Looting Equipment From NPCs

Chapter 85 Ghost Lake (NPC)

The village is not big, so Qin Tan and Lou Fan walked around it quickly. The rain had stopped, but the sky is still gray. Water droplets dripped from the eaves and quickly disappeared into the soil. By the time they circled around the village once, the water marks on the ground are almost dry.

"Not a single person around? It's so strange here." Suddenly, Lou Fan stopped and looked at the houses nearby. He pulled Qin Tan and said, "Qin Tan, there are people in the houses."

Qin Tan looked over and probably heard their voices. There are people standing inside, behind the door of the house and every door had someone there. Those people hid in the house and looked out at them. Qin Tan and Lou Fan can only faintly glimpse at them from the little light around. Some of the people are frowning while some are grinning. But no matter how they looked, Qin Tan and Lou Fan only felt that their expressions are strange.

It’s stiff and weird. Lou Fan looked around and had this strange thought in his heart.

"May I ask who is in charge here?" Qin Tan asked. "We just passed by here, but someone in the team is sick so we need to stay here for a few days."

After Qin Tan finished speaking, it took a long time before someone seemed to understand what he is talking about and pointed a finger in one direction. After thanking the people, Qin Tan and Lou Fan walked over in the direction.

Lou Fan asked suspiciously, "Are all the villagers unable to speak? They are not saying a thing."

"Not exactly." Qin Tan said, "The old man we saw earlier, didn’t he speak to us?"

That’s right. Lou Fan followed, but pursed his lips and looked around. Those villagers just now looked very thin. It is no exaggeration to describe them as a bag of bones. Their face is stiff but it's not completely lifeless.

The two walked along the way and saw the old man that they had spoken to earlier squatting by the door and looking up at the sky. There is nothing in the sky, only thick dark clouds.

"Old man, are you the head of the village?" Lou Fan took a few steps forward and stopped 2 meters away. Then he explained himself like an obedient child, "It's like this. We passed by here earlier and someone in the team unfortunately fell sick. It is inconvenient to travel, so we want to stay here for a few days."

Seeing the old man look up at him, Lou Fan immediately added, "Don't worry, as long as the person recovered, we will leave and we will not disturb you."

The old man stared at Qin Tan and Lou Fan silently. His eyes are looking straight but there are no emotions in them, like a glass bead.

"Okay." The old man nodded slowly and said slowly, "The village is remote, so don't go out at night."

The two nodded and said okay before leaving under the old man’s heavy gaze.

"Brother Lou, you are back?" Wen Lang is standing guard outside the door, waiting for the two to come back. When he saw them returning, he happily asked, "How is it, is there any information?"

Qin Tan nodded and said, "Let’s go in and talk."

They left the door open so that they could observe the situation outside. Lou Fan and Qin Tan spoke in a low voice inside the house, and the two repeated the old man's words to the rest of the group.

"Don't go out at night." Gao Yi touched his chin and said meaningfully, "Is this a clue for us?"

Apparently, everyone thought so. With this information in hand, everyone discussed to check out what is going on in this village at night.

"Brother Lou, what's wrong with you?" Seeing Lou Fan in a daze, Chen Shuyang reached out and shook it in front of him.

Lou Fan came to his senses and explained, "I was trying to pinpoint the weird point of those villagers." His index finger tapped on the table as he said it. Suddenly, his brows furrowed and he said, "Contradiction."

"Contradiction?" Chen Shuyang is confused, "What is contradicting?"

Lou Fan said solemnly, "It's the villagers here who give me a contradictory feeling, something is very inconsistent."

After hearing Lou Fan’s words, everyone immediately recalled what they saw earlier. It indeed really felt out of place. But now the villagers are hiding in their houses so there is no information to obtain. They can only wait to see what's wrong with the village after dark.

The night wind is cool, and under the dark clouds, there is not a trace of moonlight shining through. The village is dead silent. Wen Lang's feet are numb from squatting, and none of the villagers appeared. He whispered begrudgingly, "What's wrong with them? These people didn’t come out during the day, and they don't come out at night as well?"

There’s a tap on his head and Wen Lang heard Qin Tan whisper, "Shut up."

At this moment, shadows appeared and people can be seen walking out of their house but everyone looked a little stiff. They walked in the direction of the ghost lake like something is attracting them.

Seeing that no more villagers coming out of the houses, a door gently opened. A group of 12 people walked out lightly, following the villagers from a distance.

The village is not far from the lake, less than 10 meters away. The group saw the villagers standing facing the black lake. They are lined in a row before kneeling down in front of the lake, their movement is uniform. A faint mist rose from the lake, and the mist became thicker and thicker, spreading around.

The group of 12 people stared at the villagers closely, not even daring to blink, for fear of missing something important in the blink of an eye.

Surrounded by fog, the dark clouds above their heads dissipated, revealing a black moon. The villagers stood up and raised their arms as if cheering. Immediately afterwards, a horrifying scene happened that made the group of 12 people hold their breaths and dare not blink.

The villagers tore at themselves and quickly shed the human skin on their bodies as if they are simply undressing. There are no blood splatters like one would imagine. What comes out of the skin is something like a skeleton shrouded in black mist, it should be a supernatural being. The black skeleton, who had taken off its human skin, slowly walked towards the ghost lake. They stepped into the water step by step and sank to the surface of the lake.

In just a few minutes, there are only human skins left on the shore of the lake. The black skeletons disappeared into the water, and the entire village became a dead village.

In the thin mist, 12 people watched with bated breath. Finally, they released the breath they were holding and keep cursing in their hearts ‘Fck!’.

"It turned out to be a ghost in a human skin." Gao Yi's expression is bitter, "This mission doesn't look easy."

"Let's go and have a look," Tong Fei said.

Gao Yi is about to agree when Chen Man by his side tugged at his sleeve, "Brother Gao, look there."

Everyone looked in that direction and saw that the place was still barren during the day, but now a forest appeared in the fog. Other than that, there is a faint shadow of a mountain behind.

"If I remember correctly, there should be no mountains there." Tong Fei said with a frown.

There is indeed no mountain during the day, which means this is obviously a problem.

Gao Yi hesitated for a moment and said, "Let’s do it this way. I'll take Chen Man and Dayong to have a look. You guys will stay here first to find out if there are any other abnormalities in those villagers. As you do that, remember to investigate the surrounding as well."

Qin Tan: "Captain Gao, do you need me to follow along with you?"

Gao Yi waved his hand, "No need, the three of us will come back after we have a look inside. You guys be careful not to be discovered."

Tong Fei paused and said, "Then you guys try to return early. This fog seems to only appear at night."

Gao Yi nodded. After checking his small bag, he walked towards the forest with Chen Man and Fan Dayong. The three stepped forward into the woods, but after a few steps, the people behind them could no longer see their figures.

Seeing the men disappear into the woods, everyone turned their heads to look at Qin Tan.

Qin Tan pondered for a while and said, "Let’s go and check out those human skins first."

The human skins left on the shore gave them a very uncomfortable feeling. Lou Fan touched the goosebumps on his arm. Most of the human skin looked like they are cut open from the middle, and the facial features of the skin cannot be seen properly. Even Qin Tan felt a little disgusted. After a glance, he stopped looking at it.

Tong Fei and Feng Zhi are very daring. They used their spirit weapon to pick up the human skin and looked at it, then put it down.

"Looking at these, it seems that those things from the lake are pretending to be the villagers," said Tong Fei. "But what do they want to do? Where did they get the human skins?"

No one could answer these questions at the moment. But one thing is certain, which is these villagers are definitely weird.

Qin Tan pondered for a while, then discussed with Tong Fei and the others, "Let’s go back first. We’ll arrange the vigil and duties for the lookout, and the rest will rest first. We will talk about it when Gao Yi and the others come back."

Tong Fei nodded in agreement.

Nie Feng stared at the lake, his usual lazy eyes that were drooping in the past are now as sharp as an eagle. The fog around is getting thin, and when he looked back, the place where the forest had appeared before is flickering. The fog on the lake surface gradually dissipated, and when the fog became so thin that it is about to fade away completely, the forest disappeared.

Circles of ripples began to appear on the surface of the lake water, and a group of black shadows emerged from the lake. They walked to the shore and began to put human skins on themselves. Wrapped in human skin, they stretched out their hands and feet, as if trying on clothes to see if they fit. Their heads made a creaking sound, and they even knead their facial features and ears, as if there are folds to straighten out.

The sky began to turn bright. Glancing at the time on the watch, Nie Feng took a few steps back and walked quickly towards the house.

In the house, Qin Tan is already awake. Nie Feng greeted Qin Tan and said, "The fog disappeared and those things came back. The time is 5:55. Also, the woods disappeared when the fog cleared."

Hearing that, Qin Tan’s hand that is covering Lou Fan with clothing paused. He said, "Okay, I understand."

Nie Feng nodded and walked to Chen Shuyang who is still sleeping by the wall. He straightened Chen Shuyang’s slightly tilted head and sat down next to him. Letting Chen Shuyang lean against him, Nie Feng closed his eyes and rested.

After an hour, everyone woke up. Qin Tan told them about Nie Feng's discovery and Tong Fei frowned.

"Gao Yi and the others should be trapped."

Lou Fan: "There may be clues in there."

Qin Tan turned his head and saw the eagerness in Lou Fan's eyes. He chuckled lightly, "Let's go to the woods at night."

Lou Fan nodded sharply.

There are footsteps outside the house, and everyone immediately moved to the door to see the villagers walking toward their own house. Before this, Lou Fan felt that their movements and expressions are very inconsistent. After knowing that they were just supernatural beings in human skins, the inconsistency immediately made sense.

After Tong Fei and Feng Zhi discussed something, they opened the question to the rest of the group. "Are we going into the woods together at night, or someone will be staying back to stand guard?"

Qin Tan looked at Tong Fei and asked, "What are your plans?"

Tong Fei pursed her lips. To be honest, she wanted to be with Lou Fan and the others. Feng Zhi debated that if everyone went in together, on the off chance that none of them came out, then the mission would not be completed. It is better to divide into 2 teams and Qin Tan’s team to go in and search for clues while looking for Gao Yi. On the other hand, 3 of them (the girls) will stay back in the village, maybe other clues are appearing later on.

There's nothing wrong with this suggestion, it's just that Tong Fei subconsciously wants to follow Lou Fan’s team. After all, their team has always survived and returned in a complete group, but what Feng Zhi said is not unreasonable.

Raw word count: 3035


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