"Sorry for disturbing you tonight, rest early." Chen Ge had been so focused on the game that he did not realize it was already so late.
"Are you really going now? Why don't you stay here for one night? There's more than enough space on my bed." Fan Chong moved the wrinkled clothes on his bed away.
"Thank you, but I still need to open my Haunted House for business tomorrow." Chen Ge rejected the kind offer and prepared to leave. "I remember you saying that there have been some weird happenings when you played the game. You felt like the thing in the game has come out, right?"
Fan Chong and Fan Dade shared a look. The two were confused as well. When they were playing, even after they turned the background music off and moved as far away from the screen as they could, they would still be scared. But when they saw Chen Ge play, the source of fear had moved from the game itself to the person who was playing the game. This had happened for the first time for them.
The brothers did not know how to explain, and it was Fan Dade who moved the topic away. "It's probably a psychological thing. Now that I think about it, how could something from the game come out into real life?"
"It never hurts to be careful. There is indeed something off about this game, so I suggest you only play it when there's daylight." Chen Ge told Fan Chong a few things and left after making sure that there were no more problems.
"Boss Chen, it's hard to get a taxi here, how about I drive you home?" Fan Chong chased after him. Chen Ge's gaming ability had greatly impressed him, and he had many things that he wanted to ask Chen Ge.
"Thank you, but I'll be fine." After playing the game, Chen Ge's relationship with the Fan brothers had improved a lot.
"There is no taxi at Li Wan City at night-you'll need to walk to Eastern Jiujiang Business Center to get car service." Fan Chong took out a key from his drawer. "Why don't you take my e-bike? I plan to visit New Century Park tomorrow, so you can return the bike then."
Chen Ge did not reject it this time and accepted the key from Fan Chong. "Then, I shall thank you."
Opening the door, Fan Dade and Fan Chong walked Chen Ge down the stairs. The whole area was dark, and only Fan Dade's home had light.
"How come there are so few residents at this residential area?" Chen Ge thought back to Fan Dade's neighbor, who had a mirror on the door to ward away evil spirits.
"This place is too isolated, and traffic is not convenient. Those who can afford to move have already moved." Fan Dade led Chen Ge to the e-bike. "Be careful on the road, see you tomorrow."
Chen Ge inspected the electrical meter and thanked the brothers again before leaving. After a while, the lights in Fan Chong's home went off as well, and the whole area plunged into darkness.
Eastern Jiujiang sure is creepy. Chen Ge turned back to look. Shall I go visit the places pointed out in the game tonight?
After thinking about it, Chen Ge gave up on the thought. I should do this with more of a plan. After Fan Chong pinpoints out all the dangerous zones, I can start to look for the door that has gone out of control.
Driving out of Li Wan City, it took him almost one and a half hours to reach New Century Park. Chen Ge's taut nerves finally relaxed after he walked into the Haunted House. Resisting the urge to sleep, Chen Ge found the backpack at the staff breakroom and opened the steel door to enter the underground scenario.
Sitting inside the last classroom, Chen Ge activated the recorder and then flipped open the comic to release Men Nan. The boy who was just slightly taller than Chen Ge's knees crawled out from the book and looked at Chen Ge with some resentment.
Chen Ge coughed from the embarrassment. "How are things?"
"When are you going to let me go back! If no one fixes the broken window of the door in the Third Sick Hall, many scary things will happen!" Men Nan talked like an adult, but the cute face looked at Chen Ge seriously.
"What will happen?"
"The door in the Third Sick Hall already has the symptoms of going out of control. During the period when I was unconscious, the world behind the door was slowly overlapping with the world outside the door! They are influencing each other, and if we leave them be, the door will never be closed again. The negative emotions behind the door will overflow into the real world." Men Nan tried his best to explain the severity of the problem to Chen Ge.
"The negative emotions behind the door will overflow into the real world?" Chen Ge thought of the scenarios that he had seen inside the game. The small town was filled with ghosts and crazed murderers-everyone had gone mad.
"Yes, if the door is left open for too long, it will slowly affect everything around it." Men Nan crawled onto the chair. He hated talking up to people. "Those who are within the vicinity of the 'door' will be affect. First, it's a small change to the psychology like a person turning silent and losing interest in life. Then, one's habits will change; for example, they might have liked ninety percent cooked steak in the past, but now, they prefer thirty percent cooked and later completely uncooked steak."
Men Nan described how a normal person might slowly become insane.
"Can this process be undone?" Chen Ge knew that the door in Li Wan City had already gotten out of control. This time, he was facing not only ghosts but also people who had been corrupted and monsters from behind the door.
"The best method that I can think of is to make sure that the door doesn't lose control. Of course, you can find them a good therapist to help counsel them one by one." Men Nan was dropping hints. He was desperate to return, but he could not beat the ghosts that Chen Ge had in a physical fight. This made him feel conflicted like he had been cheated to leave the Third Sick Hall.
"A door that has lost control cannot be closed anymore?" Chen Ge had his own plan, and he maintained his calmness at all times.
"You have to be certain about the sequence of events. A door is said to have gone out of control because it cannot be closed," Men Nan answered sadly.
"Even the door-pusher cannot close it?" Chen Ge leaned against the chair. He was rather sad. His original plan had been to find the door in Li Wan City, enter the door to find Xiao Bu, and use a reasonable method to convince Xiao Bu to close the door.
"The door-pusher might have the power to close it, but that is different for each pusher because everyone has different strengths and weaknesses." When Men Nan said that, his eyes darkened further. The reason that he did not sneak away was because he was not a fighter type. Even if he was inside the door in the Third Sick Hall, he was no match for Zhang Ya, so he had been staying obediently inside the comic.
"I've told you everything I know. Even if you ask me more, I can't answer you." Without waiting for the question from Chen Ge, Men Nan looked at him openly and said, "It's really scary if a door goes out of control. I have to return soon. Without me behind the door, Western Jiujiang will eventually become like Eastern Jiujiang."
"Western Jiujiang will eventually become like Eastern Jiujiang? You know about Eastern Jiujiang?" Chen Ge was surprised. In their conversation, he had never once brought up the words 'Eastern Jiujiang'.