Matryoshka Off-Limits Chapter 34

Chapter 34.1 Big Factory

<Previous Chapter<Table of Contents>Next Chapter>

Wen Shi raised an eyebrow, but didn’t express an opinion.

The teenager wasn’t an intern, so there was no food for him. This was fortunate, as most people would’ve wanted to stay away from such meals.

Wen Shi stirred the foamy, blood-tinted broth. In this world that highlighted purity, he didn’t think chefs would’ve used dead players’ bodies for cooking, at least not at that time. The only thing to figure out was whether not eating this bowl of food would’ve triggered the death rule.

If Wen Shi learned something from veteran players, it was to always find excuses.

In the previous instance, the only person who could’ve helped him buy time by detonating the staircase was likely A’Ling from the real bride’s faction. She openly destroyed the castle master’s staircase, yet she didn’t die at the Earl’s hands. That was worth thinking about.

Looking at things from A’Ling’s point of view, in that critical moment, she either mustered her strength to endure the Earl’s attack with the help of items, or she had already crafted a justification for her actions. Wen Shi was more inclined to believe the latter scenario. If he were in her shoes, he would have likely claimed that destroying the staircase was a strategic move to prevent the bride from escaping.

Having a perfect excuse in advance might have led to punishment, but it wouldn’t have resulted in death.

Wen Shi composed himself and decided to experiment. He stood in front of Tu Bianxi’s table with a bowl in his hand and earnestly said, “You must be really hungry to eat so quickly. I was on the verge of becoming the ambassador for Big Factory’s Beautiful Soul, so I felt obligated to make sure you’re well-fed.”

After speaking, he emptied the soup from his own bowl into Tu Bianxi’s bowl.

Accompanied by a splashing sound, the entire process resembled pouring slop.

The bowl that had just been emptied was instantly full again, making Tu Bianxi’s face turn frighteningly dark.

Having done all this, Wen Shi patted his shoulder and said, “You’re welcome.”

Tu Bianxi really wanted to push the person’s head onto the table and stuff everything from the bowl, including the porcelain, into his mouth. However, doing so could easily anger Overseer Zhao, leading to being accused of provocation and misconduct and getting expelled.

Wen Shi’s experiment was quite successful.

However, the other players didn’t follow suit. Firstly, after witnessing Wen Shi’s actions, everyone guarded their own bowls to prevent a similar incident. Secondly, they didn’t have the status of an ambassador. It was highly likely that their attempts might backfire.

After the meal, Overseer Zhao led the new employees to collect their belongings. Each new employee received a set of their own work uniforms and a mobile phone. Then he began explaining the post-entry precautions.

“Tomorrow morning at seven o’clock, everyone must gather downstairs in the dormitory on time. I will assign you to workshops. Interns are mainly responsible for handling raw materials and processing. Whether you’ll be assigned to Workshop One or Workshop Two depends on your performance tonight. Workshop Two offers monthly incentives, and the benefits are better than Workshop One.”

“Are we starting work tonight?” asked one of the twins.

When it came to attractive members of the opposite sex, Overseer Zhao seemed a bit more accommodating. “Of course not. Unless it’s time for the night shift, the factory operates on regular working hours. You work from eight in the morning until noon, and then from two in the afternoon until six.”

A bizarre smile tugged at the corner of Overseer Zhao’s mouth, as if he recalled something. “At the beginning of the year, we hired a batch of interns. However, they violated the accommodation rules and had some bad luck. Some encountered thieves, got seriously injured, and some even lost their lives.”

Overseer Zhao sighed as if regretting something. “After all, interns can only stay in the first three floors of the dormitory, without supervision during the night. Ensuring safety during nighttime is quite difficult.”

His gaze swept over the players one by one. Overseer Zhao made a sinister prediction. “You university kids with skinny arms and legs, I doubt even half of you will survive tomorrow. However…”

He intentionally dragged out his words, adding suspense before saying, “Desperate for wealth, when you encounter thieves, you can buy your lives with money. For instance, with Beautiful Soul Elixir.”

“But we haven’t started working yet, and we don’t have any salary.”

“On credit,” Overseer Zhao grinned. “I can introduce you to Hai Sheng from Workshop Three. He often keeps some Beautiful Soul Elixir on hand. You can give him an IOU note, but when it’s time to pay back, you’ll have to show some extra effort, for sure.”

Hai Sheng.

Wen Shi remembered hearing this name outside the factory manager’s office. The guy had once donated fifty yuan to Jian Qingrong. Later, after Jian Qingrong returned the fifty yuan, he ended up losing more than half his salary every month.

Wasn’t that guy sick?

Wen Shi couldn’t help but suspect that Hai Sheng wasn’t sick at all, and he was just trying to swindle more money from Jian Qingrong.

This Overseer Zhao wasn’t a good person either, probably taking the new employees to borrow ‘high-interest loans’.

【Side Quest: Successfully Survive a Night in the Dormitory Building

Quest Reward: 50 points

Quest Description: This is a dormitory building where staying once means a lifetime commitment. It has been the nightmare of countless people. Always remember that the rules inside the dormitory are stricter than the ones in the factory. Also, never provoke senior employees on the sixth floor or above.

Players are requested to do their best and strive to see the dawn of the second day.】

The game’s specific task assignment was proof enough that safely spending a night in the dormitory wasn’t easy.

Other players also received notifications. Considering the Beautiful Soul Elixir they bribed during the interview, writing another IOU note would truly pile up debts.

Never underestimate an NPC’s greed. Overseer Zhao played the hunger marketing card, “The quantity of available Beautiful Soul Elixir for borrowing is limited. Interested individuals can come with me now.”

Apart from two veteran players who were confident in surviving the night alone, including Wen Shi, the rest followed Overseer Zhao.

However, Wen Shi had a different plan. He needed to get a closer look at this Hai Sheng.

The group returned to Workshop Three from the cafeteria. This time they delved much deeper than during the interview.

Workshop Three was actually quite spacious, with winding paths inside. The picking area, quality inspection area, and shipping warehouse were all said to be here. Hai Sheng was on the night shift tonight, and the night shift personnel had to take care of patrolling. According to Overseer Zhao, Hai Sheng wasn’t feeling well these past days, probably catching up on sleep.

At this hour, the workers in the workshop had already finished their shifts. The lights, which were already not very bright, were turned off for the most part.

“Big Brother, I’m scared of the dark,” the teenager tightened his grip on Wen Shi’s sleeve. “Can I wait for you outside?”

For safety’s sake, Wen Shi wanted to keep him close, but a drop of foul-smelling liquid falling from the ceiling quickly changed his mind.

…maybe it’s better to stay inside the workshop.

“Just be careful and don’t wander around.” Wen Shi thought for a moment. “Go downstairs near the dormitory and find a hidden spot to wait for me.”


After the teenager left, he didn’t go far. He leaned against the outer door with his hands in his pockets. He could clearly feel that this factory wasn’t clean. It wasn’t terribly dangerous to say, but that timid overseer would probably flee soon.

The deeper they went, the heavier the cold and dampness became. Suddenly, a player exclaimed, “What the hell?”

Startled, Overseer Zhao snapped, “What’s with the fuss?”

The player’s lips moved a few times before finally speaking up, “There seems to be something on the ceiling.”

“Did your eyes play tricks on you?” Overseer Zhao’s expression seemed a bit uneasy.

Wen Shi also looked up, within the narrow fluorescent light tube, only speckled colors were illuminated. The obstructed parts resembled a distorted face. As Wen Shi tilted his head, he locked eyes directly with a pair of lifeless fish eyes.

A faint mist floated around the ceiling, currently condensing around the light tube. Gradually, the mist gathered to form hands, feet… limbs took shape. In the next moment, the brightness of the light increased significantly, and the humanoid figure that had been blocking the light inside suddenly disappeared.

Wen Shi took a step closer to Ji Yuanzhi. “Dad, protect me.”

Something “plop” landed not far in front of them. The player walking ahead squatted halfway down, suppressing disgust as he said, “It’s minced meat.”

A blurry mass of flesh and blood blocked the path.

Overseer Zhao’s expression changed multiple times. He blurted out, “I suddenly remembered I have something to attend to. You guys can go find Hai Sheng yourselves. Keep going inside, turn left at the second room, that’s the shipping warehouse. He’s in there.”

With that, Overseer Zhao fled as if his life depended on it.

He practically dashed outside like a gust of wind. However, his running steps halted upon catching a whiff of a delicate fragrance.

Overseer Zhao turned his head and then spotted someone still standing there, which startled him.

The teenager smiled and gestured, “Hello, let’s get acquainted.”

Overseer Zhao found it totally bewildering. Coupled with the fear from earlier at the factory, he was about to reprimand when, at that moment, the teenager leisurely removed his mask. “It’s so stuffy.”

The instant he recognized that face, Overseer Zhao’s blood rushed to his head. Soon, his entire face turned crimson. It took him a while before he managed to say a complete ‘fine.’

The teenager smiled contentedly.

Overseer Zhao was so captivated that he didn’t even grasp what the other person’s lips were forming in speech.

Workshop Three

The abandoned players exchanged glances, surprised that the NPC had fled before even leading them to their destination.

Damn, heartless!

They had come this far, and leaving now wouldn’t be justifiable. The group could only grit their teeth and continue forward, reassuring themselves that their numbers would prevent a complete wipeout.

Whatever they feared seemed to manifest.

The overhead fluorescent light suddenly burst into blinding brightness, and then the tube exploded.

Wen Shi carefully counted and heard four distinct explosions. In the darkness, an unnerving silence settled in.

Relying on their numbers, some tried using light-emitting items. Wen Shi also took out his【Flashlight】and attempted his newly issued mobile phone. Both prompted that these special circumstances prevented their use.

“Touch shoulders, count.” Ji Yuanzhi suddenly spoke up.

Wen Shi reached out and felt the shoulder of the person beside him. Someone behind him also placed a hand on his shoulder.

“One.” The first count came from Lil Sis.

After a brief pause, with no one speaking, Wen Shi said, “Two.”


“Three.” Two people almost spoke simultaneously, the later one stopped and corrected, “Four.”

People started to count in succession, until they reached eleven, matching the number of players who entered.

Sweat beads formed on Wen Shi’s forehead. He couldn’t relax at all. He was sure that the person ahead of him had not counted.

The shoulder he held onto felt like a deflating balloon, gradually becoming limp. A chill crept up his hand as if he were holding an ice pop that was freezing his entire arm, making it difficult to let go.

He glanced at his attribute panel and indeed found an additional line of status after his health points: “Infiltrated by Yin energy.”

“Wandering Corpse.”

Without hesitation, Wen Shi summoned his war general.

The cooldown for the harp skill hadn’t passed yet, so the Wandering Corpse could only attack in its primitive state. It excelled at 【Devour】 and 【Heart Extraction】, biting into the throat of the monster ahead. There was no anticipated spray of blood, just a mouthful of putrid stench.

“Warning: Your war general has inhaled toxic mist.”

“The mist is currently corroding the Wandering Corpse.”

While the Wandering Corpse tore at the monster, Wen Shi’s arm could barely move. He received another notification.

“Your War General has been provoked, releasing【Sweet Floral Scent】.”

Sweet Floral Scent?

Wen Shi realized it instinctively, linking it to the mutated pomegranate flower.

The monster in front of him seemed either disgusted or fearful of the sweet scent. It suddenly vanished, not straying far but shifting its target of attack.

Amidst four explosive sounds, the monsters shattered the team’s formation.

Human vision would be obstructed by darkness, but not monsters, and similarly, not war generals. Wen Shi commanded the Wandering Corpse, “Turn left and take me to the shipping warehouse.”

They were already inside the factory. There were no windows nearby. The cold wind rustled from above and descended.

Wen Shi’s hand brushed against the edge of a machine. He brought it to his nose and sniffed, catching a whiff of blood. The Wandering Corpse led the way, not avoiding obstacles. Wen Shi accidentally kicked a metal bucket.

He could sense something inside the bucket.

If you enjoy this novel, support the Translator ginevre on her ko-fi account :))

<Previous Chapter<Table of Contents>Next Chapter>

Leave a comment