563 A Ghost with Shadow
A faded light cut through the night, but neither Chen Ge nor the man turned to look at it.
"They have placed their hope on you?" Chen Ge could understand to a certain degree why the man turned into a Red Specter. His own resentment was not that strong, but he had interacted with many patients when he was alive, and the key part was that those dead patients had treated him as the sole person that they could talk to.
All their negative emotions, all their sad past, all their regrets that could no longer be fulfilled, the patients poured all these things into the operator, and he kept them locked up in his heart. A qualified operator would know how to adjust the emotions in his heart. They would be able to keep their distance from the patients and would know how to siphon out the negative emotions that they got from their work. They would engage the callers when they were on the phone, but once the call ended, they would toss the case out of their mind.
However, the man on the other side of the track was different. He had been deeply influenced by his callers. Like Chen Ge, he had placed himself in their shoes and tried his best to empathize with them, to connect with them. When he was standing at the edge of the abyss to help his patients, he had slowly been pulled into it with them.
There was a limit to a person's ability to accept pressure. Even for professional counselors, they would have some inner problems after working at their post for too long. The man had failed to adjust his conditions after every case and then a new case would arrive. He had reached out to grab those victims, but he did not realize that his own body was slowly being pulled down into the abyss with them.
The man's teacher had noted the problem, so he had told the man to go for a rest, but in the end, the result proved that he had failed to follow his teacher's instructions. He had become one of his patients; a suicide prevention operator chose to commit suicide.
"Why would you do that? Death will not solve any problem." Chen Ge tried to console the man, but considering the man's job, he had a surreal feeling.
"I've considered everything that you've said before. After all, I'm the expert in this field." The man's body was covered with blood. He was different from other Red Specters. He turned to look at the light from the distance; he seemed to like brightness and light.
"There are several major reasons someone commits suicide. One is because the person's understanding of their environment and world has become twisted. They use a gray view to look at the world and believe life is a painful ordeal. My death is not this kind.
"Next is when someone feels overwhelmed by guilt due to a certain incident, and they cannot see themselves out of it. Obviously, my death is not this kind either.
"The third is for the sake of revenge. They want to use their death to make other people feel regret. This doesn't match my situation either.
"There are more than ten reasons to the cause of suicide if we're being really detailed. However, I don't belong to any one of them. In a way, I'm a unique suicide victim.
"Actually, I tried to convince myself. I reminded myself that I've saved so many people, but when I was trying to save myself, I realized how weak language really is.
"The author, the worker at the park, the cancer patient, each of them represent a different personality, a different attitude toward life. I felt sorry for their loss, and I hated myself for how powerless I was. I really wished they had another chance to live!
"I tried my best to explain, to persuade myself, but after hearing what they had to say, I understood that they had their own reason to leave. Sometimes, I envy the doctors because they only need to prescribe medicine to save their patients. But it's different for us. Even though I know death is a type of release, a type of medicine, I can never prescribe them that.
"When the people on the internet attacked me, I explained my thoughts. It was a public execution, just without the blood." The man's eyes were calm. "Many people said that I am sick, that I've lost my mind. I'm an executioner, and I've killed so many people, but in reality, I was just trying to help them."
The light came closer and closer. The man stood next to the track and had no intention of evading.
"Those who have not witnessed death will never understand their pain. So, who gave them the right to point their fingers at us? Who allowed them to have the moral high ground?"
As the light got closer, the man spoke faster. Blood leaked out from his forehead to dye his uneven face red. "When I stood up from the pool of blood, I understood. Those lives that were unlivable, lives that were nothing but despair, channeled into my body. I finally understood them, understood why they would make this ridiculous choice."
The man's eyes were red. The calmness left his face, and his voice became more and more crazed.
"I tried everything to cure them. Perhaps I could find a way to make them feel love and make them give love and even accept love, but I could not change the love, or the lack thereof, in their surroundings. This is why many people continue to repeat the action after they are stopped for the first time. This is because their living environment has not changed. The bullied become easy targets, and the taboo makes them even more isolated. The group of people who really could save them did not include me, a meager hotline operator—it was the people around them.
"After you get to know most of them, you'll realize, the real evil is the people around them. They used their power to decolorize the world of these people—they are the real murderers!
"Even when they died, those who killed them would never show a trace of sadness, but those who loved them would feel more pain.
"Is that fair?"
The man looked at the approaching train, and he slowly raised both of his arms.
"I understood these things after my death. Actually, many victims have regrets, but they have no chance to redo their lives. They could only channel their last wishes into me, to ask me to seek justice for them."
"Justice? What do you plan to do?" At that moment, Chen Ge felt intense murderous intent from the man. After experiencing so many things, the man was completely corrupted.
"To punish those who would only demand love but would never give love. I need to clean up the trash so that kind people will not suffer pain anymore."
The way the man said that made it sound like he was going after not one but many people. Compared to other Red Specters, this man's cruelty and madness was hidden deep inside his heart.
"Calm down first. I feel like there is a better way." Chen Ge took a step back and called Zhang Ya's name in his heart.
"This is not my decision alone—it's everyone's wish." The blood boiled, and the train lit up the stretch of the tracks. When the light shone, Chen Ge could see the many black shadows that crowded up the space behind the man.