Chapter 28 - Father, are you the one behind this?

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"Dr. Im. How do you view this case? It seemed like this is related to the Hanged Man card before, and this time, too—"

"Let's try to look at this in a little simpler way. Although 12 is a number with lots of meanings, it seems like the culprit used it to confuse us. Let's think about it as meaning there are nine victims left in the future."

Inspector Jung was puzzled by Hansol, who took the matter more lightly than expected. In the last profiling, Hansol reasoned that the number 12 had some massive meaning behind it, but now he had changed his position completely.

"Why are you taking it easily this time?"

"The culprit is making the scene. At first, I expected that it would only happen in the case of the Woo brothers, but… the same pattern is also being used here. The culprit wants us to distort our thoughts with wrong profiling. In times like these, we need to think of simple things."

"… I canot understand what the doctor is trying to say." Inspector Jung spoke out honestly.

She couldn't figure out what Hansol was thinking. Should they judge this differently from last time? From Hansol, looking at the bodies of the Kim sisters, nothing seemed weird.

"Once the autopsy is done, we will talk about this again."

Team leader Woo-jin patted Hansol on the shoulder and said, "Doctor Im, I don't know what is going on in your head, but wouldn't it be better if you told us?"

"No. Saying something you are not sure of is worse than saying a lie… the fact that the sisters' bodies had been found here is a miracle in itself. There was no sign of intrusion… judging from the body position, it is close to a perfect closed room murder."

Inside the room with a slight red stain on the wall where <La Crimosa> was written and erased, there were the sisters' bodies, who had their eyes closed and were hanged upside down.

What the hell happened inside?

"… what does Doctor Im think?"

"Someone must have come here, I believe. According to the state of the scene, they had been dead for almost a week. Kim Jiyeon, who was released without charge, and Kim Jiyo, who returned, decided to return to this house? They moved even while being under the suspicion of the Police? They must have left someone behind here…or returned to the house after someone contacted them."

"That is why we're also investigating whether there was a missing phone with Kim Jiyeon or Kim Jiyo. First of all, there is no sign of anyone living in the house. Sweeping the dirt or anything on the floor is possible, but… did the culprit, who created this perfect closed murder, really leave without giving out a trace?"

"That is what I am saying. We need to uncover the reason the sisters, who already ran away, were back here just like how the killer wanted. An autopsy is needed for that. There are not one or two suspicious things on the bodies."

"Okay. I will ask the National Forensic Service to perform an autopsy as soon as possible."

"No. The slower, the better. The criminals want to close the case quickly and leave it unsolved. Let's do this slowly but surely. That is the purpose of this case."

After Hansol said that, he carefully looked around the room.

How many times does the judge want to judge?

Will it really be 12 people like the number of the Hanged Man? If so, there are 9 more to go. So, what does he want to achieve through the 9?

On the next day, the 30th, Hansol went to the Seoul Central District Prosecutor's Office to attend Shin Jong-tae and the group's trial. The trial was being held in room 503.

News agencies and other outlets were waiting at the entrance of the first floor because this case was the case of two psychopaths who killed themselves and made three people commit a crime.

"Ah, taking pictures isn't allowed, so get out of the way."

One of the reporters got nervous as Hansol passed by. Hansol didn't mind it and passed through the entrance on the first floor with the things in his bag: ID, documents, and items relating to the trial.

Then, he took the elevator to the 5th floor.

Inside room 503, reporters were already seated and ready to write the articles.

"Defendant, please speak."

Lee Man-soo stood on the Defendant stand with a face that couldn't hide his anger. A lawyer from Shin jong-tae's side asked him.

"Defendant. The defendant said that he only killed the man when he himself asked for that to be done. Is that correct?"

"That's right! He asked me to kill him! No matter how much money was invested, why would we kill him for real for that reason?"

"Respective judge, the same statement can be heard from the other two. It is believed that the crimes weren't done to get the money but to obey the will of someone close to them. Please consider this."

'… a lie, and a very refreshing one at that.'

Hansol's eye turned blue and went back to normal. Hansol watched it silently. Then, his eyes met with Shin Jong-tae. The man mouthed a curse at him, but Hansol didn't respond. Shin Jong-tae tried to mumble more and more, and the judge caught him.

"Defendant, please refrain from doing the same thing again in this holy place."

"… yes."

A reluctant answer.

Hansol folded his arms in anticipation of how Prosecutor Kim Soo-hyeon would handle it.

Meanwhile, CIF has investigated the case and turned over hundreds of documents. A few pagers could be given out as an article if it was to be summarized and advertised. He wondered if the prosecutor, who was expected to get up and oppose it, would speak out.

"Any objections?"

The judge questioned, and Kim Soo-hyeon got up and submitted a document.

"This document is a record of consultations of the three defendants who received psychiatric care. The content contains the same as the defense council. And… the prosecution views that this isn't a case which can be considered as a simple murder, but was still a taught murder based on the will of the deceased."

'… so the prosecution will receive the sentence given without any questions?'

"No! I didn't murder!"

"Defendant, be quiet."

The judge was in deep thought. And there was silence with only the typing sound being heard.

Soon, the judgment was made.

"… they are sentenced to 12 years in prison."

Bang! Bang! Bang!

Hansol quickly left the courtroom without looking back.

Questions lingered on his mind.

Just why? How?

What kind of scene is this?

Hansol felt something was swirling in him. The judgment this time wasn't as expected.

This feeling inside him….is a feeling of evil. A strong desire to twist something right away. It had been a long time since he felt this.

But he had to be patient because of the 'education' he received for a long time.

"Im Hansol."

As Hansol approached his car, a familiar voice called out to him.

Hansol turned his head in that direction.

His father, who had been missing for a while, was standing there.

"Are you satisfied with today's results?"

"Father, what the hell are you doing behind the scenes?"

And at that moment, Professor Im Jaemin threw a fist at his son.

That made Hansol turn his head.

Smiling, Hansol said, "Father, you were never such a quick-tempered person."

There was no change in Hansol's tone of voice. Blood dripped from the corner of his lips, but Hansol spoke calmly.

On the other hand, his father looked like he would explode.

"Father, are you making the judgements by any chance? I think my father is behind all this."

"You are good at all these useless words. Did I teach you all this?"

"We.. my father's education was impressive. So, what my father wants now, is to teach it to me all over again. If not… should I guess the remaining 9 people? I think…"

"There is nothing you can do."

"Hmm. A father and a son with antisocial personality disorder meeting. The father is making up something, and the son is trying to uncover it. The fight between father and son only involves what? Words? Tricks? Well, father did like chess."

Hansol wanted to grab his father and punch him, but at the same time, he was curious. What role was his father even playing?

And the words.

"All I can say is that you have nothing to do with this. I need to go. I couldn't bear to look at you acting like this any longer so I came."

"… father. I will find you and bring you to court. Oh, did I tell you this? Even the title of father is disgusting to be attached to you."

Hansol didn't arrest his father, who was walking away. If he reported now, he could have caught him and put him into question, but he was full of desire to collect the missing pieces first.

His instincts were telling him that.

'I'll know once I see it. Will I be an abandoned horse, or will I become the king of the play that eats you.'

"A new incident has occurred!"

Team Two of the Violent Crimes Unit handed a case to the CIF.

"Hmm… ugh… so, sexual assault case with GHB1 in the body but cannot be detected so we can guess from here… the suspect claims he never raped the person? In addition, the suspect's DNA wasn't detected in the victim's body… Doctor Im, take a look at this file."

Hansol approached Team Leader Woo-jin and took the file.

Hansol read it one by one. There were many things to read other than what Woo-jin mumbled out.

'The victim and suspect are living together, and according to the victim's testimony, the suspect was usually good at obtaining drugs? The point is that even though they live together, they had to use GHB to sexually assault….'

"It is both a regular and unusual occurrence in dating violence. According to the suspect's information, he is a drug addict. But it's strange. The victim reported the incident six months after it happened. It has reached the stage where there is no reliable proof that it actually happened. They look to be still living together. Let us all gather in the conference room."

Hansol took the team members into the room.

Team Two of the Violent Crimes Unit thought that profiling was necessary since this was a case with too many holes in the case, so they handed it to the CIF.

"Everyone, do you know the movie <Gaslight>?"

Inspector Jung answered, "… it is a film that is the origin of the word gaslighting, which is often used in dating violence these days."

"Do you know the story?"

"In my memory… a husband deliberately invents a case to arrest his wife and drives his wife into delusions… I remember it to be something like that. it's been a long time since I saw it…."

"Let's look at the case file again. What do you see first?"

Detective Kang Woo-cheol titled his head and opened his mouth.

"… strangely a paranoia of being a victim."

Angel's Corner

Oh my, oh my… Why is his father warning him to not get involved? Is it really just father vs. son Wohohoho~

  1. Gamma-Hydroxybutyrate — is a central nervous system (CNS) depressant that is commonly referred to as a "club drug" or "date rape" drug. ↩️

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