Chapter 1 – It stemmed from a place of help

The clone of a lover who eventually became a real lover
It stemmed from a place of help

Tan Yunxiao’s eyelashes fluttered open and he had finally opened his eyes. Maybe the spring breeze had a drowsing effect -even if it was just an artificial, manmade one- Tan Yunxiao who just woke up still felt a little dizzy.

“Um…” There was another person in bed with him.

He looked at the man sleeping beside him. He had a conventionally handsome face, and would be considered attractive to most people. At the moment, the man had his eyes closed tightly as though he didn’t want to be awoken from his dream.

Tan Yunxiao smiled softly and leaned over to kiss his lover’s cheek, making a ‘pop’ sound, and then got out of bed to prepare breakfast for the two of them.

A good day starts with a good breakfast after all.

Preparing the ingredients carefully, he cleans them thoroughly before cooking them and setting them on the table. In this era where machines could be used to cook food, Tan Yunxiao has still insisted on making breakfast for his lover without its assistance. This is something he has done for more than ten years now.

Tan Yunxiao likes watching his lover eat the breakfast he’s carefully made. When his lover finishes the entire plate, a sense of fulfilment always makes itself known in his heart.

The love between the two was a match made in heaven. Together since birth and inseparable since childhood. Their parents were neighbors and good friends too. The two families often used to travel together. After high school, the two even went to the same university and spent most of their time there together before joining the same company for work. They shared each and every day without growing tired of each other.

The two can spend an afternoon in the library together, even without talking. Only occasionally raising their heads to look at each other and smile. Where else would you find two people more suited for each other elsewhere? Both of them have asked themselves the same question before.

Naturally, the two would always be together, and Tan Yunxiao still often recalls the warm confession years earlier.

“My dear, what are you thinking about? Why do you seem so happy?” A gentle voice had come from behind him.

Tan Yunxiao raised his head and leaned it against his lover’s generous chest. “It’s nothing, I just remembered the moment you confessed to me.”

“Hmm, was I more handsome than I am now? I noticed that you were blushing.” Feng Shang said as he gently kissed the smooth back of his lover’s neck.

Tan Yunxiao couldn’t bear the ticklish feeling, turning around, he chuckled at his lover’s antics and gave him a warm look. Seeing his lover content, Feng Sheng smiled heartily.

The two have always been harmonious in every way, and they could understand each other from just one glance. After staring in silence for a while, he found himself moved by the sincerity of the other’s gaze and they shared a passionate kiss in each other’s embrace.

A warm breeze entered the room from the window and the two of them bathed in the rare morning glow, in each other’s arms and feeling one another’s touch, simply reciprocating the love and comfort they felt from being in the other’s company.

“Thanks to science and technology!” Feng Sheng clapped his hands together before making a move on his meal and said, “Oh, and of course thanks to my dear for preparing this lovely breakfast for me.” Feng Sheng winked playfully at his lover who sat across from him.

“Yes, it’s thanks to science and technology that we can still enjoy the warmth of spring here.” Tan Yunxiao repeated the sentence thoughtfully before lowering his head to start eating the breakfast laid out on his plate.

After they were both finished with the meal, the AI helper came up to clean up the leftovers and dirty plates. Their method of nutrition intake was rather old-fashioned, but since Tan Yunxiao liked eating, they have retained the habit of eating this way.

Both of them were employees of the National Research Institute. Feng Sheng works in the research department while Tan Yunxiao works in the external department. The two hardly had the chance to meet at work, but fortunately, the workforce right’s movement has recently been demanding some changes in the work hours of employees for the past two years so their lunch breaks have been extended. This allowed the both of them to have lunch together.

“Hey, Yunxiao. Could you do me a favor?” A colleague swiveled his chair in Tan Yunxiao’s direction as he held a phone in the other.

“Alright.”

“Ah, thank you so much. Do go right ahead to Room 701 in Area S and copy file No. 3 for me.”

Area S was the storage area of the organization and it contained all the old files and abandoned experiments that were carried out in the laboratories.

As one of the five districts in the area to be rebuilt, very few people these days even think of passing by S district after an accident had occurred here years ago. Plus due to the lack of maintenance, the service machinery around here were all too old to be operated safely. Apart from coming to observe the older and original makes of the machinery, no one would frequent this area, especially not on the weekdays.

Tan Yunxiao sighed. He felt that it was too old-fashioned to have to find these documents manually. Taking out his ID card from his pocket, he scanned it against the identification window.

The door beeped open and Tan Yunxiao raised his hand as he strode inside, only to be surprised that the lights had not automatically been turned on for him. He fumbled around the walls for a light switch instead.

“Hmm, found it.”

The activation sound greeted him with a “Good morning, sir” before the entire room slowly lit up.

“Ah, this really is a storage room.” Tan Yunxiao gulped before taking two steps forward.

“This…”

Tan Yunxiao knelt down and silently observed the bits of junk that were strewn all over the floor.

The item before him has obviously been a half-complete bionic person. It’s chest hasn’t been closed off properly, leaving its internal circuitry and chips inside the cavity to be partially exposed. The face, however, was already well beyond finished and polished with its distinct eyelashes, down to the detailed moles on the corner of its eyes and the fine creases found at the corner of its mouth.

The face was of someone that he recognized and was very familiar with. He’s seen this person countless times before, because this was the exact face he has just seen in the mirror this morning.

Tan Yunxiao was so shocked that he staggered as he stood back up, surveying the entire room carefully. The whole room was disorderly, crammed with all sorts of extra limbs and appendages that had failed to make it to the final cut. They all lay crookedly on the ground too. From all sorts of disfigured heads, incomplete limbs and inferiorly-made torsos, they undoubtedly cast their shadows onto him as they bore a striking resemblance to his own body.

Not to mention the expressions on their face that were just too uncanny and similar to those of Tan Yunxiao’s. They all had different emotions, some were neutral while others were angry, or had their mouths sealed tightly in grief and some had their eyes closed looking very pitiful.

Seeing all this, Tan Yunxiao only felt his stomach churning and hairs on his arm standing. With every ounce of his strength, he struggled to get out of this eerily, depressing room.

 


T/L notes: Yikes, imagine walking into a room full of yourself. Well… full of incomplete body parts that looked like you. That’ll be pretty disturbing.

Anyways, I wonder if this would be the first time he’s ever been in this room? After all, his colleague did casually just ask him to enter the room and get him some documents. What if he’s already been here before but just forgotten? Our main character did mention something about having goldfish memory in the previous chapter, but perhaps there was some other reason for his forgetfulness?

Ohohoho, guess you’ll have to continue reading to find out! (^0^)/

Consider liking the writer’s work or buying a kofi for me <3
https://ko-fi.com/hoenibean

 

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Chapter 0 – (It’s there even if you pretend not to see it)

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Chapter 2 – The emotional turmoil continues

1 Comment

  1. oh my this just gets more interesting!! thank u for the chapter~

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