Chapter 714: Final Chapter (End of Novel)
Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation
No matter how dangerous going deeper into the tomb was, it was something they had to do.
Xiao Lin and Song Junlang both understood that, and as they prepared to move forward, Song Junlang suddenly shouted at Xiao Lin, “Hold on.”
At Xiao Lin’s confused face, Song Junlang walked over to the corpse, knelt down, and started to strip it.
Xiao Lin was curious at first, and his expression turned strange. “Didn’t you say to respect the dead earlier?”
“That’s right.” He might have said that, but Song Junlang’s movements did not slow down at all.
“What are you doing, then?”
“Can’t you see? I’m stripping it. I told you earlier that this is a Phoenix Robe. It’s something that can save your life!”
Xiao Lin was speechless, but he had seen how shameless Song Junlang was before. Only, with how familiar that guy seemed to be with his movements, why did he feel like it was not Song Junlang’s first time raiding a tomb?
The Phoenix Robe was quickly taken off. Song Junlang was obviously well-versed in this regard. After that, he threw the robe right at Xiao Lin’s disdainful face and asked him to put it on.
“This is for you to protect yourself. It might be able to save your life at an important time.”
Saying that, Song Junlang started to move forward, not looking back as he walked deeper into the tomb.
Xiao Lin widened his mouth. Even though he was apprehensive about putting on something that belonged to the dead, he still quietly put the Phoenix Robe on as he stared at Song Junlang’s departing back.
The Phoenix Robe could give him one chance at resurrection, and Song Junlang had given that chance to him. He could not betray that kindness.
The tomb was very deep, and the further in they went, the darker it got. That darkness was different from regular darkness. It was a pitch-black darkness that even the light could not pierce through, be it from torches or the orbs of light Song Junlang produced.
And Song Junlang and Xiao Lin could both feel that they were slowly walking further underground. The tomb was slanted, and the deeper rooms were all beneath the ground.
It was similar to the structure of a pyramid, so what did the deepest part at the end hide? Xiao Lin and Song Junlang were both filled with anticipation because of that.
They had been a little worried that the tomb would have various traps and mechanisms hidden within, but after going forward for so long, they did not encounter any traps at all.
They did not know if it was because the earlier tomb raiders had already cleared up all the traps, or if the tomb’s traps had all lost their effects after such a long time.
No matter what, it was quite good news for them.
Just like that, time slowly ticked away.
Xiao Lin and Song Junlang talked less and less to each other, and the inside of the tomb was incredibly quiet, only the soft sounds of footsteps and the thumping of their heartbeats could be heard.
Xiao Lin did not know how much time had passed, but he started to feel tired. Even though there was no way for him to know the time, by rough estimations, they should have walked for at least two or three hours.
Their pace was quite quick. Even though they were not running, they were still walking at a very brisk pace.
Even at that speed, there did not seem to be any trace of the end of the tomb.
How big was the tomb?
Could it be heading straight underground?
“Department Head Song, are you sure we’re going the right way?” Xiao Lin finally asked.
Yet, the question did not get an answer.
In the dark tomb, Song Junlang merely continued to show his long back, which was not too far and not too near to Xiao Lin. He did not talk and did not turn around.
Xiao Lin’s heart started to race, as he could feel like something was wrong.
The Song Junlang in front of him suddenly felt very foreign, but he had no power at all. He should have realized it earlier, yet he only realized it just now.
“You’re not Song Junlang! Who are you?!”
Xiao Lin did not hesitate to launch an attack. He was only at Black Iron-rank now, but he was not completely devoid of any ways to attack; it was just that his attacks were only good for probing.
Song Junlang still did not turn around, nor did he make any moves.
When the attack landed on Song Junlang’s body, Song Junlang rippled and disappeared, and the space around Xiao Lin started to twist and distort.
Xiao Lin suddenly opened his eyes, and was greeted with Song Junlang’s concerned gaze.
He looked around in confusion. He was still in the room with that corpse, and he had the Phoenix Robe on. After looking at Song Junlang for a moment, Xiao Lin let out a sigh of relief.
That was the real Department Head Song. After interacting with him for so long, Xiao Lin was certain about that.
“Was it a hallucination?” Xiao Lin asked.
“That’s right, and it’s not a regular illusion either.” Song Junlang had a concerned expression on his face, “Now I know why the tomb raiders have never been able to get to the final room despite so many tries after all these years.”
“What happened? Stop playing around!” Xiao Lin seemed anxious. He could tell that Song Junlang definitely knew a lot more. He could already tell a few days ago. It was something that guy always did. He would never reveal the full picture.
“Xiao Lin, the next step of the way, I’m afraid I won’t be able to go with you.” Song Junlang’s expression was suddenly calm, but his words caused Xiao Lin to feel like something was wrong.
“What do you mean? Are you leaving?”
“No, it’s because only you can walk the next part of this journey. It’s a destination that only you can reach.”
“I don’t understand what you mean.”
Song Junlang rubbed his temples, sighing. “Do you still not understand? Actually, I’ve already read the journals of the tomb raiders that had been here before this. According to them, there’s nothing in this tomb at all; it’s like a maze that goes on forever. Yet, just now, you entered an illusion. Do you understand what I mean now?”
Xiao Lin understood. “You’re saying that past the illusion is where the real tomb lies.”
“That’s right, but only you can enter the illusion. In truth, up until just now, I did not feel any form of illusory power at all. So, I think that only you can take that path.” Song Junlang had a heavy expression on his face.
“What’s at the end of the road?”
“I don’t know.”
“What will be in that place?”
“I don’t know.”
“Will it be dangerous?”
“I don’t know.”
“Then what do you know?!” Xiao Lin was getting frustrated.
“You should just stay true to your heart. Do what you want to do. That should be enough.”
Song Junlang gave Xiao Lin a heavy push after those words, and before Xiao Lin could say anything else, his eyes blurred again.
When his vision returned to normal, Xiao Lin was standing in that tomb again. Only, Song Junlang was not next to him, and there was no corpse on the ground.
He understood that he was back in the illusion.
This time, he no longer hesitated, and continued straight, going deeper into the tomb.
The deeper he went, the darker it got around him. The torch in his hand was no longer enough to illuminate the darkness, and he just threw it away instead.
The tomb’s layout was quite simple anyway. Each room was connected, and even by closing his eyes, he would still be able to continue. When he mustered up his determination, Xiao Lin realized something.
It was possible that light was actually muddling his eyes.
Without the light, in the darkness where he could not even see his fingers, Xiao Lin did not feel afraid at all, and his footsteps became even more determined.
Just like that, he walked ahead one step at a time, and time moved forward second by second, minute by minute.
No one knew how much time had passed; it might have been an hour; it might have been a day; it might even have been a year.
Then finally, in the darkness in front of Xiao Lin, light suddenly appeared. It was a pure white glow.
He felt no happiness or sadness, and merely quickened his footsteps. When he touched the light, he suddenly felt an incredibly strong power surge forward.
Xiao Lin could not reach it in time, but of course that did not matter at all. With his Black Iron-rank powers, there was no way he could fight back, so he could only look on as the white and intense light swallowed him whole.
As the light dissipated, Xiao Lin forced his eyes open again, and he was shocked to notice that he was no longer in the tomb, but instead surrounded by streams of colorful lights.
However, he was naked at that moment. Xiao Lin immediately understood that the Phoenix Robe had saved his life, which was why he was able to live on, and get past that white light.
Where was this?
“This is the beginning and the end of the world.” An old voice could suddenly be heard.
“You can hear my thoughts?” Xiao Lin was shocked.
“Because I am you, and you are me.”
Xiao Lin was silent for a moment before he suddenly got anxious. “You were the one who gave me that admission letter?”
“You brought me to Dawn Academy?”
“You caused everything to happen?!”
“Then who are you? No, I’ll ask it this way instead, who am I?!”
“If I tell you that you were a god in your past life, a god that created and destroyed everything, would you believe me?” the old voice said slowly.
Xiao Lin smiled coldly, “Proof?”
“There is none.”
Xiao Lin paused for a moment. “Then how can I believe you?”
“What of it? Your past life is your past life, and you are you.” The old voice resonated again. Its voice carried a thick sense of exhaustion.
“In truth, everything you’ve experienced, I’ve experienced as well. No matter if it be love, friendship, sadness or happiness. I’ve experienced it all. It is like a loop, constantly repeating itself. I can tell you what happens after this. Dawn Academy sparked a war between the academies, and the whole world is quickly pulled into it, including Earth. There’s no need to say what happens in the war, but the end result is destruction. There is never a victor in war; both sides always suffer heavily.
“Your friends, your family, they will all perish in this war!”
“That’s impossible!” Xiao Lin immediately shouted aggressively, “If that’s the future, then I will stop it all from happening!”
“You can’t stop it!” That voice seemed to get angry, “Because I’ve already experienced the same thing countless times. How many times do you think I’ve seen myself in this same manner already?!”
Xiao Lin immediately calmed down. He could vaguely guess the answer.
“That’s right, you are very smart. You really are my past self. Everything you’ve experienced is just the recycling of time. The future me, which is you, mastered the power of time. You managed to distort time, twisting the future and the past, but this result never changes.”
Xiao Lin was suddenly stunned. He did not suspect the other man’s words. In truth, he had long suspected that the letter was given to him by his future self, and it was his future self that guided him to this point.
Everything was a loop. So, was everything destined for destruction?
“Is there no other way?”
“What’s the way?”
“Allow everything to return to its original state, and completely change the timeline. The source of all this sadness is just because of this foreign world. Without it, everyone’s lives will revert to the most original path. All of this will need the two of us together to accomplish. With the shards in your body and mine, we can do it. However…”
“However, after we do that, I will completely disappear. Of course, that is of no consequence. And you will lose everything you have right now. Do you understand what I mean?”
Xiao Lin had a conflicted look on his face. Of course he understood. The most important thing to him was not his strength, but his memories. His memories with his friends, Gu Xiaoyue, Song Junlang and everyone else.
If everything was reverted to its original state, then it meant that they would never be able to meet again.
“What is your answer?” The voice could be heard again.
“Let’s do that!” Xiao Lin’s answer left no room for debate.
After so long, Xiao Lin was actually tired as well. It was possible that this was the decision that the dean and Song Junlang had wanted him to make.
A wormhole that transcended time and space should never have existed in this world.
Xiao Lin’s vision started to blur. He could feel the Shards of Creation in his body rapidly leaving himself, finally condensing in the air.
The radiant light of creation shone brightly, enveloping the whole space and completely covering the world.
“Let’s end it this way! This might be the best ending.”
That was Xiao Lin’s final memory.
The academies no longer existed. The wormhole that connected Earth to a foreign world was forever closed, and Earth finally returned to its normal path.
As for whether or not the wormhole would reopen again… That was a story for another time.