With the help of one of the paper dolls, she managed to step up into a bridal carriage covered in red cloth.
Once she was inside, the curtains of the carriage were drawn closed and a paper doll playing the role of a traditional matchmaker shouted, “Up!”
The paper dolls in black-and-white attire effortlessly lifted the bridal carriage, plodding after the ones singing and dancing at the front at a steady pace.
Meanwhile, a procession of paper dolls behind the carriage were tasked with carrying the things which represented her dowry, all of which were crafted from paper, including a miniature Mercedes car, a mansion with a garden, a trunk filled with gold, stacks of joss money, and a whole bunch of mobile phones.
In the carriage, Tang Tian was staring at her embroidered shoes, each adorned with a large pearl at their tip.
She watched as the pearls shook slightly whenever the carriage moved.
Everything that had just happened was too much for her to take in all at once, and Tang Tian felt as if her brain stopped functioning for a while.
What kind of marriage custom is this? It’s so old-fashioned.
She sat quietly in the carriage, her body rocking slightly to the movements of the carriage.
After some time, the bridal carriage came to a complete stop and was lowered to the ground.
The instruments went silent as well, and the curtains of the carriage were opened.
A hand reached inside, palm up, as if inviting Tang Tian to take it.
Something about it was eerily familiar—it definitely looked masculine, with strong, slender fingers, but the pale, smooth skin was covered in unseemly dark-green blotches.
The hand was waiting patiently, but despite the welcoming gesture it was making, Tang Tian felt the urge to roll her eyes at its owner and refused to budge.
You dragged me all the way here with no warning, scaring me to death.
I’m not moving, so think of a solution yourself.
It seemed as if the other person wasn’t irritated by her lack of response, as he slowly reached for her hands that were folded on her lap.
He tugged on them slightly, and Tang Tian felt her body moving against her will.
She couldn’t do anything but watch her own body stepping out from the carriage gracefully.
Tang Tian was speechless.
It’s the body’s fault, not mine.
It walked out on its own.
A bright-red silk cloth was pressed into her hands, with the other end held by someone else.
As the other person sauntered forwards, tugging on the cloth, she followed suit.
From the corner of her eye, she noticed that they had entered a room adorned with traditional furniture.
Then, a voice that sounded like a eunuch broke the silence.
“First bow to the Heavens and Earth!”
Tang Tian felt her waist bending forward uncontrollably, then she almost felt her joints crackling as her body slowly bent backward, returning to an upright position.
“Second bow to the parents!”
Her body bowed once again.
This time, Tang Tian had the urge to pull down her veil to see if her biological parents, whom she had never met before, were truly present.
A sudden wave of melancholy washed over her, and she almost teared up for the first time in a long while.
But with no control over her body, she wasn’t able to cry.
“Third bow to each other!”
Her body turned around.
From underneath the veil, Tang Tian could only see a pair of black shoes, and the bottom of a traditional long-sleeved wedding suit.
After completing the third bow, the same voice announced, “The ceremony is complete.
Enter the bridal chamber!”
Tang Tian immediately tensed up.
She thought everything would be over once the ceremony was completed.
You’ve got to be kidding me.
Tang Tian prayed secretly for someone to knock her out.
She couldn’t accept spending one night together with a dead person, let alone in a bridal chamber.
But all she could do was watch her body step forward in despair.
After a few steps, the gentle tugging on the red cloth in her hands stopped, and her body came to a stop as well.
It was as if the other person had sensed her refusal somehow.
He walked towards her and placed a hand around her neck.
It was that familiar cold, yet damp sensation, but there was also something else… A fishy smell, like that of a murky river.
The hand wrapped its fingers around her neck, exerting more strength, and Tang Tian panicked as she felt his hands tightening.
As she struggled to gasp for air, she convulsed in his grip, her vision gradually turning blurry.
Abruptly, Tang Tian widened her eyes and realised that she was able to breathe again.
She panted heavily as she took in deep, short breaths.
The women who were helping her change into a red funeral attire were frozen in shock, then they let out deafening shrieks.
Everyone screamed and scuttled away from her in terror.
Wang Li collapsed to the ground, paralysed by fear as she stared at the young lady, who had shown no signs of life earlier, slowly sitting up on her deathbed.
Tang Tian lowered her gaze and glanced at the dress she had on her body.
Her lips were painted a bright crimson colour, which contrasted greatly with her pale complexion and made her look even more like a ghost.
A smile crept onto her face.
“It seems like I’m not dead.”
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