Dead End Chapter 93

Dead End

Dead End Chapter 93

Chapter 093

Another orca corpse floated to the water’s edge, and the beast hurled it skyward. The beach, about a hundred meters long, had become even more horrific, now completely filled with black blood.

The fat zombie that was walking ahead was drenched in the black blood and let out a ghastly scream.

“Panting! Everyone, charge?”

During the lull in Shepherd’s assault, the beta and alpha zombies began advancing in unison from the coast towards a single point.

“Shepherd! Evacuate! Get out of there!”

-I’m already retreating! But where should I go?

Instead of replying, Son Taehwan fired a flare from the hillside. Because it was shot almost from the top of the mountain, the flare could be seen from any part of Livingston Island.

Shepherd started running towards that signal, rifle slung over his shoulder.

-Provide cover!

“We’re out of range! You need to run up here! The skewers have already taken the beach! There’s no point in holding it anymore, panting!”

-Roger! But what’s the plan from the mountaintop?

Shepherd had already found a way to climb up towards them, and Son Taehwan once again aimed at the beach from the hillside.

‘Speed type zombies are on the move!’

Son Taehwan marveled once again at their intelligence. From a distance, skewers respond to long-range weapons with artillery. Meanwhile, the fat zombie acts as a shield, allowing the main assault force to land on the beach. Once they drive off the enemy and fully secure the beach, the faster-moving forces hide among the rocks or snow and advance.

It was an almost perfect landing operation. As a result, Shepherd completely lost the range for his rifle, and the beta zombie along with others fully captured the coast. They secured a foothold – often the hardest part of a landing – without much trouble. From that foothold, a zombie that was chasing after Shepherd came into view.

“Shepherd, it’s the one-armed creepy guy!”

Of course, it didn’t move exactly like a one-armed creature. If each one-armed creature was a gymnast and the runner that had followed them to the beach was a sprinter, then the creature chasing behind Shepherd was more like someone practicing parkour, scrambling up the boulder-strewn and icy mountain like a cockroach.

Shepherd intermittently turned around, trying to shoot the creature, but inevitably the bullets only ricocheted off ice and snow.

-Just like Afghanistan! Dammit!

The terrain around this mountain was exactly like Afghanistan’s. There wasn’t a blade of grass, and it was impossible to confirm exactly where the enemy was. Additionally, although the open terrain gave a clear line of sight, it made judging distances tricky.

Son Taehwan also tried to shoot the creature from the mountaintop, but it seemed to know the angles of the rifle too well. As soon as he aimed the gun, the zombie hid beneath the ice or snow. Even if black smoke was visible and he shot at that spot, the creature did not flinch out of fear.

No, it wasn’t just unafraid; it fundamentally lacked a physical burden. A strange kind of race unfolded mid-way up the mountain. Shepherd was already breathing heavily after scaling 1 kilometer, while the alpha zombie was hot on his heels.

Now was not the time to worry about the situation on the beach. The distance between Shepherd and the zombie had closed to about a hundred meters, and Son Taehwan tried desperately to hit the zombie.

“Damn it! Hidden again!

-Why aren’t you shooting! Don’t tell me you’re saving bullets!

“Of course not! The damned creature hides every time I aim the gun!”

-See! I told you it’s just like Afghanistan! Dammit! Those damned creatures hide as soon as they see a gun!

While shooting a few rounds backward, Shepherd crawled upwards, and another threat gradually started to follow him up. Could it be the weather antenna snapped off by the bombardment, flying towards Shepherd like a spear?

Shepherd dodged to the side of a large block of ice and rolled down the slope. The weather antenna smashed into the ice where he had been, splitting it with a loud crack.

-Damn it! This, does this even make sense?

“Damn it, now the sniper’s starting to attack!”

The creature had managed to attack a precise point from nearly 1 kilometer away. It had discovered a more precise method of attack and was demonstrating its power. Now the skewers were capable of attacking them from a longer distance than Son Taehwan and his group.

It was the Achilles’ heel of mountain warfare. Shepherd had to ascend 3 kilometers in a straight line, but in climbing upwards, he couldn’t increase the distance from the skewers. Meanwhile, the skewers were closing the gap for a direct attack by advancing along the beach, not through mountain terrain.

It was similar to bombing high ground from low ground. No matter how high the infantry climbed, the distance from the artillery didn’t increase much.

The skewers, inching closer in a straight line, sent the fat zombie uphill as well.

‘Damn it! It’s dangerous to lose the high ground to the skewers! This isn’t some Korean War!’

It was precisely the situation that Son Taehwan had feared. Considering the evolved skewers’ attacking capabilities, it seemed likely they could strike any part of Livingston Island if they took the high ground.

Then they saw their only hope, a plane, in the distance. Son Taehwan hesitated again. Han Sujin had already been sent to the Spanish base to bring ‘shells’, and the pastor’s life or death was unknown. He peered through the scope at Shepherd, making his way up huffing and puffing.

He wasn’t aiming to shoot Shepherd but to look at the situation through the scope. However, Son Taehwan already had his finger on the trigger.

He had been walking on a razor’s edge since the defeat at the Chilean base. The blade now seemed red, and Son Taehwan shook his head once again.

“You’re right. I’m the same. Until a minute and a second ago, I wanted to stand tall as a human and die with dignity.”

-What are you talking about!

“Duck now! This is the only way to shoot that creature!”

Pooching!

The distinctive sound of the Dragunov sniper rifle resounded, and Shepherd instinctively fell forward. The alpha zombie pursuing him also easily dodged the Dragunov’s bullets.

‘It can’t be! At least 400 meters away! It couldn’t dodge by hearing the sound!’

Son Taehwan gritted his teeth, recalling a scene when he had fought the previous owner of this gun. He had deduced that the creature could dodge Shepherd’s bullets by reflexively changing direction on hearing the sound.

“Could it be this!”

Right then, Son Taehwan had his back to the sun, and he saw the sunlight flashing off the muzzle of the gun. Acting on a hunch, Son Taehwan aimed the gun at the creature and pretended to pull the trigger. As suspected, the creature sharply changed direction, hiding behind the ice. It didn’t need to hear the sound to dodge the bullets.

‘The creature is moving by seeing sunlight reflected off the lens or muzzle of the gun! Then there’s a chance!’

Like the fable of the tortoise and the hare, the distance between Shepherd and the alpha zombie was closing, but Son Taehwan wore an unsightly smile.

“Lieutenant! Cover fire! It’s getting tiresome now!”

“Climb higher! I’ll sort this out somehow!”

“Where are you! Ah, there?”

Shepherd too, with his battlefield experience, noticed the reflection on the scope of the Dragunov, which was visible even from a distance.

“I’ve fired too many rounds from here! Lieutenant! Panting, damn it!”

Son Taehwan gave no further response. Though Shepherd felt like his legs would break, he could not stop climbing. The skewers and their main zombie force were ascending the mountain from below.

Thump, thump.

As though threatening Son Taehwan and Shepherd, boulders fell in the distance and rushed Shepherd up the mountain. The mountaintop, at a height of 1,700 meters, seemed unreachable to Shepherd.

“Could it be that he ran away like this!”

Neither the pastor nor the female doctor were in sight. It wasn’t unreasonable for Shepherd to think he had been left behind.

“Dammit, was I used as bait? Is this how you abandon me to escape in this situation!”

Shepherd gasped for breath and exploded with frustration. All the ammunition brought from the AC-130 had been used up, and only about 40 bullets remained. As he discarded the magazine, Shepherd continued climbing upward until he turned over a side of the mountain.

Once again, the sound of a swoosh followed by a stone flying towards Shepherd.

“Kid, you could get scouted for the Major League with that arm!”

Now that he was close to the skewers, their attacks had become more precise. Shepherd aimed and fired at the creature that was trailing him by about 10 meters.

Bang! Bang! Bang!

The gunshots rang out uselessly, and the alpha zombie hid. Meanwhile, Shepherd climbed the mountain as if scrabbling up it.

This had been the situation all along. He would shoot, gain some distance, then the detestable zombie would chase after him. Shepherd’s ordeal seemed as meaningless as that of Sisyphus.

“Panting! Should I head to the mountain slope?”

Even as a combat veteran, there were limits to his stamina. As his legs trembled, Shepherd regretfully looked towards the mountain summit.

The distance between Shepherd and the zombie had narrowed to practically 1 or 2 meters. Flipping his M4 to automatic, he swung it behind his back.

“Come at me, you bastard!”

But instead of attacking, the creature rolled back and hid behind a large piece of ice.

“What? What is it? What are you doing?”

Something sparkled chaotically from above, and Shepherd shielded his eyes from the glittering something. As another glint appeared, the zombie creature that had been behind Shepherd pounced on him.

In the split second that it seemed to leap 2 meters in a single bound and pour ‘black dirt’ down onto Shepherd.

“Shepherd! Close your eyes!”

All at once, it seemed to Shepherd as if everything had turned white. A horizontal rescue flare flew by, blinding the zombie, causing it to crash into the snowy ground. When Shepherd opened his eyes, he saw the zombie’s neck splayed from the Dragunov.

With a thump, the neck was torn off and the zombie spewed black blood. With black steam gushing like from a hole, its head seemed to disappear.

Son Taehwan rose from the snow, holding the ‘scope-less’ Dragunov. The front of the gun was wrapped with a scarf, and he had been waiting in the snow for this moment.

He had completely blinded the zombie’s eyes, and although the zombie hadn’t yet received a fatal blow, it floundered as it rushed at Shepherd.

“Damn, make sure it hit right!”

Shepherd squinted as he sprayed the automatic rifle. One bullet finally shattered its head, and the zombie fell in front of Shepherd. Black blood boiled up, and Shepherd sighed in relief.

“Shepherd! We can’t relax yet! Run!”

“Damn it all! How much farther do I have to run!”

Son Taehwan pulled the tied scope towards him, indicating the mountain slope to Shepherd.

“This way! We need to hold this place!”

“Panting! Here? What about the fuel?”

“It’ll probably be thrown by the skewers before we can even get going!”

“Panting, this is maddening! Do we have to hold the high ground until the helicopter arrives! Again!”

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“No! Just an old story!”

Son Taehwan tugged at Shepherd’s shoulder belt, ducking his head. The skewers’ bombardment was now raining down near the mountain summit. Ice shards fell behind Shepherd like buckshot, and snowballs from the mountaintop rolled down rumblingly.

Now the direct distance between them and the skewers was less than a kilometer, and the skewers were pitching ice chunks from right below the mountain. If the early battle on the beach had been a landing operation, this current battle had turned into a defense of the high ground.

Son Taehwan supported Shepherd and turned to the other side of the mountain, while other zombies began their advance under the skewers’ cover fire.

“Shepherd! Rifle magazines!”

“Three!”

“90 rounds? This is madness!”

“What are you talking about! You always have to remove two because of the spring! Forgot?”

“I don’t keep up with that stuff!”

Veteran soldiers with combat experience often remove two or three bullets from a full magazine to prevent jamming. Son Taehwan, however, had forgotten this fact and miscalculated the 30-round magazines.

Two Dragunov sniper rifle bullets.

83 bullets for the 5.56mm assault rifle.

Three revolver bullets.

That was the total firepower at Son Taehwan’s disposal.



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