There was an indescribable smell in the air that had a bit of a salty flavoring to it. Fatty said that this place was a bit like a dried ham cellar. I didn’t know if the ancients used salt when processing corpses, but I only felt a little physical discomfort.
All three of us had already adapted to the flashlights’ dim glow, but it was very quiet here. Whenever we walked, the sound of rustling clothes and footsteps produced a faint echo that was a bit ethereal.
As we continued moving forward for another two kilometers, we were shocked by what we saw. Many of the niches up ahead were empty, so Fatty said that the zombies in them didn’t decay completely and climbed out of the niches. They were probably still moving here and we’d come across them later.
All along the way, I had seen just how diverse the corpses here were. I really hadn’t imagined that so many different kinds of things were buried underground. People thought that after a corpse was buried in the ground, it had reached its end and all changes had stopped, but that didn’t seem to be the case at all.
I decided to give this tunnel a name and went with “Corpse God Way” since these strange corpses were already gods according to the original deifying customs. Plus, they were under the tomb owner’s control.
Before we knew it, we finally reached the end of Corpse God Way and were met with an even bigger tomb door than the previous one. Fatty was surprised that not a single zombie had popped out like he originally predicted. I said that maybe the bodies in those niches had simply turned to dust. These bodies were all strange corpses that had been dug up from all over the world and they all had very different ages. It was possible that some of them were already close to turning into dust when they were moved here, and when the humidity and temperature changed, they disappeared completely in two or three years.
If the tomb door we saw before was the entrance to the tomb, then this door here should be the entrance to the tomb chamber itself. So, did that mean that the tomb chamber was right behind this door? I thought the world’s second most valuable tomb would have many levels to it, but after entering through the back, the scale seemed much smaller than I was expecting.
Even though my thinking had been wrong, it definitely wasn’t smaller than the previous Corpse Country banquet. This tomb door was about twenty meters high, which was as tall as a seven-story building. But only the middle part was actually the door, while the rest was just carved to look like a door. It was obvious to see that only this six- or seven-meter-high door in the middle could be opened and the rest had just been carved out of a stone slab. But on the whole, it looked like a big door.
This door was also full of niches, but the bodies in these were very ornately dressed. They were covered in gold ornaments and tourmaline gems, which made it obvious at a glance that their identities were very special. I knew after looking around that these were all normal female corpses that must have been concubines who were burial sacrifices.
The reason I noticed them was because there was a huge niche on the door, the contents of which were just too eye-catching.
There was a human skeleton in that niche that was at least three meters tall. It was sitting in the niche, wearing colorful armor. Although the oxidation had dimmed the colors somewhat and there were many things like cobwebs coiled around it, it was still particularly elegant at first glance. This skeleton’s skull was very long, so it clearly wasn’t normal at first sight, but it also had a lot of hands like a spider.
It was also decorated with a lot of human skulls. If you had ever read any information on the Indian god system, you would probably know what kind of complicated aesthetic corpse this was.
At this time, Fatty said weakly from the side, “Mr. Naïve, if I’m not mistaken, isn’t that King Wannu?”
I shook my head. This thing was very similar to King Wannu, but it was different. I used my flashlight to take a look at it. Truthfully, I could feel that this skeleton had long been fossilized. In fact, this multi-handed corpse was so old that I couldn’t even being to imagine its age.
I didn’t believe that this thing had nothing to do with King Wannu, but it definitely wasn’t the kind of thing we had seen before. I felt like this long-faced, thousand-handed corpse was more primitive than King Wannu, and the fact that it was sitting in front of the tomb seemed to indicate that it was of a higher rank than the Zhang family.
The whole door had a wild, unruly nature of primitive worship about it.
I took a look at Fatty. Normally, he’d be starry-eyed and forget all of his pain as soon as he saw precious stones and gold. But this time, he seemed quite serious. I glanced at his face and found that he looked extremely tired and haggard.
“Are you sure it’s not?” His nose was running, but it was like he couldn’t feel it.
“What’s wrong with you?”
He looked at me for a long time before saying, “Mr. Naïve, I can’t see anything clearly. The time here must be messed up again. I feel too tired. It’s like I haven’t slept for three days.”
I looked at my fingernails and saw that they were getting better, which made me think that what Fatty was saying was plausible.
While we were talking, Poker-Face jumped to the middle of the door, reached the long-faced skeleton, and put his strangely long fingers into its mouth. After groping around for a while, he twisted his wrist hard. I didn’t know what he did, but that long-faced, thousand-handed corpse’s bones sank down into the door panel. Then, the real door in the middle slowly opened, revealing an entrance
At this time, Fatty suddenly fell to the ground. I quickly grabbed him and tried to pull him up, but I found that he was too sleepy to move anymore. I pressed his philtrum and heard him murmur, “Save people…”
I continued to press on his philtrum and smacked him a few times, but he fell into such a deep sleep that he immediately started to snore. I dragged him over to the side, leaned him up against the wall, and then looked at Poker-Face. Instead of entering the real door right away, he jumped down and walked back over to us.
“This place is fascinating,” I said to him. I couldn’t shake the feeling that everything here seemed to have something to do with the Heavenly Palace, but it was much older and more primitive than that place. I even felt that we might be able to find the origin of those monsters we saw in the Heavenly Palace. But I couldn’t let Fatty sleep here by himself. Even if I wanted to know, I had to stop and take care of him first.
“I know you’re in a hurry, so you can go in first and have a look. I’ll take care of him here,” I said.
He looked at me, “No. I’ll stay with you.”
I didn’t see a trace of eagerness in his expression, which made me feel more at ease.
I couldn’t help but smile as he also leaned against the wall. Now all three of us were leaning in a row. I handed him some dry food and he handed me some water.
We didn’t say much. I wrapped my clothes tightly around Fatty while Poker-Face put his hoodie on.
“You should also get some sleep,” I said to him. “This time, I’ll keep watch for a while.” He had been on high alert for a long time, but he shouldn’t keep going like this even though he was practically immortal.
I didn’t know why—maybe it was because I actually slept for a long time when I was poisoned and unconscious earlier—but I was actually in good spirits.
He didn’t object and I soon felt his breath even out as he fell sleep.
I looked at the dark hole on the other side of the recently opened door. I had originally thought that the world’s second most valuable tomb was a huge building complex with rigorous standards and a mixture of skills from craftsmen of various civilizations. But now it seemed that this was a very primitive mausoleum, which was something I couldn’t understand.
I stared at the doorway and slowly got a little distracted. I suddenly wanted to smoke, but I didn’t have any cigarettes on me. As I sat there in a daze, I saw Jiang Siwang suddenly appear in front of me. He was standing upright, but the strange thing was, he didn’t have a lower body this time. His lower body had been replaced with a strange, intestine-like thing that was supporting him like a snake.