editors: apricot & juurensha
The ballroom dance floor.
The bayonet was drawn from the long, flaxen-haired girl’s waist with a swish. At the same time, Vera angrily loaded up her gun, accompanied by the constant violation warnings from her wrist watch.
Ning Fengbei smiled smugly.
When the dance music rang out again, everyone’s gazes were dazed, and the Hall of Mirrors was finally restored to calmness.
On the other side of the gilded gate, at the end of a long, winding corridor.
Wu Jin and Ming Yao were both rummaging through boxes at full speed. Wu Jin’s expression was serious, and Chu Chu was constantly breathing into her hands, wrapping herself up tightly in the humble cloak.
The Palace of Versailles was too cold.
The windows were wide open, and the cold wind swept in. Even the wind and snow outside the window seemed to have solidified, and at a glance, every piece of snow seemed to be in exactly the same place it had been the moment before. The players groped through the gray Palace of Versailles, and it was like they’d been frozen into a gloomy oil painting. Outside the Hall of Mirrors, none of the fireplaces were lit up, and even the occasional candle that was lit up on the walls was weak, with its remaining wax levels so low it seemed that it would go out anytime.
“Hiss.” Chu Chu sucked in a breath of cold air, “I really want to point the muzzle of a gun at myself. It’s better than being eliminated due to being frozen to death.”
The ability of Wu Jin’s combat suit to withstand the cold was almost negligible. There was a moment when he was even frozen into a trance, and if he were offered a 7-piece dress again now, he might not be able to put up any resistance––
“Keep looking.” Wu Jin comforted, “There must be heating equipment. Otherwise, with these temperatures, all the players will have to either kill their way back to the Hall of Mirrors or be eliminated by the extreme cold.”
Based on the indoor temperatures, the program team had adjusted the outdoor temperature to at least negative 10 degrees Celsius. Wu Jin felt that no matter how absurd the rules were, they would not become ‘the first to freeze to death after the ball’. The first team must have an advantage.
They passed by an ambulatory and Chu Chu shivered as she leaned against the door, “I can’t walk anymore. It’s warmer to just lean here.”
Chu Chu paused suddenly, her eyes flying open in disbelief. Then, she opened the door in surprise––a gust of slightly heated, dry air swept over her face.
We’re sorry for MTLers or people who like using reading mode, but our translations keep getting stolen by aggregators so we’re going to bring back the copy protection. If you need to MTL please retype the gibberish parts.
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There were nearly 100 seats, corresponding to the 100 remaining contestants.
The three sets of heating equipment were quite different. Wu Jin pondered for a moment, “Don’t put all our apples in one basket.”
He picked out one of the 9 hour heaters from the middle and handed it to Chu Chu, then loaded himself up with an 8 hour self-heating vest. The smell of rust, carbon powder and exotic glue floated in the air. Wu Jin pressed the button to start the current, and the thin material of his protective clothing began to warm up immediately. Even his frozen heartbeat seemed to recover.
Chu Chu’s attempt to obtain a third heating system was unsuccessful when her wrist watch beeped in warning.
“A blizzard, 100 sets of equipment. The heating is a must have. The Council Hall, three sets of seats. Each person can only take away their own set––” Chu Chu murmured, “What does this have to do with Louis XVI?”
Wu Jin walked out of the room with Chu Chu, “At the very least, the blizzard is related to him. The French Revolution was triggered by blizzards, skyrocketing land prices, soaring food prices, and civil unrest. Let’s wait for Brother Wei and Vera.”
The door squeaked open, then closed again quietly.
They waited for the pointer on the clock to turn a full circle, and then the two of them headed towards the Hall of Mirrors to meet the others.
“As Barons, it should be about time for God Wei and Vera to come out.” Chu Chu calculated, then her eyes suddenly brightened, like a little fangirl of Wei Shi. Each dance lasted three minutes, and if nothing unexpected happened, it should be right now––
The door to the dance floor opened, and Red froze for a moment before greeting Wu Jin. His eyes were clearly trying to reveal something, but he was soon pulled away by his teammate.
After that came a pair of B-level trainees, and then the extremely lucky Lin Ke who had managed to remain until this round…
Wei Shi and Vera were nowhere in sight.
Chu Chu frowned, “Did they come out first?”
Wu Jin suddenly looked out the window. Not far from them were shallow footprints left in the snow, and there were two figures trekking off into the distance in the snow. Both figures were thin, and one of them wore the same dress as Vera, while the other definitely wasn’t the big boss––
Chu Chu abruptly spoke up, “Ning Fengbei?! Ning Fengbei and Sister Vera are grouped up together! Did they team up?!”
Wu Jin blurted, “Impossible. There are two ways to form teams for the Versailles instances. One is through the initial invitation, and the players on the invitations remain unchanged from start to finish. The second way is during the ball. Only when two teams choose each other at the same time can they form a legal four member team. If Ning Fengbei teamed up with Vera alone, then Brother Thin, as well as Brother Thin’s teammate will be unable to form a ‘legal team’ together. This is equivalent to weakening the team’s combat power and both sides harming each other––”
Chu Chu’s lips moved slightly, “…Why do I feel like this is something Sister Ning would do…”
Wu Jin analyzed, “If you want to advance––”
Chu Chu finally interrupted him and explained, “Ning Fengbei’s goal has never been to be promoted. She and Sister Vera took turns dominating the top of the Hyacinth Show. For her, losing her place is not nearly as humiliating as ‘losing to Vera’.”
––Rather than have Vera do better than her, it was better to pull Vera down with her. They would either win together or lose together.
Having come to that realisation, Chu Chu was obviously upset, “I should have thought of it earlier! Ning Fengbei must want to tear apart Sister Vera’s perfect alliance. What shall we do now?”
Wu Jin’s expression stiffened.
The reason why he’d invited Chu Chu was because in his predictions, each player would fight for the rankings, and they would all try to pick the best solution between a ‘four person team’ and a ‘two person team’. Ning Fengbei’s unique purpose had upended all of his expectations.
The big boss and Vera were both alone. Even if the big boss was on his own, he could enter the top 10 even with his eyes closed.
But the situation was much more complicated for Vera.
“I’ll go look for Vera.” Wu Jin spoke quickly. Forming a team could only ensure that Ning Fengbei wouldn’t attack Vera, but it couldn’t guarantee that Thin Fire wouldn’t eliminate Vera.
Chu Chu realized what he meant in an instant. Wu Jin had said ‘I’, not ‘we’. However, even before Chu Chu could speak, Wu Jin tried to appease her with an explanation, “You should go back to wait in the Council Hall. Brother Wei will definitely come over to meet up.”
As for him, if he tried to team up with the big boss again, it would already be regarded as an illegal team formation by the current rules. After handing Chu Chu over to the big boss, he would have to leave.
Chu Chu was dissatisfied, “You’ve already invited me to dance. We’re teammates too! How about we sneak around behind God Wei, and I’ll secretly pass on anything that God Wei finds to you…”
Wu Jin choked and couldn’t help but laugh as he shook his head, “Go, I’ll send you over. Don’t forget, Brother Wei said he would carry you and let you win lying down.”
Within the narrow Council Hall, nearly one third of the heating equipment had already been taken away. The survival figures on their left wrist watches had jumped to 98. If any contestant was unable to find this place while their physical endurance could still hold up, they would most likely end up eliminated by the cold.
Wu Jin sent off Chu Chu, his gaze sweeping across all the seats in the hall.
All of the 9 hour heating equipment had already been taken away, and there were only two sets of 8 hour heating equipment left. The 4 hour cold protection devices had all been left untouched.
4 hours wasn’t even enough for them to figure out the process for this round before they became cold again. It was obviously the least preferred choice.
Vera and Ning Fengbei had both taken a 9 hour device.
Based on the tracks they’d left, they were headed towards the Little Trianon Palace.
They were going to find Queen Marie in the ghost incident at Trianon Palace––
The big boss finally appeared outside the Council Hall.
Their gazes met, then shifted away. Countless cameras flew up, and Wu Jin immediately went on alert. If he glanced over again in this frame, the skies would collapse, and the earth would shatter! The youth quickly got up to chase after Vera.
The entrance to the Council Hall was narrow, so Wu Jin inevitably ran into the big boss.
Wei Shi seemed to have come in from the cold outside the Palace of Versailles. He had frost and snow on his shoulders, and for a moment, the coldness went straight into Wu Jin’s nose, bringing with it the smell of nuts and hay in the sun.
Wu Jin paused for a moment, then practically ran off.
The camera chased after Wu Jin as he flew out––
Chu Chu’s eyes were huge, “Little Witch escorted me over! God Wei, don’t bully Little Witch, what did you pinch his hand for! Little Witch is red all over!!”
Wei Shi casually picked up a heating device, and only now did Chu Chu realize, “You, you, you, you came in from outside! Didn’t you use a heating vest?! You went out in the blizzard just like that, holy, God Wei, are you even a normal person! … Wait a minute, where are we going?”
Wei Shi’s face was expressionless as he replied, “To the Little Trianon. Taking you to win lying down.”