Vol 3: Chapter 5-2.
The ten of them discussed their plans after lunch. Aside from finding a way to eliminate the Ju-On from the temples, it was also important to keep an eye on the police network. Zero also wanted to find a suitable sniping spot. Yanwei wanted to go shopping and those three students volunteered to protect her.
The situation was totally unexpected for Zheng. It seemed like no one placed any hope on the temples. As if the guns and magical bullets were enough to ward off the ghosts.
Zheng was the only one who was aware of the horror. The Ju-On was way beyond anything they could imagine. Yet ignorance was a bliss. If it was an Alien that was standing in front of them, they would probably feel scared. But these people had only seen the movies and they didn’t have the sharp senses Zheng possessed. To be honest, the magical bullets didn’t bring their lives safety.
Zheng couldn’t help it, he couldn’t just drag everyone to the temples. It was only his conjecture after all.
Even though he didn’t want to admit it… but if it was Xuan in his place, what would he do in this situation?
Zheng shook his head and shook away these thoughts. The bus had arrived at their third temple. The four of them visited two temples already, and aside from the numerous visitors signifying the status of the temples, the abbots (priests) didn’t know anything about curses. They recited some scriptures and gave the four incense ashes but they couldn’t sense the marks on their body.
It was tourist season this time of the year. The third temple was also filled with visitors.
Zheng took a deep breath. “Let’s go and hope we can find what we want here… Is it 3pm already?”
The other three people sighed. Even though they didn’t have much hope from the start, the result was still disappointing.
No matter what, they still had to continue. As they merged into the crowd and slowly climbed the mountain, Zheng suddenly shivered. He saw a pale little boy disappeared into the crowd. An indescribable sense of chillness swept through them. He felt as if a hand grabbed his left ankle.
The charm in Zheng’s pocket immediately flared up. The fire didn’t burn him, instead it gave him a feeling of warmth. This warmth moved down his body to his left ankle and that cold hand retreated. It wasn’t until then that Zheng recovered from the horror. His left leg had become numb.
The other three saw Zheng paused for a moment then stumbled. Jie immediately got hold of him. “What’s wrong? You sprained your leg?”
To their surprise, Zheng took out the submachine gun and said to them in a serious tone. “I was attacked just now. Hurry, get into the temple! The charm in my pocket is burning…”
Without another word, Jie and Tengyi carried Zheng and sprinted toward the temple. Tengyi was a large man and Jie’s strength was just second to Zheng’s. They forced their way through the crowd and finally reached the main gate (still outside the actual temple) before the charm burned out.
Once inside, Zheng felt that a weight was lifted. That chill and stress disappeared. He stopped Jie and Tengyi then walked toward a sideway, away from the crowd.
When they were alone, Zheng crouched down and lifted the bottom of his trousers. There was a grey handprint on his leg, the size of a child’s hand. He also took out the charm from his pocket, it had already burned to ashes, yet his shirt was intact.
“It was really an attack.” He smiled bitterly. “You still remember the two ghosts in The Grudge? This was probably that little boy’s ghost. He merely grabbed my leg and I couldn’t move a bit. If the adult ghost is also like this, or even stronger… then the magical bullets won’t be enough. We are dead if they get ahold of us.”
Jie and the other two turned pale. They stared at the ashes in silence. Lan touched her forehead and asked. “Then why did you stop here? Hurry up and get inside the temple.”
“Can’t you feel it? Right, I am the only one that can feel it. Once we stepped beyond the gate, the chill and stress were gone. It seems like this temple is authentic. Maybe they have what we are looking for. I also suspect the ghost attacked us because they didn’t want us to come in here!”
Jie cried with excitement. “That’s good, I never thought we could actually find something useful. Haha, let’s go, hurry to the temple!”
The reason Zheng found a place to stop was really because his left leg felt numb. Since the others were excited to reach the temple, Jie and Tengyi had to carry Zheng up.
The biggest difference between this temple and the other two was a sense of old age. This temple felt like it had survived many centuries. Tengyi observed the walls and doors then said to them in a low voice. “It’s a style from the Tang dynasty, probably left by monks that visited Japan.”
This gave them a sense of safety. Monks from the ancient times were probably more skilled at handling ghosts. Even though modern-day people thought of them as superstitions, they chose to believe these superstition, at least while they were in this world.
The four of them found the abbot of this temple. Unfortunately this abbot was the same as the last two. He couldn’t sense the mark of Ju-On on them and just recited some scriptures. They felt awful as the sun was moving down the horizon.
Zheng suddenly asked, “Master, did the first abbot of this temple come from the Tang dynasty?”
Tengyi translated the words for him. The old abbot answered, “This temple was built by the local residents when the disciple of Xuanzang visited Japan. It was said this monk passed away inside the main hall. The Buddha in the main hall was modeled after the position that he died in.”
“Then master, where is his body? And was there anything strange about the main gate outside?”
The abbot shook his head then continued. “That monk’s body was burned by Oda Nobunaga during the Sengoku period. Nobunaga then ordered people to spray his ashes on the main gate so everyone that walks pass will step on him.”
As the abbot sighed, they finally realized what happened. That monk’s ashes could counter evil but this also took away their last hope.
The four of them also sighed and when they were about to leave, the abbot handed them a few pieces of yellow paper.
“These are hand copied scriptures by that monk. He said he would go back to the Tang dynasty once he finished preaching in Japan. Unfortunately he died in this mountain… Since fate led you here, why don’t you take these scriptures. Perhaps you can find a way to remove the curse in them.”
The generosity of the abbot gained their respect. Even though these pages were old and some corners were cracked, they were invaluable antiques.
As Zheng took the scriptures, he felt a sense of warmth in his body. At the same time the mark on his body faded, he almost couldn’t feel it anymore. He’d never felt so comfortable since he’d come to this movie.
“We can definitely survive, definitely!”
P.S. The easy days are over.