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    Translated by boilpoil
    Edited by boilpoil


     

    Xü Beijin makes a somewhat tired yawn. Some of his accumulated emotions are roiling again.

    This Nightmare… This Nightmare, is a recreation of some of the past.

    A recreation completely true to the original.

    What this Nightmare depicts, once also happened on Earth, at some period of its past.

    Even if both the Missiontakers and Actors have forgotten, Xü Beijin… hasn’t.

    He once told Dai Wu, memories, sometimes, end up as a curse.

    It’s true.

    If he could, he would also prefer to forget.

    Xü Beijin’s mouth makes a sad upturn for a bit.

    That is when the familiar, calm and magnetic voice of Lin Qin speaks up besides him, “if you don’t want to smile, then you don’t have to.”

    Then Xü Beijin notices a warm touch at the corner of his mouth.

    Lin Qin is putting his finger on his lips, and gently brushing the bitter angle away.

    Xü Beijin turns to look at Lin Qin on reflex.

    He can see Lin Qin’s eyes. It’s not easy to tell what Lin Qin must be feeling, because they are too close together. It is when Xü Beijin has realised for the first time, that Lin Qin is already someone that can step into his social comfort zone at will, and he will remain at ease.

    He looks at him blankly.

    Lin Qin tilts his head, and suddenly asks, “should I be kissing you at a time like this?”

    Xü Beijin “…”

    He immediately snaps out of the mood he’s fallen into, and sternly pushes Lin Qin away, answering with a stoic expression, “no, you must not.”

    “You said must not, instead of should not. That means, I should have kissed you…” Lin Qin goes analysing, “but you would not grant permission?”

    Xü Beijin “…”

    How could someone as frustrating as Lin Qin even exist!

    Lin Qin has successfully pissed Xü Beijin off, once again.

    Though this time he decides to keep his frustration in check, and simply says, “that’s right. I would not grant permission.”

    “Then at what time, would it be when I both should, and you would permit… And then, that is the time I can kiss you, right?”

    Xü Beijin’s ears are flushing red.

    He’s going to ignore Lin Qin now.

    While Lin Qin, looking at Xü Beijin like this, thinks he has an answer, even if Xü Beijin wouldn’t answer.

    And he believes, that time, would be soon, right?
    At least, his instincts says so.

    He cheerily smiles at the thought.

    Fei has walked away from the premises of the Space Agency.

    Behind her, the group of astronomy enthusiasts are still bickering.

    Fei has already managed to acquire information from them.

    For example, the thing they observed, would be making imminent contact with the planet in 20 minutes to half an hour. The impact wave would pulverise everything in the vicinity in no time.

    Which means, depending on where it lands, this may be the last moments of their lives.

    Also, after the thing was observed, many people have decided to lump it together with whatever it was that drove humanity mad a year ago or so.

    Maybe the thing approaching has undetectably messed with the magnetic fields and how human brain signals work somehow.

    Someone was advocating that theory loudly earlier, even though no one else buys it. Fei doesn’t believe in it either.

    If it directly affects the brainwaves, then how could it be that some are left unaffected, but some are completely transformed into someone else?

    But then, could it also simply be, that all the people who still are sane, are merely looking like it?

    Fei doesn’t want to entertain that possibility, so she forces herself to turn her attention back onto the Nightmare at hand, murmuring, “so basically, we don’t have much time in this Nightmare anymore.

    The Missiontakers originally planned to assemble back at the library building to share findings after they individually finish their explorations. Fei .

    Since starting from the library, it took them about 20 minutes on foot just to reach here, and that is without counting time lost dealing with all the mad people on the way.

    They probably wouldn’t have time to hurry back to the library before whatever it was in the sky falls down.

    Suddenly, Fei thinks she realises why, in this Nightmare, Mu Jiashi would keep looking up at the sky subconsciously.

    He probably knows what’s coming.

    Fei and Mu Jiashi share a look, and knows what the other person is thinking, and worrying about.

    Mu Jiashi seems like he’s about to speak, but then the sounds of a vehicle’s horn interrupts them from not far away.

    It’s a bus sounding its horn.

    Mr Suicide sounds tired enough when he asks, “so can we just get back to the library by bus?”

    Fei answers quietly, “I don’t know. We can try asking…”

    Mr Suicide nods.

    Although Mr Suicide is quite the perverted individual in other Missiontakers’ eyes for chasing after death, but in this Nightmare, he might actually go mad from all the different insanities playing out.

    He was going to just seek out fresh new ways to die in this Nightmare, but then…

    He sure is feeling down in the dumps.

    He doesn’t really remember either when his obsession with death began; it wasn’t exactly accurate to simply describe it as an urge to die, either.

    He enjoys the different ways in which he dies, it’s like a way of proving… or pursuing something.

    When he heard those enthusiasts mention ‘something falling out of the sky,’ Mr Suicide can feel a sudden grip on his heart.

    It’s like a voice yelling in his ears, “that’s it! That’s it!”

    Yet even Mr Suicide himself can’t exactly tell, why that was.

    He’s been looking for… an experience. A particular feeling. A certain… experience in death.

    The moment of a death, which he has been chasing after all along, searching for all this time, but has always failed up to this point.

    So many people have died and come back to life in Nightmares in fear, because of the pain afflicted at the moment of their death.

    But it is different for Mr Suicide. He enjoys death, not because there is pain in death,
    But because… when he is resurrected after death, there was like one single moment, a moment of daybreak, like awakening from a bad dream.

    He feels like he has once experienced that before, too.

    Not long ago, at the mention of the falling object from the sky, and the mention of how everything would be pulverised in an instant when it makes contact with the planet… Some feelings were stirred inside of him.

    It might be fear, but possibly, there is also an expectation among that fear.

    He is, therefore, standing there in quite the daze. He is still trying to figure out his feelings.

    Of course, neither Fei nor Mu Jiashi have time to focus on Mr Suicide; all Missiontakers agree that Missiontakers who pursue death are effectively insane. No communication is possible. They just want to die.

    No one would try to rationalise or sympathise with such a twisted, sick mind.

    The Tower has already forced the Missiontakers to twist the tranquil garden in their hearts for the much, much worse, and it was all so that they could fight against these maddening Nightmares.

    They have no time to care for others’ mental processes, or psychologically analyse others’ states of mind.

    They might lose their own lives soon enough. What time do they have to care for someone else’s?

    You could say, that they’re simply automatons trying to prolong their own lives.


    Read only at Travis Translations


     


    boilpoil's notes:

    This chapter reveals Mr Suicide’s way of thought, and also how the world has had to become indifferent, and even ignorant of such lines of thought by the nature of the Tower in which they are trapped.

    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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