Before that autumn even ended, Shen Cheng was filled with an aura of death, and everyday Lu Shenxing witnessed him fading away bit by bit.
Wei Yang was more silent than before, and the smile that had always been on Liu Huo's face disappeared. Whether for Baozhu, for oneself, or for Youlong Castle, everyone was anxious.
The man in question, however, was extremely calm, as if it had nothing to do with him.
Lu Shenxing thought that Shen Cheng would survive until winter, but Shen Cheng lived for another whole year, beyond his expectation.
On the day of the Lantern Festival, every family in the city put up lanterns and festoons, it was very festive. The dreary atmosphere of Youlong Castle also faded a little with the sound of the fireworks.
The kitchen was full of warmth as a dozen cooks were preparing dinner. Lu Shenxing leaned on the edge of the table, his chopsticks holding the freshly prepared Yuanzi, sucking them into his mouth two or three at a time.
"Meiren, these are stuffed with custard." The middle-aged man brought two hot plates of Fuyuanzi over. "And these are stuffed with sesame seeds."
Lu Shenxing's voice was vague, "Stuff another plate of sesame seed ones and use a little less sugar."
"Yes!" The middle-aged man answered and quickly ordered someone to do it.
When his empty stomach finally became a bit more comfortable, Lu Shenxing wiped his mouth and sighed in contentment. When he spied a golden floating Yuanzi, he strode over, "Is it the sweet-scented osmanthus filling?"
The middle-aged man nodded, nervously flicking the cooking Yuanzi in the frying pan. He was in a hurry and forgot to wipe off the water on his chopsticks. As soon as he put them in, it made a loud sizzle and hot oil splashed everywhere.
Lu Shenxing pulled down his sleeves to cover the back of his hands, smiled and comforted him, "I’m fine."
"Meiren, this..." The middle-aged man was very guilty. He suddenly looked behind Lu Shenxing, and his face paled as though he’d seen a ghost.
Lu Shenxing turned around, but he didn't see a ghost, he saw Shen Cheng.
The kitchen was instantly enveloped by a frigid chill, and everyone knelt on the ground, not daring to even breath.
The broken meridians in his body were retrograde. Shen Cheng's chest rose and fell sharply, his breathing was rapid, the blue veins in his forehead bulged, and his complexion was twisted.
When Lu Shenxing saw this, he immediately started to pull Shen Cheng away, but he was still a step too late. A warm liquid splashed on the back of his neck, he turned around and the middle-aged man who’d been talking to him just now had been blown apart.
The blood bubbling on the ground was disgusting, but no one dared to scream.
Lu Shenxing's face was pale, he took a deep breath, biting the bullet and approached. His face was bloodied by the violent burst of energy around Shen Cheng.
Holding Shen Cheng's hand, Lu Shenxing ignored the blood flowing to his chin, and the taste of iron at the back of his throat, "I’m here."
Shen Cheng's hideous bloodthirsty eyes had a trace of clarity, and he clenched Lu Shenxing’s hand tightly, wiping the blood from his face with his other hand. There was an imperceptible pleading in his voice, "Let’s go back."
There was a fierce pain in his core, and Lu Shenxing cursed wildly in his heart. He forgot how many similar Wulin novels he could have chosen. Now he was the protagonist of a disaster film without any martial arts or qi.
What happened that day didn’t spread beyond the kitchen, the blood on the ground was cleaned up and everyone was still busying themselves, as if nothing had happened.
The scent of medicine on Lu Shenxing's body became stronger and stronger, and even he himself felt that he could die in Shen Cheng's hands at any time.
Spring flowers bloomed, this world was their world.
Shen Cheng was so thin and breathing intermittently. Lu Shenxing sat on the side of the bed, rubbing his fingers. The first time he met this person was a coincidence, the second time was fate, there shouldn't be a third time.
"I’ll spoil you for the rest of my life, stay with you for the rest of my life, but I don't want to see you again in the next life." Lu Shenxing squinted, his tongue swept around the walls of his mouth, using a volume that only he could hear.
This world was fake, the people and things were derived from text, but his emotions were real. Lu Shenxing was afraid that he would get lost in them and forget his original intentions, so he reminded himself every time he was about to lose his grip.
If he forgot to remind himself for even a day, it would be a terrible thing.
He couldn't forget his identity or his purpose. He must recognize that this was just a game. He had parents waiting, brothers and sisters, and a bunch of friends. Everything he did was so he could go back and return to his original life.
Lu Shenxing looked at the person in front of him, he still felt like the other one, but he remembered nothing. Anytime he thought of this outside his task, he would become more involved, think more about him, and worry more, which was not good.
The most frightening thing would be that one day when he confuses this illusion with reality. Lu Shenxing looked at the injuries on his arm. The old ones had faded, and new ones were added. Such days were endless.
"222, did you choose the people who would be the goal of my two missions?"
"Ding, Mr. Lu, this question is not within the scope of your tasks."
The answer was as unsatisfactory as expected, but Lu Shenxing felt disturbed, becoming very irritable.
He’d thought more than once, that maybe the soul in Shen Cheng's body was the same as his, and also worried about the progress of the task.
Shen Cheng opened his eyes, his already indifferent face still held the shadow of his past self, filled with darkness, making people uneasy. Lu Shenxing faced it everyday and had gotten used to it.
"What time is it?"
"It's a moment in time." Lu Shenxing yawned and pinched the quilt on Shen Cheng's body. "Wait, soon it will be dawn."
He suppressed the depression in his eyes, for a year he’d stayed with Shen Cheng, exhausting his patience, but the five percent remained, it really seemed to be hopeless.
Shen Cheng stretched out his hand to touch Lu Shenxing's cheek, slowly stroking it, stopping at his neck. His eyes were covered by his black eyelashes, making him unable to see clearly.
"Has the sun risen?"
After a while, Shen Cheng asked the same thing again, and the somewhat tired Lu Shenxing's pupils suddenly shrank. He could smell the dark aura of a dying man from Shen Cheng.
There was a ‘don't be afraid’ in his ear, and the hand on his neck tightened and dug in with a terrible force. Lu Shenxing's consciousness gradually dissipated, and the fingers that held the back of Shen Cheng's hand slowly loosened and hung weakly.
At the moment when Lu Shenxing's breathing stopped, Shen Cheng lifted the corners of his lips and smiled contentedly, the joy he wished for was here.
Along with his laughter, a system prompt sounded in Lu Shenxing's mind, "Ding, the second novel task is complete."
The already vulnerable meridians finally shattered, and Shen Cheng bled out, as he lay down quietly beside Lu Shenxing, clasping their fingers together and smiling. He closed his eyes, and whispered, "I'm here."
The flames awoke everyone in Youlong Castle. They saw the skyrocketing fire rising from Cuizhu Garden. The fire spread with the wind and swept away everything. Soon the whole castle was a ruin.
It was daybreak.
The author has something to say:
The next world is modern, uncles and nephews, no blood