Author: 长洱 / Chang’er
Translator: Kinky || https://kinkytranslations.com/
Yongchuan University Female Dormitory, Building 7, Room 201, 4 beds, 6:30 a.m.
When Jin Xiaoan saw the video, it was already the next morning.
In fact, she didn’t sleep well last night. Overall, her heart was still calm. After all, everything was finally coming to an end, so she deserved to spend the last night of her life in peace.
But for some reason, there was always a feeling of uneasiness deep in her heart.
She opened her eyes very early. At that time, there was barely any light outside the window. She felt as if she hadn’t woken up this early in a long time. She turned around slightly, picked up the phone that was fully charged, and clicked on it as usual. This was the place she looked at every day after opening her eyes.
It was like washing her face and brushing her teeth; such an act was like cleansing her heart as she chanted her scriptures. This was what she did every morning, and it had an important sense of ritual. At this time, she was in a mood for nostalgia or homage and thought about that place and wanted to take another look. After all, it was the most beautiful place in her memories.
But the beauty was no longer there because she saw the video.
The video was silent, but she could hear manic drum sounds beating in his ears, as if someone were roaring and screaming at her. In the midst of the chaos, there was a figure with an expression of indifference.
She watched helplessly as the person ruined the beauty in her mind.
Bright red blood dripped from the walls. The figure’s writing speed wasn’t fast, but in the dark space, those bright red characters were like countless ants devouring her world.
Seeing the original white wall defiled like this, Ji Xiaoan’s hand holding the phone trembled. Finally, the person’s writing paused. Jin Xiaoan curled up abruptly and began to gasp in anger.
She leaned against the cold wall, trying to calm herself down, but she discovered that the person in the video didn’t have any intention of stopping.
The figure just walked leisurely to the edge of the paint bucket, dipped his brush into the bright red paint, and then returned to the wall again.
The red paint dripped from the brush onto the wooden floor. It was so dirty, and it took them a long time to wipe that floor clean…
Seeing this, she subconsciously stretched out her hand and rubbed hard on the phone screen, trying to get rid of the stains, but no matter how hard she tried, she couldn’t wipe the dirt away.
Her fingertips became hot, and her anger burned like a flame—at her fingers, in her eyes, in her chest. She sat straight up and smashed the phone, creating a loud bang.
The sound of people waking up immediately filled the bedroom. At first, it was her roommates who woke up and didn’t seem to know what had happened. A few seconds later, angry scolding could be heard.
“What idiot isn’t asleep!”
“Get out if you’re not sleeping!”
Not only in the bedroom, but even next door, there were angry pounding on the wall.
The voices rumbled in her ears as Jin Xiaoan tried her best to restrain the urge to kill. She gritted her teeth and crawled out of bed cautiously. She gathered the pieces of her smashed phone and reassembled them slowly, then tentatively turned over the phone again.
The screen lit up, the webpage lit up, and the video lit up again. She dragged the video bar to the end in a daze.
The picture was frozen in the empty room. Only red blood meandered down from the wall, but her gaze was frozen at the end of all the formulas, where there was an obvious message to them.
Seeing that line of information, it was impossible for her to smash her phone again, so she opened the curtains and turned on the lights. She ignored the insults that sounded in the bedroom again, opened the book, and found the corresponding world.
*Originally in English.
It meant garbage. What other intention was there to leave this word on the wall than to curse, but specifically curse at people who could understand the word.
You guys are rubbish.
You’re garbage who lives in a dark corner.
Countless words passed through Jin Xiaoan’s mind. She pursed her lips. From beginning to end, she didn’t see that person’s face, but she could feel that person’s condescending voice and contemptuous eyes.
That person had smashed the door, cracked their code, and written out the formula all over the walls, just so he could call them rubbish?
It truly made people want to kill.
Ji Xiaoan tasted saltiness in her mouth and smelled rust. Perhaps extreme anger could also be calming. At least, this was what she thought. She didn’t make any more noise. She closed the curtains, turned off the lights, and then sat down quietly at her desk.
Some people were as angry as Jin Xiaoan. In a dormitory some distance away from Jin Xiaoan, specifically in Yongchuan University of Technology, which was adjacent to the Yongchuan University campus.
In dorm room 6-601, the protagonist was a boy.
Shen Ran woke up earlier than Jin Xiaoan. He was awakened by a sudden text message at around 5 a.m.
He picked up his phone in a daze. The sender had no name, and the content of the text message was only one extremely short message: [Go to the Yongchuan University City forum.]
Shen Ran was still sleepy and wasn’t in the same tense mood as Jin Xiaoan. On the last night of his life, he had slept soundly. If it weren’t for the fact that he felt the number looked familiar, he would’ve put down his phone and gone back to sleep again.
Well, it didn’t take much time to go to a website with his phone, so he opened the forum and immediately saw the top post at first glance.
With bright red headlines, cool highlights, and thousands of replies, on such a deep night, the content inside must be quite sensational. This was, in fact, the case. When he clicked on it, he saw a wall covered with red paint.
Probably because he had seen this place so many times that it was deeply engraved in his mind, although the original white walls were now covered in blood-red handwriting, he didn’t even need to enlarge the picture to know where it was.
At that moment, his reaction was the same as Jin Xiaoan’s. He was angry. He wanted to kill. His drowsiness had disappeared without a trace, and he felt all his muscles trembling uncontrollably, but perhaps because the night was still deep or because different people reacted differently, he was able to restrain his anger and read the post carefully from start to finish.
Finally, he opened his messaging app and sent a text back to the anonymous sender.
[Who are you?]
But the other end didn’t reply to him in text but sent him a multimedia message. Because he had read the post, Shen Ran could identify the content of the MMS without any effort.
This was the floor in the comment section that was forcibly removed from the entire long post, and someone had saved it in the form of screen shots.
When Shen Ran downloaded the picture, his fingers were cramping nervously. Soon, like many sleepless students in University City, he saw the “unspeakable” reply.
In fact, it didn’t seem like the reply was such a big deal. It was only the second half of a 150-person list indicating the school’s top rankers in 2013, 2014, and 2015. The difference from the long list was that there were four names on the list that were circled. Other than that, there was nothing else in the screenshot.
The problem, most likely, was the four circles—or rather, the names that were circled.
Shen Ran used the most unimaginative but effective way. He typed the names in the search box and pressed enter.
In an instant, the search engine listed thousands of results for him, and the most important and closest result was impressively at the top.
[The list of the 10th General Election of the Yongchuan University City Joint Association of Science and Technology Application is as follows:]
With almost perverse excitement, Shen Ran clicked on the campus news. Sure enough, the news seemed to have been deleted, but a snapshot of the webpage captured by the search engine still existed.
He saw the four names in it, and the president of the association was Chen Xuan, the owner behind the famous ID that suddenly went online and then offline.
Probably the heavens had opened his eyes, or rather, those self-righteous idiots didn’t expect that the power of the masses was so great that the things they were trying to hide were picked up in an instant.
Shen Ran continued his search.
As with the result of the conjecture, almost all information of the Science and Technology Association was almost wiped, but this kind of remedial measures taken under panic was full of loopholes.
He quickly found the organizational structure of the association, the location of the event, and the arrangements for the event…
What bullshit “Three Graves”. This was simply a small student club that was completely unknown. They were pretending to be ghosts playing tricks, thinking that they were so refined and extraordinary, but in fact, they were just trash that didn’t dare show their true colors!
Shen Ran clenched the phone tightly and continued his search…
He suddenly discovered that the group of people also had a routine meeting today.
What a wonderful coincidence.
With this in mind, Shen Ran edited the information he found into a text message and sent it out.
Countless messages, together with the rising sun, spread rapidly throughout University City at a pace that was fast, but wasn’t unstoppable.
However, in this world, what humans really couldn’t do was stop time.
It was April 14th, 12:00 p.m.
The sun was just right, and it wasn’t affected by yesterday’s rain in the slightest.
Everything on the campus showed an undisguised sign of spring, such as flowers on the side of the road or the legs of girls; they all exuded warmth as if they had a sweet smell of chocolate.
The bell just rang, indicating the end of class. Students were laughing happily around the cafeteria. Jin Xiaoan carried a plastic bag and walked out of the cafeteria against the flow of people.
This was her lunch.
The cafeteria at Yongchuan University sold a lot of delicious food, but her favorite was the 50-yen buns that came in a pack of three and were sold on the corner of the second floor. If it were like usual, she wouldn’t eat the buns at noon, but since today was her last moment, she felt she deserved to treat herself to the best thing in life.
So she carried the buns and walked to the lake.
Because of the suicide two days ago, there were few people here. It was quiet under the banyan tree. The air was filled with the smell of candles, and the sound of water was inaudible.
Her favorite place was under this banyan tree. She sat down by the tree, opened the plastic bag, and took a bite from her favorite bun.
Everyone’s preferences were different. After all, people were different.
Shen Ran, unlike Jin Xiaoan, didn’t believe there were any beautiful things in life worth remembering, so after class ended at noon, he skipped lunch and wandered through the entire campus until he came to the ruins by a playground.
When everyone was running to the cafeteria, no one noticed what he was doing standing by the ruins. People in this world were always so indifferent that they would eventually die from it.
Shen Ran’s gaze swept across the ruins and found the mark he had made. He removed some bricks and pulled out something at the bottom.
Under the banyan tree at Yongchuan University, the girl who had just finished gnawing on her buns stood up.
In the campus kiosk, someone pulled up their hoodie and checked out their newly selected fruit knife in front of the cashier.
In front of a car repair stall, someone stuffed an abandoned chain into their pocket.
On the road, someone tightened their clothes as they walked slowly forward…
In all people’s lives, some people eventually walk on a completely different path than the rest.
They were angry and determined and had started to gather from all directions.
<<< || Table of Contents || >>>