Death Progress Bar

Death Progress Bar

Chapter 52 - Mermaid

Lian Jun turned to look at Shi Jin and even proactively slid his wheelchair closer to him. He held Shi Jin's other hand that was hanging by his side and gently squeezed it, comforting him, "Don't get angry, it's not worth it for a traitor." His voice was so gentle.

Shi Jin immediately held Lian Jun's hand tightly in return.

Xiao Si let out a surprised squawk and felt that there was light shining ahead.

Even the Numbers turned their bodies and stared at the two holding hands, their eyes unconsciously widening as if they were doubting what they were seeing.

In such a tense moment, it seemed that pink bubbles were floating in the air. However, Shi Jin did not receive any emotional or meaningful eye contact from the crowd. After holding onto Lian Jun's hand, he took a few steps back and furrowed his brow, reminding him seriously, "Young Master Jun, don't get too close to that side of the deck. I suspect something is wrong with Long Shi." He then took a step to the side and continued to aim his gun at Long Shi.

Long Shi had stopped shouting when Shi Jin pulled out his gun. After witnessing the interaction between Shi Jin and Lian Jun, his expression twisted and he began to struggle desperately, shouting once again, "Young Master Jun! Who is he? Who is this little bastard pointing a gun at me? What right does he have to touch you, to do anything to you?"

Lian Jun's expression darkened and he was about to speak when Shi Jin, who was standing in front of him, pulled the trigger.


The bullet flew out, but the target was actually Zhuo Yang, who was holding onto Long Shi's hand. Zhuo Yang looked back and forth at Shi Jin and Lian Jun with a pensive expression. Seeing this, he coldly snorted and pulled Long Shi aside, dodging the bullet together.

The fragile peace between the two ships was shattered by the gunshot. A crowd of people gathered on both sides of the deck, pointing guns at each other, and the situation was about to escalate.

Lian Jun's progress bar dropped to 950 as Long Shi shut up and the two sides faced each other.

Shi Jin became increasingly certain that Long Shi was a problem. He couldn't let him directly interact with Lian Jun or even talk to him. He loaded another bullet, this time aiming directly at Long Shi's head.

Long Shi's expression became even more terrifying as he looked at Shi Jin with a resentful gaze. He struggled to scream, but Zhuo Yang stuffed a cloth in his mouth, silencing him. "Lian Jun, it seems like your subordinate doesn't want you to live." 

Lazily, Zhuo Yang spoke and pulled out the dagger that was stuck in Long Shi's arm.

Blood spurted out, and Long Shi's eyes widened as he groaned in pain. His forehead bulged with veins, and his face quickly turned pale.

Uncle Long gritted his teeth and turned his head away from Long Shi's miserable state.

After pulling out the dagger, Zhuo Yang wiped the blood off on Long Shi's body and looked at Lian Jun, who was being blocked by Shi Jin. He said, "Lian Jun, you need to think carefully. If you let your subordinate force Long Shi to death, your leg will never heal. How about we make a deal? You give me that little guy and the old man, and I'll give you Long Shi. This deal isn't bad, right?" As he spoke, he pointed his dagger at Shi Jin and Uncle Long. 

The expressions of Number One and his companions all turned ugly. Zhuo Yang was really good at picking people. Shi Jin and Uncle Long, one was a person whom Lian Jun cared for, and the other was a doctor who knew Lian Jun's physical condition in detail. To exchange these two people for a traitor who might not even reveal the toxin's base, Zhuo Yang was definitely making a profit!

Lian Jun slipped out from behind Shi Jin and looked at Zhuo Yang, saying, "You are not qualified to negotiate with me. You can kill Long Shi, but my people, don't even think about it."

"Uh, uh, uh!" Long Shi heard this and struggled desperately, staring at Lian Jun with wide eyes, tears streaming down his face.

However, Shi Jin's mind was active. He turned his head to look at Lian Jun and whispered, "Young Master Jun, I can..." 

"No," interrupted Lian Jun, looking up at him and explaining, "Zhuo Yang doesn't really want you and Uncle Long. He just wants me to compromise. Once we take the first step back, we lose the initiative."

Shi Jin understood this, but... he glanced at the pale-faced Long Shi across from him and said, "But if we keep dragging this out, Long Shi might be tortured to death."

"If he dies, he dies. Ever since the day he betrayed 'Annihilation,' his life and death have had nothing to do with us," Lian Jun replied, holding Shi Jin's hand and comforting him, "Put down the gun and leave everything to Uncle Long."

Leave everything to Uncle Long? Shi Jin didn't understand what was being said and was puzzled. In the next second, he saw Uncle Long suddenly snatch a gun from someone else's hand, load a bullet, and aim it at Long Shi. His usually steady hand was now trembling, his fingers touching the trigger, tightening and loosening, clearly struggling.

"Lian Jun, forcing your subordinate to kill his own son, you are truly heartless." Zhuo Yang sneered when Lian Jun didn't take the bait, and suddenly pulled out the cloth ball from Long Shi's mouth.

Long Shi immediately struggled and turned towards Uncle Long, crying out in despair, "Dad! Dad, I was wrong! I was wrong! Please don't kill me, Dad. I was just confused for a moment. You said you would always protect me, Dad!" 

Uncle Long's hand shook with force, his eyes turning red as he gritted his teeth and said, "But your mistake is just too outrageous, Long Shi. I don't ask you to repay my kindness, but you shouldn't be so heartless and actually make a move on Young Master Jun... The biggest mistake I've ever made in my life was taking you in as my son! Our father-son relationship ends today."

With that, he pulled the trigger and a loud bang echoed through the air as the bullet flew towards Long Shi's forehead.

Zhuo Yang didn't expect him to actually do it. His expression changed and he quickly threw Long Shi to the deck, narrowly avoiding the bullet. He then turned to Lian Jun and said, "Lian Jun, do you really not want to live? Will you let your subordinates kill your only chance at life?" 

Lian Jun signaled for Number Five to hold up Uncle Long, whose body visibly weakened after being shot. He replied, "I fight for my own survival and never rely on others. Zhuo Yang, you're useless. You don't need to try to provoke me. Long Shi has never been my weakness. Even if you gave him to me for free, I wouldn't keep him."

"Hmph, who can't talk big?" Zhuo Yang's eyes darkened as he suddenly laughed coldly. He waved his hand back and had his men tie up Long Shi, who was almost unconscious on the ground. The other end of the rope was tied to the deck railing, and then Long Shi was thrown overboard. "What is this... Ahhh! Help! I don't want to feed the sharks, help! Dad! Dad, save me!" 

Long Shi regained consciousness and watched himself free-falling. Then, the rope tightened around him and he was suspended on the fence, struggling and shouting for help.

Uncle Long lowered his head and, upon hearing the cries, his fingers twitched. His face showed exhaustion and indifference after a struggle, and he waved off Number Five's hand before walking towards the cabin, no longer caring about what happened next.

Lian Jun glanced at Uncle Long but did not stop him.

Long Shi was suspended too low to see what was happening on the deck and did not know that Uncle Long had already left. He continued to plead for help, occasionally calling out to Lian Jun, his voice filled with despair. 

The night had fallen completely, and the official ship had already left without a trace. There were no stars in the sky tonight, and the entire sea was pitch black, with only the faint lights from the two ships. 

Zhuo Yang leaned against the railing, his dagger lightly tracing the rope that bound Long Shi. He laughed and said, "Come on, shoot him! Long Shi is now a live target, and this time I won't help him dodge the bullets. I'm a kind person, you've always wanted to deal with this traitor, and now I've found him for you and even taken half of his life. How will you thank me, hmm?" 

No one on the deck of the Annihilation spoke, and all of the Number One members stared at Long Shi, who was hanging from the sea and struggling with decreasing strength. Their expressions were tense, and their palms were clenched - if Long Shi died, then the information on the toxin would truly be lost. 

Zhuo Yang continued to speak leisurely, "Here's the deal. Since we're colleagues, I won't lay a hand on you. I'll give you a chance to take Long Shi away. Just...just bring over Number One, Number Two, and that little guy. The three of you can take a small boat over. As long as you can untie Long Shi's rope, I'll give him to you."

Number One and Number Two were intrigued and immediately looked to Lian Jun, seeking his approval.

"Go back to the cabin and rest," Lian Jun ordered, as if he hadn't heard Zhuo Yang's proposal.

Number Two couldn't help but call out to him, "Young Master Jun."

"Go back to the cabin and rest," Lian Jun's tone brooked no refusal. He looked at Number Five again, "It's getting late. Prepare to set sail." 

Number Five struggled with his decision, but ultimately gave the order to prepare for departure. Number One and Number Two both wanted to say something, but in the end, they remained silent, their faces filled with frustration.

"Young Master Jun," Shi Jin couldn't help but stop Lian Jun's wheelchair.

Lian Jun looked at him and promised, "Even without the toxin's source, I will work hard to get healthy, even if it's just for you. Zhuo Yang clearly wants to use one Long Shi to exchange for the lives of you three. I can't gamble with your lives."

"Just for you," Shi Jin's heart skipped a beat, his hand on the wheelchair tightening. "You never planned to take back Long Shi, did you? You said you had a plan, but you were just lying to me, weren't you?"

Lian Jun didn't say anything, trying to comfort him by holding his hand.

Shi Jin directly shook off his hand. 

"Shi Jin," Lian Jun paused and looked up at him, explaining in a gentle tone, "Long Shi has a peculiar temperament and unstable mental state. Even if we manage to retrieve him, there is a high chance we won't be able to extract the knowledge on the toxin's base. It's not worth risking your lives for a low chance of success."

"But your life is not something that needs to be measured in terms of cost and benefit with me," Shi Jin's expression turned cold for the first time towards Lian Jun. He suddenly left his side and strode towards the deck of the Nine Eagles.

Lian Jun's expression changed and he quickly ordered Number One and the others to stop him. 

"I don't plan on going to my death, so don't try to stop me," said Shi Jin, halting his steps before the group of Numbers gathered. He looked towards Zhuo Yang, whose expression was now clearly visible, and continued, "Zhuo Yang, you must be dreaming. None of us would risk our lives for a traitor. If you're so capable, why don't you throw Long Shi into the sea to feed the sharks? It must be unbearable to feel threatened by Young Master Jun. You're just a useless waste! Young Master Jun will surely live a long life, even without the toxin's source, but as for might as well go meet the King of Hell sooner rather than later."

Zhuo Yang's casual smile disappeared from his face, and his expression turned cold as he said, "Young man, I advise you not to jump so high, or else you might not even know how you'll die in the future."

Shi Jin responded with a mocking smile, cursed at Zhuo Yang again, and then turned around without even acknowledging Lian Jun. He strode towards the cabin with large steps. 

Everyone had never seen Shi Jin truly angry before, and now that they did, they didn't know what to do. They all looked towards Lian Jun. 

Lian Jun watched as Shi Jin entered the cabin, his hand tightly gripping the armrest of his wheelchair. He also gave a cold glance towards Zhuo Yang before sliding his wheelchair towards the cabin and ordering, "Set sail, everyone back to their cabins!" 

Ever since being mocked by Shi Jin, Zhuo Yang felt a burning anger inside him. The words "you're useless!" and "Young Master Jun will live a long life" kept rolling in his mind. 

The recent hostility and the look from Lian Jun only added fuel to the fire. His mind raced and in a fit of rage, he grabbed the dagger hanging from the rope and shouted, "You want to leave? Not so fast! You said Lian Jun can live without the toxin's source, well, let's see how this cripple can survive today! Attack!" 

His subordinates behind him were shocked and quickly tried to stop him, "Boss, we agreed not to harm Long Shi's life. He's a valuable pawn." 

Zhuo Yang was furious and did not listen to reason. He pushed away the hand of his subordinate and exclaimed, "What good is that? We've been waiting for so long for Lian Jun to take the bait, and even if we keep Long Shi alive, it won't make a difference. He's as good as dead! Hurry up and arrange for someone to take action! Today, I will take Lian Jun's life myself!"

The subordinate dared not speak any further and frowned as he withdrew his hand.

Zhuo Yang's dagger was extremely sharp, and the rope binding Long Shi was not very thick. Before Zhuo Yang could finish his sentence, the rope snapped with a loud bang, and Long Shi fell directly into the sea.

At the same time, the people on the Nine Eagles deck suddenly received orders and began firing towards Annihilation's side.

The expressions of Number One and his men changed drastically. They quickly instructed those nearby to take cover from the bullets and ordered those further away to fight back, providing cover for Lian Jun to enter the cabin. 

Gunshots filled the air over the sea as Number Five ordered the cockpit to set sail quickly and distance themselves from Nine Eagles. Nine Eagles's ships began firing in their direction, and the faint sound of helicopters taking off could be heard.

"Has Zhuo Yang gone mad?" Number Two pushed Lian Jun into the cabin, his expression grim.

If the two sides were to engage in a naval battle and unleash all their firepower, no one would come out unscathed!

But suddenly, Number Five's expression changed. "The cockpit just received a message that several unidentified ships have appeared within radar range and are rapidly approaching our location." 

"Damn it!" Number Two cursed, finally realizing what was going on. "Zhuo Yang is trying to ambush us. He was just talking nonsense with Long Shi to delay us! He's waiting for us to waste time so he can attack us."

Meanwhile, amidst the sound of gunfire, Lian Jun heard a few splashes in the water and instinctively panicked. He looked around and asked, "Where's Shi Jin?"

Everyone was taken aback by his question. Number Two also looked around and said, "Yeah, where is Shi Jin? Didn't he go into the cabin first? Did he go back to his room?"

"No," Lian Jun's expression suddenly turned pale and his voice was very dry. "He wouldn't stay in his room while the Nine Eagles are firing. He can't sit still... Find him! Go and find him!" 

A man standing on the deck suddenly rushed in and exclaimed, "I saw several of our lifeboats floating on the sea, Young Master Jun. Someone is dismantling our lifeboats! There's a traitor among us!"

Lian Jun's face turned completely pale, although he tried to maintain a calm expression, his voice was trembling, "It's not a traitor, it's Shi Jin. He went down to retrieve Long Shi. Number Three, do whatever it takes to hold off Nine Eagles and prevent them from causing any more damage in this area. Move the battlefield away from here. Send someone to find Shi Jin quickly!"

Everyone was shocked by his words and quickly dispersed, moving faster than ever before. 

At this moment, Shi Jin was indeed in the sea. He had intentionally angered Zhuo Yang earlier, and Xiao Si had given him a bunch of buffs just to help him successfully provoke Zhuo Yang into cutting the rope that bound Long Shi and throwing him into the sea.

Everything went smoothly. Zhuo Yang did throw Long Shi into the sea, and Shi Jin successfully jumped in after him. Now, all he needed to do was use the mermaid buff that Xiao Si had given him to locate Long Shi and carry out the impromptu plan to rescue him. It seemed like everything was going according to plan.

But... Shi Jin reached up to touch the strange, transparent thing growing by his ear. He looked down at the white, opaque substance between his fingers and felt the bones in his waist soften. 

"Is this your mermaid buff?" he asked incredulously. Wasn't this some kind of frog-like amphibian buff?

"Of course, no matter what, Jin Jin is always the most beautiful," Xiao Si praised without a care in the world.

Shi Jin replied, "...As long as you're happy." 

Saving people was more important, and he didn't have time to worry about these things. After getting used to the strange sensation of the buff, he tried moving around underwater. 

He felt that his swimming speed was too slow and said, "Can you stack the buff a few more times? I need to swim faster. Long Shi might not be able to hold on underwater for much longer." Xiao Si hesitated, "If we stack too many layers, your body won't be able to handle it. It will be very uncomfortable after the buff wears off."

"I can't worry about that now. If Long Shi dies, we'll lose the information on the toxin's base. Just keep buffing me," Shi Jin replied.

Xiao Si compromised and began frantically giving him buffs.

Shi Jin felt his body start to heat up and then his skin and bones seemed to undergo some strange mutation, making him more agile in the water. With a gentle kick of his legs, his body slid forward like a fish.

He was shocked to see his arms now had strange and flexible lines, unable to imagine what kind of monster his body had become under the buff's influence. Shaking his head, he no longer thought about it and swam towards the location displayed on the map, gliding through the water like a line. 

On the sea, Annihilation began to counterattack the Nine Eagles' assault, slowly leading the battlefield to the distant waters.

After a few minutes, Shi Jin held the unconscious Long Shi and surfaced, wiping the seawater off his face. He located the nearest lifeboat and swam over, forcefully throwing Long Shi onto it before climbing aboard himself. 

Without even looking at the surrounding situation, he bent down to untie the ropes on Long Shi's body and knelt beside him to begin administering first aid.

Long Shi was already injured, and his wounds were aggravated by the water. He had also swallowed water, causing his face to turn pale and blue. It seemed like he was beyond saving.

Shi Jin was getting anxious, so he quickly had Xiao Si buff him with "increased success rate in rescuing" and "luck boost" before using all the first aid techniques he knew. 

Time seemed to drag on endlessly, and just as Shi Jin was beginning to lose hope, Long Shi suddenly coughed up some water and groggily opened his eyes.

Shi Jin was overjoyed and quickly leaned in, asking, "How are you feeling? Are you conscious? What day is it?" 

As he spoke, he extended his hand, which had become twisted due to the buff, in front of Long Shi.

Long Shi instinctively turned his head towards the sound of Shi Jin's voice. His previously muddled consciousness became clear when he saw the lumpy, twisted appearance of Shi Jin's ears, arms, and legs. He was so frightened that he almost passed out again. 

Suddenly, his hand moved, and he pulled out a tiny syringe from somewhere, quickly jabbing it towards Shi Jin. The progress bar on Shi Jin's computer suddenly froze, causing Xiao Si to jump in fright. Shi Jin was also taken aback and instinctively dodged to the side while kicking out at Long Shi's body with all his might.


Long Shi let out a low cry and fell to the ground, the small syringe in his hand dropping to the side.

Shi Jin quickly picked up the rope and re-tied Long Shi, then picked up the syringe. Inside was a strange colored liquid, and unable to resist, he hit Long Shi again.

"Damn it! You really are a problem. I don't believe that Zhuo Yang doesn't know you have this weapon on you. Have you been colluding with him all along?" 

As he spoke, he grew angrier and angrier, feeling that scum like Long Shi should just go and die again. But he restrained himself from attacking him, carefully collecting the syringe and feeling grateful for Lian Jun's calmness. No matter how much Zhuo Yang provoked him, he didn't fall for it.

Long Shi groaned in pain, turning his head to look at Shi Jin more closely. Finally, he ignored the strange buff effects and saw Shi Jin's face clearly, shocked as he exclaimed, "It's you! With that appearance, are you a demon?! Did you use demonic magic to seduce Young Master Jun?!"

Shi Jin rolled his eyes at him, fiercely saying, "Yes, I'm a demon. Tell me what the toxin's base is, or I'll eat you alive!"

Hearing the words "toxin's base," Long Shi's expression changed again. 

After a moment of flickering eyes, his expression suddenly became calm as he said, "I'll only tell Young Master Jun about the toxin's base. Take me to see him." 

As Shi Jin was about to retort with some foul language, he saw the smug look on the other guy's face and let out a cold laugh. But before he could say anything, they heard a series of deafening explosions coming from the distant sea. Shi Jin's expression changed in an instant, and he quickly turned to look in the direction of the sound.

"Baby must have clashed with Nine Eagles," Xiao Si said with concern. "Jin Jin, should we go back now?"

"Of course we should—" Shi Jin stopped mid-sentence, realizing how he looked right now. He furrowed his brows and said, "No, we can't go back. I can't let Lian Jun see me like this. We have to wait."

Long Shi also heard the sounds of gunfire and looked excitedly towards the direction of the raging battle. "Did they start fighting? Did Nine Eagles and Annihilation start fighting? Hurry! Take me to see Young Master Jun, take me to see Young Master Jun!" 

"Stop it! Be quiet!" Shi Jin started the rescue boat with an unpleasant expression and headed towards a farther distance from the battlefield. Although he was worried about Lian Jun, it was better for him to stay away for now. 

Long Shi was stunned as he watched him row the lifeboat further away. Suddenly, the man burst into wild laughter, looking completely insane. "Are you afraid that Young Master Jun will see your ghostly appearance? What's there to be afraid of? Let him see it! Weren't you arrogant before? 

"You don't know this, but Zhuo Yang's attack was planned. He had other ships waiting in the nearby waters, intending to trap Young Master Jun and exhaust the official ship before delivering a fatal blow! Aren't you going to protect Young Master Jun? Are you more concerned about your face being exposed than his life? Hahaha, don't run away, only cowards do--mmph, mmph, mmph!" 

Shi Jin couldn't stand it anymore and stuffed a cloth into his mouth, his expression sour as he angrily said, "Who do you think you are? Only caring about looks like a shallow person! Whether you believe it or not, even if Lian Jun saw me like this, he would still eat with me at the same table every day!" 

After speaking, he glanced at the distant sea, hesitated for a moment, and then gritted his teeth, abandoning the idea of rowing the boat further away. He decided to stay and see what happens. 

If Lian Jun really encountered danger and the progress bar showed a slow death, he would immediately jump into the water to save him.


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