Mosaic School (9)
“What’s going on? Did we lose a few pieces when we placed them on the ground to sort them?” Everyone lay on the ground and searched carefully for the missing pieces of the puzzle. The 14 people searched through every corner of the classroom, but didn’t find even the shadow of the puzzle pieces.
After searching the classroom, they all started to search themselves. They were afraid that the puzzle pieces had unknowingly fallen into their clothes. Even so, they still found nothing.
“What to do? There are 20 minutes left…”
“We haven’t been anywhere other than this room. We looked for everything that we needed. Is it possible…this puzzle is set to have pieces missing?”
“No, the teacher made it clear that the puzzle needs to be completed to open the iron box.”
Tang Yu counted it for a moment before stating calmly, “There are still 19 pieces left for the puzzle to be completed.”
A boy lowered his head in a frustrated manner. “Forget 19 pieces, we haven’t even found one piece.”
Just as everyone was at a loss, Chi Nan glanced at the female teacher who had been silently observing them and asked, “If there is a puzzle piece missing, where can we go to look for it?”
He believed that as a student, it was better to actively ask the teacher if there was something he didn’t understand. This was more reliable than guessing.
Moreover, the female teacher had been watching their every move and didn’t leave. This meant she should be of some use.
It was as if the female teacher had a condition triggered. She looked over stiffly and her voice didn’t fluctuate. “Once the snow melts in the south, the truth of the totem will come out.”
“What? Repeat it again.” Guo Xian listened carefully. His intuition told him that this sentence was an important clue.
Therefore, the female teacher repeated it word by word and reminded them, “The weather forecast says there might be a snowstorm coming. Students, please hurry up.”
“What the hell? This broken school has snow that is three feet deep. The snow can’t melt for three days and three nights…” A boy rubbed his face in despair.
The group fell into a tense silence.
The south, snow, totem, 19 puzzle pieces… Chi Nan quickly went through this information in his mind.
The number 19 was very familiar. This was the number of sleepwalkers who arrived at the boarding school on the bus, but according to the admissions booklet, he shouldn’t be part of the planned enrollment. Therefore, the connection between the number 19 and the number of students could be excluded.
Words related to 19… Chi Nan looked slightly stunned before abruptly glancing at the location of the classroom door. “This side should be the south, right?”
His sense of direction had never been very good.
The classroom door was facing the corridor that led to the school’s playground.
Guo Xian answered, “That’s right. The door of the classroom is facing the southern direction. Why? Do you have an idea?”
He also took out a compass to confirm that it was correct.
Chi Nan nodded. “The number of snowmen in the playground is exactly 19. The remaining puzzle pieces might be hidden in the snowmen.”
Guo Xian’s eyes lit up. “Yes, the south and snow are both right. The number 19 is also right.”
“What are you waiting for? Hurry up and dig.” Tong Yu was full of energy and went directly to the cleaning corner to get a broom. She also distributed the mops and garbage shovels to a few boys around her.
The remaining sleepwalkers rushed to the other classrooms and grabbed brooms and mops, preparing to destroy the snowmen.
“But…the teacher just said that a snowstorm might be coming. Is it okay for us to go to the playground now?” A girl questioned it. After all, the first taboo to be found was that walking on the playground at night in the snow would subject them to the punishment of a thousand knife cuts.
The group had already rushed to the playground. Guo Xian told them, “If you are worried, we will bring the red umbrellas at the door…”
He choked halfway through his words. It was because the umbrella stand was empty at this time. No umbrellas could be found.
“This…” A few sleepwalkers with brooms paused and hesitated.
If the weather forecast said a snowstorm was coming, then they would undoubtedly die if they rushed out.
Chi Nan stated, “According to yesterday’s observations, the snow will only fall once it is dark. The time it gets dark here is 5:30. There are still 17 minutes left.”
Based on Old Yu in the previous instance, Chi Nan had learned to observe the time in which it became morning and evening in every instance.
“You say this but what if…what if your inference is incorrect and the snow falls early?” Some people expressed doubts. In fact, no one dared to rush to the playground any longer after knowing the school rule of the ‘snow cuts like a knife.’
However, Tong Yu was unmoved. She bit her lollipop and walked toward the playground. “How can the Nightmare World be 100% safe? Not being able to find the puzzle pieces is death and the snow falling on your body is also death. It is better to gamble when the probability of survival is a bit higher.”
This was true. However, everyone knew that the death was random when they couldn’t find the puzzle pieces. They might not necessarily die. However, this wasn’t the case if they risked going to the playground.
They would undoubtedly die once the snow fell.
Guo Xian looked at the group. “Whoever wants to search the snowmen can follow. There might be danger, but time is running out. This might be our only way to clear the game.
Chi Nan, Tang Yu, Guo Xian, and his roommate Jiang Liang picked up the brooms and walked toward the snowmen. The remaining 9 sleepwalkers looked at each other in the corridor. Finally, the two boys from Room 208 also followed them to sweep the snow.
On the playground, the snowmen were all wearing red scarves and had smiling red lips painted under their noses. It wasn’t known if it was paint or blood.
This was a cold sense of horror to the curvature of the smile.
The group didn’t care about admiring the snowmen. They quickly raised their brooms and swept it toward the heads. As the snow fell, 19 skeletons were revealed.
Supporting the snowmen under the snow were the skeletons of the students who triggered the school rules and were killed by the snowflakes. It seemed that it wasn’t just their current class but the seniors before them.
They had a general idea from the death punishment video, but now they saw with their own eyes the white skeletons with no traces of muscles and flesh left. The overly strong sense of impact still gave everyone a psychological sense of discomfort.
A newcomer boy from Room 208 immediately turned his head and vomited in the snow.
“They are all ‘remnants’ of our predecessors…” Guo Xian sighed.
Chi Nan said politely and reverently, “I am disturbing you.”
He carefully observed the skeleton that had been cleaned. Finally, he focused on the teeth of the skeleton that seemed to be biting something in its mouth.
“I am offending you.”
Chi Nan used his frozen hand to break open the skeleton’s clenched teeth and found a puzzle piece in its mouth.
“The puzzle pieces are in the mouths.”
At almost the same time, everyone found the hiding location of the puzzle pieces. It was disgusting, but their will to survive prevailed. They resisted the nausea in their stomachs and opened the mouths of the skeletons one by one, taking out the puzzle pieces hidden in their mouths.
In less than 10 minutes, the group had gathered 19 puzzle pieces from the snowmen.
Tang Yu rushed back to Classroom 103 with the puzzle pieces. Unfortunately, her hands were frozen from the snow and there was no way for her to accurately put the puzzle pieces in the empty positions.
“Quick, let me come, let me come.”
The sleepwalkers who had been staying in the classroom scrambled to work together. They finally completed the puzzle when there was five minutes left of the class.
The moment the last piece of the puzzle was inserted, everyone held their breaths nervously. Then the iron box made a dinging sound and an iron drawer popped out of the box.
There was a neatly rolled painting in the drawer.
Guo Xian raised his eyebrow. “The dream maker has a sense of ritual. They created such an ingenious mechanism.”
Tang Yu breathed out lightly, picked up the scroll, and unfolded it
The painting maintained the weird totem style of the puzzle. It was like a follow-up story of the puzzle.
In the center of the painting, the originally empty totem pole had a man tied to it. He was fixed to a blazing fire and the jumping tongues of flames greedily licked every inch of his skin, amplifying and spreading the twisted pain on his face before finally devouring him.
The se*ual characteristics of the sacrificed male were deliberately highlighted and enlarged by the painter, as if the teacher had drawn the focus for the students before an exam.
The exaggerated male indicator appeared strange and contradictory in the sacrifice themed painting.
The experienced sleepwalkers knew very well that the more contradictory the place, the easier it was to find a clue.
What did this mean? Did it mean that someone would burn to death tonight?”
Guo Xian’s frown deepened. “If I’m not mistaken, the unfortunate school rule tonight is related to men.”
“Huh?” The boys from Room 208 paled.
“The name of this class is physiology. The totem for fertility worship in the puzzle and the exaggerated se*ual characteristics in the painting all point to men,” Guo explained.
Tang Yu covered her mouth. “So what the painting means is that a certain male among the sleepwalkers tonight will be chosen as a sacrifice?”
She was emotionally confused because she was transgender.
Guo Xian nodded with a calm face. “I think this probability is very high.”
“This…have we encountered a male-hating female dream maker?”
“It can also be a male dream maker who really hates his gender and only wants female sleepwalkers to appear in his instance…”
“There is no more information in the painting. I don’t know if there are any useful clues other than being a man…”
“B-But…no matter what, us boys are in a lot of danger. Don’t forget that once the school rules are triggered, they will continue until the end of the semester. Even if the lucky boy doesn’t randomly receive the punishment tonight, there is still tomorrow night, the night after tomorrow night, etc. There are only six boys left so there will be a day when it is our turn. It is about killing all of us!”
During the time when the boys were trembling, Chi Nan seriously looked at the painting and found that there was a full moon in the night sky.
“It isn’t every night. It is only a night with a clear sky and a full moon,” Chi Nan interjected.
Guo Xian’s expression slightly tensed and he quickly took out his phone to check the calendar. “A full moon falls on the 15th or 16th of the month. Today just happens to correspond to the 15th of the lunar calendar. This is why the physiology class was arranged for us…”
It might be a questioning tone, but the words spoken were affirmative sentences.
The meaning of the physiology class and the explanation in the painting were already obvious. On a clear night with a full moon, an unlucky boy in the boarding school would be tied to a totem pole and burned alive.
“How many men are there in the school now?” Chi Nan turned to the female teacher.
The female teacher’s eyes swept over the ground. “There are seven left.”
She was referring to Chi Nan, Guo Xian, Jiang Liang, and the boys in Rooms 206 and 208. Chi Nan keenly found that Tang Yu wasn’t classified as male by the female teacher due to her transgender status.
Tang Yu thought for a moment before asking, “What about the driver who brought us in that day? He is a man as well, right?”
The female teacher shook her head. “The driver is a temporary worker and will leave the school after work is over.”
The group: “……” This was forcing one of the boys to die, right? Even the routine of a temporary worker was brought out.
Chi Nan wondered, “Does the one in the school doctor’s office count?”
The female teacher’s eyes froze and she stopped talking. It seemed there was no answer to this complex question in her program.
The bell for the end of the class had already rang. The female teacher stood on the podium and looked at everyone in a condescending manner. “Today’s physiology class has ended. The students have completed the class exercises very well and have accurately found the knowledge point. However, whether you can flexibly apply the knowledge points to your future campus life depends on your performance tonight. I wish you good luck.”
Everyone was speechless. Chi Nan watched the female teacher pack up the lesson plan and prepare to leave. Suddenly, he stopped her. “Can we borrow seven more sets of female school uniforms?”
The female teacher looked over in a confused manner. “Why? You need to give me a valid reason.”
At this time, Tang Yu reacted faster than all the girls. “Teacher, us girls have to change clothes and wash them every time. We are worried that they won’t dry by the next day. The weather is so cold that it is easy to catch a cold. Therefore, I want to apply for another set of school uniforms per person.”
The female teacher was stunned for half a second before unexpectedly nodding. “No problem. The housekeeper will send it to the girls later.”
“Thank you!” Tang Yu nodded obediently.
“Seven sets is just enough,” Chi Nan said.
Guo Xian also understood, but he couldn’t be happy at this time. His lips twitched and he said, “Chi Nan, do you really think that female clothing…will it work?”
Chi Nan thought about it for a moment. “I’m not very sure either.”
Guo Xian: “……”
Tang Yu added, “I think we can give it a try. After all, the teacher doesn’t count me as a man so…you might be able to avoid the danger if you wear female clothing.”
“Now this is the only way…”
The corners of Guo Xian’s lips twitched at the words ‘female clothing.’ However, being humiliated wasn’t worth mentioning when it came to saving their lives.
“What type of bad taste does this dream maker have…?” Finally, he rubbed his face helplessly. He didn’t expect that he had lived up to 40 years, but had to wear female clothing today.
“Who knows?” Chi Nan replied with a still very calm expression.