Chapter 11: The Ninth Cycle of Time (V)
Original Translations: Crafted with Care, No Unauthorized Reposting Allowed.
Officer Du did not see too much of a flaw in Li Shiqing and Xiao Heyun's performance and feedback to the questions, as their emotions were too real.
The mutual shifting of blame and escape of responsibility is also in keeping with the proper attitude of two young men who did not know each other before when confronted with questioning by police officers.
But his intuition and experience from years of working on cases still made him feel that something was wrong.
In fact, during the time they were summoned, all the information on their schooling and work history from childhood to adulthood, including the composition of their family members, had already been placed on the desk.
All information has been vetted and there is nothing wrong with it. The two young people are neither cynical nor unhappy with their families, their paths to school and work have been smooth, and they have never had direct or indirect contact with each other before.
But it was these two "clean" people who, by coincidence, got off the bus early, having just found the "explosives".
"Did you know at the time that it was the bus you were on that had the accident?"
Officer Du and Officer Jiang enquired separately.
"First I didn't know, then I found out."
Both replied with the same content.
"How do you know this?"
Officer Jiang wouldn't miss a single mistake, "Even if it was a bus accident, it might not be the one you were on, right? There are a lot of buses coming and going on this bus."
This question went beyond the two men's previous 'answer to the question'.
"I heard later that it was the 45 bus that just passed that hit the tanker, I just got off the 45 bus ah."
Li Shiqing holds back her inner turmoil.
"I was sure of that by looking at the photo of the bus driver that was exposed online."
Xiao Heyun reacted fairly quickly, "I have an impression of the bus driver's face."
"Did you guys notice anything wrong when you were in the car?"
Officer Du asked.
"For example, has the driver been held hostage?"
Li Shiqing said without thinking, "The driver was driving all the time and there was no one next to him."
Xiao Heyun is the most vocal on this point.
"No, I've sat behind him before and no one has interacted with him."
"If you didn't know the bus was going to be in trouble, why did you run together when you got off?"
That's not at all the reaction of two people who have a conflict in the car, is it?
"He tried to run as soon as he got out of the car, so I pulled him to keep him from going to the police, and he ended up running, so I followed."
Li Shiqing replied.
"I got out of the car thinking that I had met a crazy person today and tried to get away from her. Who knew she was dragging me and wouldn't let me go, and when I thought that these lunatics would do anything these days, I tried to run ......"
Boy in the other questioning room replied, "I didn't know she was such a good runner, I couldn't even outrun her."
"Why are you going to the supermarket together?"
Officer Du's frown grows deeper and deeper.
"We hadn't been running long when it blew up behind us. Everyone was scared to death and running desperately forward, and we just happened to be wrapped up in the crowd running forward."
Li Shiqing looks back on the scene and is still haunted by the commotion that occurred after the bus exploded, "It was a situation where if you didn't follow and run towards the supermarket, you might get pushed over and maybe trampled on."
"Because that's where everyone runs to."
Xiao Heyun replied more simply, "I'm a foreigner and I'm not familiar with the places of refuge nearby, so of course I followed the locals."
"Then why have you stayed in the supermarket? Under normal circumstances, shouldn't you go back immediately when something like this happens?"
"We didn't know it was a bus that exploded at the time, we just knew there was an explosion, who knows what happened? What if it was a terrorist attack? Any way you look at it, the supermarket is safer and there are more people."
Li Shiqing replied, "My phone ran out of battery in the car and I wanted to find a place to charge it in the supermarket so I could figure out what was going on."
"Was Xiao Heyun with you at that time?"
Officer Jiang asked immediately afterwards.
"Not together, he disappeared as soon as he went into the supermarket."
"I met him later by chance in front of a fast food restaurant."
On the other hand, Xiao Heyun's answer was even simpler and in keeping with the style of a programmer.
"The road to Jiangbei was closed and I didn't know the way, so when I went to the supermarket I was looking up how to get to Jiangbei, then I found out that the bridge across the river was closed and I might not be able to cross, so I started to find out what had happened."
He said helplessly, "I couldn't put this phone down once I picked it up and sat in the supermarket for a long time swiping news and reports about the incident and whatnot. I was ready to go until my phone ran out of battery."
"Why are you evading summons?"
The most strange thing about the whole incident was that Officer Du was not informed of the incident until long after it had happened, although they did eventually "catch themselves".
"My phone ran out of battery and I didn't have a rechargeable battery, so I found a place to charge it later."
Li Shiqing said, "I called my family first after I was charged, and I heard from them that the police were looking for me, so I found out about it and answered the phone later.
"I thought it was a scam call."
Xiao Heyun bit off more than she could chew, "Aren't there a lot of scam calls these days? There are also the kind of text messages that can modify caller ID. And at that time I was looking up something online and didn't want to answer strange calls."
"Why did you come together to see the police? Didn't you say you were separated before? It's not like two people who are at odds, is it?"
After all, they've been climbing on each other's backs until now.
"I was seen by her and she kept following me like a maniac and insisted I turn myself in."
Boy replied calmly, "And I had read the news online and knew that the police had approached us to assist with the investigation and I, as a good citizen, was definitely going to support the police."
The police asked one question after another, all of which went straight to the key points that made them most suspicious in the whole affair, but the two young men gave explanations for all their questions, and no matter how much the police asked them, the answers were the same.
Given that the time was so short before the event, there were things that could not be checked immediately and needed time, so the questioning was at a standstill for a while.
Now, even the police find it tricky.
It was clear that the two young men, who had acted in a state of panic, were answering the key questions in a way that made sense and matched what they had seen on the surveillance footage.
There was a sudden moment of silence in the interrogation room.
When he didn't ask any more questions, Boy got a bit restless and asked, "Is there anything else you want to ask? Officer Du, when can we go back?"
"There are still some questions to be understood and I hope you two can cooperate a little more."
Officer Du did not give a definitive answer to his question, but merely interrupted the questioning for the time being.
The two men emerged from the interrogation room, their faces full of fatigue.
In such "confrontations", it is not only the person being questioned who is highly strung, but also the questioner, who must be more focused than the person being questioned, as they have to combine words, movements, gestures and even micro-expressions to catch any hint of a flaw.
"They responded too completely and reasonably to ask any questions just by asking."
Jiang Officer wiped his face, "I see they are very stable and don't look like they are terrified, can we try something a little more intense with the questioning?"
"Better not, they are just subpoenas now, not suspects, not to mention that they have neither a motive nor a bad record for this matter, and we cannot take the interrogation approach without sufficient evidence and breakthrough points."
Officer Du dismissed Officer Jiang's suggestion and pondered for a moment, "I'm going to test their reaction by throwing out that there are explosives in the car next."
Officer Jiang froze.
"Based on experience, I think it's unlikely that they are the masterminds of the incident, so let's switch the next interrogation to Mr. Zhang."
The police also have techniques for questioning, some with a red face and some with a white face.
Mr. Zhang is widely regarded as the "good old boy" who lets his guard down.
"Simultaneous questioning or separate questioning?"
Officer Jiang was somewhat reluctant, but had to admit that continuing to ask hard questions would do more harm than good.
"Let's start with the men."
Officer Du said.
"Don't we start with Li Shiqing's side? Wouldn't it be easier to use a girl as a breakthrough?"
Officer Jiang is a little concerned.
"You should not underestimate that girl, she is more resistant to pressure than the male one in comparison. When we first met, she was able to open her mouth and explain under your intimidation, the guy didn't even dare to look up."
He patted Officer Jiang on the shoulder and said, "You can't just take things at face value, you need to gain more experience."
When Officer Du, who was clearly in charge, went out, Xiao Heyun thought his plan A had worked.
This plan delays the investigation while avoiding the suspicion of collusion between the two sides. As long as both sides think the other is guilty, the police will take great pains to find out where the two men came from, and naturally they will find out that they have no motive or possible outcome for the crime.
One is an ordinary college student, one is just working programmer, clean family life experience is simple, not to mention the manufacture of explosives, even the manufacture of explosives are problematic.
There is not enough evidence to convict on the basis of "I think you are suspicious", they are being summoned, not arrested as a suspect.
But a short while later, an older, kindly-looking police officer entered Xiao Heyun's house and showed his identity card, which showed that his surname was "Zhang" and that he was also a criminal police officer.
If Li Shiqing had been here, she would have recognised that this was the other older officer who had questioned her last time.
A new inquisition begins.
Unlike Li Shiqing, who had already undergone one such intense "stakeout", Boy had no such experience, and was already in a hospital bed with severe burns, deaf and in a coma several times when he was last investigated, unable to speak in complete sentences.
He looked nervously at the "Officer Zhang", terrified that the next moment would bring more drastic measures, but to his surprise, the kind-faced officer was kind enough to explain the reason for the change first.
"It's past seven o'clock now, the two officers haven't rested from noon to now for this case, and they couldn't even have time to eat, so now they've gone to eat. They're afraid you'll be scared waiting here, so they asked me to come over and keep you company."
Mr. Zhang chatted like a family man, not saying anything about the "inquiry" or sitting down opposite him.
"By the way, do you want some of this?"
Mr. Zhang looked at the young man in front of him and politely exchanged pleasantries, "The food in our canteen is not bad."
"No, I've eaten."
Boy subconsciously declines.
"Oh, well, I'll go and get you a glass of water then."
As he spoke, he actually seemed to come and chat with him, running out in the middle of the conversation.
Xiao Heyun is heartily relieved.
However as soon as this " Mr. Zhang" went out, he immediately went into the pantry and informed all parties through the intercom.
"He said he had eaten and obviously knew it was not logical to stay at the police station for a long time."
He found a breakthrough and said in a buoyant spirit.
"Immediately investigate the service staff in the various restaurants in that building of the supermarket, and ask the security and floor staff on each floor if anyone has seen this person. Find out when this person ate and with whom they ate ......"
"Maybe there's an accomplice!"
Author's Note: A little theater.
Xiao Heyun: (squinting) Crow's-eye, real-head-breaking meal?
Li Shiqing: ...... You're no better, a seamless "Plan A"? I have a feeling they don't believe it at all.
Xiao Heyun, Li Shiqing: (grimaces) Hmph!
The two young men were too young to think they could "get" information from the police or stall for time, but hey. The police dad will teach them to behave.