The Haunted Chapter 105

Chapter 104◀︎Table Of ContentsChapter 106

Chapter 105 Patriarch

Translated by Nessie Lee


A night wind blew. The soccer match on TV was over. Chi Yan picked up the remote control and changed the channel casually. The male and female singers on the stage were singing a duet: “…You and I have made a promise for a hundred years. Whoever died at the age of ninety-seven shall wait at the Nai He Bridge (the bridge in hell/afterlife) for three years…”


Chi Yan was dazed for a while. He was no longer the little baby who didn’t understand anything, lost his way, was chased by ghosts and cried so much. In the past, he ran into the other person’s yard, and when he saw the figure of the youth, he was stunned momentarily and then rushed towards him and hugged his thighs. He was old enough to weigh the circumstances and keep his distance when needed to. Of course he understood the meaning of Xu Rui’s words. He wanted to return with the help of the Xu siblings, so naturally it would be better not to cause trouble.


Besides, what Xu Rui said was also very reasonable. After all, so many years had passed, how could he be sure that that person had not changed, and that that person would treat him the same as before?


Chi Yan shook his head silently, looked at Xu Rui then nodded, “Don’t worry, I understand.” 


They had to be on the road early the next morning, so Chi Yan and Xu Rui packed up the leftovers and went to sleep separately.


Lying on the bed with his eyes closed, Chi Yan still couldn’t fall asleep after a long time. Because of Xu Rui’s words, he suddenly realized clearly that he would definitely see that person again after going back this time. His thoughts fluttered, as if he was back in the spring when he was nine years old. He foolishly followed a few cousins out to play. As a result, they sneaked away when he was not paying attention, leaving him alone in a strange place that he had never been to before.

Translated by The Red Oak Tree

Little Chi Yan tentatively walked forward, and after walking for a long time, he finally saw a figure. He trotted towards that figure to ask for directions. He raised his voice and said “hello” several times, but that man never looked back and ignored him. He couldn’t help but patted his back with his little hand, and that man finally turned his head. There was nothing on “his” face. Little Chi Yan was so scared that he turned and ran like a panicking little animal. Unable to discern the direction at all, he turned his head from time to time. To his horror,  that thing was always one step behind him.


In the end he ran into a quiet and unique courtyard with many flowers and trees planted in it. It was the flowering period, and everywhere he turned was a beautiful scenery.


A young man with a long and slender body was wearing a white shirt. He was standing under a magnolia plant, reaching out to pick a jade-white flower hanging down from the tree.


Little Chi Yan was stunned, he quickly hid one side and secretly looked at the youth’s front face. After confirming that the other party was a human, he rushed forward and hugged the youth’s thighs and cried loudly… 


Most Taoist clan families like the Chi family lived in seclusion. The Chi family, the Ye family, and the Xu family stayed very close to one another. The Chi family studied Heavenly Dao while the Ye family studied Ghost Dao. They stayed adjacent to each other with the intention of letting the Dao of Yin and Yang complement each other. It was only later that Chi Yan learned that he had entered the Bie Yuan where the youngest son of the Ye Family Patriarch used to recuperate. The person he hugged was the third young master of the Ye family, Ye Yingzhi.


The three of them set off in a car early next morning. The distance was not close, so the three of them took turns driving. Although Xu Xin was born slightly later than Xu Rui, the twins fought every day when they were young. But as Xu Rui got older and more sensible, he felt empathetic towards his sister. He knew that Xu Xin was eager to do well in everything so he let her take shifts to drive. He subtly drove a little longer so that Xu Xin may rest more. Moreover, Chi Yan didn’t recognize the road, so Xu Rui ended up driving all the winding mountain roads and they finally approached their destination.

Translated by The Red Oak Tree

In fact, the Xu family no longer lived in the remote mountains, but on a mountain in the outskirts of the famous bustling M City in China. However, due to various formations, the possibility of ordinary people straying into their family house was extremely low. And this Pan Shan Road was the road that led directly to the Xu family’s house.


Looking out from the car window, the mountain was blanketed with fog and they almost could not see the scenery outside the window. There were no other cars before and after theirs. Chi Yan sat on the front passenger seat and took out his mobile phone to check. There was no signal. This indicated that they were getting closer and closer to the Xu family, and also getting closer to the Chi family and that person.


Looking at the fog outside the window, he couldn’t help recalling what happened back then.


At that time, he was crying and hugging the youth’s thighs. That youth who seemed four or five years older than him was not angry and did not speak. He picked Little Chi Yan up, hugged him in his own arms, carried him at his elbow and let him play with the magnolia flower which he had just plucked. The youth carried him into the house and put him down on a soft sofa, personally wiped his face with a hot towel and poured warm milk for him to drink.


Other than his mother, no one else had cared for him like this. Little Chi Yan was a little shocked at once. He held the big glass of milk with both hands and looked up at the teenager in front of him blankly. His body was very small, and as he held the big cup in front of his chest, his black and round eyes were still wet, his eye sockets were red and swollen. He looked rather innocent and pitiful.

Translated by The Red Oak Tree

The youth took the glass from his hand, placed it on the table  and held him in his arms, coaxing softly, “Good boy, my poor little one, tell ge ge, what is your name?” (“ge ge” is an affectionate term meaning “older brother”)


The youth’s fingers were a little cold, but his embrace was very warm and reassuring. Little Chi Yan couldn’t help leaning forward, lying softly on his chest and whispered, “…My name is Chi Yan.”


He leaned on the person’s chest, listened to his heartbeat and cried for no reason. Ye Yingzhi held the soft and warm little baby in his arms and comforted him for a long time.


Later that day, Chi Yan stayed in the Bie Yuan where Ye Yingzhi lived. Ye Yingzhi fed him milk, had meals with him, told him stories, and also told him that the thing he met on the road was just a lost wandering soul. It had lost its way, so it had to follow someone. But after Little Chi Yan entered the yard, that thing dared not follow anymore. That night, Little Chi Yan shared Ye Yingzhi’s bed. Ye Yingzhi coaxed him to sleep, and then fell asleep after watching him fall asleep.


The next day, someone from the Chi family came over and brought Little Chi Yan back. Ye Yingzhi made a small little lucky pouch and hung it around his neck. The lucky pouch contained a dual source guide. His Bie Yuan was not far from Chi’s home. Later, if Little Chi Yan wanted to come over, he could follow the guide which would lead him to his Bie Yuan. As long as Little Chi Yan moved towards his Bie Yuan, Ye Yingzhi would detect it, and he would go out early to meet him on the road and pick him up.


Although Little Chi Yan was young, he could distinguish good from bad. He was unhappy staying at Chi’s family house, but lived comfortably in the Bie Yuan. Since then, he visited Bie Yuan every other day. The people in the Chi family didn’t care much about him, and Little Chi Yan’s mother knew that her son was not happy staying with the Chi family. After understanding the situation, she acquiesced to Little Chi Yan’s frequent visits to Bie Yuan. Later, Little Chi Yan even lived there for a month until his mother sent someone to pick him up and he left reluctantly.

Translated by The Red Oak Tree

Fu Bo, the housekeeper in charge of Bie Yuan’s affairs, was surprised at first, but later he got used to it after some time. Before Little Chi Yan came, he had never seen the cold and aloof Third Young Master so close to anyone before.


The Ye Family Patriarch borned Ye Yingzhi during his elderly years and his two older sons were about twenty years older than him. Thus Ye Yingzhi’s brothers were peers of Chi Yuan Shan. According to seniority, Little Chi Yan should have called Ye Yingzhi “uncle”. But since they met under such a coincidence, and their age difference was not too big, Little Chi Yan kept calling the other “ge ge” instead.


Chi Yan closed his eyes slowly, and the figure of the person in his mind was sometimes far and sometimes near; sometimes clear and sometimes fuzzy, but when he deliberately recalled, every movement, every expression and every sentence of that person became vivid, as if their separation was only yesterday.


The car came to a halt slowly. Xu Rui took off his seat belt and said in a loud voice, “Okay, we have arrived, it’s time to get off the car.”


Xu Rui and his sister took Chi Yan to meet their parents first. Chi Yan didn’t know how and what the siblings told their parents, or if they had confessed or not that they were just helping Chi Yan to participate in the ritual with a plausible identity, or made up other stories that they could accept. In short, Second Master Xu (Xu Er Ye) and his wife did not have much reaction to the so-called “boyfriend” of his own daughter, they just treated him like an ordinary friend whom their children brought back. They told the housekeeper to arrange a room for him. Their words and actions were not too warm nor too cold towards Chi Yan.

Translated by The Red Oak Tree

In the evening, Chi Yan and Xu Rui’s family of four had dinner together. Xu Rui’s father said to his son, “The praying ritual should begin in ten days. The guests would be here tomorrow. All of you should be careful when you go out these days.” Xu Rui nodded.


His father glanced at Chi Yan and said, “Tomorrow night, we are welcoming guests and friends from all walks of life. There will be a banquet in the clan and there will be a lot of people. Till then you can also bring Xiao Chi over.”


Chi Yan raised his head and looked at Master Xu, he paused and said in a deep voice, “Thank you, Uncle.”


Master Xu waved his hand, and the five of them continued to eat without mentioning the topic again. Chi Yan faintly guessed that Xu Rui and his sister should have told their parents everything truthfully, only then would Master Xu deliberately mention something.


The banquet was held in a venue in the Xu’s house, and it was more than ten minutes walk from Xu Rui and their residence. In the evening of the next day, Chi Yan departed with Xu Rui and Xu Xin. Master Xu and his wife had already gone to the venue ahead of time and were not with them.


It had been seven or eight years since Chi Yan left the Chi family. His stature was tall, and his immature teenage appearance had already faded. Many people felt that he looked familiar when they saw him, but they couldn’t recognize him for a while. Xu Rui didn’t explain it when he introduced him, only said that Chi Yan was his sister’s boyfriend who accompanied her back this time.


There were some unspoken rules and etiquettes amongst these Taoist clans. Rituals such as praying to heaven were usually not allowed to include unrelated ordinary people from outside the clans to participate, but since it was Young Mistress Xu’s boyfriend, it was naturally different. It was natural for someone to accompany his girlfriend home, and if their relationship developed harmoniously and steadily, he might be part of the family in the future. If the man was willing to join the family and be part of the Xu family member in the future, then there was nothing more to talk about.

Translated by The Red Oak Tree

The three of them sat with the other descendants of the Xu family, close to the corner unobtrusively. Some of Xu Rui’s cousins looked at Chi Yan quietly, and felt that he looked familiar. One of them asked for his name. As soon as he heard the special surname of “Chi”, he connected it to the Chi’s family, and then remembered that Chi Yan was the eldest grandson of the Chi family who had separated from the family.


Chi Yan sat between Xu Xin and Xu Rui, quietly looking at the people present. His eyes involuntarily paid special attention to the main seat. He didn’t see that person, but saw his father, Chi Yuan Shan instead. Chi Yuan Shan didn’t notice him and kept talking to Xu Rui’s grandfather. There were a few empty seats next to them. Chi Yan looked at the empty seat to the left of Xu Rui’s grandfather, stopped for a while, and then turned away.


The sky was getting darker and the seats at the main table were filled up except that seat was still empty. Chi Yan had been paying attention to the dynamics in that direction. He saw grandfather Xu waved for the housekeeper of the Xu family and ordered him to do something, then the housekeeper left in accordance with his words. Not long after, the housekeeper returned quickly and whispered a few words into the ear of grandfather Xu. Then all the people at the main table turned around and looked at the entrance of the venue.


The others didn’t know what was happening, so their eyes followed to look at the door. Some people guessed something and whispered to the people around them.


Chi Yan also had a faint hunch in his heart.


They heard the sound of a car coming to a halt outside the door and then the two wooden doors of the banquet hall were pushed open inwards by the doormen from the outside. The doormen respectfully bowed their heads and welcomed the guest who had just arrived.

Translated by The Red Oak Tree

A group of people filed in. Leading them was a man wearing a long black trench coat. He was tall, slender and handsome, but his face was a little sickly pale. His black eyes were deep and quiet, looking down slightly, as if he didn’t care about everything else in the world. He faced everyone’s gaze and walked forward unhurriedly. Even though it was early spring, there seemed to be a gloomy chill in the room with his arrival.


Grandfather Xu had already stood up and left his seat to greet him, and the others at the main table followed suit. As a result, everyone in the entire hall followed suit.


Chi Yan felt that his breathing had stopped. From the moment the man entered, his eyes were stuck on him, as if the whole world could only see this person. Xu Rui quietly pulled his sleeves when he appeared to behave strangely but he didn’t even notice it.


The man exchanged greetings with grandfather Xu. Chi Yan didn’t know what he said, but saw grandfather Xu nodding with a smile, glanced towards the left of the venue and then went back to the main table alone  to sit down. Then the man waved his hand to the people following him, turned his steps and walked straight to the left alone, and finally stood in front of Chi Yan, looking at him calmly.


Chi Yan suddenly stood up again.


All the guests had already followed the people on the main table to take their seats. At this time, the two people who were still standing in the hall were particularly eye-catching.


The man leaned down slightly, stroked Chi Yan’s chin with his left hand, lifted it upwards slightly, and carefully looked at his eyes and facial features. The corners of his mouth were softly curved, and he said softly, “I haven’t seen you for a few years, Ah Yan has grown up.”

Translated by The Red Oak Tree

Chi Yan didn’t know how to respond momentarily. He remembered what Xu Rui had said before, and subconsciously looked at the person on the left. Xu Rui was also looking at him, stupefied and helpless.


Chi Yan hesitated for a moment, raised his gaze to look at the man, and whispered back, “Yes, Patriarch Ye. I hope everything has been well for you.” He also found it strange to call him Patriarch Ye, but he couldn’t be called by his old name, he didn’t even know how the others call this person in front of him.


The man curled his lower lip with a smile that somehow didn’t look like a smile. His dark eyes stared at him, “What did Ah Yan call me?”


Chi Yan looked at his eyes and instantly understood what he meant. He hesitated and called out even more quietly, “…Yingzhi ge ge.” (in Chinese “ge ge” is an affectionate term which means “older brother”)


The man laughed at once, which was different from the smile he had just now. This time it was a real smile. The lines on his entire face became soft, his eyebrows and corners of his eyes were all filled with smiles.


He seemed to realize that this was not a good place to talk about old times. He held Chi Yan closer to him, and whispered in his ear, “Ge ge misses Chi Yan. Come home with ge ge tonight and let ge ge love and pamper you properly.”


Chi Yan knew that that man always loved him and spoiled him. There was no other meaning in saying this other than just inviting him to reminisce about the old times, yet Chi Yan still blushed involuntarily. He felt that it was inappropriate for both of them to act so intimately in front of everyone else. After all, he was no longer a child, but Yingzhi ge ge still treated him in the same way that he treated the milk doll of yesteryear, always hugging him.


He put his hand on Ye Yingzhi’s chest, trying to gently push him farther away, but in the end, he couldn’t bear to do it. He just maintained this posture, and responded in a low voice, “Okay.”


Looking at the two of them, it looked like Chi Yan was proactively lying on the other party’s chest obediently.

Translated by The Red Oak Tree

Chapter 104◀︎Table Of ContentsChapter 106


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