This ominous pond was soon filled in by the villagers to prevent anyone else from drowning.
However, there was no peace even after filling in the pond.
Instead, Erniu and Damin died in consecutive deaths. These two died in exactly the same way, by hanging from the tree in Maiden’s Ridge.
But the weird thing is that both of them had eyes protruding high, and their faces and arms were scratched. They seemed to be struggling desperately to get free before they died.
Ordinary people, when they go to hang themselves, are not like this. They don’t struggle or have a scared expression. In these conditions, these two corpses were somewhat weird.
After reading the stars, the Monk said that this was not a conscious suicide but one in possession of evil spirits. That’s why, when their bodies were out of their control, their consciousness struggled desperately to resist.
The Monk carefully calculated that the last time when filling the pond, these two disturbed the Saffron Maiden inside, so the maiden came out to take revenge.
Many people immediately remembered that it was indeed the two of them who helped in filling up the pond, and coincidentally, there was a sudden well in the middle of the pond [our local vernacular for a small, deep pit that suddenly appeared in the riverbed], and it just so happened that it was the two of them who finally filled in that well too.
That’s definitely the Saffron Maiden’s home!
For a while, people were on edge. A lot of people wanted to go out and escape, but the Japanese were haunting the outside at that time, and they were more fierce than the ghosts in the mountains.
So no one dared to move out.
The good thing is that although the ghosts are powerful, they all act at night, so the villagers started returning home before dark, regardless of how much work there was.
And after two or three years of fear and panic, it was found that since the death of Erniu and Damin, the evil spirits hadn’t harmed anyone.
The Monk said that since the two of them had died, the Saffron Maiden had moved away to the Maiden’s Ridge because the Yin energy over there was the strongest.
Strange to say, since then, indeed, many people saw the Saffron Maiden in the Ridge.
Mostly on cloudy days or when it’s almost dark, a shadow wearing red clothes with a pale face and bloodied mouth floats alone in the woods.
There were a few people who had even met the Saffron Maiden.
According to their recollection, the maiden’s face was white and frightening. Her eyes were hollowed out, and after she saw them, she would leap across the trees and come after them with her red claws sticking out of her hands.
It scared the crap out of everyone when they heard of this.
And every time a disobedient child cried, the adults just said one sentence, “Cry again and the Saffron Maiden will come over to take you away and eat you!”
The kids were quasi-scared and didn’t say a word after listening to this.
Sometimes after speaking, they were all chilled down their spine and can’t help but look behind their backs, in case the Saffron Maiden really appears–
The one who has met the Saffron Maiden most of the time is Chen Zhong Bao.
After seeing her too many times, he could only ask the Monk for help in the hope of getting rid of the spell. But after carefully calculating his birthdate, the Monk concluded that he had extreme Yin energy and was especially good at attracting the evil spirits, so he was always able to run into the maiden many times.
Although the Buddha’s talisman had been passed around his house, it was still useless. The monk had no choice but to tell Chen that it was his fate and there was nothing he could do about it.
In the following years, even if Chen had to work in the middle of the day, he dragged others along with him, even if they weren’t willing.
And because of this, he was never able to get a wife for the rest of his life. Later, he even consciously moved his family to the foot of the mountain half a mile away from the village.
He saw the maiden more often and was not as afraid as he was at first, but he didn’t want to involve others.
But from then on, the Saffron Maiden hadn’t harmed anyone over the years.
So slowly, the Saffron Maiden also became a legend or figure that came into existence only when children disobeyed their parents.
And about this legend, I’ve basically heard it from my fifth grandfather.
My fifth grandfather is Chen Zhong Bao.
From a young age, several of us young boys especially liked to go to him and listen to the story of the Saffron Maiden.
Fifth Grandfather also told us with great interest and succeeded in scaring us to death every time.
When I was seven years old, I peed in my bed for three days when I listened to the story of the Saffron Maiden for the very first time.
The reason is simple, you really can’t afford to get up at night and go out in the dark to relieve yourself.
So later when I left the village for high school and college, I still believed that there were ghosts in this world.
Because I have seen the Saffron Maiden with my own eyes twice.
The first was on the 15th of January. Although it was the fifteenth, that day was exceptionally cloudy, and there was no moon at night. We were playing with lanterns when I felt a little strange, as I suddenly noticed that I could see twelve figures.
But there was only a total of eleven of us.
There was a figure that didn’t have a lantern and followed along from afar, singing and dancing to have fun.
After a while, Song Pan and Zhang He also appeared to have discovered the same problem. They shouted and gathered everyone together and carefully counted–
Sure enough, there were only eleven of us!
So, what about that one figure?
Moreover, Song Pan shouted violently again. We followed the direction of his finger and could indeed see a faint figure, jumping towards the grove side.
The eleven of us immediately fled and ran home in one breath as fast as we could.
Our lanterns were also tossed away by us.
The next day, the villagers and adults had a meeting. Immediately, an old man remembered that when the Saffron Maiden died, she was only thirteen years old and she was just a child. Yesterday, when she saw us playing with lanterns, she also wanted to play together with us.
The village chief led people to slaughter a sheep and two chickens and offered them outside the Maiden’s Ridge, so that no accident occurs.
The other time was even more memorable for me.
It was when I was about eleven years old. One afternoon, we were playing hide and seek behind the hill. Because there was the Saffron Maiden on the other side of the Ridge, we only dared to go to this area at most.
I didn’t know why I got into the cornfield at that time, and sure enough, the boys couldn’t find me.
But an inadvertent glance left me with a lifelong shadow.
Because a figure (or a ghostly figure) was in the corn field only a dozen meters away from me.
The corn fields were in full bloom, so it was a little blurry. I only saw a red shadow. The face seemed to be somewhat bloody, and the eyes were particularly strange as they stared at me, wide and hollow.
I shouted loudly. My brain went blank, and I immediately ran frantically out of the grounds. As to how I arrived home, I simply do not remember and I was cut by corn leaves and twigs, leaving dozens of bruises all over my body. Unexpectedly, I did not feel any pain.
I only remember one thing: that I was at least three times faster than Bolt.
After I got home, I stayed under the covers for two days before I dared to get out of bed.
The good thing is that the maiden also just wanted to come together to play hide and seek and did not intend to hurt us children.
According to the Monk, the Saffron Maiden is very kind-hearted and does not hurt people. She killed those people only because they were her enemies.
It is now the nineties, and although my classmates talk about ghosts and gods in a sneering manner, I have always been convinced.
I forgot to mention, my name is Chen Xu. Our village started to have some contact with the outside world from the seventies onwards, and I am the first university student in the village and the only one at present.
Since the age of five, my dream was to become the director of public security, so now, I am studying criminal investigation.
I’m currently a junior in college, and I am home for the summer vacation.
The Saffron Maiden has not harmed anyone for more than 40 years now. Of course, there are always people who die in the village every few years, but most of them are accidents, such as falling into the water or falling from the hillside and hitting the rocks and so on. It does not appear to be the maiden’s work.
The Monk says that the Saffron Maiden just likes to stay in this place and will not harm people.
But this year, I only came back for a few days and something horrific happened in the village.
In the evening, after dinner, several of our friends were chatting when we suddenly heard Uncle Zhang shouting from door to door, so that all the men could go out and find someone.
Their eleven-year-old Xiao Fang, who went out to play this afternoon, had not yet returned home.
Usually, because of the Saffron Maiden’s influence, children don’t dare to play outside and certainly come back home after dark.
Xiao Fang is even more of a scaredy child.
But now it’s almost 8:30, and Fang still hasn’t returned home. We’ve been to several of her classmates’ as well as relatives’ homes but to our dismay, could not find her. I’m afraid…
Everyone felt anxious and had the same place in their minds, that is, THAT PLACE.
Xiao Fang’s parents weren’t daring enough to go up there alone, so they went from house to house to call people for help.
As everyone had anticipated, Xiao Fang was found on a tree.
Xiao Fang’s face was full of blood, and her eyes were protruding. Her tongue was sticking out, exactly like the Saffron Maiden’s that we had heard of since childhood.
Xiao Fang’s mother immediately screamed miserably and passed out.
And none of us dozen of men dared to move.
Even Uncle Zhang did not dare to open his mouth to curse the Saffron Maiden, and he couldn’t gather the courage to move Xiao Fang’s body. Instead, he greeted several young people who may have wanted to put Xiao Fang down together to carry her home.
But who would dare to move when you think about the situation over there?
And the Monk also said that Fang’s soul might still be in the vicinity. Moving at night is susceptible to fraudulent corpses, and they can only wait until tomorrow afternoon at 3:00 to move Fang’s corpse because when the day is at its peak, ghosts and gods rarely come out.
Once they heard the word “fraudulent corpse” and whatever “soul,” not more than one person dared to act rashly. Together, they could only go back to the village first.
Along the way, everyone could not stop sighing. Over the years, everyone had forgotten to express their filial piety to the Saffron Maiden, so the maiden was certainly unhappy.
And the maiden lives here by herself; she must be lonely too, so–
Alas, this child, Xiao Fang, I don’t know how she got the attention of the maiden–
Everyone was afraid to talk on the way home.
I tossed and turned all night, unable to sleep, especially thinking about the scene in the corn field when I saw the Saffron Maiden with my own eyes, that made my scalp tingle.
It’s just that I don’t wet the bed now like I did when I was a kid.
I guess the whole village couldn’t sleep as well.
The next day, at noon, the entire village’s men went back to Maiden’s Ridge. Xiao Fang’s mother did not dare to cry, let alone curse the Saffron Maiden.
Hundreds of us bravely came together to the Ridge.
Fang’s corpse is still there, and today, it is even more bizarre. Fang’s hands, which were hanging yesterday, have actually become slightly bent forward. Looking at that, it’s almost like she’s going to jump down from the tree and strangle someone right at that moment.
Zhang Wen Lian immediately shouted in fear. His legs went limp, and he sat on the ground unable to stand up.
Uncle Zhang himself could not put Xiao Fang down and was unable to say a single word for the whole day. Other people only dared to stand on the side to give him courage, but no one dared to go over to help.
Of course, you can not leave Fang here. Looking at Fang’s appearance, maybe there will be another Saffron Maiden in the future.
When everyone didn’t know what to do, suddenly, a voice from behind said “I’ll do it. I’m familiar with the maiden. Alas, this child is strange and pitiful.”
That was Fifth Grandfather’s voice.
There was no one who went to call him, but he heard about it and came along on his own.
Fifth Grandfather is almost seventy years old and in poor health and can only walk a few steps to kick the booze.
The good thing is that it is also very simple to put Xiao Fang down, as long as one person holds it and another person moves it. It’s easy to do. Just no one dares to do it.
Along the way, Uncle Zhang carried Fang on his own, and we people followed from afar.
Although it’s the middle of summer, everyone still felt eerie and creepy.
The Monk had already chosen a place to bury Fang.
At this point, Fifth Grandfather suddenly said, “Xiao Xu, are you not learning to solve cases? Come and take a look.”
I walked over with a stiff upper lip, but pretty much immediately, I could see that it was not Saffron Maiden’s doing.
Because on Fang’s neck, there are two very shallow handprints, two totally different handprints, one of which feels like a man’s imprint.
Looking more closely, Fang’s ten fingernails are bloodstained, which must have been scratched off someone’s body.
And more importantly, it’s already summer.
Fang wore very few clothes and had only one pair of shorts underneath, with some white stuff on them.
I didn’t take it off to look at it carefully, but I could still tell that it was a sperm spot!
And the maiden was a female ghost. Even if she wanted to rape someone, she definitely could not shoot such a thing!