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You Yi is not that helpless as he imagined. Just as Xin Meng guessed, the game will not push people into a dead end, it’s often due carelessness that they end up in a difficult situation. The path of life among dangers- if one can calmly observe and search for the hidden clues, danger could be avoided to a certain extent and escape, but few are able to do it. Xin Meng’s escape in the reservoir was likely thanks to luck, but You Yi doesn’t lack in calmness and wisdom.
Each time the stone ghosts are split in two, it takes a few seconds for them to merge their bodies again. This time is enough for You Yi, an experienced combatant, to meditate between the ghosts. Although occasionally the ghosts end up biting his arms, it’s not that harmful. With his movements, the bloodstains on his arms increased, but You Yi didn’t even frown. The saber was versatile in his hands, sometimes resembling a swiftness of a butterfly, other times resembling a tiger. In addition, his body and footsteps were out of this world. Even if Xin Meng’s eyes were glued to him due to fear, he was unable to see his movements from time to time.
If this was a normal occasion, Xin Meng would definitely have a question: ‘Is this really a level achieved by the special forces?’
However, Xin Meng has no time to think about it. He clasped his hands tightly, praying that You Yi would be safe.
You Yi remained calm. Even after being bitten by the stone ghosts and bleeding, he still had the will to carefully observe his surroundings.
Each time blood gushed out, the gluttonous monsters fade a little. It was not obvious at first, but when it was discovered, Xin Meng was able to see the difference in every ghost. You Yi made a decision, he retracted his saber and made a cut on his arm. Xin Meng let out a yell. The blood poured out and covered the saber’s sharp blade. The ghosts surrounding him smelled the blood and went for it excitedly. You Yi swung his blade and slashed a ghost, who disappeared with a tragic scream.
Xin Meng was both excited and distressed, ‘at least he found a way to destroy them!’
You Yi quickly started to act, but after finding out the right way to destroy them, he was even stronger. Twenty or thirty ghosts soon disappeared in less than ten minutes; they all disappeared under his blade.
Xin Meng’s legs softened as he stumbled, almost falling to the ground.
He watched You Yi lift the last stone and the stone inside his heart also fell. He stood by his side and was about to talk with You Yi, however, it seemed that those ghosts appeared next to the grove.
They gathered next to each other and stood around the grove, their numbers made Xin Meng go numb. Some were previously cut by You Yi and some were the same ghosts he saw in the reservoir before, those who attacked Xin Meng. There were men, women, old and young, even five or six babies still lying on the ground, their pure black eyes staring right at them,
‘Is it not over yet?!’
Xin Meng felt powerless, ‘I couldn’t even lift a stone before. Do I need a blood-stained knife to kill them? With hundreds of ghosts, I’m more afraid of dying of blood loss before being bitten…’
However, the ghosts didn’t move, they just stood there and looked at them, without the white in their eyes. Although their eyes were scary, they no longer had the kind of greed and hunger from before. Xin Meng calmed down and even thought they had something to say.
However, without the help of body language, Xin Meng was unable to understand their intentions and was frozen stiff for a while. The skin of the ghosts suddenly started to fall apart, piece by piece*, and tooth marks appeared on their skins, as if all of them were bitten. Within a few minutes, all ghosts disappeared once more.
The grove lighted up all at once, the coldness replaced by warmth, and the sound of insects and songbirds echoed again in their ears. As if they went from hell to Earth.
This time… They got rid of the danger.
‘No wonder why the Xiu Se Village’s ancestors moved the rocks far away and no one was allowed to enter anymore. With so many monsters appearing, they would want to move the whole village away!’
Xin Meng sat on the ground to rest, waited until You Yi walked to his side and then quickly got up. He took the mineral water from the bag You Yi threw to the ground, washed the blood on You Yi’s wound and cleaned it up.
“Doesn’t it hurt?” Xin Meng can’t explain the feeling inside his heart.
“It’s okay.” You Yi patted Xin Meng’s head. “We are still in the game.”
Xin Meng remembered they lifted the stones and the ghosts disappeared, ‘but we’re still in the game?’
‘Isn’t the stone the condition for clearing the task?’
He took out the card given to him by Qi XiaoKui and looked at it one more time, but again, discovered nothing. ‘Isn’t the grove where everything started? The ghosts that appeared just now prove that this place is indeed special, shouldn’t it be the final location?’
‘Did they ignore something?’
He looked around the grove twice, but found nothing suspicious, just trees and fallen leaves with nothing else.
Well, nothing to be done about it. He decided to first take You Yi down the mountain, bandage him and then meet with Xiong JiaBao to discuss their next move.
When they returned to the village, they heard some amazing news. Wu DeLi was almost dragged away by one ghost, but somehow the ghost disappeared before he was dragged all the way. Wu DeLi was shocked and kept shouting for help, and so the villagers went to rescue him at the reservoir. Then, he was taken to the village chief’s house to rest, with Wu XuaHua taking care of him.
The village chief Wu Dacheng saw the bite marks on You Yi’s arm and was almost speechless, “T-This is…”
Xin Meng explained, “A ghost’s bite. The village chief can be rest assured, all the ghosts disappeared, and no villager will die again.”
Wu Dacheng was both surprised and doubtful, and he said with a shaking voice, “R-Really? You aren’t lying to me?”
Then, Wu Dacheng’s eyes blurred and he remembered the tragic end of his younger brother and his family, couldn’t keep his tears from falling. Xin Meng, who was watching, was also sad, “It’s true, they are gone.”
“Young man, you… You are the savior of Xiu Se village!” The village chief originally wanted to hold You Yi’s hand, but was intimidated by his cold expression, so he turned around, holding Xin Meng’s hands instead and thanking him. Xin Meng had a funny and embarrassed look on.
Wu DeLi quickly sat up on the bed and thanked the two of them: “I wondered why the ghost disappeared! If it weren’t for you, I probably would have never escaped!”
Seeing the villagers crying and celebrating, Xin Meng was also touched, but he didn’t forget about Xiong JiaBao. He didn’t know if his wound was infected, he asked Wu Dacheng, who was cleaning his tears, “Village chief, what about my friend?”
“He’s still lying in the bed with a fever, do you want to see him?”
“Yes.” Xin Meng and You Yi went to see Xiong JiaBao. Xiong JiaBao was lying on the bed, covered with a big quilt by the villagers, and his face was very red. However, he was still conscious.
“You are back?” Xiong JiaBao’s voice wasn’t clear due to the stuttering, but he sounded very excited. “How come the task isn’t cleared yet?”
Xin Meng calmed him down: “Don’t worry, we have completed the task stated in the card, but we don’t know why it isn’t finished. We came back to discuss it, but at least the danger is gone, and those ghosts won’t appear again.”
“Like I care about the ghosts!” Xiong JiaBao groaned in pain, and his hands kept tapping against the quilt. “I only want to clear the task, why haven’t you found a way yet?! It hurts so much… My legs hurt so much…”
Seeing him like that, Xin Meng was uncomfortable, but they also encountered danger in the grove and You Yi was even hurt. Xiong JiaBao didn’t even say a word about his injury, but instead accused them in a questioning way of not clearing the task. Xin Meng was a bit angry, however, remembering Xiong JiaBao was suffering from a great pain, he couldn’t really ask him to care about others and just kept quiet.
Looking at You Yi’s bandaged arm, his heart clenched, so he canceled his plan of discussing it with Xiong JiaBao and pulled You Yi out of the room.
“If he’s like that, I don’t think we will be able to analyze anything. Let’s just do it together, the two of us!” Xin Meng said angrily, but he didn’t realize how he actually sounded.
You Yi laughed out loud, softly scratching his lips with his index finger, Xin Meng blushed and felt that this action seemed a bit too intimate, but still he wasn’t disgusted by it. What’s going on… QAQ.
They looked for a quiet place, Xin Meng took out all the six cards, put them on the table and studied them one by one.
The six were:
[This is not a paradise for vegetarians but must be hell for the meat eater.]
[Don’t look for it, there’s no exit. Trigger certain conditions to leave the valley.]
[Those poor people must be so hateful.]
[Pay attention to details.]
[There’s a reason for you to arrive at the forbidden land. Ignore it, or push it down. It’s your choice.]
[The place where it starts is often the place where it ends.]
Looking back at the past few days, Xin Meng noticed several things pointed out by the cards right at the beginning, but even though they analyzed it, nothing entered their minds back then. Ends up the clearance task was simply written vaguely.
“Trigger certain conditions to leave the valley”, Xin Meng read the contents of the card. “In fact, the focus of the task wasn’t on ‘trigger certain conditions’, but on ‘leave the valley’. This is the real task. In other words, it’s all because we are still in the valley that the game didn’t end. If I guessed right, if we walk down the mountain road now, we will be able to leave.”
You Yi sat still by the window, one leg bent with his wrist resting on his knee, he looked at the barely visible mountain outside, his eyes far, and only said, “En.”
Xin Meng paced around and then moved to sit next to him, and continued to look at the card, “Meanwhile, ‘pay attention to details’ allowed us to find Qi XiaoKui, discover how to escape and find the defective necklace in Xiong JiaBao.”
“Then, there’s my card, ‘the hell for the meat eater’,” Xin Meng said, “I didn’t understand what it meant at the time, but looking back now, we can see that most of the dead people ate meat on the first day. In our team, Li Yougen was the one who died first, and according to his personality, even if I haven’t seen it, I know he must have eaten lots of meat. Dong Xiu also ate a lot, followed by Xiong JiaBao, who maybe ate less, so he barely saved his life. I suspect that’s why we encountered ghosts very few times, except when we were thrown in the reservoir. But the priority was always attacking the others and so they let us go, because the two of us didn’t eat meat.”
You Yi turned his head at the clear analysis of Xin Meng, praise in his eyes, but Xin Meng looked down at the card and missed his expression… When Xin Meng looked up, You Yi had already turned back, continuing to look out the window.
“As for Qi XiaoKui’s card, it’s becoming clearer and clearer by now, but there are still two cards I can’t be sure of.” Xin Meng pulled two of the six cards. “‘Ignore it, or push it down. It’s your choice’, it’s obvious that there are two different options. Xiong JiaBao chose to push the stones, and as result many died, so did Dong Xiu and Li Yougen, but it also allowed us to find the clearance task, so is that right? Why does the card say ‘trigger a certain condition’? I’ve been thinking there’s a logical problem with that. If the condition is triggered by pushing down the stone, why does the card give us another option? What if we chose to ignore it? Don’t we need to go through these dangers? But this is a horror game, after all, I don’t think it would give us such a peaceful route…”
“But since we decided to push down the stones, what happens in the other route will remain unknown…”
“Then, there’s the last one, ‘that poor person must be so hateful’. This sentence, what does it mean?”
Translator and Editor Notes:
*Editor: *giggling* they got Thanos Snapped…
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