nozzle at the mutated area and licks of flame burst forward. The flame leaped through the border and fields of locusts immediately caught on. They crackled strangely.

    'They look quite edible...' Peacock thought as she watched the fire toast the locusts. The City of Kindle had no concept of snack. When she was young, she used to venture out to the edge of the Ossarian fields with Malachite to capture and roast insects to eat.

    'Stamp out that kind of thought!' Kathlyn immediately gasped in shock. 'My god, if we consume those bugs, we might be infected by the Locust Sickness...' Peacock's heart tremored. She could not tell whether this sudden desire was compelled by her memory or influenced by the locusts. In any case, the opaline stone around her wrist did not light up. They still reported this to the superior and it was valued heavily. Elder Tong demanded that if anyone showed interest to feast on the locust, they should report back to the base immediately. There was no telling what a diet of these locusts might do to one's body.

    Thankfully that worry did not happen. Perhaps it was because they were outside the border or because they were spared from the smell of roasted locusts. These locusts had an inexplicable mandible strength and consumptive energy. They were definitely mutated creatures but at least they could be killed by flamethrowers, grenades and other explosive weapons. In contrast, Ancient Seal had no effect on them. However, the biggest problem was there were simply too many of them. Their number was endless.

    The command central issued the next order. A drone was sent in to try to collect the DNA sample from these locusts. A grenade levelled the ground where the strange cat had scrawled out the ominous warning. If it was part of a ritual, it had to be disrupted. However, it did nothing to slow down the locust swarm.

    At that moment, a new development startled everyone. Around the mutated area, from the quarantine circle, signs of life appeared from these seemingly deserted plains, farmlands and forests around Mo Bei...

    "We are registering sights of many insects and birds!"

    Mo Bei had a complicated geography. There were many barren lands. Locust plague was an annual problem, but the government always managed to contain it. However, at that moment, so many locusts appeared in the sky of Mo Bei even though it was not the season for them to be active. Accompanying them were other insects like mosquitoes, flies and flocks of birds. They came from various places of origin but they gathered as they flew towards the mutated area. Had they been dominated by fear or controlled by darkness? There was no telling for now.

    They formed a moving dark cloud in the sky, blocking out the sun.

    "The **..." Lou Xiaoning cursed as she saw the cloud approach. Deng Ximei was stunned as she was reminded of that illusion, that place devoid of life.

    "Shoot them down!" Lou Xiaoning ordered in a hurry, "Do not let them enter the mutated area!"

    Bang, bang, bang. The group aimed their guns at the air. However, their effort barely registered before the great tsunami. If they stood there any longer, they'd be dragged into the mutated area by the insects and birds. Therefore, Elder Tong ordered them to get back into the armored car and prepare to evacuate... He had a feeling the fifth explosion was not going to be long now...

    The insects and birds flew into the mutated area from all sides. They were instantly feasted on by the locust swarm. The birds' caws erupted everywhere. They were indeed gripped by fear. The mutated area turned into a slaughterhouse. However, the insects and birds continued to fly into it, sacrificing their flesh, blood and life for these locusts, for that unknown 'God'.

    "The energy of life will depart from some, while strengthening others."
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