When He San mentioned that his fainting had to do with mirror, Chen Ge’s heart skipped a beat. He was instantly reminded of the game from the previous night and how the thing inside the mirror had been stopped from escaping by the doll.
From the look of it, the creature still had not left, hiding the mirrors of the Haunted House.
“Boss, is this a new thing just added to the Haunted House? How come I’ve not heard of it before?” Xu Wan also wandered over, pulling the gaze of the crowd along with her. Chen Ge was caught in an awkward position; he could not just confess that there was an actual ghost living inside the Haunted House, could he? If he did that, the Haunted House would be forced into closure, but more than that, he would be dragged to the mental hospital.
“I guess you can say that. It’s related to the short video I uploaded last night, but I don’t recommend playing this game without professional guidance.” Chen Ge patted He San lightly on his shoulder. “If you do not take my advice, you might end up in the same state as this young man. Alright, who still wishes to visit the Haunted House? Don’t worry, there are bound to be accidents in a Haunted House; that’s what makes it interesting, yes?”
“Interesting my backside! A man fainted! It’s a Haunted House visit, so why should we put our lives on the line‽”
“He’s right! I’ll forget about my broken phone as long as you don’t post any more weird ass videos in the middle of the night.”
“Thanks, but no thanks!”
As Chen Ge extended the invitation, the crowd stepped away from him in unison. He laughed awkwardly. “Why are you all acting like that? My Haunted House is really not that scary.”
“Bro, we have two forensic science students who deal with dead bodies every day here; one is in tears, and the other fainted. Now, you’re telling us your Haunted House is not scary? Who are you lying to? How can you lie without batting an eye?”
“That’s right, have some morals!”
The comments from the crowd stumped Chen Ge. Initially, when the Haunted House was supposedly not scary, no one wanted to visit because, apparently, it was too boring. Now, when it was finally scary, it seemed to have overshot the effect he wanted. “But you came from all over the country just to stand at the entrance and watch? Guts can be trained; an occasional scare here and there will be able to increase your heart rate, thus improving your blood circulation.”
“Even if you give us money, we’re not going into that place. And improve blood circulation some more, you might as well say your Haunted House can cure cancer.” The man who had his phone broken retorted before turning to leave.
However, right then, a middle-aged uncle standing beside him suddenly raised his voice to say, “Boss, give me a ticket!”
His voice was firm like he had come to this decision after much contemplation.
“F*ck, there really are thrill-seekers everywhere.”
“Uncle, don’t be rash. Other Haunted Houses take your money, but his Haunted House takes your life!”
“Uncle, you’ve impressed me with your courage! Go on, don’t worry, you can leave your wife and your daughter with me!”
The uncle looked to be over forty, and his head was balding. He walked out from the crowd and gave Chen Ge ten dollars. “One ticket please.”
“You’re doing this alone?” Even Chen Ge was impressed by this middle-aged man. He dared to do this after witnessing what had happened earlier‽
After taking the money, Chen Ge gave the uncle his ticket. He was about to go through his introductions when the uncle took the ticket and walked off in the other direction from the Haunted House’s gate.
“Uncle, the door is right this way…”
“I know.” The uncle did not turn back and continued to walk to a rather photogenic spot. He pulled out his phone to mess with the camera angle until he managed to encapsulate most of the Haunted House building in the frame. He snapped two pictures before posting them to his Facebook. “The weather today is perfect for a day-out. I personally recommend this Western Jiujiang City’s House of Horrors. It scared the bejesus out of me when I visited the place, highly recommended.”
The crowd could not help but roll their eyes. All you did was stay at the entrance for about twenty minutes and purchase a ticket, you call that visiting the place?
Before the crowd could say anything, the uncle already got likes and replies from his social circle.
Xiao Li from Human Resources responded, “Brother Zhang, you’re scared of even the common rat but you dared to visit a Haunted House today? My man, nice job!”
“This means that the Haunted House isn’t that scary if Ol’ Zhang dares to visit it (wicked grin),” replied Wang Da You.
“Dinner is served, come home soon!!!” Ol’ Ball and Chain’s response was relatively off-topic.
Precious Daughter, Wang Jing, laughed. “LOL, Dad, we’re all very familiar with the type of courage you have, so stop with the hapless struggle.”
The balding uncle didn’t mind the comments but replied with a mischievous smile, “Feel free to visit this place on your own. Since you all claim to be braver than I am, I’m sure none of you will be afraid to take up this challenge, right?”
This series of actions had stunned the crowd.
“Uncle, how cunning you are! To prove that you’re not a scaredy-cat, you’re entrapping your very own wife and daughter…” The man who had broken his phone stood beside the uncle and saw the whole process. Then, he rushed toward Chen Ge and demanded, “Give me a ticket as well!”
Chen Ge had no explanation to this development, but since he was operating a business, he could not say no to his customers. After passing the young man his ticket, he saw the young man operate his broken phone to snap a picture and upload it onto Instagram with the caption, “God, what did I do? I realize I’m easily scared, who can come to hold my hands as we challenge this Haunted House together‽”
Reading through the many comments that appeared under his photo, the young man had a devilish smile on his face.
“Give me one ticket too.”
“Fifty percent off, you say? Then give me two!”
There was no visitor inside the Haunted House, but the tickets in Chen Ge’s hands quickly disappeared. In just a few minutes, about half the stack was gone. The crowd slowly dispersed, and Chen Ge started to happily count the day’s earning.
“Boss, the tickets we sold this morning are more than the total tickets we have sold in the whole month.” Xu Wan squatted down beside Chen Ge, and the excitement in her eyes could not be suppressed.
“We merely got lucky today, to make sure we have a constant stream of visitors, we have to improve on our content first.” Chen Ge placed the cash inside his pocket and turned to head back inside the Haunted House. It was then that he realized, his ‘victims’ of the day, Gao Ru Xue and He San, still hadn’t left the scene.
“Are you two feeling any better?” Chen Ge walked toward them with an offering of mineral water. After all, they were crucial to him having such good sales that day.
“Yes, thank you, and sorry for the trouble,” He San, who sat on the steps, uttered awkwardly.
Beside him, the color still had not returned to Gao Ru Xue’s face yet. Her gaze wandered between Chen Ge and Xu Wan before she said, “I have two questions I want to ask, may I?”
“Sure.” Chen Ge nodded readily.
“Number one, inside the West House, I swore I saw this girl’s face in the mirror, so how could she suddenly appear behind me?” Gao Ru Xue intended to get to the bottom of the truth. She had a hard time coming to terms with that fact that she had been so scared that she cried.
“You think that’s a normal mirror, but it’s actually not. It’s actually a triangular pillar with mirrors on each side, but the two other sides are normally hidden behind the wall. It can be moved with a slight push. The exit to the Minghun scenario is actually behind the mirror. Regarding the woman you saw in the mirror, it was merely a picture that was pasted at particular angle. Using lighting effects, the other mirror, and optical illusions, it creates the illusion that you’re looking at a real person. Xiao Wan was actually hiding behind the mirror. The sound of footsteps you heard was merely a sound effect.”
Gao Ru Xue nodded after listening to Chen Ge’s explanation. “Alright, the second question.”
She pointed at Xu Wan. “This lady is obviously alive, but how come, looking at her, I have this feeling that I’m looking at a dead body?”