Night's Nomenclature - Chapter 10: We Need Fire
Lin Xiaoxiao was the one who created this nightmare for Qing Chen.
This world was not always dominated by a mechanical civilization. The reason for it to have sustained to this day was the result of many more mysterious civilizations in its history.
And tonight, Lin Xiaoxiao created the nightmare to test what kind of man Qing Chen was, in hopes of understanding more of this mysterious person.
Lin Xiaoxiao intended to test Qing Chen’s courage and ability to withstand stress by trapping him inside the nightmare known as the “Dilemma of Two Ghosts”, but he never expected that Qing Chen’s reaction was beyond what courage and stress could represent.
He now realized that when a crisis hit, this young man would face it with the most intense yet calm attitude.
Qing Chen did not display any fight or flight response. The only word that could be used to describe him was… calm.
Lin Xiaoxiao still couldn’t understand how Qing Chen was able to break out of the nightmare by picking up the dagger.
After all, this was Lin Xiaoxiao’s domain, he was the one to dictate the rules in the nightmare.
By this point, Qing Chen knew that he probably didn’t have to kill anyone today, so he just looked at the empty living room and asked, “Lin Xiaoxiao?”
The nightmare was still not over, Lin Xiaoxiao wore a police uniform and walked downstairs with a smile, “Uncanny. How come you can keep full consciousness inside my nightmares? I knew the boss had a good eye for spotting talents, but you sir are extraordinary.”
“Why are you doing this? I don’t remember offending you in any way,” said Qing Chen, puzzled.
“Because the boss is interested in you. He wishes to know more about you, but now it seems my nightmare won’t have any further effect,” explained Lin Xiaoxiao as he sat down on the last step of the stairs.
“So, is this another one of your special abilities?” asked Qing Chen.
“Yes,” Lin Xiao smiled and shrugged, “Just like how you have a photographic memory, I have my own abilities. It’s not much of a secret.”
For a brief moment, Qing Chen felt as if the world around him was becoming increasingly mysterious in his mind.
The strange world where mechanics and mystics coexisted did not frighten him; rather, it piqued his interest.
And everything that was going on right now could be the reason why Li Shutong and his supporters were so powerful in this prison.
Qing Chen wanted to learn more about this mystery and even wanted to obtain part of it.
“Are you from the Qing Family Corporation?” Lin Xiaoxiao inquired when he noticed Qing Chen was silent.
Qing Chen didn’t answer this question, but responded with another one: “Are any of your guesses on my secret identity what got me privileges? And why didn’t the robot jail guard treat you the same way the other prisoners are treated?”
“We naturally get special privileges because our boss is special,” said Lin Xiaoxiao, “You aren’t allowed to change the subject here. Back to the topic of your identity. I found the camera recording of your conversation with Lu Guangyi today. He’s been brought here by the Qing Family Corporation, and given his haste to find you, I’m guessing you’re a member of the Qing Family as well.
Qing Family Corporation… Qing Chen remembered the name.
He relaxed a bit.
His opponent has unrestricted access to the entire prison. Qing Chen was like a newborn who had just started to walk when compared to him.
In this situation, there was nothing for him to be concerned about.
Since the other party was willing to sit down and talk with him, that means he must have something they desire.
“Since you already know that I’m from the Qing Family Corporation, why are you still willing to make a deal with me?” Qing Chen asked, sitting on the ripped sofa.
“In our organization, we don’t care about people’s backgrounds. Anyone can join as long as they are like-minded,” with a smile, Xiaoxiao added, ”Of course, you still need to be qualified enough first.”
Qing Chen was a little taken aback. So, he was being tested the whole time?
Lin Xiaoxiao seemed to want to work together with the Qing Family at first.
“You want to recruit me?” Qing Chen inquired, perplexed.
“I never said that you are qualified now. To be honest, I don’t think you and I share much in common at all,” said Lin Xiaoxiao, “But the boss believes there should be all kinds of people in a proper organization: tigers that can settle a mountain; eagles capable of observing frontiers; wolves that can fight the enemies; leopards agile to the different situations; and dogs devoted to the group. Everyone plays a part.”
“So what kind of role do you play in your organization?” asked Qing Chen.
Lin Xiaoxiao declined to reply, but he asked strangely, “What do you think?”
Qing Chen pondered for a moment and responded, “The donkey of the production team?”
Lin Xiaoxiao: “???”
What the hell?
I’d rather be a fish that can paddle in the water.
Lin Xiaoxiao also found that the teen sitting in front of him looked perfectly unconcerned, and could even crack a joke with him.
This young man was only seventeen years old.
Lin Xiaoxiao asked curiously, “The Qing Family arranged for Lu Guangyi to come in to prepare so early. So, what are your plans? Or rather, what are you looking for?”
I’m not sure what I came in for, either… but you won’t believe me… Qing Chen thought to himself.
I still have to ask Lu Guangyi sometime soon…
Qing Chen was debating in his mind whether or not he should trust Lu Guanyi enough to tell him about what happened.
He was getting a headache simply thinking about Lu Guangyi’s never-ending comments.
Lin Xiaoxiao responded, “It doesn’t matter if you tell me now or later; I’ll figure it out sooner or later. Well, good night. You still have to play chess with the boss tomorrow morning.”
As the voice faded, the horror faded with it. He climbed onto his cold bed after carefully rising from the jail floor.
He examined the cell door, which was made of thick metal. A cold and mysterious world awaited him outside the door…
Return Countdown 20:59:21.
Return Countdown 20:59:20.
In the morning, Li Shutong still sat at the table like he had done the day before, calmly contemplating yet another endgame.
It was not yet time for prisoners to leave their cells, so the entire prison was quiet.
Lin Xiaoxiao squatted on a chair and said, “Boss, I put him to the test using the “Dilemma of Two Ghosts” last night. Guess what, he chose to grab the dagger and kill the first one upstairs… Way too brutal…”
Ye Wan frowned, “I told you to not take it too far. Most people would faint inside the Dilemma of Two Ghosts.”
“Don’t worry,” Lin Xiaoxiao grumbled, “I didn’t continue until the end. I lost control of the kid in the nightmare.”
“Oh?” Li Shutong raised his head, “I was sure he is just an ordinary kid, but if he can escape your control in the nightmare, then I might be mistaken.”
The large cat, which had its eyes closed, was now staring at Lin Xiaoxiao strangely.
“How did he do it?” Ye Wan wondered.
Lin Xiaoxiao shook his head and said, “I don’t know”
“Perhaps his will is strong enough,” Li Shutong did not delve into the matter. Qing Chen was not the only one who was able to break free from the nightmares he created.
Squatting, Lin Xiaoxiao remarked, “I would encourage you, Boss, to consider it carefully. Qing Chen has a great desire to kill.”
Li Shutong burst out laughing, “So many of your colleagues and friends died for our cause, even you and I are trapped inside this prison. You must understand, Xiaoxiao, that we cannot face the darkness with kindness. We require fire.”
While he said so, Li Shutong’s demeanor darkened, “Ye Wan, bring me my harmonica.”
Breakfast was about to start, and the prison gradually became noisy. The sounds from these steel beasts behind the alloy doors began to become unsettling, like a pot of water was being heated.
But a melodious harmonica suddenly sounded in the open space in the prison. The invigorating sound reverberated across the room.
The sound of the inmates hammering on the cell door faded away, and everyone listened silently as if someone had brought a fresh spring into the desert.
Translated by: Nite
Edited by: Tempest