Chapter 50: Tangtang: Sorry.

Chapter List

Original Translations: Crafted with Care, No Unauthorized Reposting Allowed.

The underground car park is dimly lit and the two men walk up the stairs to the outside.

It's nighttime and the sky is dark. Without the lights of the city, the night in Shanghai is silent, with a few rare stars in the sky. As they walk out of the mall, Fu Wenduo says: "The situation in Beijing is no better than in Shanghai, or rather very similar. All parts of China should be in a state of disorder at the moment, so the situation is more or less the same, regardless of the size of the city."

Tang Mo nods understandingly.

The black tower game started too suddenly, even though it sent out an announcement three days in advance asking all of humanity to eliminate players and enter the game. But no one knew what that meant. During those three days, the official players who had already completed The black tower game were unable to say anything about The black tower game (as confirmed by Li Bin) and could not alert the rest of humanity. This dooms the players who enter the game after three days, almost at random.

So when Earth came online, government systems around the world were basically paralysed.

The way the black tower screens players has nothing to do with their identity. State secrets like Fu Wenduo and Luo Fengcheng survived, as did ordinary citizens like Tang Mo. Many other murderers, such as Qian Sankun, a thief whom Tang Mo once touched, also survived and entered the game.

An unregulated game of sifting has completely shattered the social order that man has maintained for thousands of years. But humans are, after all, herd animals. Tang Mo wonders, "Is there a group of psychics like Shanghai in Beijing?

Atak is not the only group of psychics in Shanghai, there are others. It's just that Atak is more powerful and is quite well known in Shanghai.

Fu Wenduo said lightly, "There are many small, scattered organisations, and one very large one."

Tang Mo sensed a hint of something wrong in his tone: "This organisation ......"

"It's a stowaway group."

Tang Mo stops dead in his tracks.

"Beijing's largest group of psychics is called the Chosen, and consists of over thirty stowaways. Each of them is very strong, and one of them has already cleared the ground floor of The black tower."

Tang Mo said in surprise, "How did you know he cleared the ground floor of The black tower?"

Fu Wenduo said, "I fought him before I left Beijing. He was very strong, and that kind of strength must have been detected by The black tower and forced to attack it." After a pause, he continued, "You would have been forced to attack the tower in the same way."


Fu Wenduo looked up at the quiet expanse of the night sky and his voice was calm: "So did he. He must have been forced to attack the tower, and the fact that he made it out means that there is a 90% chance that he has already cleared the first level, perhaps even before you. In every zone, except for the first player to clear The black tower, any further clearance is not broadcast globally and no one will know about it. You, of course, are an exception."

"I'm an exception?!" Tang Mo was pondering Fu Wenduo's words. When he suddenly heard the other man mention himself and make such an inexplicable remark, he stopped in his tracks and turned his head to look at Fu Wenduo in disbelief.

Fu Wenduo pulled his eyes back from the stars and looked at Tang Mo, who looked stunned. It was rare for Tang Mo to show such a stark expression, most of the time he would hide his emotions, or disguise them. But this time, to his surprise, his eyes widened slightly, and a strand of hair fell from his forehead onto his upturned nose, looking surprisingly innocent.

Fu Wenduo understood the reason for Tang Mo's shock. After thinking about it, he chose between telling the truth and hiding it for a while. "According to my guess, it's been almost two months since The black tower went online, and there were at least twenty players who had cleared the first level before. This time, many players were forced to attack the tower for the Christmas benefit copy, and although most players have not yet reached the first level, the number of players is so huge that the number of people who have cleared it will be objective. A conservative estimate is that at least sixty people around the world have now cleared the first level of The black tower. But they haven't announced it to anyone, whether they've cleared it or not. Only you ......"

Fu Wenduo weighs up his words: "You have cleared the first level of The black tower on hard mode. So at the moment you cleared it, The black tower made an announcement in my head - MOMO in China 2 cleared The black tower level 1 (hard mode). There was no worldwide announcement and no China-wide announcement, so I guess it was just communicated to all players who had cleared The black tower level 1."

Tang Mo: "......"

A month ago, Tang Mo was punked twice by The black tower.

The first time was when I was informed that I would be playing a tower attack game. Tang Mo had to work very hard to save up his powers and props to get through the game and save his life. The second time was when Tang Mo was told by The black tower that "you're on hard mode" after completing the game to the death, and he went straight to the bottom of The black tower and kicked the monolith underneath it several times to vent his emotions.

Now tell him: The black tower is giving away a one-stop shop to help you make a name for yourself among high-end players around the world for free.

...... god damn free hits of awareness!!!

Tang Mo is now glad he used his name change ability, it was MOMO who was known, not Tang Mo. The players who made it through the first level of The black tower before Tang Mo are some of the best players in the world today. Tang Mo is a cautious player and does not want to be a target by revealing his strength early.

Tang Mo's expression changes rapidly, and finally he lets out a small breath of relief and regains his composure. He decided that the next time he went to Puxi, he would find a chance to kick the monolith in the face again.

Next, Fu Wenduo briefly revealed some outside information to Tang Mo.

All in all, there is no chaos in most cities in China, although there is anarchy and no social order. The exception was the stowaway group in Suzhou, where Fu Wenduo travelled south from Beijing to Shanghai, through three provinces and two cities, but only in Suzhou was there a crazy stowaway group that committed massacres.

The stowaways in Suzhou were also purely accidental, after all, according to Tang Mo and Luo Fengcheng, they went on a killing spree because of their special ability to get stronger by eating hearts. Otherwise, no stowaway group would kill blindly if they didn't have to. It would have been more costly to kill the majority of the players.

So Fu Wenduo says that although the Beijing stowaway group is very large, they don't really do anything to ordinary players, and everyone is fine.

Tang Mo was relieved to hear this news. Whether or not his college nemesis makes it into the game, at least he won't have to worry about being killed by other players in Beijing once he's online on Earth.

Tang Mo is also thinking about when he will have the opportunity to go to Beijing.

At that moment, an excited voice rang out from the distance: "Brother Tang, Brother Tang!"

Tang Mo turns his head to look.

He saw a young blonde woman running from the direction of the mall, moving very fast and reaching him in a matter of seconds. Tang Mo knew her, her name was Lizzy and she was a member of the Atak organisation, she and Tang Mo had met before in the infirmary.

When she came to see her, Tang Mo's first thought was: "Luo Fengcheng wants to see me?"

Lizzy shook her head and laughed, "No, it's your friend who's back."

Tang Mo frowned strangely, not understanding the other party's meaning. Little Fatty and the others had gotten out of the assembly copy so quickly?

Suddenly, something occurred to him: " Chen Shanshan and the little girl are back?"

Lizzy said, "No, just a little girl, Chen Shanshan, who came back. She walked back to the organisation on her own and is now resting in the medical room. I've just bandaged her wound, she's hurt. Tang Mo, when she came back to the organisation she said she wanted to see you, she had something to say, Dr. Luo had gone over. I remember she had two classmates, one was that cute little chubby guy who went to Puxi with Jackass this afternoon and hasn't come back yet. There is another classmate who went with a member of our organisation to clear a copy of S8 today, right? I'll go and look for that little friend."

Tang Mo said, "OK, thank you, I'll be right back."

Lizzy smiled, "No, I'm glad the little girl is back safe." With that, she quickly walked deeper into the factory area, looking for Liu Chen.

Tang Mo looked to Fu Wenduo: "A friend of mine just came back from the game."

Fu Wenduo understood what he meant: "I'll go back with you." After a pause, he said calmly, "Not to Atak. It's not easy to move at night, so I'll find a place to stay in the mall."

The two walked back to the mall together.

There are things you can't say near a shopping mall, and Tang Mo and Fu Wenduo have long since reached the edge of the factory district. The road is empty and the white factories on either side are neat and tidy. After nightfall, except for the players who had entered their copies during the day and could not come out for the time being, the others had already returned to the mall and were ready to spend the silent night.

Tang Mo has his hands in his pockets and his eyes forward, not speaking.

He didn't know what to say.

He has only known Fu Wenduo for a month and a half, or half a day if you don't count the time they've been in contact with each other on MOMO. Before Earth went online, the two were very different and if The black tower hadn't appeared out of nowhere, Tang Mo might never have met Fu Wenduo in his life.

Both were very quietly silent, and gradually, between the foliage, the shadow of the mall was almost visible.

Fu Wenduo's low voice rang out, "Did you just say that you are a Suzhou man?"

Tang Mo stared: "Well, I'm from Suzhou. I came to Shanghai because of something and I was going to go back to Suzhou to see how the stowaways were doing, but since you've dealt with them, I'm probably not in a hurry to go back."

"Not going back to Suzhou, staying in Shanghai?"

Tang Mo thought for a long time: "...... Maybe it's to Beijing."

Fu Wenduo: " Beijing ?"

It's not a big deal," Tang Mo says matter-of-factly, "I have a good friend who I haven't seen since college. He's working in Beijing."

Fu Wenduo didn't say any more, but Tang Mo's words already explained why he was most interested in hearing about Beijing before.

The two men continued on through the factory and across the road to the mall.

It was at this point that a clanging sound came up from the distance. In the dark silence of the night, the sound was ear-splitting, as if someone was dragging heavy chains across the floor with a thud. The shrill sound echoed rapidly from house to house, and Tang Mo suddenly felt something was wrong when he heard it. The next second, he immediately remembered the name.

The Iron Shoemaker!

But the moment Tang Mo reacted, a tall, lanky figure appeared around the corner of the premises.

It was a muscular, burly man two metres tall, with a short, greasy grey shirt and worn and old leather boots. In his left hand he held a thick chain and in his right a nail stained with blood and rust. On his face, a twisted knife scar spans the bridge of his nose and cuts from the left eye to the right corner of his mouth.

The iron cobbler is blocking the end of the road. Behind him is the mall and in front of him are Tang Mo and Fu Wenduo.

The iron cobbler's unsuspecting gaze scanned the two men as he hemmed and hawed, "Look what I found."

With his brain running fast, Tang Mo remembered what the prepper had said yesterday.

'I don't know what Keiko did, I was right next to him and the iron cobbler just hemmed and hawed at me and didn't drag me away.'

When you meet the iron cobbler, you don't necessarily get dragged away by him.

Of the two, the one who triggers the side quest and is dragged away by him is not necessarily me.

It all happened in the blink of an eye, and Tang Mo turned his head quickly to look at Fu Wenduo beside him. Fu Wenduo's gaze is locked on the iron cobbler, his face calm. Noticing Tang Mo looking at him, Fu Wenduo turns his head to look at him.

Tang Mo said quickly, "Sorry."

Fu Wenduo: "......?"

The next moment, Tang Mo turned and ran without hesitation.

Fu Wenduo: "......"

Many of us have heard the story of the tiger encounter in the forest. How can two hunters survive a tiger encounter? It is impossible for a man to outrun a tiger, so it is never the tiger that the hunter has to outrun, but his own companion.

Tang Mo didn't know who had triggered the side quest, but in any case, it was definitely the best option for him to turn and run now. If his companion had been Chen Shanshan, or even Luo Fengcheng or Jackass, Tang Mo would have hesitated and probably would not have chosen to do so. But now it was Fu Wenduo standing beside him, a man he didn't seem to know that well, and he wasn't even as strong as Fu Wenduo.

...... dead dawg, not poor dawg.

Tang Mo turned and fled while silently giving Fu Wenduo a wave of goodwill in his heart.

The cobbler's reaction was quick too. Tang Mo had just turned and run a metre when he swung the rusty iron lock forward and bound Tang Mo's right wrist with force. With his right arm bound, Tang Mo had no choice but to turn his head and look at the cobbler again.

The giant of a man bared his teeth to reveal a mouthful of stained teeth full of yellow dirt.

"Hey, hey, hey, welcome to the world of the Iron Shoemaker game."

Tang Mo's face slowly sank as he realised that this time he was the one who had triggered the game. Just now, he had been trying to break the iron lock secretly while appearing to remain calm. However, this seemingly ordinary iron lock had been locked firmly around his arm, and with Tang Mo's current muscle strength, he was unable to break free.

The black tower promulgates a game that it is best not to resist so easily. Even if you are in a desperate situation to use the king's gold to forfeit the game, do not resist forcefully at the beginning.

Fu Wenduo watched from the sidelines. The iron cobbler ignored him, only locking Tang Mo. His eyes swept back and forth between the iron cobbler and Tang Mo's body, and then to the iron lock that bound Tang Mo. He curled his lips, understanding what was going on. He looked over at Tang Mo and smiled, "Sorry about that."

Tang Mo: "......"

The exact same words, which Tang Mo had just said when he decided to sell Fu Wenduo to escape on his own, were now returned to him in their original form by Fu Wenduo.

Tang Mo had already confirmed his intention to participate in the game and he looked at Fu Wenduo's calm and smiling face and thought that it was a blessing.

However, Tang Mo was not left helpless for long when the Iron Shoemaker gave a low, muffled laugh and turned his head towards Fu Wenduo: "Welcome, too, to the Iron Shoemaker's game world." At these words, the Iron Shoemaker stomped his foot and a chain inexplicably extended from the chains binding Tang Mo, binding Fu Wenduo's wrists at a speed unreachable to the naked eye.

Fu Wenduo: "......"

Tang Mo: "......"

Fu Wenduo reacted in the first moment, dodging and escaping. But the chains seemed to have eyes and kept chasing him. After Fu Wenduo's wrists were tied up, he quickly raised his right hand. His five fingers disappeared and a sharp, black metal weapon appeared on his right arm. Without hesitation, he swung it down with a slash. After a hard, crisp metallic clash, the chains did not break and Fu Wenduo's face looked a little grim.

The iron cobbler saw him move and laughed out loud.

A familiar child's voice rang out in both of their ears.

"Dingdong! The side quest 'Meet That Iron Shoemaker by Chance' has been triggered, officially entering the reality copy 'That Lovely Iron Shoemaker'. Please ask players to follow the cute iron cobbler and enter the iron cobbler's crafting hut. Hint: The iron cobbler's love chain is a karmic weapon, and cannot be untied by anyone except the iron cobbler when bound."

The black tower has been prompted to this point, and Tang Mo and Fu Wenduo are unlikely to make any more pointless attempts.

In the moonlight, the iron cobbler hums a little tune and tugs at his chains, pulling the two men straight ahead into the depths of the factory district.

The chain was originally just a long bar, but now it has split down the middle. At one end was Tang Mo and at the other Fu Wenduo. Tang Mo and Fu Wenduo are together again, side by side. They will not be like the previous prepper who struggled desperately to escape from the game that had begun, leading to himself being dragged along the ground by the iron shoemaker.

The two men quickly followed in the footsteps of the iron cobbler, no one could tell that they were now under restraint except for the iron locks tied around their wrists.

The Iron Shoemaker's song was even worse than Pinocchio's. After a long time, over the noise of the song, Tang Mo whispered, "...... is even?"

Fu Wenduo's voice was low: "Does it count?"

Tang Mo: "Count on it."

"Forget it then."

This time it really is a grasshopper tied to a rope (iron locks). Tang Mo doesn't want that accident just now to create a divide between the two, and while he does ...... cough up and try to sell out his teammates, what really matters when things get to this point is working together to get through this game in front of us.

The cobbler dragged the two men to the entrance of a factory. While Tang Mo looked around the factory, Fu Wenduo's eyes were locked on the shoemaker's body, examining every tool he had (including nails and locks) several times.

Arriving at this plant, the iron cobbler gave the iron lock a firm tug.

Strangely enough, Tang Mo and Fu Wenduo were clearly attached by him to the same iron lock, and when the iron cobbler tugged, only the one binding Tang Mo tugged forward. Tang Mo took half a step forward and the iron cobbler ground his teeth and said with a heated smile, "You're here, you go in." With that, he kicked open the door and the dull moonlight shone into the darkened factory, illuminating only about two metres of distance.

Tang Mo frowned as he looked up at the iron cobbler and then back to Fu Wenduo.

The two men's eyes met in the air and they nodded in unison.

The iron cobbler, seeing Tang Mo's delay in entering, was about to make an issue of it. Tang Mo strides straight into the building. The iron lock that had been tied to his wrist suddenly fell off the moment he stepped into the building. As if it was alive, it swished back into the cobbler's hands.

The door slammed shut behind Tang Mo, who leaned over it for a moment to listen, only to hear the sound of the iron cobbler humming away.

It should have taken Fu Wenduo to another place.

"Isn't it a team of two people for this copy?" Tang Mo thought secretly.

The Iron Shoemaker and Fu Wenduo had gone too far for Tang Mo to sit still. He turns around and surveys his surroundings.

This is a food processing factory. Even before entering the factory, Tang Mo smells the sweet aroma of biscuits in the air. The factory has not been open for a month and a half since the Earth went online, but the raw materials piled up in the factory have not yet completely decayed and smell like food. Of course, it couldn't be used for food anymore.

The factory is dark and the moonlight shines in through the high windows, illuminating only one corner.

Tang Mo tried pushing the door. He did not push it open. Then he took a stone out of his pocket.

In his haste to get out, Tang Mo hid his rucksack in a hidden spot in the commercial vehicle and did not carry it with him. Without a torch, he remembered the stone he had knocked out with Mario's hat. Although the light from the stone only shone for a couple of metres around, it was better than nothing.

Tang Mo rubbed the stone three times and tried to stomp on it again with a firm hand. When he tapped on the stone twice, a line of small letters gradually appeared.

[Props: a magical stone]

[Owned by: Tang Mo].

[Quality: Normal].

[Grade: Level 1].

[Attack power: average].

[Function: Smashing people might even hurt a little, glows, and maybe has some sort of strange effect].

[Restrictions: None.]

[Remarks: Even a stone can have a dream - I want to be a luminous pearl!

Tang Mo's gaze lingers for a moment on "some strange effect", then he holds up the stone as an illumination and begins to explore the room he is in.

The sound of Tang Mo's footsteps echoing through the walls is unmistakable in the vast silence of the factory. Tang Mo uses a stone to illuminate his surroundings while keeping his eyes peeled for any movement. In the event of an accident, he takes out a large match as quickly as possible and meets the enemy.

This room appears to be the manual work area of a food processing factory. Tang Mo walks a dozen metres and finds long rows of stainless steel tables set up here. On these tables, there are scattered food boxes and long-packaged food. Almost two months after Earth went online, most of the food that had been made in this factory had been looted by players, and only some of the food that had fallen into the pile of boxes had gone undetected.

Tang Mo picks up a box of crumpets and continues on his way.

The work area is part of this plant, and further in, the office area.

Tang Mo peers forward cautiously, the glowing stone clutched in his hand. He stops in front of the first office door and tries to twist the handle.

Can be twisted open.

Tang Mo took a half step backwards as he stared warily ahead, extended his leg and kicked the door open.


The door was kicked open and dust flew up with this gust of wind.

Tang Mo kicked in the door and the house was quiet and untouched. Tang Mo took the stone and went inside, searching around. It was an ordinary office, the contents seemed to have been raided by other players in advance and were all torn up. I don't know if those players had entered this factory because of this realistic copy of the game, or if they had entered it long ago.

Tang Mo checked it over and found nothing special, he went further in.

After searching three offices in a row, Tang Mo found nothing unusual. When he reached the door of the innermost office, an extremely faint click sounded from inside the door.

Tang Mo's eyes narrowed as he stared at the door in front of him. After listening for another moment, he kicked the door open and stepped aside, leaning against the wall to prevent any sudden attack from inside.

"Ah ...... who! Who's there!" A hoarse, frightened male voice rang out and Tang Mo's brow furrowed. The voice continued, "Who is it, who is it coming." He seemed to suddenly think of something and his voice became very excited, "Is it a new player? Is it a new player coming?!"

The male voice in the room said it a few more times.

Tang Mo thought for a moment, clasped the large match in one hand and turned to walk into this office.

The ground was a mess.

Countless bags of snacks litter the floor in a chaotic heap, stained with some long-blackened blood. A thin young man, like a dried up black bat, hides behind a desk in his office, peeking out at Tang Mo. His mouth was still covered in biscuit crumbs, as if the clicking sound had just come from him eating them.

All over his body, there were shockingly dark wounds. From arm to thigh, the stone illuminated a blackened hole that looked to have been formed by something stabbing through it.

The blood on these holes had long since congealed and turned purple, and the player's enhanced fitness that he had gained kept him from dying from these wounds. He was seen falling to the ground almost as if paralysed, the right leg with the most wounds was now muscular and atrophied, and should have not been exercised for a long time.

Tang Mo did not let his guard down as he said coldly, "Who are you?"

The young man looked at him fearfully, "I ...... my name is Xing Feng, are you a new player? I came in early, this is a realistic copy of the iron cobbler right? I came in on the 1st. Do you know what number it is now? How many days have passed already? You ...... don't be afraid, I mean no harm, I really don't, I just haven't seen a new companion in a long time."

Tang Mo immediately said, "A new companion?"

Xing Feng swallowed fearfully and nodded, "Yes ...... right. Before you, I came to two companions and they both died. They were killed by those people over there. I hurt my leg by the iron cobbler and there is no way I can move to find the clues again. If you don't come, I'm afraid I'm going to die too."

"What are those people over there?" Tang Mo asked.

A look of fear flashed across Xing Feng's face and before he could say anything, he heard a bell ring in the office. At the same time, a dazzling light illuminated the bookshelf behind the office desk.

Tang Mo was shocked: "What's that?!"

Only to see the deadly silent office, the computer on the desk in the centre of the room suddenly booted up and on the screen, a video call invitation was sent over. All communication devices were inoperative when the planet went online, and all power sources were down. How did this computer boot up?

Xing Feng crawled backwards on his hands and knees in fear as he clung to the wall, holding out his hand and pointing fearfully at the computer, "Here it comes, here it comes ...... It's that guy over there, the guy over there is coming to the phone!"

Tang Mo pursed his lips as he pondered for a moment and stepped forward. He looked at the main computer first. The mainframe of this computer had not been activated, only the screen was turned on and there was an invitation to a video call from someone.

Tang Mo looks at the computer screen with a blank expression and presses the OK button.

The next second, Fu Wenduo's handsome face appeared on the computer screen.

Tang Mo was surprised, " Fu Wenduo ?"

Fu Wenduo also had a hint of surprise.

It was at this point that a clear, childlike voice rang through the room.

"Dingdong! Trigger side quest 2: Find the Iron Shoemaker's missing shoe polish."


The author has something to say.

Tangtang: Sorry.

Mr. Fu: Sorry.

Iron Shoemaker: Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha, sorry~!

Tangtang & Mr. Fu: ......

Published at: 03/29/2022 21:04