Date of Performance/Collection: Apr. 24
Primary Language: Chinese
The informant is currently a Chinese college student. She heard this piece when she was in Junior High School. We were talking about ghost stories when she brought out this piece.
Informant: You need to find a rectangular room. 4 people each stand in 4 corners. A person starts to walk along the wall. S/he touches the next person, who starts to walk. This person touches the next person who then starts to walk. And there are 4 people who had played the game for the whole night until they realized that when the fourth people walked towards the first people, s/he should’ve not touched the first person, so there was 1 extra person.
Interviewers: Wait, why the fourth person should not touch the first person when s/he walks back?
Informant: Because the first person is not yet back. He stayed where he touched the second person.
Interviewer: Oh f**k. What’s next?
Informant: The story just ends.
Interviewer: I felt a chill just ran down my spine.
Informant: I just remembered that this is a ghost-summoning game. You basically follow the rule to see if you can resume it.
Interviewer: OMG. Are there any requirements like turning off all the lights?
Informant: Yes. Make sure that no one can see the person in front of him/her.
Interviewer: By the way, what do you mean by ghost-summoning?
Informant: Basically, if you can keep on with the game, then there is a real ghost coming out.
The informant told me that this had been her childhood shadow.
This story is most frightening if the audience imagines the occasion carefully. Many people would get stuck, not understanding why the first people should not be touched by the fourth people. But the scenario is fully understood with a little effort, the story turned out very scary. The story doesn’t describe many details, which invites the audience to draw their most frightening imaginations on what is the ghost and what would happen to the 4 people trapped in the game.