Chapter 34 The Liang Kaifeng Case
Liang Kaifeng looked at me as if he finally had seen a glimmer of hope. “Can you contact him? Please, please, ask him to save my dad!”
Our group looked at each other and were a little surprised.
“Your dad? What’s happened to your dad?” Su Xiaoyun asked.
I cut him off before he could talk, “Let’s not talk about it here. There are too many people in the classroom.”
We had already attracted too much attention as we gathered together; not to mention Liang Kaifeng’s pale, almost ghastly face.
We took Liang Kaifeng to an empty self-study room in the building. He then began to tell us about why he needed Wen Jiubo.
“My father, I beg you, please save him.” I had never seen Liang Kaifeng speak in such a serious tone. “I know I was rude to you in the past, but…”
“Okay, okay. Can you get to the point? Stop beating around the bush,” Shi Yitong impatiently interrupted him and said the words that I did not dare speak out. “What’s going on? Make it clear.”
Liang Kaifeng nodded. He calmed himself down before saying, “My father, he… he’s dying.”
“What?” Su Xiaoyun asked in surprise. “Is your father sick? Or is somebody trying to harm him?”
After Su Xiaoyun said this, I suddenly remembered that Liang Kaifeng’s father was a business tycoon. It would make sense for him to be targeted by one of his competitors.
But Liang Kaifeng shook his head. “No. This incident… is somehow so unbelievable that I, myself, can’t even believe it’s true. But you’re the only one that will believe me. My father, he’s paying the price for a deal he made long ago.”
“A deal?” I asked.
“I should tell you beforehand, I’m not really sure about what exactly is going on. I just noticed something weird and then I tried to look into it,” Liang Kaifeng sat down on a table and said. “Let me tell you what I know. You may not know that my father, before he became a business tycoon in Yan City, was just a loser who dropped out of junior high. He did all kinds of part-time jobs, like distributing flyers and newspapers or carrying bricks at construction sites. And my mother is just an ordinary rural woman. She never went to school, and she’s illiterate.”
Su Xiaoyun, Shi Yitong and I looked at each other in surprise. As a son, the way he described his father seemed a little harsh. I could tell that their father-son relationship was not as good as we thought.
“Is that true?” Shi Yitong muttered. “I really hope that your dad can write a biography and tell us how children from poor families like us can become millionaires overnight.”
Liang Kaifeng shook his head. “You won’t have to wait until he writes a biography. I can tell you how he became successful, right now. As you said, my dad became a rich man overnight, and I still remember what happened on that night. It was about a year ago, and it was supposed to be a normal night. My dad and I were walking down the street, and he wanted to sell an antique mirror we had, which was my mother’s dowry. They had quarreled about whether or not to sell it until the middle of the night. As we were walking down the street, all of a sudden, we saw a man running towards us, and another person following closely behind him, shouting at us, ‘Catch that thief! Catch that thief!’ We didn’t react until the thief ran straight towards my dad. At that time, just before I could warn my dad, the thief suddenly fell flat on his face right in front of us. And inexplicably, no matter how hard he tried, he would always fall back to the ground, unable to stand up.”
Shi Yitong found the story interesting. “Then what?”
“Afterwards, the man chasing him arrived. When he saw the thief lying on the ground in front of my dad, he was excited and surprised; he thought my dad had taken down the thief. He bowed to us to show his gratitude, then called the police. The police took the thief away and he got back his stolen wallet. Then guess what happened?”
I shook my head.
“After the thief got caught, we learned that the person who lost his wallet was the president of a big company, and there were business secrets inside the stolen wallet. And in order to thank my father for catching the thief——although he didn’t do anything at all, that president gave us a luxury villa in the suburb.”
“Wow.” Shi Yitong’s mouth was agape. “You have to be kidding me.”
“That’s not the end. In addition to the villa, the president also gave my father a job. He directly offered him a job as a corporate director. And it didn’t take long for him to be promoted again, because less than two months later, my dad became the general manager of the company. Then, a week after his last promotion, the former chairman suddenly died in a car accident. And my dad became the new chairman. All of this happened in the space of three months.”
“No way.” At this moment, Zhu Xuan who remained silent during our conversation said, “This can’t be explained by pure luck. It’s impossible for a situation this absurd to exist in our world.”
Liang Kaifeng smiled bitterly with his hands outstretched. “Yeah, I know. But at that time, our family was incredibly thrilled, and no one cared about how weird our situation was. We were just a poor family struggling to feed ourselves who became multi-millionaires, and we owned the whole business. We didn’t need to worry about food or clothing, and we bought several houses and luxury cars. As if the goddess of fortune suddenly smiled on our family, we didn’t notice anything wrong until… until recently, everything became abnormal.”
“What do you mean by abnormal?” I asked.
“Ever since my dad became the chairman, his temper suddenly changed. Although he used to be a coward, his temper was very good, and he was very considerate to me and my mother. In the past, even if there was a quarrel, though my mom was always the one who started it, my dad never complained and just let my mother vent her anger. But ever since then, the situation completely reversed. My dad became very agitated. He would suddenly get emotional from time to time, and he would snarl loudly to me and my mother. His way of doing things also changed completely. He became rude to his colleagues and subordinates. If someone did anything that was against his wishes, he would fire them without hesitation. No, rather than saying that his temper got worse, it’s better to say that he was always tense, always worried that others would steal his wealth from him. Afterward, we start noticing bad things constantly happening to our family. First, he and my mother had a big fight, and he went completely out of control. He took a kitchen knife and stabbed my mother in her leg, which paralyzed her. My mother now has to sit in a wheelchair for the rest of her life. Of course, after that time, my mother divorced him, leaving me alone with him. I have to live with him cautiously and try not to provoke him. But it didn’t take long for me to have an accident as well, which you all know about already. It was that ghost incident in the school. If Mr. Wen wasn’t here, I’m afraid I would already be dead.”
“But…” I couldn’t help but interrupt. “I heard that your dad asked Wen Jiubo to save you. He doesn’t sound as cold-blooded as you make him out to be.”
Liang Kaifeng shook his head. “No, he’s not cold-blooded. He just became very violent. At first, I thought it was because he fell into a deep depression, worrying about something that didn’t exist. But, after the life and death experience I went through, I slowly began to think that the gibberish that he said before, might be true.”
“What did he say?” Zhu Xuan asked.
“Since he became the chairman, he often whispered some weird words. Some…wicked words.” Liang Kaifeng said. “Like ‘nature is the true law’, and ‘what goes around, comes around’. He even asked some Taoist and Buddist monks to visit our house. He never believed in those things before. When my mother divorced him, he looked disappointed and said that it was his own retribution. He said the same thing when I was involved in the ghost incident in our school. He said that he made a deal and now he had to pay it back. Then just a while ago, about a week ago, I returned home earlier than usual, and I heard voices coming from my dad’s bedroom. My mom had left, so there was only me and my dad in the house. How could there be voices coming from his bedroom? I walked over and wanted to ask, but the voices suddenly disappeared. My dad came out of his room and asked me rudely why I tried to sneak up on him. But that is not the point. The point is that when he opened the door, I saw that he was alone in the room. And I also knew that he didn’t have his phone since I saw it in the living room downstairs.”
“Em.” Shi Yitong frowned. He didn’t seem to believe what Liang Kaifeng said. “You should think positively, maybe your dad was just chatting with people online.”
“Maybe. But as far as I know, my dad knows nothing about technology. He only makes calls with his newly bought iPhone.” Liang Kaifeng shook his head. “Also, after that, he became even more bizarre. He started to have nightmares at night. He ran out of the room in the middle of the night, shouting and yelling something about ghosts. He has started smoking a lot more than he used to, and he’s now constantly drunk. One night when he was drunk, he began to smash things in the house. When I rushed over to stop him, he tightly grabbed my collar. I will never forget how he looked at that time. He glared at me as if he was glaring at an evil ghost and he said, ‘I’m going to die, I’m really going to die.’”
“So you believe in his drunken gibberish?” Su Xiaoyun squinted. This was her habit when she was suspicious of something.