Chapter 1: Chapter 1 – Mini Worlds Gaming Console (1)
Translator: Dragon Boat Translation Editor: Dragon Boat Translation
Ding dong… ding dong…
The ear-piercing chimes of the doorbell rang out incessantly, rousing Ren Suo from his slumber. He muttered something under his breath, rubbed his eyes groggily and turned to his side as he went back to sleep.
The doorbell continued to ring on. At this point, Ren Suo could also feel a faint dampness spreading across his right cheek – his face was touching the drool on his pillow when he turned over.
A combination of disgust and the frustration from the doorbell chimes finally woke Ren Suo. He rubbed away the offensive secretion from the corners of his eyes, put on his slippers and walked over to slide open the security latch. Opening the door wide, he was greeted by a deliveryman outside, dressed in his red and white uniform.
“Here’s your parcel,” said the deliveryman. “Please acknowledge here.”
Ren Suo seemed to recall something – his heart instantly leapt in excitement. Hurriedly, he unlocked the security gate, signed the necessary, collected the parcel and brought the large box into his house. Without skipping a beat, he found a small knife and eagerly went about unboxing the parcel!
“Hehehe…” Ren Suo rubbed his palms as his eyes lit with excitement. He slit the plastic wrapper around the large box and with utmost sincerity, he received his dream bride for the past twenty-two years with utter affection –
A home cinematic gaming console!
As a healthy, vigorous young man in the best years of his youth and bursting with boundless energy, Ren Suo was like most others. He yearned above all else to own a gaming console that he could play whenever he wished.
However, he did not come from a wealthy family growing up. Moreover, his parents had refrained from buying him gaming consoles to ensure that he focused his energy on his studies.
When he entered university, Ren Suo had to buy a laptop for his studies and internship, leaving him without any spare cash for gaming purchases. What’s more, it wasn’t convenient to keep a gaming console in his dormitory.
Now, Ren Suo was a Year Four undergraduate on the cusp of joining the workforce, having found a job and made graduation plans. Furthermore, Ren Suo’s eldest uncle was letting out his apartment in the heart of Lianjiang to Ren Suo at a highly-discounted token rate. Looking at it, Ren Suo finally has a place to call his own in Lianjiang. Well, somewhat.
Since there were still a couple of months to go before graduation and work, Ren Suo bought a gaming system, Hell4, off an online shop with the little cash that he had earned during internship. It was time for him to enjoy the exhilaration of the current hottest and most explosive work!
Yet as Ren Suo unboxed the parcel, what greeted him was not the familiar packaging of Hell4 that he seen time and again on the Internet, but rather…
A round, black steel container?
He lifted the circular container cautiously. An icy cool sensation spread across his palms and travelled like a cool current to dissipate the heat of his body. Lianjiang had turned warmer in March; to save on the electricity bills, Ren Suo would time the air-conditioner to turn off after one and a half hours even in these hot summer nights. Each morning, he would be awoken by the sweltering heat.
This box looked no bigger than the typical Danish butter cookie tins. However, Ren Suo couldn’t find the lid on the container; it seemed like a solid circular block.
But as Ren Suo held it in his hand and felt its weight, he sensed that it wasn’t very heavy. It definitely didn’t have a solid steel core.
Ren Suo flipped the circular box over and saw that in the middle of the other side was a concave depression that could be turned – just like one of those money-scamming capsule toys. Without a moment’s hesitation, Ren Suo turned the knob in the depression.
A loud snap rang out, scaring the wits out of Ren Suo. He noticed a deep crack that formed along the cross section of the circular box, in the shape of an ‘X’. Watts of vapour emitted from the cracks like dry ice, which caused the circular box to disintegrate and reveal the object within.
Ren Suo held up the circular black steel lid that he turned earlier to inspect it, and saw that on its inside was a mortise and tenon structure that lined the rim. When he turned it earlier, he had released the core mechanism that held the mortise and tenon in place, thereby causing the structure to collapse.
Although Ren Suo could make some sense out of it, he couldn’t understand how a person could have spent so much effort on a mere storage box to create emitting vapour from it. That person must have been dying of boredom!
Inside that box lay a strange, round machine. It was pure black in colour and its exterior looked like a heap of vinyl records stacked together.
Ren Suo scraped at the side of the machine, feeling the layers upon layers of metal beneath his fingernails. Indeed, there was a pitifully tiny crack between each layer, which was too small even for his fingernails to dig into.
“This can’t be Hell4, can it?”
Ren Suo was stunned. Swiftly, he took out his phone and found the customer service on the online shopping platform and texted, “Hello.”
Customer Service, “Dearest CatMall customer, this is the official customer service for Hell Co. The collector’s limited edition Hell4Ever Unparalleled is currently available for pre-order (please clic.k here for more details); 50% off for hot games (please clic.k here for more details); Hell Store web card (please clic.k here for more details); delivery by CatMall – to the furthest areas (may take up to 10 days – to check delivery information, please clic.k here for more details).
Ren Suo, “Are you there?”
Customer Service, “Hi there, yes I am. How may I help you?”
Ren Suo, “The thing is this: I think the Hell4 console that I received is a different model from the one I ordered…”
Customer Service, “Alright, please hold on a moment. Let me check for you…”
Thirty seconds later, the customer service personnel replied, “Dear customer, it seems when you bought the Hell4 gaming system, it automatically utilised the 888-off-2000 discount voucher. However, the CatMall platform did not deduct the discount at check-out. When the message was relayed to the back-end service personnel, they mistook it as you having bought the 2888 Hell 4PRO version. That’s why the Lianjiang warehouse mailed out the Hell4PRO.”
Ren Suo replied, ” Huh? So you sent me the Hell 4PRO?”
Customer Service, “That’s right. If you’re not satisfied with it, you may get in touch with the After-Sales Refund Department in CatMall. However, you’ll forfeit the 888-off-2000 discount voucher that you used earlier. As a gesture of good will, however, Hell Co. is willing to offer you a 500-off-2000 discount voucher as compensation.”
Ren Suo glanced at the circular gaming system on his desk and hesitated.
“Let me try it out first. If I still don’t like it, then I’ll return it.”
“Sure, we accept unconditional refunds within seven days. When your refund is successful, you’ll automatically receive the discount voucher from Hell Games. If you like the product, please take a picture and leave a five-star review alright? ~”
Ren Suo kept his phone and began to fiddle with his new gaming system.
Nonetheless, Ren Suo still had his doubts. It’s not that he hasn’t heard about Hell4PRO; in fact, as the newest gaming system that had launched this year, Hell4PRO was an upgraded version of Hell4 with higher performance levels. Ren Suo had also been deliberating between Hell4 and Hell4PRO when the latter entered the market two days ago in Xuan Nation. But since he was embarrassingly short of money, he had chosen to buy Hell4 in the end.
But he recalled that Hell4PRO didn’t look like this model either!
“Forget it. I’ll try it out for now. Anyway, I can always return it…” With a ‘nothing-to-lose’ attitude, Ren Suo began to scrutinise the gaming system.
Very soon, he discovered three troubling problems.
Firstly, he could not find the power plug nor the power inlet for the gaming system.
Secondly, he could not find the audio and visual output cables, or any socket in the gaming system itself.
Thirdly, he could not find the controller.
“What shitty load of crap this is!” Ren Suo was flabbergasted. Just as he was about to complain to the Customer Service, the doorbell rang again.
He opened the door a deliveryman from CatMall standing outside.
“Here’s your parcel, please acknowledge.”
“Another parcel?” Ren Suo was rather baffled. He signed for the parcel and brought it in, before using his knife to swiftly tear it open.
Three seconds later, he was greeted by the packaging for Hell4PRO.