Sure enough, the game had a higher authority than the real world and could tamper with facts in the real world. This was a world that had been tampered with and the selected players discovered this reality, but were forbidden to reveal the truth.
He just didn’t know how far it went. It was easy to falsify and erase objectively existing things such as deleting words written on paper or a Weibo post. This degree of erasing could be done by humans in the real world.
Bai Liu found his mobile phone with the broken screen that he wasn’t willing to change and called a friend. Before the other person could react, he quickly said everything he encountered. The friend listened and once Bai Liu finished, he put his hand on the table and knocked, counting down casually, “7, 6, 5…”
“Why are you counting down? Continue telling me about what happened to you! F*k, is this true? You didn’t make it up? It is too exciting—”
Bai Liu looked down. “—3—2—1.”
His friend’s voice abruptly stopped before sounding confused. “Eh Bai Liu, why are you calling me? Huh? When did I answer your call? I have no impression at all!”
“It’s nothing.” Bai Liu spoke casually. “I was just thinking of you and gave you a call.”
Seven seconds was the time from when Bai Liu sent the Weibo post to when the last word completely disappeared. He made a special note of it but he didn’t expect that the game could easily tamper with non-objective things like human memory. Moreover, it only took seven seconds to complete the tampering. It seemed that tampering with a person’s memory was no more difficult for the game than tampering with a piece of data.
“I’m nauseous. Bai Liu, people like you can only think about money. Don’t make me sick.” This friend obviously understood Bai Liu very well. He joked before asking, “Seriously, why did you think about calling me. Is there something?”
“I was thinking about a question. Lu Yizhan, do you think a person’s memory is only seven seconds?” Bai Liu tapped his fingers on the table as he wrote down his experiences in the game on a piece of paper. Then he watched the words disappear one after another.
Lu Yizhan’s voice sounded a bit confused. “Why are you suddenly thinking about this type of philosophical question? In addition, isn’t your question wrong? Isn’t the original saying that a fish’s memory is only seven seconds?”
“Did I remember incorrectly?” Bai Liu lazily stretched his body. “Perhaps. After all, there are only seven seconds of memory and it is normal to remember things incorrectly. Eh, is it possible that the original sentence is ‘a human’s memory is only seven seconds’ and it was tampered into ‘a fish’s memory is only seven seconds’ by something to fool us humans who only have seven seconds of memory?”
Lu Yizhan was accustomed to Bai Liu saying strange things after becoming unemployed and didn’t know if he should laugh or cry. “What are you thinking about after becoming unemployed? In any case, I was paid today. I will invite you to dinner. Don’t think about humans, fish and seven seconds of memory. If everyone only has seven seconds of memory then what to do when you ask us to recite French clauses every day?”
“If you are inviting me to dinner then I will naturally come.” Bai Liu casually threw the coin around his neck back into his shirt and was chilled by the cold touch that was different from the coin. It was the Siren King’s scale pressing against his heart. Before Bai Liu hung up, he couldn’t help asking, “If a person’s memory is only seven seconds and a fish’s memory is only seven seconds, tell me, how many seconds is a merfolk’s memory?”
“Why are you still struggling over this question and even pulling out the merfolk?” Lu Yizhan let out a helpless laugh. “According to your hypothesis, the memory of a human and fish is only seven seconds so the memory of a merfolk must definitely be shorter. Perhaps only a few tenths of a second?”
Although he said goodbye to the merman called Tawil, the other party might’ve forgotten him the moment Bai Liu left.
Bai Liu felt a rare disappointment about being forgotten. He didn’t pursue human approval and could live well as long as he had money to entertain himself. However, the Siren King was really an unprecedented beautiful piece of data. Even Bai Liu who had no feelings couldn’t help slightly regretting that he was erased from the other person’s memory in a few seconds. Of course, it was just a little bit, a little bit like the size of a fish scale.
The main reason why Lu Yizhan and Bai Liu could play together was because they had the same stinginess. The two become unshakeable friends by sharing various discount lottery information. Of course, some people thought that they played together because both of them had no parents. They were orphans who could understand each other’s misery.
The moment Bai Liu sat down at the barbecue stall, Lu Yizhan opened his mouth with curved eyes. “Bai Liu, I’m going to get married.”
“Congratulations.” Bai Liu wasn’t surprised. Lu Yizhan and his girlfriend had been together for several years and marriage was normal. “Then I will ask you to treat me to this meal today. I will pay you 2,000 yuan later.”
Lu Yizhan almost sprayed a mouthful of cold beer onto Bai Liu’s face as he stared in shock. “Are you crazy? Giving me money for a treat? It is also 2,000! Didn’t you say that you will never give people money for marriage in your life? Why are you doing this type of ‘to hit a dog with a steamed bun’ thing?” (Never get back what is given away)
Yes, this was what Bai Liu said when a colleague got married.
This colleague usually didn’t get along well with people like Bai Liu so he always talked about Bai Liu behind his beck. Then once he was getting married, he kept being cheeky and trying to get Bai Liu to give him money. He said that his other colleagues gave one or two thousand yuan. Bai Liu could put together a monthly bonus. One or two thousand would do.
At that time, Bai Liu had said with a calm face, “I don’t intend to get married so I won’t give strangers money for marriage. This type of thing is like hitting a dog with a steamed bun and there is no return on my investment.”
The colleague’s face had turned dark. He was directly scolded by Bai Liu as a dog. Bai Liu meant that he and his wife were a couple of dogs, right? The colleague was so angry that he swore at Bai Liu, saying that he would kill Bai Liu’s children and grandchildren.
Bai Liu’s emotions hadn’t fluctuated after hearing this. He didn’t have any intention of raising future generations so such swear words were just an objective narrative of his future life. He had no need to be angry.
“That isn’t necessarily the case. I just won’t give money to strangers.” Bai Liu took a sip of his beer. “However, you’re not a stranger. We are in contact with each other and it isn’t an invalid investment if I give you some money.”
Lu Yizhan was a bit gratified but also wanted to laugh. “Why? Do you still want to make money back from investing in me? Really Bai Liu, I don’t need you to give me money. I’m just happy to be married and I wanted to invite you to dinner. I don’t have many friends and you count as one. I am very happy that you came. In addition, isn’t your situation bad right now? Forget about it.”
Lu Yizhan waved his hand and made a virtual rejection gesture. “We’ll talk about it when you have money.”
If Bai Liu’s stinginess was a result of his nature then Lu Yizhan’s was because he was forced by life. Lu Yizhan was a poor policeman. His recent days had been better and he was far better than the unemployed Bai Liu. He really didn’t want Bai Liu to give him money.
Bai Liu ate a bunch of cooked kidneys and wiped his mouth before suddenly saying, “I made 100,000 in the past week.”
“Pfft—!” Lu Yizhan really sprayed out his beer this time. “What did you do?”
He knew that Bai Liu wouldn’t lie to him. If Bai Liu said he earned 100,000 then it was really 100,000. Lu Yizhan was shocked. “You didn’t do anything illegal right? I will kill you personally!”
Lu Yizhan had always known that Bai Liu’s brain was excellent but it could be used in some strange or crooked paths such as designing horror games or designing seamless criminal plots. Therefore, after hearing that Bai Liu was rich, Lu Yizhan’s first reaction wasn’t to feel jealous. He had an eerie feeling and took out his phone in preparation to call his police colleagues.
Lu Yizhan knew that Bai Liu’s moral bottom line was very low and combined with the money hoarding psychological problem, it was really hard to say what Bai Liu would do without a source of income.
“I changed jobs. You don’t have to be so nervous. I asked and it is legal.” Bai Liu replied while peeling peanuts. “This job has a high income. It is more dangerous but it is quite suitable for me.”
“What kind of job can earn so much?” Lu Yizhan doubted it. “100,000 in a week?”
“Ummm, I probably sold my soul to a large underground organization but I can’t reveal the existence of this organization.” Bai Liu touched his chin and thought about it before trying to talk about his experience with the game in a way that wouldn’t be blocked.
“Then I will go on stage, or call it a live broadcast, and do things that sell my body and soul on the stage. There will be some weird things that insult and bully me and this will be shown to the audience. Some of the viewers who watch my performance will give me a lot of money and I earned 100,000 yuan.”
“……” Confusion, shock, fear, complexity etc. appeared on Lu Yizhan’s face. Finally, it froze on pity and Lu Yizhan looked at Bai Liu sadly. “Are you acting as a male prostitute in nightclubs, Bai Liu?”
Bai Liu, “……”
After he explained it, Lu Yizhan reluctantly believed that Bai Liu wasn’t doing such things but he was determined not to accept any money from Bai Liu. He felt that this money was from Bai Liu selling himself and didn’t want it!
Bai Liu, “……”
If Lu Yizhan insisted on understanding it this way then it didn’t seem impossible.
After the brief meeting, Bai Liu went home and rested for two days. He paid half a year’s rent to his landlord, cleaned his house and prepared to enter the game. The game only required him to enter once every seven days but Bai Liu felt he needed to enter in advance to learn about other things.
Still, he should have a good meal before he left. If he died in the game then it was equivalent to a good final meal. Bai Liu had this thought and went downstairs to buy a bowl of noodles with fried eggs.
The craftsmanship of the owner of the small noodle restaurant downstairs was quite good. In the small noodle restaurant, there was a TV set up on a shelf that was covered with oil. The social news was being played directly above Bai Liu who was eating noodles.
The voice of the female anchor on the news was clear. “The lawyer of Li Gou, a major suspect accused of raping and killing a high school female student, has filed a lawsuit again. He said that the evidence for Li Gou’s original death sentence is insufficient and he is currently preparing for a second trial.”
On the TV, photos of the suspect with a fleshy face and a smiling schoolgirl with mosaics covering their eyes were placed side to side. It was clearly incompatible.
The male owner of the noodle restaurant also saw the news. He wiped his hands on his apron and shook his head with a sign. “How evil. A good girl has been ruined. If I was the parents of this female student, I might be crazy right now. He was about to receive his sentence only to suddenly say that the evidence is insufficient. I heard that the evidence has suddenly disappeared. There is a lot of fuss about it on the Internet.”
The female anchor on the TV was still reporting without any fluctuations in tone. “The emotional ups and downs of the victim’s family are very serious. People are gathering to make trouble at the entrance of the court. Relevant personnel have been sent to investigate and coordinate.”
The video behind her showed a middle-aged hysterical woman with messy hair being stopped by a group of people. She was so emaciated that she almost lost her human form. Her hair was white and there were wrinkles around her eyes that were filled with tears. Even if she barely wiped away the tears with the back of her hands, with the next breath more tears and snot would fall.
The woman was stopped by a group of people and went crazy. She rushed to the door of the courthouse and knelt on the ground, howling. She gave a heart-rending howl like a mother beast. “She was only 18 years old! Why is the evidence missing?! Why is all the evidence recording what that beast did to my Guoguo gone? Are you protecting him?!”
Next to her, a middle-aged man had already been subdued by a security guard and his head was pressed to the ground. He screamed and writhed on the ground, his clothes torn by the struggle.
The man wept while shouting, “Let go of me! Give my daughter justice! Give back my daughter’s innocence! Call out that brute Li Gou! I vowed before Guoguo’s grave that I would kill the bad guy and avenge her!”
The video soon changed and Li Gou with a mosaic over his eyes appeared in the video. He pressed down the corners of his mouth but the pride of a successful crime still overflowed from his expression. “I didn’t do it. The previous evidence was all made up by the couple to frame me.”
“A good person like me,” Li Gou’s mouth raised in a smile. His eyes were covered by the mosaic so the raised corners of his mouth gave him a weirdly ferocious and tyrannical expression. He whispered hoarsely, “—God will help me. Yes, those types of bad people who casually spread rumors about me should be burned to death.”
“It’s so sad.” The restaurant boss was a soft and chubby man like dough. Now seeing this news, he couldn’t help wiping his tears with an apron. “I know those two people. They used to live here. Their daughter Guogou had very good grades. I didn’t expect… how could this happen?”
“The evidence suddenly disappeared?” After Bai Liu finished his last bite of noodles, he watched the social news on the screen and raised his eyebrow.
This method of obliterating a certain objective existence was slightly similar to the method of the game…
“Where is this girl’s grave?” Bai Liu asked the noodle restaurant owner. “Or do you have her parents’ number?”
The owner was taken aback. “I have it. What are you doing to do, Bai Liu?”
“Maybe I can help them.” Bai Liu wiped his mouth, placed 10 yuan on the table, pressed it under the bowl and stood up.
The noodle restaurant owner was taken aback. “Help them? How can you help?”
“Using an unconventional and legal method,” Bai Liu calmly replied.
Bai Liu had found that this game used a MLM-style promotion method. Players were like dominoes one after another. They were knocked down by events that seemed to be unrelated but there was actually a certain internal connected event that knocked them down, making them fall into the trap and despair preset by the game. This would stimulate fierce desires and they would be entered into the game, becoming someone who sold their soul to the game in order to satisfy their out of control inner desires.
The condition of entering the game was to have personal desires so intense that they didn’t care about life and death. For example, Bai Liu’s desire for money.
If Bai Liu didn’t guess incorrectly, perhaps the next batch of players in the world would have a pair of sad and desperate parents.
This Li Gou should also be a player and he used an item to eliminate his crimes. This action of Li Gou forced the parents who lost their beloved daughter to be helpless and fall into a state of extreme desire for revenge. They reached the standard that the game had for players.
It was like Mu Ke wanting to experience life due to his bad heart. Therefore, he was parachuted into the company and took Bai Liu’s original spot, forcing Bai Liu to lose control of his desire for money after being laid off, thus entering the game.
Everyone in this world was like chess pieces or building blocks for the game. The game played around like God and their lives were just a fun game.
What a cunning and cruel game.