There might be someone standing outside the door. Chen Ge thought that it was too dangerous to open the door, but he had no better solution at the moment. This was an opportunity, one that they could not miss.
"Ying Chen probably has not wandered too far away from this place. There might be a trap right outside the door. Someone is probably waiting for me to open the door and crawl out."
The sound of the cats would warn Chen Ge of Ying Chen, but they would not be able to do anything regarding Ying Chen's helper. Chen Ge understood that deeply. Earlier, when he was pushed down the stairs by the boy, throughout the whole process, the child did not make any noise. It was not until the last moment that he had revealed his nasty fangs.
"Currently, there are two possibilities. The first possibility is that Ying Chen and his helper are respectively guarding before Mr. Wood and Miss Red's doors, and the second possibility is that Ying Chen is hiding somewhere in the stairwell, and his helper has not left but is waiting outside the door. The conversation that they shared earlier was purposely leaked for me to hear so that I'd lower my guard."
Chen Ge kept wondering about these two possibilities. For a normal person, the best choice would be to stay inside Miss Dress' room. Even though the crazy murderer had the key, as long as he kept the door blocked, there should not be too big a problem.
But doing that meant that he would have positioned himself in a passive situation. Ying Chen could have easily made use of this time to go and do other things. Chen Ge had limited physique, and it was already difficult on his body for him to have to go through so many of the dangerous adventures since he had entered this door. If he continued to do this, the chance of an accident would only grow exponentially greater.
What worried him most were Mr. Wood and Miss Dress. After all, there was no trace of humanity in Ying Chen. The b*stard would stoop down to the lowest of the lows. If anything happened to the two of them, it would be extremely difficult for Ying Tong to get the chance to open his eyes again.
"Perhaps I can make use of this trap that Ying Chen has set for me and turn that into an opportunity, using the trap to change my current passive situation into something else."
This idea appeared in his mind, but to ensure that this method would work, he had to be able to ensure that there was indeed someone outside the door.
Chen Ge dragged the sofa away from the door. He purposely made as loud a noise as possible, but in reality, he had only moved the sofa several centimeters back. With his hands on the doorknob, Chen Ge slowly removed the mop that was placed slanted against the door. He pressed down gently on the doorknob. The lock had already been undone by Ying Chen earlier. The surroundings were eerily quiet; he could not hear anything. There did not seem to be anyone out in the corridor.
"Have I overthought everything?" Chen Ge held his breath as he slowly pulled the door open. Just as the door was about to open, a giant force suddenly slammed into the door! "There's someone out there!"
The door banged into the sofa behind it. A cold and icy hand reached out through the gap, and the dry fingers gripped Chen Ge's wrist!
Chen Ge reacted in an instant. The sofa had not been fully moved from its place. The door slammed into the back of the sofa, and that acted as a buffer that had saved Chen Ge's life.
The door was unable to open completely. Chen Ge used both of his hands to try to push the door shut, but the person had grabbed him by his wrist. The hand of the person outside the door was stuck through the small gap, so Chen Ge was unable to close the door unless he cut the person's hand right off. The gap of the door was getting bigger and bigger.
Chen Ge was unable to see the development before him. His heart was burning like a fire. At that moment, he threw caution to the wind. He lowered his head and bit at the hand that had a death grip on his wrist!
When a person was under a highly intense situation, they would gain incredible strength. Chen Ge could feel his teeth chomp down right to the bone. A child's scream came from outside the door. The person had to let go because of pain. Chen Ge instantly slammed his body into the door and forced the door shut while he still had the opportunity to do so. He grabbed the map by the side and replaced it against the doorknob. He laid it slanted underneath the doorknob and replaced the sofa against the door.
Gasping greedily for air, Chen Ge's back was already covered in cold sweat. He leaned against the sofa. At that moment, Miss Dress' phone that was inside his pocket suddenly started to vibrate. Chen Ge's fingers pressed on the multiple buttons that were on the screen. Moments later, he finally got the call connected.
"It's me." Mr. Wood's voice came from the other side of the line. His tone was dark, and he lowered his voice to very soft. "Ying Chen is now outside my door."
"Keep your front door locked and stay away from the door. We have to make sure that Ying Chen won't be able to overhear any of our conversation." Chen Ge adjusted his breathing. Everything was within his predictions. Ying Chen knew that Ying Tong had accepted Ah Mu, so he would definitely go looking for Mr. Wood and Miss Red.
"I am inside my study. It is very far from the front door, so he won't be able to hear us."
"Did Ying Chen tell you anything? What did he say?"
"He did not say anything; he did not even announce himself. He just stood there outside my door. If you did not just call to warn me, I would not have known there was someone just standing outside my door." Mr. Wood was still shaking as he thought about it.
"He is probably waiting for you to open your door, and then he will rush in. The madman is capable of doing anything." Chen Ge kept retreating and hid on the other side of the sofa. He lowered his voice to a whisper to ensure that the person outside the door would not be able to hear him. "There is a favor that I have to ask from you."
Chen Ge took a deep breath. He wanted to make a bet with Ying Chen. Without risk, there would be no reward. "Ying Chen is guarding outside your door, and his helper is outside mine. I need you to call Miss Red for me. Have her bring Ah Ying away from her room and try to sneak him to the cleaning closet on the third floor without alarming anyone."
"Get him without anyone noticing to the cleaning closet? Have you lost your mind?"
"Listen, only by accepting Ah Ying, Ah Tong, and Ah Mu will Ying Chen have a chance to open his eyes. We have to make sure that Ying Tong meets these three kids somehow. If we are all hiding inside our rooms, Ying Tong and his helper only need to guard outside two of our doors, and we will never have a chance to win." Chen Ge analyzed this very calmly.
"This is madness."
"Ah Tong suffers from claustrophobia, so the person who hides inside the cleaning closet has to be Ah Ying!" There was indeed an undercurrent of madness in Chen Ge's tone, but the man himself did not realize that. "Ying Chen is staying outside your door. Your room is on the second floor. His helper is waiting outside my door, I am on the ground floor. No matter how this building is connected, Miss Red is the furthest from either of them, she should have enough time to do all these things."
"But what is the point of doing all these things?"
"Ying Chen has laid a trap for me. But when he set this trap, he exposed a weakness. This is our only chance." Chen Ge's voice squeezed through the gap of his teeth. Even though he was unable to see anything, through the trap that Ying Chen had designed for him, Ying Chen had inadvertently revealed the location of himself and his helper.
Mr. Wood gave it some thought before it dawned on him what Chen Ge was planning to do. "Okay, I will give Miss Red a call now."
The call ended. There was a dial tone that kept on going.
After about ten minutes, the phone in Chen Ge's palm started to vibrate again. "Hello?"
"Miss Red has already sneaked Ah Ying to the cleaning closet on the third floor. Thank god there was no accident." Mr. Wood's voice came from the other line.
"Is Ying Chen still waiting outside your door?"
"Yes, he even knocked on my door earlier, but I ignored him."
"Very good, what we need to do next will be key." Chen Ge tried his best to make himself calm down. "You should have the number of the cleaning lady, Auntie Wu, yes? Tell her to come over to my place. When she is here, I will take Ying Tong away from Miss Dress' place and go to you."
"You want to come to me? But Ying Chen is now waiting outside my door."
"If Ying Chen's helper is being held back by Auntie Wu, Ying Chen will know that Ying Tong and I have a chance to leave the room. In that case, there is a great chance he will come over here to try to stop us." Chen Ge's voice was sounding scary. "Miss Red lives on the sixth floor, and we are on the ground floor. Moving down from the stairs, we will be the closest to her, so Ying Chen will think that we will try to get to her. Of course, that is not important. The important thing is that when Ying Chen is coming after us, I need you to go to grab Ah Ying from the third-floor cleaning closet and bring him to your own home."
Mr. Wood understood Chen Ge's plan. It was a plan of no risk.
As the Chinese proverb goes, you cannot get the tiger cub without entering the tiger's liar.
If everything was successful, Chen Ge only needed to bring Ying Chen to Mr. Wood's place, and then Ying Chen would be able to meet both Ah Ying and Ah Tong at the same time. After facing three phobias head on, Ying Tong definitely would be able to reopen his eyes again.
Chen Ge was fed up with being blind. A world of darkness could push people over the edge, especially when every wrong step would lead to death. One careless move, and he would fall into the hands of a murderous madman.
After giving his orders, Chen Ge ended the call. He grabbed Ying Tong by his hand. "Ying Tong, we are now on the ground floor. Later, we will run up the stairs, to go to Mr. Wood's place on the second floor. You have to remember which floor you need to get to. Even if you end up alone, you must meet up with Mr. Wood somehow. Do you understand me?"
"Yes, I do." Ying Tong understood the hidden meaning of Chen Ge's words. If the unavoidable happened, Chen Ge would try his best to try and distract Ying Chen's attention. Just like how Miss Red had sacrificed herself, he would use his own life to buy time for Ying Tong. Of course, this did not mean that Chen Ge was some noble saint. After all, his only hope of break this nightmarish cycle was with Ying Tong. By helping Ying Tong, Chen Ge was helping himself.
The room once again fell silent. Chen Ge checked all the items he had on him. He was still unable to see, so he could only use his hands to feel the comic. He could feel the pull of some force on his fingertips. It appeared like his employees were calling his name as well. The front door started to shake again. Ying Chen's helper wanted to burst the door open by using brute force. Chen Ge leaned all of his body weight against the sofa, but he could feel his body going weak. He had no employees to rely on behind this door, and he was exhausting his physical energy at a very fast rate. Ying Chen and his helper were not giving him any chance to collect himself at all.
This lasted for about half an hour when an unfamiliar middle-aged woman's voice suddenly travelled down the corridor.
"Ma Gui? What are you doing here? Aren't you supposed to be at home? It was you who was sneaking behind me earlier, wasn't it? Of all the kids in this building, you are the naughtiest one!" The person who came was the cleaning lady, Auntie Wu. When Chen Ge heard her voice, he grabbed Ying Tong's hand and went to the door. He silently moved the sofa away from the door.
"I wasn't following you." A boy's whining voice came from outside the door. Based on his voice, he should be around the same age as Ying Tong, but he was even more powerful physically than a full grown adult.
"You are lying again. I saw you following me-how dare you lie to my face?" Auntie Wu's footsteps stopped at the door. "Ma Gui, have you seen Ying Tong? Were you playing with that boy earlier?"
There was an urgency in Auntie Wu's voice. Earlier, she had helped Ying Tong hide inside the cleaning closet. She had probably returned there to take a look and discovered that Ying Tong had gone missing. Chen Ge had predicted all of that. It was why he had asked Mr. Wood to contact Auntie Wu. He had told Mr. Wood to tell Auntie Wu the truth and ask for her help.
"Are you telling the truth? Normally, I see you bullying Ying Tong the most. It is like you have a vendetta against him or something."
"You have all been tricked by Ying Tong! I was not bullying him. If you do not believe me, go and ask Ying Chen! He will vouch for me!" The boy tried his best to argue. Honestly, he sounded quite innocent in his prepubescent voice, but knowing how scary the boy was, it only made chill run up Chen Ge's spine.
Inside the room, Chen Ge had a brief idea why the boy was so impressively strong in the world behind Ying Tong's door. Ying Tong had always been the target of bullying by the boy. For Ying Tong, other than Ying Chen, this boy was the second existence that he found impossible to hide away from. Auntie Wu and the boy got into an argument. Chen Ge was looking for an opening when the cat's weak calls suddenly appeared in his ears.
"Ying Chen is coming this way!"
He only had one chance. Chen Ge did not want to miss it. He removed the mop from the door and carried Ying Tong on his back. When the cat's call came again, he whipped the front door open!
"Auntie Wu, this boy wants to kill Ying Tong! You have to stop him no matter what!"
Ever since Chen Ge entered this door, he had memorized all the routes that he had taken in his mind. The layout of the whole building was imprinted in his mind. Even though his eyes were almost blind, he knew where he should go and which route he should take.
When he shouted out that statement, the cats became conspicuously louder. Chen Ge took a beeline and headed straight into the stairwell.
Chen Ge was unable to see the road before him. Even though he had remembered the height of each step and his muscle memory had gotten used to the height, that did not stop him from tripping once when he ran down the stairs. Pain shot through all the parts of his body, but neither he nor Ying Tong made any noise. Compared to everything else, this little bit of physical pain was nothing.
The cats called from right above him. Chen Ge had just run to the landing between seventh and sixth floor, but Ying Chen had already arrived at the corridor. He had arrived so quickly; there was no hesitation in his movement at all. Ying Chen's speed surpassed Chen Ge's expectations, and other than that, Chen Ge had greatly underestimated how difficult it was for a blind person to maneuver down the stairs.
If they continued like this, they would be captured before they arrived at their destination.
"Remember what I said!"
Chen Ge rushed to the sixth floor and then put Ying Tong down. He removed Doctor Skull Cracker's hammer from his backpack. He stood guardedly at the corridor of the sixth floor and the corner that led to the staircase. Ying Tong was a very clever child. After all, he had managed to survive so many years under Ying Chen's mindful torture. That itself proved many things. When Chen Ge put him down, the child immediately stuck himself to the walls. Following the method that Chen Ge that taught him, he silently moved down the stairs.
Gripping the hammer tightly with both of his hands, Chen Ge gritted his teeth. The cats were calling closer and closer to his ears. From a normal meow, they had crescendo into a heart-wrenching scream. Ying Chen was getting closer and closer to him!
Without any footfall and sound of breathing, Chen Ge's mind was overwhelmed by the sound of thousands of cats calling out as they were being tortured. When the sound reached its peak, he raised the hammer as high as he could and swung it at the mouth of the stairs that was right next to him.
The hammer obviously hit something. There was a sound of something heavy falling to the ground.
"Did I get him?"
Chen Ge did not stop to check. He dragged the hammer, turned, and ran. The cats stopped making noises for a moment. Just as they started up again, Chen Ge heard Ying Chen say, "You do not appear to be a tenant of this building."
There was a chill and anger in Ying Chen's voice. Bloodlust was boiling in this crazed murderer when he first laid his eyes on Chen Ge. Hearing Ying Chen's voice from behind him, Chen Ge ran even faster.
His heart was shivering whether he could help it or not. All Chen Ge could do was to pray that Ying Tong would have encountered and accepted Ah Ying and Ah Tong before he fell into the clutches of Ying Chen.