IWOL Chapter 19: Chase

The unknown crystals on the walls of the karst cave glowed blue and lilac, vaguely illuminating this completely dark place. Cold water tickled down from the hanging pillars of stalactites and was caught by the stalagmites below.

Cui Zuojing climbed ashore from the turbulent dark stream. His two stiff legs felt as if they’d been frozen by the blizzard and were wet with water, giving the sensation that they don’t quite belong to him.

Small, unknown flying creatures perched on the walls of the cave, quietly observing the sudden intruders in the shadows. Behind him, came the clattering sounds of the executioner stepping on water. Its huge body could not stand upright in the karst cave. During the chase, it had smashed the stalactite pillars that had been growing for thousands of years, upsetting the pure land that had never been stepped on.

Cui Zuojing pulled out two sharp stalactites and threw it above his head towards the executioner. Without looking at the result, he staggered on the raised stones by the dark riverbed and quietly opened a door.

This time, he returned to the labyrinth. Cui Zuojing sighed and rubbed his frozen face hard. The temperature of late summer finally made him feel better.

The meat-covered saw came through the door first, and the executioner followed behind, full of growls and roars of incomprehensible words. It’s anger was self-evident. If the hatred that exuded from its face had substance, it would probably crush Cui Zuojing into mince meat.

The leader of a five-members squad had just turned around when he saw the executioner twisted out of the narrow door, looking like a monster struggling out of the abyss.

The appearance of this thing was completely beyond the scope of human cognition. After a brief shock, he suddenly shook his head and ran without hesitation. He shouted to the players behind, “Don’t go that way. Run!”

The executioner was injured. The left cheek was completely frozen, and the blood had condensed into a pure red ice that was completely attached to its face. The iron gloves and iron boots were covered with a thick layer of frost, which was seriously affecting its speed of travel.

It didn’t pay attention to the people that had accidentally stumbled upon it and was staring fixedly at Cui Zuojing. It rushed at him with a knife. Meanwhile, Cui Zuojing was standing by a door, waiting for it. He waited until the two tentacles snapped toward him before suddenly running into the door.

The sudden, scorching heat of the crater evaporated the water on his body and the ice on his eyelashes. Cui Zuojing sweated out in a few breaths, while the magma nearby gurgled hot bubbles that boiled and popped.

Ash clouds surged in the sky, and the volcanoes that had just erupted continued to vomit endless volcanic ashes, submerging all traces of forest and civilization.

The flaming lava flowed like a stream, and the red volcano under the thick cloud was like an evil altar, summoning demons and calling for the end of the world. Cui Zuojing stood by the crater and glanced inward.

Then, he jumped down.

Just before the tongue of fire was about to lick the soles of his feet, the invisible door appeared in the air, engulfing Cui Zuojing and the hot pursuit of the executioner.

Putong-

Suddenly falling into the sea at the beginning of everything, Cui Zuojing did not struggle, nor did he try to slowly float under the effect of buoyancy. Instead, he continued to sink slowly.

Strong ultraviolet rays directly hit the sea surface, streaming around an atmosphere that lacked oxygen. The organic matters in the primitive ocean wandered with the waves. A huge cell relying on flagella swam in front of Cui Zuojing and “ate” a phosphate molecule, thus completing the synthesis of raw materials into nucleotide.

A string of tiny bubbles floated from Cui Zuojing’s mouth. He held his breath, bypassed the polysaccharide molecules larger than himself, and swam toward the cell-shaped white fragment floating in the sea water.

“…”

“…”

There was only silence in the story dialogue about the fragment. Cui Zuojing collected the fragment. Behind him, the executioner’s saw was coveted by a single-cell algae. As a result, half of it was absorbed into the simple cell wall, and the executioner struggled to pull it out.

Cui Zuojing turned around and bumped into the soft cell membrane of a prokaryotic cell, and the phospholipid molecule gently wrapped around him.

[Swallow Swallow Swallow Swallow Swallow Swallow Swallow Swallow Swallow Swallow Swallow Swallow —Infinite Evolution】

In the blink of an eye, on the rudimentary screen of a red and white machine, Cui Zuojing looked down at his pixelated hands, then at the black background and the river water that was merely a simple blue line under his feet. Unexpectedly, from his pocket, he was able to extract a gun.

The executioner, who was also pixelated, descended from the sky but had lost its scary appearance due to the nature of cartoon. Cui Zuojing touched the tip of his nose thoughtfully and suddenly shouted, “Up, down, left, right, left, right, BABA.”

The cheat for 30 extra lives immediately took effect. After looking at the medal in the upper right-hand corner with X30 on it, Cui Zuojing loaded the gun, looked at the executioner, and gave him a smile full of evil intentions.

*******

Late at night, the sleepy teenager suddenly woke up. Somehow, he’d fallen asleep on his physics workbook.

He rubbed his eyes and yawned. He picked up the pen and was about to finish his unfinished homework, when suddenly, he saw two small black spots in the diagram of his “Synchronous Workbook”.

He froze for a moment. Thinking it was because he was too tired, he lowered his head to look carefully before realizing that it seemed to be two people.

The bigger figure was holding a horror-shaped serrated knife, covered in blood, and there were two belt-like things twisting on its head, In contrast, the smaller figure had nothing.

He widened his eyes and hurried to look more closely.

The two little people fell together in the water cup used to calculate buoyancy utilizing iron balls. The smaller one swam up quickly, climbed out of the water using the black line drawn on the cup’s wall. He tiptoed across and jumped again, grabbing the acceleration of gravity g in the formula “F float = ρ liquid gV row”.

The g was dragged down by him, causing it to hang crookedly in the formula. As the small figure clung to the hook on the g, he bent his legs, struggling, and managed to pull the g slightly out of the formula.

The larger figure was now swimming awkwardly toward the liquid level marked on the cup’s wall. The teenager didn’t know what would happen and, out of curiosity, used the tip of a pen to gently nudge the g’s head.

The g was finally pulled down by the little figure.

“F float = ρ liquid gV row” became “F float = ρ liquid V row”, and the buoyancy was instantly reduced to 1/9.8 of the original. The executioner, who was about to swim to the surface of the liquid, almost instantly lost all buoyancy. His four limbs struggled wildly as he fell down to the bottom of the cup.

Cui Zuojing took advantage of the fallen g to jump to the wall of the cup. He looked down at the executioner and the g in the water. After a short break, he pushed open the door.

The teenager also wanted to try touching Cui Zuojing with the tip of his pen, but he saw that the little figure had taken out a pen from his pocket, drew a frame, opened it, and then disappeared without a trace.

Even without the missing person and the larger person at the bottom of the cup, the line “F float = ρ liquid V row” remained. The g also laid at the bottom of the diagram. It looked like a printing error, telling him everything he’d seen wasn’t an illusion.

The junior high school student blinked in shock, shoved away the workbook and threw away the pen, shouting:

“Mom! My physics problem is solved!”

In the supreme meeting hall of Chaos, thirteen strange-looking creatures sat around a table, voting on the proposed result of the library invasion case, when suddenly Cui Zuojing appeared on the round table among them.

The teenager looked up at the council members who were nearly a hundred meters high, and the council members looked down at him silently, their compound eyes reflecting the teenager’s figure from head to toes. Behind him, the door was once again pushed open.

Countless pieces of meat fell from it, but due to this indescribable state of affairs, it once again returned to its original state.

“▇▇▇▇▇▇▇?” it asked.

Cui Zuojing didn’t understand the language of these supreme beings. He was a little dumbfounded. He didn’t expect that the Labyrinth of Time could even reach here. He hurriedly bowed deeply to the thirteen council members, and firmly pushed the executioner’s head back through the door. “I’m sorry to disturb you, please continue.”

He bowed again and hurried through the door at the fastest speed.

A council member, who had no physical form, asked from within a mass of dark mist, “▇▇▇?”

Its companion answered affirmatively, “▇.”

“Mother, I broke into the supreme meeting. Fortunately, I ran fast enough.” Cui Zuojing took a deep breath, having just recovered from his shock. The instinctive fear imprinted deep within the soul finally subsided.

The executioner, who was forcibly pushed into this space, was one step ahead. In the dazzling hall, an emperor with a deteriorating face sat on a dragon throne. As the sound of gunfire rained outside, he stared dazedly at the dragon statues across the hall and muttered, “My Great Qing–”

“Old brother, Great Qing had died a long time ago,” Cui Zuojing kindly reminded him, before catching the executioner’s iron fist with his hands, rolling away, and pushing open the hall door.

The executioner, who was covered in bruises, screamed and rushed through the door.

Only the smoke rising from the ambergris remained.

*******

Dong Zheng had no idea where he was.

Cui Zuojing had said that he would lead the monster away, but what was his situation now? Dong Zheng didn’t know.

As the owner, he could feel the prisoner’s situation to a certain extent, but he’d only known Cui Zuojing for just two days before they entered the Labyrinth of Time. He hadn’t yet learned how to use the prisoner card. Now, he could vaguely sense that Cui Zuojing was getting tired.

The release of the prisoner for a long period of time would become a big burden on the owner’s spiritual strength. Cui Zuojing had initially requested that, if there were no special circumstances, he wanted to stay outside. Dong Zheng had agreed. Even You Chenlei thought that Cui Zuojing was a participant like them.

At that time, Cui Zuojing basically didn’t move much and stayed close to him. As a result, Dong Zheng didn’t feel much burden. But now that the youth had taken the executioner away to some unknown location, Dong Zheng was starting to feel the strain of distance.

He began to have a faint headache, and his vision became slightly blurred. Dong Zheng suppressed the anxiety in his heart and forced himself to concentrate on finding the door to the story fragments.

But, at this moment, he heard a loud wailing scream that seemed to be rapidly approaching him.

 


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Loni
Loni
2 years ago

Holy SHIT, this is so cool!! And fun af (≧∀≦)

Dreamer
Dreamer
2 years ago

I just get more amazed as I go on. Like… Travelling through the founding of the US, to the primordial sea/soup, an arcade game, a school textbook, and even the meeting of the higher beings… What a wild ride. Its fun and chaotic.

Though I do agree that the transition between scenes is kinda jarring

Ketkai
Ketkai
2 years ago

This labyrinth is so interesting! So many time&space jumps and they’re all unimaginable!!

yel
yel
1 year ago

oh i love the continuous jumping in space and time. that was so cool!!

Nezunezu
Nezunezu
1 year ago

i was almost lost in this labyrinth 😅😂 *someone help!!! I need to find myself out here!*