"For now, you should focus on helping the local team investigate the dead bodies underwater, leave the rest to us."
Whenever Lee Zheng conversed with Chen Ge, he would have this strange feeling. Whether it was his tone or his way of thinking, the latter felt more like an experienced first-class police inspector. At times, Lee Zheng even suspected that Chen Ge was a special agent that Captain Yan had requested to aid their group. In fact, Lee Zheng did not think he would be surprised if one day in the future, Chen Ge came slapping his shoulders and said with a smile, "Sorry, but I'm actually also a police officer."
Clever people turn their passion into their career, but in Chen Ge's case, his pursuit of justice was far beyond a mere passion for murder investigation. It was hard to imagine what kind of attitude he adopted to be able to unearth so many hidden cases all over the city without asking for any reward in return.
"Alright, I will lend them my full cooperation." The group that was responsible for overseeing the dam was from the Eastern Jiujiang Police Station and Investigation Team Two from the main station. Chen Ge was not familiar with them, and after some basic questioning, the two parties got into a standstill on how to deal with the coffin lid.
In the end, under the persuasion by the leader of the Team Two, Chen Ge agreed to hand over the coffin lid and the dolls inside the coffin to the police temporarily for the medical doctor and other professionals to examine, and then the police would personally send them back to the Haunted House.
"Every doll here has a name carved on their back, and each name corresponds to a once-living child. I suggest you run an investigation on each of the names, and you might come to a surprising discovery." Eastern Jiujiang had been peaceful for so long, but this peace was faked. The current beneath the surface was rapid, and no one had any idea how dirty and how deep the water went.
At 3:30 am, the management of the dam and the salvage team arrived. They worked together to retrieve the dead bodies and the coffin. During the process, one of the salvage members claimed that he heard strange noises coming from inside the hole, and someone else noticed flickering shadows underwater. It was probably the fish.
The salvage operation went smoothly. After the bodies and coffin were taken away, there was nothing left for Chen Ge to do. After getting permission from the police, Chen Ge called a cab and left.
He had never seen an underwater scenario being built before, and he was quite curious about this newly unlocked scenario. At 4 am, Chen Ge returned to his Haunted House. He pushed open the gate and rushed underground. Walking down the darkened steps, Chen Ge noticed that a small path had opened up between Mu Yang High School and Coffin Village. It was large enough to allow two people to go through at once, and it went deeper underground. Walking down the path felt strange and oppressive.
The light was dim and the air damp. Occasionally, Chen Ge could hear the sound of water dripping. At the end of the tunnel was a dark lake of water, and a small boat was floating on the surface of the water. The boat was made from wood, and it was just big enough to fit two passengers.
"There's no paddle?" Chen Ge tossed the Vat Ghost into the water, and to his surprise, the water was surprisingly deep. Getting on the boat, Chen Ge slowly paddled using his hands to row himself forward.
"This design is rather insane. The visitors have to use their hands as paddles for the boat to move. If the monsters hiding in the water suddenly surface, just how much terror and despair will the people on the boat be trapped in?"
Due to safety considerations, Chen Ge planned to go to the Props Room to make a small wooden paddle for emergencies. Inching along the way, the boat continued to move forward. The scenario for Twin Water Ghost was only half the size of Mu Yang High School.
"But this is at the very least a two-star scenario. It can't be this simple, can it?" Chen Ge was seated inside the boat and looking around with his flashlight when the Vat Ghost suddenly surfaced. He waved his hands and then pointed at the water.
"There's something underwater?" Chen Ge thought about it and approved of that possibility. The lake was quite large, and the boat did not come with a paddle. The people on the boat had to use their hands to work the boat, and in that case, it was highly probable for them to be pulled overboard.
No matter what, safety was the most important. To prevent accidents from happening, Chen Ge removed his clothes that were still damp and jumped into the water again. Using his Yin Yang Vision, Chen Ge discovered to his surprise the completely different world that was underwater.
This scenario was built on the slope, and the deeper one swam, the more things one could see. The things near the top of the water were common everyday items like an old sofa, broken furniture, and lamps like actual rooms that had sunk.
"Are these the rooms that the drowned victims lived in before they died?"
Further down, the bed of the lake was littered with cut up dolls. The faces were embedded into the silt, the broken eyes staring at the boat that skimmed across the surface. Moving forward, one would come into a graveyard of coffins. They were stacked in a complicated manner, turning the geography of the underwater lake into a maze.
"I don't think this scenario should be opened to the public yet. Without the necessary equipment, it is too easy for accidents to happen."
Running into scary things underwater was ten times more terrifying than running into them on solid ground, but unfortunately, the risk was too high. Chen Ge was a Haunted House operator, and he defined his own job as one in the service industry. The underwater scenario was a good direction for the Haunted House to take, but it could only be tested after he had the necessary equipment.
"Then again, I suppose it's not completely useless. At least I have a home now for all the underwater ghosts that I encounter in the future."
Chen Ge worked together with the Vat Ghost to move the boat back to the shore. Then, he carried his clothes and retraced the path back. "You should stay here for now."
Vat Ghost was naturally faint-hearted. Give him a water vat, and he could stay in the cramped space without complaint for century. His personality was really a great contrast to how he looked.
"If you see any visitors wander in here, remember to warn them to stay back. If they fall into water, you have to save them, understand?"
After giving the Vat Ghost his orders, Chen Ge was still worried. He ran to the tool room to make a roadblock and placed it at the scenario entrance.
"Who would have thought that my Haunted House would one day have an underwater scenario?" Chen Ge looked at his Haunted House, and his heart was surfeited with pride. With his careful expansion, the Haunted House now had a hospital, a school, a village, a residential area, and even a manmade lake. "The Haunted House just upgraded to a Maze of Terror. If I continue to unlock scenarios, will my Haunted House eventually become an underground city filled with endless scary stories and terrifying tales?"
When he first obtained the black phone, Chen Ge had once noted the term Castle of Nightmares on the mission detail, and he felt like that should be the Haunted House's final goal.
After dealing with all that, Chen Ge placed the wet clothes in the toilet and gave them a simple scrub. Then he went to the staff breakroom. He was about to crawl into bed when his phone-started to vibrate. It was Lee Zheng.
"Inspector Lee? How can I help you?"
"We've found Huang Ling's husband." Lee Zheng's tone was grave, signifying that they had run into trouble.
"Where did you find him?" Chen Ge sat up and spooked the white cat, which had curled up next to him.
"We checked for his trail on the surface and finally found him at the entrance to White Dragon Cave Tunnel. When we arrived, he was already unconscious."
"White Dragon Cave Tunnel?" Chen Ge thought that the name was familiar. His eyes slowly widened because White Dragon Cave Tunnel was the abandoned tunnel where he had completed his latest Nightmare Mission, the place where he had seen his young self being killed for the first time.