588 Using the City as a Womb
"I can give you the child, but you have to be clear about this—if this issue is not fully resolved, this thing will happen again in the future, and it might not be me who is holding the child next time." Chen Ge put Wen Wen down. The child was still holding the shampoo bottle. She liked to stick close to her sister; without her sister, she felt so unsafe.
"There is no need for you to worry. I will look after Wen Wen." The woman looked at Wen Wen—the girl had already calmed down. She did not resist her aunt, but she did not leave with her either.
"Follow your aunt home. I will help fulfill her wish." Chen Ge pointed at the bottle. "Trust me."
After a long time, Wen Wen finally let go off the bottle and silently went to grab her aunt's hand. Seeing Wen Wen return to normal, the woman sighed in relief.
"You should go home now. Leave the rest to me." Chen Ge placed the water bottle inside his backpack as he stared at the dark surface of the lake.
Sensing the incongruity in his tone, the woman pulled Wen Wen behind her. "What do you plan to do? We didn't ask for your help, and don't you be dumb enough to start any investigation."
Based on that sentence, Chen Ge felt like Wen Wen's aunt still had something that she was hiding from him due to certain reasons.
"You are both victims. The culprits are those who turned a sad event into a tragedy. If we do not stop them, more families will encounter the same pain as you did. Despair is contagious, and we must stop them before it is too late." Chen Ge held the railing of the bridge with both of his hands. He had no idea whether he had said those things to pull some useful information from the woman to help her complete the Trial Mission or really intended to use his negligible amount of energy to help change this imperfect world.
"Then, be careful. I still need to work tomorrow. I'm not going to stay to act crazy with you." The woman nudged Wen Wen along, and after taking a few steps, she suddenly stopped and stood where she was for a few seconds. Then she turned to tell Chen Ge, "The Bury Seed needs three things—the seed, the fetus, and the womb. To transfer a child's life into another child's body, that is Bury seed. But if you transfer many lives into one singular body and use the whole city as the womb, then what kind of monster will be birthed once the seed germinates and grows?"
Chen Ge was thinking about something else, and the sudden exposition from the woman made Chen Ge think that he had misheard her. "The night that my parents left, I followed them sneakily to Li Wan City and saw something."
The woman seemed to be talking to herself, and when she was done, she led Wen Wen away. Chen Ge stood by the bridge and watched the woman and the girl disappear into the distance.
"To use the whole city as the womb?" Chen Ge gripped the railing tightly. He realized that things were far more serious than he had thought. "Innumerable children's lives and despairing living humans as seeds, the city as the womb, then the fetus can only be the ghost fetus.
Li Wan City's difficulty is 3.5 stars, and ghost fetus is four stars. Could there be a relationship between the two?
Chen Ge's mind was flooded with many questions.
Wen Wen's family might just be the first stage of the trial to confirm the effect of Bury Seed and the real test will begin at Li Wan City. Xiao Bu is most likely the 'fetus' that was handpicked by the culprit, but why did it insist on creating the ghost fetus? Could it be that it also wants to gain a new life like the well ghost in Coffin Village?
Li Wan City's door had gone out of control, and Chen Ge had no idea how powerful Xiao Bu was. However, she had to be a very special Red Specter to have been chosen by the culprit hiding at Eastern Jiujiang.
The upper limit of a three-star scenario is a Top Red Specter, but it is hard to say for a 3.5-star scenario.
Thinking back to the woman's parting sentence, Chen Ge dissected it closely, and he noticed some details that he had missed earlier.
If the culprit plans to turn the whole city into the womb and use living humans as seeds, then they must need some kind of medium to connect with everyone. The first time that I ran into the shadow was at Eastern Jiujiang Fresh Water Plant, and that place happens to be relatively close to Eastern Jiujiang Dam. The Water Plant is used to cleanse the water from the dam, and both of these locations are stops for the bus on Route 104. Could the culprit have been using the drinking water as its medium? The man from the fishing society told me that he saw many water ghosts at the dam. That shouldn't happen under normal circumstances. Could the dam be a part of the culprit's plan?
Realizing the severity of the situation, Chen Ge hailed a cab and rushed to Eastern Jiujiang Dam. The dark surface of the dam occasionally rippled. When Chen Ge arrived, it was almost 11 pm.
"Is someone there?" He knocked lightly on the manager's door. Ten seconds later, the light inside came on.
"Who is it?" With an alarmed voice, the man inside got out of bed but did not open the door.
"Brother Zhang, we met each other earlier. There was someone fishing for the King Fish, yes? It was me who returned the man's fishing rod."
"I think I remember you, why did you come back so late at night?" Probably thinking that Chen Ge sounded familiar, his alertness went down.
"I want to borrow a boat." Just as Chen Ge finished, the door opened.
The manager was wearing a large coat, and he looked shocked. "Borrow a boat?"
"Yes, I have something to confirm and need to salvage something from the water." Chen Ge's eyes were firm and his tone unshakeable.
"I can't help it if you're on your personal mission, but I can't allow you to risk your life like that. There is a King Fish in the dam, and you want to conduct a salvage around midnight. What if there's an accident?" Zhang Dabo shook his head.
"Zhang Brother, when I went to return the rod, I found a dead body buried at the fisher's home. The police will probably come to find you soon."
"They already came this morning." Zhang Dabo looked at Chen Ge with a bitter smile. "It gave me quite the shock. After all, I'd spent so long in the company of a murderer."
"Actually, I've been working with the police. You can go online and search for Western Jiujiang's Haunted House boss. I've helped the police solve many big cases. I'm borrowing your boat this time to investigate some things." Chen Ge took out his phone and opened his phone record. In his small contact list, the names with inspector, officer, and captain took up half of it.
After some more persuading, Zhang Dabo finally agreed. "I can borrow you the boat, but I don't think I'll be coming with you."
"By the way, what is it that you're trying to salvage?" Zhang Dabo was curious.
"A dead body, a little girl's body to be precise."
Zhang Dabo definitely did not anticipate that answer. He rubbed his hands and didn't know what to say.
Opening the warehouse's door, Zhang Dabo pulled out the paddles, fish spear, and rope. "Wait here for a moment."
He turned into the manager's room to take out a flashlight. "This might look old, but its light can penetrate far into the darkness. If there's any danger, wave it several times at the bank, and I… I will call the police for you."
"Thank you." Chen Ge threw everything into the boat, then activated the recorder and jumped into the boat as well.
"Several teams normally work together to salvage a body, are you sure that you can do this alone?" Zhang Dabo thought that Chen Ge was messing with him.
"Don't worry, I'm not working alone either." Finding his balance on the boat, Chen Ge opened the comic and released the vat ghost into the water.