The space under the church was about half a person high and filled with the smell of something that had been around since the 1800s. When the tall man went down, he realized that the chapel’s marble floor was so thick that the heat couldn’t effectively be transmitted down. As a result, the basement was very cold.
The stone block structure that was supporting the upper floor stood in this space like a pillar, while the sandy soil on the ground was covered with coarse flagstones.
The lights from the chapel were shining down like stage lights. As a result, only one area was actually illuminated while the other places were completely dark. Heat poured in through the hole to such an extent that you could feel the temperature gradually rising.
The tall man glanced at the damaged sarcophagus sitting directly under the hole in the chapel floor. Its lid, which must have been pushed aside by the contents inside, had smashed into two pieces. There was a shriveled corpse in the sarcophagus that was completely frozen. It had a big beard and its hair was well preserved considering how its clothes had oxidized to black lumps. This must have been the owner of the coffin. When that person originally hid the body in this coffin, they must have directly set it on top of the coffin owner’s body. With the two bodies sleeping together in this little stone box for sixty years, he couldn’t help but wonder if any feelings had developed between them.
The priest called down to him from above, “I’ll get you a flashlight.”
“No need,” he heard Xie Yuchen say.
When the tall man took off his sunglasses and headed into the darkness, the priest looked at him in surprise, “It’s too dark down there, and it’s also very dangerous. Can you even see anything?”
The tall man didn’t answer. It had been too bright in the chapel just now, so he felt uncomfortable even with his sunglasses on. But down here, he was much more comfortable. It was no surprise that he could see. His eyes were different from those of ordinary people, after all.
In his vision, the dark basement below the chapel was very clear. It was so clear, in fact, that he could see the flow of dust in the air. To him, the darker the place, the more the dust looked like stardust reflecting a silver-gray light.
You could never know what other people saw with their eyes; let alone the fear they had experienced after seeing such things.
The other sarcophagi were arranged very neatly in this basement. There didn’t appear to be any stardust flowing in the dark depths of this space, which indicated that there weren’t any living creatures around. But the look in the priest’s eyes just now seemed to indicate that there was something worth studying down here.
He moved more than a dozen steps forward before he finally saw it. There was too much dust here, so he had to cover his mouth while he laughed.
The thing he saw was something he had never imagined. He had gone through some extremely rich experiences over the years, so hardly anything surprised him anymore. But what he saw here was definitely very special.
It was another sarcophagus, but it was covered in cicadas.
The cicadas’ wings looked very bright in his vision, and there were a whole lot of them on the sarcophagus, but they were all dead because of how cold it was here.
“Yesterday, we heard a lot of strange insect noises coming from under here, but then they disappeared,” the priest said from above.
If the cicadas were singing yesterday, then that meant that they were still alive at that time. They must have crawled out at some point, sang for a while, and then all froze to death.
The tall man crawled over to the edge of the sarcophagus and saw that there were a lot of cracks in it that were big enough to form a few gaps. Most of the cicadas were in the vicinity of these gaps, making it obvious that they had crawled out of the sarcophagus.
Is there anything else hidden in there besides the body? The tall man asked himself. But when he approached one of the gaps, he suddenly saw the air and dust around him get sucked into the sarcophagus.
There was something moving inside.
He frowned. Nothing had changed just now, so did he disturb something when he got close to the sarcophagus? He was just about to report to the two people above when six or seven cicadas suddenly crawled out of the gap and immediately flew up. They hit the ceiling and pillars on the side, fell to the ground, and then started calling.
The cicadas were so loud that it was like the sound suddenly exploded out of nowhere. It was noisy enough to give people a headache, but this was only the beginning. After that, even more cicadas kept crawling out of the gaps in the sarcophagus and started flying everywhere.
At that time the cicadas’ singing resounded throughout the whole basement. The tall man even had to step back to prevent the cicadas from rushing into his mouth.
Xie Yuchen had been looking up at the chapel ceiling to see if he could find a climbing route to reach the dome without stepping on the murals when he suddenly heard the astonishing sound of cicadas coming from below.
As if awakened, the floating Taoist priest’s corpse suddenly moved in mid-air. It had originally been face up, but now it had slowly turned and was face down.
He saw that the corpse had an extremely resentful and sinister expression on its face. The Chinese-speaking priest cried out in alarm, too afraid to look at it directly. The group of priests who had been hiding at the door earlier and didn’t dare come in had now pushed the door open, raised their cell phones, and started filming.
Xie Yuchen sighed, but didn’t dare look away from the floating corpse. At this time, he suddenly heard Black Glasses’ voice float up from the hole in the floor, “I want to open another coffin. This coffin is full of cicadas, so it should be somebody’s scheme. It probably has something to do with the body. There may even be something inside of it. Come down and help me.”
“No, come up here now.” Xie Yuchen’s expression became very serious. He had noticed that the corpse’s pale eyes seemed to be looking at him. “It’s about to start.”
<Chapter 1><Table of Contents><Chapter 3>
FYI: I made a boo-boo last chapter. The priest isn’t Chinese. The author gave him a nickname of “Chinese-speaking priest” (a mouthful, I know). Just wanted to give you guys a heads up in case you got confused.
Pic added 4/15/2023 (fan translation courtesy of me)