“According to the law, even if the assassination attempt of an official is unsuccessful, they will still be dispatched to the border for three years.”
Lin Xi looked at this female beggar whose face already became completely snow-white, calmly saying, “If you confess and tell me who urged you to do this, I can help you lower your sentence, at most being imprisoned for a year.”
“No one urged me.” Even though the female beggar knew that there was already conclusive proof, her head lowered, she still didn’t change her words, still saying with a trembling voice, “The reason I carry the dagger is just for self protection.”
Lin Xi shook his head, with a light sigh saying, “I only wish to chat with Fourth Grandpa Zhu. Admitting a wrong, having a chat, is it just that difficult for him?”
The female beggar and the others, because of what Lin Xi said, immediately sensed a strange feeling. “This is the Enforcer who arrested Liu Tong yesterday?” At this time, there were a few people in the surroundings who also reacted.
“They all said that the new Enforcer was a young man, who would have thought that he was actually this young!”
“That Liu Tong even dared to bully that tofu selling granny, Fourth Grandpa Zhu really went too far. Sir Enforcer did his job, yet he actually still dares to send someone to assassinate him.”
“Good thing the Enforcer was vigilant, or else if he was attacked, this person might start running amok.”
“Just now, I personally saw that woman secretly approach him from behind. I originally thought she wanted to steal something, who would have thought that she wanted to carry out an attack!”
Many people immediately began to discuss this spiritedly. Compared to last time, the voices were still entirely one-sided, but now, they were all on Lin Xi’s side.
Right at this time, the crowd separated slightly. The son of this fish market’s Fatty Xu, the gloomy, dark faced youngster, walked over again.
“This one is Xu Sheng, the son of the boss of these thirteen docks shops. Greetings to Sir Lin.” The dark faced youngster directly bowed respectfully to Lin Xi, and then looked at this female beggar, coldly saying, “Hand over the dagger in your hands.”
After a bit of hesitation, the female beggar didn’t say anything either, reaching out her hand.
This place immediately erupted into commotion.
There really was an extremely sharp black dagger in her hand.
“We usually mind our own business, but for something to happen here, it is basically pulling us all into the water. This time Fourth Grandpa Zhu really has crossed the line, so in this matter, we won’t help you either, you can only take responsibility yourself.” After retrieving the black dagger from the female beggar’s hand and handing it to Lin Xi, at the same time, this young master of the thirteen docks stores narrowed his eyes slightly, saying this quietly by this female beggar’s ears.
The female beggar knew that it was because of her miscalculation that resulted in Fourth Grandpa Zhu and herself being in this type of situation. Thus, her body trembled slightly, face becoming even more pale.
“It seems like I must ask the young master to serve as witness.” Lin Xi received the dagger, and then said with a smile towards Xu Sheng.
Xu Sheng’s face sunk. He took a step forward, and then with a low voice only the two of them could hear, he said, “Sir, I believe it won’t be difficult for you to find out that normally, Fourth Grandpa Zhu doesn’t have much of a bad record. If he really wanted to assassinate you, the best place would be somewhere without any people, and not the day after the two of you had some conflict, in this type of place where all eyes can see. Sir, you definitely don’t want this East Port Town to become even more chaotic, so I wish sir could quell some of the anger you currently feel, give me a day of time to reconcile, have Fourth Grandpa Zhu meet you face to face.”
Lin Xi also became silent for a bit, but then he suddenly laughed. He pointed at the pond that was raising two Ironhead Dogfish, asking, “Are those Ironhead Dogfish?”
Xu Sheng didn’t understand his intention, frowning slightly. After a nod, he said, “They are.”
Lin Xi looked at this accomplished, though young boss’s son, asking seriously, “How many taels of silver normally for these two fish?”
Xu Sheng’s brows furrowed even deeper. “Three taels each.”
“Then if I produce six silvers, would I be able to buy these two fish?” Lin Xi smiled, asking.
Xu Sheng stared blankly. He looked at Lin Xi, after remaining silent for a moment, he said, “You naturally can.”
Lin Xi patted his shoulder, and then said, “I live right in Elder Mo’s small building. I’ve already paid for the Old River Lump here, so when the time comes, I’ll have to trouble the young master to deliver everything together, the money for these two fish, I will pay to the young master then… If Fourth Grandpa Zhu changes his way of thinking, wishing to find me, then he can look for me there as well.”
“Many thanks to sir.” Xu Sheng understood Lin Xi’s intention. His brows jumped, and then he immediately bowed seriously to Lin Xi.
Lin Xi didn’t say anything else. After nodding to this pale-faced female beggar, they began to walk out from the fish market.
This female beggar followed with her head lowered. After walking just a few steps, Liang Sansi who just received the news also already ran over.
While Lin Xi walked out from the fish market, the green and white dead object that young child saw before already bobbed up and down in the froth at East Port Town’s harbor.
Because all of the large ships had to unload their goods at this harbor, the amount of white froth, the dried branches and rotten leaves left behind were naturally much greater.
Together with the fact that most of these goods were tung oil, there was also quite a bit of grease blobs on the surface of the river.
An elder wearing a bamboo rain hat rode a small wooden boat, slowly approaching the green and white dead object.
This elder was surnamed Zhong. Since he was a lonely elder without any heirs, out of pity, the official in charge of managing the transport of goods in this dock allowed him to be in charge of cleaning the river surface, paying him several silver each year, barely allowing him to fill his belly. If he found some things discarded from the merchant ships that had some value, then these would be extra bonuses.
Because his age was already close to seventy, this elder’s movements were extremely sluggish, and his sight was already quite poor.
While slowly fishing up the random things in the white froth, piling everything in the hold of the small ship, only when he was a few dozen steps from that green and white dead object, did the elder see clearly what it was.
His blurred eyes suddenly brightened a bit, viewing it as something good that was tossed out from the ships. The bamboo pole net in his hands immediately moved over.
After turning it over, he saw it even more clearly. The green seemed to be clothing.
However, when he used a bit more force, this lump flipped over. This elder released an ah cry, releasing a scream of horror, falling right on his bottom, this small boat almost directly turning over.
The face of someone who had been soaked until it was white ‘looked’ at him, scaring him to the point where his soul almost directly flew out of his body.
What good stuff? It was completely a floating corpse that had been soaked by the river water until it became bloated!
Breath River flowed calmly. There were many fisherman households along the river, and none of them held the superstition that drowning people were underwater ghosts looking for bodies to possess, so their first reaction upon seeing anyone in the water was to rescue them.
During these years, there had never been any appearances of floating corpses in the regions surrounding East Port Town.
Right now, it was precisely the time when East Port Town’s large ships unloaded their goods.
The two ships docked at the front of the port were both wealthy ships that carried several thousand jin of goods, both of the ships having ‘Heng Rongchang’, these large characters painted in black. Groups of porters were currently carrying casks like ants as they moved along the plank to the pier’s storehouse.
When this elder released a scream of horror, many people’s attention was immediately drawn to him.
Several merchant-like individuals on the large ship closest to the elder could see it clearly, their faces immediately turning pale.
Their sight couldn’t be compared to the elder’s. They saw several rough hemp ropes around this corpse’s body.
Several boats immediately approached that floating corpse.
An Internal Affairs Sector’s official just happened to be at the port today. He covered his mouth and nose with an embroidered handkerchief, forcefully enduring the disgust as he examined this floating corpse.
His expression immediately became exceptionally grave.
The hemp ropes were bound extremely tightly, and this floating corpse had a clear cut wound on its throat.
This was undoubtedly a murder case.
“A floating corpse appeared by the port?”
Inside the Enforcer Office, Lin Xi frowned.
Originally, after he and Liang Sansi brought back this female beggar back to the Enforcer Office, he prepared to report to the Town Supervisor Manor’s superior Police Department, preparing to make a trip back to Deerwood Town first to see his family, giving them a pleasant surprise.
He didn’t even have any intention of interrogating this female beggar immediately since he was someone directly involved and he was the Enforcer who judged the case too. As long as he didn’t report this case, then there was no way for it to reach a verdict. Then, he would definitely watch Fourth Grandpa Zhu’s reaction. If Fourth Grandpa Zhu couldn’t show him an attitude that he was satisfied with within the one day deadline Xu Sheng spoke of, then there was no need for him to rush things, he would just go back home to visit his family for a few days, give him the cold shoulder for a bit first.
However, what he never expected was that when he returned to his Enforcer Office, before his bottom even became warm from the seat, Du Weiqing, Xu Jianling, and the other Enforcers hurried over, telling him this.
Lin Xi stood up, preparing to take a look around the port first. However, before he even took a few steps out, a middle-aged man dressed in water blue official clothes walked in with his hands behind him. When they saw this middle-aged official, Liang Sansi and all of the other bailiffs were immediately stunned, bowing respectfully.
Lin Xi immediately reacted. This large and tall stature, roman nosed middle-aged man who looked quite inflexible and strict was his superior. East Port Town’s Police Department’s town police Lian Zhanshan was minor ninth rank. As such, he also quickly bowed slightly, respectfully saying, “Sir Lian.”
“You are the new enforcer Lin Xi?” Lian Zhanshan looked at Lin Xi, giving a slight nod, considered a return of greeting. However, his face instead fell. “You are already aware that a floating corpse appeared at the port?”
Lin Xi replied, “I just found out.”
“You just found out?” Lian Zhanshan released a cold snort, as if cold light shone from his eyes. “Just what were you doing this morning?”
Lin Xi’s brows furrowed slightly. This Lian Zhanshan seemed to be extremely displeased with him, but his expression still remained calm. “I went to the fish market.”
Lian Zhanshan looked at Lin Xi, saying with a sneer. “Since you already came to East Port Town, you should know that the fish market is managed by Fatty Xu and his son, there is no chance of anything happening. Yet you were in such a rush to head to the fish market, could it be that you were so quick to pay them a visit, wishing to obtain some benefits from their hands?”
Lin Xi’s brows furrowed deeper. He didn’t answer him immediately, raising his head slightly to look at Lian Zhanshan.
This outwardly strict and serious Lian Zhanshan seemed to become even more unhappy, coldly saying, “I reckon you haven’t even examined that floating corpse yet?”
Lin Xi replied, “I haven’t had the time to yet.”
Lian Zhanshan’s eyes narrowed slightly, looking at Lin Xi and saying, “I can tell you that the floating corpse was bound in ropes, and there is a fatal blade injury on his neck. This is a murder case!”
“Our East Port Town has always been peaceful, everyone is also willing to do their part, rarely having vile cases, let alone this type of homicide! Under broad daylight, moreover right when a great trading company is unloading goods, the effects of this will be extremely bad.” Lian Zhanshan paused slightly, looking at Lin Xi and saying, “That is why I am giving you seven days of time, you must crack this case before then, capture and bring the criminal to justice!”
When Lian Zhanshan’s words sounded, Liang Sansi and the others’ whose faces already changed slightly felt their bodies go rigid. However, Xu Jianling who was inwardly dissatisfied towards Lin Xi instead produced a smile of delight in his disaster.
This type of floating corpse floated over from who knew where in the river, and the location of the crime was from who knew which river shore, the hardest to investigate. Unless one was omnipotent, seven days of time was a completely impossible deadline.
“Because the port is important, our East Port Town’s lifeline, our food, drink, including East Port Town’s prosperity, most of it comes from this town, our Enforcer Office normally has someone patrolling the port. However, this type of huge event happened today, yet the first one to examine this was instead an official from Internal Affairs Sector, and not someone from our Judicial Sector’s Enforcer Office.” When he saw Lin Xi didn’t immediately reply, Lian Zhanshan released another cold snort, somewhat sinisterly saying, “Then let me ask Sir Lin, where was the bailiff responsible for patrolling the port today?”
Of the few bailiffs behind Lin Xi, the timid Qi Guanwu’s body immediately began to tremble slightly.
It was originally him who was in charge of the port’s patrol today, but Heng Rongchang always managed his ships well, so everyone would give face to Breath River’s greatest trading company. That was why when Heng Rongchang offloaded goods, the patrolling bailiffs could take a break elsewhere, this was already a usual practice of the Enforcers Office. However, regardless of what reason was used, now that it was brought to the surface, when facing a superior officer, they couldn’t say anything, no matter what they did, they would lose their job.
Lin Xi gave Lian Zhanshan a look, instead saying, “The bailiff in charge of patrol today was transferred over by me to escort a criminal.”
Qi Guangwu immediately couldn’t help but raise his head, unable to help but look around him. He never expected Lin Xi to actually help him take on this responsibility.
“Very good.” Lian Zhanshan gave Lin Xi a look, not getting angry and instead smiling as he said, “Then I must ask Sir Lin to please seize the moment. If the criminal is captured within seven days, then everything will naturally be okay, there will even be awards from above. However, if you cannot get to the bottom of this matter before the deadline, then don’t blame me for doing official business according to the official principles.”
“There are naturally no problems with doing official business according to the official principles.” Lin Xi looked at Lian Zhanshan who was turning around to leave, saying, “Only, there is one matter I do not understand, I wish for sir to help me dispel my doubts.”
Lian Zhanshan suddenly turned around, saying indifferently. “What?”
“Yesterday, I already looked through some records of the Enforcer Office… indeed, murder cases are huge cases no matter where they are, but it’s not like murder cases don’t happen in the areas around East Port Town from time to time. If the records are not incorrect, three years ago, Long Bench Port engaged in a business dispute, in the end, three members of a family were killed, there was this huge case. Back then, the effects of that case were far nastier than this one, truly leaving the people shaken, but they were still given a month of time to solve that case.” Lin Xi looked at Lian Zhanshan, having the attitude of seriously asking for guidance, and then slowly said, “Previously, sir asked me if I was in a rush to get some benefits from Fatty Xu’s side because I was headed to the fish market, I instead want to ask Sir Lian, this seven day period, can this be considered deliberately making things difficult?”
“You can view it as a test for a youngster like you, you can view it as giving you a chance. If you cannot do it, there will naturally be people who can.”
Lian Zhanshan released a snort, and then didn’t say anything else, brushing his sleeves and leaving.
When he left the Enforcer Office’s small courtyard, he inwardly thought in disdain, who cares about what kind of background you have? By offending so many people, even the Judicial Sector and Government Sector from the provincial side have sent over news. There is a great mountain that wants to crush you from above, yet you don’t even know how to be more tactful below… in Lian Zhanshan’s opinion, even if Lin Xi could barely maintain his official position, he definitely wouldn’t have an easy time in East Port Town.Previous Chapter Next Chapter