Chapter 52 – Mu QianSe's Code of Conduct
7-9 minutes 03.03.2023
The truth was, Mu QianSe still harbored some latent infatuation for her first love.
As they say, “the deeper the love, the keener the vengeance”.
After she broke up with her ex-boyfriend, she had stuck a picture of him to the wall facing her desk.
Since then, she had thrown knives at that picture every day, for target practice, and also in resentful memory of how her precious first love had been ruined.
If things took their natural course, once they graduated from college, they would most likely have parted ways and lived out the rest of their lives without ever crossing paths again.
Their brief dalliance would be no more than a painful footnote born of foolish, young passion in a dark chapter of her life.
Of course, Mu QianSe always believed there was a chance that she might turn on some law-enforcement-based program on TV and find out what that lowlife had been up to.
But nothing was certain except uncertainty itself.
For the life of her, she could not fathom how that ambitionless, video game addict who had nothing to offer but a pretty face could have transformed overnight into a secret guardian of humanity!
There's no way something as fantastical as all that could be true, goddammit!
The worst part of that was, even when she tried to look for evidence to disprove this, she had failed to find anything definitive, but ended up uncovering more evidence to prove it instead!
…Could Lin XiaoYi's theory be true, after all?
Thus, such thoughts had occupied Mu QianSe's mind night after night as she tossed and turned in bed, unable to get to sleep.
If she applied that theory to her vivid recollections of all the unreasonable things her ex-boyfriend ever did, it seemed that a reasonable explanation could be found for each of his bizarre actions…
but the theory itself had to be a wild flight of fancy!
The poor girl racked her brains for any memory of supernatural encounters she might have had when she was still dating Bai Zhi.
If something like that had happened, whether that guy was a hero or not, at least things would make a little more sense.
But to her chagrin, she found that, since she was extremely timid, the slightest rustle in the middle of the night had always rattled her nerves so badly that she couldn't be sure if she had encountered a supernatural entity, like Lin XiaoYi had, or if it was all in her imagination…
…Have I ever had a supernatural encounter?
No…? No way…
Find the original at bit.ly/3Tfs4P4.
And so it went, round and round in her mind.
But Mu QianSe was one of those people who defied others' expectations.
For example, when she was struggling with the extreme dilemma of honoring her promise to eat her phone—and be choked to death in the process—or not eat the phone and be plunged into a pit of self-loathing, the phone had “accidentally” slipped from her hand and fallen ten stories before smashing on the ground.
If she was ever bothered by a problem she could not solve, she simply had to remove the source of the problem—that was the code of conduct that Mu QianSe lived by.
When she had been forced to enter places and face things that scared her, the solution was to cut herself so she would feel pain instead of fear.
By that same reasoning, if she accidentally dropped her phone, then there was no way she could eat that phone—the perfect way out!
As she stared at the familiar figure enjoying his breakfast at the table some distance away, Mu QianSe was reminded that the truth of Bai Zhi's identity was a problem she would never solve, and when it came to problems she couldn't solve, the solution was to take out the one causing the problem…
Suddenly, she was struck by a new realization.
The reason she had come to Prosperity Mall was to get a new phone, since her old one was now in pieces and it was terribly inconvenient to get anything done without one.
But why was he here? The mall was nearly a 30-minute bus ride away from campus—it seemed unlikely that Bai Zhi would make such a long trip just to get breakfast…
How bored does someone have to be to do something like that?
Therefore, the most likely explanation was that he was…
Slapping a palm to her forehead, Mu QianSe let out an anguished cry.
Another clear piece of evidence…
but not the kind I wanted to find!
If that ex-boyfriend of hers really was a Player, then everything would match up with what Lin XiaoYi had been saying.
He used his abilities to be a hero, a secret guardian of humanity who kept his identity hidden, so the reason he had dated her was because she was being stalked by a supernatural entity, the reason he had stood her up that night was because he was fighting that entity, and finally, he had ended their relationship as soon as the problem had been taken care of…
It explained everything perfectly!
So, back at the hospital, that guy had been saving the comatose students, and instead of protesting his innocence, had completely brushed aside her misunderstanding—he meant to slip away once the job was done, leaving no trace of his hand in the matter!
“Ahh!” Mu QianSe groaned.
“No more, forget it! It's way too annoying! What does that have to do with me anyway? He's the one who wanted to play hero, while I've done nothing wrong, so why should I be the one feeling guilty about that?!”
A deeply disturbed Mu QianSe decided that averting her eyes was the best way to stay out of trouble and hurried to get out of the area.
She had not expected to encounter the Game at the mall, and it had already cost her nearly ninety minutes.
The first thirty minutes of that had been wasted agonizing over whether or not to even join the Game.
At least she had ended up in the same party as that guy, because from the way Mustachio and Nine-Tailed Fox were retching, if she hadn't been given special protective gear, she had no doubt that her reaction would have been far worse.
“Speaking of, they're just a lousy pair of glasses, it couldn't hurt to just give them to me! All that fuss about the cost of making it—aren't they no better than polished beer-bottle glass? I could've put on some presbyopic glasses, or even regular glasses for short-sighted people, for the same effect…”
Mu QianSe started grumbling about her experience in the game, as if to distract herself from all thoughts of her ex-boyfriend.
After all, an ex-boyfriend was an ex-boyfriend, to say nothing of the fact that he was currently dating Lin XiaoYi, so what did she have to do with him?
Exactly! Nothing! Besides, fat chance that I would have anything to do with him in the future, so what's the use in worrying about it? More's the pity…
It was better for her to spend her time thinking of something else, of course…
Even though the “something else” didn't make her feel any better—such as that completely boorish Player known as Black&White.
If she could, she would have liked to team up with that guy long-term, since despite his eccentric personality, his performance in the Newbie Run and the Game marked him firmly as an expert Player.
There was no shame in relying on a helping hand from the expert…
And what was more, Black&White always had something prepared for her.
He was the one who lent her the portable amplifier, offered her snacks, and looked out for her in various other ways, unlike her lousy ex-boyfriend…
…even though he had no sense of delicacy whatsoever.
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