The Plough – Chapter 5

Yue Dingtang was so angry!
As long as a place has people there would be divisions, it was the same in a prison which could also be segregated into groups.

Those from an affluent background can afford to throw out some money and often are given private cells, even though the environment remains the same, at least they won’t be bullied by others.
But this case was a bit special, it was a major case and Smith was personally in charge of the investigation. There was also Yue Dingtang overseeing it, the police didn’t dare to mess about and threw their main suspect directly into the most chaotic cell.

After graduating they went their separate ways. Yue Dingtang and Ling Shu hadn’t seen each other in a good few years.

But he could still remember the youth who had to have Du Yunning wipe his hand clean with a handkerchief after being pricked by a thorn from a flower.
Although the Ling family is no longer as glorious as before, many habits have already been carved into stone. This environment must be the greatest torture for Ling Shu. Coupled with Shen Renjie’s awkward attitude, he could imagine how the spoiled and pampered Ling Shu would be treated in the hands of these people.

Even if Ling Shu is a policeman himself, in the same Shanghai, the Municipal Government and the Shanghai City Government1Muncipal Government is for the International Settlement, and Shanghai City Government is the Chinese administrated so anything not the International Settlement or French Concession could not be more separate.

Decades ago, an unequal treaty was signed by one country with another country.

A country within a country, a place outside the common law.

Not to mention that Ling Shu’s brother-in-law is just the employee at the Shanghai City Government, even the Mayor of Shanghai wouldn’t be able to help.

The musty smell came from all directions, rushing into the nasal cavity, penetrating into the internal organs, as if wanting to corrode and melt anywhere anyone who came in, and be completely buried there.

Shen Renjie had got used to it, he didn’t think anything of it. He watched Yue Dingtang take out a handkerchief from his pocket to cover his nose, the former didn’t even have the heart to ridicule him even in his mind as he was already feeling extremely nervous.

With each advancing step, the commotion coming from the depths of the prison was getting louder.

There was a faint noise, it sounded like a group of people arguing or fighting.

Yue Dingtang glanced at Shen Renjie.

“What’s going on?”

Shen Renjie smiled in a panic: “It’s nothing, it’s probably the suspects who are too cold so they are making trouble. Would you like to come and inspect again tomorrow? It’s cold and dark, and it’s almost the Lunar New Year. It’s inauspicious…”

Yue Dingtang didn’t reply, instead he quickened his pace.

Shen Renjie hurriedly followed, he wanted to shout loudly to make those people disperse, but he didn’t dare to do it.

All kinds of societal characters were hidden in the dark here.

Those who came in due to petty thievery may not have done it because they were wicked. It may have been because they were destitute and unable to live without stealing.

There were also those who didn’t make a sound and were especially quiet, leaning against the corners of the cells.When Yue Dingtang’s eyes swept over to them, they quickly lifted their heads and glared back with an ominous glint in their eyes. These must be those who have killed before and spilled blood.

Ordinary people who ended up staying here overnight must receive a huge shock.

As for Ling Shu–

Just like these people whose faces could not be seen clearly, who are cowering in the depths of the prison, battling with their inner demons and enduring hunger.

When he arrived here, he was still wearing a cashmere coat, but when he entered the cell he was unable to keep it and he would definitely have suffered a few beatings.

Those people were gathered in the crowd and in all likelihood, they were teaching the newcomer a lesson.   

“Big or small, put your money in or leave it.”

A lazy voice was heard. It was not too loud but it stood out in the noisy commotion.

“Big!”

“Big big big!”

“Small!”

Amongst the musty smell, there is also another strange smell mixed in, which makes people feel indescribably weird.

In the furthest cell, next to the small door by the iron gate, Yue Dingtang finally saw Ling Shu.

He was sitting, leaning against the wall.
In one hand he had a small clay pot holding dice inside, in the other he was holding a chicken drumstick.

A rag was spread out in front of him, which had crookedly written words black words on two sides saying “big” and “small”.

The four corners of the rag were being held down by four plates. On the plates were some messily placed meat and some other cold snacks. Although they had almost been finished off, on the side there was a pile of bones, Yue Dingtang recognized the edges of the plates with his sharp eyes. It was Lao Jiangxi restaurant’s signature dish of five-spiced duck.

The owner of this restaurant is very dedicated and never closes its restaurant doors even for the New Year Holiday. It has been like this for the last ten years. Prices were also affordable so many people like to go to this restaurant for reunion dinner.

Four or five people surrounded Ling Shu.

There was no lamp in the cell, probably because the Municipal Police didn’t want to be too brazen and only gave them two candles.

Yue Dingtang discovered that the cashmere coat was still worn on Ling Shu’s body.

The coat was wide open, with the scarf still around his neck, he was sat cross-legged, with a teasing smile on his face.

The surrounding environment was filthy and dirty, but it didn’t seem to bother him in the slightest.

No sign of bullying or hazing.

No sign of suffering or begging for his life.

On the contrary, it was more like a fish swimming in a deep pond, completely joyful and harmonious.

Yue Dingtang slowly turned his head and looked at Shen Renjie next to him.

Shen Renjie was in a cold sweat.

“Mr… Mr. Yue, listen to me to explain.”

Yue Dingtang was expressionless.

Shen Renjie:……

He was unable to get his words out for a long while, just urm-ing and ah-ing.

“This, this must be the subordinates not taking their job seriously, and the food and gambling equipment must have been carried in privately by the suspects! I will separate them right away! ” Yue Dingtang turned around without saying a word.

He felt that his spur of the moment kindness in the middle of the night must have arisen from eating too much at supper.

After leaving his house, he should have actually fed that kindness to a dog.   

“Hey, Mr. Yue! Mr. Yue! Don’t be angry, wait for me!”

. . . . . .

Ling Shu stretched and opened his eyes, his whole body was aching.

It’s definitely not as comfortable as the bed at home. When he slept, he could still hear squeaking noises, like a mouse gnawing his hair.

The brand-new cashmere coat must have become very dirty. Fortunately, it was originally gray and black, and so it wouldn’t show too much. Otherwise, he would definitely be scolded when he went back.

When he first entered this cell last night, the coat on his body was immediately spotted, and it almost became someone else’s mattress. If it weren’t for his quick response and agility, he wouldn’t have been able to beat the bullies at their own game, and coax the others. The money he had on him wasn’t confiscated by the police and he was smooth and slick with people, so why wouldn’t he try to find the joy in his sorrows and feed his belly at the same time?

Ling Shu touched his stomach.

He could still feel the dinner from last night, so he was not particularly hungry right now. But he was definitely not used to the prison meal. He estimated that according to the time that had passed, his family must have been informed by now and would come to post bail. Maybe he’d be able to rush home and have dinner there…

Whilst thinking about this, the sound of footsteps floated over from outside.

After a few seconds, the prison door had been opened; a couple of officers appeared in front of him.

Ling Shu glanced over, Shen Renjie wasn’t there.

Neither was the other officer he had secretly communicated with last night.

They were replaced by a few strange faces.

He suddenly felt that something was not right.

Without being able to understand it himself, the leader raised his hand.
“Bring him over here!”

Ling Shu was picked up from both sides.

He was quickly taken to the interrogation room.

It was the same one as yesterday.

But the officer interrogating him had changed.

And there was neither Smith nor Yue Dingtang.

“Just tell us, be honest, why did you kill Du Yunning?”

The officer had a cold face and spoke with a severe tone.

Ling Shu twitched his eyebrows: “I haven’t killed anyone.”

*Bang!*

A hand smacked the table, and the small interrogation room shook.

“Still trying to deny it! When the deceased was alive, you privately hooked up, and after Du Yunning died, you couldn’t provide an alibi, and even the shoe print on her bedroom windowsill matches yours. There is motive and evidence, it clearly all points to you!”

Ling Shu: “I do not admit to killing someone, and I also hope that you can all find some evidence to prove my innocence.”

The policeman sneered: “Evidence? There isn’t to prove that you’re innocent, but to prove that you are the killer, there definitely is.”

He opened the notebook in his hands, took out a few letters from it, and threw them in front of Ling Shu.

Ling Shu spread them on the table.

The three letters were all written by Du Yunning.

Ling Shu recognized her handwriting, and even the hook of the word “Ning” at the end of the signature, flying freely, was the personal writing style of Du Yunning.

When she was in school many years ago, Du Yunning liked to write her name in a variety of fonts. The final one was chosen by Ling Shu for her.

There is not much content in the letter, one was a love poem written by Du Yunning, talking about the feeling of longing that she felt, she wanted to see someone but couldn’t.

She was a well-known talent when they were in high school. Although this wasn’t a characteristic that was particularly sought after by the male classmates, she was known for her literary talent, bringing a lucid elegance and attractive style.

The other two letters were similar, and they both told Ling Shu about her depression.

Ling Shu glanced at the ten lines and couldn’t help raising his eyebrows when he saw some words in it.

“First, I have never written to her, and second, I have never asked her to be patient for a while, and she would be free soon, these are all imaginary.”

“But we checked the handwriting and signature and confirmed that it was from Du Yunning. How do you explain this?”

The Policeman stared at him, like a bald eagle watching its prey firmly, not allowing the other party to have the thought of fleeing for a moment.

Ling Shu: “Sir, since I was wrongly accused, how would I know where these letters came from? Shouldn’t this be what you need to find out? I haven’t met Du Yunning since she got married. Two months ago, she suddenly sent someone to come looking for me, saying she had something she wanted to speak to me about, and asked me to meet her at a coffee shop. ”

Policeman: “What did you talk about?”

Ling Shu: “She said Yuan Bing beat her and scolded her after he smoked opium. She was suffering and didn’t know what to do. I suggested that she get a divorce.”

Policeman: “Then what?”

Ling Shu: “Then she repeatedly confided in me how she was in harmony with Yuan Bing on the surface but both their hearts were elsewhere. Originally, I wanted to help her for the sake of being old classmates so I met up with her several times. But later, I saw that she had no intention of divorcing Yuan Bing at all, so I didn’t go out to see her again. Until the afternoon of two days, she sent someone to come get me again. Her tone was very anxious. She said that I had to go see her, so I ended up going.”

“She told me that Yuan Bing had discovered her private assets and wanted me to keep it for her so that Yuan Bing would not take it to spend on opium. She also said that the Yuan family was not as glorious as it seemed on the surface. The fortune that Yuan Bingdao left behind was squandered by Yuan Bing a long time ago, leaving only an empty shell.”

“Also, she said that she regretted not having the courage to reject the Yuan family’s marriage proposal back then. She said that she wanted to be with me again, which was the elopement that I mentioned last time. Of course, this idea was rejected by me.”

Policeman: “What about the private assets?”

Ling Shu: “I don’t know, I naturally didn’t agree. I just suggested that she deposit it in the bank or entrust it to someone else.”

Policeman: “Why didn’t you help? Do you not still garner any old feelings for her from your previous relationship? ”
Ling Shu raised her eyebrows: “At school, we were a couple, and her family was initially optimistic about us, but then the Ling family’s status changed and our family’s reputation declined. As a result, the Du family immediately decided to match her with the son of the Yuan family. From the beginning to the end, she did not resist or say a word. From then on, we’ve been nothing but old classmates. So, if it weren’t for her coming to find me, I wouldn’t have anything to do with her at all. ”

Policeman: “That said, it is also possible that you coveted her assets, pretending to agree to eloping, and then a quarrel or a fight ensued, so you killed her and then fled.”

Ling Shu laughed with rage.

“These are all your speculations. I didn’t even see the assets that she was talking about, so where would I get the idea of coveting her assets? Also, if I really killed someone and jumped out of the window, why would I leave such an obvious footprint?”

The policeman nodded: “This just shows that you killed her purely in the heat of the moment. After the murder, you didn’t know what to do and didn’t think too much about covering your tracks.”

Ling Shu: “And how do you explain the death of the noodle shop owner?” In order to frame me, the murderer deliberately wiped out my alibi. Doesn’t that prove that actually I am not the real culprit here?”

Policeman: “The fire at the noodle shop was purely accidental, so it doesn’t clear anything up here.”

Ling Shu was silent for a moment, and suddenly said, “I want to see my family and a lawyer. And I apply for bail.”

The policeman leaned back.

“Family? Sure, after you came in, you might have missed the news. Zhou Sa, your brother-in-law, was arrested just last night on the charge of corruption and bribery. Your sister is completely overwhelmed, I’m afraid she won’t be able to take care of you.”

Ling Shu’s heart skipped a beat.

“What about Yue Dingtang? Tell him to come out, I have something to say to him.”

“I’m afraid you won’t have this opportunity either.”

The other party shook his head, stood up, and called in the guard from outside.

“He won’t admit to his crime, move him to another location.”
Author Note:

Ling Shu: Natural selection, survival of the fittest, how easy is it for me?

Yue Dingtang: hehe.

2 thoughts on “The Plough – Chapter 5”

  1. Wow I wonder how can he get out of this predicament. Thank you for the translation, I’m really enjoying the novel!

    Reply
  2. Gosh, Ling Shu!! Please be safe!! The prison’s scene though kkkkkk Yue Dingtang cares so much for Ling Shu =^=

    Thank you for the chapter (´。• ᵕ •。`) ♡

    Reply

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