Chapter 7.2 – Knotted Tail
Lu Bafang added: “They are special soldiers, and they all have weird personalities. They have the characteristics of infected creatures. Only the General can move them and we rarely see them.”
Shi Yuan thought about it for a long time and said, “Then Lu Tinghan is so pitiful. Surrounded by such a terrifying group of people, how scared he must be every day.”
Lu Bafang froze for a moment and suddenly laughed. As if he heard something totally funny, he laughed until his body was shaking, and laughed until the table trembled slightly. He shook his head and said, “Shi Yuan, the General won’t be afraid, how could he be?”
Shi Yuan was confused.
Lu Bafang did not explain, smiled and shook his head, ate the rest of the bread in two bites, and his eyes fell behind him. “But why is your… er, tail tied in a knot?”
At the top of Shi Yuan’s tail, there was a knot.
“I was a little scared just now,” he explained.
“Ah, I can understand, to be honest I’m a little scared of them.” Lu Bafang reassured him, “Don’t worry, they’re definitely not bad people. They are gone, you can untie it, I think you feel uncomfortable.”
“I’ll try,” Shi Yuan said.
It was originally a very loose knot, but the tail was knotted in a twisted posture, Shi Yuan couldn’t untie it and became more and more afraid. As soon as he became afraid, the tip of his tail reacted and exerted a force, now it was completely knotted, and the scales were tightly stuck.
No matter how hard he tried, no matter how he used his hands to break it, he couldn’t untie it.
Lu Bafang looked at him anxiously and said, “Let me do it, I’ll help you.”
He grabbed Shi Yuan’s tail with his hands, and carefully exerted force, tugging on different parts to try to separate them. When there was a thin layer of sweat on his back, the knot remained motionless.
“It’s weird, why can’t it be untied?” he muttered. “It’s stuck.”
“Then what should I do?” Shi Yuan asked, looking at his tail worriedly. “I’ve never tied a knot before.”
“Don’t worry, I’ll think of a way,” Lu Bafang said.
He took Shi Yuan back to the tent, took some water in the bucket, and then took a piece of soap, and told Shi Yuan, “I went out to play when I was a child, and my head got stuck in the railing, and my dad took soapy water to rub me out. I was rescued, but it’s a pity that my handsome head was almost squashed.”
Shi Yuan said, “Don’t squash my tail.”
“No, I won’t,” Lu Bafang promised, pouring soapy water on Shi Yuan’s tail, and continued to untie.
It didn’t work.
Lu Bafang went to ask for cooking oil and poured it on his tail.
It still didn’t work.
Shi Yuan became more and more worried: “It won’t be knotted forever, right?”
He didn’t want a knotted tail.
“Surely, there must be a way.” Lu Bafang wiped the sweat from his forehead, sat on the chair, and drank several gulps of water in a row. “We just have to try more. This little thing, hey I just don’t believe in this evil…”
They worked together for more than 20 minutes, pulling hard and trying to no avail.
As soon as Wang Yu finished taking care of the patient, she came back and saw the two of them squatting together and asked in confusion, “What are you doing?”
Lu Bafang explained the matter again, and Wang Yu said, “Hm, what a big deal, let me do it.”
Confidently, she rolled up her sleeves and worked hard for more than ten minutes. The knot was tightly twisted and did not budge. She was also confused, sat down, and murmured, “I’ve never seen a snake tied to a tight knot either, how come the tail is stuck…”
The three looked at each other, unable to do anything.
Lu Bafang rubbed his face and let out a long sigh: “Break, let’s have a break, let me rest for a bit before thinking of a solution.”
“You shouldn’t have brought him near the mutants, look how scared he has become.” Wang Yu frowned and continued to study the soapy water.
Shi Yuan washed his tail clean. He was a little sad, and also thought that after so long, Lu Tinghan should be back.
Sure enough, after ten minutes, the knot was not solved, and the three aircraft had already passed through the night with a shrill sound and stopped in the open space to the west of the garrison.
The team was back.
Shi Yuan didn’t care about the knot, and trotted over, Lu Bafang chased after him and shouted, “Slow down, be careful!”
Shi Yuan saw the aircraft from a distance.
It was already dark, and the lights of the garrison lit up one by one, reflecting the long night. The pure black metal shell of the aircraft shone beautifully with the chill of the wasteland.
A large group of soldiers stood guard around, silently stopping Shi Yuan, who was forced to stop his pace and look through the gap between them to see One-Eyed Dragon and several mutants.
Shi Yuan’s tail curled even tighter, if it wasn’t for searching for someone, he would have turned tail and run.
So where was Lu Tinghan?
He stood on his tiptoes and tried to find him.
Not long after, a conversation came from inside a tent, the curtain was lifted, and the huge container inside contained half of the tentacles. It twisted in the transparent liquid, oozing green blood. Several people came out of the tent, including Xing Yifeng.
The soldiers stood up straight and saluted those who came.
Among the several unfamiliar faces, Shi Yuan searched anxiously and finally saw Lu Tinghan. Followed by many soldiers, Lu Tinghan walked towards the aircraft, wearing a black coat with gold trim, the tail end raised in the wind, his military boots gleaming. He took off the blood-stained gloves and handed them to Xing Yifeng, who immediately handed over a brand-new pair.
“Lu Tinghan!” Shi Yuan shouted.
This time, Lu Tinghan didn’t hear it.
Shi Yuan shouted a few more times, but they were too far apart. A soldier looked at him: “Where are you from, go back!”
Lu Bafang, who followed him, explained, “He was saved by our third team.”
Soldier: “Don’t get close, leave immediately.”
Lu Tinghan walked straight forward, and the mutants greeted him-they were the most terrifying people Shi Yuan had ever seen, with eyes like sharp blades and aggressive wildness. The infection changed their minds. Some people sniffed the wind like beasts, some explored the darkness with bright vertical pupils, and some moved their sharp claws, their bones crackling and popping.
Wolf Claw said something to Lu Tinghan.
To Shi Yuan’s surprise, in front of Lu Tinghan, whether it was the two-meter-tall sturdy man or the cold and pale snake-scaled man, their rebelliousness and roughness were cleaned up, standing straight and serious, they became the most disciplined soldiers.
They looked weird and respectful, like a pack of wolves waiting around, bowing their heads, and obeying orders.
Shi Yuan watched this scene in a daze.
He suddenly understood what Lu Bafang was laughing at at that time.
Of course, Lu Tinghan would not be afraid.
These terrifying humans were willing, and perhaps only willing, to listen to his command; they were the wolves that tore at the enemy, they were the knives that stabbed the decay, and they were Lu Tinghan’s subordinates.
The soldier urged him again: “Don’t stand here, this is not where you should be.”
Lu Bafang responded, stretched out his hand to pull Shi Yuan, and said in a low voice, “You have seen him now, it’s too cold, let’s go back.”
The guards in front of Shi Yuan were expressionless. Their broad shoulders formed a solid line of defense. Mutants, fully-armed soldiers, and doctors in white robes surrounded Lu Tinghan. Their epaulettes and badges were shiny and dazzling. Through so many people, and through the long night, it was impossible for Lu Tinghan to hear his call.
The shadows on Lu Tinghan’s face were as thick as oil paintings, and his hands were slender, powerful, and deadly.
He didn’t have the flamboyant vigor of the mutants, but he was taller and more heroic than ordinary soldiers. He always seemed graceful, whether he was pulling the trigger or looking down, listening to the report of Wolf Claw, while slowly putting on pure white gloves, there was no difference between killing and listening.
He walked forward and didn’t look back.
At this moment, Shi Yuan suddenly felt that he was far, far away from Lu Tinghan.
Obviously, he had just found Lu Tinghan, but everyone was telling him that they couldn’t be together.
Xing Yifeng said ‘the general is very busy and can’t see you’; Wang Yu said ‘forget about the general, you really have no chance’; even Lu Bafang said ‘no need to thank him in person, just look at him from a distance’.
Shi Yuan once thought that Lu Tinghan was an ordinary person, and he could find him as long as he went to the city. He thought that during those ten years, Lu Tinghan was only responsible for staying at the observation tower, he didn’t touch the war at all, and he was just ordinary and nameless. Now he looked at Lu Tinghan from afar and understood, Lu Tinghan had done so much more than he had imagined – he was famous and powerful, the people around him were the people he commanded, the city far away was the city he guarded, the bills he signed, his controversies, his choices, Shi Yuan might not be able to understand for the rest of his life.
And Shi Yuan had nothing.
Except for a tail that got knotted out of fear.
In the past, they were all alone and belonged only to each other.
Now his human was high up and out of reach.
Shi Yuan just looked at Lu Tinghan walking towards the aircraft.
He suddenly had a strong premonition: if he missed this time, it would be very difficult for them to meet again.
He felt that he should be afraid of Lu Tinghan. Compared with the group of mutants, Lu Tinghan must have killed a lot more monsters.
But Lu Tinghan was his human.
Lu Tinghan should touch his head, scratch his chin, and stay with him for a whole day without getting bored.
He was really an abyss that was afraid of being alone.
“…Hey! What are you doing?!” the soldier exclaimed.
Shi Yuan’s movements were very fast, he lowered his body and jumped suddenly like a cat, and he really penetrated through the weakest part of the guard. The soldier was about to grab him with his backhand, his hand was enough to reach his shirt, and he suddenly stopped—
Lu Tinghan looked here and stretched out his hand.
The palm of the hand was turned outward, a smooth and irrefutable stop.
The soldier’s movements came to a halt, allowing Shi Yuan to pass by.
Countless people’s hands were on the guns, and there were several dark muzzles aimed at Shi Yuan’s eyebrows in the dark, all of which stopped because of Lu Tinghan’s movements.
The north wind was cold, the wasteland was cold, and everyone breathed white air, but Shi Yuan was a warm mass.
Wearing a fluffy coat that didn’t fit well, he trotted all the way, with timidity and desperate courage. With warmth, heat, and a little fragrance of potato soup, he threw himself into Lu Tinghan’s arms, and the tail with a knotted tip swung around in front of Lu Tinghan’s eyes, extraordinarily cheerful, like a ribbon waving in the wind.
He was a little scared and a little expectant, his eyes were bright, and he whispered: “Lu Tinghan, my tail is knotted, can you help me untie it?”
Hey guys, I just finished translating “He Holds a Rose from the Abyss“, you can now binge-read it. Enjoy~ 🙂