Chapter 29: Stormbird
"Sen, you are so fit! You must have maxed out on mutant geno points. " Lin Beifeng stopped climbing as he felt his arms hurting too much, while Han Sen was still climbing briskly.
"Hang in there. There is a rock sticking out up there, and we can go there and rest." Han Sen looked down at Lin Beifeng.
"Sen, I can’t. Shall we just go back down?"
"You stay here. I will go up first and then pull you up with the vine." Han Sen started to climb with all fours, and he was so fast it looked like he was walking on the ground, which stunned Lin Beifeng.
It took a little while for Han Sen to reach the rock and use the vine to pull Lin Beifeng up. The rock was the size of a table. The two huddled on the rock and looked around. The cliff was so steep and there was no way to climb if it wasn’t for the vines, which only covered a part of the cliff.
"Sen, let’s stay here for two days and maybe the mammo beasts will leave if they don’t see us. The cliff is so steep and I’m not as fit as you. I really can’t go up," Lin Beifeng said anxiously.
"Well, you just rest here, and I’ll go see if there is a way out. If there is, I’ll come back for you. If not then we could just wait for the mammo beasts to leave," Han Sen said and got up to climb.
"Sen, you will not abandon me?" Lin Beifeng grabbed Han Sen's clothes like a little girl.
"Don’t worry. How can I abandon you when you owe me so much money?" Han Sen patted Lin Beifeng on the shoulder and climbed away.
Because he had practiced Ghosthaunt, Han Sen was particularly good at climbing. As he was much stronger now, it wasn’t too hard for him either.
Han Sen climbed for a few hundred feet and still saw nothing but the cliff. The vines continued to go up, and he was wondering where their roots were.
Han Sen felt a little tired and was thinking about going down. But with another look, he felt like there was a rock sticking out above him.
"I’ll climb up to the rock above and have a look. If there is no way out, I’ll just go down to eat and drink. Maybe we could outrun the mammo beasts," Han Sen decided, and kept climbing.
The stone was farther and larger than Han Sen had imagined. It was half the size of a basketball court. When he got on the stone, Han Sen’s eyes suddenly widened.
On the stone was a nest made with tree limbs and vines. It looked like a huge swallow’s nest, almost taking up a better half of the stone. An egg at least three feet tall lay in the nest.
"Wow, such a big egg! How big would the creature that laid it be?" Han Sen shuddered. The creature was not here now, but he dared not think what would happen if it came back.
Being big did not necessarily means it was advanced. Mammo beasts were huge but merely primitive creatures.
However, the ability to make a nest and lay an egg on the cliff proved the creature was no average creature. It could very likely be a sacred-blood creature.
If the egg belonged to a sacred-blood creature, Han Sen would not want to miss it.
After some hesitation, Han Sen approached the egg and cut a hole in the egg shell with the tip of his dagger. Fishing out a straw from his pocket, he stuck it in the hole and started sucking.
Suddenly the sweet juice filled Han Sen’s mouth.
"Sacred-blood creature stormbird’s egg eaten. No sacred geno point gained.
Although no sacred-blood geno point was gained, the fact that the egg was indeed a sacred-blood creature left Han Sen in joy.
It was such a huge egg, with at most only ten sacred geno points, that he was not surprised that he hadn’t gained a point with just a mouthful. And he already had some sacred geno points and couldn’t have all ten points, so he could only get six or seven if he was lucky.
But sacred geno points were so hard to get that even just a few more would help.
Han Sen was desperately sucking the liquid with the straw that he used to drink from his water bag when he was hiding from the creatures that he didn’t have to move. It was unexpectedly handy as well for sucking the egg juice.
The egg was so big that when Han Sen finally heard the cue that he was gaining one sacred geno point, he was so full that he could drink no more. Han Sen pulled out the straw, and then sealed the hole with mud. Putting the straw back, he descended using the vine.
"Sen, what took you so long? Is there a way out?" Seeing Han Sen coming from above, Lin Beifeng, who had been worried sick, asked immediately in a low voice so as not to alert the mammo beasts below.
"No. It is as steep as a mirror, and we have nowhere to go." Han Sen shook his head.
"Then we have no option but to wait for the herd to leave," Lin Beifeng said disappointedly.
"It’s alright. We still have some food and water left." Han Sen was really taking his time now as he couldn’t finish drinking the raw egg any time soon, and he wouldn’t leave before that.
They huddled on the stone to spend the night, and the next morning Han Sen climbed up to eat more egg. He made sure there was no creature in the nest before he went up and broke the seal to drink from the egg.
"Sen, why are you climbing up again?" Lin Beifeng wondered when Han Sen came down.
"There are sacred-blood creatures above, and I was having a feast up there. Do you want to go together?" Han Sen laughed.
"You can keep it." Lin Beifeng glanced at him and didn’t believe a word he said. Even if there really were sacred-blood creatures, Han Sen was more likely to be their food.
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