229 The Flyer for Ghost Stories Society
"No matter where I was, when the sun rose up and I woke up from my dream, I would tell myself it's a new day. Yet, whenever I opened my eyes, the monster within me awakened. It would tear open my wounds relentlessly, and that bone-piercing pain reminded me.
"I'm my children's killer, the source of all tragedy.
"I sought help from doctors, and they told me the monster was a manifestation of my conscience and guilt; it was me torturing myself.
"They suggested that I put my focus elsewhere, find a place where my heart could rest.
"I'm afraid of interacting with people, so I relied on medication and books as well as religion to seek escape.
"I have a small wish in my heart. Perhaps God will be able to forgive my sin to give me my salvation.
"In everyone's eyes, I'm my children's killer, but my God wouldn't. I will give my everything to God.
"Three years ago, the pain finally stopped—perhaps the medicine was working. In fact, I could feel myself improving. I was more at peace with myself.
"The fall of the fourth year, the police came to me with a stranger. They said that this was one of the culprits who harmed my wife. The man came to me because he wanted to seek forgiveness. But why should I forgive him?
"My wife lost three of her children, and she was taken away from me forever not long after. I will never forgive him, never!
"The stranger opened his heart to me, but I didn't feel a shred of pity for the man. If anything, I felt like he had not suffered enough punishment. Those kinds of people do not deserve forgiveness.
"After he was done, he seemed to feel better. Looking at how relieved he was, I was angry. I charged at him, and during our tussle, the locket on his neck snapped, and the necklace that had the carving of God fell to the ground.
"As if afraid that his most precious treasure would be stepped on, he used his body to shield the locket, to beg the God for forgiveness.
"I saw myself in the man; he was very similar, including the God in the locket. I had the very same locket—we believed in the same God!
"Why would my God forgive the murderer who harmed my wife?
"After the stranger left, I smashed the locket around my neck and burned everything religious I had in my house.
"The monster that had been silent for the past four years awakened once more. I thought I was healed, but I was merely lying to myself. However, this was perfect. I no longer needed to suppress the monster that was now a part of me.
"I found a knife inside the kitchen and chased after the stranger.
"God might have forgiven him, but I had not."
The blood letters filled the wall. There were plenty more, but they became more and more incomprehensible, although they all had a feeling of confession to them.
The more he looked at them, the more afraid Guo Miao became. "Could this be Boss Chen's past? The patient in this room was once Boss Chen? This mask is one he has used before?"
His mind went to impossible places to scare himself. "Could this be actual human skin?"
With a grit of his teeth, he held his breath and reached out to touch that face. When his fingertip was about to touch the face, there was a sudden scream coming from the corridor!
"Who is that‽ I saw it! A face! There was a face inside Room 3!" The shrill female scream made Guo Miao's legs turn to mush, and he collapsed to the floor. His heart was racing, and Guo Miao had his hand over his heart. He turned to yell outside the room when something caught his attention. He was kneeling before the human face, and from his vantage point, a yellowed piece of paper was poking out between the wall and the human face.
"What is this?" With shaking hands, he reached into the human face to pull the piece of paper out. Careful not to ruin the human face, Guo Miao finally pulled out the piece of paper that was about the size of his palm.
"Ghost stories society?" The paper looked like a flyer. The back was a picture of a half-opened red door, and on the top half was written 'Ghost Stories Society'. The lower half of the flyer introduced the way to get into this society.
"Look for a building with twenty-four floors and take the elevator at midnight?"
Holding the paper in his grasp, Guo Miao's heart kept skipping. He could no longer tell what was real and what was fake. At the same time he found the flyer, Chen Ge exited the secret tunnel into Room 3, and the black phone in his pocket vibrated.
A message at a time like this?
Chen Ge retreated into the secret tunnel and closed the steel door. He checked his message.
"You've triggered the only hidden mission inside Third Sick Hall—Ghost Stories Society!
"This will your first opponent before you master nightmares! Find them!
"Mission Hint one: The ghost story society congregates in one of the rooms on the 24th floor.
"Mission Hint two: A building with 23 floors, but it has 24 numbers. Why?
"Mission Hint three: Only by taking the elevator at midnight will you be able to enter the 24th floor."
When he was waiting for his elevator at Fang Hwa Apartments, he had accidentally discovered that the building only had 23 floors, but the elevator had 24 numbers!
The Ghost Stories Society is inside that building?
Inside Room 10, Guo Miao put his phone close to the flyer. "Only by taking the elevator at midnight will you be able to find the ghost stories society. After entering the elevator, press to go to the 23rd floor. When you've reached the 23rd floor, press to go down to the second floor. When you reach the second floor, go up to the 22nd floor. Repeat this many times before pressing the button for the 24th floor."
Just looking at the flyer, Guo Miao was scared. He folded the flyer back up and shoved it back under the human face.
"This has to be some kind of prank, right? Taking the elevator alone at midnight, going up and down endlessly. The elevator opens to the corridor. What if those spooky things join you in the elevator?
"This place is too weird, we cannot stay here any longer. Ol' Song, help me up, we're leaving!"
Chen Ge pocketed his black phone and swung the hammer before him.
The visitors have triggered the hidden mission. How did they manage to do that?
Before the Third Sick Hall was opened to the public, Chen Ge had inspected every single corner of the scenario. He had examined Room 10 as well. However, the flyer was hidden masterfully. Only be looking at the mask from the floor would one be able to spot it. This meant that one had to be afraid of the mask until one fell on the floor to discover it. It was a pure coincidence that Guo Miao had found it.
In comparison, when Chen Ge saw the face, he had gone over to squeeze the nose and cheeks to try it out. He was not afraid at all; if anything, he was happy because he suspected that this was Patient 10's face, which meant that he was closer to solving the puzzle.
The hidden mission was discovered the visitors—I need to thank them nicely.
Listening to the footsteps coming from outside the tunnel, he touched the skin mask on his face and lay in wait for the perfect moment.