On Pingshi Street, Jinling, the Zhang family have a residence. On the western side of the house is a three-roomed study. The rooms are kept completely empty and firmly locked, because they are rumored to be haunted by the ghost of a woman who hanged herself there.
One day an elegant and apparently rather affluent young scholar came looking for accommodations. Mr. Zhang told him that they had no spare rooms.
The young scholar was clearly unhappy with this response and said rather aggressively, "Since I have already decided to live here, it would be far better for you if the rooms were willingly offered. I can make your life miserable, you realize."
As soon as Zhang heard this strange response he realized that he must be dealing with some sort of fox fairy. Thinking quickly, he said, "In that case, you are welcome to use the three rooms on the western side of the house."
Zhang secretly hoped he might be able to use the fox to expel the ghost. The young scholar was cheered by this news and before taking his leave he thanked Zhang with a bow.
The next day Zhang could hear laughter coming from the haunted rooms and happily noted that the fox fairy had taken up residence. He made sure there was plenty of food and wine at the fox's disposal.
After about a fortnight, the sounds of merriment suddenly ceased. Assuming that the fox fairy must have left, Zhang went to the study. He opened the door and peered into the silent rooms.
There, hanging from a roof beam, was a yellow fox.