Grandma Qin and Grandma Sun soon left the temple.
The untied the ropes holding the dogs and opened the fence trapping the roosters. Then a large group of roosters and dogs following them out of the temple, the sounds they made livelier than a market.
All the dogs recognized their owners. Once they were released, they ran to their owners and rubbed their heads against their owners’ thighs. The villagers of Liuxi Village felt the dogs’ heads excitedly, as if they had found a relative they had been separated from after many years. For these blind people, dogs were the best partners. Not only did the dogs help them watch the house, the also accompanied the villagers and acted as ‘guide dogs.’
A young woman touched her dog while asking, “Aunt Qin, Aunt Sun, are you okay?”
The people next to her also asked about the situation in the temple. “The foreigners shouldn’t have made things difficult for you?” “What did they take our dogs to do?” “Why are they keeping all the dogs here?” “I thought they were going to kill the roosters for stew and the dogs for barbecue. Why are all these dogs okay?”
The crowd didn’t understand the challengers’ thinking and subconsciously thought the other side was stealing roosters and dogs just to eat.
Grandma Qin spoke coldly, “They stole them so we can’t hear the roosters in the morning so we can’t get up on time. They tied all the dogs on the west mountain so that they wouldn’t be discovered when stealing. The thing these outsiders really want are the precious gems in the village. These gems are valuable and can be sold for a lot of money!”
Grandma Sun added, “Yes, no one is here. They have probably left with the gem.
A young man suddenly exclaimed, “Ah, our gem was hidden under the bed. I got up this morning without checking it. Will it also be stolen? Will my wife be okay?”
Grandma Sun turned to him. “Go and check. Your wife will give birth in the next few days and her baby’s vital energy can’t be displaced.”
The man immediately took the dog and turned to go down the mountain. The man called Lin Er was the one who talked to Niu Niu’s mother on the day they came to the village. His wife was Lin Hui, the cousin of the village chief who would give birth in a few days. The village chief had revealed this information to Xiao Lou’s group.
The only person about to have a child in the village was Lin Hui and it was easy to tell. The moment Lin Er descended, the others followed Aunt Qin and also went down the mountain. The group of blind people was followed by roosters and this scene was extremely spectacular.
The challengers hiding on the roof of the ruined temple were relieved.
The young man lying next to Yu Hanjiang wondered, “Do you really have the gems?”
Yu Hanjiang quickly showed the green cat’s eye stone before retracting it.
The other side had just put down his worries. “Then we don’t have to worry about being robbed. Since we all have one, why not talk about cooperation?”
Yu Hanjiang’s eyes swept over the four people and asked, “Do you know each other?”
The man nodded. “Yes, we know each other in reality.”
Xiao Lou smiled and reminded them, “It isn’t convenient to talk while lying on the roof. How about we go down first?”
Everyone looked at each other carefully. Seven people lying side by side in strange postures, neck twisted 90 degrees to look at each other was really uncomfortable. The man seemed to have a jump card. He heard this and jumped off the roof with his companion. Liu Qiao flew down with the help of trees. Yu Hanjiang grabbed the trunk with one hand and he used his long legs to descend to the ground.
Xiao Lou looked at the ground with a bit of embarrassment. He had just been pulled up by Group Leader Yu and the roof was three metres high. Jumping straight down will definitely hurt his feet. He was hesitating when Yu Hanjiang raised his head and held out a hand to Xiao Lou.”Jump, I’ll catch you.”
Xiao Lou didn’t worry over it and jumped straight down. Yu Hanjiang reached out and caught him steadily. However, gravity meant that Xiao Lou’s body was directly in Yu Hanjiang’s arms. He was surrounded by the familiar man’s breath and this made X’s heart inexplicably stop. He hurriedly stepped back and pretended to comfortably say, “Thank you.”
Yu Hanjiang looked gently towards Xiao Lou before looking at the four people.
They were three men and one woman. The one who spoke to Yu Hanjiang was around 25 years old who looked good. Another was a middle-aged man around 40 years old had a beard on his chin. Apparently, he hadn’t shaved it in a long time. He never spoke and looked relatively calm. The combination of a man and woman should be a couple or partners. They were dressed young and fashionably.
The curly haired woman smiled. “The four of us are actually from the same design company. We were on a New Year’s group outing when there was an accident. Then we happened to meet in 4 of Spades.”
The young man introduced them. “This is our design director, Old Qi. Xiao Wu and Xiao Li are newly married and my last name is Zhou.”
Xiao Lou also smiled and introduced them. “This is Old Han, I am Yunxiao and this university student is surnamed Qiao. We also have teammates outside the village.”
He used a pseudonym again to avoid trouble occurring if his real name was known. After introducing each other, Xiao Lou asked, “How many clues do you have at present?”
The curly haired woman surnamed Li said, “Our gem was found in Lin Er’s house in the easternmost part of the village. His wife has a big stomach and is about to give birth. During the time when he accompanied his wife for a walk, we searched his house and found a gem under the bed.”
The young man said, “Our gem was found in Grandma Qin’s house. At that time, we happened to bump into you. You didn’t find it at Grandma Qini’s house so where did you find your gem?”
Xiao Lou said, “We found two in the farmland to the east. One is green and one is a nearly transparent white.”
The woman explained, “This is a cat’s eye stone and we suspect it is for a bracelet. Each gem is a different colour. We found a blue and brown one and you have a dark green and transparent one. There should be red, gold and white as well.”
The gold one was in Liu Qiao’s hand but Xiao Lou wasn’t going to reveal the truth about Liu Qiao’s single-person action.
As for the red one, it was found in the pond and snatched by the masked person. The white one should’ve been taken out of the village by the chameleon man and zombie-jumping woman.
Mr Zhou picked up a branch and crouched down to draw a picture on the ground. “The first should be the temple. Then three appeared in Grandma Qin’s home, the village chief’s home and Lin Er’s home whose wife is going to have a baby. Two were found in the farmland outside the village. Don’t you think these six are a bit strange when connected? Where is the last one?”
Xiao Lou picked up a branch and drew the intersection between the three lines. “It is in the pond.” The distribution of the seven gems formed a human person.
This was something they had long speculated about. The four strangers weren’t clean but suddenly realized after seeing the graphic. “The head is the west mountain and the feet is the farmland. The rest of the body is the village?”
Xiao Lou nodded. “Yes, what else did you find?”
The curly haired woman said, “Lin Er’s wife is called Hui Hui and her due date is in three days. She isn’t well and has been taking medicine. We checked the dregs of the medicine she poured into the yard and found human bones and many unknown Chinese herbal medicines. We speculated that this medicine should lead to a malformation of the baby’s eyes.”
The four people’s approach was different from Xiao Lou but they also speculated there was a problem with Grandma Sun and Grandma Qin. They stole the roosters and the dogs to lead the villagers here to the ruined temple. The conversation between Grandma Qin and Grandma Sun in front of the human bones pit revealed a lot of key information. It could be said that the people who stole the animals made great contributions.
Xiao Lou touched his chin thoughtfully. “Based on the dialogue between Qin and Sun just now, Grandma Sun might plan to slaughter the village on the day of the Autumn Harvest.”
The curly haired woman stared. “Slaughter the villagers?”
Yu Hanjiang understood Xiao Lou’s meaning. “Just now, Grandma Sun said she was tired and would rest after her daughter’s death anniversary. Do you understand what she means by rest?”
The curly haired woman choked up for a moment. Then Old Qi, who hadn’t spoken from the beginning, suddenly opened her mouth. “Grandma Sun’s hatred of this village hasn’t diminished. For her daughter, she will definitely slaughter the village again and let the villagers be buried with her daughter.”
The three people’s expressions changed and the curly haired woman couldn’t believe it. “Old Qi, are you serious? There are a hundreds of houses and should have a population of approximately 300 in the village. Even if they can’t see, won’t it be difficult for Grandma Sun to kill all the villagers?”
Old Qi replied, “Don’t forget who she is. She is the village doctor and can let all the villagers drink the medicine she made. She can use ‘poison’ to kill the villagers.”
The woman understood this and her face became uglier.
Xiao Wu asked, “Letting the entire village die together, will Grandma Sun poison the spring water?”
Xiao Lou shook his head. “Poisoning the spring won’t guarantee that all villagers will die at the same time. Many people pick up two buckets of water in advance for storage. These two buckets of water can be drunk for a long time. I think it is more likely that she teamed up with Grandma Qin to poison the rice wine that will be drunk at the Autumn Harvest.”
Yu Hanjiang agreed. “On the Autumn Harvest day, everyone will drink to worship their ancestors. This is the tradition of Liuxi Village. As long as they drink the poisoned wine, everyone will immediately be poisoned and buried with her daughter.”
The group fell silent at the same time.
In fact, they could understand Grandma Sun’s mentality. If this was replaced by anyone, their daughter’s tragic death meant they would hate the enemy and hack them into meat sauce. If her daughter was really killed by the people of the village, as a mother who lost her beloved daughter, it was reasonable to kill the village for revenge.
However, hatred distorted her mind. She not long slaughtered the villagers but also retaliated against the descendants of the villagers.
The descendants hadn’t participated in the events of 35 years ago such as Lin Er, Liu Hui, etc. The babies born later didn’t know anything at all. They were poisoned blind by the grandmothers since they were born. How innocent were they? Why should they bear the revenge for more than 30 years? They didn’t just have to grow up in darkness, they had to drink their parents or grandparents’ bones as well?
In ancient times, some people made mistakes and the ‘entire clan’ of those involved would be wiped out. This cruel system had long been abolished in modern times. Some people made mistakes and the more than 100 families in the village were buried with them, even their descendants retaliated against… this was a bit too much.
In Grandma Sun really wanted to slaughter the villagers, the challengers would face two choices.
The first option was to sit back and ignore it. 4 of Spades didn’t require ‘rescuing the village.’ It was to find the gem and live in this world for seven days. As long as Liuxi Village was destroyed again, the challengers could stay in the village for seven days and live in their homes, avoiding the wind and the rain. It was equivalent to lying down and winning for the challengers who found gems.
The second option was for the challengers who knew the truth to interfere with Grandma Sun and Grandma Qin’s plan. The more than 300 villagers would be rescued and their descendants would no longer suffer from blindness.
However, this voice was very difficult. First of all, the villagers wouldn’t believe in these ‘outsiders’ over Grandma Sun and Grandma Qin. Once they drank the poisonous wine at the Autumn Harvest Festival, they would be killed.
Xiao Lou looked back at the four people. “I personally think that if we want a perfect clearance, we have to save the villagers.”
The four men looked at each other in agreement.
According to the timeline, the Autumn Harvest Festival and Liu Hui’s due date was on the fifth day. This was three days later.
The challengers must’ve found all the gems by the fifth day. Those who didn’t find the gems and wanted to steal the gems would be eliminated after fierce internal fighting. The rest of the challengers would protect the gems well. As long as they sat there and ignored everything, they could directly clear the instance after the villagers were destroyed.
This was the easier way to clear the instance and was basically the same as the description when entering 4 of Spades. Hide from the villagers, find the gems and then hide from other challengers. Protect their gems from being robbed.
Those wanting a perfect clearance would have to save the villagers and the difficulty was much higher. However, thinking of the innocent children, Xiao Lou couldn’t sit idly by. He looked at Yu Hanjiang and said, “We have to find a way to stop Grandma Sun’s actions.”
Old Qi touched the beard on his chin. “The Autumn Harvest Festival is the fifth day, right? On the evening of the fourth day, we can sneak into the village and steal all the medicine from Grandma Sun.”
Xiao Lou, “…”
The four of them were simply a ‘stealing gang.’ They stole the roosters and dogs last night and now they wanted to steal the medicine.
Xiao Lou didn’t object to this idea. “We can try it. On the fifth day at 24:00, all the card skills will refresh and everyone will act together. You go to Grandma Sun’s house to steal her medicine while we go to Grandma Qin’s house to change her rice wine.”
The curly haired woman was worried. “Can it be that smooth?”
Her crow’s mouth made Xiao Lou’s heart jump. Could it really be that smooth? His heart was worried.
The seven people separated with Old Qi reminding, “There are challengers in the village who didn’t get the gems. They will certainly try to rob you so you should be careful.”
Xiao Lou nodded. “You too.”
The four of them went up the mountain while Yu Hanjiang and Liu Qiao returned to the farmland to the east of the village.
Two girls were chatting with Ye Qi under the tree, their soft voices entering Xiao Lou’s ear. “We found a gem. Have you found one? Do you want to work together to try and get a perfect clearance?”
It was the girls who had been robbed after catching the wooden box in the pond. They were apparently lying. Ye Qi was just about to speak when Shao Qingge stopped him, eyes narrowed in a faint smile. “We didn’t find a gem. We were worried about what to do and didn’t expect the two of you to come here. Leave the gem behind.”
He winked at Ye Qi and Ye Qi understood immediately. He used the teleport card to appear behind the girl and trapped them with the Balance. Then he took out his guitar and started to play. The two girls immediately became sleepy.
They were shocked and exclaimed, “We don’t have gem. Don’t do it!”
Ye Qi put away his guitar and Shao Qingge smiled. “I know. You were trying to see if we have a gem and then find a way to rob us, right? Unfortunately, we don’t have one. The two of you should look elsewhere as soon as possible.”
The two girls ran away in a sloppy manner. After they left, Xiao Lou’s group of three came to the tree.
Ye Qi excitedly wondered, “Professor Xiao, what did you find?”
Xiao Lou briefly retold the conversation they heard at the temple and then the next plan.
Ye Qi exclaimed, ”Definitely save them! The perfect clearance condition should be to save the villagers. Liuxi Village is like an instance in a game. The first task is to avoid the villagers and look for the gems. In the process of finding the gems, the players will discover the secrets of the village and trigger the hidden task to save the villagers.”
Liu Qiao looked at him. “Do you often play single-player games?”
Ye Qi laughed. “Yes, but I play xianxia type RPG games. According to the game’s rules, place seven gems and open the village’s mechanism to summon the dragon.”
This secret room might not have a ‘summoning the dragon’ setting but Ye Qi’s understanding was almost the same. It was really like the plot of a game. Players came to the village, found the secret and rescued the villagers.
Moreover, Xiao Lou remembered the village chief’s words. “As long as you are willing to help me, you can take away all of the village’s jade resources.”
Perhaps these jade resources were the reward for perfectly clearing the instance?
Thinking up to here, Xiao Lou said, “Since everyone agreed, we will plan the next action.” He looked at Yu Hanjiang. “Group Leader Yu, you are more professional in this regard. What do you think?”
“At present, the four people in the west mountain are holding two gems and the five of us are holding three gems. A couple with one gem escaped the village and the last gem was robbed by the masked person, who is very strong. Those who got the gems aren’t easy to provoke. Other challengers who want to rob the gem will likely form a team.”
It might be harsh but there was no way. The Spades room was destined to eliminate people. Those who didn’t find a gem could only blame themselves for being too slow while those who were robbed could only blame themselves for being too weak.
Shao Qingge’s eyes narrowed. “Just now, the two girls wanted to steal from us. After the secret room refreshes at 24:00 tonight, the system will give the prompt that there are 0 gems remaining in the village.”
Ye Qi was obviously nervous. “This means that people are likely to team up tomorrow to steal the gems. We have to guard against being robbed of the gems. After all, we have three!”
Yu Hanjiang took a deep breath. “I don’t want to clash with other challengers. If they rush at us, we will have to fight and might kill them, so…”
Xiao Lou understood what he meant. “Shall we go out of the village?”
Yu Hanjiang nodded. “It might be dangerous outside the village but it isn’t a dead end. We have five people and a large number of guards. I believe that facing a group of beasts without intelligence is easier than dealing with other challengers.”
Everyone agreed with Group Leader Yu.
Xiao Lou smiled. “Then we will leave the village for two days. On the fifth day when the Autumn Harvest Festival starts, we will return to Liuxi Village. Liuxi Village is bound to be very chaotic in the next two days. Let’s not wade in this muddy water and go out to avoid it.”
The five people were ready to turn away.
The neglected village chief didn’t understand what they were saying about the game, instance and saving the villagers. He just heard that everyone was going to leave the village and immediately interrupted with a frightened cry. “There are many wild animals outside the village. You won’t be able to live!”
Xiao Lou looked back at him with gentle eyes. “People are more terrible compared to wild animals.”
Ye Qi smiled. “Village Chief, do you want to follow us?”
The village chief’s expression was complicated. He subconsciously shook his head but remembered that he had been expelled from the village. Finally, he nodded his head. The six people moved side by side.
On the west mountain, Old Qi was holding a telescope and suddenly said, “They are leaving the village?”
Next to him, Xiao Wu couldn’t help saying, “Staying in the village means being targeted by challengers who haven’t got a gem. In fact, it isn’t safe. What if a broken challenger drags us down into the water?”
Old Qi nodded solemnly. “Should we also go out of the village for two days?”
The four people glanced at each other and quickly went down the mountain. A person in a mask suddenly came out from behind the tree. He held a red gem in his hand as he followed quietly.
A prompt appeared on everyone’s floating boxes at the same time.
[Liuxi Village, day 3, 24:00]
[Number of stones remaining in the village: 0.]
[Number of challengers remaining in the village: 8]
Xiao Lou saw these prompts and couldn’t help sighing. “This morning, there were 18 challengers in the village and now there are only 8. It seems that Old Qi’s group also left the village. The remaining eight people in the village will fight each other but in fact… the gems have all been taken out of the village.”
The howls of the wolves range in their ears and there was the sound of venomous snakes crawling on the ground. The wilderness was dangerous but their survival rate was higher if they went into the wild with the gem.