Hei Cha twisted the key nervously. The moment the ‘click’ was heard, the big stone in everyone’s heart finally fell. The villa door opened again. The thick fog outside the door cleared and pale moonlight filled the yard. The nightmare was finally over…
At the same time, the temperature in the room rose rapidly. Old Yu raised Cheng Xu from the sofa and told everyone, “Leave quickly. This dream probably won’t last long.”
The group left the house as if fleeing. Hei Cha, who opened the door, wanted to turn around to show Chi Nan the way, only to find that Old Yu was taking care of him.
“Chi Nan, I want to ask you something. Just treat it as me being curious. You don’t have to answer if you are unwilling.” Old Yu spoke in a casual manner.
Chi Nan also simply replied, “Ask.”
“What is the relationship between you and that young master? Do you know each other in reality?” The expression he directed toward Chi Nan was enigmatic.
Chi Nan was silent for a moment before cocking his head. “It is probably a relationship of sympathy with the same disease.”
Then he pointed to his eyes.
Old Yu was taken aback before shrugging with a smile, “Okay, I will believe you. I wish you a speedy recovery.”
The moment they left the villa, there was a loud noise from behind them. The villa spontaneously ignited without warning and fire soared into the sky. The scarlet tongues of fire flew and swayed in the night breeze. Even if Chi Nan couldn’t see it, he could clearly feel the surging heat wave.
“My god… if we didn’t come out in time then we would be burned alive.” Hei Cha trembled with fear thinking about it. He wiped the sweat from his forehead joyfully and looked at Chi Nan. “It is really thanks to your quick reaction or we would all be buried tonight.”
Chi Nan didn’t speak. He obviously couldn’t see but he turned to face the villa engulfed in fire, his side profile blurring in the light of the jumping flames.
“Chi Nan?” Hei Cha looked at him strangely and called out to him doubtfully. “Let’s go. The exit seems to be in front.”
Chi Nan didn’t move and spoke in a determined manner, “You go first. I’m heading back to the villa.”
“What?” Hei Cha was dumbfounded and couldn’t believe what he heard.”
“You go first.”
“This isn’t… are you crazy? It wasn’t easy to escape. Why do you want to go back to the burning villa?” Hei Cha looked at Chi Nan incredulously. He ignored Chi Nan’s dislike of being touched and grabbed Chi Nan’s sleeve to pull him outside.
Chi Nan broke away from his hand. “I have something important I didn’t take…”
He paused and added, “There are also missed favorability that I haven’t gained.”
“I think your mind isn’t clear. What is more important than life? You can gain more favorability in the next instance? Why do you have to joke around and go back now?” Hei Cha roared in a hurry.
Chi Nan just wanted to explain when Old Yu pulled at Hei Cha. “Little streamer, it is best not to interfere with other people’s choices in the Nightmare World.”
Hei Cha was puzzled. “But he is going to die!”
“High risk means high returns. The dreamers shouldn’t set a dead end situation.” Old Yu explained. “It is best to respect personal choice.”
Then he patted Chi Nan on the shoulder. “If you want to go back then go. I’ll persuade Hei Cha.”
Chi Nan and moved forward using his cane.
“Chi Nan!” Hei Cha finally shouted. “Do you want me to come with you…”
Chi Nan’s steps paused before he replied softly, “No, I will probably come back soon. Wait for me outside.”
Then he once again entered the villa where the fire was spreading. It was just seven minutes past midnight. There were still 13 minutes until 12:20…
What happened that year? How did You Yu die? How did Chi Nan take his body?
…Did he kill You Yu himself?
Chi Nan had been faintly worried about this for many years so he tried every means to find out the truth. Now the truth was in the house surrounded by a raging fire. It was only after going back that it would be revealed.
The moment Chi Nan stepped into the villa, a scorching heat swept over him. His always cool and dry skin was covered with layers of sweat and his cheeks were flushed.
[Sleepwalker ‘Chi Nan’ has entered the nightmare’s core area again. This area will collapse in 13 minutes. Chi Nan, please hurry up and leave.]
[Due to the core area being severely damaged by the fire, the system has decided to make an exception and enable the voice navigation system for the sleepwalker with a mobility impairment.]
[After an evaluation by the dream maker, it has been decided that the fire is too fierce and the probability of survival is too low. The system has opened the local cooling service for the sleepwalker and 5 points of favorability will automatically be consumed.]
[The sleepwalker ‘Chi Nan’ currently has a favorability of -5.]
Chi Nan was a bit surprised. How did the system suddenly become so humane?
“Thank you. Please help me plan a route to You Yu’s bedroom on the second floor.”
[The route has been planned. Please strictly follow the route planned by the system to reduce the probability of death and help the dreamer fulfill their wish.]
Help the dreamer fulfill their wish? So the dream maker behind the scenes was also looking forward to him coming back? This was why the humane voice and cooling services were provided? The reason wasn’t important. The result was good for him.
Fire cracked constantly in his ears. Through it, Chi Nan faintly heard music coming from You Yu’s bedroom. The melody was beautiful and holy. However, it was also permeated with an unspeakable gloom that hit at the darkest part of the soul.
Chi Nan pushed open the door of You Yu’s bedroom and the music stopped.
“Brother, I have been waiting for you.” You Yu smiled innocently like an angel. “Although I wasn’t sure you would really come back.”
Chi Nan reached out for him. “Let’s go. This place will be gone soon.”
You Yu didn’t step forward to grab his hand and instead asked, “You are the only one among so many sleepwalkers who came back for me. Can you tell me why?”
Chi Nan thought about it before answering seriously, “Isn’t the most important part of the nightmare instance to gain favorability?”
You Yu smiled. “Brother, you might not be the first to realize this but you are definitely the first to risk your life to come back.”
“It isn’t just that.” Chi Nan’s lips curled slightly but it was replaced by his usual blank expression before the smile appeared. “I want to take you out of this prison.”
He extended his hand to You Yu again.
You Yu’s expression stiffened for a moment. Then he continued to smile with his hands behind his back. “No one can take me away.”
His smile became smaller and his voice drifted gently, “At least, not while I’m alive.”
“Brother, were you one of the evil spirits back then? In the end, you picked up a bargain and took away my body?”
“Do you want to heal your eyes and see me, to see yourself?”
“However, you have made the wrong choice.”
The moment he finished speaking, a scorching heat wave came from all directions. Chi Nan instinctively raised a hand to cover his face but the turbulent heat easily penetrated all his senses. He could clearly feel his skin curling and deforming in the high temperature. His facial features were also distorted by the heat wave…
Just as his consciousness was gradually fading, the heat wave cut his eyes open like a sharp knife. The scene of the fire gradually became clear and the heat gradually subsided.
Chi Nan regained his long-lost vision to find that the fire was still spreading in a devastating manner. He had appeared as a bystander on this night 11 years ago.
Bai Yingzhi’s voice urged from downstairs. “The time for the sacrifice is coming! Hasn’t the young master changed his clothes yet?”
“Madam! It’s bad! The young master isn’t in his room. There is only this…” Aunt Mei shivered as she held a humanoid doll in pajamas.
Bai Yingzhi immediately rushed upstairs. She grabbed the doll to take a look before heading downstairs angrily. “Check the surveillance! Find him within five minutes. We can’t delay the sacrifice ceremony for even half a second!”
“Otherwise, we will all die!” Bai Yingzhi’s facial features became distorted and terrifying due to her anger.
Aunt Mei quickly ran to the surveillance room while Bai Yingzhi walked along the corridor and put on a soft and sweet voice to coax the child. “You Yu, come out. Don’t play hide-and-seek with your mother. You know that I like obedient children.”
“Mom knows you are very good. You won’t be late and you won’t deliberately hide yourself.”
“I promise you that everything will be okay after tonight. You won’t be sad or have to take medicine.”
“You Yu, did you hear me? Time is running out.”
The corridor was still quiet and no one responded to Bai Yingzhi. Finally, she could no longer pretend to be calm and her voice was stern. “Quickly come out here! What is the use of hiding? You know you can never escape!”
“If you don’t come out, it won’t be a simple punishment when I find you!”
Bai Yingzhi had changed from a soft voice to a naked threat.
Just then, Aunt Mei finally finished checking the surveillance and she whispered a few words in Bai Yingzhi’s ears. Bai Yingzhi’s expression became worse and she walked on high heels to the door of her own room.
She didn’t talk nonsense. She went straight to the wardrobe, opened the door and angrily slapped You Yu who was hiding there. “You really were hiding here!”
“Are you angry?” There was a red palm print on You Yu’s face but he still hugged his legs and sat in his mother’s wardrobe with an innocent expression.
“You know that there is no surveillance in my room, right?” She slapped him again.
You Yu smiled sweetly and looked up. “I just wanted to surprise you.”
Bai Yingzhi roughly took his hand and pulled him out of the closet. “I don’t like trouble-making children. Don’t mess around. There is no time. Don’t you know how terrible the consequences will be if we are late?”
You Yu was dragged out hard and scraped his knee on the side of the wardrobe. “I know. Our whole family will be killed by evil spirits, right?”
Bai Yingzhi stiffened when she discovered the truth was uncovered. She looked at her son with anger, a grim and terrible expression on her face. “Shut up. A sacrifice should have the consciousness of a sacrifice.”
“Mom, I love you.” You Yu didn’t shut up but smiled sweetly like an angel. “So I want you to stay with me forever.”
Bai Yingzhi suddenly became cold all over as she stared in horror at her innocent son. “You… what do you mean?”
“It means we will go to hell together.” You Yu took Bai Yingzhi’s hand. “The time is up. It is too late.”
He had just finished speaking when the altar shook. The wall full of charms cracked and collapsed and a ghost fire spread without warning in the villa!
Bai Yingzhi was so scared that she lost all color. “Aunt Mei! Aunt Mei! What is going on?!”
“Impossible. There is obviously still five minutes left…” Bai Yingzhi instinctively glanced at the bedroom clock that was pointed to 12:15. “How can this be… did you do it?”
She severely grabbed You Yu’s neck, her nails with crimson nail polish cutting the child’s white flesh. “Did you move the clocks at home?!”
You Yu didn’t seem to feel the pain of being strangled and still smiled. “I stole a few seconds from Mom every day… unknowingly… I can take you away from this world.”
Bai Yingzhi went crazy and her eyes turned red. “I will kill you now… kill you!”
“Let’s go to hell together. I love you.”
The fire spread quickly. You Yu looked at his mother who was about to kill him and smiled while his eyes gradually dimmed. The altar collapsed and the flames turned into evil spirits. They hungrily and fiercely devoured the mother and son in the room, as well as everyone in the villa.
Finally, You Yu died in Bai Yingzhi’s hands. His corpse was lying in the sea of fire and countless resentful spirits circled him. Chi Nan walked over and the evil spirits panicked like they saw something terrible.
The evil spirits in the house as well as Bai Yingzhi disappeared. Only Chi Nan and You Yu’s body were left.
The bystander restriction on Chi Nan was lifted. He crouched down and touched the top of You Yu’s nose. Perhaps it was because the temperature in the room was too high but his skin was still soft and warm.
You Yu met death and there was still a smile on his face.
Tears flowed from Chi Nan’s eyes due to the touch. It was much fiercer than any previous time. He just wanted to pick up You Yu’s body but the moment his hands touched You Yu… the world spun. Chi Nan could clearly feel his soul being sucked into You Yu’s body!
This was the night when You Yu’s life ended and the beginning of everything.
11 years later, Chi Nan finally learned the truth about You Yu’s death.