Ch48 – A Life For A Life

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Gu Xizhou and company drove once again to the residential district where the elderly couple lived and knocked politely at the door.
It took a while before the door finally opened.

“What do you want?” The old man who opened the door frowned upon seeing the four of them and asked. 

“We would like to speak to you about your son……”

“Don’t talk to me about it.
I don’t want to hear it, and I don’t know anything either.
He’s been missing for so many years anyway, I’ll just assume I don’t have such a son.”



The old man waved his hand and said impatiently.

“He, just died, a week ago,” Gu Xizhou said. 

The old man did not seem to have understood Gu Xizhou’s words, saying hurriedly, “I’ll wait for him to die, I……”


The old man was halfway through his sentence when he suddenly realised that Gu Xizhou’s words were different from what he thought.

“Who, who did you say is dead?”

Gu Xizhou waved the report on his phone and said, “Your son.
A body was found on Phoenix Mountain in the city of Ningqing about a week ago.
We confirmed a father-son relationship between you and the deceased yesterday using DNA on your cigarette butt.”


“A week ago?” The old man questioned.

Gu Xizhou nodded, “Are you willing to let us in and talk now?”

The grey-haired old man stared at Gu Xizhou for a long time without saying a word.
A moment later, he released his hand blocking the door.
He seemed to have aged in an instant.
At this time, the old lady who had opened the door for them yesterday reached out, grabbed the identification papers in Gu Xizhou’s hand and started leafing through them.


“Dead…… he……” The old lady was shaking all over, so dizzy she was unstable on her feet. 

The old man looked at his wife beside him for a long while and said, “Ha, this bastard is dead! Good riddance!”

“You……” The old lady reached out and jabbed an index finger in the old man’s face.
Her mouth opened, but no sound came out.

The old man asked Gu Xizhou and the others to sit on the sofa in the living room and then said, “Since you have confirmed that it was my son who died, I will tell you the truth.”

“Seven years ago, that bastard drove A-Qiang home to visit us elderly folk.
On the way here, the bastard said that an urgent matter had cropped up in the company, so he asked my A-Qiang to bring the gifts for us elderly folk over in the car.
In the end, the car suddenly caught fire and exploded while on the road, and my A-Qiang died.
He died just like that……” 

“This A-Qiang you speak of is your second son Zhao Qiang?” Song Qian frowned and tried to confirm.

The old man nodded and sobbed, “Yes, it was actually my younger son who died seven years ago.”

“Did you report it as being your older son for the sake of insurance fraud?”

The old man shook his head, “I didn’t know that they came back together at first, I thought it was that bastard who died too.
There was his IC in the car, and my older daughter-in-law, Feng Tian, also said that the clothes belonged to that bastard.
I really thought he was dead.
Later, my younger son disappeared, and my hair really all turned white.
I cried so much; I was so exhausted.
It’d been a lifetime, and yet a white-haired man had to send the dark-haired men off.
My heart was so heavy……” 

“But then one day I went to see Feng Tian and saw a man in the street who looked just like my older son Zhao Guo, so I followed him and called out to him.
I thought I was hallucinating, but the more I called him, the more he ran.”

“At that time, I felt that something was wrong, so I went to ask Feng Tian.
Feng Tian shook her head and said that she didn’t know, but I saw several people go to her house to collect debt that day.
Only then did I know that the bastard was gambling outside and borrowed usury, and owed 800 thousand in debt.
I saw Feng Tian get surrounded by those people and beaten up……”


Gu Xizhou said in a low voice, “What happened next?”

“Originally, I was going to sell my house to pay the debt for Feng Tian, but Feng Tian refused me.
She said that Zhao Guo had bought himself work insurance previously, and the compensation was about one million yuan.
She would first pay off the debt when the compensation came and then give us a fraction of what’s left over.” 

“Honestly…… Feng Tian is quite a good girl, just down on her luck, to have been tied to that bastard!”

The old man was in tears as he said in between broken sobs, “The compensation came down.
Feng Tiang had just paid back the money.
She called me and said that she would give all of the remaining two hundred thousand to me and the old lady, saying that our older son was dead, and that life would be difficult after our younger son’s disappearance.
She was talking over the phone and suddenly I heard her scream, calling that bastard’s name.”

“When the old lady and I arrived, we saw that bastard at home…… I asked him then and there, who was the one that had died! It was then that he said that he had gone back with our second son that day.”

“I felt something was off then, so I questioned him……” 

Not so different from what Gu Xizhou had guessed, it was Zhao Qiang, the second son of the Zhao family, who had died 7 years ago.
Since no one questioned it at that time and no DNA testing had been done, they determined that the deceased was the eldest of the Zhao family straightaway, and the insurance company paid the necessary compensation.

“He was kneeling on the ground, kowtowing to me and begging us not to tell the police.
He kowtowed to Feng Tian too, knocking his head against the ground until blood ran all over his face.
Feng Tian hadn’t had the heart to in the first place, and hearing his pleas just looked at us elderly folk.”

“As a parent, seeing my only son left like this, I couldn’t bear to send him to the police station, and it was difficult to face my dead second son too.
I told him at that time that I would cut off our father-son relationship, and that I would never see him again.”

“And now he’s dead, it’s retribution!” 

The old man said and wiped at his tears.
As he spoke, the two elderly folk wept together, and the atmosphere of the whole house immediately became oppressive.

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Gu Xizhou and the others fell into deep thought.
In this way, the deceased Zhao Guo was an unregistered resident, cut off from his parents.
As he had killed his own brother for insurance fraud, he never associated with his former friends.
It was very likely that Zhao Guo had been living in Feng Tian’s villa.

“Has Feng Tian always been staying with the deceased since then?” Gu Xizhou asked.

The old man nodded, “Should be.
Ever since that incident, the remaining two hundred thousand was left in Feng Tian’s hands.
That bastard was not very good at being a man, but he had a good mind in business.
He placed that money into investments and made a ton of money……” 

“This I heard from my friend.
She came several times too, but we never accepted the money she tried to give us.”

Gu Xizhou looked at the old man and asked after a brief thought, “Have Feng Tian and Zhao Guo had children all these years?”

“Children?” After a brief surprise, the old man said with absolute certainty, “No!”


Without hesitation, the old man said frankly, “That bastard doesn’t have the balls to have children…… He has azoospermia.”



Fang Zhi at the side noted down the key information.
The elderly couple was not clear about the living conditions of Feng Tian and Zhao Guo after that and knew nothing about any children.
Gu Xizhou nodded slightly.

“Please do not let anybody know that we have come to find you, so as not to arouse the vigilance of the murderer,” Song Qian told the elderly couple before he left. 

The elderly couple nodded vigorously.

We’re sorry for MTLers or people who like using reading mode, but our translations keep getting stolen by aggregators so we’re going to bring back the copy protection.
If you need to MTL please retype the gibberish parts.

“Dear police, you must find the murderer……” The old lady started nervously and was immediately interrupted by the old man next to her.

“Lwqt, ktja obg, tf vfrfgnfr la!” Snfgs alwf atf biv ijvs kjcafv ab ajix, atf biv wjc cfza ab tlw rajgfv ja tfg olfgmfis, “Tbe ibnf atja yjrajgv, atfc ktja jybea beg C-Hljcu? Qtfc sbe rjs atlcur ilxf atlr, vlv sbe atlcx jybea C-Hljcu’r offilcur? Lbk rjv kbeiv tf yf lo tf tfjgv atja!”

Hearing this, the old lady looked at the old man.
She could not speak for a long time and eventually went to her room crying. 

“We’ll leave first then.”

Gu Xizhou and company left.
Just as they fastened their seat belts, Song Qian said by the side, “Say…… could it have been the old man who did it, hmm?”

“…… you’re thinking too much.”

Song Qian, “What do you mean, I’m thinking too much? Look at that old man, he’s so upset every time he mentions the deceased, like he wants to kill someone!” 

“If he really had such a temperament, would he wait seven years to kill someone?” Gu Xizhou said lightly.
“Compared to the others, Feng Tian is more likely to be the killer.
The moment we left, she went to find her parents.
When people are in dire need of help, the first thing they think of is their parents.”

As they spoke, Gu Xizhou and the others arrived once more at Feng Tian’s house.
After waiting for about 40 minutes, Feng Tian finally arrived home.

“Hello, Miss Feng.
We meet again,” Gu Xizhou said softly to the newly-arrived Feng Tian.

Feng Tian glared at Gu Xizhou, a little impatient.
“Mr Policeman, are you looking for me again today? I really don’t have any idea, I threw the ticket away! I don’t know who picked it up, and I don’t know why the victim had my parking ticket!” 

“We have already confirmed that the deceased is your ex-husband, who died seven years ago,” Gu Xizhou said lightly.

Feng Tian froze briefly, her face turning white.
Abruptly, she pushed Gu Xizhou away violently and turned to run.
When she turned, she ran into Song Qian, who stumbled and fell down in the middle of the road.

Feng Tian shoved Fang Zhi away, running straight to her car.


“Sto –”

It all happened too fast.
Feng Tian started her car and began driving forwards, looking as if she was intent on running someone over.
As Gu Xizhou watched, her car was about to run Song Qian over.


Before he could finish his words, the car made a shrill screeching noise.
Feng Tian had stepped on the brake and was crying bitterly in the car.

“Hoo –” Gu Xizhou blew out a long breath.
Beside him, Fang Zhi was frightened stiff.
He opened his mouth, but managed not to scream out loud. 

Song Qian’s legs trembled slightly as he stood up, bracing himself on the hood of the Mercedes less than a handspan away from him.
He looked at the crying woman in the car and said, “You, you… get out first…”

Feng Tian was still wiping away her tears when Gu Xizhou shot forwards, opened the door and dragged her out of the car.

Because of this, Song Qian was still a little frightened, so he was particularly bad-tempered during the interrogation.

“Is there a point to crying all the time? Tell us, why did you kill him?” 

Feng Tian sat in the interrogation room crying silently.
She did not speak, only kept crying.

“Wow, Old Song’s temper is really bad today,” one of the local policemen whispered.

“Is it surprising? He almost got run over by this woman! If it wasn’t for Captain Gu from Ningqing, today we’d be seeing a dead Old Song.”

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“No……” Fang Zhi paused, pointing at Feng Tian who was getting interrogated, “She stepped on the brake.” 

Inside the interrogation room, Gu Xizhou sat down at the side, waved at Song Qian and said, “Let her cry for a while.
You should take a break too and calm down.”

Gu Xizhou handed Feng Tian a packet of tissue and sat beside her, waiting for her to regain her composure.

After crying for about 20 minutes, Feng Tian finally calmed down gradually.
Just as she was about to speak, Song Qian’s phone suddenly rang.
After listening to the first line, he put his phone down and murmured to Gu Xizhou with a complicated look on his face, “We need to step out for a bit.”

“Okay.” Gu Xizhou glanced at Feng Tian, following Song Qian out of the interrogation room.
After closing the door behind them, he asked in confusion, “What happened?” 

“Feng Tian’s father just turned himself in at the police station, saying that he was the one who killed Zhao Guo……”

Gu Xizhou raised his eyebrows.
“And his reason?”

“He didn’t want Zhao Guo to be a parasitic existence leeching upon his daughter anymore,” Song Qian frowned as he spoke.
“The investment for these few shops were all done by Feng Tian herself.
Because Zhao Guo could only hide at home for the past seven years, he was quite temperamental and was occasionally violent towards Feng Tian.”

“Feng Tian’s father said this was the reason why he killed Zhao Guo.” Song Qian continued, “To choose this specific moment to turn himself in, it must be because he realised he could no longer get in touch with his daughter and got frightened.” 

Hearing this, Gu Xizhou felt it was a little troublesome.
If Feng Tian’s father was to insist that he was the killer, it would affect the final conviction.

“First interrogate Feng Tian, let’s hear what she says.”


The two of them went back in.
Feng Tian had already calmed down.
When she saw Song Qian, she was very apologetic.
“I’m sorry for almost running you over, officer.”

Song Qian waved it away.
“Let’s not talk about this anymore, let’s talk about you first, why did you kill Zhao Guo?” 

Feng Tian looked at him and whispered, “I didn’t kill him.
Since you know the deceased was my husband…… you should also know that the one who died seven years ago was his brother, not him, right?”

“Yes.” Gu Xizhou nodded.

“Seven years ago, he killed his younger brother for insurance fraud.
After getting that money, I paid off his previous debt, and still had 200 thousand yuan left.
I had intended to give it to his parents, but he appeared in front of me again for the money.”

“At that time, he knelt by my feet and kept kowtowing to me.
I didn’t have the heart to…… so I helped him to cover it up.
I admit that I was an accessory to his crime,” Feng Tian spoke weakly. 

“Then how did he die?” asked Gu Xizhou.

“…… He has been living with me for the past seven years.
Every day, all he does at home is watch TV, or play some games when he’s bored.
He wasn’t in contact with his parents, but my parents kept urging me to remarry.
With no choice, we told my parents that the one who died was Zhao Qiang, not Zhao Guo.”

“But Zhao Guo told my parents that it was an accident, and he really needed the money at the time…… my parents expressed that they understood it.
Later, maybe because he was in hiding all the time, he became very bad-tempered and would occasionally hit me.”

“Several times, I was beaten so badly I landed in hospital.
My father was very angry.
He just beat me not too long ago, so when my father came home and saw him playing games again, he flew into a rage and killed him,” Feng Tian said slowly. 

When Gu Xizhou and Song Qian heard her say the murderer was her father, they glanced at each other and thought simultaneously: The day they found Feng Tian, Feng Tian went to her parents’!

It was possible that Feng Tian was telling the truth, but it was also possible that this was the conclusion Feng Tian and her parents reached that day.
It was difficult to figure out whether there was a scapegoat.

“And your child?” Gu Xizhou asked.

Hearing that, Feng Tian’s body trembled.
“Child? What child?” 

“My husband had azoospermia, we don’t have any children.”

“There is one.
There was a saliva imprint on the plush toy I took that day,” Gu Xizhou said lightly, but his meaning was obvious.

However, Feng Tian shook her head firmly and said, “I really don’t have any children.
I’ve always wanted one all these years.”

After finding that they could no longer get any useful information out of Feng Tian, they met Feng Tian’s father, Feng Sheng about an hour later. 

Feng Sheng was 1.85 metres in height and had a sturdy build.
With his physique, if he did it stealthily, he could indeed kill Zhao Guo.
Compared to Feng Tian, he was in a much better state and his speech was also very logical.

“You said you are the killer.
Please explain the details of the murder,” Gu Xizhou said lightly.


“He hit my daughter.
I rushed to his house because I was upset and had a dispute with him.
Because I was too angry, I hit him on the head with an axe.
He died before he was even able to scream…… and then I used a chainsaw to cut the corpse up, put him in garbage bags, took him to the car and drove to Phoenix Mountain to bury him.”

“What kind of car?” Gu Xizhou asked. 

Feng Sheng thought for a moment and said, “My daughter’s car.”

“Why not your own car?”

“No reason,” Feng Sheng said blandly, his face expressionless.

“How about the murder weapon? Where is it?” 

Feng Sheng glanced at Gu Xizhou and said, “I lost it.”

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“Where did you lose it?”

The man shook his head.
“I forgot.”

When Gu Xizhou and company came out, all of them were frowning severely.
Song Qian raised his eyebrows and said, “This is too contradictory.
The father became a killer for the sake of his daughter, but then he disposed of the corpse using his daughter’s car, this is illogical!” 

“How so?” asked a policeman whom Gu Xizhou didn’t know.

“When a person wants to protect someone, they’ll definitely avoid any traces that could link the other party to the murder.
He drove to Feng Tian’s house.
Then, why didn’t he use his own car to dispose of the body?” Fang Zhi explained.
At that, the confused little officer made a sound of epiphany.

Gu Xizhou suddenly slapped his forehead and strode back into the interrogation room.
He propped his arms on the table and asked Feng Sheng, “I have another question.”

Feng Sheng, “?” 

“Where is your grandson?”

“He……” Feng Sheng opened his mouth, and then seemed to suddenly realise something.
He asked angrily, “What grandson? That bastard is infertile!”

Then he began to curse the deceased constantly, obviously still bitter about the matter.

After a while, Feng Sheng suddenly looked at Gu Xizhou and asked, “When can I see my daughter? I’ve already pleaded guilty and I want to see her.” 

“Don’t worry.
After the case is closed, you’ll be able to meet her,” Gu Xizhou said.

After leaving the interrogation room again, Gu Xizhou looked at the others and said, “Feng Tian does indeed have a child, but why won’t any of them admit it?”


“Where is that child now?”

It was probably related to this case! Feng Tian and her father’s confessions were the same, and Feng Sheng was taking all the blame onto himself, clearly hoping that his daughter would be acquitted! 

“See if there are any clues in Feng Tian’s villa,” Gu Xizhou said.

They left the police station and got some noodles to eat.
They went straight to Feng Tian’s house, bypassing the yellow warning line.
After inspection, there were some residual bloodstains in the room.

After going into the villa again, Gu Xizhou entered the room full of toys.
At this time, Fang Zhi called out to him, “Gu Ge, look at this!”

Following Fang Zhi’s finger, Gu Xizhou saw a unique rattle drum, the kind which children played with, with rows of small teeth marks on it. 

“There is a child!” Song Qian took a look and frowned.

With the rattle drum and the other things in tow, Gu Xizhou and the others returned to the police station once again.
At this time, Feng Tian was eating.
Seeing the rattle Gu Xizhou threw on the table, she was slightly stunned, and looked up at him and asked, “What is it?”

“What is this? Where’s your child?” Gu Xizhou asked.

“I said, I don’t have any children,” Feng Tian thought for a moment and said. 

“The toys in your house have traces of usage.”

“This toy is an old one.”

“You have so much money to buy old toys?”

Feng Tian looked at him coldly and asked, “Can’t I?” 

“There’s nothing wrong with it, but do you really want your father to take the blame for you? Your father’s doing this out of his love for you.
What about you? Are you really going to be so selfish?”

“Have you ever thought about how your father’s going to live in prison? He’s getting on in years, have you considered that? “

Feng Tian ignored him and went back to her food.

Gu Xizhou and Song Qian returned.
Song Qian shook his head and said, “My God, this woman is quite something, eh? She believes that her father is too old to be in prison for more than a few years, and is set on letting him be the scapegoat! Although the deceased deserved it, this isn’t the way to go!” 

“You keep asking her about the child.
Do you think there’s something to do with him?” Song Qian asked.

“Zhao Guo can’t have children.
The child is definitely not his,” Gu Xizhou said softly.
“By the way, do a check on Feng Tian, see if she has any records of giving birth, and then visit her employees.”


Early the next morning, Gu Xizhou received a message from Song Qian stating that Feng Tian had never had a child.
Her employees could prove that Feng Tian visited the store every Friday, so they were absolutely certain that Feng Tian had never been pregnant.

Gu Xizhou took the key and said to Fang Zhi, “Would you like to see your sister? I’m going alone today.” 

“She’s in school, it’s not good for me to go.
Besides, work is important too.
I’ll go to Feng Tian’s house with you today?” Fang Zhi said.

“All right.”

Gu Xizhou and Fang Zhi sped all the way to Feng Tian’s villa.
This time, they paid a visit to the neighbors.

“Hello,” Fang Zhi said politely, “we are……” 

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The lady in the red nightdress waved her hand and chuckled, “I know, police? I heard from my maid yesterday that somebody from the family next door died.”

“But are all you police officers so handsome now?” The beautiful lady looked at Gu Xizhou with a smile in her eyes.

Gu Xizhou, “……”

Before Fang Zhi could ask, the lady made a shushing gesture and said, “I know what you want to ask.
My maid has already answered you yesterday.
The lady next door really doesn’t do anything special.” 

Gu Xizhou was silent for a moment and said, “Have you ever seen Feng Tian hurt?”

The woman waved her hand, “No, she’s always well-dressed.
She’s pretty, but not as beautiful as me.”

Gu Xizhou, “……”

Fang Zhi, “……” 

Seeing Gu Xizhou and Fang Zhi speechless for a long time, the lady let out a light laugh.

Having laughed enough, she pointed to the bonsai in Feng Tian’s yard and said, “I’ll stop teasing you.
I think the only strange thing is those bonsai that she recently bought.”

Gu Xizhou raised his eyebrows, “?”

The lady glanced at Gu Xizhou and continued, “A friend of mine took a look at her yard the last time he came to my house.
He said there was something wrong with those pots of flowers.” 

“What’s wrong?” Gu Xizhou asked.

The lady said lightly, “I don’t know.
He just vaguely said that that arrangement is not good for fengshui.”


“Thank you.” After thanking the lady, Gu Xizhou asked Song Qian to bring everyone over.


They went through all the flower pots with a shovel.
Within 10 minutes, Fang Zhi’s shovel hit something hard.

“Gu Ge! It’s a human head!” Fang Zhi had goosebumps all over.
At the same time, in the other two bonsai a box of bone ashes and a bloody axe was found!

“Let’s go back.”

Before leaving, Gu Xizhou saw the lady in red from next door. 

“You don’t look afraid at all?” Upon seeing the beautiful lady from next door, Song Qian asked in surprise.

The lady replied nonchalantly, “What’s there to be afraid of? It’s just a corpse.
It’s not someone alive and it’s not a ghost, why would I be afraid?”

Gu Xizhou examined the lady thoughtfully.
Someone who was afraid of the living and ghosts, perhaps this lady was also someone who was struggling through the mission worlds, just like them.

They sped back to the police station again.
Striding into the interrogation room, Gu Xizhou said directly to Feng Tian, “Feng Tian, the murder weapon was in the flower pot in your house.
After analysis, we will know whether your DNA is on it.
I suggest that you confess now.
Owing to the fact that the deceased has a history of murder for insurance fraud, your sentence may be lighter.” 

Feng Tian looked at the photo.
She was silent for a long time, and suddenly said self-deprecatingly, “I didn’t expect you to look in the flower pots.”

After laughing, she opened her mouth and said, “I lied.
He didn’t beat me.
He didn’t dare to.”

Feng Tian said mockingly, “I did have a child previously.
Not mine, but I found him……”

“Zhao Guo has azoospermia and we had no children.
About three months ago, I was drinking coffee by the roadside after visiting the shops when I heard a baby crying.
The child had been abandoned.
He was very cute; he grabbed my hand and refused to let go.
I didn’t know what I was thinking, but I took him home.” 

“I told Zhao Guo that I wanted to adopt this child.
Zhao Guo opposed it at the time, and during the argument I said…… said he wasn’t a man, I said I wanted to raise this child, that anyway I would never have a child with him.
By adopting this child, I could have someone to rely on in the future.”

“In the end, he didn’t object.
I thought he agreed.
The child cried a lot, and Zhao Guo hated him.
Then one day when I came home from work, I didn’t hear the child crying.
When I went to take a look, even his body was cold!”

Feng Tian sobbed and began crying.
“I questioned Zhao Guo, he, he said…… he was irritated by the child.
He wanted the child dead, so he started strangling him for fun, and didn’t expect to really strangle him by accident.
He was laughing when he said that!”

“At that time I was thinking, if it wasn’t for me taking the child home in the first place, the child wouldn’t have died.
And then I thought of his brother Zhao Qiang…… his brother was a really good person, I’ve been feeling guilty about it all these years! After thinking of all this, I made a plan to kill him.” 

Gu Xizhou glanced at her and said, “He has a history of murder.
You can just expose him, there was no need to personally……”

Feng Tian interrupted him coldly.
“So what if he had killed? It’s said that a life for a life, but how many murderers really do pay with their lives? There’s no shortage of death penalties getting commuted! I want him dead!”


Glacestorm: The ultra-long chapter as promised.
And so Feng Tian’s secrets are revealed!

Please remember that justice is not ours to deliver.
That being said, I am sorry if the legal system in your country is not mature enough and allows criminals to slip through the cracks.
However, I would like to maintain that serving our own brand of justice would certainly disrupt peace and harmony in society.
After all, the world is never black and white, and as the saying goes, an eye for an eye and the world goes blind. 

Oh, and I was wondering if you guys would prefer if I stick more closely to the original text or take more liberties in translation and try to bring out the meaning instead? Please let me know in the comments!

Finally, I’d like to thank my temporary editor (and sister) Starrie Wolf for helping with the translation for this chapter, or I’d never have got it out by today.
Kudos to you, with a cherry on top!

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