Chapter 11 – The Shore That Cannot Be Reached
Ah Xiu looks at Li Yin in front of her with confusion, as the latter becomes more and more upset.
His deepest fear, Hengyan’s disappearance, has finally happened.
Although he has expected something like this to happen since long ago, he was truly hoping that they can pass this month safely. Now it seems like that is impossible.
Based on his past experiences and Xia Yuan’s words, a conclusion can roughly be deduced.
To be missing at the location appointed by the bloody words is basically equivalent to death. Although this is what he is thinking, Li Yin still finds it hard to accept that Luo Hengyan has died just like this.
He still remembers that when Luo Hengyan’s shadow first entered the apartment — his panicked and agonised expression, almost as though he was about to cry. It was Li Yin who comforted him and told him that he could leave after completing ten bloody missions. Although no one knew just how many years that would take, at least there was hope.
But now… that person who finally found his light again, and wished to continue living on…
In that apartment, although there exists trust amongst residents, there also exist layers of emotional defence. And the residents who Li Yin can truly trust and open his heart to are only Xia Yuan, Ye Kexin, Luo Hengyan, the Hua Liancheng couple and the surgeon Tang Lanxuan who lives in room 106.
The last time, after Li Yin escaped from hell and returned to the apartment, the six of them gathered in the Hua Liancheng couple’s room and ate a meal of hotpot together. After all, in the hellish apartment, staying alive is the biggest happiness. At that time, Luo Hengyan had also escaped death and returned to the apartment so everyone had agreed that this definitely called for a celebration.
That day was one of the few happy days amidst the time they spent living in that apartment. Everyone chatted and laughed, sharing stories of their past and hoping that they can leave this apartment together.
All of them were hoping for the arrival of that day.
But in their hearts, they knew very clearly that ultimately, very few people can leave the apartment. No one can remove the curse on their shadows casted by the apartment, so they have no choice but to act according to the apartment’s rules.
However, Li Yin still hoped that he could continue living with Luo Hengyan and the others, eventually leaving the apartment together!
But now, isn’t that hope shattered?
At this time, Qin Shoutian enters that dense forest to look for Luo Hengyan. Although he hasn’t had many interactions with Luo Hengyan, he has a good impression of that humble and honest youngster.
In the apartment, although it is already difficult enough to keep their own bodies intact, they will still mourn the loss of one of their kin when another resident dies. After all, they all carry the same burden.
Qin Shoutian truly does not wish to see people around him die just like this.
A violently gushing river about ten meters wide appears before his eyes.
Qin Shoutian is instantly stunned. Normally, there shouldn’t be a river here! Just what is going on?
At this moment, he is only five meters away from that river, but he does not dare to take another step forward.
In this dimly-lit dense forest, under a sky without a trace of light, for a bizarre river to appear like this makes Qin Shoutian shiver even though he did not feel cold. At this moment, Li Yin’s words resound in his mind.
Although he wants to retreat, Qin Shoutian could not help but worry about Luo Hengyan.
Go back… Or… move forward?
As he thinks about this, he looks down… But the moment that he lowers his head, what he sees makes him release a shout of terror!
That river which was originally five meters away from him is now only a few centimeters away from his feet.
It actually moved?
When did this happen?
As expected, it is just like Xia Yuan has said. The later it gets, the more bizarre the bloody missions get.
Qin Shoutian does not hesitate at all. He turns around and begins to sprint away but… he actually ends up taking a step into water! Then, his entire body begins to sink downwards.
It is fortunate that Qin Shoutian’s swimming skills are pretty good. Without too much consideration, he immediately swims towards the shore.
Although he is swimming without pause, after more than two minutes, he still cannot reach the shore. Even if this shore… is clearly right before his eyes!
Ominous… This bizarre situation that has escalated far beyond Qin Shoutian’s imagination is already completely wearing him down!
The previous bloody missions have never been this inconceivable! It is as if he does not exist in a real world at all!
And Qin Shoutian has also realised another thing.
This river has become so much wider than before! Its width has increased to roughly at least tens of metres wide. As for its depth, he approximates that it definitely exceeds ten meters, perhaps even deeper!
To be unable to swim to the shore in a deep river like this… is this not certain death? Once he has completely depleted his strength, then death is the only result!
“Li Yin!” Qin Shoutian shouts desperately, straining his voice. “Help! Li Yin, Li Yin!”
His cell phone has become completely water-logged and is unuseable. He can only scream and hope that Li Yin will be able to hear him. He is already yelling Li Yin’s name at the top of his lungs but even if he yells until his throat is hoarse, he needs Li Yin to hear his voice!
At this time… Li Yin can vaguely hear that someone is calling his name.
“Who is it?” Li Yin instantly directs his sight towards the dense forest behind the village. After listening carefully, he once again faintly hears the voice that is calling for him.
“Hengyan? Shoutian? ” He immediately becomes very nervous and hurriedly sprints towards the forest.
Behind him, Ah Xiu watches his retreating figure. The corners of her lips curve into the shadow of an ominous smile.
Li Yin uses all his strength to dash forward, searching for the source of the voice while yelling as loudly as he can, “Hengyan! Is that you? Hengyan! Shoutian, are you here? Answer me! Where are you!”
He does not want to see people die anymore!
Already… He has already seen too many people dying in front of him!
“Answer me! Shoutian!”
Li Yin’s shouts till his voice is almost gone. Just when he is about to give in to despair, he hears Shoutian’s voice traveling from ahead.
“I am here… Li Yin, help me!”
At this time, Ah Xiu returns to her home.
She shuts the door before leaning against it, speaking to herself. “Soon… Sister Bing Er, everything will end soon. Everything will be over.”
Slowly, she walks back to her room and sees Ye Kexin who is still deeply asleep on the bed.
“Although I don’t know why Sister Bing Er is targeting you… she surely has her reasons to do so. You all must have done something against Sister’s good will.”
Following that, step by step, she walks into the kitchen towards the water tank.
At this moment, Qin Shoutian is already at the center of the river. Swept along by the incredibly violent currents, he gradually gets tired.
The river has already exceeded a hundred meters wide at this point.
Just as he is about to be lost hope, he suddenly sees a light flashing in the distance. Then… he spots Li Yin rushing towards him with a torch!
When Li Yin sees this wide river and Qin Shoutian who is struggling consciously in the water, he quickly pulls off his shirt and prepares to jump into the river!
But Qin Shoutian instead shouts, “Li Yin! Don’t jump down, you will never return to the shore after you jump! Grab a rope and pull! Pull me up!”
“Alright! Hang in there!”
After saying this, Li Yin puts down the backpack he is carrying. He unzips the zipper and takes out a very long and thick rope.
Since they must come to these kinds of dangerous places, they obviously need to be prepared. It is definitely a must to bring all kinds of emergency kits and medicine, as well as some weapons. Only, it is unfortunate that purchasing guns in China is difficult so they only have some cold military weapons.
“Shoutian, swim closer!” While saying this, Li Yin pulls out that coiled lump of long rope and prepares to throw it towards Qin Shoutian.
This thick and long hemp rope is about tens of meters long. It is fortunate that the backpack is big enough to fit it. Li Yin is also very nervous. Although he has trained himself many times in the past in order to deal with this kind of situation, it is still his first time using this rope.
Qin Shoutian immediately continues to swims towards the shore. Though the current is flowing against the movement of his body, his will to stay alive leads him to endure it desperately.
“I am going to throw it!”
That long rope flies across the sky before Qin Shoutian reaches out with his right hand, grabbing onto one end of the rope very tightly. He then ties the rope on his arm firmly!
Li Yin takes a breath and is about to pull the rope in when suddenly, he feels something his feet getting wet… Then his body abruptly gets pulled down, falling into the water!
But the endless water has already surrounded Li Yin’s body. He immediately tries to grab onto the shore, but it is already five or six meters away from him!
“How is this possible! This damn apartment! How can it leave me without a way out of this?!”
Even so Li Yin is still grabbing onto the rope tightly as he begins to swim towards the shore desperately. But no matter how hard he swims, he still cannot reach land. In fact, he is gradually being pulled further and further away from the shore.
Li Yin’s heart instantly sinks.
He is going to die…
Die here in this Village of Tranquil Water!
He will be dead on only the fourth bloody mission?
This is just the fourth time!
Li Yin also knows how to swim but if he keeps struggling like this, sooner or later his strength will be completely used up! In addition, this water is flowing very fiercely. It is only a matter of time before they both perish in this river!
“No! I don’t want to die, I don’t want to die—”
At this time, in the middle of the river, there suddenly appears… a huge whirlpool! This whirlpool sucks Li Yin and Qin Shoutian in. Both of them are helplessly churned towards the center of the river.
Li Yin and Qin Shoutian are extremely dizzy from the spiraling motion of the current. They don’t even know how much water they have inhaled. As the current gets more rapid, they can no tread water to stay afloat!
“Catch the rope! Li Yin!”
This unexpected voice is like angelic music to their ears! Li Yin struggled to open his eyes and when he sees a thick and long rope being thrown downwards from the sky, he hurriedly reaches out and grabs it!
At this moment, only one of Qin Shoutian’s hands still remains above the surface of the water. He is about five or six meters away from Li Yin but in this huge whirlpool, that distance might as well be the distance between heaven and earth!
Li Yin holds onto the hemp rope with all his strength. This is the biggest hope for him to stay alive!
“Hold on tight! I am going to pull you up!”
Ye Kexin was already awake before Ah Xiu came back. She was just pretending to be asleep. When she heard Ah Xiu’s strange mumblings, she immediately grabbed her backpack and rushed out of the house eventually finding her way to this dense forest.
As Li Yin grasps the rope with a death grip, Qin Shoutian’s body has completely sunk into the water.
“Kexin!” Li Yin shouts, “Stay away from this river! It will move near your feet automatically!”
If Kexin also falls into the water, then everything will be over!
Although Kexin is a girl, every resident in the apartment goes to the gym daily to train their bodies so in these three years, her arm power has become very strong. And she always carry a hemp rope inside of her backpack.
After hearing Li Yin say this, Kexin quickly retreats and pays constant attention to where she is stepping, all while ceaselessly pulling Li Yin in.
This rope was chosen personally by Xia Yuan, so it is needless to mention just how strong it is. Since Kexin has quite some strength, within the blink of an eye, Li Yin is only about ten meters away from the shore.
Li Yin whose body is fully immersed in the water starts to feel as though his luck has turned slightly. Simultaneously, that whirlpool seems to have quietened down.
But then… something more horrifying happens.
Kexin suddenly feels the earth shaking beneath her feet. Then… the ground around that river begins to rumble before rising upwards.
In fact if one is looking down from the sky, then he will find out this river is shaped like a circle.
“Li Yin!” Kexin is very shocked as she continues to rapidly reel in the rope. But just then… that entire piece of land containing the river rises up unexpectedly!
At this moment of imminent danger, Li Yin finally almost reaches the shore. And right now, this river is already five meters high.
Then Kexin’s pupils dilate. What has appeared before her eyes is simply an unimaginable nightmare!
The surface of the floor is rumbles continuously before a huge white eye appears on the dirt beneath the river.
Is actually the insides of that huge woman’s mouth!