Bonus ko-fi chapter
Yu Hanjiang soon roasted the hare. In addition, he placed the fish roasted last night on the charcoal fire so it would be hot.
Ye Qi was blind and could only accompany Xiao Lou, chatting with Professor Xiao.
Xiao Lou knew that Shao Qingge wasn’t good at the Hearts room and told in detail the two murders in 4 of Hearts, the cause and effect and the suspects’ testimonies to Ye Qi. Ye Qi heard this and was stunned. “Aren’t these two men too much of a scum? I say, they really deserve to die!”
Xiao Lou told him, “The names of the characters in the Hearts room will change.It is likely that this case also has several versions, such as Version A and Version B. Once you and Chief Shao go to 4 of Hearts, you should remember to carefully analyze the evidence of the suspects and not be confused by them.”
Ye Qi nodded carefully. “I understand. The information you gave me will reduce the difficulty of solving the case by a lot.” He scratched his head and suddenly thought that the two sides should exchange information, so he said, “Yes, 4 of Clubs is very simple and doesn’t eliminate people. Perhaps it is because the elimination rate of 4 of Hearts and 4 of Spades is too high, so that Diamonds and Clubs are easily passed.
Xiao Lou was curious. “This time, is the Clubs room playing cards?”
Ye Qi said, “4 of Clubs is called Cards Flying Chess. You directly draw a card and jump to the grid. There will either be rewards or punishments. Generally, the rewards are gold coins or an S-grade card being directly upgraded to full level. The punishment involves confiscating a card from your card pack at random. It is based on pure luck.”
This meant that in the second battle, 2 of Clubs tested player’s psychological quality and forced challengers to be eliminated. On the third level, 3 of Spades was used to improve the elimination rate and on the fourth level, 4 of Hearts and 4 of Spades were very difficult and eliminated more than 80% of challengers. The rest could enter the main city.
It was getting harder and harder.
Xiao Lou thought about it. “The Card World has two main cities, the City of the Sun and the City of the Moon. It should be the joker cards in charge of them respectively. After leaving 4 of Spades, we will separate again. You and Chief Shao should choose the City of the Moon after clearing the fourth level, so that we can meet again in the City of the Moon.”
Ye Qi wondered, “Why not choose the City of the Sun? Doesn’t it sound a bit brighter?”
Xiao Lou smiled. “It is because the City of the Moon has the largest and most professional casino. Don’t you know Chief Shao’s money-making ability?”
Ye Qi suddenly realized. “Oh, Chief Shao can always go to the casinos in the City of the Moon for gold! Then let’s choose the City of the Moon together!”
Just then, a low voice interrupted them. “What are you talking about?”
Xiao Lou smelt cooked meat and laughed. “I am chatting with Little Ye about 4 of Hearts and 4 of Clubs. Group Leader Yu, did you roast the hare?”
Yu Hanjiang tore off a meaty hare leg and handed it to Xiao Lou, sitting next to him. “Yes, eat it.”
Xiao Lou took a bite. Yu Hanjiang’s roasted meat was really fragrant and tender. Xiao Lou had never eaten game barbecue before and he took a bit mouthful, eating while praising, “It is delicious. This is the best barbecue I have eaten.”
Yu Hanjiang smiled at his satisfied expression and took out the hot fish. He was worried that it would be dirty so he found a bamboo leaf to place the fish on and gently pressed it into Xiao Lou’s hand, whispering, “You can’t eat the hare alone. Have some fish as well.”
This was the first time Xiao Lou received the ‘being fed’ treatment. Yu Hanjiang cared for him so intimately, holding the hare leg in one hand and the fish wrapped in bamboo leaf in the other. Xiao Lou was embarrassed and quickly said, “Cough, Ye Qi, you eat as well.”
Ye Qi had been waiting. He found that Group Leader Yu was taking care of Professor Xiao and it wasn’t yet his turn. He couldn’t see so he could only wait quietly to be fed.
Only then did Yu Hanjiang realize that he had ignored Ye Qi and he hurriedly tore off some hare meat to hand it to Ye Qi. “Eat it.”
Ye Qi gratefully took the food with his hand. “Thank you, Group Leader Yu!”
At this time, Shao Qingge came back with water. “There are many challengers near the spring. They came to pick up water during lunch time. Since we are having barbecue at the temple, the smell will spread and people might come here.”
Yu Hanjiang spoke lightly, “We have four people and the other challengers are groups of twos. They won’t rush in to find trouble.”
The Spades room was randomly matched. They met in 3 of Spades, negotiated in advance to form a team and just happened to be matched in 4 of Spades. At present, the other challengers were in teams of two and their combat effectiveness was naturally inferior.
It was as Yu Hanjiang said. A team of four was the strongest combination in this secret room and general challengers wouldn’t dare to face them. It was just because Xiao Lou happened to be blind that the couple on the mountain road wanted to take advantage of them.
Yu Hanjiang suggested, “We will eat lunch peacefully. In the afternoon, we will go out again once Professor Xiao and Ye Qi’s eyes are better to check the other challengers.”
Shao Qingge let go of his worries and sat down on the dry grass to share the hare and grilled fish. The sweet spring water and fragrant barbecue, Ye Qi ate with relish. Following bigshots to break through really wasn’t the same.
The four people were eating when two girls walked in cautiously and politely knocked on the door. Yu Hanjiang frowned and his sharp eyes swept over the door. “What?”
These two people were at Grandma Qin’s house last night and accidentally startled the Tibetan mastiff.
The girl in front had clean, short hair and her voice was calm. “We saw that you have grilled fish. We picked a lot of wild fish and mushrooms in the mountains. Do you want to exchange them for a fish?”
Yu Hanjiang moved to Xiao Lou’s ear and whispered. “Do you want to eat wild fruit?”
Xiao Lou thought that having three meals a day that was all meat wouldn’t be good for indigestion. A diet with meat and vegetables was good so he smiled and nodded. “Change it.”
Since Xiao Lou wanted to eat, Yu Hanjiang didn’t mind making an exchange for some fruit. He took two grilled fish from beside him. The girl’s eyes brightened and she immediately pushed a basket of wild fruit and mushrooms to Yu Hanjiang. “Thank you.”
Yu Hanjiang asked incredulously, “Where did this basket come from?”
The girl answered, “We made it ourselves with bamboo.”
Yu Hanjiang found that these girls were very clever and said, “Give this basket to us. I have a way to fish. If you still want to eat fish then come find us tomorrow.”
The two girls didn’t expect him to speak so well. They soon reacted and spoke excitedly. “That’s great! We know a place to pick wild berries in the forest. In addition, green apples, apricots and pears are also ripe this season. In the afternoon, we will pick more for you. By the way, if you want the bamboo baskets then we can make another two. There are many bamboos in the mountain. It isn’t difficult to make it.”
Yu Hanjiang nodded. “Thank you, then please make two more.”
The girls walked away cheerfully with the grilled fish.
They left and Ye Qi couldn’t help lamenting. “The more normal challengers will exchange materials and information. It mutually benefits everyone and hot good is this? Meanwhile, other people go straight to steal.” Clearly, he had upset about the people taking advantage of Xiao Lou’s blindness.
Xiao Lou spoke helplessly. “There are different types of people and we can’t control their ideas.”
To the side, Yu Hanjiang washed the fruit clean with water and handed the largest apple to Xiao Lou, whispering, “Taste it and see.”
Xiao Lou took a bite. The wild fruit was sour and sweet. It was just picked and the taste was excellent. The fruit’s vitamin content was certainly very rich. Xiao Lou couldn’t help smiling. “It is very good to eat. We should eat more wild fruit to help with digestion.”
Since his eyes couldn’t see, Xiao Lou gnawed on the apple very slowly. Yu Hanjiang couldn’t help thinking of a well-behaved small animal eating fruit. Then he looked back at Ye Qi and it was on the other end of the extremes. Ye Qi couldn’t see but he devoured the food like a hungry rat. He ate an apple in an instant and then his hand reached out to continue eating.
Yu Hanjiang thought that Xiao Lou’s eating appearance was more pleasing. Ye Qi’s mouth was covered in oil from the fish while Professor Xiao didn’t have a dirty mouth.
He had been holding a hare leg and his white slender fingers looked dirty. Once he finished eating, Yu Hanjiang picked up the bamboo barrel full of water and asked, “Do you want to wash your hands?”
Having greasy fingers was very uncomfortable. Xiao Lou had been worried about how to wash his hands and didn’t expect Group Leader Yu to be so careful. Xiao Lou immediately got up and said, “I will go and wash it.”
Yu Hanjiang told him, “Come here.”
He took Xiao Lou to the door and had Xiao Lou crouch down. Then he tilted the bamboo barrel 45 degrees and gently washed Xiao Lou’s hand.
Xiao Lou sensed the slightly cool water being poured on his fingertips and consciously moved his fingers under the water to wash them clean. The greasy feeling was completely washed away and it felt really smooth. Xiao Lou looked back at Yu Hanjiang and smiled. “Thank you.”
Yu Hanjiang saw his smile and couldn’t help whispering, “Why so polite? You are blind and I should take care of you.”
Ye Qi also ran out to wash his hands.
In order for Yu Hanjiang to show that he was simply looking after his blind teammates, he asked, “Do you need help?”
Ye Qi smiled and said, “No, I can wash them myself.”
Ye Qi stayed outside to wash his hands while Yu Hanjiang helped Xiao Lou back into the room. Shao Qingge saw the scene from behind and there was a meaningful smile on his face.
After lunch, Yu Hanjiang and Shao Qingge quickly cleaned the room and left their uneaten items in the temple to be eaten in the evening. Xiao Lou and Ye Qi’s eyes hadn’t recovered yet so Yu Hanjiang suggested, “You take a nap and you should be recovered by the time you wake up.”
The two men couldn’t see anyway, so they slept in the temple.
Yu Hanjiang went to the door and wanted to check the movements of the other challengers. Then he thought about how Xiao Lou and Ye Qi were blind. If someone came to find trouble, Shao Qingge couldn’t deal with them alone. Therefore, Yu Hanjiang stayed.
Shao Qingge stretched out. “I also want to lose my vision as soon as possible. After three hours, I can feel at ease. Otherwise, there will be a constant fear.”
Yu Hanjiang speculated, “The random blindness seems to be by teams? I am in a team with Professor Xiao so I’m normal while he is blind and you’re normal when Ye Qi is blind. The secret room shouldn’t allow two people to go blind at the same time or they will be too easily destroyed.”
Shao Qingge thought about it and nodded in agreement. “It makes sense. It seems that it will be our turn once the blindness ends.”
Xiao Lou and Ye Qi had a nap. Once Xiao Lou woke up, his eyes were haze. He rubbed his eyes hard and his vision was finally restored. Before, his vision was only dark. Now he could see this colourful world and Xiao Lou’s mood was complicated. He stood up and went to the door. “I can see.”
Yu Hanjiang walked to his side and asked with concern, “Are there any side-effects with your eyes?”
Xiao Lou shook his head. “I can see as clearly as before.”
Ye Qi woke up and his vision was also restored. He was so excited that he almost ran circles around the broken temple. “It feels so good to see! I was dying during these three hours when I was blind. I couldn’t find anything and was afraid of falling when walking. Ah, I suddenly sympathize with the villagers of Liuxi Village. They aren’t able to see since they are young. Isn’t this too tragic?”
Xiao Lou suddenly said, “I thought carefully. There should be a message misleading us when we entered the secret room.”
Ye Qi wondered, “Professor Xiao, did you find what is wrong?”
Xiao Lou spoke seriously. “If there is a genetic cause for the blindness then the most easily inherited disease I know is called ‘retinitis pigmentosa.’ However, those with this disease aren’t born blind. It begins with night blindness, they can’t see at night. Then once they get older, their field of view gradually shrinks and this finally leads to blindness.”
Yu Hanjiang listened to Xiao Lou and quickly caught the key point. “You mean, the entire village being blind isn’t due to a genetic inheritance? The ‘genetic inheritance’ mentioned when entering the secret room is actually misleading?”
Xiao Lou nodded. “Yes, in terms of medical genetics, a dominant genetic inheritance has a 50% probability of being acquired while a recessive genetic inheritance is 25%. There are also XY linked inheritances and this causes a significant difference in the prevalence between men and women. A 100% congenital blindness inheritance for men and women doesn’t exist. The secret room definitely misled us.”
Ye Qi looked ignorant while Shao Qingge rubbed his temple to show that he didn’t understand. Only Yu Hanjiang quickly understood Xiao Lou’s meaning and said, “The villagers’ blindness is more likely to be human-induced? Was some type of medicine used?”
Ye Qi scratched his head in a confused manner. “However, if blindness was suddenly caused then wouldn’t it be strange for those who first got it? Why didn’t anyone investigate?”
Xiao Lou looked back and said, “What if it is a pregnant woman or baby?”
The three people suddenly narrowed their eyes. For pregnant women, if the baby was born blind that it would indeed seem like a genetic disease when it fact, it was a drug-induced disability. For a baby, even if they could see things in the beginning and became blinded by a drug, children under three years old wouldn’t remember anything. They would grow up blind and not investigate…
Yu Hanjiang’s face was gloomy and terrible. “Doing this to pregnant women and babies, this is too cruel!”
Ye Qi’s voice trembled. “T-This murderer seems to have been lurking in the village for a long time, blinding generation after generation of villagers with drugs?”
Shao Qingge asked curiously, “Is there a medicine that can cause blindness in the baby’s eyes?”
Xiao Lou nodded. “There are many. As long as it affects the optic nerve, retina or corner, long-term use can blind both eyes.
The four people were silent at the same time. As the girl said last night, simply clearing 4 of Spades was simply. Just avoid the villagers and find a gem.
Yu Hanjiang stared at the sky and whispered. “In the evening, the four of us will take action together. Professor Xiao and I will go to Grandma Qin’s home to investigate. Ye Qi and Shao Qingge will use the Teleport Card to bug the homes of the three important people. Professor Xiao will open the Peach Blossom Spring in advance. If any of us are in danger then return there.”
Ye Qi was worried. “If we split up then how do we make contact with each other?”
Xiao Lou took out the Qin Guan card. “This Qin Guan allows us to set up a ‘heart connection’ so we can keep in touch at any time.”
Ye Qi’s expression was strange. “Qin Guan? If two people love each other, it doesn’t matter if they are separated?”
Xiao Lou smiled helplessly. “I don’t know what is going on with my hands but I keep drawing these strange character cards. Ignoring the skill description, these cards are very useful. Qin Guan’s heart connection is sharp enough to make contact across the secret room.”
The four people discussed countermeasures and then went outside.
The challengers were afraid to enter the village during the day and most hid on the mountain to find food, not interfering with each other. After all, this was only the first day and there was no need to be too radical as to fight directly. As for the two gems, apart from the one taken away from the temple by the girl last night, the remaining one was unknown.
In the afternoon, Shao Qingge became blind and he calmly returned to the temple to sleep. It was just before dusk when Shao Qingge regained his vision.
Out of the four people, only Yu Hanjiang hadn’t become blind. Yu Hanjiang was worried there would be an incident while acting and directly told Xiao Lou, “Once I lose my vision, directly send me back to the Peach Blossom Spring so I don’t affect you.”
Xiao Lou nodded seriously. “Rest assured, we will be wearing invisibility cloaks and won’t be found. I will leave the location of the Peach Blossom Spring in the temple. If there are any accidents then I will directly transfer you there.”
At dusk, the people in the village started to become busy. Many men went to the mountain to obtain water. This seemed to be a habit of the villagers and the challengers were worried they would be found and climbed to the top of the mountain. Yu Hanjiang’s group also cleaned the fish smell from the temple in advance and tightly closed the temple door.
Ye Qi and Shao Qingge had the Teleport Card and were responsible for investigating the village. They sent a message to Xiao Lou through the heart channel, “Grandma Qin has led the dog out.”
Xiao Lou looked at Yu Hanjiang and the latter simply nodded. “Go.”
The two people out on the invisibility cloak and quickly descended the mountain, quietly sneaking toward Grandma Qin’s home. Just then, they noticed a strange air current surging next to them and Yu Hanjiang whispered in an alert manner, “Who?”
A young man’s cold voice entered their ears. “We are also using the invisibility cloak to find gems. Everyone has their own ability. We can’t fight here since you should know the consequences of alerting the villagers.”
It seemed that this was a clever challenger. Once the villagers were alerted, it was likely that all challengers in the village would be collectively destroyed.
Yu Hanjiang nodded. “We will each search on our own and don’t make too many movements.”
All four of them were wearing cloaks and couldn’t see each other. However, Yu Hanjiang and Xiao Lou had been walking side by side and could feel the other person’s familiar breath. Xiao Lou just wanted to act when he heard Yu Hanjiang say in his ear. “Go to the kitchen. Something isn’t quite right.”