“Get everyone ready immediately!” Liu Yan hurried downstairs. “Move all of the equipment out of the storage room, quickly!”
Hu Jue tried to keep up with Liu Yan as they ran across the whole field. “Is there any point?”
“It’s definitely possible, Hu Jue! Send some people out, figure out a way to get Meng Feng and Zhang Mun back! Hurry! The others, follow me! Move the equipment! Xie Fenghua! Get Ding Lan here! Open the storage room!” Liu Yan shouted.
At that moment, the entire school was panic-stricken. People were running out of the dormitory and classrooms, standing behind the school building and looking at Liu Yan from afar.
Ding Lan’s hand was shaking, nearly dropping the keys a few times. Xie Fenghua took them over and opened the large lock.
Liu Yan turned around and said, “All of you… Is everyone here?”
Hundreds of people were looking at Liu Yan blankly. “Are the zombies coming? Where’s Meng Feng?” someone asked.
Even in the midst of the blizzard, the people were remaining calm.
Liu Yan, “Meng Feng went out on a scout mission. He’ll be back soon. There’s a large wave of zombies approaching from the northwest. They’re avoiding the ice and snow, and will be here soon. I’ve already made defensive preparations beforehand, so now I’m asking for everyone’s help to finish the emergency defenses.”
Hu Jue, “The zombies are only passing by, maybe a small number of them will invade. As long as we listen to Liu Yan, everyone will be fine.”
Liu Yan, “I’ll be with all of you. Wait for Meng Feng to return. Trust me, all of us will make it. Hurry! Start to move the equipment! Move all the generators up to the roof!”
The group dispersed, starting to move the items according to the instructions.
“Where’s Lin Musen?” Wu Weiguang came over and asked.
Liu Yan, “He’s still upstairs talking to the two newcomers… Pastor, take the children to the rooftop and toss the cables down. You’re called Qian Huairen, right? I remember you. Take three people with you and tie all the wire connectors onto the fence.”
Liu Yan was busy running around the entire school grounds. In an instant, the chaos of war had erupted and everyone was starting to move. The men moved the batteries up to the roof of the school building, setting them down in the middle, where a month earlier, thirteen pipes of cement had been cast.
The wind was fierce and biting up there on the roof, to the point where the gale could almost bite off their ears. Liu Yan instructed people to set up the 30 metre tall wind turbine pole by sticking it in the cement pipes. The hundreds of fan blades started to spin wildly in the wind, creating a swirling vortex of snow behind it. It was quite a magnificent sight.
“Liu Yan, this is your defensive measure?” Wang Shu came upstairs and said.
Liu Yan turned his head, saw that it was Lin Musen’s follower, and asked, “Where’s Brother Sen?”
Wang Shu, “He told you to ready the resources in the garage, which means that he’s telling you to inspect the vehicles, open the garage and drive the cars out of the garage. Yet you’re playing around with this rubbish? Liu Yan, are you pretending to be stupid or are you actually stupid?!”
As soon as those words were said, the dozens of people on the roof were immediately alert. Qian Huairen asked, “What’s going on? He wants to abandon us and escape?”
Wang Shu, “A hundred thousand zombies? If you’re not running, what are you waiting for? Liu Yan! Are you insane?”
Everyone immediately started to panic. “Don’t be afraid. I’ll go speak to him,” Liu Yan said.
Wang Shu blocked his path. “He doesn’t have time to see you now.”
Liu Yan was running out of patience, but with the enemy on the horizon, and without Meng Feng by his side, he couldn’t let another incident happen. Hu Jue interrupted, “What’s Brother Sen doing?”
Wang Shu, “He’s… Forget it. Liu Yan, what on earth are you planning to do?”
Another person came up from the third floor to the rooftop. It was an unfamiliar man.
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Hu Jue glanced at his watch. It was already mid-afternoon. Liu Yan turned to the others and said, “You all still have to eat. Don’t worry. Head back and eat. I’ll explain in greater detail to all of you later.”
Hu Jue brought them down for their meal. The newcomer stretched out his hand. “Hello, I’m Tang Yichuan. You’re Liu Yan?”
Liu Yan, “That’s right. When will Lin Musen be free to meet with people?”
Tang Yichuan shook his head. He looked around at the wind turbines that had been set up all around them. “I’m not sure. You’re setting up an arc splitting Tesla coil?”
Liu Yan was a bit surprised. “Yes. You know about this?”
“I studied in the field of energy in physics. This design is not bad. It has to be strengthened a bit. The primary coil circuit is a bit unbalanced. It can easily cause some small explosions,” Tang Yichuan said.
Liu Yan let out a sigh of relief. “You came at such a good time. Let’s talk downstairs.”
The zombies hadn’t arrived yet. Under Hu Jue and Wu Weiguang’s efforts, the people slowly started to calm down from their panic. Of course, Auntie Yu was the one who called the shots in the end.
“Look at this, the food today is the same as always. Everyone will live on well, otherwise why would the meat be brought out?” Auntie Yu said as she distributed the food.
Those words soothes the hearts of the survivors completely. Everyone sat around the canteen at their respective tables, and started to eat.
A blueprint was laid out on the table in front of Liu Yan. Tang Yichuan was sitting across from him, making a few changes to the circuit layouts with a pen. He put the cap back on the pen and said, “It will last a lot longer like this. There’s a lot of water vapour on snowy days. The coil will definitely be even more useful.”
Liu Yan’s mouth was stuffed full of rice. “Do you think electricity will work on zombies?”
Tang Yichuan met Liu Yan’s eyes, and nodded. “Yes. It’s very strong against them. The high voltage generated in that instant can destroy their central nervous system and completely render them immobile.”
Liu Yan was very relieved. A long time ago, he had also discussed this with Xiao Lei.
Zombies and humans were actually quite similar to each other. They were not immortal. The core of their nervous system was in the brain. The brain operated by sending electrical signals through the nervous system to command the rest of the body to move.
Once the electrical surge destroyed their nervous system, leaving them with only a mouth on their head, the problem would be solved.
The Tesla coil was a kind of high frequency voltage device that used a transformer to generate millions of volts of electricity. However, when the zombie outbreak happened, there were power outages in most regions, so no one had ever tried this before.
“What does your sister do?” Liu Yan asked.
“She’s an actress,” Tang Yichuan replied. “To cut a long story short… The one you call Brother Sen is the leader here?”
Liu Yan, “The situation is a bit complicated. I have to go and modify these circuits now. When everyone survives and is safe, let’s talk in more detail.”
Tang Yichuan nodded his head amiably. “Sure. I’ll help you.”
Liu Yan, “Can you ask your sister to calm Lin Musen down?”
Tang Yichuan understood immediately. He was silent for a moment, then said, “Yes, but he’s already…”
Liu Yan, “Go and talk it over with her. Ask her to convince Lin Musen to stay.”
Liu Yan went back to retrieve a few shunts. Most of the lights in the area were off, except for the ones in the hall of the school building.
On the stairs of the second floor of the hall, Liu Yan disassembled a transformer. According to the changes on the blueprint that Tang Yichuan made, he started to modify it.
“Can I help you with anything?” Xie Fenghua was holding a lunchbox as she came to sit by him.
Liu Yan looked at her lunchbox, and said, “No. Is that all you’re eating? How come the food you eat is different from ours?”
Xie Fenghua shrugged and mixed her soup and rice up with a spoon.
Xie Fenghua, “You just noticed?”
Liu Yan, “Go and tell Hu Jue that if he treats you differently and doesn’t let you guys eat properly, I’ll use him as a guinea pig for my Tesla coil.”
Xie Fenghua laughed. “He probably doesn’t even know what that is.”
Liu Yan, “He just needs to know that it’s a very powerful toy… Help me hold this down.”
Xie Fenghua helped Liu Yan with a metal spring, and asked, “Have you seen that newcomer? That lady?”
Liu Yan, “No, why? She’s infected?”
Xie Fenghua, “No, she’s very healthy. Guess who she is?”
Liu Yan frowned, using a screwdriver to carefully loosen a screw.
The name that Xie Fenghua next said was a very famous and renowned name. Liu Yan nearly dropped the screw into the transformer he was working on.
Xie Fenghua laughed. “You like her?”
Liu Yan, “I don’t dislike her, but I can’t say I like her. She’s been in a lot of movies, and she’s a queen in the movie industry… Gosh. I never thought I would ever live in the same building as her.”
Xie Fenghua, “I heard her say that her real name is Tang Yixiao. The other name is just her stage name.”
Liu Yan thought about it for a moment, then said, “Actually, I don’t have anything against movie stars. I’m just very shocked. Meng Feng and Zhang Min will definitely like it. I remember Zhang Min saying something before… That she was his idol in middle school. Are you sure it’s her?”
Xie Fenghua looked upstairs. “There, look. She’s out.”
That female celebrity had tidied up her messy hair, and closed the door to Lin Musen’s room as she came out. She was holding a branded bag. There was an obvious red flush to her neck.
Xie Fenghua and Liu Yan were aware of what happened. The heels on Tang Yixiao’s high heeled shoes were broken, obviously to make it easier to run and survive. When she walked though, she unconsciously walked on the tips of her toes as if the heels were still there.
She carried her handbag elegantly as she made her way downstairs. She glanced arrogantly at Xie Fenghua and Liu Yan, and asked, “My brother?”
Liu Yan, “He might be outside. You can go out and take a look.”
Tang Yixiao walked away without a word.
Liu Yan placed the transformer on the steps, and quickly headed upstairs. He knocked twice, then couldn’t help himself and pushed the door open immediately to enter Lin Musen’s office.
Lin Musen’s shirt was open, and he sat on his swivel chair, smoking his cigarette, with a satisfied expression on his face.
“Is everything ready?” Lin Musen grinned. “We leave at three o’clock.”
“No,” Liu Yan said. “No one is leaving.”
Lin Musen’s smile disappeared.
Liu Yan, “If we leave now, we’ll die. I’ve waited for the chance to explain this to you. A massive number of zombies is in the south. Where do you want to go?”
“Liu Yan, are you serious?” Lin Musen said coldly.
Liu Yan, “I swear on my life, no one will die. Meng Feng and I made very careful and thorough arrangements to the terrain here a month ago…”
Lin Musen didn’t wait for Liu Yan to finish speaking before roaring, “You’re insane! Liu Yan! A hundred thousand zombies! Do you know what one hundred thousand of them means?!”
Liu Yan wasn’t agitated. He knew that shouting at Lin Musen would not solve anything, so he said seriously, “Brother Sen. No matter where you run to, there will only be death. It’s only a difference between dying now or dying later. Xi’an has a population of nearly seven million. Henan province is nearly one billion. Those people who were turned into zombies already started to head south. Even if it’s only ten percent of them, that’s still twenty million of them.”
“If you leave now, it will only mean being chased by those zombies. Do you want to go south? Back to where we came? When Meng Feng proposed to go to Tibet through Sichuan, you didn’t accept the idea. Now the only road to survival has been cut off. There is no way you can move through the zombie horde and escape into Sichuan.”
Lin Musen didn’t speak. Liu Yan continued. “A hundred thousand zombies is only the first wave. These zombies can’t have assembled, so they must be dispersed, and the ones that reach us first are only a very small part of it, probably about five thousand to ten thousand of them at a time. It’s very possible to deal with the zombies in batches.”
“You think that if we deal with them in ‘batches’, you can kill off one hundred thousand?!” It was as if Lin Musen had heard an amazing joke.
“We can try,” Liu Yan said. “If we follow Meng Feng’s battle defense plans, we can at least buy three days worth of buffer time. We have to wait here until the right moment, until Meng Feng and Zhang Min return, until the first few large batches of zombies pass through, then we can go all out and go north against the zombie tide. If we do this, it will be a hundred times easier for us to deal with the pressure.”
“Zhang Min is skilled in directing guerilla tactics. If we can use those tactics, then we use them. If we can’t, then we’ll force our way with guns and bullets. Think about it, is twenty or thirty thousand zombies dispersed, scattered around in the wild more terrifying, or is one hundred thousand zombies as an obstacle in front of you more terrifying?”
Lin Musen was silent.
Liu Yan continued. “We have to use our defenses to kill off some of them, then bypass the next wave of zombies. Only once we successfully go north will we truly be safe. At least in this winter, the cold will be the zombies’ greatest obstacle to their mobility. We don’t have to worry about surviving. That’s all.”
Lin Musen, “Are you really sure this will work? All of our lives will be in your hands.”
Liu Yan sighed. After a long time, he said, “Brother Sen. Meng Feng isn’t back yet. I won’t be going anywhere. I believe I can hold the place down, but now we still have time to choose.”
“One, if you want to leave now, leave. However many people you want to bring along, however many things you want to take, hurry up and instruct them to evacuate. Then ask the others, whoever is willing to follow you and self-volunteer, go wherever you want to go, whether they live or die, everyone can try their luck. Other than the batteries upstairs, I don’t want to keep anything. Besides, you can’t bring the generators or batteries with you. Treat it as a little something to give me after following you for so long. Being acquainted with you was fate. I’ll wish you good luck, and hope that we’ll still have a chance to meet in the future.”
“Two, join us, stay and fight. As long as we hold out until Meng Feng and Zhang Min return, we’ll be safe.”
Liu Yan lifted his gaze, and looked at Lin Musen steadily.
“Go ahead and choose, Brother Sen.”
Lin Musen saw a kind of crazy confidence in Liu Yan’s eyes. The two of them stood face to face for a long time, until Lin Musen finally said, “Okay. I trust you. Don’t disappoint me. What do you need me to do?”
“You just have to sit here, watch over everyone and maintain morale,” Liu Yan said.