Find out what the mermaid village is hiding, and on top of that stay alive for three days?
Seeing the red words float past with her very own eyes, Ruan Bai clearly understood that she had been fooled by the White Lotus system!
What reality show, what a fake!
She had read this sort of story before, but who would’ve thought she herself would be entered into an escape game as a player!
Holding back her anger, she manically called for the system in her head. “Hey? System? Are you there?”
After asking, all Ruan Bai felt was a piercing pain in her head.
Following right behind it, a string of crackling mechanical sounds sounded in her ear – –
【Zzt zzt… … Host… … Zzt… … Hello… …】Hearing the familiar sound, Ruan Bai’s eyes narrowed. “Quick, come out and stop dawdling, tell me what the hell is going on!”
Although she had faith in her own strength and felt that she could probably tackle some danger, she also had self-awareness.
This escape game was so different from her previous “CEO’s Overbearing Love” worlds, she could really die here!
As Ruan Bai was freaking out, her system seemed to have realise something as well.
【Oh? Wait a minute, it seems like something isn’t right.】
【Crack… … Sss… … Crack… …】
【Oh, I got it, seems like I made a mistake and crossed into the Escape Game system’s field.】 Hearing this, a flicker of hope lit up in Ruan Bai’s heart.
Does this mean she can leave?
After a second, the system continued to speak.
【Whatever, what’s done is done, just make do and get it over with.】
Ruan Bai: “... …”
No! Wake up!
How can I “just make do” in a situation like this!
As Ruan Bai’s vision was about to turn black, as if she was about to faint, the other players started to move.
A 30-year old man took the lead and stood up first, and looked at the other players with a serious expression. “I presume everyone has received their individual systems, and that you all know your tasks?”
He pointed at himself and spoke. “Ok, for the sake of finishing our tasks, let's all introduce ourselves. I’m Qin Yu, after clearing the game 3 times, this is my fourth time playing.”
“I am Wang Wen Wen, this… This is my first time playing this game.” A girl who looked around sixteen stood up.
It seemed like she had been crying, her two eyes were red and swollen, Ruan Bai recalled that she seemed to be part of the group going crazy earlier.
“My name is Li Huo, this is my second time in the game.” Compared to the girl, the man who spoke was obviously much calmer.
“This is also my second time in the game, I’m Wang Lu… …”
Listening to the other players talk, Ruan Bai could not help but raise her head and hopelessly ask: “System, there’s really no way for me to leave?”
Would she really have to be like the others and stay here for three days?
【Sorry host, you yourself confirmed your entrance into this world.】 The system mercilessly replied. 【Now that your identity has been recorded, there’s no way to change it.】 After finishing, the system added a clarifying statement. 【Of course, no matter if you’re in an escape game, after you clear the world the score will still be evaluated based on your performance. May the host please stay strong, and no matter what environment you’re in, you still have to work hard to become a warm, pitiful, innocent, pure white lotus!】
Ruan Bai: “... …”
She understood, even if she was in a game where she had to escape death, she still had to maintain this damn white lotus setting!
Thinking about this, without saying anything more, she pinched her arm, and her tears started to run down her face.
A mere normal white lotus, upon being faced with this sort of situation, how could she stay calm?
Ruan Bai wasn’t stupid, she knew that if she spoke to the other players like how she had spoken to the bespectacled guy earlier, she’d definitely be given the cold shoulder.
As she couldn’t go down that road, she could only settle for acting weak. Although the nonstop crying would probably incite some dislike for her, it would lower the defences of the surrounding players, and also attract pity from some people.
Since she was here, she may as well make the best of it. Now that she was in this escape game, then she should work hard to stay alive.
By now, the others had finished their self-introductions, and only Gu San and Ruan Bai were left.
Gu San’s introduction was extremely short. “I’m Gu San, this is my third time.”
Ruan Bai was sobbing and shaking as she spoke: “I’m Bai Ruan Ruan, where is this, can I go home… …”
Her eyes were cried red, and her face was incomparably pale, looking at her definitely gave people a pitiable feeling.
“This is an escape game, don’t worry, as long as you finish your tasks you can go home.” A nearby twenty-something lady took pity on Ruan Bai and spoke to her comfortingly. “Don’t cry, the difficulty level of a B grade world isn’t very high, just do your best and you can clear it.”
She seemed like she wanted to say more, but her two teammates didn’t seem very pleased and dragged her away, leaving her unable to say anything more.
Ruan Bai saw all this but pretended she didn’t, compliantly nodding her head.
After Ruan Bai finished her introduction, the passengers began to get off the bus and walk towards the mermaid village, preparing to take shelter in one of the houses.
In order to smoothly enter the village and find out the secret, they told the elderly villagers that they were city-dwellers coming for a holiday, and planned to stay in the village for three days.
Ruan Bai understood the concept of the more you say the more mistakes you make, so she followed behind the players at a distance that was not too close and yet was not too far. She cried silently the whole way, while simultaneously evaluating the terrain surrounding her.
The mermaid village was completely walled in by mountains, outside the village was all dense forest and slopes of mountains. The village wasn’t big, with somewhere between twenty to thirty houses. And the villagers seemed to all be elderly or young children, with the silhouettes of young people rarely being seen.
There was plenty of farmland, but much of it was left uncultivated, one glance would reveal long rows of weeds,
At the leftmost end of the village, there was a small stream trickling past.
And on a nearby mountain, there was a covered-up Taoist temple.
The temple looked run-down, and stood amidst the canopy of trees. It was cut off from the village solitarily, and one would easily miss it if they weren’t looking carefully.
Because they could provide money, there were quite a number of villagers willing to rent out rooms to the players. Without much pause, they began to choose their houses.
When it came to Ruan Bai’s team’s turn, Gu San didn’t say anything and looked at her. He tilted his chin at her, letting her pick.
Seeing that there was no one around them anymore, Ruan Bai quickly wiped away her tears, shaking her head. “You choose, whatever is alright for me.”
Gu San glanced at her, and smiled with an unknowable intrigue. “No longer pretending to cry?”
Ruan Bai was someone who already played the role of the white lotus in 4 different worlds, how could she be so easily exposed.
She puzzledly looked at him and blinked her eyes, pretending to not know anything.
Gu San saw and sneered. Not wanting to mince anymore words with her, he chose the house closest to them and walked in.
This house was home to an elderly villager and her eight year old grandson. When they entered, the boy ran over and curiously stared at them.
Ruan Bai wasn’t sure if she was being oversensitive, but she constantly felt that the surrounding villagers were evaluating them.
That ice-cold, unusual and probing gaze, was as though they were looking at objects. When she turned to look at them, they would look away one by one.
The elderly lady cleaned the guest room for Gu San and Ruan Bai, and cooked some dinner for them.
In this time, Gu San maintained his cold air.
Ruan Bai wasn’t sure what he was thinking and couldn’t dare take the initiative to talk to him.
As someone who was likely to be considered dead weight to a large number of the players, the only person she could rely on right now was Gu San. Although gathering points was important, staying alive was even more so. To not let Gu San be irritated by her, Ruan Bai decided to speak less and do less, and just follow Gu San’s instructions.
They quickly ate their dinner in the silence.
Waiting till the grandmother was collecting their bowls, the silent Gu San suddenly raised his head and asked: “Grandmother, what God does that temple by the village worship? The Three Pure Ones?”
Like Ruan Bai, he had also noticed the temple.
“Not the Three Pure Ones.” The grandmother shook her head and answered. “It’s for worshipping the Mermaid Mother.”
She smiled mysteriously at them and spoke with profound implications. “She is the protector of our village.”
Ruan Bai recalled what she saw outside. The village was completely surrounded by mountains, aside from the small stream, there weren’t any other bodies of water.
Did mermaids not actually live in the sea? How did this protector come about?
At this time the sky outside had already turned dark and night was gradually falling. One by one the lights in the surrounding houses turned off, submerging the village in darkness.
Ruan Bai and Gu San had been sitting on a bus the whole day, and for now they were quite tired. After hurriedly eating their dinners, and trying without avail to get useful information, they went into the room and got ready to sleep.
Although they were a single man and woman sharing a room, under these sorts of circumstances, there was not much need to guard against between one another.
The room had two beds, and they each took one. Ruan Bai yawned, and after cleaning up she went to bed.
Amidst the stillness, Ruan Bai finally shut her eyes and fell into a deep sleep.
In the middle of the night, Ruan Bai suddenly woke up with a start.
She couldn’t explain it, but somewhere between being half-awake and half-asleep, she could not stop feeling like someone was staring at her.
Along with that stare, there was the gentle drip-drop of water.
“Drip… … Drop drop… …”
The other party’s stare was too strong, leaving Ruan Bai on tenterhooks, confusedly opening her eyes – –
Staring back at her from the outside window was a woman’s face.