"How could you do this to me? I did whatever you asked me to!" Jake said with tears in his eyes. These were not tears shed of despondency. These were tears of anger.
Welling up inside of him for years, they finally came out.
"You are just not worth keeping around anymore. You lost your value. What can I say? You are just a lost puppy, and some lost puppies don't find their owners back." a burly man in front of Jake said, laughing.
"I sacrificed all of my levels to die for you in dungeons, in expeditions! You even made me hand you the item that I found when I went to the Tiger Marsh on my own!" Jake shouted back.
"That was because you were a part of the guild. And you know that you have to contribute to the guild when you are a part of it, don't you?" the man smiled.
His smiled made Jake clench his fists. But he knew that he was no match for the behemoth before him. He was the reason that the despicable Yuahn could become so strong after all.
"I will get back at you. I swear to god-"
"Now, the item that you gave me, it has been very useful. In fact, it is so good that no one else can know that it exists. Do you know what that means, Jake? It means that you are in the way of the guild. Why don't you jump out of the way?" Yuahn interrupted.
"Wait, what are you saying? I have been so useful to you! I did everything that you asked for! And you want to kill me?" Jake was aghast. He took a step back with fear.
"Just stay here for a few moments, and it will all be painless." Yuahn said, looking to the side. His eyes slowly darting to the side. He was looking at something else.
And Jake understood that. Yuahn was talking to someone else.
"Oh look at that, I think that you don't need to wait anymore. Good bye, Jake. You will be far more useful to me dead than alive. It is a pity that you can't live again." Yuahn smiled and turned back.
Jake quickly raised his right hand.
Ten icons appeared in front of him, and his hand glided to the bottom one.
A pop up appeared before him.
Jake tapped on the pop up once more, and his character started blurring.
He opened his eyes, looking at a murky room. But something felt wrong. He could swear that the light had been switched off when he entered the game.
Why was the room so bright?
But then, the light above was masked by a shadow. A shadow that loomed over him. All he could see was a glint, and then he felt the pain.
The pain of having a sword shoved right in the gut.
Jake couldn't scream. He was too tired to scream. The last few days, he had been working till he could barely move, and yet, ironically, the person that benefitted from all of this decided to get rid of this hard worker.
"Guess I was too late. Curse my life. Why does god have to do me like this?" Jake cursed, and then, all he could see was black.
It was dark, like no other.
"Am I... in hell? Maybe Heaven? I didn't do much wrong did I? I have to go to heaven." Jake mumbled to himself. He seemed alone in this vast darkness.
Suddenly, he felt a sharp pain in his chest. He opened his mouth and tried to take in as much air as he possibly could. He felt like he hadn't taken a breath in years.
Light returned, and he could see once again. There was light back in the world, blinding his eyes.
"I survived? Wait, where the hell am I?" Adrenaline kicked in and after a few seconds, Jake could see where he was with clarity.
But what he saw was a place that he remembered. It was a place of his past. A place that he remembered so fondly.
He looked at his hands. They were animate, that was for certain. This was no dream, this was no trick.
"No way. You have got to be kidding me. I... went back in time? God answered my calls?" he muttered. For a few seconds, his mind was blank. He didn't know what to think.
He jumped out of his bed and looked around. It was his old room, his old bed, and his old VMMORPG controller.
He had gone back ten years in the past! Back to when he was a twenty year old gullible young man!
And then, the emotions that he felt, his brain registered. A wave of endorphins flooded him.
"Yes! I actually went back in time!" he jumped up on the bed again and again.
"Jake! Get down here. Look at the news! Something happened! The president is announcing something!" Jake's mom shouted from the hall.
Jake's eyes welled up with tears again. In his last life, his mother, father, and brother all died early. The apocalypse and the food shortage caught up to them. Only Jake was lucky enough to get to an internment camp, where he would survive for the next nine years.
"No. I will not let that happen. I will not die like a dog this time. I will make sure that they all pay, and they will see who comes out at the top this time around." Jake smiled viciously.
He was done being nice to people. This was his turn.
He ran to the hall though, because today's announcement was going to be a big one. Jake remembered everything that happened today.
Today was the day that every single country announced that it was now a law to enter the VMMORPG: World Online. Every single currency could be translated from this world, and everything that happened in there was more important than real life!
Today was the day that lawlessness became the new rule. It was the day that they legalized the survival of the fittest.
"Today is a monumental day, citizens! We are now proud to be partners of Nova Corp. It is time for you to have a new life. It is time to take your life online. We welcome you to world online! Headsets to enter the virtual world will be provided to you. Martial law will be implemented to make sure that every one will enter the world." the president was saying on the TV.
But Jake already knew all of this. He was stuck looking at his parents, and his little brother. They were struck with shock at this announcement.
"What is going on, Jake? Is this all a joke that the internet people are making on us? When we are struggling to make ends meet and get enough money for food, why is the government stopping us from doing even that?" Jake's mom, Lydia, said with a trembling voice.
"This is not a joke mom, but do not worry. This is not going to stop us from doing anything. In fact, it is going to make us all rich beyond our dreams. But whatever you do, remember, enter the world. If it is martial law, then we will be punished for not following it." Jake said.
There had been incidents where people were even killed mercilessly for not joining the online world. It sparked a lot of debate, but the stories were crushed by the power of the massive corporations, and the governments themselves.
"World Online. Meet your maker." Jake smiled as he rushed back to his room to grab his headset. Now, time was of the essence.
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