Chapter 517: First Impressions Are The Strongest
Lin Dongxue asked again, "However, it was your elder brother who inherited that shop later, and not you. Why’s that?"
Zhang Farong said, "This is what my dad wanted. He wanted my elder brother to inherit the store so that I could do anything I want! I went out of the city to do business and earned big money for a while. I sent money back home and my parents were delighted. But, my elder brother wanted to work in a canning factory. He didn’t make much money. My dad was so angry that his blood pressure was really high. He almost severed the father and son relationship with him. Later, he was laid off and had nowhere to go. That’s when he became willing to run the business with my dad.”
"The Hualin Cannery in the city. It was previously state-owned, but it’s now privately owned."
Chen Shi said, "When your father disappeared, why didn't you suspect your brother?"
Zhang Farong was shocked. "Oh, now that you’ve said that, I really do suspect him. Yes, they often quarreled at that time."
"Why did they quarrel?"
"Sister-in-law was worrying. My elder brother would always defend my sister-in-law. Their family only had this type of bad stuff.”
Chen Shi said to Lin Dongxue, "We won’t interrogate further for now!"
"Not interrogating already?"
The interrogation had to be suspended. Chen Shi went straight to the forensics department. There was a stranger in the room who looked to be an appraiser. Peng Sijue said, "You came at the right time. The meat quality test came out, it was-”
"Don't talk about that yet. Is the DNA result wrong?"
"That's impossible!" A forensics technician said. "I did it. I did it three times in total."
"Do it again. This time, test the nephew first, then the second uncle. Don't test them together."
Pence Sijue frowned. "What’s up with you? You’re actually suspecting that we did something wrong?"
"Just think of it as satisfying my willfulness. Thank you... What were we just talking about?"
Peng Sijue wasn’t in good spirits and snapped, "I invited an expert from the Material Evidence Center to come over and help. Tests found that the meat was made up of beef, pork, lamb, chicken, and duck."
Lin Dongxue said, "That’s the same as what he said."
Chen Shi confirmed, "Is the meat mixed together?"
"No, this is a specific report..."
Chen Shi glanced at the report. The composition of the pots of meat was complicated. He couldn't help but wonder. If it was to reduce costs, why would he use beef or lamb? Was it really a mysterious recipe?
But what kind of recipe is this? Using meat from different animals and then mixing beef paste into it. Wasn’t the selling point of that store the soup?
Chen Shi stayed there waiting for the result. He paced around causing Peng Sijue to be annoyed. Peng Sijue wanted to kick him out several times. Two hours later, the DNA test results came out. The forensic technician said guiltily, "Zhang Hao's DNA and the dead are 99.98% match..."
Pence Sijue looked at him, startled. He couldn't believe that the result going out from this place could be wrong.
"How could this be?"
"It was my fault. During the previous test, I found that Zhang Hao was 99.98% and Zhang Farong was 99.99%. I thought it might be that the sample was mislabeled. Didn’t you say at the scene that the person missing was the father? So-“
"You actually had a preconceived notion? Go and write me a review to self-reflect!"
Chen Shi was very happy. "I knew it was wrong! So the problem lies here!"
Lin Dongxue asked, "How did you figure it out?"
"When the second uncle said that his father went missing, I vaguely guessed why Zhang Hao was so calm. Could the bones not be his father at all? Judging from the results now, the deceased was the immediate family member of the second uncle and Zhang Hao’s relative of a different generation. That is his grandpa, not father!"
Lin Dongxue thought for a while and covered her mouth in surprise. "The second uncle said that after his grandfather disappeared, his father continued business as usual. Could it be..."
"It’s almost certain that the father killed the grandfather, minced the grandfather's meat and mixed it with beef paste to make meatballs. The bones were charred and hidden in the wall."
"What about father?"
"I have a bold guess that the father was later killed. The body was not dealt with in this manner, but in a more concealed way. The reason I’m saying this is because I still believe that Zhang Hao has a ghost in his heart. Otherwise, why did he want to kill the second uncle who had no direct evidence? What he feared was that the second uncle would leak this matter, attracting police attention…” Chen Shi paused. “These mixed meats are likely to be Zhang Hao experimenting. He wants to test what other meats will taste like if it’s added with beef paste. If the second uncle didn’t rush out and shout “murder” that night, what would the result look like? He may be dead and the body may have been minced to make beef!”
There was silence at the scene as Peng Sijue said, "Are you thinking from the criminal’s perspective again?"
"Yes. If I was Zhang Hao, this is the most likely method of murder."
Lin Dongxue wondered, "Zhang Hao has a very contradictory personality. He’s both calm and irritable. The childhood domestic violence experience made him emotionally impaired, and it’s indeed possible to cause him to take extreme actions."
Peng Sijue said, "But adult men with domestic violence experience tend to point their frustrations to other people rather than their fathers. Such as their wives and children."
Chen Shi said, "Let's verify it and see if we find the body. Dongxue, send a few people to the other branches to check the unnamed corpses that have appeared in the past two years."
"By the way, the time limit for their detention is fast approaching. We can't detain them here much longer."
Chen Shi considered this. "Before the release, we’ll interrogate Zhang Hao again! Dongxue, you shouldn’t go. Go find his wife again and see what you can dig out."
Chen Shi and Zhang Hao met again in the interrogation room. Zhang Hao casually said, "Is there anything else that needs to be asked?"
"I have news to inform you. That set of bones isn’t your father’s.”
"Judging by your reaction, you already knew it!"
"Yes, because I didn't kill anyone, so I know it's definitely not him."
Unexpectedly, Zhang Hao would deliberately evade this problem. Chen Shi threw out the truth. "The bones are your grandfather’s. Because of the scorching, the age of the bones couldn’t be determined. Some problems occurred in the previous identification results."
"Your grandfather disappeared 18 years ago. What do you know about it?"
Zhang Hao smiled. "I was still working outside. How would I have known?"
"It's impossible for the family not to notify you of such a big event."
"You might not believe it, but they really didn’t inform me. I only found out he disappeared when I returned home six months later for the New Year. Although I reported the case, the police couldn’t find out anything. I finally got an explanation today."
"How many employees did you have in your shop back then?"
"Were there any other people?"
"Only my father. My mother died of illness early on. Every day after business, my father would close the door to drink and watch TV. He liked to watch ‘Records of Kangxi's Travel Incognito’ the most. As long as the TV station kept playing it, he would sit by the TV to watch it. It’s been the case for many years.”
"So, I’ll now make a hypothesis that your grandfather was killed by your father. Do you think it could be the case?"
1. It can mean being attached to the first thing you hear despite what other people say going forward, but it can also mean preconceived notions that the person themselves make.
2. This is the English name I could find. The Chinese pinyin is: Kangxi wei fu si fang ji
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