Wang Wenlong sat in the old well with his fists punching the air before him. It looked like he was in the middle of a boxing match.
“Stand here and don’t move. I’ll go and pull him out,” Chen Ge told Pei Hu. Wang Wenlong heard him and stopped moving. Like a traumatized victim, he lifted his head upwards dumbly. When his pair of lifeless eyes caught Pei Hu, they started to focus.
His body shaking with anger, Wang Wenlong seemed to escape from the thing that had taken hold of him earlier, and he yelled at Pei Hu, “You f*cker! You dare come back to face me‽”
“Listen to me. It was a dangerous situation. If I didn’t run, we both would have been in danger.”
“It’s true! I used myself as bait to lure the scariest threat away! If you don’t believe me, ask the boss!”
Pei Hu felt wronged. Being targeted by a mannequin head and frozen under the bed for ten minutes, those who had not experienced that before had no idea how scary it was.
“Keep your voices low. You can continue the argument outside.” Seeing how spirited Wang Wenlong was, Chen Ge sighed in relief. “Come, give me your hand.”
Wang Wenlong stopped shouting when he saw Chen Ge. “I can’t. My lower body is numb.”
“Numb?” Chen Ge jumped into the well, and with Pei Hu’s cooperation, they hauled Wang Wenlong out. After saving the guy, Chen Ge did not hurry to leave. He had inspected the well when he placed the nametags that morning. Other than the two mannequins, there was nothing particularly scary about.
Outside the well, Wang Wenlong and Pei Hu had started the argument anew. Chen Ge squatted down to examine the mannequins’ faces. The male mannequin’s eyes were open, which was different from that morning.
The mannequins buried inside the well should represent Fan Yu’s parents. If they are baleful specters, it would not be so easy to deal with. Thankfully, they are just lingering spirits. Chen Ge was reminded of what had happened to Fei Youliang. His body had been taken over by the Pen Spirit, who wanted to escape, but he had been stopped by the twenty or so spirits in the sealed classroom.
The spirits had entered his body and controlled him to walk to the deep well. They had seemed prepared to punish the Pen Spirit but stopped at the last moment.
The mistake lay with the Pen Spirit. The other spirits dragged her to the well to punish her, did they plan to throw her inside the well?
Chen Ge looked at Fan Yu’s parents, who were buried in the sand, and his suspicion was confirmed. The old well seemed to be some sort of prison for evil lingering spirits.
Now that I think about it. The lingering spirits in the sealed classroom have quite a strong sense of justice.
All the spirits had been orphans when they were alive. They had been adopted by the old headmaster, and they treated Mu Yang High School as their home. Now that Chen Ge’s black phone had reconstructed Mu Yang High School inside the Haunted House, these lingering spirits probably just wanted to have a stable and peaceful life here.
As long as you do not do anything out of line, my Haunted House will be your new home.
Chen Ge looked at the mannequins buried in the sand and jumped out of the well. When he turned back to look inside the well, the eyes of the two mannequins were closed again.
“Come, it’s time to walk you out.” Chen Ge helped Wang Wenlong get up from the floor. The fear in his eyes had not dissipated. The only reason he could appear so spirited earlier was because his anger at seeing Pei Hu had suppressed all the other emotions.
After wasting a ton of energy, Chen Ge finally managed to drag these five people out of Mu Yang High School. When the curtains to the Haunted House opened, the surrounding visitors all took a cold gasp. They had heard the incessant screaming coming from inside the Haunted House, but they had never envisioned things being so bad.
“What have these people experienced?”
“It was only half an hour…”
Uncle Xu, who was serious in his role as the ticket seller, felt everyone’s eyes focusing behind him. He had a bad feeling, and when he turned around, his hair stood on end.
“Damn! What happened to them‽” Uncle Xu abandoned his post and ran over to help Wang Hailong and Xia Meili.
“Just a little scare, it’s nothing serious.” Chen Ge released his grasp on Wang Wenlong’s arm. “Can you walk on your own?”
When they heard Chen Ge, the visitors all took a step back.
“He could not even walk, and you say that’s a little scare‽”
“Are you trying to lie to us‽”
Wang Wenlong was embarrassed with the crowd watching him. He waddled forward two steps like a baby learning how to walk.
“Wenlong, Pei Hu!” A large fella in a tank top pushed through the crowd. He had the tattoo of a wolf’s head on his shoulder. He rushed over to support Wang Wenlong. “What happened to all of you‽ I heard your screams from outside.”
Chen Ge glanced at the man; he was the group’s sixth member. According to their plan, now was the time for the man to challenge the Haunted House alone.
“Were we that loud?” Wang Wenlong prayed for a hole for him to hide in as he brushed the man’s hands off him. Since Wang Wenlong did not seem like he want to explain, he turned to Chen Ge, “What have you done to my brother‽”
“Brother?” Chen Ge thought the man’s tone was a bit weird, but he did not take it to heart. He took one step forward to face the crowd. “I told all of you before they entered that the scenarios are separated into levels! Only by passing the earlier scenarios will you be able to stomach the fear levels of the later scenarios, but they refused to listen to me and insisted on trying it. You can see the result of that for yourselves.”
Standing before the Haunted House, Chen Ge ignored the muscular man, and his expression turned serious. “When I suggested to delineate the scenarios into levels, many suspected I was trying to cheat you out of your money, but that is really not the case. I simply want to protect my customers because the newly opened two-star scenario is not suitable for everyone. Its scare factor is much higher than other Haunted Houses available on the market!”
Chen Ge gripped the gate of the Haunted House. “Western Jiujiang’s Haunted House has been in operation for several years already, and from the beginning until now, our rating has never dipped under 90 percent, and that is because we put our customers first. As long as you are willing to try, we will give you the scariest time you’ll experience in your life!
“But have you considered this? Everyone’s fear threshold is different. We strive for the ultimate scare, but for those who haven’t visited a Haunted House before, certain scenarios might be a bit too much. Thus, after much consideration, we decided to set the rules to split the scenarios into levels.”
The new rules had to be accepted by the visitors, and what Chen Ge was doing then was introducing the rules to the visitors and making them accept the rules. On one hand, he used reward money to make people want to challenge the hard scenario; on the other hand, he made use of Wang Hailong’s group as a lesson to warn future visitors of the consequence from not following the rules.
“If you want to win the reward, then you have to follow the Haunted House’s rules. Start with the low-level scenarios before you challenge the scarier ones.”
Once this rule was put into place, all of the scenarios inside the Haunted House would be put to good use. And most importantly, as long as he could unlock more scenarios with higher Scream Factors, the level of attraction it would have for a certain type of visitors would increase, and this would lay the foundation for the scary theme park.