The base was bustling.
Excluding the women in the "care center," the base’s population approached 150, and they were the backbone of the future Fishbone Base. Once the newly expanded wall was completed, two more apartment buildings would be added, and then they could consider accepting foreign populations.
Lu Huasheng was still in charge of the construction. Needless to say, the ex-chief developer of Huajian Real Estate certainly had his strengths. Jiang Chen gave him the opportunity to demonstrate his ability, and he proved himself by designing the base's structure.
An honest and hardworking man like him was best suited for jobs that required basic planning with no room for mistakes. With his foresight, Jiang Chen was able to choose the right people, and Lu Huasheng didn’t disappoint him. He personally stood with the construction team every day on the front lines to expand the wall with 120% efficiency.
For someone like Cheng Weiguo, who had loyalty and a strong passion, Jiang Chen assigned him a role in the army as the leader of the civil force responsible for guarding the base and training the soldiers.
As for Zhou Guoping, he was the type to be smooth and flattering, so Jiang Chen naturally stationed him in the Sixth Street. This was partially because he had prior experience in intelligence collection and also because he had a bad history with Chu Nan. Although it was not directly Zhou Guoping’s fault, he did violate Chu Nan’s "goddess."
In front of him, multiple times.
For the sake of keeping the harmony in the base, it was not a terrible decision to separate them.
On his way to a warehouse, Jiang Chen passed by the community center, which was a temporary hangar to store the Type-51 Transport Helicopter.
Entering the hangar, Jiang Chen found Chu Nan hard at work repairing the helicopter.
Virtual reality training chambers inside the base were installed with general weaponry training, and they could also copy general technical skills from the city library. But for a military transportation vehicle like the Helicopter-51, which was considered top secret before the war, it was excluded from the civil force training courses.
Therefore, the only person able to repair and operate this helicopter was Chu Nan.
"How's the situation?" Jiang Chen asked as he approached.
"Terrible." Chu Nan didn’t turn around. His only response was to wipe his sweat with his arm and continue arranging the messy wiring.
"Can it be repaired?" He glanced at the helicopter that seemed to come straight from science-fiction and touched the circular side wings. He didn't see a rotor on the helicopter, but based on the appearance, the suspension force most likely came from this circular structure. The design of the body was aerodynamic with a hatch door open in the back. The words "Transport Helicopter" along with the PAC symbol had all but faded, and the metal frame in the front was caved in from the impact. Even the bulletproof glass was completely shattered. The appearance wasn't so terrible, but Jiang Chen did question whether it would ever fly again.
"Should be fixable. The damage to the exterior is fine since it can be easily replaced with metal parts, but the problem is the electronic parts inside. Dammit, the entire engine control is burned. Can you believe it? Inside the city center, I met a monster that can fire an EMP from its mouth." Chu Nan cursed as he retracted a palm-sized box from the helicopter's side and connected the exposed wiring to the computer on the side to input some data.
Jiang Chen’s expression turned strange when he heard Chu Nan’s words. He himself had encountered a monster that could emit EMP before.
"Isn't it hard to see mutants that can fire EMP?"
Chu Nan turned around with a look of surprise.
"Actually, it’s common to see mutants that can fire EMP?"
Jiang Chen paused.
Now that he thought about it, he knew Chu Nan ended up in that area because he failed a mission, but he never asked about the specifics.
"The mission was to eliminate a mutant creature and collect the crystal. We sent out two helicopters as well as a force of twelve soldiers equipped with power armors. When we arrived at the target location, I suspended the helicopter above the yellowish-green particles. Then our captain requested missile support.
"The missile would expose the body, the soldiers parachute, kill, and collect the crystal. That was the routine, and it wasn't my first time out on such a mission.
"It was a beautiful hit. The electromagnetic cannon fired from Liuding Town directly hit the building and the concrete tumbled down like an avalanche. Just when we thought all we needed to do was go down and collect the crystals," Chu Nan paused with a mysterious smile, "a red meat cannon as tall as half the building fired a red beam into the sky. It hit nothing, but the two helicopters immediately stalled.
"The monster seemed to have exploded, so the parachuted soldiers must have been successful. But who knows?" Chu Nan shrugged as he inserted a processor into the helicopter body.
"Did no one from Liuding Town come to save you?"
"That’s impossible." Chu Nan’s mouth twitched. "For Liuding Town, pilots can be mass produced. The only thing of value was this metal scrap right here, but the point of the crash was too far from the port. I almost flew half a city."
Jiang Chen fell into silence.
He suddenly recalled his time in the underground fallout shelter. The artificial intelligence had described the bug that infiltrated the fallout shelter.
[Hehe, even if it missed, your metal pieces will become a metal casket.]
"Klein Particles?" Jiang Nan muttered to himself.
"What’s that?" Chu Nan asked confusedly.
"Nothing." He would ask Lin Lin about Klein Particles later. For now, Jiang Chen avoided the topic. "Oh, once you finish repairing the helicopter, could you make some modifications to it?"
"Mhmm. Such as installing a 50mm machine gun on the side and welding a fire cannon on the top."
Different than Liuding Town, Fishbone Base's focus was on land; hence, there was no need for long-distance combat, and it would better suit Fishbone’s combat needs if the Type-51 was converted into an air cannon vehicle.
"Do you think the helicopter is a truck? That you could weld anything on top?" Chu Nan couldn’t help but ridicule him.
"What’s the problem?" Stumped, Jiang Chen frowned.
"There's a big problem." Chu Nan shook his head as he dragged the wiring from the computer. He picked up the screwdriver again to adjust parts inside the helicopter. "Balance is a big issue. Even casual modifications could cause the helicopter to be unable to suspend itself or fly a certain distance before it flips over."
"Then let’s not do a casual modification." Jiang Chen laughed as he patted Chu Nan on the shoulder. "I’ll leave the trouble to you, the expert. I need you to add some weapons on this thing—the stronger the firepower, the better."
Hearing such an unprofessional request made Chu Nan rub his face with his palms. He let out a helpless sigh.
"I’ll try my best. I’ll install a machine gun on the side and design a new fire-control system. As for the fire cannon, I’ll install it near the back hatch. It should be okay if it's manually controlled. But if we modify it like this, the transport helicopter will become a combat helicopter."
Jiang Chen smiled at Chu Nan’s doubts.
"Exactly what I want."