Dominion’s End Volume 1: Raining Stars at World’s End
Original novel in Chinese by: 御 我 (Yu Wo)
Chapter 9: Joining the Mercenary Troop—translated by Elkin
After lunch, I strolled over to the living room and sat down. Everyone watched me curiously and Ceng Yunqian couldn’t resist commenting, “How strange. You’re not going back to your room to be depressed and all today?”
You’re the one making me really depressed now!
Cain stroked his chin, asking, “So he’s over his rebellious stage now?”
Like hell I’m going through a rebellious stage at the age of thirty-five!
“All right, don’t bully the boy.” Zheng Xing said unhappily, “What are you guys, kids?”
Dàgē looked me up and down and asked with concern, “You’re not tired anymore?”
I nodded. I’d already rested for three days and I’d long gotten over my exhaustion. If not for the fact that Dàgē insisted on keeping me indoors, I’d have gone out hunting yesterday. Time was very precious in the apocalyptic world. We can’t afford to waste a single second!
“Then, let’s go to the police station in the afternoon–”
I immediately cut in, blurting out in one breath, “You need to share the evolution crystals with Junjun, Uncle, and Auntie. Otherwise, I’d rather go hunting aberrants by myself!”
With that, I sat back to watch their responses. This was the lowest I was willing to go. If they weren’t willing to share, then we would each fight for our own portions, and they could forget about me going hunting with them!
Who’ll agree and who’ll object? I was betting that Cain would be in the objection camp. And anyhow, I was already extremely small-minded, so there was no way I could forgive him so quickly.
“So, what do you have to offer in exchange for their three portions of crystals?”
I can’t believe it, it’s Dàgē! I stared at him in disbelief. Like, what the hell?
Dàgē was sitting on the couch, his chin tilted back a little and his lips curved in a faint smile. His long legs were crossed and his interlaced fingers were resting on his knee. If someone took a picture of this, you would have a magazine cover right there, no photo editing needed.
But the feeling I got was that I wasn’t facing Dàgē, but instead a sly fox! Even if this fox was extremely handsome, it wasn’t enough to shake off the feeling of impending doom, like I was not only being tricked into selling myself, but I’d even have to count the cash from my sale.
Jiang Shutian chuckled lightly and remarked, “If you want cooperation, then we must first agree on a price. This is the fundamental rule of being a mercenary, and I can’t make an exception, not even for my dìdì.”
Zheng Xing shook his head, saying ,”Boss, stop teasing your little bro. He’s only eighteen. You’re being way too hard on him if you’re wanting him to negotiate using the merc laws.”
Even as a thirty-five year old I’m finding it difficult!
Everyone grinned from the sidelines, watching me put on a show. Dammit! Dàgē, just whose Dàgē are you?
“What about you guys?”
I didn’t want to negotiate with Dàgē. There wasn’t any point in trying with him. I might as well just give up in total defeat. Using his handsome looks is a really sly move… Wait, what am I thinking about? Dàgē hasn’t used his handsome looks. How’d I even arrive at that conclusion?
Xiao Sha said curtly, “Boss is in charge of negotiating prices.”
The others nodded their agreement, watching this farce play out with leisurely expressions.
Anger flared up in me. I blinked, secretly creating a thin film of ice in my eyes. They immediately smarted from the pain. Although I couldn’t see myself, I was pretty sure my eyes had reddened. The film of ice also instantly melted, and though it didn’t amount to much water, it was just enough to make my eyes fill up with tears without spilling over.
After pretending to hold back my tears with all my might, I glared accusingly at Dàgē. There’s no way this wouldn’t work on him!
“Awww, he’s gonna cry now,” Lily said, feeling sorry for me. “Boss, that’s enough already.”
Zheng Xing gave Dàgē a hard look and sighed.
“I owe him one,” Xiao Sha said grudgingly. “We can share some crystals with him.”
Ceng Yunqian stared at me with sparkling eyes, complaining, “Boss, you’re so lucky. Why did my mom never give birth to such an adorable pair of siblings for me?”
These handsome looks really were something. Jiang Shuyu was able to sway the hearts of people of all ages and genders, even of those who were into women. He didn’t even need evolution crystals to be invincible!
But the most critical person, Dàgē, just looked at me with a smile that was not quite a smile… Excuse me, Dàgē, shouldn’t you be the first one to feel bad about this? Don’t make an expression like you’ve realized something… Don’t tell me that the Jiang Shuyu of the past also acted like a kicked puppy a lot?
I really needed to ask Shujun later about what kind of person Jiang Shuyu was in the past… And while I was at it, ask about what kind of person Dàgē was as well. I suddenly felt like I didn’t know him at all.
“Dàgē’s teasing Èrgē again.” Shujun entered the living room, and the moment she saw my eyes brimming with tears, she immediately took my side. “Be careful, or he’ll start ignoring you again. I’m not going to help you this time, Dàgē.”
Sob sob, Shujun, you’re the best! I don’t want to lust after Dàgē anymore. It’s best to marry Mèimei after all.
“It’s not me this time,” Dàgē said with amusement. “It’s your Èrgē who’s pretending to be sad. And he’s doing a pretty good job of it. Look at him, that expression.”
“And it’s definitely you who started it first, Dàgē. Since when was it ever Èrgē who started anything?” Shujun pouted, speaking unhappily, “You’ve always liked teasing Èrgē. I don’t know how many times you’ve made him cry when we were little.”
Why is everyone grinning at me? I wasn’t the one who was teased to tears… but this wasn’t very persuasive at all, coming from someone whose eyes were brimming with tears. I blinked away my tears; otherwise, I would be proving Shujun’s words to be true.
Cain said admiringly, “As expected of Boss. Only you could tease such a cute little bro from a young age!”
Shut up! You think I won’t hold yet another grudge against you?
“Dàgē!” Shujun’s expression darkened and she warned him in a low voice, “If you tease Èrgē again, your food will taste especially bad in the future!”
Dàgē said helplessly, “I haven’t teased him in a long time. Can’t I tease him just a little?”
“No!” Shujun pouted. “No teasing! Èrgē’s been through too much lately. If you tease him again, you’ll only get peanuts and plain rice.”
Dàgē propped up his chin with one hand, looking at Mèimei helplessly.
So Mèimei is Dàgē’s weak spot, even more effective than Dìdì! I was enlightened. In the future, I’m marrying Mèimei, no doubts about it!
Dàgē took back his sly, fox-like face, and under Mèimei’s supervision, started to explain to me seriously.
“Because there are too few of us, Uncle and Auntie need to start learning to guard the base. So, the two of them can get one portion of crystals. I’m the leader, so I can get two portions. The others all saw your ability a few days ago and are willing to let you join. They’ll also assign two portions to you.”
My eyes lit up. Dàgē’s two portions could be used to make up for Uncle and Auntie’s portion, and my two portions could be shared with Shujun, so it was just perfect.
…Wait, so this means Dàgē was really teasing me just now? I was shocked.
“Going forward, we still need to go further afield to look for supplies and try to find out if there are other survivors. After a while, people will start establishing colonies, and at that time, we will need to assess whether or not to head over or to continue securing our base. All of this requires manpower. Shuyu, this isn’t a world where you can survive just by yourself.”
I nodded. No matter how strong you are, what’s the point of living if you’re surrounded only by aberrants?
“Okay,” I replied with a nod, “I can even check how everyone’s powers are developing and maybe give some pointers.”
The moment I said this, everyone’s eyes shone. They couldn’t sit still anymore and started bombarding me with questions.
“I’ve been wanting to ask since a few days ago. Xiao Yu, your powers are really strong! How on earth do you practice in order to use them like that?”
“I’ve eaten a lot of crystals and my physical abilities have gone up, but I really don’t know how to train my powers.”
“I’ll pay you crystals as the tuition fee—please be my tutor!”
I pondered for a moment, then replied, “I can’t teach so many of you. Split yourselves into two groups. Junjun and I will take charge of one group each.”
I had already told Shujun how to train her powers, and she had also taught Uncle and Auntie. So there was no problem with her teaching. Besides, this way, the mercenaries would owe her a favor, and we were going to call in that favor for sure in the future!
“I’ll join Junjun’s group!” Cain immediately shouted.
Fuck off! I growled, “Only Yunqian and Lily can join Junjun’s group!”
“Yunqian is more dangerous than me—she likes women!” Cain declared triumphantly.
Dammit, I totally forgot. I hastily corrected myself, “Only Lily and Xiao Sha can join Junjun’s group!”
Cain said incredulously, “Wow! So you know Xiao Sha is into guys?”
Shit! What’s with these people?
“Who did you say was into guys?!” Xiao Sha snarled.
“You!” Cain said in a matter-of-fact tone of voice, “Didn’t you date a guy before? The others didn’t notice, but I saw!”
“That was just once!” Xiao Sha snapped hatefully, “He was really cute, so much so he wasn’t any different from a girl. And anyway, we broke up not even a month in!”
“It counts, even if you’ve broken up!” Cain turned to speak to Jiang Shutian, “Boss, watch out and keep a close eye on your little bro. With Shuyu’s looks, who knows? Maybe Xiao Sha’s already fallen for him.”
Honestly, talking about good looks like I’ve grown a second head or something, when clearly I’m jaw-droppingly good looking, handsome as hell, and adored by everyone— having praised myself to this extent, I suddenly felt a little embarrassed.
Xiao Sha shot up from where he was sitting, his face flushed red and veins popping at his neck, and he yelled, “Cain, take it outside and let’s see who’s better!”
Cain shrugged, replying casually, “Are you sure you want to fight me head on?”
Xiao Sha’s face twisted even more at that. I remembered not long ago hearing about how he was better at stealth, while Cain could be a match for Dàgē when he was armed. I’ll never believe that Cain can defeat Dàgē. That simply won’t happen! Dàgē is just too humble, definitely!
“Watch out that you don’t get shot while you’re sleeping!” Although Xiao Sha sat himself back down, the ferocity in his eyes had grown even more.
Cain pretended to be scared and exclaimed shyly, “Oh my, what are you planning to do in the dark depths of the night? You just said you only liked the cute ones?”
Xiao Sha hurled a chopstick at him, and Cain dodged it easily while laughing heartily.
“Stop messing around, the two of you!” Zheng Xing said somewhat angrily, “There are kids here too, so what are you two running your mouths for?! Boss, say something too. Don’t let them set a bad example for Shuyu and Shujun.”
Dàgē glanced at Shujun and said, “Shujun, help Auntie with cleaning up the table. Don’t stay here and listen.”
Shujun pouted her defiance in the most adorable way, but she still obediently headed over to help Auntie carry the bowls and chopsticks to the kitchen.
Then, Dàgē looked at me for a moment and chuckled lightly, “Shuyu’s already eighteen, so there’s nothing he can’t listen to. If he likes, he can even get together with Xiao Sha.”
Everyone immediately spat out whatever food, coke, tea, or beer in their mouths.
…If only I never confessed my sexual ambiguity to Dàgē last night.
Dàgē rested both hands on the table and said with immense discontent, “You think my sister and Aunt don’t have enough to do? Everyone, clean up your own mess!”
Fortunately, I hadn’t spat out anything and looked on as everyone reluctantly wiped down the table and chairs. Then, I gleefully returned to my room to prepare for the expedition to the police station. Boy did that feel good.
But strictly speaking, my so-called preparation just involved picking up my two ice weapons and my large backpack only. Others might need to bring water as well, but with my ice powers, all I had to do was melt the ice to drink.
When I headed back down to the living room, I was the first person to arrive.
I rested the ice staff on the table. By now, the shaft was already five centimeters in diameter, and I wouldn’t be able to hold it if it got any thicker. I no longer had to layer on any more ice. Instead, I was seriously considering whether or not to dismantle the blade from a knife, to use as the base for an added spearhead. This way, not only could I whack my enemies, I could stab them too.
All right, let’s try it when I’m back.
When I looked up, everyone had already arrived, and their eyes were fixed on the ice weapon lying on the table. The lust in their eyes was like they were eyeing a hot, naked woman on the table.
“Shuyu,” Dàgē asked, “Is it very difficult to make weapons like that? Can you make a few more?”
Hearing that, I immediately got Dàgē’s meaning. After looking around at everyone, I replied, “Yunqian-jiě, try touching it. Just use one finger to poke at it.”
Yunqian rejoiced and quickly prodded it with one finger. But she immediately gave a cry and yanked back her hand.
“Xiao Yu, you hate me this much?” Yunqian showed her finger to everyone, which was a bit red. Just that moment of contact was enough to injure her. She said dejectedly, “I just yelled at you a few times. You don’t have to take it to heart, you know?”
“It’s not that!” I immediately flushed and retorted, “It’s because your water powers make you more resistant to ice powers than anyone else, so that’s why I let you touch it.”
I’m really not being vengeful, or I would’ve asked Cain to touch it!
Even so, Yunqian looked at me dolefully, like she didn’t believe me at all. Suddenly, Dàgē grabbed the ice stave with one hand.
“Dàgē, let go!” I yelled, and immediately snatched the ice stave from his hand.
Dàgē opened his hand, revealing that everything up to his wrist had turned purple-blue. It was quite obviously frost-bite, and a much more serious case than Yunqian’s injury at that.
I was exasperated. I know that Dàgē did it to prove what I said, but he didn’t have to use his whole hand and refuse to let go!
“Dàgē, like this, how’re you supposed to go to the police station later?”
Dàgē smiled, and his palm shone with a gentle light. The purple-blueness receded gradually, until there wasn’t even a single trace left.
I sighed in admiration. “Dàgē, your healing powers have become stronger.”
“I’m better at healing myself than others,” Dàgē explained, then added after a moment, “I have pretty good regenerative skills, so even if I left an injury like that, it’d be more or less recovered by the evening.”
As expected of Dàgē! Surely, it’s just a matter of time before he becomes immortal?
Thinking back, Xiao Qi, who also had healing powers, was nowhere as powerful, and because of this, her healing abilities were about as useless as my enhanced vision. But at least I was his girlfriend in name, whereas she was at best his first mistress, so she had been in an even more pitiful situation than I was.
Later, I stopped hating her. We’d even help each other pretty often, and she would heal my small injuries. And towards the end, she became even more reliant on me than on him. He might have even forgotten that he had taken in such a woman so long ago. After all, Xiao Qi’s looks were at most average, and although she was a few years younger than me, she couldn’t compare to those young girls in their teens or twenties.
Lily asked, “So, we can’t use your ice weapons?”
“Not exactly.” I responded honestly, “If you use your energy to protect your hands, you can pick it up. But right now, your powers are nowhere as good as mine. You’d end up using all your energy in fending off the chill from the weapons, which is a bit pointless. But by the time your powers are on the same level as mine, you can create your own weapons with your powers, so you won’t need my ice weapons either.”
Looks of realization dawned on everyone’s faces. Here, Dàgē unhesitatingly snatched away the ice stave again. Only, this time, he didn’t get frostbite. A layer of gentle light protected his hand and warded off the chill from the ice stave.
“Xiao Yu, make me one?” Dàgē said blandly, “I feel like I don’t need much power to hold off the cold.”
I really have to hand it to you. Dàgē, do you have to be so godly in using your healing powers?
“Sure,” I agreed obediently, but quickly added, “but this will take some time. It isn’t normal ice. It’s actually been tempered. And one round of tempering doesn’t even create a 0.1 centimeter thick layer of tempered ice.”
Dàgē nodded. “No rush.”
Although he had said no rush, in my mind, I was already starting to think about what weapon best suited Dàgē. Knives were definitely a no go. Just imagine someone as mighty as Dàgē, who could inspire awe in all with just one roar, pulling out a short dagger—it would look absolutely ridiculous! Not to mention, I’d feel extremely bad for those people who were awestricken by Dàgē and travelled all the way to become his subordinates just to see that.
A longsword like the Ice Emperor’s seemed just right, but I didn’t have anything suitable to work with as a base. If I had to create a solid longsword out of the air, by the time I had finished, Dàgē might have already evolved to the point where one punch was enough to sink an entire continent, and things like weapons would just become mere ornaments.
Who’s laughing? I looked up in suspicion, only to see the awe-inspiring man looking at me with mirth dancing in his eyes. What? I haven’t done anything?
“You’re daydreaming again.” Dàgē shook his head, remarking with equal parts amusement and despair, “I said we were setting off, and everyone’s gone out, but you’re still standing here. And you even shook your head or made a face every so often. I really have no idea what’s going on in that head of yours.”
I looked toward the door to see everyone laughing so hard, they couldn’t even stand straight and had to lean against the door frame.
“I’ll change this habit in the future!” I said grouchily, not wanting to make more of a fool out of myself.
“Don’t!” Yunqian shrilled, “We’ve been fighting aberrants day in, day out, and it’s getting super boring. Entertainment like you is hard to come by, you know?”
Keep talking, yeah? Then you’ll be Cain’s replacement as my scapegoat for everything!
Having made a fool of myself, I tightened my expression to stop others from laughing at me and followed everyone to the car parked at the back of the house.
Originally, I’d thought that we’d need to split into a few vehicles, but in the end, everyone sat together in a minibus. I didn’t know where they had gotten their hands on this vehicle, but it was pretty handy and could seat twenty people. At the same time, it wasn’t as massive as those tour buses that were hard to maneuver.
Being on the first mission with everyone, I really was a little nervous, especially given how tense our previous relationship was. I was a little worried I wouldn’t fit in.
Like now. The others were just casually chatting to each other on the minibus. Most of them were talking about interesting stories the merc troop had come across in the past, but I didn’t know a thing about those, so there was no way I could chip in as well.
“Shuyu,” Lily suddenly called out to me.
“Eh?” I immediately responded, to avoid being thought as spacing out again.
She gave me a big wink and said flirtatiously, “You’ve dated before, right? Tell us a little bit about your love life.”
Love life? The tragic love story of my previous life was indeed an epic tale, but it wasn’t something I could talk about with them. As for Jiang Shuyu’s love life…
“I don’t remember.” I was very troubled by this. I really hoped I wouldn’t have some kind of former girlfriend popping out somewhere down the line.
“No, he’s never dated.” Dàgē rescued me. “There were a lot of things he had to take care of at home, especially once I set up the merc troop. Uncle and Auntie weren’t home much either. Although we still had Lin-bó and some cleaners who would come in periodically, Shujun was very attached to her Èrgē since she was little, so the moment classes ended, she had to be able to see Shuyu. It was only recently, now that Shujun’s grown up a little, that Shuyu has had a little time for himself. But then, he had to prep for uni entrance exams, so he didn’t have time to think about things like that.”
Once he’d gotten into university, he was immediately smacked on the head by a tile and spent over a month in a coma. Then came the apocalypse.
Everyone looked at me, their eyes saying, “Rest in peace.” Goddammit, I’m still alive, okay?!
With Jiang Shuyu’s looks, it was guaranteed that he’d get a date even in these apocalyptic days. If I really wanted a girlfriend, it wouldn’t be hard to have a love life that’s as exciting as never ending fireworks!
Dàgē patted me on my back, comforting me, “Don’t worry. Once the time is right, we should start looking around. You’ll definitely find someone.”
Don’t talk about these expeditions like they’re just for helping me look for a partner, Dàgē!
“Why the hell are we still talking about love in the apocalypse?!”
Not to mention, my previous love life was such a mess. I had really had enough of it and wasn’t the slightest bit interested in this kind of stuff!
Cain snickered as he said, “Precisely because it’s the apocalypse. Aside from lovey dovey things, what else is there to do?”
That was true. That was why the apocalypse was full of all kinds of perverts. Regardless of whether the women, pretty boys, or even twelve or thirteen year olds were interested or not, some folks would still force themselves onto them for some physical loving.
I scowled. “It best be consensual. Don’t force yourself on others!”
“Hah,” Cain snorted, then said proudly, “Take a look around you. Which one of us would ever even need to come on hard to get laid?”
I reflexively looked around. This merc troop’s looks really were quite good.
Cain. What more needed to be said about him? He was the stereotypical blond haired, blue-eyed handsome foreigner, with teeth so white he could do ads for toothpaste.
Lily was probably a foreigner as well, or a mix. Although her pronunciation was no different from the locals, that copper skin and deep features singled her out. Even her body didn’t look anything like the locals. Her body was curvaceous, with a big bust, narrow waist, and a round, firm bottom. That S-shaped figure of hers was really quite something!
Ceng Yunqian had a prettier face than Lily, especially those refined eyes and eyebrows. Even though she couldn’t be called pale, given her work as a mercenary, the healthy skin tone couldn’t hide her elegant features. Her eyes in particular were beautiful, with large, dark irises contrasting sharply against her eye whites and accented with long and lush lashes. It was just a pity that she wasn’t as well endowed, with barely any curves to speak of. I mean, her biceps were almost bigger than her chest.
Xiao Sha looked the youngest. I suspected he wasn’t older than twenty-five. His expression was always cold and bland, with single-lidded, narrow eyes and thin lips. Although he couldn’t be regarded as handsome or pretty, he was at least very cool looking.
Zheng Xing was the oldest out of everyone and was probably in his forties. He wasn’t as clean shaven as Cain, but even so, he didn’t look bad. He just looked like a mature man.
Then there was Dàgē. If I looked too closely or started describing too much, I was worried I’d get so turned on, I’d start having a nose bleed and be forever humiliated for the rest of my life!
After taking a good, hard look at all of them and thinking about it, I understood why they looked good. They were all mercenaries, so they had pretty good figures after undergoing training. A good figure immediately gave them at least an eight out of ten, so there was no way they’d look bad.
Yunqian snapped at Cain, “How can you be so proud of your looks with Boss and Shuyu next to you? Go look in the mirror later, idiot. And try again in your next life when you’re part of the Jiang family!”
Cain immediately protested, “I’m just a different type from Boss! I don’t look any worse than he does. As for Shuyu…”
He looked at me and trailed off. Everyone also turned to stare at my face silently.
I could totally understand their reactions. I also frequently made different poses and expressions in front of the mirror in silence.
“…He’s just a kid!” Cain said through gnashed teeth.
“Although Cain’s just comforting himself, Shuyu really is still quite young.” Yunqian chuckled, “Still need to wait.”
Wait for what? I thought you’re into women? Although my soul was a woman’s, my body definitely wasn’t.
“Boss, you best take good care of Shuyu and Shujun.” Even Zheng Xing, who was driving and hadn’t even made a peep the entire way, spoke up in a worried tone of voice, “It’s the apocalypse now, and there aren’t any more laws. His and Shujun’s looks will probably bring trouble.”
Dàgē just smiled and said without a care in the world, “Xiao Yu will definitely stand up for himself, and he’s strong enough to do so. As for Shujun…” Here, he gave a cold laugh, and said boastfully, “With me and Xiao Yu around, no one can even dream of harming so much as a hair on Shujun!”
That’s right! If anyone dares to even touch Shujun, I’ll slice them into a thousand pieces and won’t let them know the peace of death!
Everyone shivered collectively. “You really are brothers. Those expressions of yours are identical in how scary they are.”
What do you mean, “identical”? I didn’t look that much like Dàgē, but rather, my looks were closer to Shujun’s. When I’d looked at the full family portrait earlier, I saw that me and Shujun looked like our mother, with only our noses like our father’s, while Dàgē was almost cast out of the same mould as our father.
“We’re almost there,” Zheng Xing cut through the laughter and chatter calmly. “Prepare to sortie.”
With that, everyone sobered up and burst into a flurry of action. They checked what they were bringing, inspected their guns, and so on. Their movements were extremely quick and looked very professional.
I too picked up the two sections of my ice staff and started freezing them into one long staff. In the past, I would only go through these motions right before combat, because a long staff was not suited to covert action. But this time, it was a team mission, and the target was to break into the police station that was full of aberrants. I couldn’t imagine this mission being stealthy in the slightest, so it was best to prepare my staff and see where things went.
Watching everyone’s busy hands, I suddenly thought of something important.
“Hey, guys, you best start being less reliant on guns. In two years’ time, guns will be useless, and powers will be the most important!”
Everyone was immediately distracted by what I said, but Dàgē didn’t seem surprised and nodded as he spoke, “Guns and ammo will run out.”
“Not just that. As the aberrants get hit by more and more bullets, they will start evolving to prevent being hurt by bullets. By the second year, the smaller caliber guns will be useless, and in the third year, guns are really only used to bully the weak and needy. Well, the high caliber guns might still be of some use.”
At my words, everyone’s expressions clouded over.
I elaborated further, “If you infuse your energy onto the bullets, guns aren’t entirely useless. But as the apocalypse progresses, guns will become harder and harder to find. Good weapons all need go through a long period of tempering. So for things like bullets that are expendable, it’s a waste of energy to spend too much time tempering them, but if you don’t temper them enough, they won’t penetrate the aberrants’ shells. At most, you can use them as an auxiliary weapon, but if you use it as your primary weapon, it won’t be good enough no matter how much or little energy you use.”
I frowned. “Then again, I seem to remember hearing about people with certain abilities who would specialize in forging sniping bullets. They’d be able to kill aberrants in one shot and didn’t require any gunpowder. But as for the specifics on how it’s done, I don’t know.”
Was it a special power or just the use of a normal power? For the previous life me, this kind of question was far too deep and untouchable. Although “he” counted as an elite ability user too, he was so secretive that no one could ever dream of knowing the bounds of his ability.
“Shuyu’s prophetic dreams are really amazing,” Lily said in disbelief, “Aren’t your dreams too detailed? How’d you even know stuff like that?”
Prophetic dreams? I guessed this was how Dàgē had described it to everyone else.
I thought for a moment. If I didn’t tell them certain facts, it would be very difficult to explain why I knew so many things. Or perhaps they wouldn’t ask in deference to Dàgē, but it would be very difficult for them not to harbor suspicions deep down inside. If these suspicions accumulated over time, it wouldn’t be good for anyone. There was no telling if there was someone else like me who would always think negatively.
I decided to give a quick summary of things. “That’s because I dreamed a dream that was ten years long. In the dream, I wasn’t Jiang Shuyu, but a very ordinary woman. At the beginning of the apocalypse, she just ran around trying to survive, so whatever I say about the first few years of the apocalypse might not be too accurate. I also don’t know much about the deeper things going on in the background. I just know the general developments in the world over the first ten years of the apocalypse.”
Contrary to expectations, everyone became very excited on hearing this.
“That’s more than enough!” Xiao Sha made a rare show of expression, the corner of his lips lifting a fraction in what should be a smile. “Just knowing about the evolution crystals was enough. I never thought I could become this quick, and even power-wise I’m twice as strong as before.”
When I heard that, I actually became a little worried. Going by how many evolution crystals they had had, doubling one’s strength wasn’t actually much. When humanity first started eating crystals, the effects were extremely impressive, particularly with respect to power. Even for ordinary ability users, as long as they still had power stored inside their bodies, their strength would swell up to multiples of their original levels. It seemed everyone was still too reliant on guns these days and were still unfamiliar with the use of their powers.
Yunqian gave an exaggerated laugh and yelled, “Aw yeah, we don’t have to worry about anything for ten years!”
The moment I heard that, I immediately dashed cold water over that notion. I can’t let them let their guards down!
“You can’t! Life will become harder and harder in the days to come. We’ve been very lucky recently and had things real easy, but the apocalypse isn’t a joke! Aberrants will grow stronger at a frightening pace. If we don’t eat enough evolution crystals and train our powers, they might even overtake us!”
Everyone stared fixedly at me at that. But what? What’s with the expression in everyone’s eyes?
The door was suddenly pulled open and just as I raised my staff to guard position, I saw Zheng Xing poke his head in from outside. Without knowing it, the minibus had already stopped.
So we’ve arrived?
Zheng Xing gave a faint smile as he said, “I told you Shuyu’s a good boy. Although he’s made some mistakes in the past and made a fuss of things, he’s still a good kid. He’ll get things sooner or later. I mean, look at him now. Hasn’t he started to think about the team?”
“Kids at their rebellious stage are all like that,” Yunqian said like it was the most natural thing in the world, “When I was his age, I’d even beat up my dad over little things! Boss, you’re lucky your dìdì hasn’t punched you a few times.”
Like hell, I still want to live! Punching Dàgē is a stupid thing to do and should never be done! At most, I’d secretly fantasize about tying him up for some S&M— who asked him to pour away my coffee?
Dàgē stood up and ruffled my hair, saying, “If you want to punch me, you’ll have to do it using your own strength. Even if I was in the wrong, I won’t go easy on you.”
“Dàgē, if you keep rubbing my head, I really will want to punch you!” After a glance at my reflection in the window, I couldn’t resist snapping savagely at him when I saw my hair exploding into a bird’s nest again.
Dàgē burst into hearty laughter and actually reached out to ruffle my hair again. I never imagined Dàgē would do this intentionally, and the bird’s nest exploded into further messiness.
…Someday, I’ll tie up Dàgē for some S&M!