Chapter 360 In a good mood today
When Ren Xiaosu returned to the battlefield, he saw the corpses of his enemies left behind in the uneven valley. Soon after Wang Congyang fled, the fearsome bandits from the north were routed.
Most of these bandits had already fled into the wilderness and gone missing. Meanwhile, Jin Lan and Zhang Yiheng were frantically thanking the shadow clone, “Master Xu, I didn’t expect you to show up and help us out personally. Thank you so much!”
Ren Xiaosu’s eyes kept twitching when he heard those thanks. He did not even gain a single gratitude token from it.
At this moment, Ren Xiaosu wanted to lay all his cards on the table. That was not Xu Xianchu’s shadow clone but his! But Ren Xiaosu eventually managed to hold back from doing so because he still had not thought of how to give Xu Xianchu an explanation yet.
Ren Xiaosu said to the shadow clone, “Old Xu, go back and report to Commander Zhang that we’ve defeated a large bandit gang here in the valley.”
There used to be three large bandit gangs that were active in the valley, and now, one of them had been eliminated.
The bandits who had escaped might go on to join the other bandit gangs, but this battle here was a complete victory.
When Jin Lan heard that, he thought that Ren Xiaosu was getting Xu Xianchu to go back to report about their contributions.
However, Ren Xiaosu coughed and said, “I got Old Xu to return to Stronghold 178 to put in some good words for all of us. The commander might be happy when he hears what Old Xu has to say and immediately recruit y’all to join Stronghold 178, so you should know what to do now, shouldn’t you?”
While Ren Xiaosu waited for everyone to thank him, he watched Jin Lan, Zhang Yiheng, and the others started bowing to the shadow at a 90-degree angle and saying, “Thank you, Master Xu!”
Ren Xiaosu was speechless. ‘Are they fucking rebelling?!’
Yang Xiaojin walked over from the wilderness looking extremely exhausted. Tonight, she had made some significant contributions to the battle. If it weren’t for her, Jin Lan and the others would be dead.
Yang Xiaojin looked at Ren Xiaosu and asked, “How many of our people were lost or injured?”
The excitement on Jin Lan’s face immediately faded as he sighed and said, “More than a 100 of our brothers have died. The houses we just built have been destroyed, while our fellow villagers have also died and been injured.”
“Let’s treat our brothers’ wounds first.” Ren Xiaosu took out ten bottles of black medicine and handed them to Jin Lan. “Take the bullets out of their wounds first. This is a secret remedy passed down through my family. You can apply it directly to the wound. One bottle is enough for five to six uses. Just make sure it isn’t drunk.”
It might be gratifying to win the battle, but what about the aftermath? The dead could not be resurrected.
Zhang Yiheng stood in the devastated wasteland looking a little confused. The refugees in the distance were crying.
More than half of the settlement’s mud houses had been toppled by the steam locomotive, while none of the brick houses remained standing. Even the ditches had given way and were now a total mess.
It would be great if even half of the crops they planted could end up germinating.
Zhang Yiheng slowly walked through the crowd. Some of his injured brothers were crying out in pain, while the ones who were OK stayed around to comfort them.
When he walked past a refugee, a child cried out at him, “It’s all your fault! Those bandits came here because of all y’all!”
But before Zhang Yiheng could speak, the mother slapped her child. “Don’t you run your mouth!”
The child’s mother looked at Zhang Yiheng and said, “I know that y’all are good people, so I won’t blame you!”
Zhang Yiheng was stunned and did not say anything
Ren Xiaosu called out to him, “You regretting it?”
Zhang Yiheng was stunned again, then suddenly said, “Actually, I don’t feel that sad. After so many years, everyone knows what this world is really like. It’s all too common to see people dying. Even when my father passed away, I didn’t cry.”
“Then what’re you thinking about?” Ren Xiaosu asked.
Zhang Yiheng said calmly, “I’m just thinking, if we were stronger, could we have prevented this suffering?”
Ren Xiaosu looked at him seriously and said, “The houses that we built have all been destroyed.”
Jin Lan, who was standing next to them, said, “We can still rebuild them even though they’ve been destroyed. I’ve checked, and the brick kiln is fine!”
“Even if something had happened to the brick kiln, we could still build another one, two, or even three of them!” Zhang Yiheng suddenly said in a determined tone.
Ren Xiaosu was looking at these bandits. Actually, there was nothing they were good at. Most of them did not even attend school and were illiterate. Even though they were bandits, they could not even hold a gun properly.
But when he attacked the enemy from their rear just now, the bandits here did not break down. Right now, they were still harboring hopes in the ruins of the settlement.
Ren Xiaosu suddenly realized these bandits were probably still useless as of now. But starting from today, their fate was really going to be changed.
On the same day, Jin Lan led everyone to carry the wounded back to the mud houses that were still intact. Some of the refugees also took the initiative to help take care of them.
At first, they thought that it would be very difficult for the wounded to survive. That was because bacteria these days had become very scary. If anyone received a wound, 90% of them would get infected even in the early spring when the weather was still very cold.
Ren Xiaosu’s wound had been infected after he got nipped by the sparrow.
But they were shocked to discover the black medicine given by Ren Xiaosu was really effective. As soon as it was applied to the wounds of the injured, they claimed their injuries did not hurt anymore. Moreover, their wounds started healing the very next day. The medicine was extremely effective!
Everyone looked at Ren Xiaosu with more and more admiration.
It was even more so when Jin Lan and the others talked about Ren Xiaosu going behind enemy lines to draw fire to himself. Everyone’s eyes were shimmering in admiration when they heard that.
To Jin Lan and everyone else, this was the respect Ren Xiaosu had earned through risking his life. They admired him in all sincerity.
With the refugees helping to take care of the wounded, Jin Lan and the others had time to make clay bricks again. They salvaged all the usable black bricks from the ruins and restarted the brick kiln.
Standing next to Ren Xiaosu, Yang Xiaojin asked him, “Do you feel these people have more enthusiasm now? Their eyes are all filled with hope.”
“Yes, I can feel it.” Ren Xiaosu said emotionally, “It’s probably because there’s no rebuilding without destruction. These people are undergoing a complete change and getting reborn.”
“I’ll be teaching them about firearms. Some of them should be suitable for sniper training. They’re calm and can endure hardship,” Yang Xiaojin said.
On this day, Jin Lan and the others would go looking for Yang Xiaojin on and off to ask her when they could start learning about guns and when she would select the candidates for sniper training.
The battle had made them see their shortcomings. But most importantly, the powerful fire suppression Yang Xiaojin had displayed during the battle was terrifying.
Although everyone knew that it was basically impossible for them to reach Yang Xiaojin’s level, their current ambition was to become a sniper.
As for how Ren Xiaosu had surrounded all their enemies without fear, that was too far of a goal even for them. Jin Lan, Zhang Yiheng, and the others did not even dare to think about something like that.
Ren Xiaosu thought for a moment and said, “When the situation here has stabilized, I plan to make a trip back to the stronghold and see if I can bring Liuyuan and the others here.”
Yang Xiaojin said with a smile, “You’ve decided that you want to settle down here?”
“Mhm.” Ren Xiaosu nodded. He suddenly asked, “Have you decided yet?”
Yang Xiaojin was stunned for a moment. She slipped her hands into her pockets and walked off to the distance. “I’m in a good mood today.”