Agent Smith spotted Zhang Heng and Rabbit from the outside. He walked in, face expressionless.
Instead of charging directly at him, Smith picked the museum staff from the ground and inserted his right hand into the helpless guard’s chest. He screamed in pain, where a thick, black liquid oozed from his chest, spreading and engulfing his entire body at the same time. In only about two seconds, the guard had transformed entirely into another Smith.
Rabbit shrugged. “As I said, neither of us can escape…”
Right before she could finish, Smith turned to Rabbit and lunged at her, socking her in the face with his fist.
“Owww! It hurts!!!”
It wasn’t before half her face was smashed, did Smith land a kick on Rabbit’s belly. It sent her flying, its force so great she knocked over several shelves along the way.
Zhang Heng didn’t have the time to check out what happened to Rabbit since the other Smith was now walking towards him. He looked around quickly, catching a glimpse of a bronze sword in a showcase cabinet. Zhang Heng instinctively smashed the glass when he saw the weapon, drawing a Spring and Autumn Period bronze sword.
This time, it was his turn to face Smith’s fist. After seeing what happened to Rabbit, Zhang Heng didn’t use his arm to block the punch and instead dodged it with his pure reflexes. Swinging the sword to his back, he thrust the ancient weapon forward, managing to hit Smith.
Nevertheless, the Smith that Zhang Heng just encountered wasn’t the most dextrous Smith from The Matrix. This incarnation of Smith had failed to dodge the attack. Despite that, apart from his shades needing a little adjustment, everything, including his hairstyle, remained unchanged.
Smith stretched out to grab the bronze sword, easily snapping it into two. He tossed the pieces to the ground, loosed his neck, removed his sunglasses, and went for Zhang Heng again. Zhang Heng wasn’t surprised by how the first round of fights with Smith went. After all, Smith, the ultimate guardian of the third dreams, was nearly as formidable as the tsunami and dragon. Evidently, Smith wasn’t one to go down without a fight.
But Zhang Heng’s biggest problem now was that his items couldn’t be brought into Han Lu’s dream. It left him with little room in conjuring an excellent strategy to defeat Smith.
In the end, he decided to adopt the dodge-and-hit strategy. He had to stay as far as he could from Smith and use the opponents’ speed to his advantage. He also had to ensure Smith wouldn’t get close enough and transform him into another Smith. The virus’ killer move in the movie was to create unlimited copies of himself, and there was a good chance Zhang Heng would cease to exist if Smith managed to lay his hands on him.
The Smith next to Zhang Heng started to walk towards Rabbit, now lying motionlessly on the ground as if she was dead. Smith then stretched out, intending to “hack” into her chest and transform her into another Smith copy. A rabbit wouldn’t stand a chance if he were to do that. Then, as if jump starting to live, Rabbit’s eyes snapped open, and she grabbed Smith’s arm.
Rabbit grinned, sneering cynically at the less-than-human apparition. “I admire your attitude and your sense of responsibility. But, hey, don’t forget to take a rest once in a while.”
She then touched Smith’s forehead with her finger. Then, as if all power to his body was cut, Smith fell lifelessly to the ground. Rabbit stood up, patted the dust off her body, and glanced at Zhang Heng. He was now in a sticky situation. “It seems I there’s nothing else for me to do. Take your time to deal with him. Don’t worry about me. I’ll go ahead first.”
After that, she opened the window and jumped out.
Zhang Heng and Smith didn’t go after her, each one afraid of the other. Though less than half a minute later, Rabbit returned to the museum through the window cursing. Zhang Heng looked at where she was, seeing dozens of men standing outside. All dressed in the same suit, sunglasses and had the same face, and they stared into the museum’s open window with a ghostly expressionless face.
Smith had already started making copies of himself, and it wouldn’t be long before he transformed everyone in the city into his likeness. Earlier, Rabbit managed to end the battle quickly, and she didn’t even appear to break a sweat. The truth was, Rabbit had actually sacrificed a lot in the attempt to get Smith to snuggle up with her. The price for that was a heavy blow from Smith, resulting in half her face getting smashed in and two broken ribs.
Seeing how Smiths’ copies could come in from all directions, she realized she had to face multiple enemies. It was no wonder she didn’t look so good.
This was in no way good news for Zhang Heng, either. The fight was only escalating. One Smith was terrible enough, but he was now forced to deal with a wave of Smiths. Even with a respectable Lv.3 Swordsmanship and the physical skills mastered in Black Sail, he could barely defeat him. If more Smiths joined the battle, it would put him in an immeasurable amount of danger.
Now that the two were trapped in the small museum, Zhang Heng knew it was impossible to simultaneously deal with so many of Smith’s copies. He could only hope that they would kill Rabbit first and that Han Lu could wake up in time.
Zhang Heng quietly strayed far away from all the doors and the windows.
He then saw Rabbit, sighing at the sight of her. “So, I’m forced to use that trick in the end?”
Rabbit took out a harmonica from her pocket and started playing it. When Zhang Heng heard the first note, warning signs flashed in his heart. He quickly covered his ears with both hands, but the melody found its way to bypass his ears, eventually reaching his brain despite his best efforts. His consciousness began to fade away slowly.
Zhang Heng knelt on one knee. Making a decisive decision, he picked up a thin piece of glass on the ground and pierced his eardrums with it. Despite that, the sweet and pleasant melody didn’t disappear with the other sounds. The last thing that Zhang Heng saw was the suited Smiths dropping like flies as the sound of the harmonica’s melody filled the room. The whole world seemed to have fallen asleep.
Rabbit finally finished the song after three minutes. She wasn’t in the best state, her lips as pale as paper as she put the harmonica away. She then stood there with her eyes closed before taking a deep breath.
Pocketing the instrument, she walked to Zhang Heng’s side.
“The guy called Seth went overboard this time. Why would he make so many copies of my game item? I’m exhausted. This time that nearly killed me. Forget it… Let’s finish this order first.”
Rabbit squatted, putting her fingers on the forehead of the now comatose Zhang Heng. “In the name of Hypnos, I order you to show me the dreams in your heart, and in return, I will bless you with an eternal dream… Huh? Wait. What the hell is this?!”
A horrified look appeared on Rabbit’s face. Hypnos was the god of sleep in Greek mythology, and he had seen all kinds of strange dreams. Whether it a tsunami or dragon, they were all common to him. When he peeked into the eye of Zhang Heng’s mind, however, he saw a grotesque, twisted nightmare he had never seen before.
Though a hasty glimpse, Hypnos couldn’t help but tremble in fear.