Xiao Lou had been taken notes during Group Leader Yu’s questioning. He took down everyone’s confession word for word. Once Zheng Weiguo left, Xiao Lou asked, “Group Leader Yu, who are you more inclined to believe is the murderer?”
Yu Hanjiang picked up the notebook and said, “At present, Zheng Weiguo and Liu Yuming’s suspicions are relatively large. First, they are both in Room 2 and can easily confirm if Li Zhemin is asleep or not. As long as the other three are asleep and the door is closed, the crime wouldn’t be discovered by anyone. Secondly, they both have a motive. Third, there are obvious loopholes in their confession.”
He put the book on the table and pointed his finger gently at one of the records. “Zheng Weiguo said that he found Li Zhemin’s body in the morning and stole the loan note. Who did he know Li Zhemin would take the note with him? Who would bring an IOU when travelling?”
Xiao Lou’s eyes brightened. “Yes, in general, things like a loan note would be placed at home and taken out when used. No one would take it with them.”
Yu Hanjiang nodded. “The only explanation is that Zheng Weiguo asked Li Zhemin to bring the loan note on this trip. Perhaps he lied and said he would pay back the money, tearing up the loan note in person. In this way, Li Zhemin would naturally bring the note with him.”
The function of the loan note was special. It was written down when money was borrow and torn up in person. This was a rule.
Yu Hanjiang’s speculation was reasonable. If Zheng Weiguo took the initiative to find Li Zhemin and say he would pay back the money, Li Zhemin would bring the loan note. This way, they would tear it up in person once the money was paid.
Xiao Lou opened his mouth. “Group Leader Yu, you mean that Zheng Weiguo stealing the note isn’t accidental, it was premeditated?”
Yu Hanjiang’s eyes were deep as he gave his analysis. “Zheng Weiguo knows that Old Li loves to play cards with them. That’s why he made up an excuse in advance for Old Li to bring the loan note. On this trip, he could quietly steal the loan note. If Old Li doesn’t have the loan note, he could drag things out by not admitting it.”
Xiao Lou followed along the lines of the analysis. Perhaps before getting on the train, Zheng Weiguo confirmed the position of the loan note on Li Zhemin?”
Yu Hanjiang nodded. “Obviously. He knew that the IOU note was in Old Li’s pocket.”
Xiao Lou slightly raised an eyebrow. “In this way, Zheng Weiguo’s suspicion is very big. He was afraid things would be exposed after stealing the IOU so he killed Li Zhemin. He thought that only he and Old Li knew about the matter of him borrowing money. As long as Old Li is dead, he wouldn’t have to pay back the money and wouldn’t be suspected. He didn’t expect Liu Yuming in the same room to accidentally see the note.”
Yu Hanjiang continued, “In addition, Liu Yuming knew he is addicted to gambling and that his wife divorced him. His seamless plan was brought to light.”
The two people were silent for a moment. If the murderer really was Zheng Weiguo then his motive was very clear. In addition, he was a diabetic and knew the safe insulin dosage. He stayed in the same room and could easily confirm that the deceased was asleep and he had plenty of time to commit the crime.
Still, was it really that simple?
Yu Hanjiang always felt that something was wrong and said, “Zheng Weiguo should’ve immediately torn up the note after stealing it yet we didn’t find fragments of the note. It is only human evidence and no physical evidence. If he really the murderer then we can’t catch him.”
There was no way to convict people based on another person’s word because people could lie.
If Zheng Weiguo really was the killer, the most correct path was to insist that he didn’t know about any loan. This way, Liu Yuming’s identification was false. In any case, the inside person Li Zhemin had died and there was no proof.
Xiao Lou wondered, “We found no scraps of confetti in the trash can. Where did the note go?”
Yu Hanjiang thought about it and suddenly said, “Perhaps he ate it?”
Xiao Lou, “…”
Yu Hanjiang had encountered such a murderer before. In order to destroy the evidence, he ate the paper and it was digested in the stomach and couldn’t be found.
If Zheng Weiguo’s confession was correct, he woke up at 7 in the morning. Some elderly people would be awake at this time and Zheng Weiguo might encounter them if he threw the note into the garbage. Then the most reasonable approach was to swallow the torn piece of paper so it couldn’t be found.
Xiao Lou helplessly held his forehead. “Group Leader Yu’s words are reasonable. IF the note is eaten and no one can find it, why should he admit it?”
Yu Hanjiang said, “From the point of view of criminal psychology, he is somewhat like ‘a cornered dog jumping over the wall’. He is so worried about being caught for murder that he had to admit to stealing. The punishment for stealing is much lighter while he would be sentenced to death for murder.”
Zheng Weiguo’s suspicion couldn’t be ruled out but it couldn’t be determined.
Xiao Lou had a headache. “What about Liu Yuming? His loophole is… he went through the trash can in the middle of the night?”
“Going in the middle of the night to rummage through the trash can to find a watch, this excuse is ridiculous. They played cards until 2 a.m. An average person would check the time before going to sleep. He should’ve found that the watch was missing. Why not go to search for it? Instead, he slept for an hour and woke up at 3 o’clock to sneak over?”
“His statement said he was afraid people would see him searching through the trash can and this was shameful.”
Yu Hanjiang said, “Who would see it? At 2 a.m., everyone would be asleep apart from some night owls. He could wait for his three roommates to fall asleep, close the door, pretend to go to the bathroom and search for his watch.”
Finding the watch was lost at 2 a.m. yet searching for it at 3 a.m. How is this explanation reasonable?
Xiao Lou found Liu Yuming’s registration form from the stack of information.
His ‘spouse’ column had the information that his wife had left the company and worked for another company. He had a son who was 25 years old, unmarried and working as a doctor.
This way, Liu Yuming’s suspicion was also very big. His son was a doctor. Even if he didn’t have diabetes, he could hear about the risk of insulin injections from his son and find his son to buy the syringes and insulin.
However, he now had a wife, a son and a happy family. Was it necessary to kill over an old thing that happened more than 20 years ago?
Yu Hanjiang thought about it. “At present, the accident is in the 6th carriage and our investigation is limited to the 6th carriage. Since it was arranged for us to manage two carriages, perhaps there will be clues in the 4th carriage.”
Xiao Lou nodded in agreement. “Yes, I will go to the 4th carriage to ask. The child Yu Xinxin fell asleep at 10 o’clock last night. Perhaps she woke up in the middle of the night and found something.”
Yu Xinxin’s family would get off tonight and wouldn’t go the terminal. They obviously weren’t related to the case but the little girl had too big a presence in the secret room. She might have a clue.
Thinking up to here, Xiao Lou stood up and told Yu Hanjiang, “Group Leader Yu, I will first go to ask Yu Xinxin and wait to find you later.”
Yu Hanjiang nodded. “Okay, be careful.”
The two men separated ways.
Xiao Lou went to the 4th carriage to find Yu Xinxin while Yu Hanjiang continued to interrogate the other elderly people.
He called ‘Sister Mei’ from Room 1 who had bad ears.
The grandmother’s real name was Mei Ruohua. When she was young, she was in charge of the company’s personnel department and was responsible for hiring people. Yu Hanjiang knew about her hearing and brought a pen and paper to write down the questions. “Aunt Mei, what was your relationship with Li Zhemin?”
Grandma Mei wore thick reading glasses but also took out a magnifying glass to carefully look at the words. She read the opening question and said, “Little Li? I personally recruited him into the company. He wasn’t well-educated but the young man was clever and learned things very quickly.”
“What department did he join when he first entered the company? Who trained him?”
Grandmother Mei replied, “He was an intern in the company’s sales department. Niu Dapeng trained him and is regarded as half his master.”
Yu Hanjiang continued to write. “Did you hear about the matter where he chased the boss’ daughter and stole the manager position from Niu Dapeng?”
The grandmother nodded. “Yes, the entire company knows about it.”
Yu Hanjiang quickly wrote, “Were there any accidents when he chased the young lady?”
Grandmother Mei sighed and coughed. “Well, this matter is a long story. I watched Ruirui grow up and she was like my younger sister. Liu Yuming chased her. They knew each other since university and Liu Yuming was handsome and talented. Liu Yuming had long tempted but she was retrained and embarrassed to have a relationship in the company. I encountered her to take the initiative and she was going to say yes. The result was that a week later, she suddenly cried to me and said she was… that’s it.”
Yu Hanjiang’s pen stopped slightly and he frowned. “Was she forced?”
Grandmother Mei shook her head. “It wasn’t so serious. It was Little Li’s birthday and many young girls were invited to his house party. He was going to cook and the girls wanted to taste his craft, so they went together. Naturally, they couldn’t avoid drinking. She drank some wine and became drunk. It was unknown what happened but when she woke up… ah, drinking is really bad!”
Yu Hanjiang finally understood.
He knew why the young lady suddenly changed her mind and married Li Zhemin when she was about to go further with Liu Yuming.
Originally, this was planned by Li Zhemin. He already intended to rely on the boss’ daughter to gain a higher position. He deliberately coaxed a few young girls to his home to play. Perhaps he drugged the young lady’s wine and slept with her while the group of people were drunk.
Grandmother Mei followed his thoughts. “She fell pregnant and was very ashamed. She was embarrassed to be with Liu Yuming and Little Li apologized to her, swearing he would be good to her. She was discouraged and simply married Little Li. They had a wedding within a month. Little Liu was sad but…”
“Cough cough…” Grandmother Mei sighed and coughed. “This matter, her father and I knew about it. Little Li really went too far. He said he was drunk and didn’t know what he was doing. I didn’t believe it! I am also a person and if a man is really drunk, they are like mud. Their brains aren’t awake and how can that thing stand up?”
Yu Hanjiang, “…”
Grandmother Mei said this directly and as a man, Yu Hanjiang agreed with her point of view.
A person who was completely drunk would lose consciousness and wouldn’t have an impulse in that impulse. In a semi-drunk state, men would only be emboldened through the wine. In addition, Li Zhemin probably wasn’t drunk and intentionally slept with this young lady.
He did anything possible to climb up.
Yu Hanjiang followed suit and wrote, “How is Li Zhemin’s wife now?”
Grandmother Mei suddenly had red eyes. “Ruirui, this girl is really unlucky. She was married for six months when her father died of lung cancer, leaving the company to his daughter. She was pregnant and couldn’t manage the company. She had to let Li Zhemin help manage the company. Then she had a difficult time when giving birth and had postpartum depression. She died within two years.”
Then the company entered Li Zhemin’s hand?
Yu Hanjiang picked up the information sheet. In the spouse column, Li Zhemin didn’t write ‘dead’ and his spouse’s name didn’t have the character ‘Rui.’ He thought about it and asked, “Li Zhemin married again?”
Grandmother Mei exclaimed angrily. “This Little Li, he didn’t behave properly! Not long after Ruirui died, he got involved with a young and beautiful nurse and married the nurse within a year. His son was still young and didn’t know his mother is actually a stepmother!”
Yu Hanjiang, “…”
Grandmother Mei continued, “He and his second wife had a son who is currently in university.”
Yu Hanjiang looked down. This matched the information sheet. Li Zhemin currently had two sons, one with his ex-wife and another with his current wife.
Yu Hanjiang took down the grandmother’s words in detail and asked her a question, “You are the company’s oldest senior employee. Do you know who organized this trip?”
Mrs Mei replied, “It was organized by Li Zhemin’s son.”
Yu Hanjiang raised his eyebrows. “Oh? There is a relationship with his son?”
Grandmother Mei explained, “A few years ago, his son graduated. Li Zhemin placed the company in his son’s hands and retired early to enjoy life. His son is truly very promising. He took over the company and business boomed. He earned a lot of money and engaged in real estate. It is said that some time ago, he made a net profit of several billion from developing real estate. He took the initiative to come up with a sum of money and contacted our company’s retired employees to organize a free trip for our well-being.”
Yu Hanjiang’s frown deepened. He gripped the ballpoint pen and quickly wrote down the last question. “His son paid to let everyone travel. How do you know this?”
“The company’s personnel director is new and didn’t understand the situation of the retired employees. She looked for me, the former supervisor, to consult. I asked her what to do and she said the boss told her to give benefits to the old employees. Isn’t this free tour a benefit?”
Yu Hanjiang lowered his head and pondered for a moment.
Grandmother Mei probably talked too much. Combined with her agitated emotions, she covered her chest and started to cough desperately. It was a type of dry cough that caused the listening people to feel worried. She suffered from asthma and shouldn’t speak too much. It wasn’t good for Yu Hanjiang to question her for too long and he could only temporarily send her back.
In the 4th carriage, Xiao Lou smiled and walked to Yu Xinxin. “Xinxin, Uncle has a few questions to ask you. Is it possible?”
Yu Xinxin liked this gently smiling uncle and immediately nodded. “Okay!”
Yu Xinxin’s mother wasn’t sure about giving her daughter to a stranger. She obviously looked hesitant. Xiao Lou said, “You can come with me to the office. Rest assured, I just want to ask your daughter a few questions.”
The woman was relieved as she held her daughter and followed Xiao Lou.
Xiao Lou came to the train attendant’s office in the 4th carriage. The woman holding Yu Xinxin entered with a tense face. “What happened? I heard someone screaming in the 6th carriage and the door was locked.”
Xiao Lou told her, “Nothing, there were two elderly people who had an argument. The attendant is handling it, don’t worry.” He smiled at Yu Xinxin and asked softly. “Xinxin, did you sleep well last night? I saw that you fell asleep at 10 o’clock. Did you wake up in the middle of the night? Children must not tell lies. You can tell me the truth.”
Yu Xinxin looked at her mother and saw her mother nodding. She seriously replied, “I woke up at 3 o’clock. I wanted to go to the toilet but my mother was sleeping. I didn’t wake her up and went to the toilet by myself!”
Xiao Lou praised. “Xinxin is really sensible.
Her mother also spoke in a pleased manner. “This child has been sensible from an early age. She goes to the toilet and changes clothes by herself, never letting us worry.”
Xiao Lou gently touched the child’s head and asked softly, “Then when you went to the toilet, did you see anyone walking around the 6th carriage or hear any strange sounds?”
Yu Xinxin’s eyes curved as she smiled. “Yes, a grandmother went to the toilet and she was coughing!”