Tao Yueyue ran to the kitchen, stayed there for a while and brought out a drink. As Chen Shi had been pondering the case, he took a sip and suddenly sprayed it all out, saying, “I understand! I understand now! Yueyue, lock the door and don't go out anywhere!”
Chen Shi grabbed his jacket and, on his way out, he asked, “What did you make? It’s sweet and salty.”
“What kind of milk tea is that? Milk tea doesn't need salt in it.”
When the door closed behind Chen Shi, Tao Yueyue picked up the remaining half in the cup, tasted it, and said with a pout, “I really did put too much in.”
Chen Shi called Lin Dongxue in the car and asked her where she was. Lin Dongxue said, “Dining outside.”
“Send me the location and don't go anywhere. I'll come to you!”
“Okay...” Lin Dongxue was clueless. “Is it important?”
“I'll be right there.”
Half an hour later, Chen Shi found the small restaurant. Several members of the task force were having dinner. Chen Shi took Lin Dongxue to the bureau, and Lin Dongxue asked, “What the hell is going on? You suddenly appeared looking so serious.”
“Stay over at my house for the next two days.”
“Huh? But my stuff...”
“I'll go to your house later on. From now on, don't go out alone. I’ll be driving you to and from work from now on.”
“It's okay for me to stay over at your house, but I want to know why.”
“To protect you!”
Lin Dongxue thought that Chen Shi was joking, smiled, but found that Chen Shi's expression remained serious.
When they finally arrived at the bureau, Chen Shi dragged Lin Dongxue over to the forensics department. Peng Sijue was still working in front of the computer when Chen Shi burst out, “Bottle! The bottle!”
“The plastic bottles in the previous cases. Test to see if they match with the victims.”
Although Peng Sijue wanted to say a few words about Chen Shi’s abrupt behavior, seeing that he had come in so hastily, he guessed that it was something important that needed to be done, so he went about it silently.
Twenty minutes later, the results came out. Peng Sijue said, “In the case of the migrant worker, the migrant worker’s saliva enzymes were on the bottle; in the family of three, this was also true; the otaku, also true...The driver…There was no saliva on the bottle.”
“What's going on?” Lin Dongxue looked at Chen Shi in surprise.
Chen Shi ’s conjecture had come to fruition. He said, “Today ’s hitchhike murder case inspired me. Why did the murderer choose this extremely difficult method to kill? The rules of the game he formulated were just diversionary tactics for us. In fact, he had his own pre-established murder list!”
“Explain.” Peng Sijue didn't quite understand.
“We all thought that anyone who bought a bottle cap with the mark would die. The murderer did exactly that in the first three cases, but from the fourth case onwards, he didn’t do that. He just killed the person who he wanted to kill, and then put half a bottle of that drink at the crime scene.“
“That way, we would think that the deceased's death was simply because he had won the 'award'?”
“That's right, so we can't prevent it no matter what we do. The people he wishes to kill will die no matter whether the victims win the ‘prize’ or not. Why the killer didn’t poison them directly is because the bottle cap is easier to manipulate. He’s hiding a piece of wood in the forest. It’s a perfect tribute to the poisoning case from ten years ago.”
The two spoke too fast, and Lin Dongxue barely kept up with their thoughts. “Serial killings were fake; this time, they were just murders with multiple targets?”
“Yes! He hitchhiked his own murder cases.”
“But this deceased person is just a driver. How did this driver offend him?”
“Everyone has already gotten off work. We’ll do it tomorrow!”
Chen Shi told Lin Dongxue, “Pour me a glass of water.”
Lin Dongxue picked up the water glass next to him, and he continued, “I want to drink the tea from your brother's office.”
“Are you trying to find a reason to get rid of me?” Lin Dongxue laughed. “You have something to say to Captain Peng? I'll wait for you outside the door then.”
After Lin Dongxue left, Chen Shi told Peng Sijue, “I’m worried that he will target Yueyue or Dongxue. It was the same person who sent me those three photos before. Today he called me ‘Officer Song’.”
“Really? His brother was arrested by you back then. Are you afraid that this case is an act of revenge against you?”
“Yeah!” Chen Shi stressed, “If my identity is exposed, I'm afraid you will also...”
“I don’t matter!” Peng Sijue interrupted him. “You have to be careful yourself, and you have to protect Dongxue. In fact, I have always wanted to say that since you chose to conceal your identity, you should no longer be involved with the police.”
“This is the so-called fate!” Chen Shi smiled bitterly.
Chen Shi turned around to leave when Peng Sijue suddenly said, “Have you thought about countermeasures? When Wang Sunxu is arrested, he’s likely to expose your identity. Captain Lin has long suspected you, but no one has poked a hole through this layer of window paper yet. Once he has a direction to move towards, it would be a matter of time before he finds out the truth.”
Chen Shi shook his head sadly, “I’ll have to handle it as it comes!”
Chen Shi returned to the car, and Lin Dongxue looked at him with a smile. “What were you whispering to Captain Peng about ?”
Chen Shi looked back at her. When Lin Qiupu knew who he was, it would be the end for him and Lin Dongxue. Lies would always be uncovered, but he didn't expect it to happen so fast.
Thinking of this, Chen Shi felt a sting in his heart. He still had a lot of things he wanted to do with Lin Dongxue.
So, he leaned over and kissed Lin Dongxue on the forehead. Lin Dongxue said, “What’s wrong? You’re acting a bit abnormal today! Is there something that you’re hiding from me?”
“No, look at my honest face...”
“Honest face? From the moment we met, you’ve never told me about your past. Can you talk about it now?”
“A man who doesn't want to mention his past, either has unspeakable secrets or there’s really nothing to say. Which kind of man do you think I am?”
“The one with an unspeakable secret!” Lin Dongxue poked Chen Shi's chest and said with a smile.
“If you know that, then why are you still asking?” Chen Shi smiled.
Chen Shi went to Lin Dongxue's house to collect some daily necessities. Lin Dongxue said, “This doesn’t count as cohabitation, ok? I will move back when Wang Sunxu is arrested.”
Chen Shi said, “Relax, it’s not like you haven't stayed over at my house before, and there is also a small light bulb there called ‘Yueyue’!”
“Haha, what would Yueyue think if she heard that?”
Lin Dongxue went inside Chen Shi's house, and Yueyue was very happy to learn that she had come and hugged her. Lin Dongxue said, “I haven't seen you for a while. Yueyue has grown again!”
“Really? She still looks like a child.” Chen Shi said, while hanging his clothes up.
“That's because you see her every day.”
“Elder Sister Lin, how long are you going to stay here this time?” Tao Yueyue asked.
“When the bad guy this time is caught, I’ll move back.”
“Oh, then I hope the bad guy will never be caught.”
“Haha, then I'm afraid that Elder Sister here wouldn’t be able to sleep much.” Lin Dongxue tapped Tao Yueyue’s nose lightly.
1. Back in ancient China, windows were covered with paper that was glued on, and if people poke holes in them with their fingers, the light from outside would come through. Thus the idiom means that the truth has been illuminated by the light i.e. revealed.