Chapter 131: The Time Bomb
Compared to Tang Cuo’s smooth-sailing progress, Jin Cheng, who was still engaged in metaphysics, was facing some trouble.
Even when he made such an exaggerated move in Zone B, Yan Ye and Rong Yi still hadn’t been found, while many people were now crowding around the ruins. Players in Zone B were the elites second only to Zone A, who weren’t as afraid of him as those in the low-ranking zones. At this point, someone immediately stepped forward to speak with him.
Jin Cheng asked Chi Yan to continue searching, while he himself was held back. The more people gathered here, the more probable it would be for Yan Ye to blend into the crowd and flee.
“Yan Ye is related to Scarlet’s escape. If anyone here tries to stop me, I’ll consider that person to be on the same side as Scarlet.” Jin Cheng said concisely, not bothering to explain much.
“Jin Cheng, boss Jin, aren’t you a bit too tyrannical?” The man opposite him joked.
“Tyrannical? Scarlet is more tyrannical than me. You can reason with her.” Jin Cheng slightly raised an eyebrow.
“Don’t, we’re here to see if you need any help…” Before the man’s words finished, a woman with a pale face and a hint of gloominess hanging in between her eyebrows emerged from the crowd, and she frowned at Jin Cheng: “Jin Cheng, Scarlet got out because of you. No matter what method you use, you have to be responsible for the people lying on the ground. You have to save them!”
“Oh, how come I didn’t know that you’re all so full of compassion?” Jin Cheng asked back.
“My friends are among them.” The woman clenched her fists.
“Then give a helping hand. If you don’t want to, then f-off.”
“You —” Before the words could leave her lips, they vanished under Jin Cheng’s arrow. Jin Cheng stretched his bowstring and warned her with a smile: “I reject any form of guilt-tripping. One more sentence and I’ll send you to jail.”
Saying so, he raised his voice: “Chi Yan, have you found them?”
“No!” Chi Yan responded loudly. In response to Jin Cheng’s call for metaphysics, his [Kylin Arm] had been activated, so he rummaged through the ruins with this arm but still found nothing.
It was impossible for the surrounding players to just watch. Many people had already entered the ruins, either to keep watch or to join in the search. The man in front of Jin Cheng finally stepped up to appease the woman, saying with a smile: “Okay, let’s leave everything else aside. At least everyone’s goal is the same, right? Let’s find Yan Ye first, then we can talk later.”
Jin Cheng knew that it was impossible for him to stop so many people, and it would be even more unwise to take action, so he simply gazed coldly at the players as they entered and didn’t speak.
If he didn’t say anything, it was a form of silent acquiescence.
The man patted the woman on the shoulder, and the woman finally nodded before carefully taking two steps back. She walked across Jin Cheng and worked with the other players.
But even with so many people searching together and turning over every brick in the ruins to inspect, they didn’t find any clues
Just when everyone started to doubt whether Jin Cheng was lying to them, Chi Yan withdrew and slowly heaved a sigh. His face didn’t seem very good at this point, because he had been using his [Kylin Arm] non-stop, which consumed too much energy and forced him to stop to take a rest. But his ‘not very good’ was different from others’. His face flushed and his head sweat profusely, making him look like an energetic teenager who had just finished playing basketball.
Jin Cheng cast him a glance and didn’t bother him, and neither did he join in the search. He stood at the edge of the ruins with his arms folded like a watchman. His purpose, of course, was to prevent Yan Ye from escaping.
The players certainly felt uncomfortable when he just stood there with the look of a big boss. They were obviously here to help… Even if they had some opinions, they were also helping now. How come Jin Cheng, the man in the middle of this whole affair, suddenly became the supervisor?
But this man was just like this. He emanated that air that invited people to beat him up, but no one would be able to actually beat him up.
Now that Chi Yan had also withdrawn, the players felt even more unhappy. If the big boss doesn’t want to do it, fine, but why is the xiaodi also taking a rest?
Was he having any awareness of being a xiaodi?
Right at this moment, Chi Yan suddenly made a soft noise, bending over and probing the grass behind him. Yan Ye’s house had been turned upside down by Jin Cheng, but the courtyard was only half destroyed and the plants near the edge were still intact.
Chi Yan kept digging in the grass until he pulled out a black metal ball. He scratched his head, wondering what it was, and as he turned it around, there was a countdown on the back of the ball — ‘00:57’.
“A timer bomb?!”
With his exclamation, everyone’s gaze turned in his direction. Jin Cheng appeared beside Chi Yan in an instant, and his eyes turned solemn as he touched the black metal ball.
“It’s a [Time Bomb].”
“What?!” The face of the man earlier changed suddenly, and several other people who knew the item also flipped their expression one after another. Those who didn’t know what the [Time Bomb] was noisily raised questions.
The man took a deep breath and said: “It’s Rong Yi’s item. The bomb doesn’t hurt people, but once it explodes, it’ll distort time and affect the law of causality.”
Once time was distorted, the order of things might change as a result, and subsequently, cause and effect would also change. Even a minor change might result in a completely different outcome.
“Everyone, step back now. The bomb has a limited range of impact. Everyone retreats, it’s about to blow up!” The man yelled, and before the words even faded, he turned around and ran away.
Feeling very nervous, Chi Yan kept staring at the time as each second ticked by, but Jin Cheng didn’t show the slightest intention to back off. The corner of his mouth even slowly revealed a hint of smiling, hiding deep thoughts behind it.
Like before, in the dark room.
Yan Ye’s figure reappeared, and a tinge of anger flashed across her face: “Did you put the bomb there?”
Staying at the other end of the room across from Yan Ye, Rong Yi didn’t speak and only looked at her quietly. While Jin Cheng was searching outside, Rong YI also tried to look for Yan Ye, but she seemed to be in hiding and only her voice echoed in his ears, constantly forcing him to hand in the 2nd Movement.
They were at a stalemate with each other, but as long as Yan Ye still had Rong Yi trapped here, she would have the upper hand. But now, Jin Cheng had discovered the [Time Bomb] left by Rong Yi.
In fact, the bomb would explode even if it wasn’t discovered; it only depended on when Rong Yi wanted it to explode. As the second-ranked player on The Red List who lived a not-so-easy life, Rong Yi would never put his basic guard down no matter how much he looked down on the enemy.
Before he entered Yan Ye’s house, he hid a [Time Bomb] in the grass without anyone knowing. Regardlessly of what Yan Ye might do to him, as long as the bomb blew up, causality would be changed.
The weapon of causality yielded a dangerous effect that no players would be able to shield against. If not necessary, Rong Yi himself wouldn’t use it lightly either, because the consequences were out of his control.
He wouldn’t know which time point it would distort and which period of causality would change. In the end, everything was pure luck.
And luck was a learning process.
With only ten seconds left, Jin Cheng put the [Time Bomb] back into Chi Yan’s hands: “The time has come to really test your luck.”
“No, ge!” Chi Yan held the bomb as if he was holding a hot potato, wanting to toss it away but he didn’t have the nerve to. In merely ten seconds, the time around him seemed to be stretched infinitely. From the initial tension, consternation, worry, apprehension to the end of the ten seconds, the black metal ball split and burst with a dazzling light that flooded the ruins and the surrounding area within a ten-meter radius.
A trace of peace appeared on Chi Yan’s face.
Now that the matter had reached this point, he could only chant “Nanmo Amitabha Buddha” to himself. Avalokitesvara, Tathagata Buddha, The Eighteen Arhats, Victorious Fighting Buddha, no matter what god or Buddha you are, please bless me!
“Open!” Feeling his blood suddenly rush up, Chi Yan shouted loudly, as if the bomb would explode at his command.
In the dark room, Yan Ye seemingly went mad and desperately charged towards Rong Yi, trying to stop all of this, but the light of the [Time Bomb] soon drowned out her figure, filling the entire dark room.
Deprived of their sight, everybody subconsciously closed their eyes to block the dazzling white light, only to find that they couldn’t move.
No one knew how much time had passed. Perhaps one second or one minute later, everyone’s body returned to normal and they opened their eyes again to find themselves stunned.
Yan Ye’s house had been restored to its original state, where only some of the damage inside could be vaguely seen through the windows, and the players who originally stood on the ruins were now scattered around the house.
Everyone suspiciously looked around, and all of a sudden, an exclamation came from the gate. One after another, they ran over.
“What’s the situation?!”
“Who is that?!”
Amidst the exclamation, the players who had gathered spotted Chi Yan in the center of their field of vision, then they saw the person he was clutching in his hands. One by one, they couldn’t help but join in the crowd who was all gasping in sheer surprise.
Chi Yan himself felt even more dumbstruck than anyone.
Could anyone tell him what was going on? What did the [Time Bomb] change? Why was he grabbing someone as soon as he opened his eyes? Although his [Kylin Arm] came with a good luck buff and it could launch critical hits with eerily correct precision, so much so that even if the elites of Zone A stood in front of him, they still faced a risk of getting hit. But how did he catch a person just like that?
It was Yan Ye that was caught by Chi Yan.
Yan Ye had never felt so aggrieved. Even if she was hit by the [Time Bomb], she shouldn’t have been so unlucky. If it were Jin Cheng or Rong Yi who caught her, she would accept it, but this was Chi Yan.
Such a small-fry xiaodi, who was he to catch her?!
“F**k off!” The word Yan Ye spat out was like a sonic bomb that directly hit Chi Yan’s chest. Caught off-guard, Chi Yan jumped backwards, almost sputtering a mouthful of blood.
Fortunately, Jin Cheng rescued him in time, and at this point, Rong Yi, who had disappeared for a long time, finally turned up at the room door.
Jin Cheng and Rong Yi glanced at each other, then their eyes both fell on Yan Ye again. Without saying a word, they immediately took action.
At the same time, Tang Cuo finished his interrogation with Pei Pei. He obtained the addresses of several bases that belonged to Lawless and immediately spread this information by borrowing the mouths of the players on the scene.
He couldn’t guarantee that the players wouldn’t try to attack Lawless, nor could he guarantee that this wouldn’t lead to them accidentally disturbing some dangerous people. The real issue was that his team didn’t have enough manpower, so he could only use other players’ hands to deal with Lawless.
After doing all this, he immediately sent Pei Pei and Tall Man to jail, then rushed to South Sixth Street with Qian Wei.
He predicted that Lawless should have mostly evacuated from the base on South Sixth Street, but given that the city was in such an urgent state, they would certainly not decide to go too far. Let’s first head to South Sixth Street to determine the situation, then use it as a starting point to search around.
On the way, Qian Wei kept thinking about the scene where Tang Cuo sent Pei Pei and Tall Man to jail earlier. Clever, ruthless people were indeed so similar. He asked Pei Pei and the Tall Man to stab each other, isn’t that exactly the same as what Zheng Yingying did?!
Now that he thought about it, they must know each other, or perhaps they had a close relationship, otherwise, how could they make such corresponding moves? Qian Wei couldn’t help but pat his face, warning himself not to talk anymore and even harbouring a thought to slip away halfway.
But he thought about it again. Forget it, I’m already here, an upright fighter will never shy away.
But by the time the two reached South Sixth Street to take a look, the building was already empty. Since it was all as expected, Tang Cuo didn’t show the slightest disappointment. Very quickly, he ran to the next location.
Translator and reviewer at Strictly Bromance blog. In essence, she lives to indulge in plot-driven stories sprinkled with camaraderie and slow-burn drama-free romance, especially more so if they belong to adventure, mystery or supernatural genre. A trope that she always thirsts after: “Comrades who go through life and death together”.