Chapter 78 - Doll Play #4
"I-I don’t have one.”
"Look straight into my eyes and repeat that.”
Kang-suk signalled Hyun-ho to look around the room. Hyun-ho nodded without speaking and searched the room. The door to the basement that was hidden under the carpet wasn’t so difficult to find.
Kang-suk looked at the door with confidence. The lack of dust gathered on it meant that it was frequently accessed.
"Master-nim. Sorry, but can I go in and check it?”
Yoo Ho-jin’s face was pale as his shoulders slumped, seeming like he didn’t have the energy left to answer. Kang-suk grabbed the opponent’s arm so he couldn’t escape and went down to the basement. There was only one light bulb flashing inside the small room, with a woman tied up inside with a doll.
"A-Are you alright? Don’t worry. I am the police.”
The woman desperately shook her body and banged her head against the wall. It was the identity of the sound that he had heard.
Kang-suk pulled out his handcuffs and put them around Yoo Ho-jin’s hands.
"I am arresting you for kidnapping! You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to an attorney, and the right to have the attorney speak for you when you are asked a question. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be provided for you. Do you understand the rights I have just read to you?”
While Kang-suk was reading the Miranda rights, Hyun-ho was untying the woman.
“Are you okay?”
“...T-Thank you for saving me.”
Hyun-ho’s eyes widened as he confirmed her identity.
“I’m sorry, but are you Ryu Myung-hwa?”
“Yes, that’s right...”
“Sunbae! It’s Ryu Myung-hwa, the actress who went missing a month ago!”
Thus, she was dramatically rescued from a criminal by Detective Cho Kang-suk.
They searched the basement and the attic, but couldn’t find any traces of anyone being killed. Kang-suk was praised by Kim Do-shik for resolving the disappearance of Ryu Myung-hwa.
But no matter how he thought about it, he couldn’t feel clean at all. In the end, he couldn’t find anything on the mutilation murderer.
Joo Hyun-ho was already inside the interrogation room, but Kang-suk couldn’t wait outside.
"Hyun-ho, sorry but I will be substituting.”
"Geez, a senior is trying to take away his junior’s rice bowl.”
"Go already. Either that, or you can watch from the sidelines.”
"You two have a good time, I’ll be eating some rice.”
Hyun-ho hummed before disappearing, leaving only Cho Kang-suk and Yoo Ho-jin left inside the interrogation room.
Kang-suk sat on the chair and looked at the man on the other side. The doll artist seemed to have become 10 years older as he stared into the air with a blank expression. Before Kang-suk could speak, Yoo Ho-jin opened his mouth first.
“Detective-nim. I kidnapped Myung-hwa. However, I didn’t kill anyone. I have nothing to do with the mutilations.”
Anybody would become psychologically nervous when sitting handcuffed in a room. In such an atmosphere, the criminal tended to confess.
"So tell me the reason why a famous artist like you would kidnap Ryu Myung-hwa.”
Although he had been branded as a criminal, Kang-suk treated him as a human being. Yoo Ho-jin replied with a look of pleasure,
"I wanted a doll."
“Yes. No matter how perfect a human is, they can’t be truly perfect. Therefore, I decided to make the most beautiful doll in the world.”
Kang-suk inwardly sighed. What type of artist was this?
"I don't understand. That doesn’t explain why you kidnapped Ryu Myung-hwa.”
"I wanted a doll that resembled her, a beauty that would last forever. But it wasn’t easy, since I couldn’t express everything I wanted. So I think I became crazy for a while.”
Kang-suk licked his lips. This was why he kidnapped a person and locked her in the basement?
"You didn’t harm her, and you also don’t have a criminal record, so it will be three year sentence.”
“Thank you. I was able to come back to my senses thanks to Detective-nim.”
In the end, the doll play of the artist who wanted to make the most perfect doll was over. Yoo Ho-jin suddenly called out the leaving Kang-suk, as if he remembered something.
“Ah, could you please wait a moment?”
"I've been thinking about it. Decorating a Christmas tree with doll parts. I did a very similar work two years ago. That work was definitely bought...”
"If you tell me then I will lighten your sentence as much as possible.”
Yoo Ho-jin spoke hesitantly.
"Maybe I should say sorry in advance. Someone from China bought it.”
Kang-suk sighed. It was almost impossible to find the whereabouts of a foreigner.
“Detective-nim, I hope you catch the killer. At any rate, I’m sorry for the inconvenience.”
"Please say that to the victim.”
The first doll play was solved by Detective Cho Kang-suk of Gangdong Police Station’s 2nd team. However, Cho Kang-suk eventually couldn’t figure out the answer to the second doll play. That incident seemed to be falling into a labyrinth.
A huge reversal was waiting.
"What, did you find a good way to make money?”
Big Mama greeted Tae-hyuk with a light smile. She was the owner of a pawn shop and was also a forgery specialist. However, it was an open secret that she was also a trader in buying and selling information.
"Do you have the information for T Medical Center that I previously requested?”
At that moment, a strange light flashed in Big Mama’s eyes.
"I felt like I was poking around a fortress.”
"A merchant sells goods and the customer pays. However, I am busy so please make this short.”
Tae-hyuk said this with a smile and Big Mama laughed. When she first met him six months ago, he had known nothing, but now he was a criminal.
"Of course, I have prepared it. This one is a little expensive.”
“That is cheaper than I thought.”
“Oh my. Your hands are getting bigger. Did you win the lottery or something?”
"I got something better than the lottery.”
Big Mama didn’t ask further.
"If you have any questions about the real estate market, then don’t hesitate to ask.”
Big Mama received the money from Tae-hyuk, put it in a safe, and then pulled out a bunch of papers from a box under the table. The transaction of a company’s secrets was completed as if he was buying a drink.
"Can I read it here?"
Tae-hyuk sat down in Big Mama’s workroom like it was his own home. The volume of the report was nice.
On the surface, it seemed to be a medical menter that was implementing noblesse oblige. They regularly provided medical support to the orphanages in the city, and even provided free hospitalization for injured children.
However, there were two unusual things about T Medical Center.
First of all, the percentage of Chinese patients was strangely high. It was said that there were a large number of wealthy Koreans living in China and that they often came to T Medical Center for difficult surgeries. Even so, it was an overwhelming proportion compared to the Korean patients.
"This concludes all the information that could be obtained legally. And now, it is time for the illegal content.”
Tae-hyuk turned the page. Unlike the previous page, this ink was different.
“Um... It disappears when exposed to air.”
He could only read it once. Tae-hyuk paid careful attention to each letter of the report.
T Medical Center strictly kept it a secret, but the frequency of organ transplants was much higher than other hospitals. It was as if T Medical Center itself existed only for organ transplantation.
Tae-hyuk licked his lips.
“…First, let me organize the case.”
The first thing that happened was the disappearance of actress Ryu Myung-hwa. After that, the children living in orphanages started to disappear.
It seemed to be a type of causal relationship; however, they had nothing to do with each other.
The children in the Seoul orphanages started to disappear and after a while, their arms and legs were found decorating a tree. It seemed like a horrific mutilation murder case. Disappearing children
Health screenings on a regular basis. The rich people from China coming here for surgery. A hospital that specialized in organ transplants. All the pieces of the puzzle were revealed one by one.
Tae-hyuk was hit with a sudden wave of fatigue. If his reasoning was correct, this was an atrocious crime that didn’t regard the children as humans.
“…In the first place, this isn’t a mutilation murder case, it was just made to look like that.”
A bizarre doll play event that decorated the tree with body parts. It was done to make it look like murder.
"It is kidnapping for organ trafficking.”
Tae-hyuk reached the truth of the incident.
The police were trying to catch a murderer. In order to do this, they mobilized a nationwide investigation. However, they couldn’t catch the culprit. It was natural. In the first place, the mutilation murderer didn’t exist.
"This was the reason why it ended unsolved. The problem is logic, because the police were solving the wrong equation.”
Tae-hyuk searched the Internet for news on his smartphone. It was easy to find some relevant articles.
[Since earlier this year, organ transplant from death row prisoners is legally forbidden in China.]
China used to take the organs of death row prisoners and sell them for a lot of money to patients who needed transplants. It earned hundreds of millions of won every year. However, as the controversy over human rights violation persisted, it eventually became prohibited by law.
The Chinese medical community showed that the number of patients who need organ transplants every year in their country went up to 300,000, and that the actual number of organ transplant recipients was only 10,000. Furthermore, most of them were organs form the death row prisoners.
But now that had become impossible. Demand was overflowing but the supply was gone.
Then what would happen?
Tae-hyuk suddenly recalled a ghost story circulating the Internet. There were a large number of homeless people in front of the station and volunteers would come to give them bread and milk. But the next morning, the place where the homeless people should’ve been was empty.
However, there was one error in this ghost story. The organ rating was assigned according to the health status. There was no way that the organs of old or sick people would be sold at an expensive price.
Then, what if the organs were young and healthy? There were also regular health checks to keep the organs at their best. Indeed, those ones would sell at an expensive price.
Tae-hyuk became nauseous as he thought about it.
The children were orphans. There was no family to mourn them if they disappeared. Nobody would look for them. The police would report them as simple runaways and not even investigate properly. They were the best prey for an organ trafficking ring.
Tae-hyuk recalled the children he met at St. Mary’s Orphanage. There was a troublemaker who always drew on Kang-suk and the walls, and he wanted to become an artist. Some girls even cried at the dresses that Kang-suk gave them, since it was the first time they wore such pretty clothes.
T Medical Center was literally playing with dolls. They destroyed the arms of the expensive dolls, and then they fixed it for a cheap price. Such a terrible thing was still occurring somewhere.
Fury filled Tae-hyuk’s face.
Seo Tae-hyuk put on the mask and became Phantom. Phantom muttered quietly,
"I will leave it to Cho Kang-suk to become angry.”
Freshness was vital for organ trafficking. Maybe a lot of the survivors were being held somewhere in T Medical Center. After saving them...
Smash T Medical Center.
"I'm sorry but I will finish this case. I don’t feel like giving it up.”
He had promised to rescue Kim Soo-bin. He could also get huge rewards from solving it.
This incident was the best chance to announce the Phantom.
For all of that...
It was Phantom, the God of Crime’s turn.
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