The First Order Chapter 89
Chapter 89: A product of genetic modification
Liu Bu and Luo Xinyu looked at them in surprise. When they were brought back here earlier, the Qing Consortium's combat troops were still dealing with the Experimental. So was this commotion related to the troops bringing back the Experimental? Honestly speaking, both of them were curious. Just what were those Experimentals?
But a moment later, they were stunned. They saw a multilayered, reinforced steel cage get carried over. Lying inside of it was a gray person!
Liu Bu suspiciously checked out the person inside the cage. That person was riddled with bullets, but there wasn't much bleeding. It was as though it could control its skin and muscles to close up its wounds the instant the bullet entered its body.
This would be pretty unimaginable to the average person because no one could control their bodies like that.
In addition, this gray figure was chained up by its arms and legs!
The chains had been meant to imprison the person somewhere, but it had somehow managed to break them off. Did the sound that Liu Bu and the others hear the other night come from this person?
At this moment, Liu Bu remembered the ravaged corpse of Xu Xia and the human teeth marks on it. He vomited on the spot at the thought. When Xu Xianchu and the others said that it was a human who bit Xu Xia's corpse, he did not believe them. But now, there was no reason not to believe it.
Feelings of terror and disgust were gripping Liu Bu's stomach like they were squeezing everything out of it.
He had no food inside him, so he could only vomit out a pale-green mixture of gastric juices and bile.
Qing Zhen looked at Liu Bu with great interest. "It looks like you also have some understanding of this thing here. Have you seen it chewing on a corpse too?"
Luo Xinyu's reaction was tougher than Liu Bu. She forced herself to calm down and asked, "Just what is this thing?"
"Since it's called an Experimental, then of course it's something that's used for performing experiments on." Qing Zhen said, "But don't misunderstand, this thing's got nothing to do with our Qing Consortium. They are a product from the Pre-Cataclysm times. We also found out about their existence just recently."
"It was from before The Cataclysm?" Luo Xinyu said, rather shocked. "How many years has it already been since The Cataclysm happened? Can they live for so long? Wait, when you said 'they'..."
It was at this time that Luo Xinyu realized there wasn't just one of these things around!
Qing Zhen carefully sized up the "person" in the cage. He said, "They seem to have just escaped from the research laboratory. Even I'm very curious about how they managed to live until now. This is basically a living specimen."
Liu Bu shivered. This Qing Zhen was treating a living person as a specimen, even if that person was neither human nor demon.
Luo Xinyu suddenly realized what the Qing Consortium had come to the Jing Mountains for. They had even mobilized a large number of industrial machinery and spared no manpower or logistics, all so they could locate the research laboratory where these freaks were previously imprisoned!
When they realized that there wasn't just one of these Experimentals around, they finally understood why the combat troops had called for support at first contact with the Experimental. It was because they were worried there would be more of them in the area!
"How many Experimentals did you all encounter, and how many people were injured or killed in the capture of this Experimental?" Qing Zhen asked.
Nearby, someone answered, "We only encountered this one. We mobilized five platoons, and three people died while another 13 were injured."
Qing Zhen shook his head. "It's enough to capture one of these Experimentals. For future encounters, it doesn't matter whether they live or die. Just destroy them all. Don't add to the number of casualties on our side."
"Roger," an officer of the consortium's combat troops answered.
The Experimental in the cage was clearly not dead yet. Luo Xinyu and Liu Bu could tell because they could see it was still breathing from the rising and falling of its chest.
However, Luo Xinyu was a little skeptical. "It should've been centuries years since The Cataclysm happened, right? How are they still alive?"
This was the most puzzling thing. The average human's lifespan was only several decades long, or at most, a little over a hundred years. But if these Experimentals were really from the time before The Cataclysm, how did they manage to survive til now in the underground lab? This didn't make sense.
Even if their lifespan could be extended, what did these Experimentals eat in the underground lab?
Qing Zhen stood before the cage and laughed. "Did I not capture them to find out their secret? For example, multicellular organisms like humans use cell division to perform growth and reproduction. Logically, cell division should be an infinite process, since if it could be divided once, then it could be divided again for a second time or more. But what's strange is that human cells can only divide an average of 50 times before they stop dividing 1 . After that, they will head into an irreversible decline."
This is the reason why humans grow old and die. After human cells divide themselves about 50 times, the cells enter a senescence phase. Then the organs start to fail until death occurs.
Qing Zhen looked at the person in the cage and continued, "I suspect this lab has discovered a way to make the cells divide indefinitely. By doing so, the human body's metabolic rate and lifespan increases. However, they did not consider the consequences of doing something like that."
Qing Zhen labeled this creature in the cage as a Fiend, but it was neither human nor demon. To him, these Fiends had lost their human minds, and their intelligence had degraded to the point of being not that much different from a beast.
But in contrast to their intelligence, these Fiends had physical strength and agility that surpassed the average human's to the point that not even wild animals were a match.
Moreover, wild animals obeyed an order. Just like Ren Xiaosu had said, the different species still had taxonomic orders 1 .
But these Experimentals were different. They did not belong in an order.
Right at this moment, the Experimental that had been shot four or five times started coming around. It curled its body and slammed itself against the steel cage, as if it wanted to use brute strength to break the cage apart!
However, it seemed that this cage had been specially built by the Qing Consortium. It got slightly deformed but did not break apart from the Experimental slamming itself against it.
Eventually, the Experimental stopped trying. It just glared daggers at Qing Zhen, who was in front of it. Luo Xinyu and Liu Bu discovered that Qing Zhen remained unusually calm no matter how aggressively the Experimental was struggling. There was no point in time that he took a step back due to fear.
Qing Zhen removed the magazine from a pistol and threw the pistol into the cage. The Experimental bit into the steel pistol and crushed it with its jaws!
Qing Zhen and the Experimental looked at each other. Suddenly, he said, "Note this down. Subject's teeth have evolved to become harder, its pupils are narrow, and it has a habit of crawling to move around. This thing can no longer be categorized as human, and it's suspected that they are a product of genetic modification. The lab is suspected as a possible secret testing site for the Pyro Company from before The Cataclysm."
From nearby, someone took out pen and paper to take complete notes on Qing Zhen's observations. Compared to Luo Xinyu and Liu Bu's startled looks, everyone else looked like they had gotten used to Qing Zhen's calm demeanor. The Hayflick limit or Hayflick phenomenon is the number of times a normal human cell population will divide before cell division stops. | en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hayflick_limit Taxonomic rank used in the classification of organisms and recognized by the nomenclature codes. | en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Order_(biology)
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