Author: 年终 / Nian Zhong
Translator: Kinky || https://kinkytranslations.com/
Chapter 166: A Group of Lunatics
Ruan Xian ran into the light.
Everything in front of him began to distort, and another corridor unfolded in front of him. It seemed to have discovered that Ruan Xian used some means to locate the real environment, as the perception interference became more violent.
The corridor began to twist and roll like a snake’s belly, and all the doors opened at the same time. Ruan Xian ignored the distorted scene in front of him, clung to the iron bead, and rushed firmly in the direction of safety.
The giant machine followed him closely. There was no sign it was using heat weapons but was just trying to hold him down with its mechanical arms. The endless doors circulated infinitely like two mirrors on opposite sides; each one filled with delusions of grandeur between them.
The anomalies of the entire island were all condensed in front of him.
Ruan Xian stepped on the soft and rancid flesh, bypassed the waist-high iconic buildings of various countries, and rushed straight towards a door that seemed to have no end. Swirling celebration confetti swept across his shoulders, and from time to time, something so twisted that its original form couldn’t be determined crashed through. Ruan Xian wasn’t interested in dismantling these playdough-like contraptions, casually letting them pass through his body.
The limbs of the ceramic doll shattered under his shoes. The moldy plush doll swirled out dust and dark green mold. Strange creatures that didn’t exist in reality tried to grab his feet but dispersed like clouds of smoke.
The perception of false interference, a distorted optimism about one’s own survival, coupled with an extreme thirst for purpose; the three created such a wonderful chemical reaction that the vision in front of Ruan Xian couldn’t interfere with him at all.
The iron bead that was fully impacted by the perceived interference for the first time wasn’t so lucky. It broke through the sound barrier as it produced a rattling sound full of panic.
However, the loud cry was a tremendous help for Ruan Xian, so it didn’t have to bother making other sounds. The crisis was in front of his face while the iron bead’s extremely penetrating screams stabbed in all directions.
Ruan Xian was busy running away, carefully distinguishing the location of things in the real world. Visual perception interference was the hardest hit area, but he couldn’t close his eyes completely, for fear of missing some key details…
He pretended to fall into the blue mushroom field in his perception, raised his hand, and grabbed a small mechanical reptile the size of a quail egg, and quietly slipped it into his pocket. The iron bead, who was still screaming in the previous second, closed its mouth tightly, bit Ruan Xian’s wrist in dissatisfaction, and even tried to shake its head while biting him.
It stared at Ruan Xian sternly with three small eyes for a few seconds and found that the other party didn’t have any reaction to throwing away his new love, so it continued to scream more aggrievedly.
Ruan Xian couldn’t help twisting the corners of his mouth, regaining his balance, lowering his body, and avoiding a wave of mechanical attacks behind him.
Then he casually grabbed another mechanical reptile casually.
The rattle of the iron bead changed its tone a bit. It struggled symbolically twice, and when it saw that the frequency of the chaser’s attacks had increased, it shrank back in a daze, and the crying in its voice became more obvious.
He was obviously fleeing for his life, but Ruan Xian couldn’t help but smile more strongly.
Although the equipment was really limited, he only now had time to verify his theory.
The iron bead had undergone extraterrestrial evolution, but according to the information provided by Ji Xiaoman, it didn’t have the ability to obtain evolutionary capital through food. π stayed with them because it got to eat precious parts. The only growth it had was that its shell was a little harder and its temperament became much lazier.
And on this strange island, the timid iron bead would certainly only eat food it could identify. Considering these factors, Ruan Xian had an exact guess about the possibility of its mutation.
If he could pick out something that it had eaten that was abnormal, it must be the earring that was stained with his own blood.
His own blood was so high in human tissue composition that mechanical beings accustomed to eating steel, plastic, and other things wouldn’t be interested in his flesh. Ordinary creatures like the ventral cockroach couldn’t use the “non-biological” parts of his blood, so his blood would have no effect on them.
The iron bead wasn’t vigilant towards him and Tang Yibu, so even if it was food that it didn’t recognize, it would still dare open its mouth and eat it if it was from them. If this was really his own blood that caused its mutation… Then he may have some kind of “offensive ability” other than defense.
His blood could repair Tang Yibu’s body, but it didn’t let Tang Yibu evolve. It was likely that Tang Yibu’s body itself was relatively advanced—the human body’s own repair ability was limited, and the survival rate after mutation would also be extremely low.
What about creatures with simpler structures? If they had obtained enough initial organic ingredients and had no wounds to be repaired, they were likely to instinctively use it as one of the aids for survival. They didn’t have very sophisticated intelligence, and they only lived by strong survival instincts. On the contrary, it was easier to take those parts that could be changed at will for their own use.
99% of the brain of the iron bead was on food, so it wasn’t surprising that such a change had occurred, but guesses were still guesses. He must try his best to verify them.
Ruan Xian put a little debilitating agent together with his blood into one of the mechanical reptiles. The reptile wriggled twice in his pocket, and then there was no sound. A few minutes later, Ruan Xian suddenly felt something jump out of his pocket, accompanied by an unskilled sound of buzzing wings.
When he picked it up just now, it didn’t have wings.
The reptile flew for a while unskillfully, then plunged into the soil and flapped its wings weakly.
His blood could indeed be absorbed and utilized by low-intelligence creatures, but he couldn’t control what the other party did with it. If he just simply provided blood, God knows what these things would look like on their own, and it was hard to say whether the mutation was really beneficial.
Seeing Ruan Xian let go of a mechanical reptile, the iron bead breathed a sigh of relief, only to find that Ruan Xian had intensified and picked up two more. After that, it simply just kept quiet and stopped screaming. No matter how Ruan Xian petted it, π didn’t say a word, and pretended to faint with its four legs facing the sky.
Without sound, Ruan Xian couldn’t make sense of his direction, so he had to step on the ground more loudly. Unfortunately, without the powerful scream of the iron bead, his detection range suddenly became much smaller.
No matter. He would finish in the end.
Three mechanical reptiles were lying in his pockets and had been injected with his pre-mixed blood mixture. Although the preparation of the material temporarily obtained from Ji Xiaoman was limited, the effect should be barely passable.
Using the first one for comparison, the second mechanical reptile was only injected with a debilitating agent and showed no abnormalities. The third ingested a small amount of mechanical nerve disruptor while ingesting blood. Its whole body bulged and swelled out of shape and it almost lost its motor ability. The last one was only half the size of the previous one, and the changes appeared three to four times faster with the same dose of injection.
Ji Xiaoman’s syringe needle could obtain the vital signs and data of machines. As long as the attack of the machine behind him slowed down a little bit, he could take the opportunity to look twice and get a relatively accurate conclusion…
Ruan Xian skillfully stepped over the layers of distorted human bodies under his feet, turning a blind eye to the giant ball of flesh covered with distorted facial features. He held the iron bead that was pretending to be dead tightly in one hand and grabbed the edge of his pocket with the other.
Possibly one of the mechanical reptiles exploded and died as he felt a sticky and unpleasant scrapping sound that was followed by a milky white residue that soaked the fabric near his pocket.
The iron bead probably heard the explosion as it shivered and glanced at the pocket and began to rattle obediently.
Ruan Xian knocked on its shell approvingly. On the other side, the seemingly endless cloister of perception had also come to an end. Crossing the last door, a familiar ruin hit him, but the trees were not as lush as he remembered.
The ruins were burning.
No, he should be witnessing the process of turning the building into ruins.
Ruan Xian didn’t have much experience in free observation outside the Institute. He only remembered a few shots in the virtual reality propaganda film. The building was always topped with blue skies and white clouds, and the other wall would almost glow in the sun. Right now, it was burning fiercely in the night. The thick smoke obscured most of the sky. The walls of the building were covered with all kinds of combat machines, and their metal surfaces reflected the quivering fire. The burning rays from their guns left orange-red burn marks on the walls.
The fire burned more vigorously, and from time to time, incomplete machines fell from the outer wall and exploded into pieces on the ground.
The place where he had lived for more than ten years was damaged and collapsing. Ruan Xian couldn’t help but walk away and look for more than half a second. In just this half, he was almost pierced by an invisible chaser behind him.
The iron bead suddenly struggled and rushed straight in the direction of the fire. Ruan Xian tsked and chased after it.
The scene in front of him this time was really distracting.
Tang Yibu was collapsing at the entrance. His body was full of scars, and his ragged, thin clothes were almost soaked in blood. The handsome face was covered with blood and sludge, and his hair was much longer than it was now and was tangled in knots and dirt. The tips of his hair were scattered indiscriminately on the floor. There were more dirty bandages on his body, many of which were soaked in pus and blood, with an unpleasant smell.
The only golden eye exposed was extremely dim, like a corpse.
A few steps away, a deformed ventral cockroach was approaching. It had one more leg than the one Ruan Xian had first encountered, and its movements were very slow. It looked like it had been seriously injured. The explosion of fighting machines was endless, and from time to time, metal limbs fell from high altitudes and hit Ruan Xian’s feet. However, his focus was only on the person in front of him.
“Yibu,” he said, squatting down, trying to touch the other’s cheeks with his hands. There were faint human voices in the distance, and they burrowed through the layers of smoke and into Ruan Xian’s ears, getting closer and closer to this direction.
“You went too far this time, Xiao Zhao.” Kang Ge’s voice sounded a bit bitter, and it was a lot younger than now.
“What’s wrong with me?” Xiao Zhao’s voice was abnormally high-pitched. “Look, look! Isn’t that the research institute? That famous research institute is burning! We have always been near real people. Why are you lying to me?”
“That’s right, but Xiao Tang he—”
“I don’t want this electronic pet anymore. I don’t want it anymore. I’m not familiar with it… Why can’t I make fun of him? Didn’t you like hunting with me very much before? Anyway, those things are not even creatures, and they can’t be reasonable. At most, they are meat connected to a computer. Did I do something wrong?”
“If it weren’t for you, I wouldn’t want to live like this at all! What can we do besides eat, drink, and shit? Being hunted down by these messy things and fighting them to the death?”
Su Zhao’s narrative was erratic and chaotic.
“Kang Ge, tell me. Are we really the only two humans here? I’ll break my skull open for you to see if it’s okay. I’m so curious. I can’t stand it anymore… I can only hit other things with my gun. They are just items. Just set-up items. If you have anything else to say, tell me quickly—”
Her voice took on a weeping tremor and returned to cheerfulness the next second.
“Isn’t that what all games are like? You have to try one option at a time. We have already tried all the good options. As long as we try really hard, there will definitely be some changes! You, let me kill him. His wounds are getting more infected, so it’s useless.”
After speaking, she repeated mechanically, “It’s useless.”
‘It’s an illusion,’ Ruan Xian thought. He clenched the broken mechanical reptile corpse in his pocket, knelt beside Tang Yibu, and leaned down to look at the other’s face. The place where they were was about to collapse. Debris fell down from time to time, and the surrounding smoke was blown askew, covering the two of them.
Whether this past was true or not, he couldn’t change it.
“Run.” Ruan Xian picked up Tang Yibu, who he suspected was unconscious, and gave a silent command to the trembling iron bead that was rubbing against Tang Yibu. “Wait for Ji Xiaoman and them nearby. They will come.”
It was a pity that he didn’t have Tang Yibu’s ability to communicate with mechanical life. The iron bead only half understood what he was saying. It screamed and rushed into the distance, looking back every time it rushed a meter or two.
Among the howling of the iron bead, he leaned down and kissed the dim eye in the illusion. Ruan Xian felt the wind behind him, but he just made a look like it was too late to react and didn’t dodge.
A sharp mechanical foot pierced his heart from behind him.
Ruan Xian spurted out a mouthful of blood and his hands fell limply. The wristband bumped into something and projected a light screen near his wrist in a crippled state. The screen was full of garbled code.
A few traces of smoke came out of it. It slowly loosened and then fell to the ground where it was crushed by an armed machine.
There was no doubt that this was a fatal injury.
The giant machine threw the mortally wounded corpse into the storage tank behind its body and began to follow the instructions heading towards Professor Ruan’s underground control center.
In the stuffy and airtight storage tank, Ruan Xian opened his eyes slightly with anger still on his face, but there was no shock or confusion just now.
He smiled at the darkness in his eyes, and quietly took out the blood gun hidden under his white coat.
So far, the plan was progressing normally.
What Yu Le and Ji Xiaoman saw wasn’t night.
The ventral cockroach, with one more leg, rushed to the vicinity of the research institute at dusk, but unfortunately, there seemed to be an invisible barrier that it couldn’t get through no matter what.
“Artificial regional control.” After a long silence, Ji Xiaoman opened her mouth.
“Little profiteer, do you want to continue?” Yu Le wasn’t interested in the transparent wall in front of him. He straightened the gas mask on his face. “If Tang Yibu is really related to MUL-01, this is not something we can intervene in.”
He originally thought that they were in a cooperative relationship that used each other, but in the face of an overly huge strength gap, the so-called “cooperative relationship” was nothing more than a cover for unilateral use. At this point, he had no interest in cooperating with Tang Yibu, and the other party had no technical needs that they had to have.
The risk was even greater—if Tang Yibu’s identity was exposed, they would become the world’s most wanted criminals in minutes and would be taken care of by the Order Supervisors. Even if he lost his life, according to the consistent style of behavior of the Order Supervisors, the Walking Stones that were far away in the Sea of Ruins could also get dragged in.
The needs of himself and Ji Xiaoman weren’t complicated, and Tang Yibu and Ruan Lijie hadn’t revealed the slightest bit of news. They made do with playing this companion game for long enough, and now their heads were about to be decapitated and with the guillotine coming for his own neck, Yu Le wouldn’t be stupid enough to rush forward.
“…This is better.” Ji Xiaoman’s voice was so low that he couldn’t hear it.
“If it’s an artificial intelligence of the same level as the Mainbrain and Professor Ruan, who’s familiar with this business, my mother will definitely be fine.” Ji Xiaoman looked away. “It’s better for me, but you don’t need to take risks, Lao Yu.”
Yu Le suddenly let out a puff and started laughing out loud. He laughed louder and louder that the rubbing friction almost didn’t cover it up.
“This is all really crazy.” He smiled and shook his head. “Fuck, not a single normal person.”
“It’s fine. If something like this happens to my family. I can even tear apart King Yama*.” Yu Le laughed a few more times. “It’s good to be crazy. It’s great, in fact. It’s best for everyone to be crazy together. Damn it. Alright, I should have died a long time ago. If I can survive, I’ll make a lot of money.”
*King of hell. Equivalent would be like the devil or hades.
“Uh-huh.” Yu Le scratched his head. “Let me think about it… If that kid Tu Rui remembers correctly, the first generation of Struggler’s show is near the research institute. It seems that the terrain around here is good, and it is also convenient to get data. Plan Corp bought the land as a face slap to the Institute, which wasn’t much different than a direct provocation, but with the legal procedures complete, no one could say anything.”
He pointed to the invisible wall. “This is probably the boundary of the show.”
“Strange, there is nothing special here.” There wasn’t even a convenient area for fighting. Ji Xiaoman endured the stifling heat of the gas mask and turned her head to look around.
“Wow, Kang Ge, look, it’s me! It’s me!” Su Zhao suddenly clapped her hands. “Did I look good at that time?””
“You look good all the time.” Kang Ge’s voice was a bit unnatural this time.
Yu Le made a gesture. Ji Xiaoman climbed up along Yu Le’s back knowingly. The young mechanic put her sharp fingers in her sleeves, lay on the top of the abdomen of the ventral cockroach, and carefully spied on the scene ahead.
Under the height limit, only the upper half of Tang Yibu and Su Zhao’s faces could be seen in front of them, with only vision of the top of Su Zhao’s head. Ji Xiaoman tried to raise her head, but she could barely make out the faces of the two of them clearly.
Su Zhao’s face was splattered with blood, while Tang Yibu stood quietly, like a lifeless wax figure.
“Xiao Tang.” She stretched out her hands to show him the blood stains on her hands, with a frail edge of madness in her voice. “Xiao Tang, look, you always know a lot of things.”
“I’m crazy, right?” She said dreamily. “Look behind me. Are you following two children?”
“Yes, from the looks of it, they look a lot like you and Mr. Kang when you were children.”
“You… What you couldn’t see yesterday, I could see them for a long time. They have been following me with their eyes closed. They are ghosts.” Su Zhao scratched her face. “What did I do wrong? Why should I be thrown into this hellish place…”
She scratched her face with her fingers.
“Forget it,” she whispered suddenly. “I’m crazy, and you’re crazy too.”
Tang Yibu was obviously aware of the hostility and madness in her words, as the next second he limped and tried to escape with his injuries. Even though he was shot in the heel by Su Zhao, he didn’t stop.
The sun that was about to set would dye everything blood red. Tang Yibu ran hard along the transparent wall, like a fish trying to escape from a fish tank.
“It’s this! Kang Ge, that’s what I wanted you to see!” Xiao Zhao beside them clapped her hands, with only joy coming from her voice.
The ground was trembling, and countless armed machines suddenly appeared in the air like magic, covering the sky and the sun. Dark walls rose from the ground, re-dividing the forest, and a metallic city in the distance was being quickly built by mechanical robots. The weird spire flashed with icy brilliance under the setting sun.
The armed machines rushed to the research institute not far away in a neat manner, and ammunition was fired in unison. The Institute’s defensive measures failed to last for even three minutes. Gradually, thick smoke emerged from the building not far away.
Yu Le recognized this battle.They were watching the day of the Great Rebellion of the 22nd Century.
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2 thoughts on “Happy Doomsday Ch166”
Pi has been replaced! (Or not, but that’s what it thinks lol)
Thank you for the chapter!
Yo, I’m thinking of what if Ruan Xian uses his blood and creates a whole army of mutated mechanical lives… That is gonna be epic!