Chapter 76: Who Are You
Yue Qiang did not know Luqiu Ning, and he did not recognise the woman lying inside the coffin either. However, her every feature was identical to the female fitness coach Luqiu Duanyi he met in real life.
Any normal person would’ve had the thought that ‘they are both the same person’.
For instance, Zhang Dapang and Zhang Dazhuang might not share a relationship with each other since there were plenty of people whose surname was Zhang. But if it was a strange surname like ‘Luqiu’, then it was only normal to guess that they share a relationship with each other or were actually the same person.
Plus, it wasn’t like he wasn’t familiar with the name Luqiu Ning.
A long time ago, when he first activated the friend system, Luqiu Ning’s name was there already. It’s just that her status display was in gray color. At the time, he thought that it was because they were too far apart and thus could not communicate with each other. Now it would seem that it was because Luqiu Ning was dead.
Yue Qiang shook his head and refocused his attention onto the dialog box.
He did not attempt to type anything and communicate. This was something a corpse left behind, and it was likely that the words on the bamboo scroll were merely stored using certain methods by Luqiu Ning. He could read, but not communicate with her.
After pressing the triangular shape once more, the bamboo scroll continued to display lines of characters in Song font.
“I have no way of knowing who you are, but if you’ve seen this bamboo scroll, then it must mean that you are that person.”
“The attraction formation could disarm every person’s weapons, and the mechanical fist could only be broken by a person who is familiar with the Killing Style fist technique. The soul confounding gas can kill any person who does not have any heart type skill from long distance, and cause anyone with the Hundred Schools of Thought’s heart skill to fall into pain and unconsciousness. Only those who have learned a heart type skill on their own can arrive here while maintaining their consciousness.”
“Therefore, since the moment I leave these words behind, I can predict that the only one who will pick up this bamboo scroll, is you.”
“You are the only person who can come to this place. There will not be anyone else beside you.”
There were three people in Yue Qiang’s group, and beside him Yin was fine just like he was. However, Ai Qian was leaning not far away against the door and had fallen unconscious and in pain just as the bamboo scroll said. It would appear that the heart type skill he and Yin possess were extremely rare.
The bamboo scroll had predicted wrongly in this regard, but it did not stop Yue Qiang from looking more and more shocked at all. Cold sweat began to seep slightly out of his palm as he pressed the tiny triangle continuously.
It was you who is behind all this…
This thought was due to the words displayed on the bamboo scroll:
“There are no ‘main quests’, and there will no longer be any ‘system messages’ in the future. After all, these things don’t exist in the first place. They were originally things I have created them at the last moment to help you. However, this is as far as I can do since there is just too little time.”
“Every main quest you went through is me helping you to get used to this world as soon as possible.”
“Thank goodness, and really, thank goodness you are a seasoned gamer, and you managed to survive several fatal situations. I know that you are relying on a relic level keyboard and mouse to control your character; perhaps I should have given you a… before the cutscene happened, I can see what you were doing… Every time you are about to die, I am more anxious than you are. After all, while you are playing you are fully concentrated, I am the one who has to endure the fear and panic while I watched you from the back. If you had died, then everyone’s efforts and hard work would’ve all been for naught.”
“You really would die if you had died inside the game.”
“Luckily, you are a very smart person and have discovered this point. You have acted very carefully, and your control is excellent. I was both very happy and very afraid, but ultimately, you managed to reach here alive. You managed to see my corpse.”
“This is truly a lucky occurrence. As long as one is alive, then there is still a little bit of hope left. If you had died as well, then the only thing left is infinite pain and despair.”
When Yue Qiang finished reading this line, he sucked in a deep breath before slowing exhaling.
You were here when I was playing the game.
You knew all of it.
He had played the game simply relying on his long years of gaming instinct. Now that he thought back, there were many times – no, almost every quest he went through was unbelievably dangerous, and nearly forced him to a dead end. If he didn’t happen to learn a new skill or receive a new hint every time, he might have died a long time ago.
What shocked him even more was that her telling him that she was the one who issued him the main quest!
There were no main quests or system messages in the first place… it was all issued by her to help me.
This was a main quest! This was a world that was akin to a literal game otherworld. If she could issue quests in a place that was pretty much a real world on its own, then what exactly was her true identity? Even then, the despairing emotions she divulged between her words: ‘Wasted’, ‘failure’, pain’. Words that represented negative emotions jumped out one after another. Didn’t this mean that there was something that even she could not go up against…
He subconsciously looked towards the corpse inside the coffin. Her expression appeared to be both beautiful and tranquil, but Yue Qiang could imagine that her feelings were definitely otherwise when she was leaving behind these words.
The text continued to appear line after line slowly.
“The purpose of every main quest is for you to obtain a reward. It is not… that I do not want to send this rewards to your item screen directly. I only know that certain game characters and certain places might have these items. What really gladdened me was the fact that you are not a player who relies on auto-pathing and leaves your character to level up on its own. You have taken the initiative to seek out many hidden quests and made many exploratory efforts in the process. Your attempts allowed me to secretly and unobtrusively issue quests to you. In reality, you have survived up to this point through your own efforts. I wish that you will not disappear like I do.”
“Among the rewards you have obtained, what you will not normally receive in a normal game are: S/L Module, Pause Module, 97 Progress Points and School of Mo’s Killing Style Fist Technique.”
“Progress Points is extremely difficult to obtain. The reason you had 97 initial Progress Points is because the game manual converts every 1 percent of your three progress bars into 1 Progress Point.”
“As for the Pause Module, I am referring to the first bamboo slip on this bamboo scroll. When you use it, the game world can be paused for an hour’s time. It can also ensure that your time ‘over there’ remains unchanged as well… This is a bug. I could’ve done better, but I was never a smart person, so it is what it is. You may need to use this Pause Module some time later.”
Yue Qiang could read no further.
Every information on the bamboo scroll; every information Luqiu Ning left behind caused perilous waves to ripple through his heart. With every passing line, he could not help but think ‘so this is how it is’ again and again in shock. All of these ‘this is how it is’ eventually gathered as one to form the biggest question: Just who is she?
The bamboo scroll did not disappoint him. It did not attempt to answer him in a roundabout and secretive manner. It answered the question Yue Qiang had thought for a long time but was unable to ask in the simplest of manners.
“I am the game’s A.D.” deep traces of ink appeared across the bamboo scroll.
There was another line:
“I am not… I am just the game’s A.D. And I have done the best I could.”