Translator: La Phong
Book 1 – Chapter 3: Leaving the Bus
The first thing that came to Ye Jiang mind was to leave the bus immediately, where the film incidents would occur in. Logically, he would not be able to run away too far from the bus as he only had two hundred tickets.
He didn’t have enough tickets to run away completely from this place. And the moment he could not pay the price by tickets, he had only one option, to die!
So, he had to know the exact standard of deduction, and calculate how far he could possibly escape from the film site. Obviously he couldn’t escape alone, he needed to find some fellows to run away together. It would be scary to be alone during this time. In many horror movies, the character who left the group was always killed.
He observed everyone in the bus to find out who were the amateurs and who were the experienced actor. He was only an amateur and he didn’t know what a pro actor would do in this situation. They had more experiences, had more tickets and of course, could make a greater change in the plot. It would be better if he could join a pro actor’s team.
In addition, in this horror film, the ‘main character effect’ is nothing, as even the main character is not absolute. The actor who plays the main character, could be killed in the first place if the plot wanted it to. Staying next to the main character also would not guarantee his life.
“Why did the bus stop?”
“We are still in the forest, right?”
“Your tourism company sucks. How can the bus stop working at this time? ”
Inside the bus, people were discussing loudly. Ye Jiang could hear some of Sichuan’s accent, some of Xian’s accent, maybe the filmmaker really picked actors randomly from all over the country. Everybody had found the flyers and got sucked into this world.
In this moment, the male protagonist, Hao Sheng frowned. He turned around to look at Ye Jiang(Xia Yun) and Nian Zhou and said: “Do you have a map, Xia Yun, Nian Zhou?”
“Ah!”, Nian Zhou looked considerably calmer than before and he started to read the provided dialogue but his voice still trembled in fear. He spoke slowly and tried to avoid mistakes. “Yes… I… did… bring… one…”.
Just one simple sentence, but he needed to rest between every words. His face turned red, as he started sweating profusely, his legs trembled, and his pupil contracted. Yi Jiang could easily confirm that Nian Zhou was an amateur.
After receiving the map, Hao Sheng said: “It will be a long road to get down this mountain, moreover, it’s nearly midnight, there will be no more vehicles passing through this deserted place.”.
The driver had got down the bus to check. Ye Jiang really admired this man. He could die, the plot hadn’t even mentioned how he would die, yet he seemed very calm, talked to other people and then went down to check the bus exactly like in the script. And the tour guide was not shabby either, she comforted everyone and explained the condition.
After a long time, the crowd got a bit more quite.
Ye Jiang took a deep breath, he had thought of some plans. Just by looking, Ye Jiang could cancel the idea to take Nian Zhou as a partner. Seeing how he looked now, he would be no more than a burden, if they tried to escape together. Especially, considering that they might encounter ghosts and demons, he would not be of much help.
Regarding Du Yan and You Lin, Du Yan looked nervous. It looked as if Du Yan was also looking out the window, trying to find the way to run.
“Xia Yun!”, Nian Zhou suddenly grabbed Ye Jiang’s hand and said one sentence that was not in the script. “We … Let’s go down the mountain! Please! We should go now! And, Hao Sheng, come with us! Please!”
Hao Sheng folded his arm and kept silent. He did not want to speak dialogues which were not in the script. Xue Yan remained silent too, it looked like she too didn’t want to go.
Nian Zhou looked so miserable that Ye Jiang was touched, and felt pity for him. He made a decision. Everyone here had the same fate, so, Ye Jiang could not be indifferent to this sufferings. Ye Jiang said: “Okay… let’s go together”.
As soon as he spoke, his amount of tickets were deducted. What was 200 in the beginning, now became 197. Since this dialogue was important, 3 tickets must have been deducted. Ye Jiang regretted that, if he had only nodded, perhaps fewer tickets would have been deducted.
Du Yan came by and said, “I … I will go with you too!”. He held Ye Jiang’s and Nian Zhou’s hands, then cried out loud, “We … we need to go! Now!”. From his acts, anyone could be sure that he was in a hurry to escape. If he has not been missing a partner earlier, he would have already bolted.
Three people, however, did not make a move. Hao Sheng, Xue Yan, and You Lin didn’t even say a single word, and completely ignored the group.
They stayed still, their faces serious, but they had no intention to leave the bus. This made Ye Jiang wonder for a while, could it be that the best plan was to stay on the bus? But he immediately thought otherwise. These people are experienced actors, they probably have a few tricks to survive. I am, but a new actor. I can’t sit here just waiting to die!
“Everybody!” Jiang Ye raised his voice: “Does anyone else want to join us going down the mountain? We could go together so we can help each other on the way! What do you think? “
Jiang Ye was really impatient, and he looked toward the driver and waited for his idea?
“Okay, we’re going after him.”
This time, from the rear, a few people stood up. Among them, there was a man with Si Chuan’s accent. He carried a big sack, and said: “Okay! Let’s go down the mountain! “
Ye Jiang looked back to see that there were four people who stood up. All of them were supporting actors, so he didn’t even know their character names.
The four people included the Si Chuan’s man, a couple that seemed to be married, along with a young man wearing a baseball cap.
Ye Jiang also had sympathy for them. Supporting actors basically had not many dialogues nor acts, and if they did not work together well enough, all of them would die. Those who stayed on the bus, looked at each other like they wanted to say something but couldn’t.
Ye Jiang did not have to carry any luggage because Hao Sheng and the crowd could bring them back to the guest house at the foot of the mountain. He, Nian Zhou, Du Yan, along with the other four supporting actors got off the bus.
Actually, based on the scenario, the driver would die at midnight, there was still some time left until then, but leaving a little early was also good, as no one wanted to sit on the bus waiting for the devil. Seven people rushed out of the bus.
As soon as they stepped off the bus, tickets got reduced once again. Currently, only 177 left! In other words, leaving the bus meant 20 tickets were deducted! Ye Jiang knew, the further he got away from the bus,the more tickets that would be deducted, it would skyrocket like the meters in the taxi (ED: whaaaatttttt???). So, he cannot run too far.
They were so afraid they didn’t differentiate which way were they going. Other people also seemed to notice the deduction, so they started to slow down, no one dared to walk fast.
At this point, everyone kept silent because the tickets were very precious. No one knew whether the tickets would be reduced or not if they said even one redundant sentence, so they must preserve their words like gold. This no longer was a metaphor, words truly were gold to them. Ye Jiang observed those around him, the Sichuan’s man still remained calm, but the newly married couple, the husband hugged his wife but both were also shaking violently (ED: hmm what kind of shaking and where….XD). The young man pulled down his hat regularly to try and cover his face, but one could still see his pale face.
The mountain was relatively deserted, there were no residential places visible, dry twigs covered the whole area. The group turned left, then turned right, they did not know how long they traveled, the passenger bus was already far behind. Suddenly, Ye Jiang finally stopped.
Now, his tickets had dropped to 147! He could not foresee what would happen next, so he had to save his tickets. Of course, during the implementation of the script, if he could do something to surpass the main character, like find out the way to live before the protagonist, then the number of tickets would be raised. But at this time, the tickets should be reserved, the consequences would be hard to imagine if the tickets were to run out before the film ended.
“We should stop here.” Ye Jiang said.
The other six people also nodded, it seemed like their tickets had been deducted as much as his own. Ye Jiang thought, the maximum payment for these supporting roles was maybe lesser than 100 tickets, so having all the tickets reduced simultaneously probably was not good idea.
On the ground, there wasn’t even a big rock. Sichuan’s man had to take out several old newspapers, and spread them out, so people could sit down together.
Sitting on the old newspaper, Ye Jiang bowed and looked at the content. The newspaper was published in 2013, completely in coincidence with the time of the real world. Of course, based on the information in the beginning, this world was not the real world, this fact was confirmed. Looking at news in the newspapers, there were many hot news of the day, just liked in the real world. This world was parallel to the real world, but the actors were just passers-by in this world.
After sitting down, everyone looked at each other, but they did not know what they should say to each other. Looking around, they were surrounded by mountains crowded closely together, this place must be certain mountain chain of China. By midnight, there would be demons coming to the bus. Then, the first scene would have ended, but what would come in the next scenes were unknown.
According to Ye Jiang conjectures, some actors would probably die. The following scenario would surely establish that people had dispersed and fled from the bus. While fleeing, what would arise was difficult to tell.
During this time Ye Jiang felt unease, he wondered if fleeing was the right choice. Although there were seven people, but when the devil appeared, what could seven people possibly do? Frankly, he was an atheist, so he did not believe in the devil, normally, he fearlessly walked alone in dark, watched horror movies without being scared. But now, when he was dragged into a reality horror film, so he could barely keep calm.
“This ……” Suddenly, Sichuan’s man asked: “We should not just sit here … waiting, right?”