"Happy birthday to you~…"
The melody of the birthday song harmonized perfectly with the clapping hands as the song echoed throughout the old mansion .
It was already night and there was no light on .
The room was dark . Only 16 candles illuminated and lit up the blushed face .
Colorful confetti exploded alongisde three genuine wishes .
"Tha…Thank you . " Yao Yao’s eyes were decorated with mists of excitement . Her tiny hands clenched onto the tip of her dress, and she bowed deeply to express her appreciation .
It has been many years since she was this happy .
But before she could finish, an unharmonious voice interrupted the touching atmosphere .
"Oh my! Cake, mango, gulp . " Lin Lin chuckled moonly at the cake as her fists clenched on the fork .
"You are drooling! Fool . " Sun Jiao grabbed her by the collar as she lifted back Lin Lin, who was approaching the cake . At the same time, she gave her a scorned look .
"Wooo!" Lin Lin retracted her neck as she pouted her mouth feeling wronged, "Didn’t we agree on eating the cake after singing the birthday song?"
"We still have to blow out the candle, wait a bit longer . " Jiang Chen’s mood was particularly delightfully today as he gave a rare tender smile to Lin Lin .
"If it is only a bit longer . " Lin Lin looked away with her face blushed .
Under the dim light, no one noticed the red hue on her face .
"Go ahead, Yao Yao, you are the star today . " Sun Jiao extended her hand with a smile as she put it around Yao Yao’s shoulder .
"Remember to make a wish . " Jiang Chen said .
"Mhmm!" The pretty face was red because of excitement . Yao Yao’s tiny head nodded fiercely .
She approached the candles with excitement as she took a deep breath .
16 candle flames flared by her breath . Each candle was filled with a young girl’s wish .
From now on, Yao Yao has offically entered her sweet sixteeth .
The light turned back on .
With a pure white princess dress, soft hair that dangled to her chest, ad white stocking paired with black chauffers, she looked like a girl who just walked out of a fairy tale .
"Cut the cake . I want the cake!" Lin Lin couldn’t wait any longer, her silver hair swayed, but her one red and one black pupil stared at the pieces of mangos on the cake as she continued to gulp .
Sun Jiao lifted the plastic knife as she started to portion the cake .
"Is it okay to cut the letters? Or should I avoid the letters . "
Born in a fallout shelter, it was her first time seeing a cake . She only remembered that she ate something called chocolate before . Just a small piece was sweet enough to melt her . But now, the chocolate was made into a cake the size of a plate .
The white vanilla cream and the colorful fruits were just like a piece of art . She didn’t want to cut it .
"Ahhh! Don’t hesitate anymore, my mango!" Lin Lin reached her hand out desperately as she tried to fight for the plastic knife in Sun Jiao’s hand .
"Rowdy . " Sun Jiao obviously would not let Lin Lin succeed so she easily took care of her .
Yao Yao, on the other hand, was quieter . Her face blushed as she closely leaned on Jiang Chen . Her cheery-like mouth panted as her chest raised up and down . She looked nervous .
As to why she was nervous . . . that was because of tonight…
"Are you happy today?" Jiang Chen gently squeezed Yao Yao’s hand as he smiled .
Seeing the warm smile on his face, Yao Yao shyly stared at the chocolate vanilla cake in front of her and she grinned softly .
"I am happy . "
"Speaking of this, I thought it was your 17th birthday today… Do we really need 37 candles?" Jiang Chen suddenly added a smirk to his face .
The cute mouth immediately pouted .
"Woo… Don’t be mean to me today . " Yao Yao said softly as she gently dragged the tip of his shirt .
"Haha, sorry, I can’t resist because you are too cute . " He caressed Yao Yao’s longhair . Seeing the slightly narrowed and loving eyes and the lightly shaking eyelashes, a joyful smile appeared on Jiang Chen’s face .
The feeling of home was probably similar to this .
"Speaking of this, what did you wish for?"
Hearing this, Yao Yao’s face turned red as her eyes quickly glanced at him before moving away .
"It would not be a wish if I say it out loud, it’s a secret…" She said quietly .
She certainly minded .
Just as Jiang Chen was about to tease the small loli more, a light door-knock transmitted from the living room .
Sun Jiao looked at Jiang Chen to ask for his opinion, Jiang Chen shrugged before he walked to the living room and opened the door .
Wang Qin stood outside . Her nose turned vibrant red because of the chillness . Her freckled face had some ice shards on it .
The night on the wasteland was frigid, particularly in the winter .
Seeing how her frozen face was written with worry, Jiang Chen turned serious .
"Come in first . "
Wnag Qin nodded sincerely, she ducked under the door and shook the snow off her body .
"Do you need a cup of hot water?" Seeing how cold she was, Jiang Chen asked caringly .
But she waved her head signaling a "no" and she took a deep breath of the warm air before she looked at Jiang Chen . . "The mutated humans, they are coming from the Seventh Area and they are setting up camps across from Taifu rive . It is rumored that…Awechu!"
As she spoke, she suddenly sneezed .
Seeing her disjointed look, Jiang Chen sighed as he headed into the kitchen and poured a cup of hot water for her .
"Thank you . " Wang Qin sat on the sofa and held onto the steamy cup . Signs of bloodflow finally began to show on her face .
"Sit down and say it slowly . There is no need to rush . Don’t forget any details . " Jiang Chen sat across from Wang Qin and said in a stern tone .
She nodded before she took a deep breath and collected her thoughts .
"This afternoon, Zhao Gang sent information from Shenxiang town…"
Wang Qin described in detail the movements of mutated humans to Jiang Chen, including the force distribution, the number of equipment detected by the drones, as well as the request for backup from Zhao Gang .
Hearing her description, Jiang Chen pondered for a moment .
"What’s the production status on Tiger?"
"We only produced two new units as of now and the workers are already working around the clock . " Wang Qin said, troubled .
"What about the drones?"
"47 units . "
"Mhmm, I see . " His finger on his chin, Jiang Chen fell into deep thought .
Mutated humans were planning to fight untill death . They chose to invade during winter even with their outpost taken out . The motive certainly surprised him .
Although the Carman Pharmaceutical Corporation was near city center, it was not within the vicinity of city center . From any point of view, it would be a wiser choice to head to the Carman building when spring came around rather than fighting through the river during the winter .
Was there any reason they must fight in the winter?
Unless their target was not only the Carman building but the city center as well?
"Tell Zhao Gang that the backup will arrive immediately . "
Wang Qin nodded, but a troubled look flashed across his face .
"New recruit training is still underway . There are only 70 soldiers available to fight in the base . If we send too many people . . . "
She didn’t complete the sentence, but the meaning was obvious .
If the defense of the base is weak, they might not be able to control the slaves .
"I’ll take care of the problem, just reply this way . " Jiang Chen smiled .
Perhaps because his smile was confident, Wang Qin’s concern immediately vanquished .
She nodded with a smile before she left .
Seeing Wang Qin leave, Jiang Chen pondered for a long moment and closed the door .
He readjusted his mood before he went back to the dining room .
"Did something happen?" Sun Jiao seemed to have sensed something .
"Nothing . " Jiang Chen smiled, signaling her not to worry .
But this time, he saw Lin Lin twitching on the chair with vanilla smeared all over her face . His expression changed .
The naughty Sun Jiao seemed to have noticed Jiang Chen’s stare as her face turned red . She looked at the ceiling, raised her proud chest, and pretended that nothing happened .
"Don’t bully Lin Lin that much . "
Sun Jiao stuck out her tongue and suddenly grabbed him by the arm . She giggled and inched closer to his ear .
"I am full, let’s go play games?"
[I haven’t even eaten yet . ] Jiang Chen facepalmed in his mind .
But the tenderness he felt from his arm made his mind drift elsewhere .
"No, not acceptable!" Yao Yao with her ears on high alert immediately jumped on like a squirrel who's tail just got stepped on . She ran over and dragged onto the other hand of Jiang Chen, and looked at Sun Jiao in remorse, "We already agreed that the star today is me…"
"We already agreed?" Jiang Chen paused as he looked confusedly between Sun Jiao and Yao Yao .
"Ahem, uhh, I changed my mind, I’ll give him to you tomorrow . " Sun Jiao didn’t answer Jiang Chen’s question . Instead, she looked away awkwardly .
"Woo-!" Yao Yao bloated her cheeks as the adorable eyebrows immediately raised up, but they soon softened down .
"You already ate all the good food, you can’t even let the small animal drink some soup?"
The saddened voice made Sun Jiao’s face look somewhat embarrassed . She didn’t say anything .
Seeing Sister Sun Jiao had no reaction, Yao Yao didn’t give up . She lightly gritted her teeth to give herself the courage as she continued to use the soft voice to persuade her, "If you eat meat every day, you will become sick of it . "
Sun Jiao’s expression was evidently moved . Jiang Chen still looked at the two of them in bewilderment, not understanding why the conversation topic suddenly turned to food .
Seeing the words were effective, Yao Yao secretively posed a success gesture with her hands as she built on her success . "The occasional vegetable would be good for your health . Also, if the small animal doesn’t taste good, wouldn’t it demonstrate the attractiveness of the big dairy cow…"
Sun Jiao with a blushed face said, ‘What…what’s big dairy cow . "
"Uh, what are you guys talking about?" Jiang Chen scratched his face in confusion .
Her conflicted eyes moved between Yao Yao and Jiang Chen as her stance wavered .
Although she already decided…[Wooo! This is annoying!]
[If you eat meat every day, you will become sick of it . ]
"Ahhh! I don’t care anymore, do whatever you want . " Sun Jiao said in defeat as she escaped without looking back .
Jiang Chen stared at the fleeting Sun Jiao blankly before he looked at Yao Yao, who had a red hue on her face . A troubled smile appeared on his face .
"Uh, what just happened?"
"Nothing . " Yao Yao’s head shook furiously as she put her hands behind her back timidly .
She smiled tenderly, as she posted a success gesture with her hand behind her back .
The victory belonged to the small animal!