Hearing Nathan's question and seeing his warm smile, everyone in the area fell silent.
In the case of Team 1, they found themselves lost because one of their orders was to escort Ashleigh away to safety.
As for Ashleigh herself, she felt conflicted.
Truth be told, even she was starting to fear Nathan as well.
Although she wanted to have a private talk with him and explain why she didn't tell him she was a Chosen One, every time she sees him, he always ends up in conflict with someone else due to his behavior.
He was just too unstable, too violent. Someone that she shouldn't associate with.
Yes, she was thankful that Nathan never once laid a hand on her and even helped her back when the zombie apocalypse first started. But after witnessing what just happened now to her fellow teammates, the desire to distance herself from him as much as possible was stronger.
Everyone, including Nathan, noticed the conflicting emotions within her eyes.
"Nathan... Sorry, but I already made plans with Rose tonight to have dinner. So maybe –"
"My dearest sister-in-law, you know that it's been a while since we spent time together. I was hoping we could catch up and all."
"True. B-But maybe we can set it for another time? How about tomorrow? It's our rest day anyway."
Nathan just stared at her, still wearing a warm smile.
Her palms started to sweat and her knees weakened.
During these past few days, as a person who was fearful in nature and hates violence, she knew that she had no choice but to toughen up and face her fears if she wanted to survive in this zombie apocalypse. This is why she has been training every morning and even requested to be part of the Scavenger Teams. And with the support of her friends and teammates here, although she was still afraid, she was slowly building up her courage with each passing day.
However, upon seeing how Nathan ruthlessly beat up her teammates singlehandedly, most of the courage she built up until now started to waver.
Fortunately for her, there was a brave soul… or perhaps a vengeful soul willing to save her at this moment.
"Miss Ashleigh, we've also been ordered by the Boss to escort you to her for your scheduled dinner date."
It was Tyrone.
Ashleigh looked at Tyrone and a sense of gratitude bloomed inside her heart.
On the other hand, the warm smile plastered on Nathan's face slowly faded away.
Everyone tensed up.
However, his face didn't display anger or frustration, nor did he attack. Instead, he just stood there with a calm expression.
"Well, I guess it can't be helped then," Nathan said.
He picked up his backpack and walked away, leaving everyone surprised.
Haven Town – Northwest.
Nathan was walking down the streets alone while smoking a cigarette.
Normally, he doesn't like to smoke while walking. To him, a cigarette must be enjoyed in a relaxing and comfortable manner.
But at this moment, for some reason, the feeling of walking down the streets alone and not being invisible with people around instead of zombies made him jumpy and uncomfortable.
He felt so naked, so vulnerable as if everyone's eyes were locked on him.
As a self-proclaimed lone wolf, before the zombie apocalypse, he disliked going to crowded places. However, the feeling that he was experiencing right now was just too intense.
He had other issues in his mind as well.
Firstly, since the zombie apocalypse began, he now couldn't imagine himself having someone to specifically cook for him a nice and warm meal in fear of poison.
Secondly, he doesn't feel safe at Haven Manor at all and would never sleep there.
Thirdly, he was having a hard time controlling his temper.
'This… When did I become so dysfunctional?'
He tried to think about something else.
Ashleigh's face flashed inside his head.
'That traitorous bimbo. I shouldn't have helped her back then. Because of how well she is being treated here and her status as a Chosen One, she had the guts to refuse my invitation!'
Nathan spat on the ground.
'But thinking about it now, this was something that I should've expected right from the start. I was a fool to even expect something different. Regardless of what era, female nature or just human nature in general will never change – a person will always pick the side that's most comfortable and beneficial for them.'
He thought about what he was going to do tomorrow after taking Harry's head.
'Hmm... my only choice is to make an excuse that I will be grinding at Cram city tomorrow but will instead secretly sneak into Saint Holy Child Hospital at Saint Town to look for Amir.'
His mind then shifted to another issue.
'But what about my training with Germaine? I also need to learn about parkour and other things.'
He felt conflicted. In his mind, he was only able to suppress most of his opponents due to high level and invisibility. If his stats were the same as the opponent or if he loses his invisibility skill, he wasn't confident if he could even win.
His mind shifted back to Amir.
'If I could save Amir tomorrow, then at least I will have from freedom back and I could think about getting even later. Aside from that, there's also the issue about the government... Assuming what that bitch said is true.'
Rose told him that the government wasn't interested in eliminating the zombie threat once and for all in favor of leveIing up and learning more about the System to the point of even conducting human experiments.
In some way, he could understand why the government would do this.
Who wouldn't be tempted by the System? The fact that every human has it means anyone can obtain superhuman strength as long as they level up.
Sure, there could be some people out there that aren't tempted by it and wants to end the zombie threat as soon as possible. However, there are also people who desire it.
If those who desire it are from high positions or want to be in high positions decide to build an army of superhumans, that would definitely pose as a big threat, not only to the people of this country but also to other countries as well.
However, there was an issue: The source of EXP was limited.
Right now, the only source of EXP were humans that turned into zombies. Animals were still just normal animals.
Although there are about 7 billion humans around the world, it still was a limited number. That number would eventually die out.
He wouldn't be surprised to hear if some countries have also begun human cloning or invade other countries to turn the people into zombies.
With the limited source of EXP, it's no wonder the Womanian government isn't interested in ending the zombie threat.
As for his agreement with Rose and her personality, he would be a fool to believe that she will keep her word.
If he was going to join a group, it must be in equal terms where both parties share the same interests or at least find it very costly if they decide to betray one another.
If he was going to form his own group, he would still need to interact with others aside from Amir.
There's also the issue about his family back in Muwin.
If he decides to go solo, no matter how strong he is, if a group of elites backed up with their vast resources and technology bands together to take him out, even he would be powerless to stop them.
'Sigh… Why can't things just be simple? Where is my [Plot Item] or cheat?'
He held open his palm.
'Even with the strength I have right now, I'm still as powerless as ever, still struggling, still having to bend over to the rules of society. Are humans bound to be weak, social creatures that need to depend on others no matter what?'
He closed his palm.
Outside of Haven Town to the North deep within the mountains.
Rose just met Brezine and Ashleigh not long ago.
Upon seeing their state, she was displeased with Nathan's actions. Fortunately, he didn't kill Brezine and Ashleigh.
If he had…
Rose and a female assistant were walking in an underground tunnel that was just enough for a single 6-wheeler truck to pass through.
The floor and walls were coated with cement and there were fluorescent bulbs on the sides,10 feet away from each other.
Up ahead, there was a closed large steel double door guarded by two guards who were extremely loyal Red Dust, specifically to the previous leader.
"Boss, that Nathan. What he did to Brezine and her team –"
"I'm sorry, Boss."
"I understand where you're coming from and I know how much you care about the overall safety of this town."
"You are very wise, Boss."
"People like Nathan are like bullied children who one day was given the power to fight back. Right now, he's acting out but will eventually calm down once he has his fill."
"And if he goes too far or doesn't calm down?"
Rose's red lips curled up and formed into a smile that wasn't exactly a smile.
Paul felt a chill ran up her spine.
"Good evening, Boss."
The two guards who were guarding the large steel double door greeted Rose when she was about 10 feet away from them.
"I received the message from my father."
The two guards glanced over at Rose and Paula.
After deciding that there was nothing out of the ordinary, one of the guards turned to a camera discreetly positioned on the side and gave and O.K. signal.
The large steel double door was opened from the inside.
Rose and Paula entered.
Inside, the place was like a high-end hotel. The only difference was that there were no windows but the place had a ventilation system.
"Good evening, Boss."
She was greeted by two guards and a female maid about 45 years old.
Rose, Paula, and the maid started walking together.
"Marcella, how's my father?" Rose asked the female maid.
Marcella was one of the long-time employees at Haven Manor. She used to take care of Rose's eldest half-brother when he was still a baby.
"He's doing well. Although sometimes he gets a little stressed out when the twins bombard him questions about when will they get to go outside to play."
"It's good to hear that my father could still keep up with those little siblings of mine that are always full of energy."
"It's largely thanks to the power of the System."
The System was miraculous.
According to the research from one of Rose's contacts from the government and also Red Dust's own research, the average person has 10 VIT points, giving them an average lifespan of 80 years. And every time a person increases their VIT by 1 point, it gives that individual an extra 1 year on their lifespan.
The trio finally arrived to a large room that what looks like a mini-park.
The sound of laughter could be heard.
A pair of fraternal twins about 8 years old with blonde hair cried out excitedly and rushed to Rose.
They hugged each of her legs.
Rose patted their heads.
"Big sister, you're just in time. The burgers that father is cooking are almost done," said Rica.
"Big sister, when will we be able to go out? I want to go to the beach and play. It's almost my birthday," said Rico.
"My birthday is also your birthday, but I'm not asking for anything. I'm a good girl, right, big sister? I just want more toys."
"No, my birthday is my birthday. You can have yours on a different day."
"No, we have the same birthday. And as your big sister, you should believe what I say."
"Who said you're my big sister? I'm the eldest here. You should –"
Rose started pinching their cheeks.
"All right you two. Stop fighting. I'm going to talk to father for a moment. So please behave, okay?"
"Yes, big sister."
"Yes, big sister."
"Stop copying what I say."
"No, I'm not."
"No, you are."
"No, YOU are."
They started pushing each other.
Marcella cleared her throat.
The two kids flinched and immediately quieted down.
However, they were eyeing each other, arguing with their eyes.
Rose shook her head and walked away. She could only imagine what her father had to go through every day.
She found her father wearing an apron and grilling burger patties and some vegetables.
Her father's name was Rhett. He was Caucasian with gray hair and was 68 years old.
Rose had 5 siblings.
The eldest children, Remington and Raphael, were from the first marriage.
Rose and Richard were from the second marriage.
And lastly, Rica and Rico were children from the current wife.
Remington, the supposed heir to Red Dust once Rhett retires, had gone missing. When the zombie apocalypse began, he was currently overseas for a business meeting and no news about him has been heard since then.
Raphael, on the other hand, was the black sheep of the family that Rose had to kill when they were both aiming for the position as the leader of Red Dust back when the zombie apocalypse began.
I hope you guys enjoyed this chapter. Thank you for reading!
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Thank you once again and I'll see you in the next chapter.
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