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    Being an Extra Actor in an Escape Game

    Vol. 1 Chapter 19


    Cheating

    Translated by boilpoil
    Edited by boilpoil


     

    What is the character setting of the dollmaker, Wu Shen?

    When he suddenly sits up from the bed to show a grim smile at the Missiontakers present, Xü Beijin, watching this unfold in the stream, is thinking.

    The information known so far is that he is a doting father. That seems to be it. Everything he does or says seems to entirely revolve around the girl, xiao-Chun.

    Outside of this, we only know that he has run into conflicts and disagreements with his ex-wife.

    His ex-wife who, in the letters she sent, accused him of being insane, loving his dolls more than his wife and daughter.

    While in Wu Shen’s diary entries and letters, he accused her of being a violent, overbearing mother instead. A mad woman who drove her own daughter to run from home.

    Who should be believed? Who is speaking the truth?

    Given Wu Shen’s appearance right now, the Missiontakers all lean towards his wife being more trustworthy.

    Prior to this, Wu Shen was in pain and desperation due to his daughter going missing, but right now, faced directly with the fact his daughter is missing, he is going ‘hee~’… What kind of reaction is that, even? Has he truly gone insane?

    This distinctly contradictory behaviour made both Ponytail and Glasses recall a mental illness – split personality.

    More professionally known as dissociative identity disorder, the name sounds complex but ‘split personality’ is an apt description.

    If his personality is split… perhaps Wu Shen really is insane?

    Wu Shen shakily stands up from the bed with his head tilted to the side. He speaks to the three Missiontakers present, “you are looking for my daughter… Hehe, xiao-Chun… Oh, xiao-Chun…”

    Ponytail asks, cautiously wording her question, “do you have any clues?”

    Wu Shen stands with his arms akimbo and leans a little towards Ponytail. His limbs look absurdly uncoordinated. The man says, “no, no… She must be glad right now… Glad… No, that’s not right. There is still one thing to do… One more thing… xiao-Chun, hehe, xiao-Chun…”

    The lack of logic or coherence makes Ponytail furrow her brows.

    Glasses asks instead, “what do you mean by xiao-Chun being glad? Where is she?”

    Wu Shen suddenly turns to him and says, emphasising each syllable, “xiao, Chun, must, be, feel, ing, glad! For daddy did what she asked for… hehe, daddy did it…”

    He begins flailing his arms about in an excited gesture. He seems ecstatic about something.

    He enthusiastically explains, “xiao-Chun must be feeling glad! If she could see what daddy has done for her… xiao-Chun…” then, he turns sombre in tone as he continues, “but, xiao-Chun… xiao-Chun, oh, xiao-Chun, she still cannot see…”

    “What did you do for her?”

    Wu Shen suddenly stops moving entirely. He answers, “I did what daddy promised xiao-Chun he would do.”

    Ponytail asks, “what was it?”

    Wu Chun’s neck, almost like that of a real doll, begins churning Ponytail’s way in locked steps. Staring with his empty, soulless eyes, he really does resemble a real doll. It is disquieting.

    He says, “xiao-Chun, wants the world’s most perfect…”

    And he pauses.

    His face begins contorting in a complicated expression. Everyone is staring, and they become fearful when they see both terror and grimace on his face. What did he think of? Why is he terrified?

    What is the most perfect thing in the world that Wu Chun wanted?

    Ponytail really wants to keep asking, but the next second, Wu Shen begins emitting a strange ‘kuh kuh’ sound from his neck as his face flushes red. His eyes roll upwards, and the next second, he faints.

    Ponytail yells out, exasperated, “why! Why is it always cut off right before the important bit!”

    The flashback was cut off the moment Wu Shen was going to go down the stairs the day Wu Chun went missing; this time they were cut off right before Wu Shen was going to say the most important word.

    Glasses is mulling over it, “the most perfect… what?”

    “Mommy, maybe?” Quarrelsome says nonchalantly, “she treats her badly, right?”

    Glasses smirks and taunts back, “then it could also be daddy, no?”

    Ponytail takes a deep breath before joining in the discussion, “it seems awfully unlikely a six-year-old little girl would indirectly criticise her parents this harshly.”

    Quarrelsome then says, though, “kids these days… but still,” he says casually, “maybe she just wanted to ask for trivial things like toys or snacks.”

    Glasses then says, “she said ‘perfect,’ though. What kind of toys or snacks would you describe with ‘perfect’?”

    Quarrelsome goes, “hey, are you being quarrelsome?”

    Glasses rolls his eyes at him.

    “Stop arguing!” Ponytail is out of patience. She then tells them to begin organising their current information.

    None of them gives so much as a glance at Wu Shen, lying flat on the floor, nor do they feel like it.

    Ponytail begins speaking, “Wu Shen said that he finished what his daughter wanted, but Wu Chun could not see. Does this mean that the request was completed after Wu Chun went missing?”

    Glasses rubs his chin and adds, “yet he said there is still one more thing to do… Mm, does he mean letting Wu Chun know her wish was completed?”

    Quarrelsome looks at Ponytail on his left, and Glasses on his right, and says, speechless, “are you guessing riddles?”

    Ponytail makes a weary sigh and says, “yeah…”

    Even the viewers in the stream concur, “my head hurts…”

    The detective dalao is typing “We must have overlooked something!”

    Xü Beijin agrees that everyone knows they overlooked something, or perhaps missed some important clues.

    Yet they have no idea what it might be. That is the crux of the issue.

    It truly is difficult to venture forward in a dense fog with no sense of direction.

    In the doll store’s second-floor bedroom, Ponytail is still sighing, saying, “as expected of a Nightmare in which no one has ever achieved a True End. It really is difficult.”

    Glasses says, impatiently, “but Wu Shen’s suspicious actions at least confirms he killed Wu Chun!”

    Ponytail suddenly glares at him, questioning, “what do you actually know?”

    Glasses seems taken aback, merely repeating, “what?”

    “You said, Wu Shen killed Wu Chun,” Ponytail repeats what he said before, then asks, “why do you think that? Why are you so adamant that, Wu Chun is already dead?”

    Glasses is completely silent.

    Ponytail continues, “when we tried to probe Wu Shen before, you also mentioned, ‘to be honest, I can’t really see him doing anything to his own daughter.’ How are you so certain it is Wu Shen now? Why do you no longer suspect his wife?”

    Glasses seems to be holding in some panic. He forces an explanation out, “because Wu Shen is just suspicious. He looks like his personality is split. Why would it be any other person that lay their hands on Wu Chun?”

    “Yet nobody said his split personality cannot be from the trauma of Wu Chun going missing.”

    Ponytail takes another steps and stares straight into Glasses’ eyes, who inadvertently adverts his gaze. She continues pushing him, “you said that there might be two reasons for the flashback to cut off. One is that some great trauma caused him to forget everything that happened, two is that he did not want us to know what happened next.”

    Glasses says, “yeah, I think it’s the latter, and Wu Shen is suspicious! He might have done something to Wu Chun the point after it cut off!”

    Though Ponytail counters his point, “yet in the memory, Wu Shen ignored us entirely. He didn’t even know we were present. Why would he not want us to know what happened next if we’re not even there?!”

    Glasses freezes up again.

    Ponytail coldly chuckles and says, “all your analysis is based on the premise that Wu Shen is the one who laid his hands on Wu Chun. You made your conclusions by assuming this position first.”

    Glasses is silent. His head hangs low, and he does not respond.

    “Those three points are obvious enough,” Ponytail concludes, then she relaxes her tone to say, “we’re still in cooperation. Can you explain, honestly, what you know? Why are you so certain Wu Shen killed Wu Chun.”

    Ponytail’s sudden interrogation not only shocked Glasses and Quarrelsome whole, but also the viewers in the stream and Xü Beijin himself.

    The detective dalao is slamming his thighs and typing, “That’s right! Holy shit, I got completely led astray by this player in glasses! His logic was actually completely faulty!
    Even though in Wu Shen’s flashback he didn’t know at all the players were there, he could never have stopped it because he wanted to conceal his actions from the players! It makes no sense!
    Yeah, he really is suspicious. Why does he think Wu Shen is the one that did it in the first place?”

    “super amazing ponytail girl! ur the best!”
    “um… I have my own thoughts. since host is a player with a special role, then could this guy in glasses also be? maybe he knew something when he entered this nightmare, like who the killer is?”
    “its possible, but probably not the truth itself, thats cheating”
    “yea, and its definitely gonna limit him, just look at our all-knowing host who cant do a thing but wait for detective dalao to carry him”

    Xü Beijin “…”

    What do you mean ‘carry‘ when playing a game? You call… you call it winning without even moving!

    Besides, Xü Beijin isn’t in a role that’d play a part in this Nightmare anyway!

    Xü Beijin has some built-up tension now. He is thinking about showing his capabilities later, otherwise it’ll be quite vexing for him too to get scolded all the time by the viewers, he thinks, without showing it on his face.

    Meanwhile, back in the stream, after quietly standing still for a long time, Glasses finally concedes.

    He says, “before this, I actually came across a utility card, back in the doll store of the Tower…”

    Ponytail’s eyes light up as she is ready to listen to the information.

    When suddenly, the door that was left ajar makes a creak. Everyone looks over there, only to find, to their dismay, that the doll of the little girl in the red dress, is walking into the room.

    “Shit! Why is she here all of a sudden!”

    Ponytail yells out and instinctively tries stepping back and looking about the room, trying to find a way out of this.

    Yet, it is too late.

    “Eyes,” they hear the doll say, “I want, eyes.”

    Then, the next second, she raises her thin, little arms. The fingers of them suddenly stretch and disperse, shooting at the Missiontakers like bullets. There is a squelch as their eye sockets are pierced through.

    The moment blood begins oozing, they can all hear their hearts racing rapidly, until they slowly came to a stop.

    The Nightmare, restarts again.


    Read only at Travis Translations


     


    boilpoil's notes:

    Ooh, eighth run, baby! It's gonna be a wild ride.

    boilpoil

    This should go without saying, but considering the nature of this novel, please think twice before posting a comment on any chapter in order to avoid spoiling any possible future plot points or twists from later chapters.

    Travis Translation

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