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    Translated by boilpoil
    Edited by boilpoil


     

    Right now, as a good Missiontaker, Ding Yi is still asking for more information on the matter, “then would you happen to know where those ‘experts’ opinions and results are?”

    “The results?” The big, irritable hunk of a man dismissively snorts, and answers, “at the library, I guess. They put their ‘results’ on those specialist periodicals or whatever they call them. They’re no better than gossipy tabloids now, I’d say.”

    Ding Yi falls into thought. It seems that, back at the reading room on the third floor of the library, they haven’t found all the clues yet.

    Though would they be information critical to the Nightmare? Or simply coverage of the Apocalypse?

    Ding Yi then asks the man, “so are you free? We can go see your fiancée together if you are.”

    “Free?” The man replies, “I’m not. I’m at work, you know. I have to drive these stuff elsewhere soon.
    If she’s still at the Space Agency, I’ll go talk to her myself. I don’t need you to play telephone for me.”

    The Space Agency?

    That’s where his fiancée is?

    Fei has already said that the Space Agency had nobody else but astronomy enthusiasts around, though…

    Could it be that his fiancée is one of them? Maybe one of those who observed the falling object herself, that’s why she is certain the Apocalypse is coming?

    Maybe it’s the woman named Xie Ji?

    Though why would this man not believe in his fiancée, though? Assuming the fiancée saw it herself, but her fiancé does not believe in her. Would it have been devastating for her?

    If the man really did take a detour to his fiancée while transferring the relics, while the Raining Hellfire happened… Would it be enough despair for him to qualify as a Nightmare owner?

    It sure would be enough fear and suffering. Ding Yi thinks this man is a likely candidate for the Nightmare owner.

    That said… it’s not just him who might be.

    Ding Yi shakes her head. If only she had an Infocard and can check the man’s status directly. It would show if they are the owner of the Nightmare.

    The points against her guess would be how this man doesn’t seem at all fearful of the coming Apocalypse, even though he’s yelling like a doomsday cultist back in the Tower.

    The stark contrast in behaviour is a bit too obvious. Can the fear of the Raining Hellfire really have had such a dramatic and instantaneous effect on him?

    Now Ding Yi is slightly more doubtful that he might be the Nightmare owner.

    Her thoughts are tangling up, but it doesn’t show on the surface. The conversation with the man has ended thus, as the man is now moving to join his colleagues in helping categorise the relics and pack them for transport.

    Ding Yi then looks at Mu Jiashi, saying, “do we still need to enter the Museum?”

    Mu Jiashi says, “depends on you.”

    Ding Yi hesitates, then finally comes to a decision, telling him, “let’s go somewhere else.”

    “Not going to try conversing with the old Director of the Museum?”

    “I meant, somewhere else in this Museum.”

    Mu Jiashi is surprised.

    Ding Yi seems slightly pleased he managed to trick Mu Jiashi a little.

    She then shakes the thought out of her head to explain, “we──I, still don’t understand the secret held in the Museum yet. If the Director really has gone insane, I suspect there would be far more tragedies hidden within this Museum.”

    Mu Jiashi listens, then nods, and says, “let’s go then…”

    They enter the Museum once again through the side entrance.

    Meanwhile, Buzzcut and Ye Lan have had new discoveries.

    Xü Beijin has his stream focused on them, too; the viewers are currently in a discussion.

    “this person looks like the nightmare owner!”
    “why? just cuz he looks fearful?”
    “good, the first step of becoming a great detective is questioning every single thing other people say!”

    The young man seen on camera appears to be in his 20s, perhaps just a few years older than Lu Chengzhe, but he is clearly much more distressed than the latter.

    The moment he saw Buzzcut and Ye Lan, he tried to run away. Buzzcut managed to catch him by the arm, though. He’s now standing there, shaking.

    Buzzcut and Ye Lan found him just outside of a kindergarten.

    It’s one of those kindergartens exclusively serving the apartment complex surrounding it. It’s right in the centre of the community.

    Right now, they can hear the cheerful sounds of the children laughing and playing inside. The teacher seems to be playing some sort of game with them.

    This is quite the unexpectedly wholesome and also terrifying scene, given the context.

    Buzzcut and Ye Lan are numb already, though.

    They saw largely similar scenes walking into this residential area.

    The residents seem to be living their everyday lives undisturbed, but deep down, it’s obvious the madness has already turned their lives upside down.

    Buzzcut went from disgust, to speechlessness, to simply being numb to it all.

    Maybe he’s being assimilated into the environment, he thinks. He suspects he is coming to an understanding of how and why these people are living like that in an environment of madness. All their crazy actions… he can sympathise.

    The moment that thought crossed his mind, he’s in shock. He quickly gathers other thoughts to chase it away.

    He knows that such hypnotised thoughts that are almost like memetic hazards would disappear as soon as he leaves the Nightmare behind.

    Though what if they fail to leave the Nightmare? Buzzcut thinks they should be more careful.

    He glances at Ye Lan, unsure whether this cold and expressionless Missiontaker is experiencing something similar as him, being corroded by madness, inch by inch.

    He wants to ask, or advise her to be careful, but he feels like he need not do so.

    His companion is far more rational, calm, and unfeeling than him.

    Along the way, they’ve come across people who can still communicate effectively; they’re crazy, that’s for sure, but they all had a common piece of information to give, the same information the restaurant owner told them – that a couple argued overnight.

    The owner was right, everyone around the community heard the arguing couple last night.

    The information largely adds up as well – it was a young couple, the woman believed in the rumour, the man did not; they argued, and the argument was heated.

    Other than that, though, no one knew who the couple was, or their address, or even who they are. They just know there was a couple arguing.

    The vagueness of the identity of the arguers has Buzzcut and Ye Lan stumped. They might have to… find the couple by exhaustively asking everyone.


    Read only at Travis Translations


     


    boilpoil's notes:

    This part of the chapter wraps up Ding Yi and the irritable man’s conversation. Meanwhile, Ye Lan and Buzzcut have come across some strange young man! Stay tuned for more tomorrow.

    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.

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