Dead End Chapter 79

Dead End

Dead End Chapter 79

Chapter 079

For Son Taehwan, the events of the day flashed through his mind like a series of quick images. In just around 12 hours since yesterday, a multitude of incidents had occurred.

It was only last night that they had recaptured the Chilean base from the zombies, and it was this morning that they lost it again and had to flee. From the attack by the killer whales to encountering Echo Nelson, Son Taehwan let out a bitter laugh, finding it all beyond belief. He had experienced things that most people would find hard to endure even once in their lives.

Son Taehwan felt his enthusiasm deflate. Just yesterday, he was buoyed by meeting many survivors and the prospect of calling for rescue when their signal connected with the Punta Arenas airport. But everything had led to despair, ultimately bringing them to this moment.

‘I honestly don’t even know what to do next.’

The chaos caused by the killer whales suggested that for the time being, they might forget about being chased by the steel pikes. Yet he felt a similar despair to that of the recently lamented Czech man. Perhaps, if Son Taehwan was alone, he might have made an extreme decision himself.

The outside was tranquil, with only a clear breeze lifting the snow. The electricity in this place had been cut off since last night, leaving only the light of a dim stove in the darkness.

“Without a watch, can we keep a night watch?”

“Heh, that’s right. Without a watch, it’s quite troublesome for everyone.”

Shepherd leaned on his rifle and sighed, then suddenly cocked his head. Son Taehwan reflexively grabbed a sniper rifle and aimed in the direction Shepherd was looking.

“What’s up? Why the sudden reaction?”

“No, I thought I saw a green light.”

“A green light?”

At the mention of a light, Han Sujin woke up abruptly. Shepherd got up with his gun and looked toward the bookshelf that the pastor had knocked over while backing away.

“Hey, it’s a laptop!”

Son Taehwan was also surprised to see what Shepherd had discovered.

Why was the laptop hidden in such a hard-to-find place?

The question lingered only briefly. Son Taehwan powered on the laptop.

“Senior, maybe… Shouldn’t we be careful before turning that on?”

Han Sujin nervously spoke, looking at the beam from which the person who committed suicide had hung. However, Son Taehwan nonchalantly placed the USB memory stick left by Park Donghyuk on the desk.

“We need to know why Hyunsoo died. And we need to discover what happened to the rest.”

Han Sujin also nodded after seeing the USB. According to Park Donghyuk, it contained the only evidence of what had taken place at the Sejong Science Base. There had been no chance to check it at the Chilean base, nor were there any computers left.

Son Taehwan swallowed nervously as the booting screen appeared.

“Hey, Lieutenant, what’s that?”

“It’s a camera that recorded events at our base.”

“The base?”

“There’s something we have to see. I can’t just let it go without looking.”

Son Taehwan didn’t bother explaining to Shepherd or the pastor. The events of Sejong Base did not concern them.

He clenched his teeth as he thought of the body of Kim Hyunsoo in the freezer. Park Donghyuk was right; he did not die because of zombies.

Son Taehwan felt obliged to confirm the scene himself, despite already having heard from the deceased Park Donghyuk about the incident. He also needed to know who survived and how.

‘I can’t say I’m entirely innocent myself.’

Although the situation had become complicated, Son Taehwan had still intended to kill the Red Scorpion and abandon others. His actions were no different from those of the sub-leader of his group. For their survival, they had killed others.

‘But killing people like that is wrong. It shouldn’t be done that way.’

While waiting for the computer to finish booting, Son Taehwan also thought about the body they had just buried. Cutting up bodies at the Chilean base, done at the pastor’s behest, was no different in act from these events. One was a dignified burial; the other, an odd conclusion where a human corpse is utilized as an item.

Son Taehwan became increasingly confused about what was right. The goal was clear, but the means to achieve that goal—how much he could allow—became harder to discern. Could he throw the pastor to the pastor’s zombies for the survival of Han Sujin and himself?

He looked intently at the pastor. The pastor, for his part, returned the look with a strange expression.

Kill the pastor. And save Han Sujin.

With this thought, Son Taehwan felt a bitter taste. He was already weighing the value of human life.

‘But wait a second… If everyone who fled Sejong Base first has perished, then watching this has no meaning.’

If Nelson Island was in this state, then Antarctica was also in danger. Could the survivors of Sejong Base get to Antarctica through the killer whales? It seemed implausible after seeing so many killer whales infected.

“Sujin, why am I trying to watch this?”

“I’m not sure…”

“What difference does it make? I already heard from Donghyuk about how Hyunsoo died and what evil deeds they did.”

“Isn’t evidence necessary?”

“Yes, it is necessary. But can this evidence really bring them to justice?”

Han Sujin too let out a deep sigh. Words like ‘trial’ felt incredibly foreign to them now.

Son Taehwan felt a sense of directionless anger. He had been feeling an unfair rage since the funeral, and now it seemed to be directed only toward those who had fled.

Finally, the computer booted up completely, and everyone silently observed the monitor again. The background showed the Czech man they had buried, along with people who looked to be his wife and daughter.

“This is tough.”

No one responded. Son Taehwan moved the laptop’s touchpad and opened the ‘My Computer’ folder. It was in Czech, making it difficult to understand, but he managed to locate the files within the USB easily enough.

“Is this… from before we arrived?”

“Shepherd, before we arrived?”

“Looking at the timestamp, it seems like it.”

“Uh… Sujin. This time is certainly that.”

It was exactly the time when Son Taehwan had sought refuge at the German base during a blizzard. The video was split into four sections, showing the exterior and interior of the base buildings. It was the day Son Taehwan had gone fishing. The snow fell incessantly, and people divided into two snowmobiles approached from somewhere.

The first scenes showed people speaking loudly in Chinese as they dismounted from the snowmobiles in the evening.

“Are those Chinese people?”

Among the Chinese were the large sergeant whom Son Taehwan had encountered in the machinery maze and the Chinese geologist who died on the stairs of the machinery building. There were seven Chinese in total.

Son Taehwan, Han Sujin, and the other survivors were not the only ones left; this answered why so many zombies appeared.

“But why did they come? It looks like they’re being escorted. Wait, Shepherd, isn’t that a gun?”

“Togarev. A favorite Colt among the old Eastern Bloc.”

Shepherd confidently identified the gun from the silhouette in the Sergeant’s waistband.

“But don’t you know, Shepherd? No weapons are allowed in Antarctica, except for those needed for capture, according to the Antarctic Treaty. It could become a diplomatic issue.”

“Haha. Well, reality is…”

Shepherd gestured to his M4 carbine and Son Taehwan’s Dragunov rifle.

“No, this is emergency equipment you brought knowing the situation, right?”

“Then, they must have been in an emergency as well to move with guns.”


The conclusion was simple, but Son Taehwan had to nod his head.

There was no way the people from the Chinese base would move with weapons for no reason, especially in the snow and carrying weapons in the evening. Even with Antarctica’s generosity towards visitors, there would be no warm welcome for so many unexpected guests, food issues notwithstanding. Although at the time, Sejong Base had been preparing for a birthday party, these were uninvited guests.

“Emergency situation. Occam’s razor, then. The simplest explanation is often the correct one.”

“Lieutenant, I don’t get all that. Fine by me, but can you please explain?”

“That is…”

Han Sujin placed her hand on Son Taehwan’s shoulder and nodded. It was fine to tell them.

Shepherd and the pastor had shared life-threatening moments with Son Taehwan, and they too had the right to know why he was so furious.

“There were people at Sejong Base who abandoned their comrades. We’re trying to confirm it on the video.”

“Is that what it was?”

“Can’t forgive the bastards who abandon comrades.”

“Yeah, bastards who run away and abandon their peers don’t deserve mercy, even if you shoot them.”

Just then, a loud crash resounded as a chair fell over.

Son Taehwan and Shepherd quickly raised their guns and looked around. There was no guarantee there weren’t other alpha zombies on Nelson Island.

But the source of the noise was the pastor. He sighed, stood up unsteadily, and apologized.

“So, sorry, I slipped off the chair.”

“Oh, Pastor… you gave us a fright.”

“Seriously. You’re all right, but you’re too clumsy.”

After grumbling at the pastor, they turned their attention back to the video. So far, nothing unusual had happened in the footage.

The atmosphere in the living quarters grew tense as the Chinese entered the area, set up for a birthday party with people leisurely enjoying drinks. The Chinese sergeant began to speak with the chief of Sejong Base in English and then suddenly called for the ‘geologists.’

“Shepherd, doesn’t that Chinese sergeant look strange to you?”

“He seems to be preparing to draw his gun.”

Before Son Taehwan could further question, the situation escalated. One of the Chinese took something out of a lock & lock container, speaking rapidly in Chinese, and handed it over to the Sejong Base geologists.

The geologist Son Taehwan had seen in the stairway sniffed at a bottle of soju, then headed toward chef Kim Hyunsoo, and everything happened in an instant.

“Wait, wait a minute! What’s this?”

Everything turned to nightmare the moment the container was opened.

The container held something black, and the person who held it inhaled the smell, exhibiting strange behavior, then turned and began biting others.

Soon after, the infected began to bite nearby individuals, causing a chain of infections.

Son Taehwan rewound the video several times, looking for the first person to be infected.

“This guy, he’s the same one who tried to infect me in front of the machinery building!”

The Chinese, claimed by Park Donghyuk to be the first infected, was indeed the intelligent being, the alpha, who tried to pour black blood into Son Taehwan’s mouth.

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