Chapter 14: 014
Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation
Lin Sheng rummaged in the hall but found nothing.
Hence, he entered the study room. Yet, he discovered nothing except books there.
Backing out from the study room, Lin Sheng decided to search the kitchen. After he found a pointed kitchen knife there, he rushed back to the bedroom.
There was a king-sized wooden bed in the middle of the bedroom. Additionally, there was a wardrobe, a dressing table, and a large wooden box along the wall.
Lin Sheng opened the wooden box but saw that it was empty. So, he swept his eyes around and walked up to the dressing table to pull open the drawer in which he found a few colored teenage-style hair bands. But the colors of the hair bands looked old and faded.
He closed the drawer and checked out the other spots. Soon, something leaning against the wall in the corner behind the curtains caught Lin Sheng’s attention.
Lin Sheng strode nervously to the corner and grabbed the object—it was a cross sword without a sheath.
As Lin Sheng took the sword, its silvery-black tip slid across the floor, producing a faint noise. He carefully lifted the sword in his hands.
The long sword was not hefty—felt like five pounds—and its length was just right, about waist-high. The crossguard and the blade formed a standard cross, though the shape looked a little stretched.
When Lin Sheng clenched the hilt with both hands, he could feel the rough fabric wrapped around the handle. The hilt and the blade formed a seamless body without any apparent joint marks, and on the blade near the hilt, there was a vertical eye pattern that looked identical to the one on the door.
Lin Sheng waved the sword to see how it felt. To his dismay, it was a little too clunky.
“Let’s see if there’s anything else.” Lin Sheng poked around the bedroom for a while but still found nothing. So, he had no choice but to return to the hall.
“I’ll need to be more careful not to make a sound this time. If I manage, it should be fine.” Lin Sheng was a bundle of nerves when the thought of his previous death came to mind. But it did not mean that he would not venture outside. After all, he knew that he would not die for real because it was just a dream.
Lin Sheng was very curious about the world outside and would not be satisfied without going out to explore a little.
With the sword in hand, Lin Sheng stood stark before the door and took a few deep breaths to calm himself.
“This time, I’ll do it as quietly as possible. It’ll be all right as long as that thing doesn’t notice me.”
He carefully reached for the snake-shaped door handle and gave it a gentle twist. The door unlocked with a click and opened slightly, just enough for Lin Sheng to pass through.
Carrying the sword in his hands, Lin Sheng slowly slipped out.
Once he stepped outside, Lin Sheng could feel the chilly wind blowing in his face. He shivered involuntarily as his body temperature plummeted and his joints stiffened.
“This feels more real than the last time. It doesn’t feel like I’m in a dream.”
Lin Sheng’s heart suddenly skipped a beat, and the strange feeling made him uneasy.
He stood right outside the door, peeked around furtively, and decided not to get down the flight of steps.
“This wooden stairway squeaked too loud the last time. I think I should just jump directly onto the ground so that I don’t make any sound.”
With a plan in mind, Lin Sheng slowly moved to the right of the staircase.
The humid and cold fog was surging slowly in his surroundings. Lin Sheng looked down and saw old scratches as well as many small pebbles on the dark yellow floor under his feet.
He had to maneuver past the gravel with caution.
Holding his breath, he quickly reached the edge of the veranda and jumped down silently, landing on the ground with a soft thump.
With his feet planted on the black soil, Lin Sheng peered into the distance. There was no strange sound coming from the direction of the bridleway.
“I made it! I just have to remain vigilant, then I won’t attract any attention.” He breathed a sigh of relief.
Shrouded in the fog, Lin Sheng started to anxiously scan his surroundings.
Behind him was the open hall door, from which he exited earlier.
On his left and right were all dark and dense woodlands. All he could see was the bridle path in front of him.
Lin Sheng took a deep breath and slowly circumvented the manor by going to the left.
Soon, he arrived at the yard where the hall window faced.
The yard had a swing, which was made by tying a black wooden shelf between two dead tree trunks with thick hemp rope.
There were a few decaying benches scattered randomly in the yard and a small withered garden in the corner of the wall.
Lin Sheng wandered around for some time but discovered nothing. As such, he headed to the back of the house.
He suddenly stopped in his tracks when he heard something.
Lin Sheng was rooted to the spot in the fog, with the manor on his right and the small yard on his left.
Clenching the sword in his hands and planting his feet on the ground, he looked straight ahead.
He heard something dragging on the ground, and it sounded disturbingly all too familiar.
He tensed up and stood still, staring into the dark fog from the backyard, which was just around the corner.
The sound gradually got closer and closer. Then, the owner of the sound finally emerged.
It was a weird person covered with black pustules. The figure carried a long black sword, and its hilt was fused together with his hand. Other than that, the figure looked just like a typical human.
The human figure’s face—his eyes, nose, and mouth—was fully covered with thick gray linen, and there were some blood stains on it.
At about 1.9 meters tall, he was taller than Lin Sheng.
The human figure also spotted Lin Sheng the moment Lin Sheng saw him emerging from the fog.
He then stumped toward Lin Sheng. His steps were slow, and the tip of his sword produced a ‘shiiiing’ sound as it was dragged across the ground.
“What the heck is this?” Lin Sheng’s blood ran cold, and he shrank back involuntarily. But compared with his last experience of death, not only did he calm down quicker this time, but he also managed to think of a countermeasure.
He traced his eyes downward and noticed that the monster’s right leg was crippled. Large chunks of flesh were missing underneath his long pants.
“He doesn’t look that impressive.” Lin Sheng clenched the hilt of his sword and had no intention of going away. He wanted to test how good the monster was.
Lin Sheng figured that since the entrance to the house was nearby, he could turn around and quickly run back inside should things go wrong.
With an emergency withdrawal plan in mind, Lin Sheng decided to make contact with the living creature.
“Hey, can you understand me?” Lin Sheng spoke in Xilin in a low voice.
The strange human figure did not respond but just continued to trudge toward him.
“Are you a resident here? I come in peace. Can you tell me what this place is?” Lin Sheng tried to communicate with him.
When the human figure showed no response while he approached, Lin Sheng sensed that something was wrong and began to retreat slowly.
Right when Lin Sheng and the human figure were less than three meters apart from each other, the human figure suddenly lunged forth, thrusting his sword forward.
The tip of his black sword hit the cross-shaped sword in Lin Sheng’s hand with a clang, and the sharp percussive sound reverberated in the air. Lin Sheng lost his balance and almost tumbled to the ground.
His blood ran cold, and he immediately turned around and ran, dragging the sword along as he scrambled onto the wooden staircase. He slipped through the doorway back into the hall before he slammed the door shut and snapped on the latches.
Just as Lin Sheng thought that he was safe, he heard the same hissing sound behind him.
He turned around slowly with all his muscles in a knot. To his surprise, a rotten swordsman with the same linen cloth wrapped around his face was limping toward him!