Chapter 7 – Haunted House Vlog (7)

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For the next day’s joyous event, the Lin family strung festive red silks and lanterns all throughout the house.

In order to receive the benefits the rice merchant had promised, Mister Lin had sold Lin Wan to the rice merchant’s incompetent son.
He knew that Lin Wan held someone in her heart and was worried she would elope with someone.

He called upon a servant and directed him to see if Lin Wan was still in her bedroom.

The boundaries outside of Lin Wan’s door had long been sealed.
He never thought that Lin Wan would disguise herself as a maid and escape through those boundaries.

The servant opened the door and saw that the room was empty, leaving only the looming candlelight and torn red wedding robes.

The servant rushed to inform Mister Lin.
When he learned that Lin Wan was gone, his eyes immediately spun with anger.1 Madame Lin immediately burst into tears and sent someone to call the doctor.

After a while of Madame Lin poking and prodding Mister Lin, he woke up, but the servant had not returned.

Mister Lin furiously released a slurry of curse words.
The servants around him lowered their heads, afraid of angering him and being beaten, scolded, or punished.

It was already dark by then.

Mister Lin directed all of the servant in the house to find Lin Wan as he sat in the hall with Madame Lin, awaiting updates.

Madame Lin felt pity for her daughter.
She clutched her handkerchief tightly, then said softly: “I think Wan Wan is truly displeased about this relationship.
Why don’t we forget about it, I don’t think that young master is a good match either, unless our daughter is meant to suffer after getting married.”

Mister Lin scolded Madame Lin: “What do you women know! Merchant Wang’s family is rich, enough that their wealth can’t be spent even with a few lifetimes! Wan Wan getting married is a certain path to a happy life.
Does is matter if they’re a good match? The wedding robes the young master sent a few days ago, do you know how valuable they are?!”

His eyes were red, and his entire body was like a furious wild dog: “The gemstones inlaid within it, any one of them would be enough for an ordinary person to survive half their life!”

“With the support of Merchant Wang, my incense shop will definitely reach new heights……”

Madame Lin was shocked by his scolding.
She looked at her insane husband and let out a deep sigh.

She didn’t know what had happened to her husband.
Ever since he began making the soothing incense, something had changed in his personality.
He threw himself into his incense all day, and his attitude toward her and their daughter had become more and more perfunctory.

Now he even wanted to exchange their daughter for money.
Madame Lin couldn’t help but feel cold thinking about it, and looked at her husband beside her.
His face was familiar, but it was as if she no longer knew him.

Madame Lin excused herself due to illness, and retreated.

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After leaving, she called for one of her personal maids and asked her to go to the gardener’s residence to find Lin Wan, then instructed her to let Lin Wan escape and leave the Lin’s house once she found her.

Looking at the maid who was walking away, Madame Lin was worried.
She was about to turn around and leave when she suddenly heard Mister Lin’s voice from behind her: “Isn’t Madame not feeling well? Why didn’t she return to her room to rest.”

Madame Lin stiffened as she turned around.
She saw Mister Lin behind her, holding a horse whip in his hand.
After she finished turning, the whip impacted her.

Mister Lin continued beating Madame Lin with the horse whip, scolding her while attacking: “You moron! You actually want to let my cash cow escape! See if I won’t beat you to death!”

Madame Lin’s intense screams echoed throughout the hall, but the servants around them pretended to not have seen it, working without looking to either side.

Mister Lin had the habit of hitting people when angry.
It was a habit he formed only after he began preparing soothing incense.
The servants near him, as well as those outside, had all been beaten by him.

Madame Lin was beaten into unconsciousness by Mister Lin.
Seeing she had passed out, Mister Lin put away the horse whip, gathered his servants, and rushed to the gardener’s residence.

And Madame Lin, who was lying on the ground, was ignored.

~ The Other Side ~

After the gardener walked to the rose bush, he glanced back at the setting sun behind him.

The sunset was indescribably gorgeous.
The fiery red clouds gathered up one by one, joining into a strange and vibrant figure.

He took out the short knife and reached his arm out with no expression on his face.
He held the knife in one hand and slashed harshly at the still-open wound.

Blood flowed out of the torn flesh, dripping onto the roses.

The gardener slashes several times all across his body.
His hands moved unconsciously as he thought about the past.

He was originally the son of the richest family in Huaiyang Town.
After unintentionally laying his eyes on Lin Wan a few years ago, he wanted to marry her and bring her back home.

To facilitate that, his father promised Mister Lin a lot of benefits, and he was smoothly betrothed to Lin Wan.
Each time they met, Mister Lin would beg for favors from his father.
After it occurred many times, there were complaints from his family.

Until the time that they returned to their hometown to visit relatives, the path they took was extremely well hidden.
They never expected to run into bandits.
The pathway was so obviously remote that the old man from his father’s hometown told them he didn’t even know the pathway existed at all.

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They haven’t seen any bandits in years.

They hadn’t found any servants with sturdy bodies to accompany them, so when the bandits attacked, there was no one there who could defend them.

Their family with over a dozen members, along with the seven or eight servants accompanying them, all died at the bandits’ hands.

Except for him, who was pushed by his mother and fell off a cliffside in the chaos.
He was lucky he kept his life, but due to the steepness of the cliff, some sharp raised stone edges sliced through his left cheek, leaving an ugly scar.

In order to find out the truth, he went undercover to find clues about that year.

— And all the clues pointed to Mister Lin.

People in Huaiyang Town were mostly generous and kind.
In order to discover the truth, he went to Weining County, Mister Lin’s hometown, and casually asked around the street vendors.
He learned plenty of Mister Lin’s scandals.

It turned out that Mister Lin left Weining County because he robbed a wealthy businessman and was driven out.
Mister Lin accompanied a lot of female friends in private, and all of the children born to him and his lovers all died before the age of one, no exceptions.

According to the vendors, it was Mister Lin who killed the children and used their flesh and bones to prepare soothing incense.

These rumours grew as if they had eyes and noses.2

He didn’t entirely believe it until he overheard a conversation between Mister Lin and the rice merchant outside the window a few days prior.
Then, he was fully convinced.

Then came his revenge.
The old man from his father’s hometown gave him some medicine.
After drinking it, the drinker’s flesh and blood would become a delicious delicacy, and could be used to raise evil ghosts.
When the evil ghosts are fully grown, they would obey the orders of their caretaker and perform tasks.

The old man said that in the end, if after three days his flesh and blood has not fully raised the evil ghosts, then on the last day, he must fully sacrifice his own flesh and blood to the evil ghosts, then once they grow, they will fulfill his wishes.

What he drank just now was the last of the medicine.

At that moment, his entire body was saturated with flavors that are sought after by evil ghosts.

His blood flowed thicker and thicker, and the gardener became slightly dizzy.
He suddenly remembered that spring day when he climbed over the wall and went out to play.
He saw Lin Wan by the bridge – he had never seen such a beautiful woman, so he fell in love at first sight, and paid a heavy price.

Perhaps even back then, his love at first sight was also planned by Mister Lin.

The evil ghosts within the roses desperately devoured his flesh and dripping blood.

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The gardener was standing beside the rose bush.
The wounds and blood flowing from his body were both attracting evil ghosts.

The evil ghosts were getting bigger and bigger, and their minds were also insane.
One brave evil ghost broke away from its rose and floated toward the gardener, ripping at his flesh with its sharp teeth.

The gardener seemed unaware.
His eyes were closed, and he waited patiently for the evil ghost to grow.

It was already very late at that moment, and the torches and lanterns were lit all throughout the Lin’s house.

The servant’s cries and the sounds of the evil ghost devouring its food were intertwined.
The hearts of all who heard it trembled.

Gu An watched the scene from the side, frowning.
He finally understood why the roses weren’t harmed by yin qi.
Those evil ghosts were born from the rose bushes, so the roses would naturally not be afraid of their yin qi.

On the contrary – they particularly enjoyed yin qi.

Ming Ye, who was beside him, would touch Gu An’s smaller hand every so often, hooking his fingers around Gu An’s pinky, or caressing the palm of his hand.

Gu An said not to touch, but when Ming Ye’s hand came close, he held it very naturally, and allowed Ming Ye to touch.
He could still hear Ming Ye’s low laugh from when he realized and tossed it away.

The more often that happened, the more progress Ming Ye would be able to make.

But not yet.
Ming Ye’s fingers went to hook Gu An’s again, and he looked at Ming Ye helplessly. You’ve played this finger hook game a dozen times, are you still not tired of it?

If Ming Ye knew Gu An’s thoughts, he would definitely answer ‘Not tired of it, not even after playing hundreds of times.’

Ming Ye caressed Gu An’s finger with his open hand, then his little finger hooked Gu An’s.
Gu An’s finger fell against his side, easily hooked.

Then Ming Ye also picked up Gu An’s hand and kissed it while he wasn’t paying attention.
Afterward, he said: “Really fragrant.
My An An is fragrant everywhere.” Everywhere iss perfect.

Ming Ye didn’t say the last sentence.
He was afraid that if he said it, Gu An would become angry again.

“……” Gu An asked: “Didn’t I say that you need my permission before you kiss me?”

Ming Ye blinked innocently, saying: “I thought you meant kissing your mouth.”

Gu An: “……”

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You must get full marks for reading comprehension.

Gu An wanted to say more, but at that moment, he heard shouting from a crowd of people, so he just glared at Ming Ye and turned his head to look.

But because the place they were currently standing in was too well hidden, he couldn’t see very clearly.

Then Gu An felt as if the space underneath his feet was empty.
His entire body was being lifted up by Ming Ye!

“What are you doing?!” Gu An kicked his feet and said nervously: “Let me down!”

Ming Ye pretended he didn’t hear Gu An’s request and lifted him into the air with no difficulty: “Don’t be afraid, An An.
I won’t drop you.”

Gu An obviously didn’t believe him, and he struggled to get down.

Ming Ye couldn’t resist him, so he had to put him down.
However, Gu An only stood on the ground for a few seconds before being lifted up by Ming Ye once more.

Gu An sat on Ming Ye’s shoulders, and his field of vision was suddenly wider.
He was slightly embarrassed, and put his hand on top of Ming Ye’s head as if he was afraid of falling.
He whispered in Ming Ye’s ear: “Put me down quickly.”

Ming Ye held Gu An’s calves and took a few steps forward.
Feeling Gu An quickly hug his head, he showed a smug grin: “Don’t let go, An An.
Don’t worry, even if I fall, I won’t let you fall.”

When Gu An heard his words, his heart was warmed.

Before he could think more about it, he heard piercing screams from across the garden.

“There’s a ghost, ah!! Help!!!”

The voice of Mister Lin begging for mercy entered their ears.

“I was wrong, I was wrong! Let me go!! I know I was wrong!”

“Ah–! Don’t eat me, ah!!”

Footnotes

Eyes rolled into the back of his head, like a cow, or like during a seizure [x] As if they were alive and could speak, etc. [x]

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