The Tale Of The Ghost Eyes - novelonlinefree.info
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"Oh!" I said, barely avoiding the men. "Excuse me."
"No worries son, off to class!" The head teacher said. The man beside him, however, waved a hand at me.
"You there, boy! What's your name?"
I stopped, not sure whether I was in trouble or not. Trying not to show my hesitation I said, "Shi Yong," with a firm voice. "Are you a new teacher here?"
He ignored my question and squinted at me. "That's a fine name. There is a dark air about you Shi Yong. Tell me, have you seen anything unnatural as of late?"
I darted a glance at the head teacher, not wanting to get detention for talking about ghosts. "What are you up to Black Jacket?" I thought.
The head teacher noticed. "Say what you need to say, Shi Yong. You won't get into trouble. Please, tell the truth."
I let out a small sigh of relief and then told the man about the first time Zhao Jie and I saw the shadow man. I went on about the second time we saw it as a group, careful to leave out my part in scaring it off.
Black Jacket listened to me with a furrowed brow. When I finished he jumped right in, "How did you get away? If what you say is true, then the spirit would have followed you forever. Shadow spirits are known for being pesky little devils."
He didn't pause for my answer, "Who did you say was with you?" He looked to the head teacher, "I'd like to meet these children."
"They're all in class," I said, also looking to the teacher, "Should I go get them?"
The head teacher smiled awkwardly. "Mr. Left, why don't you come with me to the office. If you'd like to meet this…group, I'll call them in after classes are finished."
Black Jacket nodded and said, "Up to you."
I watched the two men walk away down the hall before going to my class. "He might be a Taoist like Master Liu," I thought. "Maybe the head teacher invited a master to come and shoo away the ghost."
When first period ended I went to the office with You Xiaoqing at my teacher's instruction. We ran into Zhao Jie, Shang Haoming, and Ku Tou on the way.
When we got to the office I could see Black Jacket talking with the head teacher inside. I raised a finger to my lips and gestured for everyone to keep quiet. The boys hunkered down like they were sneaking and You Xiaoqing rolled her eyes at us.
"Mr. Left, this whole ordeal has gotten out of hands. I haven't slept a night through since this ghost nonsense popped up again. I tell you, I've seen it myself. Well…" The head teacher paused, "Heard it, I guess is more accurate. The singing and laughing its… eerie."
"No wonder he brought in a master." I whispered to the others.
Black Jacket spoke next, "Don't worry Headmaster Shen. If it is a black shadow spirit I'll be able to take care of it this evening."
"Cocky guy." Shang Haoming whispered behind me.
The two men looked towards the window. I made eye contact with the head teacher and let out a groan. He stomped towards the door and hauled it open. "Hey, what are you all doing?"
"Nothing sir!" I said, bowing respectfully. "You asked us to come after class didn't you?"
"I asked you," He pointed a finger at us accusingly, "To come to my office. Not to eavesdrop like a bunch of hoodlums!"
He scowled at us for another terrible moment and then sighed, his shoulders sagging as he did so. "It doesn't matter. Is this everyone?"
"Yes sir." I said.
"Fine, come in and have a seat." He told us.
We ushered in and sat in awkward silence in a row around the room. We filled all of the seats that were usually reserved for students in deep trouble.
"Your show, Mr. Left." The head teacher said.
Black Jacket, now Mr. Left, held a cup of steaming tea. He paced in front of us and asked questions about the story I'd told him earlier. He focused primarily on You Xiaoqing, who looked the most comfortable out of all of us.
Her story matched mine to a tee. I gave a silent thank you that she didn't mention my part in scaring it away.
"It danced around us for a while and then just took off." She finished.
Mr. Left frowned at this and picked at his fingernails. He took the occasional sip of scalding tea and peered over the glass at each of us in turn.
After an unbearable length of silence he finally cleared his throat and pointed at us. "You three can leave, but you two stay here." He was looking at Shang Haoming and I.
The others stood up and left in silence, a sound that now seemed to be another member of the room. "Did he know I was lying?" I thought, trying not to panic. "Why would he ask Haoming to stay too?"
Mr. Left looked at me and smiled. It took all of the seriousness out of his eyes. "Shi Yong," He said, "Don't be nervous. I have heard about you and Shang Haoming. You have supernatural eyes and a heavy Yin air. Shang Haoming on the other hand has a heavy Yang air. It's…interesting."
"How do you know about us?" I asked in surprise.
Shang Haoming took it a bit further by screaming, "Who are you?" He pointed his finger at Mr. Left like it could fire bullets.
Mr. Left chuckled. The head teacher turned to him, "Mr. Left, do you know these two?"
Mr. Left nodded, "Absolutely I do! Shi Yong is the godson of my senior uncle apprentice, the same senior apprentice who saved Shang Haoming long ago. Master Liu and I report to the same master. As I am the first apprentice of our master, I try to keep up with what my fellows are into."
I gaped at the man. "So you're the junior nephew apprentice of Master Liu?" A feeling of connection overwhelmed me. "Does he know people everywhere?" I asked.
"I see…" The head teacher said, shuffling his hands uncomfortably and finally putting them in his pockets.
Mr. Left smiled and said, " Headmaster Shen, could you excuse us for a few minutes? I'd like to talk with these two privately."
The head teacher gave a polite smile and left the office, clearly respecting Mr. Left's authority.
When the door closed behind him, Mr. Left turned to us, "My name is Zuo Qingmu. You can call me Senior Fellow Apprentice Qingmu. And you, Shang Haoming, you can call me uncle. It's appropriate."
Shang Haoming crossed his arms and said unhappily, "No way! Xiao Yong calls you senior fellow apprentice whatever, and all I get is uncle?"
Zuo Qingmu smiled and waved his hand, "Fine, fine Qingmu if you must." He looked to me and asked, "How is Master Liu these days?"
I surfed past the wave of feelings rushing over me and managed a reply, "Senior Fellow Apprentice Qingmu, Master Liu hasn't been here for almost a year. The last time I saw him he said it'd be another three!"
Zuo Qingmu's smile was implacable. He said, " I expected no less. Our Master Liu is quite the mysterious one. It's been a long time since I've seen him. No matter, tell me about this ghost situation. Did you know him when he was alive?"
I nodded and said, "He was a mad man before he died. We gave him food a few times. He didn't have a home and he died freezing in the snow."
Zuo Qingmu leaned against the office desk and said, "We need to find out what's keeping him around here. Are you two free this evening?"
Shang Haoming and I looked at one another. "Why?" I asked.
Zuo Qingmu gave a chuckle and said, "Don't worry! I'm here and I'll protect you. By what you've told me already, I don't think the spirit has a problem with you two anyway. I'm sure it'll be quite understanding."
"Can something be understanding and crazy at the same time?" I thought.
Mr. Left dismissed us back to class after we promised to meet him in front of the school when we were done for the day.
We went back to our classes and passed the news on what had happened. I told You Xiaoqing. Shang Haoming told Ku Tou, and we all came together around Zhao Jie in between classes.
"I'll tell them I'm sick so I can come with you." Zhao Jie said at once.
"Thank you brother." I told him.
"I can't." You Xiaoqing said. "I'll go home after school, I can't be a part of this."
"I..." I started.
Ku Tou chimed in, "I stay in the school dorms, remember? We can't go out at night! I'm out!"
I turned to him in surprise, "Wh"
"That's fine." Shang Haoming said, saving me from trying to find the right words.
When school ended we watching Ku Tou head to the dorms and You Xiaoqing walk home. Zhao Jie came up to us by the door and apologized profusely.
"They took my temperature! They said if I didn't feel well I'd have to go home! I'm sorry, brothers!" He looked at us distraught and then turned and walked with You Xiaoqing.
"Guess it's just us." I told Shang Haoming as Zuo Qingmu came around the corner.
He saw us and said, "I thought you two might be too scared to show."
Shang Haoming shot back, "We're not scared. We've seen worse things than this, right, Xiao Yong?"
I nodded, setting my jaw and puffing out my chest.
Yet there was a seed of fear growing steadily up my spine and I'd soon find out why.