The Plough – Chapter 18

Another person dies.
It’s easier to invite the devil than to send him away.

It wasn’t an easy task to get rid of the nurse. Now the two older sisters had calmed down, Ling Shu was physically and emotionally exhausted.

Ling Yao, seeing that Ling Shu was suffering, didn’t say anything outloud but she felt some remorse in her heart.

She put down the oranges and told Ling Shu to get plenty of rest. She then took the lead to leave the battleground.

After Ling Yao left, Yue Chunxiao also felt that it was time for her to go so she quickly left as well.

Ling Shu let out a sigh, looking at the already cold sweet and sour fish in the food box, he was a little dejected.

“What a pain in the neck!”

Yue Dingtang’s meal was also left unfinished because the pork knuckles had become cold, and the taste had completely changed.

He got up, put on his coat and his scarf, and touched his wounded arm. He randomly picked a fruit from the fruit basket and bit into it.

“I’m going to the station to question Yuan Bing, I’ll come back a bit later, you can rest for a bit more.”

He put on his hat and walked towards the door, seemingly having thought of something he walked back again.

“Oh yeah, Happy Lunar New Year.”

Ling Shu sneered.

This beginning of the Lunar New Year has really got off to a great start.

It’s the first time that he spent the New Year in hospital.

It was close to the afternoon, the sunshine was coming in through the window. The ice and snow was already melting bringing with it a warmer climate.

The sound of firecrackers being set off far away could be heard and some of the smoke from the streets wafted in.

But the corridor outside the patient’s room was completely tranquil. Perhaps because the majority of the patients had already been taken home by their families to celebrate the Lunar New Year.

This time last year, he would have already been ousted out of his house by his sister going from house to house to pay his New Year respects to their relatives. Or perhaps he would have followed them back to his brother-in-law’s family. He’d be eating freshly made niangao. One mouthful of niangao with one mouthful of tea, chatting all night, feeling joyous and harmonious.

Thinking about being framed and having encountered such a bitter experience, Ling Shu couldn’t help sighing out loud again.

“What’s up, it’s the holiday. Don’t sigh or you may blow away all your luck!”

Along with the voice, there was a guest who had entered.

Ling Shu’s eyebrows twitched.

“What wind would blow you here?”

“Southeast Northwest Wind.” Cheng Si smiled mischievously, “Since you can still make jokes, you must be alright?”

Ling Shu reached a hand out towards him.

“No serious injuries but a few minor ones. I bumped my head so I could lose my memories at any moment. Shouldn’t you express some sympathy?”

“Here.”

Cheng Si gave him the paper bag in his hands.

“Sweet Chestnuts – freshly roasted. They’re still warm, how’s that for sincerity!”
Ling Shu didn’t bother to be courteous, he put his hand in the bag to take one out, and threw it at Cheng Si.

“Peel it for me.”

Cheng Si glared at him: “You bumped your head, are your hands also broken?”

Ling Shu lifted the hand where the IV had been inserted as a hint.

Cheng Si reluctantly peeled the sweet chestnut skin off and then passed him the contents.

“Speaking of which you really were looking for it! If on the night you were arrested, you had left the dancehall when I asked you to, then you wouldn’t have gone to Xiaoji noodle shop to eat noodles and I could have been your alibi. It wouldn’t be how it was now, you’re even suspected of murder!”

Ling Shu said earnestly: “If that night I had been with you then I probably wouldn’t be able to see you today.”

Cheng Si paused for a moment, then shuddered, he was no longer in the mood to peel chestnuts.

“Don’t scare me! Who the hell has this massive grudge against you, and wants to see you dead? !”

Ling Shu: “It’s not necessarily against me, but I’m just a convenient target. What’s it like now, has the news of Du Yunning’s spread across Shanghai? What does it say in the news?”

Cheng Si came back to his senses.

“It’s not good, all the major newspapers and the tabloids have all reported on it, it’s chaos out there. After a maid died at Yuan manor, it’s the lead story in today’s paper….”

“Who died?” Ling Shu cut him off.

“A maid of the Yuan family.”

Ling Shu had a bad feeling in his gut.

“What’s her name, how did she die?”

Cheng Si: “I didn’t really pay attention to the name……the paper said she hung herself. She was discovered dead this morning in the Yuan manor, in Du Yunning’s bedroom. The body was already cold, there was no way of saving her.”

Ling Shu: “The main residence has already been sealed. All the employees live in the small annex building.”

Cheng Si: “So that means everything written in the papers is true. It’s really Du Yunning’s soul lingering on to take revenge on the maid?”

Ling Shu: “You are also an educated person, how could you believe something like that, what did the papers say?”

“There were many different theories.”

“Some say that this maid was trying to climb the ranks, she went behind Du Yunning’s back and was sleeping with Yuan Bing. When the maid got pregnant, Du Yunning found out. The married couple got into a big fight and Yuan Bing accidentally killed Du Yunning. Because she died a wrongful death, she came back to claim the maid’s life beyond the grave.”

“Some others say, this maid ruined the Yuan family and because of a restless conscience, she kept dreaming of Du Yunning coming back to seek revenge every night, so she decided to kill herself in the end.”

“There are some even weirder theories, such as Du Yunning sent the maid to seduce Yuan Bing in order to keep her husband’s heart. Since the child would still be born into the Yuan family, it was better than to be from one of the random women he kept outside but who knew that this maid was so spirited. She’d rather die than submit but in the end she was still tarnished by Yuan Bing……”

“Stop!”

The more he heard the more dumbfounded he got.

But he was certain of one thing.

The maid that Cheng Si was talking about had to be Du Yunning’s personal maid, the mute girl Ah-Lan.

“What kind of crap is this? I have seen this maid before, she is pretty with delicate features but Yuan Bing is a massive philanderer, even Du Yunning wasn’t able to hold on to his heart, could Ah-lan have done it? What unrestful spirit. What malicious spirit coming back for revenge, that’s even worse!”
Cheng Si put out his hands innocently: “How would I know? But the good thing is that your name hasn’t been mentioned. Aside from at the beginning when there were two papers who had mentioned that you were a suspect. Right now, everyone has their focus on the animosity between the married couple, as well as the state of the Yuan family’s assets.”

Ling Shu pointed at himself: “As the prime suspect, why don’t I deserve to be named fully?”

Cheng Si laughed: “Maybe because they think a warlord’s son killing his wife is a better story to write about than using you as a former childhood sweetheart?”

“It’s a shame I forgot the papers back at the station, I should have brought a copy for you to look over. The larger newspapers are a bit better, the tabloids are simply unrestrained. It’s like they are all hidden under the Yuan family’s beds turning the murder case into some torrid love story within the elite families.”

What Cheng Si said was representative of the majority of the ordinary citizens. Instead of the straightforward description of the case, many people would rather read some alternative theories. Taking fiction as the real thing, happily discussing it around the dinner table.

Some tabloids even took advantage of the opportunity to launch a three-part story on the Yuan family. Beginning the story with Yuan Bingdao. The entire report’s contents were a third fact and two thirds fiction. It was an exaggerated fantasy but this was also widely popular with the public and tabloid sales immediately soared.

The Yuan family had declined. When Yuan Bingdao died, the large family had been divided. Yuan Bing was not particularly able, and now he was still in prison. If the Yuan family was as influential as it was before, this fictional story would never have made it to the light of day.

But driven by the public opinion, the way of investigation of the police may also be influenced. Perhaps for Ling Shu this may also be a good thing.

But Ling Shu was lost in thought.

They had nearly been killed last night and today Ah-lan was dead.

Regarding the timing, Ah-lan must have met her end in the early hours of last night.

As the personal maid of Du Yunning, Ah-Lan must have known quite a lot, but why didn’t she die before, why did she die now?

Was it because the culprit thought that she might know something so he couldn’t let her live, fearing that she’d expose him?

Due to Ah-Lan’s position, she was obviously the first choice for questioning for the investigation.

But before they had not really suspected her because she was unable to speak, she was illiterate. Also she was a weak woman so she didn’t have the physical strength to kill Du Yunning or it would have been very difficult for her to succeed.

Now Ah-Lan was dead, it confirmed that she actually had some connection to this case.

Secrets are kept safest with the dead. He was afraid that now they had realised this point, it would be difficult for them to have another breakthrough.

Yuan Bing, the Yuan Family.

Now it seemed they were getting further and further from the truth. But when looked at from another angle, they were also getting step by step closer and closer to the truth.

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