IWOL Chapter 93: Unknown Cave

The starry night and meager moonlight wasn’t enough to illuminate the entire region. The island at night was pitch black, and the light of the fire flickered across their young faces.

Dong Linhai and Lin Hangzhi worked together to cook the poor rabbit that had met Allen on the road and was stoned to death. Even though there was no seasoning, the rabbit still tasted pretty good, and so it wasn’t difficult to eat.

Wang Que was given a rabbit leg with the tenderest meat. The ship had sunk in the afternoon and so they didn’t have time for dinner. Except for Dong Zheng, who hadn’t forgotten to eat a package of compressed biscuits despite being in a hurry, everyone else was so hungry that they felt as if their stomach was attached to their back.

“We have to find a place to stay overnight.” After washing off the oil stains on his hands with seawater, Cui Zuojing turned his back to the sea and looked out at the island in the shadow of night.

The lush, wild forest was like a huge beast silently occupying the island. From time to time, calls of unknown birds would reach them from some distant place. The sea breeze blew over the tips of trees, creating a soft “rustle.”

“It’s too late to build shelter now. Let’s see if we can find a cave.” Dong Zheng also came over and stood beside him. The tide washed over the shore, leaving thin white foams.

“I’ll go find it.” Cui Zuojing glanced at the people around the fire. After surviving such an encounter, the team’s vitality had greatly depleted. Dong Linhai had already lost a lot of blood before he was treated by the Stitched-Heart Bear. Although he was still very energetic, his lips were pale. Then, there was also Wang Que. Cui Zuojing could only hope that she would never get sick again.

Dong Zheng said, “I’ll go with you.”

Cui Zuojing didn’t refuse him. After all, he didn’t like wandering around alone. His frozen time during those eight years outside had made loneliness a close companion.

He’d had enough.

When they were still on the ship, they’d each sealed up some necessities with waterproof bags and carried them on their bodies in case of emergencies. Dong Linhai gave Dong Zheng a well-preserved flashlight and said, “You pay attention to safety.”

“Isn’t it safe enough to have me with him?” Cui Zuojing carried his sword and watched as Dong Zheng made two simple torches. After the torches were lit, he took one and said, “You have to be more careful. Although most beasts are afraid of fire, the monsters in this box may not necessarily feel the same.”

They’d landed on the southeastern part of the island. Dong Zheng walked beside the large, flat beach and rugged reefs toward the side with many cliffs. If the sea breeze had blown in this direction for a long time, then the natural wind erosion should form a kind of cave.

On the way, they ran into the carcass of a sea turtle. They cut off the sea turtle’s shell, washed it, and took it with them. They didn’t know if they would be able to find a water source. If not, they could use the shell to catch water.

The path wasn’t easy to thread. They groped forward silently, making no conversations except to remind one another to be careful. Half an hour later found Cui Zuojing struggling to climb a large bulge on a sloping cliff. His eyes lit up when he saw a dark hole.

The entrance of the cave was only 1.5 meters high. Cui Zuojing bent over through it and found that there was a cave inside.

The cave was very deep and seemed to wind away with no ends. It looked like the nest of some creature.

“This place is good,” Dong Zheng said.

“Mmn, let’s call everyone here.” Cui Zuojing took more than a dozen steps inward, holding the torch. There were no traces of animal feces. Presumably, this place was abandoned by its former owner.

To be frank, it wasn’t appropriate to call everyone over without first exploring clearly. But there was no time. It was better to hide in an unknown cave than to sleep out in the open.

They retraced their steps and called everyone over. By the time they settled in, it was already past nine in the evening.

Even though the Rolex on Dong Zheng’s wrist had been soaked in seawater for so long, it still worked as normal. It was indeed the best waterproof and dustproof watch.

Everyone had collected firewood on the way there so they were able to start a fire in the cave to keep warm. In the box, it was at the tail end of summer, but the sea breeze was strong on the island at night and so it was quite cold.

Cui Zuojing and Allen, both of whom had the most energy, would take on the job of night watch, respectively. Meanwhile, others found a relatively flat area around the fire to lay down and sleep.

Wang Que was fairly slender so the hard ground was very uncomfortable to her. She thought it would take a long time for her to fall asleep, but she didn’t expect that the moment she lay down, she would be overcome with the exhaustion that washed over her.

Soon, everyone’s breathing became steady. Cui Zuojing sat cross-legged next to Dong Zheng with the Tang Sword lying across his knees. Victor curled up at his feet, forming a fluffy white ball of cat.

Dong Zheng felt uncomfortable and used one arm under his head as a temporary pillow as he laid on his back to sleep. Cui Zuojing glanced at him and thought to himself:

When you get up tomorrow, this arm will be dead.

After he was sure that Dong Zheng had fallen asleep, Cui Zuojing quietly turned sideways, silently lifted Dong Zheng’s head, pulled out his arm, and gently laid his head on the ground.

Dong Zheng must have been really tired. He didn’t even wake up. Or, perhaps it was because he subconsciously felt that the person touching him was Cui Zuojing, and so he knew it was safe.

The youth leaned his back against the wall and stared at the slowly burning campfire. He would add some firewood from time to time and poke at it with a branch to ensure that it wouldn’t go out.

The night was long.

But, in the company of these people, it seemed that it wasn’t at all boring or lonely.

It was unknown what Wang Que was dreaming about. She let out a soft whimper, frowning. Allen slept on Lin Hangzhi’s legs with his mouth open. Dong Linhai leaned against the wall of the cave with his arms folded, as if he planned to sleep sitting all night.

Although he’d never clearly said it, Cui Zuojing had to admit that he did have a sense of belonging with the current Wanton Insurgency team.

He saw everyone’s struggles and persistence. One day, when he take back the rest of his feelings from the clown, this sense of belonging would perhaps blossom into a firm belief, creating a special emotional attachment to everyone.

Just like when he was in the Afternoon Tea Party.

Cui Zuojing kept watch until 3:00 before he began to feel tired. He squinted his eyes and yawned silently before lightly patting Allen awake.

“It’s my turn?” Allen rubbed his eyes, glanced at Dong Zheng’s watch, and exclaimed in surprise, “Huh? Why did you wait so long to wake me up?”

“I wasn’t tired, and I could always go back to the prisoner’s space to rest during the day.” Cui Zuojing put the sword aside and whispered softly, “It’s estimated that there will be light before six. I’ll go back to the prisoner’s space first. Keep watch carefully. If you’re really tired, wake Uncle up and let him keep watch. His cat’s body automatically wakes up at 4 in the morning every day to eat.”

“No problem.”

More than five hours of sleep was enough for Allen. He saw that Dong Linhai was sitting in an awkward position, his neck looking as if it was about to break, and so he scooted over and allowed the teen’s head to rest on his shoulder.

The first light the color of a fish’s belly lit up the day. The campfire had gone out by the time Victor woke up. He went outside, and as he stretched his long waist, he surveyed the flat land and vast sea in the distance.

There were no longer any traces of yesterday’s shipwreck on the sea. The luxurious Gabriel II had completely sank to the bottom of the sea, trapping the desperate souls of the many people who’d died.

Those NPCs were originally players or even pilgrims like them. But, they’d died on the journey and were reused. Their memories were washed away, and they were placed in boxes to either become other “people” whose sole purpose was to increase the difficulties or pave the way for later pilgrims.

Daylight crawled into the cave and fell on everyone’s faces. The light got brighter and brighter and soon awakened them one after another.

Dong Zheng opened his eyes and subconsciously looked around, but he didn’t see Cui Zuojing’s figure. He glanced into the prisoner’s space in his consciousness and saw that the youth was lying on his back and sleeping on his big bed with only a corner of the comforter covering his stomach.

Dong Zheng had slept through the night and was dying of thirst. He placed the sea turtle’s shell at the entrance of the cave last night for it to accumulate condensed water. But, it only collected very little, and there was just barely enough for a mouthful.

Allen came over and said, “Since that didn’t work, just distill seawater. We have fires and plastic bags and now even pots.”

Dong Zheng nodded. If they just focused on accumulating dew, it was likely that they would die of thirst first.

He saved that clear water he’d collected all night and gave it to the just awakened Wang Que to drink. Then, he took the turtle shell and went outside to get seawater.

Dong Zheng turned several bends and bypassed large seaweeds not far from the cave. Under the bright sky, he finally saw the beach they’d passed by last night.

It was densely packed with scatterings of white bones.

Dong Zheng took awhile to realize that they were a mixture of fish bones and human skulls about one meter long.They were stacked together to form a layer of white sandbars, dotted with yellow and orange dots. These were the bodies of the people who’d fled by jumping ship and ended up dying along the journey; their bodies had washed ashore.

Dong Zheng didn’t go over. He just looked at it from a distance. With so many bones, there was clearly something dangerous there, at least once upon a time.

He didn’t want to run into death when Cui Zuojing wasn’t here.

He picked a place where the water quality didn’t look so bad, filled the turtle shell with it, and returned back to the cave. Everyone was awake. They were all looking at the cave wall, and it was unclear what they were doing.

Seeing that Dong Zheng had returned, Dong Linhai shouted, “Brother! Look, there are words here!”

Words?

Dong Zheng put down the turtle shell and went over. The walls within the depths of the cave were engraved with strange characters. The reason they called it “words” was probably because the horizontal arrangements of symbols were very neat and the spacing between each pattern was about the same size.

Hieroglyphs.

These symbols ran into the deepest part of the cave. Because it was too late yesterday and everyone was exhausted, they didn’t explore the cave in detail and had slept directly in the outermost area.

The cave’s depths could not be reached by the sun and were pitched black, looking like the legendary mouth of hell that swallowed everything, including light.

It was unclear how deep the cave was.

Holding a flashlight, Dong Zheng tentatively walked in with Dong Linhai. There was a huge inverted pentagram on the wall of the cave above his head. Within the symbol was a dilapidated and incomplete goat head that seemed to be staring at them.

Not long ago, Fu Zhe had included this symbol in their study material. The inverted pentagram was known as “Judas Goat,” which was the religious emblem of Satan and was said to be representative of a demon. (1)

“I don’t think this is a good place,” Dong Linhai whispered.

Dong Zheng’s brushed his fingers over the Hebrew words around the symbol. Logically speaking, these words should be “Leviathan,” which should be the behemoth that was mentioned in the Old Testament. But now, it looked different. (2)

The two of them returned to the cave entrance. Everyone was extremely thirsty. There was nothing more unbearable than being surrounded by such a large body of water without any actual water to drink.

Dong Zheng thought for a moment, gave up using the turtle shell to distill water and said, “A lot of things floated in from the shipwreck. Let’s go see if we can find anything useful.”

—————————-

Translation Notes:
(1) Judas Goat – more widely known as Baphomet.
(2) Leviathan – a huge, primordial sea monster.



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Anonymous
Anonymous
3 years ago

C'mon Wang Que, you don't need to let them pamper and dote on you like that. Your powers are super cool. Go gather and control all the poisonous bugs on the island and become the Hive Mother of Dusk Island or something!!

-anon1995

Dreamer
Dreamer
3 years ago

Wait Baphomet is actually mentioned in the story whaaaat?! I thought I was just spouting nonsense in the past chapters. I didn’t expect that Baphomet would really appear and be mentioned later as part of another box plot.

We have the fookin cat head dog bodied creature (Gluttony), then Leviathan (Envy). I’m guessing Ibris and Baphomet each represent one of the remaining seven deadly sins. Asmodeus was mentioned in earlier chapters and he represents lust. The ones left are pride, wrath, sloth, and greed.

Huh… The seven deadly sins huh

Dreamer
Dreamer
3 years ago

DZ: *sleeps with pillow arm*

CZJ: When you get up tomorrow, this arm will be dead *gently removes arm*

DL: *sleeps upright*

Me: When you get up tomorrow, this neck will be dead–

Then AAAAAAAAH teetee moment right there! Allen helped Linhai rest his head on his shoulder. It was just so touching. Allen takes care of Linhai so much. Actually, even LH takes care of Linhai. At this point DL will never break free from his spoiled nature

Qi Qi
Qi Qi
3 years ago

I thought Cui Zuojing would give Dong Zheng a lap pillow but I guess it’s too soon ;-;

Chiyomi
Chiyomi
3 years ago

I like Wang Que as a female character a lot but if I were the leader of a team, I might actually leave her out because she seems more high-maintenance then the other members. It’s sad tho cuz it gives the impression that since she’s a girl she’s the weakest/frailest link in the group.

Ketkai
Ketkai
2 years ago

A team is as strong and as weak the weakest link. Persevere and develop (๑•̀ㅂ•́)و✧ maybe because we are just near after the beginning, but I hope to see Wang Que shine and produce/exercise wonders from her greatest potential

Nezunezu
Nezunezu
2 years ago

Haha first thing to do after waking up isn’t checking on his baby brother BUT his baby (future) wifi~~~~ DZ sooooo cute~✨💜

Last edited 2 years ago by Nezunezu
Brazilian cheese cake using google translator
Brazilian cheese cake using google translator
1 year ago

A comment below made sense you know.. About the 7 deadly sins and that really increases my theories! I’m looking forward to seeing if they’re real (my theories) or just paranoia. There was another comment below that made me want to do a digital art of Wang Que being a queen of insects and I hope her development is good since the character of Wang Que has..How can I even say? I think a lot of chances to become something good or really amazing. What the fuck, I forgot the word ಠ⁠ಗ⁠ಠ