Chapter 19: Julien Eighteen
TL: cici, Editor: Isalee
Synopsis: Behind the half-open window, one side of a face with long hair appeared. The person did not look at Luo Wenzhou, but said, “Get on.”
First Published on Ainushi.
Hearing these amazing words, the attentive people surrounding Captain Huang all stared at him in blank astonishment.
Captain Huang ignored them all and paced around the house feverishly.
At this time, someone whispered: “That’s the Bureau’s …”
These people neglected their duties, bent the laws for their own benefits, concealed crimes, and took filthy lucre in return. Of course, their hands were not clean, but keeping their mouths shut for money was one thing and killing someone on their own was another matter. Most people in this house were not involved in any specific crime. All they needed to do was to turn a blind eye to the crimes and wait for the hush money. They still went to work and earned their salaries. The only difference was a little bit of gray income and the occasional social activities in some “places of entertainment”. No one thought of himself as a vicious and wicked person – not to mention that under the influence of Wang Hongliang’s way of dealing with matters, they all agreed that it was okay to let a few prostitutes or rogues die, but to kill someone of their profession? That was too much.
These people had a pair of naked eyes under their foreheads, when they looked up or around, they often considered what they saw as people.
When they looked down however, they often had a feeling that what they were seeing were animals. Most of those who were old, weak, powerless, drifting in life and struggling to survive belonged to this category.
Speaking of animals, people usually thought that they also felt hungry, full, warm and cold, but that was it; death, to them, was only a death. After all, the idiom only said, “A human life is one of heaven’s concerns.” Other lives, however, were not heaven’s business.
The death of a Chen Zhen was an accident, but the death of a Luo Wenzhou would be a big deal – Everyone here more or less had this kind of feeling. Only Captain Huang, who had tremendous courage, was actually somebody.
“Captain Huang, we cannot do that, seriously.” Someone said, “In my opinion, that guy’s death is no big deal. Let’s deal with the body. If that Luo Wenzhou cannot find a live person or a dead body, what can he do?”
“What can he do? He knows that the kid disappeared here,” Captain Huang gritted his teeth, and the words that came out sounded as if they had breached the teeth. “Let’s say he will return without accomplishing anything today, but how about tomorrow? How about the day after tomorrow? What are you going to do? Do nothing every day and wait 24 hours for him here? Can you guarantee that all the people in this place will keep their mouths shut? It was only business, but now this is someone’s life! Not mentioning him, but for today’s matter, even if you tell Director Wang the truth, he might not be inclined to protect you!”
The man hesitantly opened his mouth: “They…they are all on our side…”
“Some fucktard on our side is causing trouble! Why did a dead person suddenly appear at ‘that place’ on the night of the 20th? You were all there. Who saw him? Even if it was only some bastard killing and abandoning the body, why did he so coincidentally throw the body right there? Just like… just like someone was deliberately ‘marking’ us!” A shiver ran across Captain Huang’s body as he was speaking. He swallowed hard and added, “And that kid, he inexplicably came out to inquire about ‘that place’. Can any one of you tell me how he knew about it? If he was not caught by the monitoring system, or if I were not here, only God knows who will wear the handcuffs in your pockets tomorrow! When and how on earth did a kid who drives an illegitimate taxi come into contact with the Bureau, ah? Do you know? You don’t know. You only know shit!”
The music in the room stopped playing. Those who had taken the drug were still dazed, but those who hadn’t were silent.
“The ‘520’ event must be related to the things that happened today, and there must a betrayer among us.” Captain Huang stared at the surveillance screen, took a deep breath, and said one word at a time, “I wanted to keep the Chen guy with us and give him some ‘sweets’ to get some information from him… Forget it. We have been pushed to the stage, We’ll have to use the simple and rude way. Just tell me, do you dare do this?”
No one responded.
Captain Huang sighed heavily: “Well, you useless things, go do whatever you love to do then. Go out and surrender yourself now. Go. Maybe you can get your sentence reduced.”
At this time, the person whose face had been splashed by him said, “I gave that guy that injection.”
Captain Huang turned around and stared at him.
“I, I… I am in!”
“You gave him the injection, and who else beat that kid? When he leapt away in fright, who stood behind him and hit him with a stick?” The corner of Captain Huang’s mouth moved unnoticeably. His eyes swept over the gang of people. “Who tied him? Who was the doorkeeper? Oh, speaking of the doorkeeper, I have to ask, Little Song said that he only injected a little bit, but why did the kid die? Hm?”
One by one, people around him lowered their heads. No one responded.
“Those who consider themselves to have nothing to do with this can go,” Captain Huang smiled. “Just need to take care of your own mouth after going out.”
Everyone had a mouth, and once a person with a mouth left the room, he would become a potential betrayer.
No one wanted to admit that he was a “betrayer” in front of such a ruthless person.
No one made a sound.
“Be careful when you do it,” Captain Huang said with a blank expression. “Captain Luo died at his post when he was investigating the ‘520’ murder case in the Western District, and he unfortunately ran into a mad addict.”
Luo Wenzhou glanced at his watch. More than 20 minutes had passed since he called for assistance. The heavy soundproof material could not stop the music coming from the next room as it was attempting to drown the house down. He was sitting opposite a girl whose job was not very decent. The drinks that cost him half a month’s salary were all placed on the table next to him.
The temperature of the air conditioner in the house was probably too low. A small smoldering wind swept over his neck. Luo Wenzhou suddenly had an ominous presentiment. He then picked up the big, thick ashtray on the table, looked at it, and said to Wu Xuechun: “I think you are very young. You still have many other opportunities. Do you want to switch to a different job?”
Wu Xuechun shook her head and did not make a sound. She just lifted up the long sleeves of her dress and showed him a few pinholes on her thin arms and the bruises caused by improper injection techniques. Her skin was very bright – that made the bruises look more shocking and it looked like they would hard to remove.
Luo Wenzhou: “…”
In this kind of situation, he should have behaved like a big brother and said a few words of comfort and encouragement, which would be more in line with social etiquette. However, some situations were extremely cruel. If he were in her shoes, Luo Wenzhou would not be able to do anything better than her. Saying those words was like saying, “drink more water” to a terminally ill person. It was easier said than done.
He was speechless, so he had to close his mouth.
At this moment, the “wall-pulling heavy metal” music next door just reached the gap between two songs and paused for a short while. Luo Wenzhou’s ear, which just regained consciousness, suddenly heard the sound of abrupt footsteps from outside.
He made a subconscious reaction before he could think of anything. He asked Wu Xuechun: “Where is Chen Zhen?”
Wu Xuechun was stunned by his sudden question, and she also blurted out: “The storage room on the west side of the second floor.”
As soon as she stopped talking, her whole body was dragged up by Luo Wenzhou with one hand. Luo Wenzhou violently pushed her towards the window: “Run away.”
Wu Xuechun walked a few steps back and she was kicked by her own high heels. She was still a little dazed at this time, and she trembled as she supported herself with the wall and stood still. She said: “I…”
She was going to say, “I am fine. I am one of them. They will not hurt me.” However, before this long sentence could leave her mouth, it was already interrupted by Luo Wenzhou: “Just run away. Take off your shoes and don’t talk nonsense.”
Before the sound of his voice faded away, the door of the private room had been kicked open, and a few brightly-dressed young people came in with an especially strong alcohol smell. After coming in, they started their fight with Luo Wenzhou without saying a word.
Luo Wenzhou turned around to pick up the luxurious ashtray from the table. At the same time, he saw some light through the corner of his eye. He reached out and blocked it with the ashtray. The metal slammed through the glass and produced a “ceh” sound. A kitchen knife pierced through the bottom of the ashtray and then slipped out.
Luo Wenzhou pressed the ashtray down, slammed it on the man’s wrist, pressed the man’s arm towards his own back, and lifted his knee to hit the knifeman’s lower abdomen.
The knifeman’s bile was almost forced out by him. The kitchen knife slipped out of his hand. Luo Wenzhou then took the knife away. He held the knifeman’s yellow hair, slammed him into the wall, and ducked to dodge another man’s attack. Then he took a bottle of god-knows-real-or-not-Remi-Martin from the table and slapped the big, cakelike bottle against the knifeman’s head.
These thugs were all hooligans from god-knows-where. Every face looked like that of a living ghost, showing that they were all addicted. Luo Wenzhou was experienced in streetfights; he was young and strong, exercised regularly, and he ate an extra egg with pancakes every day. So there was a strength disparity between him and these addicts.
He looked back and found that Wu Xuechun really followed his words. After his shout, she took off her shoes and ran away from the window. Therefore, he took a deep breath and rushed to the storage room on the second floor – they were quiet for such a long time, why did they suddenly start attacking him?
He was not able to think too much about it at this point and ran up to the second floor. A heavy and uneasy feeling filled his heart. A thought suddenly passed through his chest for no reason. He thought, Has Chen Zhen experienced a mishap?
The little hooligans who had been beaten by him gathered their friends to chase him. A waiter who was delivering some drinks screamed and pressed himself against the wall. Luo Wenzhou pushed him away and saw the sign to the storage room: a mottled sign that said, “Employees Only.”
Luo Wenzhou took half a step back and kicked the door. The shock of the wooden door hurt him, so he immediately switched to his other leg and kicked it again. This time his calf went through the door. He had made a hole on it.
Luo Wenzhou pushed the door open and saw a person lying there: “Chen Zhen!”
He wanted to go forward and look at the man, but his legs were a bit numb, which stopped him for a moment. In this short moment, the brain that had been overheated because of the fight just now slowly cooled down with his calm breath. A thought suddenly came into Luo Wenzhou’s mind – This is not right. He had directly asked Wu Xuechun for Chen Zhen’s location. There had to be some people monitoring them through the surveillance system. Why didn’t they move Chen Zhen away?
The thought flashed past, and Luo Wenzhou stepped back without thinking any longer. At the same time, the person lying on the ground jumped up without warning and poked a knife toward Lu Wenzhou’s neck. Luo Wenzhou was alert, so he immediately snatched the kitchen knife the knifeman, pushed the man’s wrist away, grabbed the man’s shoulder, and slammed him into the shelf on the side.
The other side was also very experienced. He squeezed his shoulders to dodge the impact. With the rebound force, he hit Luo Wenzhou’s ribs. Luo Wenzhou missed one breath and his knife almost slipped out of his hand. He leaned sideways to escape the other’s attack. He then took the man’s arm, turned a half circle, and kicked the man’s knee.
The man screamed and fell to the ground. Luo Wenzhou finally recognized who the man was with the help of the glimmer from the entrance. He did not know the name of this person, but he had seen the man following Wang Hongliang before.
Luo Wenzhou held his hair and forced him to look up: “Where is Chen Zhen?”
The one who was kicked by him – Captain Huang, squinted at Luo Wenzhou. He did not show signs of repent – he instead smiled softly: “He is waiting for you in front.”
Luo Wenzhou understood the meaning of the words in this statement, and his pupils shrank. At the same time, he heard the sound of wind from behind him. He instinctively leaned sideways and raised his arms to protect his head. With a “clam” sound, both a bottle of wine and Luo Wenzhou’s left arm were hurt, and the people waiting for the sneak attack were swarming in. There were people holding knives, bottles, sticks, and iron chains. They greeted him with slaps in the face.
Luo Wenzhou had to dodge left and right, and his body was quickly wounded.
When he left, he actually applied for a gun, but now when his life was at stake, he did not dare to use it. It was because he was not sure if these people from Wang Hongliang’s gang would honestly obey the “five bans”. These people now thought he had no other weapons for self-defense and that they could use cold weapons to deal with him. They did not want to make noise in the downtown area, so they were willing to fight him.
He was alone, and it was better to fight with fists than fight with guns. Besides, Blessing Grand View was not far from the downtown area. If there was a miss in the chaos, the result would be serious.
A sharp siren suddenly rang, and the group of people froze at the same time. Only Luo Wenzhou reacted very quickly. He lifted a hand to press down on one of the men’s faces, and he hit him on the cartilage of his nose. Then he quickly dodged a knife and a kick before striding into the corridor in two steps – he knew that the siren was fake. The road conditions in the West District were not good, and it was still less than half an hour since he had called – assistance could not have arrived so fast.
Luo Wenzhou did not take the stairs as he feared an ambush. He rushed into the bathroom at the corner, opened the window, and jumped out.
He had a knife wound on his back, not mention various sized chop wounds and bruises. He was not able to lift his left arm, and he not sure if it was fractured. Two hours ago he was still thinking that the murderer of the “520” case would bite the bait called Zhang Donglai, and that he would be casually “feeding the cat” in the cafeteria. He did not expect to transmigrate to an action movie two hours later.
Life was just as unpredictable as Luo Yiguo.
Suddenly, someone called him from behind: “Big brother, here!”
Luo Wenzhou turned back and saw Wu Xuechun, who was barefoot, waving at him. Luo Wenzhou’s hair stood up on his scalp: “Didn’t I ask you to run? Why are you still here?”
“I just sounded the alarm,” Wu Xuechun said. “You are not familiar with this area. I will show you out. Did you find Chen Zhen?”
Before Luo Wenzhou was able to reply, the chasers had arrived: “There, catch him!”
Luo Wenzhou pulled up next to Wu Xuechun and came to a low wall behind Blessing Grand View with her incoherent guidance. Fortunately, Wu Xuechun was slim, and Luo Wenzhou was able to support her over the low wall. Then he quickly also climbed over.
When he landed, he felt the pain in his left arm which he just forcibly used change unceremoniously from numb pain to burning pain. Luo Wenzhou frowned and hissed, the back of his blood-soaked shirt blown by the cool evening wind, making him feel extremely cold.
Wu Xuechun saw this bloody scene with the light from the street lamp. Frightened, and she almost screamed.
Luo Wenzhou: “Which direction?”
Wu Xuechun pointed a direction for him, and in the next moment, she was being dragged to run by the man.
“It’s okay,” Luo Wenzhou comforted her casually. “My face didn’t get hurt.”
Wu Xuechun: “…”
Two of them crossed a few small roads and saw an avenue after several turns. Luo Wenzhou’s tightened heart was finally untangled itself, and he spoke to Wu Xuechun who was out of breath: “Come back to the Bureau with me, then… ”
His voice stopped abruptly.
On both sides of the road, the originally busy stalls had all moved a long distance away. The pedestrians had all disappeared, and several screaming motorcycles were stuck at the intersection. They had already waited for him for a long time.
Luo Wenzhou glanced at the watch through the corner of his eyes – according to the time, he just needed to keep them busy for a while. His assistance would arrive soon.
So he hid Wu Xuechun behind him and smiled at the leader of the motorcycle gang: “Man, I think we have a misunderstanding, how about we have a talk?”
Unfortunately, that man did not have the “villain dies because of speaking too much” (1) problem. His eyes blazed through the helmet as he stared at Luo Wenzhou. Then he forcefully twisted the accelerator and the motorcycle charged toward them.
Luo Wenzhou had no choice but to grasp the gun (2) in his pocket.
Before he took his gun out, they all suddenly heard a car engine screaming even louder than the sound of the motorcycles.
The motorcycle riders did not expect a brainless Mat Rempit to appear in this place and they had to dodge hurriedly, so they end up in a hideous mass. A bright and colorful snake sports car appeared like lighting. The car performed a skillful drift there, and it just hit the rear wheel of a moving motorcycle. That motorcycle and the person on it veered off.
Behind the half-open window, one side of a face with long hair appeared. The person did not look at Luo Wenzhou, but said, “Get on.”
(1) “villain dies because of speaking too much”: A slang. In many novels and TV dramas, the main villain usually has a chance to kill the main character. However, they generally spend a lot of time talking, and eventually the main characters find a chance to kill them.
(2) We don’t know the original text due to censorship. Gun is just the translator’s guess.