Translator: Nyoi-Bo Studio Editor: Nyoi-Bo Studio
The house was almost clean, but the yard was not. The lawn was still full of weeds and the pool was muddy. It looked awful.
However, the cleaners refused to continue working, and one of them said, “Your pets must have found something. Look, they won’t go into the house!”
Li Du said, “No, they are just playing around. Believe me, folks, there are absolutely no ghosts…”
The cleaners started to shiver when they heard this, and someone said, “This doesn’t make sense. Why don’t you let your pets in, Mr. Li? We’ll keep working as long as they are inside.”
Li Du said helplessly, “OK, no problem.”
Thinking that the little ones were just playing around, he went into the room and said, “Come on in.”
The most obedient of the lot, Crispy Noodles, immediately stepped into the house. A moment later, his eyes bulged and he shrieked, while at the same time the white hair on his body stood up, and he ran out at once.
Ah Ow made two circles and tried to step forward, her eyes locked on the living room in an unprecedented panic. She was more afraid than Crispy Noodles and howled and backed off with her tail between her legs after making just one step forward.
The animals stayed in the sun, huddling together. No one was willing to enter the house.
One cleaner shouted, “They must have found something. They’re afraid to go in. They are sure there’s something dangerous in the house. They were not afraid before!”
“Damn it, we must have awakened the dead in the house. We disturbed their peace!”
Not only the cleaners thought so. Even Li Du began to get suspicious.
Lu Guan, who was most afraid of ghosts, stayed behind and quickly drew out the saber.
Young Markelov gave him a push. “Keep your saber away from me, f**k you. Don’t get too close, or you’ll cut me.”
Lu Guan sneered, “Isn’t it safer when we are together?”
Li Du frowned and waved to Ah Meng. “Ah Meng, you come in, you are the boldest right? You can stand up to a lion. You’re not afraid of anyone. Come in…”
Ah Meng’s bravery disappeared. He circled the door twice, and his short legs started to shiver. He did not enter the house but ran away.
Seeing this, the cleaners lost their wits completely and ran away without taking any money, which showed their fear.
Li Du sighed. “Well, I guess the neighborhood has a new rumor about the haunted house.”
Lu Guan said with a sad face, “Boss, let’s leave too. There are ghosts in this house. You see how even Ah Ow and the rest of the little ones are afraid. When were they ever afraid before?”
Godzilla gave him a push and said, “Don’t raise panic. They got scared when they saw the polar bear at the North Pole, and they got scared when they saw brown bears at Lake Erie.”
“But not that afraid,” said Lu Guan. “You see they do not dare to go into the house now, which means that there are more terrible things than bears inside!”
Big Markelov said in disbelief, “A ghost? Then let him come out and meet me, and I’ll ask him if my brother who died in battle has turned into a ghost.”
Firecracker’s temper flared up, and he too went in and said, “Why should I be afraid of ghosts? If there is a ghost, let it try to kill me. If it succeeds, I will become a ghost too, a more ferocious ghost than it is, and then I will kill it myself!”
Driver said, “But if it is already a ghost, how would it die again?”
Li Du waved and said, “Enough, stop this. If you go on, Lu Guan might cry.”
“Boss, you can’t laugh at me. I followed you to many dangerous places, when was I afraid? But ghosts are different, this isn’t normal!”
Li Du said, “What are you afraid of? There can be no ghosts!”
Lu Guan gulped, then hesitantly said, “I have never told this to anyone, but boss, I have seen a ghost, I saw it when I was a child…”
Young Markelov patted his shoulder and said, “You have seen a ghost and lived, so what are you afraid of?”
Ghost or no ghost, they would have to stay here for the time being.
Fortunately, the house was clean, and the rooms had all the necessary furniture and appliances. The electricity and plumbing were working fine, and the house was ready for moving in.
There were some fish, vegetables, fruits, and drinks in the car, and the group began to move things into the refrigerator.
Several children followed, but did not come in, and stopped at the door.
After a long time, Li Du couldn’t help but feel a little nervous. There must be something wrong in the room, otherwise, the children wouldn’t do it. They didn’t have the intelligence to make fun of him.
Gritting his teeth, he picked up Ah Meow and Ah Meng and carried them into the house with him.
As they entered the doorway, Ah Meow struggled and uttered a shrill cry, as if something terrible had appeared.
Li Du had to let them out. Driver frowned. “Damn, boss, this house is a bit strange. What if he saw something?”
“I don’t believe in ghosts.” Big Markelov took a bottle of beer and began to drink it. He bent to strengthen the knot on his shoelaces. When he went to grab the beer again, he grabbed nothing.
At that instant, his facial expression changed, “Where’s my beer?”
Young Markelov said, “In my hands. What’s the matter? I’m so thirsty. I’ll have a drink.”
Big Markelov let out a sigh of relief and swore, “Son of a bitch, don’t you know how to tell me when you take it?”
“If I’m a son of a bitch and you’re my brother, what are you? I’m your brother. Why should I tell you when I take your beer? You should be glad I’m willing to share.”
The two quarreled, and as they fought, the tense atmosphere faded down.
Li Du knew what they were doing. He went to get some beer and snacks and said, “OK, let’s drink first and figure out what’s going on.”
Seeing the food, Ah Fei’s eyes lit up. It beat its wings, flapped and made sounds.
Ah Bai was a foodie too. Seeing the food, he got all excited too, running into the house and back again.
Then he rolled his eyes, and suddenly he sprang to his feet and climbed up against the door. Then he climbed through the door and jumped into the nearest chair. Then he jumped from the chair to the sofa and ran into the room.
Seeing this, several people suddenly froze. Firecracker said, “Hey! How come Ah Bai is not afraid?”
“Fool, he’s not afraid to go in, he’s afraid to step on the floor! There something on the ground!” Li Du reacted quickly.
The others responded, went out, grabbed the little ones and brought them in. When they got to the door, they were still resisting, obviously scared of the area around the door.
However, when they were brought into the house, they quieted down, laid down, and began to jump up and down again, without the fear they had shown before.
No doubt, they had indeed found something, but not in the house. It was actually the doorway that frightened them.