The two immediately chased after Wang Jinsong through the safety passage from the other exit. Wang Jinsong ran very fast ahead of them and didn’t stop no matter how much they called out to him.
Lin Dongxue was wearing leather shoes today which didn’t have the proper support or grip for running. Her feet began hurting and when she looked over at Xu Xiaodong, he was already panting. He asked, “Should we fire a warning shot?”
“What do you mean fire a gun? We can’t even catch up to a child?”
At this time, a Volkswagen SUV suddenly stopped at the roadside in front of Wang Jinsong. From the car, there appeared a man and a woman. Wang Jinsong stood next to it and did not try to run. The man used a stern voice to reprimand him before suddenly slapping Wang Jinsong’s face.
The woman pushed the man aside, knelt down and held Wang Jinsong in her arms as she tried to comfort him. At this time, Wang Jinsong started bawling his eyes out.
Lin Dongxue walked closer and heard the man’s lecture. “You dog! Not coming home when you finish school, but actually going to an online café instead. Don’t you know there’s things happening at home?!”
The woman retorted, “Save your words. Don’t you also pull all-nighters playing around? If he’s a dog, then what are you?!”
It seems that this pair were the parents of Wang Jinsong. Lin Dongxue approached and took out her badge and inquired, “Hello, are you the parents of Wang Jinsong?”
Wang Jinsong’s dad looked surprised and then put up a smile. “Officer? Are you looking for us for something?” He began to take out a packet of cigarettes and handed it over to Xu Xiaodong who stood behind Lin Dongxue. Xu Xiaodong made a gesture of rejection, so the dad took one out for himself.
Lin Dongxue asked Wang Jinsong, “Child, why did you run away so fast just then?”
“I... I...” Wang Jinsong hid in his mother's arms and watched Lin Dongxue with caution.
“Oh, that. We called him and asked him where he was, so he hurried over.” The mother explained with a smile.
“Oh really? We want to know where Du Lei lives.”
“Why don’t you tell the police aunty?” the mother urged.
“Unit 4, Building 10 of Feng Yuan Community.”
“How do you know so clearly?”
“We live together!”
Wang Jinsong’s father suddenly turned to him and looked very stern when he responded, as if telling him to keep his mouth shut. Wang Jinsong was so scared that he hugged his mother tighter than ever.
In the face of Lin Dongxue’s confused eyes, his father explained himself with a smile. “This is the case. Du Lei’s parents and I used to be employees of a printing company in the past. Later, the company moved their employees to this little community. However, we do not live together. Our family lives in another unit.”
“Then, do you often play together?” Lin Dongxue asked Wang Jinsong.
The father replied on his behalf, “They don’t always play together. Grade two is a crucial year. The study is relatively tense, so they rarely come into contact with each other.”
“Can you not always interject?!” Lin Dongxue was a little annoyed with this man.
“Children don't know anything!” Father still smiled as he responded. “Oh yeah, what are you investigating? I heard that Du Lei died, and a teacher in the school was arrested. Teachers are getting more and more unreliable nowadays!”
“How did you know about this?”
The mother responded, “The incident has blown up in the parents circle. Some people even say that this guy molested children before. He is actual scum. Hey, how can the school employ this kind of person as a teacher?!”
Their answer seems to be flawless, but Lin Dongxue felt that something was wrong. Was it their reaction?
She was thinking about what to ask next when Xu Xiaodong asked, “If it is convenient, can you take us to the community in your car?”
“This...” The father hesitated.
“We’re really sorry, but this car is used to transport goods. The seafood that was just shipped in the afternoon made the car smell very bad,” the mother hurriedly explained.
“Right, right, why don’t we help you to call a car?” the father offered.
“No, just tell us the address. We’ll drive over...We left the car at the school.”
After the father gave them the address, the family got in their car. Lin Dongxue touched her chin and muttered to herself. Xu Xiaodong declared, “I know that this family has problems at a glance!”
“Do you think so too?” Lin Dongxue asked excitedly.
“Why is your reaction so intense? I mean, look at the parenting of this family. Children who grow up in this family are definitely going to be mentally unwell.”
“Get the car, it's getting dark.” Lin Dongxue's excitement suddenly cooled down as she started to head toward the car
Xu Xiaodong caught up. “What happened, am I not correct?”
The two drove to the apartment complex. When they found Du Lei's home, they heard people talking inside. “You can rest assured, we are looking for him! We will inform you when we receive news. He must be lost.”
The door was slightly opened. Lin Dongxue opened the door and saw an old lady crying. Two police officers were comforting her.
Seeing outsiders coming in, the officers’s eyes changed a little. Lin Dongxue showed her ID to them before the policemen nodded their heads. One of them informed her of the situation. “There is a lost child case that has just been reported. An old grandma lost her only grandson, it’s pitiful really.”
“The Public Security Bureau did not inform you?” Lin Dongxue asked.
“What? Is it...”
“The child was killed.”
The officers were so surprised that they gasped behind their hands. Lin Dongxue glanced at the old lady and the officers reassured her, “Don’t worry, she’s a bit deaf.”
The other policeman asked, “Has the body been found?”
After a few simple exchanges, Lin Dongxue entered the house. The police said loudly to the old lady, “These two are comrades of the Public Security Bureau. They came over to see what clues they could get.”
The old lady nodded and seemed to see a glimmer of hope. She cried, “Lei Lei, you must come back, or how can I continue living?!”
Upon hearing this, Lin Dongxue was really sad. Xu Xiaodong, who was next to her, had already begun tearing up. He said, “The white-haired sending-off the black-haired. It’s just so sad.”
Lin Dongxue went to Du Lei's bedroom. The child who was obedient in the teacher's mouth also collected some items for his hobbies, like comic books and idol posters belonging to this age group. In addition, there were awards that almost filled the whole wall.
The room was not big. They could see everything just by walking in a circle. There were some information books on the table, a small TV set, but the other end was empty. Lin Dongxue walked over and found that the dust on it was a bit strange. It seemed to have something placed there at one point. A square object.
“What is this?”
“Isn't that a game console?” Xu Xiaodong pulled the drawer down and saw a few game discs. “Oh, it’s really a PS4. Fuck, I’ve always wanted one.”
“Can you not talk nonsense here?! Ask your mother to buy it for you then.” She turned her eyes to the table. “It looks like this game machine has been moved recently. Who took it?”
“Go ask the old lady!”
When they got back to the living room and saw the old lady still crying, Lin Dongxue couldn't bear to open her mouth. The officers came over and asked what happened. After explaining the situation, the police asked the old lady. “Ma’am, there was a game machine in the house. Where has it gone now?”
When the old lady entered the room to take a look, shook her head and sobbed, “He was ranked in the top 100 of the whole school, so his father bought it for him. I don’t know where it’s gone. It might have been borrowed by one of his classmates.”
“Who does he usually play with?” Lin Dongxue asked.
“Ah? He’s closest with me. I brought him up ever since he was young.”
“I was asking which children he usually plays with?”
“Ah? Oh! I don't know. You should ask his classmates. Lei Lei is the class representative in his class!” The old lady gave a thumbs up, showing a sense of pride behind her sad expression.
The police signalled that Lin Dongxue should go out. When they went out, the officers begged, “Don't ask her any more questions. I’m afraid that you will leak the situation to her. She has high blood pressure and has a history of heart attacks. If she knew that her grandson has been killed, she will definitely die on the spot.”
Lin Dongxue reasoned, “Even if we don't say it, the bureau will send someone to get her to claim the body.”
“No! This is killing people!”
“We can’t just hide the truth from her forever!”
Xu Xiaodong proposed, “Why don’t we lie to her for now?”
1. When children die before their older family members, thus the people with white hair have to send them off instead of the other way around.Previous Chapter Next Chapter