Chapter 41: Ending the Time Loop (Finished)
Original Translations: Crafted with Care, No Unauthorized Reposting Allowed.
As soon as the police got into the car, they took control of the driver, Wang Xingde, and carried away Tao Yinghong, who was unconscious on the ground.
They then proceeded to evacuate the passengers, conduct a thorough sweep of the vehicle to prevent further explosives, take photographs and secure the crime scene.
Just as Boy and Li Shiqing are being pushed off the bus by the panicked passengers, the music of Canons in D major suddenly starts.
Li Shiqing and Boy's heads went numb, and their faces turned white with fear.
"Get out of here!"
The passengers on the bus panicked even more when they heard the strange bell, and simply left the bus at a run.
Even after getting off the bus, everyone was still in a state of shock, each carefully moving away from the bus.
Li Shiqing and Boy also tried to escape, but their limbs were so cold and weak from the stress that they simply lost their instinct to fight back.
They stood under the car and watched as a mobile phone was pulled out of the pocket of Tao Yinghong, who was being escorted out of the car, and the two men were chilled to the bone, looking as terrified as if something was going to explode in their faces at any moment.
"Don't be afraid, it's just an alarm!"
An officer, wearing gloves, carefully retrieves the phone into an evidence bag and looks up at the two of them looking like they've seen a ghost, smiling.
"Here, it's set for 13.45, just in time."
"Just ...... is an alarm?"
Li Shiqing stammered and asked, "Isn't it some kind of bomb timing device?"
So the ringing they had heard so many times before, wasn't it the pressure cooker's timer?
"It's just an alarm."
The officer laughed, "Even if it was some kind of timing device, the bomb in the pressure cooker has detonated now, so it can't blow up again, can it?"
As soon as the driver was arrested, the interrogators had very carefully searched the car, including the undercarriage, and found nothing suspicious, including explosives.
The passengers who had alighted from the car were not allowed to leave because they were witnesses to the crime scene, and were sitting or standing in twos and threes on the empty bridge, some calling their families to report their safety, others discussing the thrilling movie-like episode with each other in an emotional state.
As soon as the masked man got out of the car, he hurriedly opened his bag. The poor kitten in the bag had been so terrified by the loud and frightening noise earlier that it drowned directly in the masked man's bag, this time without a jacket wrapped around it.
"Don't be afraid, don't be afraid, it's just a thunderstorm, we'll find something nice to eat when we get home."
He was not the least bit offended, but took off his own muzzle and casually wiped the filth from the kitten with it, heartily holding the terrified kitten in his arms to soothe him.
"The bad guys have been caught and it won't thunder anymore ha ......"
As soon as his feet hit the ground, the able-bodied uncle let out a long sigh of relief and sat straight down in the wrecked street.
Of all the people on the bus, he was the one who worked the hardest.
Controlling a person from moving around is easier said than done.
Not to mention the tension and stress he felt inside knowing that the middle-aged woman was carrying a bomb and had a murder weapon on her.
Even with the help of the boys, but they are so fit and old that if something were to happen, would it be necessary for a few children to risk their lives?
You definitely need to take on a bit more yourself.
Now that the police had taken over, the bad guys had been arrested and the bomb had been detonated under the bridge, the breath he had been holding in his heart was finally relieved and he felt his muscles stiff and sore and fell to the ground.
He touched the thousand dollars hidden in his inner chest pocket, feeling the fullness of the notes in his arms.
With this thousand, he could buy a second-hand electric bike, or he could choose to rent a small house. No matter what, the future is still there, hope is still there, nothing has happened to everyone, and it's worth the risk to his life.
The money had been secured and he had left his life to spend it, which should have been a happy thing, but it was only once the tension and urgency of a moment ago had passed that he finally began to feel bitter and backward, silently wiping tears from his eyes.
Some people are even sad and miserable, but they are silent.
Once the police had the scene under full control and the ambulance had taken the injured Officer Zhang and the unconscious Tao Yinghong, Officer Du had time to look for the "police" enthusiast.
"May I ask which one of you in the car called the police?"
Officer Du shouted an enquiry from the bridge.
Boy glances at Li Shiqing and raises his hand in gesture.
Officer Du approached them with several policemen and shook hands with him to express his gratitude.
"Thank you so much for the tip-off and for working together with the passengers on the bus to subdue the culprit!"
"It's not just me either, after all the murderer was only stopped when several passengers on the bus came together to help ......"
Boy froze and hastened to explain.
He pointed to Li Shiqing in front of him and then to the young man holding the cat with the mask removed.
"And the older man, they subdued the man with me."
The other policemen, hearing his words, sized up the young man in surprise.
Li Shiqing and Xiao Heyun, one in his early twenties and the other a young, out-of-school student, are the main contributors to stopping the bombing?
When they first received the text message, because it was concise and well organized, pointing out all the key points, they thought that the car encountered this kind of thing is experienced veterans or police officers on leave, and did not even have time to check the origin of the mobile phone number, and received a call to notify the traffic police department to block traffic and rush to the bridge.
"Amazing, young man, great courage!"
One officer complimented them, "Thank goodness for you, or this would have been a huge disaster!"
"It's good that it didn't cause any trouble for the police."
Li Shiqing and Xiao Heyun looked at each other, but they were still not sure if the matter was completely settled.
They were so tired of living for this day, and had exhausted all the means they could think of, that they would surely go mad if they could not end the time loop.
"Everyone, please come back to the police station with us to take a statement... Thanks a lot! A car will take you all back afterwards, please cooperate with us police."
Officer Jiang came shouting from the other end, "There will be a big car coming soon, please get in that car!"
It didn't take long for a police bus to slowly drive onto the blocked bridge and take away all the passengers who had been stranded on the bridge.
As she watched the bridge leave, and felt the breeze blowing into the carriage from the window, Li Shiqing's mouth turned into a smile as she leaned against Boy's shoulder and fell sweetly asleep ......
Half a month later, in a private room of a teahouse.
"How have you been?"
Li Shiqing entered the room, took off his hat and mask and greeted Boy, who had arrived first, "I heard you were being hounded for half a month?"
"Which is not as fast as you, why not just run away and travel abroad for half a month."
Xiao Heyun cried and laughed, "You send a long tweet and people disappear, what if other people don't come to interview me?"
"I don't want to abandon my comrades!"
Li Shiqing shrugs and smiles broadly without any guilt at all.
"My parents took me to a psychiatrist for a week to unwind for fear that I would be left in some kind of psychological shadow. It was also the psychiatrist who persuaded them to take me out for a trip to get away from the situation for a while. I actually didn't want to go at all, I just wanted to hurry up and see if there were any new developments in the country!"
"It was a blessing to say the least that things worked out so well."
Xiao Heyun sighed, thankful that they had gotten away with it so easily.
After the incident, the first question the police asked was how they knew Officer Zhang's mobile phone number, and it was good to see that they had a long discussion at the hotel that night, which included how to deal with the police investigation that was to follow if they did succeed.
That night at the hotel, they searched online for Officer Zhang's mobile phone number and found that the local police platform had released Mr. Zhang's mobile phone number during the previous bus arson case.
The arsonist in that case first burnt himself beyond recognition when the fire started, and his body was later burnt beyond recognition. The mobile phone number left for the police to contact him at night was Officer Zhang's mobile phone number, so that anyone who knew about the arsonist could provide information to the police.
Xiao Heyun said that when he realised something was wrong, he first searched for the keyword "bus case police", found the phone number through the search and sent a text message.
After the text messages took over, Officer Zhang had texted back asking for information, only they were in an emergency situation and didn't have time to reply, but establishing that the number was still in use by the police laid a lot of confidence in them.
The police later tried and found that they were indeed able to locate Mr. Zhang's mobile phone in this way.
Afterwards, the police complimented Boy on his intelligence and, in addition to being grateful that the message had been traced after so many years, they also acknowledged his initiative to contact the CID directly.
Otherwise, if you rely on 110 to call the police and then divide the police, the process is complicated, too slow and likely to be detected by the suspect in advance.
As to how they found out there was a bomb on the bus, they still use the excuse that "we were sitting behind the older woman and heard her talking to herself".
They told the police that they had called the police because Li Shiqing had heard the older woman chanting "The bomb is in the pressure cooker", "Go see your daughter at 13.45", "Wang Xingde, drive" and "Hurry up to the bridge". Drive", "Hurry up and get to the bridge" and so on, and they thought something was wrong.
Li Shiqing said she approached Boy, who was in the next location, for advice because she noticed something was wrong with the older woman, then decided to call the police and, because she was short of time, tried to find help in the car to control the suspect first.
She often took this route and was familiar with the driver, knowing that his surname was Wang, which led to the inference that the " Wang Xingde" the older woman spoke of could have been the driver and was suspected of being an accomplice.
In fact, there was a high probability that this reason would not hold up once the confrontation with the older woman, Tao Yinghong, had taken place, but during the time loop in the search for the truth, Officer Zhang had undoubtedly revealed that Tao Yinghong had been in a poor mental state and was probably mentally ill, and they were betting that the older woman might have had problems in this area, and that even a confrontation would not be able to serve as a basis for a confrontation. They continued to use this argument because they were betting that the older woman might have problems in this area and that even if they confronted her, there was no way they could be admitted as evidence of doubt.
As a result, I don't know whether God felt sorry for them and opened his eyes or what, but Tao Yinghong had a real mental problem after he got sober.
She was swarmed and pinned down by the panicked passengers and was mentally stimulated either by brain damage caused by the coma or by her inability to face the reality of knowing that the plan had been dashed. She was later rescued in hospital, but she is now unresponsive to any external stimuli, like a living dead person.
She will have to spend the rest of her life, if not in prison, then in the relevant hospital.
He only said that he had always felt that Li Shiqing was like his daughter and that she had cried and begged him to stop when it happened, which made him think of his daughter.
Because of Tao Yinghong's mental disorder and Wang Xingde's concealment for some unknown reason, there was no proof of this suspicious incident. Thus, the two young men, with their good behaviour, clean pasts and good reasons, were quickly sent back after a brief questioning and, instead of being blamed, were rewarded by the community.
After leaving the police station, the two men did not go home separately, but went to stay at a nearby hotel.
This time, they learned their lesson and stayed up all night, drinking coffee and watching movies, until dawn. Only after seeing the sun rise and the white of a fish's belly outside the window did they dare to relax and drift off to sleep.
As a result, they woke up and the internet had turned upside down.
The "bombing" in W City quickly became the most talked about story on the internet once it was exposed by the media.
The bombing, as intended by the two suspects, would have caused more casualties, but because of the resourcefulness of the two young men who were spotted in advance, not only did they call the police in advance, but eventually joined hands with the passengers on the bus to subdue the culprits and successfully assisted the police in detonating the bomb in advance ......
The bombing alone was sensational enough, but with such a bizarre and "legendary" resolution, the case was on the top of the media in no time at all.
Li Shiqing, one of the people involved, wrote a long tweet with his Weibo account detailing what happened to him and his companion in the car at the time.
With the police's permission, she added to the tweet some information that she had learned after cooperating with the police in their investigation, and at the end of the tweet, she asked for information from those who knew about the Wang Mengmeng bus that year.
Li Shiqing's long tweet, a first-hand account, was retweeted and commented on by over a million people within half a month, and they were even approached by well-known directors and screenwriters through various means to make a film of the story.
As a result, Li Shiqing, Xiao Heyun, Wang Yong and Fang Xiao, the masked man, have all become "heroes" in the public eye.
Officer Zhang, who was injured in the bombing, was awarded first class honours for his bravery in throwing the bomb at a critical moment and thus stopping the explosion.
Unfortunately, he was diagnosed with sudden deafness due to a violent explosion and it took half a month for his ears to recover, so he could only communicate in writing.
But he laughs at himself, if it weren't for this, he would feel like the noise was killing him with so many people coming and going to visit him in the ward every day, but now it's good, as long as his eyes are closed, he can rest in peace.
After his life and the story of the "thousand bucks" was unearthed by the media, he was immediately approached by a number of local businesses to take up positions offered by their companies, mostly in the security field.
The company that hired him rewarded him with a five-figure 'bravery' bonus and a brand new electric bike as a gift for taking up the job.
With this money, the uncle rented a slightly larger house near his company. The next step was to urge his daughter to hurry up and get into a university in this city, so that he could take care of her nearby.
The masked man and his little kitten have also become famous. Now, the kitten called " An An" has become an internet celebrity kitten, and many people crouch under the masked man's microblog every day just to take a couple of puffs of the cat and see this little angel after the robbery.
Half a month has passed and the passengers on the bus seem to have drifted away from the gloom of that time, only Li Shiqing's desire to know "what happened to Wang Mengmeng at the time" has not been met with much information.
"Not a clue?"
Xiao Heyun asked with a frown after hearing about Li Shiqing's situation over the past half month.
"After all, too much time has passed and witnesses who could provide corroborating information have not been found, but they are not completely without leads ......"
Li Shiqing takes out her phone and shows Boy a few of the private messages.
The private messages, all from strangers, begin with the statement that they were not on Wang Mengmeng's bus and therefore cannot provide information about the circumstances, but that they, like Wang Mengmeng, used to travel on that route.
One thing they all have in common is that they have encountered "salty hands" on this route.
The girls who take this route are mostly college girls who get on at the bottom of the station. They are young, beautiful and energetic, plus they have not yet entered society, lacking some experience, and are slightly young, so they are the easiest targets for these lecherous men.
They were young and timid at the time, and when they encountered such things in large crowds they didn't know who had done it, so they either chose to get out of the car in a hurry or find a male companion to travel with next time. All these years later, that disgusting touch still seems to remain in their memories, especially as they graduate and work and have more courage and insight, they regret more and more that they didn't stand up for themselves when they encountered such things back then.
"But a private letter like that is still not enough evidence, right?"
Boy splashed her with a pot of cold water, "Since it's 'salty hands', the person doing this must be very secretive, and as long as no one can be caught, this can only be taken as speculation and not as the reason why Wang Mengmeng got off the bus."
Li Shiqing nodded, not looking discouraged.
"But at least, it'll be a wake up call for a lot of girls."
Boy was stunned.
"I've got permission from these girls and I'm going to put this out there ......"
Li Shiqing says seriously, "As an ordinary girl, the first reaction to such an encounter in a car is fear, and shyness and fear often prevent them from seeking help from others, either suffering in silence or leaving in fear, but this fuels the flames of such scum, who will keep reaching out to the next victim. "
"Maybe that's not why Wang Mengmeng got off the bus back then, but tragedies keep happening as long as people like this are around, and who knows if the next girl, will be Wang Mengmeng."
Li Shiqing still talks about the girl with regret.
After the incident, the media did unearth the story behind the Wang Xingde couple, a very clean-cut and seemingly delicate and soft-hearted girl who had grown up with good character and was helpful at school, not to mention stirring up trouble and never arguing with anyone.
But because of this, such soft and gentle girls will often be the first choice of scum when they seek a target.
Many parents teach their daughters to be well behaved and gentle, to be quiet and cultured, but they forget to teach them how to protect themselves.
"Maybe some will believe it, maybe some won't, but that's not even the point."
Li Shiqing had more thoughts on this, "I hope that the girls who saw this incident will be brave enough to stand up to such perverts and scum next time they encounter them while riding the bus, and never compromise and fight to the end in the face of such disgusting behaviour."
"It also allows for the courage and confidence to break the ice when faced with adversity."
Xiao Heyun didn't laugh at Li Shiqing's "bold words", but rather encouraged her: "You have a good idea.
"Speaking of 'horny', there's something I've been wanting to say to you that I was too embarrassed to say before."
Li Shiqing scrolled through the private message and said, as if offhandedly, "Whenever you catch a pervert, you don't actually have to reach out, all I have to do is scream, really!"
Boy was drinking tea and coughed woefully at the sound of his voice, the scarlet colour staining from his face to his ears.
Li Shiqing was about to put her phone away when she accidentally clicked on something and a video suddenly popped up.
"What is it?"
Boy is a quick diversion.
"It's an interview that has just been released with the driver's uncle who will soon be escorted to prison."
Li Shiqing gave the video a complicated look in her eyes and hesitated before choosing to click on it.
After the incident, the older woman became mentally damaged and became a living death, while the older man came forward to reveal the events leading up to the case and offered to take all the responsibility.
Although there were no further casualties apart from a police officer, he was eventually convicted of "endangering public safety by dangerous means" and faces a long prison sentence.
Li Shiqing has mixed feelings about the uncle and has avoided news and information about the driver since she stopped the time loop, and this is the first time she has followed up on the uncle's situation.
The interview was conducted by the reporter directly in front of the uncle.
"With a busload of passengers involved, and innocent people on the bridge who could have been affected, didn't you have any hesitation or regret when you knew the bomb could have hurt them?"
The journalist asked.
"My wife and I, at that time, had nothing but hate in our hearts."
The driver, Wang Xingde, was indifferent, "If there was any hesitation, it was probably because there was a girl on the bus who used to ride my bus, and I always thought she looked like my daughter. When I saw her on the bus, I had hesitation."
Li Shiqing and Boy were both frozen in their tracks.
"So you just waited for her to die, did you?"
Knowing that the girl was one of the young people who later stopped the driver couple, the reporter then asked, "If you had known that she would later call the police and stop you, would you still be sorry and hesitant?"
"This reporter ...... is up to something!"
Boy said angrily.
Uncle is only imprisoned, not sentenced to death, and will still be released from prison later. What can it be if he is not stirring up trouble by stirring up conflicts like this now?
"She's a good kid."
The driver's uncle seemed to be very offended by the journalist and spoke with a bit of tongue in cheek, "Much better than some people who just talk behind their backs!"
Although there was no footage of the reporter, the journalist was clearly in a state of distress and quickly changed the subject.
"If you had it to do over again, would you still choose to do it?"
"I don't know."
The driver sounded down, "When I first became a bus driver, I especially hated these people, who only knew how to drive mechanically and didn't care what happened to the passengers on the bus, or what would happen if they suddenly got off. When I drove for a few years, I realized that some things are not entirely under the driver's control, and some people are not at all reasonable. In fact, it's not easy for everyone ......"
"But you did it even though you knew how hard it was to be a bus driver, why?"
The journalist asked in exasperation.
"Because my daughter is dead."
Wang Xingde said numbly.
"The route was over an hour long, didn't you and your wife think about the possibility of being spotted on the road? How did you manage to keep driving so calmly?"
"...... I thought about it. And I wasn't cool with it."
The driver said wearily, "I've been wandering a lot on this journey and rambling, especially about the girl, and I always wish she'd get off earlier ......"
"When I passed the intersection, I saw the motorbike that ran the red light and thought I should cut up, create a little friction, pull over and let the people in the car get off..."
"I was thinking that if something happened to someone on the bus, like a sudden illness or an argument or something, I would be able to pull over and let people off, but with most of the passengers on the bus sleeping, there would be little chance of an argument ......"
Li Shiqing and Boy's faces became increasingly grave and even knotted up in a shiver as the driver elaborated on one idea after another that had crossed his mind.
"Do you think that what we've experienced could just be a figment of the driver's imagination?"
Just as Li Shiqing spoke, Boy was quick to click off the video.
"Stop looking and thinking nonsense, we've escaped the time loop!"
Boy spoke in a stern voice.
"It's all in the past, and whatever the situation is, it can't affect us anymore!"
[Coco's imagination, and the time loop we go through all match up ......]
Li Shiqing can't help but feel a chill running through her body at the thought of a certain possibility.
"Don't think about that, think about the good stuff, think about your reunion with your parents, my reunion with my parents. Think of the uncle with the bag who finally has money to buy an electric bike, Boy with the mask who has the cat and we've got off!"
Xiao Heyun saw that Li Shiqing's mental state was beginning to deteriorate and grabbed her hand.
Although they seem to have escaped the shadow brought by the time loop, they all know in their hearts that the time loop has done too much damage to them, and this damage can never be detached in a day or two.
And now it is time for them to learn that it is time to return to a normal life.
"No matter what the reality is, as long as we are still alive and living and everything around us remains the same, that's enough!"
Li Shiqing was stunned by Boy's drink and gradually came back to his senses.
"Yes, you're right ......"
She regained her composure and took a deep breath.
"Life goes on."
(The bus that never arrives, end of story.)
The next chapter is a short story based on this worldview, an attempt to amuse myself, the main characters are not Boy and Li Shiqing. The end of each chapter will be chosen by the readers themselves, similar to the way RPGs are chosen to interact with you, so that you don't have to suffer every time you catch up.
Hope it was fun to write hahaha.