Novel Name : Mercenary Black Mamba

Mercenary Black Mamba - Chapter 656

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Hae Young smiled with satisfaction. The skeleton of the defense paper (the final course of the Ph.D.) was the hypothesis that the center of the Great Earth, from Lake Malawi to Lake Albert, was lifted, while torn from the seabed and the second rise happened after the seawater evaporated in a deep basin state. The academic advisor constantly criticized her, saying that she chose the wrong direction.
“Damn old hag, he told me not to be writing novels!”
If one found any eukaryotic fossils in the Precambrian strata, their paper became the cover of the Nature journal. She could picture the U.S. Geographical Society flipping out and her image covering the front page of the Korean morning newspaper. Hae Young, who was showered with adrenaline, felt her way up the strata.
“A pine cone!”
She was so surprised that the drill she was holding fell off. A fossil of a pine cone suddenly appeared from the shale floor on the top layer of the conglomerate. It was a pine cone fossil with clear pine needles. As it was known, pine trees appeared in the late Mesozoic era.
“No way!”
Her mind flew to the Cambrian period. Why was a pine tree that appeared in the Mesozoic era in the Precambrian period? Where did the Cambrian and Paleozoic go, and now the Mesozoic? Maybe one should throw the geological common sense that people knew so far; in the trash can. Hae Young collected the pine cone fossils and climbed up the slope.
“A trilobite!”
A scream broke out without even realization. Following pine cones, a pile of trilobite fossils appeared. Trilobites were representative players of the Paleozoic era. Assuming that the stratum where pine cone fossils were found was in the Mesozoic era, it was in the order of the Mesozoic reverse rock layer, the unknown sandstone layer, and the Paleozoic sales layer. The strata and fossils were mixed up.
The Paleozoic stratum between the Precambrian and Mesozoic eras could disappear due to inconsistency. However, there could not be a reversal between the Mesozoic layer and Paleozoic layer. They could not exist in the Mesozoic stratum unless the trilobite fossils were revived and crawled up through the ground.
This phenomenon occurred if trilobites flourished in the Cenozoic era or when the stratum was flipped over completely like a bread mold, and the Precambrian stratum was bent by folding. Of course, the stratum was not a walnut-snack bread mold and Pangu was only a legendary giant.
“Yes, this is it!”
Hae Young clenched her fist. She was so excited that she could pee herself. Nature magazine was out of the window now. She felt there could be something that would turn the world upside down. She climbed a dangerous incision that could collapse at any moment. Her brain was bursting with the desire to solve the mystery of the strange reversal stratum.
“I’m about to go crazy. Would it be so horrible if it was a little cloudy?”
Hae Young glared at the blazing sun with her eyes. The work, which began at seven o’clock, had passed noon. Like a madwoman, she skipped lunch and crawled around the cliff. A backpack full of fossils weighed her shoulders down and she was light-headed from hunger.
Sweaty jeans, that wrapped around her legs, ate away at their physical strength. The blouse had been soaked with sweat for a long time and the hunter’s jacket had become white from salt. She took out the military grade ration, then put it back in the backpack. She felt like she’d be throwing up if she ate. She took two tablets in the size of a pinky nail from the pouch and swallowed them. It was a nutritional supplement that combined vitamins and sodium. She lifted the bra and wiped the sweaty breast with a towel, then she stopped.
“Who is that?”
She couldn’t tell who the silhouette climbing up the slope of the cutting site was. The silhouette would fall over several times on a rough slope and then stand back up. The heated atmosphere waved like a haze, making it seem as if a person was floating in the air and approaching.
“Thought he was resting?”
It was Kerry, who remained in the nest. The man dressed in an all-in-one yellow researcher attire.
“Oh, man.”
Kerry gasped, sweating like a waterfall. Sweat ran down everywhere even if one just stood in one place, but he climbed a steep slope of 300m, so his exhaustion was expected.
“Kerry, what’s up? I thought you were taking a day off.”
“It’ll collapse with even the tiniest movement. Did you think I’d feel comfortable doing that?”
Kerry collected his breath and grinned.
“Hmph, I bet the Gargamel kicked you in the ass.”
“I came running because I was worried. Now, I’m disappointed. Oh, my God! Look at the sweat.”
Kerry wiped off Hae Young’s face with a sports towel.
“Kerry, don’t come close.”
Hae Young slapped his hand away.
“Oh, I’m sad that you don’t understand my pure kindness. Hahaha!”
Kerry grinned as he felt awkward. He was, in a way, stuck on her. Lin was on a different level from a personal and tough American woman. She had an oriental beauty, was considerate of others, and was well-behaved. While staying together, he grumbled like a puppy who lost his mother, but she didn’t give him a chance.
“Lin, don’t be coy. I’m going insane just digging in this damn place. A coal miner wouldn’t even inhale as much dust as we do. Let us have some fun while working.”
Kerry pushed. He heard that Asian women were easily attracted to Caucasian men.
“You’re not my type. If you want to have fun, look for a Bantu woman dressed in red clay. There are six of them in the support team.”
“Want me to do it with a dirty savage!”
Kerry shrugged his shoulders. The thought of a woman with red mud on her face and with a musty smell was awful.
“Kerry, are you a racist? You seem like you’ll call me the Yellow Monkey.”
Hae Young frowned. All the white dudes knew was sex. She missed Mu Ssang all of a sudden.
“Sorry, I didn’t mean it that way. I’m just talking about the hygienic aspect. I’m so lonely!”
Startled, Kerry quickly made an apology.
“If you’re so horny, go into the woods and get with the gorillas.”
Hae Young pointed towards a dark forest above the cutting site.
“You’re too much. Don’t you feel sorry for my youth, to be torn to death by a silverback?”
“Kerry, I have a man I love. He’s stronger than ten silverback gorillas. You better watch out,” said Hae Young.
She was wearing a serious face.
“Well, I may be scared of a silverback but not of a man.”
Kerry didn’t know what Hae Young truly meant by what she said.
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“Stop talking about useless things. Just look at the strata. It’s taken my breath away.”
“I saw it on the way up. The Cambrian strata disappeared and the Paleozoic and Mesozoic strata reversed. There must have been an over-thrust.”
“It’s not a fault. I didn’t find any ripple marks, dry layers, cross-bedding, graded-bedding, groove marks, or flute marks. It looks like a giant kneaded it and flipped it over as a whole.”
Hae Young pointed at the flat stratum with no protrusion.
“Maybe a huge explosion overturned it?”
“It’s a more realistic speculation than a mono-layer, but can such an explosion occur?”
To flip over thousands of kilometers of strata as a whole, it must be a powerful explosion that would make the moon bounce away.
“Lin, you look exhausted. Let’s call it a day if you don’t want to suffer from heatstroke. Let me carry your bag. Gosh, why is it so heavy?”
Kerry, who was picking up Hae Young’s backpack, acted like a crybaby.
“Okay! Let’s go, madangsoe.”
She is tired, but more importantly, her body was itchy and was driving her crazy. Hae Young gave up her work.
“It’s a Korean word for servants. The one special madangsoe in the world is called Dolsoe.”
“The Dolsoe must be a lover or a husband.”
“You know it. A clumsy man who spills his belongings doesn’t deserve to be a Dolsoe.”
Hae Young pointed to a long yellow cloth that fell to the ground.
“Aha, I must have dropped a towel when I fell.”
Kerry kicked off the rock covering the cloth, quickly picked it up, and stuffed it into his pocket. The pattern of watermarking D and S on the edge of the towel was clear. Hae Young was not interested in the fact that the towel that fell could not crawl under the rock nor in Kerry’s flustered reaction.
The next day, Hae Young found sector H again, which she climbed the previous day. Kerry returned to the nest, saying he had something to check on. It must have been a big deal since the cat refused the fish.
Tree stumps and bedrock that weren’t there yesterday were revealed here and there. It was a sign of fluctuation of Earth’s surface overnight. She was scared, but curiosity and desire moved her hands and feet. Some say you resemble the very people you hate the most. Hae Young’s resonance resembles her parents’. She left Mu Ssang because of her resonance and regretted it deeply, but she wasn’t aware that she was burning with resonance again.
Yesterday was today. With the burning sun of the equator, high humidity as if in a steam bath, and a heavily subdued atmosphere, Hae Young was covered with sweat and dust. Her eyes stung. The sweat-melted mascara got into her eyes. She tilted the water bottle to wash her eyes.
She wanted to wash her face, but if she used all the water in the water bottle, she would have to bring it from the base camp. She didn’t want to ask a cyborg to do it, and it was hard to go back and forth 800m. Hae Young missed the camp. She desperately wished to take a cool shower and sleep well for about 10 hours.
“Who did I put on makeup for?” she thought.
Before coming out of work, she habitually put on mascara and painted on her lipstick. Mascara and lipstick were all that was for so-called makeup. Smelly cosmetics such as lotion and perfume brought in poisonous insects. When she was with Mu Ssang, She didn’t even bother to put lipstick on. The past years had become unfamiliar as if it was some other’s life. Hae Young took out a wet tissue and wiped her face hysterically. She roughly wiped off the lipstick as well.
Yesterday, her breast was itchy. But today, the inside of her underwear was itchy. It was because of a rash in her important areas. The application of terbinafine hydrochloride did not improve the condition. The itchiness was one thing, but the fact that mold lived there was so uncomfortable.
Hae Young wanted to throw off her clothes and wash them off. She glanced around. There was no way there were other people, other than the cyborg who was keeping security at the far bottom. She turned around and unzipped her trousers. She pulled down her underwear and showed her genitals. The itch was relieved by the wind. Maybe it was just in her head.
“What am I doing!”
A sudden surge of sorrow came. It was ridiculous to see herself exposing her genitals in a wide-open place. If she’d put a flower on her head, it’ll be the complete version of a mad woman. What if Mu Ssang saw this madness? It was awful just to imagine.
“I’m not even a virgin. Why do I care…”
Tears that were held back poured out like a broken faucet.
“But I’m glad Mu Ssang took my virginity, at least. If you cry, you lose.”
As soon as she thought of Mu Ssang, her mysophobia started. Hae Young wiped her tears and looked up at the dark forest above the cutting area. She heard that rivers were intertwined in the forest and there were countless swamps and pools. It’s a place one should never go in, but the desire to wash up was so strong. As she approached the forest, a flock of mopani came in like clouds. It was proof that there was water nearby.
“Oh, it’s water!”
When the forest was about 30m away, she found a slim stream flowing along a gentle slope. The stream of water led to the original forest. Hae Young made a puddle by blocking a thread-like stream of water with a portable stainless steel shovel.
“Oh, it’s cold!”
She flinched while putting her hand in. The water that’s supposed to be lukewarm because of the geothermal heat was cold? This was where her head tilted. Her eyes searched up the stream. About 5 meters upstream, a shiny object could be seen. The essence of science is persistence and suspicion. Hae Young climbed up the stream.
“Oh my God!”
Unknowingly, an exclamation came out. The edge of the stream, which was less than a foot wide, was frozen. The shiny object was ice reflected in the sun. This place was Africa, on an equator where geothermal was suffocating. A place far from thin ice. How did ice formation make any sense when the sun pierced the middle of the sky, radiating heat as if to burn one’s skin?
There is no result without a cause. Hae Young looked into the water with her face close. There was no object in sight. She put her hand in the water and stirred it. A cold block of ice caught her hand. Her fingers were so cold that they could stick to one another. She pulled away her hands out of fright. This was the culprit who froze the water. She poked with a shovel. The object remained motionless. The roots were firmly buried in the rock formation.
“What the heck is this?”
An object emitting cold air appeared from the unknown stratum. The thought of washing her sweaty body flew away to a faraway country. Using a portable electric crusher, she carefully dug out the reverse rock that was holding the object.
Thirty minutes of investment was made to remove the conglomerate stuck to the surface of the object with a dental drill, and the impurities were washed with weak acidic hydrogen fluoride. When foreign substances were wiped with a microfiber towel, the object showed its face. Her palms felt freezing.
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Hae Young stared at the milky white object on her palm. The cylindrical object that fit into the palm was colder than ice and lighter than a tree of the same volume. At first glance, it was an ice mica, but there was no ice mica with a perfect arc at the edge.
“A neolithic tool?”
It’s a ridiculous imagination, but there are many things in the world that human intelligence cannot comprehend. The Mesozoic strata were placed on the Precambrian strata. There was no law that stated Cenozoic strata could not exist between the Paleozoic and Mesozoic strata.
Hae Young measured it with a tape measure. It was 150mm in length, 20mm in diameter, and had a smooth cylindrical shape, and the circular edge was treated with 3R (metal processing method that pulls three sides into a curved surface). If the material was wood, it would have rotten or silicon would have permeated the tissue and it would have been heavy as stone. There was no rock that came to mind even if she searched through her brain.
Sophisticated artifacts whose physical properties were unknown were not neolithic tools, no need for spectroscopic analysis. The sound of a Neolithic person making such a sophisticated object was as absurd as the sound of a frog making a spaceship.
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