Historically, there are a lot of cunning and cruel criminals that managed to escape the raid, yet exposed their ident.i.ty under the least expected circ.u.mstances. For example, Ted Bundy, the American serial killer was arrested after he failed to pull over for a routine traffic stop. In China, Yang Xinhai was stopped by police check points in an entertainment venue.
Now, in front of Bo Jinyan and Jian Yao is a valuable clue that’s obtained in a similar fashion.
After lunch. A quiet conference room.
A few technicians from the Ministry of Public Security are a.n.a.lysing data they collected from the arsonists’ house. One of the senior technicians explains: “Three of the five arsonists had computers at home. We noticed that all of them have been hacked a few days before the fires. All the data inside were wiped off by a virus sent by the hacker. Not only were the computers, but the servers in the areas were attacked too.”
Bo Jinyan stands behind them. His long fingers taps the desk: “So, the internet cafes that are close to the two other arsonists’ houses were hacked too?” He says coldly: “Internet. This is the quickest way to source his victims.”
Jian Yao says: “They are born all in the 70s. People from this generation are usually technically proficient.” She turns to Bo Jinyan: “We should add this to the profile: frequent users of the internet chat rooms and discussion forums. It’s common for these middle aged men, who are not successful in their careers, to spend a lot of time online.”
“You are right.” The senior technician is impressed with her a.n.a.lysis: “And we have a bonus. The data in one of the computers was not completely wiped off.”
The last arsonist, who is also the oldest of the five arsonists, is in better financial shape compared with the others. The old computer he normally used was at the repair shop. What the hacker wiped was his son’s laptop.
‘We traced the data back to an online discussion forum. According to the company that runs the forum, their server was hacked around the same period as well. But their firewall managed to block the hacker. So we managed to retrieve the information that belonged to all five arsonists. The results show that all of them had frequent contact with a particular ID account.” The senior technician turned to a young man: “Anam, please show Professor Bo.”
Anam looks like he is in his early twenties. He wears a pair of gla.s.ses with a thin golden frame. He turns the monitors towards them: “The name of the ID account is Ching Tian Gu Chi* It uses an overseas proxy login, with a number of firewalls around it. We are currently using a few different algorithms to crack his location.
(* literal translation: the solitary notes/accounts of the clear sky)
This is not a speciality of Bo Jinyan, he takes a look at Anam: “How long till we get the results?
Anam: “Approximately three minutes.”
Bo Jinyan has a satisfied smile on his face. He pulls a chair over to sit next to Anam. The others take a seat too. Everyone is waiting anxiously.
“Ching Tian Gu Chi…” Bo Jinyan mocks: “What a narcissistic name.”
Suddenly, all three computers flashes and turns into a blue screen! Rows of data fills the screen, then there is an error message. The original program is nowhere to be seen anymore.
“What happened?” asks the senior technician.
Anam frowns and looks at the machine. They try typing on the keyboards but the computers are not responding.
Bo Jinyan says coldly: “Are we….. being attacked instead?” Jian Yao’s heart tightens. She taps his shoulder to remind him not to be too harsh to Anam.
The senior technician says to Anam: “Deal with this immediately. If we lose this clue, we will be at a dead end.”
Anam, who has been silent since the computer started to play up, speaks calmly: “His safety system uses the best technology he can get his hands on in the US.”
Everyone starts to worry, but then he continues faintly: “But it’s not the best in the world.” Then his fingers start typing on the keyboard at a quick speed.
In a few seconds, his screen flashes again, and rows of calculations re-appear on screen.
The technicians are relieved. Jian Yao and Bo Jinyan looks at Anam. His hand is on the mouse. They hear around 10 clicks, then another set of numbers appear on screen. He turns to look at Bo Jinyan. His gla.s.ses reflect the lights from the computer screens: “I’ve got his address – didn’t take more than 3 minutes.”
Everyone is surprised. The senior technician taps Anam’s shoulders. He pa.s.ses the information to the officers waiting outside.
Bo Jinyan stands up. He takes a glance at Anam: “The security system for the discussion forum. Is it designed by you?”
Anam has no expressions on his face. He closes his laptop screen: “A small job I took on while studying in university.”
Bo Jinyan doesn’t say anything more. He walks out of the conference room. Jian Yao looks at him. Then she looks at the young man, Anam. Then she walks out after Bo Jinyan.
Half an hour later. On a plane.
The address Anam identified is a villa in a seaside city. The special team in charge of this case is taking the first available flight there. They have informed the local police to work with them.
The plane is travelling through a clear blue sky. Bo Jinyan has his sleep mask on. He adjusts his seat so that he can lean back more comfortably. His handsome face glowing from the rays coming through the cabin window. He is holding Jian Yao’s hand. His thumb gently rubbing the back of her hands.
Even in the midst of stressfulness and hard times, love brings a sense of peace to the situation. When he is by your side, you heart is settled. Even if you are in a dangerous place, you feel that together, you can face it with ease.
“Anam is a genius too.” Jian Yao says softly.
When they were in the conference room. It was like watching two masters at work. Jian Yao is glad to have another genius working with them in the team.
Bo Jinyan faintly repeats an important word: “Too?”
Jian Yao laughs: “Yes. Like you.”
Bo Jinyan looks disdainfully at Jian Yao: “Criminal psychology is an art. Mathematical calculation is a skill. How can you compare the two?”
Jian Yao: “……”
Man, can this man be more arrogant?
Then he says again: “Of course, he is one of the best amongst his field. He should be very pleased to be working with me.”
Jian Yao asks: “Why is that?”
“Because I can help him maximise his value and live to his full potential.” He says: “Why shouldn’t he be happy?”
Jian Yao: “…..”
There are a lot of empty seats in the plane cabin. Some of the others within the special team comes over to discuss the cases with Bo Jinyan.
Jian Yao looks at Anam. He is sitting quietly by himself in a window seat a few rows behind them. He is reading something on his mobile phone. Looks like he has no intention of joining the discussion.
Mmmm… so is this what happens when two geniuses meet? They simply ignore each other?
The private beach looks lovely in the setting sun. A golden sheen covers the sand. A cool sea breeze is blowing.
Several police cars are driving along the coastal highway. From afar, one can see a black and white villa. It has a contemporary design, at the water’s edge. There are a few police car in front of the property – the local police who arrived ahead of them.
“It’s a new dwelling. There’s no registered owner yet.” says one of the officers. “But to be able to build a villa like this, the person must be very rich.”
When Bo Jinyan’s police car arrives the car parking area of the villa, they see a person they don’t expect to see.
She is wearing a causal pair of cream colour track pants. Her hair is tied up to a poly tail. There are few people standing behind her. They don’t look pleased either. Jian Yao recognises them. They are her a.s.sistant, secretary and two bodyguards.
“Welcome to K city. Let’s keep this brief.” One of the local police is addressing the special team: “The owner of this villa is Lin Yi Yang, the deputy general manager of Feng Kai Group. The lady over there is Ms. Yin Ziqi. She is his fiancee. When we arrived, she is already at the villa.”
Jian Yao is shocked. Bo Jinyan walks overs to her.
When Yin Ziqi sees him, a concoction of emotions arises: surprise, joy, dependence, confusion, shock ……
“Jinyan. What’s the matter?” She grabs hold of his shirt: “What’s happened to Yi Yang?”
Bo Jinyan asks her coldly: “Why are you here?”
“A few days ago, Yi Yang said he will be here to go sailing. I am here on business. I thought I’d join him. He said he will be back today.”
Bo Jinyan is quiet for a moment: “I think you might need to prepare yourself. He may never return.”
Yin Ziqi’s face turns pale. Jian Yao is very quiet too.
He is right. Whether it’s Lin Yi Yang is or is not the person behind the arson cases, he might never come back.”
This is an unexpected turn of events. Yin Ziqi’s finance is involved in this case?
Is ‘he’ someone close to them?
Yin Ziqi’s heart is very troubled.
They have been together for five years. Their relationship has been very steady. Both of them regard each other as their future partner for marriage. It is very hard to accept Bo Jinyan’s words.
She is not ignorant. She knows that Bo Jinyan only gets involved with big cases. She asks as streams of tear start to flow down her face: “So…. Yi Yang is murdered?”
Bo Jinyan asks the police to leave first, then he answers: “We are not sure. Perhaps he is the killer.”
Yin Ziqi can’t believe what she is hearing: “What did you say?”
Bo Jinyan is looking at her without any expression on his face. Jian Yao suddenly understands why he said that – he wanted to observe Yin Ziqi’s reaction. He wants to know if she is hiding anything.
From what Jian Yao can tell, she doesn’t know anything about the case.
Bo Jinyan has obviously reached a conclusion. He softens his voice and says to his sister: “Don’t be sad. I know you are a strong woman. I will find him for you. Dead or alive, I will bring him back.”
What was intended to be ‘words of comfort’ by Bo Jinyan is just making Yin Ziqi feel worse. Jian Yao steps forward to console her: “Perhaps the situation is not as bad as we think. Don’t worry. Just leave everything to Jinyan.”
Yin Ziqi does not reply to Jian Yao. She takes out a packet of tissue. After wiping her tears, she turns to ask Bo Jinyan again: “Tell me, what has happened?”
Bo Jinyan: “I don’t have time to explain. The other police officers will fill you in the details. I just need you to answer a question now.”
Yin Ziqi nods.
Bo Jinyan looks at her and says in a clear and slow voice: “Flower Cannibal No.2 kissed you. And you have spent a lot of time with Lin Yin Yang. Tell me. Do you notice anything strange about your fiance? Do they have any similarities?”
Yin Ziqi is shock to hear what Bo Jinyan is suggesting: “That’s impossible. How could you….”
“Are you sure?” Bo Jinyan interrupts her: “Is there anything, no matter how small it seems, that you find unusual about him?”
“No!” This time, it’s Yin Ziqi that is cutting him off mid-sentence.
“Jinyan. Sure. We are both very busy people. I don’t know everything about him. But you said it. The Flower Cannibal kissed me before. Would I confuse his kiss with my fiance’s kiss?”
This is a typical rich man’s villa. Luxurious, refined and elegant. Especially the bedroom, and study, full of touches that reveals the masculinity of its owner. In the middle of the bedroom hangs a large artist self portrait – half body, shirtless, muscular, and with a smile on his handsome face.
Inside the study, Anam connects his laptop onto the computer. Other officers are busy looking around for clues and evidence.
Bo Jinyan stands in front of a window. He puts up the blinds and looks at the ocean that stretches out to the horizon. Jian Yao walks up and ask him softly: “Do you think it’s him?”
Bo Jinyan puts down the blinds. He looks at her: “I don’t plan to make a conclusion now. But he does fit all the criteria we set for ‘him’.”
Jian Yao thought about that earlier too – He is close to Yin Ziqi, wealthy, capable of doing what ‘he’ would have done… But from another angle, he is a normal rich kid with a good qualification and high IQ. Who knows if he is hiding something underneath his charming appearance?
But Jian Yao shakes her hand: “I don’t think Lin Yi Yang is him.”
Bo Jinyan lifts his brows: “Why? My female detective?”
Jian Yao chuckles. Then she says in a serious voice: “Yin Ziqi is right. If ‘he’ is Lin Yin Yang, she would know when ‘he’ kissed her.”
Bo Jinyan looks quietly at her, then gives a laugh: “What an interesting view. From a kiss? Unless he has a very distinct bad breath, I don’t think it’s easy to confuse Yin Ziqi by changing his kissing style.”
Jian Yao: ‘But I still think….”
“Ok. Let’s test it out.” He says. He steps forward, grabs her waist and lower his head to kiss her.
A hot and wet scent quickly fills her mouth. But this kiss is different from his usual ones.
His usual kisses start off gentle. He likes to linger for a long time. When he gets pa.s.sionate, he will suck and lick her, it can be rich, deep and intense, but he is always very patient, and warm toward her.
But now, his hand is squeezing her chin. it’s so tight that she is feeling a little painful. His tongue invading greedily, sweeping around the inside of her lips. He even bites her tongue, till it’s painful and numb. It’s like he’s changed to a different person. Powerful, and cruel.
After a while, he lets go of her. Their lips are still wet from the kiss. Her lips are still burning from this short but fiery kiss.
“I don’t like this style of kissing. And I don’t think you enjoyed it either.” He said: “But we have proved a point. Kisses can be used as a disguise.”
Jian Yao is just catching her breath back. Then she remembers –
There is someone else in the room!
Even though the kiss is an experiment, but it’s still awkward that others would watch them. She turns her head. Surely enough, Anam stands in the other side of the room. He has a surprised look on his face. When their eyes meet, he looks down again to the computers.
Jian Yao blushes. Then she turns to Bo Jinyan and asks: “This style. Did you learn it from a book?”
Bo Jinyan: “There’s no need to. I just imagined myself as a ruthless criminal.”
Jian Yao smiles: “But you are wrong.”
Bo Jinyan frowns at her words.
Jian Yao grabs hold of his shirt and pulls him towards her. She says quietly in his ears: “Whenever you kiss me, you have a habit. At the end of the kiss, your tongue will always curl at the tips, then lick mine from bottom to top. It’s a subconscious trick you do every time.”
Bo Jinyan is stunned, then he looks down at her.
He thinks for a while, then he smiles: “Ok, you have successfully convinced me. Yin Ziqi and Lin Yi Yang have been lovers for years. They would be very familiar with each other’s, and Yin Ziqi is a sharp and observant woman. Based on this, she should be able to tell if those two men are the same person.”
Jian Yao nods. It’s a relieve to hear that he agrees. The last thing she wants to see is that people she knows are involved in the case.
But then, he says: “It’s not a good enough reason to eliminate the possibility that Lin Yi Yang is ‘him’ yet.”
Jian Yao is puzzled: ‘Why?” But didn’t he just admit….
Bo Jinyan has a faint smile: “You have left out a possibility – Split personality.”
She thinks about what she has read in the books about split personalities. It’s like two people living in one body. They can have completely different likings, characters, and of course personality. So kissing habits and styles can be completely different too.
So it’s back to square one again. The truth seems to be hiding behind layers upon layers of fog, and they can’t see where they are going.
Some of the other special team members walk in. They ask Anam: “Any new discoveries?”
Anam: “His motherboard and hard drive is destroyed. I am trying to recover some of the data…” Suddenly he stops and looks at the computer screen.
Everyone looks at him.
He tells everyone: “We have a set of numbers.”
On the black screen, there’s a few rows of numbers in red. Blood red. And it’s arranged in a pattern very familiar to Bo Jinyan and Jian Yao –
“135 / 329
Anam enters the numbers into another a.n.a.lysing programme. Jian Yao turns to looks at Bo Jinyan.
The room is very quiet. No one moves.
Jian Yao has a bad feeling about what will happen.
Then Bo Jinyan’s face changed when he saw words starting to appear on the screen.
The others in the team don’t know about the codes Bo Jinyan received earlier, or anything about the Flower Cannibal. Anam reads out the words on screen: “Say h.e.l.lo to Jenny.”
He looks ups: “Who is Jenny?”