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The other Battle God

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He was in an off-white room, slightly beige. The room was pristine, with white curtains blown softly by the wind from outside the open, wall-height window. There were dressers and toys littered around the room, and there were always a spare of everything, placed opposite of each other. He was moving forwards towards a large 4-poster bed, when he saw a figure getting up from it and was also coming towards himself.

He reached out his right hand, while the figure in front of him raised his left. Tentatively, his fingers splayed and touched the other’s. He saw a smile, so bright, reminding him of his own. It probably was. He himself was smiling too. He peered into his own eyes in front of him, his hair parted to one side. When he tilted his head, the other tilted too. The face he saw, he recognised it was his own.

Oh, a reflection. He was looking into a mirror!

He knew he was dreaming, as the other reached out and cupped his cheeks, while he did the same. You can’t touch your reflection unless you were dreaming, his subconscious screamed. He continued fooling around with his doppelgänger for a bit, pinching each others cheeks.

“Ah Qiu!” “ ———“ They both called out the same time. Then they smiled once more, giggling.

 

He always woke up crying from that same dream of his child self with his own reflection every time. He didn’t understand why. He was happy in the dream, so why…? Was it because of a sibling he had lost before? He was probably quite young or traumatised, that he has forgotten this sibling, he supposed. Or very likely due to another recent death. He thought to look up the meaning of dreams from google or something. Bah, whatever.

After calming down and rubbing his face, he got up and did his morning routine before coming out of his room. He greeted his mother and brother on the altar, and began preparing his breakfast. He was glad his mother made him learn to cook during his younger years, as well as all the other domestic chores so he could save quite a sum from eating take-outs or outside, plus keeping the place clean.

His mother.. his sweet loving mother. There was nothing she wouldn’t do for him, he always remembered her gentle smile, even when she was angry. She had never hit him for whatever wrong-doings he had done. She gently explained and coaxed him to understand what was good and bad, and she wanted him to do better next time. He obliged, and it was amazing to see his mother proud of him for doing the right things.

He didn’t have an Oedipus complex, no sir. His mother pampered and spoilt him a lot. It’s obvious it’s due to the reason she had lost the other son (his brother) and was somehow unable to punish him, fearing he might run away and leave her. His mother wasn’t over-bearing although she was strict about his whereabouts. He knew he was her anchor to reality and couldn’t bear to make her sad, because he can see that his mother is a bit loose in the head. Just a little. His mother wasn’t crazy.

His mother didn’t focus entirely on his grades, but urged him to try and do better, since to be better in life, he has to do well in the academics rat-race first. He tried, and he excelled in them. Subjects came to him easily but he was bored as quickly too, so his mother actually bought him a computer and a game console for his good grades. He was ecstatic. But good days didn’t last forever. His mother’s health was deteriorating throughout the years. His mother kept assuring him he will be okay after she was gone, prepared him for the days to come when he will be alone, but he knew he wasn’t going to be alright. At least not for a while.

After his mother had passed on, she left him with this small unit of a house, but he was glad for it. It was fully paid off by his mother, and he didn’t have to worry about rent and the utilities for the next 6 months. He was alone, all the more space for himself, but he still kept his mother’s room intact for the sentimental value. His mother loved him after all, and he loved her a lot too. Her passing had broken him, making him skipped school so long; it was too terrible to bear that he stopped entirely.

When the funeral was in process, he was saddened that his mother’s relatives didn’t show up somehow, but he can’t blame them. He had never seen any of them for the lunar new years, or attend any familial festivities with his mother at all. He had never picked up a call from them either, or his mother had never called anyone for that matter, now that he realised. Since he didn’t have a father and only had a mother, he could only guess that either his mother was an orphan, she really had no family, or disowned by one that she couldn’t bear (or couldn’t bother) to show her face again. His mother never told him about her past and he wasn’t privy about it. He didn’t even remember his own childhood much since that accident, his mother told him he was a quiet child before and after.

In the end, all this didn’t matter to him presently.

Now that he has to face reality, he decided he should do something about his life. Being a school-less teen was not going to help matters, the money from his mother’s life insurance can’t sustain him forever. He decided he was not going to waste his mother’s efforts like that. Other than study, which he was not doing currently, the only other thing he knew was games. While eating, he was thinking of how he could earn money for himself, being a school drop-out now, good grades be damned. He couldn’t help but think of the new popular MMO game. The more he thought about it, the more convinced he was that there was money to be made. Decisively, he finished his breakfast, cleaned up, went back to his room, and booted his computer.

He needed to QQ that infamous pair of shameless money-making duo in GLORY after all.