Old man’s mouth is open slightly, but soon it is closed. It seems he is irresolute about something. Then he closes his eyes. It became very quiet at that time. Old man heaves a sigh, and finally, he says slowly, “Do you want a story?” Right after, Takumi stands up and finds another sofa to lies down. He stares at the old man in front and stays quietly as he usually does.
“Here is the story.” The old man glances at his grandson, and then closes his eyes, seemed he calls his own mind to before...
“A long time ago, there were two guys, one of them was called... hum... was called Allen, and the other one was called Kevin. They were not only very good friends, but also ghost hunters. Allen had a girlfriend called Sandra, who liked hiking very much. But she did not know the two guys were hunters. They usually go hiking together and have a lot of fun with each other.
One day, they gathered together to hike a high snow-covered mountain. It was a really bright day. By joint efforts, they finally reached the half of the mountain in the afternoon. Sandra was tired but she stuck not to stop. Allen and Kevin followed her without saying anything. But for her happiness, they acted as they were tired and were behind for a long distance.
Without any reasons, wind blew harder. It seemed temperature kept going down; even the two guys compulsively shake their body slightly. Suddenly, Allen and Kevin heard Sandra screaming. Allen was a little bit nervous and he ran quickly up to Sandra. Luckily it was just a false alarm. Sandra just fell over into faint. Allen calmed down and was going to turn back to tell Kevin not to be worried. But when he turned his head back, he was surprised.
Instinctively, Allen shouted, ‘Kevin!! Where are you!! Answer me!!’ But all around him were in silent.”
Old man stops because he saw his grandson’s pale face. “Yes, my grandson, it was scary. A big live person disappeared. I want to drink some water please.”
Takumi goes to the kitchen to get water, and old man sits there quietly, but it seems he is suffering from something due to his quivery body.
After he drinks some water, he stops for a while, and said, “OK, let’s continue.”
“Just now I told you Kevin disappeared. What happened?
At that time, in Allen’s mind, there was just one question, ‘Where was Kevin?’
Sandra woke up soon. Her face was pale. Allen decided to say some words to comfort her but he stopped. Because he found all the things around him started disappeared, except Sandra was still held in his arm. Couple minutes later, Allen saw a road.
Yes, it was a road, with very high walls up on both sides.
Sandra was not weak. She stood up and asked Allen what happened. Allen told her Kevin disappeared and suggested to get into that road to find him, without any other strange things, because he did not want Sandra to be worried, and she agreed.
They stepped into the road after a short break.
Allen knew there should be something unexplained but he did not tell Sandra. However, Allen held Sandra’s hand firmly, as hoping Sandra won’t be disappeared the same as Kevin was.
‘Let’s go. Are you frightened?’
‘Because... I believe you.’
It was really a long and quiet road. You could hear every step you made. Every 10 steps, there might be a turnoff, but Allen told Sandra not to walk in, in case they would get lost.
They kept walking straightly, but it seemed the road is too long to imagine. Allen realized the problem, and he thought of a story about the road written on a special book:
‘The road is named ‘Ghost Wall’. It usually appears on mountains. You have no choices except to get into it if you see one. Each Ghost Wall will have its own method of walking to get out. For example, if the method is ‘LEFT UP RIGHT UP RIGHT’, then you need to walk into the left turnoff first, and then go straight until meet up with a right turnoff. When you just have one step left to get out, you must not turn your head back; otherwise you cannot get out any more. During the way, you will hear whisper beside you, whatever happened you cannot turn back or go into the wrong way. If so, you would never get out too. But there is another method. It is to climb over the wall.”
Allen took a deep breath and he finally told Sandra what happened. At last, Allen added, ‘We do not know the method of walking, apropos of the 2nd method...’
He has not finished his sentence, a person dropped from the top of the wall. Luckily snow was soft. Allen felt strange but when he stared at the person, he was so happy.
The person, who dropped, was trying to stand up, and he kept repeating some bad words. No doubt, the person was Kevin. Allen gave him a big hug as soon as Kevin stood up. Sandra looked at the two guys in front of her; she smiled and said, ‘Oh, I know it! You two are gays.’ Two guys looked at Sandra and showed a strange face to each other. The nervous situation got a little bit relaxed. Allen, as remembering something, told Sandra, ‘I guess we could not use the second method any more.’ And then, he turned his head to his best friend, ‘OK, now tell us what happened.’
Kevin started to tell his experience, ‘you said I disappeared at that time, actually I prefer to say that you two disappeared. Then I saw the stupid road as you did. But you know I am smarter than Allen; as soon as I saw it, I remembered a story on a special book. Also I am usually luckier than him, I found a women’s body. Do not look at me strangely. Guess what happened then? I found a paper with bloody words in her right hand. It told me how to get out. Originally I decided to follow the method on the paper but I failed...’ ‘Failed?’ Sandra was surprised because just now Allen told her if someone was failed, then he could not get out any more. ‘Do not break my words in please. What I mean is I failed to found the right way. I tried to find the way on the left but I kept walking and I found no ways on the left. So I decided to climb over the wall and finally I did it.’ ‘And then you fell down and met us.’ Allen continued. Kevin answered, ‘Right. I want to get out as quickly as I can because I think you two must be worried about me. Who knows, at the end you two got into the stupid road also.’
Allen got a piece of paper from Kevin and words were read, ‘I do not know how long I could live for and I am too hungry to keep walking. I had no intention of it. Why I figure out the method to get out but I still cannot get out, just because I was too hungry. Maybe someone will see it, here is the method: U L R U R U L R L U L...’ The last letter ‘L’ was very dry. Obviously it was the last letter before the woman died.
Allen took a deep breath again. They took a rest for a while, and then Allen stood up. He stared at his best friend for a while, and then held his girlfriend’s hands. As he made up a huge decision, he said, “Let’s go.”
They started their survival way.
It was lucky. During the way, they got right with everything. Whispers around them did not affect their sense.
Finally they nearly got the exit. It really took a long time and wore down their strength. The three people were so hungry but they did not give up. At that time, Sandra was too tired to walk so Allen put her on his back. We would be alive, he thought.
But instantly Allen found Sandra’s body was shaking. Obviously, it was not normal. As soon as he wanted to say something to encourage Sandra, he felt Sandra turned her head back and cried, ‘Mom!’ Allen hung down his head, it was the last step.
Allen stopped, with shocked. He stood there. Kevin got shocked too. He shouted at Allen, ‘Catch her! Are you listened? Catch her!’ ‘Ah!!!!!! Allen!!!! Help me!!’ Sandra’s sounds came to the two guys’ ears. But Allen just stood there with his dull gaze. ‘I don’t want to die... ‘Sandra’s sound was getting farther and farther, but Allen just stood riveted to the ground there. Kevin shouted, even louder than a lion, ‘What are you doing? Catch her!’ Finally Allen took respond, he cried, ‘Kevin, it was not real! Calm down! It is just illusory! The ghost just wants us to turn our heads back! Do you understand? It is just illusory!’
‘You Liar! Selfish Liar! You can feel she is not on your back, is she?!!!! I clearly know you now!’ Then Allen’s best friend turned his body and tried to catch Sandra.
The sound of Kevin was still around his ear but Kevin was gone. Wind blew heavily. But invisible wind in someone’s heart blew much more heavily.
And Allen closed his eyes...”
Old man stops. If you observe his face carefully, you can find two lines of tears silently flow down from his eyes.
And our little Takumi thinks his grandpa is too thirsty to continue, so he goes to the kitchen.
Moonlight shed through the window onto the floor, she slightly wipes the tears on old man’s cheek. It seems someone heaves a sigh, and whispers, “I’m sorry... ”
An old man sits on a sofa with peaceful face. Beside him, a little boy lies on the floor playing a gun toy. Warm feelings fill the room and the light of fire illuminates on the old man’s face. The old man opens his mouth and asks, “What would you like to be when you grow up, my dear grandson, Takumi?” Little boy lifts up his head, with bright pure eyes, and answers seriously, “I want to be a ghost hunter.”
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