Su Jin was surprised that Han Mengyao was trying to call him. It had been more than a month since they had last seen each other, since she had not contacted him since they left New Moon Island. He figured she must be calling him over something urgent.
“Can we meet? Now?” Han Mengyao seemed to be very anxious and needed to meet Su Jin right away.
Su Jin frowned when he heard her request, but since he was still hired as her bodyguard, he had to agree to it. He smiled sadly at Kano Mai and said, “It looks like I’ll have to enjoy your feast another time!”
“No problem, I’ll just cook for you another day,” she replied with a smile.
Su Jin left the house for the office building that Han Mengyao told him to meet her at. He was surprised that there was an office building in the heart of town, since land was extremely expensive here. Most of the buildings here were shopping complexes and hotels because it didn’t make economical sense to build something like an office building here.
After he arrived at the top floor of the building, someone opened the door for Su Jin. Han Mengyao was already in a room along with a young man and a much older man.
“Mr. Su, you’re here.” Han Mengyao immediately greeted him when she saw that he had arrived.
“I hope you didn’t wait for too long! These two gentlemen are…?” Su Jin could tell with one glance that these two men were used to being in a position above others. They had friendly smiles on their faces, but there was still something distant about their demeanour.
“This is my senior, Lv Jincheng,” said Han Mengyao. Lv Jincheng nodded at Su Jin and didn’t say anything.
Han Mengyao continued, “This is my mentor, Mr. Yang Tianzheng. He is also the superintendent of S City’s special police, and he’s also the one who wanted to meet you today.”
Su Jin raised an eyebrow. The special police? He had only heard of this department in books, but he never knew they actually existed. He was even more surprised that they wanted to meet him and that Han Mengyao belonged to this department.
“Hoho, young man, you don’t have to be so wary. Mengyao isn’t from the special police. She’s just one of my disciples,” said Yang Tianzheng with a kind smile. It was really hard to imagine that this man was once the head of the Department of Supernatural Affairs.
Su Jin went straight to the point. “Hello, Mr. Yang. Why did you want to meet me?”
“It’s like this. Things have been a little rough in S City and some bad things have happened. We’re a little short on manpower and Mengyao recommended you when she found out about my situation. She said you’re a really capable person, so I’m actually here to ask for your help,” said Yang Tianzheng with a rather sheepish look on his face, as if he was truly in a sticky situation.
Su Jin didn’t believe a word Yang Tianzheng said. His instinct told him that these people were very likely to be connected to Situ Jin. In fact, government officials sealed off New Moon Island immediately after he had gone there with Han Mengyao, so he was pretty sure Han Mengyao worked for the special police too.
And if all these incidents were connected, then it was possible that Han Mengyao had gotten into contact with him on Situ Jin’s orders. Xu Ran had already restored Situ Jin’s altered memories, so it wasn’t surprising if Situ Jin was trying to hunt him down again.
With that in mind, Su Jin replied flatly, “I’m sorry, Mr. Yang, but I’m just an ordinary guy, so I don’t think I could be of any help to you.”
“Hoho, young man, you don’t have to be so modest. I know someone from B City made things difficult for you, but our country is in trouble and we need a capable citizen to help us now that we don’t have enough people in our department. Mengyao has strongly recommended you to me, so I hope you can put aside any prejudices you have from prior incidents and lend us a hand.” Yang Tianzheng’s voice was gentle, but there was nothing gentle about the message he was sending to Su Jin.
In short, what Yang Tianzheng was saying was that he knew that Su Jin could be of help, so it was best that Su Jin agreed to help. Since Situ Jin could track him down and make life difficult for him, the special police could do the same.
Su Jin really didn’t want to have anything to do with the government, but since Yang Tianzheng had already put it this way, it was hard for him to turn the old man down.
“Could you at least tell me what are these ‘bad things’ you need help with? If it’s within my ability to help, I don’t mind helping.”
Su Jin had parents, a younger sister and friends. He wasn’t all alone in this world. So, even though he had superpowers and was way more formidable than an ordinary human being, he thought it better to be careful around anybody from the government. He didn’t want any of his loved ones to be implicated because he had offended a government body.
Yang Tianzheng gave Su Jin a pleased nod and smiled brightly when he heard Su Jin’s answer. “You don’t have to be so worried, really. We’re just hiring you as external help and you might not need to be part of the actual operation.”
“You still haven’t told me exactly what’s happened,” said Su Jin with a frown.
Yang Tianzheng laughed heartily and said, “I won’t keep you in suspense anymore. Basically, two major happenings have occurred in S City. The first one is a series of three murder cases where an entire family has been killed.”
Su Jin was rather surprised to hear this. He was living in one of the safest countries in the world and it was rare to hear about any major crimes at all. Past murder cases were talked about on TV, but he couldn’t recall hearing about a murder case that involved the deaths of an entire family.
“The second one is also a spate of murder cases, but the victims are foreigners. S City is a cosmopolitan city and a global financial centre, and security in this country has never been a problem. It is extremely unusual for so many murder cases to occur in such a short time,” said Yang Tianzheng.
Su Jin wasn’t so surprised by the second part. Xu Ran had killed seven foreigners in his house the last time. There were clearly more of such Handbook owners going around S City.
Yang Tianzheng was secretly observing Su Jin from the corner of his eye, but Su Jin’s expression didn’t flinch at all. Su Jin was also wary of Yang Tianzheng.
“I think these two events are likely to be related. The special police should have been able to cope, but when we did an autopsy on the bodies, we noticed that many of the fatal wounds on the victims’ bodies were very strange. To play safe, we decided that we ought to consult an expert outside of the police force like yourself,” said Yang Tianzheng with a friendly laugh.
Su Jin was quite interested in finding out more about those Handbook owners who were going around robbing fellow owners of their items, so since there was a chance to investigate them, he thought he ought to seize the opportunity. It was a lot easier to get things done since the government was now involved.
“Alright, I’ll help out this time, but I hope this will be the first and last time,” said Su Jin. He didn’t want to be overly involved with the special police. Situ Jin was not easy to deal with and he didn’t want to end up having to face Situ Jin again.
Yang Tianzheng was pleased with Su Jin’s response and said, “I’ll have to trouble you then, Mr. Su! Jincheng, you and Mengyao can bring Mr. Su along on your investigations and see if he can provide any useful clues.”
Lv Jincheng nodded, then left with Han Mengyao and Su Jin. After the three of them left, Yang Tianzheng fell into deep thought for a while, then suddenly smiled. “Looks like Situ Jin was right to suspect this young man. There’s more to this fellow than meets the eye.”
As Su Jin followed Lv Jincheng and Han Mengyao out, Lv Jincheng explained the situation to Su Jin. “Mr. Su, we’re going to the crime scene of the very first homicide case. A family of three died there. The father was stabbed in the chest and his heart has gone missing, but the stab wound is only the size of a needle, so there’s no way anybody could have removed the heart from such a small hole.”
“Is it possible that he was injected with some corrosive substance that corroded the heart within his chest?” asked Su Jin. If it was impossible to remove it from the body, then the other possibility was that the heart had been left inside all along.
Lv Jincheng shook his head. “No. We did a full autopsy and found that all his other organs were intact. Only the heart was missing. Based on the injury to the arteries, it seems like it had been tugged on by a great force, but of course, my conclusion is that it is still not possible to remove the heart through such a small hole.”
Su Jin didn’t say anything. It was certainly impossible from a scientific point of view, but this wasn’t difficult for an owner with the right abilities.
“The woman who was found dead in the same location was his wife. Her cause of death is much simpler. Her forehead suffered severe trauma and there is a wound that is the size of a finger that went right through her skull, so she died immediately,” continued Lv Jincheng.
“What about the third person?” asked Su Jin nonchalantly.
“The third person…should be the child of this couple. The boy was probably around six years old or so, but we haven’t been able to find his body,” said Lv Jincheng with a sigh.
Su Jin blinked in surprise. “If you haven’t been able to find his body, how were you able to conclude that the child is dead?”
“How should I put this? We haven’t found his body, but we’ve found his skin. It’s one perfect piece from head to toe, so if you stuff it, you’d make a perfect humanlike doll,” said Lv Jincheng with a strange smile on his face. That smile was so creepy that Su Jin was sure that Lv Jincheng would become famous instantly if he acted in some horror film with that smile.
“If that’s the case then I agree that it’s enough to be certain the child is dead.” Su Jin nodded.
Han Mengyao shook her head and said, “Things might not be that simple. My senior said that the third victim ‘should be’ this child, but we’re actually not sure either. According to a medical expert, the piece of skin we found was not peeled off the body but it came off the body on its own, just like how a snake molts.”
“Just like how a snake molts?” Su Jin was really shocked. He had never heard of a human molting before.
An expensive sports car that belonged to Han Mengyao was parked outside the building. After going through the jammed roads for half an hour, the three of them finally arrived at the crime scene.
This was a middle class neighborhood and it looked like the special police had made sure that this entire case was kept under wraps. Nobody in the vicinity even looked mildly curious about the unit they were headed for, which meant that nobody knew a homicide had occurred here recently.
“The police have managed to keep this a secret?” Su Jin asked Lv Jincheng.
Lv Jincheng nodded. “Someone reported the case after it happened and it was immediately passed on to our department. We’ve kept the person who called the police in custody and we’ve checked with all the units within a one kilometer radius to make sure that absolutely nobody else knows about this.”
The murder happened in a unit on the third story and Lv Jincheng had keys to the apartment. After he opened the door, Su Jin immediately noticed that the inside of the house had been thrashed very badly. It was almost unbelievable that nobody else had noticed anything amiss.
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