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MCAB - Chapter 134

Dong Hong was a little baffled when she first learned of Chen Yang's death, but she didn't think it was particularly sudden. After all, it wasn't rare to see people in their circle die because of gang fights, enemies, debts, etc.

Although Dong Hong was saddened by the news, her sadness wasn't particularly intense. After all, she still hadn't forgotten about Chen Yang's infidelity, something she detested the most.

However, when the police came to question her afterward, Dong Hong panicked a bit.

Dong Hong knew that the police often liked to cast suspicion on acquaintances the deceased had conflicts with and those who were the last to see the deceased. She still had a few little secrets that she didn't want the police to know, so she chose to lie at the time.

"Why did you hide these things from us before?" Jun Zishu asked as she looked at Dong Hong.

"What's there to say about such things? Do I have to give a detailed account of our sex to that officer?"

Dong Hong's language was bold and straightforward, and it made even Wang Duoduo feel embarrassed.

"What date was it when he left?"

"How would I know? It's been so many days already. How can I possibly remember?" Dong Hong said, rolling her eyes. Her memory wasn't that great.

"Think, then," Jun Zishu flatly said, causing Donghong to shudder.

"Fine."

Dong Hong closed her eyes and started thinking.

Dong Hong had never been such a wimpy person. Although she was afraid of the police, her fear wasn't to the extent that she would behave obediently when threatened. However, she couldn't help but find the beautiful officer in front of her scary. The other party's cold gaze gave her the feeling that she would die should she say 'no.'

After thinking for a moment, Dong Hong suddenly thought of something and hurriedly ran back to her room. Then, she returned with her phone in hand.

"I'm so dumb. I can't believe I forgot about my call history."

Although Dong Hong had already deleted her messages and call history with Chen Yang, their conversation history on QQ remained.

"October 23. He came to my house that day. He stopped messaging me afterward. I tried messaging him and calling him on QQ later that night, but he didn't respond, so I stopped caring," Dong Hong said truthfully as she showed her QQ conversation history to Jun Zishu.

Jun Zishu fell into thought when she saw this. It meant that Chen Yang had most likely disappeared after leaving Dong Hong's house that day.

"That's everything I know, Officer."

"Did he show any strange behavior when he came to find you? What did he say to you when he left?"

"Ah, I honestly don't remember this," Dong Hong said, shrugging helplessly.

It had already been a month since they last met. Who would remember something that happened so long ago? At the very least, Dong Hong couldn't.

After failing to get any more information, Jun Zishu, Yang Tianxiao, and Wang Duoduo took their leave.

When they arrived downstairs, they came across a middle-aged man with a bald spot.

"Officer?" the middle-aged man greeted Jun Zishu in a surprised tone.

"You are?"

"I'm Tan Linlin's form teacher. We met in the faculty office last time. You might not remember me, but I still remember you."

"Ah… Do you live here as well, Teacher?"

"That's right. Have you found any clues about Tan Linlin's case yet?" the teacher asked with concern. Then, putting on a lamenting expression, he continued, "She's a very obedient and hardworking child. Her grades in most subjects are quite good, and she's only poor in mathematics. But she knows how to improve herself, and she would usually come to my office to ask questions when she is free. She would even come to my home sometimes during holidays to ask questions. I really don't know what kind of scum would do such a thing to her. Hah… What a pitiful child."

"The investigation is still underway, so we cannot reveal too much information, but we already have some leads. Rest assured that we will catch the perpetrator. But, did you just say that…Tan Linlin often visits your home to ask questions?"

"That's right. Our school provides students with a three-day break once every month. That child would visit me during these times. But it doesn't happen every break. She would usually choose to work if she had free time."

"Is that so? Which unit do you live in, Teacher?"

"302. If there is nothing else, I'll be heading home to eat now. I still have classes in the afternoon."

"Okay." Jun Zishu nodded. Then, after the teacher vanished from her sight, she looked at the apartment building and said, "The murderer is most likely living here."

"Really?"

Yang Tianxiao and Wang Duoduo exchanged looks when they heard Jun Zishu's words, their expressions lighting up in realization.

Chen Yang's corpse was found nearby this place. Meanwhile, Chen Yang's ex-girlfriend and Tan Linlin's mathematics teacher just so happened to live here.

While this situation might look like a coincidence, they realized that there must be an indispensable connection between these points when they thought it over carefully.

Jun Zishu had previously speculated that the killer was a very cautious person and that he preferred to have everything under his control. Thus, he would only act when he thoroughly understood his and his victims' circumstances. He might have even stalked his victims to learn more about them.

Meanwhile, the main problem that stumped Jun Zishu before was how did the killer learn of the victims' circumstances in the first place?

After hearing Tan Linlin's teacher's account, Jun Zishu felt that she had reached the answer:

An accidental encounter between neighbors.

Meanwhile, after accidentally learning about Chen Yang's and Tan Linlin's circumstances from his neighbors, the killer had started preparing to take action.

"Do we check the residents now, Chief?"

"Head back to the station and pull up everyone's information. We'll go through everything again."

"Roger!"

"All residential blocks in the district are of the same height. Each block has six floors, and all six floors of Residential Block 4 are fully occupied."

The suspect was most likely living in Anhe District's Residential Block 4, a rather inauspicious number.

"Unit 101 houses a young couple with a child in kindergarten. Unit 102 houses an old grandmother. Unit 201 houses another couple and a child, but the child has already gone to university. Unit 202 houses a lone career woman. Unit 301 houses a female grade school teacher. Unit 302 houses Tan Linlin's mathematics teacher's family," Yang Tianxiao said before pausing to catch her breath. Then, she continued, "Unit 401 houses a 30-year-old man working as a bank manager."

"Does he live alone?" Jun Zishu interrupted.

"Mhm. He is divorced from his wife, and his children were assigned to the mother," Yang Tianxiao said, nodding. Then, she continued, "Unit 402 houses Chen Yang's ex-girlfriend, Dong Hong.

"Unit 501 houses a family of three.

"Unit 502 houses a widower working as a painter.

"Unit 601 houses a man. We haven't investigated him yet, so we don't know his profession.

"Unit 602 houses another lone man. He's a Taobao store owner."

There were quite a lot of males living in Residential Block 4. Meanwhile, the suspect was deemed a man with a height of around 176 centimeters.

"Filter through the men and see which ones match the suspect's characteristics. Exclude the ones who are too tall," Jun Zishu said. A short person could increase their height by padding their shoes. However, a tall person couldn't reduce their height unless they chopped off their legs.

Having a lead to go on was much better than fumbling about like a headless fly. Immediately, everyone investigated the male residents of Residential Block 4.

There were a few men who didn't match the suspect's characteristics. The husband of the family living in Unit 101 was 180 centimeters tall, so he could be excluded. The husband living in Unit 501's family was also taller than 180 centimeters, so he, too, could be excluded.

Afterward, the third person to get excluded was the Taobao store owner living in Unit 602. Unlike the first two family men, he was excluded because of his short stature. He measured less than 170 centimeters, so a few layers of padding definitely wouldn't be enough to propel his height to 176 centimeters. He'd have to wear incredibly tall platform shoes to match the suspect's height. However, based on surveillance footage, the suspect only wore normal snow boots at the time.

Meanwhile, after the team conducted a more thorough investigation, they also found out the profession of Unit 601's owner. The person in question was a restaurant owner.

"Out of the remaining people, we can rule out Unit 302. While investigating Tan Linlin's case, this teacher has already provided an alibi. During the three days of snow, he visited his father-in-law's house together with his wife and child," Jun Zishu said. "So, we are only left with Units 201, 401, 502, and 601 that need further investigation.

"Everyone, work hard. The killer might be among these four people."

"Roger!"

Afterward, Jun Zishu grabbed her voice recorder and revisited the residential block with Wang Duoduo to conduct further investigation.

Although they had already ruled out some of the residents, they decided to investigate every resident living in the residential block. After all, the previous inquiry was only a routine inquiry conducted by normal officers.

Unit 101's young couple wasn't home, probably because both of them had gone to work.

Unit 102's grandmother wasn't home, either, though they had no idea where she went.

Unit 201's door opened rather quickly after Jun Zishu knocked on it, and the person opening the door was a middle-aged woman.

"Hello. You are?"

"Police. We have some things we want to ask you. No need to be nervous; we're just conducting a simple inquiry," Jun Zishu said. Then, she looked into the house and saw a middle-aged man watching TV on the sofa.

The man's height was probably around 175 centimeters, and he turned around when he heard movement coming from the door. The man also showed a rather normal reaction when he heard the word "police," looking a little surprised and curious.

"Come on in, then. We'll try to help with whatever we can."

"I would like to ask about your relationship with your neighbors."

"Our neighbors?"

The middle-aged couple was a little stunned. Then, they promptly began talking one after another.

"Everyone here is quite friendly with each other, probably because our block's residents are relatively old. The two of us bought this house relatively early, so there weren't many people living here when we moved in," the husband spoke first.

Then, the wife followed up by saying, "I know that there are two teachers living above us. The math teacher living in 302 even used to teach our son when he was in high school, while the female teacher living in 301 is very kind. I also know a little about the people living on the fourth floor. The woman living there is quite shady, and the man, I heard, got divorced by his wife because of his violent tendencies. I've never even dared to greet that man, but everyone has secretly talked about how his wife left him after she couldn't stand his beatings any longer. The wife also took their child away because she was afraid he'd beat them."

TL Notes:

Taobao: It's basically the Amazon of China.

Hellscythe's Notes:

MCAB's first patreon goal (150$) has been met! So, expect to see two chapters released on Sundays from now on!

If you would like to read ahead and help increase release rates for MCAB, please consider subscribing to my patreon!

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Other novels I translate on Hosted Novel:
Pantsu Hero Alice (PHA)
Reincarnation of the Strongest Sword God (Side Stories)
After Being Bent By Reader (ABBR)(GL)
Written by 小吾君 Xiao Wu Jun. Translated by Hellscythe.