Chapter 39: Wardrobe
Chi Yan was not in a good condition today. After playing a round of basketball, he sat down at the side and watched them play. He informed Old Yuan and carried his bag to the library to borrow the materials he needed before heading back to his dormitory to take the clothes before returning to the court. By this time, almost everyone had left, only Old Yuan stood under the tree beside the playground, waiting for him.
Seeing him appearing, Old Yuan greeted him and pointed to his bulging bag, saying, “Why is it so full? Are you going to marry over there?”
Chi Yan covered the bag. “…Don’t talk nonsense.”
Old Yuan looked at the time and suggested, “A new hotpot restaurant has opened outside Dongmen. It seems good. Recently, it has been appearing in my feed. Let’s try it?”
Chi Yan embarrassingly refused, “…Ye Yingzhi prepared a hot pot at home today and told me to go back to eat. Do you want to make another appointment?”
Old Yuan couldn’t bear to look straight at him. “I said, ruler. Are you really married? I was wondering why you couldn’t play after one game today. So, it was because of kidney deficiency.”
“Don’t talk nonsense!” I am not… as you said, Chi Yan grumbled in his heart. He conversed with Old Yuan as they went toward the direction of the cafe near the canteen. He explained as they walked, “I’m seeing ghosts. I want to talk to you and ask if you have any solutions.”
“Ghost? It can’t be?” Old Yuan followed him closely and inquired for the details.
They sat down at the side of the cafe and ordered two cups of coffee. He then talked about his experience of seeing a female ghost that night after he heard that a girl had been murdered.
Old Yuan was his friend of four years, they skipped classes, copied homeworks, played games and even did last minute studying for exams together. After listening to him, he did not suspect that Chi Yan was lying to himself, in fact he was worried, “This is not easy to solve. First of all, we don’t know whether it belongs to science or metaphysics, whether you have hallucinations due to some reason or was it because those things really exist and keep on looking for you.”
Chi Yan whispered, “I wish that science could explain that everything is an illusion.”
Who knew what Old Yuan was thinking about, he suddenly patted his thigh and said, “Right, I remembered. I had a friend in junior high school and our friendship is very good. When I saw him in high school again, I heard him mention that he had become an apprentice to a master and studied about these gods and ghosts stuff. Let me ask him if he has any solutions. It’s the best if he can solve your problems, if not, he should also be able to give you the right connections and recommend your other masters, at least you won’t be deceived.”
People tended to hold the past over the present, so when Chi Yan heard that he was a classmate of Old Yuan’s junior high school and was the same age as him, he was somewhat unassured. However, Old Yuan’s remarks were very reasonable. He asked Old Yuan to help him make an appointment with this classmate. He saw the time and realized that it was getting late, he hurried caught the subway back to Ye Yingzhi’s home.
When he rang the bell, it was already 7:40 p.m. Ye Yingzhi had already boiled the soup and set up a table full of dishes. When Ye Yingzhi opened the door for him, he asked him to wash his hands, sit down and eat first before packing his clothes.
Ye Yingzhi’s hot pot soup were made with simmering beef bones. The chili and Sichuan pepper were produced in Chongqing’s area and were specially transported to A City. They were fragrant and delicious, leaving a rich aftertaste behind. Fresh beef, mutton, shrimps, fish fillets, belly tripe, white quail eggs, and fresh vegetables, including vermicelli and ham were to be added in. Even though there was only a small portion of each of the food, they looked very exquisite, and nevertheless, sufficient. Chi Yan almost could not stop eating.
Autumn was cool and refreshing. It was a suitable time to eat hot pot. Ye Yingzhi took out two bottles of iced beer right from the fridge and poured himself and Chi Yan a cup. The cool beer added more pleasure to the stomach.
Chi Yan chatted as he ate cheerfully, those ghosts and demons he had encountered recently along with all his fears were temporarily thrown aside. Unknowingly, he ate with Ye Yingzhi until it was ten o’clock at night.
After helping Ye Yingzhi clean up the table, he went to bathe in the bathroom. He then washed their clothes drenched in the smell of hot pot and beer in the washing machine before packing up that big bag of clothes he had brought here.
Although he had been sleeping in Ye Yingzhi’s room, the clothes he brought were still hanging in the wardrobe of the original guest room.
That wardrobe was also more old-fashioned. It was a wood colored double-door wardrobe that was as tall as a person. The texture looked good and very thick.
Chi Yan still held some lingering fears for this room. After entering the door, he first switched on the ceiling light before putting his bag on the bed. He then went to the wardrobe and opened the left side of the cabinet door to hang his clothes.
A bloody red object stood out in the wardrobe, it was a badly mutilated lump of flesh, it was barely enough to see that it came from a human figure.
Chi Yan slammed the cabinet door in reflex and ran directly out of the door. He pushed the bedroom door next door and rushed into the bathroom with the sound of water running.
He remembered that Ye Yingzhi just went in to take a bath.
Ye Yingzhi was still inside. He was completely wet and his short black hair clung tightly on his face. The water poured down from the showerhead and sprinkled all over his body. Under the bathroom light, the droplets reflected a golden glow.
Chi Yan, however, did not take into account these many things. After rushing into the bathroom, he ran directly into Ye Yingzhi’s arms.
The moderately hot water poured on him, drenching his clothes. The temperature of the water barely brought him back to some of his senses.
Ye Yingzhi’s hand held his waist with one hand to steady his figure, he also closed the showerhead. He bowed his head and asked, “What happened?”
“I saw that thing again, this time it didn’t have any skin… it’s in the wardrobe next door, I saw it the moment I opened the wardrobe…” Chi Yan stammered. His teeth were chattering and the chill from the bottom of his heart made him shiver all over.
Ye Yingzhi did not speak. He simply removed his soaked clothes and threw them onto the table at the side. He pulled him under the showerhead and turned it on again. He increased the water temperature and let the hot water wash Chi Yan while he stood at the side watching him. He was still holding him with one hand to prevent him from falling. He quietly reassured him by saying, “It’s all right. You can take another hot bath here to relax and wash away any bad luck. Let me go and check it out.”
Chi Yan subconsciously turned his hand over and held him back. “…No, I’ll go with you.”
As Chi Yan didn’t bring any clothes in, Ye Yingzhi took out two sets of clean pajamas from his wardrobe, one for himself to wear and the other set was thrown at Chi Yan. As Chi Yan was not as tall as he was, the top hung over his hips and the bottom had to be rolled up a little.
Ye Yingzhi led him to the next door. He went to the wardrobe, opened it and looked inside before informing Chi Yan who dared not come in and was standing at the door, “Ah Yan, there is nothing. Don’t be scared.”
When Chi Yan recalled the scene just now, he could not help shivering and hesitatedly said, “Is-is it…”
Ye Yingzhi gave an “en” and said, “It’s all right. Don’t be afraid. This cabinet is also old. I’ll find someone to take it away and replace it tomorrow morning. Don’t be afraid. Shall I take out your clothes and hang them in the wardrobe of my room first?”
Chi Yan went over and picked up the backpack he had laid on the bed. He looked at the heavy old brown wardrobe with trepidation and shook his head. “…No, I’ll just take this bag away. There’s a change of clothes in it. I don’t want the clothes inside.”
Even if Ye Yingzhi helped him take the clothes from the wardrobe, he would not dare to keep those clothes, however there weren’t many clothes inside to begin with. There was only a set of laundry and a few underwear he had brought before.
Chi Yan took his bag and followed Ye Yingzhi back to his bedroom. He secretly vowed that he would never enter that room again. Ye Yingzhi vacated half of the wardrobe for him to hang up his clothes. There was also a cloakroom opposite the bedroom. The two wardrobes in the bedroom were all the clothes that were often worn during this season, as such, it wasn’t too crammed.
Chi Yan hung his clothes one by one into Ye Yingzhi’s wardrobe. Looking at it, there was nothing wrong hanging their clothes side by side. Ye Yingzhi sat on the bed and watched him being occupied with his stuff. There was a book on his knee. When Chi Yan looked back, he was reading the book with his head bowed. It seemed that he was enthralled by the book.
Chi Yan was curious and he came over to look at the title of the book and found that it was Rawls’s “A Theory of Justice”. In his heart, he praised that Ye Yingzhi was indeed a student of the philosophy department. He could even read this book with such joy.
Then Chi Yan realized an extremely embarrassing issue.
He had brought quite a few underwear, so this time he mainly brought his overcoat but not any additional underwear. The one he was wearing before was soaked, removed by Ye Yingzhi and then thrown into the bathroom. It had not been washed yet; while the rest was in the haunted wardrobe in the next room.