Chapter 524 – Familiar But Unfamiliar
Ye Qi woke up and found that the surrounding environment was very familiar. He was sleeping on the bed of his university dormitory and the wall next to him had posters of his favorite singer pasted on them. His friend on the opposite bed was playing LOL on the computer while the little fatty on the next bed was wearing headphones while listening to a song. Only one person was seriously studying. His computer was opened to the review material set by the teacher.
Ye Qi sat up from bed and stared at his roommates, fearing that they were all hunters and would surround him the next moment.
However, a few minutes passed and nothing happened.
His roommates were still doing their own thing and didn’t notice Ye Qi’s abnormality.
It wasn’t known how much time passed before the little fatty who was listening to a song got up to go to the toilet. He met Ye Qi’s eyes and couldn’t help being stunned. “Ye Qi, why are you staring at me? You slept long enough. It is noon. Do you want to go downstairs to eat?”
Ye Qi came to his senses and asked, “Xiao Pan, what date is it today?”
His roommate Pan Yun answered, “December 24th. Are you confused after sleeping? You don’t even remember today’s date.” Then he reached out a hand to test Ye Qi’s forehead, as if wondering if Ye Qi had a fever.
Ye Qi’s expression changed. He avoided the hand, got dressed quickly and got out of bed. He took the mobile phone on the table and rushed out of the dormitory like a gust of wind, leaving his three teammates looking at each other.
It was noon this time. The sun was shining brightly and many students were walking toward the cafeteria. The paths of the campus were full of people and there were many couples holding hands and snuggling intimately. Ye Qi was surrounded by familiar faces and it made him feel confused for a while.
Two girls saw Ye Qi and walked toward him. The class leader with a ponytail said, “Ye Qi, I heard you are going to participate in the singing competition?”
The curly-haired girl next to her smiled sweetly. “We will go to the scene to cheer for you. Jiayou!”
Ye Qi’s mood was complicated. He clearly remembered that at noon on December 24th, he did meet the two girls when going downstairs to eat. The two of them were his friends in university and happened to say these words at the time.
This scene was very much like a recurrence of the past.
Ye Qi took a deep breath to calm himself down and replied as calmly as possible, “Thank you. I am going to the cafeteria to eat. Do you want to come with me?”
“Okay, we happen to be going to the cafeteria as well.”
Ye Qi alertly followed them to the cafeteria.
The university cafeteria which was crowded with people, the long queues during peak hours, the smell of food in his memory and the familiar faces at the dining window… everything made Ye Qi think he was back at school in reality.
He touched his pocket and found that his card pack wasn’t on his body.
Ye Qi was inwardly nervous but he smiled on the surface and lined up with his two classmates to eat.
He paid for the meal and didn’t rush to eat it. After all, poisoning the meals in the Spades secret room had happened more than once or twice. Ye Qi pretended to have no appetite and as he fiddled with the food on the plate, he checked things with the two people. “By the way, what is the date of Professor Zhou’s class exam?”
The class leader answered, “It is January 15th. There is still half a month to study.”
Ye Qi said, “That’s fine. The first class in the afternoon is his class. Can you help me ask for leave?”
The class leader raised her head and looked at him questioningly. “Are you mistaken? His class isn’t this afternoon.”
Ye Qi pretended to have a headache and rubbed his temples. “I just woke up and my mind is confused… ah, my stomach is a bit uncomfortable. I will go to the bathroom first. The two of you should eat slowly.”
He quickly got up and left. He thought the two people would catch up with him and attack him but strangely, the two of them didn’t move. Rather, they smiled at him in an understanding manner and continued to bury their heads to eat while exchanging some gossip about the school.
Ye Qi went downstairs in a doubtful manner.
These people weren’t hunters? What exactly was the mission of this secret room?
His teammates weren’t around. Ye Qi thought about it and decided to contact Shao Qingge first. The secret code that Shao Qingge told his teammates was a string of numbers which should be his personal mobile phone number. Not many people knew it and it was difficult to impersonate him.
Ye Qi called the phone according to the number in his memory. There were a few beeps before Shao Qingge’s lazy voice was heard. “Hello, who is this?”
Ye Qi excitedly said, “Chief Shao, it’s me!”
Shao Qingge was puzzled. “Who are you?”
Ye Qi thought Shao Qingge didn’t recognize his voice and hurriedly said, “I am Xiao Ye.”
Shao Qingge replied lazily, “Xiao Ye… oh, is it the young master that Old Chen forced on me at the nightclub yesterday? I didn’t touch you. Why are you calling my private number? Is it because you want money?”
Ye Qi, “????”
Ye Qi was stunned in place and didn’t know how to respond. A moment passed before he asked doubtfully, “What young master? You went to a nightclub last night? Is your private life so unruly?”
Shao Qingge raised an eyebrow. “Aren’t you managing me too much?”
The more Ye Qi listened, the more upset he became. He took a deep breath and said solemnly, “Chief Shao, now isn’t the time for jokes. Where are you? I’m coming to you. We have to meet as soon as possible! This world is so strange…”
Shao Qingge laughed softly. “What are you talking about? Meet for what?”
The two of them were talking without understanding each other and Ye Qi realized that something wasn’t right.
Chief Shao might like to tease him but at critical moments, Shao Qingge could always distinguish between whether to joke around or be serious. Now Shao Qingge didn’t understand about meeting up. The only possibility was that the Shao Qingge on the other end of the phone wasn’t the Shao Qingge he knew.
Ye Qi’s back became cold when he realized this and he simply hung up.
He walked quickly out of the school and headed west along the sidewalk.
The Jiangzhou Conservatory of Music was located in a university area recently built by the government. It happened that Jiangzhou Medical University was also in this area. Liu Qiao was a student of the Department of Traditional Chinese Medicine while Xiao Lou was a professor of forensic medicine here.
Shao Qingge wasn’t himself so Ye Qi wanted to go to the medical university to see if he could find his other teammates.
The distance between the two schools was no more than one kilometer. Ye Qi quickly came to the gate of the medical university.
It was near the end of the semester and the students of the medical university were in a hurry. They carried school bags and rode bicycles. Most of them were heading in the direction of the teaching buildings and the library.
A handsome young man with glasses and wearing a white coat approached. He should’ve just come out of the laboratory building and was still carrying a cage of mice. Ye Qi politely asked him, “Hello, Senior. Can I please ask where the student dormitory of the Department of Traditional Chinese Medicine is?”
The handsome guy pushed up his glasses. “Are you looking for the boys’ dormitory or the girls’ dormitory?”
Ye Qi coughed. “The girls’ dormitory.”
The boy pointed to the front. “Turn right at the second intersection. It is the red building in the dormitory area.”
Ye Qi thanked him and followed the instructions. He soon found the red dormitory building. Two girls happened to finish eating in the cafeteria and were walking toward the dormitory building. Ye Qi quickly stepped forward to stop them and asked with a smile, “Hello, do you know which dormitory Liu Qiao, a freshman of the Department of Traditional Chinese Medicine, lives in? I am looking for her for something.”
The two girls looked at him curiously, making Ye Qi a bit uncomfortable. He barely accepted the girls’ gaze and forced out a smile.
After a while, a girl smiled and said, “Wait a minute. Liu Qiao is my roommate. I’ll go upstairs and call her.”
He didn’t expect such good luck. He actually met Xiao Liu’s roommate.
Ye Qi told her, “Thank you.”
The two girls went upstairs. They opened the dormitory door and spoke to Liu Qiao, who was sitting at her desk and reading a book. “Liu Qiao, there is a handsome guy downstairs looking for you. Tell me honestly, is he your boyfriend?”
Liu Qiao was expressionless. “Don’t joke around. I don’t know any handsome guys.”
One girl pulled Liu Qiao to the window and pointed downstairs. “That one over there. He said he is looking for Liu Qiao who is a freshman of the Department of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Tell me, is there a second Liu Qiao in our department in addition to you?”
Liu Qiao raised an eyebrow before changing her clothes. “I’ll go and take a look.”
Her roommates were smiling secretly behind her and whispering. Liu Qiao looked back at them coldly. “Don’t think about it and don’t talk nonsense. I don’t know this boy at all.”
She left her roommates looking at each other and turned to go out.
After going downstairs, Liu Qiao looked at Ye Qi in front of her. It was as her roommate said. He was indeed a handsome young man, with beautiful features and fair skin. He was dressed in casual clothes and white sneakers. He looked to be 17 or 18 years old and was youthful, energetic and full of vigor.
Liu Qiao walked up to Ye Qi and asked casually, “Classmate, are you looking for me?”
The ‘Xiao Liu’ that Ye Qi wanted to blurt out was stuck in his throat. He swallowed it down with difficulty and asked tentatively, “Liu Qiao? You don’t know me anymore?”
Liu Qiao’s face was blank and her voice was cold. “Should I know you? I don’t remember where we met.”
Ye Qi, “……”
The smile on his face disappeared and even his eyes widened with surprise. Liu Qiao saw this and raised an eyebrow. “Classmate, are you looking for the wrong person? My department has someone called Liu Qing. Are you looking for her?”
Ye Qi smiled bitterly and shook his head. “It’s fine. I might be wrong.”
He turned to leave with a slightly lost expression. He had just taken two steps when he turned back and asked, “Do you know Professor Xiao?”
Liu Qiao asked, “Which Professor Xiao?”
“Professor Xiao Lou from the Department of Forensic Medicine.”
Liu Qiao nodded. “Yes, I know him. Professor Xiao is very popular and many people are rushing to take his elective courses. I also went to listen to it.”
“Then do you know when he has classes? I also want to go and listen.”
Liu Qiao looked at him doubtfully. “What department are you in?”
Ye Qi casually answered, “The Clinical Department.”
Liu Qiao answered, “For the first class this afternoon, he is holding a lecture in Classroom 302 of the teaching building. You should go there in advance to occupy a seat.”
Ye Qi thanked her and turned to leave.
Two people in a row didn’t remember him, which made Ye Qi feel more confused. Was it the collective amnesia of his teammates? It couldn’t be so dog blooded! Besides, why did he still have his memories if it was arranged for everyone to lose their memories collectively?
This world was very wrong. Shao Qingge and Liu Qiao weren’t right.
Xiao Lou had an open class at 2:30 p.m. this afternoon. It was now 1 o’clock. Ye Qi took advantage of the lunch break to find the Jiangzhou Criminal Investigation Police Team. The police officer in charge of the reception asked him if he needed any help. Ye Qi directly said, “I have an important clue and I’m looking for your Group Leader Yu.”
The policewoman dialed an internal number. Soon, Yu Hanjiang walked out of the office.
Yu Hanjiang happened to be wearing a police uniform and his expression was serious and indifferent. Ye Qi’s heart couldn’t help trembling when he saw the man’s sharp eyes but he bravely met Yu Hanjiang’s gaze.
Yu Hanjiang sat down at the desk and asked, “Hello, what clues do you want to provide?”
Yu Hanjiang obviously didn’t recognize him at first glance. Ye Qi became anxious and said in a low voice, “I was threatened by someone yesterday. A man called Lu Jiuchuan sent a dead mouse to my dormitory, saying I stole his girlfriend and he wants my life! I have met Lu Jiuchuan. He works in a bar, his arms are all tattooed and he has a knife hanging from his waist. He is particularly terrible… Can I apply for police protection? I am really afraid he will do something to me…”
Yu Hanjiang frowned and interrupted him. “Lu Jiuchuan?”
Ye Qi nodded. “Yes, that person is Lu Jiuchuan.”
Yu Hanjiang was silent for a moment. “Give the relevant evidence to the police and we will handle it.”
Ye Qi hurriedly stood up. “I was too nervous when I went out just now and I didn’t bring it with me. I’ll go back and get it…”
Then he quickly turned and ran.
He rushed all the way out of the gate and stopped by a tree. He held the tree while panting, his thoughts a bit confused. Then after taking a few deep breaths to calm down, a conjecture gradually emerged in his mind.
Shao Qingge and Liu Qiao didn’t know him and Yu Hanjiang didn’t recognize him as well.
It was impossible for all his teammates to lose their memories while he alone had his memories. Such a secret room was too unfair to his other teammates. He thought back on the actions of his roommates after waking up in the dormitory and what Xiao Pan said about today’s date. It was December 24th!
This date was the key.
His accident occurred on February 3rd, the afternoon of the seventh day of the new year.
Now it was December. In other words, he hadn’t been accidentally pulled to the Card World yet. Therefore, it was normal that the Shao Qingge and Liu Qiao of December didn’t know Ye Qi. Yu Hanjiang, a criminal investigation police officer, was even more unlikely to know him, a student who wasn’t famous.
Assuming that these people weren’t hunters, it was more likely that he had returned to the past.
How could he find his future teammates in the world of the past?
Ye Qi fell into deep thought. He couldn’t think of a good way for a while and could only take a taxi back to the medical university.
It happened to be 2:10 p.m. by the time he arrived at the school. Ye Qi went to the teaching building to find the classroom Liu Qiao had mentioned and get a seat in advance. Xiao Lou was holding a public lecture this afternoon. He wanted to try his luck again and see Xiao Lou’s reaction.
Professor Xiao was indeed very popular. The classroom was full of people before class even started.
At 2:30 p.m., a handsome young man in a clean white shirt walked into the class on time. He smiled slightly at the audience and his graceful and calm demeanor immediately attracted the attention of all the students in the audience.
Xiao Lou opened the PPT and said, “Hello students, today’s public lecture is to introduce some basic knowledge of forensic identification…”
The lesson was about the difference between strangulation marks and hanging marks in a forensic identification. There were also several interesting cases interspersed. Xiao Lou talked on the podium and the students listened with great interest. Ye Qi sat in the corner to minimize his presence. It wasn’t until after class that he followed Xiao Lou into the teacher’s lounge.
Ye Qi knocked on the door. “Professor Xiao, I have a question I want to ask. Is it convenient to enter?”
A gentle voice came from inside the room. “Please come in.”
Ye Qi walked into the room. Xiao Lou smiled slightly after seeing him. “Xiao Ye? Why did you come to school to find me?”
He had been watched like a ‘stranger’ every time he saw his teammates. Now seeing Xiao Lou’s gentle gaze, Ye Qi was very happy. He immediately walked over and asked, “Professor Xiao, do you remember me?”
“Of course. Why do you ask that? Don’t our other teammates remember you?”
Ye Qi smiled and scratched his head. “Uh, I made a slip of the tongue in a moment of excitement. I haven’t found our other teammates yet. By the way, you said before that if the two jokers secret room is an urban world, we should gather at the largest fountain in the city. Maybe they will be waiting for us there? Shouldn’t we go over and check it as soon as possible?”
Xiao Lou nodded. “Yes, let’s take my car. I happened to drive over today.”
The moment he heard this answer, Ye Qi pretended to be calm on the surface but his fingers hidden in his pocket were tightly clenched.
His teammates didn’t know him. He finally found Professor Xiao who knew him and who was also the person Ye Qi admired the most. He felt excitement and joy but at this time, it was like a bucket of cold water was poured on his head, instantly extinguishing it.
The secret code mentioned by Xiao Lou wasn’t the fountain at all but the largest Western restaurant in the city.
The Xiao Lou in front of him was definitely a hunter!
Partially proofread: Paranoid Kitten