Chapter 9: Bait
Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
The mention of the name stunned the sullen Wu Anxun briefly.
“How could it have been her?” murmured Head Wang, jaws dropping.!!
“Who is she? Someone famous?” asked Su Jingxing in a low voice, noting Head Wang’s reaction.
“Of course she’s famous,” blurted Chief Wang. “Mei Jinju is one of the three golden flowers of this town. She’s got the face and the figure, and men go crazy for her!”
“And then she died,” added Gu Bo faintly.
Head Wang said nothing.
Exactly. Sometimes, being born too pretty is a huge inconvenience
“We… we don’t know that for sure yet,” said Head Wang, swallowing his spit. “She may have gone missing, but it could have been someone else who died.”
It was a feeble lie to feed himself.
The current Head Wang was the perfect definition of the phrase “self-deceit”.
Su Jingxing and Gu Bo didn’t bother to argue with him.
Wu Anxun paused for a moment before regaining his composure. “When did this Mei Jinju disappear? And who saw her last?” he asked in a deep voice.
“Three nights ago,” answered the investigating personnel. “As for the last person who last saw her…”
He paused and turned his gaze to Zhou Hongsong, who was standing in a corner. With an odd expression, he said, “According to many eye-witnesses, the last person who saw Mei Jinju was Manager Zhou. Three nights ago, a number of people saw Manager Zhou chasing after Mei Jinju before the two of them disappeared into the alley behind the amusement park.”
Swish! Swish! Swish!
Everyone turned their heads toward Zhou Hongsong.
“I…” said Zhou Hongsong.
With a sharp wave, Wu Anxun cut him off in a booming voice. “You killed Mei Jinju and buried her in the forest?”
“No, I didn’t. That’s nonsense!” denied Zhou Hongsong fervently. Jumping up, he yelled, “Why would I kill her? Everyone knows I was wooing her. How could it have been me?”
“Hmph, that’s simple,” said Head Wang with a sneer. Acting as though he had concluded the case, he said, “You tried to woo her, but she kept rejecting you, and that’s how your grudge formed. Humiliated when she rejected you again, you flew into a rage and killed her!”
“I didn’t! That’s bullsh*t!” cried Zhou Hongsong, his face flushed red as he vehemently tried to defend himself. “I did follow her to her house that night, but I quickly left afterward. After I sent her home, she asked me to leave and so I did. I have no idea what happened afterward. Haven’t you seen me looking for her for the past few days?!”
Su Jingxing’s eyes lit up.
There was a contradiction in Zhou Hongsong’s statement!
According to what he said, he already knew that Mei Jinju was missing—so why hadn’t he told anyone about it?
Su Jingxing didn’t know if Mei Jinju lived alone, or with her friends or family.
Whichever the case, if Mei Jinju was such a beauty, people would definitely be curious if she didn’t appear for three days in a row.
Yet there hadn’t been any rumors in town. That was strange!
Su Jingxing wasn’t the only one who thought of this; Wu Anxun was the next to spot the contradiction.
Like a bolt of lightning, Wu Anxun darted towards Zhou Hongsong and grabbed him by the collar. With one hand, he lifted him up and dangled him in the air.
“Spill it! How did you kill Mei Jinju?” bellowed Wu Anxun angrily.
“No… It wasn’t me… I… I didn’t…” stammered Zhou Hongsong with an effort, frantically patting at the arm that clasped him tightly.
“Heh, you think you can get away with keeping your mouth shut?” sneered Wu Anxun.
“Was Mei Jinju really murdered by this f*ckhead, Younger Brother Wu?” asked Head Wang. “I thought we still couldn’t confirm whether she’s dead?”
Earlier, he only said what he said to trick Zhou Hongsong.
“That’s true,” said the investigating personnel, chiming in. “Although Mei Jinju was largely missing for the past few days, people have seen her in town… Hold on!”
There was a sudden pause, and the investigator’s eyes darted around in remembrance. “No, that’s not it! The only person who claimed to have seen Mei Jinju in town was Manager Zhou! The others had heard it through him!”
“What… What does that mean?” asked Head Wang, slightly puzzled.
“It’s simple,” said Gu Bo, his gaze fixed on Zhou Hongsong. “Mei Jinju had gone missing three days ago, but Manager Zhou deliberately told others she’s still in town!”
“Because of this, everyone thinks that Mei Jinju was still in town even though she hasn’t appeared for three days!”
“If people thought she’s still in town, naturally, no one would suspect anything bad had befallen her.”
“If my guess is correct, Mei Jinju occasionally lives like a recluse and stays at home for prolonged durations. Is that correct? ”
“Yes, exactly,” said the investigating personnel, nodding.
Head Wang finally saw the light. His mouth slowly gaped open. Glaring at Zhou Hongsong, he said angrily, “You son of a b*tch, do you still think you can talk your way out of this?! Spill it! Why did you kill her?”
“I… I didn’t…” said Zhou Hongsong, his face flushed as he tried to break free.
Wu Anxun threw him to the ground and said expressionlessly, “Give him a cut and send him into the mountains,”
Zhou Hongsong stifled a scream.
Steadying his breath and enduring the pain, he begged with a face full of sweat, “No… please don’t…”
Wu Anxun paid him no heeds.
With a wave of his hand, two security personnel rushed over and escorted Zhou Hongsong away.
Wu Anxun followed behind them in large strides, herding the rest of the security team personnel who were armed with heavy firearms.
Head Wang and the others watched the whole proceeding. Some lips moved, but no one said anything in the end.
“Is this Team Leader Wu always so domineering?” asked Su Jingxing softly.
“Why else would I be so scared of him?” said Head Wang, smiling helplessly.
Then, he sighed, wiped at his face, and cursed. “It’s all because of that bastard Zhou Hongsong. He f*cked us up real good this time. Sh*t!”
“Come, follow me, guys!” he said with a thrust of his belly. A heroic expression rested on his face. Solemnly and gloomily, he and his staff members followed behind Wu Anxun and the others.
Su Jingxing studied the personnel. Fear, grief, and anger were written on their ashen faces, and they were clearly doing their best to keep themselves together.
“Are they joining the Corpse Puppet extermination?” asked Su Jingxing, puzzled. “Why not just sit it out if they are so unwilling to go?”
Gu Bo shrugged. “Wu Anxun is going to use Zhou Hongsong as bait to lure the Corpse Puppets over. If this works out, then Wu Anxun and Head Wang wouldn’t need to face punishments for this incident. Even in the worst-case scenario, they’ll simply be transferred to other posts. The others will receive neither merit nor punishment. However, if someone doesn’t go, they don’t have to think about ever getting a promotion again.”
“I don’t really get it,” admitted Su Jingxing, shrugging.
“It’s okay if you don’t. You are not a part of their system anyway,” said Gu Bo with a smile. “In fact, if it had been an ordinary murder case, it wouldn’t affect the lower-ranked personnel in any way. But it’s a different matter if Corpse Puppets are involved!”
“Once these things appear, anyone who has anything to do with them will get implicated!”
“Alright, enough talk. They are on their way to encircle and exterminate the Corpse Puppets. Shall we…”
“Go and take a look?” finished Su Jingxing.