Chapter 001 : Three Days Later
A dazzling bright light suddenly came like lightning. Much like a bomb. It’s just that there was no sound of explosions and no bits of material being thrown. There was only a blinding flash of light. As soon as Shannchyuan realized, his vision darkened. He couldn’t see anything at all. All he could see was black and brown. He could hear people screaming in panic.
“Aaaaah,” Yinqyueh shouted.
Shannchyuan couldn’t see Yinqyueh. But he knew Yinqyueh was still in front of him. He reflexively grabbed Yinqyueh and grabbed the girl’s head. Right now, the situation was very dangerous. The panicked crowd was likely to move wildly and erratically. He knew the two of them were currently in the middle of the crowd. The possibility of being trampled on by people was enormous. Shannchyuan hugged Yinqyueh. He remembered he was standing near a fairly large table. The table was the property of an impromptu stand on the ground floor. Shannchyuan didn’t really pay attention to what stand it was. But if he wasn’t mistaken, it was a children’s toy stand. He remembered there were colorful toys spread out on the big table.
Shannchyuan planned to inch his way towards the table. He wanted to hide under the table. In his judgment, it was the most logical plan in a situation like the one he was currently facing. Shannchyuan hoped they didn’t collide with other people while trying to approach the table. Earlier, the table was only about two meters from where Shannchyuan was standing. So it was really close. However, they might not be able to move smoothly there. Anything was still possible.
“I want us to take cover under the table to our right. I count to three, and we are ready to move,” Shannchyuan whispered in Yinqyueh’s ear.
“I’m ready!” Yinqyueh said.
After counting to three, they started moving towards the right. It didn’t go smoothly. Several times, they nudged people who sounded confused. Shouts and screams of people after another deafened Shannchyuan’s ears. After moving for a while, according to Shannchyuan’s estimation, he was now only a few centimeters from the table. That’s when someone hit them hard. Shannchyuan staggered. He almost fell. Yinqyueh shouted loudly. Shannchyuan was worried that Yinqyueh was hurt. He hugged the girl tighter.
Shannchyuan felt his waist touch the edge of the table.
“We’ve reached the edge of the table. I’m counting to three. After that, we immediately crouched down and immediately rolled to the right side. I mean to my right side, which means your left side.”
“OK!” Yinqyueh said. Her voice was shaking a bit.
“One, two, three!” Shannchyuan said in a loud voice.
Shannchyuan and Yinqyueh immediately squatted down. From behind, someone else hit him. Because Shannchyuan squatted, the person fell and immediately fell on him.
“Ouch!” Yinqyueh shouted. That person also fell on Yinqyueh, who was squatting right in front of Shannchyuan. Shannchyuan tried to ward off that person who was currently above them. The powerful push from Shannchyuan made the person fall to the left of Shannchyuan. Shannchyuan took the opportunity to push Yinqyueh to the right, to the post right under the table. With a few jolts, they finally managed to get under the table. Not too smooth either, because Shannchyuan’s head had hit the edge of the table.
“Are you okay?” Shannchyuan asked after they were under the table. In a squatting state, Shannchyuan hugged Yinqyueh again.
“I’m fine. But I can’t see,” Yinqyueh said in a low voice.
“I can’t see either,” said Shannchyuan. “But don’t worry. This blindness is only temporary. In fifteen to ten minutes, our vision will return to normal.”
“So we wait here?” Yinqyueh asked.
“Of course. This place is the safest.”
They could still hear people scream and curse. The sound of people colliding and the sound of objects falling to the floor still dominated the surrounding sounds.
“If you stay here too long, you won’t be able to get home on time.”
“You don’t have to think about that. Let’s just focus on our current situation. I’m sure my friends will find a solution to that problem.”
They were both silent for a few moments.
“So this was what happened a few days ago,” Yinqyueh said after a moment of silence.
“Yes, it seems so,” said Shannchyuan.
“So this is the second time you’ve experienced this. Even in the same place.”
“Yes, but the first time I fainted inside the restroom. Before I fainted, I didn’t get to see the bright light either. So the light didn’t make me blind.”
“Which is better? Fainted or can’t see?” Yinqyueh laughed.
Under these circumstances, Yinqyueh could still laugh. Even though it was strange, Shannchyuan actually liked it.
“The problem is, I didn’t realize I had passed out. Maybe if I realized, then I would have been able to enjoy it,” replied Shannchyuan. He laughed too.
“How long do you think this mess will last?”
“I don’t know. It could be quick, but it could also take a long time. It depends on many factors. Today’s situation is not exactly the same as it was a few days ago. So it’s unpredictable.”
My eyes still can’t see. How about your eyes? Has there been a slight change?”
“No. It’s still the same as before. It’s only been a few minutes. The effects may only wear off after fifteen minutes.”
“If, after fifteen minutes, we still can’t see, then what?”
“Maybe we can’t believe one hundred percent the news we saw yesterday on television. I think everyone is different. We can’t beat it evenly. Maybe certain people will recover quickly, while for others the effects will last quite a while. I don’t know which group of people we belong to.”
They could still hear the screams of the panicked people. From those voices, Shannchyuan concluded many people must have been injured. Both minor and moderate injuries.
“If they had calmed down, of course, there wouldn’t have been any injuries. But something as simple as this seems very difficult to understand,” said Shannchyuan.
“Would you like to come out from under this table?”
“No! I don’t want to risk being pushed, falling, or even trampled by other people! We’re just hiding here for a while. Let’s just say we’re practicing patience.”
“Do you believe in destiny?”
“Of course. Why do you ask that?”
“This isn’t the first time the two of us have been trapped somewhere. And I have a feeling it won’t be the last either.”
Yinqyueh’s words were very interesting. Shannchyuan remembered the first time they met. They had to share a cramped phone box to avoid the rain. Then deliberately trapped in the elevator to escape the pursuit of some criminals. And now, hiding under the table so as not to get hurt from being bumped or trampled by the panicking mob. After this, he didn’t know what else they would face together.
“Are you afraid?”
Shannchyuan laughed. “Of course not. Why be afraid. Things like this we should enjoy every second. One day, these events will become unforgettable memories.”
“If someday we experience more strange events, how about we put those experiences into a book?”
“Actually, my friends and I already had such a plan. After we left our hometown, we gained a lot of life experiences. We had promised that each of us would write a memoir. Everything we experienced will be an integral part of the memoir we are going to write. Some of us have even started to write. We don’t know when we will publish the memoir. We don’t even know whether we will publish the memoir, and distribute it to the general public, or only show it to our family and close friends. But whatever the outcome, we have determined to record everything we went through.”
“Wow! That’s amazing,” Yinqyueh said. “But apart from a memoir about your life experiences, what if you later also write a memoir about the things we went through? I mean, what we both went through.”
Shannchyuan laughed. During the decades of living life, for the first time, there was a girl who asked him to write a book together.
“Alright! I agree. Later, when Shinnshiow returns home safely, we can start writing our story!”
“Hurray!” Yinqyueh cheered after hearing Shannchyuan’s answer.
Shannchyuan hugged Yinqyueh even tighter. The two of them hugged tightly in the darkness. Shannchyuan took a deep breath. Being stuck together in such a situation really wasn’t such a bad thing.
For a few moments, they hugged so tightly. Shannchyuan didn’t know how long they had been under the table. This kind of situation was very dangerous. Moreover, the two of them could see nothing at all. But strangely, Shannchyuan didn’t feel any fear. He was just worried that he wouldn’t be able to get home in time to receive a call from Shinnshiow’s kidnappers.
Suddenly, there was a buzzing sound. The hum grew louder and louder.
“What’s that sound?”
“I don’t know. A similar incident that happened a few days ago was not followed by anything like this.”
The news they saw and heard about the explosion of light did not mention the existence of a buzzing sound that disturbed the hearing.
The buzzing sound was getting more and more painful.
“My ears hurt so bad.” Yinqyueh tightly gripped Shannchyuan’s arm.
“Try covering your ears.” Shannchyuan tried to give advice. Although he wasn’t sure that the advice was useful enough.
Shannchyuan sighed. When he ran out of the restaurant upstairs, he just ran. He forgot to bring the small waist bag he brought from home. He put the backpack on the table. Shannchyuan remembered that there was a pair of earplugs in the waist bag. Since he had it about four months ago, he hasn’t even used it yet. The earplugs were a gift from Jenqyih. If he hadn’t been in such a rush to run outside, he could now use the earplugs.
The two of them let go of their cuddle from each other, and then immediately covered their ears. However, covering the ears with both hands was unsuccessful in reducing the pain in their ears. The buzzing didn’t stop. Their ears hurt. Maybe earplugs will help them a bit. But no one brought earplugs. No one knew something like this would happen.
The buzzing sound was then followed by a booming sound. This booming sound has a regular rhythm, much like the sound of the beat of a drum instrument. But in contrast to music that gives a happy and exciting effect on the listeners, this booming sound makes people feel uncomfortable. Each time the boom made Shannchyuan’s heart tremble violently.
“I feel so dizzy!”
Shannchyuan also felt the same way. In addition to the very disturbing vibrations, he also felt nauseous and had a headache. Shannchyuan didn’t know if the booming sound, which came crashing down in succession like this, was also accompanied by a low-frequency sound, which had the potential to cause anxiety. But clearly, Shannchyuan, and probably Yinqyueh too, felt that way.
The people’s screams didn’t stop either. Instead, they screamed and screamed even louder. Obviously, this booming sound affected not only Shannchyuan and Yinqyueh but everyone else there.
Apart from feeling heavy, Shannchyuan’s head was also very sore. In such circumstances, it was no longer useful to cover the ears with both hands. Shannchyuan hugged Yinqyueh again. He grabbed Yinqyueh into his arms. Yinqyueh also stretched out her hand. She wrapped her arms around Shannchyuan’s neck.
“I really wish we still had time to write our memoirs,” Yinqyueh whispered.
“Don’t despair. I’m sure one day we’ll be able to finish our memoirs,” Shannchyuan said quietly.
Yinqyueh’s head drooped limply on Shannchyuan’s chest. The headache that Shannchyuan was feeling was also getting worse. At some point, Shannchyuan’s head felt heavy. It was as if there was a quintals sack of rice placed right above his head. Shannchyuan’s neck couldn’t hold his head. Slowly, Shannchyuan’s head began to droop. Shannchyuan quickly lost consciousness. Until finally, he couldn’t hold it anymore. Shannchyuan’s head drooped completely.