Book 1 Chapter 14.2 - N958
The interior of the base was full of extremely dim red rays of light. This was also a sign that the base was trying to preserve as much energy as possible. It was trying to save as much energy on lighting as possible. However, the energy used by the main regions and the automatic doors were still given priority.
At the base’s entrance was a small public square. There were vehicles, a tower crane, and transporting platforms. This area seemed like a region where all types of goods and supplies could be transferred. Through the glass window on the wall, he could see that the warehouse was located on the right. Covering the left side was a large window that was made of bullet-proof glass. The glass was unidirectional, so one could only see from the inside out and not outside in. Sliding doors led into the left region, and at the side of the door was an electronic sensing device.
Su placed the ring on the electronic device, and the automatic door slowly opened. Inside was a large room that was at least 60 square meters. When looking at the glass window from the inside, there was also a display screen function. Below the window was an operational platform. The platform indicated that all of the lights have gone out except for the reserve energy system, which was still lit. Four camp beds were arranged in the room, and the pillows were full of dust. Resting against the wall were four metal wardrobes. On the other side of the room was a weapon rack for firearms, neatly stacked rubber batons, shotguns, and automatic rifles. It seemed like this was the security room.
Behind the security room was a door, and beyond that door was a corridor. On the left side were the staff member dormitories, dining hall, and storeroom. The rear side of the base was the machinery maintenance room, parts warehouse, garage, elevator, and staircase. Two vehicles were parked in the garage. One was a two man four-wheel drive light off-road vehicle, while the other was also an off-road vehicle, but modified into a maintenance vehicle. Apart from the surface and other junctures showing chunks of rust, these two vehicles were still preserved well. They might be usable after just a bit of repair.
The right corner was the medical treatment and biochemistry district. Even though it wasn’t large, the clinical room, surgery room, and biochemistry laboratory still had everything needed available.
The lower level had a computer room, facilities room, fuel storehouse, air purifier, weapon and ammunition dump, as well as even a miniature factory. Inside of the factory were four multipurpose machines, a small scale smelting furnace, and an automatic metal compression facility, displaying the greatest accomplishments of the olden era’s machinery processing industrial arts. Inside of the fuel storehouse, of the four fuel containers, only one was full. Inside the computer room, the battery indicator on the control monitor indicated that electrical power was already extremely low. Only the last bit of flickering red light could be seen.
Su knew that bases like this one all had systems that supported multiple energy sources. The most commonly seen would be diesel-electric mixed power source, while the higher-end ones would have nuclear power as a driving mechanism. Below the computer room was a rather large facilities room, and from the warning sign, it seemed like it should be a small scale nuclear system. However, for some unknown reason, it hadn’t been activated. It seemed like he would only find out what was going on after finding the central control room.
Su followed the spiraling staircase and walked up three floors. The elevator could still be used, but regardless of whether it was to save the clearly lacking energy supply or for safety, Su still took the stairs.
Different from N11, apart from the central control room, N958’s second floor had three sets of suites that could be considered luxurious even in the olden era. There were also five bedrooms for visitors or servants to use. There was a complete entertainment section, exercise section, and even an indoor garden. Of course, there was only dry earth remaining in the garden now without anything inside. In the exercise region, Su stood in front of the 25 x 10 half-standard swimming pool and stared blankly for several minutes. He, who had worked an entire day for a single bottle of water in the past, truly could not imagine how it felt to swim in such a large body of clean water.
There was also a storeroom here where over ten sets of advanced escape equipment were prepared, seemingly prepared for the number of people that this area could accommodate. Su unexpectedly found a wine room filled with fine alcohol. However, most of it was red wine, and due to the air controlling system here having stopped a long time ago, the red wines’ taste have gradually worsened. However, in Su’s eyes, the red wine was a tonic rich with nutrition. As for taste, he had never let such a thing be a deciding factor. Meanwhile, the strong alcohol on the side only became purer over time, so these bottles that have been aged for nearly a hundred years were all items of the highest quality. However, Su was somewhat scared to try them.
Inside of the central control room, Su found a thick operational manual. He immediately followed the manual and used the ring to start up the master control computer and reset the master identity. From here on, it did not only depend on the ring. His pupil, fingerprint, and DNA could all become a foundation for determining Su’s identity. Su made himself the sole administrator with the highest level of authority. Only after completing that did he begin to read the information regarding N958 on the computer screen.
Contrary to N11, N958 was not a public base. Instead, it was a private refuge base modeled after the N series and constructed under contract with Larsen Company. The two bases were both small scale bases, but just the luxurious living section of N958 took up a third of the base. Meanwhile, in N11, these areas were all used as food storerooms, staff dormitories, and for other applications. N11 could hold 400 to 500 people at max, while N958 was designed to contain only 30, with this number including the guards, servants, chefs, and maids.
The one that invested in N958 was the famous Morgan family of the olden era. Every installation in this base practically represented the most advanced science and technology the world back then had to offer. When the international situation worsened day by day, construction of Base N958 began. Not long after the construction project was finished, the tension around the situation instead eased. As a result, N958 was sealed up and reserved as backup.
Normally, no one supervised Base N958’s affairs. The central computer followed preset procedures to intermittently operate parts of the facilities. The amount of energy required to preserve its function was quite low, and as such, the base’s nuclear power did not provide any fuel, and the base relied purely on electricity and oil for its energy supply.
Then, war erupted without any signs. N958 detected the changes to the outside world and automatically carried out emergency procedures, entering a state of emergency. The base autonomously recorded everything until this day.
Larsen Company was worthy of being known as the olden era’s largest industrial company. Every aspect of N958’s construction was remarkable. By relying on the emergency system, the base actually persisted until this day. Moreover, it didn’t suffer any major damage, especially its ventilation system. From the moment Su entered until now, apart from feeling that the oxygen was a bit thin, he didn’t feel that there was anything else that was out of sorts. In addition, he could tell that the Morgan family that decided to build N958 definitely understood how to enjoy life. Even the electronic sound of the central computer was switched for a gentle and charming woman’s voice. Those five guests rooms were most likely prepared for young and beautiful maids.
At this moment, the system’s self-check was completed one after another. Due to Su’s existence, the life preserving system began to operate. Standing on the third floor, one could only hear an extremely weak engine sounding. Normal people wouldn’t even be able to hear anything. It was clear just how high the requirements of the base’s original owner were. This type of sound-proofing capabilities definitely raised the construction costs of the base much higher.
It seemed like the skeleton at the front of the base should be this base’s owner. Only, the war erupted too suddenly. When he hurried to the base entrance, he couldn’t stay alive long enough to reach the base’s gate. The distance between life and death was probably just within two or three minutes.
The ventilation system began to release fresh oxygen, and the originally muddled air left through the ventilation shafts at the corner of the room. This was fresh air without any radiation, so pure that Su greedily breathed it in a few times.
The system self-test suddenly lit up several red lights. It seemed like the water purifying system had a malfunction. Either to show consideration for Su who didn’t know the slightest thing about water circulatory maintenance, or to meet the Morgan family’s needs, after the self-test failed, the central computer started up the back up water purifying system. According to explanation on the display screen, this emergency system could generate 10 kilograms of pure water. After deducting the water that was to be used for producing food reserves, there was six kilograms of water remaining. This water might not be enough for one of the Morgans to wash their face with, but for Su, it was a precious resource that he could use for survival for quite a while.
Twenty minutes later, the self-test was finally completed. Apart from the drainage system, the other installations were perfectly intact and completely usable. Even the eight automatic weapon platforms could immediately be used as long as power and ammunition were supplied.
While standing in front of the central control platform, Su selected a few touch options. The display screen that was three square meters in size immediately revealed an image. These were the images sent back by the surveillance cameras set up in every corner both inside and outside the base. The cameras installed outside the base were all ruined, but the ones inside were for the most part intact.
N958 was completely displayed before Su’s face. Towards this wealth that had suddenly walked to his doorsteps, Su did not feel that much excitement. The Black Dragonriders would definitely find this place, and they will definitely notice this base.
Su had the urge to blast this base apart to prevent letting the Black Dragonriders get their hands on anything. After hesitating for a while, Su still bitterly shook his head. In this era where every drop of water was precious, N958’s existence was self-evident. With the Black Dragonriders’ level of technology, restoring this olden era base was too easy. Meanwhile, a perfectly preserved N958 base could provide 10 tons of clean water each day! From the wilderness’ perspective, this base could allow ten thousand people to survive.
Is there a need to? Su thought.
Su closed down the base’s facilities one after another, only maintaining its most basic functions. The rumbling of the machines gradually disappeared, and the fresh air of the ventilation systems stopped as well.
Su walked out from N958 and watched as the large gates of the base noisily closed. If he repelled the Black Dragonriders, then he could live a bit more easily in this base, to the point where he could even slowly sample strong alcoholic drinks without any fear of passing out like he did in the Falcons’ manor. He could even sleep while being completely relaxed, without any worry about the outside world’s circumstances. From what he could recall, Su had never enjoyed this type of feeling before.
He walked through the cave entrance and walked towards the southernmost mountain peak. The fantasy of living in N958 all rested on the premise of Black Dragonriders’ defeat. It was a pity that the age of turmoil never had what ifs.
Soon after, Su stood on top of the highest mountain peak and looked into the south. The Barrett rested silently on his back, the cloth strips completely covering its appearance. Only a small part of the jet black muzzle revealed its true malevolence.
Wind blew over, and as it brushed against his face, it felt extremely gentle. It did not carry the somber and desolate feeling that Su was waiting for. He brought out a high power sighting device used for sniping and gazed into the boundless grasslands. This sighting device didn’t increase the limit of his sight by much, and instead greatly limited the scope of his field of view. As such, Su rarely used sighting devices. Of course, there were still sighting devices that could even significantly improve Su’s line of sight, but the price of those items was equivalent to seven or eight RF300A sniper rifles. Not even Roxland would prepare one of these for their own troops. As such, Su did not have the opportunity to seize one.
What appeared within the sighting device was a peaceful grassland. Apart from the group of deer that might occasionally leap past, there wasn’t anything else.
Su lowered the sighting device and gazed at the grassland with a bit of confusion. With the level of expertise the Black Dragonriders displayed in the past, they should have caught up a long time ago. Su definitely did not believe that he could escape the Black Dragonriders’ pursuit. If the Black Dragonriders only relied on their hunters to find him, then Su still had some confidence. However the cold feeling that swept over his body more than once a few days ago reminded Su that there were countless mysterious abilities within the Black Dragonriders that he did not understand.
The grassland remained calm from start to finish. There was not the slightest bit of disturbance that raised Su’s vigilance. It was to the point where Su began to doubt whether something was wrong with the senses he relied on all this time for survival.
At this moment, by the eastern coast a thousand kilometers out, a small crack appeared in the heavy clouds. The sunlight that was ready to cast itself shot down fervently, painting the clear and crystalline surface of the sea in reddish-gold. The old-fashioned, seven-floor gothic architecture construct by the seacoast was perfectly preserved and even newly renovated. Under the sunlight, the dark brown exterior was also dyed in a thick layer of golden radiance, as if its glory during the olden era had been restored.
A window at the highest floor was pushed open by an old man whose hair had already turned gray. His face was covered in streaks, resolute and unyielding. His tall nose was like the beak of a vulture, giving him a completely hawk-like appearance. Even though he seemed to already be aged, his faint blue eyes still contained the vitality of a young individual. He wore a white shirt with the collar button undone and dark black, well-ironed pants. At the side of the pants, a dark-golden rose branch weaved all the way downwards.
He stood in front of the window while facing the damp sea breeze. His faint blue eyes slightly narrowed as he fixed his eyes on the setting sun hiding behind the clouds. Even though the steam brought by the sea breeze contained levels of radiation that were fatal, and the ultraviolet rays from the blinding sunlight could also kill most living creatures, he continued to stand in front of the window, allowing the sea breeze to blow his ash-colored hair about. It was as if he was still standing in the beautiful olden era.
The beautiful scenery did not persist for a long time. The sun was once again blocked by the coalescing clouds, and the rays of light quickly grew dim, allowing the curtain of night to descend. The second the sunlight disappeared, the sea breeze that blew over no longer contained any warmth, instead becoming damp, gloomy, and cold. The entire world didn’t seem to have the slightest tenderness or sign of human habitation. The only one that seemed alive seemed to be the old man standing by the window.