Erdao Baihe was very cold in autumn, but fortunately, Xiao Hua had prepared very warm clothes for me. Wrapped in a large jacket, I followed beside Poker-face and walked with him. “You’re not going to kill yourself here, are you?” I asked him.
He gave me a look, shook his head, and walked on. “Are you going to stay here for a long time?” I continued to ask. “Why did you choose such a cold place?”
He looked ahead and finally spoke after a long time, “Not here, I’m going there.”
I looked up and followed his eyes, seeing the continuous snowy mountains on the horizon up ahead.
At that moment, I stopped walking and stood there in shock for a while before continuing to catch up with him, “You want to enter the mountain?”
He didn’t answer me and just kept walking straight to the snowy mountain.
Poker-Face didn’t say a word the entire way and showed no intention of stopping. Whether I could keep up with him or not, he was going all the way.
I kept asking questions without getting any answers, so I was burning with anger after a while. Just forget it, I thought to myself. If you want to die, just die.
I had determined that Poker-Face was going up there to die because I couldn’t see any food packages on him, only that backpack he carried. Based on our experience with the last mountain expedition, you would starve to death in less than three days after entering the mountain with such equipment, not to mention returning to the city.
The more I walked, the worse I felt. Soon, I saw a small vehicle pulling people up the mountain. When I saw a shop along the way, I stopped and bought some things to stuff into my bag. Buying those dry goods didn’t take up much space, so the bag was soon full of all kinds of plastic bags.
After that, the two of us went to get noodles and then drove all the way up the mountain.
At this time, Poker-Face looked at me and said, “You can’t follow me.”
“If I advise you not to go, will you listen?” I asked him. He shook his head, which made me furious, “Fuck, then if you advise me not to go, I won’t listen either. So stop talking, I’ll follow.”
He looked at me, turned his face away again, and really stopped talking.
We said nothing the whole way to a tourist inn located on the mountain. When we got out of the vehicle, the temperature was already quite low and he went straight into the inn and booked a room. I followed behind without looking at it, this time angry with myself.
Poker-Face still didn’t say a word. When I lay down in the room, I began to regret it.
According to our current situation, Poker-Face prepared the correct equipment before entering the mountain, while my equipment was too simple. I would definitely die. I was afraid I’d freeze to death without even reaching half our destination. Poker-Face must’ve understood this before and didn’t stop me at all, because when I got to the snowline, the problem I faced was definitely whether to die immediately or retreat. It seemed useless for me to threaten him with my life this time.
Poker-Face had said before that he only saved those who didn’t want to die. If the other party had a choice to die or not, and they chose death, he wouldn’t intervene. I was in the same situation—if I chose to go to the snow line, followed him, and froze to death, he wouldn’t intervene to save me.
While he was resting, I took advantage and immediately went out to buy more equipment. There were many travelers in the hotel so I took some cash and bought a little here and there. When the money wasn’t enough, I swiped my card with the hotel owner—exchanging it for cash at a ratio of ten to eight—and continued to buy. Finally, I managed to gather together a set of equipment that could be used at the moment.
After I put it on, it was simply horrible. Xiao Hua’s clothes weren’t thick enough so I had to put another suit over them, making me so bloated that I looked like a bear. The two gloves were different from each other, with the left hand being a woman’s glove that was very small and had limited mobility after wearing it. Any sort of work would basically depend on my right hand.
There were a pair of mountaineering boots, but the previous owner obviously had sweaty feet so they stunk to death. I had no choice but to wear them.
There were also some compressed biscuits for mountaineering. I sorted them out and put all the cooking utensils and the smokeless stove into the big mountaineering bag. I then divided the snacks I bought before and put them into a big plastic bag. It was only after all of this was done that I felt at ease.
I also went back to rest after finishing, replaying everything in my head as I lay down on the bed. I didn’t know why I was doing this, but I really couldn’t let him enter the mountain alone. I didn’t have any reason to persuade him since I didn’t know what he wanted to do, so I could only go in with him and learn what it was before I could persuade him to come back.
I didn’t know why, but I thought my behavior this time was very bad. Even though it was the middle of the night, I couldn’t sleep at all, so I got up and called my dad and Xiao Hua and told them what I thought.
Dad only told me to have fun, which had me thinking to myself, how can I be happy? After hearing my thoughts, Xiao Hua hesitated for a moment and then said, “I was going to suggest you not follow, but I think you can try it for a while. After all, if you don’t do anything, you won’t be satisfied for the rest of your life. But I suggest you pay attention to the distance when you go in. It’s autumn and Changbai Mountain hasn’t been closed yet so you should know which line to cross or you’ll be having a new lease on life. If you haven’t persuaded him to come back before this line, you have to turn back.”
“But he doesn’t communicate with me at all,” I said. “How can I persuade him?”
“I believe that since he came to say goodbye to you, all you have to do is say the word. Even if he doesn’t answer, he’ll still hear you,” Xiao Hua said.
At noon the next day, I set out with Poker-Face. When he went out, he looked back at me and I looked at him. “Don’t worry,” I said, “I’ll accompany you on the final journey.” With that, he turned and set off.
After that, there was nothing worth describing. Even a running account isn’t necessary. In the blink of an eye, three days had passed and we entered the snow line.
Autumn was the peak tourist season in Changbai Mountain. There were many scenic spots above the snowline and even places where supplies could be replenished, which I was very excited to take advantage of.
If you went further inside and walked through the areas with tourists, the path that we used to enter the snowy mountains before was now completely different. But Poker-Face still had a way, so he kept walking while constantly looking at the mountains and the sun’s position around him. That evening, we reached the ridge of a snowy mountain. At dusk, I saw a familiar sight again: the snow-capped mountains in the setting sun, giving off a feeling of warmth and coldness that was seamlessly connected. At that time, Poker-Face had worshiped the snowy mountain in the distance under the same sunset. This time, however, he didn’t kneel down but simply looked at it indifferently. The setting sun shone on his face with an extreme sense of desolation.
<Chapter 76> <Table of Contents><Chapter 78>
One thought on “Chapter 77 To Erdao Baihe Again”
О чем же думает Сяо Гэ? И эти слова “Я буду сопровождать тебя в последнем путешествии”… так по сердцу резануло. Те же слова, что Сяо Гэ скажет У Се в последней части? (прошу прощения за спойлер)