Chapter 34: That Despicable Man
By the time A-Jiao reached Yunyun’s father and was able to confirm that Feng Lina was missing, it was already close to one o’clock in the morning. That very night, Feng Lina’s family filed a missing person report. But in such a vast city, it was next to impossible to find a missing woman in the dead of night without any leads to go on.
The next morning, in the exact same spot where Wei Xin had been found, another naked woman appeared: Feng Lina. “Fuck me sideways! Another one?” A-Tao immediately started cursing as soon as he heard his underling’s report. “Alright, let’s go check it out!”
Soon, just like last time, over twenty men surrounded Feng Lina. One of them, A-Meng, knelt down and probed her body. “Brother Tao, I don’t think this woman’s going to make it. She feels cold to the touch.”
“She’s dead?” A-Tao asked, twisting his neck left and right. “Go and get A-Jiao for me! She can help us identify this woman!” Meanwhile, his underlings had already confirmed this woman was neither a prostitute nor a cop.
A-Jiao had just woken up and was still quite muddleheaded when A-Long led her to the ditch. “What do you guys want so early in the day? Don’t you know I didn’t go to sleep until two in the morning?” she complained.
Upon seeing A-Jiao, A-Tao’s violent temper completely disappeared. He walked over to her and politely asked, “Jiao, look at this one here. Do you recognize her?”
“No,” A-Jiao shook her head. She then squatted down next to Feng Lina to get a closer look and said, “Brother Tao, she’s not going to make it.” However, when A-Jiao noticed the wax string on Feng Lina’s chest, her body began to tremble uncontrollably.
Seeing A-Jiao abnormal behavior, A-Tao shook her and nervously asked, “What’s going on, Jiao? Are you ok?”
“Bro! I want you to kill him! Kill that fucking animal!” A-Jiao kicked and screamed.
With help from A-Meng, A-Tao was finally able to bring A-Jiao under control. “Tell me what’s going on here.”
“The person who did this to her, did the same thing to me two months ago,” said A-Jiao, before she placed her head on A-Tao’s shoulder and started crying loudly.
“I’ll fuck his grandmother!” A-Tao roared. “Who is it? Tell me who did this to you!”
“Umm… okay… It was the guy who was smoking in your internet cafe the other day, “ A-Jiao said. She shook violently in A-Tao’s vice-like grip. “Ow! Let me go! You’re hurting me!”
“Oh! Sorry…” A-Tao apologized and immediately released A-Jiao from his grip. “All you fuckers listen up! This bastard hurt A-Jiao!” he barked, noticeably agitated. His eyes were protruding from their sockets, his head was twitching non-stop, and he pointed at the innocent woman on the ground. “Find him, but I want him alive! I want to kill that son of a bitch with my bare hands!”
“Yes, Brother Tao!” the men surrounding Feng Lina all acknowledged in unison, as they quickly dispersed.
“Don’t worry, A-Jiao. I promise I will kill him,” consoled A-Tao. He stood over her crying figure and quietly said, “Come on, let’s go back inside.”
“Bro, call the cops,” A-Jiao said as he helped her to her feet. “She’s not dead yet. Let the police do what they can for her.”
Shortly thereafter, the police arrived at the drainage ditch. Just like last time, it was an anonymous tip, and the police weren’t able to find the caller. The officers who arrived at the scene worked up a storm before leaving with a plethora of evidence. As for Feng Lina, she was immediately transported via ambulance to the municipal hospital, where she was brought before Old Lady Wang.
“How is she, Dr. Wang?” asked Jiang Zhengkai, having hurried into the hospital upon receiving the news. He hadn’t been present at the crime scene, since A-Tao’s internet cafe straddled the border between his district and the Third District. The drainage ditch itself was under his jurisdiction, but the far bank of the ditch was under the jurisdiction of another sub-bureau.
“It’s going to be an uphill battle to save her,” Dr. Wang said as she shook her head. “Her urinary tract has been destroyed. That bastard poured salt into her wounds and also burned her genitals.”
“And his modus operandi?” Jiang Zhengkai continued as he looked at the woman lying on the hospital bed.
“Similar to A-Jiao and Wei Xin,” Dr. Wang sighed as she answered. “Jiang, are you able to arrest that bastard now?”
“Commissioner Yao is still working on it,” Jiang Zhengkai embarrassedly replied. “But it’ll depend on what the forensics team finds. This case isn’t under my jurisdiction, so we’ve consolidated this case and Wei Xin’s case and handed both over to the Third Sub-Bureau for investigation.”
“Ai! You know, I like that we have a society based on the rule of law and all, but sometimes it really frustrates me how a bastard like that can get off scot free because he can hide behind the rules of evidence,” Dr. Wang responded to Jiang Zhengkai as she walked out the hospital room by herself. “I’m afraid there won’t be much in the way of forensics evidence with this case. This man is obviously an experienced serial rapist. This woman is covered in dirt and her genitalia has been badly burned, so good luck recovering any DNA samples from that mess.”
Dr. Wang was absolutely correct. When the final forensics report came out, it stated that the forensics team was not able to retrieve any semen from the victim’s body, meaning the rapist most likely wore a condom. They were also unable to recover any other DNA evidence from the victim, because her entire body had been contaminated by foreign substances. Unfortunately, it wasn’t that bastard who’d covered the woman in dirt and grime. The police had A-Meng and his buddies to thank for that. Apparently, they purposely threw dirt and dish water on the woman to prevent the police from recovering any of their DNA, since they were the ones who’d carried her out of the ditch.
As the saying goes, you can’t smother fire with paper. Before long, the local media had found out about these horrific sexual assaults that had occurred in their city. The funny thing was, when the media rushed to the municipal police headquarters in the hopes of interviewing someone with knowledge of the case, all of the bureau’s External Affairs officers were out on assignment, standing watch in the alley. In the ultimate twist of irony, the job of fielding questions from the media fell to a police officer who was on loan to External Affairs, Wei Xin.
“Hot damn, that bitch was a cop?” a man exclaimed. He lit up a cigarette while he watched Wei Xin on the television in his rental home. The police were never going to find him, since he had already changed his place of residence.
He reached underneath his pillow and retrieved Wei Xin’s cell phone. Stored inside the phone were countless photos and video clips of Wei Xin’s sexual assault. The man very much enjoyed flipping through all of the saved photos and video clips. He could feel himself getting hard again. “That bitch was a good fuck!” the man said to the phone as he proceeded to kiss Wei Xin’s picture. “You interested in round two with yours truly?”
This man had a very vindictive personality. If Feng Lina had not walked through the alley that night, then perhaps she would have safely picked up her daughter and continued living her happy life. He did what he did in order to punish A-Jiao and the internet cafe owner, A-Tao.
When he found release assaulting those women, he would think back to that night when he was humiliated in the internet cafe, and also to the pleasure he felt as he unleashed his revenge on A-Jiao. But his pursuit of that feeling of pleasure was slowly pushing him towards the abyss.
“Wei Xin, a letter for you!” One of the mailroom personnel placed a letter on Wei Xin’s desk and left.
Wei Xin picked up the letter and glanced at the return address. It came from somewhere in the city. When she opened it, she found a microSD card wrapped inside a thin sheet of paper. Nothing was written on the paper. At that moment, an ominous feeling coursed through Wei Xin’s mind. Nevertheless, she found an external microSD card reader and plugged it into a desktop console…
“Unh! Ahh!” sounded Wei Xin’s headphones as a video clip of her squirming with that man on top of her played on the computer screen. Whenever she tried to free herself, that man would give her two loud slaps on the face. As the video progressed, close-ups of her face, chest, and other body parts continually filled the screen. As Wei Xin watched the video, an uncontrollable flood of tears streamed down her face.
“Wei Xin! A local school is looking for a guest lecturer on civil service. Are you interested?” one of her new colleagues walked into the office and asked her.
“Yeah, sure!” Wei Xin replied as she hurriedly wiped the tears off her face. She disconnected the microSD card from her computer and locked it away in her drawer.
That afternoon, Wei Xin thoroughly enjoyed teaching the students at that school. Although she was a bit stiff, she was far from being dull. As such, the students liked engaging with her, with dozens of students asked her dozens of questions. She spent the entire afternoon in happiness and joy.
She returned to her office right before it was time to leave. Upon seeing her return, an officemate happily called out to her, “Hey Wei Xin, Commissioner Yao is looking for you! I think he said something about being very satisfied with the way you handled those reporters a couple of days ago. You should go see him before you leave today.”
“Okay, thank you.” Wei Xin dropped her stuff off at her desk and quickly headed over to the commissioner’s office.
“One more thing, Wei Xin, do you have my microSD reader?” her colleague suddenly asked her.
“I don’t know. Why don’t you check my desk drawer?” Wei Xin directly replied without thinking twice. Apparently, the happiness of that afternoon had already made her forget about the contents of that microSD card.