968 Moving Forward
Standing at the door of the hidden room, Chen Ge focused his ears on the song. The woman's singing voice was strange, and she was singing some old folk song that had long disappeared from Jiujiang. Through the walls papered with talismans, just listening to her voice, when he closed his eyes, he could practically see green tiles and blue roofs, mantles of various colors like he had been transported to the past. Taking a deep breath, his lungs were filled with a scent that was unique to rouge.
"She has a surprisingly mellifluous voice. This Red Specter is rather unique." Chen Ge snapped out of it. "My Haunted House still doesn't have a worker who knows how to sing classical songs. If she is willing, I can help her."
The woman's voice was alluring and she was singing in a local dialect. Chen Ge could only understand some of it and thus had no idea what she was singing about.
"Which room will you choose? The hidden room is the most dangerous. Will you come here?" Chen Ge's hands tightened, and right then, he heard the door wiggle. The door of the bedroom outside of the hidden room was opened!
As the door opened, the woman with long hair who sat in the room alone screamed.
"Xu Yin!" Chen Ge pulled open the closet door, and he saw a thin woman wearing a bloody stage costume standing at the bedroom door. Her fingers were pressed on the door, and hatred pooled in her red eyes. Her body leaned against the wall, and the skin exposed through the costume was covered in wounds.
"Careful!" Chen Ge yelled at the woman in the room as he grabbed her by her arm and pulled her behind him. While he blocked her from danger, Chen Ge also blocked her view. Before she could recover from the fear, Xu Yin rushed out from the hidden room and charged at the Red Specter in the costume.
"The red high heels is hindering the altar, and Xu Yin will be chasing after you. Where are you going to go?" Chen Ge glanced behind him. After Xu Yin and the Red Specter left, he stood up. He was about to leave when someone grabbed his shirt.
"Don't… don't go. The woman in the stage costume isn't one of the workers!" The woman went through a lot before she could say that. Her hair was disheveled. The woman who had a bad opinion of Chen Ge finally had a change of mind. When she was in danger, the man stood before her, putting himself in danger for her. The business competition aside, the man was a morally upstanding man.
"How do you know she is not a worker here?"
"Don't worry, perhaps she's just a projection. After all, this place is a combination of forty hellish scenarios. Any strange projection can appear." Chen Ge pretended not to notice the change in the woman's room and ran out of the bedroom. The other visitors who heard the commotion ran over, but the Red Specter had already disappeared.
"Where have they gone?" Chen Ge was not worried about Xu Yin and red high heels; they could fend off even Top Red Specters, much less a normal one.
Now I can confirm that there is indeed a Red Specter at this house, but the Specter is in a strange state, completely different from the other Red Specters I've met.
What was the difference? Chen Ge could not tell. The only thing he could do now was find a way to control that Red Specter.
"The ghost was inside the altar!" the police officer yelled to grab everyone's attention. "The altar's door has been opened! The pair of red high heels disappeared too!"
With the police officer's aid, a beautiful misunderstanding was formed. All the visitors thought that the red high heels were the ghost in the cursed scenario. They did not think of the other possibility.
"Look! The exit!" Xiao Ling pointed behind the altar. The place was originally sealed by wooden boards. But when the Specter appeared, the boards had been moved away. The chilling wind caressed the group, and a dark path appeared behind the altar.
"The cursed house has no door. The exit should be hidden behind the altar." The young man scratched his chin and played with his stubble. "We have not solved the puzzle, but the exit appeared on its own. Could this be a trap?"
"When I visited here last time, this was where the exit was, but when I came in earlier, I gave it a try. The board behind the altar couldn't be moved. It's probably because we hadn't satisfied the conditions then."
As if afraid that the rest would not believe him, he ran to the altar. "Look, there is a pattern on each board, and they correspond to the hint on the scroll. If we arranged them according to the scrolls, we should've been able to open the hidden door. But I tried that earlier. It wouldn't work!"
"If you knew the way to leave, why didn't you share it with us?" Chen Ge stared at the police officer. He realized that these people still planned to cheat him. "Looks like you still haven't experienced the deepest despair, never mind."
When everyone realized that this was not a game but it was placing their lives on the line, they would listen to Chen Ge and help him. If Chen Ge had not come to visit and they continued to work with Red Specters, they would have faced the threat of death every day. Now, Chen Ge was there to help them solve this problem, and in return, they would have to sacrifice something.
"Come, finding the exit is a good thing. We shall move on then." Chen Ge carried his backpack and ran into the bedroom to quickly stuff the other black and white picture into his pocket. "I'm missing the windchime. Oh well, I'll come and find it next time."
What Chen Ge wanted was not the objects but the lingering spirits possessing them. He had the comic. With enough time, he could bring all the spirits with him and leave the objects behind. After getting the item, Chen Ge entered the dark path.
"The puzzle of this scenario hasn't been solved, but the exit has been revealed just like that. Is it really fine for us to enter it?" The guy with the glasses looked at the police officer. Honestly, none of them felt like trying another scenario.
"Finding the exit is a good thing. What? Are you scared?" Chen Ge walked ahead alone. As 'visitors', the rest could only follow him. When he saw that everyone had entered the new scenario, Chen Ge showed a satisfied smile. These visitors could provide him with hints. Plus, they were free labor and could help him prove some speculation. Most of all, these visitors were all witnesses, and their eyes would help wash Chen Ge off any dirty accusations.
"Even though Xu Yin and the red high heels aren't here, I still have the stench and the headless woman. I can guarantee my own safe."
Beyond the cursed house was a long corridor. Without any proper lighting, just using flashlight on the phones, they could see several wordless tombstones sitting along the corridor. This appeared to be a mass grave. There was a sign with the name 'Public Dormitory' hanging at the end of the corridor. Behind the old doors, the interior was huge.
"Is this the new scenario?" Chen Ge was the first to arrive, but he stood at the door and did not enter. After everyone entered the dormitory, Chen Ge reached into his backpack to get the comic. He silently summoned the stench and had the boy replaced the boards that led back to the cursed house. After the boy left, Chen Ge closed the entrance to the dormitory. From that moment onward, the visitors had no way of turning back.