ISOL Chapter 47
Su Xiao Pei had never come across gangster in the ancient world.
In fact, in her line of work as an advisor, her time spending has been limited to her house and the Yamen. She had hardly visited the market. Regarding her daily essentials, Aunty Liu has been taking care of it. The Yamen was located on the same street as her house, therefore, there was no need for her to walk any further. Let alone gangsters, other than colleague, the only people she meets that were not working in the Yamen are the people who are involved in a case. And when she meets them, she spends most of her time asking question rather than getting to know them.
Sometimes she would laugh at herself, her luck with meeting the right people is quite good. She was pulled here without knowing what is happening but she a house and a job that she is good at. While she does not even see a shadow of Cheng Jiang Yi. Suddenly, her thoughts start to stray, what if she can’t find him, will she be trapped in his world forever?
That Yue Lao is not reliable, saying that the red string of fate was tied to tightly to her life. Once she transmigrates over, she would not be far from Cheng Jiang Yi, then, why is she still here? Now, she has even used the government but yet there is still no result. The more she thought about it, the more anxious she became. And she could not even talk to anyone about this. This makes Su Xiao Pei even more depressed.
On this day, Ran Fei Ze had left for half a month, Bai Yu Lang suddenly gave her a letter and said, “Uncle Ran gave it to you.”. His disapproval was clearly showed on his face but Su Xiao Pei acts like she did not see it.
But why would Ran Fei Ze give her another letter? Was she in a bad mood and Bai Yu Lang saw it? Did Ran Fei Ze ordered Bai Yu Lang to give her a letter when she is in a bad mood?
Su Xiao Pei opened the letter, the letter was quite long. He was considerate as he did not write the letter in a classical Chinese text where they were polite, and the meaning were subtle. This made Su Xiao Pei very happy, she couldn’t help but laugh after reading it.
The letter was sent from a far away place by Ran Fei Ze. He said that he went to No Town next to Ping Zhou City and he had found a place there to live for a while. He wrote about the kind of house he lived in, what kind of scenery there was and that a lot of Jianghu members were living in No Town. Compared to them, he is considered a gentleman, this made him very confident. He added that the things that were sold there were about the same prices as Stone Town, some were cheaper. For example, two of the mantou cost five copper plates. He said that he had helped her calculate, with this, she was able to buy two thousand mantou with her monthly salary.
Su Xiao Pei laughed out loud when she read this sentence.
He had also written some trivial things, in the end, he had wrote that things had finally settled down and he was looking forward to her letter. In the letter, he had enclosed an envelope with his address, he had told her to hand the letter over to Bai Yu Lang and he will arrange for people to send the letters.
Su Xiao Pei was in a good mood after reading the letter, she quickly wrote back to him. she wrote about her current living situation, that there was not big case and it was a bit boring now. She wrote that there was no progress in her search, and she was panicking a little. In the end, she complained about Bai Yu Lang, saying that if she gave this letter to Bai Yu Lang, he would lecture her for privately sending letters, as it is improper. However, she intends to tell Bai Yu Lang that he could read her letter, that her letter is not only for Ran Fei Ze to read, and asked Bai Yu Lang to not nag so much. She then wrote a question in the letter, asking Ran Fei Ze how many letters he passed to Bai Yu Lang before he left, she wrote that Bai Yu Lang only gave her two and the others were still hidden by him. she wanted to take all the letters, asking Ran Fei Ze to write to Bai Yu Lang, telling Bai Yu Lang to pass all the letters to her.
Once Su Xiao Pei was done with her letter, she placed her letter in the envelope that was prepared by Ran Fei Ze, then she took it to Bai Yu Lang. Bai Yu Lang frowned at her, but Su Xiao Pei smiled and pointed to the words on Ran Fei Ze’s letter. That Ran Fei Ze had given her permission to write a letter back, can’t blame her for doing as she’s told.
As a result, Bai Yu Lang said, “In that case, you can’t write a letter back so fast.”
Hey, does this means that it is not appropriate for her to even have thoughts to reply back to him even before he said it? Whose logic is this? Su Xiao Pei frowned at him.
Bai Yu Lang had nothing to say, he took the letter away mumbling away that he wanted to write a letter to his Uncle Ran. Su Xiao Pei ignored him, only thinking that Ran Fei Ze could read her letter soon, and couldn’t help but smile when this thought passed through her head. She can’t help but look forward to the day she received another letter from Ran Fei Ze.
But the days did not pass fast, and finally her days were not calm.
fThis day, an old lady carried a corpse to the front door of the Yamen and beat the drums. The old lady is a suburbs farmer, her husband passed away, her eldest daughter married out of the town and she is left with her youngest daughter at home. Two days ago, she had reported to government that her youngest daughter was missing but the government had not found her. Today, she came to report to the Yamen that she as she was finding her daughter outside the village, she found her youngest daughter. Her daughter was dying, when she saw her mother, she fell down. Before her last breath, she pointed a direction and said that she was kidnapped to a red roof and green walled building somewhere in the suburbs. She was raped and badly beaten for several days. She recognized the man, it was Ling City’s garment shop’s owner, surnamed Tong Feng.
Once her daughter finally said her peace, she passed away. The old lady grieved and carried her youngest daughter to the Yamen and beat the drums.
The Magistrate attached great importance to his case and ordered an autopsy on the corpse.
The daughter had passed recently, there were traces of injuries on her. There were traces of rope marks on her wrists and ankles. It was horrible. She was only covered with a shredded outer coat, twigs and leaves in her hair and no shoes. These were signs that she had escaped. The Magistrate listened to the story and he sent two officials, Gu Xing and Liu Xiang to the suburbs to search for the house as what the old woman had said.
Head Constable Gu took the lead, taking Liu Xiang and other constables with him. They did find a red roof and green walled building, and after investigating, they had found out that the building was indeed owned by Tong Feng. He had bought this house a few years ago, he would stay in the house whenever he’s free.
Before they returned, the Magistrate asked the old lady again, about the details of her daughter’s disappearance, and how she knew Tong Feng. The old lady confessed while in tears, that her daughter was filial and she often did some part time work to earn some money for the house, because of this, she received a lot of work from Tong Feng.
The Magistrate also asked about the old lady about her daughter relationship with Tong Feng. The old lady shook her head, her daughter was not married, so she would not be involved with Tong Feng. The daily work was sent to Ling City. Occasionally, her daughter would go to the city to pass her finished work to the staff and collect her money and she would return home immediately. Sometimes, she would see Tong Feng around in the shop, but she would just bow her head as a greeting, they would not talk much.
The Magistrate listened, and Head Constable Gu reported back. The Magistrate is confident that Tong Feng is infatuated with the victim. But the victim rejected him, so he kidnapped and forced himself on the victim. Although, Ling City has their own Magistrate, their own Yamen, it can still be considered as Ning’an City jurisdiction. Head Constable Qin has a golden dagger that was given by the Emperor, it is one of a kind. To avoid confusion, the Magistrate sent Head Constable Qin to Ling City to catch Tong Feng.
Before Qin De Zheng could set off, the old lady knelt in front of the horse, bowed and shouted out, begging the government to help catch her daughter’s murderer and give justice to her. Su Xiao Pei couldn’t move her eyes from this scene.
Qin De Zheng led his officials and set off on the night, and they returned the next morning with Tong Feng with them. But it was at this point, that things start to change. Tong Feng claimed innocent. He said that he was at home the past two days with his wives. He did not go out and his wives could testify for him. Needless to say, three wives testified for him and they confirmed that Tong Feng did not leave the house and had accompanied the three of them, enjoying each other company.
Tong Feng knew the old lady, he knew that she had helped his shop did some embroidery work, but the craftsmanship was nothing spectacular, he had not sent any work to them for a few months. Both mother and daughter had come to the shop and complained a few times, but he had ordered the manager of the shop to stop them. He said that the old lady and her daughter were pitiful and he pitied them when they came up to him, but the girl said that he was the one who committed the crime or it could even be that before she died she did not speak a word. The old lady’s daughter had just passed away, she is grieving, therefore, she could’ve just pointed at anyone to bear the crime, no one will know. In addition, there is no one around that eye-catching building. Everybody also knows that he owned that building, it is not unusual for people to link the building and him together.
The old lady never thought that the situation would turn back to her. She was so angry that her face turned paled and she fainted.
The Magistrate sent Gu Xing, Liu Xiang and other officials to search the house. After searching, they could not find the victim’s clothing, there were no other physical evidence of anyone being kidnapped found in the house. There was no servant in the house, the neighbors were quite a distance away from the house, everyone said that nothing happened, they also did not hear any sound coming from the house, much less a woman crying for help.
The Magistrate then ordered Head Constable Qin to head to the Ling City’s Tong residence to question them. Head Constable thought about it and decided to take Su Xiao Pei along with him.
Unfortunately, there was no progress in their questioning. The servants all said that their Master and Mistress was home. Master had also given instructions that no one is to disturb him. Everyone knew that their Master and Mistress were enjoying themselves. So, everyone did their own task and did not bother their Master. Tong Feng’s three wives also confidently said that he had stayed at home and did not go out.
Qin De Zheng and Su Xiao Pei went to the Tong Feng sleeping quarters, there were still a smell of incense and that the sleeping quarters is still messy. It seems that they were not lying.
Qin De Zheng asked Su Xiao Pei about her thoughts on this case. Su Xiao Pei was thinking about what the servants and wives had said. The wives said that they were enjoying themselves with Tong Feng. The servant also said that their Master and Mistress were locked in the house for the two days. These words, even if the main subject did not include Tong Feng, it is the truth. Therefore, they were not lying, and they didn’t have to lie.
“I would like to see that building.”
It is obvious that these people’s words were carefully prepared, and Tong Feng’s gaze were cold and calm, without remorse and mercy. This is a typical anti-social personality and for him to arrange his wives and servants to say the same alibi, it is not the first time he has committed a crime. There must have some clues that were left behind.
Qin De Zheng took Su Xiao Pei to the building.
The building was very clean, some parts were too clean. Apparently, after the victim escaped, Tong Feng must have felt that something was going to happened, thus, he must have cleaned the place. The building was not big, there were a few strange furnishings and items in several of the small rooms. But in one room, Su Xiao Pei pulled out a box from the cabinet and saw a few small pieces of jewelry.
“This is nothing special. The old lady did say that her daughter had no jewelry on her.” Qin De Zheng said when he saw the jewelry.
“This is not her daughter’s.” Su Xiao Pei stared at those jewelry, the color, style and texture are not same. This few jewelries were not from the same woman. The wives of Tong Feng had much better jewelries than these.
“This is not only one case.” Su Xiao Pei suddenly said to Qin De Zheng. “Tong Feng is a serial killer.”
Qin De Zheng was surprised.
“These are his trophies. He must have stolen these from the ladies then killed them after torture. He needs to deal with the bodies.”
Qin De Zheng was even more surprised.
“He cleaned up everything and ruined the evidence, but these trophies are too precious to lose. He needs these jewelries to satisfy his perverted obsession.” Su Xiao Pei stood up, she was quite sure of her deduction, that he is a serial killer and that they are dealing with multiple cases. She suddenly felt a chill ran down her back because she thought that in her modern world, there was a case similar to this. The murderer used real estate to commit his crimes. Every time he would commit his crimes, he would let his wife, mistress and guest to enjoy at his house. the neighbors would be able to hear them partying. Therefore, he had the perfect alibi.
She said to Qin De Zheng, “Head Constable Qin, please bring your men to search around the house. Tong Feng would need to deal with the body, there should be more than one victim.”
Qin De Zheng believed her; he sent a constable back to the Yamen asking Gu Xing to bring some people. Everyone scattered around to look for the body. Finally, the found traces of loose soil in the woods that were not far from the house. At first glance, there were four bodies that were buried.
This time the case has a big breakthrough, the Magistrate immediately investigate passed cases of missing daughters and asked them to identify their daughters. With the evidence in his face, Tong Feng could no longer deny it. His wives finally spit out the truth. Like what Su Xiao Pei had thought, Tong Feng had gone out to commit his crimes, he had his wives enjoying themselves at home and had his servants to not disturb them. But whenever someone asked, as long as his wives stick to his orders, there will be no problem. In the past few years, Tong Feng had changed a lot, he had become more demanding and aggressive, they had become afraid of him. What he says goes, nobody can go against him.
Su Xiao Pei and the wives talked for a long time, while they talked, Su Xiao Pei felt that this case is really similar to the one in modern times. If this wasn’t a different era, Su Xiao Pei would’ve thought that Tong Feng is the one who committed the murder in modern times.
The Magistrate is very happy that they took 5 days to solve case. While Su Xiao Pei saw that the old lady was kneeling down in front of the Yamen main gate, thanking the heavens and the Magistrate for bringing justice for her daughter. After that, she wiped her tears and left. Su Xiao Pei felt a little sad, luckily, they had caught the murderer, she hope that this was enough to bring comfort to this mother.
That night, Su Xiao Pei wrote a letter to Ran Fei Ze. She told him what happened the past few days. She said that she solved another case. She missed her mother. She was far away from her home. She was afraid that she was unable to go back.
Su Xiao Pei felt that the more she wrote, the sadder the letter becomes. She wrote that she he was the only friend she has in this world. That she also misses him, she had also asked him how far was Ping Zhou City?
She stops writing at this point.
She took out the letter that Ran Fei Ze wrote, ‘Till we meet again.’, and read it again. She sighs and started to daydream.
Why does it matter the distance between them, can she even go and find him? It is inconvenient for him to bring her along. In fact, his original plan was to bring her to a nunnery. Her luck is considered good now that the government allowed her to stay. She should be content with it. she can’t always bother him to take care of her. Now that she thinks about it, she is very lucky, the first person she met was Ran Fei Ze, a good person. She didn’t meet any hardship. Other than unable to find the person she wanted, her life in ancient times has been smooth. But finding the person is a priority, what else can she do?
What if her mother found out that she is missing, will she be anxious? Su Xiao Pei missed her mother so much, although whenever they meet, they always quarrel, she still missed her mother. Her father used to say that her mother and her was very similar, he was right. She started to think about her father, but there are no photos of her father here…
Su Xiao Pei was in a daze when she heard a knock on the door. The knock was not heavy, but it was clear.
Su Xiao Pei was alert, if it was Aunty Liu, or her kids, or even Bai Yu Lang, or anyone else that she knows, other than knocking on the door, they will called out, ‘Miss Su.’. But this time, no one called out after the knock. Su Xiao Pei did not answer the door, she took out the dagger that Ran Fei Ze gave to her and sneaked behind the door.
There was no sound coming from outside, as if the knock on the door was a hallucination. But Su Xiao Pei knew that she had not mistaken the knock. She was sure that someone had knocked on the door.
“Who is it?” Su Xiao Pei couldn’t help but whispered. But no one answered her.
Su Xiao Pei waited and frowned, she wanted to ignore it and go back into the room when suddenly she saw a letter on the floor.
Just from a glance, Su Xiao Pei knew that this letter is not from Ran Fei Ze.
He would not send her a letter in such a scary way.
Su Xiao Pei hesitated before picking the letter up. She looked through a crack of the door, but she saw no one.
Su Xiao Pei took the letter back to the room and opened it.
After reading it, she rushed towards the main door, opened it and rushed out, looking around.
The moon was still high up, the sky is clear, the alley is brightly illuminated by the moonlight. There is no one in the alley. Su Xiao Pei ran outside into the main street, she looked around, yet she still did not see anyone.
Su Xiao Pei’s heart was jumping, it was beating so fast that she felt it was jumping out of her ribcage.
There was only three words on that letter – who are you? [These three words were written in English to Su Xiao Pei.]