ISOL Chapter 33
Su Xiao Pei thought for a while and spoke up, “I would to ask if the eldest young miss and second young miss look alike?” She did not see the body, therefore, does not know the appearance of the victim.
Sima Wan Yu coldly glanced at her and thought, ‘She asked a question rather than answer one?’ She was not happy, but with so many eyes around, it is best for her to not get angry. “Look alike.”
Su Xiao Pei nodded and said, “Second young miss is beautiful, big-hearted and has a straight-forward personality. Your eldest sister must be the same?”
She is not talking about the case but rather she’s sucking up to me?
Everyone was puzzled, Master Sima was starting to get impatient, but Su Xiao Pei spoke softly, and lowered herself to praise his daughter, this made him soft-hearted for a moment.
Sima Wan Ru bit her lips, coldly said, “Sister is better than me.” After saying this, she was sad and stopped talking.
Lady Sima held Sima Wan Ru hands and took over the conversation, “Qing’er is gentle and considerate. She loves martial arts, and kept on protesting to learn but her body was weak, wasn’t able to learn like Ru’er. As Ru’er was learning martial arts, Qing’er was at home studying. In the recent years, she was healthier.” The more she said, the sadder she became, the eyes of Lady Sima starts to redden.
“What’s the use of saying this?” Master Sima finally could not hold it and screamed at his wife.
Lady Sima was shock by his statement and kept silent.
Su Xiao Pei didn’t mind the shouting, she nods her head and said, “Master Sima, Lady Sima, your two daughters are similar, but their physical condition, personality and behavior are different. If a maid reported that a young miss is ill, the first daughter you would think of is your eldest young miss. This is because her health is weak. If a maid reported that a young miss had beaten someone, you would think that it was the second young miss.”
Ran Fei Ze coughed. It is inappropriate to say that someone else’s young miss is fighting.
Su Xiao Pei remembered Ran Fei Ze’s warning when she heard him coughing, and knew that she had said something wrong. But she did not ponder why, and quickly steered the conversation away, “I would also not know which young miss is better at embroidery and cooking. But whatever it is, when things happen, Master and Lady is able to know who did it based on you knowing your daughters. It may not be 100% accurate… I mean you may not be correct all the time, but there is a feeling and certainty.”
Master Sima frowned, some were confused as they were unable to linked what she said with the case.
“For example, Big sister is very eager to practice martial arts like her sister, but Master and Lady did not agree to her request. One day, while the eldest young miss was leaving the house, Master Sima and Lady Sima were on their way to visit second young miss practicing martial arts. For example, if a maid reported that her mother is seriously ill, but house rules states that she was not allowed to go home, and one day, this maid had gone missing. Master Sima and Lady Sima had sent someone to this maid’s house to find her. They were able to find her; all this maid wants to do is to see her mother.”
Su Xiao Pei said slowly, her tone was soothing, her speech was slow, her tone varies depending on her story, causing everyone to listen to her story carefully.
“What everyone does or say, everything needs to be investigated. Miss wants to practice martials arts, the maid that want to go back. Master, Madam, to look for the criminal, it is the same as this concept. We have to identify which is he, the young miss or the maid? This is for us to know where he is going, then we are able to intercept and capture him.”
The room was silent, everyone did not talk, but they understood it. What she said made sense, and everything was clear.
Master Sima coughed and said, “In that case, do you know which is he? Does Miss and Constable know where to capture him?”
“No, we do not know who he is.” Su Xiao Pei said clearly, “The things that Head Constable Qin and Soldier Ran had said was actually quite simple. The one that killed the eldest young miss is not the same as the serial killer.”
Everyone was surprised, especially four of listeners.
Head Constable Qin turned his head and looked over. What he said just now had the same meaning as what she said? He did not said that the criminal that killed Miss Sima was not Ma Zheng Yuan.
Su Xiao Pei continued saying, “The previous cases, the criminal was vicious, and he would touch them. But for eldest young miss, one stabbed to the heart, the finishing blow was quicl, perhaps the murderer did not want the young miss to be in pain. The eldest young miss knew some martial arts but she did not resist. What if she was being restrained? What if she knew the murderer? Perhaps she did not know that he would kill her, therefore she did not defend herself. Just now, Head Constable Qin and Soldier had already said many of the murderer’s actions were different from the previous cases, I will not talk much about them. But I would like to say this, I heard the servant said that when she had found the eldest young miss, her clothes we messy. But only her belt was removed, and her clothes were pulled open, but her skin was still covered. So in fact, only her clothes was messed up, meaning that the murderer do not want to shame her, he only wanted the eldest young miss to die.”
The Sima family were dumbfounded, and the government officials were stunned as well. She actually had such a speculation.
“This murderer is not the same as the serial killer. The only thing that is the same between the two is that both shave the victim’s hair. This act shows this murderer wants to blame the serial killer. With the notice posted, everyone knows that there is a criminal unwaveringly targets rich young ladies. As for the details of the case, he should have heard from the rumors that was being passed around. The murderer listened to the rumors and thought that an opportunity has come, all he had to do is follow the actions of the serial killer. He killed the young miss, shaved her hair off, and messed up the clothes, all according to the case. And at the end, everyone would think that this case was committed by the serial killer and he won’t be caught. It is easy to learn how to cut hair, but who has the heart to harm an innocent lady, so he learnt the basic of martial arts, just barely passed.”
Master Sima grit his teeth and did not speak. He felt Su Xiao Pei’s deduction was plausible if this was the case, that means that the murderer did not chose the victim at random, but his daughter was targeted? He had targeted his family?
“Are you speaking the truth?” Sima Wan Ru asked with a shaking voice, her hands were clenched at her side.
“Regarding this point, I guaranteed it.” Su Xiao Pei’s tone was unwavering. “If a maid pretends to be the lady, she was able to change her clothes, make up and her speech, but she was unable to change her mannerism. The murderer wants to imitate a criminal, but they can’t imitate that vicious heart. Their desires are different, therefore, what they did are different as well.”
“So, there is another person?” Master Sima finally spoke.
“Yes.” Head Constable Qin answered, he also believed Su Xiao Pei words.
“So, we can’t be fooled by the assumption that he is a serial killer. We have to start investigating from the start.” Su Xiao Pei answered honestly.
Head Constable Qin nodded and continued, “Master Sima, any additions to the servants, visitors, the young miss’s friends, young miss’s enemies, your family’s enemies, they could be involved in some way or another, Master Sima, could anyone had done this?”
“My daughter!” Lady Sima responded at this time and burst into tears. Sima Wan Ru supported and comforted her.
Master Sima couldn’t think of it for a moment, he frowned, and his heart was beating very fast.
The magistrate talked to them and let them think about it for a moment, and even order the Sima family not to let anyone enter nor exit the house, anyone that wants to enter or exit, they would have to undergo a security check. Head Constable Qin decided to go back to the yamen for further discussion, if there are any news on Sima family, then they were to report it.
A team of government officials went back and forth, Sima Wan Ru stared at Su Xiao Pei’s back and bit her lip.
Su Xiao Pei thought that they would return to the Yamen and Head Constable Qin would discuss the case with Ran Fei Ze and her, but that had not happened.
Head Constable Qin and the Magistrate started their own small meeting. This poured cold water on Su Xiao Pei. She was full of enthusiasm, wanted to solve the case quickly, but at the end, people ignored her.
Ran Fei Ze did not mind, he understood that that the Yamen only allowed their own people to be included in the investigation, he and Su Xiao Pei were outsiders. Naturally, the superiors were discussing on how to catch the criminal. He comforted Su Xiao Pei, saying that this was a good thing, they can go to the market to walk around.
“Soldier have money to go shopping?” she still remembered his fifteen copper coins.
“Still able to shop without money, see the sights, gain some knowledge.” Ran Fei Ze answered calmly.
Su Xiao Pei’s face turned black. Was this person saying that she has no knowledge?”
Bai Yu Lang came over and asked, “Big sister, is this your first time entering the city?”
Su Xiao Pei’s face turned even darker, she grits her teeth and answered, “Yes” this was her time entering the ‘city’!
“Uncle Ran is right, even if there is no money, you can just go sight-seeing, gain some experience. It is good that Ning’an City is a big city, there is a lot of things here that the countryside doesn’t.
Such a thoughtful constable, Su Xiao Pei has no energy to answer him.
In the end, they didn’t go to the market to stroll. The two poor person and the kind-hearted constable returned to the inn to have lunch. Unintentionally, Ran Fei Ze give signals to Bai Yu Lang to give some money.
Su Xiao Pei was very happy, able to join Ran Fei Ze to trick someone of their money.
On the table, the person who was tricked asked, “Big sister, are you sure that the person who killed Miss Sima Wan Qing is not Ma Zheng Yuan?
“Yes.” Su Xiao Pei answered quickly.
“What if you guessed wrongly?” Bai Yu Lang saw Su Xiao Pei glanced at him and changed his question, “What if the criminal was never caught, and the Sima family blame you?”
Well, there was that possibility. Su Xiao Pei looked at Ran Fei Ze.
Ran Fei Ze did not bother at their glaze, “The act of catching a criminal is the official’s duty, how is that related to people like us?”
Su Xiao Pei looked at him suspiciously.
Ran Fei Ze grinned, “Outsider’s duty is to make suggestions, and the officials’ duty is to catch the criminal. If you really want to blame us, we will run.
Run? So ruthless!
“Uncle Ran!” Bai Yu Lang called out disapprovingly.
Ran Fei Ze blinked, looked at Su Xiao Pei, “Quickly leave with one bag, do not need to pay for the room.”
“Then, you must bring me.”
“Of course.” Ran Fei Ze acted as if Bai Yu Lang did not exist. “I brought Miss here, naturally, I will leave with Miss. We can go to the Bai family first, I have friends there, the government can’t do anything to us.”
Bai Yu Lang looked at them at the side. Uncle, the friend you are talking about? Their son is right in front of you. This son is also helping you pay for this meal.
Su Xiao Pei looked at Bai Yu Lang and laughed out loud. “That’s great, that’s a plan. Soldier is really the best!”
“Of course.” Ran Fei Ze was calm, “Once the constable leave, should I send Miss to the nunnery or send you to the Bai Family to repay debts? That decision can be made after.
“Hey!” How can he change the plan in a blink of an eye? Su Xiao Pei frowned.
“Miss can’t do that” Ran Fei was still calm. “You should not do that in the future, it is indecent.”
“Hahahaha.” This time it was Bai Yu Lang who was laughing. Su Xiao Pei stared at him, and then stared at Ran Fei Ze next.
Three of them laughed for a while, and the meal was finished. Head Constable Qin sent someone to find them, asking Su Xiao Pei and Ran Fei Ze to go back to the Yamen.
The three of them took a slow walk back to the Yamen, which was opposite of the inn. Su Xiao Pei thought that they were going to discuss how to catch the criminal, therefore, while she was walking back, she was thinking through the details of the case.
When they entered the room, Head Constable Qin had a serious look on his face, and started the discussion straight away. He had discussed with the Magistrate; the case was indeed different. It was what Su Xiao Pei had speculated, therefore, they had adjusted their direction of the investigation. They had to hold onto their grasp on both cases and hoped that Su Xiao Pei would continue to participate and analyze clues to help them solve both cases, to catch both criminals.
Su Xiao Pei nodded and was planning to tell them her decisions. But Ran Fei Ze interrupted her, “Sir, regarding Ma Zheng Yuan’s case, the person who provided useful clues would be given five tales, but Miss Su and my clues was not easy to deduce. Now, with Sima family’s case, the two cases together, the rewards must be adjusted.
Qin De Zheng was stunned, he was diligently studying the cases, how was he supposed to think about the money? But with Ran Fei Ze’s reminder, he thought that the reward was something that they should talk about, therefore, he agreed, “The five tales will be rewarded, so please rest assured.”
Su Xiao Pei is overjoyed, but Ran Fei Ze was not, “Sir, solving two cases but getting five tales as a reward is not enough, it is time consuming and laborious, Miss Su and me still have find someone, but your case is more important. Frankly speaking, five tales is not enough for our lodging and food.”
Qin De Zheng was stunned again. He handles cases, his negotiating skills was not that good. And who would have expected to talk about money when they were just talking about something serious?
Su Xiao Pei was very spirited.
Awesome! Soldier is really talented.
She hurriedly calmed down and nodded her head.
Qin De Zheng looked at Su Xiao Pei and then at Ran Fei Ze. He couldn’t help but asked, “If that is the case, how would be appropriate?”
Su Xiao Pei and Ran Fei Ze answered at the same time, but the number that Ran Fei Ze said nearly made Su Xiao Pei bite her tongue.
She still hesitated before opening her mouth, and she still thought that it was too much to request three times the original amount. At the end, she looked at the other person, and he even dared to raise up by 10 times the amount.
Soldier is really awesome!
Su Xiao Pei looked at Ran Fei Ze, saw that he looked normal and upright. She was glad that she said it in a small voice because she was embarrassed, there was still time if he wants to remedy it.
She turned back to Qin De Zheng and said once more, “50 tales.”