IWBL: Chapter 58
Xiao Li took a step back and distanced himself from the ponytailed girl. He moved but the girl didn’t move. She kept her back to Xiao Li with dropping shoulders. It looked disharmonious and strange.
At this moment, Guan Yu’s item failed. He started sweating and he couldn’t wait to drag Sherlock to leave. He wanted to leave this man alone but in the absence of an item, it was difficult to say if he could safely return to the dormitory. If so, he might as well follow Sherlock. After all, this person wasn’t reliable but he seemed to be very strong.
Xiao Li saw that the girl didn’t speak and reached out to pat her shoulder. “What ward are you in? Why are you wandering outside so late? If you are finished in the toilet then go out. Next time, look at the gender.”
Guan Yu couldn’t help saying in his heart, ‘Can we not mention this toilet matter?’
Then the ponytailed girl moved. Her voice was thin and weak and there was a friction sound like a rusty tap. She said, “501.”
It was the first room on the fifth floor. Xiao Li conducted himself like a doctor on duty. “Go, I will send you up.”
The ponytailed girl refused to turn around and spoke intermittently, “You… go first, no… don’t peek.”
Xiao Li was waiting to answer. Guan Yu was really afraid he would say yes and grabbed Xiao Li’s wrist. “Wait, Sherlock, you aren’t really going to let her go behind you? This is the classic killing from behind. She definitely isn’t a person and once behind you—”
“It’s fine. You go in front of me and I’ll walk in front of her, Doctor Guan.”
Guan Yu walked in front and the footsteps of the two people behind him were very light. In particular, the footsteps of the ponytailed girl could hardly be heard. It was as if she was floating forward.
The further he went, the colder he felt, especially on the stairs. He wanted to turn back five times but he heeded the warning of the ponytailed girl. He didn’t dare look back in case he was killed and he kept calling out to Xiao Li, “Sherlock?”
“It’s fine, I’m just calling you.”
Five minutes later. “Sherlock?”
“If you call out one more time, I’ll walk away from you.”
“Don’t do it, I won’t call out. It is good as long as you’re still there.”
It took them some time to get to room 501 because of Guan Yu’s slow pace.
The fifth floor of the inpatient department was darker, as if the darkness became thicker the higher the floor. It seemed like something was dormant in the depths of the darkness.
The door of 501 was wide open. It was a single room with a single bed in the middle, a small table and a TV. Guan Yu came to this door and stood in place, refusing to move. Xiao Li crossed him to enter the room and turn on the light.
The girl with the ponytail stopped him. “Don’t turn on the lights.”
She walked forward slowly, the ponytail behind her head swaying along with her footsteps. At first glance, she was quite youthful but her bizarre forward posture destroyed everything. How could she walk backwards? How scary was her face?
Guan Yu’s brain filled in the image of the ghost based on a variety of horror movies, from a disfigured face that had been splashed with sulfuric acid to a grim white face.
The moment the ponytailed girl reached him, Guan Yu hurriedly took two steps back. His eyes widened and he reached out to cover his mouth, swallowing the instinctive scream. He saw that the ponytailed girl’s face was a ponytail!
In other words, he thought this ghost was walking backwards but she was actually going forward! She didn’t have a face!
Guan Yu’s sweat was huge as he used his sleeve to wipe it. He wanted to call out to Sherlock but the other person was standing next to the hospital bed. Xiao Li stared at the girl who lay down on the bed.
The room was dark but Guan Yu stood at the edge of the door and turned on the flashlight. He didn’t dare shine it into the room and shone it around, but a weak light still entered the room. The ponytailed girl lay flat on the bed, her face still a tied up ponytail.
Guan Yu was sure that Sherlock saw it but this person was still calm and also leaned over to care for the female ghost. “Are there any uncomfortable places today?”
The ponytailed girl replied, “Where… I’m not feeling well. Doctor, I want to hear a story.”
“I… I want to hear a story.” She laughed like a madman in a movie, as if she would tear Xiao Li apart if he didn’t tell her a story.
Xiao Li sat by her hospital bed, thought about it before turning to Guan Yu. “Do you have any good bedtime stories?”
Guan Yu focused on Xiao Li’s face and tried not to look at the ponytailed girl on the bed. “S-Sleeping Beauty? Snow White? The good and honest Xuanzang on a journey to India on a quest for Buddhist scriptures?”
The focus was on kindness and being a vegetarian.
Xiao Li exposed his dislike with his eyes. He turned back, put his hand on the quilt and paused for three seconds to organize his language. “Then I’ll tell you something interesting. Do you know the pen fairy? There was a train travelling around the world and several people boarded the train. On the train, four passengers played the pen fairy game but didn’t send away the pen fairy. Therefore, the pen fairy was stuck on that train.”
Guan Yu, “???”
He originally found it quite fresh but the more he heard, the more wrong he felt. Wasn’t this a horror story? How could it be so real? Surely this wasn’t a real instance that Sherlock had experienced… In addition, why was he telling this type of ghost story to the ponytailed girl? Wasn’t he afraid that it would increase her appetite and she would act?
Xiao Li continued to tell the story. “There was a man on the train who was quite interested in the pen fairy. He heard that it never ran out of ink and he wanted to try it. However, the pen fairy ran really quickly.”
Guan Yu looked at his mention of the ‘pen fairy’ and the other person’s bright eyes and thought that Sherlock was the person mentioned. Still, wasn’t the pen fairy hundreds of years old? How did Sherlock mention it and actually described it like this…
Xiao Li spoke up to here and the ponytailed girl showed interested. She raised her ponytail in Xiao Li’s direction. “Sounds… delicious…”
“Delicious? What do you want to eat, the pen? That isn’t delicious.”
The ponytail of the girl rubbed over the pillow. “Go on, tell the story…”
The story of the ghost train stopped at the station just before the second group of passengers boarded. Not only did the ponytailed girl want to hear the following story, even Guan Yu couldn’t help being attracted. Then Xiao Li rejected him, “It isn’t too early, it is time to go to bed.”
The ponytailed girl shouted in a hoarse voice, “Continue, continue!”
Guan Yu outside the door was sweaty but Xiao Li was still amused. It wasn’t until the girl said, “I-I have something to exchange…”
Her hands moved under the pillow, pulled out a piece of paper and handed it to Xiao Li. Xiao Li picked it up, unfolded it to see and found that it was a simple drawing.
The person who drew it should either be young or have never learnt to draw. It was as ugly as the Bloody Mary that Xiao Li painted. There were two people on the white paper, one was red and the other was black.
The little black man holding a sharp knife was stabbing the red knife. The little red man was surrounded by white dots. The two villains were surrounded by tall shadows, with twisted bodies, who were looking a the two villains. The soles of their feet contained a pond with lots of fish.
Xiao Li stared at it before putting away the picture. Then he told the ponytailed girl, “The drawing is good.”
The female ghost didn’t seem to think Xiao Li would say this. She cocked her head but it was too strong. Her head directly turned 180 degrees and one ponytail was replaced for another. Then Xiao Li finished the world of the ghost train. The ponytailed ghost and Guan Yu relished it then Xiao Li got up from the bedside. “It’s time to sleep.”
The ponytail turned in his direction and the ghost asked, “Doctor, what’s your name?”
Xiao Li paused his actions before stating, “Hans Christian Andersen.”
Guan Yu, “……???”
He was Andersen because he told a bedtime story? Andersen would cry!
The ponytailed girl seemed to believe it and she repeated, “Dr Andersen.”
Xiao Li told her. “Yes, go to bed early.”
The ponytailed girl told him, “You should go.”
Xiao Li asked, “Where should I go?”
“Check the rooms.” The ponytail shook as she spoke coldly.
It was the rooms again… the split mouthed girl and ponytailed girl but told him this. However, hadn’t Xiao Li been checking the rooms? Was this not the place for it? Or was he doing it wrong? Xiao Li asked directly, “What room should I check?”
The ponytailed girl reached out a hand to roll up her ponytail. “You should check the rooms.”
Or there still weren’t enough clues—
Xiao Li thought about it and replied. “…Okay.”
He walked out the door and wind blew through the corridor towards Xiao Li. It blew the white coat and the angle of the female ghost changed. It moved to a high state and she looked ready to act. Then Xiao Li held the door handle and spoke without turning back, “Goodnight.”
His voice was cold and clear, like glass marble on the floor. Then he shut the door. The girl in the room twisted her crooked ponytail and lay back down.
“Sherlock, that train… was it a real world you experienced?” The two of them walked side by side to the stairs and Guan Yu asked curiously.
Xiao Li didn’t answer and instead made a gesture. “Shh.”
The young man’s expression wasn’t right. He looked a bit serious and his face wasn’t very good. Guan Yu looked around. “What’s the matter? A ghost?”
Xiao Li shook his head to deny it. The stairwell was close at hand but Xiao Li didn’t look at the stairs. He went straight to the front desk next to the elevator and pressed the down button. The elevator lit up.
The elevator. It was a place that a reincarnator avoided as much as possible. In such a small box, it would be difficult to escape if there was a ghost inside. Guan Yu didn’t want to take the elevator. He took off the cap on his head and combed his hair with his hands. “Why are you taking the elevator instead of the stairs? Isn’t the stairs safer?”
Xiao Li replied, “I spoke too much telling the story and I don’t want to walk.”
Guan Yu, “???”
There was no logical or causal relationship between these two sentences. Guan Yu asked, “Do you walk with your throat?”
Xiao Li stared at him coldly and declared, “You can take the stairs by yourself.”
Guan Yu, “…”
He didn’t want to! The young man put on his cap again and followed Xiao Li. He looked at the elevator floor that changed from 7 to 6, from 6 to 5…
“Ding, this is the fifth floor.”
The automatic voice belonging to the elevator was heard and the elevator doors slowly opened, a yellow-white light emerging from the increasing gap. Guan Yu was a bit nervous as he stared into the elevator and gulped.
The author has something to say:
Ponytail: This drawing is really ugly. Don’t lie.
Bloody Mary: Oh? How ugly?
Ponytail: Just like Xiao Li’s painting of you.
Bloody Mary: Then it is really ugly and tragic.
Xiao Li: ?