Urban Tales of Demons and Spirits
Vol 3 Book of Exchange – Chapter 32 Taking A Tour To The Mountain
First Published on Chaleuria.
Chapter 32 Taking A Tour To The Mountain
“Really? The temple fair is held in honor of Bai Ze.”
“Em, if you go to the temple fair, you’ll find a lot of interesting stuff,” Zhu Xuan said with a smile.
“I see.” Shi Yitong nodded pretentiously. He looked at Su Xiaoyun and me and asked, “Hey, if this is the case, we should wait until the day it opens… when will the temple fair open?”
“In two days,” Zhu Xuan quickly replied.
“Ah, in two days.” Shi Yitong clapped his hands. “So how about we spend these two days visiting nearby places and have some fun?”
“Hey, why are you always so lazy when it comes to the urgent and important things?!” Su Xiaoyun hit Shi Yitong on the head.
“Hey, I’m not! The thing is, the only lead we have so far is this temple fair.” Shi Yitong scratched his head. “It took us a lot of effort to get here; we deserve to have some fun. Right, Gu Yu?”
Shi Yitong suddenly asked me to support him, so I had no other choice but to answer, “I don’t disagree… Anyway, we might not find anything either.”
“Do you wanna go take a look through the mountains?” Zhu Xuan suddenly showed great interest and said, “There are many interesting places on the mountain. The oranges in the picking garden are delicious. You can also rent a boat to fish on the lake. However, all of these tourist attractions are all very similar, so my personal recommendation would be to go hunt in the northern mountains.”
“Hun…hunting?” Shi Yitong’s eyes suddenly widened.
“Yes, that’s right. Mt.Diecui is a mountain range and tourists are only allowed to visit the highest mountain peak. The northern region is wilder. There are many wild animals like pheasants and rabbits; it also has many wild vegetables and mushrooms. If you come with me, you might get a lot of good stuff. If you’re lucky, you could even find some pine mushrooms!”
“Wow, really?” Shi Yitong’s eyes glittered with light.
“Yes, that’s true.” Zhu Xuan shyly smiled at Shi Yitong.
Unsurprisingly, Shi Yitong immediately began to persuade Su Xiaoyun and me, “Hey, what do you think? I think it sounds cool. We should seize this rare opportunity!”
“I don’t want to,” Su Xiaoyun gave her opinion as her face hardened. “What I went through on Mt. Yanjin was enough for a lifetime.”
“Hey, what about you, Gu Yu?” Shi Yitong looked at me, full of expectations.
“Um…I don’t mind, it’s up to you,” I answered with a shrug.
“Hey, how can you do this to me?” Shi Yitong was upset. “Shouldn’t a city boy like you be very interested in activities like these? You’re such an introvert, not wanting to try it out.”
I didn’t know why, but it seemed that Zhu Xuan cared about what Shi Yitong wanted. After he saw Su Xiaoyun and I weren’t interested in his proposal, he anxiously said, “Well, I can go with you. I’m a very good hunter, and there are no dangerous beasts on Mt.Diecui. We’ll only be there during the day, and we’ll be back before night even falls. Everything will be fine. Besides, even if you’re scared of getting lost on the mountain, I can take you to other attractions.”
What was wrong with this guy? He seemed too friendly. Su Xiaoyun and I looked at each other. But, at the same time, we also felt that it was hard to reject his enthusiasm.
“Count me in.” I raised my hand to help Shi Yitong. “It seems fun.”
“Yes! Gu Yu, I knew I could count on you, buddy!”
Su Xiaoyun pouted as she looked at us with her arm crossed, then shook her head. “Really? You boys always want to have fun, or just try and act cool. I really don’t know how to deal with you two anymore. But, if you both wanna go, then I’ll obviously come along.”
“You’re the best, goddess Su!” Shi Yitong cheered.
“However, is it okay for you to keep us company? Don’t you have your own business to deal with?” I asked, feeling a little apologetic.
“It doesn’t matter!” Zhu Xuan quickly waved his hands and said with a shy smile, “Since I’m idle now and I don’t have any other plans, it’s my pleasure to help you.”
“It’s so rare to meet a kind person like you,” Su Xiaoyun teased.
“What are you waiting for, shall we go now?” Shi Yitong said excitedly.
“Hey, wait, now? Are we going to leave now?” Su Xiaoyun was surprised.
Shi Yitong looked down at his watch. “We’re already awake, and it’s almost seven o’clock, isn’t the timing just nice?”
“No, it’s not. I haven’t washed my face, and I haven’t combed my hair. I also need to do my makeup and pick my clothes!” Su Xiaoyun immediately stood up. She put up a finger and said to Shi Yitong and me, who were very confused, “Well, just wait here for a bit. I need to wash up, and then I’ll be back soon!”
After that, Su Xiaoyun ran upstairs, leaving Shi Yitong and I sitting on the sofa waiting for her to come back.
However, Su Xiaoyun, who said ‘she would be back soon,’ didn’t come back for an hour. Shi Yitong and I almost fell asleep on the sofa while waiting for her.
“Excuse me, excuse me, I need to clean the floor.”
A voice woke us up. Shi Yitong and I opened our eyes and found that it was the hotel owner Xu Yingchen, who slowly moved towards us with a broom and a dustpan. Frankly, I didn’t think the broom in his hand matched the black secret agent style trench coat he wore.
“Oh, sorry!” Shi Yitong and I hurriedly stood up so he could have enough space to clean. Zhu Xuan seemed to have been standing up since the beginning.
“What the heck? Su Xiaoyun is too slow.” Shi Yitong scratched his head. “Are all girls as slow as her?”
I laughed dryly after hearing his words. I had this lingering fear about girls’ dress-up process before going out. When I was tortured by my mother every day for two years, she could spend at least two hours dressing me up before going out, so much so that no one could tell that I was a boy as long as I remained silent.
“You’re right, girls always spend an awful lot of time getting ready; so did my ex-wife. Blush, foundation, you can’t miss anything. So you should be mentally prepared before going out with a girl.” Xu Yingchen looked at me with a smile. “Right, Gu Yu?”
Huh? Me? Though I was so confused about why he called my name, I nodded.
“Sorry,” Shi Yitong apologized to Zhu Xuan, feeling guilty. “Uh, I’m sorry you have to wait for my friend for so long. If you want to…”
“Ah, it’s okay.” Apparently, Zhu Xuan didn’t mind at all. ” As I said, I don’t mind waiting for her since I have nothing else to do right now.”
I looked at Zhu Xuan and couldn’t stop feeling curious, “Oh, right, Zhu Xuan, you said that you’re from here… Are you a student?”
“Nope,” Zhu Xuan answered instantly.
“Um… ” I was surprised by his answer, feeling a little embarrassed. “So, are you working around here?”
“No, I’m not.” Zhu Xuan grinned. “I’m kind of a freelancer.”
“So, what do you do?” Shi Yitong was interested in our subject, and he looked at Zhu Xuan. “You’re just like a non-player character that suddenly shows up in a game as if you’re here to guide us.”
Zhu Xuan looked confused as if he didn’t understand what Shi Yitong meant. I rolled my eyes. Shi Yitong had this habit of offhandedly saying weird things.
“No, I’m here because I’m waiting for someone.” Zhu Xuan smiled.
Waiting for someone? So, was his friend going to visit him? That would explain why he stayed in this small hotel doing nothing.
“Speaking of that, are you going to visit Mt.Diecui?” Xu Yingchen interrupted. “I overheard your conversation.”
“Yes, we are,” Shi Yitong answered. “What’s the matter?”
“Oh, nothing. I have been there many times. After I heard that you want to visit, I suddenly recalled some memories.”
“Wow, mister, is it a good place?” Shi Yitong asked immediately.
“Of course. There are many interesting places. However, you must remember to bring a compass and your GPS, it’s easy to get lost in the mountains without them,” Xu Yingchen warned us.
“Don’t worry; I’ll be with them. We won’t get lost,” Zhu Xuan answered with a smile.
“Well, if you go there during the day, you shouldn’t encounter any wild beasts,” Xu Yingchen said with a smile. He glanced at me. “However, you should stay careful.”
This man…why did he look at me again? Is he trying to warn me in particular?
While my mind was wandering, Su Xiaoyun arrived.
“Gu Yu! Shi Yitong! Sorry, I’m so sorry that I’m late!”
“At least you’re aware that you’re late,” I joked. “You have a weird definition of the word ‘soon.’”
“Isn’t it normal for girls to be obsessed with their appearance? You guys never care about your own looks, that’s why you’ll never understand that.” Su Xiaoyun pouted her lips while buttoning her collar.
“Um, but… ” Shi Yitong hesitated. “Honestly, I don’t think anything changed.”
Su Xiaoyun immediately hit Shi Yitong on the head. “What did you say?”
“Ay! Ay! Please forgive me! Please forgive me!”
However, nothing dangerous that we were worried about happened during our trip. Mt.Diecui was a tranquil place, with sunlight filtering through leaves and branches. We didn’t encounter any wild beasts, or any strange girl ghost and monsters like we did last time on Mt.Yanjin. Everything went well, even Su Xiaoyun, who was not willing to come at first, enjoyed the trip.
Zhu Xuan held a shotgun in his hand, which he said was borrowed from an older man who lived nearby. He clearly was familiar with hunting. The way he loaded the gun, and his shooting stance, was so smooth and precise; it seemed like he was born in the mountains and had already become part of it. We were stunned by him several times.