Illusions, Lies, Truth Volume 1: Human Doll Contract Part One
Original novel in Chinese by: 御 我 (Yu Wo)
Chapter 5: House Keeper Part 3—The True and False World—translated by raylight (proofread by Trespasserby; C/E edited by Amgine & lucathia)
It was rare for Yu Shu to step out of her own apartment. This time, she had a reason, though it wasn’t a very good one. Her neighbor was in the hospital, so she was going to pay him a visit—conveniently bringing along a packet of salt to sprinkle on his wounds.
House Keeper had followed her. In the journey between her apartment and the hospital, he had attracted the gaze of females from eight to eighty years old. All of them stared intently at him. There were also a few that had directly rushed over to give him their contact number, completely ignoring that he had a female by his side.
Even before reaching Jiang Ziya’s hospital room, Yu Shu decided that she would come over again. Next time, she would bring chili powder.
When she walked into the room, only Jiang Ziya was in. He was flipping through an original novel with much difficulty. His entire left arm was in a cast and bandaged, and he wasn’t able to move it a single inch. Even his right hand was wrapped firmly in bandages, and several gauzes were pasted on his face—which had been injured when he had fallen down.
The moment he saw Yu Shu, his expression immediately turned into one of alarm.
Yu Shu looked about the room and seemed puzzled as she asked, “Jiang Yu isn’t around?” It seemed like she could really sprinkle salt on his wounds then.
“My sister went shopping.” Jiang Ziya cowered as he said, “Ah… That… matter regarding House Keeper, I really didn’t do it on purpose…”
“I know. You did it deliberately,” Yu Shu sat at the side of the bed and coldly replied.
Jiang Ziya had no way of explaining himself.
House Keeper walked to the side of the table. A fruit basket meant for sick visits was placed there, so he picked up an apple and started peeling it. The peel was so thin that it was even transparent.
Yu Shu’s face was icy and promised a horrible death for Jiang Ziya with her sharp, piercing gaze. It didn’t take too long before she couldn’t hold in her curses.
“Your Xiao Xue is a little girl, and my House Keeper is a vampire. If you were to pick one of the two, you should let Xiao Xue become a lie and not my House Keeper! Do you want to add a vampire race to the world? Do you know that vampires are above humans in the food chain? If you want to be food, go ahead, but I don’t want to be sucked dry!”
Jiang Ziya felt wronged as he said, “The only thing I did was call his name. I didn’t know that he would level up just from that! I shouted Xiao Xue’s name numerous times already, but she didn’t level up. Who knew that House Keeper would level up from only being called once?!”
Yu Shu roared in a frenzy, “The way of calling is different!”
In what way was it different? Jiang Ziya felt that he really was wronged to no end. He didn’t know how this call had differed from the others. Can it be that shouting as you jumped off a building is more effective?
However, even if he had known that calling House Keeper would turn him into a lie, Jiang Ziya would probably still have done it. If he hadn’t, two lives would have been lost, and one of them was even his own. As the saying goes, better a live coward than a dead hero! Moreover, if anything were to happen to him, his sister would…
“You super-duper trouble magnet! Even disregarding the fact that you have the truth-seeing eye, you even have the calling ability as well… No wonder your family even has a ‘truth’ already. You’re 200% part of the reason!”
Jiang Ziya froze. So besides my eye, even my mouth is a problem?
“Hold on, the ‘truth’ in your family is…?” Yu Shu paused, and then shook her head. She continued to roar in rage, “Anyway, I’m warning you, don’t ever come to my place again. Moreover, don’t look at House Keeper with that eye of yours. And most importantly, absolutely never call his name! Even if you’re about to die from a thousand cuts, you’re absolutely forbidden from calling his name. You hear that!”
Can’t go over to Yu Shu’s place? Jiang Ziya opened his mouth wide at that. He was originally thinking of clinging onto Yu Shu’s thighs and begging her to teach him.
“I got it.” Since she had already said so much, Jiang Ziya could only agree to it.
Yu Shu snatched the apple that House Keeper had peeled, with absolutely no intentions of giving it to the patient. Under Jiang Ziya’s aggrieved gaze, she finished the whole apple before she then said with irritation, “You’re responsible for taking out the trash, got it?”
“Huh?”Jiang Ziya froze, and asked in confusion, “What trash?”
Yu Shu emphasized, “After you get out of the hospital, you’re responsible for taking out the trash and waiting for the garbage truck. You hear me?”
The time waiting for the garbage truck… Jiang Ziya nodded his head vigorously.
“Then, that’s that.”
Yu Shu threw the apple core onto Jiang Ziya, brushed off her butt, and got up to leave.
Lu Yang walked in, and just happened to brush past Yu Shu and House Keeper. He stared at the two, a little shocked. However, the other party seemed to have no intentions of stopping to say hello to him, so he could only walk to the side of the bed, rubbing his nose.
Both of Lu Yang’s wrists were still wrapped in heavy bandages. However, compared to the heavily injured Jiang Ziya who could still only lie in bed even now, he was already able to run around freely since a while ago. He helped Jiang Ziya flip the page of the book in passing, and then asked in doubt, “Who are those two people who just left?”
“The neighbors living across from me.”
“Oh, that man sure is handsome. His looks can compete with mine!”
“… I should have let you hang there for another twenty-four hours.”
Once she reached home, Yu Shu felt extremely relieved. It was good to be home. If she could, she would really want to rot at home for the rest of her life.
She suddenly frowned, and turned to ask, “Jiang Jiang is the ‘truth’ in Jiang Ziya’s family, right?”
House Keeper diligently nodded and answered, “Indeed.”
“Damn it!” Yu Shu cursed with irritation stemming from the bottom of her heart as she said, “Once I walk out of the apartment, I almost can’t remember even the fact that Jiang Jiang is a ‘truth!’”
To think that I can even forget something that’s just next door! Yu Shu couldn’t help but feel panic rising in her heart.
Just how much truth is left in this world?
Even if she avoided stepping out of her apartment as much as she could and closed herself in this barrier dimension, just how much of the world she remembered was true? Just how did the original world look—
“Forget it, why do I want to remember it so clearly for? I’m not going to think about it anymore—not anymore! Thinking about it is of no use anyways! Even if I remember a lot, in the end, one still can’t tell the difference between what’s true and what’s false! Life still goes on as usual, and there are still manuscripts to rush!”
Yu Shu rolled all over the apartment, screaming, kicking, and clutching her hair.
“Alright, you may drink an additional cup of coffee today.” House Keeper said helplessly, “I will go and brew it right away.”
She fell silent.
“To tell the truth, it is very hard for me to understand what you are all thinking.”
Yu Shu held her coffee and reclined on the sofa lazily. Though she would rather die than turn House Keeper into a lie, she still had to admit that after House Keeper had turned into one, he had become better at understanding others and was more fun to chat with.
“House Keeper, how does it feel to know that you are a figment of someone’s imagination and not a real existence?”
“Mistress, I am merely a lie, and am not real enough to suspect my own existence.”
Hearing such an answer, Yu Shu felt a strong twitch in her heart. She looked at House Keeper who seemed to always be smiling, and let out a long breath.
“I am now starting to understand what part of a ‘lie’ is more real than an ‘illusion.’ To be able to say something like that, I am now suspecting that you are lying to me! Do you truly not understand the concept of ‘self?’”
“Indeed, I do not understand.” Even when he was being accused of lying, House Keeper still kept his smile on as he replied.
However, Yu Shu didn’t believe a word of it. She gave a cold snort, and said as though she was vowing, “No matter what, I will absolutely never let you come true. Don’t even dream of taking back your name, ‘House Keeper!’”
“As you wish, my mistress.” House Keeper only continued to smile.