That night, Ye Qi had nightmares and didn’t sleep well. He dreamed of his first trip to 3 of Spades.
The joy he first felt at knowing Cheng Ziyang was his senior and then the helplessness and anger when his senior took away their supplies and abandoned him. After following the group of people to the construction site, he barely managed to feed himself with everyone’s help. Later, the prisoners escaped and he was shot to death…
He had experienced two realistic deaths.
The first one was the car accident in the real world and the second time was in 3 of Spades Financial Crisis. He had been shot in the head. At that moment, he could even see a large amount of blood flowing down his forehead and blinding him, turning the world in front of him a bloody red.
Later, he was penniless in the Nightmare Room. He sang on the streets for the first few days and then ate leaves and weeds every day to survive. He lived worse than a beggar. This crazy sense of hunger seemed to be engraved in his nerves and bone marrow. Therefore, even after leaving the Nightmare Room, he cherished it every time he saw food.
The secret room had left a serious psychological shadow on him. He felt hungry every night and had to eat before going to bed or he would wake up hungry in the middle of the night. The days of looking for fresh leaves or even digging through the trash for food were too hard. He never wanted to go through it again in his life.
The repeated nightmares caused a cold sweat to appear on Ye Qi’s forehead. At the end of the dream, Ye Qi saw Cheng Ziyang smiling and saying to him, “I am also from the Conservatory of Music. What a coincidence. I am a junior this year and I’m your senior.”
Ye Qi walked over enthusiastically and held out his hand. “Hello Senior. I always hear your name. I often hear my classmates talk about you in school…”
As a result, the moment he held this person’s right hand, Cheng Ziyang suddenly brought out a knife with his left hand and stabbed Ye Qi in the chest. Ye Qi lowered his head and saw the bright blade stuck in his chest and the dazzling blood on it.
Ye Qi sat up in shock.
Obviously, Cheng Ziyang’s appearance had reminded him of not-so-good memories. Cheng Ziyang stabbing him at the end of the dream hadn’t actually happened but Ye Qi’s heart was still thumping. The dream was too real and he always felt it was a bad omen.
He heard that some dreams were contrary to reality while some were ominous…
Ye Qi was staring at the tent in a daze when a low voice entered his ears. “What’s wrong?”
Shao Qingge was awakened by him. Ye Qi turned back to meet Shao Qingge’s sleepy eyes and told him, “I just woke up from a nightmare.”
“Were you dreaming about 3 of Spades?” Shao Qingge knew this because he had the heart channel to let him feel Ye Qi’s uneasiness. He sat up, gently pressed a hand against Ye Qi’s shoulder and spoke softly, “Don’t think too much. It’s all over. The people in our team can be trusted and no one will abandon their teammates.”
“Of course I believe in everyone.” Ye Qi scratched his head and barely squeezed out a small smile. “It’s just a dream. It doesn’t matter.”
“Okay… it is only three in the morning. Sleep a bit longer.” Shao Qingge’s voice was lazy. Perhaps it was because he woke up in the middle of the night and hadn’t got enough sleep. Ye Qi told him, “You go to sleep. I can sleep so I might as well swap shifts to keep watch.”
“Then I’ll go do night watch duty as well.” Shao Qingge started to put on a coat.
“Don’t you like to sleep late? You can sleep a bit longer…” Ye Qi hadn’t finished when Shao Qingge interrupted him. “It’s fine. Everyone has been taking turns to stand guard these days. I can’t always let Professor Xiao stay up late. It is time for us to change shifts.”
“Yes, it makes sense!”
The two of them got dressed and walked out of the tent to where Xiao Lou and Yu Hanjiang were keeping warm.
They were sitting on fruit cartons around the small stove used by the security guard. They added some wood to the stove to keep themselves warm and should be talking through the heart channel. It was because they couldn’t hear Xiao Lou and Yu Hanjiang making any sound. They could just be seen making eye contact.
Xiao Lou saw that Ye Qi and Shao Qingge were awake and couldn’t help asking, “What are you doing up? The two of you don’t need to keep watch tonight.”
Ye Qi told him, “In any case, I’ve woken up in the middle of the night. Professor Xiao, why don’t you go back to rest and leave the night watch to us? I can release another eavesdropper and monitor any movements.”
Yu Hanjiang glanced at Xiao Lou. “Since Ye Qi is taking the initiative to keep watch, you should go to sleep and raise your energy.”
Xiao Lou smiled. “Okay. Then work hard.”
Yu Hanjiang nodded at Shao Qingge and the two of them turned and returned to their tent. As they opened the curtain of the tent, Ye Qi accidentally discovered that in the light of the night pearl, the tent only had one quilt.
Shao Qingge was connected to his mind and soon detected Ye Qi’s thoughts. He smiled and said, “The other quilt should be laid down to make a mattress. Then one quilt is used to cover them. This way, the ground won’t be too cold.”
The voice that suddenly rang out in his mind made Ye Qi stunned. He still wasn’t used to connecting to people using Heart has a Tacit Exchange of Romantic Feelings.
Shao Qingge continued, “Speaking might wake the others up. It is a good thing to have the spiritual channel. Shall we try to communicate in our heads?”
Ye Qi nodded and sat down in the place where Xiao Lou had just been sitting. He added some fuel to the stove.
He glanced at Xiao Lou’s tent and wondered in his mind, “Can two big men sleep under the same quilt and not be squeezed in? In fact, half of the quilt can be spread underneath and the other half can be used to cover yourself. This way, it is warm and you won’t be stealing each other’s quilts.”
The young man’s eyes were simple and clear and it seemed he was really going to seriously suggest this to Xiao Lou…
Shao Qingge helplessly touched his forehead. “The two of them are voluntary so you don’t have to worry. At that time, they were a couple for half a month in Beacon in Troubled Times. They shared the same bed during that time and are probably used to it.”
Ye Qi was stunned and his eyes widened once he finally reacted. “You mean… they? Are that?”
Shao Qingge smiled and asked, “Haven’t you ever heard of two men being together?”
Ye Qi’s face was slightly red as he replied with embarrassment, “I’ve heard about it a lot. My school has some small, transparent people who are willing to be taken care of by a bigshot in order to become famous in the singing world. There is a young boy with a gold master behind him. The gold master is said to be over 20 years older than him and is raising him as a little lover.”
Shao Qingge smiled. “So do you need a gold master? Not one that raises you as a lover. The type that only gives you money.”
Ye Qi froze. “What does that mean?”
Shao Qingge put away his joking tone and spoke seriously. “I am the boss of a fund company in reality. I started from scratch but actually, I am a rich second generation with a relatively wide network. Otherwise, my business wouldn’t have gone so smoothly.”
Ye Qi looked contemptuous. “Can a rich second generation start something from scratch?”
“I really didn’t ask my parents for money. The start-up funds were from a loan I got. Later, after several rounds of financing, the company grew bigger and became available to be listed. I originally planned to go public at the end of the year… why am I telling you this? You don’t understand.”
Ye Qi nodded. “I don’t understand. However, it sounds great that it is going public!”
Shao Qingge narrowed his eyes slightly before smiling. “Then I’ll say something you can understand. Star Factory Recording Company, do you know it?”
Ye Qi’s eyes lit up. “I know! This is the most famous record company in the circle. My idols and goddesses are all here! The singers are all powerful, there are many excellent songwriters and the most powerful producer, Teacher Zhou!”
Shao Qingge told him, “Their boss grew up with me since childhood. We are iron-clad buddies.”
Ye Qi, “……”
Shao Qingge saw that Ye Qi’s mouth was open wide enough to swallow a duck egg and smiled. “Who is your goddess or male god? Xue Ninglu, the queen of songs? Singer Zhou Heng? I know them well. They have entrusted a lot of their personal money to my company to manage. I made a lot of money for them last year and they’ve all learned to invest with me.”
Ye Qi, “……”
Shao Qingge smiled and stretched out his arms. “Your gold father is here. Come and hug his thighs.
Ye Qi was so excited that he couldn’t believe it. “I-Is this true?”
Shao Qingge’s eyes were deep. “What is the benefit of lying to you? One day, we are going to return to reality. At that time, I will help you realize your dreams. I will introduce you to Star Factory as a singer, find you the best team of music producers and tailor-make songs for you. I will let you become the king of music. So don’t think about the bad things in the past and think about the bright future.”
Ye Qi’s heart was warm and he nodded vigorously. “Yes, I know. Thank you.”
A moment later, he stared at Shao Qingge and spoke seriously in his mind. “Mr Shao, I believe that you can create shortcuts but I still want to get good results in the competition on my own, whether it is being the champion, runner-up or something else. I have the confidence to say this. Otherwise, if I go through the back door to become a singer and I don’t do well enough, I will shame you…”
Against the background of the fire, the boy’s cheeks were slightly red. His eyes were full of seriousness and Shao Qingge remembered the way he held a guitar and sang in the square. That was the first time Shao Qingge had seen Ye Qi. The boy was so serious and hard-working when playing the guitar and singing. He was full of vitality as he asked the audience around him to give him money.
Now he was talking about his future dreams. He was serious but his eyes were bright. Shao Qingge’s heart was moved and he couldn’t help reaching out to rub the young man’s hair. He whispered, “Okay, I respect your decision. After you win the prize, I will help you.”
Ye Qi nodded excitedly. “That’s great. Thank you, gold father!”
Shao Qingge smiled silently. Since Ye Qi wanted to be a singer so much, Shao Qingge didn’t mind helping him gain the opportunity. After all, he was a person Shao Qingge shared life and death difficulties with and he knew enough about Ye Qi’s character.
The two of them chatted with each other. Time passed and it became dawn in the blink of an eye.
Ye Qi woke everyone up.
On this day, everyone was alert and entered a battle prepared state. They didn’t relax at all times but nothing happened during the day.
Xiao Lou had some doubts. “Did the bugs in the north and south of the cities have some accident that delayed them coming to the east?”
Yu Hanjiang replied, “It is possible. If the challengers in those two urban areas are prepared in advance and resist stubbornly. Some people might directly use gasoline like us. It isn’t easy for a large number of bugs to encounter fire.”
Old Mo analyzed it. “The team from Luoying Pavilion shouldn’t have come to the east of the city? We haven’t seen them these days. Perhaps they ran into the bugs in another area. That team… based on the decisiveness of the captain, there shouldn’t be too much of a loss if they ran into the bugs.”
The female captain was indeed ruthless enough to burn her teammate to death when infected. This approach was a bit cold-blooded but the strong and straightforward style of doing things wouldn’t put the team in danger in critical moments.
Xiao Lou stated, “Regardless of the situation in other districts, we should continue to stay vigilant.”
In the evening, everyone continued to keep watch in turns. At 24:00, the floating boxes gave an announcement.
[8 of Spades Doomsday Escape, the fifth day, 00:00 in the morning]
[Number of challengers remaining: 198]
Ye Qi opened his mouth. “I remember that it was 208 people last night and it became 198 today. It seems that only two teams were destroyed.
The death toll on this day had decreased a lot compared to the large numbers a few days ago.
Yu Hanjiang told them, “It is likely the challenger teams have accumulated some experience in actual combat. Those who were eliminated the past few days were either not prepared enough or they ran into the bug army without understanding the bugs. Those that can survive until now are all very strong teams.”
Everyone agreed with Group Leader Yu’s analysis. The more time that passed, the stronger the people that remained. The Spades room had always been about survival of the fittest. It was just unknown where those teams were hiding. At present, only the 12 member team of the Distant Association led by Cheng Ziyang had come to the east district near them.
Since Ye Qi and Chief Shao had been keeping watch until dawn yesterday, Long Sen, Qu Wanyue, Liu Qiao and Old Mo took the initiative to volunteer tonight. Liu Qiao and Qu Wanyue would keep watch for the first half of the night and Old Mo and Long Sen would keep watch in the second half of the night.
The two girls Liu Qiao and Qu Wanyue stayed away until 3 o’clock but nothing happened. It was still calm outside.
Liu Qiao handed the Bug card to Old Mo and said, “This is Ye Qi’s Bug card. You can use it to hear the movements outside clearly. Three bugs can be used in turn and one bug can listen for three hours.”
Old Mo took it seriously and placed the unused bug in the snowman under the tree away from the warehouse.
The sound of this high-tech bug was extremely clear. Even the sound of snow could be heard. Old Mo and Long Sen listened carefully to the movements outside while warming themselves with the fire.
It was five o’clock in the morning and dawn hadn’t arrived yet.
Snow had fallen all night and Ye Qi’s ugly snowman was covered in a thick layer of new snow. The eyes, nose and even arms couldn’t be distinguished. It looked like a big snowball but this didn’t affect the effectiveness of the bug. Just then, a creaking noise came from the bug. It was as if something had stepped on the snow!
Old Mos’ face changed. “There is something out there!”
Long Sen stood up alertly and turned to wake everyone up.
5 o’clock in the morning was the time when humans were most likely to be sleeping deeply but everyone’s vigilance was very high. After being awakened, they woke themselves up and gathered in the warehouse.
Old Mo told them, “Listening to the sound, there shouldn’t be many of them. It’s like human footsteps.
Xiao Lou said, “Don’t forget the bugs look like humans and can disguise themselves.”
He just finished speaking when the group of people walked to the warehouse. They knocked gently on the door and a female voice was heard. “Is there anyone inside? Can we come in to hide from the snow? It is too cold outside.”
Everyone tacitly kept silent. Yu Hanjiang blinked. The team immediately scattered and put on their invisibility cloaks to hide. During the day, Yu Hanjiang had planned the locations where everyone would hide with their invisibility cloaks so they wouldn’t be crowded together and accidentally hurt their teammates.
Just then, the door was forcefully kicked open by several men.
Outside was dark but the light of the night pearl in the building allowed them to see clearly. There were five people, four men and one woman. All of them were tall and didn’t wear down jackets, only sweaters. The only female was also taller than 178cm and was taller than Ye Qi.
Yu Hanjiang slightly squinted and spoke in his mind to Xiao Lou, “They are bugs.”
Xiao Lou also agreed with Group Leader Yu’s inference. These people looked exactly like humans and their walking posture and voices were no different from ordinary people.
However, everyone immediately judged that they were bugs. It was still snowing outside and Xiao Lou and the others were cold in their down jackets. They had to use the stove to keep warm. Yet this group of people actually weren’t wearing down jackets and were only wearing a thin coat and sweater in the snow at night?
The disguise might allow them to put on an appearance but it couldn’t hide their instincts. They weren’t afraid of the cold, they were afraid of heat. This was the nature of the bugs. Putting on a down jacket was probably hot enough to affect their movements.