(Hey everyone, due to school, this novel will now be released every three days. Thank you for the love and support!)
Translated by Vivian of Exiled Rebels Scanlations
Li Qiang had woken up, but he was still a little in shock, and although he gave a rough description of what happened that night, he didn’t provide any valuable information.
“This killer is pretty clever, they don’t allow anything to possibly expose themselves. They haven’t shown their face this entire time, not even their voice.” Ding Ding smiled bitterly.
“The killer was unsuccessful this time, but that doesn’t mean they’ll stop here. We still need to pay close attention to the remaining people, since the killer is probably already setting their sights on another target,” said Guan Jin.
“It’s really hard to imagine that one of these people is a murderer…” muttered Lin Bai. “Right, Gu Xiang checked the others’ call histories, and none of them have contacted WenWen, who is still abroad. Perhaps they used a public telephone or perhaps by email or another method. I’m using the school’s network to get into their computers, but this will take some time, and I’ll have to do it covertly.”
“…Isn’t that a violation of their privacy?” Guan Jin glanced at him.
“I’m just a hacker.”
“So you’re a criminal.”
“But I’m an undercover police officer.”
“Wow, sure enough, your English has improved after taking classes~”
Guan Jin resumed his life of attending classes, but he was already paying very close attention to Qin Xiao’s and Chen Jing’s each and every move. Qin Xiao no longer struck up conversations with him too often, but occasionally, they would make eye contact, and Qin Xiao would give him a detestable and strange smile that made Guan Jin want to beat him up.
As for Chen Jing, he was still studying diligently and working hard to answer the teacher’s questions. He wholeheartedly helped other students and teachers, and he didn’t seem to have changed much.
“Okay, class, our school has an open house this weekend, so remember to wear your school badges.” The class monitors were supposed to go to each dormitory and remind them of this, and Guan Jin unexpectedly volunteered to help.
“During the open house, everyone has to wear their badge.” Guan Jin knocked on the door to the last dormitory, where Chen Jing and his three roommates were.
“How troublesome, what kind of tradition is this?” A boy began rummaging through a pile of what looked like trash on his desk. “If I can’t find it, then I’ll have to buy a new one again!”
Chen Jing’s neat desk was clearly very organized, and he smiled as he opened a drawer to search for his school badge. Guan Jin looked at him and saw that there didn’t seem to be anything wrong, so he turned around to leave. However, he suddenly heard the sounds behind him become more rushed and disorderly. He glanced back.
Chen Jing was frowning and rummaging in his drawer wildly and loudly.
“You can’t find yours either?” asked Guan Jin.
Chen Jing froze and looked up, forcing a smile. “It’s so small, I probably accidentally left it somewhere, and maybe it’ll turn up somewhere tomorrow.”
Guan Jin nodded and left. The instant before he closed the door, he saw through the gap in the door that Chen Jing had already turned to another drawer, almost crazily.
Chen Jing looked around carefully, and when he was sure there was no one around, he hastily used a key to unlock the door to the rooftop and went to the rooftop.
He anxiously went to the east side and began searching, and finally found something near the air conditioner. Chen Jing excitedly bent down and picked something up before wiping the dirt off of it.
“You accidentally left it here?”
Chen Jing flinched and looked back, panicked, to see Guan Jin standing nearby with his arms folded.
“Wha-what are you doing up here?”
“I saw that the door was open, and I was worried someone had come here to jump off, so I came to check. What were you searching for just now?”
“Nothing, I just came up here for an inspection.”
“I saw it.” Guan Jin pointed at his own eyes. “You picked up a school badge, and you specifically came here to find it, right?”
Chen Jing’s expression suddenly contorted. “What do you mean?!”
“What? Do you also plan on pushing me down? You’d better save it, when I saw that the door was open, I already notified security for safety purposes, and I reckon the police are going to arrive soon.”
Chen Jing was immediately deflated, and he said weakly and impatiently, “I was only looking for my school badge, it’s not like I did anything.”
“According to my knowledge, this rooftop doesn’t seem to have had any refurbishing or cleaning since the start of this semester. During the first week of school, you still had your badge, so why would it be here?”
“I have the keys, so I sometimes come here to study…”
“Well, the place where you left it sure is special, it seems to be right where Dong Ping fell from. You’re quite bold,” said Guan Jin, a little sarcastically.
“I-I——” Chen Jing became anxious and didn’t know how to refute.
“I’m only a curious student, so you don’t have to explain it to me. It’s probably best if you have a chat with the police.” Before he finished speaking, Chen QiaoYu and two security guards had already rushed to the rooftop.
Chen Jing’s face was ashen.
“Officer, I really didn’t do anything!” Chen Jing struggled to prove his innocence.
“Since you say you didn’t do anything, show me evidence of that.” This time, Chen QiaoYu didn’t have any of the gentleness she had towards young students; this one was a criminal.
“Is it illegal for me to go onto the rooftop to look for something I lost?”
“It’s not. But last time, you clearly said that you’ve never opened the door to the rooftop without notice before, so even if you didn’t do anything, the school would suspect that the only reason Dong Ping had access to the rooftop was because you often open the door without permission.”
“I always remember to lock it… And, on the day of Dong Ping’s death, I never even left the library.”
“Is that so? You think that the logs of your card swipes will help you cover up the truth? The logs show that you indeed never left except for an hour at noon to eat lunch. However, the card of Little Pang, who was studying with you, shows that he left once from four thirty to five. According to him, at the time, you had already borrowed the maximum number of books, so you borrowed his card to go to another building to borrow books from four thirty to five! What did you do when you used his card to go out?!
“And, Dong Ping fell on a Saturday, and it was required to wear the school badge until Monday the next week. I already checked. On Sunday, your roommate’s badge broke, so he wanted to use yours to pass the inspection at the school gate. However, you were in the restroom, and he didn’t find yours on your jacket, so he went to another dormitory to borrow one. Your badge disappeared on Sunday, and you didn’t even notice it at all. Because there was something much more important on your mind that prevented you from caring about such a trivial matter! It was because you pushed Dong Ping off the building and was still scared!”
“No! It wasn’t like that!” Chen Jing cradled his head and cried, “I didn’t push him! He accidentally fell off himself!”
Chen QiaoYu immediately removed her aggressiveness and casually leaned against a chair. “Go ahead.”
“That day, Dong Ping called me and said that I snitched on him to a teacher that he had broken curfew, and he got points deducted because of it. I didn’t want to explain things loudly to him in the library, so I asked him to come meet me on the rooftop. I told him that I wasn’t snitching, it was just part of my job, and besides, breaking curfew might create problems for the school and was detrimental to his safety. Then, he got very angry and said that I was just the school’s lackey or toady or something… It was quite rude. I also got mad, so we started arguing.
Then, he pushed me, and when I reached out to block him, he stumbled backwards and tripped over a pipe. I went up to him and apologized, but he quickly got up and ran towards me. I was startled, since I’ve never gotten into a fight before. I subconsciously ran backwards, but he didn’t seem like he intended to stop. He threw a punch at me but I dodged, and he lost his balance and fell over the short railing… At the time, I was in shock, as I hadn’t expected that it would turn out this way at all. I didn’t even dare to look, I just scrambled away, locked the door, and ran back to the library… It still just feels like a dream right now! Officer, I really didn’t do it on purpose, I didn’t even do anything, I only dodged his attack. Who knew…” Chen Jing sobbed and collapsed on the table, pulling at his own hair.
“There are accidents every year, but there’s an awful lot this year.” Lin Bai sighed.
“Did Chen Jing tell the truth?” asked Guan Jin.
“He’s the only survivor from the scene, so isn’t it his decision about what happened? I looked into it, and Dong Ping indeed threatened to teach him a lesson because he got points deducted. It’s hard to say whether he lost his balance or was pushed over.” Chen QiaoYu said, “But there’s not enough evidence, so we could only let him go.”
“Chen Jing is a very cowardly person, and he tries very hard to blend in with the crowd. This type of person is very fragile psychologically, and they crumble easily. I believe that after being frightened by you, his psychological line of defense collapsed, so he couldn’t have had the spare brainpower to fabricate lies,” analyzed Lu YunYang.
“Then could he be the killer responsible for the other cases?” asked Guan Jin.
“That’s not very likely. Right now, I think that since the killer commits crimes at such high risks and is very calm and methodical, they’re definitely not being manipulated to do these things. They’re acting out of their own will. Perhaps Chen Jing is easily manipulated, but his personality is way too different from the killer’s, and he’s not arrogant nor does he seem to take pleasure in the rush of danger. He has a normal family. His parents are happily married, and he has a little sister. He’s always been very studious, and he’s the pride of the family. His teachers all say that he’s hard-working, though he’s a little withdrawn. However, this isn’t too strange, and he still communicates normally with his classmates. When he came to university, the other students’ activeness made his introversion and poor communication abilities stand out, which made him lose confidence, since he had only been able to blend in because of other people’s praises and compliments. Since his only source of confidence disappeared, he felt inferior and was very careful. However, according to his teachers, he later actively participated in student activities and became a resident supervisor assistant. His teachers all praise him for being reliable and hard-working, and he’s loosened up a lot. This is the success of his self-adjustment, and it wouldn’t turn him into a murderer.”
“This is also good, since we’ve eliminated another. Ah, we can also eliminate WenWen, who’s been abroad this whole time. Now, all we have left are Qin Xiao, Fang YuTian, Tang ZiYou, and Lu MinMin,” listed Ding Ding.