Chapter 473 – Craniotomy and Autopsy
Lin Xuanzhi thought for a moment and said, “If it wasn’t him, would there be anyone else?”
Lin Liuchun shook his head. “I’d never let anyone get close to me so easily, so nobody should have been able to take away the jade pendant.”
Lin Xuanzhi asked, “What if that thing was not a person?”
Lin Liuchun, “…”
Yan Tianhen touched his arm. “Dage, don’t scare me ah. It’s already weirdly gloomy in here.”
Ji Lanjun’s eyes brightened. “You say it’s not a human being, but I think it’s very possible! Those scissors, too. I was sure that I didn’t take them with me when I went out, but it somehow ended up in my hands. It also suddenly changed from an ordinary scissor to a magic tool that could kill people. However, I was still cutting cloth with those scissors on that day, and they’d never left my hands. If the culprit was a human being, he wouldn’t be able to do this.”
For a moment, silence fell in the room.
After a pause, Ji Lanjun added, “What’s more, the reason why I negotiated with the family head to put me here was because when I approached the bloody corpse, I vaguely smelled the scent of burning incense from it, which was very special. I remember only the Lin family’s ancestral temple had this kind of smell. I am an alchemist, so my sense of smell is very sensitive. I would never mistake it.”
Lin Liuchun was stunned, and he shook his head. “I didn’t smell this, but I don’t know if I ignored it or it really wasn’t there.”
Lin Xuanzhi said, “If Aunt Ji’s judgement isn’t wrong, it may be related to the ancestral temple. It’s just in this way, it makes things very complicated.”
One couldn’t easily enter the ancestral temple. Even if you entered, you could only stay on the first floor. Starting from the second floor, there would be unpredictable dangers when going up. Entering the ancestral temple every ten years was only possible because the transmission array going straight to the seventh floor would open at that time, so the Lin family disciples didn’t have to go through the rest of the floors between them.
Lin Runru frowned. “What kind of ghosts can there be in the ancestral temple? It has been peaceful all these years.”
Lin Xuanzhi asked, “Would Fifth Elder know what is in the ancestral temple?”
Lin Runru didn’t look very good as he shook his head. “I don’t know, but when the previous generation of the Lin family head passed this position to me, he specifically told me not to get any ideas about exploring the ancestral temple, otherwise the fate of the Lin family would be worrying.”
You Ming became interested and said, “After listening to this, I’d like to know more about what is in the ancestral temple.”
Lin Runru said, “You can’t ah! If you really mess with the rules and anger the Dao of Heaven, the Lin family may be finished!”
If there were no other clues, they would explore the floors sooner or later. But before that, they had to first rule out other possibilities.
Lin Xuanzhi asked some of the elders in the room, “Master, Martial Uncle, have you ever encounter such a situation when you were in the Nine Lands?”
You Ming frowned. “This reminds me of a possibility, but the probability of this is too small to tell whether it is the same or not.”
Lin Xuanzhi replied, “Now all possibilities are worth mentioning.”
You Ming concisely explained, “I once heard my master mention that everything in the world has a spirit, even swords and equipment have spirits. If magic treasures turned into spirits, they’d be even more terrifying than human and demonic cultivators. If there was a reliable master, it would be fine, but if not, it could turn over the sky. After all, the one who knows himself best is always himself. What’s more, magic treasure spirits have a characteristic, that is, their magnetic energy field is special, so humans cannot see them.”
Yan Tianhen’s eyes widened. “What Master means is that the one who has been killing people and framing others was a spirit transformed from some unknown magic treasure?”
You Ming shrugged his shoulders. “It’s just a guess. I’d have to take a look at the body.”
“All of the corpses are still there.” Lin Runru sighed and said, “If necessary, I will take you to have a look. The corpses were kept intact in an ice room of the Lin family.”
The so-called intact was not the body still being complete and lifelike, but that it maintained the original appearance when he died. As soon as Yan Tianhen entered, he wanted to vomit after a few glances. Lin Runru was not surprised and pointed to a spittoon placed next to Yan Tianhen.
Yan Tianhen thought Lin Runru was wholly prepared, but after recalling that others before him also did this, he suddenly didn’t want to throw up anymore.
The appearance of the corpse was very shocking. Even Demon Venerable You Ming, who had seen many ways people died, couldn’t stop clicking his tongue in wonder. “The blood was sucked dry enough to not leave behind even a little bit of water. You probably can’t see the spiritual root in the Dantian Qi Sea either, can you?”
Lin Runru sighed and nodded. “It is more than the spiritual root of the Dantian Qi Sea. The whole Dantian Qi Sea has disappeared. If not for cutting open the body for examination, it would not have been obvious from the outside. According to the statements of several other disciples who saw these mummified corpses, they had been sucked dry in an instant, and could not even be saved.”
Lin Runru’s eyebrows wrinkled more and more tightly. “I have never heard of such an appalling cultivation method.”
Yan Zhonghua, who never spoke very much, said, “Have you ever seen their heads?”
“The head?” Lin Runru was shocked. He obviously hadn’t because the focus was only on the body and blood, so he’d never opened up their skulls to investigate.
After Yan Zhonghua said so, Lin Runru immediately planned to find the Lin family’s pharmacist to come to check.
“I’ll do it.” Yin Xingli looked eager to try. He rolled up his sleeves and took out a set of autopsy tools from his storage ring, eyes shining as he walked toward the corpse.
Lin Runru secretly asked Lin Xuanzhi, “Where did you meet this friend? How is his disposition ordinarily? Is it reliable?”
Lin Xuanzhi couldn’t help but laugh. “He’s definitely reliable, but I don’t know what his special hobbies are.”
Yin Xingli was one of Xuan Wushe’s people, and Xuan Wushe allowed him to travel to the Lower Realm with Yan Zhonghua. Obviously, he was very assured about Yin Xingli and trusted him.
Although it was hard to figure out what Yin Xingli’s motive was, he should be reliable. Lin Runru was reluctant to nod, only paying more attention to Yin Xingli, who did not care what kind of impression he made in the old man’s heart. He took out a small hammer and awl, then knocked on the mummified corpse’ skull. It didn’t take a moment for him to open the skull.
Yin Xingli raised his brows and said to them, “The inside of the skull is empty, and the brain has been eaten clean.”
He used a silver stick to pick apart the thick hair on top of its head, and a round hole with the thickness of a finger appeared in front of everyone. “I think it was a tube inserted into the Baihui acupoint of the skull. First is to suck the contents from the head, and then suck the rest– bone, marrow, and blood from the body.”
There was only one hole on the entire mummified corpse, and Yin Xingli’s statement was very well based.
Lin Runru’s breath hitched, and he asked, “What exactly is that thing? Maybe it’s the work of a demon?”
“Why are you like this?” Annoyed, You Ming cut him off immediately. “Did the demons kill your mother or rape your son? Our demon clan is also very picky, okay? It’s not like every single human cultivator is good either, and it is also possible to commit such evil acts after becoming obsessed and crazy from a Qi deviation. Why should it be a demon who did it? Besides, this may be a matter of cultivation method rather than race. Are you right in the head ah?”
Although Lin Runru was older, he was like an innocent child under You Ming’s momentum. He couldn’t help but shiver a little, and he quickly changed his tune. “It was just a slip of the tongue. Venerable, please don’t be angry.”
You Ming snorted, then pointed to the clumps of flesh and blood whose original shape could no longer be seen. “Check those things again.”
There was no need for him to say, as Yin Xingli had already gone over there.
Yan Tianhen stood not far away and watched Yin Xingli rummaging over the corpse. He couldn’t help but admire the man’s thick nerves.
Seeing through Yan Tianhen’s hard-to-hide admiration, Esteemed Lan Yue explained, “Since he was a child, he wanted to be an undertaker. However, there are many rules in the Yin family, and this business of corpse collecting is an inferior field. Naturally, it was impossible for the family to go along with his desires, but Ah Li has always been a man of his own mind. He secretly learned some undertaker techniques.”
While talking about this, not only was there no disdain on Esteemed Lan Yue’s face, but there was also a bit of pride and appreciation too. After all, among the disciples of Nine Lands’ Divine Clans, there were only a handful who would dare resist their clan’s elders and those heavy, shackle-like rules to act according to their preferences.
It took a long time to examine this kind of meat carcass, and the smell of blood in the air grew heavier and heavier. Yin Xingli pinched out something hard from the flesh and blood, then put it under the light to look carefully. It was a broken nail.
Yin Xingli placed the nails on a towel handkerchief and showed them to everyone. “These fragments were torn like this alive, and there are many marks dug out by nails in the wound. This broken nail could prove that the body was indeed torn apart by bare hands.”
He also pointed to a wound with a neat edge and said, “Although some places are indeed made by scissors, they only account for a small part and are not worth mentioning.”
Lin Runru immediately breathed a sigh of relief. “In this way, it can wash away the injustice the two of them suffered.”
“It’s hard to say.” You Ming rolled his eyes and said with a smile that didn’t reach his eyes, “You can’t guarantee they weren’t possessed by ghosts.”
Lin Runru could only apologize by smiling, knowing that his earlier words had offended You Ming.
Yan Tianhen inspected the nail closer and frowned. “Why is this nail blue? It looks very familiar.”
You Ming glanced at it and stared at the broken nail with a slightly strange look. “This is the nail of a corpse puppet. Moreover, a corpse puppet that’s been refined with poison, and the grade is not low. Is there anyone in your Lin family who controls corpses?”
Lin Runru’s face changed, and he started saying, “How is that possible? My Lin family has always been on the righteous path since ancient times. The Lin family’s disciples would never be allowed to cultivate an inferior, vile, and evil skill like the Imperial Corpse Technique!”
As soon as he stopped speaking, You Ming and Yan Tianhen both stared at Lin Runru with unfriendly eyes.