Volume 2, Chapter 6: Gui Mian Cao

On the next day, Xiao Bei was carrying the bag he had packed the day before and together with Yang Chen and the rest, they returned to Harbin.

At this time, Harbin had become bitterly cold, catching many unprepared residents off guard. The contrast between the North and the South was just too big. Xiao Bei and the others could only rush into the department store to buy themselves winter clothing when they got off the bus.

The weather really does change very quickly. A few days ago when they had went to Li Jiang, they were wearing woolen clothes, but as Xiao Bei looked at the rest of the four that were wearing down-filled jackets, the corners of his mouth unconsciously curved up.

These few days, as they were traveling back, it had been very long since Xiao Bei last smiled. This was to the extent that when Xiao Bei smiled, everyone’s gazes were filled with interest as if they were looking at a huge panda. As Yang Chen and the rest saw Xiao Bei smiling, they grinned and giggled softly.

“It’s indeed worlds apart ah. Just now, we were still discussing whether we were being too hasty by returning now.” Both Xiao Min and Qiu Yu laughed. As for Lu Yun, ever since Xiao Bei saw him, he had never really seen him speak. Anyway, Xiao Bei did not have any good impression of this hen-hearted guy. After everyone slightly nodded their heads and said their goodbyes to each other, Yang Cheng and Xiao Bei rented a car and parted with the other three.

“Where are we going now?” Yang Chen asked Xiao Bei.

“Let’s go see Brother Liu first so that he won’t get worried about our safety. Also, I have things I want to ask him.” Xiao Bei took off his hat and looked outside the car.

The pedestrians on the roads hurriedly passed by. The side window of the car rapidly turned foggy, causing the scene outside to be blocked by a misty white color.

The biting cold wind blew against Xiao Bei’s cheeks, making them sore.

“Dōng, dōng, dōng.” Xiao Bei knocked on the door of the antique shop. Today, for some unknown reason, Liu Xin’s antique shop was not open but Xiao Bei knew that Liu Xin had already moved and was now living in the house behind his shop.

Before long, “tī tà tī tà” sounds of footsteps came from inside. A rough sound rang out, it was from Liu Xin due to whom Xiao Bei had decided to be a robber in the past.

“Brother Liu, it’s me!” Yang Chen took the initiative and spoke first.

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‘Zhī ya’ with a deep groan, the antique shop welcomed in its first rays of sunlight.

Though the time was nearing noon, the wind outside was very big, to the extent that there was no stop to it and it made the door curtain to sway constantly. Xiao Bei and Yang Chen hurriedly lifted the curtain and moved sideward into the shop.

The shop still possessed its interesting and appealing antique charm. Xiao Bei deeply breathed in as it had been a long time since he had last smelled this scent ah.

This time, their trip toward Li Jiang could be said as a narrow escape as Xiao Bei nearly could not come back. Liu Xin was pleasantly surprised to see the two as he patted their shoulders. “It’s nice for you two to safely return!”

“Come come come, let’s sit down first before talking. Today’s weather outside must be very cold right? I just made ginger soup, I’ll go pour a bowl for each of you.” As Liu Xin said, he pulled the two over and pushed them into the rattan chairs that were in front of the old-fashioned square table.

Liu Xin then ran ‘dā dā dā’ to the back of the house. Before two minutes had passed, he came back carrying two bowls of hot ginger soup that were emitting steam.

Looking at the steam that was rising in spirals, many thoughts and emotions flooded Xiao Bei’s mind as he sighed.

“Come, tell me. What did the two of you meet when you were there? Ever since that time when I saw those lines posted in the chat room, it gave me a fright. If the two of you still did not return, I would rush there to find you two! Today I closed my shop and had just finished packing up my things but I did not expect the two of you to give me such a surprise ah! The ancient tomb at Li Jiang is very dangerous. I still had some lingering fear of it when I thought about some of the past events regarding that ancient tomb.” It turned out that the reason why the shop’s door was sealed shut was due to this. While both of Xiao Bei and Yang Chen hands were holding onto the bowl that was filled with ginger soup, their hands were slightly trembling and there was a hint of red in their eyes.

“At first, I wanted to wait till I received news of you guys going missing before going to find you. But suddenly, something happened which caused me to not be able to delay the search, āi, we can talk about this at a later time. First, let’s talk about how Xiao Chen found you.” Liu Xin’s complexion seemed strange.

So, Xiao Bei started to narrate his experience in the tomb, starting from the time when he fell into the bandit hole.

While Xiao Bei was narrating, Liu Xin saw Xiao Bei’s exposed hand when he was picking up the bowl with his sleeve cuffs rolled up. Liu Xin quickly stood up and went to the back of the house. He brought out a medicine box. “It’s all my fault ah. If I didn’t agree to allow you to get involved in this industry, you wouldn’t have met such a dangerous situation.” After changing the medicine on Xiao Bei’s wounds, he guiltily spoke.

In fact, the injuries on Xiao Bei’s body were nearly healed and were just covered with scabs. However, when he saw Brother Liu was blaming himself because of his injuries, Xiao Bei’s heart felt as if eighteen stoves were warming his heart. Imagine the scene where a straightforward big man from Northeast China carefully dressed and changed the medicine on the wound. Wouldn’t this seem comical? To Xiao Bei who was separated from his parents since young, the Liu Xin this moment was like a father worrying about his child, using his clumsy ways to make up for his mistakes. This kind of illusion caused Xiao Bei to feel somewhat emotional.

If Liu Xin is like a father, then fatty is like a familiar stranger who doesn’t really like to interact, an outside cold and inside warm big brother then? This was what Xiao Bei suddenly thought about.

“Fatty……I will definitely avenge you……Please bless me to find the culprit behind the scenes……” Xiao Bei murmured softly. The memory of fatty’s final lonely yet determined back suddenly surfaced in his mind. As the weight of fatty in Xiao Bei’s heart was extremely heavy, no matter how much time had ground him, it would not be able to erase his resentment and pain. Towards fatty, Xiao Bei felt deep remorse for him. Like what Uncle Qia had said, if it wasn’t for his appearance, fatty might not have died this easily. This even more greatly deepened his hatred for the mastermind of this plot.

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“Oh, that’s right, I found a diary in the tomb. The information inside is very useful. I believe we will be able to find some clues from it!” Xiao Bei excitedly slapped down on the table, causing the porcelain bowls to be thrown to the ground, breaking them into pieces. “I’m so sorry ah Brother Liu, I was just too excited. Recently, my mental state isn’t that good and I was also unable to control my strength.”

Xiao Bei quickly bent over to clean up the broken pieces of the bowls.

Whatever things that were useful, Xiao Bei would naturally carry them with him. Due to this, even after he changed to cotton clothes, he would still stuff those things inside his not so deep pocket. This very action of Xiao Bei caused the plastic bag that Uncle Qia had used to hold parts of the plants to slip out.

“Oh right, Brother Liu, there’s still something I would like to ask you. Do you recognize this? None of us have seen this strange thing. You have seen many things and is more knowledgeable than us, so I brought it back to have you see it.” After Xiao Bei had swept the broken bowl pieces to a rubbish bin that was at the corner, he took out the seed and together with the remaining part of the plant, he passed them to Liu Xin.

Initially, Liu Xin was filled with curiosity when he received the two items, but once he saw clearly what those things were, his pupils suddenly contracted!

“Gui Mian Cao! Why on Earth is this horrible thing still in existence?!”

Looking at Liu Xin’s frightened expression, Xiao Bei knew that he had found the right person. For Brother Liu to call those things horrifying, unfortunately, only he knew why. The degree of strangeness regarding those things, Xiao Bei had already personally witnessed them.

“Āi, to tell you guys honestly, if I had known these things would happen, even if I were to be beaten to death, I still would not have allowed you guys to go to Li Jiang ah!” Liu Xin regretfully spoke and one of his hands was supporting his forehead.

Why was it that when Brother Liu brought out that place, he seemed to have lost his self-control? Also, once Brother Liu spoke those words, Xiao Bei faintly felt that the situation seemed somewhat fishy.

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