Sitting on the wooden table were several used cotton swabs, a bottle of mineral water, and an unopened bun.
The young officer sitting across the table put down his recorder and took out his phone to show Chen Ge a picture on it. “Is he the man you saw?”
Chen Ge took a look at the picture of several men walking out of a building together. The tallest among them had a tattoo of a peony on the back of his hand.
“Yes, that’s him!”
“Peony represents wealth in Chinese culture and is a common tattoo among gamblers. This man’s name is Zhang Peng; he’s a gambler who is currently running from a debt of several hundred thousand RMB. He’s involved in crimes like robbery and mugging.” The officer continued flipping through the pictures. “Now, take a look at this.”
This time, it was a picture that looked like it was taken from a traffic camera. After multiple zoom-ins, Chen Ge finally got a clear view of the driver. Sitting in the driver’s seat was a frantic looking fat man; he looked around ninety percent similar to the fat man Chen Ge saw in the apartment.
“With your description, we matched it to our traffic records database. The name of the driver in the picture is Feng Chunlei, an out-of-city man. He was responsible for a hit-and-run and driving under influence.” The young officer put aside his phone and rearranged the information laid before him. “I believe I’ve taken all the information I need from you, Mr. Chen, but temporarily, you cannot leave. In a minute, the people from the Main City’s investigation team will need to get a more thorough statement from you. Hopefully, you’ll be willing to cooperate with the investigation; after all, you’re our only witness.”
“Of course.” Chen Ge leaned down in bed, and his emotions began to calm down. Several hours ago, Western Jiujiang City’s police station had received a call saying there was a murder going on at Ping An Apartments. The police mobilized immediately. They ran into Chen Ge on their way to Ping An Apartments. After some initial questions, the police separated into two teams.
One went to follow Chen Ge back to the wooden house to detain Wang Qi, and the other went into the forest to capture Ping An Apartments’ tenants. When Chen Ge returned to the wooden house, there was only a pool of blood on the floor; Wang Qi had already disappeared.
After seeing the fresh blood and the large amount of clothing in the wooden house, they finally believed Chen Ge. They immediately called for the station’s help to send more people to seal the mountain.
Chen Ge, as the key witness, was given airtight protection. Initially, the police wanted to send him to the station, but to complete the mission given by the black phone, Chen Ge insisted on staying. He told the police there was more evidence inside Ping An Apartments and insisted on having his statement taken at Ping An Apartments.
So, with four officers, two inside and two outside the door protecting him, Chen Ge lay down in bed, waiting for the mission time to pass.
The door was pushed open at 3 am. A middle-aged officer in his forties walked in. He removed his police cap and grabbed the bottle off the table to take several big gulps.
“Uncle Sanbao, that’s mine.” Chen Ge sat up in bed when he saw the man. The officer’s full name was Lee Sanbao, the deputy head of Western Jiujiang City’s police station. Coincidentally, he was also the officer responsible for Chen Ge’s parents’ disappearance case. At the time, it was this Uncle Sanbao who had helped Chen Ge walk out from his depression.
“You cheeky little thing, haven’t I told you to not refer to me as your Uncle Sanbao? It’s Superintendent Lee or Inspector Lee.” Lee Sanbao put down the water bottle and scolded him with an irrepressible smile on his face. “I’ll let it slide this time since you’ve done a wonderful good deed this time.”
Chen Ge stood up to ask, “They’ve caught the man?”
“Of course, don’t underestimate the people from the investigation team. They have not only captured Wang Qi but also the other people from the apartment. The only one missing is Zhang Peng.”
“That’s great news!”
“They’ve even found Wang Qi’s fiancé’s body; it’s being looked over by our forensic expert as we speak. In any case, if you have any questions, you’d better ask them now because I’ll need to leave to deal with other things soon.” The only reason Inspector Lee was there was to give Chen Ge the good news.
“Both Zhang Peng and Feng Chunlei are escaped criminals, but what about the other two?” Chen Ge did not hesitate and pose the question on his mind.
“The woman is Zhang Peng’s wife. At most, she’ll be guilty of harboring a fugitive. The landlord, though, is a bit more complicated. He was originally a care-taker but got too greedy and cooperated with the rest to seize the senior’s property. However, he did not torture the senior. At least, we couldn’t see any obvious wounds on the senior,” Inspector Lee answered as he put his cap back on. “Why would you ask about that?”
“Just curious.” Chen Ge listened to He San and flashed an honest smile. “Although, I hear that aiding the police in capturing fugitives entitles one to some rewards, yes?”
“The banner and badge will be sent to you through mail when the case is closed, goodbye.”
The young officer who saw this laughed and said, “Inspector Lee is just playing with you. If Wang Qi is confirmed to be the arsonist from four years ago, then the reward money that you could get is about 30,000 RMB. However, the reward will be given by the local government’s treasury and not the law enforcement. Furthermore, the senior once offered 5,000 RMB as reward for any information relating to his family’s death.”
“So, there’s really a monetary reward?” Chen Ge’s lips curved into a smile when money was mentioned. “I asked only for fun. Of course, the reason I did this was not for the money. To be able to contribute to the preservation of peace within this wonderful city of ours is the absolute honor.”
The young officer smiled and did not comment. He went back to his post of guarding the door.
Later, after Chen Ge was questioned by the investigation team, the officers volunteered to send him home. However, to complete the mission, Chen Ge gave multiple excuses. He refused to budge from the apartment building. Either he needed to get his stuff from Room 408 or he wanted to follow the officer up to the third floor to see the crime scene for himself. In any case, he stayed there until 6 am. It was not until the Mission Completed notice appeared on the black phone that he was willing to leave in the police car.
Looking at the scenery that flew past him, Chen Ge did not feel at all tired. He snuck out the black phone quietly and started to look through the mission reward.
“Player managed to reach the Mission Location on time, successfully found the party responsible for the murder, and survived until dawn. Trial Mission, Murder by Midnight, successful! A new scenario has been unlocked. Player can manipulate the props inside the set freely using the interface available on the phone!
“Trial Mission’s completion rate more than Ninety percent. Congratulations for unlocking this mission’s hidden item—Wang Qi’s Missing Person Notice.
“Wang Qi’s Missing Person Notice (11 Malice Points): Every day I search for the love that I killed. I killed her again and again, but she always manages to find me. Every morning, when I open my eyes, her stuff will appear in bed with me. I’ve already sealed her inside the wall, but she seemed to have snuck inside my heart.”