Old Gang reached underneath the coffee table and took out a square wooden box. He opened it, and it was stuffed with business cards.
He had a lot of acquaintances.
To obtain the glory he held today, Old Gang must have spent countless efforts. He exerted a lot of his strength to find a business card in the box and handed it to me. “It’s him.”
The business card’s owner was surnamed Song.
I quickly dialed the number on the card with Old Gang’s telephone. The phone rang several times, but no one picked up. I called again, and the result was the same. I dialed the office number on the business card and found that the number didn’t exist.
I was upset to learn that I couldn’t contact the person named Song.
The phone kept ringing, but no one picked up. I thought for a moment, then asked Old Gang, “If you are business partners, he should have contacted you and some other people, right? Do you know anybody that is a mutual business partner?”
Old Gang thought for a minute then found another business card. He handed it to me.
This time, the call went through. A male voice came from the other end of the line. He sounded a little hoarse but smooth-tongued. “Old Gang, you rarely call me! I know you’re very busy with your business. Why have you remembered to call me all of a sudden?”
“Hello sir, I’m Old Gang’s friend. I need to ask you something—”
Before I could ask, the man’s voice grew more cautious. “Who are you? What happened to Old Gang? Are you the police? Did Old Gang do something illegal? Officer, I’m just a business partner of Chen Fugang. We did some deals, but we aren’t really friends. Moreover, it’s been a long time since we’ve had any deals. I don’t know much about him, either.”
With just a few sentences, he had completely distanced himself from Old Gang.
I thought to myself, Oh well, if you’re not cunning, you can’t do business.
I didn’t know what to say. I had to arrange my thoughts for a long time then patiently explained, “Old Gang’s fine. But there’s a guy that owes him money. We can’t reach him. I just called to ask if you know him.”
“Ah, okay!” The man calmed down. His voice became more arrogant. “Who is it? If he owes Old Gang money, how could he still work in this tea business?”
I told him the name on the card. The man was surprised. “Him? Old Song…”
“You know him? Could you please tell me how to contact him?” I was excited.
The guy’s voice grew somewhat sad. “It’s too late. He passed away.”
He’s dead already?
I was shocked. “When did it happen?”
“Several days ago. He owed a lot of money to people, so he had no choice but to commit suicide. He jumped off a building. I heard that his wife was so heart-broken that she went crazy. She’s in a mental hospital now. What a pitiful woman.” He sighed then continued, “Since he is gone, everything’s over. You should tell Old Gang to let go. We don’t need to calculate the debt with a dead man.”
After the call, I saw Old Gang looking at me with dazed eyes. He looked like a lost child.
Li Mazi returned with two beers. “Little Brother Zhang, take a sip before we get down to business.”
Drink! Drink! Drink! He only knows how to drink!
I shot him a fierce glance.
“Horse piss is delicious too. Why don't you drink it?” I scolded.
Li Mazi held his beers and dashed back to the kitchen.
Things were hard to solve now. That clock was too strange, and I knew I couldn’t solve this alone. I contemplated and decided to call for external support.
“Old Gang, I want to take the clock and meet a person. You should stay in the house with Li Mazi and wait for me,” I said.
Old Gang looked absentminded. But then, he suddenly jolted up. “No, you can’t take it away!” His voice was strangely resolute.
“Don’t worry, I’ll bring it back. Don’t you want to solve this problem?” I advised.
“I don’t,” said Old Gang.
At this moment, I believed that the otherworldly item was controlling him. If I didn’t investigate this clock, the consequences would be unimaginable. I immediately called Li Mazi. “Li Mazi, get your butt over here!”
Li Mazi ran over quickly. “Little Brother Zhang, what’s wrong?”
I pointed at Old Gang, “Get a rope and tie him up.”
I shouted impatiently, “Hurry up!”
Li Mazi moved agilely and got a rope from the kitchen. “Little Brother Zhang, are you sure?”
I didn’t have time to answer as Old Gang had pushed me aside and dashed toward his bedroom.
“Damn, this guy’s crazy!” Li Mazi was frightened.
I strode forward and grabbed Old Gang’s shoulder. Old Gang’s strength seemed to have been miraculously boosted. He was like a crazy bull that kept charging forward. I had to use all of my strength to pull him back before kicking his knee from behind.
Old Gang screamed in pain. He stumbled and fell to the ground.
I lifted my head and saw Li Mazi standing nearby with a dumbstruck expression. My rage surged. “Are you enjoying the show? Come help me!”
Li Mazi came with the rope. We had to join hands to subdue Old Gang. We tied him up and threw him onto the sofa. Although we were two strong men, we still sweated a lot.
“How did he become so strong all of a sudden?” said Li Mazi.
“The otherworldly item is controlling him,” I explained. “The otherworldly item this time is really hard to deal with. I’m going to see a real expert. You stay here and watch him.”
“Can I watch him alone?” Li Mazi reluctantly pointed at his face.
“Are you scared?” I sent him a provocative look.
“I’m not scared. It’s just that…”
Before Li Mazi could finish, I stopped him. “If you aren’t scared, it’s settled.”
I strode to the bedroom and found a piece of red cloth to cover the clock. Li Mazi chased after me. “Little Brother Zhang, who are you going to see?”
“Senior Shu,” I answered.
“Him?” Li Mazi couldn’t ease his worries. “That old man hates the fact that he can’t dig an underground bunker and hide inside. Would he help you if you went to see him?”
“I’m just going to try and see.” I looked at the red bag in my hand. “Moreover, I have never encountered an otherworldly item like this before. I think that only Senior Shu might know something about it…”
I didn’t have enough time to explain it clearly to him and just patted Li Mazi’s shoulder. “Take care of Old Gang. Don’t let him do anything risky. Otherwise, our efforts will be in vain.”
“Understood.” Li Mazi nodded. “If something bad happens to him, who should we ask for money? I don't want to work for free.”
I was speechless and gave him a glance before leaving the villa.
After changing public vehicles a few times, I reached the neighborhood where Senior Shu was staying. However, even after I had knocked on his door for a while, nobody came to the door.
It seems I’m not welcomed!
I took a deep breath and decided to use my ace. “You damn old ghost. If you don’t open the door, I’ll go to a printing shop and make a posting of your face and contact information. I’m gonna post the ads on every wall and street, even on electric poles. I guess it will help your enemies find you—”
Before I could finish talking, the door opened. If I wasn’t swift enough to dodge, my nose would be gone.
Senior Shu wore a loose mandarin jacket. With his cunning face, he looked the same as an evil landlord.
I smiled to earn his favor, but it didn’t work.
Senior Shu shot me a cold glance. “It’s broad daylight. Why don’t you do some business instead of coming to my house?”
“It’s because I missed you, Senior.”
“Senior?” Senior Shu sneered. “I’m not your Senior. Didn’t you just call me a damn old ghost?”
“Err…” I smiled sheepishly. “It’s just a misunderstanding. A misunderstanding.”
Senior Shu sighed. Since he didn’t know what I wanted, he invited me to his house. Senior Shu’s house was still the same. It was dark and wasn’t different from a rat cave.
Senior Shu turned on the light and sat down on his chair. Then, he lazily said, “Kiddo, whenever you come to my door, you’re up to no good! If you need to say something, do it quickly. Don’t delay my business. I’m going to play mahjong soon.”
“Are you going out? Who’s going to play mahjong with you?” I was surprised.
Senior Shu picked up his phone and knocked it on my head. “You’re a young man, but you know nothing. There’s something called the Internet. Who would go out to play mahjong? What if the enemy finds me first?”
I quickly told him every detail I knew about the clock.
Before I finished talking, his eyes twinkled. He was excited. “Really? Is there a top-quality item like that? Show me!”
I opened the red bag in my hand and carefully handed the clock to Senior Shu.Previous Chapter Next Chapter