When A Snail Falls in Love - Chapter 20[Updated at: 2021-01-11 09:54:55]
Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation
Father Xu had always been open-minded and gentle with the way he educated his children. He gave Xu Xu and Xu Juan the freedom to develop their character freely. Thus, Xu Juan started his pursuit at a very young age as he believed that money and social status were the keys to success in society. On the other hand, Xu Xu chose to pursue truth and conscience, which she considered the simplest and most important things in life. This was also the reason why she chose this profession.
The two of them were very busy and sometimes they could not even meet each other once a month. Nevertheless, they did not grow distant. Since everyone had their own strengths, they both respected each other and their relationship only got better with age.
However, if there was anyone around Xu Xu who could keep such a big secret, it would be Xu Juan. Since she would never analyze her brother who loved her unconditionally, she would subconsciously “turn off” when she was with her brother who had always protected her.
Around three or four in the afternoon, there were very few people in the departure hall and only patches of sunlight were shining in. Xu Xu stood in front of the huge glass window and stared out at the cloudy blue sky above for a while. Then, she turned around and walk towards Ji Bai who was standing not too far away from her.
After Ji Bai passed the photo to her last night, he said, “You’re suspended from all work relating to this case until Xu Juan can prove his innocence.”
Ji Bai was watching the news on his mobile phone with a calm look on his face whilst his tall body leaned against the light blue chairs at the airport. It seemed as though yesterday’s accidental discovery had not affected his calm heart in even the slightest.
He noticed that Xu Xu was standing in front of him and he asked without lifting his head, “Do you have anything to say?”
Xu Xu stared at his chiseled face and said after a moment of contemplation, “Teacher, as the sister of the suspect, you can feel free to interrogate me.”
Ji Bai’s lips slowly curled up as he raised his head to look at her.
Her expression was dignified and, though it was slightly gloomy yesterday, it had now returned to her usual cool look.
Since he did not say anything, Xu Xu continued, “Firstly, I believe that Ye Zixi was once the woman that he loved the most. Even though he used to have many girlfriends, both of us are very careful and selective when it comes to marriage. This is due to the way that my father educated and influenced us. He had never proposed marriage to another woman…”
Ji Bai interrupted her, “What does being careful and selective when it comes to marriage mean specifically?”
Xu Xu thought for a while before continuing, “To try to only have one marriage, such as to avoid elders and children from being affected by unstable family relationships.”
“Be faithful to one’s spouse until death”
“You could say that. Yes, that would be the ideal state.”
Ji Bai smiled lightly. “Very good. Continue.”
Xu Xu felt that the way he said “very good” was a little strange, but that feeling disappeared in a flash. Thus, she did not pay too much attention to it and continued to state her analysis,
“Even so, there isn’t sufficient motive for him to kill her.
“Firstly, if they are lovers now, he is successful now so there is no need for them to hide the relationship. The secret lover must be someone else.
“Secondly, even if there is an emotional involvement between Xu Juan and Ye Zixi, I doubt that there is anything beyond that. Xu Juan had nothing at all in the past, he was just a young and frivolous youth who might have been crazy about love.
“Nonetheless, after so many years in the business industry, he has changed a lot. He is a very outstanding businessman who is skillful in planning as well as a very tactful man who is rarely swayed by emotions. ‘Profit’ and ‘achievement’ are the most important things in his life. So, even if he couldn’t get Ye Zixi’s love, he would just try to win her over by whatever means necessary, and if he was unsuccessful, he would take his revenge on her through business. However, he would lose if he murdered her out of anger, thus ruining everything he has. Therefore, the possibility of him doing something so stupid and impulsive is very low.
“Thirdly, I think that Xu Juan’s greatest contribution to this case lies in the reason why he wanted to hide the fact that he used to be in a relationship with Ye Zixi. Even if he wanted to hide the relationship from the others, why would he want to hide it from me? This proves that he definitely knows something about Ye Zixi that he can’t tell his sister, who is a police officer. Thus, I hypothesize that it is something illegal. After figuring this out, we might be able to relate it to the reason why Ye Zixi was killed.”
After she finished talking, she stared at Ji Bai’s face and tried to observe the change in his expression. Nevertheless, Ji Bai remained silent as usual such that she was not able to read him.
“I only believe in evidence. I will thoroughly investigate whether he’s innocent or not.” He said briefly.
Xu Xu nodded and was about to sit down when he added, “However, I personally hope that your brother is innocent.”
Xu Xu was stunned.
As they were about to take-off, more people started to come and go in the spacious departure hall. The lights got dimmer and the place was filled with noise.
Ji Bai calmly and quietly sat in the messy environment as he took his time to speak in a mellow voice. There was a rarely seen gentleness in his profound looking eyes and also a faint smile on his handsome face.
Xu Xu stood in front of him and looked at him quietly. The noise around them felt distant and far off as a warm and comforting feeling rushed into her heart.
She was grateful as she thought to herself, ‘What he said was natural because he was considering their mentor and apprentice relationship. He was indeed a strict teacher with a gentle heart.’
Ji Bai looked back at the obvious respectful look of admiration in her eyes and thought internally, ‘As expected, she completely missed my signal… Well, there is no need to hurry. I will need to be determined and think of a good plan before making a move. Also, I must be persistent, but not overdo it.’
The good news came faster than expected.
As soon as they landed, Ji Bai just turned on his phone and received a call. After a brief phone call, he turned around and faced Xu Xu who was a few steps behind him. “It seems like you will not be on leave.”
Xu Xu suddenly stopped smack in the middle of the passage where people were hurrying to and fro.
Ji Bai had a warm look in his eyes as he told her, “Xu Juan has an alibi. He was working overtime at the company until 11 pm, then he went to get supper with two of his colleagues and stayed up until the next morning. He is not a suspect and he’s still in the police station. He asked to speak to you.”
Xu Xu let out a sigh of relief as a smile appeared on her face.
It was the first time Ji Bai had ever seen such a wide smile on her face as even her eyebrows were raised and the corner of her eyes were wrinkling. Even so, all she did was stand there quietly and smile silently as she looked at him. She was unlike any other women as she did not say or do anything else.
It was a quiet and comfortable moment.
Slowly, a sense of deep gratitude appeared in Xu Xu’s eyes since she believed that Ji Bai was the one who immediately ordered someone to get Xu Juan’s alibi. With this, Xu Juan was able to be free of any suspicions as soon as possible.
As she thought about this, she stepped forward and reached out for Ji Bai’s hand.
Ji Bai’s heart fluttered slightly. Was she going to give him a hug? He would definitely not refuse it even if it was just a hug out of gratitude.
Xu Xu grabbed his hand with both of her hands and bowed deeply before speaking in a solemn tone, “Thank you, teacher. Thank you.”
There was only a small window in the interrogation room of the police station. The orange light was the only thing illuminating the tables, chairs, and the gray walls, which made the atmosphere in the room appear cold and solemn. Even so, Xu Juan who was standing by the narrow window seemed very tall and handsome.
As Xu Juan heard the sound of footsteps, he turned his head and smiled, “Xu Xu, the coffee here sucks.”
Xu Xu did not answer him. She sat down and went straight to the point, “Why didn’t you tell me about Ye Zixi?”
Xu Juan stopped smiling and stared at the night sky outside of the window for a while before answering softly, “Sorry, I just didn’t want to talk about her.”
Xu Xu’s body stiffened.
The two of them remained silent for a moment and Xu Xu asked once again, “Okay, I understand. What else are you hiding? Even if she did violate the law during her lifetime, she has passed away. If you tell us everything you know now, we can use it to find the murderer.”
Xu Juan looked her profoundly as Xu Xu returned his gaze calmly. After a while, Xu Juan turned around and went back to the table to sit down. He shifted his head slightly to light up a cigarette, but he remained silent.
Throughout Xu Juan’s twenty-seven years on this Earth, there was no one who made his life burn with passion the way Ye Zixi did. Nonetheless, everything burned itself to ashes in the end.
Between the two of them, he was the one who loved money and cared solely for profit. He used to promise her that in the future, he would use his money and empire to fulfill any dream she had.
However, she could not wait for this to happen. The shares and her rights in the Ye Group that had been stripped away from her was like a thorn in her heart. The straw that broke the camel’s back arrived right before her graduation. Her father’s old subordinate had told her that her father might not have died if Ye Lanyuan had sold the factory and used the money to treat him when he was severely ill.
“Juan, the Longxi Group was originally known as the Longxi Group (TN: Both ‘Xi’ have the same pronunciation but have two different meanings, the current company name being ‘west’ and the old company’s name being ‘sunset’.). My father used my name as the company’s name.” She said. After this, she left him, determined to get back the shares that once belonged to her.
Later on, when Xu Juan himself was immersed in the business industry, he finally understood something. What were the odds of having such unrealistic coincidence? The people from the Ye Family might, in reality, have been the one who revealed the news to her that Ye Lanyuan had given up on treating her father. It might have just been one of her dirty, underhanded tricks. Nonetheless, by the time he realized this, it was already too late.
“So… she went back to Ye Group in order to get back the shares?” Xu Xu asked. “What did she do? This may be related to the reason why she was killed.”
Xu Juan shook his head, “I don’t know. All I know is that she has been doing it for years, but she has never told me anything else.”
Xu Xu continued by asking, “What is your current relationship with her?”
Xu Juan, “After she returned to Lin City, we stayed together for a few nights. That’s it.”
“Did she have a lover in Lin City?”
Xu Juan remained silent for a moment, “One time after work, I tailed her with my car.”
What happened after this? He saw a black car pass by but the man’s face was blocked by the window. He had a tall build and was wearing a suit as he tightened his hand around her waist and vaguely moved his hands under her clothes. Meanwhile, Ye Zixi’s entire body was leaning against him as if she was worshipping him. He had never seen her so humble and submissive before.
“Who was that person?” Xu Xu asked.
“I don’t know, but Zixi was very determined to achieve her goal. I don’t think she would do anything without expecting a reward.”
Xu Xu continued to ask questions and Xu Juan continued to answer as Ji Bai and a few colleagues stood outside on the other side of the one-sided mirror. When they heard this, Zhao Han hesitated before saying slowly, “He meant…”
Ji Bai faintly said, “He meant that Ye Zixi’s lover was most probably her accomplice in the Ye Family.”
Xu Xu sent Xu Juan back home after they finished taking his statement. After she arrived home, she wanted to return to the police station, but Xu Juan suddenly said to her, “I want to see the photos of Zixi after she passed.”
Xu Xu remained silent for a moment before nodding. “I will give them to you, but you need to be mentally prepared.”
Xu Juan looked at the photos in his hand for a long time. Eventually, he buried his face in his hands and sobbed deeply.
Xu Xu walked in and reached out to embrace him. She felt something wet dripping onto the back of her hand. Xu Xu’s heart hurt as she said in a low voice, “I didn’t ask you in the police station, but why didn’t you mention her before? Did you really not even want to talk to me or dad about it?”
Xu Juan did not answer.
How could he tell this little girl?
How could he tell her that her tough and tactful brother was having problems falling asleep after breaking up with a woman? He had been struggling with insomnia for the past few years, such that all he could do at night was keep his eyes wide open until the next morning.
When he heard the news about her death, he was standing in the warm and lively conference room, but in his mind, he felt as though he was standing on an empty wasteland.
He raised his head and looked at his sister’s worried expression. He smiled and caressed her head, “You wouldn’t have understood even if I told you.”
Xu Xu was stunned. She thought that there was nothing that she needed to understand. Every action had its consequences, and Ye Zixi had, in this case, made the wrong choice.
It was the third day after Ye Zixi’s death when they put together all the information from their investigations along with the information provided by Xu Juan. Then, the criminal police unit held another meeting.
Old Wu was the first to report on the overall investigation,
“Firstly, we conducted a large-scale search on all the suspects but we still found nothing. Our first step now is to investigate the possibility of hired personnel or gangsters committing the crime.
“Secondly, we searched the entirety of Lin An Mountain but did not find any valuable clues or evidence.
“Thirdly, ever since the day of the incident, we have arranged criminal police to constantly monitor and track the few members of the Ye Family. So far, we have observed no abnormalities, and there aren’t any loopholes in their testimonies.”
Da Hu added, “Right now, the motives for the murder are not yet established. Xu Juan’s words are credible and I suspect that the Ye Family most probably found out that Ye Zixi was secretly plotting her revenge against them. Therefore, she was killed during the conflict.”
“The man that Ye Zixi formed an alliance with to go against the Ye Family is unlikely to be the child of the Ye Family.” Yao Meng said, “It is most likely one of the two sons-in-law.”
Ji Bai nodded and said in a low voice, “I agree with everyone’s point. Out next investigation will focus on the members of the Ye family. Old Wu, what about their alibis?”
Old Wu flipped through the information and said, “At first glance, everyone seems to have alibis. However, after two days of in-depth investigation, we have encountered some problems.”
Old Wu replied, “Ye Lanyuan and the eldest child Ye Ziqiang both had a definite alibi. Ye Lanyuan always had a servant in his room and he did not leave the house that night. Moreover, his body condition is not suitable for driving, whereas Ye Ziqiang had been in the company since 10.00pm to deal with an overseas affair. The security camera and security guards confirmed that he was there as well.”
Xu Xu nodded, “According to Xu Juan’s description, the man should be a middle-aged man.”
Old Wu continued, “The second and third couple returned to the Ye Family’s mansion before 10 pm and did not leave the house for the entire night. However, I went to check the mansion and found that because Ye Lanyuan did not like cameras, they did not have any security tapes to verify this claim. The mansion is very big and is located very far away from the other mansions. Thus, if they left the mansion in the middle of the night, they would not necessarily be discovered. Therefore, the remaining suspects are now the second couple and the third couple.”
Ji Bai said briefly, “We will visit the Ye Family tomorrow.”
The next day.
Every one of the members of the Ye Family was told by their respective secretaries that the criminal police was paying them a visit. The eldest child, Ye Ziqiang was listening to his assistant’s report and stiffened when he heard the news.
The second child was holding a regular department meeting and contemplated for a short while before nodding. “Okay.”
The second son-in-law, Wu Xie had just arrived in the office when he got the news. He simply remained silent as he raised his head to look at his secretary while holding a cup of coffee.
The third child, Ye Qiao was standing in front of the floor-to-ceiling window while she looked at the flow of traffic below. She frowned and cursed angrily. “When can they wrap up the investigations?”
The third son-in-law, Zhang Shiyong was in his office meeting another high-ranking member of the group. After he heard the news, he was stunned slightly and smiled politely at his guest. “I’m sorry, this will be it for today. I will make up for it and treat you to a meal some other time. Officers, please come in.”