Home Categories romance novel Doomsday and Grim Wonderland

Chapter 24 Shadow Square at the end of the twenty-fourth world

After three days of bright and sunny days in a row, it was over when I woke up this morning.The sky was covered by thick dark clouds without a single gap, and the sun that had finally climbed to the ground had already been deprived of its inherent warmth and brilliance.In this gray, gloomy, cold sky, the trees thrust their leafless branches into the air like fish traps in the sea, and the rivers broadcast the sound of frozen water in all directions.Looking at the cloud situation, it could snow at any time, but it didn't. I am afraid that it will not snow today, the old man told me that it is not a snow cloud.

I opened the window and looked up at the sky again.But it is not clear what kind of cloud can make snow and what kind of cloud cannot. The porter was sitting in front of the big iron stove, taking off his shoes and warming his feet.General shapes in the stove and library.On the top is a stove cover that can hold two kettles or pots, and on the bottom there is a moving iron plate for digging out ashes.There are two large metal handles on the front like a western-style decorative cabinet. The janitor sat on a chair with his feet on the handles.The room was damp and suffocating with kettle steam and the smell of cheap pipes, presumably substitute tobacco.Of course it was also mixed with the stench of his feet.Behind the chair he was sitting on was a large wooden table, on which there were neatly arranged whetstones, hatchets, and axes.No matter which knife or ax was used, it was so powerful that the handle part completely changed its color.

About the scarf, I said, without a scarf my neck is too cold to bear. Ah, even so.said the porter seriously, I know that very well. There are clothes that no one uses in the reference room in the library. If I can use some of them, I think Oh, that, said the gatekeeper, use that as you please.There is no problem for you to use it.Whether it's a scarf or a coat, it's up to you. Is there no owner? Owner, you don't mind.Even if there is, I have already forgotten it.The janitor said, by the way, you seem to be looking for a musical instrument? I nodded, this gentleman knows everything.

In principle, there is no such thing as a musical instrument in this town.But not entirely, he said.You work diligently, and there is nothing wrong with asking for a musical instrument.You can go to the power station and ask the administrator there, you may find one. power station?I am surprised. There are power stations and the like.As he said that, the janitor pointed to the light on his finger. Where do you think the electricity comes from?You don't think it's from the apple grove, do you? The janitor smiled and hooked Qin's route to the power station: Follow the road south of the river all the way up the river.After walking for about 30 minutes, there will be an old granary on the right. The granary has neither a roof nor a door.Turn right and walk for a while, there is a mountain, and there is a forest on the other side of the mountain.Five hundred meters into the forest is the power station.Understood?

I figured it out.I said, but isn't it dangerous to go into the forest in winter?Everyone says that, I have suffered myself. Ah, yes yes, I completely forgot about that, or I pushed you up the hill with a cart.The gatekeeper said, how are you doing now? Never mind.Thanks. Feeling a little bit scared? Well, kind of. The porter smiled slyly, and switched his feet over the handle of the stove.It is a good thing to have lingering fears, so that people will become cautious and avoid suffering.The good woodcutter has only one wound, no more, no less, just one.Do you understand what I said?

I nod. But you can feel free to go to the power station.There is an entrance on the edge of the forest, and there is only one road, so you will not get lost.And you can't touch the people in the forest.The danger is deep in the forest and next to the fence.As long as you avoid these two places, there is nothing to worry about.Just don't deviate from the road and don't go inside the power station.If you go, you will be unlucky again. The power station manager is someone who lives in the forest? No, that guy is not.He was neither forest dweller nor townsman, but an incomplete man.He can't go deep into the forest, and he can't return to the town, no harm, no guts.

What kind of people live in the forest? The gatekeeper tilted his neck, looked at my face silently for a while, and said: From the very beginning, I said something first, asking what is your freedom, and answering is my freedom. I nod. Forget it, I'm not happy to answer anyway.The gatekeeper said, by the way, didn't you keep saying that you wanted to see your shadow, how about it, how about seeing it now?It's already winter, and the shadow is much weaker, so there's nothing wrong with meeting him. Is the situation bad? No, he is alive and well, and he is put outside for a few hours every day to let him exercise, and his appetite is also very strong.It's just that the days are short and the nights are long and the cold is getting colder. As a shadow, no matter what kind of thing, I can't get emotional.This is not anyone's responsibility, it is a very normal law of nature.Can neither blame me nor blame you.Immediately let you meet and have a direct interview with me.

The janitor took off the chain of keys hanging on the wall and stuffed them into his coat pocket, and put on his sturdy lace-up shoes while yawning.The shoes look extremely heavy, and the soles are studded to facilitate walking in the snow. Shadow's dwelling is midway between the town and the outside world.I can't go outside, and shadows can't enter the town.Therefore, the Shadow Plaza is the only place where people who have lost their shadows meet their shadows.Walking out of the back door of the janitor's hut is the shadow square. It is said to be a square, but it has no name.It occupies a small area, only a little more spacious than ordinary people's yards, and is surrounded by eerie iron fences.

The janitor took out a keychain from his pocket and opened the iron gate.Let me in first, then come in by yourself.The square is an upright square, and the end is separated from the town by a wall.There is an ancient elm in one corner, and a simple stool is placed under it.The elm tree has turned white, whether it is alive or dead. In another corner, there is a small makeshift house built with old bricks and scraps.There is no glass in the window, only a sliding wooden panel window.There is no chimney.From this point of view, I am afraid there is no heating equipment. Your shadow lives there.The janitor said it looked uncomfortable, but it wasn't that bad.There is basically water, toilets, and a basement.The basement cannot be squeezed in by any wind.Although it is not a hotel, it is more than enough to shelter from the wind and rain.

Go in and have a look? No, just meet here.I said.I had some headaches from the extremely bad air in the caretaker's hut.A place where you can breathe fresh air even if it is a bit colder is much better. Anyway, bring it here.Having said that, the porter went into the little house alone. I turned up my coat collar, sat on a stool under the elm tree, paved the ground with the heels of my shoes, and waited for the shadow to come.The ground was very hard, and there was hard residual snow everywhere, and the snow remained intact at the foot of the wall because the sunlight could not reach it.

After a while, the gatekeeper led the shadow out of the small house, and he strode across the square as if he was about to smash the frozen ground with the soles of his leather shoes, followed by my shadow slowly.It seemed that the shadow was not as handsome as the janitor said, his face was thinner than before, and his eyes and beard were particularly eye-catching. Let's stay alone for a while, the gatekeeper said, he must have accumulated a lot of words, so let's talk slowly.But the time should not be too long.If you can't make it stick together again, it will be troublesome to separate it again.Besides, it's useless for you to do that, it will only add trouble to both parties, right? I nodded in agreement.Presumably, as he said, even if they become one, they will still be separated, which is nothing more than repeating his old tricks. My shadow and I kept our eyes on the gatekeeper, watching him lock the door and go to the gatehouse.The sound of the nails gnawing on the ground gradually faded away, and the sound of the heavy wooden door closing suddenly came.After the janitor disappeared, Shadow sat down beside me, digging holes in the ground with his heels like I did.He was wearing a rough-eyed sweater with holes on top, work pants underneath, and the old work shoes I gave him on his feet. How are you?I try to ask. Not good.Shadow said, it was too cold and the food was poor. I heard that I exercise every day. sports?Shadow looked at my face inexplicably, oh, how can that be called exercise!But every day the janitor pulled him out from here to help him burn the unicorns, piled the corpses on the cart, pulled them to the apple grove, poured oil on them and burned them.Before lighting the fire, the janitor cut off the animal's head with a hatchet.Have you seen those beautiful hatchets in his collection?No matter how you look at it, that kid is unreasonable.As long as the situation allowed, he definitely wanted to chop everything in the world to pieces. He's from the town too? No, it's not.That guy was hired.Specialized in burning unicorns for fun, and the townspeople are not interested.After winter, a lot has been burned.Three of them died this morning, and they will have to be burnt soon. Shadow and I also paved the frozen stone-hard ground with the heels for a while.Winter birds soared from the branches of the elms with their shrill calls. The map is found.Shadow said, the drawing is better than expected, and the text description is also essential.It's just a step late. Wreck the body. heard.However, it was too late after winter, and I wanted to get it earlier, so that things would go more smoothly and plans could be drawn up faster. plan? Needless to say, the plan to escape from here!What else could be planned?Do you think I want the map to pass the time? I shook my head and said: I thought you were trying to teach me something about this strange town.Because almost all of my memory was taken away by you. Not like that, said the shadow, yes, I have most of your memories, but I can't make full use of them, and that can only be done after we become one, which is not realistic.If so, we will never see each other again, and the plan will fall through.So right now I can only ponder alone, pondering the name of this town. Figure it out? A little bit.I can't tell you yet.Because it is not convincing yet, it is necessary to complete the details.Let me think about it again.I think I'll come to a realization soon after thinking about it.The problem is that by then it will likely be too late.After all, since winter, my body is indeed getting worse day by day.If things go on like this, even if I come up with an escape plan, I'm afraid I won't have the strength to carry it out.That's why I want to get the map before winter. I look up at the elms above me.From between the thick branches, one can see the disintegrating winter clouds. There is no escape from here.I said, have you read the map carefully?There is no exit anywhere, this is the end of the world. There is no way back, and there is no way forward. It is possible to say the end of the world, but there must be an exit.I know this very well.This is written in the sky, and it says that there is an exit.Birds fly over fences, don't they?Where are you flying to?The outside world.There must be a world beyond the walls, and that's the only way to wall off the town to keep people out.If there is nothing outside, there is no need to specially build walls.And there is definitely an exit. perhaps.I said. I must find it and escape with you.I don't want to die in such a miserable place.After all, the shadow fell silent, and then planed the ground, remembering that I told you from the beginning that this town is unnatural and abnormal.Shadow said, I still believe in it: unnatural and abnormal.But the problem is that this town is so unnaturally unnatural.Because everything is distorted and unnatural, everything fits perfectly in the result.It is so designed. The shadow drew a circle on the ground with the heel, and continued: We are locked in here.As time goes by, this and that, after thinking about it, gradually feel that they are right and I am wrong.Because they look almost natural and flawless.Do you understand what I said? Clearly, I have often felt the same way, feeling that I might be too small, weak, and overwhelmed compared with this town. But this is wrong.The shadow draws meaningless circles beside the circles.We are right and they are wrong.The natural is us, the gang is the unnatural.I believe so, firmly.Otherwise, it is bound to be swallowed up by this town without even knowing it.After being devoured, there is too much regret! However, what is right and what is wrong is relative after all.What's more, I have been deprived of memory as a measure of comparison between the two. Shadow nodded and said: I am well aware of your confusion.But think about it this way: do you believe in eternal motion? No, eternal motion does not exist theoretically. Same reason.The safety and integrity of this town is the same thing as Eternal Motion.The so-called complete world in theory does not exist at all.Yet here it is intact.In this way, something must have been tampered with.It's like a machine that seems to be in a state of perpetual motion uses an external power invisible to the naked eye behind the scenes. you found that? not yet.As I told you just now, this is a hypothesis of mine, and I must add specific things.It will take a while for this to happen. Tell me the hypothesis, please?Maybe I can also help with specific additions. Shadow took out his hands from his trouser pockets, breathed hot air on them, and rubbed his hands on his knees. No, even if it’s hard for you, I hurt my body, you hurt my heart, and you should be the first to be repaired.Otherwise, the two will perish together before they can escape.Let me consider this aspect, you try to save yourself, this is the top priority. I was really overwhelmed.I looked at the circle drawn on the ground and said, you are right.Not sure which way to go, not even sure who he was in the past.How much can a lost heart do?Besides, in a town with such great power and values.Since entering the winter, I have been losing confidence in myself, and I am getting worse day by day. No no, not like that.The shadow said, you haven't lost yourself, it's just that your memory has been subtly concealed, which makes you feel at a loss.Yet you are not wrong.Even if the memory is lost, the heart is still moving in the established direction. Human beings themselves have the ability to guide, and only then can they become themselves.Believe in your own strength.Otherwise, you will be drifting with the crowd and placed in inexplicable places. Do your best.I said. Shadow nodded, looking at the overcast sky.After a while, he closed his eyes in thought. When I can't figure it out, I always look at the birds.Shadow said that when he saw the bird, he suddenly realized that he was not bad.The invulnerability of the town was nothing to Bird, nor were the walls and gates and horns.At this time, you might as well watch the birds. From the gate of the fence came the voice of the gatekeeper calling to me.Meeting time has passed. Don't visit me for a while.The shadow whispered to me when we parted, and I will find a way to see you when necessary.The janitor is suspicious by nature, and if he sees too much, he will definitely be wary of us, for fear that we will do something tricky, and then my affairs will be difficult.If you ask me, you will pretend that you are not speculative with me, understand? understood. how is everything?As soon as I entered the hut, the gatekeeper asked me, is it fun to meet again after a long absence? can not say it clearly.Saying that, I shook my head in negative. That's it.The porter looked rather contented.
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