Translated by Addis of Exiled Rebels Scanlations
After truly understanding that four people had disappeared from their side without even leaving a memory, the scene fell into a very uncomfortable silence. They were elites, the strongest, the ones who stood at the top of the unlimited flow world or in the present world, but now, they suddenly found themselves so powerless and so small that they were no more than a grain of dust, unable to leave even a trace of their existence after disappearing.
“What should we do?” Ning Yangze quickly gathered his mood, “Now is not the time to be disillusioned, we must break this circle, we can’t continue in this way. If Shen Si was not here then…”
Ning Yangze couldn’t go on, but everyone present knew what he meant.
If Shen Si was not here, if the playfield wasn’t ineffective against him so he could still remember all the people in the playfield, they would have disappeared one by one without the slightest trace and without anyone remembering the deaths. It made them shudder just thinking about it.
“But what should we do? I still don’t understand what’s going on.” Sun Zhi looked around in bewilderment, “Every hour there is a person who disappears and they die according to the surveillance footage, but we haven’t seen their bodies, let alone traces.”
“It looks like Miss Sun didn’t even pay attention to the time on the surveillance footage.” He Xin’s voice softened, “If you look carefully you’ll see that the video that was played just now showed the time at 0:00, the time we came in at the beginning.”
“The clock, the time.” Yang Yi muttered, “The clues have been given to us from the beginning. This is a temporal playfield, the monster in the clock can travel back in time to when we just came in, and kill us one by one according to the numbers on our arms.”
“The people killed will disappear, and the death of the past means that the future will not exist, so this time meddling causes all of us to forget the person. Yeah, this is not the real world, but a playfield. In this kind of unreal playfield, this kind of thing is not rare.” Ning Yangze lowered his head, “But what should we do?”
Now that he understood the rules of this playfield, and even though he knew the reason why several people disappeared, they still didn’t have the slightest idea how to leave.
The monster could go back in time to kill, but they couldn’t. The clock in the corridor could ignore all attacks, since they had tried countless times but couldn’t damage it in the slightest.
Was there no way out? Are they really all going to die here?
“If we really have to die, why did we have to know the truth?” Sun Zhi took two steps back, her face in a trance. The words seemed to come out of her mouth without her consent, “If we can’t find a way to leave and fall into despair, is that better than dying senselessly? Why tell us…”
Shen Si looked at Sun Zhi, “You want to leave knowing nothing and be forgotten by everyone?”
“I’d prefer it that way if I had to die!” Sun Zhi suddenly burst out as she pulled up her sleeve, where the number 1 was etched on her thin arm, “It’s my turn next to die, so if I can’t find a way, I’d rather die without knowing this, that no one can remember me, than dying in such fear. I don’t want to die! Nor do I want to be forgotten by everyone so easily!”
Sun Zhi flung open the door of the surveillance room and ran out, and the door that was flung open viciously smashed against the wall with a slam. Yang Yi whispered apologies and then chased after her, the whole episode lasting only a minute.
“Survivors struggled hard to survive in the unlimited flow world, every Survivor has made preparations for death, but not all of them can be so resilient.” He Xin sat on the chair next to him, “Especially when the unlimited flow world collapsed and they returned to the real and safe life, and some of the Survivors developed a strong psychological stress. To be more specific… after feeling the beauty of being alive, they are more afraid of dying now.”
“In fact, there’s no need and explanation for these, it’s human nature to be afraid in the face of death.” Shen Si’s voice was calm, “We believe in science and rational code of conduct, so if one decides that it’s the right time to tell the truth, then the matter will definitely be revealed.”
He Xin pushed his glasses on the bridge of his nose before nodding, “Does reason always outweigh emotion? That’s fine.”
“But like Sun Zhi said, there’s nothing we can do right now.” Ning Yangze leaned back in his chair, “As long as time is still advancing, we can only be killed by the monster one by one, and if we can’t break this, none of us can be saved. He Xin, you’re smart, what do we do now?”
He Xin gave him a subtle look, “I’m just a technician responsible for the development of new equipment. This kind of thing should be your job as the team leader of the Special Unit.”
“Actually, there is a way.” Shen Si suddenly opened his mouth.
He Xin and Ning Yangze sounded a beat, they looked at each other, then at Shen Si, asking in the same breath, “What method?”
“Just now, when I was looking for Xia Leyu’s information in the office, I scanned Yang Yi’s file, which he reported to the Special Unit when he came back.”
He Xin slapped the table, “The ability to come back to life after death in a limited time?!”
“Yes, if it’s him, it’s no problem.” Shen Si’s voice was a little lighter, “If Xia Leyu could leave a little white mark on the clock earlier, that means the clock can be destroyed during that period, so as long as Yang Yi dies, he can stay at that point in time because of his second-revival ability. And smash that clock.”
“It’s a feasible proposal.” Ning Yangze stood up and quickly rushed out of the surveillance room, “I’ll go find Yang Yi! You guys don’t run around!”
The door of the surveillance room slowly closed, while Shen Si sat on the chair looking at the desk, his face had little expression and no restraint or impatience could be seen either. He Xin took out his own book and jotted down a few sentences before finally looking at Shen Si.
“It doesn’t look like you’ve achieved absolute rationality either. Since you saw Yang Yi’s information in the beginning, it means you thought of this method earlier.”
Shen Si didn’t say it in front of Sun Zhi, but waited until she left to mention it to both of them.
“Watching a person collapse isn’t that interesting.” Shen Si’s voice was calm, “Just wanted her to know the truth, and it’s better not to fill her in on these unnecessary details.”
“Looks like a guy with few words, but he’s a good talker.” He Xin helplessly closed the notebook.
Even though Shen Si proposed a method they still faced a problem, that was Sun Zhi. In the current order, Sun Zhi was 1, Yang Yi was 2, even if Shen Si’s proposal was valid, Sun Zhi would have to disappear first.
The rest would be saved only if they disappeared from this world; this news was too cruel for a girl who was eager to live, they couldn’t save her. Because they simply couldn’t change the order of these numbers nor could they simply watch her disappear.
And who could accept the reality of their own death so openly while the rest of the people were saved?
“There is no unsolvable playfield in this world,” Shen Si murmured the words, “But on the way to finding a solution, there will also be many people who will leave and become unforgettable regrets.”
“There is no unsolvable playfield?”
“It was Xia Leyu who said that.” Shen Si leaned back in his chair, his gaze stuck at the corner, but his eyes were lax and he seemed to be just dazed.
Xia Leyu, the deputy team leader of the Special Unit that disappeared from their memory?
Although he couldn’t recall, but, by this statement alone, that person was really an interesting guy ah.
Ning Yangze only understood after finding Yang Yi and Sun Zhi, why Shen Si didn’t explicitly explain it earlier, it was because Shen Si knew very well that this truth only added to Sun Zhi’s psychological pressure. She was already nearly crushed by the despair of death, and once she heard that she was only very close to being rescued, she might quickly collapse.
The silent disappearance, death, the traces of existence swept away, even the parties involved will forget their own existence; Ning Yangze shuddered. He didn’t want to face this present Sun Zhi.
Taking some deep, heavy breaths, Ning Yangze walked out, patting Yang Yi’s shoulder from behind, “Yang Yi, is it all right?”
“How can it be all right…” Yang Yi helplessly pushed his hand off his shoulder, at present Sun Zhi’s mental condition was very bad. She was clutching a hammer and kept trying to crack the clock above, even if it shook her hand until it trembled, she didn’t give up.
In Sun Zhi’s opinion, her only way to live was on this clock.
“There’s something I want to talk to you about.” Ning Yangze looked at Sun Zhi who was crying while smashing the clock.
“But I don’t feel comfortable with her like this.” Yang Yi looked at Sun Zhi worriedly, “Of course I know how scary death is, after being killed time and again and getting back up, all of them will cry for joy that they are still alive, so I understand the significance of Shen Si telling them the truth, but also understand Sun Zhi’s fear.”
Ning Yangze frowned slightly, “I know, so, can you come over here for a moment?”
“What is it that can’t be said here?” Yang Yi looked at Ning Yangze strangely, then glanced at Sun Zhi. The girl was still hitting the clock and didn’t look like she was going to give up. He followed Ning Yangze around the corner, “What the hell is going on?”
“There is a possible way to get out of the playfield.”
“What? Then you should go tell Sun Zhi, that’s a good thing!”
“Don’t go!” Ning Yangze grabbed Yang Yi’s sleeve, “Just hear me out first.”
In Ning Yangze’s hesitant tone Yang Yi sensed that something was wrong. Why couldn’t he tell Sun Zhi when he had a solution? Why did Ning Yangze have to avoid Sun Zhi to tell him the method?
There was only one answer, that is, even if they found a countermeasure, there was no way to save Sun Zhi.
“Your ability is Extreme Death, you can resurrect after you die. Remember that video we saw? The most probable way to break the game is for you to come back to life to smash that clock, but this can only be done once.” Ning Yangze grabbed Yang Yi’s sleeve, “Our lives are in your hands, I’m counting on you.”
Yang Yi took two steps back as he pulled his sleeve out of Ning Yangze’s hand, “That means it must wait until I die? The resurrection ability can only be used once a day, which means that I must seize that moment and mustn’t die or disappear.” Yang Yi murmured in a bewildered whisper, “But my number is 2, my turn to die is still more than an hour away, in other words, Sun Zhi would…”
Sun Zhi would be the same as the previous four, disappearing silently.
There was nothing they could do to save her.
“There’s really no other way?”
“The monster stays in our past, only at the exact hour will it come out to kill. We simply do not have the ability to return to the past, only you can die and then resurrect, and can temporarily stay in the past events.” Ning Yangze shook his head, “There is no other way.”
Yang Yi walked out of the corner, looked at Sun Zhi, who was still desperately smashing the dial, wanted to say something, but couldn’t say a word.
Any words were meaningless, and right now he deeply hated his own powerlessness.
In the corridor, Sun Zhi stopped her action and threw the hammer away, then sat on her knees, her face and body filled with sweat and tears, she was looking a little wretched.
“I’m really afraid of death, so afraid that I almost don’t dare to close my eyes.” Sun Zhi murmured in a small voice, not knowing whether she was talking to herself or to Yang Yi, “The thought that I will die and will be forgotten by everyone is terrifying, you will even forget how crazy I was here, it’s scary…”
Yang Yi didn’t speak. At such a time, comfort had no effect.
“Sorry, Leader, after this you won’t be able to sense the location of the playfields anymore, and the cooperation with the Special Unit will also be blown off. Right, obviously you were looking forward to everyone in the organization getting jobs so much.”
“Don’t say that now…”
“I give up.” Sun Zhi stood up from the ground, then turned her head to face Yang Yi, “Help me apologize to Shen Si. At first I suspected him of lying, and just now I yelled at him very unkindly, ah, by the way, Leader you shouldn’t remember it either, what a fool I am.”
Sun Zhi laughed a little, only this laugh was even worse than crying. The clock behind her rang out, the alert tone of the exact hour sounded like the summoning song of hell.
“Number 1 is disappearing!”
Yang Yi rushed forward, and the moment he grabbed Sun Zhi, time seemed to stand still for three seconds. Sun Zhi disappeared into the air, Yang Yi stood bewildered, as if he didn’t quite understand why he was here.
“Why did the clock fall to the ground?” Yang Yi picked it up from the ground, and looked at it from top to bottom, “Right, if I remember correctly, at full hour a person disappears. Who is the person who disappeared this time? Are we related?”
Yang Yi kept searching his memories, but he shook his head helplessly in the end. “I don’t remember. Who was it?”
“Death Trials?” The middle-aged man repeated the name of the playfield, “So is there a way to break this playfield? Do we just let it finish?”
“Indeed, we can’t do anything, we can’t even determine the location of the playfield.” Wu Qiu pushed the glasses up on the bridge of her nose, “But there is no unsolvable playfield in this world. It may be hard and difficult to discover, but even this playfield can be defeated.”
The middle-aged man looked at Wu Qiu, “Continue.”
“This playfield has no fixed rules, or the rules are hidden, and the people trapped in the playfield may not even discover it completely, but once the rules of the playfield are discovered, then it’s easy.” Wu Qiu pulled over a whiteboard to write on it, “Like a game, each has its own laws. For example, if there’s a lottery box with only third-rate prizes and the players could only get third-rate draws, if a first-rate prize is accidentally drawn, it will be completely outside its laws, so the rules don’t apply to that.”
“In other words, after the discovery of the rules of the game they can use those to break its rule and can come out of it?” The middle-aged man concluded.
“That’s right!” Wu Qiu tapped on the whiteboard, “This is the only way to break the game.”
Jian Nian stood next to him, and after a moment he raised his head slightly. The next instant, the clock on the wall signalled at the full hour, and a corpse fell from the ceiling, exactly as before.
“The rule of this playfield is that one person will die at every full hour.”
“There’s a second rule, and that’s this clock.” Wu Qiu pointed to the clock on the wall, “This is the most important thing.”
The middle-aged man stood next to her for a while before he sighed, “Can they only rely on themselves?”
“Only on themselves, yes.” Wu Qiu held the door frame, “They must watch everyone die until they figure it out, then destroy this clock. Only then can this playfield be broken, although it is easy to say, but everyone knows how difficult it is ah. Who knows what’s inside. Team Leader, you must not die, there are so many documents in the Inspection Unit that you haven’t signed yet!”