The door to the Murder by Midnight scenario closed with a click, and the crisp sound was like a shackle that tightened itself around the group of medical students’ hearts.
“He San, based on your previous experience, what do you think our best course of action is?”
“Find the exit as soon as possible!”
After locking the door, Chen Ge immediately gave Xiao Wan a call to tell her to meet him in the props room.
“Boss, what’s the hurry? The visitors are already inside the building, aren’t they?” Xu Wan, with her dead person make-up and the ghost bride’s attire from the Minghun setting, was quite scary running about the building.
“I’ve built a new scenario on the third floor; it’s called Murder by Midnight. The group of medical students should be the perfect test subjects for the new scenario.” Chen Ge pushed open the door and used the black phone to search for the things that he needed.
“But shouldn’t the new scenario be inspected by the park management first before it can be used?” Xu Wan followed after him, holding the traditional skirt above her ankles lest she tripped on it. “Boss, what are you looking for anyway?”
“The uniform that I personally made for you.”
At the deepest corner of the room, Chen Ge spotted a familiar wooden box. He did not expect this box that had once housed the doll and the black phone would suddenly materialize in the room. Chen Ge walked to the box and peered in. Sitting at the bottom were a weird-looking hammer, a blood-soaked robe, and a yellowed missing person notice.
“Found it.” Chen Ge pulled the robe up. Surprisingly, the robe that looked like a normal doctor’s garb was incredibly heavy. That was probably due to the iron chains that were sewn into the fabric. The chains were carved with human faces in various degrees of torment.
“Boss, this is the uniform you made for me?” Xu Wan involuntarily took several steps back because she could smell the blood that seemed to radiate from the outfit. “Can I not wear it?”
“Extras at Haunted House are actors, Xiao Wan. Think of the lessons your teachers at drama school once taught you. An actor has to be able to familiarize themself with any and all roles.” Chen Ge spread the robe out, and a faux-human skin mask fell out from between the folds. Chen Ge also did not know such a thing came with the outfit. He bent over to pick it up, and with just a quick glance, he shivered with chills.
The mask was made from parts of male faces sewn together. It was rough-looking, but that only added to its scare factor.
“Boss, don’t tell me I have to wear that as well.” Xu Wan had already retreated to the door.
“Just try it on, please. I want to see how it looks as a whole. I’ll be the ghost next time, okay? Pretty please…” Chen Ge begged, but his tone sounded like the devil in fairy tales luring common man to sin.
“Fine… I’ll try it on.” Xu Wan finally relented. After accepting the skin mask and the garb, she took off the ghost bride attire in front of Chen Ge and changed into her new uniform. She did not seem to mind that Chen Ge was standing right there. “Boss, honestly, your definition of uniform might need to be updated.”
The moment Xu Wan curled the chains around her body and put on the blood-soaked garb and the skin mask, a subtle change seemed to occur to her entire personality. A sense of cruelty, madness, and wickedness seemed to come over her.
“Not bad.” Chen Ge did not dare let Xu Wan near the mirror, afraid that she might scare herself. “Come, carry this with you.”
Chen Ge grabbed the weird-looking hammer from the box. The hammer was about forty centimeters long. Its handle looked like a human spine. At the end, there was a hook that could connect it to the chain inside the robe, and on both sides of the hammer head, there were needles used for bloodletting. “It’s hollow so not heavy, but if you feel it’s too troublesome to run with it, you can drag it across the floor.”
Xu Wan had already surrendered to Chen Ge’s weird ideas. All she did was nod and accepted the hammer.
“Place your phone inside your outer pocket and make sure your earpiece is working. Keep the channel open, and if there are no questions, it’s time for us to start.”
“Us? Boss, you’re entering the scenario as well?” Xu Wan turned to glance at Chen Ge. Her mellifluous voice coming out of the skin mask had a particularly chilling effect.
“Of course. Come on, let’s get a move on. The visitors are probably bored waiting for us.”
Chen Ge had Xu Wan enter the Murder by Midnight scenario while he returned to the main control room. In just several minutes, he found the shadows of the seven students on screen. Those seven were bigger cowards than Gao Ru Xue. Judging from the expressions on their faces, it was clear that they were nervous.
After so long, they’re still wandering around the entrance? Looks like I’ll need to give them a little push.
Chen Ge first switched the music to Black Friday before calling Xu Wan.
“Xiao Wan, this new scenario is huge; it not only involves the third floor but also parts of the first and second floor. There are staircases at the left and right end of the scenario, so don’t wonder about aimlessly or you’ll get lost. Now, listen to my orders carefully.”
After ending communication with Xu Wan, Chen Ge applied some make-up to himself before entering the Murder by Midnight scenario through the workers’ passageway. With the black phone, he could control the more than ten props and traps around the set freely. With this little convenience alone, the playability of Murder by Midnight was far greater than Minghun and Night of the Living Dead.
In the darkened floor, the bathtub in one of the rooms was pushed aside. After Chen Ge crawled out from it, he returned everything back to its original state.
“Xiao Wan, they’re probably around Room 207. You go standby at the left staircase and await my next order.” After that, Chen Ge let his eyes get used to the darkness before he used the right staircase to get up to the third floor.
The group of medical students still had no idea that ‘danger’ was approaching. They were still looking through the random props carefully, hoping to discover some useful clues.
“Other than the general dimness and low temperature, this Haunted House doesn’t seem that scary, are we acting a bit too cautiously?” Monkey was the smallest and chattiest of the group. “Brother Feng, I think we should split into two groups. That way, the search will go much faster. The progress will be too slow if we continue to stick together like this.”
The tall youth was the Brother Feng whom Monkey referred to. After realizing all of their preparation had been nothing but a waste after entering the Murder by Midnight scenario, he was admittedly a bit unsettled. However, as time passed, he slowly realized the place was not as scary as he imagined. “That’s not a bad idea. Alright then, Monkey and Lao Song, the two of you take the two girls with you as you look through the rooms on the left; the three of us will search the rooms on the right.”
“We should have done that a long time ago. I don’t understand what are you guys acting so scared for! This place is like a park compared to our school’s morgue.” The one who spoke up was a girl, one of the few who had her hair dyed among the group. Different from Gao Ru Xue, she had a little make-up on her face, and she looked more like an adult than a student.
“Sister Hui, Brother Feng, we mustn’t let our guard down; I still think we should stick together.” He San hid among the crowd with a perpetual pout. “The boss of this Haunted House cannot be understood with normal logic. None of you have seen his livestream, but he’s a madman with absolutely no regard for his life!”