Warm blood was running down his throat; Su Bai felt as if he was floating. It was odd, as if his mind and thoughts had escaped from his body, and he was almost as high as the clouds with ethereal lightness.
But the next moment, Su Bai suddenly realized something. He was shocked, and his minds quickly got back. Then he took a closer look; Nona was looking at him with deep affection, but when she saw Su Bai come back to himself, her eyes were filled with rage and grumpiness. Apparently, she had failed.
It sent shivers down his spine. He was almost confused by Nona's sorcery; it was so close!
After the close escape, Su Bai started to suck blood out of Nona's neck with even greater efforts. Gradually, Su Bai felt his body was changing. The blood he drank didn't seem to be the right blood he needed for his side effect, therefore, his body was rejecting it.
But he had no other choice but to keep drinking hard.
A spasm started in his stomach. Su Bai felt extremely sick, but he choked it back.
Nona's struggle became weaker and weaker, her spirit started to vanish, and the sheen in her eyes was dying away.
Ego swayed and kneeled. His blood was running out from his eyes, ears, nose and mouth.
At last, Nona fell onto the ground. Su Bai was bending over her; then he couldn't bear the rejection any more, just crouched aside and started throwing up acutely, with his hands around his neck.
Nona's body burst into pale blue flames. Soon, a heap of ashes was all that was left of her.
The ice in the room started to melt, leaving only pools of ice and water.
When Su Bai stopped retching, he stoop up with dizziness. He felt like all his internal organs were burning up, as if there was an electric soldering iron strung inside his body.
He felt as if he was drunk; everything he saw was whirling and blurred. But he saw Ego kneeling there, hardly breathing.
Su Bai stretched out his hand, broke off an ice stick by his side and held it tight.
Just then, Ego managed to raise his head. His eyes were still closed, his face was all covered by blood, but an awful willpower was suddenly concentrated. However, his willpower soon came to an end.
The two of them faced each other for a moment, then Su Bai smiled, threw away the ice stick and sat down again.
Sickness struck him again.
Ego finally lost all his consciousness. His head inclined, and he pa.s.sed out.
The dusk came with a little loneliness. The evening breeze had taken away the heat of summer. In a room of a small inn, Ego was lying on the bed in front of the electric fan.
After a while, he woke up. Seeing the current circ.u.mstance, he smiled.
His eyes were hurting and so was his head; it was the result of overdrawing his willpower. He would be fine after more rest. When he got up, he saw some wine and dishes on the table.
Su Bai was smoking on the balcony, but he seemed to have noticed that Ego had woken up. He walked into the room; it was the hottest day in the year, but he was wearing a heavy coat as if he was feeling very cold.
"Why didn't you kill me?" Ego asked directly, "Oh, I forgot. You must have no idea that all the other audiences were already dead. If you had killed me, this story would have ended."
Su Bai paused. Ego was so honest that it made him a little surprised. But it was indeed something new to Su Bai; he wondered whether he would still carry Ego out if he had known that earlier. After all, Ego's death would have put an end to all these disasters once for all; it was indeed a pretty smart choice.
However, there wasn't always a second chance. Besides, Su Bai didn't regret much about the choice he had made.
"I didn't kill you, because you didn't kill me either." Su Bai answered. But even he himself wouldn't believe that.
"Nonsense." Ego shook his head, picked up the gla.s.s and took a deep swig from it. "I didn't attack you because I would be paralyzed if I did, either physically or mentally. Then I would be as good as dead anyway."
Su Bai took a cigarette and threw it to Ego, and he caught it.
"Don't you know? The more I recover, the more dangerous I will be." Ego asked.
Su Bai didn't answer that. He just picked his gla.s.s, took a sip and then put it down. "I wasn't thinking that much."
"No, you were thinking that much." Ego seemed a little mischievous. "You are definitely not as innocent as you appeared. A guy that could blow up all the experiencers including himself with detonators, will he be so benign? Will he care about some stupid rule that I didn't kill you so you don't kill me? Will he be that stubborn and naive? Do you think I'm an idiot?"
Su Bai was surprised; then he nodded.
"My state of health right now is no better than yours was when you chose not to kill me."
Ego frowned. He stood up, walked to Su Bai and put a hand on Su Bai's shoulder. Suddenly, Su Bai felt a stream of power was running down his body from Ego's hand.
Then Ego opened his eyes, looked at Su Bai and didn't know if he should laugh or cry.
"I was f*cking touched! Turns out you're already disabled! Now I bet you can only stand up, sit down, walk for a little while, but nothing more than that! Like an ALS patient!"
Su Bai nodded, "So, if you want, you can kill me now."
Ego shook his head. "Not funny."
He sat down, picked up a bottle of beer, poured down half of the beer down his throat and cleaned his mouth.
"I don't like owing other people anything. I'm no decent man, but there is something you don't know as an experiencer: audiences' relationship with one another in reality actually counts a lot."
Su Bai seemed to feel a little cold; he turned the electric fan off.
"You must be poisoned by something like ice. Well, not like hard drugs, but after the mission, Dreadful Radio will help us with treatment. Maybe you'll even get some extra benefits.
"I used to know a woman. Every time when the mission was about to end, she would poison herself and then finish the mission before the poison showed its effect. Or we can say she finished his mission while she was breathing her last. Then she got cured by the Dreadful Radio. Through such an extreme method, her potential was aroused. That woman's awful!"
"Who is that?"
"………" Su Bai.
"What, you know her?" Ego asked.
"Yeah." Su Bai nodded calmly. Now he did regret a little. If he had known that all the other audiences were dead, he should have killed Ego. But now Ego was awake and he could hold nothing heavier than a cigarette, let alone an axe. There was no chance he could kill Ego now.
This was a huge mistake.
It was caused by the fact that Dreadful Radio wouldn't give them the current remaining number of audiences and experiencers. Of course, because of that, the game was more thrilling, and the story was more interesting.
"You two are close?" Ego asked cautiously. Apparently, it wasn't for real when he said he knew Dark Litchi. Perhaps he had only heard her story, or came across her in merely one task. In fact, judging by Lucky, the pet of Dark Litchi, Ego was far below Dark Litchi's level.
"I helped with her cat for a while. The black cat named Lucky." Su Bai continued indifferently. Now was the perfect time for bluffing. What if Ego changed his mind?
An experiencer knowing so much; this made Ego believe that Su Bai was somehow special to Dark Litchi. But he still asked another tentative question.
"Which city do you live in?"
"I've just got back to Chengdu."
Location was right.
Ego smiled. He finally made up his mind and raised his gla.s.s:
"Come on, bottoms up."
Su Bai was also mightily relieved. He raised his gla.s.s as well:
Clear footsteps came into the cold corridor in the hospital.
Two cops sitting outside the ICU stood up and saluted to the visitor. The visitor motioned them to open the door for him and then walked in.
w.a.n.g Hongsheng was lying on the bed. His body was stuck by tubes connected to all kinds of machines. He was injured and then involved in the explosion; with wounds over wounds, he was already dying and could pa.s.s away any time.
The visitor took off his gloves; his hands were burned. When he took off his mask, his face was destroyed, too. But his overall appearance didn't change, and that was why those two cops outside were still able to recognize him.
Director Zhou stretched out his hand and raised a dagger.
Just then, the two cops who were standing by the door were bounced into the ward. They immediately got up. Then, seeing Director Zhou holding his dagger about to kill someone, they were astonished. Also, by the stairs, there were a group of cops running towards this place after getting an emergency call.
Director Zhou's pupils suddenly shrank. He knew that…
… he was entrapped.
 ALS: Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease and motor neuron disease (MND), is a specific disease that causes the death of neurons which control voluntary muscles. ALS is characterized by stiff muscles, muscle twitching, and gradually worsening weakness due to muscles decreasing in size. This results in difficulty speaking, swallowing, and eventually breathing. — Wikipedia