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TDRA Chapter 3

Return to the Apocalypse

Until she was lying on her little bed in her soft pyjamas, Gu Ning was still a little nervous and felt uneasy, but she had a real sense of reality now.

After a while, Mother Gu changed into her pyjamas too and went to bed, and said to the puzzled Gu Ning: “Mom will sleep with you.”

A few moments later, Mother Gu turned her head to look at Gu Ning and asked: “What’s wrong? Can’t fall asleep?”

Gu Ning shook her head and stared at the ceiling: “I don’t dare to sleep. I’m afraid that I will wake up.”

Mother Gu almost cried again, and finally held back her tears. She holds onto Gu Ning in her arms, patted her back repeatedly, softly comforting: “Go to sleep, when you wake up, your mom will still be here.”

The bed was really comfortable, the embrace from mother was warm, and Gu Ning’s tensed mind for more than three months had indeed reached its limit. In the end, she closed her eyes and slowly fell asleep.

At night, Gu Ning was still sleeping, with no sign of waking up at all.

Father Gu asked: “Should we wake our child for the meal before sleeping again?”

Mother Gu distressed and said: “Let her sleep. We don’t know how much our child have suffered out there. When she wakes up, let’s listen to her if she wants to speak out. If she doesn’t, then let’s not ask alright?”

Father Gu thought so too and he nodded.

Gu Ning slept till noon the next day and woke up because of the smell of the food.

“NingNing you are awake! Did your dad’s cooking caused too loud noise?” Father Gu asked.

“Nope, it’s the aroma that woke me up.” Gu Ning smiled.

After a good night’s sleep, her mind felt clearer and her face was not as pale as before.

Seeing that their daughter seems to be back to normal today and is still able to crack jokes, the couple looked at each other feeling happy.

The family of three gathered around the dining table and ate merrily. The couple stared at their once-lost daughter and could not bear to move their glance away, as if they were afraid that their daughter would disappear again in the blink of an eye.

After the meal, Mother Gu asked: “NingNing, would you like your mom to accompany you to go out this afternoon?”

Gu Ning nodded but then shook her head and said: “I want you to tell me about what happened these three months. I can’t seem to remember clearly.”

She disappeared three months ago and was said that she went travelling but then she could no longer be contacted, as though she had vanished suddenly. Her parents filing a police report posted her missing person notices everywhere, even published them in newspapers. Everyone who knew Gu Ning from elementary school to university was asked about her but there was no news. Many people were also mobilized on Weibo blog to share and repost news of her disappearance. The news spread out everywhere, but there was no feedback or any information received. She seemed to have gone up in smoke. Today, when they received a call from the police station, the couple rushed over immediately. When they really saw Gu Ning, both of them almost couldn’t believe it.
Also, the date of her disappearance was the day when the apocalypse broke out based on her memory.

At first, she thought this was all a dream, but the clear information felt by every sensation and organ told her that this was the real world.

She wondered if the end of the world were actually her dreams instead? However, that dream was too real. Those stiff walking zombies and hideous rotten faces were too real to be a dream. Whenever she closes her eyes, she can still clearly recall everything, every single detail that happened after the apocalypse started and even the smell of bloodstain on her body. Also, the police Fang Fa was someone she knew on the way to escape during the apocalypse. Before that, she never knew him, and judging from his previous reaction, he did not know her. Yet all those varying scars on her body completely disappeared.

She was obviously bitten by a zombie, but there was no sign of mutation.

If those were not true, then the only explanation was either she was schizophrenic or hysteric.

Countless questions hovered in Gu Ning’s mind but she was unable to clear her thoughts.

Mother Gu spoke again: “By the way NingNing, I had informed your uncle, aunt, eldest aunt, and second aunt, as well as those friends and classmates with who you are close. At first, they wanted to visit you but I wanted your consent so I had rejected them instead, what do you think?”

Gu Ning replied: “Mom, I currently don’t want to meet anyone yet. Can you please tell them not to come and visit me?”

Mother Gu quickly responded: “Sure, Mom will listen to you. Mom will tell them not to come over. So you can take a good rest for these few days.”

Almost immediately as the sentence ended, there was a knock on the door.

Mother Gu instructed Father Gu: “Old Gu, go and take a look who is here.”

Father Gu stood up and took a look.

Then a voice floated in from outside the door: “Uncle and Auntie, I heard that NingNing is back. I have dropped by to see her.”

Hearing this very familiar voice, Gu Ning’s mind was buzzing and was a little stunned.

“JiaZi. My NingNing is not feeling very comfortable right now…” Father Gu just refused when he heard Gu Ning said: “Dad, let him in.”

Father Gu followed and let the person in.

What came in was a young man in a light blue shirt, gentle, polite, and handsome. It was what Gu Ning liked before, yes, before.

Mother Gu had stood up and said with a look of surprise: “It’s JiaZi, why are you here.

“I heard others saying that they saw NingNing came back. So I come over to see her.” Lu JiaZi placed the fruit basket on the table and saw Gu Ning, the worries in his eyes became gentle: “NingNing, long time no see, how are you?” He was being considerate and refused to mention her disappearance.

Gu Ning forced a smile: “I’m fine, thank you for your concern.”

Such a polite yet distanced answer.

Lu JiaZi was stunned, and then returned to normal, thinking that she had just returned home thus it was somewhat understandable: “I see that you are not in good condition, I won’t bother your rest then. If you need me, you can call me anytime.”
It was always so gentle and polite that no one was able to fault it.

Gu Ning did not feel like getting up to send him off, so she just smiled and said: “Thank you, then I won’t see you off.”

Lu JiaZi replied: “Have a good rest then.”

Yet was Father Gu that sent Lu JiaZi off.

Once the door closed, Mother Gu was unable to resist and asked: “NingNing, why are you treating JiaZi so indifferently, in the past…”

“Mom.”Gu Ning broke Mother Gu speech: “I’m feeling a little tired, wake me up when it’s dinner time then.”

Mother Gu immediately tossed Lu JiaZi in the back of her mind and quickly replied: “Ok ok ok, go and rest. Mom will wake you later.”

As soon as the door closed, Mother Gu ran over and said in a low voice to Father Gu: “Old Gu, do you think there is something wrong with NingNing? In the past, her eyes were shining when JiaZi came to our house and her mouth almost reaching the back of her ears, but look at her today, her cold attitude…”

Father Gu replied: “Our daughter just came home. Her mind is probably still confused, you have to give her some time to adapt.”

“I still think that she is treating JiaZi coldly.” Mother Gu believed in her instincts.

Meanwhile, Gu Ning sneered into the room.

On the way to escape the apocalypse, she ran into Lu JiaZi naked with Jiang Yu, after that she really did not have any interest in him. Also, during the apocalypse, because he had been keeping calm in commanding everyone, he was very prestigious among the rest in the bus and the driver was even looking up at him. Then during that time, if he even took into account their past relationship, he would not have let the bus just drive off and abandon her. Leaving her behind might be even because of him pulling strings…

“No… Don’t! Don’t go there! Dad! Mom!”Gu Ning eyes were still shut tightly when she suddenly screamed in horror.

Mother Gu was originally asleep but got awakened by Gu Ning’s screams. She quickly reached out and switched on the light. Seeing Gu Ning with her eyes still closed in pain and was breaking out in cold sweat, she was startled: “NingNing, NingNing, wake up!”

Father Gu who was in the next room also heard the commotion and rushed over: “What’s the matter? What’s wrong?!”

Gu Ning slowly woke up, still with horror residue on her face. She gazed at the worried Mother Gu and Father Gu, then she slowly realized that she had a nightmare. Seeing that her parents were well and standing here, Gu Ning blinked and tears roll out.

Mother Gu looked distressed: “What’s wrong with you. What kind of nightmare scared you like this?”

“I’m fine. It’s just a nightmare.” Gu Ning wiped away her tears and put on a smile to assure them. She could not help but glance at her father’s knee. During the apocalypse, her father’s knee was injured, due to the lack of medication, the injuries worsened. He was afraid to become a burden for her and Mother Gu, that he even tried ending his life… Gu Ning felt that her eyes were getting watery again, and quickly closed her eyes: “Dad, Mom, I’m still sleepy. Mom, you don’t need to accompany me to sleep. The bed is so small that neither of us can sleep well.”

Father Gu added on: “Yes JiaoJiao. The bed is already so small and yet you still squeeze in, NingNing won’t be able to sleep properly.”

Mother Gu started pouting: “It’s because I miss NingNing too much.” After reluctantly getting off the bed, she switched off the light and walked out with Father Gu while muttering: “Let’s go to the furniture store in a few days and buy a bigger bed for NingNing…”

After the door shut, Gu Ning opened her eyes.

She dreamt that her parents in the apocalypse would soon be rejected by everyone because she was not there to protect them and they might end up being abandoned just like her. This was not just a nightmare.

If she’s not there, this nightmare would become a reality. Gu Ning covered her face and did not dare to imagine how her elderly parents would survive in such a cruel apocalypse… Her parent’s kind faces appeared in her mind.

When all of a sudden! At this moment, a dazzling golden light flashed ——

Gu Ning suddenly moved her hand and looked at the scene in disbelief.

The whole place was glaring white ——

She swallowed hard and stood up from the ground.

What, how could it… she actually returned to this weird place again. The current place she was in was the white room that she came to after being bitten by a zombie during the apocalypse. Even the watermelon knife was still lying quietly on the ground.

She looked around anxiously and soon found the black door.

She ran to the door, took a deep breath, then reached out and slowly twisted the doorknob, and the familiar golden light flashed by ——

The familiar foul smell from the zombies gushed over her face, and Gu Ning opened her eyes wide, staring in disbelief at the scene in front of her.

“This… This is…”

In front of her, there were all sorts of corpses of zombies, emitting the rancid smell that Gu Ning had long been immune to. Most of the zombies here were hacked to death by her… She unexpectedly returned to the apocalypse world!

Gu Ning getting goosebumps all over her body and a cold sweat broke out. What the hell was going on…? She remembered clearly that she was lying on the bed at that time, she did not even close her eyes, and then a golden light flashed. She arrived in the white room, and then she opened the door and arrived here…

(T/N: Woots! 3 chapters at once =) Next chapter update will be on Sunday then. Hope you guys will enjoy reading.)
(Editor: De Vile)

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