Ch44 - Dreamland
(Part 1 – Death Roulette)
Edited by Silver Wind
Zhou Wenyan raised the《Strange Talk City》book in his hand and explained: “We were inside a book just now.”
Initially, Zhou Wenyan presumed that the supernatural beings were written by the Otaku but he did not expect that the Otaku was also a character constructed under an author’s pen, and everything was written by said author.
Therefore, the reason why the players met the ghosts and monsters fabricated from the strange talks was because they entered the book world.
Zhou Wenyan said, “This game is actually quite interesting.”
At the start of the round, the System misled the players by stating that the game mode was a battle royale, and had they not thought past the given information, they would have been caught in the System’s trap because the city was made to exhaust the players’ lives, either by having them collapse from the incessant waves of ghost and monsters or the adversaries who were eyeing them menacingly.
If they let their guard down in even the slightest, they would be deceived by Otaku too.
Under Otaku 2’s narrative, the horror and regret he felt from killing his mother caused him to divide and create Otaku 1, and Otaku 1 was a monster for being able to write out those strange stories and make them reality.
Hence, everything could only be reverted back to normal by killing Otaku 1.
However, if Otaku 1 died, the World Outlook would never be solved fully.
The complete truth was that this was a book within a book.
The author wrote a book where the protagonist inside the book was a web novel writer, and under the author’s setting, the protagonist would write supernatural fiction and cause them to materialise and become real.
In turn, the protagonist believed that he was the writer who controlled everything, but in reality, he was just a character in the book, which was why everything he tried to do to end his nightmare was of no use.
Shen Dongqing started understanding it slightly.
“Then how do we clear the copy”
Zhou Wenyan said: “Find the real author.”
As his words landed, the room door was opened by someone.
A bespectacled young man in a T-shirt walked in, and upon seeing that there were three additional people in the room, he was so scared that he dropped the teacup he was holding onto the ground.
“You, you guys…”
Zhou Wenyan gave him a kind smile: “We have something we want to talk to you about.”
The young man was pressed into the sofa.
He was somewhat panicked: “Y-You, you, you, who are you guys”
Zhou Wenyan placed the book《Strange Talk City》on the tea table in front of him: “Simply put, we just came out from your book.”
Young Man: “W-Wait, my book” His eyes widened, “How is this possible!”
Zhou Wenyan could not be bothered to explain and he said in a direct manner: “You can choose not to believe it, but you still have to follow my instructions afterwards.”
Young Man: “Ah”
The young man was carried to the front of the computer and his hands were placed on the keyboard.
He was a little befuddled, “Could it be that the editor told you to come over to make me rush my manuscript Rest assured, my manuscript is almost completed, it’s almost, almost…”
Shen Dongqing said: “What have you written for next week’s manuscript”
The young man seemed to understand something, “Is it possible that you are fans of my book and you want to know the contents of my update in advance”
Shen Dongqing nodded, “Something like that.”
Heaving a sigh of relief, the young man said, “Is that so, it doesn’t matter if I tell you.
The story I wrote involves a group of people being hoodwinked into Strange Talk City for a battle royale, but I haven’t finished writing it.”
Zhou Wenyan: “The ending”
Young Man: “The ending was that everyone died.”
Zhou Wenyan pressed down on the young man’s shoulder: “Change it.”
We’re sorry for MTLers or people who like using reading mode, but our translations keep getting stolen by aggregators so we’re going to bring back the copy protection.
If you need to MTL please retype the gibberish parts.
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Blueberry saw hers too and she pointed at her own name as she exclaimed: “It actually has my name!”
The young man looked at where Blueberry was pointing and explained: “She’s my female protagonist.”
Blueberry was startled and she fired three consecutive questions.
“I’m the female protagonist Are there romantic scenes Is there a male protagonist”
Young Man: “Uh… there are no romantic scenes, and there is a male protagonist, two male protagonists in fact.”
Blueberry backed away slowly: “I understand.”
Wasn’t this implying that there was no such thing as having a female protagonist She was just pure soy sauce.
The young man scrolled the document to the very end.
In actuality, he was almost done with writing and he was only missing the conclusion.
Even if he was being told to change the ending now, he did not know where to begin changing.
Shooting Zhou Wenyan a pleading look, he asked: “How should I change it”
Zhou Wenyan crossed his arms together: “Make the two male protagonists in the book successfully escape and allow them to return back to the real world.”
Blueberry reminded: “The female protagonist as well.”
Zhou Wenyan: “Plus the female protagonist.”
The young man started adding the finishing touches as per commanded and typed out the ending where the three people succeeded in escaping.
When the last sentence was inputted, the young man let out a sigh.
Then, he turned his head around, only to realise that the three people who had randomly appeared had departed without any prior notice.
Young Man: “”
Fortunately, as a writer, the young man’s ability to accept things was strong.
Thus, he turned back to his computer and read through the ending again to find that it was quite decent, so he packed it up and sent it to his editor.
“I’m finally done with it, now I can work out the plot for the next story…”
【 You have left Strange Talk City 】
【 Congratulations on successfully solving the puzzle, Closing in Progress— 】
【 This copy is an assault copy, no points are awarded outside of the system’s scheduled games, special items dropped [Key Fragment*1], [Dreamland Invitation Letter*1] 】
Shen Dongqing held the piece of key fragment.
He had no choice to say this but, the game was quite miserly in a certain aspect— it was merely a single key and yet it loathed the fact that the key existed, such that it was broken into a dozen of pieces.
Right now, Shen Dongqing had two key fragments in his hand, and even if he pieced them together, he was afraid that he could not even form a corner.
Zhou Wenyan opened his eyes.
“I thought we could borrow that author’s strength to return to reality.”
Because the ending the author wrote was that the three returned back to the real world, but the game was evidently not the real world.
However, he was only giving it a try, and he did not feel much after the failed attempt.
Shen Dongqing casually stuffed the key fragments into his pocket.
“You want to go out How many key fragments do you have right now”
“Nine, it’s quite a rare drop,” Zhou Wenyan replied.
Shen Dongqing thought about it before he opened his hand and offered the two key fragments to him: “For you.”
Zhou Wenyan gave him a sidelong glance.
“Why are you giving it to me ”
“So that you can gather the pieces as soon as possible ah,” said Shen Dongqing.
Zhou Wenyan closed Shen Dongqing’s fingers around the key fragments in his palm.
“Even if I gathered them all, I can’t leave.”
Shen Dongqing tilted his head.
Zhou Wenyan said, “If I’m going to go out, it has to be with you at least.
How meaningless would it be to go out alone”
Shen Dongqing’s lips thinned, revealing a grin, “That’s what I’m thinking too.
Help me keep it first, we’ll go out together when the time comes.”
Zhou Wenyan caressed his head.
Soon after, Shen Dongqing pulled out another rectangular card.
This was the other item that dropped after the game had ended.
“What is this” asked Shen Dongqing as he raised the card.
The card was exquisite and resplendent with gold powder scattered all over its surface.
When it was opened, a three-dimensional castle appeared and there was a little girl in a ballet skirt standing in the middle that twirled continuously to the music.
When she was done spinning, a cluster of papers folded itself into a firework exploding and formed the word “Dreamland”.
“Where have I seen this” Shen Dongqing thought about it, “Ah, it was right next to Plague City.”
When they were on the way to Plague City, there had been a road sign at the midpoint.
Going left brought them to Plague City, and Dreamland was on the right.
Zhou Wenyan took the invitation letter to examine it.
“It appears to be an amusement park.”
There were a lot of game copies but that did not mean he knew nothing about them.
“Let’s go out and search for information concerning Dreamland…”
Before he could finish speaking, he heard the little girl in a ballerina skirt open her mouth and say sweetly:
【 Dreamland Invitation Letter taking effect 】
【 May Player Shen Dongqing take along a partner  and leave for Dreamland to participate in a tea party 】
Shen Dongqing: “Partner” He looked at Zhou Wenyan.
Zhou Wenyan nodded his head calmly in reply.
Shen Dongqing blurted out, “When did we become partners”
Wasn’t his identity always that of his reserve grain
Zhou Wenyan was helpless.
“Back at the sanatorium, didn’t you promise me that” Carrying some grievances, he said, “We even kissed and now you’re trying to renege”
Shen Dongqing: “I… you weren’t talking about being with you back then”
The Chinese language was wide-ranging in meaning and profound.
Shen Dongqing thought that he meant playing games together.
Zhou Wenyan did not explain and directly used his actions instead.
He bent forward and kissed Shen Dongqing on the lips lightly.
“If I were to do this to someone else, would you agree to it” Zhou Wenyan asked.
Shen Dongqing shook his head, “No way.”
Zhou Wenyan guided him patiently and systemically.
“Then do you want to do such a thing to me”
Shen Dongqing hesitated a little but he still chose to answer according to what his heart intended.
Zhou Wenyan: “We are partners then.”
Shen Dongqing was slow to react.
“Is that how it is”
Zhou Wenyan answered in the definitive.
“Only partners would do that to each other.”
Feeling a little giddy and dazed, Shen Dongqing nodded his head.
He said, “Okay, then we’re partners.”
The game system could no longer hold itself back and opened its mouth again to remind them:
【 Can the two players please proceed to Dreamland to participate in the tea party!!!】
【Please set off immediately!】
Please stop showing your public displays of affection here!
The pumpkin carriage swayed noisily with the motion.
A handsome and spirited white horse with hair as glossy as silk and satin pulled the carriage from the front.
It was like a fairy tale.
Shen Dongqing picked up the delicate and small pastries from the table, and said: “Are we really going to an amusement park”
Although Zhou Wenyan was not completely certain, he still said: “We should be.”
After the game said the line “Proceed to Dreamland to participate in the Tea Party”, it became silent like a chicken and did not issue another prompt again.
Shen Dongqing reopened the letter of invitation.
The music sounded and the little girl wearing a ballet skirt was still dancing merrily but she did not utter a single word.
Da da da—
The white horse pulling a pumpkin carriage entered an amusement park.
The place seemed to be carved out from a fairy tale; the air was filled with the roasted scent of popcorn, all the architecture belonged to a fantasy in style and it was painted with multitudes of bright colours.
Shen Dongqing got off the pumpkin carriage.
They had stopped at a wide public square and at its centre, there was an erected statue of a Queen clad in a magnificent dress.
Behind the statue was a looming castle.
All four directions of the square were lined with guards,their bodies were draped in thick and heavy suits of armour which concealed every inch and muscle of their skin.
Apart from that, players who were similarly dazed occupied the middle of the square as well.
“Our humble guests, welcome to Dreamland.”
From seemingly out of nowhere, a Clown leapt out and winked at each player as he addressed them in a shrill voice: “Every guest present here should be holding onto an invitation issued by Her Majesty the Queen, right”
“Do you know how many people in the Infinite Nightmare Game wail and shout about wanting a chance to participate in Her Majesty the Queen’s Tea Party You bunch ought to feel honoured.”
“We certainly feel honoured,” A player wearing a black hat gave his salutations, “Can we enter the castle now then”
“You are quite hateful, behatted one,” said the Clown as he shook his head.
“Unfortunately, you are the guests of Her Majesty the Queen, or else I would have cut off your head a long time ago.”
Black Hat shrugged his shoulders: “That is truly unfortunate.”
Suddenly, the Clown issued a drawn-out maniacal laughter.
“It is just that it is not that easy to participate in Her Majesty the Queen’s Tea Party.
Her Majesty the Queen only wants to invite loving husbands and wives with mutual trust…” His eyes swept across the group of males and females, “And of course, husband and husband or wife and wife is acceptable too.”
“There are always inferior people with bad intentions that want to deceive Her Majesty the Queen, so before you enter the castle, we will be going through a small game to screen for the genuine lovers.”
The Clown raised his voice, so shrill it could pierce people’s eardrums: “Death Roulette, commencing—”