Chen Ge heard this female voice for the first time—it sounded almost the same age as Gao Ru Xue. The tone was laced with impatience and a very well-hidden resentment.
"I'm Gao Ru Xue's friend. I wish to ask her out for dinner tonight," Chen Ge said randomly. "Where is she?"
"She's washing her hair. I'll have her call you back later."
"Thank you." After hanging up, Chen Ge lay on his bed.
If this was a normal date, then it's understandable for Gao Ru Xue to prepare, but she was obviously in a panic, and asking me out is to resolve the issue with her roommate. Under this circumstances, with her personality, she wouldn't have wasted time with her appearance. Chen Ge had a feeling something bad had happened to Gao Ru Xue.
Five minutes later, Gao Ru Xue's call came. After picking up, the girl's familiar voice said, "I'm preparing to leave now."
The door closed, and she sounded like she was in the corridor. The amount of background noise had decreased. "Where shall we meet tonight?"
"Name a place, I'll go there now." Chen Ge relaxed slightly when he heard it was Gao Ru Xue's voice. She sounded fine.
"Why don't you come to our school? Come in from the western gate. It normally isn't guarded. We'll meet behind the old education block." Gao Ru Xue seemed to have walked into the bathroom. "Come quick, I keep finding weird stuff about that two roommates."
"During school, Liu Xianxian collapsed on the table and slept for the whole afternoon."
"She explored the underground building at night, so it's normal for her to sleep in the day." Chen Ge did not think there was any problem with that.
"If she was just sleeping, I wouldn't have been so worried." Gao Ru Xue lowered her voice, feeling very unsafe. "During the second class, my pen fell to the ground. Just as I bent down to pick it up, I accidentally saw that Liu Xianxian wasn't actually sleeping; her eyes were wide open, staring at the mirror inside her drawer."
"Yes, to be precise, she was looking at herself inside the mirror." Gao Ru Xue reconstructed the situation for Chen Ge. "Her eyes were bloodshot like she hated the person in the mirror very much, but wasn't it herself inside the mirror?"
"Your roommates sound like they are possessed. Why don't you move back home for now?"
"Okay, but I'll meet you at school first. I still have many things to inform you."
After the call was ended, Chen Ge was about to leave when his phone rang again. This time, it was from Captain Yan. "Such a coincidence? At a time like this."
Chen Ge accepted the call, and before he could say anything, he heard Captain Yan say, "Come to the police station now. I have something very important to tell you."
"Yes! It's very important!"
Captain Yan sounded very serious, so Chen Ge promised, "I'll be there in a minute, but I have something else to do tonight. I cannot stay for long."
"It won't take too much of your time."
After ending the call, Chen Ge called for a taxi to get to the police station. He called Gao Ru Xue on his way there, but this time, there was no answer.
Chen Ge reached that station at around 8 pm, and once he stepped through the door, he realized that the atmosphere was wrong. The officer on duty recognized Chen Ge and led him directly to Captain Yan's office. He pushed the door open, and other than Captain Yan, there were two other people in the room—Ol' Wei and Master Bai.
The door closed, and Captain Yan signaled for Chen Ge to take a seat. "Last night, the three of you entered the mountain to find the two kids, but when my men went into the mountains this morning, they followed your directions, but they could not find that village after searching for six hours."
"Last night, it was Master Bai who led the way. You will have to ask him about this." Coffin Village had been unlocked, and Chen Ge temporarily had no reason to return to the ghost village.
"My directions are correct." Master Bai leaned against the chair, feeling better after a good night's sleep. "I saw the pictures taken by the other officers. The route is correct; Coffin Village is just beyond that valley."
"But the problem is there is no village after crossing that valley." Captain Yan sat at the table. "What happened to the three of you last night?"
"I cannot remember clearly, but there is indeed a village," Ol' Wei said with his head lowered. He had done a good deed, but he looked so despondent.
"The children have been saved. There's no rush to find that village." Chen Ge stood to the side. He did not even sit because he wanted to leave as soon as possible.
"If it was just that, then we could have investigated slowly, but the issue is…" Captain Yan took out an evidence bag from his drawer; it had a gun inside it. "Ol' Wei's gun had a shot missing. According to ballistics, the gun was used last night, but Ol' Wei has no memory of it. Do you know what this means?"
Chen Ge shook his head. He understood it was Ol' Wei who fired the gun, but as for why he fired and what happened then, Chen Ge had no idea.
"Ol' Wei is an experienced officer; something must have been intense to make him shoot the gun! Did you guys encounter such danger last night?" Captain Yan kept his eyes on Chen Ge, waiting for him to answer.
Chen Ge glanced at Master Bai and said, "No."
Hearing him, Master Bai's tightened fists slowly relaxed.
"Then do you have any memory of Ol' Wei firing this gun?"
"I did hear the gunshot when I was at the village, but at the time, I wasn't with Ol' Wei and Master Bai."
"The gun is the most important to an officer; it cannot be touched by outsiders. Now, we can confirm the gun was shot once. Whether the shooter was Ol' Wei or not, this is serious business. If you have any clues, you have to tell us." Captain Yan looked at Ol' Wei, who had his face lowered, and sighed. "The doctor said that Ol' Wei is suffering from temporary memory loss due to trauma, but no matter what, I'll get to the bottom of this."
"Understood." Chen Ge nodded, and after some hesitation, he added, "Captain Yan, Jiujiang's Children's Home's Doctor Chen was also at the village. He had been following us. This might be related to him."
"A BOLO is out on the man. The result should be coming back soon."
As he said so, Captain Yan rummaged through the drawer, and seconds later, he took out a map with pictures pasted on it. "Actually, there's a second reason I called for you."
Chen Ge examined the map, and his pupils narrowed. There had been five eye-gauging cases around Jiujiang over the past two days, and if the crime scenes were all joined together, they aligned with New Century Park at the center!
"All the cases are surrounding my Haunted House? Is this some kind of ritual by the ghost stories society?"Be On (the) Look Out 5 Best Chinese Romance Books of 2018 So Far