Living Our Lives Well is More Important Than Anything – Chapter 1

Publish Time: 2024-05-26 07:04:09 507 views
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Chapter 1:

Welcome to Dungeon World.

Please follow the rules below—

[There are evil spirits in the Spring Flowers Tower, do not make eye contact with them, the number of evil spirits will increase over time]

[There is a curfew in the city, do not wander outside, do not let any NPC discover your true identity.]

[Outsiders will all be expelled together!]

[Don't let Him find you!]

[Oiran is friendly and you can ask for Oiran's help when needed.]

[Breaking the cage or killing it can end everything...]

[#&*... One of the above rules is false.]

After Qi Leyuan finished reading the mysterious system prompt, he fell silent, stroking his chin. He had ventured into spooky Dungeon tales before. These seven rules didn't impress him as someone who had been through dozens of Dungeons, but...

Qi Leyuan glanced at the Dungeon information provided by the system again, confirming it was indeed an S-level Dungeon, where no player has ever come out alive so far.

Qi Leyuan lightly ran his tongue over his molars, feeling that the rules of this copy wouldn't be as simple as they appeared on the surface. If it weren't for the hefty mission rewards and leaderboard rankings, he wouldn't have voluntarily chosen this Dungeon World without any leaked information.

Qi Leyuan's deep brown eyes narrowed slightly, his hands restless with a communication sphere. Even after years of exploring dungeons, he still gave off the vibe of a reckless and impulsive seventeen-eighteen-year-old kid, unpredictable yet surprisingly lucky, like a wild monkey on Emei Mountain.

Despite feeling uncertain about the need for the communication sphere, Qi Leyuan still tossed it into his personal space, thinking it wouldn't hurt to have an extra one, just in case he needed it.

Before entering the Dungeon, he had already used an S-level skill, a tool that allowed Qi Leyuan's consciousness to embody a closer identity to the mission center in the Dungeon, to access more first-hand information.

Thinking of the S-level skills and equipment he had in his personal space, Qi Leyuan didn't feel worried about anything. He regained his senses, full of confidence, and prepared to face the new Dungeon.

Qi Leyuan pressed the "confirm" button on the floating screen, closed his eyes, and let his consciousness gradually detach from his body.

After a flash of white light, Qi Leyuan opened his eyes to see a quaint world. The buildings exuded a unique beauty and a sense of history. Every detail showcased traditional architecture, with exquisite carvings and elegant color combinations making the building magnificent.

The sunlight was just beginning to shine, making the artificial pond in the garden shimmer with gentle waves. It felt as if one could see colorful koi fish swimming gracefully inside, creating a peaceful and serene scene that was completely different from what one would expect in a typical Dungeon full of strange tales.

Qi Leyuan furrowed his brow, feeling like his perspective was a bit off, as if he was too short.

"I hope I haven't possessed a child," he thought, realizing it would be difficult to gather information in that case...

Just as Qi Leyuan was trying to check on himself, a brightly colored figure hurriedly stepped onto the wooden bridge above the pond, catching his attention forcefully.

It was a young girl dressed in vibrant red silk. She hurriedly approached, appearing to be around fourteen or fifteen years old, slender and delicate in the sunlight, as if a gust of wind could blow her away.

Behind the girl was a small lake artificially dug and filled. In midsummer, the lush green lotus leaves covered the swimming koi in the lake. As the girl ran across the bridge, creating gentle ripples on the lake, the drooping dew-covered lotus leaves leaned towards a dewy flower, filling the air with a dreamy, faint fragrance.

She hurried along because she wasn't wearing shoes, so she walked quickly, looking very lively and energetic in her flowing clothes.

The girl had a white peony the size of a bright moon on her head, slightly pinned at the back of her head, larger than her small face.

As she turned her face slightly, Qi Leyuan couldn't help but inhale sharply, his heart skipping a beat - he had seen many beauties before, but he was still stunned by the dazzling beauty of the person in front of him.

Truly rare... Qi Leyuan thought, the girl in front of him not only had a stunning appearance, but the charm that lingered in her eyes was also incredibly captivating.

Her beautiful eyes, when looked at by those watching her, were as innocent and clear as a young deer.

Her face was more delicate than a flower, even outshining the peony. Qi Leyuan felt like he was seeing the sun for the first time after being underground for so long, his eyes stinging from the sunlight but reluctant to look away, even subconsciously reaching out towards her.

How could such a beautiful person be an NPC...?

In that moment, Qi Leyuan wished he could immediately copy her data, recreate an identical person back in his space, safeguarding her in a golden chamber.

Someone so beautiful and fragile should be protected by the strong.

He was in a mess thinking about things, even planning how many children he would have in the future. When he looked down at his hand, he instinctively shouted, "Oh my! Where's my hand?!"

What appeared in front of Qi Leyuan was a wing with a mix of black, red, and yellow. Upon closer inspection, it turned out to be the unique mottled pattern of a rural chicken.

Qi Leyuan was cursing inside, clenching his teeth in frustration - he couldn't believe that after using an S-level skill, he had transformed himself into a chicken!?

Darn Main God System!!!

But there was no time for him to regret. Qi Leyuan took a deep breath, suppressed his anger, and clumsily flapped his wings towards the girl wearing peonies.

However, to the onlookers, it appeared as a still chicken staring at Li Chunzhou for a while, before suddenly squawking and flapping madly towards her.

Li Chunzhou glanced over with surprise in her eyes. But before Qi Leyuan could land near Li Chunzhou, a cold, bony hand reached out and mercilessly grabbed his wings, throwing him forcefully under the bridge.

Qi Leyuan couldn't change course in time and plunged straight into the water, turning completely into a drenched chicken, with a few feathers floating down. Li Chunzhou paused by the bridge, curiously watching until a tall maid beside her urged her on.

The person who intercepted Qi Leyuan's "flight plan" was the maid who had just caught up with the girl. This maid was taller than most men, with a scar running from the left eye corner to the other side of her ear, ruining her once pretty face. Her expression was cold and stern, giving off an unwelcoming vibe.

Qi Leyuan felt a shiver down his spine, and without looking at the maid, he hurriedly ran from the shore to the bridge, determinedly chasing after Li Chunzhou with his pale yellow three-pronged staff.

Li Chunzhou realized that the chicken was running towards her, and as the maid was about to kick the chicken away, Li Chunzhou stopped her.

Li Chunzhou gently grabbed the maid's arm, her voice clear but with a hint of coquettishness from growing up in a brothel, "I want to keep this little chicken by my side."

The maid glanced at her, then coldly replied after a moment of silence, "It's not suitable."

Li Chunzhou's eyes wandered, her long eyelashes resembling small fans up close. Her expression remained unchanged, still with a beautiful smile as she emphasized to the maid, "I want to keep it."

The maid, not forcefully refusing anymore, calmly explained while looking at the girl's face like a spring flower, "Birds have straight intestines and will poop anywhere. Keeping it by your side is not suitable."

"Then..." Li Chunzhou thought for a moment, gesturing as she spoke, "How about making a bag for it to wear on its bottom?"

The two locked eyes in silence for a moment, silently competing.

"Hmm." Finally, the maid took a step back, emotionless as she agreed, then flatly added, "Mama Li has been urging you several times, please go now, miss."

Li Chunzhou started to walk, then thought for a moment and went back. She picked up the little chicken on the ground, held it close to her, and whispered, "Please don't poop on me!"

After saying that, she ran lightly towards the Spring Flowers Tower. During the daytime, the Spring Flowers Tower was not as lively as it was at night. The girls were still asleep, and the guests had mostly left. Only a few servants in charge of cleaning saw Li Chunzhou and greeted her respectfully.

Li Chunzhou replied to each of them and ran upstairs into the room where the old brothel keeper was, gently knocking before pushing the door open.

The old brothel keeper was neatly dressed, tallying her accounts while smoking a pipe. She was in her early forties, still retaining her grace despite her age, but the years spent in the pleasure quarters had unknowingly added a touch of shrewdness to her demeanor.

The old brothel keeper's eyes lit up when she saw Li Chunzhou. She put down her pipe on the table, exhaled a puff of smoke, and smiled, calling her "my dear" as she walked towards Li Chunzhou. But as she got closer, she paused and asked, "Why are you holding a chicken?"

Li Chunzhou hugged the little chicken to her chest and with sparkling eyes said, "I found it on the road. I really like it and want to keep it by my side. Can I, Mom?"

Li Chunzhou was one of the most famous pillars at the Spring Flowers Tower. The old brothel keeper didn't want to upset this little moneymaker, so she kindly said, "If you want to keep it, then go ahead."

The old brothel keeper affectionately touched Li Chunzhou's fair and soft face, lowered her voice, and whispered, "My dear daughter, I've sorted out those rumors that were going around about you a few days ago. Don't worry, that case won't affect you..."

Li Chunzhou snuggled against the old brothel keeper, buried her head, and playfully called out "Mom" a few times.

Every famous performer in the Spring Flowers Tower has been gossiped about by idle men in Shengjing City, but recently, Li Chunzhou's rumors needed the Madame of the brothel to handle personally because they involve a series of murders.

This case caused a stir in the capital city and dragged Li Chunzhou, the little money tree of the Spring Flowers Tower, into it.

The Madame affectionately touched Li Chunzhou's increasingly beautiful face and said, "Good child, you are lucky! The Second Master is back in the city and has eyes on you. Hurry up and change into your new clothes."

Li Chunzhou mumbled in agreement, put down the chicken in her arms, and let the maid by the Madame's side take her to dress up. She changed into clean clothes, still made of lightweight silk, she took off the white peony on her head and replaced it with a brighter one.

Li Chunzhou wore flowers in her hair all year round, only peonies. Peonies don't bloom all the time, but in the Spring Flowers Tower, there is a special flower room where several gardeners work all year round to ensure Li Chunzhou always has peonies to wear.

This situation was absurd. Even the gardeners were brought from the palace by the Second Prince to amuse Li Chunzhou. Therefore, no one dared to openly discuss it, but rumors spread quickly like wildfire behind the scenes.

Most of the time, Li Chunzhou wore white peonies on her head, with a few days in a month wearing red peonies, as if a vague hint. The city dwellers who liked to gossip said that the color of the flowers was linked to Li Chunzhou's menstrual cycle, and would tease her as "Peony Lady."

Some gossip reached Li Chunzhou's ears, but she paid no attention and continued wearing her flowers.

Over time, her reputation spread throughout the entire capital city due to the rumors of busybodies, and even in other bustling cities in Daliang, people knew Li Chunzhou's name.

The "Second Master" mentioned by the madam is Liang Changfeng, the Second Prince of Daliang.

The madam noticed that Li Chunzhou seemed a bit hesitant about meeting the Second Prince later, so she reminded and urged her, "Lady Chun, do you remember what I told you before?"

Li Chunzhou lifted her eyelids, pursed her lips, and replied softly and crisply, "I remember, I will accompany Second Master well, Mom, don't worry."

There were frequent wars at the northern border of Daliang, and the world had long been chaotic. Even the people in Shengjing were in disorder. Most of the girls in Spring Flowers Tower were a mixed bag, relying on each other in the building to survive by selling their bodies, like floating duckweed on the water without roots. Sometimes they schemed against each other. They had not received a proper education, had short-sightedness, naturally couldn't see long-term benefits, and when faced with difficulties and temptations, they would unconsciously turn against those around them.

There is nothing new under the sun. Even in the most bustling and extravagant Spring Flowers Tower on the most luxurious street in the entire capital city, all that can be seen is a more tragic cycle, a more desperate life, more helpless pleading, and a more indifferent audience.

In this dull era, it seemed like fate had never shown mercy to anyone.

Everyone in Pingkang Alley knew that the madam of Spring Flowers Tower was shrewd and cunning, and highly skilled. But apart from a savvy operator who was adept at judging the situation, for Spring Flowers Tower to stand tall in Shengjing City, it also needed an unshakable support.

There is naturally no bigger tree than the royal family. Although it seemed that the madam was still managing Spring Flowers Tower on the surface, in reality, the true ownership was already in the hands of the Second Prince, but few people knew about it.

Spring Flowers Tower is the money bag of the Second Prince in Shengjing City and also his eyes and ears to gather information.

When Li Chunzhou was just starting to show her beauty, the mama-san had high hopes for her. She reminded Li Chunzhou every day - the future of everyone in this building depends on her.

So Li Chunzhou had to be sensible, not be stubborn, not make the nobles angry. No matter what she thought in her heart, when facing the Second Prince, she should always put on a smile.

Growing up with this idea ingrained in her, Li Chunzhou had already gotten used to carving a smile on her face.

She couldn't keep holding onto a chicken all the time when meeting the Second Prince. Li Chunzhou entrusted the small chicken to her maid and solemnly said, "This chicken is mine, please watch it for a while... It's mine, don't mix it up with the other chickens in the yard."

The maid nodded in agreement, and Li Chunzhou left with peace of mind.

When she pushed open the door to the elegant room upstairs, the Second Prince was indeed sitting inside waiting for her. He had one hand resting on the table, his eyes closed, his jet-black hair tied up in a bun, his face exceptionally handsome half hidden in the shadows.

He slowly opened his eyes upon hearing the noise at the door, beneath his sharp eyebrows were a pair of beautiful phoenix eyes, carrying some disdainful meaning when not smiling.

In the instant their eyes met, Li Chunzhou reflexively put a smile on her lips.

...

This scene has appeared exactly 120 times in the past cycles.