Illusions, Lies, Truth V5C2: Apartment, Part 3—Spirit Car

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Illusions, Lies, Truth Volume 5: The Fallen, Jiu Ge, Part One

Original novel in Chinese by: 御 我 (Yu Wo)

Chapter 2: Apartment, Part 3—Spirit Car—translated by lucathia (proofread by Minthe)

“This chair has been influenced and has become a devil.”

Liu Yishi’s Bible shone with light falling upon the chair. The heavy, wooden chair actually began to tremble. The brighter the light became, the wilder the chair shook. A black aura seeped out but was completely ensnared by the light, unable to stretch out further. The two entities fought until the bitter end when even the Bible began to tremble minutely.

The end result was that the chair they had just said to bring back to Qing Wei Gong shattered into a pile of wooden boards. Even that wasn’t satisfactory. The Bible rushed in, light flashed several times, and the wooden boards became wooden pieces.

The three of them were speechless. It was as if the Bible had seen an archenemy. This chair couldn’t be anything but a devil.

Liu Yishi turned and asked worriedly, “Son, are you all right?”

Liu Yishi rarely ever saw his son unable to stand up. Lu Yang’s toughness wasn’t for show. Liu Yishi had never doubted that his son could beat up the boxing champion and kick down the top fighter, winning enough championship belts to decorate an entire wall.

“I’m fine, just got shocked by a stun gun. That woman should be the one behind it.”

Lu Yang hesitated for a moment but still didn’t divulge that the voltage of the stun gun was too low and logically shouldn’t have tripped him up, let alone render him unconscious. However, these kinds of private items varied in quality. Perhaps the voltage was out of expectations this time. Besides, the chair had already been shattered. There was no need to dither over this matter.

“The black shadow was really scary!” Jiang Ziya felt like he needed to emphasize this. “I’ve never come across anything scarier.”

In response, Liu Yishi walked around the room again with the Bible and cleansed the room while he was at it. After walking out, he explained, “The black shadow should have been the demonic energy released by the chair. Since Slay dispersed it, the chair was a lot easier to deal with afterwards. I only feel residual demonic energy here.”

Jiang Ziya relaxed a bit and looked at Slay in awe. “Isn’t your Slay godly? I can’t believe Slay dispatched something so scary just like that.”

“Of course Slay is godly!” Lu Yang wasted no effort praising the sword. He hoped Slay would give him the chance to hold the sword as soon as possible. “But I’m sure it’s mostly because Slay’s element counters the chair. The chair is wood. Slay is metal.”

Jiang Ziya came to a sudden realization, nodded, and asked no further. Perhaps he had been scared out of his wits because he always saw spirits instead, and this was only his first time seeing such a strong devil.

“All right, hurry and head home. You two youngsters have had a busy night—”

A cell phone suddenly rang. Liu Yishi walked off to the side to answer it.

At this time, the door across the hallway suddenly opened with a piercing creak. Just as Lu Yang was struggling to get up, a girl nervously appeared behind the door. She had only dared to open the inner door. The rusty steel door on the outside was not to be opened under any circumstances.

She first looked at Lu Yang and Jiang Ziya suspiciously. Then, she looked at the woman on the floor who had fainted.

Lu Yang smilingly said, “Sorry, we came to find my cousin to take her to the hospital, but she struggled way too much. We’ve caused you trouble.”

The girl’s face reddened at that. “So that’s what was happening. I’m s-sorry, I’ve already called the police…”

She had been scared to death by the noise coming across the hallway, but her brother worked the night shift. Alone at home, she hadn’t even dared to open the door. She had plastered herself behind the door and peered through the peephole to assess the situation. She couldn’t see much and didn’t know what they were doing, but she saw a guy drag out the woman who lived across the hallway and place her on the floor.

If it weren’t because they seemed about to take the neighbor away and the police hadn’t arrived yet, the girl wouldn’t have opened the inner door. She hoped to be able to stall for a bit of time so they wouldn’t be able to take the neighbor away.

Once she opened the door, she was able to make out Lu Yang and Jiang Ziya’s appearances, which were way too different from the image she had in mind of bad guys. She felt that things weren’t quite right, especially given how Lu Yang’s appearance and attire resembled a movie star’s. What ulterior motive would he have for dragging away a woman who had lost her mind?

Hearing that, Lu Yang could only give Hu Lican a call to prevent their group from getting handcuffed and carted off to the detention center.

“Are you okay?” The girl had misunderstood them and felt apologetic. Seeing that Lu Yang was sitting on the floor, unable to get up, she quickly asked after him.

“We’re fine.” Jiang Ziya answered, “His cousin landed several punches on his stomach. He just needs to take it slow.”

The girl looked pitifully at the woman on the floor and said, “Your cousin ended up this way after experiencing something scary. She was a good person. Last time, her husband beat her up so much that she almost…”

Jiang Ziya wanted to persuade her to move out with her brother but saw the girl touch her chest to calm herself down. She was wearing a silver cross necklace. The style was old, and the necklace was yellow with age, appearing to be quite an old object.

As soon as the girl’s hand touched the pendant, the cross actually glowed faintly. Jiang Ziya felt that the light was a bit strange. When he focused his gaze, he discovered that it was actually a glowing word—“good.”

Lin Zhixiang’s blessing is so straightforward! Jiang Ziya felt relieved. He had some understanding that as long as they had this necklace, the siblings would be all right.

Lu Yang moved his lips but didn’t say anything. He had seen the cross glow too, but it was only after Jiang Ziya fixed his gaze on the necklace that he saw the word “good” float out.

With Lin Zhixiang’s blessing and Jiang Ziya’s amplification, even he wanted that cross necklace. Lu Yang felt it was unfair. His teammates’ bonuses were all being used on someone else. Can’t you spare me some?

Ah, forget it. If Lin Zhixiang accidentally uses a curse instead and Jiang Ziya amplifies it too, then I’d be in big trouble!

“Since you’re fine, then goodbye!” The girl’s tone suddenly changed. She covered her chest in embarrassment and slammed the door shut.

“…” Jiang Ziya was unable to explain that he had been staring at the cross necklace! He really hadn’t paid any attention to whether she was a B or C cup!

Lu Yang guffawed. After helping amplify the blessing, Jiang Ziya was still being treated as a pervert. Lu Yang was living it up! It was a worse fate than getting shocked by a stun gun!

Liu Yishi walked back from his phone call. He looked apologetically at Jiang Ziya and asked, “Ziya, could you come with me to Top Star Hotel for a look? That place has become a barrier dimension. It’s troublesome. The person I asked to go over to handle it is afraid that he would also get stuck inside, so he’s wary of entering.”

“Okay.” Jiang Ziya agreed immediately.

The three of them waited until Hu Lican and Fang Da came over and agreed to escort the unconscious woman to Qing Wei Gong before they left the apartment.

Although he had arrived by motorcycle, it was too dangerous for Lu Yang to drive in his current condition. The three of them took Driver’s taxi instead. However, Lu Yang was unwilling to go home. After discussing it with Driver, the three of them headed straight to the hotel. Liu Yishi and Jiang Ziya would enter the hotel while Lu Yang rested in the taxi.

“The room number is 713. It should be on the seventh floor where Manager Wang and the others are trapped.”

In the car, Lu Yang was resting in the passenger seat while Jiang Ziya and Liu Yishi studied the hotel’s information in the back seat. Jiang Ziya pointed at the photograph of the underside of the bed, showing Liu Yishi the black blob with eyes.

Liu Yishi frowned and studied the photograph. Then, he summoned his Bible, even eliciting a startled gasp from Driver in the driver’s seat.

As soon as the Bible appeared, the pages of the book kept flipping, reacting wildly toward the photograph on the cell phone.

“This is a devil,” Liu Yishi affirmed.

Jiang Ziya was shocked. “Another devil? Didn’t you say devils are a rare sight in Taiwan?”

“They are rare.” Liu Yishi pondered, “There might be a connection between these two cases. We’ll have the Bible determine if it really is the same source or not. It is possible that the woman has been to the hotel and stayed in room 713.”

Jiang Ziya thought it was highly possible. Top Star Hotel wasn’t far from the apartment. After the domestic violence case, the woman could have been too scared to return home and went to stay at the hotel. As a result, misfortune led to more misfortune, and the hotel got involved.

Liu Yishi looked at his son who was fast asleep in the passenger seat. He wasn’t moving at all, as if he was extremely exhausted. He’d gone offline the moment he lay down.

He quietly said to Jiang Ziya, “Choose a time when Lu Yang isn’t around to call me and tell me about the black shadow.”

Having been taken seriously, Jiang Ziya was encouraged and quickly nodded while saying, “Okay, Liu-shū. Do you think this is really serious?”

“I’m unsure for now.” Liu Yishi was both lenient and nervous about his son. He had had to let his son slay demons since he was a kid, yet he couldn’t not worry about his safety.

Maybe it was time to give an ultimatum to Lu Le. She had to return to Taiwan at any cost.

The hotel wasn’t far. They arrived in a short while. Liu Yishi got out of the car and opened the passenger seat door to touch his son’s forehead. Fortunately, he didn’t have a fever.

He picked up Lu Yang’s cell phone and lightly drew a cross over it. Then, he stuffed the cell phone in Lu Yang’s hand. Following that, he asked for Jiang Ziya’s cell phone and drew the same thing before giving it back to him.

Liu Yishi carefully instructed, “Don’t take the phone off of you. It can protect you one time and also let me know at the same time that you’re in danger. It’ll call my number directly and allow me to hear your situation.”

Jiang Ziya was dumbfounded. You can do that? Why hasn’t Lu Yang ever done this?

“Lu Yang isn’t good at this sort of thing,” Liu Yishi answered without prompting after seeing Jiang Ziya’s doubt.

I understand. Lu Yang specializes in slaying demons for a hundred years.

Liu Yishi leaned into the car and said, “Keep an eye on Lu Yang. Make sure he’s safe.”

Driver had a huge smile and laughingly responded, “Hey, Master Hunter, don’t worry, once the doors to my car close, it’s safer than anywhere else!”

After walking a distance away from the taxi, Jiang Ziya couldn’t help but ask, even while knowing it wasn’t important, “Is Driver a spirit?”

“No, he’s human. His car is an artifact demon.”

Jiang Ziya was taken aback. The car we were in is an artifact demon! We were just sitting in an artifact demon?

Liu Yishi smiled and said, “You should be able to tell. You probably never entertained the idea that the car would be a spirit, so you didn’t realize it.”

“Won’t it be dangerous to let Lu Yang sit in a spirit?”

If it was the usual Lu Yang, no spirit would dare cross him, but Lu Yang was clearly out of energy at the moment and was even deeply asleep. It was too dangerous to have him sit in a spirit car!

Liu Yishi observed the hotel’s entrance while explaining, “This spirit car dates even further back than Qing Wei Gong. No one knows how long it has been around either. I heard from Master Ah Lu that the car used to be a rickshaw before it gradually became a taxi. This “Driver” person changes every few years, but the person who takes over seems to be able to inherit previous memories and won’t forget their passengers.”

Jiang Ziya was lost in thought. This phrase, “inherit,” I seem to have heard it somewhere—Dong Huang Taiyi!

Liu Yishi sighed. “A person on the verge of death depends on the spirit car for survival and agrees to become ‘Driver.’ The car allows the person to live a few years longer and take care of any regrets. This business has been going on for a long time. We have never heard of the spirit car harming anyone. We’re also unsure of just how powerful the spirit car must now be after existing for so long. We can only acquiesce to its existence.”

Other than the spirit car, are there other spirits whose existence has been acknowledged?

Jiang Ziya didn’t dare ask, afraid that he would learn too much and be scared of ever leaving his apartment again—Why does that sound like something Yu Shu, that eternal shut-in, would say?

“Head right on in. Let’s take care of this quickly and go home. You guys must be tired from running around for most of the night.”

As soon as he finished speaking, Liu Yishi summoned the Bible. The glowing book couldn’t wait any longer and rushed right in, smashing apart the automatic door, shattering glass across the floor. Liu Yishi thought nothing of the shattered glass and walked in with glass crunching below his feet. He smilingly waved Jiang Ziya over.

“Come, the Bible is in a hurry. It hates devils the most.”

Even with a smile on his face, Jiang Ziya felt that the imposing Master Lewis Hunter hated devils just as much as the Bible.

Liu Yishi directly walked to the elevator. Jiang Ziya quickly explained, “Manager Wang said that the elevator is no good. After the door opened, the scene outside wasn’t the hotel at all.”

“You can’t leave the seventh floor, but getting to the seventh floor shouldn’t be difficult.” Liu Yishi thought about it and dismissed the Bible. “You should press the elevator button so the devil won’t find anything amiss. It’s difficult for me to hide from a devil. If it discovers anything wrong and runs, it will be troublesome trying to find it later. Devils have always been good at hiding.”

Jiang Ziya pressed the elevator button.

As expected, the two of them reached the seventh floor without any trouble. However, when the elevator door opened, a long corridor appeared in front of them. It wasn’t the hotel’s corridor but a stone corridor like one from a ruin. The places where the doors to each room should have been had become arched stone tablets.

There was complicated fancy font carved on them. A closer look revealed mottled photos stuck on them, with the year of birth and death…

Jiang Ziya glanced back reflexively. The elevator had vanished, replaced by a rusty, decorative iron door that was tied up with heavy chains. A single glance told him that this door could never be opened.

“It appears that the severity of the situation has gone up.” Liu Yishi said with a little more caution and asked, “Do you know how many people are trapped inside? Their fright will make the devil grow stronger and stronger.”

Jiang Ziya thought about how many people he had seen earlier.

“If no one left from those I had seen, then it should be around twenty, give or take.”

“That many?” Liu Yishi frowned. “This devil isn’t simple. Even though people’s fright will allow it to grow more powerful, it has to trap a lot of people first. That isn’t an easy feat in the first place.”

Jiang Ziya recalled the previous incident at the library and asked suspiciously, “The hotel has been haunted for awhile. Many rooms ran into trouble, so many guests experienced oddities. Rumors arose on the internet. Could the devil have used that to achieve the desired result of scaring people?”

Liu Yishi couldn’t help but sigh. “Devils and the internet. This combination will probably grow more and more troublesome.”

Jiang Ziya nodded in agreement. Lu Yang likewise often “thanked” movies for their widespread contribution to creating spirits.

However, now that they arrived at the seventh floor, Liu Yishi wasn’t scared. He was unafraid of devils rearing their heads. What was frightening was when they grew in power, hidden away in the dark.

For example, if a possessed person received treatment early on, there was a high chance they would recover completely. If treatment was delayed until mid to late stages, then even if the devil was successfully exorcised, the person would often go crazy, even if they didn’t die. The woman from earlier was one such example. She would have to be admitted to a mental institution.

“Since we can’t block the internet, we can only deal with the devil while it’s still young and block it from reaching the internet.”

The Bible appeared once again.

3 Responses

  1. Kamui

    A catacomb, huh? How…fun. I can only hope that western horror will feel a little less scary than the previous case…

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