When Qiu Ren opened his eyes again, he found himself in a pitch-black place. There was a wooden table, and the lamp on it was the only source of light in the dimension.
“Welcome… to my territory. What should I call you?”
A masked figure was sitting behind the wooden table. It was wearing a neat suit, looking like it had been waiting for Qiu Ren for a long time.
“Then, you can call me Tapir or Lord of Nightmare. Anything will do.”
It pointed at the wooden chair opposite the table while addressing Qiu Ren. Qiu Ren couldn’t identify its gender from its voice, but it seemed to sound more like a woman?
“Please take a seat, Mr. Qiu Ren.”
Hearing this name, Qiu Ren suddenly thought about the cubic Nightmare Seed and the eye that had cracked open on the Rubik’s Cube.
Was his consciousness sucked into that Level S Nightmare Seed?
Qiu Ren didn’t think too much. He directly sat opposite the Lord of Nightmare.
It looked at Qiu Ren’s cooperative and calm face and gently nodded in satisfaction.
“What do you want from me?” asked Qiu Ren.
Qiu Ren wasn’t thrown into the deadly game of this Nightmare Dungeon but met the Lord of the nightmare in person instead. This Lord of Nightmare must have something it wanted.
“Your creativity, Mr. Qiu Ren… I feel something complicated in her, but I’m more interested in your creative potential. Young people always have a wild imagination, don’t they?” the Lord of Nightmare said with a deep voice.
It didn’t see who I really am?
Qiu Ren was relieved in his heart, but he didn’t show it.
“What exactly do you want me to create?” Although Qiu Ren asked, he had already got an answer in his mind.
“Nightmares.” The Lord of Nightmare replied even more directly, “Even though we’re the owners of the Dream Dungeon, we don’t have the ability to imagine. But you humans… You always have countless wonderful fantasies in your minds. I can make all of them real.”
When it spoke, it constantly tapped its index fingers together like a person who had been starving and thirsty for a long time, waiting for Qiu Ren to offer it a delicious feast.
“But it has to suit your liking, right?”
Qiu Ren had also read the books about Dream Makers. He would need to consume a large number of Creation Points when building things in his own Dream Dungeon Dimension.
However, this was the Nightmare Dimension that belonged to this Lord of Nightmare. Qiu Ren was only responsible for building. All the consumption would be borne by the Lord of Nightmare.
The most important thing was that the dreams Qiu Ren created must be enough to satisfy the Lord of Nightmare.
Simply put, the Lord of Nightmare was Qiu Ren’s boss. If Qiu Ren made his boss content, he wouldn’t only be able to leave this nightmare safely, but he would also get quite a lot of benefits.
If his boss was dissatisfied…
Qiu Ren probably had no room to consider this possibility.
“I like talking to smart people.”
The Lord of Nightmare gently tapped the wooden table, and the place underwent great changes.
In a blink, Qiu Ren’s dark surroundings turned into an arena covered with dust and blood.
Qiu Ren was right in the middle of the arena. The wooden table and wooden chair were still there, but there were two gladiators fighting with their lives on the side of the arena.
They were drenched in blood. One of them was even lying on the ground with his intestines out of his belly.
“This is my… memory.” The Lord of Nightmare said, “It’s a memory from a long time ago, and it’s also a dream the first human Dream Maker built for me. He’s your… senior’s senior.”
It stared at the two fighting gladiators and took a deep breath, as if it was reminiscing something.
“Even though it’s bloody and cruel enough and full of barbaric smell, it’s too straightforward. I’ve already grown bored many years ago.”
The Lord of Nightmare said while tapping the surface of the wooden table gently. This time, the entire scene turned into a confined iron space.
In this space, a group of people was running in fear. All kinds of machines and monsters constantly appeared in the dimension to kill these people.
Qiu Ren recognized that these people were the death row prisoners in the prison back then!
The Lord of Nightmare said with a bored look as it watched the death row prisoners run fearfully.
“There are death triggers everywhere. They fear when they escape brings me a long time of fun, but I still feel like something is missing…”
“So, what exactly do you want?” Qiu Ren asked expressionlessly.
When it said this, its voice suddenly sounded passionate.
“I want to see the most despicable and vicious part at the bottom of your hearts! The indulgence in taking other people’s lives without being restricted by any rules! Being unscrupulous in order to achieve your goals! The madness of giving up your conscience when you’re desperate! Finally, the greed you have when you betray your closest people for your own interests! These… All… These are all I want.”
The Lord of Nightmare looked even crazier when it spoke. It directly stood up in the end, speaking with a slightly shaking voice. But soon, it noticed its gaffe.
The Lord of Nightmare returned to its seat again and tidied up its little messy suit and tie. It put on a serious expression and said, “I want you to build a nightmare where those Dream Explorers can encounter all those situations. A real… nightmare instead of those boring pantomimes.”
Good Lord! If these requirements were really put in a movie or a drama series, wouldn’t it be a popular yet heart-tormenting one?
Qiu Ren wasn’t sure if it would be heart-tormenting, but he was certain that it would be popular.
Unfortunately, people exploring the Nightmare Dungeons weren’t actors. It was impossible for them to follow Qiu Ren’s script.
Luckily, Qiu Ren happened to have some game rules that could perfectly fulfill these requirements of the Lord of Nightmare.
“So, Mr. Qiu Ren, can you show these to me?”
“Maybe…” Qiu Ren already had a general plan in his mind.
“So fast? Great… Great! I hope you’re not bluffing. You’re in charge of this nightmare now. I look forward… to seeing you build a nightmare that’s enough to blow me away.”
The Lord of Nightmare got up and made a “please” gesture to Qiu Ren.
“How many people could the Dream Dungeons in the past contain every time?” Qiu Ren looked at the group of death row prisoners struggling to survive in the death chamber.
“Twenty.” It said with a little teasing tone, “This is what your seniors fought for. Of course, you can reduce the number of people that can enter the nightmare each time, but under the premise… that it’s still exciting enough after having fewer people.”
“No, I might need to increase the number.”
The game Qiu Ren had in mind wouldn’t work with just twenty people.
“Oh? Your seniors have been curbing the number of people entering the nightmare over the years. If you do this, people outside might not be happy,” the Lord of Nightmare reminded him kindly.
Qiu Ren also understood that. When people died in the world of nightmares, although they might not really die, their minds would be seriously damaged.
Those death row prisoners would have to rest for a long time before they could enter a nightmare again.
However, the Lord of Nightmare should be like a human as well. It needed to “eat” after a certain period. There would be severe consequences if it wasn’t full.
The two Dream Makers before had also considered how they could feed this Lord of Nightmare with the least number of people.
“Are you responsible for their negative effects when they die in the nightmare?” Qiu Ren tried to negotiate with the Lord of Nightmare.
If the death row prisoners were treated as consumables, it was indeed a bad thing to let them be consumed too quickly.
“Me? I won’t hurt anyone in the nightmare on purpose. It’s them who can’t separate reality and dream. That is why their fragile minds are severely damaged after they die in the nightmare. You can design something like a safe house, so they won’t be so desperate in the nightmare,” the Lord of Nightmare said.
This was how it worked… As long as the nightmare was interesting enough for the Dream Explorers, death in the nightmare would bring less harm to them.
“No. I think they’ll like the dreams I build,” said Qiu Ren. He was quite confident in what he had in mind.
“They’ll like a nightmare?” The Lord of Nightmare chuckled. “Don’t you think it’s contradictory to make people like death?”
Qiu Ren directly kicked out those death row prisoners in the deadly game. He started rebuilding the nightmare.
Although Qiu Ren was rebuilding the nightmare, the Lord of Nightmare kept a copy of the original two Nightmare Dungeons. If it didn’t like the things Qiu Ren created, it could still go back to the “leftovers” from the past.
However, as the framework of Qiu Ren’s Nightmare Dungeon gradually appeared, the Lord of Nightmare suddenly felt like the leftovers from the past didn’t smell good anymore.