IRNDGL - Chapter 3: Blood And Beast
Ji Zhixiu nearly shot right up from her seat out of shock, but she managed to restrain her impulse at the final moment.
These words were so firmly etched in her mind as if they had been there all this while. She wondered if this searing pain was something one would feel when being branded.
Beast Transformation: Drawing power from blood, and using blood to control…
Ji Zhixiu’s eyelids twitched as she held the book with hands trembling in trepidation. What exactly was this?!
Hunters drew their strength from the sordid blood of dream beasts. Through injecting themselves with a drug made out of sordid blood, they could gain a portion of the power of the abyss. However, such an act was extremely dangerous, and there was a high chance of dying on the first injection.
This eventually became known as the threshold for becoming a hunter.
On top of that, if the dosage exceeded a certain limit, the hunter would be unable to control the devastating prowess of the sordid blood in his body and become ‘infected’, leading to the occurrence of a certain phenomenon.
This phenomenon could be split into three stages: Personality distortion, loss of rationality, and physical mutation.
The higher the concentration of sordid blood, the stronger the hunter and the prowess of the transformation.
Amongst the different types of physical mutation, the most commonly seen one was beast mutation.
And it was nigh impossible to control a beast mutation!
Veteran hunters who had accumulated too much sordid blood possessed unimaginable strength, but at the same time, they underwent great suffering due to their beast mutation phenomenon.
It was true that Ji Zhixiu had considered ‘casting aside her humanity’ to undergo a second injection so as to gain the power needed to exact vengeance, but she had never thought that this mysterious bookstore owner would actually give her the method to control sordid blood!
This meant that she would be able to control her beast mutation, a problem which neither hunters nor magicians had been able to solve since ancient times!
Sensing the blood in her body slowly coming under her control, Ji Zhixiu’s raspy voice quivered in a mixture of excitement and agitation as she asked, “Is this what you want me to do?”
The man standing before her was a real madman!
An unbelievably powerful one at that!
One must know that this knowledge was more than enough to topple the current system of hunter groups! As soon as this skill was spread amongst the people, the hunters would be able to break free of their reliance on sordid blood.
This was an undertaking equivalent to a crusade to change the old world. There was no saying what would come out of this—she could become lauded as a saint or condemned as a sinner.
But in any case, the choice of fate was currently in her hands, and she wanted to change the old world that had long gone out of time.
Ji Zhixiu’s breathing got heavier and heavier as she lowered her head to stare at the book in her hands. Her panting echoed exceptionally loudly in this quiet little bookstore.
On the other hand, Lin Jie sighed in silence as he watched the lowered, trembling head in front of him.
Haa, she’s just like any other young lady in the face of a breakup.
Despite appearing to be a strong, independent woman, she had a vulnerable side to her too..
With just a few words of encouragement and comfort, she’s already on the verge of crying.
At times like this, tears didn’t just represent sadness. It could also be a sign of being ready to let go of the past in preparation to move forward.
After revealing her vulnerable side, what she needed next was an injection of self-confidence. She should be given the courage to believe in herself, that she could stand proudly before the harshness of the world and face it!
”Yes, you need to do it. You must do it. Cast aside your remorse and face yourself honestly.”
The young man spoke with a lowered tone. It sounded as if he was talking to her and to himself at the same time.
“Once the last trumpet sounds, I shall present myself before the sovereign judge with this book in my hand, and loudly proclaim, thus have I acted; these were my thoughts; such was I. Such as I was, I have declared myself; sometimes vile and despicable, at others, virtuous, generous and sublime; even as thou hast read my inmost soul;”
What Lin Jie narrated was an excerpt of original text from Confessions.
He looked at Ji Zhixiu with a smile and continued, “Like wild beasts, everyone has primitive desires. That’s just how reality is, isn’t it?”
Ji Zhixiu raised her head, only to see Lin Jie raising his cup and clinking it against hers.
“Cheers to a new tomorrow. What do you say?”
After a long time…
Jin Zhixiu put down the book and picked up the cup earnestly. She smiled and nodded prudently in response. “Thank you for your guidance. I will comply with your wishes.”
Lin Jie had just taken a sip when he noticed Jin Zhixiu’s actions and froze up.
Did she just gulp down the entire cup of tea? That was just a symbolic gesture! I just wanted her to have some hot tea to warm herself up...
Furthermore, I have only topped it up moments ago. It must have still been boiling hot!
How in the world did she drink the whole thing in the blink of an eye?!
She has just been jilted after all. She might not be in the right frame of mind...
Lin Jie put down his cup uneasily. He hesitated for a brief moment, but he decided to ask it in the end, “Do you need to head to the hospital?”
Ji Zhixiu shook her head. “Thank you for your concern, I’m fine.”
Most of her wounds had already healed up during the exchange. This was the power of sordid blood.
Alright then. Since she’s already said so, I’ll just assume that she’s fine.
After all, she wouldn’t have been able to continue speaking so casually with me if she had really been scalded.
“Would you like to rest a little longer?”
Lin Jie brought out a black umbrella from beneath the counter and shook it. “It’s unfortunate that my cramped bookstore doesn’t have much space, so I can only keep you here till tonight.
“Here’s an umbrella. You can take it along with the book. The due date for returning the book is a month with a maximum extension of another seven days. Remember to bring the umbrella along with you when you drop by to return the book.”
Rather than a bookstore, it felt more apt to call it a book warehouse. There were only bookshelves in the store aside from books.
“I’ll leave in a moment’s time.”
Jin Zhixiu took the umbrella before receiving the register book Lin Jie was passing over to write down her personal particulars and sign it off. She then raised her head to look at Lin Jie and asked cautiously, “May I know a little more about you?”
I didn’t go overboard with my words right? Or are heartbroken girls just that vulnerable?
Lin Jie blinked in surprise before swiftly putting on a professional smile. “I’m Lin Jie. I’m just an ordinary boss of a bookstore who likes helping others.”
He placed the book in a plastic bag and looked at the name on the register.
Ji Zhixiu… Hmm?
Doesn’t the sole daughter of the underground resource development magnate, Ji Bodong, go by the name of Ji Zhixiu too?
Lin Jie was confident in his memory, and the name ‘Ji Zhixiu’ was rather atypical too. He was quite certain of it.
Not to mention, the lady before him was dressed in an evening gown that appeared to be custom-made. It was not the kind of attire that an average person could afford.
Lin Jie tried his best to maintain his composure as he silently tucked the register away.
This is quite the big fish.
I can definitely chea… I mean, earn enough money to renovate the bookstore!
On the other hand, Ji Zhixiu assumed that Lin Jie was unwilling to divulge his identity, but she wasn’t disappointed by his response. On the contrary, she felt a surge of anticipation.
She thought that this was a trial, and that she had to prove herself worthy. She needed to use her own strength to get rid of all of the traitors and return within the stipulated deadline of one month.
And after that, she would be able to seek out the next step…
Ji Zhixiu took two steps back from the counter. With the cane tucked under her armpit and the book and the umbrella in each of her hands, she bowed deeply.
“Well then, have a good night.”
Lin Jie scratched his head. Well, she’s an affluent young missy after all, but such etiquette is still a little too exaggerated.
Ji Zhixiu exhaled deeply before rising back up. She walked out of the store, closed the door, opened the umbrella, and walked into the rain.
But all of a sudden, her entire body went on high alert as she grasped her cane, ready to activate its mechanism at any moment.
A stooped old man with an umbrella was walking towards her. He was holding a book in hand.
Confessions by Jean-Jacques Rousseau
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