"How's your day?" Jun asked Marianne lying on the bed.
"Well, fun I guess? There were more and more people inquiring about our special items, but none actually bought them. Its good that people are getting interested and finally saving up some money to actually buy things. It feels like — like everythings back to normal." said Marianne.
"Mhmm." Jun nodded his head, then lied down next to her.
"Are you tired?" said Marianne.
"A bit." said Jun as he closed his eyes.
Marianne took the comforter on their feet and covered their bodies up to their chest. She then inserted her hand inside while smiling at Jun. A few seconds later, Jun opened his eyes.
Jun faced Marianne and said, "I'm actually not that tired."
The next morning, Edward greeted the two of them saying, "You should keep the noise down and let others sleep too."
Jun ignored the matter but Marianne was too embarrassed to look people in the eye as she attended her post.
The town was thriving because everyone is doing something. Scavengers takes everything that they can find and setups stalls while hiring clerks. People who aren't comfortable scavenging, do odd jobs to earn some money.
Scavenging in a sense became the core aspect for the community. Its a trade that needs you to fight your way to find loot. You risk your life to obtain something deemed important. Basically, a type of job not for the faint-hearted.
Today, Jun planned on joining the scavenging group that the three elite core member of his group leads; Sheila, Adrian, Edward. Though, he brought his own lackeys to command.
Jun doesn't usually join scavenging trips. The sole reason he was joining this time was that they were heading in the same direction, his old house. He want to go back to his old house to retrieve something he forgot. Jun also prefers adventuring and that's the reason why he let's Evo and Bernard do most of the stuff regarding Black Haven's operations. Heck to management. A real boss gets someone to do his job!
Jun walked out of the gate and met with the group at the streets where his contingency of masked slaves were already waiting for him.
Edward smirked at him, Adrian was indifferent while Sheila was a bit shy. It seems like what happened last night was a hot topic for some.
Jun ignored Edward's childish act and headed towards the three of them.
"Is everyone here?" Jun asked.
"Yeah, everyone's here. So for today, we're headed towards the local elementary school. Some rescued survivors notified us about the place. A group of people seemed to have camped at the local elementary school, so we're gonna go and say hello. It's best to know your neighbors, right?" said Sheila.
"Okay, great. Do you have any info about them?" asked Jun
"We have numbers but were not sure if that was true. They have about fifty people, young and old, led by the Baranggay Chairman." Sheila said.
"We're also scavenging and clearing the area along the way. That's why were here." said Adrian.
"Have you noticed that a lot of people seem more active recently? Having a safe place to settle down really helps people to strive forward and forget about the past. Though some people actually never went out to scavenge after everything that they have experienced, the people were still looking forward for the future." said Edward.
His uncharacteristic speech shocked Jun a bit. He was then reminded that he wanted to give Edward something, an energy fruit.
Jun took the fruit from Helena before they left yesterday. Helena didn't mind and showed no ill-feelings after handing over the fruit. For her, the fruit was more of a problem than actual help. And since she already consumed one, she knew how important the fruit was. She hoped that Jun's anger, even if not quelled, would be reduced. First of all, she knew that the man had the right to be angry since he was the one risking his life and he was promised things that he wouldn't even receive after everything that he went through.
Jun took the fruit out from his dimensional storage, then remembered that Edward was making fun of him just now and earlier this morning. He then walked towards Sheila and handed the fruit to her.
"Here, eat this. I think you'll need this the most." said Jun.
"What is this?" Sheila took the fruit and examined its appearance. She then reads the item description that says, "When consumed, increases max energy and restores energy to full."
Sheila widened her eyes in shock after reading the description.
"No, no, no... This is too important for me to use." Sheila said trying to hand back the fruit to Jun.
"It's okay, you're the doctor. The higher your max energy, the more people you could cure. Well, I hope that that time won't come, since when that actually happens, that means we're in great danger." said Jun. "Enough of that. We need to stop wasting time. Let's move on."
Jun faced towards Adrian and signaled for him to lead the way. The group marched on foot even though the streets were littered with abandoned cars. Paterno could drive a jeepney but their group have more than thirty people and a jeepney couldn't accomodate all of them, Jun's group alone have twenty-two people including him.
Various trash were starting to fill the sidewalks while leaves and ashes were being blown around by the wind.
They traveled on the western residential area since the bridge hasn't been repaired. Though the streets were already carrier-free since the territory has already been cleared, it doesn't mean absolute safety. They encountered that same scary dog they saw yesterday before they reached the bridge area, just right at the apartment building where they met a screaming carrier baby.
The dog was quite chill and lazed on the ground as it watched the group passed by. It started barking after one of the death slaves tried approaching it, wanting to tame it. A thorough warning was given to him by the squad leader and the group moved on quietly.
Sheila even commended Jun since he was able to find such disciplined subordinate. Jun replied with a smile, then continued walking.
Before they reached the barren path leading towards the Lakeside Marina, Jun, who was teaching Adrian how to be alpha, noticed two people walking by the side of the road, Gilbert and Helena.
Jun told the group to move ahead and said that he'll catch up.
"Good morning, Master." Gilbert greeted Jun as soon as he got near.
"Don't call me like that. Calling me by my name should be alright." said Jun.
Gilbert nodded. "Yes, Mr. Reyes." replied Gilbert.
"That's not what I meant... So what's going on here?" asked Jun feeling a bit uncomfortable about having someone way older than him speak to him with much respect. To be clear, he doesn't hate the old man, he was just not on good terms with him.
Gilbert came closer towards Jun and muttered, "We were about to go to your place to deliver the first batch of fruits. We were able to produce five fruits after amassing all our energy for this day."
"You know that energy slowly recovers right? Most people recovers full energy between thirty minutes and an hour, so you could produce more, right?" rebuked Jun.
"Y-yes... but after producing its fifth fruit, the plant no longer produced fruit but still accepted our energy. We have a few guesses as to why this was happening. First, we have reached the daily production limit of the plant. Second, it requires more time and energy to produce later batches of fruits. You can trust us that we'll do our best to protect and care for the plant." said Gilbert as he lowered his head for a slight bow.
Helena didn't speak the whole time and only watched the scene as it happened.
"Continue your experiments and let me know about the results as soon as possible. Where are the fruits?" said Jun.
"It's here." Gilbert brought out a small fishnet filled with fruits. There were four circular green fruits and one oval red fruit inside the fishnet.
"What is this?" said Jun.
"It's a magical fruit that increases life, Mr. Reyes." said Gilbert.
Though Jun trusted what the old man said since he already signed a contract earlier this morning, a contract which he ordered his most extraordinary slave to get deal with, he still grabbed the red fruit and examined its description.
[Description] A fruit from the rare tropical plant found only on lands that has a high concentration of energy. When consumed, increases max health by 100 points. The effect would be halved for every consumption of the fruit.
Holy! Jun couldn't hide the surprise in his face and the old man cherished the moment he was anticipating for. To see their hard work pay off really made him happy.
"How did you make this?" said Jun clearly excited.
Gilbert smiled warmly and said, "I don't know."
"What do you mean?" said Jun.
"We literally don't know how we made them. We just poured energy and the plant bore four green fruits. Afterwards, it took eleven people for the plant to bore its next fruit, which is that red fruit. We're still trying out whether we could produce another one, but there's still no news as of now. Four fruits didn't even took us five minutes to produce while only requiring about three to four people each and yet that red one took us eleven people!" said Gilbert with fervor.
"Okay, I understand." Jun interrupted him before he could continue speaking. He then took out batches of short swords and other tools like daggers, spears and one of the latest weapon: a bow. The bow was made from leg tendon and some kind of wood. He gave two bows and added a few sets of arrows made from regular carriers bones.
When Jun was finished, the ground was filled with all kinds of arsenal ranging from short, medium and long ranged. He wasn't like this usually but getting good stuff really makes someone do stupid things. While he was still riding on cloud nine, he congratulated the old man and said, "Good job. You should apply for a credit points card at the market. Wait, your people haven't been there, right? Bring your people there and have a tour. Tell Bernard that you're my guest for today."
Gilbert happily replied, "Thank you Mr. Reyes. I will make sure to do that."
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