“I thought your friend would make a cat meal out of it to go with some wine,” Tu Dian said as he cut open the cat’s skull.
Xie Yuchen sat off to the side in silence.
Tu Dian pushed the cat’s brain aside, “What made you think there’s something inside the cat’s brain?”
“Did you find something?”
“The X-ray showed some surrounding tissue that’s similar to a tumor. It’s just like what’s written in the report you gave me.” Tu Dian used a pair of tweezers to pick out a small crystal from inside the cat’s brain. “Is this what you’re looking for?”
“There really is one in there?” Xie Yuchen frowned. “Does that mean there’s also one in my brain?”
“The CT scan shows that your brain is clean and there’s nothing abnormal there. You can rest assured. You’re safe,” Tu Dian put the crystal on a tray, which he then handed to Xie Yuchen. “So, what you’re saying is that there are a lot of dead cats around that house, and you think the thing you’re looking for is near the place where these cats died?”
Xie Yuchen stared at the stone that was about a quarter of the size of a fingernail, “What’s your opinion?”
“You know that there’s a thing called tea money, right? You raise it among tea leaves, and one tea money will turn into two. If you pour it out, it’ll turn into a piece of round stone. It’s actually a compound made up of many kinds of fungi,” Tu Dian said. “It’s very hard and has the texture of a seashell. It’s very similar to this thing. But most importantly, it can spread and reproduce under optimal conditions.”
“You mean to say it spreads spores?”
“I won’t know without a lab test, but I don’t have the equipment to do that here.” He put the crystal into a medical waste bag and handed it to Xie Yuchen, “It’s yours now.”
Xie Yuchen grabbed two more bags, wrapped them around the crystal until it was covered in three layers, and then said, “If this thing can infect cats, then those cats should’ve become cats with special abilities or something. Why did they all die?”
“Street cats are animals. The story might go like this: One of the cats gets infected with the stone and becomes smarter or stronger than the other cats. It stays in the infected area, and whenever other cats come in, it bites them to death. That’s why there are so many carcasses piled up there.”
Xie Yuchen looked at Tu Dian and said, “You’re just making things up.”
“At this stage, the best conclusion is drawn from a simple analysis.”
“What about the others’ CT results?”
“I got yours first. Their scans are still processing.”
When the two arrived at Tu Dian’s office, Black Glasses was lying on the examination table while Liang Yanyan and Ah Tou were sitting off to the side. Xie Yuchen handed them the stone so that they could take a look.
“It really was inside the cat’s brain. So that means you were under the influence of the stone inside the cat’s brain when you were in the car.”
“But there weren’t any stones when my house was being haunted,” Ah Tou said, looking rather pale. The only possibility she could think of now was that there was also a stone in her brain.
But she also felt a little wronged. She had only visited Xie Yuchen’s house once, so how did she get infected? This kind of probability seemed to go against the laws of nature.
She didn’t know whether Liang Yanyan had a close connection with Xie Yuchen before, but it looked like Black Glasses was more likely to have one of those stones in his brain. They seemed to have worked together a lot.
But Black Glasses didn’t grow any taller.
It’s also possible that Xie Yuchen only recently obtained this house and Black Glasses was only 1.6 meters tall before this whole thing happened.
“Can I leave now?” Black Glasses smiled from where he was lying on the bed. “I don’t like being in the same room as a pervert.”
Tu Dian smiled back, “If I’m a pervert, then you’re my grandpa.”
Black Glasses continued to smile as he looked at Tu Dian, “Xie Yuchen, I think I’ll get a job sooner or later where I finally have the chance to get rid of your relative.”
Tu Dian didn’t answer him but looked towards Ah Tou and Liang Yanyan. Ah Tou felt a little uncomfortable being looked at by those intense eyes.
“What’s the matter, Dr. Tu? Why are you looking at me?”
“I’ve been to where you live. There are a lot of underground exhibitions there. I’ve seen your work.”
“I don’t think you should do art. You should do something else. Otherwise, your talent will be buried,” Tu Dian said. “You know your family has an art background, but you should break free from their constraints.”
Xie Yuchen glanced at Tu Dian while Liang Yanyan lit a cigarette on the side. Tu Dian pointedly looked at the “no smoking” sign on the wall, but Liang Yanyan completely ignored it.
At this time, the computer chimed. Tu Dian clicked the software open and saw that he had received several CT scans. He looked them over and then shook his head, “No one here has a problem with their brain.”
Black Glasses stood up, put on his jacket, and glanced at Xie Yuchen, “I’m off.”
Liang Yanyan didn’t leave but looked at Xie Yuchen. “Now there’s only one unsolved mystery,” Xie Yuchen said. “Why is Ah Tou being targeted?”
“I’ll keep looking into it.”
“I’ll have the check ready.”
Then, Liang Yanyan grabbed Ah Tou and left. Tu Dian watched the two leave, his expression making Xie Yuchen feel particularly uneasy.
“I’m curious. Why are you so interested in Ah Tou?”
“There’s an intense bond between her and Liang Yanyan. Don’t you think they’ll end up like an atomic bomb with countless possibilities if there’s an external force squeezing the two of them together? Don’t you think it’s interesting?” Tu Dian asked.
“A wise man who plays with human nature for entertainment usually has a miserable ending,” Xie Yuchen said. “People won’t let you mess around with them.”
Tu Dian looked at Xie Yuchen and made an expression that seemed to say, “Whatever you say.”
Xie Yuchen held the black-and-white group photo with Pan Boda in it in front of Tu Dian, “Check out the man carrying the camera. Doesn’t he look a bit like you?”
Tu Dian raised his eyebrows.
“I’ve looked into it. There was an intern on the team with the last name Tu. He had the same name as your father. At the time when my family was in charge of investigating all kinds of strange happenings in the Mystic Nine, your father was on his way to investigate Long Immortal, wasn’t he? He mingled with the group, recorded everything, and took care of the aftermath,” Xie Yuchen said. “The house was owned by your family before it was transferred to the previous owner. After that, it was transferred to me. You referred Liang Yanyan to me and you also met Ah Tou before.” Xie Yuchen looked into his eyes, “What exactly are you doing?”
Tu Dian pointed in the direction the two women had gone and smiled, “Do you think these two girls will come to a good or a bad end?”
Xie Yuchen looked at Tu Dian as the other man continued talking, “I think they’ll come to a bad end. You know I like to play games. I made these two girls meet again to see if they’ll end up exactly as I’ve expected. You’re the head of the Xie family, so I know that I can’t hide anything from you. In fact, I’m not planning on hiding it anyway. Let’s make a bet. Why don’t you bet that they’ll have a good ending? Aren’t you smart? I’m smart, too. It’s boring to watch the game alone, so I’m calling you to join me.”
“I don’t treat people as toys.”
“What a joke. You do things that are much worse than what I do,” Tu Dian said. “Now, take a guess as to why that ‘ghost’ followed Ah Tou all the way home. This is the first round. Once they’ve solved the puzzle, the relationship between the two of them will immediately change. If you don’t want to join me, I’ll immediately speed things up.”
<Chapter 44><Table of Contents><Chapter 46>
Manga pic added 1/10/2023 (fan translation courtesy of Yvette and merebear)
One thought on “Chapter 45”
Wow , those are really something.
Any ways ~ I don’t want Tu Dian to die or anything happen to him. It’d be a waste of handsome face.
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