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964 Spider and Butterfly

 Even though the old Japanese house only had a few rooms, it gave people the feeling of being trapped inside a maze. Some of the rooms were connected; others appeared like they were separated, but there was actually a panel that could be pushed open between them. The layout was confusing, and the five rooms corresponded to the human body's five major organs. Chen Ge also found the remnants of mantra scrolls in every bedroom.

Even though the building style was Japanese, the scrolls had Chinese characters. Most of them were written in ancient Chinese calligraphy, and Chen Ge could only recognize the Five Elements (Wood, Fire, Earth, Water, Metal).

"Five bedrooms, five organs, five elements..." The sound of a wind chime tingled in his ears. Chen Ge turned back to look. He was curious about where this sound came from. This was the second time that he had heard this.

"Has anyone realized that this house appears like a person who is lying on the ground?" The police officer had started treating Chen Ge nicely. He followed Chen Ge around loyally; where Chen Ge went, there he would be.

"A person?"

"Yes, the room that we first entered in is the head. The rooms on the left and right are the arms. The rooms below are the legs. The corridor in the middle is the body, and the altar at the end appears like it's being stepped on." The police officer's comment inspired Chen Ge.

"If the whole building corresponds to a person, then the whole layout is using the energy of a living person to hinder the altar."

"A person stomping on the power of the altar?" A shine glazed the police officer's eyes, and he shouted excitedly, "I get it now! A person literally stepping on the god! That's why there is a pair of red high heels inside the altar!"

The first part of the analysis was okay, but the second half was all over the place. Chen Ge wanted to correct the man, but the police officer was too excited to share his discovery with the rest of visitors. Just as the other visitors were discussing this among themselves, Chen Ge stood quietly in the corridor.

"The theme of this place is a curse, and a curse can be a reincarnation. Spreading from the malice of the first person, to clear this scenario, we will need to understand what has happened here. I found the camcorder inside the first bedroom. It recorded the history of the seven young people staying overnight at this house. The camcorder did not show the ending of the seven people, but the chance of them surviving is negligible. Those were seven human lives.

"The second bedroom is filled with a bunch of clothes, and they are all covered in dirt like they had just been picked out from a swamp. Compared to the words mentioned by the owner of the house, his parents died in a landslide, and his whole family died in the cave in. So, it would be natural for the clothes on their bodies to be covered in soil. Therefore, the clothes in the second bedroom probably belong to the parents, and the reason behind their car accident may have something to do with the altar as well."

Chen Ge scratched his chin and slowly sifted through the known information in his mind.

"Based what the owner of the house said, on the day of their parent's accident, it was raining heavily. The road to this mountain village is hard to navigate, and the villagers' reaction showed that landslides are a common occurrence. Since the owners were local, they should have known about that. If that's the case, why did they venture out that day?"

The answer was quite clear. Chen Ge turned to look at the altar.

"They probably opened the altar, and even if they didn't, they would have discovered something dangerous and been forced to leave! But they did not expect, even after escaping from this house, they still couldn't escape from the shadow of death. That should be the power of the curse.

"Then comes the third bedroom. I found a toppled over sacrificial table, and on the table was a black and white picture of an old man. Strangely enough, the man was facing away from the camera, so his face couldn't be seen. Other than that, I found many children's toys in the third bedroom, and they are all hidden under the sacrificial table. The items in that room reminded me of the story told by the man in the camcorder. On the day of the grandfather's burial, the grandson looked into the altar and mysteriously disappeared. If the grandson also died, then we have another two more dead lives.

"The similarity across these stories is that someone has probably opened the altar."

The first three bedrooms had items once belonging to the victims, but starting from the fourth bedroom, things changed.

"I found traces of a fire in the fourth bedroom. The bedroom walls are heavily charred, and the items are seriously burned. Who lit a fire inside the room? Why would they burn up the bedroom?"

Chen Ge temporarily skipped over the question because he did not get it.

"The fourth bedroom aside, the fifth bedroom is also very weird. This should be a woman's room. There is a mirror by the wall, many traditional clothes are in the closet, and there are make-up boxes. The owner should be a young woman, but why would a black and white picture of an old woman be placed in a corner of the room? The feeling of the fifth room is discrepancy. The strange thing is that the old woman's picture is facing the room like she is smiling while looking at the stuff inside.

"The picture of the old man in the third bedroom was taken from the back, but the picture of the old woman was taken from the front-why? What has happened to this family?"

Just as Chen Ge was murmuring about that, that child's voice appeared again. "Losing its wings, a butterfly will be in great pain, so why would they tear out the butterfly's wings?"

This sudden appearance of the voice startled Chen Ge. "They are probably envious of the butterfly's beauty. Some ugly people like to ruin things that are more beautiful than them. That way, they hope to feel prettier."

"Ugly people? But grandma is not ugly..." the child mumbled.

"Grandma? She was the one who tore off the butterfly's wings?"

"Yes." The child sounded sad.

"You must be alone here, right? Can I be your friend?" Chen Ge tried to keep his voice warm.

"I have my grandpa, and he doesn't like it when I run about. He is afraid that grandma might find out about me, so he had me hide in my room." There was an innocence in the child's voice.

"So, the scariest person in this house is grandma?" Chen Ge slowly lifted his finger. He wanted to confirm something. A chill came from his fingertip. There was something standing next to him, and it was not a projection!

"Can you bring me to go meet your grandpa?" Before the child could answer, he was interrupted by the sound of a wind chime. This was the third time that it had chimed.

"Grandma is here. I should go back." The boy's voice dwindled. Chen Ge used his Yin Yang Vision to look and saw a boy of about five running back into the third bedroom. He was going to chase after him when he felt the wooden floors around the corridor shake. A giant spider larger than a man crawled out from the room filled with talismans. Screams echoed everywhere. The spider crawled speedily on the ceiling and wall. Her arms were like human limbs, and she had a dried human head.

"A projection?" The monster looked so real that Chen Ge was feeling numb. "No wonder they call this hellish difficulty. This is more than scary; it gives people biological discomfort."

The spider seemed to have her eyes on Chen Ge and crawled rapidly toward him. Chen Ge saw this and led the spider to meet up with the other teammates.