Chen Shi rushed out of the interrogation room, leaned against the wall, and wanted to vomit.
Lin Dongxue was also pale. Chen Shi asked, "Do you want to go to the hospital to wash your stomach?"
"All the food I ate yesterday has arrived in the small intestine. Can you wash that?" Lin Dongxue said in denial. "Impossible. How is that possible? Absolutely impossible!"
Although he wanted to have breakfast, Chen Shi had no appetite anymore.
Zhang Farong had just said that the meat was actually human flesh, and the source was even more exaggerated. That is, it was Zhang Hao's father's flesh.
Lin Dongxue said, "But if it's human meat... We should have been able to tell. The taste and texture of beef is different from other meat."
"Go for a test!"
Upon hearing this request, Peng Sijue flatly refused. "The meat is composed of protein and fat. Even the mass spectrometer can't tell what kind of meat it is. I can't test it."
"I’ll think of a way!"
Chen Shi ran to the cafeteria to borrow a pot, then ran back to the forensics department. Peng Sijue scolded him right away. "Don't do that here!"
"It's about whether I can eat meat deliciously in the future. Have a little sympathy!"
"So? What does it matter? Aren't human flesh and beef all protein?"
"Captain Peng is so open-minded. If it’s human flesh, would you come and taste it?" When talking about human flesh, Chen Shi wanted to vomit again.
Lin Dongxue whispered, "No way. It tasted like beef."
Peng Sijue said, "Do you know there’s something called beef paste?"
"What is that?"
"An additive made from beef bones and fat. It can be used to make other meats taste like beef."
Upon hearing this, Lin Dongxue stopped being calm. In fact, Chen Shi had already thought about it, but he didn't want to say it out loud.
The price of beef is high. In order to reduce costs, some stores would sell pork as beef. Beef paste can cause pork to have the same taste and texture as beef.
There are plasticizers in the cake, washing powder in deep-fried fritters, and a drop of incense is widely used in mala hotpot restaurants. Chen Shi knew these well. Sometimes when you go out to eat, as long as you don’t see it, you’d pretend it’s clean. After all, Chinese people’s constitution was relatively resilient from eating various poisons.
However, if the food they ate yesterday really was human flesh, it would really be unbearable!
He heated the pot with a gas stove, put the meat filling into it and the smell of beef soon wafted out. Lin Dongxue smelled and looked at it again. "The texture and smell are both like that of beef!"
"Have you ever seen human meat filling?"
"I guess there’s something mixed into the meat stuffing. Let's go to the scene to check. If the shop uses beef paste, then the meat has to be tested."
The two went to the Zhangji Soup Noodle House. His wife was packing up the shop. When she saw that the police had come back, she asked with concern, "When will my husband be back? This situation wasn’t his fault. Why should he be detained?”
"After all, it’s bodily harm caused by a weapon. We have to figure everything out before letting him go. I hope you understand."
"Ah, if he was really put in jail, how would my son and I live from now on?! The soup in this shop is an ancestral recipe and only he knows the recipe. Without him, we can't do business."
"Relax, it won't be dragged on for too long... We are here to ask you about something else. Where is the source of the meat in this shop?"
"Meat source? I don't know very well. It’s the chefs who buy it."
"Is there any contact information for them?"
After a while, several chefs were called to the store. When asked about the source of meat, they were a little vague. They only said that they bought it from the vegetable market, but they couldn’t produce any evidence. Chen Shi asked a different question. “Do you guys use beef paste?”
"No... No..." The masters denied it in unison with a suspicious attitude.
"Okay, you all can head back first!"
Chen Shi and Lin Dongxue began to search around the store. They finally found a few green tins in a drawer at the bottom. They opened one of them and smelled a strong beef smell.
Lin Dongxue's face changed color. "I will never go out to eat again."
Chen Shi looked at these items in a daze and suddenly said, "Why am I so stupid? If there’s such a thing, we just need to check where that person is."
He asked Zhang Hao's wife, "I want to know something. Where is Zhang Hao's father?"
His wife looked embarrassed. "He... He... Went missing."
"How long has he been missing?"
"Wait a minute." The wife ran upstairs and brought a stack of paper down. It was a printed missing persons notice, which said that Zhang Fade went missing in the beginning of 2017. It also mentioned his appearance at the time of disappearance, the family’s contact information, etc.
Lin Dongxue called the police station and then whispered the result to Chen Shi. Chen Shi said, "The police station has no record of this. Your father-in-law is missing. You only posted missing persons notices but didn’t call the police?"
"I don't know much about it. My husband did it."
"Your husband did it?”
"No, no, I mean, he printed them all." The wife looked a little flustered.
"He’s been missing for two years now. Is there no news of him?"
The wife shook her head.
Chen Shi seemed to understand something. Zhang Farong knew about this matter but kept it secret so as to blackmail his nephew. His instinct was correct. The abnormal attitude of the parties indicated that there might be a murder case behind it all.
Thinking back, this store was closed for two years before reopening again.
Lin Dongxue gave Chen Shi a look and the two went outside. Lin Dongxue said, "Zhang Farong's confession and Zhang Hao's confession don’t match."
"About what happened last night?"
"Yes, Zhang Hao said that when he saw a man crouching on the ground, he was scared and he defended himself with a knife. However, Zhang Farong said that at that time, he shouted Zhang Hao's name and the other party had already recognized him, but he still cut him with the knife."
"Where is Zhang Farong's injury?"
"Behind..." Lin Dongxue pointed to her own shoulder blades. "Here. There are two more knife wounds on his back."
Chen Shi thought, "Since it’s a relative, when the first knife wound was made, the other party would definitely speak out. Adding two more may have been to murder him so he couldn’t talk."
"Murder? Are you saying that Zhang Hao really killed his father? But Zhang Farong has no evidence!"
"There’s no evidence, but he knows and blackmails him this way. This is a threat!"
"No wonder you scared him in the interrogation room back then. Do you suspect there’s a case within?" Lin Dongxue looked back at the old shop. "Didn't you say you’re afraid that you won't be able to eat breakfast in this shop tomorrow?"
Chen Shi smiled. "Compared to soup noodles, the truth is more attractive to me... Go and search again!"
Lin Dongxue asked Zhang Hao's wife to take her leave first. The two conducted a carpet search in the store. There was nothing suspicious on the first floor. They were considering whether to go to the second floor when Chen Shi noticed that the wall behind the freezer was a bit abnormal.
He asked Lin Dongxue to help him move the freezer aside. The wallpaper there bubbled out slightly. He tapped it with his fingers to find that it was hollow inside.
Chen Shi made a decisive decision and picked up a kitchen knife to scratch the wallpaper off.
There was only a wooden board under the wallpaper. Lin Dongxue's was a little uncomfortable. Chen Shi lifted the board up, revealing a hole in the back. When he reached in, his expression changed.
He pulled out a burnt bone. Judging from the size, it was likely to be that of a tibia.
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