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Dominion’s End V2Extra: The Journey Home, Part Two

Dominion’s End Volume 2: Aberrant City

Original novel in Chinese by: 御 我 (Yu Wo)


Extra: The Journey Home, Part Two—translated by purplezero (proofread by Arcedemius & Elkin; C/E edited by lucathia)

Jiang Shutian was the first to wake up.

Reflexively, he touched his chest and confirmed that he was still alive. Then, feeling silly about such an action, he lowered his hand with a bitter smile. That wave of pain had been so terrifying that he thought he was going to die.

He turned around, looking at the others, and saw that red-haired Jenny was moving. She was lifting her head up.

“Up already? Wake up the others. We need to hurry and hit the road …”

Jiang Shutian’s sentence trailed off. She raised her head and looked straight at him, her face covered with translucent fish scales. Her mouth ripped open, revealing a mouth filled with sharp teeth. Her throat even had lines of openings that fluttered non-stop. They were fish gills!

But he could still tell from that face that it was Jenny. Jiang Shutian didn’t know how to react. He even began to worry about what he currently looked like. Could it be…

Jiang Shutian abruptly pulled his gun out and aimed at the half-monster, half-human Jenny—she was pouncing at him. He hesitated for a second but in the end, he could not bring himself to shoot, choosing to duck aside instead. However, something swept at his legs, almost tripping him. He looked down to discover that Jenny’s legs had morphed into a large fish tail.

With the body of a human and the tail of a fish, she was practically a mermaid. But the mermaid in front of him was absolutely nothing like the beautiful ones from fairytales. The fish tail was a wretched shade of green, as if mold were growing on it, and spikes jutted out of it.

Jiang Shutian aimed at the fish tail and fired a few shots. She was in so much pain that she leapt non-stop, shrieking like a strangled chicken. By now, the muzzle had already moved to point between Jenny’s eyes. Jiang Shutian gazed at that face that was both familiar yet foreign, struggling to shoot. Before he could open fire, a throwing knife had stabbed into her head, and she slowly sagged to the floor.

“Boss!”

Jiang Shutian turned his head. Xiao Sha was looking at Jenny in alarm.

Xiao Sha still retained the appearance of a human. Judging from the way he was looking at himself, Jiang Shutian could conclude that he also appeared human.

“What is that thing?” Xiao Sha asked in disbelief.

Jiang Shutian opened his mouth and only then realized that from Xiao Sha’s angle, the large fish tail had blocked more than half of his view. He had probably not realized that this was Jenny and had only seen a monster attacking his boss, thus he was able to act so decisively.

He hesitated over what to say. But the next moment, someone grabbed his ankle. Jiang Shutian looked down and saw Jenny yawning her mouth wide open, about to take a bite of his leg.

Bang, bang, bang!

Jiang Shutian fired three consecutive shots and blasted away most of her head.

In that moment, he completely understood what kind of apocalypse this was: it was terrifying beyond expectation.

With such a great commotion, some of the others woke up in a daze.

Jiang Shutian surveyed the inside of the car and then pressed the muzzle of his gun to the head of furry monster with a snout.

It was Wu Zaiyu, the rookie mercenary, Wu the Ewe. He had always said that once he married a girl, he would then be able to raise a dog with her at home. Cain had always teased him that he was marrying just to get a dog. But before the rookie could realize that future, he had turned into a dog himself.

After Jiang Shutian pulled the trigger and lowered the gun, he realized that his steady right hand that had never missed a mark was shaking.

“Boss, t-they’re…” Xiao Sha made out the fish’s face and realized that the monster he had attacked had actually been his comrade.

“Dead.” Jiang Shutian coldly said, “Jenny would never attack me. That thing isn’t her.”

Xiao Sha nodded, silent. He hesitated for a bit but still asked, “Will we become like that too?”

Jiang Shutian firmly answered, “No.”

If everyone would turn into monsters, Shuyu would not have asked him to prepare supplies, so not everyone would turn. He just didn’t know what the trigger was. Jenny and Wu Zaiyu did not have anything in common.

How many will turn into monsters at home?

Can Shuyu really handle it?

The more Jiang Shutian thought about it, the more his heart sank. He also completely failed to realize that his siblings could become monsters.

“Xiao Sha, wake up the others. We’re returning immediately!”

However, this “immediately” took several days. Jiang Shutian had never thought that there would be so many monsters, or that they would all be different types with completely different abilities so that there was simply no way of predicting what they could do. Many of them were much tougher to deal with than Jenny, who had been a fish out of water.

Although guns were still useful, the moment a shot was fired, it would attract hundreds and thousands of monsters. They had to sneak along the entire way and were forced to only use daggers to fight with those monsters.

It only took a momentary lapse of concentration for Zheng Xing to get bitten.

Everyone had grim looks on their faces. At the start of the apocalypse when they hadn’t figured out anything, they had already lost Jenny and Wu Zaiyu. Now, they would even have to lose Zheng Xing too?

“Kill me.” Zheng Xing took a deep breath. “Let me die as a human.”

The group’s eyes reddened. Cain lifted his gun, intending to send off his comrade, only to be ordered “Stop!” by their boss.

“Give him a shot of antibiotics.” Jiang Shutian calmly said, “If we die from a single bite, then Shuyu wouldn’t have asked me to get hold of so many antibiotics.”

Hearing that, the mercenaries, who had survived through countless battles, almost cried with relief. The next day, after seeing that Zheng Xing was still human and able to eat, talk, and not bite people, they really did burst into tears.

“Boss?”

After many days of risking life and limb to escape, he had finally arrived home. Yet, Jiang Shutian did not dare to get out of the car. Yes, the man who had entered the mercenary world before even turning twenty was, at this very moment, afraid to get out of the car.

But his family was waiting for his rescue, and a second could spell the difference between life and death. Jiang Shutian could not permit himself to be weak here. He pulled the door open and was out of the car the next moment, leading the charge into his house.

The moment Jiang Shutian opened the front door, he felt all the blood in his body freeze.

It was absolute chaos inside—the living room furniture was overturned and many places had been stained dark red. It was dried blood.

He was going crazy.

“Shuyu!” He rushed into the living room and passed through the kitchen. The entrance was blocked off by stacks of stuff, but he did not see anyone.

“Shujun!” The hallway was dyed with blood. Whose blood am I stepping on?

“Where are you? Answer me!”

“Boss, there’s…” Ceng Yunqian stuck her head out from the second floor. However, after shouting “there’s,” she did not know how to finish that sentence and was at a loss of what to do.

Jiang Shutian rushed directly to the second floor. He blankly stood rooted to the spot. The floor in front of Shuyu’s door was completely stained a dark red, dotted with specks of yellow-white. An unbearable, rotting stench emanated from it.

He was too frightened to take another step, too scared of going into Shuyu’s room, too afraid to even think…

The mercenaries stood behind him, not daring to make a sound.

Dàgē—

The group all started. Although the voice hadn’t been loud, they had definitely heard it.

Jiang Shutian growled, shoving the suffocating worry out of his mind, and jumped straight from the second floor to the first. He had glanced into Shujun’s room but had found no one there. He turned around and saw that Lin-bó’s door was closed. Jiang Shutian couldn’t stand the torture anymore and forcefully kicked the door open. There, he saw a figure lying on the bed.

He rushed over with long strides and lowered his head to look. He nearly broke down there and then. That face was no longer a human’s.

But his gaze was.

Jiang Shutian took another look. This was his younger brother. It was just that he was skinny to the point that he didn’t look human. He stretched his hand out to touch the face of that person lying on the bed, his touch feather-light for fear of breaking him. He couldn’t feel any flesh, only skin and bones. Is this really my dìdi who has been handsome beyond words since childhood?

“Shuyu…”

Jiang Shutian was speechless when he saw his brother open his mouth to say something, but he couldn’t hear anything. He quickly lowered his head to listen closely.

“What?”

“Basement. Junjun.”

Jiang Shutian didn’t know how he had responded. His heart both ached and was bursting with pride. Shuyu had really protected the family. He had been the one protecting the family all along. As for him, the elder brother, what had he done? What was he doing?!

The person lying in bed heaved sigh of relief, and his eyes slowly closed.

“Shuyu!” Jiang Shutian frantically yelled.

Both eyes opened a little, as if shocked open, but his gaze wasn’t focusing at all.

“Bring over the antibiotics! Now! Shuyu, wake up, you’ve got to stay awake, Shuyu—”

Zheng Xing rushed in and pushed his boss away. Seeing Shuyu’s condition shocked him too, but he immediately took over the emergency rescue effort.

Jiang Shutian could only stand there senselessly. He knew that his sister was in the basement, and that her situation was unknown, but he also knew that as long as Shuyu was breathing, Shujun would be all right.

Just as expected, before long, Shujun rushed in. It was only then that Jiang Shutian snapped out of his daze and quickly wrapped his arms around his sister and forcibly took her out of the room. On the way out, he also locked the door to prevent her from getting in again.

Jiang Shujun yelled hysterically, “What are you doing, Dàgē? I want to see Èrgē! Èrgē!”

Nevertheless, Jiang Shutian refused to let her go in. If Shujun were to see Shuyu’s condition, and how he was currently being resuscitated, she would likely fall apart on the spot.

Unable to break free, Jiang Shujun sobbed, turning to pound her fists against Jiang Shutian’s chest over and over again.

“Dàgē, where did you go? Why are you only home now? You don’t know how much Èrgē pushed himself. He couldn’t even stand up steadily, but he still used a baseball bat to save us, and he even went to check the basement. Lin-bó grabbed him and…”

Jiang Shutian hugged his sister and listened to the several days of events his brother had experienced, suddenly feeling like trash. He had plenty of firepower but he had still taken such a long time to return home. Conversely, his dìdi, with a dilapidated body and a single baseball bat, had saved the entire family!

“Dàgē, I…” Jiang Shujun was filled with dread, and the pace of her breathing quickened. She babbled, “I locked Èrgē outside. He told me not to open the door. U-Uncle and Auntie were behind me, so I didn’t dare open the door. But… Èrgē’s dead because of this, right? I killed Èrgē!”

Jiang Shutian’s heart ached. Shujun was panicking to the point that she was incoherent. He didn’t fully understand the situation, but he did know how heavily Shujun relied on Shuyu. If what she said was true, she had locked Shuyu outside the door. For these past few days, just how much pressure had Shujun had to bear? Now, all that stress was let out in one explosive burst and she was completely hysterical.

He squashed down his guilt and slapped his sister.

“Nonsense. Your Èrgē is doing well. Who do you think you’ve killed?”

Shujun stopped and caressed her face without feeling the pain. She could only stare at Dàgē and asked in a daze, “Èrgē is fine?”

“Of course he’s fine. Have you forgotten his reputation of being the healthy boy who never gets sick?” Shuyu’s skinny and rugged body kept flashing through Jiang Shutian’s mind. Not only was he trying to persuade his sister, he was also trying to persuade himself.

“Yeah!” Jiang Shujun brushed her tears away and smiled. “I’m glad that Èrgē is fine. I’m glad that Dàgē has returned. With both of you here, our family will definitely be all right.”

Jiang Shutian hugged his sister. He hoped it would be so, begged that it would be so.

Shuyu, I’ve come home. You also need to come back quickly.

[The Journey Home, End]

Dominion’s End V2C10: Next Stop, Luo’an

Dominion’s End Volume 2: Aberrant City

Original novel in Chinese by: 御 我 (Yu Wo)


Chapter 10: Next stop, Luo’an—translated by Elkin (proofread by Arcedemius & EvlNabiki; C/E edited by lucathia)

“Huh?” I was stunned by his question. I hadn’t a clue why Jiang Xiaotian was asking about this, but I replied honestly nonetheless, “Yeah, I’ve killed before.”

Jiang Xiaotian glanced over me with a somewhat conflicted expression, then nodded and said, “Then never mind. I was originally thinking to give you some practice.”

Whoa, suddenly I feel like I’ve just saved a bunch of innocent lives. I wiped away my cold sweat. As expected of the Ice Emperor who’d lived through ten years of the apocalypse: he no longer put much value on human life. Although I was much the same, I hadn’t reached the stage where I could kill a person just to polish my skills. This was probably because I’d stayed in the safety of the colonies for too long in the later stages of the apocalypse.

But before that, I had killed my fair share of people too, particularly after my mom died and Xia Zhengu started collecting women like they were goods. The me at that time couldn’t care less about human lives, either.

“Let’s go?” I ventured the question, wanting to get Jiang Xiaotian away from these people as soon as possible and prevent the Jiang family from becoming responsible for the extinction of all mankind.

“Okay…” Jian Xiaotian’s tone of voice suddenly changed as he asked, “Shuyu, are those Hummers behind the minibuses?”

What?! I immediately looked. He was right. They’d been blocked by the minibuses, so I hadn’t spotted them until now. More importantly, those Hummers weren’t the civilian models, but military Humvees in camouflage colors!

“Dàgē, can I run away?” I asked in all seriousness.

Jiang Xiaotian gave me a look and said slowly, “You leave, you don’t run away. If you want to run away, then I won’t let you leave.”

The whole business about “running away” versus “leaving” baffled the hell out of me. Whatever it was, we had to go. My energy levels were almost zero, so this wasn’t a good time to cross paths with the military or mercenaries.

“Okay, let’s leave.”

When I saw the cars approaching the intersection we were at, I quickly wheeled around the motorcycle to go. But we hadn’t even gone ten meters when we heard a voice coming from a megaphone,

“Stop the motorcycle right now or we will shoot!”

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Dominion’s End V2C9: Jiang Xiaorong

Dominion’s End Volume 2: Aberrant City

Original novel in Chinese by: 御 我 (Yu Wo)


Chapter 9: Jiang Xiaorong—translated by Elkin (proofread by Arcedemius & EvlNabiki; C/E edited by lucathia)

I exited the house and dumped the pile of supplies on the motorcycle. When I looked back I saw the little face, which had been stuck in a gloomy expression for the better half of the day, watching me with a grim expression.

“Shuyu, you’re lying to me, aren’t you?” Without waiting for me to respond, he analyzed what I had said, “Even with a healing ability, I wouldn’t be someone under protection. If you say this is the fourth month into the apocalypse, guns are still useful, and even without guns, I’d be able to fight with a knife.”

I grinned and chuckled, “Of course. Dàgē, you really believed me? Don’t worry, even when Dàgē’s ability is healing, it’s still awesome. There were quite a few times when I wondered whether or not your ability truly is healing.”

He kept his eyes fixed on me, a faint smile crossing his face, and he remarked, “I’d forgotten you were this kind of person. I only remembered you were very protective of family.”

My smile froze. Are you suspecting me or just reminiscing? Make it clear, Dàgē, I’m really nervous now!

But even if I was nervous, it wasn’t to the same extent as earlier on when I’d rather be strangled to death. I want to live together with Dàgē, Xiaomèi, Uncle, and Auntie in the apocalypse. I am Jiang Shuyu!

“Is Shujun all right? Has she gotten used to the apocalypse?”

I nodded, replying, “Everyone’s holding up quite well. If not for that little accident, we’d probably still be at home, with a basement full of supplies, shooting aberrants with guns, eating crystals, and training our special abilities.”

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Dominion’s End V2C8: The Many Tales of the Town

Dominion’s End Volume 2: Aberrant City

Original novel in Chinese by: 御 我 (Yu Wo)


Chapter 8: The Many Tales of the Town—translated by Elkin (proofread by Arcedemius & EvlNabiki; C/E edited by lucathia)

As I drove, I kept turning to look at the passenger seat. A three year-old kid was wearing a seat belt, head slumped to one side in slumber and lips in a slight pout. He was super adorable. It was hard to believe that this was Dàgē, the Dàgē who had become the Ice Emperor!

Enough! Even though on the inside, I was a thirty five year-old woman who had never had kids before, it was no excuse to gawk at the child all the time. I needed to find a map, not play around with children!

Jin Feng had given me a map of Zhongguan City and the surrounding suburbs, but what I needed was a map of a wider region. Otherwise, if I could drive to Luo’an City just by knowing that it was in the east, I’d start suspecting whether I was actually a GPS instead.

Originally, Dàgē had probably left some maps behind. The basement hadn’t been completely empty. There had been a few boxes left there, with supplies probably meant for me. Unfortunately, the ice tornado had been brutal and had wiped the whole house off the map, to say nothing of what it could do to a few boxes. There wasn’t even a speck of dust left of them.

So my current mission is to locate a map and food. I glanced again at Xiaotian. And hunt for crystals to feed the child, too.

I’d already reached the edge of the map, so I didn’t know which road to take anymore. My only option was to continue heading east. However, this was risky, not to mention the skies were darkening. We were better off looking for somewhere to stay the night.

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Dominion’s End V2C7: Dàgē, Dàgē

Dominion’s End Volume 2: Aberrant City

Original novel in Chinese by: 御 我 (Yu Wo)


Chapter 7: Dàgē, Dàgē—translated by Elkin (proofread by Arcedemius & EvlNabiki; C/E edited by lucathia)

Traveling at night really was much more taxing than during the day. Along the way, I once again started accumulating a ton of evolution crystals, to the point where I had almost made up for the crystals that had been spent on that group.

I rushed onwards the entire night, and en route, I kept having to pause to fight or zig-zag quickly through streets in order to throw off large groups of aberrants who were on my tail. It really was dead tiring, but at least I made good progress. I’d originally estimated that I’d arrive home in the evening, but it wasn’t even ten in the morning when I caught sight of the district where our home was located.

The exhaustion, however, was nothing in comparison to my longing for my family. If anything, my pace picked up when I saw our district. Starving as I was, not having had breakfast, I still didn’t bother to stop for a bite. The faster I reached home, the sooner Shujun could prepare breakfast for me. No one likes rations! Even if those rations were prepared by Jin Feng, they can’t compete with Shujun’s home cooked meals!

I passed through a few more streets, so excited that I was practically skipping every step of the way. Then, finally, I spotted some familiar road signs. I just had to go two more steps, look left, and I’d be home sweet home!

One step, two steps, look left!

A cluster of huge ice crystals stood not far away, right where the house had once stood.

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