Death Progress Bar

Chapter 93 - Warehouse No. 1



Warehouse No. 1

(Second Part)

Xu Jie screamed and struggled to her feet in a panic, rushing to take cover behind a chair. She looked at Shi Jin with eyes filled with fear and disbelief.

When Shi Jin raised his head just now, his face had suddenly looked like Yun Jin’s, and his voice seemed to become softer and more feminine; it was as if it were Yun Jin speaking to her, saying that she knew everything Xu Jie had done, saying that she wanted to plunge her into the depths of despair.

No, impossible, Yun Jin was dead. The person in front of her was Shi Jin, that slut’s spawn.

She tried to convince herself, blinking and blinking to try and dispel the illusion. However, the more she blinked, the more Shi Jin’s figure looked like his mother, even his expression slowly appeared more and more like Yun Jin’s. Finally, unable to bear it, she ducked down behind the chair, lowering her head and completely hiding herself. “Kill her! I order you to kill her! I’ve paid you for this, so hurry up and kill her!” she screamed, her voice shaking.

Xiao Si’s buff was only effective against Xu Jie, the only one who had actually seen Yun Jin and held a guilty conscience. Therefore, to the members of Tarantula, it looked like Xu Jie had exchanged a few words with Shi Jin, then suddenly hid behind her chair for no apparent reason and started raving like a madwoman.

“Are you sick in the head?” The guard team leader scowled at her, motioning for his subordinates to ignore Xu Jie and stay put.

Shi Jin hadn’t expected Xu Jie to have such a huge reaction—really, wasn’t she acting too scared? After checking the time, he poked Xiao Si in his mind and, with a little reluctance, asked it to remove the buff for the moment.

When the buff disappeared, Shi Jin did find himself feeling a little unwell, but because it hadn’t been applied for long, the degree of discomfort was still within the tolerable range. He moved his bound legs, giving himself a moment to adjust, then cleared his throat with a low cough and looked at Xu Jie. “What are you hiding for, didn’t you want to chat? Why are you panicking all of a sudden?”

It wasn’t Yun Jin’s voice anymore.

Xu Jie gripped the back of the chair tight in her hands. Calming down a little, she peered over the chair at Shi Jin, wary; seeing that he didn’t look like anyone but himself, she almost fell to the ground as her tense body relaxed.

Shi Jin raised his eyebrows, deliberately taunting her. “You seem to be terrified of me? Huh, I thought you’d be difficult to deal with, but it turns out it was all bluff and bluster to cover up your fear.”

Xu Jie’s face went taut at his ridicule. Realizing that her recent behavior was extremely disgraceful, she quickly straightened her skirt and stood up, looking down at Shi Jin from a dominant position. She glanced at the members of Tarantula out of the corner of her eye, only to see that they were looking at her like they were watching somebody mentally deranged, and her expression stiffened further. She sat back down in the chair, acting as if nothing had happened, and said, “I’m just playing with you. At this point, you’re just an insect in the palm of my hand that I can crush whenever I wish—you think I’m afraid of you?”

“I don’t think so, I know so,” Shi Jin replied innocently. “I mean, a moment ago, you very obviously showed everyone how much I scare you, so did I say anything wrong?”

Xu Jie’s expression sank. “You’re looking for death, you damn mongrel! I should have killed you as soon as you were born!”

“You?” Shi Jin shook his head, giving her a look of derision mixed with pity. “You couldn’t even step in the front door of my house. After we moved to M country, whenever you were there as well, Dad would send people to watch you to make sure that you couldn’t get close enough to even catch sight of me, much less kill me. Do you really think I don’t know anything at all? Among all Dad’s women, you’re the only one he didn’t choose. Do you really not have any idea how much he disliked you? If Xu Chuan hadn’t done his best to speak up for you back then, Dad would’ve gotten rid of you straight away—once you climbed into his bed, he knew exactly what kind of scheming, calculating woman you were. I’ve heard you think of yourself as Dad’s rightful wife? Wake up. Even if there was something like that, that would be Fei Yujing’s mother rather than you—at least Dad took the initiative to woo her.”

Xu Jie’s face flushed, then turned white. Her hands clenched on the chair’s armrests, she cried out, “What do you know?! ‘Woo’? You think they deserve that word? They’re just a bunch of baby-making machines Shi Xingrui bought—as if they can be compared to me!”

“Baby-making machines?” Shi Jin’s tone was flat, but his words were deadly. “At least Dad was willing to pay them to birth a child, but what about you? You managed to get pregnant after sleeping with him, but if it weren’t for Big Brother resembling Dad so much, you would’ve been run off as a scammer. I heard you lived with Dad for a few months after giving birth. After that first time, he never touched you again, did he? I’ve seen your medical records for postpartum depression—according to the psychiatrist’s notes, you seemed to be complaining about Dad not wanting to sleep with you?”

The last fig leaf torn off, Xu Jie’s expression distorted with fury. She surged to her feet and rushed at Shi Jin, screaming, “Nonsense! The reason Xingrui didn’t touch me was that I’d just given birth, he was worried about my body! He loved me, he loved me more than anyone else! I’m going to rip out your tongue, dig out your eyes—I’ll make you beg for death!”

The guards promptly moved to block her. “Step back! If you don’t stop, we will throw you out!” one of them warned, glowering at her.

Shoved back, Xu Jie staggered and nearly fell over again.

Shi Jin chuckled. “He loved you more than anyone else? Stop talking in your sleep, Xu Jie. The person he loved the most was dead, and the living can never compete with the dead. And now, he’s gone to reunite with his favorite person in the afterlife. You couldn’t have him in life, you won’t have him in death—you’re doomed to never obtain his love, for all eternity.”

Snap.

The last string of reason in Xu Jie’s mind broke. She looked at Shi Jin’s mocking smile, remembering Shi Xingrui still pining for his deceased lover, even after she bore him a child, remembering him burying any information about that person so deep that no one could find any trace of it at all, remembering how he kept looking for substitutes and how obsessed he was with Yun Jin… Then, an image of Shi Xingrui, blissfully happy together with his true love or Yun Jin in the afterlife, appeared in her mind. At long last, her sanity completely collapsed. Shrieking, she lunged at Shi Jin again. “I’ll kill you! I’m going to kill you!”

Boom—!

At the same time, the faint sound of an explosion could be heard outside.

The guards stopped Xu Jie once more. Hearing the explosion, very convincingly tense expressions appeared on their faces; after a brief exchange, they all took out their weapons and moved closer to Shi Jin, keeping him in the middle.

Xu Jie was still struggling to get free, looking completely deranged.

The leader of the guards, who had caught her, raised a hand and slapped her. “We’re under attack and the enemies already broke in, keep quiet!” he growled.

The enemies broke in already?

Her face swollen and painful and her mouth tasting of blood, Xu Jie was forced to regain some reason. She looked in the direction of the noise, disbelieving. “What’s going on? We’re being attacked? By who?”

“Who?” Shi Jin said with a smile. “Of course, by the ‘cripple’ who you said couldn’t protect me, who else? Unfortunately for you, it seems it’s not your destiny to be able to kill me in this lifetime, Xu Jie.”

Xu Jie’s eyes widened and she screamed in denial, once again struggling to rush at Shi Jin.

Finally reaching the end of his patience, the team leader tossed her aside, cussing her out. He crouched to cut the rope binding Shi Jin’s feet. “Watch them,” he ordered his subordinates. “I’m going out to check the situation. If I don’t come back in ten minutes, take them and retreat!”

His subordinates acknowledged the order and changed their formation to surround both Xu Jie and Shi Jin as the team leader stepped out of the storeroom.

Xu Jie stared blankly for a moment, dumbfounded, then turned to look at Shi Jin next to her. A twisted smile crawling onto her face, she breathed, “How nice, I can finally reach you.”

Shi Jin gave her a sideways glance, sneered, and extended his leg to kick her without hesitation.

Thump.

Caught off guard, Xu Jie crashed to the ground.

Tarantula’s guards looked over at the commotion. Seeing that it was Xu Jie who’d suffered a loss, they turned back as if nothing had happened.

“You damn mongrel…” Gnashing her teeth, Xu Jie struggled to get up.

Out of the corner of his eye, Shi Jin saw Gua One’s figure appearing at the door of the storeroom. Asking Xiao Si for the buff, he kicked Xu Jie down once more, then deliberately got closer to her and whispered, “Hey, don’t you want to kill me? Come on.”

It was a soft female voice again, Yun Jin’s voice.

Xu Jie shuddered. She looked up at Shi Jin, but saw a woman’s face instead and screamed in horror. Scrambling back at first, she came to an abrupt stop, her expression turning vicious. “Yun Jin, if I could kill you the first time, I can kill you a second time! Go to hell, you slut!”

A woman’s shrill voice resounded in the car. Shi Weichong started and instinctively turned towards the comm, then got up and tried to get closer to it. The other brothers also glanced over at the sound. Li Jiuzheng asked hesitantly, “Was that Xu Jie’s voice just now? What did she say, she’s going to kill Xiao Jin’s mother a second time? What does she mean?”

The car was dead silent as everyone looked sideways at Shi Weichong. Shi Weichong stiffened, then sat back down and buried his face in his hands, a low howl like that of a trapped animal escaping his throat.

At this point, the last glimmer of hope flickering in his heart was completely extinguished. What was even more terrifying was that his mother’s true face and past may be much darker and weigh heavier than he thought.

The other brothers watched him in silence, their expressions complicated.

Lian Jun’s cool voice broke the stifling atmosphere inside the car. He switched the comm to a two-way communication with Gua One, who had been the one to broadcast Xu Jie’s voice, and asked, “What is the situation, have you found Shi Jin?”

{Yes, in the storeroom in the deepest part of the factory. Both Shi Jin and Xu Jie are there, guarded by Tarantula, and Xu Jie is attacking Shi Jin. We’re not willing to risk charging straight in for fear of accidentally injuring Shi Jin.} Gua One gave a calm report.

Lian Jun’s eyebrows knitted. “Hold them down with cover fire and try to find a way around to enter the storeroom from the rear, then wait for an opportunity to rescue Shi Jin.”

Gua One acknowledged the order and began to discuss a detailed plan with his subordinates. Xu Jie’s voice, intermittently sounding in the background, provided an unpleasant accompaniment.

Hearing that, Lian Jun added with a frown, “Don’t let Xu Jie hurt Shi Jin. Set up a sniper—if she tries to do anything drastic, kill her.”

Shi Weichong’s head snapped up. “No, don’t kill—”

“So you’re going to watch her hurt Shi Jin?” Lian Jun interrupted him, looking at him with eyes like ice. “Don’t try to interfere with my decision or I’ll take care of both of you together.”

“Big Brother.” Fei Yujing pressed a restraining hand onto Shi Weichong’s shoulder and motioned him not to speak, then looked at Lian Jun and said, “Saving Shi Jin is the most important.”

Lian Jun glanced at him, then turned back to the comm, no longer paying any attention to Shi Weichong.

Shi Weichong’s fists clenched, his body so tense it might as well have been carved out of stone, and his eyes already bloodshot from repressing all the emotions raging in his chest.

The sound of gunfire continued to flow from the comm, along with Xu Jie and Shi Jin’s vague voices. Gradually, the brothers’ attention was drawn to their conversation, and the longer they listened, the uglier their expressions became.

When Xu Jie rushed over to attack him, Shi Jin hurriedly backed away. He asked Xiao Si to remove the buff, pretending to look shocked and enraged as he said, “You had a hand in my mother’s death? What did you do?!”

After going back and forth for so long, Xu Jie finally saw Shi Jin show the panic and anger that she’d been dying to see. Instantly feeling better, her desire to kill him grew even stronger. “What did I do? What do you think I did? That fragile little girl wasn’t worthy of standing by Xingrui’s side, so naturally, I sent her to hell!”

Although Shi Jin was acting precisely in order to provoke Xu Jie into speaking her true mind, he still couldn’t avoid growing angry as he listened to her. His expression cooling, he asked, “She wasn’t worthy? You think you were worthy?”

The members of Tarantula spotted Gua One’s team and rushed to guard the door; they were “completely focused” on the enemy and “had no attention to spare” for stopping Xu Jie.

Xu Jie was quite satisfied with this situation. Now that there was no one to hold her back, and afraid that Shi Jin would really be rescued, she reached inside her clothes and pulled out a slightly curved, finger-length iron wire, sharpened at one end. “You think you can still mouth off at me? Go to hell, you mongrel!”

< Where did she get that?! > Xiao Si screamed. < Wasn’t she searched? How come she still has a weapon! >

“Women wear a certain item of clothing than men don’t, and it’s possible to hide weapons there,” Shi Jin replied in his mind, quickly figuring out where the iron wire in Xu Jie’s hand came from. Dodging her attack, he said coldly, “Mongrel? Out of all of you, my mother was the only one Dad was in a recognized relationship with—he put an engagement ring on her hand. Have you been deluding yourself for so long that you believe your own lies?” As he spoke, he asked Xiao Si to give him the buff again.

“An engagement ring? So what, she’s nothing but a substitute as well!” Xu Jie’s emotions had been pushed to the limit as Shi Jin repeatedly avoided her attacks; she seemed to see the shadow of Yun Jin in him again. Her expression turning more and more distorted, she screamed, “It’s you, it’s all because of you, because you have this face! Why do you look like this?! And your hand, your ring finger, destroyed, I’ll destroy them… Yun Jin, I’ll make you and your son live a life worse than death!”

Shi Jin dodged her uncoordinated attacks and slipped behind her. He kicked her in the calf and retreated again, asking, “And what about Shi Weichong? Have you ever thought about him, how does he feel with you not caring about anything other than killing me?”

Kicked, Xu Jie stumbled and almost fell. When she heard Shi Weichong’s name, her reason returned for a brief moment but soon disappeared again. She turned around to look at Shi Jin, her eyes murky. “Weichong will understand—he’s only like this because you confused him and sowed discord between us. Once you’re out of the way, he’ll return to being my good, obedient son. I don’t care about anything but killing you? No, you’re just the first. You, your mother, those other sluts who dared to touch Xingrui and their bastards, I won’t let any of you go. I’m Xingrui’s wife and the rightful owner of Ruixing—anyone who dares to snatch what belongs to me deserves to die!”

In the van, the brothers frowned and turned to look at Shi Weichong. He in turn was staring at the van’s comm with a blank expression, completely shocked by Xu Jie’s words.

In the storeroom, Shi Jin was stunned as well—Xu Jie wanted to kill not only him but also his other brothers and their mothers? He wasn’t acting this time when he asked, “Are you crazy? Big Brother would never accept you killing them! They’re different from me!”

“What do you mean never? I’m Weichong’s mother, of course he’ll listen to me. Even if he doesn’t understand now, as long as I’m with him, he’ll understand sooner or later.” Xu Jie was very satisfied with the expression Shi Jin was showing now. Gripping the iron wire, she approached him step by step, taunting, “Aren’t you doing so good at running away? With the wall behind you, let’s see where you’ll run now. Hmm, what should I start with? I’ve heard that Xingrui attached the most importance to your face, so let’s destroy it first!” With those words, she lunged forward.

Shi Jin glanced over his shoulder, finding that he’d been careless in his shock and actually let himself be herded into the wall. He frowned and ducked down to avoid Xu Jie’s first blow, then kicked her away. After that, he looked towards the door of the storeroom, where the members of Tarantula and Annihilation were pretending to fight it out, and caught Gua One’s gaze—the play had gone on long enough, it was time for the curtain call.

The moment Gua One received the signal, he turned his gun towards Xu Jie and pulled the trigger.

Bang!

{Ah—!}

A woman’s scream resounded in the van, then Gua One reported, {All the Tarantulas have been subdued. Xu Jie wanted to stab Shi Jin, so I shot her in the leg. Shi Jin is not injured. I repeat, we rescued Shi Jin and he is unharmed.}

Lian Jun acknowledged the report and turned off the comm. “Open the door, we’re going to pick up Shi Jin,” he said to Gua Nine.

Complying, Gua Nine pulled the van’s door open and got out to pull out the wheelchair, then helped Lian Jun into it.

“Big Brother!” came Xiang Aotings sudden shout.

Lian Jun turned his head and saw that Shi Weichong had gotten out of the car on the other side and was running towards the abandoned factory. Turning back, he ordered Gua Nine, “Send people to follow him—don’t let him get hurt, and don’t let him hurt Shi Jin.”

His words indicated that he suspected Shi Weichong might hurt Shi Jin because of Xu Jie. Fei Yujing and the other brothers exchanged glances, frowning, then chased after Shi Weichong.

If you’re seeing this notice, you’re reading this chapter on pirate site – the original translator of Death Progress Bar is Betwixted Translations.

The shot knocked Xu Jie to the ground. She landed badly when she fell, and cut her own face with the wire she was holding, disfiguring herself.

Shi Jin stared at her, stunned. He looked at the fast-approaching Gua One and asked, “What should I now?” Disfigurement wasn’t part of his plan.

Gua One misunderstood his meaning. He untied the rope on Shi Jin’s hands and handed him the gun, saying, “You can finish her off if you want to, Jun-shao will take care of the consequences.”

“No, I don’t want to get my hands dirty because of someone like her,” Shi Jin replied, returning the gun. Although he wanted to take vengeance on Xu Jie, he’d never planned to kill her. “Get a doctor to dress her wounds, Shi Weichong is coming.”

As if stimulated by Shi Weichong’s name, Xu Jie on the ground suddenly moved, groaning as she struggled to sit up. First, she touched her painful, bleeding face in disbelief, then looked at her leg. Out of the corner of her eye, she caught sight of the members of Tarantula and the “enemies” standing together and talking peacefully, and realization dawned on her. She turned to stare at Shi Jin, shocked. “You, are you colluding? You, all of you…”

Shi Jin looked at her, a corner of his mouth pulling up. “You guessed it, this kidnapping was a trap,” he said. Gesturing towards Gua One’s earpiece, he added, “By the way, let me kindly inform you that Shi Weichong heard everything you said to me, and he’s on his way here now.”

“What?” Xu Jie stiffened, then hurriedly turned towards the door of the storeroom, the movement making her fall to the ground again.

“It’s not just Shi Weichong, my other brothers are here too. They all heard what you said, that you’re going to kill them and their mothers. Xu Jie, no one will ever believe you again.” Shi Jin looked down at her and continued to twist the knife. “Oh, and the Xu family is finished. Soon, Xu Chuan is going to be released on bail—you should be very clear about what he’ll do.”

“No, no, no…” Xu Jie struggled upright again. She looked at Shi Jin with eyes full of hatred.

Not paying any attention to her glare, Shi Jin leaned in close and whispered, “I forgot to tell you—Shi Xingrui’s true love, who you tried so hard to uncover, was actually a man, and my mother was his sister by blood. Shi Xingrui found my mother long ago and raised her in secret for ten years, hiding her until she became an adult. So you know, you never had a chance to win Shi Xingrui’s heart—from your appearance to your gender, everything was wrong. Spend the rest of your life tormented by this knowledge, Xu Jie. I won’t kill you—rather, I hope you’ll live a long, long life in pain, watching me and your only son getting along.”

Xu Jie was so livid her eyes seemed about to pop out, and she bit her lips so hard they nearly split. She sprang up and threw herself at Shi Jin, snarling, “No! I’m going to kill you! Kill you!”

Sharp-eyed, Gua One pulled Shi Jin back, taking out his gun to shoot her other leg. Before he could, however, a tall figure rushed over and enclosed Xu Jie in a firm hug, blocking his line of fire and stopping Xu Jie’s attack on Shi Jin.

Shnk.

At the muffled sound of the iron wire piercing through clothes and skin, Xu Jie froze. The wire fell out of her trembling hand as she raised her head to look at the man holding her.

Shi Weichong’s expression was heavy. Not paying any attention to the wound, as though he wasn’t the one who’d been injured, he met Xu Jie’s eyes and whispered, “Mom, I really can’t help you this time.”

Xu Jie’s body trembled. She looked down at his abdomen, where the blood from the wound was beginning to soak through his clothes, and screamed. She rushed to support his body, shaking her head in panic and rambling incoherently, “I didn’t mean to, Weichong, Weichong, does it hurt? I did all this for you, don’t look at me like that, don’t…”

The iron wire didn’t penetrate very deep. Shi Weichong pushed Xu Jie’s hand away, face blank, and said, “No, the only one you were doing this for was yourself.”

“I didn’t, it was Shi Jin who forced me, he set me up, these people are all working with him. He wants to frame me, to divide us…” Xu Jie explained as she tried to take his hand. Her gaze swept over the “corpses” of the Tarantulas that were scattered across the ground, when just a moment ago they had been chatting with Gua One’s subordinates, and her voice got stuck in her throat.

Shi Weicong’s eyes were full of disappointment. He avoided her hand and said, “Even now, you’re still trying to deceive me. Mom, I heard everything… Even if this is fake, the things you said were your true thoughts. I don’t think I know you anymore. How did you become like this?”

“I’m not…” Xu Jie fell silent; she couldn’t find a convincing explanation. She caught sight of Shi Jin standing on the side, expressionless, and suddenly remembered him asking, ‘Do you know what despair feels like?’ Blood drained from her face. She looked at the “corpses”, touched her ruined face, then looked at Shi Weichong’s dead, despondent eyes, and her heart trembled more and more. In the end, she couldn’t endure the combined blows any longer and fainted.

Shi Weichong hurried to catch her. He kneeled on the ground, silently touching her bloody face. A while later, his shoulders gave a sudden shake as a suppressed cry rose in his throat.

Seeing Shi Weichong like this, Shi Jin’s chest felt stuffy and painful. After the buff disappeared, physical discomfort flooded his body; just as he was about to fall down, his back suddenly touched something warm and arms tightened around his waist. He couldn’t have been more familiar with this embrace.

“Lian Jun.” He didn’t look back, only held the hand that had come up from his waist.

“It’s alright.” Lian Jun gave him a comforting kiss on the ear. He followed his gaze to Shi Weichong holding Xu Jie, and whispered, “Are you regretting it?”

Shi Jin shook his head and turned around to hug him, evading the question. He buried his face in his lover’s shoulder and closed his eyes.

Was he regretting it? No, this mess of a situation needed a clean cut, it couldn’t be left to fester any longer. But…

“Revenge doesn’t taste sweet,” he sighed softly, tightening his arms. “I’m a little tired.” He didn’t feel happy at all.

Soothing him, Lian Jun stroked his back, and coaxed in a gentle voice, “So from now on, leave this kind of thing to me… Rest, I’ll take care of everything else.”