Two Way Trip 03
Xing Cong Lian wasn’t in a hurry.
He knew Lin Chen was at the R&R station and knew he couldn’t run.
With Lin Chen’s intellect, he must have known he was already exposed.
It was interesting to see someone famous for their calm composure so anxious.
On the HePing North Road, the police in charge stopped a small school bus that was turning north onto ChangPing Route.
When Cong Lian arrived, the driver was still hounding the traffic police.
“Mister, you really didn’t break any laws.
The police just want to ask you some questions.” The traffic police stood by the bus, patiently persuading the driver.
“The students will be late for their classes!” The driver shouted, slamming his fist against the steering wheel.
Xing Cong Lian circled around the bright yellow bus.
The students aboard the bus had already gotten off for inspection.
The boys and girls in private school uniforms huddled by the roadside in groups of two or three.
The girls’ sailor skirts were cut above their knees.
When the wind blew, it revealed their youthful legs.
But, the boys weren’t willful or stubborn.
Although they were delayed, they all patiently waited for the inquiries in silence.
“Feng Jing School” Xing Cong Lian’s eyes fell on the emblem on the left side of the school bus.
It was composed of golden maple leaves and silver cassia branches.
“They’re from the city’s famous private school.
The tuition is very expensive!” Wang Chao pointed at a girl with a mushroom haircut on the side of the road.
Wearing a navy school uniform, she was held by a taller boy.
“Her parents are okay with such a small girl going to school by herself” Cong Lian didn’t hold back.
“In the Feng Jing School, the kindergarteners were all accompanied by a senior or an upperclassman.
How can it be unsafe” Yang Dian Feng, at Cong Lian’s side, couldn’t help but respond.
“You have kids in Feng JIng”
“My youngest brother attends the high school.”
Yang Dian Feng glanced at Cong Lian and smiled.
“The quality of education is good, so it’s alright to spend more.
If you want to send your children there, I can introduce you to the principal.”
“Us criminal police officers are very poor, we can’t afford that.”
Xing Cong Lian seemed to be in an excellent mood, chatting with Yang Dian Feng.
Suddenly, a police officer pulled something out from a school girl’s bag.
“I don’t know where that came from!” The girl clutched her bag tightly, yet her voice was calm.
Throwing the object into an evidence bag, the officer handed it over to Cong Lian.
Xing Cong Lian glanced at the item inside then moved closer to the student.
“Little sister…” As soon as he spoke, Wang Chao kicked him.
“Little girl, didn’t you say this thing wasn’t yours” Quickly changing his tone and wording, Xing Cong Lian held the bag up in front of the student.
Inside the bag was the exact tablet that had been taken from the bus by the hijacker.
The girl nodded.
“When I packed my bag this morning, that thing wasn’t there.”
“So you never touched it”
The girl’s eyes were clear.
“I think you can check the fingerprints.”
“Fair enough.” Cong Lian rubbed the stubbles on his chin.
“I always wear my bag on my back, so someone must have snuck it in while I was walking from home to the bus station, but that’s unlikely.” The girl looked at her school bag.
The iron clasp on the front was tightly buckled.
“That makes sense.” Xing Cong Lian continued his previous action, “When did you leave your house”
“Where do you live”
“Ruo Shui Street.”
“Oh” Cong Lian stared at the girl but didn’t ask any other questions.
“Sir, can I go now” The girl started back to the school bus.
“Interesting.” Cong Lian watched the girl’s ponytail bounce against her back as he spoke to himself.
“Boss,” Wang Chao said, “Give the tablet back to me and go to the R&R to find Ah Chen, please!”
Waiting to catch a turtle, Captain Xing didn’t care at all about his subordinate’s demand.
He handed the table over then folded his arms across his chest.
Leisurely, he waited.
Wang Chao almost choked with indignation but could only work on the tablet.
Quickly, he connected the tablet with his laptop and knocked on the keys, working on a dizzying array of codes.
A complicated red line was outlined on the map, showing the specific locations of the tablet after leaving the hijacked bus.
The cobweb-like line was confusing but Wang Chao had an epiphany.
Immediately, he took out his phone and keyed in two locations.
“I’ll be damned…” Wang Chao looked at his phone then the map on the laptop and said, “Boss, there’s something wrong with this tablet’s GPS.
The locations are impossible!”
Hearing this, the Tou An Company’s general manager’s expression shifted.
“Officer, the tablet’s built-in GPS is the latest edition of our company.
That is impossible!”
“You see here, I used my phone’s navigation to calculate the distance from the Shi Fang Section of the Hong Jing Highway to our current location.
It’s 165 km.
It would take more than two hours to travel.” Wang Chao showed his phone’s screen to Yang Dian Feng.
He then tapped on the time display on the top right.
“As you can see, it’s just 8:00 am, only one and a half hours from the bus’s hijacked.
It wasn’t a straight route, either, the tablet couldn’t have gotten here in such a short time.”
“There might be some shortcuts.
When you analyzed the paths, there should have been some clues, right”
Wang Chao wanted to refute, but he thought the man’s words were reasonable.
He pulled up the Hong Jing City map on the screen and began to carefully study it.
Xing Cong Lian looked at the entire map.
The lines representing the roads were dense, crossing over one another like blood vessels.
“That little girl said that she went out at 7:35.
She was very sure that the tablet wasn’t in her bag before that.
So you should focus on the time between 7:25 to 8:00.
Where was our lovely tablet, and how did it get into that girl’s bag”
Wang Chao’s eyes lit up.
He began to collect information according to Cong Lian’s words but soon turned depressed again.
“Manager Yang, seriously, there’s a problem with your system.” The technician wore a dejected expression.
“Your GPS system didn’t record the ‘location time.’”
“What do you mean” Cong Lian asked.
“The system only recorded the location and paths but not the time it passed through those places.”
Yang Dian Feng spread his hands helplessly.
“For us, the GPS system was only meant to control and monitor the bus routes.
I’m really sorry.”
“Then we should combine the paths here with the one taken by the school bus driver.
Then, you can compare them.” Xing Cong Lian was also disappointed, but he patted Wang Chao’s shoulder, comforting him.
“But that won’t make sense, boss!” Wang Chao rubbed his hands, “Even if we compare them, how did it get into that girl’s bag What will that prove”
“What will that prove” Cong Lian repeated coldly, “It will prove that the criminal could do something we couldn’t.
It will prove that he had us fooled and that we still couldn’t figure out his purpose.
What other proof do you need”
When Cong Lian was finished, he strode to the driver but didn’t spare Wang Chao another glance.
Wang Chao watched him leave.
He always felt like Cong Lian was changed after that autumn of storms and bloodshed.
He just didn’t know what the changes were.
“Captain Xing, please wait for a moment.”
He hadn’t even taken two steps before Yang Dian Feng stopped him.
“I have the latest map on paper.” He ran to his car, grabbed the map from the dashboard, then trotted back towards him.
Handing it over, he said, “Tell him to draw on the map, so he can see it more clearly.”
Even the bus driver saw Cong Lian’s ugly expression.
He uncharacteristically cooperated with them.
Not only did he draw the roads he took, he also marked every stop he made.
Xing Cong Lian read the map then brought it to Wang Chao.
Recording the route from the map on his laptop, Wang Chao watched as a yellow line overlapped the red one on the screen.
“I’ll be damned.” Cong Lian couldn’t stop himself from repeating Wang Chao’s words.
The starting point on the map was the same, the gate of Feng Jing School.
After that, the yellow and red lines began to diverge and overlap, making the screen even more of a confusing mess.
“It would be simple if you had the timeline,” Wang Chao said gloomily.
Pointing at the bus’s path, Con Lian said, “I’ll go check the road.”
With a smile, Yang Dian Feng said, “Let me go with you.”
Sitting in the passenger seat, Yang Dian Feng watched the road signs change as they traveled.
Cong Lian didn’t bother looking at the map, yet he never took a wrong turn.
“You have a good memory.” The handsome manager leaned against the window, his chin propped on his hand.
The spring breeze blew through his hair, tousling it.
Cong Lian fished out a cigarette, too lazy to talk.
Stopping the car at the intersection near the Feng Jing School, Con Lian saw several students loitering.
The school hours were about to start, and several boys and girls waited at the school gate, ready for class.
Yang Dian Feng followed him out of the car and walked along the boulevard, eyeing the camphor trees that grew on either side of the street.
Walking slowly, Xing Cong Lian tucked his hands into his pockets.
The cold spring breeze and noisy voices brushed passed him, but he stood straight and strode forward.
“What are you thinking about” Yang Dian Feng finally asked.
“A friend of mine once told me that if I was ever faced something I couldn’t understand, I should experience it.” Xing Cong Lian closed his eyes then took a deep breath.
“So, what do you feel”
Captain Xing Cong Lian opened his eyes but didn’t speak.