An Xiaoning smiled at them and said reassuringly, “Fear not, it’ll be alright. Could you please bring me two chairs?”
The teacher hurriedly gestured for the students to bring the chairs. “Go, quick.”
They soon returned with two chairs, which An Xiaoning placed in front of the door.
Ma Jianguo and Zu Dong arrived back at the dormitory twenty minutes later, holding the case files of the murderer and victim of the murder case that occurred a few years ago.
An Xiaoning reached out to grab the two case files, which she then perused carefully.
She discovered that the murderer and the victim were not on good terms right from the start. The murderer was from a poor family and went through painstaking means to earn himself a place in the university. He had always been living a frugal life, whereas the victim was from an affluent family and was never cash-strapped.
The two had conflicting personalities and would frequently engage in heated arguments, which sometimes turned physical.
They did not get along with each other at all.
An Xiaoning believed that they both had a part to play in causing the strained relationship between them.
The murderer would have understandably developed an inferiority complex due to his poor family background.
Meanwhile, the victim would have been bound to develop a sense of superiority, given the fact that he had always lived a comfortable life with material abundance. Even if he may not have necessarily flaunted his wealth on purpose, it would have seemed like so to others, simply because they didn’t possess the things he did.
During their last heated argument, the pauper stabbed the affluent victim with a knife repeatedly to death.
There were no tedious investigations carried out after the murder, and the murderer was simply arrested and put behind bars, after which the case was closed.
Gong Le handed An Xiaoning the materials and tools needed for the ritual, which she then arranged accordingly before lighting up a joss stick.
Shock and terror were written on everyone’s faces as they heard a sudden shrill voice coming from inside the dorm, which lasted for a few seconds before coming to an end.
“It’s all settled. Would you guys like to go in to have a look? Also, these students here, you guys might be frightened and afraid, but don’t worry, everything is fine now,” An Xiaoning said smilingly, amused at the sight of the teacher grabbing onto the railing tightly in complete shock.
“I don’t want to stay in this room anymore…”
“Me too, I want to move to another room…”
“I’m moving back home…”
An Xiaoning removed the amulets on the door and took the lead in entering the room. The students were too afraid to enter, as much as they wanted to collect their belongings.
At last, they finally entered in the company of the police officers and quickly began packing their bags.
Liu Chen’s parents could not help but ask, “Officer An, just how did my son die?”
“The answer is very obvious. Your son had once lived in this room for a period of time. You mentioned that he used to be outgoing and optimistic but became moody and aloof ever since he attended university. This is because he was possessed by the vengeful spirit of the victim who was murdered in this room previously. Such spirits and unholy beings would usually choose to possess those who are frail and weak. For example, they would take the chance to possess their victims when their immune system is weak and defenseless. When one is healthy and full of vigor, it would practically be impossible for spirits to possess them. The vengeful spirit had possessed your son’s body for years and led him to drown in the river once your son’s energy and vitality were depleted,” An Xiaoning explained patiently.
“I would’ve never believed these superstitious theories if I didn’t witness it with my own eyes today,” said Mrs. Liu as she began tearing up uncontrollably.
An Xiaoning pointed at the student who had an amulet on his forehead and said, “This student over here was the spirit’s next target. Fortunately, we managed to discover it in time. Otherwise, he could very likely have ended up in the same plight as your son.”
The male student was scared soulless and wanted to cry yet had no tears. “Thank you, Officer An. If it weren’t for your help, I’m afraid I would have suffered the same fate too. I’ve been experiencing lots of discomforts ever since I caught a cold. I couldn’t sleep at night and suffer from insomnia, which made me appear listless all the time. I instantly felt better and revitalized after you pasted the amulet on my forehead. I really don’t know how I should thank you.”
An Xiaoning gave him a pat on his shoulder and said, “You don’t have to thank me. Fate brought me to you and allowed me to discover your condition in the nick of time. If it weren’t because of Liu Chen’s death, I wouldn’t have been here for the investigations. So, just burn some offerings for Liu Chen during his burial. That’ll do.”
“I will do that for sure,” the male student agreed, nodding earnestly.
An Xiaoning took another look around the room. Noticing how hastily the students were packing their belongings, she said, “There’s really nothing in this room anymore. You don’t actually have to move out.”
“No, no, no. I must move out. I’m really traumatized.”
“Yeah, it’s okay if we didn’t know, but now that we’re aware, we seriously dare not continue living in here.”
“I have to move away no matter what. I’m overwhelmed with fear and paranoia now.”
An Xiaoning empathized with them and said to the teacher, “Teacher, please arrange for them to move into another dormitory then.”
“Yes, yes,” the teacher agreed while nodding profusely.
The team of five then exited the college and returned inside the police car. Leaning her head against the window of the car, An Xiaoning opened a bottle of mineral water and began gulping it down.
Ma Jianguo gave her a thumbs-up and exclaimed in awe, “Team Leader, you’re really brilliant. No wonder we couldn’t find out anything substantial at all. If it weren’t for you, I doubt we’d get to the bottom of the matter even if we continue to investigate for another two years.”
An Xiaoning shot him a glance and said, “If you’d taken another two years to investigate, that student today might’ve already been dead.”
“This case is considered closed now. Drive back to the police station,” An Xiaoning instructed.
Zu Dong was behind the wheel and began driving towards the police station slowly.
“Which day of March is it today?”
“Team Leader, it’s the first day of April.”
“Oh, it’s already April? That’s so soon. Time really flies. This is the time of the year where it’s not too hot or cold. Perfect for a vacation,” said An Xiaoning.
“Team Leader, are you actually thinking of going on a vacation?”
“Why? Am I not allowed to?”
“Of course you are, hehe. I’m really getting on in my years. Yet, I’ve accomplished nothing in this life. I don’t have a wife or a child or even any money at all. I’m really envious of you,” Ma Jianguo said with a sheepish grin.
“You’re only forty-something. It’s not that old.”
“Uncle Ma, if you still don’t get married and have children soon, your child might think you’re his grandfather in the future,” Gong Le reminded teasingly.
“Get lost, who said you could call me ‘Uncle’? Call me ‘Brother’!”
Gong Le chuckled and answered, “Yes, Brother Ma.”
“That’s more like it.”
Less than twenty minutes later, they arrived smoothly at the police station due to the lack of traffic on the roads. As soon as they entered through the gate, they were greeted with the sight of a woman bawling loudly and wrapping her arms tightly around the thigh of an armed policeman, Xiao Li. Xiao Li stood rooted to the ground with a look of helplessness on his face.
What was happening?
The five of them alighted, after which Ma Jianguo asked, “Xiao Li, what’s going on?”
“Officer Ma, hurry and help me out. I’ve really had enough of her, she’s been making a din for God knows how long,” Xiao Li exclaimed in despair, appearing deathly pale.
“Miss… please get up from the ground first. Let’s talk things over calmly,” said An Xiaoning.
The woman slowly got up on her feet and announced, “I told him to release my husband but he refuses to.”
“What crime did your husband commit?”
“My husband… he didn’t hit me. Hurry and release him.”
Everyone was confused and at a loss. “Sis Xiaoning, here’s what happened. She came here to make a police report a few days ago, claiming that her husband abused her. So, we paid her husband a visit and berated him. He said that he would change his ways and seemed really remorseful. We all took pity on her when we saw how bruised and swollen her face was from the beating. She then made another report a few days later and said that her husband had hit her again,” Xiao Li explained.