I’ll Kneel and Kowtow
“Move it!” On the construction site, a police officer prodded Huang Yi-Hu again.
Huang Yi-Hu turned to glare at the police officer, “I’ll remember your face, punk. If you push me again, I will -”
Before he could finish, Jiang Ru-Yi slapped Huang Yi-Hu on the back of his head. “Huang Yi-Hu, you still dare to threaten a police officer at this stage? Did you eat leopard guts? If you don’t stop your complaining I’ll add threatening a police officer to your charges!”
Huang Yi-Hu glowered at Jiang Ru-Yi but he kept his mouth shut.
Jiang Ru-Yi pushed Huang Yi-Hu and he stumbled forward. His underlings were all lying on the ground in front and three of his four bodyguards were dead. The remaining one alive was still kneeling on the ground, too afraid to move.
Long Bing had killed three and left one for a simple reason - a live report for Jiang Ru-Yi. He was left alive to provide more information about Huang Yi-Hu’s illegal activities.
“Why did you take so long to come?” Xia Lei complained.
Jiang Ru-Yi rolled her eyes at Xia Lei, “You saw how it was earlier. This was her arrangement. She’s in charge of this part and I’m in charge of catching Huang Yi-Hu. Complain to her, not me.”
“Whatever. Could you lend me Huang Yi-Hu for a few minutes?” said Xia Lei, “I want to talk privately with him.”
Jiang Ru-Yi hesitated, then pulled Xia Lei to the side and spoke in his ear, “What do you want to do? Beat him up? That’s against procedure.”
“I had a bet with Huang Yi-Hu. If I got this piece of land, he would kneel and kowtow to Ma Xiao-An three times. Ma Xiao-An was killed by an underling Huang Yi-Hu had sent. I just want to comfort Ma Xiao-An’s soul.”
“Fine, I’ll give you a few minutes but you can’t hit him… Hmm, even if you do, don’t hit his face. You understand me?” said Jiang Ru-Yi.
Xia Lei patted Jiang Ru-Yi on the shoulder, “Thanks.”
“What thanks?” said Jiang Ru-Yi, “Ma Xiao-An was my friend too. What’s a bit of criticism when he can get some consolation and happiness?”
Two minutes later, Xia Lei brought Huang Yi-Hu to a spot where the building materials were piled up high. The building materials blocked the view from outside and people outside could not see what was going on inside at all.
“What are you planning?” Huang Yi-Hu was nervous but his words were tough, “If you leave any injury on my body, you and that female officer will have to answer for it! I’ll get the best lawyers in the country and sue you!”
Xia Lei said nothing. He walked around Huang Yi-Hu and to his front, picked up a wooden plank, then used a marker and wrote ‘Ma Xiao-An’s grave’ on it. He forcefully plunged it into the ground, making it stand in front of Huang Yi-Hu.
Huang Yi-Hu understood what Xia Lei wanted when he saw ‘Ma Xiao-An’s grave’. A smile of ridicule appeared in the corners of his mouth, “What? You’re still hung up over that bet? You want me to kneel and kowtow? In your dreams! I, Huang Yi-Hu has always stood tall and I’ve never knelt to anyone!”
Xia Lei moved forward and punched Huang Yi-Hu in the abdomen.
Huang Yi-Hu cried out in pain and bent over. Blood trickled from the corner of his mouth but his eyes were like those of a provoked beast - burning hate and no fear.
“Pah!” Huang Yi-Hu spat a mouthful of blood on the ground, “You know who is backing me. They will not let anything happen to me. I’ll be out soon and then you’ll regret everything you did!”
Xia Lei punched him in the abdomen again.
Huang Yi-Hu clutched his stomach, his expression pained. However, he growled, “Beat me to death if you dare! Come, kill me!”
Xia Lei let a punch fly at Huang Yi-Hu’s cheek.
Huang Yi-Hu closed his eyes and didn’t dodge.
Xia Lei’s fist stopped a centimetre from Huang Yi-Hu’s head and he laughed all of a sudden, “You’re a manly man, I’ll give you that. But let me tell you if you don’t kneel and kowtow to my friend, your son will pay. You have a son in junior high school, don’t you? I don’t have to do anything myself. I just have to tell your enemies of his identity and someone will avenge my friend for me - don’t you think so?”
“You dare!” Huang Yi-Hu was like a wounded beast.
Xia Lei laughed coldly, “You couldn’t win even out here - you think I’ll be afraid of you when you’re behind bars? What would a person like you want a son for? Aren’t you afraid that people would seek retribution for your sins from your son? I’ll give you one last chance. Kneel, kowtow to my friend and repent, otherwise I can’t guarantee that you’ll have a son to send you to your end.”
“You-” Huang Yi-Hu’s eyes were full of hate.
“Looks like you won’t kneel. Okay, I’ll get my justice from your son,” said Xia Lei and made to leave.
“Wait!” Huang Yi-Hu called. He hesitated, then suddenly went to his knees in front of the wooden ‘Ma Xiao-An’s grave’ plank and kowtowed three times, his head knocking the ground. As he kowtowed, he said, “Ma Xiao-An, I’m sorry. I’ve knelt. I’ve kowtowed. I’m not begging for forgiveness. I’m begging you to spare my son.”
These words were said to Ma Xiao-An but meant for Xia Lei.
Xia Lei looked up at the sky. It was blue. A cloud in the sky looked like a human face and he felt that it looked like Ma Xiao-An’s smiling face.
The police took Huang Yi-Hu and Li Yu-Lan, his underlings and the three corpses away. Xia Lei, too, got in Jiang Ru-Yi’s police car to assist in the investigation at the police station.
The employees of Thunder Horse Manufacturing stood and watched the police cars disappear in the distance, not one willing to leave the roadside.
“Who was that woman in the trench coat?” Yin Hao looked like he was at a loss for words. He was still replaying the scene where Long Bing had killed three men so quickly. He could think of only one word to describe her - Cool!
“Who knows. I suggest you not think of it,” Han Bo smiled, “She’s Chairman Xia’s, not yours.”
“What rubbish are you saying?” Liang Si-Yao interrupted the boys’ conversation, “Don’t you have work to do? Have you finished the designs?”
Han Bo and Yin Hao exchanged looks and went back to work.
Liang Si-Yao mumbled to herself, “That woman didn’t even blink when she shot those guys. Who would dare marry a woman like her? Whoever does marry her is a fool.”
In the police car, another woman was looking at Xia Lei, all smiles. “Lei, I did such a big favour for you this time. How are you going to thank me?”
Xia Lei looked at Jiang Ru-Yi, “I gave you such a good case and you’re still asking me to thank you?”
“I heard you’re going to cook something for Miss Long. Is that true?” Jiang Ru-Yi changed the topic quickly, “Can I come too?”
“Come if you want to. It’s just a matter of adding another bowl and pair of chopsticks,” said Xia Lei.
Jiang Ru-Yi thought for a bit and shook her head, “Nah, I don’t want to step on her toes. Forget today - treat me to a meal another day.”
“I’ll treat you to empty air next time,” said Xia Lei.
“Petty. No wonder you can’t get a girlfriend.” Jiang Ru-Yi glared at Xia Lei.
A female officer in the backseat suddenly cried, “Chief! Red light!”
Jiang Ru-Yi slammed on the brakes, throwing everyone in the car forward. Heads struck headrests and glass…
In North Police Station, Jiang Ru-Yi recorded Xia Lei’s testimony personally.
After they were done, Xia Lei asked, “Where is Huang Yi-Hu being held?”
“In the interrogation room. Some colleagues are recording his statement. We’re a little short-handed since we arrested so many people; I wouldn’t be recording your testimony myself otherwise. The sight of you annoys me,” said Jiang Ru-Yi.
“Take me there to have a look,” said Xia Lei with a smile.
Jiang Ru-Yi rolled her eyes at him, “Come with me.”
Xia Lei came to the door of an interrogation room with Jiang Ru-Yi but a police officer told her that Huang Yi-Hu’s lawyer had come to see him and he was in the interrogation room talking to Huang Yi-Hu right then.
“What are they talking about in there?” asked Jiang Ru-Yi casually.
“That lawyer’s very good. He requested to exercise the right to switch off surveillance upon arrival. We don’t know what they’re talking about inside there without surveillance,” said the police officer.
Jiang Ru-Yi frowned, “You switched it off because he told you to?”
“We secretly switched it on once but that lawyer came out of the room to negotiate. He even said he would call Director Xu. We switched it off and didn’t switch it on again,” said the police officer.
While Jiang Ru-Yi and her subordinate talked, Xia Lei’s left eye quietly went to work. The walls of the interrogation room disappeared in his vision and the situation inside was laid bare to him.
A middle-aged man was talking to Huang Yi-Hu. He was dressed in an impeccable suit and seemed well-mannered. Xia Lei had never seen this person by Huang Yi-Hu’s side but Huang Yi-Hu seemed to have a respectful attitude towards this man. Xia Lei was struck by a thought - Was this person sent by the Gu clan to save Huang Yi-Hu?
Xia Lei’s gaze went to their mouths and he lip-read their conversation.
“Please tell the Old Master not to worry. I won’t say a word,” said Huang Yi-Hu.
“That’s the right way to think. The Old Master will not neglect you. Don’t worry and stay in there for a time; it won’t be very long before you get out from there,” said the middle-aged man.
“Thank you, Old Master,” said Huang Yi-Hu respectfully.
“The Old Master bade me ask if you have any information that is linked to the Gu clan. Information that is of the nature that Xia Lei has exposed?” inquired the middle-aged man.
Huang Yi-Hu looked nervous and said, “No, there really isn’t, I swear. I have nothing of that sort of information on me. The information Xia Lei exposed was all evidence of myself bribing officials. I’d only kept that evidence to use it against those officials in the future.”
“All the officials you’ve worked with are in danger now. Some of these officials also have relationships with the Old Master so what is happening now is troubling our Old Master. Who will dare work with us after this?” said the middle-aged man.
“I… I have failed the Old Master.” Huang Yi-Hu hung his head.
“We shall let the matter slide this time. The Old Master will guarantee your safety. Do your job well when you’re released. Do not disappoint him again,” said the middle-aged man.
Huang Yi-Hu let out a breath, “I will. Please tell the Old Master that I will work hard to repay him after I’m out.”
A sneer appeared in the corners of the middle-aged man’s mouth, “Well. That’s it. I have to go.”
“Have a good journey, Mr Shi.” Huang Yi-Hu stood to give a parting greeting.
The middle-aged man called Mr Shi walked towards the door and he mouthed a word that others could not hear - Fool.
Xia Lei stopped using his eye.
The middle-aged man called Mr Shi walked out and his expression changed slightly when he saw Xia Lei and Jiang Ru-Yi in the doorway. He, however, said nothing and walked off with his briefcase in hand.
Suspicion bloomed in Xia Lei as he looked at Mr Shi’s back. ‘Why did he call Huang Yi-Hu a fool?’
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