He opened the door but nothing happened.
Xiao Tangqiu was just about to breathe a sigh of relief when a thick smell of blood drifted into his nostrils. A few girls in the group suddenly turned pale and looked nauseated.
Xiao Tangqiu’s expression was rather ugly as well. He braced himself and dragged Tang Mianmian into the room. Although Tang Mianmian looked completely against that idea, he could only follow Xiao Tangqiu while he pinched his nose.
The thief’s room had turned into a sea of blood. The entire room was dyed a deep red – not only were the floors soaked in dark, solidified blood, even the walls were covered with countless blood spatters, from top to bottom. What remained of his brain matter glistened in the dim room, along with some other questionable fluids and slush… Xiao Tangqiu didn’t intend to carefully analyze them.
Xiao Tangqiu strengthened his resolve and pulled Tang Mianmian to look for the man’s body, but they found nothing at all – not in the room, not in the bathroom. Except for a room full of blood and gore, there seemed to be nothing left of the man.
“Where’s the body?” The middle-aged man wondered out loud, “He’s dead but his body is missing?”
White-collar Woman couldn’t help but ask, “Could he still be alive?”
Fresh Grad laughed scornfully, “There’s no way he would survive after losing so much blood. He’s dead as a doornail!”
Xiao Tangqiu and Tang Mianmian went through the bed and wardrobe but found nothing. Instead, they found several wallets and a bunch of sparkling women’s jewelry.
The middle-aged man looked at one of the bulging wallets and immediately froze. He subconsciously reached for his pockets. Then, his expression darkened as he cursed, “That son of a bitch stole from Laozi! If he wasn’t already dead, I would kill him myself! Fuck!”
“I knew it! How could my necklace suddenly disappear?! It turns out that he had stolen it!” White-collar Woman picked up a silver necklace from the pile of jewelry and cursed at the thief.
The other wallets and jewelry weren’t claimed for the time being. No one was sure where the thief had stolen them from. Xiao Tangqiu randomly looked through the items and suddenly saw a brass pocket watch hidden underneath the glittering jewelry.
His heart skipped a beat as he pulled out the pocket watch.
“Why is there a pocket watch?” Tang Mianmian looked puzzled. “…Fuck! This guy actually stole off of Lippinobert! He actually dared to steal from him!
Xiao Tangqiu quickly opened the pocket watch. Indeed, there was a photo behind the cover, just like the other pocket watches. This photo was not as dated as the other two. Obviously, it had been taken closer to the current time, but the photo was still yellow with age.
It was a photo of an extremely beautiful woman, and like the women in the previous two photos, her facial features and eyebrows resembled Lily Marlene’s. Although the color of her eyes and hair weren’t the same, her temperament was very much like Lily Marlene’s and she could be considered as the most similar to Lily Marlene out of the three women.
He stared at the photo for a while, then found that there was faint handwriting on the back the photo. He carefully removed the photo from the cover, turned over to look, and as expected, saw a line of fine words written at the bottom – Veronika.
We’re sorry for MTLers or people who like using reading mode, but our translations keep getting stolen by aggregators so we’re going to bring back the copy protection. If you need to MTL please retype the gibberish parts.
“Ve… ro… ni… ka… Veronika? This is also someone’s name, right?” Tang Mianmian leaned in, “This name sounds rather nice and she looks really pretty as well. Alas, what a pity! Beauties always suffer such unhappy fates!”
Although she had a nice name and was a beautiful woman, her photo had become part of Lippinobert’s “collection,” which meant that she was dead.
Xiao Tangqiu said with certainty, “This should be Lippinobert’s third wife.”
So far, they had found pocket watches with photos of the last two wives of Lippinobert. They knew their names – Maria and Veronika. They even found a pocket watch with a photo of Lippinobert’s mother, and they also knew her name – Laura.
According to Xiao Tangqiu’s conjecture, there should be another pocket watch with a picture of Lily Marlene in the castle, but they hadn’t found it yet.
Where was Lily Marlene’s pocket watch?
“Anyways… we can be certain that he’s dead,” Xiao Tangqiu put the pocket watch in his pocket. “There are still two other players.”
Seeing his actions, someone immediately questioned, “Is this pocket watch yours? Are you going to steal right under our noses? “
“This pocket watch looks quite valuable…”
Xiao Tangqiu frowned slightly, “No, this is a prop related to an important clue.”
Now he finally understood why Su Manluo hid from the newbies. It was because these newbies were more than a little annoying.
“A prop that is related to an important clue? What is it? “
“What’s it for? Can it save lives?”
The newbies asked noisily.
Xiao Tangqiu couldn’t say for sure what the props were useful for. After all, he was still a rookie himself. However, these newbies seemed to think that he was hiding something and looked at him suspiciously. They turned around and plundered the rest of the jewelry.
The newbies stared at Xiao Tangqiu and looked like they wanted to steal it from him, but feared Xiao Tangqiu’s status as an “old player.”
Xiao Tangqiu felt powerless and sulked on the inside. He began to understand Shen Yuan’s habit of rejecting the newbies…
So he stopped paying attention to them, grabbed Tang Mianmian and left the room. Just then, Tang Mianmian suddenly cried out, “Wait a minute, I don’t see a portrait of Lily Marlene in this room!”
Xiao Tangqiu froze and turned back. Indeed, there wasn’t a portrait of Lily Marlene in this room, but there was obviously a mark with a different shade on the wall that indicated a painting had been hung there before. “…Someone must have taken it.”
Tang Mianmian rubbed his chin. “That should be the case… Maybe the painting is removed once the person inside the room dies?”
“Perhaps. Let’s go and look for the two remaining people.” Xiao Tangqiu mused, “If I remember correctly, the other two are the mother and son…” Because there were so many players in this instance, he wasn’t able to memorize everyone’s faces yet, but the impact the mother and son left on him yesterday was quite profound.
“I think so. I remember that their room is…” Tang Mianmian brought Xiao Tangqiu to the front of another room, and sure enough, the candle at the door was still burning. The two men knocked on the door, but even after a while, there wasn’t any movement inside the room.
“Are they dead?” Someone asked in horror.
“But the candle at the door didn’t go out…”
“The candles may not necessarily be related to our lives! Maybe the candle at that guy’s door was blown out by the wind!”
As the group of newbies began to speculate, Shen Yuan and his team finally made their move. Windbreaker Man walked to the door, smiling as he kicked it open.
Behind the door, the middle-aged woman looked like she was preparing to move something to block the door. When she saw the door being kicked in, she was immediately frightened. But she soon reacted, dropped her hands to her hips and yelled, “What are you doing? Are you trying to bully a widow and a fatherless child? I’m no vegetarian, let me tell you that!”
“Bully you? We just want to confirm you’re still alive.” Windbreaker Man laughed scornfully, “Since you’re not dead, why didn’t you open the door?”
The middle-aged woman shouted angrily, “Why should I open the door for you? God knows who you are? What if you’re all bad people? I’m just a widow with my child….”
“Older sister, calm down! We’re all in the same situation. If you have something to say, we can all sit down and talk nicely.” The middle-aged man approached her with a smile, “The more people we have, the better our chances of surviving. If we put our heads together, we can always think of a way out…”
The middle-aged woman rolled her eyes at him at him, laughing coldly before she slammed the door shut.
The middle-aged man immediately got angry from the embarrassment of being turned away. He shouted, “What a fool! She can’t even tell good from evil.”
Xiao Tangqiu slightly narrowed his eyes. Now, they could confirm that the mother and child were safe and sound. But in the short period when the door was ajar, he clearly saw that the middle-aged woman had tied her son to the bed with towels from the bathroom. Although she covered the child with a quilt, he still noticed the telltale lumps under the quilt. No wonder the middle-aged woman had refused to open the door and hastily closed it after it was kicked in by Windbreaker Man…
He and Tang Mianmian exchanged a look but before they had the time to go over the details, the female college student, Lu Si’er, suddenly suggested, “Should we go to the room with the puppet from yesterday?”
“No! It’s too dangerous!”
“Is there anywhere that isn’t dangerous in this goddamn place? In my opinion, we should go and have a look! “
“Yesterday, that guy stole a toy axe and was killed. Just in case we…”
“Then make sure to keep your hands to yourself and you’ll be fine!”
After some discussion, the newbies finally decided to go and take a look.
Xiao Tangqiu wanted to pull Tang Mianmian away from the group to go their separate ways, but when he heard that they were going back to the puppet’s room, he changed his mind and decided to go with them.
Shen Yuan and his team also followed. The large group of people finally reached the puppet’s room on the first floor.
Outside the room, no one dared to go in. The newbies looked at each other, waiting for someone to take the lead.
Xiao Tangqiu glanced at Shen Yuan and saw that he still had the same look of indifference on his face.
He sighed and stepped forwards to push the door open. The room was as eerie and strange as it was before, but it seemed to be slightly different today. The crowd first turned to the puppet on the cabinet. The way the puppet held the axe had changed again. Before they left the room yesterday, it held the axe high above its head. Now, it seemed to have returned to the original posture, holding the axe with its hands drooping down naturally again.
This posture looked less terrifying, but in reality, they felt even more frightened because this time, not only were the cute little shoes of the puppet stained with blood, its beautiful little dress was also dyed a bright red. The blood stained its clothes and shoes in a spatter pattern, which made it easy to imagine how it got there.
Xiao Tangqiu frowned and looked up. He found that the blood didn’t look like a stain at all, but rather, the spatter pattern was completely integrated with the skirt, as if it was part of the design of the dress from the very start.
Right when everyone felt a shiver down their spines, Tang Mianmian suddenly cried out, “Fuck! Look at the wall!”
They all looked up at the same time and were surprised to find two paintings of Lily Marlene hanging on the wall of this room.
Xiao Tangqiu tried his best to recall the scene from yesterday and was sure that there was only one portrait of Lily Marlene in this room last night. Furthermore, there was only one portrait in all of the rooms, but now, there were two in this room…
P.S. I just got home and rushed to finish the chapter, so let me know if you see any mistakes ❤