Matryoshka Off-Limits Chapter 46

Chapter 46 Big Factory

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When Wen Shi took out the worn cloth from the Old Man Ghost’s mouth, the Old Man Ghost angrily cursed, “Bad child, beast! I want to hurt him badly, hurt him…”

Wen Shi interrupted his anger, “How were you imprisoned?”

“That little bastard said there was Beautiful Soul Elixir in the box. After drinking it, I felt weak, and he locked the box from outside!”

The Old Man Ghost kept on cursing, even mentioning his own ancestors.

From his angry words, Wen Shi knew the person’s memory was still mixed up, thinking Jian Qingrong was his own son.

“Your son got into trouble, so he sent you to live with me.”

The Old Man Ghost was too busy cursing, not even noticing the small card with a gift message. “With his obedient and honest nature, how could he do anything wrong? I think he just doesn’t want to take care of his old man. He…”

Wen Shi: “He killed the factory manager.”


Wen Shi: “Yes, I ordered it.”

The Old Man Ghost silently folded himself and squeezed back into the box.

The box wasn’t big, but it had excellent soundproofing. He felt like he might need a long, long sleep to escape reality.

The teenager said, “Quite interesting.”

He wasn’t talking about the Old Man Ghost but the box.

Both of them had similar concerns. Wen Shi had become a complete demon in the Old Man Ghost’s eyes, but he didn’t care much about that. He was more interested in the box that could seal a ghost.

As the lid fell, Wen Shi lingered his hand on the box a few seconds longer.

Usually, good items like this get automatically identified in games.

【Ghost Box: A container that can seal ghosts

Instructions: This container can only seal creatures below low-level malevolent beings.

Capacity: 1】

Even though Wen Shi had the box, he didn’t have the ability to seal ghosts, especially when it was already full inside.

He tried to fit the box into his backpack, and surprisingly, he succeeded.

From the looks of it, the Old Man Ghost could be taken out of the instance. Although his abilities weren’t very strong, he could be useful as a minion to catch others off guard.

The creaking sounds were very uncomfortable to listen to.

At the moment the box was put away, a white seal floating in mid-air slowly landed, and the iron door automatically opened.

Wen Shi carefully took a step forward. When he finished patrolling the archives room earlier, the game dropped rewards. He didn’t believe the game would be kind enough to give benefits to every patrolling person. Most likely, only the first one to complete the patrol checkpoint would receive something.

Worried that the game might strictly limit it to the first person to enter the patrol point, Wen Shi was always the one walking at the very front.

As he took a step inside, Wen Shi thought he heard the teenager calling him. Just as he was about to turn his head, a strong light blinded him. The light was too intense and abrupt, causing Wen Shi to almost shed a couple of tears due to the physiological reaction.

The cold game notification sounded:

“You fell asleep.”

The first sentence made Wen Shi’s heart sink.

“You have two choices: One, wait for your companions to wake you up, but they may not find you. If you fail to wake up within three minutes, you’ll forever become a part of the inspection area. Even if you manage to wake up successfully, you can’t patrol the inspection area again. Two, you can choose to sleepwalk for the patrol.”

“Notification: You have the identity of a【Doctor】, and your Soul Purity is quite high, increasing the likelihood of successfully sleepwalking patrol by 20% compared to an average person.”

Games always dangle rewards in front of players, enticing them to chase after them.

Sadly, even though one knew this trick, it was difficult to resist.

“I choose option two.”

【Sleepwalking Patrol: The Quality Inspection Area used to be an important department of Workshop Three. Several years ago, all the employees died suddenly due to an accident. You had a dream where you returned to the inspection area, working methodically, and you were the new employee who had just been transferred here.

Patrol Requirement: Survive.

Reminder: Inspection is a rigorous and precise job. If you want to last long here, do whatever the senior employees tell you.

In this round, your chance of survival is only 44%. Please do your best to stay alive!】

Even with the added 20%, it was still not even half?

Wen Shi remembered the scene of getting caught snooping on Jian Qingrong’s diary and sleepwalking. What was this? Was it karma at work?

The bright light took a long time to disperse. When it completely disappeared, Wen Shi’s first reaction was a headache. His back felt completely drained of moisture, and then his stomach began to ache like convulsions. He held his abdomen and managed to find support to stand while looking around to observe the current environment.

It was a bit blurry, so Wen Shi rubbed his eyes hard, but he still couldn’t see clearly.

Inside, the lights were on, and the inspection area occupied a large section.

About a hundred workers were working simultaneously, all with their heads down. Some were analyzing heart tissue slices, while others were analyzing finished Beautiful Soul Elixir. At first glance, it looked no different from a normal factory.

The sky outside was dark, and all the employees of the inspection area were working overtime.

Suddenly, one inspector looked up and said, “Didn’t I tell you to get another sample? Why are you daydreaming?”

Only then did Wen Shi realize that he was dressed exactly like these inspectors. The special leather pockets held various knives, and his sterilized gloves were covered in blood, like a surgical doctor from a horror movie.

Snapping out of it and noticing the impatience behind the inspector’s mask, he immediately said, “I’ll go right now.”

Wen Shi looked around and saw a small door not far away, separated by a few tables. It had “Sample Area” written on it.

The letters were big and red, even in his blurry vision, he could notice it.

Suddenly, Wen Shi realized something and asked anxiously, “What time is it now?”

“Almost three o’clock. If you dawdle a bit longer, we’ll be working until sunrise.”

It was three o’clock.

Wen Shi closed his eyes. No wonder his body turned into this ghostly state. The time in the dream’s inspection area was different from the outside world. He was wearing a makeshift protective suit that counteracted some of the side effects caused by the passage of time.

He realized a horrifying fact: when he returned outside, would the time there synchronize with the inspection area? There was a sentence in the small booklet that Wen Shi always thought was nonsense: “Please leave the workshop promptly after four o’clock.”

Now it seemed that the game didn’t say anything in vain.

If he didn’t manage to leave the inspection zone before four o’clock, according to the instance’s pattern, something terrifying would definitely happen.

Amidst the inspector’s urging, Wen Shi walked towards the sample area. The room was pitch-black. He searched for the power source while taking out an electric baton for self-defense.

“This item is B-grade and cannot be used in a dream state.”

Adapting quickly, Wen Shi then took out the Old Man Ghost.

Elderly ghost: “……”


In total darkness, Wen Shi endured the discomfort and fumbled for the pull cord.

The sample area still used old light bulbs. After the bulb lit up, it cast a slightly yellowish hue, covering only two-thirds of the room with light.

In the gloomy environment, there were thirteen iron cages neatly arranged ahead, and six of them were covered with a layer of red cloth. Wen Shi walked over and cautiously lifted one of them.


Once some light got in, whatever was inside got active and started hitting the cage like crazy.

The iron cage made a clanging sound and moved slightly forward, almost slamming right in front of Wen Shi.

Wen Shi quickly stepped back, urgently turning his body to avoid any danger.

A slender arm reached through the gaps in the iron cage and scratched the Old Man Ghost’s bone Wen Shi was using as a shield, leaving three not-so-light claw marks.

The Old Man Ghost wasn’t one to be trifled with and was about to counterattack.


Jian Qingrong didn’t casually hand over the Old Man Ghost to Wen Shi. Even though he was dead, he was a resident of the fourth floor and needed to follow the dormitory supervisor’s instructions.

Under Wen Shi’s command, the Old Man Ghost stopped attacking.

The monster was confined inside the iron cage, and as long as one didn’t get too close, there wouldn’t be significant safety risks.

Wen Shi stood in a relatively safe spot to observe.

Despite the messy hair, the blood-soaked face, and the monster’s sharp teeth and nails, it was still a living person—a person Wen Shi knew.

“Liu Yuan!”

In surprise, Wen Shi called her name again, trying to bring back any hint of her consciousness.

“Hungry, so hungry.” Liu Yuan seemed desperate to use her teeth to break the iron cage and go out to find food.

There was a rusty sign hanging on the iron cage. Wen Shi moved closer to read it:

【Sample: 01

Sampling method: Live dissection to extract the heart.】

They should be exploring underground, so appearing here in the inspection area couldn’t have been intentional.

Wen Shi hurriedly went to the other cages covered with cloth. Sample 02 was Liu Yun, who, like Liu Yuan, kept bumping into the iron cage once exposed to light. Sample 03 was unexpectedly Ji Yuanzhi. His condition seemed much better, lying peacefully on the ground.

Ji Yuanzhi’s limbs were all locked with iron chains, his eyes tightly shut, not moving at all. His breathing was steady, as if he were sleeping.

Wen Shi didn’t waste his breath calling out to them. The noise from bumping into the iron cages was so loud that if they could wake up, they would have done so already.

Wen Shi had originally thought the other three cages would hold his other teammates, but it turned out to be players from Tu Bianxi’s team. One male player’s body was decaying, emitting a strong odor, clearly in a state of complete transformation. The other two players still had their senses, especially the member of Seventh Commandment, who calmly stared back at Wen Shi.

“Quite ruthless.” Wen Shi cursed the rules for treating contaminated players as samples.

The transformed player had a knife embedded in his chest, indicating that someone had attempted to dissect his heart, but the result seemed unsatisfactory. The knife wound wasn’t deep, and there was bloodstain far away from the cage, suggesting that the player had been punished by the game before obtaining the heart.

Killing a transformed player would also be attributed to fratricide.

“Was it Tu Bianxi’s team?” Wen Shi had an instinctive feeling that it was them since they had been together with the Seventh Commandment member before.

The member of Seventh Commandment sneered and retorted, “Aren’t you the master of deception? Why aren’t you calling for backup now?”

“You, the newbie collecting samples! Why are you still dawdling?” An angry shout came from outside, “Do I have to come in there myself to hurry you up?!”

“Coming!” Wen Shi absentmindedly replied.

Tu Bianxi’s team wasn’t in the iron cages. He had to be vigilant.

Fortunately, as the situation stood, Liu Yuan and Liu Yun were still salvageable. At least they hadn’t fully transformed. However, Wen Shi didn’t have any extra Beautiful Soul Elixir on him. He thought for a moment, took out the antibiotics he had bought from the chef earlier, divided it into two portions, and threw them to Liu Yuan and Liu Yun as a last-ditch attempt to help them.

Liu Yuan and Liu Yun were on the verge of hunger and didn’t even hesitate. They directly swallowed the medicine. Wen Shi wasn’t sure if they were improving, but at least they became much quieter.

“Your Soul Purity decreased by 0.5.”

Every now and then, Wen Shi would receive a prompt from the game. It seemed that if he didn’t retrieve the samples as the inspector required, his Soul Purity would keep dropping.

Once contaminated, his next fate would be to become a sample locked in a cage.

Even if locked in a cage, the member of Seventh Commandment remained confident and seemed to have a strategy in mind. He kept provoking and mocking Wen Shi, ridiculing him for having a bunch of people on night duty, only to end up in an extremely embarrassing situation.

“Continuing to call them big brothers and little brothers? Let them come out and be your backups.”

As Soul Purity continued to decline, people became more prone to becoming irritable. Whenever Wen Shi showed any signs of instability, the member would exploit the loophole and use the【Pressure】skill.

Wen Shi maintained a stable mindset, but the loud and clamorous voice couldn’t help but make him feel annoyed. It was too noisy, making it difficult to think.

“You’re right.” Before his brow could fully furrow, the corner of Wen Shi’s mouth curved up. “I do need to call for backup.”

The unexpected response stunned the belligerent member of Seventh Commandment who had been shouting.

Silently walking to a dark corner away from the illuminated area, Wen Shi broke a strand of hair. Then he entered the in-game store and searched for items, spending five points to purchase paper money, starting to silently call upon an entity.

At this point, the member of Seventh Commandment finally understood what he was trying to do.

The offering ritual quest!

The game emphasized that if the offering during the ritual wasn’t satisfactory to the Gatekeeper Ghost, not only would the ghost come knocking, but it would also take away the person performing the ritual.

Wen Shi never gave things away for free.

What offering could he give? He was even reluctant to part with a few strands of hair. Instead, Wen Shi moved his mouth and spat twice, “Ptu, ptu.”

His spit was his offering.

An offering that the Gatekeeper would definitely not be satisfied with.

Then, with his hands clasped together, he devoutly thought during the summoning process, “Please, please take me away quickly.”

The Gatekeeper Ghost had suffered a painful death.

No bones were left, as that night he was brutally torn apart and devoured by the monster, the pain making him crave the flesh and blood of living humans as a release for the pain.

Sincere prayers drifted from afar, and the Gatekeeper Ghost caught the scent of the paper money. When he tried to sense the offering, he only vaguely saw a void of darkness.

No offering?

The Gatekeeper Ghost grabbed the strand of hair that came along with the burning paper money and revealed a bloodthirsty smile. “No offering, then you shall become the offering.”

The ghost, filled with resentment and consumed by hunger, floated through the factory, and wherever it passed, the gloom intensified.

The ghost flowed against the invisible smoke in the air. The Gatekeeper Ghost had never undertaken such a lengthy journey. It felt like he had returned to his living days, enduring a marathon.

“Huff, huff, so tired—”

He didn’t understand why it was so exhausting. It felt like he had broken through some kind of barrier along the way.

The long trek finally came to an end, and in front of the Gatekeeper Ghost appeared a partially open door. Without hesitation, he pushed it open.

The quality inspection area.

When Wen Shi’s Soul Purity was about to drop to around eighty-seven, the inspector entered. His malicious little eyes locked onto Wen Shi. “Where’s the sample?”

The inspector’s hand never left the doorknob, seemingly ready to close the door or take other actions.

Just then, the outside door was forcefully flung open, and the Gatekeeper Ghost’s grim head peered in.

“You little scum, I’ve come to take you away!”

The declaration filled the workshop with a bloody scent, breaking the silence.

Inside the quality inspection area, all the working employees stopped their tasks, stiffly turning their necks to face the intruder, their cold eyes fixed upon him.

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