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    Chapter 62: Xie Lin's Disappearance

    Despite storing several types of firearms in her medical room, He Zhiran knew that she should avoid exposing them unless it was absolutely necessary. After all, these were items unfamiliar to the people around her, and she would have a hard time explaining where they came from if used.

    After browsing Taobao, she decisively spent one thousand yuan to purchase two miniature hidden daggers.

    Though not as lethal as guns, these daggers had the advantage of being easily concealed. If used in public, they wouldn't attract too much suspicion—people might merely be curious.

    With the daggers purchased, He Zhiran felt drowsy. There were still plenty of items for sale in the mall, so there was no rush to replenish her stock.

    She withdrew her consciousness and began to prepare for sleep.

    Thinking it would be an uneventful day, suddenly, Mo Jiuye sat up while everyone else was deeply asleep. At the same time, He Zhiran sensed something amiss, rising only a split second after him.

    "I think I heard a wolf howl."

    Seemingly to confirm her suspicion, He Zhiran whispered softly.

    "It indeed sounds like howling wolves."

    As Mo Jiuye spoke, he had already lifted the curtain and stepped outside, with He Zhiran swiftly following behind him.

    By then, the guards had also noticed the anomaly and cried out, "Captain, trouble! There's a pack of wolves!"

    Relying on her experience from her previous life in wilderness warfare, He Zhiran knew that wolves were fearful of fire.

    Thus, under the cover of darkness, she swiftly retrieved all three bottles of alcohol from her space.

    He Zhiran dashed around the area where the convicts and guards were resting.

    The guards had already emerged from their tents, holding their large blades at the ready in a state of alert.

    Aside from He Zhiran and Mo Jiuye, the other prisoners were huddled together in fear.

    Mo Jiuye, recognizing the familiar scent, lit a fire torch once he saw He Zhiran pause, igniting the alcohol she had just poured around them with perfect synchronization.

    Amidst the blazing flames, the pack of wolves had already encircled them. However, deterred by the fire before them, they didn't approach further but stood at a distance, digging their claws into the ground and howling incessantly.

    He Zhiran and Mo Jiuye's first priority was the safety of their family. After igniting the alcohol fire circle, they swiftly returned to their family's campsite.

    Madam Old Mo was tightly embracing Mo Hanyue, both staring in horror towards the direction of the wolves. The sisters-in-law huddled together in fear, their bodies visibly trembling.

    "Mother, sisters-in-law, Hanyue, don't be afraid. With me and my husband here, we will never let any harm come to you," assured Mo Jiuye. He knew that the fire wouldn't last forever.

    Fixing He Zhiran with a deep gaze, he said solemnly, "I'll go out and fend off those wolves. You stay here and protect our family."

    Though He Zhiran was well aware of Mo Jiuye's capabilities, the howling wolves indicated a significant number.

    Even with his exceptional skills, it would be impossible to ensure safety against so many wolves.

    Not to mention, he was unarmed.

    "No, we'll do this together. Trust me, I can handle it."

    Mo Jiuye could see the determination in He Zhiran's eyes as she spoke.

    After some contemplation, he ultimately didn't refuse.

    "You can follow me, but you must stay within three steps of me. That way, I can save you promptly if danger arises."

    "Alright." He Zhiran responded promptly and decisively.

    The two reassured their female relatives before rushing out of the circle of fire together.

    Just as they stepped over the flames, He Zhiran conjured two miniature hidden darts in her hands with a thought.

    Taking advantage of Mo Jiuye's glance at her, she tossed him one dart and quickly explained its usage.

    Despite it being his first encounter with such a diminutive crossbow, Mo Jiuye, fueled by his enthusiasm for all sorts of weapons, quickly mastered its usage.

    They ran dozens of meters away to ensure the hidden arrows could reach the wolves before stopping.

    Mo Jiuye gracefully swept He Zhiran into his arms, lightly leaping into the air and landing them on a sturdy, massive tree.

    The couple swiftly found their vantage points and, in perfect unison, aimed at the pack of wolves.

    At the same time, the officers jumped out from the protective circle of fire, brandishing their broadswords to fend off the wolves that had evaded the feathered arrows.

    Within the circle of fire, the braver men had gathered large stones from the ground and clutched them in their arms. Should any wolf slip past the guards, they would not hesitate to use the stones as weapons.

    The compact crossbow held ten arrows; before long, the two of them had exhausted their supply.

    He Zhiran swiftly entered her spatial dimension, purchasing a sufficient number of arrows. After reloading, she rejoined the fray.

    The pack of wolves, unable to withstand the onslaught, retreated at the command of their alpha. Dozens of the surviving beasts fled in panic.

    By the dim light of the flames, they counted at least fifty to sixty wolf corpses.

    He Zhiran was scooped up by Mo Jiuye and landed safely on the ground.

    Peng Wang rushed over, still shaken by the sight of so many wolf corpses before him.

    "I've been a law enforcement officer for quite some time, but I've never encountered such a massive pack of wolves. Thanks to the both of you tonight, we were all saved from certain death."

    Peng Wang's words were not an exaggeration; with their abilities, the officers would have been unable to fend off the wolves.

    Mo Jiuye remained expressionless, simply nodding slightly at Peng Wang before pulling He Zhiran along to check on their own family members.

    Suddenly, a piercing scream came from the Xie family camp: "Lin'er, my Lin'er is gone..."

    He Zhiran and Mo Jiuye exchanged a glance and quickly ran over, followed closely by Peng Wang and the other officers.

    "What happened here?"

    Xie Lin's mother, Lady Lu, was already weeping uncontrollably. In her panic, she answered, "Lin'er has disappeared, Lin'er, where are you? Come out, don't scare your mother..."

    Unfortunately, her cries for help went unanswered.

    Peng Wang gazed deeply at the Xie family men. "What were you doing when we were driving away the wolves?"

    Xie Ming quickly explained, "Sir, we were worried that you might not be able to hold the line, so we carried stones behind you, ready to fend off any wolves that might approach."

    Lu also added, "Lin'er was always by my side. Later, when my husband and brother-in-law went to assist, I was so concerned for their safety that I kept my focus on them, neglecting Lin'er... Lin'er, it was Mother's oversight... Wuu wuu wuu..."

    Peng Wang impatiently chided, "Enough, stop crying for now. Finding people is more important."

    He Zhiran couldn't help but interject, "Sheriff Peng, should we inquire with the other families to see if anyone else is missing?"

    Upon hearing this, Peng Wang yelled, "Check your own households for any missing persons, and report immediately if there are any."

    The disappearance of convicts was no trivial matter; it could suggest an escape attempt.

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