After that ghost impersonating event, I didn’t dare to sleep again. I wanted to talk to Yin Xinyue, but I didn’t know how to face her. Eventually, I decided to call Li Mazi.
Fortunately, he hadn’t slept yet. “Hey bro, I’m on a train to visit Chuchu’s grave. How are you doing?”
“I’m doing okay. It’s hard to fall asleep at night these days.” I pretended to be alright. I smiled and chatted with him. I swallowed what I wanted to tell him down my throat.
Li Mazi was a sensitive person. If he knew that I had a problem, I was sure he would come here to help me right away.
“Hey, you have to come home soon and take me to conquer more otherworldly items!” His voice was cheerful.
After listening to him, I felt touched. I was lonely and wanted to quit this business at times, but in the end, I couldn’t. Being an otherworldly merchant wasn't just a profession; it was my life. If I left it, I would find no one to talk with.
I had lived for almost thirty years and I had never been this lonely before. The night was so long. Every second that passed by was a second I was tortured.
When the East became bright and the first beams of sunlight shone, I leaned back and slept. It was a good sleep as I didn’t have any bad dreams. However, I was awoken by the noise outside. The workers had returned to their jobs. I checked the time. It was noon already, and Chuyi hadn’t returned. I was worried, so I decided to call him.
The call went through soon. Chuyi’s voice came from the other end of the line weakly. “I’m on my way back. Don’t worry.”
Indeed, he came back shortly after. His Kumamon t-shirt was torn, and there were streaks of blood on his face.
“There are no mermaid’s tears here.” He breathed out when he got into the car. Then, he asked me to drive home while he slept in the back seats.
After yesterday’s events, I’d already lost my hope of finding the mermaid’s tears here. After listening to him, I didn’t feel that disappointed.
We reached Yin Xinyue’s village by twilight. I stopped at the village entrance and woke Chuyi up.
“I fought with him, but none of us dared to kill the other. Anyway, he told me that the Dragon King Village doesn’t have the mermaid’s tears, but another secret. However, he didn’t tell me what this secret is.”
Chuyi was still tired. I knew he was talking about the old man. I nodded as I understood.
“Since we can’t find the mermaid’s tears within a short time, we must find another solution to keep your parents alive.”
“What do you mean?” My eyes brightened. If he said so, he must have a solution!
Chuyi nodded and added, “This year, when the Gates of Hell open on July 15th, there will be a mysterious trading conference. It’s held by the otherworldly merchants’ Circle. There will be countless masters, monsters, and even thousand-year-old ghosts. They will trade rare herbs, pellets, cores, otherworldly items, and magic weapons. I think we can find the mermaid’s tears there.”
It wasn’t even February yet. This meant we had to control my in-laws’ sickness for half a year, but normal methods couldn’t buy us that much time. Chuyi had considered for a long time before he came up with a solution: we would use the fate-swap method, as Senior Shu had done. We would find two animals to swap their fates with my in-laws.
However, there was the possibility that those animals couldn’t endure it until July 15th. If that happened, my in-laws’ fates would be gone with them. To be sure, Chuyi decided to bring here the fox spirit we had subdued in Japan. At the same time, we would borrow Senior Shu’s life-bound rat to use.
“Thank you, Chuyi.” I thanked him. Chuyi smiled, then directly drove away without visiting my in-laws’ house a second time.
I lingered for quite a long time to gather the courage to go home. I thought that the first thing Yin Xinyue would ask me about was the water nymph’s tears.
“Brother Zhang, you’re back! Are you hurt?” Unexpectedly, she worried about my well-being first.
I shook my head, then told her what Chuyi had told me.
“It’s good. As long as my parents are safe, just do whatever is needed.”
I didn’t know if she wanted to comfort me or what, but her emotions were stable. Yin Xinyue didn’t cry as she had done before.
For the next few days, I made a special ointment for my in-laws every day. After a few days, Chuyi came back with the fox spirit and the life-bound rat. He held a ritual with some spells to swap their fates.
After everything was done, Chuyi finally let out a sigh of relief. “If nothing unexpected happens, for the next six months, they will be alright. Now, we just need to wait for the Gates of Hell Trading Conference on July 15th.”
I knew that nothing unexpected would happen because Senior Shu had been swapping his fate with his life-bound rate for quite a long time, and he had no problems.
After listening to me, Yin Xinyue didn’t look worried anymore. She still had work to do, so we couldn’t stay in her hometown for a long time.
We stayed for a few more days. After confirming that nothing unexpected would happen, we were ready to go back to the city. I wanted to make Chuyi my guest for a few days, but he refused and said that he needed to return to Dragon King Village to solve an issue.
“You should be careful, then,” I told him.
I didn’t ask him what he wanted to do, just as I didn’t ask him what had happened on the night he locked me inside the car. Everybody had a secret they didn’t want others to know. We could just wish him well.
When we returned to the city, Yin Xinyue was busy again with her work. She rarely came home. I started to resume my lonely life and felt even lonelier now.
Fortunately, Li Mazi came to the rescue with a new business deal. Moreover, the client was near Wuhan. My interest was aroused after listening to him. “Mazi, give me the address.”
Li Mazi was always stealthy, his voice despicable as he said, “Little Brother Zhang, you have to take me with you. Otherwise, I’ll swallow the address down my tummy!”
Then, he closed his eyes as though he was a dead pig that wasn’t afraid of boiling water.
I had almost cracked mentally these days, so I wasn’t in the mood to joke with him. I agreed to take him with me.
“Well, it’s in a village called Baijia.”
We departed. On the way, I was bored, so I asked, “Where did you get this case?”
It was like magic; whenever I needed a case the most, this cunning man could always come with a big deal.
Li Mazi sniggered. “On my way back after visiting Chuchu’s grave, I saw a sullen-faced man on the train. You know my strength, right? I’m good at reading people’s faces and guessing their intentions. I felt that the man was in trouble. I started to chat with him. Indeed, he had a big problem. His name is He Kui. He went to the South to pray to the Bodhisattva there.”
It turned out that so many strange things happened to the man’s family after his father passed away. First, his wife had an accident, which resulted in her miscarriage. Then, He Kui lost his job in the city. Feeling helpless, he had to take his family back to the countryside to live.
Even after that, they didn’t find peace. At night, when He Kui’s wife slept, she would dream about her late father-in-law, who cried and shouted at her face.
He Kui’s wife had always looked down on her in-laws. She disdained the old man because he was just a farmer from the countryside. She had thrown the eggs that her father-in-law had to labor for into the trash bin. She even sent him out of the house in the middle of a snowy night.
When He Kui heard the situation from his wife, he hurried to his father’s grave to burn paper money, begging him to forgive his wife. However, it didn’t work. The situation had turned even worse. In the end, his wife didn’t dare to sleep anymore.
They had endured the situation, but the next incident made He Kui loathe his father completely. After a long time, his wife finally gave birth to a baby girl, but the child was very weak. They took the little girl to the hospital to check. The doctor said she was all right, but the little girl kept crying as though she saw something very scary.
The couple thought that it could be the ghost of their old man who stayed nearby and scared the child. Feeling helpless, He Kui had to go to the South Sea to visit and implore the Goddess of Mercy!Previous Chapter Next Chapter