Chapter 5: The Resentful Baby Ghost
I didn’t know how long I had been sleeping when I faintly felt a chilling wind blowing on my face all of a sudden. I opened my eyes subconsciously and found that ghost—Miss Murong, had stood near the bedside.
I immediately jumped out of bed and put on my training pack hurriedly. I was absolutely sure that if I was too slow and moved lazily, this Miss Murong would have given me her “most beautiful” face! Man, I gotta be a wise man who knows to act according to circumstances.
Miss Murong was satisfied to see the “diligent” me, and said, “Today I give you these 2 sandbags, they are each 10 kg, and your task now is to tie these sandbags to your back and chest, then run for 5 km. You are not permitted to have breakfast or go to school before you’ve finished this task.“.
“Lady, aren’t you making a mistake here? You’re telling me to run 5km with 20 kg worth of sand?”
“You don’t wanna do it?”
“I will, I will!” I quickly nodded and answered. If I incurred her wrath, the consequences may be very serious. I mean, so damn serious. But… carrying 20 kg of sand and running for 5 km… That would definitely make me exhausted… the damn silly, unlucky me.
80 minutes! Finally, I completed this hella morning exercise!
I was out of breath and dead tired. My chest was burning and it made me spit out some blood. I was soaked with sweat and my clothes were wet and glued to my body. My legs were so numb I almost thought that I lost them. And I couldn’t even move freely since my body was sore.
Crawling up the stairs was an almost impossible task, and after I did, I fell down directly on my bed. Miss Murong stood at the door and said, “Your willpower is good. I don’t want to make you suffer intentionally. But your age is a bit too late to start cultivating the basic foundations for training Daoist arts. Your physical fitness is very poor, and it is imperative that you strengthen it quickly, otherwise, you will be unable to learn Daoist skills at all.”
Since I’m so dead tired, I couldn’t speak a word; only humming twice at her in reply. Miss Murong left quietly. Shortly after, Mom called me to eat breakfast. But I didn’t have the strength and appetite to eat, so I just grabbed a pack of biscuits instead, and weakly walked out of the door.
My bicycle’s tire went flat last night and I haven’t had it repaired yet. It seemed that I couldn’t ride to school and had to call a taxi.
As usual, my arrival at the campus was always an eye-catching scene! However, I have been long accustomed to being obsessed and worshiped. Regardless of their gazes of love and jealousy, I strode directly to my classroom.
Xiaohui hadn’t arrived yet.
I just laid directly on the table, and silently fell asleep in an instant. This morning’s exercise consumed most of my physical strength and completely sapped my willpower and spirit to attentively listen to the lecture given by the teacher.
I was still in a dazed condition when Xiaohui called me twice. I mumbled at her when she called for a second time. She then stopped calling me after she saw me mumbling and gave no other reaction.
It wasn’t until noon when the school break came that Xiaohui woke me up, “Zhang Xiaolong, how can you sleep so much? It’s not a good habit. Anyway, I had put the sword hilt in your table drawer.”
I quickly took the hilt from the table’s drawer, put it into the bag, and walked together with Xiaohui out of the campus.
I went home and had some lunch. This afternoon, I decided to solve Xiaohui’s trouble. I know that I knew nothing about Daoist arts. But fortunately, there was a vial of cattle tears and the Shadowbane sword in my hands. The cattle tears gave me the ability to see the ghosts and the Shadowbane sword was one of the 10 most famous swords since ancient time—and as Miss Murong said yesterday—this thing had a great deterrent effect toward evil spirits and ghosts. Therefore, even though I was timid, these magical things in my hands gave me some courage.
I put the vial of cattle tears and the Shadowbane sword into the bag. Since I told Mom that I was going outside to buy a book at the bookstore, I took 250 yuan from my deposit and put it into my wallet.
At the bookstore, I bought a Chinese traditional dictionary. The ‘Niu School’s Past Records on Demon Subjugation’ book was written in traditional Chinese characters. So the dictionary was a must if I wanted to comprehend anything written in it.
The afternoon came. I had arrived in class but realized that Xiaohui hadn’t come in yet. There were a few people inside the classroom.
I took out the vial of cattle tears from my backpack, dipped my finger and coated the tear’s liquid around my eyes. Miss Murong said that the cattle tears effectiveness lasted for an hour. After putting the vial away in my desk drawer, I looked around the classroom. There was no ghost around here.
When I was pondering about it, a boy came and sat beside me with a ridiculing and disdaining expression on his face, “Hey you sucker, you came early today, eh?”
This boy was called Xia Chaoran, about 175 cm in height, and had a Russian blood lineage or so I heard. His hair was yellowish with a pair of blue eyes. The arrogance and superior personality was clearly expressed on his face. But he did truly have the capital to feel superior though, as he had handsome looks, good grades at school, and came from a rich and powerful family. It was said that his family’s company alone had assets of more than a hundred million yuan.
I was wondering. He and I had never had any animosity. We had never even exchanged words before so I was not sure how to reply to him. However, I spoke to him albeit indifferently, “Oh. Isn’t it the Students Commissary? Do you have some words of advice for me?”
“No, I don’t have anything important for you, but I have to warn you. Do not walk and be so close to Zhou Huiqing, otherwise, I will fix you up! You know, tons of traffic accidents happen in this city. So, Zhang Xiaolong, you gotta be careful on your way back and forth to school.”
Then, he patted my shoulder and returned back to his own seat. There was a group of male students and many female students who quickly came and surrounded him. He was, after all, the famous-handsome-rich Xia Chaoran.
I secretly pinched my fist after hearing Xia Chaoran’s threat. But as he just said, it was really easy to forge a car accident if he so wanted to, considering that he had a rich and powerful family. Even my parents would have been implicated! It seemed that he liked Xiaohui… hmph…. Originally, after seeing a big change in Xiaohui, I realized that I started to like her, coupled with the misunderstanding during my childhood, it could be said that our relationship was very subtle. However, given Xia Chaoran’s reputation as a notorious playboy, it was highly that he would chase after Xiaohui and eventually kick her out after that. I didn’t want this kind of thing to happen to her.
It seemed like the only hope for me was to quickly learn the Daoist arts! And at this very moment that really made up my mind to learn the Daoist arts! From now on, I would give all my efforts toward any tasks given to me by Miss Murong! If she told me to run 5 km, I would run for 10 km! For my own sake, for my parent’s sake, for saving Xiaohui, and finally for becoming the Guardian of Yin and Yang Harmony… and for becoming the Guardian of Peace…
Soon after, Xiaohui came. I secretly took a glance at her vague black forehead. The faint black gloomy color seemed to be more vivid than before. Perhaps it was because I had coated my eyes with cattle tears, because I could only barely see a trace of the black gloomy Yin Qi on her forehead under normal circumstances .
The cattle tear was really great! Unconsciously, I’d became more convinced of Daoist powers! Xiaohui chatted with some other classmates until the bell rang. And when we sat down, Xiaohui said, “Xiaolong, you have to learn diligently. Aunt and Uncle would be very happy for you. If you don’t understand the subjects, you can ask me, you know!”
I gave her some promises and said yes for several times. Xiaohui no longer paid attention to me and listened carefully to the teacher. I was quickly bored by that boring-confusing-uninteresting textbook, so I took out the ‘Daoist Incantation compilation’ book and put it on top of my textbook, trying to figure out the first drawing on its first page.
Last night, I had read it for a few minutes and vaguely remembered this painting. But I didn’t know anything about its effect and its usefulness.
During the afternoon class, I looked several times at the clock. Once every hour, I took a dip of cattle tears and coated my eyes with it. However, I didn’t feel the chilling wind sensation again. I couldn’t even see any ghosts in the surrounding. The only one that was close was Xia Chaoran, who had moved his seat close to Xiaohui’s with the excuse to discuss research exercises. He gave me some threatening gaze a few times too.
The night had come and school ended. I still proposed to send Xiaohui home, despite Xia Chaoran’s threat. She didn’t refuse. As for Xia Chaoran; he couldn’t get out of the dormitory since he was a resident student.
Today, since I didn’t take my bicycle, I walked with Xiaohui slowly. But I saw a few people with pale faces floating and fleeting with the wind on the road. I was so scared that my face was even paler than those ghosts. Even my speech was very faint and vague when I replied to Xiaohui. She asked whether I got sick or felt uncomfortable, and I made up an excuse by saying that my uncle had came to my house yesterday.
Xiaohui had just walked downstairs when a chilling wind blew! I could see a baby covered with blood all over its body as it passed through the door and floated near her.
The door seemed to be locked from the inside. At the same time the bloody baby floated and flew to then quickly perch on Xioahui’s back, she shivered a bit. She then spoke to me with a slightly trembling voice, “It is quite cold, isn’t it?”
She looked at me and smiled, “ Anyways, thanks for escorting me home.”
My teeth were slightly trembling, and I secretly mused inside. ‘Xiaohui was really haunted by a ghost!’
That little devil was too scary and I was paralyzed due to fear. Gritting my teeth, I suppressed the fear and avoided looking at the crimson blood baby. I let out an awkward laugh, took out the sword hilt from my backpack and gave it to Xiaohui, “Xiaohui, sorry if I’m troubling you again. Please keep this hilt again and give it back to me tomorrow.”
At the instant I removed the hilt from the backpack, the crimson baby became restless and glared at me with its red blood eyes, Then it fixedly stared at the sword hilt in my hand. As Xiaohui took the hilt, a yellow energy instantly enveloped Xiaohui’s body and the little devil let out a resentful howl and flew away to avoid the yellow aura!
‘Great! It’s really working!’
I could have sworn that I could only see this kind of scene in a movie. But I didn’t expect that this great head of mine could also do this! Mwahahaha…
My fear gradually faded as I said to Xiaohui, “Well, just go inside first, Xiaohu. Also, take good care of my sword hilt and don’t lose it, okay?”
Xiaohui entered her house, and I proudly walked back home with my head held up high. But as I walked a little farther away from Xiaohui’s house, a dreadful and terrible thing came. I was so frightened that I almost wet myself at the scene!
That little-crimson-bloody devil had been tracking me!!! It had been floating about 5 m behind me!
Not only that, I also found a very strange thing, that was, I had been walking for more than 10 minutes, but I seemed to wander around in circle.
I remembered that I had walked down this street. There was an old doctor’s clinic that specialized in venereal diseases. There were a wide variety of small ads pasted on this street lamp, a traditional Chinese medicine store, a wholesaler that sold magical oil from India, and an office card. What I remembered most clearly was, there was a rag tied on the street lamp being fluttered by the wind.
“Damn… I must have been strolling in circle here for long time! If I count the time, I should have arrived near the highway onramp by now. Is this the legendary Ghost’s Barrier like that of in fables?”
That thought scared me shitless to death. This Uncle had just started to learn the way of the Dao, how could such a dreadful-horrible-difficult to handle situation come to test me?
I took a deep breath, hypnotizing myself that this was not the time to get panicked. Since the little crimson devil had come. I must show it my power!
I turned around immediately and shouted to the little devil, “Hey, you flying imp! This Daoist priest has the intention to set you free! But you don’t know what is for your own good! Instead, you want this Daoist priest to give you the heavy hand? Do you want your soul to vanish thoroughly? AMITABHA, HALLELUJAH, JÍ JÍ RÚ LǛ LING…”1
The little floating crimson devil seemed to have been intimidated by me, as it floated motionlessly. But then, its eyes flashing a red glimmering light and rushed towards me in an instant.
I instantly urinated on the spot! The smelly water flowed down like irrigation here and there. I didn’t have time to think anymore and ran in a flash for my own life. However, when I brutally ran, I clearly felt that a cold chilling sensation penetrating my body. It was like I was stripped naked in the middle of a snowfield in winter. My body shivered and was trembling violently, but it didn’t stop me from running like hell.
I kept running, and running, and running…
I didn’t know how I arrived to the avenue. I hurriedly called and blocked a moving taxi and then rushed inside. My body was unceasingly shaking and trembling. The cold sensation enveloping my body and made me shiver incessantly.
When I got home, I quickly ran over to the clothing cabinet and took out my winter coat. Dad hurriedly asked me about my condition, so I told him that I caught a cold. He touched my forehead and the heat made him shouted in alarm, “Take out the thermometer for an examination!”
Dad then placed it in my mouth and found out that it was 39 degrees! Mom and Dad anxiously prepared everything in hurry to take me to the hospital. However, at that dire moment, Miss Murong appeared! That was when I was really sure that that both my parents were unable to see her.
Miss Murong lightly spoke, “Huh… is that a Yin Qi? It’s alright, as long as you remove the Yin Qi inside your body, you will be alright. Okay, let me do it for you!”.
While she was talking to me, her palm patted the top of my head, and 5 seconds later, I could feel my whole body becoming comfortable again. The cold shivering sensation was gone!
This beautiful female ghost was awesome!
But I couldn’t help but sigh inwardly. I felt bad about my own weakness and quickly told my Dad, “Lao Li, you don’t have to be so stressed. That thermometer should have been broken and I think I’m much better already. Just touch my head if you don’t believe me.”
Mom and Dad took turns to touch my forehead, but still used the thermometer to check my body’s temperature. It was 36.5 degree now. I told them that the cold might be a false alarm before finally interjecting, “Oh, Mom, Dad, let’s have dinner, shall we? I’m really starving now!”