1111 Take Good Care of Yourself 2 in 1
The rewards for completing the four-star scenario were far greater than a three-star scenario's. Even Chen Ge needed quite some time before he went through everything and managed to memorize all the information inside his mind. "The things mentioned by the black phone are too general. I will have to return to the haunted house to see what these rewards are for myself."
His finger slid across the many messages. Looking at the numeral new scenarios that had just been unlocked, Chen Ge sighed a long sigh from the bottom of his heart. "This time, my visitors sure are lucky. They only need to spend a few RMB to experience a scary atmosphere created by a Demon God. Where else are you going to find a steal like that?"
The haunted house had been upgraded to become a Theme Park of Despair. Its general sense of horror would continue to increase, and the authenticity level would increase as well. Sometimes, Chen Ge would even have a feeling that he was back behind the door when he was walking through his own haunted house. "When the haunted house reaches its final upgrade, perhaps the line between the world outside the door and the world inside the door might be blurred. It will become a kind of a pitstop between the living and the dead."
When he put the black phone away, Chen Ge had regained some strength. He surveyed his surroundings. The red high heels had returned to her original form. The woman who was covered in bandages was staring closely at the giant spider that was dangling upside down on the ceiling of the tunnel. The Tunnel Lady's son was covered in cobwebs and blood vessels. It appeared that the door inside his body could not be opened recklessly; it would cause serious harm to the boy's body. Of all the Red Specters that had followed Chen Ge into the world of black fog, it was the Spider Boy who was most injured because of this.
"One has to be pay that greatly to leave the world of the black fog, huh?" Chen Ge tried to communicate with the Spider Boy, but the boy was not in the mood to respond to Chen Ge. He was too busy focusing on the effort to remove the curse and the black fog that lingered inside his body.
"Even though the ghost fetus has been eliminated, I have also gained some very bad news from the faceless doctor. The cursed hospital that is much scarier than the ghost fetus can now freely enter and leave Jiujiang. In your current state, if they come to find you, I am afraid you will not be able to survive the encounter. How about…" Chen Ge was silent for a while for his proposed suggestion to sink in. "How about you follow me for now? You can return to this place when your wounds are healed."
The Tunnel Lady's son was dangling from the roof of the tunnel. For some reason, he was struck by a sense of déjà vu. He felt like he had already heard the words that Chen Ge was saying some time ago.
"Most of the dreams that you have accumulated inside the tunnel have been destroyed. It is very dangerous for you to stay here, especially in your current weakened state." Chen Ge glanced at the giant spider above his head. "You have helped me kill the ghost fetus, and it was me who was responsible for the wounds currently on your body. I hope you will give me a chance to recompensate for what you have sacrificed for me. My haunted house has a Red Specter who specializes in curing curses. She will aid you in your treatment. When your body is full recovered, you can come back to this tunnel any time you want. When you are a guest at my haunted house, you will be treated like an esteemed guest. As a matter of fact, you might even experience some good memories there."
Chen Ge's words were very sincere, and there was nothing that was too out of place in his request. It was a simple story of a man repaying someone who had lent him a hand. As if to help Chen Ge in his persuasion, the red high heels reached out to place her hand on one of the spider's appendages. In just ten seconds, a spray of black mist evaporated from the spider's body, and the Spider Boy appeared much better. After giving it a long thought, the Tunnel Lady's son decided to give Chen Ge this opportunity to repay him. After all, it would take far too long for him to cure himself of the curses on his own.
"The child trusts me so implicitly. I must not fail his trust." Chen Ge looked at the giant spider that had crawled back onto his back. "With a door inside his body, this talent is exceptionally unique and overpowered. Without him, I might have been trapped in the world of the black fog forever and would have no means to leave at all."
Chen Ge wanted to keep the Tunnel Lady's Son at his haunted house. Compared to the cold and eerie White Dragon Tunnel, Chen Ge felt that his haunted house was a far better lair for the boy. At least he would be able to get endless negative emotions and screams without actually harming anyone there.
Carrying his backpack, Chen Ge led the white cat and walked out from White Dragon Tunnel.
"Of those who know about the Spider Boy's talent, other than my own employees, the rest either already have their souls destroyed or are forever left behind in the world of the black fog. In other words, this is a trump card that my enemy still do not know I have. When I have to deal with the cursed hospital in the future, the Spider Boy might yet have the chance to shine."
The sunlight showered down on his body. The warmth of the sun finally made the man give out a sigh of relief. His heart that was strung taut finally had the chance to relax.
"Did you find something to eat behind the door? How come it feels like you have gotten fatter again?"
Chen Ge returned to New Century Park at around 8:50 am. By then, a lot of visitors had already queued up outside the theme park's entrance. Most of them were there for Chen Ge's haunted house. Seeing the crowd getting larger and larger but Chen Ge who had the key to the haunted house still not appearing, Uncle Xu, Xu Wan, and the rest were desperate enough to want to call the cops. "I am so sorry. I left in such a hurry last night that my phone ran out of battery."
As Chen Ge apologized, he quickly unlocked the haunted house's gate. When he left the previous night, he had taken all of the useable Specters with him. All that remained at the haunted house were some lingering spirits.
"As long as you are safe, everything is fine." Compared to the business, everyone, including Uncle Xu, was more worried about Chen Ge. Over the past few days, they had all noticed how tired and lethargic Chen Ge was looking. After entering the haunted house, Chen Ge first had Xu Wan lead the team to the dressing room while he summoned out Yan Danian and Ol' Zhou and had them take the comic and reassign all the employees to their posts.
Chen Ge was so busy that he did not even have the chance to stay for a chat. He hurried to help with other people's makeup. With some rushing here and pulling there, they finally managed to open for business right on time. Currently, the haunted house had many playable scenarios. It could allow more than one hundred visitors to enter it at the same time. As the operating hours lengthened, the number of visitors who had successfully cleared the three-star scenario had increased, and so everyone had their eyes now on the four-star scenarios.
Both online and offline, on all sorts of forums, there were predictions on who would be the first person to clear Chen Ge's haunted house's four-star scenario. The haunted house app that Director Luo had made specifically for Chen Ge's haunted house also became quite a popular download. Naturally, most of the haunted house aficionados would download it, but other than them, the greater number of download came from various 'cloud' users.
This batch of users did not dare come to challenge the haunted house on their own, but they enjoy watching other visitors go into the Haunted house in their stead. The app had a forum where the visitors were allowed to share their visitation experience, and these strange and scary stories had become a kind of source of joy and interest for this batch of 'cloud' visitors. Other than the sharing of the visitors, Chen Ge's haunted house was now also popular enough to attract the attention of many online celebrities. Chen Ge naturally welcomed these people, and he even allowed some of them to record a video during their visitation provided that the request was not too over the line.
The internet celebrities came to the haunted house for clicks, and the haunted house relied on these people of influence to spread its fame. They would both benefit from this relationship. Of course, the most important reason was because Chen Ge was not afraid that his secret would be exposed. The speed by which he unlocked the new scenarios was far beyond his visitors' speed to explore them. This was something that was unprecedented in the haunted house industry.
Furthermore, even if the visitors had gone through all the guides and videos and came over to visit, expecting to clear the scenario, when they were inside the haunted house in person, they would realize that everything was different from what they had imagined. The atmosphere, sense of horror, and real ghosts were not things that could be captured through the lens of a camera. For an example, if the horror feeling felt through the video was at a ten, the feeling one would have when experiencing the horrors inside the video in person would be at a hundred or even more. This was why some of the visitors felt so scammed by the guides that they saw.
The popularity of Director Luo's app that aided the haunted house made the futuristic theme park copy him and come up with the same strategy. They spent a lot of money on the marketing for the app, but the effect was not as good as they expected. There were many reasons behind this, but one of the reason was that the futuristic theme park would never show their haunted house's ranking to the public because they did not wish for the public to know that their haunted house had been grabbed and ground on the floor by a certain someone, not once but twice.
"Now that the issue with the ghost fetus has been handled, I can finally give myself a good rest." Chen Ge handed the responsibility to look after the visitors over to Ol' Zhou and Duan Yue while he squirreled into the staff breakroom. Closing the curtain, Chen Ge took out the comic that Yan Danian had just returned to him. He released Xiao Sun and the other remaining tenants from behind the door. Surveying the new and strange environment, Xiao Sun was much more honest this time. He rubbed his eyes, and the young man seemed to sense that something was wrong.
"Xiao Sun, I have something that I need to tell you." Chen Ge sat at the side of the bed as he rubbed the white cat on its head. "Actually, you are already dead."
When Chen Ge said that, not only Xiao Sun, even the rest of the original tenants behind the door had very strange expressions.
"I need you to really think about it." Chen Ge took out several pieces of white paper and pens and placed them on the table. Then, he summoned out Zhang Yi from the comic to help these tenants recover their original memory. The memory of being murdered was naturally the most painful memory. The tenants' faces paled instantly, and they refused to accept that they were already dead. Of course, that would be a hard pill for anyone to swallow.
"Life that has been lost cannot be recovered, but the only thing that I can do is help you find your murderers and offer them to the police." Chen Ge pointed at the stack of paper on the table. "Write down the name of your murderers and the exact details of your murders. I know how cruel that must be, but this is the only way I can bring you justice."
After Chen Ge said that, some of the 'people' started to move to the table and write. In the end, only Xiao Sun stood where he was.
"What is the problem? Do you not feel well?"
"It is not that." Xiao Sun shook his head. He hesitated for a long time before he spoke. "I actually ran away from home. I remember now it was because my family did not support my career in music…"
"You wish to go back to see them."
"Okay, I will take you home this afternoon. Why don't you write down your original address on the paper as well?" Chen Ge turned to the other tenants. "I will also help the rest of you fulfill any regrets or final wishes that you have. Please do write them all down."
Overwhelmed by drowsiness, Chen Ge placed the white cat and Xiaoxiao next to the bed and then slumped down to sleep. His body had reached its limit long ago. He slept until noon. Chen Ge sat up and went to collect the paper on the table. He then asked the tenants some questions one by one before he sent them all back into the comic.
"This is truly a tragedy. Some people have achieved unimaginable success due to their unflinching obsession, but others became ghosts with human skin due to the same reason." After he read all the information left behind by the original tenants, he took out the black phone because it had a few more unread messages on it.
"Congratulations, Red Specters' Favored, for gaining a new employee—Sun Xiaojun (Cursed Seed): A walking attraction for bad luck. He is a very special Specter. The ghost fetus once considered using him as one of the candidates, but due to various accidents, the ghost fetus ultimately chose to forgo him. In a way, that was the luckiest thing that ever happened to him.
"Congratulations, Red Specters' Favored, for gaining a new employee—Huang Mei (Baleful Specter): A soul that was dragged into the door by the ghost fetus. Due to her resemblance to Wen Qing, the ghost fetus never harmed her.
"Congratulations, Red Specters' Favored, for gaining a new employee…"
Chen Ge gained seven new workers. However, these employees did not have much loyalty toward him or the haunted house, and they had not been given professional training, so Chen Ge did not plan on letting them 'interact' with the visitors for the time being. "After I help the other tenants with their last wishes, I probably will have more employees who are willing to join me."
After taking a whole morning of rest, Chen Ge still felt incredibly tired. He went to the toilet to wash his face, and then he collected all the evidence and documents that he had so far and shoved them into his backpack.
"I need to go to the police station to file these cases and hand the information over to the police. Then I shall bring the new employees to have a reunion with their family." Chen Ge had already planned the rest of his day.
"Finally, things can go back to normal for a day." Just as he said that, the phone that was charging suddenly rang. When he saw the caller ID, Chen Ge's expression twisted with disbelief. "Lee Zheng? I haven't gone to find him, yet he is already calling me on his own?"
Taking the call, Lee Zheng's voice came from the other side of the line. "Chen Ge, where are you now? And how come your phone was switched off all of last night?"
"I was at… how about we talk about this in person?"
"I am afraid you will have to come and see me in person whether you like it or not." Lee Zheng's tone was extremely severe. "The blind man who stayed with you at the mental hospital before this, he died last night. It was a horrible death. I need you to come to the People's Hospital of Jiujiang as soon as possible!"
"Chang Gu is dead?" Chen Ge was so distracted by the ghost fetus that he had almost forgotten about Chang Gu. Now that he was given this sudden news, his brain was struck numb. He was still expecting Chang Gu to help him finish a movie.
"Okay, I will be there in a minute!"
After explaining the situation to Uncle Xu, Chen Ge carried his backpack, hailed a cab, and hurried to the People's Hospital. One of the sickrooms on the second floor at the hospital had been cordoned off. Chen Ge was only given entry after he dropped Lee Zheng's name.
Pushing open the door, Chen Ge was hit by an extremely cold presence. He narrowed his eyes, and he realized that Chang Gu was just standing behind the curtain. The man was expressionless. One of Chang Gu's eyes had been dug out, and his other eye was completely white. At that moment, Lee Zheng and two police officers as well as two medical workers were inside the room. When they saw Chen Ge walk in, they directly surrounded Chen Ge.
"Brother Zheng, what time did Chang Gu die last night? Do you suspect that this is a homicide?" Chen Ge's eyes glanced toward the curtain. Chang Gu did not seem to notice that Chen Ge was looking at him.
"The patient woke up at around midnight last night. His eyes started to bleed, and he kept screaming a person's name. Then he went completely silent. We tried our best to rescue him, but ultimately, we were unable to keep him around." The doctor sighed. "Honestly, this is the first time I have encountered a patient like this. His body temperature was far lower than a normal person's should be, but his physique and vitals were far stronger than a normal person's. He was unable to resuscitate from the coma. Until last night, his internal organs started to atrophy, and even now, we still cannot find the reason behind it."
"The doctor is not wrong. The patient's body has been sent for autopsy. The official statement given by the coroner is that the patient died from organ failure, which then led to his death." Lee Zheng turned to Chen Ge. The gaze that struck him caused Chen Ge's heart to quiver.
"That was a strange cause of death, but that does not have anything to do with me, right?" When Chen Ge spoke, he kept his eyes on the curtain.
"The name that the patient kept screaming before he died was your name, Chen Ge." Lee Zheng carried over a chair. "I also do not understand why, but it feels like everything is somehow related to you. Can you explain to me again what your relationship is with this patient?"
"I guess you can say that he approached me for a favor. His younger sister is missing, and he wanted me to help look into that." Chen Ge stared at the curtain. His brain was not focusing on how to deal with Lee Zheng but on the reason behind Chang Gu's cause of death.
Body temperature lower than normal but physique stronger than normal, these 'symptoms' were similar to his. Chen Ge was worried that he would one day end up in the same state as Chang Gu.