Doomsday Wonderland 656 Live-Saving Grand Prize
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There was no creature in the world that could beat Soulsqn in quirkiness. No sooner had the crowd of Zeus taken their first step than the flesh worm took to her heels and charged straight at Puppeteer. Her ma.s.sive body rustled against the carpet as she continued to move forward and shouted, "Lord Puppeteer!"
The Zeus were truly fast. One arrived next to the flesh worm the moment she called out for Puppeteer. When she yelled for the second time, the Zeus stretched his arm forward and seized her by the nape of her neck, dragging her backward and lifting her up. It was already too late by the time Puppeteer realized what was happening, as the crowd of Zeus had fallen back to the ocean with their leverage.
Once all the Zeus had retreated to the sea, only then did the second half of the flesh worm's sentence ring out into the air, "Help me!"
As soon as she finished speaking, she also seemed to realize her situation.
Unfortunately, no matter how angry she was, the Queen of the Souls was ripped of her ability to speak. One Zeus scooped out a handful of seawater, now gooey and sticky, from the sea and wrapped it around the grubby creature's layers of mandibles, snuffing out whatever the flesh worm was going to say next. Right now, with the rope-like seawater swathing around her mouthpart, she could not utter anything but m.u.f.fled noises that carried no meaning at all.
"Give it back to me," growled Puppeteer dangerously. The glitter around his eyes gradually turned red.
"Come and take it if you can," a Zeus scoffed. Then he turned to his comrade standing next to him and asked, "So… What should we do next?"
"Well, to be honest, I did not foresee this sudden turn of events. So I have no idea," the Zeus wearing a floral skirt answered.
"Well, this sure is one h.e.l.l of a change… But…"
Suddenly, from the air ahead came the creak of leather bootsteps, hus.h.i.+ng the group of theatergoers. All of them unanimously turned their heads towards the source of the sound, staring at the approaching Puppeteer.
After several moments of silence, a bespectacled Zeus pointed at Soulsqn and said, "Stop where you are if you don't want us to kill her."
A murmur ran through the crowd behind. They all put their heads together, whispering into each others' ears, "What an old-school way of making a threat... How embarra.s.sing..."
Turning a deaf ear to the crowd of Zeus, Puppeteer walked closer to the Zeus's corpse and stood beside it. He crouched down, half of his face scrunching up into a disgusted expression. He pinched the Zeus's corpse and turned it around.
The bunch of Zeus fell silent. They seemed nervous.
A few puppets arrived and stood guard around their master, watching the crowd of Zeus warily. Puppeteer inspected the corpse for a while then ran his finger across the dead body's neck. The bandage broke apart and fluttered down, bringing the ten-centimeters long neck to light.
"Lin Sanjiu is stupid," Puppeteer spoke with downcast eyes, his calm voice sliding over his tongue as smooth as water. "The more one tries to cover, the more one is exposed. She thought it was a good idea, but even a dog on the roadside knew that she was hiding something under the bandage. And now…"
He paused for a moment, and with an outstretched finger, he pointed at the headless neck, "There is nothing under the bandage."
Soulsqn suddenly became restless. From the way she wriggled her body, it seemed like she was nodding.
"Ah, because we took it away."
Looking at the corpse, Puppeteer said, "Well, you might be right, but how are you going to explain this to me?" Then he peeled his eyes away from the headless body and stared at Ji Shanqing, who was now floating about on the sea like a log in the distance. "I remember him mentioning that there is a circular wound on Lin Sanjiu's shoulder."
However, there was nothing on the exposed bluish skin of the dead body's shoulder.
With those words, a commotion broke out. The group of Zeus began to talk in a small murmur, their voices so faint it was impossible for them to know about the topic of their conversation. Slowly and steadily, Puppeteer rose to his feet, a sardonic smile dancing around his lips.
"So, can any of you give me an explanation, hm?" His voice was like a sharp blade, the cool edge slicing the group of Zeus. "Was it fun messing with me?"
For each question he asked, he took one step forward. The group of Zeus raised their guards, though they remained steadfast against the killing intent that radiated from Puppeteer. Then, the bespectacled Zeus began to talk again, "We have two…"
Before he could finish his sentence, something unseen sliced through the air and rammed into his mouth. Unable to defend himself in time, he stumbled to his feet, smas.h.i.+ng into several Zeus standing behind him. At the same time, the water sloshed behind Puppeteer. Without turning his head, he stomped on the carpet, causing the carpet to stretch itself towards the sea below the group of Zeus in the distance and throw Hegel and Rize in the back off balance.
The sea churned vigorously like a ma.s.sive beast that had just woken up from its slumber. It wrapped itself around Ji Shanqing, moving him out of the trajectory of the incoming carpet, and hurled him into the distance at the other side. At the last minute, all the Zeus finally sensed Puppeteer's goal.
"Hah," the Zeus wearing the floral skirt giggled, "We can't let you have that—"
Before he could finish his sentence, all of the Zeus suddenly realized that something was amiss. They all fell silent. Turning their heads in unison towards the direction where Ji Shanqing was flying, they found that Ji Shanqing did not stir up any waves when he fell into the sea.
At the spot where Ji Shanqing had fallen, a black figure emerged from the sea below. He had a head of jet-black hair that s.h.i.+mmered with gentle light under the sun.
Securing Ji Shanqing in his arm, Maxin swam as hard and fast as he could towards the carpet. Earlier on, when Puppeteer was distracting the group of Zeus, he seized the chance and jumped into the sea. Since then, he had been moving underwater, waiting for a chance to make his move. Hence, when he saw Ji Shanqing flying through the air towards his direction, he immediately leaped out of the water and caught him.
"Quick! Quick!" Seeing that the situation had gone out of their hands, the group of Zeus became more agitated. "Stop him! Dammit! Where did he come from?!"
Ever since he was born, the sea had been a good ally to Maxin in every situation. He had never seen this side of the sea before. Like glue, the waves became viscous and heavy. They kept pus.h.i.+ng Maxin back as if they were trying to trap him inside the receptacle of water. He was having a hard time navigating through the gooey liquid, his movement sluggish and slow. No matter how hard he brandished his arms and kicked his legs, he did not move even the slightest bit forward.
The group of Zeus at the back were hard on their heels, and Maxin was confident that it would not take long before they caught up to him. Gritting his teeth, just as Maxin decided to throw everything to the wind, a large shadow appeared above his head. His face lost its color. The shadow was astonis.h.i.+ngly large and covered a wide area. As he knew there was no time for him to make a getaway, he shut his eyes tight.
As two familiar shouts erupted in the air, the shadow landed. Maxin waited with bated breath for several full minutes, yet nothing came. Driven by his curiosity, he peeled his eyes open, and he was relieved by the scene in front of him. The carpet had landed right in between him and the group of incoming Zeus, giving him a chance, albeit short, to run away.
The thing that flipped into the air and landed on the sea along with the carpet was two posthumans who failed in their escape attempt. Hegel and Rize's shouts were drowned out by the splatter of water that raised high into the air. When they emerged from the sea below, Puppeteer's voice rang out.
"Stop them there, don't let them pa.s.s."
Maxin dared not to look back. Since they were forced, he knew both Rize and Hegel would not go all out. The sea was as sticky and heavy as glue. He paddled for all he's worth, yet every time he looked ahead, his destination was still out of reach.
He peeled his eyes away and gazed at Ji Shanqing. His face had a serene expression, and he looked like he was sleeping rather than pa.s.sed out. When he looked up again and saw the black figure in the distance, Maxin stopped swimming completely. He let go of the grand prize, allowing him to sway here and there along with the waves.
"What are you doing?" Puppeteer shouted. He was walking on the sea. "Bring him back here!"
But Maxin paid him no mind. He took off his s.h.i.+rt, and his well-toned body, which was as pale as snow, was brought under the sun. He then tossed the hoodie over Ji Shanqing, trapping the latter's arms inside, as he found it too troublesome to help him wear it properly.
Ji Shanqing became heavier the second Maxin helped him put on his clothes, and color seemed to have returned to his face a bit. With some hesitation, he lifted him out of the sea. Sensing that the fight would soon spread to his current spot, Maxin bit the bullet and yelled, "Catch!"
He had no other choice but to hurl Ji Shanqing at the man who wanted to unwrap him several minutes ago. If Puppeteer decided to unwrap him anyway, there was nothing Maxin could do. Looking at Ji Shanqing, who was flying through the air and soon to be dropped into Puppeteer's embrace, Maxin's heart rushed to his throat. He yelled, "Don't kill him. We still need him to find Lin Sanjiu!"
"You don't say."
With those words, Puppeteer took a step back, causing Ji Shanqing to plop into the sea. With his two fingers, he loathfully pinched the nape of Ji Shanqing's neck and pulled him out of the water. Even though he did not give any command, a puppet walked up to him and began to take off his s.h.i.+rt.
Maxin let out a sigh of relief. However, before he could do anything, the figure clad in the black jacket barked out an order again, his att.i.tude so normal as if he were instructing his servant to do his bidding. "Go and get that stupid worm back."
Hegel and Rize were unreliable. Rather than saying they were combatting, it was better to say that they were finding chances to make a getaway. When one of the Zeus shouted, "The grand prize is awake," both of them immediately seized the opportunity as all the Zeus were attracted by Ji Shanqing to withdraw themselves from the battlefield, darting towards the horizon in the distance.
Ji Shanqing's eyes fluttered uneasily. It was as if he was having a nightmare. The sunlight dyed his eyelids an orange hue, and when his brain finally connected, he slowly peeled his eyes open. The first thing he saw was Puppeteer's face.
Waking up to Puppeteer at such a close distance almost scared the wit out of Ji Shanqing. His face paled, but that was not the worst yet. When he s.h.i.+fted his gaze away from Puppeteer and onto the headless body wearing a tank top, all color seemed to fade from his face. His lips, his eyes, his complexion… It was as if his entire being had plunged into a dark fog of despair. There was no color other than white left behind on his countenance.
Puppeteer stared at him silently as if he was considering whether he should unwrap him or not.
"Wait, hold on a second." The grand prize blinked his eyes incredulously as the light began to enter his irises once more. "Sis's neck… There is no…"
"I already know that," Puppeteer interrupted, "Say something that I don't know."
The grand prize was so weak that he could not stand up. Crawling along the carpet on his hands and knees, he went up and inspected the corpse, his gaze lingering on the body's shoulder longer than any other part. "This is not sis… She is still alive… They must've changed her clothes when we weren't noticing."
The group of Zeus scattered about the sea. A few of them shrugged.
They would not be able to differentiate Lin Sanjiu from the group of Zeus if they changed her clothes. All of the Zeus looked the same, and none of them wore an exposing attire.
"I know which one is my sis…" Ji Shanqing said falteringly. He kept his head low, as he did not want to look Puppeteer in the eye. "But… I have a condition."
"Hmm?" Puppeteer snorted.
"Please don't unwrap me until my sis is back. She is my master, and I guess I have the right to be protected by my master just once."
Doomsday Wonderland 656 Live-Saving Grand Prize
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Doomsday Wonderland 656 Live-Saving Grand Prize summary
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