GOR Chapter 740 Darkness
Chen Xiaolian raised his head to regard the vast palace laid out before his eyes.
Despite its horribly battered state, the atmosphere of both majesty and desolation coming off the palace left Chen Xiaolian gaping in shock.
“Good looking, no?”
Duwei’s voice interrupted Chen Xiaolian’s thoughts. Chen Xiaolian turned to regard Duwei’s face.
It was a handsome face, one that had seemingly detached itself from reality. With a lackadaisical smile on his face, he looked right at Chen Xiaolian.
“I am not a female. What does you looking good have anything to do with me?” Chen Xiaolian frowned at Duwei.
“Do not misunderstand me. I am asking you about this Longevity Palace. Does it look good?” Duwei smiled. “We built this.”
“Not bad. This is Zero City’s interior?” Chen Xiaolian raised his head to regard the Longevity Palace once more. Only then did he realize that he was capable of moving once more.
Clearly, this Duwei had unravelled the restraining power placed upon him by Bai Qi.
“Yes. Now then, let’s make a deal.” Duwei smiled as he sat down cross-legged before Chen Xiaolian. “It will be beneficial for both you and me.”
“A deal? Tell me the details,” Chen Xiaolian asked calmly.
“It is very simple.” Duwei smiled. “It would appear that you care a lot about the Awakened ones who died here. Will you be interested if I tell you I have a way to revive them all?”
Chen Xiaolian felt a sudden explosion erupting within his heart. However, he was quick to regain his composure. He narrowed his eyes as he regarded Duwei carefully. “Are you joking with me now?”
“I do like to joke around, but I am not joking right now.” Duwei shook his head. “I only joke around with my close friends. As for you…”
“We are neither close nor friends.” Chen Xiaolian finished the sentence for Duwei. “If so, tell me clearly, what is this so-called ‘revival’. Don’t tell me that your revival is how Awakened ones will be refreshed back as ordinary humans. I have no need for you to tell me that.”
“Of course not.” Duwei extended a finger out and wagged it before Chen Xiaolian. “The revival that I am talking about is the normal kind, where they will return to the state they were in before they were killed. Their original state, including their skills and memories. All of them will be retained.”
Chen Xiaolian’s eyes widened as he stared at Duwei in disbelief.
If an Awakened were to be killed, he would be refreshed into an ordinary human. That was something that every Awakened knew.
How can the Awakened ones be revived after having become ordinary humans? How can they become Awakened ones again?
Although it was presently not Zero City’s opening period, the total number of people inside the city would still add up to several thousands. Even though some of them had managed to escape, by Chen Xiaolian’s estimate, at least a thousand Awakened ones had died in the hands of Bai Qi.
This red-haired man known as Duwei. If he truly did possess such an ability, the ability to revive so many Awakened ones, his power would practically be Godlike!
This was something that not even the GM could accomplish.
“You don’t believe me?” Duwei regarded Chen Xiaolian. “It doesn’t matter. All you need to do is to tell me, assuming I do possess that ability, what you are willing to give in return?”
“No need to beat around the bush.” Chen Xiaolian shook his head and continued coolly, “Out with it. What is it that you want me to give?”
our life. One life, in exchange for all the lives killed by Bai Qi.” There was a wide smile on Duwei’s face. “If we are to compare the numbers, this deal is very good, no?”
“You… want my life?” Chen Xiaolian stared at Duwei. “That doesn’t make any sense.”
“Oh? Why do you say that?” Duwei raised his brows.
“Firstly, you are someone who knows Bai Qi. If so, you, Bai Qi and Mr San should be heavyweights of the same level. If you want to kill me, why discuss it with me?
“Secondly, compared to you fellows, I am just a minor character. An impossibly small one. I do not understand how my life can be of any use to you.”
Chen Xiaolian paused for a moment before continuing, “There is a third one. If I die, how will I know if you will honour the deal to revive all those who died? If you are lying to me, what can I do?”
“Actually, only one answer is needed for the three questions.” Duwei listened to Chen Xiaolian quietly before spreading open his hands. “It is very simple. It is not that I want to kill you. Rather, I want you to do something. Unfortunately, the price for doing that task is your life. Likewise, the revival of those who had died will be one of the outcomes of you performing that task.”
Chen Xiaolian closed his eyes and pondered the matter for a moment. When he re-opened them, he took a deep breath and sat down before Duwei. “Let me clarify. You want me to perform a certain task. This task is beneficial for you. At the same time, it can also revive all those who had died, is that right?”
“Spot on. You are a smart child.” Duwei nodded his head in a satisfied manner and smiled.
“So, what do you want me to do?”
Duwei leaned his body forward and cast a serious look at Chen Xiaolian. “Close up Zero City’s main gate.”
“Why?” asked Chen Xiaolian after a moment’s consideration.
“It’s too complicated to explain it all. We simply do not have that much time,” Duwei answered with a smile. “Although the arrangements outside can delay Bai Qi for a while, it is just a matter of time before he comes.”
“Can’t you beat him?” Chen Xiaolian gave Duwei a glance.
“If I have to face Bai Qi in his prime by myself, I would probably be no match for him. Right now, he has lost a great deal of his strength. If we have to seriously have a go…” Duwei considered it. “If I want to, I should be able to win. The problem is, I am not here right now. How do I fight him?”
“You are… not here?” Chen Xiaolian knitted his brows and carefully regarded Duwei from head to toe. No matter how hard he looked, this person before him was clearly a living human being.
Earlier, Chen Xiaolian could clearly recall Duwei pulling his arm. That was how he had brought him into this place.
“Yes.” Duwei smiled. “My real body is far away from here. This body before you is just a projection. It is incapable of exerting any real power. If Bai Qi succeeds in entering this place, I will be incapable of stopping him. So, can we hurry this up?”
“Sorry, but there is no way I can trust you so easily.” After considering it for a moment, Chen Xiaolian shook his head. “We are talking about my life right now! You want me to give up my life with just a few words? I am not a fool. Please explain the details to me first.”
Earlier, he had been too trustful of Bai Qi and had not taken any defensive measures against him, which led to Zero City falling under Bai Qi’s hands.
He will not repeat that same mistake.
“Is this absolutely necessary?”
“Fine.” Duwei gave a rueful smile. “Hopefully, the stages that Bai Qi gets will be able to hold him off long enough. What do you want to know?”
Chen Xiaolian responded firmly, “All of it. How did I end up obtaining authority over Zero City? How did Bai Qi break free from my control? Why do you insist on closing up Zero City’s main gate? How will those Bai Qi killed be revived? What is the connection between you and Bai Qi? And…”
“Hold it! Hold it! Too many questions!” Duwei hastily brought his palm up, gesturing for Chen Xiaolian to stop. “Hmm, in that case, I will start from the beginning.”
Duwei lowered his head and pondered for a moment before quickly speaking up, “A long, long time ago, our group built Zero City. Back then, it had a different name, but that is not important.
“Bai Qi was one of us. However, his temper… … he is something of a weirdo. By the time our group began building Zero City, Bai Qi had already left our group. Thus, he did not have authority over Zero City. Still, he was one of us. Thus, after Zero City was completed, we inserted his template into the database for founder verification.
“When you took Bai Qi as your War Soul, you too, gained his template.
“However, his template is insufficient. You had been to Zero City before in the past without triggering the template verification process. This time, however, you just so happen to possess someone else’s template.”
“Who?” asked Chen Xiaolian with a frown.
Duwei slowly answered, “Taiyi.”
“I… … I have heard that name before.” Thinking it through, Chen Xiaolian said, “Earlier, Bai Qi had mentioned that name as well. However, I am certain I do not know someone like that.”
“At present, he no longer goes by this name. In fact, he… … doesn’t even know that he was once Taiyi.” A forlorn look appeared on Duwei’s smiling face. “The present Taiyi, goes by the name… … GM.”
“He… … he is one of Zero City’s founders?!” Chen Xiaolian was astounded.
“Didn’t Umbrella tell you about GM being refreshed before?” Duwei glanced back at Chen Xiaolian.
“I think I understand now.” After a moment’s consideration, Chen Xiaolian slowly nodded his head.
Back then, he had participated in a punishment-type instance dungeon. Before he went in, GM had split out a copy of himself and attached it to Chen Xiaolian so that he too, may enter the punishment-type instance dungeon.
After Chen Xiaolian successfully got to the secret base hidden within the punishment-type instance dungeon, GM’s copy became the secret base’s main control system.
If GM was indeed the one known as Taiyi, one of the founders of Zero City, the other template on him should have come from GM.
“What happened amongst you all?” Chen Xiaolian had only just asked the question when he saw the slight flicker on Duwei’s face.
“That Bai Qi, he is… … very fast!” Duwei abruptly stood up. There was a somewhat anxious look on his face. “He has already cleared two of the three stages. We have at most only five more minutes before he enters this Longevity Palace! There is no more time for story telling! You need to activate the refresh mechanism quick!”
Chen Xiaolian observed the anxiousness within Duwei’s eyes. It did not appear to be fake.
However, Duwei had yet to make it clear.
“Fine, let’s make it short.” Duwei turned and walked into the Longevity Palace. He hastily spoke as he did, “To revive dead Awakened ones is not that simple. However, if everything were to return to its former state, the dead will return to life as well. What you need to do is to trigger a refresh process and turn back time to before Bai Qi makes his appearance.”
“Refresh? Turn back time?” Chen Xiaolian, who was quickly following Duwei, shouted in disbelief. “That is something that only the system can accomplish!”
“The Oddity is the system.” After entering the Longevity Palace, Duwei made his way towards a circular railing located at the central spot. “I do not care about what happens to the Awakened ones, but I cannot let Shen return to Zero City. And yet… … I have no way of stopping him myself. As such, you are the only one who can do it.”
He stood before the circular railing and pointed at a chaotic maelstrom in the middle of the railing. “Regardless of whether you believe me or not, I no longer have the time to explain more to you. The current situation is such… … before Bai Qi makes his way past the last stage and enters this Longevity Palace, you must make a decision. Are you willing to give up your life to activate the refresh process? If you do it, everything except you will return to their former state.”
“Zero City’s main gate will be closed once more and the people that Bai Qi killed will be revived, right?” Chen Xiaolian asked once again.
“Yes. We both get what we want. You get what you want and I get what I want,” Duwei hastily replied. “Do not forget, the one who caused all of this to happen is you. You released Bai Qi out!”
“… … …” Chen Xiaolian said nothing.
“Bai Qi could appear at any moment. I will repeat this one more time. I am just a projection without any real power. It doesn’t matter what he wants to do. I will have no ability to stop him.” Duwei stared intently at Chen Xiaolian. “I know that you are hesitant to trust me. However, at this moment, you can only make a gamble.”
“The world after death… … does it exist?” Chen Xiaolian suddenly looked up at Duwei.
“What?” The question took Duwei by surprise.
“A friend of mine was killed in an earlier instance dungeon.” Chen Xiaolian clenched his fists. “If I die, will I be able to meet her again?”
“Your friend?” Duwei smiled. “Don’t you mean girlfriend?”
Chen Xiaolian did not reply.
Duwei considered it for a moment before asking, “Is she an Awakened?”
“No. She is like me.” Chen Xiaolian shook his head. “I think, like you as well.”
“An Irregularity?” Duwei nodded his head. “For Irregularities, after they die, they will enter a place known as World’s End. If they do not get killed there, they can continue to live on.”
Chen Xiaolian’s eyes lit up only to hear Duwei continue, “However… … you will have no chance of meeting her.”
“Why?!” asked Chen Xiaolian with a harsh voice.
“Because you will not have the opportunity to enter World’s End. When I say the price for activating the refresh process is your life, I don’t mean it in the normal sense of ‘getting killed’. Instead, it will directly erase you from existence, utterly nothing will be left.”
“You… … you are not lying?” Chen Xiaolian clenched his teeth.
There was a frank look on Duwei’s face as he looked back at Chen Xiaolian. “If I want to lie to you, I should have said you will be able to meet your girlfriend after you die.”
“I… … I understand,” Chen Xiaolian lowered his head before answering in a faint tone.
“I have to remind you, we don’t have much time left. Bai Qi could clear the third stage at any moment and enter this Longevity Palace. It could take him a few more minutes, or it might be… … the very next second.”
Duwei had only just finished those words when a figure appeared before the palace doorway.
Bai Qi had finally made his way in.
“You and your big fat mouth…” Gnashing his teeth, Chen Xiaolian swore.
“What are you two doing here?” Bai Qi cast an impassive look at Duwei before turning to look at Chen Xiaolian.
“Time for you to make a decision.” Duwei turned as well to look at Chen Xiaolian.
Watching Bai Qi step forward, Chen Xiaolian hissed out through his teeth.
“… tell me what I need to do.”
There was no time for him to slowly consider it. Whether Duwei’s words were true or false no longer mattered.
Zero City… it was destroyed because I released Bai Qi!
If so, I must be the one to bear the responsibility!
“Look into my eyes.”
Chen Xiaolian looked at Duwei and saw that a pair of golden-coloured brands had appeared within his eyes.
Suddenly, Chen Xiaolian’s eyes felt hot as the golden brands seemingly flew out from Duwei’s eyes to enter Chen Xiaolian’s eyes.
Instantly, Chen Xiaolian’s eyes was replaced by a view of the endless universe.
“The divine returns to the circle of life and the multitudes will flourish. All can be found within the Oddity. If there is time, you would have been able to slowly comprehend it yourself and obtain your own power. Right now, though, I will have to temporarily borrow you some strength.
“Now, summon your sword and strike the Oddity!”
Chen Xiaolian had no time to consider anything else. Gritting his teeth, he summoned out the Sword in the Stone and raised it up high.
“You still want to fight me? Ignorant fool.” Seeing Chen Xiaolian raise the Sword in the Stone up high, Bai Qi sneered and raised up his own sword.
Duwei shouted. Without any hesitation, Chen Xiaolian abruptly turned around to hack down upon the Oddity behind him.
A golden-coloured luminescence suddenly erupted out from the Sword in the Stone to strike the Oddity.
Bai Qi’s face sank and he charged towards Chen Xiaolian as fast as he could.
He had originally assumed that Chen Xiaolian wanted to fight him. Unexpectedly, the sword was sent swinging towards the Oddity.
Although Bai Qi was uncertain what Duwei wanted Chen Xiaolian to do, his instincts told him that it would not bode well for him.
However, before Bai Qi could reach Chen Xiaolian, the sword had already descended into the chaotic maelstrom.
Golden light suddenly burst out and countless particles of light shot out into their surroundings.
The particles of light seemingly possessed penetrating power as they pierced through Chen Xiaolian, Duwei and Bai Qi. They also pierced through the Longevity Palace’s pillars, roof and ground as they spread out in all directions.
Everything that was pierced by the particles of light immediately became still.
The stillness lasted for what seemed to be both an instant and eternity. When the stillness ended, everything began moving in reverse.
Bai Qi was retreating. Chen Xiaolian’s sword was rising up from the chaotic maelstrom known as the Oddity.
The only things capable of moving forward were the particles of light. They continued to spread out.
Chen Xiaolian observed the world moving in reverse and his heart was finally able to relax.
The red-haired man, Duwei, had not lied to him.
The refresh process had begun.
His life too, will end.
But Chen Xiaolian did not regret it.
Zero City’s destruction was caused by him. It was his responsibility to return everything to its former state.
This was his responsibility!
He saw the world fading away. There was no pain, only a sense of feebleness.
Finally, everything faded into darkness.