CNC: Chapter 22

Unsurprisingly, Chi Nan slept until the next day when he was completely awakened by the constant screams and footsteps of women in the corridor.

He checked the time. It was 8:10 in the morning.

Ye Chang sat up on the bed. He had also just woken up but he wore his glasses perfectly. “It looks like there was an accident outside.”

He looked at Chi Nan. At almost the same time, there was banging on the door of 0303.

This type of grumpy knocking belonged to Hei Cha.

“Chi Nan! Ye Chang! Are the two of you okay?”

“We’re fine!” Chi Nan had just wrapped himself in the quilt and sat up while Ye Chang got out of bed and opened the door for Hei Cha.

“What happened last night?” Ye Chang opened the door and asked in a straightforward manner.

There were dark circles under Hei Cha’s eyes and he looked like he hadn’t slept well. He swallowed with difficulty, “A newcomer is dead.”

“Who?” Chi Nan had woken up but the sleepiness in his eyes hadn’t dispersed.

Since he was in a bad mood from waking up, he looked fiercer and colder than usual.

Hei Cha answered in a deep voice, “The one with long, straight black hair among the triplets.”

It took the two of them three minutes to wash up. By the time they came out of 0303, they heard that the body had been removed from the guest room and temporarily placed in the banquet hall where they had told ghost stories last night.

Something had happened so no one dared stay in the room by themselves. They all gathered in one place to analyze clues or comfort each other and find moral support.

On the way, Hei Cha asked the two of them. “Last night… did anything weird happen?”

Chi Nan shook his head. “I slept well. You?” He turned to Ye Chang.

Ye Chang also shook his head. “I went to bed after studying. Nothing happened.”

Hei Cha scratched his head in a fidgety manner, his face pale from lack of sleep. “Last night… I received a call…”

“A phone call?” Chi Nan rarely saw Hei Cha without any energy.

“Yes, it was like the story I told last night. A call from the water…I received it.” He glanced at Chi Nan, as if to get some calm from him.

Chi Nan blurted out, “However, you don’t have a twin brother.”

Hei Cha choked up and the corners of his lips twitched. “…That’s right.”

Being interrupted like this did relax him slightly.

Chi Nan regained his seriousness. “Did the other person speak to you?”

Hei Cha’s expression sank and he nodded. “The signal wasn’t good. I could only hear intermittent words like bathtub…”

The girl with long, straight black hair among the triplets had drowned in the bathtub last night.

Due to the rules, she was forced to live separately from the two sisters and was assigned to room 0310 with the female of the young couple.

The other girl in 0310 saw the floating body in the bathtub and fainted on the spot. Later, she woke up when she was pinched and filled with medicine. Now she was hiding in her boyfriend’s arms, her face bloodless as she stared at the corpse covered with white cloth on the ground.

Due to the rays of the setting sun and the corpse being fished out of the water, the white cloth covering her seemed to be dyed with blood, damply outlining the dead.

“Wei Wei, it’s fine. I’m here.” Her boyfriend kept calling her name in a low voice, trying to pull her back from the extreme fear. “Don’t look. I’ll take you over there to rest.”

“I’m not going! Draw the curtains! Don’t let the sun shine on me! Draw it quickly!” The girl suddenly cried out in a trembling voice, startling many of those present.

Her boyfriend saw her emotional ups and downs and didn’t dare to refute it. He just held her shoulders soothingly. “Okay, we will draw it.”

He didn’t dare let go of his girlfriend who was on the verge of collapse and could only ask for help from the people around him. In the end, it was Hei Cha and Chi Nan who went to draw the curtains.

The banquet hall was curved and the sea facing sides were designed as French windows. This route faced the west sea so the light happened to shine to every corner of the banquet hall.

The curtains of the banquet hall were actually white curtains with good light permeability. It wouldn’t help even when they were closed. The entire banquet hall was still immersed in the red light of the sunset.

The girl shivered in the right light that enveloped the white gauze.

The woman with a big chest sat beside her and asked in a soft voice, “Why are you afraid of the sun?”

All the experienced sleepwalkers listened carefully. They knew this might be important information. However, the girl called Wei Wei didn’t speak. Her teeth just chattered and it made those who heard it feel numb.

Her style had always been simple and rough but the woman showed a rare patience. “Don’t be afraid. It is better to say it. Is there something wrong with the sun?”

“She… when I found her… floating in the bathtub…” Wei Wei trembled and spoke intermittently. “The bathtub full of water… was the same color… her body was soaked in it… her eyes were wide open… as if she was staring me… hair spread out… in the pool of blood… floating…”

“Pool of blood?” The woman frowned and asked in a confused manner.

“Blood… the pool of water turned to blood… “Wei Wei nervously tugged at her hair, her lips dry and cracked. “Too disgusting… disgusting…”

She repeated illogical words nervously. It was difficult to capture useful information from her.

“Speak more clearly. What happened last night?” The middle-aged man eventually stepped forward. His tone had lost patience as he chased for answers.

Her boyfriend couldn’t just watch. He half pleaded and half scolded. “How can you calmly answer questions when encountering such a thing? You are forcing her to recall the scene at that time. Can’t you be a bit compassionate?”

The middle-aged uncle sneered. “Little brother, wake up. We are in the Nightmare World right now. Maybe it will be you or me who dies tonight. Can you still care about compassion at this time?”

The boyfriend was feeling anxious and wanted to retort when the woman with a big chest interrupted them. “We can’t ask anything when she is like this. Let’s allow her to calm down. It is more efficient to ask later.”

The middle-aged man reluctantly suppressed his voice. Hei Cha, who was standing next to him, stepped forward and patted the boyfriend on the shoulder, kindly giving him a reminder. “Pay attention to your girlfriend’s awakening value. It is very dangerous once it is above 90.”

Chi Nan looked at the corpse not far away. He found that a lot of water was seeping from the corpse. In the light of the sunset, it really looked like blood.

There was also a strange raised bump around the corpse’s abdomen area.

“Who brought the body over?” He suddenly asked.

Hei Cha answered, “It seems like two crew members on the ship. She was fished out of the bathtub, covered in white cloth and directly sent to the banquet hall.”

“Did anyone else see the body apart from Wei Wei?” Chi Nan asked again.

Everyone was silent. Some of them were veteran sleepwalkers who had experienced death but who would be willing to see a corpse?”

Finally, Hei Cha replied again, “Her two sisters saw it. However, both of them were so sad that they fainted directly.”

“I see.” Chi Nan crouched down beside the corpse. He was about to raise his hand to lift the white cloth while someone grabbed his hand through the sleeve.

Chi Nan was slightly startled. This person’s hand was so cold that he could even feel it through the cloth.

“Let me do it.”

Ye Chang crouched down beside him. It wasn’t known when he had grabbed them but he put on disposable gloves prepared in the banquet hall and lifted the white cloth covering the body.

The girl stared with wide open eyes, her purple lips covered with white foam. There were visible goosebumps on her neck that didn’t disappear and her skin was gray and wrinkled.

The strange traces on the abdomen that Chi Nan had noticed were the girl’s hands holding her phone on top of her belly.

“She really drowned but how can she drown in a bathtub?” The red-haired youth looked at it and felt physically ill.

Hei Cha’s gaze was stuck on the girl’s phone. “That… that is wrong with the phone?”

In the Nightmare World, phones couldn’t connect to the outside world or access the Internet but the basic functions could still be used. For example, Chi Nan liked to use it to navigate, record and take photos.

Yet in Hei Cha’s eyes, this phone was even scarier than the dead body. He shuddered as he thought of the phone call in the middle of the night.

Twins, drowning, late night phone calls, phones… what happened in front of him just happened to coincide with the ghost story he told last night.

The others naturally noticed this. They recalled the story told by Hei Cha and their expressions became a bit subtle.

Ye Chang asked Hei Cha, “Did you hear anything unusual when you received the call last night?”

Hei Cha was in a daze for a moment before nodding. “Yes… it sounded like there was water in my ears after answering the phone. I can’t get it out…”

“Is it a murder imitating the horror story that Hei Cha told last night?” The red-haired youth wondered and shook his head again. “It isn’t as simple as killing people. Even the subsequent supernatural phenomenon was reproduced.”

Hei Cha licked his dry lips and spoke with difficulty. “Is it that anyone who tells a story will encounter it?”

“It shouldn’t be that simple. You told the story but the girl died like the character in the story.”

“Maybe it is because they happen to be triplets. They are similar to the twins in the story.”

“If so, why did Hei Cha receive the call instead of the two sisters?”

The group was discussing it when Chi Nan opened his mouth. “Maybe the two sisters also received it?”

Ye Chang nodded beside him. “Let’s confirm it after they wake up.”

“Don’t tell me this nightmare world is about recreating all the stories we’re telling…” Hei Cha was creeped out.

No one could answer him and no one wanted to hear a positive answer. Last night, there were 15 people and told 15 horror stories. If they had to take turns all the time… it was too scary to breathe.

The gender-neutral dressed female, who hadn’t talked much, suddenly blurted out, “Haven’t you found that there are two less people?”

It was only then that the group noticed the number of people in the banquet hall. Including the dead body and the two sisters who fainted, there were only 13 people.

In other words…

“The two aunts from 0309 haven’t come.”

“Could it be that they are sleeping so soundly that they didn’t hear us?” Hei Cha spoke this sentence but wasn’t convinced at all. Even so, everyone secretly hoped it was the truth.

However, things often didn’t go the way they wanted. They were afraid of what was to come.

There were neat footsteps from the corridor. The group looked over to find the neatly dressed captain and… staff members carrying four white cloth stretchers behind him.

In an instant, the air in the banquet hall solidified to freezing point.

The old captain smiled and bowed to the group in the banquet hall “Good morning, everyone. It is my pleasure to tell you that last night, there were three guests who chose to stay on the Dusk Cruise Ship forever.”

“They will always enjoy this journey that won’t end.”

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