Crying Boy (End)
You Yu didn’t immediately push open the door of Room 206. As a dream maker, his thoughts were much more complicated than Chi Nan’s.
For example, if the god of dreams was successfully teleported to their time point through the ghost tunnel, perfectly avoiding the pollution and magic damage, could the same timeline accommodate two copies of Chi Nan? What were the consequences of the simultaneous existence of two dream gods?
And… how exactly did Chi Nan get sealed in the Crying Boy?
This was the key to the whole cycle and the biggest doubt at present. The context wasn’t clear yet and rushing to make a big choice was no different from a gamble.
You Yu had always been a mad gambler to his bones, reckless and without scruples. However, now he didn’t dare to bet everything about Chi Nan.
“You Yu?” Chi Nan sensed the strangeness in You Yu. “Are you afraid?”
You Yu’s lips stretched into a straight line and he didn’t make a sound. The palm of his hand holding the doorknob was soaked with sweat.
“You know what to do.” Chi Nan’s voice was as calm as ever but it had the power to let dust settle on unresolved things.
It was clear that they weren’t doing a multiple choice question right now.
They had only one choice. The god of dreams needed to survive this catastrophe or the future Chi Nan would also disappear.
Time was running out.
Just as You Yu pushed open the door, a familiar voice came from inside the room.
“You are here. Please come in.”
It seemed that the other person had already foreseen their arrival. There was no surprise in his voice.
The glass windows in the room weren’t closed and rain swept in to wet the curtains and carpets.
The man with loose silver-white hair sat by the window, eyes closed. His thick eyelashes cast deep and shallow shadows on his face and the two tear drop moles at the corners of his eyes were shrouded in shadows.
The rain soaked the side of his face and looked like wet tear stains at first glance.
You Yu was mentally prepared but once he actually saw ‘Chi Nan’, whom he had painted countless times, appear alive in front of his eyes, he was suddenly a bit confused.
At this moment, ‘Chi Nan’ existed completely as an independent body and soul but he felt that the ‘Chi Nan’ in front of him was more distorted than ever.
He wanted to tell Chi Nan in the system how he felt, but for a moment, he couldn’t make a sound.
You Yu stood by the door like a statue and the youthful god of dreams never opened his eyes. Only his eyelashes fluttered slightly. “I was waiting for you.”
Through You Yu’s vision, Chi Nan could clearly see what the god of dreams looked like now.
Chi Nan muttered in the sensory system and his words weren’t expressed out loud.
Unexpectedly, the god of dreams not only heard his voice but also answered his question in a quiet and gentle voice. “My eyes can no longer see. After encountering the serious pollution, my senses have gradually disappeared with the aggravation of the pollution.”
“At first, my sense of taste will disappear. Then it is my smell, vision and touch… since I want to listen to human desires, it is my hearing that disappears at the end.”
“Fortunately, it isn’t too late. I can still hear many voices now,” the god of dreams said.
The god of dreams stretched his hand out the window where the rain was constantly falling, trying to confirm if his sense of touch was still there.
Once all senses disappeared then the existence of the body itself was like a bubble. Chi Nan had experienced the sealing of his senses for 229 days so he was well aware of this sense of nothingness that was like a deep quagmire.
“Can you hear me?” Chi Nan directly asked from the system.
“Of course, I can hear my own voice. It is just like when you came into my consciousness a few years ago and heard what I was thinking.”
The god of dreams who lost his vision finally stood up and touched the window with his hand. All the cold and dampness were isolated. The god of dreams seemed to feel some regret as he rubbed the water stains on his face with his hand.
Soon, he wouldn’t even be able to perceive the rain.
Chi Nan wondered, “Then do you know what I am thinking now?”
The god of dreams said, “You want to take me out of this timeline through the painting to your timeline in order to avoid this pollution and curse, right?”
The god of dreams seemed to know everything…
Chi Nan was stunned for a moment before saying truthfully, “Yes.”
The god of dreams seemed to smile faintly. “Why do you want to save me? Aren’t you afraid of disappearing and dying?”
Chi Nan’s tone was firm. “I promised someone that I won’t disappear. I won’t break my word.”
He had just promised You Yu that he wouldn’t say goodbye again. He would try to keep his promise.
The god of dreams finally turned to them. “I understand, I will help you.”
His voice was very soft and faint, as if it would disappear at any moment.
The temperature in the room didn’t change but the wallpaper in the room started to curl up and turn black like it was burned. After a moment, it turned into fine ashes and fell on the carpet. The inverse pentagram and blue flaming snake totem appeared on the blackened wall.
The magical energy field set up by the magicians had started to penetrate the entire Dawn Tower, infiltrating Room 206.
Soon, this powerful energy field would crush the god of dreams and turn him into ashes.
The god of dreams frowned slightly. “It seems that time is running out. Please take out that painting.”’
He looked out at the dark rain curtain as he spoke. It was in the direction of the ruined cliff and he said silently against the window, “Get out of here. I will find you.”
He knew that the boy standing at the mass grave in the rain would definitely make the most correct choice. He never doubted it at all.
The invisible flames spread rapidly and the air was filled with the smell of burning.
The tight time frame left You Yu with no choice. He quickly removed the Crying Boy hanging on the wall.
The painting was the same as what they saw in the first layer of the dream and the background was still the pouring rain.
You Yu’s hand trembled slightly as he opened the picture frame. “Is it okay?”
He confirmed it with Chi Nan again like before, but he was also confirming it with himself.
He had a hunch that the decision to enter the Crying Boy and open the ghost tunnel this time had some major connection with Chi Nan’s sealing.
Everything was like a carefully designed game. Time and space were interlocked and they stepped into the game and completed the cycle step by step within a limited time according to the designer’s intention.
It was just like what the dream makers did to countless sleepwalkers…
Before Chi Nan could give a positive answer, the voice of the god of dreams entered their ears.
“Believe me, you will soon be out of this cycle and all time will be new.”
You Yu looked at this god who was always calm like Chi Nan and saw the other person vaguely smile at him. “You can rest assured, there can be no two ‘Chi Nans’ on the same timeline. You don’t need to make a choice.”
“It was never a multiple choice question.”
The moment the god of dreams finished speaking, the painting in You Yu’s hand was removed from the frame. The strong light that exploded from the painting spread with the force of destruction and decay, instantly filling the entire room, the entire Dawn Tower and even the entire City of Dreams that had become ruins.
The city shrouded in a strong light stood still before absolute light came again.
The night receded, the rain stopped and all life stopped breathing.
Their vision quickly dissolved and disappeared in the bright light. All cognition and presence evaporated and dissipated along with it…
It wasn’t known how long it took but Chi Nan felt the strong light around him became a dense rain-like existence. The fine fragments were everywhere and he gradually landed on the ground with a sense of weightlessness.
Through You Yu’s gradually returning vision, he saw countless ashes falling from the sky. It was just like the fragments left over from the burning of these bright light fragments.
The place where they were standing was Building 57 of the Third North District of Zi City. Countless copies of 206 were circulating in the corridor.
This time, there wasn’t any fresh mint or green aurora. Fire burned all the way from the City of Dreams to the entrance of the ghost tunnel. The room number of Room 206 twisted and formed in the fire, making a crackling sound. They were trapped again.
“The ghost tunnel connects two time points. If we don’t seal the curses and pollutants, they will return to your timeline through the time tunnel and these negative energies will also destroy your Nightmare World.”
Facing the endless loop of corridors and fire, the god of dreams wasn’t surprised at all. It was as if this was all expected by him.
“You should have previously deduced that the reason why the 206 looped corridor is connected to the safe passage of the main world is that the system of the Nightmare World is protecting itself, isolating the energy that is trying to destroy it through endless loops. It is like trapping the invading enemies in a maze without an exit.”
The god of this ‘past time’ knew about the Nightmare World that hadn’t appeared yet.
He knew everything about them and knew even more than Chi Nan and You Yu from the future.
“How do you know this?” You Yu couldn’t help asking.
At this time, the temperature in the looped corridor increased rapidly. He could clearly feel the burning sensation on his skin and his breathing became hot and difficult.
“A god’s senses will degenerate and disappear before death, but at the same time, the lost senses will be transformed into another powerful energy. It is just like humans return to the light before they die.”
“During this process of rapid decline, I suddenly acquired the ability to see the future of the entire time cycle.”
“So… Chi Nan, You Yu, I saw you.” The god of dream’s fingers brushed across the burning hot wall. He completely ignored the tongues of fire burning his skin as he pushed open a Room 206 in the corridor. “I also saw myself and saw this scene happening.”
You Yu and Chi Nan froze in place. Behind the god was the young master’s bedroom that was burning up. It was just like the night of the fire 11 years ago. Sparks and ashes rose and swirled in the heat.
“I have seen all the cause and effect.” The voice of the god was always quiet and peaceful. “We are on a timeline where the cause and effect are in the form of a ring. The cause can be the effect and the effect can be the cause. The linearity of time is broken and the future and the past are each other’s cause and effect.”
In an instant, Chi Nan understood everything and a certain premonition emerged. “Are you going to stay here and seal all the negative energies?”
The god of dreams nodded. “I must seal these pollutants or they will spread through the ghost tunnel to the entire Nightmare World and your timeline will be destroyed.”
“This is the key to the entire cycle. Chi Nan, hundreds of years ago, you made the same choice. You stayed in the painting to seal the entrance to the Nightmare World.”
Hundreds of years ago, the same was true for the current Chi Nan. He predicted his future and chose to seal the entrance of the time tunnel with the bit of remaining divine power and soul he had left. He was sealed into the Crying Boy, thus preventing these pollutants from entering the future Nightmare World and forming a closed loop of the entire time cycle.
“It is just that you forgot after a long time. As a static painting, I will gradually forget like you and then meet little You Yu again.”
“I will go through everything you have been through. From the time I first met No 9 and the Crying Boy was born, the gears started spinning. This is the only correct decision that can be made.”
“The seal needs just the soul. You can bring my body back to the future. Chi Nan, that is your body too.”
Thus, the god told You Yu that all the time that followed was ‘new’ from the moment they left this cycle.
Chi Nan’s voice trembled slightly. “But…”
He was choked up because the other person was himself and he knew there was no ‘but’ in this choice.
This was the answer to the Crying Boy.
Chi Nan was sealed in the painting for hundreds of years. It wasn’t a forced choice but one he made on his own. It was because he had foreseen the future of the entire time cycle.
The god of dreams knew that Chi Nan understood, because he had always been himself.
“I can see my future of being trapped in the painting for tens of thousands of days and nights, with only endless rain and loneliness. Even so, I chose to stay.”
The god of dreams walked toward the fire-filled room, sealing the roaring pollutants at the entrance of the time tunnel with his energy.
“It is because I know someone is waiting for me in the future.”
“I am no longer a pure god. I am beginning to have my own emotions and beginning to fear extinction. I am also looking forward to the future that will come one day.”
“Chi Nan, you are my future.”
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Proofreader: Not proofread