In Virtual Reality
vast that nearsighted Tian Si De had to squint and wrinkle his nose just to catch a glimpse of a sprinting pink hoodie.
As they entered, Hoodie reversed backwards to kick two more times the paper man who opened the door, knocking him unconscious.
“These things irritated me in the single-player storyline I did, always ratting me out to nearby guards.” Hoodie machine-gunned his past game encounters.
“They had me run wildly from the beginning to the end of the village and out of the haunted house before I could get rid of them.”
Tian Si De: “…
He had a bad feeling about this.
Hoodie paused: “Didn't I tell you? The Paper Folding Shop's side story is a parkour challenge! Only those with sufficient stamina can obtain the clearance achievement.”
Hoodie patted Tian Si De's stiffened shoulder reassuringly and said, “Come on, Master Tian.”
They employ a trick to skip the puzzle in the current plot progression, but the remainder still depends on parkour skills.
They were now utilizing game speed runners' tactics.
Even if there were no pursuers now, both people were fleeing to their deaths, terrified that if they took one step slower, they would be met with a massive wave of Zhang family guards.
Hoodie kicked open the locking door and leapt inside, heading right for the master bedroom.
Tian Si De trailed following, slamming the door behind him.
The bride was seated on the couch when they saw her.
The woman's face was hidden under a scarlet veil.
The intricately embroidered bridal gown appeared more of an art piece than a piece of clothing.
The bride sat silently on the bed's edge as if she hadn't heard anyone come in.
Hoodie abruptly came to a halt and scowled as if they were contemplating something.
Tian Si De wasn't thinking as deeply as they were.
After everything he'd gone through, he almost burst into tears when he saw his sweetheart again.
“Wen Wen! I finally found you.
Come with me now; this is not a nice place to be…”
A hand suddenly seized his back collar, suffocating Tian Si De and causing him to choke and cough.
Hoodie: “She's not Fang Wen Wen.”
'Not Wen Wen…?'
Seeing Tian Si De's scepticism, Hoodie let go of his back collar.
“If you don't trust me, go ahead and lift the veil.” Their statements contained a touch of encouragement.
Tian Si De calmed himself and scrutinised the red bride more closely.
A thick veil hid the bride's face while the bridal gown thoroughly covered her body.
He strained his eyes for a long time before noticing something was wrong.
The bride's hands weren't hidden in her sleeves but folded together, revealing crimson nails.
Nothing would appear out of place if those hands weren't made of paper.
Tian Si De couldn't help but take a step back, his lips quirking briefly as he exhaled softly, “……
The bride before him was nothing more than a paper man; it was not Fang Wen Wen.
But, in that case, what about Wen Wen?
And where is Wen Wen now?
Tian Si De's heart was full of sorrow.
It gobbled him up from his eyes, nose, and throat, just like the fishy-sweet, icy well water he had tasted not long before.
Unconsciously, his body began to tremble.
Fear and despair had overshadowed his previous burst of vigour.
Hoodie frowned and slapped him on the back.
Tian Si De: “Ahem pfft-“
Tian Si De felt like he was about to spit blood as the slap that might have cracked the Zhang family's gate landed on his back.
“Are you going to give up?” Hoodie gave him an odd look.
“It's simply the wrong story branch.
Why are you such a pessimist?”
Hoodie turned and headed towards the doorway through which they had entered.
Tian Si De took a deep breath.
Yes, Wen Wen had not yet been located, and he couldn't give up.
He averted his gaze from the paper bride before him and turned to follow Hoodie away.
The servants of the Zhang household had finally emerged after they caused so much commotion.
They didn't resemble live beings.
Guards and servants were clothed in coarse attire and patrolled the territory stiffly.
Their eyes were little more than black holes that moved from left to right and back again.
Their bones appeared to be held in place by nails, preventing their joints from bending.
Their entire body moved quickly in a strange and scary posture, similar to wooden dolls.
Two or three men patrolled the area, bearing the same ghostly green lights as in The Paper Folding Shop.
Two or three more held long swords half the height of a man.
They slammed it to the ground sometimes, sending golden and red sparks flying.
Tian Si De, who was nearsighted, couldn't see the swords, but he did smell a metallic scent that reminded him of blood.
The servants and guards of the Zhang household moved quietly.
For a brief while, Tian Si De could only hear his own heartbeat in the vast courtyard.
He held his breath tightly, not daring to breathe.
How would he get away from the Zhang family's armed guards…?
——— Translators Notes ———
攻略: gōng-lüè = strategy / directions / guide / how-to
Often used when gamers or novel system users follow a strategy or a guide to bypass obstacles and win.
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