Guess Who I Am
Chapter 16: Black Widow
The radio fell into silence once again after announcing the exam information. The car was silent.
What precious calming pill? With “Gypsy” here, all that just went up in smoke.
Everyone was in daze for a moment. They collapsed lifelessly into their seats.
The minivan instantly turned into a hearse carrying several people who were on the brink of death.
It was irritating enough alone being awakened from his sleep, and he was even awakened to such terrible news. Just as You Huo was about to sit up, he saw a certain someone come over through the gap between his eyelids.
He immediately closed his eyes and pretended to be dead asleep.
It was like the minivan was driving through clouds. There was no shaking at all.
The sound of footsteps stopped next to him. The headrest You Huo had his head rested against sank down and it was then followed by someone tugging his earphone cord a few times.
You Huo expressionlessly pretended to be asleep.
The earphone cord was once again tugged a few times. It even made his earlobe and earring move.
You Huo continued to pretend to be dead.
“There aren’t any signals here so what’s the point of using earphones? Stop pretending.” A familiar voice that lazily dragged out the words sounded.
You Huo could no longer pretend.
He half opened his eyes and glanced through the corner of his eyes at the hand that was holding onto the earphone cord: “Need something?”
After asking this, he finally raised his eyes and looked at the person standing before him.
From his expression to the tone of his voice, he was able to completely express his attitude of “spit out what you have to say or scram”.
Qin Jiu retracted his hand from the earphone cord and leaned against the back of the seat in front of You Huo.
He used his chin to point at the seat next to You Huo and said with a smile that was also not quite a smile: “Your bag? I’ll have to trouble you to move it.”
“It doesn’t want to.”
You Huo said this expressionlessly and plugged his earphone back in before closing his eyes again.
Less than two seconds later, that annoying hand reached over again. It directly pulled out his earphone.
The moment those fingers brushed past You Huo’s earlobe, it felt a little ticklish.
You Huo raised his hand to pinch his earring and opened his eyes with furrowed brows: “Need something?”
“If it is really unwilling to move then I’ll have to do it myself.” Qin Jiu smiled and lifted the black bag. He casually assessed its weight and then placed it onto the overhead rack above You Huo.
You Huo stared at him: “Can’t you change to another empty seat?”
Qin Jiu: “I’m afraid I can’t. There is a total of nine seats in this car and you guys take up seven of them. If I don’t sit here, I’ll have to squeeze in with the driver. I don’t know about you, but the others probably wouldn’t like me doing that.”
You Huo: “……….”
He didn’t pay attention to the number of seats when he boarded. He didn’t expect the seating to be so limited.
Qin Jiu sat down beside him.
This person appeared tall and thin in his coat, but you could tell after he got closer that his figure is tall and straight. Through the clothing, you could feel his solid arms and warm body temperature.
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Fortunately, there weren’t many seats in the car so there was plenty of space between the front and back rows. Otherwise these two people would have nowhere to put their legs.
You Huo wanted to straighten his legs but if he did that, he would kick the seat in front of him.
At this moment, it was as if whoever makes way for the other person would be considered the loser. You Huo thought about it and decided that he had nothing to lose. He stretched out and knocked heavily into Qin Jiu’s knee.
He pulled up his collar and got ready to close his eyes and sleep again when he heard Qin Jiu mutter quietly: “Gypsy. Amazing.”
You Huo opened his eyes: “This wasn’t your chosen subject?”
Qin Jiu glanced at him. His fingers lazily forced a small gap between them: “With you saying that, I feel a bit wronged.”
Wronged your ass.
You Huo stared at him coldly.
“Look at that person you picked.” Qin Jiu pointed to where Mike sat, “To my knowledge, this examinee’s background is very colourful. He’s mixed with four kinds of blood from America, France, Russia and Spain and he ended up looking like that.”
You Huo: “…………”
“Sorry, I was a little harsh with my words there.” Qin Jiu didn’t look sorry at all.
You Huo: “You have information on all the examinees?”
“You guess?” Qin Jiu’s voice was low. Even when he dragged out his tone, it sounded nice.
You Huo scoffed coldly.
Since it was capable of bringing people to this damned place, he believed the examination system should probably be in possession of all their information. So how much do the invigilators know?
You Huo recalled their actions earlier and felt that it probably wasn’t much.
Invigilators were also bound by rules. Perhaps……….if they want to find out about something regarding a specific examinee, they would also need go through some kind of acquisition process? And that acquisition process probably isn’t easy.
Otherwise the first one 001, 154 and 922 would investigate would be him.
Qin Jiu supported his head and stared at him for a while with his pitch-black eyes: “Don’t worry. In general, I have no interest in an examinee’s information.”
You Huo very perfunctorily ‘oh’ed.
“In short, with a treasure like this in the team, it isn’t surprising for you all to be sent to this damned place.” Qin Jiu said.
You Huo didn’t know what exactly was behind the so-called examination system but he felt that it had a weird temper. In order to avoid this group of people getting their “mother-tongue”, it had gone through twists and turns to pull out something like “Gypsy”.
Since he had found out the reason behind it, he no longer placed the blame on Qin Jiu.
And he didn’t know if it was just his imagination but, ever since they got onto the car, Qin Jiu appeared to be a little unhappy.
You Huo looked at the invigilator who was lost in thought with his eyes lowered.
Perhaps it was because the reflections of the snow outside was too bright, his eyes started to hurt again. It felt a little uncomfortable.
He rubbed it a few times before putting his earphones back in and going back to sleep.
After about ten minutes, the car suddenly shook.
The distressed examines were alarmed by this and quickly saw that the scenery outside had changed.
The sky covered in fog and snow was gone and what appeared before them was a winding mountain road.
The road conditions were not good, so the car shook endlessly as it travelled along it. There was solid mud and gravel everywhere.
This road was very narrow. If two cars met on either end, they would have to shift to first gear and inch past slowly.
The vegetation by the mountain road grew so densely together, it was difficult making out how far down it went. Once you fall, it is very likely for the body to go missing forever.
Like this, the minivan drove daringly along it.
Halfway through, the driver twisted the radio knob. The radio inside the car buzzed a few times and jumped to a certain frequency before starting to play old songs. Occasionally, it was interrupted by traffic reminders which warned drivers to avoid certain roads which have become blocked due to recent landslides.
During the broadcast, a warning sign appeared before the car.
In front of the warning sign was a large rock and a fallen tree. A normal car clearly wouldn’t be able to pass through.
But the driver ignored the warning completely and swerved the car around in large movements.
Everyone in the car was startled. When they fell back into their seats, the car had already passed through the landslide and it continued to drive deeper into the mountains.
Since entering the depths of the mountains, the sky had darkened.
There clearly was heating in the car but everyone still unconsciously shivered.
When they came out of the mountain road, they were met with an old street sign by the side of the road. It was marked with the road number.
Old Yu wrapped himself tightly with his clothes and shrank in his head. Seeing that number, he muttered: “This road seems to be close to the border…….”
“We’re really crossing it?”
Old Yu: “I don’t know.”
Yu Wen shrank his neck and stared anxiously outside the window: “We can’t just randomly cross the border!”
As he said that, the minivan made a big turn and it entered the woods on the side.
Everyone was bewildered by strange route. They wanted to ask but the driver was a mute.
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Another ten minutes passed.
The car got out from the woods and it braked sharply by a dirt road.
“Brother wake up. We’re getting off.” Yu Wen had one knee up on his seat and he reached over the back of the chair to wake You Huo up.
He really was in awe of his brother’s bravery. He was actually able to sleep so deeply.
You Huo rubbed his hair and half opened his eyes. He glanced next to him through half-open eyes. The seat was already empty.
With the lower half of his face covered by his collar, he said in a muffled voice: “Where is he?”
“Ah?” Yu Wen didn’t hear.
You Huo shook his head to wake himself up.
He stood up and stomped on his numb leg before bending down and looking out the window: “Where is this?”
This time Yu Wen heard him, “Don’t know. The driver stopped the car here and ran.”
“What do you mean ran?”
Yu Wen pointed out the window: “There. He ran down that dirt road.”
They appeared to have stopped at the entrance to a village. Through the trees, they could faintly see several roofs in the distance. Apart from the road leading down to the village, there was nowhere else for them to go.
They were surrounded by an endless sea of trees.
Yu Wen followed behind You Huo and got off the car.
Outside the car, the examinees looked at each other dumbly.
Invigilator Qin Jiu on the other hand stood by the woods. He had one hand supporting a tree and was looking somewhere into the distance.
“Old Yu mentioned earlier that the road was near the border. Are we in some particular location in reality?” Yu Wen asked You Huo.
The newly joined Chen Bin interjected: “From my experience, it probably isn’t. But you will probably see things later that resemble those in reality or things that you have seen before.”
Yu Wen: “If we’re not in a place in reality then that so-called death, is it really death?”
Chen Bin smiled bitterly: “I don’t know. Only those who tried it will know but who would dare try something like that?”
Yu Wen lowered his head and said: “That’s true……..”
You Huo couldn’t care less about this topic. After getting off, he circled around the area.
Soon, he kicked somewhere and said, “There’s a stone monument here.”
“I was looking for that. Turns out it’s here.” Chen Bin was experienced. After getting off, he had been looking for information.
He came over and crouched before the stone monument. He pulled away some of the weeds: “It probably says the name of this place. Although it may not be useful, it’s a little reassuring when you know where we are……”
The others heard this and moved over.
All they saw was a worn-out stone monument engraved with strange characters.
“What are those drawings?”
Chen Bin took out a tissue from his bag and wiped off the parts that were stained with mud. It was still difficult to decipher.
Yu Wen: “K…….is this a?”
Chen Bin: “Lo….. What the hell is this?”
“Probably p.” Yu Yao supported her stomach and tilted her head to read: “That one looks like h……u……v.”
Putting aside the miscellaneous and useless parts, the name of the location that was carved onto this monument was:
What the hell is that?
Let me tell you a joke. You can tell where you are just by looking at the sign.
While everyone was in despair, the silent driver came back. He brought along a middle-aged man dressed in a military coat and leather cap.
Looking at his face, he was probably a Chinese national.
The driver said: “There, these people.”
Old Yu was surprised: “You can talk?!”
The driver glanced at him and said hoarsely: “He will take you to that house. Remember, don’t go in the woods.
When he was done, he waved his hand at the man with the leather hat, went back onto the minivan and drove away.
The car twisted and turned into the woods and, in a blink of an eye, it was blocked by the crooked branches and it disappeared from their sights.
Even the sounds of its engine and the grinding of the tires against the gravel disappeared.
The woods became eerily quiet. It made everyone’s hair rise.
“What did we come here for?” You Huo asked the man with the leather hat.
The man in the leather hat made a sound of exclamation and said: “Didn’t you say that you were looking for the black widow? Why? Did you already forget?”
“Black widow? Who’s the black widow?” Chen Bin followed over and asked.
The man in the leather hat cowered. He tightened his hat around his neck and said with a muffled voice: “An old granny. She and her old man came here during the war and stayed behind. Seems to be Gypsies. In any case………..”
He wrapped himself even tightened and said with a whisper: “I’ll take you there. You should be careful. After she came, our entire village had become strange. What made you to want to………stay here for ten days?”
Everyone wanted to cry without tears. Inside they said: Do you think I’m crazy? Why would I want to stay here?
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KK has something to say:
I tried searching ‘Kalo Phuv’ and nothing came up. The author probably just made it up??
Edit: Thanks to the wonderful detective skills of Romu, seems like it may mean ‘black earth’. Thanks again!