GOR Chapter 594 Human Nature and A Vague Feeling
With one heavy punch, Xia Xiaolei sent the sandbag before him flying. Due to the laws of physics and inertia, the sandbag hurtled back at him. However, he was ready for it. With a kick of his leg, he caused an explosive sound to erupt as the sandbag burst apart from his kick.
Sand flowed down the floor and Xia Xiaolei hugged the sandbag as he gasped for breath.
He was within a training room within their base. At present, Xia Xiaolei’s whole body was soaked with sweat. He had originally been a weak boy who lived in the mountains. However, after the training sessions he had to undergo, after the bitter trainings that were comparable to self-torture, and the effects of the supplements from the system, the muscles on his body bulged out in a noticeable way. The sleek and muscular body shape appeared most appealing.
After gasping for a moment, he picked up a bottle of energy drink from the base and gulped it down.
This was one of the few benefits that the base was able to provide. The stamina replenishing drink was produced by the base and its effects were far superior to that of the outside world. Drinking it during a state of exhaustion allowed the user to replenish his or her stamina faster than others.
With one gulp, he finished the contents of the bottle, which had a slight sweet and sour taste. After that, he picked up the towel to wipe off his sweat.
Then, the door to the training room opened up.
Qimu Xi walked inside. The moment she saw Xia Xiaolei, she froze for a moment. The two of them exchanged glances. Then, with a sigh, Qimu Xi lowered her head and made to leave.
“… please, wait.” Xia Xiaolei suddenly opened his mouth to stop her.
“Mm?” Qimu Xi had a smile on her face and she said, “Is there anything?”
The smile on Qimu Xi’s face was not exactly what one would call fake. It was the typical smile of courtesy. Additionally, there was a trace of vigilance in it.
Xia Xiaolei walked over and stood before Qimu Xi. “We… … cannot go on like this.”
Qimu Xi’s chest heaved for a bit. Then, she looked at Xia Xiaolei and said with a forced smile, “I do not understand what you are talking about.”
“In the Jerusalem instance dungeon, the two of us fell into a dreamworld, and that conflict happened.” Xia Xiaolei’s tone was laboured, however, he did his best to continue speaking.
Qimu Xi’s face twisted.
She had subconsciously recalled the events of the instance dungeon, their fall into the dreamworld, and the savage conflict between the two of them.
That devilish dreamworld, devilish not because it created an illusory place to confuse them – but because the dreamworld evoked and unleashed their deepest, darkest, most disgusting, and most negative thoughts and emotions.
In that dreamworld, the two of them fought to kill each other. Despite being members of the same guild and team, they almost killed each other.
The word ‘Jerusalem instance dungeon’ had now become a taboo among the members of Meteor Rock Guild. These days, almost everyone did their best to avoid mentioning what they had experienced inside the instance dungeon.
It was not simply due to Qiao Qiao’s sacrifice, which led to her death in that instance dungeon.
Rather, it was because everyone who entered the instance dungeon had been sucked into the dreamworld. The dreamworld had evoked the deepest of their negative thoughts and emotions and brought them out into the light, thereby creating a deep rift and ill-feelings between them.
That victory was the most tragic one they had faced since Meteor Rock Guild was led by Chen Xiaolian. It was also the one with the most negative effects.
These two youngsters, Xia Xiaolei and Qimu Xi, had turned on each other, nearly putting their own life up for the sake of killing the other. Most importantly, the darkest and most negative of emotions within them were unleashed in there.
Although the instance dungeon was already over, this resulting rift did not disappear.
It was not limited to the two of them. Even the most senior member of their guild, Lun Tai, was affected. After the instance dungeon ended, he became withdrawn. The two brothers, Lun Tai and Bei Tai, had originally been as thick as thieves. After the instance dungeon, however, it became clear to all that there was something odd going on between the two of them.
“We cannot go on like this forever.” Xia Xiaolei clenched his teeth and looked right at Qimu Xi. “We are a guild. Before the Jerusalem instance dungeon, we were all on the best of terms with each other, willing to entrust our backs to each other without reservation in a fight. We had absolute trust in each other. We would even take the enemy’s attack for each other… … Guild Leader had said; our guild is still very weak. However, we had managed to beat powerful enemies and seize victory, completing the instance dungeons, again and again. That is not just due to good luck. More importantly, we are united.”
The young girl bit her lip and said nothing.
A strange look flashed across Xia Xiaolei’s eyes. Then, he abruptly stepped forward, moving past Qimu Xi as he made his way to the door of the training room. He closed the door and pressed the lock button.
“… … what are you doing?”
“Solving the issue. The two of us, right here.” Xia Xiaolei shook his head and continued, “I am a very stupid fellow. However, I understand reason. As long as we do not resolve the issue between us, it would remain as a concealed rift within this guild… … that is why, right here, right now, we will solve the issue between the two of us! Until then, no one leaves!”
Qimu Xi pinched the edges of her clothes.
“The two of us are the only ones here. So, after the instance dungeon, whatever words we have, whatever things we are too embarrassed to say – no matter how unbearable it may be, we will say it out here! Put it all out here to our hearts content. Then, we will end it!” There was absolute firmness and determination in Xia Xiaolei’s voice.
Qimu Xi, with a seemingly weak look, was silent for a minute. Then, this young girl raised her head and stared at Xia Xiaolei. “Fine! Since that is what you said, we will do as you said. What do you want to hear from me?”
“Whatever it is in your mind, just say it all out. You can say anything. In this room… … speak to your heart’s content. We will deal with the issue together. After we leave this room, we will not speak of it ever again. The matter will be thoroughly solved!”
“Good!” Qimu Xi, who had always been weak, revealed a look of decisiveness in her eyes.
She walked to the side and looked at the bottles of energy drinks that were laid out on the table. She picked up a bottle, one that Xia Xiaolei had opened and drank. Ignoring the fact that Xia Xiaolei had drank most of its contents, she raised it up and gulped the rest of its contents down.
After that, she furiously wiped her mouth before turning around to face Xia Xiaolei. “Then, let me start.”
Xia Xiaolei nodded.
“I… … in this guild, I have always felt stressed. Especially when facing you fellows… … more accurately, when I am facing you, Xia Xiaolei!”
Xia Xiaolei said nothing.
“In that dreamworld, the bad guy transformed into my big brother’s likeness and you killed him… … I felt very emotional. Later on, however, I did not exactly hate you. Although I am not smart, I am no fool either. I know right from wrong. I will not hate you because you killed the bad guy who transformed into my big brother. However, Xia Xiaolei, I… … I still loathe you.”
“Why loathe me?”
Qimu Xi stared at Xia Xiaolei and took a deep breath. “Fine, we agreed to speak to our heart’s content. Is there anyone whose heart is without darkness? You want to hear it, Xia Xiaolei? Then, I will tell you. I loathe you because… … before I joined this guild, you were the weakest, most useless trash in this guild!”
Xia Xiaolei’s body shook.
“There is no need to say much about the Guild Leader. He is our guild’s backbone and my saviour. No matter how I might view others, I only have feelings of respect and appreciation for him. Brother Roddy is powerful; his mechanical skill is one of the pillars of this guild. The brothers Lun Tai and Bei Tai, they are both veterans with considerable strength and vast experience. Likewise, I only have respect for them. Sister Qiao Qiao… … she is the Guild Leader’s girlfriend, she is so beautiful, so good, and so strong… … even the youngest Soo Soo possesses an extremely powerful skill. Every time she fights, she would display a terrifying power.”
After saying all that, Qimu Xi finally turned to look at Xia Xiaolei. “As for you, Xia Xiaolei, you are not among them.”
Xia Xiaolei grunted.
“They all say that your skill is to get discount for Exchange System purchases. Fine. But just because of that, everyone must protect you in every instance dungeon. You became a logistics staff member. A supporter… … as for your own strength, you have almost no combat skills. When there is an intense battle, all you can do is go fetch the soy sauce. I think… … Xia Xiaolei, you should be very grateful to me!”
“You should be very grateful to me! Originally, the weakest one in Meteor Rock Guild, who lags behind the others, is you! However, after I joined the guild, your status instantly changed. You are no longer the weakest link. No matter how bad your strength may be, with my arrival, you are no longer the weakest one. As for me, I, Qimu Xi, had taken over your status as the weakest trash in Meteor Rock Guild!”
Xia Xiaolei was stunned.
He did not imagine that someone who had always been weak and quiet like Qimu Xi, someone who had always acted like a little kitten, would utter such piercing words.
Besides… those painful words, after considering them, Xia Xiaolei found that he was unable to refute them.
Perhaps, in his own heart, he had more or less thought the same.
“I am very weak, with little courage, and a timid character… … but that does not mean I am an idiot. More than that, I am not some naïve little girl who knows nothing!” Light shone from her eyes and she continued, “I lost my family at a young age. My brother and I had only each other to depend on as we travelled everywhere without sense or order. In our travels, we saw many things! Although my brother did his very best to protect me from them… … I still saw many, many… … evil, disgusting, sinful, and dark things.
“Xia Xiaolei, do not think of me as a blank piece of paper that knows nothing. Just because I am weak and timid, that does not mean I do not understand anything.”
Xia Xiaolei was left dumbfounded.
“I am 15 years old now. Ten years ago, when I was only five, I understood this principle. My brother was the one who taught me about it… … we are too young, and too weak. When we encounter others, we will have no strength to resist them – it is not as though we had never tried to resist. When we were travelling around, even when we were scavenging, we will be beaten up by others. My brother tried resisting them and was beaten until even his head turned bloody. It was then that my brother learnt that lesson. He imparted that principle to me: Since we do not have the ability to resist nor the ability to protect ourselves, we should just obediently act like a weakling. When others bully you and you have no ability to fight them off, just lower your head and submit. Do not resist. Do your best to submit and play the part of a weakling. Perhaps, after they are done bullying you, they will let you off. Thus, in the last 10 years, I have been living that way! I am very timid and weak because I am originally very weak!
“All those years, besides my brother, was there anyone who would help me and protect me? When I encounter malicious people, I will be incapable of fighting back against them. I can only kneel and beg for mercy. When I encounter thugs, I, who had no way of protecting myself, can only do my best to run and avoid them. You can laugh at me for being weak and useless, but for someone like me who did not have a family, who did not have any means of protection, who is at such a young age, what can someone like me do? What could I do? What could I do? You tell me, what could I do?”
Xia Xiaolei pursed his lips.
“The person I feel most grateful toward, besides my brother, is the Guild Leader.” Tears welled in Qimu Xi’s eyes. “My big brother died, but Guild Leader protected me. No, he did not just protect me, he accepted me and brought me back here. He introduced me to everyone here and let me join this guild. To me, the biggest, most precious thing that Guild Leader gave me, is not just protection. It is not that he had saved my life. More importantly, he gave me something that, in the last 15 years, no one else – save my brother – had ever given me. That thing is… …”
Qimu Xi took a deep breath before uttering the word, “Dignity!”
After a pause, she continued, “Never have I had this, being part of a group, to have companions, to have friends, to have family… … no one bullying me, to be seen as a human, an actual human being. I can get what I want without getting on my knees to beg for it or act like a weakling, a pitiful beggar! Guild Leader taught me many things, so did brother Lun Tai and brother Bei Tai. Although brother Roddy always jokes with me, I know that all of them held no ill will toward me. They did not look down on me. Instead, they really view me as their companion… … albeit a very weak companion. However, they never cared about that. They would seriously teach me, teach me how to become strong. However… … they treated me with respect! In my 15 years of living, besides my brother, this is the first time I feel a sense of dignity while facing others.
“I finally feel like a human being! Not a stray cat or dog, or some pitiful worm that others could easily bully.
“You think I do not understand anything? Xia Xiaolei, I understand! I have seen more than you, understood more than you! I followed my brother around since I was very young. You could never imagine how many despicable fellows I have seen!
“In the past two years, my body began maturing. Due to that, I encountered situations that were even more disgusting! Some bad guys would pretend to be good toward me, but… … they were greedily aiming for my body. They wanted to bully me, to do disgusting things to me.
“Humph, Xia Xiaolei, I can tell if someone is a good person, if that person sincerely treats me well, and if that person sincerely views me as a human.”
“So, what do you think of me?” asked Xia Xiaolei in a low and hoarse voice.
“… you?” Qimu Xi sighed. “In the beginning, your behaviour was the same as the others. However… … I quickly realized something strange about the way you are treating me. Surface wise, it would appear negligible. However, I kept getting the feeling that, in many situations, you are secretly targeting me. After my arrival, you are no longer the weakest one in the guild. At the same time, though, I believe you are also no longer the little bro that everyone protects anymore. Besides, sometimes, I can feel you looking down on me. You think of me as a wastrel, a hindrance.
“Mm, when we had that conflict in the dreamworld, when you were choking me to my death, you had said it clearly. I can clearly remember your words from back then. You said “You trash of the guild!”. Right, that is what you said.”
Xia Xiaolei said nothing.
Truth be told, he too, remembered what he said that day.
Mm, apart from the phrase “You trash of the guild!”, what else did he say?
Right, he had also said: “Someone like you have no right to stay in our guild!”
Mm, back then, he had said those words.
“You also said these words: “Someone like you have no right to stay in our guild!” Isn’t that right, Xia Xiaolei?” Qimu Xi stared at the young boy before her.
“Yes, I had said those words.” Xia Xiaolei replied in a low tone.
“Those words hold two meanings,” said Qimu Xi with a sad smile. “You see, it is as I had said, although I am timid, I understand it all. Those words of yours, “Someone like you” refers to me being very weak, a piece of trash, a hindrance. Mm, it is the part deep inside you that looks down on me. You also said “Our guild”. Mm, that is right. You think that this is you fellows’ guild. However, it is not my, Qimu Xi’s guild. In your heart, you have never viewed me as a companion. In your heart, you have always viewed me as an outsider, a foreigner, a weak, piece of trash, useless… … thigh hugger!”
Tears trickled down Qimu Xi’s cheeks. “I had almost forgotten those days I spent without dignity. I had almost forgotten about all the days I had to beg and cry, the days of weakness and cowardice, the days when I was bullied and had to get on my knees to beg for mercy, the days where I had to live like a dog! In this guild, I could feel the dignity of living like a human being! However, that day, in that instance dungeon, thanks to those words from you, what little bit of dignity I finally managed to eke out… … was torn apart!”
She did not appear too angry. Her voice contained hints of sadness. “You may be thinking: You are a weakling to begin with. You are a piece of trash with no abilities. Could it be I cannot point that out?
“But then, Xia Xiaolei, you tell me, what else can I do?
“I am weak! I am only 15 years old, I have never had one good day in my life. Most of the people I have encountered are all bad guys. For the past 10 years, I have always been bullied. I have no abilities and no skills. When I fight, I will feel fearful. That is because I have been bullied for 10 whole years! I am timid, because no one had ever given me any respect or dignity!
“I am weak because after I was sucked into this game world, my luck was not as good as you all! Getting some combat-oriented skill! I am just a 15-year-old little girl with no backing.
“Xia Xiaolei, you look down on me?
“Fine! Then, tell me! What else can I do? What could I have done?
“Should I simply go die? Should someone like me just go die? Is that the right way?
“The weak have no right to live?
“If my skill is similar to that of brother Roddy, I too, would like to contribute to the guild!
“If I have the same strength as Guild Leader, I too, want to stand before everyone in the midst of battle to protect everyone!
“But I do not have it! What can I do? You say I am a piece of trash. Yes, I am a piece of trash!
“However, as a piece of trash, I must die? Find a corner where there is no one and go die and rot there without giving anyone trouble?
“Is that the way it has to be?”
After reaching that point, Qimu Xi had seemingly depleted all of her courage. She crouched down, held her knees and began sobbing.
Xia Xiaolei was standing right before her. When Qimu Xi crouched down, he had reached out with his hand, seemingly wanting to help her up. However, his hand hovered there for a moment before finally retracting.
A moment later, Xia Xiaolei said in a hushed tone, “I am sorry.”
His apology did nothing to ease Qimu Xi’s emotions.
Xia Xiaolei sighed. He exerted some force as he gripped the back of his hand. It would appear that he was summoning the courage he needed before finally speaking up.
“I admit, I did look down on you… … no, that is not quite accurate, I did not look down on you, I disliked you. Guild Leader and sister Qiao Qiao are the two people I revere most. Everyone in the guild is my elder, my older sister, my younger sister… … even Soo Soo is stronger than me. I have never felt jealous of them, only gratitude. They had protected a village boy like me and helped me survive this game world. Truth be told, in my heart, my view of them is the same as you, only respect and gratitude. I admit, when you first joined, I was jealous of you. Because you are weaker than me. It appeared as though you had become the one that everyone wants to protect the most. I… … it seems I am no longer the panda that everyone wants to protect.
“But Qimu Xi, can you hear me out? Today, I have summoned my courage so that we can resolve all the conflicts and ill-feelings between us.”
Qimu Xi raised her head. She wiped her eyes with the back of her hand and said, “I am listening.”
“I admit I had disliked you. You said that sometimes, I would secretly target you… … I admit that as well. In some minor matters, I did, in fact, deliberately target you in secrecy and bullied you… … however, I am not a bad guy. I did not really want to bully you. I also wasn’t trying to push you out. Perhaps… part of it was due to jealousy.
“In the dreamworld, I had said those unsavoury words. That place brought out the deepest, darkest, and most negative side of our hearts into light. Additionally, it would appear that it also amplified it.
“However, Qimu Xi, there are some good emotions that the instance dungeon did not bring out to light. It only amplified the darkness while concealing the other emotions in my heart. Now, I want to tell you about it.”
“You… … just what are you trying to say?”
“What I want to say is… … I am jealous of you, seemingly trying to push you out, and would even bully you in some minor issues… … these things, I know they are very idiotic and foolish,” Xia Xiaolei stuttered. “Truth be told, before deciding to talk to you today, I had met up with brother Roddy and had a chat with him. He had already lectured me once. He said, I am just like a kid who has yet to grow up… he said, back when he was in kindergarten, he had also done the same thing I did. He too, had always bullied a little girl… … but, but…”
Xia Xiaolei clenched his teeth and shut his eyes. With the expression of one going for broke, he shouted, “Brother Roddy said: You are a little kid who knows nothing. When you meet a girl you like and you do not know how to express your feelings, you will subconsciously bully her to attract her attention. This is the typical behaviour of little kids.”
“… … …” Qimu Xi was flabbergasted. Her eyes grew wide as she stared at Xia Xiaolei. “You, you, you, you, you, you, you, what you say?”
“I, I, I, I, I, I, I, I, I say, I, I, I, I, I like you.”
“Those two are resolving their problem. Don’t disturb them.”
Inside the hall of the base, Roddy saw that Lun Tai was about to enter the training room. He quickly stopped Lun Tai.
Lun Tai was stunned. However, he quickly understood what Roddy meant. He then turned to look at Roddy. “Your idea?”
“We’ll need to resolve it eventually. We cannot leave everything to Xiaolian. In battles, due to the limitations in our strength, there are many things we cannot help out with. However, if we can resolve this internal guild stuff, we should do our best to help him resolve it. Don’t let him tire himself with these matters.”
Roddy, who held onto two cans of beer in his hand, threw one of the cans to Lun Tai.
Lun Tai accepted it with a nod of his head. Then, he popped it open and drank a mouthful of beer.
“So, what about you?” Roddy looked at Lun Tai. “When will you be able to unravel the knot in your heart?”
Lun Tai froze.
“Fine, I am not a busybody. Your problem should not be a big one, I feel,” said Roddy with a smile. “The problem is not that serious. It has likely something to do with something private, something to do with your past. You are also the oldest and most mature among us. I am least worried about you, Lun Tai. On the contrary, the issue between those two inside has to be resolved… … Chen Xiaolian’s issue is tied to Qiao Qiao’s death, but now, there is a thread of hope for it. The only one left, the one I worry about most is… … Soo Soo!”
Lun Tai knitted his brows.
“Soo Soo’s dark personality problem is getting worse. When I first got to know her, that little girl was not like this at all. She would always shift between her two personalities. However, these days… … that dark personality of hers appear to be coming out longer and longer. The original personality of the innocent and loveable little girl has not appeared for a long time now.”
Roddy then frowned as well. With a wry smile, he said, “I keep getting this feeling, a vague feeling…”
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