YBCB: V1C8

Translated by: TaffyGirl13

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Chapter Eight

Yu Yin shivered. He really felt like something disastrous was about to happen this time. “Yu, let’s hurry back.” As he spoke, he grabbed Yu’s hand and pulled him along to quickly descend back down the mountain path.

The weeds swayed with the wind, practically concealing the way they had just walked up.

His pace gradually quickened, and eventually sped up to nearly a run as he no longer cared whether the other person behind him could keep up. However, because the weeds along the path were so hard to tread through, the two of them often staggered and stumbled along the way. Since they were in a rush to leave the mountain area, Yu Yin shoved away any obstructing weeds with his bare hands, completely ignoring the cuts and the resulting pain from doing so.

He knew what kind of situation they were in.

He had encountered similar events many times in the past, where a great breeze would begin to blow and the rising goosebumps would warn him that something was amiss. A ghost would always appear in this cliché type of scene!

Yu tightly held onto the hand pulling him along. Although he did not quite understand why they were suddenly running as if being chased, he still tried his best to keep up as they raced forward and pushed away the wild grasses.

A few minutes later, Yu Yin abruptly froze in his tracks.

Yu also stopped behind him, panting faintly.

All of Yu Yin’s hairs rose on end.

He stared at the mountain path before them.

The weeds they had stopped to remove earlier were right next to them. The crushed weeds had been pushed aside to reveal a large hole that appeared to mock them.

The wind whooshed past, echoing loudly as if blowing through an empty house.

“You can’t see those things, right?” He turned to look at the clueless Yu. The latter wore an inquisitive expression, but could roughly guess what Yu Yin was asking about, and nodded in response. “If you don’t feel comfortable, just close your eyes. Don’t look at anything, don’t listen to anything.”

The violet eyes peered back at him. After a moment, the boy nodded.

“Good boy.” Yu Yin took out his wallet from his pocket and rummaged through it to fish out a safety amulet that his father had helped procure for him from somewhere in the past. Hanging it around Yu’s neck, Yu Yin said, “If something happened to you, Dad and Uncle would murder me. So just be good and don’t act blindly without thinking.” If these things are simply playing around, they should be able to leave quickly.

That was a conjecture based on his usual experiences. However, he had never encountered anything particularly malicious.

Yu had originally wanted to remove the safety amulet, but seeing how serious Yu Yin’s words were, he no longer dared to do anything rash. He stretched his right hand out to grasp onto Yu Yin’s clothes without letting go.

The wind suddenly died out.

The grasses around them also stopped moving. Despite this, the air seemed to turn colder. For a sliver of a moment, there was absolutely no noise aside from their own breathing.

Yu Yin pulled Yu close to his body while attentively scanning their surroundings.

Suddenly, the grass on their right moved.

A rustling was headed their way.

What is it?

He dragged Yu back as they retreated step by step.

Suddenly, something green appeared in the grass. Before Yu Yin could react, it flew out from the weeds and launched an attack at his knee.

A snake.

The long, green snake opened its jaws, its hissing shattering the silence as its snowy-white fangs bit down towards his knee.

Yu moved even faster. He let go of Yu Yin’s clothes and reached out to grab the snake when it was about seven inches away, then yanked upwards. The entire green snake was removed [from the grass], revealing its true length of nearly half their height.

“Yu! Be careful!” Yu Yin gasped in shock and hurriedly tried to help contain the venomous snake. However, his foot abruptly stepped on air as the dirt around him caved in. “Ah!”

A single hand grabbed onto his foot.

Then tugged it down with tremendous force.

He completely lost track of his surroundings.

This realisation was all that flashed through his mind as he fell. Then, he looked up to spot Yu’s expression of absolute horror. Since Yu had always sported a wooden face these past few days, Yu Yin had never imagined that the boy could show such an expression.

There was a figure behind Yu.

A very familiar one.

“Ah Guan…?”

Then, his fall landed. He hit something hard and fell unconscious.

Instantly, he sank into endless darkness.

“Miss Lin…hand over…the injection…”

A jumble of noise.

As if there were many people speaking at once.

“…Gauze to staunch the bleeding…”

His head was in immense pain. It felt like it was about to burst open.

As the voices speaking all blurred together, he felt something gently grasp onto his food. An ice-cold chill instantly flooded his entire body, causing him to shiver.

He was not sure if he opened his eyes or not, but for an instant, he was met with a malicious gaze.

“Do not get in my way!”

A girl’s shrill scream.

An anguished howl, the sound of obscene laughter from a group of males.

She was begging for them to let her go. They simply sneered and grabbed her by hands, her feet being dragged towards the darkness. To prevent her from screaming, they stuffed a cloth into her mouth and taped it up so that even the sounds of her crying were blocked.

The scene was too real, as if it were panning out right before his eyes.

Someone had seen it yet did not make any move to stop it.

The girl cried as the boys laughed.

The noises all mingled together and filled his mind.

Suddenly, it ceased.

The meowing of the leopard cat began to echo. The faint, mournful howls approached from a distance, until it was whining right next to his ear.

The girl breathed her last.

“Stop!”

When he finally managed to shout out, the scene vanished entirely. A piercing white light abruptly flooded his vision, reflecting several faces. Because of his sudden shout, everyone had paused what they were doing.

One of those faces was familiar.

“Welcome back to earth, student that was ganged up on.” Yan Si, who claimed to be a forensic investigator yet often overstepped his boundaries to earn his food, was still holding a bloody piece of gauze as he lightly waved in greeting.

“This is…” Yu Yin let out a muffled groan and immediately lay back down.

He could smell the reek of concentrated disinfectant. The ones standing around him were nurses. The ceiling and walls were all snow-white.

A hospital?

“This is a temporary ward. You fell into a pit on the mountain. Luckily, Officer Yu received the notification and immediately contacted the nearby fire brigade to rescue you. Otherwise, you would have been in eternal sleep in that ditch, and we would have just filled in the hole with you in there.” Yan Si handed the objects in his hand over to a nurse and began to help wrap his bandages. “Hmph, not even counting the lacerations all over, countless cuts, thrombosis – if you don’t mind stripping, I could get a full count – a total of thirty-one stiches. Student that was ganged up on, I think you might have walked down the path of a blood-filled calamity recently. Have you considered having your fortune looked at and see if you can improve it a bit?”

Yu Yin rolled his eyes.

He shifted his line of sight slightly and belatedly discovered that simply moving his head was painful. His skull was also wrapped in bandages; he had probably bumped into something.

“Student that was ganged up on, it’s best you don’t move around and just quietly recuperate. After all, smashing one’s head into another is a very painful matter. Plus, there’s also a risk of cerebral concussion.” Yan Si pressed down on Yu Yin’s shoulders to stop him from sitting up, then gestured at a nearby nurse to change places.

“Smashing one’s head…into another?”

Did my head bump into another rock? A strange smile appeared on Yan Si’s face. “A human skull smashing into another human skull.”

“What do you mean?” Yu Yin furrowed his brows.

“Apparently, when the fire brigade found you, you had fallen down into a pit on the mountain that was at least a story deep. And when our brave fire brigand members went down to the bottom to rescue you, they discovered that there was another person lying next to you as well.”

“Yu?” The instant this thought appeared in Yu Yin’s mind, he struggled to sit up again. “No way! Yu fell down too?”

“That’s not it, don’t panic.” Yan Si easily pushed Yu Yin back down. “The fire brigade officers discovered a corpse in the pit, with a hole broken through the skull…Do you feel something sticky on your head? When you go home, make sure to give your regards to the dead and then go wash your head, or else you’ll soon become an object spurned by the rest of the world.”

Yu Yin ignored the irrelevant blabber and automatically drew his own proper conclusion.

There was a corpse in the pit?

“Was it Lin Xiu Jing?” He immediately questioned.

It can’t be that coincidental!

Contrary to his expectations, Yan Si shook his head. “No, it was a male. Based on the preliminary examination of the corpse, they have been dead for at least four days already. The cause of death was the impact from the fall and excessive bleeding. Because it was in a remote location, they were never sent to the hospital.” He paused for a moment before continuing, “So they didn’t die from you falling onto them, don’t worry.”

Yu Yin rolled his eyes again.

A few minutes later, the nurse finished bandaging and began to organise other things. At that moment, the door was lightly pushed open.

He glanced over and saw that it was Yu standing outside, and therefore waved him over.

Yu immediately walked inside to stand next to his bed, the violet eyes showing a hint of redness.

“Student that was ganged up on, consider your own condition and don’t talk too much.” Yan Si patted Yu on the shoulder before then telling Yu Yin, “Also, if you have the strength to crawl up, remember to wash your head first.”

“…Screw you.”

This was Yu Yin’s response.

Yan Si shrugged and hummed as he left.

The nurses quickly dispersed to handle other matters. The last nurse adjusted his IV drip, helped him tuck his blankets in, then informed Yu of a few things to look out for before also taking leave.

There was nobody else in the room. Yu glanced around, then dragged a chair over to sit next to the bed.

“Was it you who called Uncle?” Yu Yin furrowed his brows as he decided to ask about this first.

Yu shook his head and pulled out his notebook to show Yu Yin the words on the page. “Don’t know, it wasn’t me.”

It wasn’t?

Yu Yin could not imagine who could have immediately called the dispatched Yu Xia in that kind of place…After all, there should not have been anyone that knew they had gone to the small mountain.

In such a situation, who could have made the call?

There was a dull pain in his head. He seemed to be forgetting something. All his memories ended at the moment he had seen the snake. He had no recollection of everything else afterwards, including the fall.

“Were you injured in the end?” He scanned Yu over. Fortunately, although Yu was a bit dirty and had various cuts from the weeds, he was not injured anywhere.

Yu shook his head, then reached up to rub his eyes and yawn.

Noticing Yu’s actions, Yu Yin searched around for a clock, finding one on the wall next to him. The digital display showed that it was 11:45.

He had been unconscious for so long?

They suddenly heard an extremely loud ruckus outside.

A second later, the door of the ward was forcefully kicked open, the bang making Yu jump in shock and wake him completely.

“You little bastard! Didn’t I tell you not to get involved!” Yu Xia burst in loudly, his chest raised in anger as he charged straight to the bedside and, ignoring the fact that the person lying on the bed was a wounded patient, gave a hard flick to Yu Yin’s forehead.

“Uncle, that really hurts!” Yu Yin clutched his struck forehead, his energy rising as well. “Someone just said there’s a risk of cerebral concussion, yet you’re still hitting me!”

“Haven’t you heard that two negatives cancel out? Taking a hit will prevent the concussion!” Yu Xia’s expression was extremely foul as he plopped down on the bed, causing it to sink down, clearing indicating his anger. “Your dad was frightened to death when he heard you were sent to the hospital. I locked him at home.”

“Why are you locking Dad up for no reason?” Yu Yin eyed the younger and crueller of the twins.

“So that he doesn’t also become a hindrance,” Yu Xia bluntly answered. Upon receiving the phone call, that person had frantically tried to grab clothes, then make food, then look for some materials, and continued running everywhere in circles. In the end, this person who was supposedly the calmest person at the police station was stumbling all over the place like a fly crashing into the walls hundreds of times. Unable to continue watching, Yu Xia had decided to forgo knocking his brother out, settling on nicely locking him up instead. “It’s not like you’re dead yet. If he wants to follow you, it doesn’t have to be now. If you Dad came, he would definitely makeover this place, then drag me to help him. Such a pain!” Yu Xia snorted as he thought of his mysophobic brother.

Yu Yin felt that it was best if he did not speak, or else he might end up getting hit for every sentence voiced…He knew his uncle’s personality extremely well, and his uncle would definitely do such a thing. Yu Xia was the someone who would not show mercy to a dying criminal, an evil demon that would even go as far as throttling the other party to extort a confession. He was the type of person who had forgotten kindness behind when he was birthed into the world.

Yu Yin shot a sideways glance at Yu, who had already scrambled far away to sit next to the window and flip through a book that had magically appeared out of nowhere. Yu had no intentions of joining in on the loving family conversation.

“Anyways, what did you run into the mountain area for?” After disciplining the boy, Yu Xia crossed his arms and went straight to the main point.

Yu Yin figured he could not hide the truth, so he recollected everything about Lin Yu Da’s matter, including his own conjecture. “I keep feeling like this all points back to that arcade centre, you know what I mean? Plus, that cat and girl have been bothering me this whole time. So I just wanted to see if I could do a bit of something.”

Yu Xia’s brows knit together in contemplation for a moment before he said, “Regarding Lin Yu Da, the commissioner has already been sent to talk with him per the higher-ups’ official orders this afternoon because of the blood traces detected in the taxi. The details of the situation are pretty much as you said. Because the two that hired the service were workers at the arcade centre, the police have already started investigating the place.” His tone sobered as he said, “Ah Yin, you know best just how many injuries you’ve gotten since the beginning of this case. I hope that you stop meddling. We’ll help you investigate the rest; nothing will go overlooked.”

Yu Yin bit his lips, uncertain of whether or not to reply as he met his uncle’s seldomly stern face.

“After all, you are only a student.”

After studying Yu Xia for a long time, Yu Yin finally nodded slowly.

“Alright, it’s a deal then.” Yu Xia let out a sigh of relief, having been afraid of the other rebelliously shaking his head instead. “Oh, right, we’ve already determined the identity of the other person in the pit. He had an ID on him, so it didn’t take long. Plus he had a unique hair colour, so we instantly identified him.”

Yu Yin’s eyelid twitched when he heard this.

“He’s also a staff member at the arcade centre. Xie Li Yu, twenty-four years old.

“According to information from his colleagues, the corpse in the city outskirts, arcade centre staff member Xie Li Yu, has been missing from work for several days now. As for how he died in that kind of place, nobody has a clue.”

Yu Xia held up the photo taken of the scene and said, “Based on the autopsy reports and testimonies, it can be surmised the Xie Li Yu died around 8 PM four nights ago. There were no vehicles found around the area, so we’re currently checking the intersections to see how he entered the mountain area.”

***

Early Monday morning, the four members of the Yu household all gathered together in a single person’s ward at the hospital.

“Xiao Yu, could you help me set up the table?” Yu Tong treated the hospital as his own home. He began to take out all the breakfast food he had bought, most of them being things like egg pancakes and fried turnip cakes, as well as milk and soy milk.

Yu pulled a small table out and started to place the food onto the table.

“Oi, oi, oi, you guys, aren’t patients supposed to get more rest?” Yu Yin lay on the sickbed with an exasperated expression. They were all doing work and having picnics here as they pleased, a situation that could not be any more bizarre.

He was supposed to be an injured person that required recuperation!

Yet what had this place become? Don’t tell me there’s a sign outside my ward that says: “Please come in if you would like to have a picnic and relax”?

“What a joke, as if you need rest.” Yu Xia put down the photos he was holding and snorted in disdain, “A young, injured chick that can’t crawl back up after a single hit? Back in the days, your dad and I wouldn’t even twitch after charging through a storm of gunfire.” Not like I’ve never been injured before – it actually happens quite often.

“Only old people say ‘back in the days’.” Yu Yin retorted back with his chin propped on his hands.

“You brat, I dare you to try saying that again!” Yu Xia began to exercise violence.

“Hey! I’m an injured person!” Yu Yin protested loudly as he lifted the pillow up to block the beating.

Hitting an injured person in the hospital? How can that be allowed?!

Yu Tong and Yu ignored the hospital bed-turned-arena and automatically started eating after setting up the table. The warm steam blew upwards, filling the entire ward with a fragrant aroma.

After a few minutes of arguing passed, the room’s door was abruptly pulled open, effectively shutting the mouths of the adult and child putting on a show.

“Aren’t you two misters a bit too excited?” With a basket of fruit in his hands, Yan Si stood at the doorway with a raised eyebrow at the fight between the injured person lying on the bed and said injured person’s family member. “Careful or the nurse might come and scold you.”

Yu Xia and Yu Yin glared at each other then harrumphed as they turned their heads away.

“Ah Si, why are you here so early?” Yu Tong stood and asked.

“Passed by, so I figured I’d help someone bring the photos Officer Yu wanted to borrow.” Yan Si waved the black work bag in his hand, then pulled out a set of photos from inside. “The on-site photos taken of the deceased He Mu Yan.”

“Lend me those!” Yu Yin, who had just pointed out he was injured, jumped off the bed and swiped a hand to grab the photos. He then began to examine each one closely.

Most of the photos were close-ups of the body. There were also a few of the more critical points of the room. There was nothing special about the suspended body, and nothing unusual about the rope marks either. No matter how one looked, it was unmistakably a suicide.

Yu also joined in to look.

“Doesn’t seem to be anything particular noteworthy,” Yu Yin concluded after flipping through many photos. There really was nothing strange about it. However, he could tell from the photos that He Mu Yan’s residence was quite small, likely a mere few hundred square feet in size. The room only contained a bed, a computer, and a cabinet that likely held clothes and such.

“Apparently, He Mu Yan lived quite frugally. He had found a small room that only required a monthly rent of four thousand yuan. After deducting his living costs from his salary, he sent majority of it back to his mother. When he wasn’t at the arcade centre, he was at home. He lived a relatively stable life.” Yu Xia plopped down onto nearby seat and began to eat his breakfast.

“How could such a person want to commit suicide….” Yu Yin doubtfully glanced at the photos. He truly found it hard to comprehend. If He Mu Yan was someone that sent his money home, it meant he was quite a responsible person. Why would he suddenly kill himself without warning?

Moreover, after all that had happened that night, Yu Yin could not imagine the case being as simple as a suicide.

Yu Yin knit his brows together as he flipped through a few photos once more, quickly arriving to the last one.

It was a photo of the surroundings, something that was taken at any crime scene.

What drew Yu Yin’s attention were not the objects placed inside the room or any kind of clue, but the wall on the far edge of the photo.

There was a woman’s shadow. It was very blurry and did not quite seem real.

However, it was clearly the shape of a woman’s figure.

“Uncle, how come the other photos don’t have this shadow?” Yu Yin fished out the other photos of the surroundings and checked the captured walls. None of them had the woman’s shadow.

Yu Xia took the photos, suspicion instantly showing on his face. “Weird, there weren’t any women among the investigators and the personnel searching the scene that day.” He squinted and looked closely once more; the shadow remained in place. “It really is a human shadow, but it wasn’t captured elsewhere…”

“You guys didn’t happen to take a so-called paranormal photo, did you?” Yan Si also came over and whisked the photo away to examine it closely. “Oho, how mysterious. It really is the figure of a woman. Plus, it’s right below where the deceased was hanging from. Do you guys want to submit it to a supernatural investigation show? They might invite a spiritual master to analyse it for you.”

Yu Yin shot a withering look at Yan Si and took the photo back.

“It’s already been proven to be a suicide. In my opinion, the camera probably just happened to mistakenly capture some other reflection. No need to overthink.” Yu Xia grabbed the other photos, then reached for the one Yu Yin held. “Now that you’ve seen the photos and asked all your questions, you’d better start recuperating like a proper injured person. I’ve already requested a week’s recovery leave from your school. Don’t even think about finding an excuse to sneak out.”

Yu Yin blinked, an expression of innocence on his face.

“Don’t! Even if you start blinking tears, don’t even dream of leaving!” Yu Xia threw an iron fist down at him.

“I’ve eaten my fill.” Yu Tong, who had stayed out of the fight from beginning to end, elegantly put down the cup in his hands as he cheerfully declared, “It’s about time for me to head to work. You guys can continue taking your time to chat.”

“Wait for me!” As Yu Xia realised that it was nearly nine already, he abandoned the original discussion subject and hurriedly raced out of the ward.

Once the two people left, the room clearly became a significant amount quieter.


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