Dominion’s End Volume 1: Raining Stars at World’s End
Original novel in Chinese by: 御 我 (Yu Wo)
Chapter 5: Special Powers—translated by Elkin
I looked down from the rooftop and fired, hitting the aberrant behind him. It was only then that I realized Mom hadn’t climbed up yet, and an aberrant had grabbed hold of her foot.
I once again aimed and fired, but the gun only made clicking noises—I was out of bullets!
“Save my mom!”
He was right above my mom and still had time to pull her up. With his strength, he definitely could pull up my mom.
I was hopeful, but then he turned and hauled up another person. And in that instant, my mom was dragged down by the aberrant and slammed heavily back to the ground. An entire streetful of aberrants swarmed toward her like locusts, and she lifted her head to look at me. She only managed a shout of “Xiao Jun!” Then there was no more.
My last memory of my mother was a spray of flesh and blood. I collapsed onto the ground, and then I looked up in time to see him helping another woman crawl onto the rooftop.
One thing only… My mind was filled with just one thing, and it was the impulse to strangle this person to death.
“Your mom was already so badly injured,” he explained somewhat wearily, “Even if we saved her, she would have turned into an aberrant. And when that happens, you’ll need to kill her with your own two hands. Isn’t that even worse?”
“Getting injured doesn’t mean she’d get infected for sure!” I wailed tearfully as I pummeled the bastard, screaming, “I saved you, so why didn’t you save my mom?!”
He explained patiently with a helpless look on his face, as though his heart was really aching, “Weijun, Xiao Qi’s healing power is very important. We can’t lose her!”
I snarled hatefully through clenched teeth, “Can’t lose her ability, or can’t lose her? So someday, when it comes down to it, you’ll choose to save her over me?”
“How is that even the same thing? Weijun, I love you! Believe me, I just want to protect you…”
Love? Bullshit! Like hell you’re gonna protect me! I actually believed him. I was actually stupid enough back then to believe in his lies!
Women–how fucking stupid can you get?!
“Shuyu, wake up!”
My eyes sprang open. A blurry vision greeted me, and my head was so foggy that I couldn’t make head or tail out of what was going on.
Someone jumped into my arms, calling out urgently, “Èrgē!”
I stroked her hair, which was soft and smooth to the touch, then blinked. Only once I blinked away the excess tears from my eyes could I see Dàgē looking down at me with a face full of worry.
“I’m fine, really,” I said with a wry smile. “Just dreamt of something from the past.”
At the beginning of the apocalypse, my sharpshooting skills really were quite useful, and I had saved him countless times, yet I wasn’t able to save my own mother.
Fortunately, I had fired to save him before discovering my mom’s predicament. If I had noticed at the same time that both of them were in danger, and that I only had one bullet left, then the absolute dumbass that I used to be might have really ended up choosing to save him instead of my own mom.
And I’d never be able to forgive myself!
…Although, I don’t really want to forgive myself at the moment either.
“Family’s most important.”
I hugged Shujun tightly. Mèimei, Gēge, Uncle, and Auntie—I had to protect them all. I had to protect them with no qualms or doubts, without overestimating myself—an unconditional and absolute protection!
“Shuyu, did someone hurt you in the future? I mean, you as in Guan Weijun,” Dàgē said, his words as tempting as a devil’s. “If you see him again, tell Dàgē which person it is, okay?”
If Dàgē found out, he would die in such a horrible way that I wouldn’t be able to continue hating him, right?
I laughed and told Dàgē and Mèimei about my theory on parallel worlds.
“So I don’t think I’ll ever see him again, Dàgē.”
Dàgē narrowed his eyes slightly and just said “Mmm,” looking a little disappointed.
I brushed away my cold sweat. No matter how much I hated him, it seemed almost too cruel to hand him over to Dàgē—but if I really did see him again, I would still sell him out to Dàgē in a heartbeat!
Shujun lifted her head from my embrace, saying anxiously, “Èrgē, you don’t go easy on yourself even in your dreams. How are you ever going to recover?”
I gave a bitter smile. Dreams weren’t things I could control, although, there was something that worried me.
“Did I sleep talk?”
In the apocalyptic world, this was a big taboo. Everyone had nightmares when living in those circumstances, but if they were to shout or talk in their dreams, they wouldn’t have to wake up anymore. Even before the aberrants came, the people nearby would immediately kill them!
Shujun shook her head. “No, you just tossed and turned and sweated a lot.”
I breathed a sigh of relief. Good, my instincts haven’t gone rusty. In the days to come, those instincts from the previous world would be crucial.
“Èrgē’s all sweaty. Dàgē, help him wash up. I’ll make a nutritious breakfast for Èrgē.”
“Junjun…” I called out to her and begged with a mixed expression of anxiousness, agony, and misery, “Can I not have chicken soup today?”
Shujun grinned, chuckling with amusement, “Sure!”
In the end, I had medicinal porridge. Shujun, when did you manage to squirrel away so many packs of medicinal herbs? Did I go crazy when I was shopping that time? How did I not notice!?
Although I ended up with an overly oily aftertaste in my mouth when I was done, with the nourishment of three meals a day as well as late night snacks, I could feel myself regaining weight quickly¬. The branch was finally budding.
Strolling into the living room, I found that everyone had already gathered there and was waiting eagerly for my arrival. If not for Dàgē’s mighty presence, I would probably have been dragged here before I even had time to wash up and eat.
Dàgē sat down, sweeping the room with a warning look. At that, everyone quickly retracted their starving gazes and stopped staring at me like I was fresh meat.
“All right, what powers do you all have?”
Xiao Sha stated curtly, “I’m faster.”
All the others had looks of frustration.
Seeing that, I knew that they were suspecting whether or not they had developed any powers at all. However, in the later stages of the apocalypse, it was proven that any human who survived the black fog would develop different powers. It was just that most of them weren’t very strong, and it was especially difficult to discover the more exotic powers.
I opened my mouth and said, “Everyone, bring over a cup of water, a lighter, a rechargeable battery, a rock, another cup with soil in it, and anything else you can think of.”
At that, everyone brightened and immediately split up to gather those items. Soon, the table was covered with a collection of miscellaneous items.
I thought for a moment, then put the cup of water in the middle of the table. The power to control water was fairly common, probably because one could not survive without water.
“One by one, fix your eyes on the water and then touch the water with a finger. Think about wanting to move the water. Do this for a minute or so.”
Everyone’s curiosity was piqued. They formed an orderly line to do so, and soon enough, we discovered Ceng Yunqian had power over water. She had almost used up the full minute when, just as she was about to give up and pull out her finger, the water exploded.
Zheng Xing had the power of earth. The moment he touched the soil, those soil particles started bouncing around.
Lily tried various things but couldn’t get anything to happen. Just when she was feeling discouraged, I asked her to stand by the window to see how far she could see. In that instant, she almost fell over, shrieking that her vision had definitely exceeded 5.0.
As for Cain, I had my own guesses, so I simply took the lighter to burn him directly. He let me do it with a grin, not resisting in the slightest, but then discovered, to his surprise, that he wasn’t burned.
As expected, he had power over fire. Powers over water and fire were the most common in the apocalypse, but there was a huge disparity between the strong and the weak. The weak could only conjure enough to rinse your mouth or be used as a replacement for matches, but the strong were unbelievably powerful.
I informed him, “You’re not completely immune to fire. As you become more powerful, your resistance to heat will increase. But don’t think that at your current level, you can walk into a big fire just like that.”
Cain gave a sharp exclamation and said gratefully, “I was just thinking of setting a bonfire to burn myself. Good thing I didn’t make a fool of myself.”
I turned my gaze to Xiao Sha, who frowned a little and repeated, “I said, I’m faster.”
I pointed at the electrical fan. “Think about wanting to move the blades of that fan, or you can even blow hard at it.”
Xiao Sha started, his brows creasing with what looked like displeasure. A shock ran through me. Does he already know his ability but wants to hide it? It wasn’t strange to hide your true power in the apocalyptic world. If I’d realized this earlier, I wouldn’t have exposed him and have him resent me for nothing.
He blew hard. Before the blades of the fan even started moving, everyone immediately knew his power—with a breath that ruffled even our hair, this was clearly the power of wind.
“I owe you one,” Xiao Sha said grudgingly.
I looked at him, not understanding his meaning.
“Xiao Sha’s debts are worth a lot,” Zheng Xing said amusedly, “He was once indebted to me before, and boy, did I get a lot back in return. He hates owing people the most.”
I see. So he wasn’t unhappy that I exposed his power?
Next were Uncle and Auntie. Until now, they hadn’t been able to move anything.
I thought hard about what other abilities there were and how we could figure them out.
Auntie finally blurted, “Xiao Yu, I feel like I can sense you guys. It’s hard to describe, but it’s like I know roughly where you are without looking.”
I understood immediately and nodded, explaining, “That’s ‘search,’ a psychic power. It’s very handy! You can use it to avoid danger, and it’s quite an uncommon power.”
This power could be further developed, but I hadn’t been in a position to know the exact details about those people with psychic powers. There were not many of them to begin with, and every single one of them was viewed as an important figure and was well-protected by their group. This was especially the case for those who had managed to develop their powers further.
When she heard that she could avoid danger with it, Auntie looked extremely delighted over her power. I felt a little more energized myself. Even though we were such a small group, we were able to have a rare user of psychic abilities. The future was looking bright!
“And Uncle?” I asked, “Do you feel anything unusual?”
“None whatsoever,” Uncle sighed. “Maybe I don’t have any powers?”
“Everyone has powers,” I said, shaking my head. “Some powers are just more difficult to discover. Don’t worry, Uncle. Those hard-to-detect abilities are usually very unique and useful abilities. You just need a little more time, so don’t be anxious. And anyway, we’ve got Dàgē!”
Uncle nodded. Probably because he was wise with age, he wasn’t too concerned about matters like this.
In my previous life, those people with no abilities were the first to be kicked out of any group, unless someone powerful was willing to protect them. It was only afterwards that we discovered these abandoned people often had irreplaceable abilities.
Powers over water and fire were the easiest to discover. However, because many people had these powers, they weren’t anything special. If they didn’t train hard to become more powerful, they would be quickly replaced by someone else. Rather, it was those people abandoned right at the beginning who had the most precious abilities. But unfortunately, very few survived.
Finally, there was just the three of us siblings left.
I hadn’t tried anything yet, but Dàgē and Mèimei had also participated in the tests with no luck so far.
But that was fine. Whether or not Shujun had powers, she was my most precious little sister.
As for Dàgē, no one had the thought that he wouldn’t have an ability. The reason we couldn’t find it now was probably because his power was moving The Earth or something just as mighty.
Shujun pouted, complaining, “I want a power.”
“Keep trying, you definitely have one,” I consoled her, holding absolute confidence in her.
Shujun looked at the table littered with things. She had gone through almost everything. Finally, after a little thought, she picked up the battery…
With a bang, the battery actually exploded. Startled, she threw away the battery, while me and Dàgē immediately snatched up her hand in fear to inspect it. Thankfully, she had only received a minor burn, and her skin was just a little red. It wasn’t serious at all.
When I got over the initial shock, I was stunned.
The power of lightning! This was top-tier in terms of attack power. Mèimei, I didn’t know you were so aggressive?
Shujun said excitedly, “Is it electricity?”
I nodded, clarifying, “Lightning. It’s very strong.” Looking at my cute and gentle Mèimei in front of me, I really couldn’t bring myself to start raving about its destructive power!
Shujun asked delightedly, “So can I recharge things?”
Of course she could use her ability to recharge things, but she needed to learn control. Otherwise, the appliances would explode, just like the battery. I nodded.
Shujun swooned. “That’s great. Now, even if we don’t have any more gas, I can use the electric stove to cook. And since the weather’s so hot now, I can keep the air-conditioner on for Èrgē, so you won’t wake up all hot and sticky.”
Fine, cooking and air conditioning and what-have-you are indeed quite compatible with the power of lightning.
“Xiao Yu, look at this light I’ve produced. What power is this?”
Dàgē stuck out his hand. There was a ball of light about the size of an egg on his palm, a warm glow that was gentle on the eyes.
I stared at that light. Actually, it was something that I was very familiar with. But I had to be wrong. No way it could be that power!
“Dàgē, did you think about what power you wanted?”
I truly believed that for someone as mighty as Dàgē, who had the words “I am the protagonist” plastered across his forehead, the gods would definitely give him whatever power he wanted, no questions asked!
Dàgē nodded and placed that egg-sized light on my shoulder. That spot instantly felt warm and nice, but my expression darkened. Dàgē immediately moved his hand away, asking anxiously, “Does this light make you feel uncomfortable?”
“…No, it feels very good.”
It was just that, for a main character as mighty as Dàgē, only powers as devastating as lightning that could obliterate everything or those that could level mountains and toss the seas could match up to him!
How could it be?
No way is it possible!
How could Dàgē’s ability be—healing!
Couldn’t it at the very least have been power over fire!
“This is the ability to heal, right?” Dàgē asked to make sure.
I nodded miserably.
Dàgē gave a faint smile and immediately placed his hands on my shoulders. They started glowing, and this time, the light wasn’t the size of an egg anymore but large enough to cover my entire shoulder. This is overkill!
Thinking back, that Xiao Qi’s healing power at the beginning was only as large as a diamond—and just ten carats was precious enough.
As for Dàgē, his was the size of two human heads! One head for each shoulder. Even if it was healing, Dàgē was still godly!
But in the end, healing is still healing…
Seeing Dàgē staring closely at my shoulders, completely focused on releasing the healing light, I suddenly understood.
He wanted to heal me, so it was the power to heal?
That’s too stupid, Dàgē. I’ll get better after a while, but your power is something that’s fixed for life!
I really wanted to cry again, but I held it in. You’re a man now. If you cry at the smallest of things, even I wouldn’t be able to take it.
“Dàgē, I’ll be sure to use my ability to protect you!”
The moment the words left my lips, the entire house directed disdainful looks at me.
“… Sorry, it must be the tile from before. It knocked me silly enough to make me think Dàgē needs my protection.”
Everyone nodded. Sob sob…
“Xiao Yu, what about you? You know already, don’t you? Don’t keep us guessing.” Dàgē gazed at me knowingly as he continued to heal me.
I smiled faintly and reached out a finger to touch the cup of water on the table.
“Is it water, like me?” Ceng Yunqian said excitedly, “That’s great! Then Xiao Yu can teach me.”
With a cracking noise, the cup of water turned into ice.
With their powers as their new toys, everyone started training very hard, but no one was more serious than Jiang Shutian. He would heal me every day, as regularly as having three meals plus a late night snack. Every time, he kept it up until he was so mentally fatigued he couldn’t let out even the faintest glow.
And so I ended up in a situation where every day Dàgē would sit behind me and use his healing powers on my shoulders, while Junjun would sit in front of me and force feed me chicken soup with a spoon. If I insisted on rejecting the chicken soup, then it would become medicinal soup.
Ever since Zheng Xing announced that I was able to eat meat, and I needed to replenish my protein, even more foods were stuffed into my mouth.
Have you ever seen pigs being fattened up? It was exactly like that!
Shujun and Auntie were busy with household chores every day. With so many people in the house, the number of chores to do naturally increased. Shujun didn’t look like she was practicing her powers at all. She had also said that, with Dàgē and Èrgē around, she didn’t need to be too strong, so it was more practical for her to help Auntie with the chores.
But I felt that she really would turn out to be the most powerful person in this house—excepting Dàgē.
Have you ever seen someone powering the rice cooker as she cooks?
Have you ever seen someone powering the washing machine while putting up the laundry to dry?
Have you ever seen someone powering the air conditioning while sleeping?
She was a walking electrical generator, charging things wherever she went! Even Xiao Sha took his iPad to her for charging, because he wanted to listen to music and play games!
In my previous life, I really hadn’t seen anyone who was able to master their ability to this extent within just half a month. The average lightning user would most likely have busted all the electrical appliances they touched.
I woefully poked at the glass of beer in front of me. As Lily happily walked away with her iced beer, Zheng Xing was standing next in line, holding a cup of Darjeeling, and after that was Cain, with his Coca-Cola.
So we could live out the apocalypse like this too! Thinking back to my previous life of living on the run, it was pretty tragic. So that was why preparations were extremely important—and even more importantly, you had to have a Dàgē.
Although I was describing things as pretty care-free, in reality, Dàgē and his team were continually searching for supplies nearby. Even though the basement was crammed full of supplies, we would run out at some point, especially in terms of our consumption of food, so Dàgē had already started searching the neighborhood in preparation.
Fortunately, this was the suburbs, so there weren’t that many humans, animals, or plants. Naturally, there weren’t that many aberrants either, and Dàgē would always gloss over it, saying that those aberrants weren’t hard to handle.
My guess was that some of them should still have gotten injured, but either Dàgē patched them up, or they simply didn’t bring up the matter. After all, Dàgē’s healing powers were all used up on me, I didn’t know if he could still squeeze out any remnants to heal the others.
In just three days, I could feel that my body had improved greatly. I finally had some flesh on my cheeks, and I could stand up and move. It was just that, the moment I stood up, I would be forced back into the wheelchair by Junjun. Aside from the nourishment and Dàgē’s healing ability, the black fog had contributed to my recovery too—all living organisms that survived the black fog would be exceptionally robust.
“Dàgē, how are you guys dealing with the aberrant corpses?” I asked curiously.
“We buried them all,” Dàgē paused, then asked in return, “I forgot to ask you. Burying them should be fine, right? We tried burning them before, but there was too much smoke and the stench of it often attracted other aberrants, so after that we buried them instead. Nothing will happen to those corpses?”
I smiled as I said, “No, burying them is fine.”
In the middle of the night, I glanced to one side to see Shujun sound asleep. Quietly, I snuck into the next room, which was my original room. The mess inside seemed to have been cleaned up by Dàgē and the others.
I silently took down the bars of the windows. During the day, when Shujun was busy cooking, I seized the opportunity to sneak in here. I replaced the bars, which were originally stainless steel, with bars of ice.
This was currently the only room where no one was sleeping in. Dàgē said that I would have my own room back when I was a little better. I couldn’t keep sleeping in Shujun’s room forever.
I moved as silently as possible. After all, Jiang Shutian’s companions were all mercenaries, so they were very skilled, very alert, and had a terrific sense of teamwork. This was the main reason why a group like us could pass our days leisurely in the apocalypse. Even if we hadn’t stocked up on so many supplies, they would still have had their ways of getting hold of sufficient supplies; it would just be that we wouldn’t be living so well off.
Secretively doing something under the nose of these mercenaries was no simple task, but I was Guan Weijun, a woman who had survived ten whole years in the apocalyptic world with just the measly power of good vision!
Speaking of skills, I definitely would not lose to them. It was just that no matter how strong the soul was, I was limited by how weak my body was. I could not pull off too many difficult stunts.
But so long as Jiang Shuyu makes a full recovery, with a little training, he would definitely be much stronger than Guan Weijun. Even though I was still quite weak, I could feel I had a fair bit of power. With a fine body such as this together with my ice powers, becoming one of the powerhouses wasn’t just a pipedream.
Once out of the house, using the darkness of night as cover, I lightly flipped over the walls of a number of houses. I chose a house that was some distance from home and climbed over the wall. I easily found the “burial site.” Dàgē and the others didn’t bother concealing their tracks, probably because they didn’t feel the need to.
I stretched out both hands and focused my entire being on them. Slowly, a piece of ice formed between my palms, growing longer by the moment. Soon, a piece of ice the shape of a shovel was completed.
The Jiang family’s bloodline is unbelievable!
Thinking back, in the first half month into the apocalypse, although everyone started discovering the existence of special powers, these powers were weaker than a scalpel. At the time, the most practical power was water, because the water could be drunk, solving one of the basic needs of the human body. As for attacking or fighting, forget it—you were better off picking up a rock and throwing it.
I never imagined that Jiang Shuyu could form an ice shovel. Together with Dàgē’s healing powers and Shujun, the walking electricity generator, the Jiang family’s powers were very formidable!
These geniuses were probably much stronger than “him,” not to mention Guan Weijun… As expected, comparing things can really piss you off.
With no time to lose, I started digging into the earth with the shovel. Thankfully, they weren’t buried deep, and it was only a moment’s work to excavate three aberrants’ corpses.
The three corpses were already rotting, and the stench was quite unbearable. I once again crafted a small ice knife, and when I sliced open one aberrant’s chest, the stench billowed right into my face. But I couldn’t care less and started dissecting the corpses with even more fervor until I saw the aberrant’s heart. It already didn’t look like a normal heart but was abnormally large, surrounded by many swollen veins.
I stabbed downwards into the center of the heart and broke open a round shell that wasn’t originally there with familiar ease. One twist into the shell, and a translucent crystal the size of a finger nail fell into my palm.
Aberrants ate flesh and blood to evolve. It was only a long while later that humans discovered there were evolution crystals in the aberrants’ hearts and that eating these would speed up their own evolution, just like how eating flesh and blood would speed up the aberrants’.
In my past life, I discovered these crystals during close combat with one of the aberrants. I was pushed to the ground, and I fired numerous shots directly into his chest, firing until his chest was gaping open.
Back then, amidst the intense stench of blood, I caught a whiff of something fragrant, something even more appetizing than food. With courage I didn’t know I had, I reached into the broken chest cavity to dig out the crystal. Instinctively, I knew this was something real good.
The aberrants must have been the same. They must have always felt that we smelled very good, so they instinctively knew they needed to eat us, which resulted in our relentless slaughter of each other.
But because of humans’ fear of aberrants, coupled with the fact that even if we did win the fight, the aberrants’ corpses would likely end up being a bloody lump of flesh, most people avoided the corpses with revulsion. No one bothered searching the corpses, so humanity simply wasn’t aware of the existence of the evolution crystals at the beginning stages of the apocalypse.
Plants and animals didn’t have these inhibitions. Their basic instincts were to eat. So even if, at the start, they might have fought back against the aberrants only when they were attacked, once they devoured the loser’s flesh and blood as food, they discovered the existence of the evolution crystals.
So regardless of whether it was the aberrants, plants, or animals, their speed of evolution was always one step ahead of humanity’s, causing countless people to die during the apocalypse.
It was only until almost ten years into the apocalypse that the situation took a turn for the better. With the appearance of the most elite powerhouses among humans, humanity finally had room to breathe and was able to build large communities.
In this life, I’ve started eating crystals right from the very beginning of the apocalypse. Together with Jiang Shuyu’s superb body, I would definitely become one of those elites!
I kept these evolution crystals a secret from the others.
I dug out three crystals from the three corpses, though the first was the largest—the other two were just tiny fragments.
Looking down at the evolution crystals in my hand, one big and two small, I was reminded of our three siblings. If I gave the largest to Dàgē, he would definitely become stronger.
Although Dàgē’s power was healing, evolution crystals didn’t just strengthen our powers but also our body. Of all humanity’s powerhouses I knew, there were also those who weren’t reliant on their powers but were renowned for their excellent physique and combat skills.
I gazed at the three crystals rolling around in my palm.
In my previous life…
I had given the first crystal that I had discovered to him, then all the crystals that we subsequently hunted together were also given to him. I only ate the leftovers, because he had said that he would be able to protect me once he became stronger, and he could keep me from staining my hands with blood for survival.
And in the end?
In the end!
In the end–
I swallowed the largest evolution crystal in a gulp.
The reason why I had ice powers in this life must be because my heart was as cold as ice. No matter how well Jiang Shutian and Jiang Shujun treated me, even though their attitudes hadn’t changed the slightest even after they learned about Guan Weijun, I still wanted to keep the power within my own two hands.
I would never give the chance of becoming stronger to anyone else in this life.
Later, I would tell them about the evolution crystals. But until then, I would first eat a certain number of crystals.
After swallowing the remaining two crystals, perhaps because my ice powers had strengthened, I felt my heart grow colder.
In the next few days, I went out every night to dig up corpses and dissect hearts. I finally felt like I was back in the apocalypse. Ever since Dàgē came back, the days passed by so leisurely that I was scared, worried that I would become used to such an easy way of living.
But this kind of life couldn’t continue forever—aberrants, plants, and animals were growing stronger by the day, and there were looters as well. Although we were quite a strong group, there would always be much stronger ones out there. From what I knew, the various military groups were the most frightening factions out there.
To the average person, the military was a lifesaver. However, for groups like ours which had plentiful supplies and could take care of ourselves, the military would become the looters taking away our supplies.
I had to get stronger as quickly as possible.
As I was scrubbing myself in the shower, I glanced at the mirror to check the condition of my body. But I couldn’t resist being drawn in by that face of mine—Jiang Shuyu really was very handsome. Although I could tell he had handsome looks when I had recovered to the state of a branch, now that my body had improved further to that of a paper doll, he looked even more handsome. If my body weight was back to normal, I wonder how handsome I’d become.
This Jiang family really was a bloodline of protagonists: Dàgē was handsome and almighty, Mèimei was beautiful and good-hearted, and Jiang Shuyu, the middle child, was incredibly handsome. When just going by his face and not the overall impression he gave, he was even better looking than his Dàgē.
Only, even if he trained up his body, he would probably lose to Dàgē by miles.
Looking further down, he lost in terms of length by a fair amount as well…
What the hell am I thinking of? I’m even comparing sizes down there now!
Guan Weijun, it’s not like you haven’t seen men before! Stop staring down below! And you’re even recalling what you saw on Dàgē’s lower body in the bath last time and actually comparing sizes! You’re a total, complete, and utter pervert!
I quickly pulled myself together. Getting a nosebleed while looking at Dàgē was bad enough, but if I got a nosebleed while looking at myself, then I was really a hopeless case.
I pulled on some clothes and exited the bathroom to see Shujun standing outside, waiting for me.
“What’s up?” I felt like she had something to say.
Shujun hesitated before asking cautiously, “Gē, where were you last night? When I woke up to go to the bathroom, you weren’t in bed.”
My heart skipped a beat, but I pretended like it was no big deal as I said, “You guys keep making me rest all day. I couldn’t sleep much at night after sleeping so much during the day, so I went out for a stroll to look at the stars. Now that there’s not much light pollution, the night sky is very pretty.”
Shujun went “Ah” and stopped her line of questioning. Instead, today’s chicken soup was immediately thrust at me.
It felt like I was getting punished. I silently finished the chicken soup and decided to hurry. I still had to go out that night.
Shujun had already started getting suspicious. I wasn’t sure when she would report this to Dàgē, which would mean I would have to confess everything—Dàgē would never believe an excuse like going out stargazing.
Before confessing the truth, I needed to eat a few more crystals.
Late at night, I headed out the same as before and dug up the corpses with the ice shovel that I formed. Recently, it was getting harder and harder to find any burial sites, so I had probably found almost all of them already. That meant I probably didn’t need to come out any more after tonight, and I could just stay at home to practice my ice powers. Then, when I got the chance, I’d tell them about the crystals.
Perhaps using the excuse of seeing a dream “again” isn’t half bad. It would be fine as long as I said it had to be “fresh” aberrants, then they wouldn’t come digging up the aberrant corpses.
After a good deal of digging, I only ended up with one piece of evolution crystal. But this crystal was the length of a thumb, which meant that this family didn’t just have one aberrant, but rather, they were all eaten by this fellow. That was why he had such a large evolution crystal.
Just as I was about to swallow it, I heard some sounds and frantically gripped the shovel tighter. I turned, about to swing down the shovel, only to see Dàgē pushing open the gates to the garden and walking in. My heart pounded furiously—they’d found out!
“Shuyu, what are you doing?”
Behind Dàgē were the rest of the mercenary troop. Their expressions were quite grim as they looked between me and the pitifully dissected corpses. They stared at me like I was some kind of zombie. If I roared a few times, they might really start shooting at me.
I hesitated. If I didn’t explain myself properly, I didn’t think they would let me off. There was no way I could pass this off as sleepwalking… Only aberrants would believe that sort of lie! So I just played it straight with the whole truth about the evolution crystals.
When I was finished, Dàgē’s expression was very stormy. I had never seen him look at me or Shujun with that kind of expression before.
“So you monopolized them?” Ceng Yunqian raged as she accused me, “Do you know how much effort it took to defeat these aberrants? And now you’ve stolen all the benefits on the back of our efforts?”
“I…” I grounded my teeth, trying explain myself, “Anyway, you’d never have discovered these evolution crystals yourselves. Now that I’ve said it, at least you can start eating from now on—“
Dàgē growled, “Shuyu!”
I stopped. No one else spoke, but their expressions were all very unpleasant: some were furious, some were condemning, and some were even scornful.
I suddenly realized I didn’t have any place in this mercenary troop.
Even though I had predicted the coming of the apocalypse, stocked up on heaps of supplies, and even taught them how to discover their powers, even if this mercenary troop didn’t have me, they’d probably be able to survive quite well in Glacia.
Perhaps, they probably had a bigger stock of weapons and bullets there. After all, they had only had a few hours to get hold of weapons and bullets after flying over to Meisia, so their supplies certainly couldn’t compare to how much they had in Glacia when they were about to go on their mission.
As long as you had adequate weapons and supplies, you had nothing to worry about.
And special powers at this stage weren’t much more useful than a scalpel. With guns and knives in their hands, special powers were probably nothing more than an interesting toy in their eyes.
What’s more, this weak body of mine was a massive burden from the very beginning. If this troop had stayed in Glacia, they wouldn’t have had to babysit commoners who couldn’t fight like me, Shujun, Uncle, and Auntie. They were all mercenaries, and the whole mercenary troop should have had more people, as not everyone would have followed Jiang Shutian over here.
Impressions were hard to change. From now on, this squad would probably think of me as someone who was a burden, and a selfish bastard who also caused them to lose lots of useful comrades and bullets.
I lifted my hand and quickly tossed the evolution crystal into my mouth.
“Shuyu!” Dàgē finally showed his fury, roaring, “What are you doing! You weren’t so selfish in the past.”
My past self…
I felt like something shattered in my heart. In the past, I was indeed no way as selfish as I was now. The Guan Weijun at the beginning of the apocalypse was truly “naïve.” Nowadays, I couldn’t believe that I had survived those times back then. You could say I had been incredibly lucky.
But Dàgē wasn’t talking about “that past,” but the past Jiang Shuyu.
Judging from Jiang Shutian’s and Jiang Shujun’s personalities, Jiang Shuyu was likely a fine example of a young man. But I wasn’t that perfect Jiang Shuyu, but rather, the Guan Weijun who had survived ten years in the apocalypse. I weathered countless betrayals and, in the end, I was abandoned to the aberrants and ripped to shreds. I was a woman whose heart and body were rotten to the very core.
I stopped looking at them and strode past Jiang Shutian. Anyway, I ate it already, so what’s he going to do? Cut open his Dìdi’s belly and dig it out?
“Shuyu, where are you going?”
From behind me, Dàgē’s shout made my steps falter. I said flatly, “Home to sleep,” then continued to walk away.