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Chapter 18 – Outside the ‘Game’.


Song Gui had just walked a few steps after he turned around, before he suddenly stopped, and patted his own head. As he scratched his head, he said, “oh? I forgot to ask him to take a bed or pillow back with him from the illusion……”

Although the things in this illusion were fake, but their taste and texture were all real. Everybody’s rooms were empty with nothing inside them, and other than the small amount of time that they could come out, and the time when they enter into the ‘game’ after accepting a task, they could only spend the rest of their time in that cold and lonely room alone. If they wanted to rest, they could only lie on the ground. Therefore, for Song Gui and the rest who were also considered ‘old members’, they would take the opportunity to bring something back into their rooms, within the limitations set by the ‘rules’.

Even if they were in this space, and wouldn’t grow old nor die, nor would they lack anything or feel tired, but they would still try their best to add some life into it.

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After criticising himself for a bit, Song Gui sat at another food stall, ordered some food, and mumbled as he ate, “forget it, I’ll remind our future ally in the future.”

Seeing him react like this, Song Gui instantly felt wronged. He rested on the table and tried to get close to Lu Chu, and didn’t forget to act and make eyes as he complained, “Chuchu! I love you so much, until it’s basically love at first sight, you mustn’t be scared of me!”

——————

Lu Chu’s smile grew warmer as he saw this, and pushed Song Gui’s head away from himself.

Song Gui went along with Lu Chu’s push and got up from the table, wiping away his non-existent tears.

Lu Chu asked, “‘if we don’t enter to do a task’, the meaning of this sentence, does that mean we can choose to accept or reject the task, and we won’t be killed if we don’t carry it out?”

apologies to those who use readers or mtl translations, but this is copy protection. for mtl, simply erase the parts that don’t match the original on the site

At the same time, Lu Chu had returned to his own space.

There was a huge gap when returning from a lively street to a silent place, and as he looked at the empty white world without a visible edge, Lu Chu could imagine how terrifying of a thing it must be if he had to spent the rest of his life in this place.

It would take more than twenty hours for him to see Song Gui again the next day, so Lu Chu simply walked over to the floating panels, and observe the ‘rules’ that Song Gui had talked about.

Speaking of which, he didn’t fully trust Song Gui, after all, this was the first time they met. Especially when they were in this type of place, where tomorrow would bring surprises, and nobody knew if the next day would actually arrive. Anybody would be cautious when meeting someone.

Even if Song Gui wouldn’t tell him everything, he probably wouldn’t deceive him when it came to the general things. Lu Chu believed that he would be able to get these basic mattersfrom the rules, but the rules’ impartial prompts and the suggestions from someone’s experiences both have their own advantages. So far, the only thing he wasn’t that sure about, was Song Gui’s motive.

He definitely wouldn’t have acted so friendly and kind to him simply because he found it fun?

Thinking of it, perhaps there was a chance…… right? Alright, Lu Chu felt that he was thinking too much.

Anyways, there was absolutely to problem if he kept his vigilance while giving a little trust.

While he was thinking, Lu Chu had already walked to the area where the panels were floating.

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The existence of these ‘rules’ gave Lu Chu a feeling as if he was being watched, and it was very uncomfortable.

He looked at these screens one by one, and realised that on every screen that he had touched, they would grow out paper-like arms and legs, then, these words would appear on them —

“Requirements: XXX

Clues: XXX

Lu Chu listened to what he said and asked, “for example, the middle-aged man who only had five minutes left?”

Tips: XXX”

Indeed, people were social creatures, and although they would occasionally enjoy being alone, but it wouldn’t be forever.

These should be for entering into the ‘game’ and tasks, and each ‘game’ would have a different number underneath them on the panel, and Lu Chu though that its purpose might be for differentiating, and on the lower right corner was a button to enter. Looking at it, on the surface, this gave them the ‘freedom’ to choose, and the right to choose. However, everybody knew the truth. Then, Lu Chu found out that some rules had written out the number of people who could enter the ‘game’.

Song Gui nodded, “that’s right, after he survived two games, and found out that he could choose not to continue with it, he hadn’t accepted any task for eleven whole days. If today, he doesn’t accept and enter a game, we’ll never see him in this illusion ever again.”

And this was probably the two-person, or multi-person task that Song Gui had mentioned before, and had also asked him if he wanted to complete it together.

Lu Chu listened to what he said and asked, “for example, the middle-aged man who only had five minutes left?”

Lu Chu had long experienced the degree of danger in each ‘game’, and under these circumstances, choosing someone he didn’t know to enter into a game with, was far worse than him doing it all by himself. At least he didn’t need to worry about being betrayed, and when he thought about this, Lu Chu couldn’t wrap his head around Song Gui’s purpose.

Afterwards, Lu Chu took some time and browsed all the ‘rules’ that had appeared. Why he said ‘had appeared’ was because before the previous game had started, Lu Chu clearly remembered that there were thirteen square panels, which meant that there were thirteen rules, and after he completed the previous game, there were still thirteen rules here, and none of them were the same as the ones before.

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From this point of view, the numbers of rules in this space was fixed, and the missing ones would be filled up.

Lu Chu tried to communicate with the ‘rules’, and didn’t expect that it actually replied him.

From asking the rules, Lu Chu learnt about the most basic things – and these weren’t that different from the ones that Song Gui had told him about. Other than this, he also learnt that the rules on the thirteen screens weren’t static, and could be replaced every once in a while. If there was a task that they intended to do, but still hadn’t yet made their choice, they could remember its number, and when the time came, the rules would naturally help them find that ‘game’ again.

At the same time, a game that they’ve already gone through cannot be repeated; but for a game that someone else had finished, other people could enter into it.

This also meant that everything in a game was repeated.

Lu Chu asked in reply, “then, could it be possible that somebody would willing choose to commit suicide…… and not enter the ‘game’, in order not to be lonely?”

Some would repeat a disaster; others would repeat death.

“Hm, are you a new person?!” Just as Lu Chu was thinking, a male voice suddenly came from behind him, after that, Lu Chu’s shoulder was patted.

Furthermore, Lu Chu also knew that for people who were governed by the same rules, would have their ‘free time’ reward increased when multiple people underwent the same mission, for two people it would be twenty minutes, for three it would be thirty minutes, and so on.

Song Gui kept away his mischievous smile, and said in a serious manner, “reach out and touch.”

Only, the more people there was, the greater the difficulty.

Lu Chu followed Song Gui’s line of sight and looked forward, only to see an intersection that he couldn’t see ending of, line with neon lights, so he looked back at Song Gui in confusion.

Of course, the people who underwent a task together needed to come out at the same time, alive, for the task to be considered completed.

Lu Chu thought about it. It seemed that, Song Gui had his eye on this.

A two-person task would be harder than a solo task, but it wouldn’t be that hard, compared to a team mission. However, Song Gui knew nothing about Lu Chu, but chose to work together with him, was it because he was willing to believe in Lu Chu’s ability, or he had too much confidence in himself?

Knowing these things, Lu Chu decided to clear his mind first, and rest his brain as well as his nerves that had been strung on high for too long. So, he casually sat on the floor and closed his eyes. Rather than this emptiness and white colour, the dark black where nothing could be seen reassured him more.

After resting for a while, in order to distract himself, and also increase his chances of surviving, Lu Chu started to do sit-ups, jogging, and other similar exercises. At the same time, this would activate his own brain. He had already discovered that he wouldn’t feel tired here, let alone sleepy.

see this? it’s a scrambled text.

Under such circumstances, Lu Chu couldn’t even feel time passing by.

Just like this, in the blink of an eye, an entire day passed by. The wristband on Lu Chu’s wrist gave a ‘beep—’ and attracted his attention. He looked down at it, and the time written on top counted down from “54’59””. Obviously, a day had gone by, and five minutes was deducted from Lu Chu’s free time.

At the same time, a door appeared in front of Lu Chu.

Lu Chu didn’t hesitate, and went out.

The moment he stepped out, a bright and dazzling light caused Lu Chu to squint. When he had adapted to this light, he realised that the outside world had become like a children’s park during warm spring. Appearing in front of his eyes was a sandy dirt ground, a set of children’s swing, a colourful ferries wheel and other kinds of recreational facilities. The trees were bright and green, and occasionally, there was the sound of birds calling, and the warm sunlight shone down on the land.

Looking at such a scene, Lu Chu froze for a while, before he had extracted himself from that unrealistic feeling of him actually having sight.

“Yo! Chuchu!” Song Gui also walked out from the same door as Lu Chu, and when he saw Lu Chu, he gave an energetic wave. When he looked at the outside world, he couldn’t conceal the joy in his eyes, and he raised his eyebrows. Then, he said, “this time it isn’t bad, we can have some fun.”

Lu Chu politely said, “Mr. Song.”

“Hahaha—” When Song Gui heard the way Lu Chu called him, he bent at the waist and laughed, and came over to put an arm on Lu Chu’s shoulder as he laughed, “you’re really cute, and there’s no need to be so polite, just call me Song Gui!”

“Song Gui.”

Startled Lu Chu immediately turned around, only to see a handsome, tall young man with a bright and cheerful smile standing behind him.

Upon hearing this, Song Gui became happy, and dragged Lu Chu over towards the children’s slide, “come, come, let’s play for a while first.”

Lu Chu asked, “senior?”

Lu Chu stood silently in front of the slide, and after repeatedly rejecting, Song Gui finally gave up the idea of getting him to slide on the children’s slide, and instantly climbed up.

“Me?” The young man was very enthusiastic, and didn’t even say anything else before he put his arm around Lu Chu’s shoulders and moved forward, speaking as he walked, “at least, I can be counted as your senior!”

As mentioned, it was a children’s slide, so naturally, the height and width was designed according to a child’s dimensions. Song Gui was tall and huge, at least 1.8m. Curling up at the entrance of the slide, he couldn’t stop acting silly alone. Then, with a ‘whoosh’, he slid to the bottom, and even called Lu Chu over to worship his heroic attitude towards the end.

Lu Chu reacted, and gave a gentle smile, “hello, you are?”

Lu Chu was speechless, and slowly turned around.

Then, a girl who looked like she was twelve came out from the door. She was the little loli from before, and was carried a machete. Instantly, she saw Song Gui who was trying to climb up the slide again, and her mouth twitched as he rolled her eyes. She couldn’t resist taking another look, and rolled her eyes even more, “idiot.”

Then she walked towards the entertainment facilities without even looking back.

Lu Chu was surprised by her age, and he asked Song Gui, “she’s also……”

This question had an obvious answer, but Lu Chu couldn’t imagine why such a young child would be involved in such a dangerous thing.

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Song Gui nodded his head, “don’t just look at her small size, or the fact that she’s fourteen, she’s actually really hard hearted, and you definitely can’t underestimate any ‘old members’. Say, although you might not believe it—”

Lu Chu was curious, “what?”

“She came here—” Song Gui gave Lu Chu a cunning smile, “earlier than me.”

This really surprised Lu Chu, and he felt it was really strange.

“Okay, your time is also up.” Song Gui pointed at Lu Chu’s wristband, and it showed that he only had ten minutes of free time left, “you should go back. However, even if you don’t go back by yourself, when the time comes, the ‘rules’ will still send you back. It’s just that you would have to suffer a little.”

.

Song Gui said till this point, and Lu Chu unconsciously looked at the time on Song Gui’s wristband – over a 150 minutes.

This showed that after passing the test, he had survived over a dozen games.

At this moment, Lu Chu held a bit of awe for this man who seemed open and light-hearted on the surface.

During this time, several people had stepped out of the door, but as for the middle-aged man that Lu Chu met yesterday, had never appeared.

As for his end, it went without saying.

“Aiya, aiya!” Song Gui jumped from the children’s slide, and brought Lu Chu over to the entertainment facility with his arm around his shoulder, as he said loudly, “we don’t have might time left, and Chuchu, you don’t look straight at me……” As he said that, he showed an aggrieved expression, and his shoulders drooped. “Forget it, let’s talk about serious matters.”

Realizing that what he meant by serious business was the two of them doing a task together, Lu Chu followed along, and went up the Ferris wheel.

The ferries wheel started, and Song Gui laughed, “haha, we won’t get discovered if we talk about things here.”

“Do you mean that we can avoid the ‘rules’ restrictions by entering the Ferris wheel?”

“Haha, yeah,” the young man raised the wristband on his right hand, “here, everybody has one, and there aren’t many of us here. You look unfamiliar, so I definitely know that you’re new!”

“No.”

Soon, the young man answered his question, “well, let me tell you, we’ve been chosen to enter into this kind of place, and do these sort of things, we definitely must have a strong psyche. Maybe we could even return to the real world some time later, anyways, I’m called Song Gui, you?”

“……”

Song Gui looked at the slowly rising Ferris wheel, then glanced at the bottom and said, “it’s just to comfort myself a little. Truthfully, whether it’s in the illusion, or within your own room, or inside a game, we are being perfectly watched, all 360 degrees, without any blind spots.”

Looking at the wristband on the young man’s hand that was almost identical to his own, Lu Chu couldn’t help but feel a little excited, could this person be in the same situation as himself?

Noting that Song Gui didn’t want to talk about this matter with him, Lu Chu didn’t push any further, and changed the topic and asked, “then, is the time in a ‘game’ the same as the time outside? If later, I choose a ‘game’, and enter into one, then will the five minutes be deducted as usual?”

This question was really important, if the time in a ‘game’ was the same as the time outside, then when he entered into a game, and the time would be deducted according, plus if he needed to spend a long time in the ‘game’, then when he came back after finishing the task, his free time might even become negative.

Song Gui shook his head, “you don’t have to worry about this, although the time in the ‘game’ is synchronised with the time outside, but as soon as you start a mission, the time on your wristband won’t change anymore.”

If that was the case, the problem that Lu Chu was worried about the most wouldn’t be happening.

By now, although he suddenly found out that everything in his life had been false, and things had developed in such a strange manner, the future was unclear, and Lu Chu could only go forward a step at a time. At the same time, he would be able to learn a few things from these people who had been chosen.

On the other side, Song Gui looked at the time on his wristband, then looked at Lu Chu’s, and decided to make a long story short. His attitude became serious, and he told Lu Chu, “since your question is answered, then let’s answer mine. About doing the task together, what do you think?”

Lu Chu looked at Song Gui with a serious expression, and didn’t say anything.

Song Gui continued, “I think that you got to know more things from the ‘rules’, right? So, you can rest assured, as I’m really interested in the multiplicative nature of multiple-people tasks. At the same time, we’re supervised by the same ‘rule’, and under this circumstance we’ll be teammates in such multi-people tasks. If either one of us didn’t fulfil the requirements of coming back alive, then everybody is considered to have failed. Based on this, you don’t need to worry that I’ll harm you, moreover—”

As he had already asked the rules, Lu Chu had already thought through most of these key points. Now that he had listened to Song Gui speak, he was already moved, but after hearing that ‘moreover’, he subconsciously, “moreover what?”

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Song Gui’s serious expression changed, and he wailed, “moreover, Chuchu, I really feel that you and I are old friends from the start!”

Lu Chu gave a gentle smile, and pushed away the face that was coming near to him.

“Regarding the task you said, I agree.”

No matter what Song Gui’s motive was, when the rules require that ‘both parties must survive’, he couldn’t do anything.

Song Gui instantly lit up, and he immediately told Lu Chu the number of the task he had chosen. The two of them agreed, and when Lu Chu’s time was up, Song Gui would directly enter into the door, and the both of them would accept the task at the same time.

“It’s fake,” Song Gui confirmed his guess, “this street is nothing but an illusion, the real distance is only so far, and there’s only a background image in front.”

After the two of them reached an agreement, Song Gui hurriedly pulled Lu Chu along, and said that he wanted to have some good fun before Lu Chu’s time was up. Song Gui’s objective was that since every time, there was a different illusion, then he must enjoy it each time, taking it as free travelling.

Lu Chu hadn’t played in these entertainment facilities before, but he wasn’t afraid, and instead, looked forward to it.

Lu Chu heard his words, stretched his hand out towards the front, and immediately encountered a barrier…… this is – fa, fake?

When the drop tower fell from the highest point, Lu Chu asked, “if the facilities here fail, nothing will happen to us too?”

“It’s fake,” Song Gui confirmed his guess, “this street is nothing but an illusion, the real distance is only so far, and there’s only a background image in front.”

After all, Song Gui had said before, there was only one way that they could die, and that was to die in a ‘game’.

Song Gui was dashing and handsome, but he always liked to smile – he could say for anything else, at least there was an air of stupidity. Lu Chu only saw him wave his hand and laugh, “of course, after, in here, we won’t die or are, and won’t—”

Lu Chu wondered, “won’t what?”

Song Gui blinked his eyes innocently, “won’t defecate.”

Lu Chu, “……”


The translator has this to add: 

And this answers the age-old question, do characters stuck in a mysterious space have physical needs?



This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. fujostea

    pfft- won’t defecate… hahahahaha nice

  2. Krolik

    I thing that Song Gui was/is ??Carrot??
    I don’t know why i think that but Song Gui says that he knows Lu Chu, he is energetic and he tags Lu Chu along. I Will know if this teory is false or True in the later chapter.
    In not eanglish so if i have an error in the comment help is appriciated.

  3. Mia

    Oh how convenient all this is…..kinda😅
    Anyways thank you for the chapter 💖💘💖

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