Night time, the children’s welfare home.
Bai Liu (6) lay on the bed and silently opened his eyes. He heard an intermittent flute sound that had awakened him but in his room, everyone else was sleeping. These children had been running all night and had consumed their energy. They were all sound asleep except for Bai Liu (6), who was always alert.
Bai Liu (6) got down from the bed very quietly and put on his shoes. Then he glanced at the clock hanging on the wall. It was 2 a.m.
In the group bedroom late at night, only the children’s slight snoring could be heard. The children curled up on the beds and covered their soft bodies with a quilt. Even Mu Ke covered his head with a quilt as if to protect himself.
In fact, as long as someone wanted then they could easily break these children. Bai Liu (6) watched as the door to their room slowly opened. The wooden door creaked with the rhythm of the flute, revealing the dark, eerie, empty corridor outside.
There was no one outside the door. The door opened by itself.
The sound of the flute that was continuous, melodious and cheerful floated in. The children sleeping on the bed started to twist uneasily. Their hands and feet moved like they were having a magical dream.
Upon seeing this, Bai Liu (6) directly shook Mu Ke awake.
No wonder why he wasn’t affected by the sound of the flute. The flute worked on a sleeping child but Bai Liu (6) had just come to the welfare home. He slept very lightly in strange and unfamiliar places. The moment the flute played, Bai Liu (6) woke up so he wouldn’t be affected by the hypnosis of the flute.
Mu Ke was pushed by Bai Liu (6) and gradually awakened. He rubbed his eyes and his forehead was covered with sweat as he took deep breaths in a daze. He woke up and stared at Bai Liu (6) standing at the head of the bed in a bit of a trance. It seemed he hadn’t yet reacted to the fact that he was awake or that there was a person standing by his bed.
Mu Ke half squinted his eyes, drowsily stretched out his feet to get off the bed and put on his shoes. He headed to the corridor while speaking dully, “We have to leave this welfare home. This welfare home will draw our blood and kill us…”
“Wake up. You just dreamed due to the hypnosis of the flute…” Bai Liu (6) grabbed Mu Ke’s wrist as he was about to go outside. He pulled Mu Ke to face him and narrowed his eyes.
Mu Ke’s eyes were sober. He was shaking and although his face had red marks and he looked sleepy, his eyes were very clear. There was a layer of tears from fear.
“It wasn’t a dream…” Mu Ke spoke in a trembling voice. The dream just now had obviously frightened him. “I saw a lot of nurses tying us to a bed. They plunged a lot of syringes into the back of our hands and feet. Red blood gushed along the infusion pipe and dropped into a stainless steel jar. Later, no more blood could be obtained from us…”
Mu Ke’s shoulders shrank back in fear and he hugged his shoulders. “They will stick our scalps and faces with very thick black needles like the ones used on livestock. They will wrap our necks with rubber tubes to squeeze the blood vessels in our faces, making it easier for them to draw blood.”
“We were tied up and suffocated until we turned purple. We struggled desperately but couldn’t escape from the hospital bed…”
Mu Ke had tears in his eyes as he looked at Bai Liu (6), who was calm and motionless. He was a bit anxious as he grabbed Bai Liu (6)’s hand, wanting to pull this child along. “I swear it isn’t a dream! I saw what will happen after tomorrow’s baptism. Those investors are bad guys! They baptized us and funded us in order to draw out all the blood in us. They aren’t funding us for free. Let’s run. Get out of here!”
“Of course they aren’t funding us for free.” Bai Liu (6)’s tone was cold. “There is no free thing in this world, especially for you and I who are young humans who don’t have much value. The only valuable thing is naturally our body. They invested in us for what we have in our body. What is surprising about them doing this? Isn’t it natural?”
Mu Ke saw the very calm Bai Liu (6) and was a bit dazed. He took a step back out of fear. “You already knew they were bad people?”
“They aren’t bad people. They are just consumers who have the ability to buy our bodies.” Bai Liu (6)’s eyes that contained no waves watched the obviously frightened Mu Ke. “We are humans who don’t have the ability to buy ourselves. We are just commodities who can be bought and sold at will. We can only be purchased.”
Bai Liu (6) had no expression at all and he spoke like he was telling an objective truth. “We only have value in the category of goods. So it is normal for us to be purchased.”
“They are here to draw our blood!” Mu Ke shouted anxiously!
Bai Liu (6) glanced at him casually. “So? Do you think that the people outside must be good people and will never draw your blood? Perhaps they will eat your meat or do something more terrible to you. Do you have any ability to resist? Is there any point in escaping? Before you have the ability to buy others, it doesn’t matter if you escape. As goods to be sold, you are just escaping from the small shelf of the welfare home to a larger shelf.”
Mu Ke was completely stunned hearing Bai Liu (6)’s words. He opened his mouth to refute it but he didn’t know where to start.
“You…” Bai Liu (6) paused for a moment. “Sorry, how old are you?”
Mu Ke was about to cry again due to Bai Liu (6)’s words. He twisted his fingers and sobbed as he answered. “I-I am 11 years old.”
“Oh, you are 11 years old. Don’t be so naive, Mu Ke.“ Bai Liu (6) continued to indifferently speak. “In this welfare home, a group of children will disappear every Sunday. This group of children was obviously selected to disappear. All the kids in our group were so good-looking that I initially thought they were taken to…”
Bai Liu (6) looked at Mu Ke who was too exquisite in appearance. His eyes subtly settled on Mu Ke’s white shoulders that were slightly exposed from his pajamas.
Mu Ke opened his big eyes as he looked at Bai Liu (6). He asked in a simple and confused manner, “They were taken to do what?”
Bai Liu (6) tilted his head as if nothing was wrong and changed the topic. “…Nothing.”
He did think at first that this welfare home was a place for the sexual trade of children. This was why it was his first reaction when his investor told him to protect Mu Ke and Liu Jiayi. From his experience, such places did breed things easily. Then Bai Liu (6) soon realized that it wasn’t such a simple purpose.
These dying investors wanted something else from them. If it was for the direct purpose of lust, they could start to enjoy the children from the first night when the children entered. Yet one day had passed and the group of investors hadn’t taken any obvious action against them. They just used the phone to maintain a one-way contact.
Bai Liu (6) had a guess that this group of investors might not understand the purpose for buying this pile of goods. In other words, the group of investors was also exploring the function of these goods.
Use them for charity promotion? Psychological comfort before death? Or was it a type of feudal superstition caused by desperation—did they think doing good deeds could prolong their lives?
It was just that some of these ‘purposes’ were too obscure and indirect. Bai Liu (6) thought there was a more core reason that dictated the investors closely observing and investing in them. A hospital was built on the other side of the welfare home. This approach made Bai Liu (6) think of one thing—for example, the children could be used to cure diseases.
This type of healing included psychological self-comfort. For example, the church in the Love Welfare Institute where they would be baptized. The decorations of the church were very good and obviously had a certain symbolic meaning. Investors might seek a virtual treatment by doing good deeds and praying for God’s refuge.
However, there was a more direct way to treat the disease—use the children directly for treatment.
Bai Liu (6) looked very calmly at Mu Ke. “On the first day we came in, I knew that my role should be as a medicine. I just didn’t know which part of me would be used. Now it seems to be blood.”
Mu Ke shook his head with disbelief. “Why didn’t you run if you knew they were going to draw your blood? You were still on the phone with your investor last night, chatting for half an hour. He isn’t a good person at all. He is a blood-sucking monster!”
Bai Liu (6) stared at Mu Ke coldly. “First of all, the Love Welfare Institute is completely enclosed. We can’t go out except for Open Day. Secondly, if it wasn’t for my investor paying me to save you, I wouldn’t have taken a second look if you died in front of me last night. Even if he is a monster, he is a monster who saved you. You should clearly understand this.”
Mu Ke was stunned before quickly refuting Bai Liu (6)’s words, “He is also saving me for my blood!”
“Impossible.” Bai Liu (6)’s eyes were dark and vague but he simply retorted, “I might not understand his purpose but he really gave up his life. He gave priority to saving the lives of me, you and Liu Jiayi. If he wants to draw your blood, he could simply pay me to help him and you would be drained by me tonight.”
Mu Ke instantly turned pale and he retreated a few steps. He crossed his hands in front of his chest in a panic and made a protective posture. “You, how can you… do this!”
Bai Liu (6) glanced at Mu Ke and suddenly wanted to do something bad. He stepped forward, opening his hands to intimidate Mu Ke. “How can I? By your standards, aren’t I much worse than my investor who saved you, little 11 year old Mu Ke?”
The 11 year old Mu Ke was scared back several steps and almost fell down, tears coming out of his eyes. “Ahhh, don’t come over.”