Chapter 17: Killing Time (Part 1/2)

Chapter 17: Killing Time (Part 1/2)
In any case, these telephone exchanges were not that different in cut-throat harshness when compared to school entrance exams. Luo Nan let out a breath upon hanging up the phone, relaxing in an instant.
He twisted his head to look at Zhang Yingying and unexpectedly saw that she had picked up his notebook from his seat; she was flipping through it at this moment. The page she had flipped to right now was the sketch of the warped Prison Building. Although this page had already been subconsciously destroyed by Luo Nan with messy scrawls and scribbles, Zhang Yingying continued to look at it with extreme earnest. She even used her hand to trace along the lines.
Luo Nan wrinkled his brows and coughed.
Zhang Yingying raised her head; she was not embarrassed at all, instead she asked him with complete interest: “This is picture must stem from your imagination. Why did you draw it? Is it because you felt some inspiration while confined in that room? What does the warped composition represent? And what do those violent devices, all placed together, symbolize? Even the lines surrounding the sketch seem to contain a lot of meaning……”
Luo Nan originally wanted to decline answering her questions. But when he saw Zhang Yingying’s expression, he suddenly thought of the subtle attitude she would display from time to time ever since they first met. He felt the tugging of a sensitive heart-string.
The thought stirred Luo Nan, causing him to look at Zhang Yingying once more. He changed his gaze completely, sweeping his eyes over her up and down. A few more questioning thoughts came into his head.
“Hey. Are these questions hard to explain?”
“I just felt that I should draw it like this. I just drew whatever came to me.”
Luo Nan simply spoke abstractly, but Zhang Yingying was unexpectedly satisfied with this type of answer.
“Transferring what you felt. That’s very good.”
Luo Nan’s curiosity towards Zhang Yingying was increasing, but he didn’t want to leave his own notebook in Zhang Yingying’s hands for too long of a time. He reached out, took it back, and sat back to his original position minding his own business.
One could tell from his attitude that he didn’t want to chat. In fact Luo Nan was pondering right now on how he would move a step towards verifying his own conclusion.
And also at this time, he heard Zhang Yingying beckon him:
“Hey, want to play?”
Luo Nan raised his head and saw Zhang Yingying lift her flexible screen to indicate towards him: “The PvP of 10 Days in the Wilderness is the best part about it. It’s way more invigorating than solo mode.”
How could Luo Nan be in the mood to play games. He tactfully rejected her offer without thinking, but Zhang Yingying was especially persistent. She was now a pure and lively girl who loved to play. It would appear that her mental age was somewhat younger than that of Luo Nan.
“Come on, come on. It’s great for killing time. Look at the police’s pace. Even seven, eight more hours may not be enough for them to finish things. It would be considered quite good if we’re able to get back home by five in the morning.”
“……when that time comes, just send me directly to school.”
“Relax, you won’t be tossed out of the warship to fall to the ground. The question right now is… Let’s. Play. Games?”
Luo Nan still wanted to refuse even though Zhang Yingying appeared to be itching to play. But the words that came out of his mouth suddenly changed: “Then let's play a few rounds…… I’ll warn you in advance. I’m not sure how to play.”
“No problem. No problem. We’re just killing time after all.”
Zhang Yingying’s brows shot up in delight. This casual and innocent attitude was far different than the strong and powerful attitude she feigned before. She immediately placed her flexible screen in front of Luo Nan, fearing that he would refuse:
“Come come come. First do a sensing imprintation. Ten Days PvP uses hand gestures to control the game. You know of this point right.”
“Yes, I know a bit.”
Luo Nan saw the layers of green rays flash past on the flexible screen and hesitated for a moment. But he placed both his hands on the screen regardless. Soon a beeping sound rang forth, indicating that the scan was completed.
Zhang Yingying snapped her fingers: “It’s set!”
“Huh?”
“I’m saying that the battle starts now!”
Upon speaking Zhang Yingying unfolded the flexible screen, placed it on the business desk within the room, and sat her own self on one side of the table to be opposite of Luo Nan. Then she dimmed the lights in the room, making things quite official.
The flexible screen casted light waves after hearing a command. A light blue arcing film of light pushed open with a radius of nearly a meter. The shade of color underneath this dome changed into a suitable matching color, successfully forming and constructing a red earth and blue sky. This boundless desolation was the backdrop to the game.
From looking at the increasingly realistic special effects, one can tell that Zhang Yingying’s flexible screen was the number one top brand in the market. It was actually able to take the portable game, Ten Days in the Wilderness, and render a mid-scale battle stage with units as a result.
Luo Nan sat upright outside the game area and looked at the vast wilderness that was concentrated atop the desk. Virtual characters wore all sorts of exoskeleton armors. They shuttled about, flying around. It would be a lie to say that his heart was still like water.
He was only sixteen years old. It was in his nature to play games. How could that nature be completely dispelled?
He was eager to give the game a shot deep in his heart when he saw the detailed imagery of the game. He spent a moment thinking about assimilation in, about being truly in the game; he spent a moment wanting to cause wanton destruction on the surface of this world. His spirits though subtle were something unsurpassable.
Yea, he hadn’t played many games……
In front of him, Zhang Yingying had quickly chosen a character. Her hands were clasped, supporting up her chin. She was all smiles as she waited for Luo Nan to choose his character.
“No need to feel anxious. Take your time. I’ll take it easy on you.”
Luo Nan really didn’t take up that much time. Ten Days in the Wilderness was a mobile game on the global phenomenon level no matter what anyone says. The number of people online had a peak record of 970 million people. This record was unbroken to this day. Mobile games released nowadays started to incorporate all sorts of immersive elements online. When he lived with his Aunt’s household, he was pestered by his siblings to play versus. He had the basics down.
He thought things over only by a bit, then he chose a relatively low-learning-curve typical hero. The trumpcard of the earth’s military. The fire-power expert Heiya.
Heiya’s profile indicated that this imposing Petty Officer lived in the later part of the 80’s. Under the support of the military’s Fire-Eye Platform, he was a complete walking independent military weapon house. Although his movement speed was that of a person, his berserk yet accurate assaulting fire was sufficient to annihilate enemies from over five hundred meters away.
When both sides had finished choosing their characters, the game automatically deployed them on the battlefield.
But when Zhang Yingying saw the character intro scenes, she immediately shouted: “What’s the meaning of this!? Are you looking down on me?”
“Huh?”
“Fine, you didn’t choose a Deep Blue Walker and a fantasy type or a mutant won’t do for you? You chose a new-player character to deal with me!?”
There were over a hundred characters selectable in the 10 Days in the Wilderness game. They could be separated into four types: Standby Types, Deep Blue Types, Fantasy Types, and Mutant Types.
Standby types referred to military exoskeleton weapon platforms and famous battle heroes. Deep Blue types followed the modifications made by Quantum Corporation to their Deep Blue Platform. Mutant types were selected from the most stereotypical mutants in the wilderness. Fantasy types were armed fantasy units unrestrained by imagination.
Although the gaming company had balanced the game quite well, in reality one needed to check with realistic circumstances for true balance. Obviously there would be some weaker characters of the four different types, especially of the Standby type. The Standby type relied completely on the character's charisma and low-learning-curve to support its role as a new-player character.
In online co-op mode, the Standby type carried the decent air of a helpful uncle. However in versus mode, a new player choosing this type would be feeding, whereas an expert would be smurfing. Generally speaking, no one would choose this type.
Luo Nan glanced at Zhang Yingying. He faced her incomparably resentful attitude and smirked:
“Not choosing a Deep Blue?”
“……”
After a bizarre moment of silence, Zhang Yingying clasped her hands together. She spoke in an exaggerated drawn out voice, her eyes flickering like stars: “Oh? You don't like the Deep Blue Platform too? How bonding! I hate the color blue the most! I feel dizzy when I see too much of it……”
Luo Nan glanced at the sapphire-blue scarf this female lawyer was wearing and lowered his head speechless.

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