The hospital morgue usually contained the corpses of patients who weren’t claimed by their families. For example, if the family members worked in other places and the patients died in the hospital in an unexpected emergency, the corpses would be temporarily stored in the morgue until the families signed to claim them. Some family members left the corpses in the hospital for a day or two in order to prepare for the funeral and then picked them up when the funeral home was arranged.
The corpses here usually weren’t stored for long periods of time. It was just a temporary transit station.
The air-conditioning in the morgue was fully on. The light was dim and the environment was a bit gloomy but in fact, the number of corpses wasn’t very high.
The rows of large refrigerated drawers here were like cargo containers. On the outside of each freezer drawer was a number plate with the names of the deceased. Xiao Lou quickly scanned the morgue and found there were only five drawers with names on them.
They were numbers 5, 7, 11, 15 and 17. The other drawers with numbers on them had no name information on the outside. Xiao Lou tried to open one and found it was empty. It seemed that only those five drawers were currently being used.
Starting from number 5, Xiao Lou opened all five drawers. The people inside were four elderly people and one young man. Their faces weren’t familiar and there were no traces of dismemberment.
Liu Qiao looked up and asked Xiao Lou, “Professor Xiao, have these five corpses been murdered?” It was no wonder she was suspicious. After all, this secret room contained a Hearts element. The first reaction when seeing a corpse was probably that they had been murdered.
She was dressed as a nurse and wore a mask, revealing only a pair of bright eyes.
Most people who came to the morgue at night and saw so many corpses might be scared to death. However, Liu Qiao’s eyes didn’t show the slightest fear. She was calm like she was looking at an exhibit in a museum.
Xiao Lou appreciated Liu Qiao’s composure. After all, ‘hauntings’ were just part of TV dramas. They were materialists who learned about the human body and obtained the truth of a case by dissecting cadavers. They didn’t do anything wrong and didn’t need to worry about ‘fierce ghosts’.
Xiao Lou put on sterile gloves and whispered to Liu Qiao, “Your suspicions are reasonable. Since there are corpses, I will check their cause of death. You will be my assistant.”
Liu Qiao simply nodded and stood next to Xiao Lou. “Are you going to do an autopsy?”
“Not for the time being. If I find anything suspicious then I’ll talk about it.” Xiao Lou gently lifted the white cloth covering a corpse. “I will first do a check to confirm the cause of death and the approximate time of death. Xiao Liu, remove all the white cloths from the bodies.”
In the hospital, every suspicious point must be investigated. Xiao Lou believed in Yu Hanjiang’s instinct that the closest connection to the dismembered body was the morgue. Even if the dismembered body parts couldn’t be found in the morgue, the morgue must contain a key clue and he shouldn’t let it go.
In the quiet morgue late at night.
Liu Qiao assisted Xiao Lou in turning over the corpses. Xiao Lou wore gloves and checked their pupils, muscle and skin spots while softly dictating to Liu Qiao and Yu Hanjiang in his mind.
“A 60 year old woman. There are traces of a pacemaker installed on the side of her chest. Judging from the condition of the corpse, the time of death has exceeded 48 hours. The cause of death is likely to be heart failure.”
“An older man over 80 years old with severe skin jaundice. There are no surgical traces on his body. He should be hospitalized for advanced liver cancer. This critical condition led to death and the time of death is less than 24 hours.”
He reported it one by one and Yu Hanjiang quickly recorded it.
They reached the last body, that of the young man. The moment Liu Qiao lifted the white cloth covering the corpse, Xiao Lou frowned suspiciously. “There are two surgical wounds on the deceased’s body.”
Xiao Lou gently touched the two surgical scars with his gloved hands. “The deceased is a young man around 30 years old. He has old surgical scars on his right lower abdomen and right upper abdomen. Seeing the healing of the wound, the operation should’ve been done over a year ago. Based on what I can see, the surgical incision on the right lower abdomen is close to the iliac bone and can be an appendectomy. For the upper right abdomen, the liver and gallbladder are nearby.”
“Two surgical scars?” Yu Hanjiang was immediately alert. “Can it be confirmed by autopsy?”
“The wounds have healed. If I cut it open again, it will leave obvious stitches and cause unnecessary trouble. Xiao Liu and I sneaked in and I don’t dare risk dissecting it.” Xiao Lou paused before adding, “I’ll check again. Maybe there are other clues.”
“Yes.” Yu Hanjiang sat up in the hospital bed, holding the notebook in his hand while whispering, “Pay attention to safety.”
“Don’t worry, we have the invisibility cloaks and can go invisible.” Xiao Lou looked at Liu Qiao. “Xiao Liu, help me place the corpse to the left lying position.”
“Okay.” Liu Qiao assisted Xiao Lou and turned the corpse sideways. Xiao Lou carefully inspected the corpse and a puzzled expression soon appeared on his face.
Liu Qiao was worried. “What’s the matter?”
“…On the man’s right side, there are only 11 ribs.” Xiao Lou concluded.
“Normally there should be 12 ribs right?” Liu Qiao might be a freshman but she had basic anatomical knowledge.
“Turn to the left again.” Xiao Lou and Liu Qiao worked together to turn the body over. After another careful examination, Xiao Lou spoke in a deep voice. “There are 12 ribs on the left and 11 ribs on the right. Look here.”
“Is it a surgical trace?” Liu Qiao’s eyes widened slightly. She followed Xiao Lou’s finger and found a shallow trace on the right rear of the deceased. It had fused with the surrounding skin for too long. If Xiao Lou wasn’t careful enough then it would’ve been missed.
“This surgery uses a special material suture of plastic surgery also known as cosmetic suture. The scar left after the wound healed is shallow.” Xiao Lou had seen this type of suture before. Along with the missing right rib, he soon thought of something. “The deceased doesn’t have congenital rib loss. The 12th rib on his right side was artificially removed.”
“Could it be that there was a tumor on the rib and it had to be cut off?”
“Not necessarily.” Xiao Lou looked serious as he drew a long along the shallow surgical trace with his finger. He frowned lightly. “Based on the position of the incision, the bigger possibility is kidney removal.”
“……” Liu Qiao was taken aback when she heard Xiao Lou’s speculation and immediately looked down at the male corpse in front of her.
“Many nephrectomies are performed in a lateral position and incisions are made diagonally near the 12th rib. Since the ribs at the back of the person blocks the kidney, in order to not be blocked during the operation, the chief surgeon will often remove the 12th rib. Then they would separate and ligate the kidney on the right side, completely removing it from the human body.” Xiao Lou explained to Liu Qiao and Yu Hanjiang in a low voice.
“It seems the deceased had his kidney removed as well as his rib?” Yu Hanjiang’s low voice was heard. “Is it necessary to remove it due to kidney cancer or was a healthy kidney removed… to sell to the black market? Is it an organ smuggling case?!”
“I prefer the latter. His surgical wound is very strange…”
Before he finished speaking, there was the sound of footsteps heading to the door. They were male leather shoes stepping on the floor. Xiao Lou’s face changed abruptly and he immediately had Liu Qiao hold the corpse. He took off his gloves and took a few photos with his mobile phone. The two of them moved at a rapid speed and within 10 seconds, the corpse was covered in a white corpse and the five bodies pushed back into the drawers.
“Invisibility!” Xiao Lou took out the invisibility cloak and disappeared. Liu Qiao also quickly wrapped herself in the clock.
The moment the two of them hid in the cloak, there was the sound of the morgue door opening. A tall man walked in. He wore a neatly ironed white coat, white clothes and silver-rimmed glasses that reflected a cold light under the illumination of the incandescent light in the morgue.
It was Zhao Sen!
The murderer had appeared in front of them. Recalling the plot that she had just watched in the Peach Blossom Spring, Liu Qiao’s pupils shrank and her body immediately stiffened. She really wasn’t afraid of the dead but she was afraid of perverted living people! Now a perverted person was in front of her.
Xiao Lou felt sweat dripping down his back.
In the morgue late at night, Zhao Sen walked in alone. Xiao Lou and Liu Qiao might be in an invisible state and couldn’t be discovered by him but when the man looked around coldly with sharp eyes, Xiao Lou still felt like a snake was staring at him.
Zhao Sen slowly made a circle in the morgue. Then he suddenly turned to look at Xiao Lou’s location and headed toward where the two of them were standing invisibly. Xiao Lou was numb and he held his breath, not daring to make any sound. Liu Qiao also felt frozen. Her heart was beating violently but her breathing was about to stop. The two of them clenched their fists nervously and held their breaths.
Zhao Sen’s face was only 10 centimeters away from Xiao Lou. Xiao Lou’s mind was blank and he didn’t dare to move. Yu Hanjiang felt Xiao Lou’s nervousness and immediately said, “The existence of the Peach Blossom Spring is three hours. I will send you there straight away!”
Xiao Lou didn’t want to face this perverted person but his sense of reason told him that he couldn’t back down. He continued to maintain the motionless posture and held his breath while speaking to Yu Hanjiang in his mind, “It’s fine. Zhao Sen can’t see me. He ran to the morgue in the middle of the night for a reason. I want to see what he is going to do.”
Yu Hanjiang warned, “If something is wrong then go right away. I’ll meet you here.”
The full level Peach Blossom Spring could exist for three hours. It was why Xiao Lou and Liu Qiao dared to break into the morgue at night. If there was trouble then the two people could be transmitted back in an instant.
It was scary to have Zhao Sen in front of the two of them, but Xiao Lou quickly calmed down. He wanted to see what Zhao Sen was doing here.
Zhao Sen’s face stopped when he was 10cm away from Xiao Lou. Xiao Lou could almost feel his perverted breath. Just as Xiao Lou was holding his breath for nearly half a minute, Zhao Sen whispered, “I thought there were people in here. It seems I am thinking too much. How can the morgue be haunted? That is something that only happens in horror movies.”
He turned and left. Xiao Lou’s heartbeat was almost out of control before it calmed down a bit. After all, the murderer’s enlarged face was right in front of him! The psychological and visual impact was even scarier than a horror movie!
Xiao Lou stared at Zhao Sen’s back. Zhao Sen turned and went to the rightmost corner of the morgue. The drawers there only had number plates and no names. Zhao Sen stopped there. Then he gently pulled open a freezer and looked inside.
Since Xiao Lou and Liu Qiao’s hiding location was far away from Zhao Sen’s current position, the two of them didn’t dare walk over in case they made a sound. Therefore, Xiao Lou couldn’t see precisely what was in the drawer of the freezer. Still, the thing hidden in the morgue must be a corpse.
The moment Zhao Sen saw the corpse in the freezer, a weird smile appeared on his face. He closed the freezer after one glance, turned off the light in the morgue and left while locking the door of the morgue.
Zhao Sen left and the morgue became pitch black. Xiao Lou took a deep breath to calm his heartbeat. He took off the invisibility cloak and whispered in Liu Qiao’s ear. “That nameless drawer actually has someone.”
This was worthy of a difficult secret room. Not only did they have to collect clues in the morgue at night but hidden clues were also set up!
There were four walls of freezers and only five clearly had the names of people. Initial checking would make people subconsciously think that there were only corpses in the drawer where names were written while those that were blank were empty.
Xiao Lou had opened two unnamed drawers just now and checked them. He confirmed they were empty and didn’t waste time going through the empty drawers one by one. Who would’ve thought there would be a body in a drawer in the corner?!
Xiao Lou quickly walked to the place where Zhao Sen had been. The lights of the morgue were turned off by Zhao Sen and Xiao Lou didn’t dare turn on the lights in case Zhao Sen came back. He had to turn on his phone.
Xiao Lou and Liu Qiao opened the drawer under the faint light of the mobile phone screen. In the drawer was a black plastic garbage bag. They opened the plastic bag and found…
There was only a head.
The head was cut off and there wasn’t even an extra blood vessel attached to the skin of the neck. The eyes on the head were so wide that they were about to protrude from the eye sockets. The horrified expression on the face seemed to be a fixed on it.
The light of the mobile phone was weak. In the dark morgue, they suddenly saw a head with wide eyes. This image was too shocking and the two of them couldn’t help gasping.
Liu Qiao’s face was white. “This person looks familiar?”
Xiao Lou’s teeth were slightly trembling and he had to take a deep breath to find his voice. “Yes… in 2 of Hearts, the corpse who was taken away after being chopped up by Zhao Sen. It is his cousin, He Yongqiang.”
Proofreader: Fictional Reality