Chapter 157 – The Corridor of Time (XIII)
Editor: Kitty & Humu
Duan Li did not reveal too much to little Ah Lan. He just told the child, told little Ah Lan, that he was asked for help by a poor man in the group. However, Duan Li did not say who the poor man was and what kind of help he needed. Duan Li did not explain. When Little Ah Lan asked him again, Duan Li just gave a gentle smile.
“It’s time for you to go home. It’s getting dark.” Duan Li observed the change in time outside from the light through the crack of the sundry room’s door. When the sky outside gradually became dark, Duan Li urged Ah Lan to go home.
Ah Lan frowned and whispered, “I don’t want to go home.”
“Your parents will worry about you.” Duan Li gently coaxed him and rubbed little Ah Lan’s head with his hand. He even reached over and kissed him gently on his forehead. However, Ah Lan was still very unhappy. He stretched out his short claws to grab Duan Li’s clothes and looked at Duan Li with pitiful and expectant eyes.
“Big brother, I’m going to sleep with you tonight.”
Duan Li seemed to be a little sad while he was rubbing little Ah Lan’s head, but he seriously shook his head: “No, you can’t stay here. You have to leave. You have to go home.”
“I don’t want to go home…… My mom and dad are always quarrelling. Anyway, they won’t care about me…” Ah Lan also showed his skill at acting cute. With his bright eyes, he rolled into Duan Li’s arms. “Big brother, big brother, I wanna sleep with you. I want to sleep with you.”
Duan Li seemed to want to frighten him. He gloomily picked up little Ah Lan and pressed him in his arms. He lowered his head and moved face-to-face with Ah Lan. He put his hand on Ah Lan’s stomach. Ah Lan was still very small, and his body was very small. He was also soft to touch, and his skin felt very comfortable.
Duan Li said in a gloomy manner: “Does Ah Lan really know what it means to sleep with me?”
To his surprise, little Ah Lan was not afraid at all. He stretched out his lotus root-like little arm and hugged Duan Li’s neck. Then he inched closer to Duan Li’s lips and gave him a kiss like what a dragonfly would give someone on Duan Li’s lips. He chuckled and said, “Ah, yes, once I’ve slept with my big brother, I’ll be my big brother’s man.”
Duan Li was stunned for a moment. He stared at the little brat in his arms for a long time. After a while, he could not help holding onto the child tightly. He even rubbed his face into the child’s embrace.
“This is what you said…” Duan Li talked to himself in a voice that almost only he could hear. He did not even know that his voice was choked. “This is what you said. You can’t go back on it.”
But Luo Jian’s hearing was very good. Even if he shrank in a corner, he still could not help raising his head when he heard Duan Li muttering to himself. He could not help but raise his head and look at Duan Li carefully. Although he was not disfigured, his personality was not distorted, and he is very gentle and mild, he seemed to be burdened by heavy things which were much heavier than what a child in his teens would carry.
After that, Duan Li still sent out the child that was in his embrace. Although Ah Lan was not willing to, Duan Li still made him go home carrying his school bag on his back, crying. In order to make Ah Lan stop crying, Duan Li had to make a lot of promises such as waiting for him here tomorrow.
Luo Jian stayed in the corner to observe the whole process, but he did not follow Ah Lan home. He decided to continue to stay in the dark sundry room to monitor Duan Li’s actions because Luo Jian had always been very concerned about what Duan Li had said about that &#k2018;terrifying group.’ He knew that as long as he stayed here and remained by Duan Li’s side, he would be able to get the answer.
However, Luo Jian couldn’t stay too long in reality. He must travel through s.p.a.ce-time once in a while, otherwise he would be rejected by the s.p.a.ce-time’s will. The result of the rejection would be Luo Jian being forcibly removed from the world.
At most, he could only stay in this s.p.a.ce-time for three days, and that was the limit.
If the answer had not been found within three days, Luo Jian would have to contact Duan Li and make a mark on him so that he could continue to track this person after shuttling through s.p.a.ce-time.
Oh right, should I make a mark on the current Ah Lan now?
As soon as he thought of this idea, Luo Jian shut it down. Ah Lan was still very young, and he was clearly not suitable for this. Luo Jian still remembered Ying told him not to casually affect the people in the past because Luo Jian’s influence may easily make the secret chamber pay attention to them. Now, as a GM, wherever Luo Jian went, he would inevitably leave some traces.
The secret chamber would track Luo Jian down according to the traces left by him to grasp Luo Jian’s actions.
However, although this made him easily traceable, Luo Jian could also use this to mislead the secret chamber’s judgement. When he left countless identical traces in different s.p.a.ce-times, some in different places and even some in unrelated places, he was afraid even the secret chamber could not correctly judge Luo Jian’s actions.
Having figured out this point, Luo Jian was not in a hurry. He stayed in place quietly and looked at Duan Li silently.
Duan Li seemed to have been injured. After he watched Ah Lan leave, he took the bandage that Ah Lan had prepared for him, lifted the blanket covering him, took off his coat, and exposed his abdomen, which was wrapped with thick circles of bandages. The white bandage had been stained with a little blood, and it was obvious that his wound had reopened.
It was an abdominal wound.
Luo Jian frowned. He remembered that Duan Li had just allowed Ah Lan to crawl on him and laughed with him. He did not frown at all and did not let Ah Lan know that he was seriously injured. How strong of a will would it take for him to do that?
Luo Jian glanced at Duan Li tending to his own wounds as he changed the bandage and the dressing. The wound was a knife cut on his abdomen that was not deep, but it absolutely hurt enough for him to drink a jug of wine. The wound had been st.i.tched, and the ugly st.i.tches forcibly occupied Duan Li’s strong abdomen. One could see that not long after, it would leave a ferocious scar.
But how exactly did he get the wound?
Maybe I can get the answer directly from his mouth. Just as Luo Jian thought of that, he blinked as he started to approach Duan Li, carrying his umbrella. But unexpectedly, Duan Li seemed to have noticed Luo Jian’s existence. He suddenly turned his head and looked in the direction of Luo Jian.
He was very keen, more alert than most people. He had never taken his eyes away from him but merely looked in the direction of Luo Jian. It was not that he saw Luo Jian. In fact, he did not see anything, but he still felt the existence of someone. Someone was here in this narrow, dirty, and dark sundry room.
Luo Jian saw that Duan Li started to get nervous. He arched his back, curved his body, and felt for the knife that he used for self-protection beneath the pillow. It was an ordinary fruit knife. And Luo Jian also noticed Duan Li’s weapon, the tang sword, was leaning on the pile of dusty debris.
“Who? Who’s here?” Duan Li stood up. It was not known whether he did it intentionally or not, but he backed away and leaned towards his weapon. His upper body was naked, and he was only wearing a pair of grey shorts, but his eyes were as sharp as a wolf cub’s. Luo Jian also intended to test him, so he did not completely suppress his breathing to allow Duan Li to find him.
“I just want to ask you something.” Luo Jian did not fully reveal his body, but he spoke out, and he knew Duan Li could definitely hear his voice.
“Who are you?” Duan Li was still young after all, and he did not conduct himself in the mature and steady manner that Luo Jian would see in the future. He looked a little frightened. He asked, “Where are you?”
Duan Li could not see anything. In the dark sundry room, no one seemed to be there except him, but Duan Li did hear a strange voice, which seemed to come from somewhere in the dark, sounding rather gloomy and faint.
Luo Jian spun his red umbrella. He lowered his voice and threatened: “The child who went out just now is called Feng YuLan, right?”
Duan Li’s tone showed that he got even more frightened: “What do you want to do?”
“All you have to do is answer my questions. That way, I won’t do anything,” Luo Jian sighed slightly. Sometimes when he wanted to get the information he wanted as soon as possible, nothing was more simple and violent than using threats.
Duan Li was not willing to remain idle. He realized that the man who came for him was much stronger than he imagined. Duan Li could not even see the enemy’s figure, and he could only hear his voice and feel a trace of his breath, but that may have been because the enemy wished to reveal that to him.
Such an enemy was too powerful. Now, nothing would help, no matter what he did. Duan Li placed his knife down and replied, “What do you want to ask?”
“I want to know what you just said about the group,” Luo Jian said in a low voice, “I’ve been here listening to you all this time.”
“Always?” Duan Li was surprised; he did not notice at all.
“When Ah Lan came in, I followed after.”
“Alright, I’ll tell you everything I know. I’ll say it…… as long as you don’t hurt him. Don’t hurt the child.” Duan Li’s tone slightly trembled. Luo Jian suddenly realized that the man who had always been very powerful in his impression was afraid. He was actually afraid. However, Luo Jian unexpectedly felt that he seemed to have used the wrong method against him.
Luo Jian had always regarded Duan Li as a powerful man in his opinion, the unruly teammate, unfamiliar but a team member that he trusted. Luo Jian had always disliked this man and he had a subjective rejection and aversion to Duan Li, which was why he kept his guard up against him. However, Luo Jian forgot that Duan Li was just a teenage boy who was inexperienced.
And he actually went to threaten a child.
Luo Jian rubbed his temples, feeling his head aching. He mockingly laughed at himself. He softened his tone and tried to placate Duan Li. He said in a soft voice, “Don’t be nervous. I won’t hurt anyone. I just want to get some information from you.”
“You mean regarding the group?” Duan Li could not put down his guard. He kept retreating until he found his tang sword. When the weapon was in his hand, he felt a little relieved. Luo Jian did not stop him and continued to ask:
“I know you’ve been through that mystifying and terrifying game, haven’t you?”
Duan Li looked around: “Yes, I am a player. You are too?”
“In a sense, I used to be.” Luo Jian added: “What’s wrong with the group you’re talking about?”
“You don’t know?” Duan Li seemed to be a little surprised and said: “I think all the players in the secret chamber should know.”
“What does that mean?”
In fact, Luo Jian was not a senior player. He had not experienced many secret chamber escapes. Moreover, it seemed that due to the secret machinations of the secret chamber, the difficulty of the secret chambers he had experienced was so great that Luo Jian was very tired and needed to spend most of his efforts on escaping from the secret chamber. He had no time to think about other things. However, it seemed that he could not advance and learn like ordinary players did—learn, improve, and progress.
But it was also because of this that Luo Jian realized that he seemed to have overlooked a lot of things.
T/N: Duan Li was an innocent and adorable child. qaq