265 A Silent Nigh

    The crevasse in the sky disappeared as the space gate closed. Count Viper was gone from this region along with the nanite container Kiba threw at him.

    Hundreds of meters above the ground, Kiba closed his eyes and let out a deep breath. A cold gust of air swept past him, making his golden hair float.

    "If Count Viper still lives on then I would have to call him Count Cockroach from now on."

    Kiba mused while flying back to the ground. He styled his hair to their original form after which he took out a soft drink can from his storage space.

    "Oh well," Kiba thought while sipping the drink. "It seems I'm forgetting something."

    Kiba crashed the can after which he threw it across the sky. He then turned around, his eyes filled with amusement.

    Some five hundred meters away, on a crater, the two remaining subordinates of Count Viper rose to their feet. Earlier, the ancient flute drained everyone in the forest of their strength in order to open the space gate.

    The surviving subordinates were also affected and they were now exhausted but the impending crisis made them tap in unknown strength. Gritting their teeth, they started running away. They might not fear death but that didn't mean they wanted to die. The desire to live was a primal instinct which not even the brainwashing can suppress forever.

    "You got a chance to leave but you didn't appreciate it," Kiba's voice came from behind. "Now, it is too late."

    The two revolutionaries shuddered in dread but they continued to run. They had crossed some twenty meters when two wind blades sliced through their necks. Their faces were filled with anger and resentment as they crashed down on the ground, never to rise again.

    Kiba then teleported in front of the battle tank that he has taken a liking earlier. He placed a hand on its surface and rays of white light shot out of his palm. They enveloped the tank in the blink of an eye and transferred it to his storage dimension.

    Kiba then snapped his fingers and a digital chip conjured in front of him. An hour ago, when he learned about Count Viper's location and started dashing here, his senses have observed Count Viper's activities through clairvoyance.  He has noticed Count Viper checking a digital map of the core region.

    When he barged in the camp, he destroyed pretty much everything just from his entry. But he ensured the digital map survived. The map was stored in a chip which he silently transferred to his storage dimension before confronting Viper.

    Obviously, at that time, he was angry and almost on verge of insanity. But he did remember the true reason why he left the city and arrived in this forest.

    It was to find a cure for Felicity.

    Saving her was far more important than just quenching his thirst for vengeance. This thought helped him in ensuring he didn't destroy the digital chip while confronting Viper and others.

    "Hopefully it would help me," Kiba thought. The information he has on the core region was limited to what Eva and Emily shared with him in Delta City.

    He wasn't worried though. He has the experience of exploring BSE79 and he knew that would come in handy when the core region opened up.

    Kiba transferred the digital chip back to his storage dimension. He tapped a foot on the ground and soared into the sky...

    At the same time, around two miles away.

    A silver-haired girl - in early twenties- rose to her feet by taking support from a tree. On her lips, there were spider bites piercing.

    She was none other than Alina.

    "Seems like Count Viper and others were attacked while I was taking a stroll," Alina muttered while wiping sweat from her face.

    She bitterly smiled while wondering if she should be sad or happy. She was disillusioned with revolution and didn't care about their mission but she didn't want her people to die.

    "Count Viper used the treasure imparted by the elders so he must have survived at the least," Alina thought while remembering the melodious tune she heard. The ethereal tune sucked every bit of energy from her while making her enter a trance.

    Alina retrieved a few pills from her storage bracelet and stuffed them in her mouth. They melted into streams of energy, filling her drained body with strength to the brim.

    "I can now explore the forest on my own by reasoning I'm trying to find others," Alina's lips curved up into a smile. "Given the circumstances, the Elders couldn't fault me."

    She humped her favorite song while happily starting her journey...

    Some ten miles away.

    On a grass track, Ashlyn's joyful smile faded and was now replaced with her usual cold poker expression.

    She shook her head, trying to understand why she felt cheerful when she heard the music notes some time ago. The graceful tune sucked her strength but made her forgot every bad memory about her cursed existence.

    Ashlyn took a deep breath while retrieving energy pills from her storage space. Streams of blue light enveloped around her black suit as she consumed the pills.

    "Are you all right?" Kiba's voice came from the sky.

    Ashlyn raised her head and looked on as he appeared right in front of her. She nodded her head.

    "That's good to know," Kiba responded with a smile.

    "Are you fine?" Ashlyn enquired. She clearly remembered how they were about to enter her crystal house to rest for the night when he suddenly turned furious and rushed out explosively.

    "Yeap," Kiba answered. "Sorry for disappearing like that."

    Ashlyn didn't reply. She turned around and started walking towards the crystal house.

    "And thank you," Kiba added as he walked alongside her. They were a few miles from the crystal house so he knew she was rushing to help him. The use of flute stopped her but it was her intention that counted.

    Ashlyn didn't respond. They increased their pace and silently returned to the crystal house under the night sky.

    "Good night."
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