185 Glacial Ice
What the… Are you kidding me… You're saying that door cannot be opened anymore?
I didn't know how to respond to Li Wen. All I could do was continue sticking to Gaoqin Jiuye as I tried to regulate my breathing. I could feel Gaoqin Jiuye's heartbeat against my chest.
"What now?" I asked softly. Li Wen probably couldn't hear me at such a volume.
Gaoqin Jiuye's heartbeat seemed to quicken. "Let's try to use our MF on both doors."
I nodded as I concentrated MF on my back. However, as I attempted to use my MF against the door behind, I felt an opposite force which not only absorbed my MF, it also pushed me closer to Gaoqin Jiuye.
Gaoqin Jiuye sounded a little perturbed when he said, "Wait."
He tried moving. "Do you feel it? The space between the doors seem to get smaller and smaller the more we use MF against them."
Yes, I felt it too. It was infinitely obvious to the both of us who were cramped in here even though it became only a fraction smaller.
"Come over here beside me and try again." Gaoqin Jiuye gestured to his right.
I tried moving over to his right, but the space was extremely tiny and my chest had to brush against his back in order for me to move… Damn it, this was too awkward.
"Well, don't be too embarrassed now, yours are pretty small…"
"Shut up," I said in annoyance.
I felt Gaoqin Jiuye's fierce heartbeat against my chest once again. Shutting my eyes, I squeezed over to the right.
Finally, we had more space now. I moved around to celebrate this tiny freedom as I heaved a sigh of relief.
I looked at Gaoqin Jiuye, and I realized he was looking at me. I was a little embarrassed as I thought of what happened moments ago. "What're you looking at?"
He kept his eyes on me. "I realized that sometimes, you're actually…"
I raised a hand to stop him. "I know, I'm pretty cute sometimes. Don't say things like that at times like these."
Gaoqin Jiuye smirked. "I wanted to say that I thought you were pretty dumb at times."
"What's going on with the both of you?" We heard Li Wen from the other side of the stone door.
I answered loudly, "We can't use MF against the door, it'll only make the space in between them smaller."
"Then what do we do?"
I rolled my eyes as I shouted, "How would I have any idea when even you two soul splitters don't know what to do?"
Gaoqin Jiuye turned around to face the first stone door. I did the same.
"Let's try using force if we can't use MF," he said.
We then placed our hands against the stone door, bottoms pressed against the other stone door behind us. It was rather unsightly.
"Ready? One, two, three, push."
I pushed as hard as I could. Gaoqin Jiuye used so much strength that his face turned red, but the stone door did not budge at all.
I was drenched in perspiration after a while. "Stop stop stop. This is too tiring. I don't think it works."
"Is there another button or switch inside?" Li Wen sounded a little impatient outside.
"How about that button outside? Does it work?"
Li Wen responded, "I've already tried it. It doesn't work anymore. I'm guessing that it only works once."
There was nothing for Gaoqin Jiuye and I to do but to look for possible switches in this space.
There was no light in this space at all. It was pitch black and all I could see was Gaoqin Jiuye even when I increased my visibility through MF. I wasn't able to see any of the walls here.
We felt around for some time, but there were no other clues.
"What do we do now," I sulked.
Gaoqin Jiuye said, "We've been trying to use our MF on the walls, but we haven't tried using it against the stone ground below us."
I hit my head against the stone door as I looked down at the ground.
"Aiyo." I held my head. "That makes sense. Though this piece of ground seems to be tiny, that might just work. Let's try to focus our MF on the bottom of our feet then."
Gaoqin Jiuye and I started to do just that. Though the ground did not absorb our MF, it seemed to be useless as well.
I sighed. "The ground doesn't absorb MF, but if this really was the ground, it probably wouldn't have much of an effect either."
The ground started quaking just as I said this. I looked at Gaoqin Jiuye and subconsciously grabbed his left hand. I've fallen too many times. This time, I'd prepare a cushion for myself.
The shaking lasted for two whole seconds before the ground below our feet disappeared and we started tumbling downwards.
"Ahhhhhhhh–" There was light now, but we were both still falling. I grabbed Gaoqin Jiuye's hand tightly as cold wind blew past me.
We seemed to be falling from quite a height. We just kept falling, to the point that both Gaoqin Jiuye and I even attempted to stop ourselves in mid-air by using our MF.
It did not work, but at least we did not crash into the water below us. We landed gently on an icy surface.
"What the hell. Where's this place? It's cold…" I shivered as I looked around me.
Both of us were in icy water. We seemed to be surrounded by glacial ice and the ice broke where we landed on it.
"Don't know. Let's get out of this place first. Don't you find it cold?" Gaoqin Jiuye glanced at me as he tried to leap out of the water. I also activated my MF under my feet in an attempt to escape this icy river.
However, we ended up just staring at each other.
There was no way to use MF in this icy river. Every time I tried to use my MF, it felt like it was being sucked into the river.
I said, "What's up with this demon cave and all these places…"
Gaoqin Jiuye breathed out, trying to regulate his breath in this bitter cold. "Let's try to use strength if we can't use MF."
Both of us then started swimming towards the ice. I heard a crack as soon as my hand grasped a corner of the ice. The ice just shattered in my hand.
I turned around, realizing that the ice cracked at Gaoqin Jiuye's side too.
"This ice, it's too weak…" I shivered as I said. The water was so cold that I tried to use MF to quicken my blood circulation and heat myself up. But it was a futile effort every time I tried it, since my MF would immediately be absorbed by the water.
Gaoqin Jiuye tried using one hand instead of two. Though the ice was not thin, it was extremely weak. It shattered with just a touch.
"Seems like we're fated to freeze to death here." Gaoqin Jiuye laughed.
Don't say these things like it's nothing…
"Can soul splitters freeze to death too?" I continued shivering.
Gaoqin Jiuye shrugged. "Probably not. But this is way too cold, and we can't use MF either. I'm guessing we'd probably end up frozen in here, like an ice sculpture."
He sounded as if he was narrating an interesting story, and he even positioned himself like an ice sculpture as he spoke. What is wrong with this guy…
It was getting colder and colder, as if the cold was spreading right into my bones. Even though Gaoqin Jiuye was not shivering like I was, his lips were already turning purple. Even then, he still looked beautiful.
"Gao, Gao, Gaoqin Jiuye. Say something, quick. It's so cold…" My lips felt like they were already frozen.
Gaoqin Jiuye suddenly swam towards me. He turned me around and hugged me from behind. Cold permeated the air.
"Is it still cold like this?" He asked.
I continued shivering. "Of course it's cold. You think this is the Titanic…"
Gaoqin Jiuye hugged me harder, trying to warm me up with his body. His heartbeat did not feel as strong as it used to be, maybe because the water was just too cold here.
I looked in front of me and saw nothing but glacial ice surrounding the icy water. This was a world made of ice. I wondered if there really was such a place in the real world.
"Gao, Gaoqin, Gaoqin Jiuye. Do you find this place weird…"
"How is it weird…" Gaoqin Jiuye spoke softly. It sounded like he was feeling really cold as well.
I licked my almost frozen lips. "There's water below the ice, and logically speaking, shouldn't it be zero degrees? But this doesn't feel like it's zero, it feels like it's sub-zero…"
"This is the Split Zone, don't use your real world logic here. Moreover, we're in the demon cave in the Gate of Ghost. It's known to be a mysterious place, so nothing is too weird here…"