Eviless Follow story

sunny-chen54 Sunny Chen

Hsieh Li Lei is a girl who shies away from the world. A shut-in with little to hope for. Seeking to escape the bitter reality of life she turns to the virtual companionship of online gaming. Athesta, an AR game in which players who do not make it past the second level vanishes. She masters the game, for all it offers, following a damaged friendship. Until she meets a player that is the first to defeat her twice. But, a game can only be fun for so long. Especially, when every player that takes part in the 2.0 version of the game, loses their life shortly.


Science Fiction Not for children under 13. © All Rights Reserved

#Chinese #Fighting #science fiction #romance #Gaming #Alternate reality #Magic
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Prologue

FORUM<CURRENT EVENTS<SUEN<WHERE DID THEY GO?


MYEONG[YOU]277784.root.tracing 2.31 A.M


What is everyone talking about?[SUEN DEAD]


Mon.LS[UNREADABLE] 2.44 A.M


RE:@Myeong It happened 3 years ago in Macau, I'm not surprised that it got buried by the media. But you met him on television, right? Did he not tell you he has a sister? There's something very weird going on ever since he came back from what happened in Macau.[HELP]

RE:@Anmeldeschluss How does this relate to Li Hua? She's missing, isn't she? [SAVE HIM]

Https://archivalforum.com/conversations/athesta

Warning!Do not play this game!

---EUnited Nations confirms that they are looking into the mass multi-player game that has now attained international fame. Ranking as number 2 on the top 100 most successful RPG games to have been created in Taiwan. The game has drawn attention from its release of 2.0 a server in which ties several disappearances to the game. A few have returned but refuses to disclose what has occurred. Within a few days, the body of Tsumana Sugisaki was found in South Bay. An autopsy revealed she leaped into the bay in the act of suicide. Within the week, however, three more bodies were found. All were participants of the game. Due to massive protest, the game remains active. However, attempts at disposing of the game have turned out ineffective. --

I don't see anything wrong with the game when I played it.

Anmeldeschluss [UNREADABLE] 2.55 A.M

@Mona.LS You're just a rebel aren't you?

She's missing.No text, call, anything. The game is a death omen, the Suen Family made it and within the year they disappeared. I only signed up because she was going in alone.I wasn't able to advance to the final level.I lost her then, I never saw her again.Something Is going on with this game.I need answers.[HELP US]

L.HUA 6.66 A/M

HelpHelpHelpHelpHelpHelp----<translation.unverified.GarDEN.>

SEA News[Top Story May 7th, 2022]

Japanese Syndicate Arakawa awaiting trial for abduction and torture of Suen Family Heir

<DELETED.THEY.BURIED.DESTROY.RUINED>

Anmeldeschluss

Li Hua?!Where are you?

-.HU-

I congratulate you all.You are now in my world.

[<SYSTEM COMPROMISED=html.unreadable>rerouteterminal<]

11 Years Ago

"Xu Xu, let's play in the rain together!" The petite, young girl carelessly spread her arms prancing around Xu Xu. The dark overcast of dim grey clouds streamed a continuous torrent of saltwater droplets. Some of which she even soaks in her tongue, seizing the drops that fall into her mouth.

"Li Lei quit playing in the rain before you catch a cold." Xuan Yu stands near the doorway.Not budging a single inch.He knew better, despite being the same age of ten.If he needs any form of entertainment, it would be playing chess inside his living room in this weather. Unlike Li lei, he had been raised in what is considered the life of luxury. Keeping his clothes clean and prim is a priority and one that makes him unwilling to step into the cascade of water and perhaps mud.

Even the slightest trace of dirt will have him reeling in disgust. Many would say the young boy is spoiled to the bone, and the rumors are true. The only thing he's thinking of now is the umbrella he would have to get for the poor girl and rain boots for god's sake.

He would have to remind his father later to get him these things, as he is staring at her wearing nothing but her school uniform, hair down, and barefoot. Her feet are now covered in black muck, which is more than enough to make him look in the other direction.

But she paid him no mind. As much as she loves to continue the fun, the dread of boredom eventually fell upon her. Desperate, an idea springs to life within her, and instantly her excitement is reclaimed.

She returned to Xuan Yu and pulled on the fabric edges of his cashmere hoodie. "XuXu let's play hide and seek!" Xuan Yu's gaze fixates firmly on the sleeves of his hoodie that is now stained. Immediately, he pulls away from her grasp.

"What's wrong?"

"You're soaking wet."

"So? You don't like the rain?"

"It's dirty. You don't know what it has been mixed with. Now it's on my sleeve."

Li Lei chuckles, this being the first time she has heard anything this silly. To her, the rain beats the sunrays any day. When it rains, she can play without worry about being in the heat. When it's clear, she regrets stepping outside without wanting to grab the nearest ice cream she can find to cool herself down.

Everything smells awful in the heat, and she has been through enough times out in the street smelling sweat, mud, farts, and even dog feces just out and exuding their stench into the world. Not to mention wanting to chug down Ice tea all day.

"What are ya? Some kind of prince? It'll dry, no worries."

He became her best friend at ten years old, and he came to know the girl who has poked through his arrogance, His disdain, whatever childhood angst there was. Even after he left, it was not without giving her his cell phone number. She had to borrow a phone from her mother to contact him. Most days it was him contacting her, but it became less. If only she had left him alone, would things have been how they are now? If they had never been friends, she would not have heard the words "I like you".

She would not mess up.

No hesitation, one foot over the ledge. Her body pulled by the unforgiving reaches of gravity pushing her further and further towards her destination of concrete pavement below.

Her body landing, the force sucking the blood out of her body, pooling on the cold pricking pavement. Her bones, ripped from their position, protruding from her lifeless arms and legs. It should have ended there. She is no more.

But if reality truly exists, there's no such thing as her death. There she was, lying in the ICU, an IV attached to her arm, and staring at the ceiling. Conscious and with no more blood pouring out of her limp body.

"She's breathing, there's no real damage done other than a few broken bones. We can't really explain it, but your daughter is stable." That must be the doctor, she thought. Li lei shifts her head slightly, attempting to see who was speaking.

More than anything she wanted to apologize once again she has disappointed her parents by doing something as cowardly as this. Now, she is making them pay more money for her medical bills. Or worse, they might just give her up altogether and toss her into a mental institution.

Yet, her gaze lands on the dark cloak of a figure towering over her. Close enough for her to make out the outline of a face and long black hair, not enough to tell the identity, a luxury that her vision is not giving her.

"Who are you.." she mutters, with sleep slowly forcing its way into her body. She saw the entire world fade to black.

"I can't let you die, not in this lifetime."

9 YEARS LATER

"New patch-update again,"

Li Lei says, slumping back in her chair. The pain is setting in. clearly, this is not the option for her neck. Lying in front of a monitor all day in one position, her neck is perhaps ruined for life. The placement of her hands was natural, and yet she remained in this posture for over several hours.

Something she could not endure without the help of dungeon rushing and PVP. She can't help it, the quests just has to be completed. All she can do to ease the stiff burning sensation on the back of her neck is rotating it every few hours. It's not going away, goshdarnit!

Now she's cut off from the screen, the real hell is taking effect. Everything spins and her head feels as if it's about to detonate. There's nothing she can do but wait. In time, she will come back to Athesta. Everything will be better.

"Li Lei!"

The shrill sharp tone of her mother's voice cuts her thoughts without a slight effort. The woman held a filled white plastic bag in her grip. Finally.

"Thank you,"

"Don't thank me, you haven't slept or eaten for days. If you weren't so picky, I wouldn't even have considered takeout."

She paused, setting down the steaming hot container of rice and lemon chicken in front of Li Lei, on her desk.

"I expect little from you anymore, but you can't even take care of yourself. Your room is messy, just like you. What are you doing with your life, Li Lei? You're not giving us a lot of options,"

What are you doing with your life, is a question that is all too familiar with Li Lei. It comes as no surprise she is doing jack with her life. She couldn't even come up with an answer to that question. Nothing. But that is a forbidden term she refuses to use, along with "I think I have a problem". All she could do is remain silent and bear the full force of shame in her mother's eyes.

Catching on, her mother takes a heaving sigh and exits the room. Within a few minutes beyond the thin walls of the apartment, Li lei was already hearing faint shouts exchanged between both of the only members of her family.

Nobody could blame them if she was her parents she would yell at herself. It was her mother who still wishes to hold onto hopes that one day her daughter would snap out of her phase, and return to the outside world.

They were at their wit's end, she has spent almost most of her life away from the eyes of others. Her own mind lost in a world of surrealistic minute-to-minute action and drama within the virtual community. The only place she felt safe, it was always a mystery why she was living and breathing in this world.

Why are you such a disappointment?

Apparently, she could always accomplish better, that 70 could always have been an 80 or a 90. A perfect score was always "Keep it up". Everything was always better if it was perfect. That perfection that could never be achieved. This was something she would have to put her head down and remain quiet.

She would finish her dinner and resume playing. Going to bed and attaining rest was never in her mind. While the world slept she would press harder, maintaining that score high, and getting better gear, weapons and completing all the events has to offer. This was all an addiction, but what is the better alternative?

While chewing the tart-sweet yet hint of sour, crisp chicken. Li Lei notices her phone has vibrated several centimeters to the left. Someone has messaged her.

"Xuan Yu, he's back?"

Normally she would tap her chat box to respond, but this time her fingers remained still. What would she say to him? She's upset? Ashamed? Sad maybe? Apologizing was on her mind but maybe it was not enough. Not enough to make it up to him after all that has happened.

It was all just confusing, no way for her to rationalize being pissed at him. Sure he got angry but so did she, in fact, he deserves to get angry. Every time she has backed out of spending free time after school with him, every time she has called him names, putting games before having her own life. Every time he has forgiven her. What else could she say?

Thinking about it didn't help the case, the sleep deprivation and fasting caught up. She only feels the world confused, hazed, and slightly trembling. Within seconds of getting up, she was on the floor again. Everything turned black.

THE NEXT MORNING

Pork chops, Raw spring onions, few canisters of Iced Coffee and a bag of leftover takeout from the previous night. Wrapped in a plastic bag, tied neatly with a bow. Whatever is in that leftover takeout, she is having it. As far as operating any kind of kitchenware Li Lei is familiar only with pressing buttons and seeing what happens.

Many times did she end up having to wipe clean the burnt crisps lining the bottom of the pot and chowing down on whatever is left she could eat. Well, not today. That leftover was hers to claim. Still half asleep from the previous night she shoves it in and presses the magical buttons to heat her breakfast.

Going back on the computer, she boots it back up hoping since it's morning. There would be great news."Eh?" wiping her eyes Li lei takes a glance closer at the screen. Not that everything wasn't correct, none of her gears or skills are missing. It was just a message.

Your game has upgraded to Athesta 2.0.

That wasn't there before. Of all the years she has devoted to the game, she is more than aware of the patches and changes. But none directly implicated that it has upgraded the game of all things. Whatever, more than not it could just be an error. Bringing back her rank was of utmost priority. Players she has known have commented on how she has completed every achievement.

Necessary or not, she did it. It was the most surreal feeling of achievement, being called an Achievement hunter is an understatement. It's all or nothing. Yet that proud shining Rank 1 status fell within the matter of minutes in a defeat against no other than a player she has never even come across.

It's no surprise, however, the servers are large. Players come and go and often one or two could defeat her with pure luck, but she would always get them back. She always emerged the victor, but this man became the stone in her throat the minute he swung his weapon.

Going with protocol she challenges him again, and it became apparent that this player is an anomaly. Her first remaining defeat in all of 3 years she has fused herself into the game.

None has ever riled up an obsession to regain her status more than this loathing usurper of her throne."He better be on. SYHUA, I swear if you bail... I will show you what it's like to anger me". Sure enough, he was on. But his message to her caught her by surprise.

"Searching for me? I gave you a second chance, and no. I'm not accepting a rematch."

"That was not even close to a fair match,"

"I think it is a fair match unless a fair match is letting you win."

"You cheeky bastard, why don't we settle this out of three."

"Cute, but nope."

"Why not?"

"Don't be a bad sport."

"That rank was mine, of course, I'm mad."

Typing violently, her keyboard was already trembling when a small ping! sneaks its way into her attention. Speculating what it was, she pulls the notification icon up to a strange message in white printed across the screen.


You are invited to join Athesta 2.0 Que. Would you like to join?

Dec. 31, 2017, 3:36 a.m. 0 Report Embed 0
Read next chapter Unexpected Boyfriend

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