Global Evolution Chapter 133
While Chang was about to say goodbye to his memory, he took out a pack of cigarettes from a drawer in the bar counter. Qing Shui gifted the pack to him, but he'd never learned how to smoke, even after four years. The act of lifting the cigarette was more of a habit than smoking itself.
Chang only did it when he felt unhappy. The smoke swirled up in the air, twisting, hovering. It was nostalgia that he was smoking, not nicotine.
The smoke reminded him of a slang that people used online back in the day - "floating clouds."
He wished everything that happened and would happen were just floating clouds that eventually went away; he wished that all of this was just a dream that he could wake up from so he could have his carefree life back; he wished the only thing that he needed to worry about was the reading that he never finished and the pretty girl beside some louts.
He was always reminded of the good days when he had time to sit down by himself. Though his stiff facial muscles inhibited his facial expressions, his lightheartedness shined through his eyes instead.
The five minutes of memories fade out in black as the smoke dispersed. His family and friends were history now. The clamor resumed and pulled him back into reality.
"Hah—" Chang forced out the air in his lungs, lifting the weight placed on his heart. He stomped on the cigarette, shouting, "Let's go, folks. The birds have passed our area."
"Yes, it's about time," Zhizhi agreed, sniffing the air. "Let's come together, guys."
As they expected, the buzzing noise decreased significantly when they walked out of the bar. The sky was brighter once the flocks were sparser and more scattered. The remaining fliers were either clumsy or slow insects.
The sunlight brightened up the red fog, returning an acceptable vision to humans.
"It's a good day, isn't it?" Chang didn't turn back when he said so.
The streets weren't crowded at all, and this was not only because of the massive migration but also because of a natural human fear of the darkness.
Though of course there were some brave ones who peaked out from their homes, seeking an opportunity to retreat with the birds.
Just right after Chang left his home, they encountered another group of backpackers who initiated a conversation with them.
The one who spoke was a young woman. She had with her a teenage boy and a conjoined twin.
"Hello!" They met at the junction. The woman approached Chang after seeing three young kids walking after him. She was confused initially, but then she quickly approached him and said, "Hey, do you want to travel together? We can look after each other."
"I don't think we need any more companions on this journey." Chang shot a glance at the woman; she was way too weak and apparently she was alone. He wouldn't gain any benefits but just burden.
"I see, but why the indifferent attitude? We have something in common - We both have kids." The woman didn't give up even though Chang ignored her.
"I am not indifferent, I just don't think your proposal is benefiting any of us." Chang sped up while speaking.
"Well, we can look after each other, especially with the kids. You probably can tell I am not a bad person already since I bring them with me. The gangsters usually won't mob groups with kids either, so I won't cause any trouble for you." The woman kept trying to convince Chang.
"However, you and your kids will become a burden to me, instead of helping in any way." Chang discovered another three cliques that were following the migration with his vision.
"I promise I won't, I actually walk reasonably fast." The woman smiled, but Chang still lacked interest in collaborating. "Plus, I am good at navigating! My profession was a geologist back then. You can tell me where are you going to, I can show you the way there!"
"Oh?" Chang slowed down a bit.
The woman noticed she had successfully intrigued Chang, so she kept going, "Listen, my judgment of topographic features and source of water is almost 100% accurate; if you want to save time and avoid walking in the wrong way, I am the expert that you want to bring on your team."
"Okay." Chang nodded, his attitude somewhat elusive. "I guess, welcome."
"Thanks." The woman reached out her hand to Chang, who didn't show interest in shaking it at all, she then withdrew and shrugged. "My name is Yin Qing, Qing as my last name. What about you?" she asked.
"Oh, I am Chang Liu." Chang turned his head to Zhizhi. "Should we make a stop at the Hua Yuan community? We can pick up Dr. Huang. After all, she saved us too, and we can't leave her behind."
"Sure." Zhizhi nodded, her arm had been treated by Dr. Huang.
Chang resumed the conversation with Yin. "Why us? I've seen other groups too. What made you make this hasty decision? And your last name is very uncommon."
"Well I just told you my reason, we all have kids." Yin Qing grinned. "It just gave me a sense of safety."
"Really?" Chang stared at Yin Qing's bright eyes. "There should be something else, am I right?"
"You're pretty sensitive in this." Yin Qing giggled. "Because... I think you guys are somewhat powerful."
"How did you....?" Chang recalled how they met—Yin Qing had only landed her eyes on him for a few seconds, and she decided to come forward immediately.
"First of all, you have a beautiful handgun, it looks even better than the most expensive ones on the market," Yin Qing analyzed. "Second, I don't see any fear in your eyes, and you don't even take precautions against other groups; I noticed that when our eyes met, there was zero anxiety in you. You are either super powerful, or you are super dull.
"And the third is proof of your abilities. The four behind you were just as calm as you, as if this apocalypse isn't a threat to them at all, even if one of them is so young." The woman kept analyzing while looking at Shui and Shui Qing. "Though these two's calmness creeps me out, they are more stable than a lot of adults. Pardon my question, but are they autistic?"