Author: 长洱 / Chang’er
Translator: Kinky || https://kinkytranslations.com/
It was no wonder that Lu Xu didn’t have any record of his identity for four years. Because, after he was released from prison, his name was no longer Lu Xu.
Lin Chen guessed that Xing Conglian had already figured things out by having Wang Chao wait downstairs, but his face was like usual. Before entering the general manager’s office, he took a roll of plastic tape from the secretary’s desk by the door.
The office was indeed empty.
Xing Conglian seemed to have expected this. He slammed the door and locked it, ignoring the shouts of the secretary outside.
At the moment when the office door was slammed shut, there was a brief silence, followed by the subtle sounds that echoed in the office.
Lin Chen looked around, and his eyes fell from the half-open glass window to the wine cabinet at the corner of the office, and finally landed on the European-style leather sofa on the other side of the room.
In fact, people like Li Gaoqiang or Lu Xu weren’t particularly smart, but they had rich life experiences. They lived in the dirtiest pit of society and were best at veiled compliance. In order to survive, they have done many ugly things in the world.
And, because they spent so long in the pit, they often mastered strong survival skills and could live well.
However, if their opponent was Xing Conglian, even foresight wouldn’t be enough.
Lin Chen walked to the wine cabinet and made himself a cup of hot coffee. He stirred in some sugar cubes with a small silver spoon, and then sat down on the leather sofa.
Xing Conglian turned around the office for half a circle. When he walked to the data cabinet, he kicked the iron door.
After a loud noise, a sibilant sound came from inside the cabinet.
“Come out,” Xing Conglian said lightly.
The door of the data cabinet opened abruptly, and a fat man rolled up like a small mountain and was lying on his back on the ground.
Sure enough, it was Lu Xu.
There were bruises and swelling on Lu Xu’s mouth and nose. He repeated the same trick and directly hugged Xing Conglian’s thigh and began to cry. “Captain Xing, I really didn’t know your true identity yesterday, so I did some bad things. Adults don’t really care about such small trifles. Please forgive me!”
Lin Chen took a sip of his coffee.
“Raise your head,” Xing Conglian said faintly.
Lu Xu raised his head obediently. His entire face looked like a mangy dog. As he looked up, he blinked nervously, as if his mouth would never snap back.
Xing Conglian took out the tape and easily sealed Lu Xu’s mouth.
Lu Xu opened his eyes abruptly, completely unaware of what was going on. He screamed twice, and then, seemingly like in those classic cop dramas, he widened his eyes and showed real fear in them. However, Xing Conglian didn’t have the mind to care about this. Before Lu Xu could reach out and tear off the tape, Xing Conglian had used a beautiful grappling technique to hold him back and drag the middle-aged man towards the window.
What happened next was somewhat frightening.
Xing Conglian first pushed the glass window that was on the 25th floor a little higher, then lifted Mr. Lu Xu and pressed him out the window.
In fact, this wasn’t really a dangerous action since, due to Mr. Lu Xu’s physical attributes, he really couldn’t fall out of the window. However, with the high-rise roaring wind pounding against him like a knife and the blaring honking noises from below, once he looked down, against all reason, it gave him the illusion that he would plummet 25 stories down.
Lu Xu struggled fiercely, slamming his body against the edge of the window, but Xing Conglian’s hand held him firm.
“Mr. Lu,” Xing Conglian got close to his ears and whispered. “Whether you believe it or not, even if I really push you out today, I’ll only sit in jail for a few years at most, but in your situation, you’ll certainly die.”
Naturally, to deal with a hob, they had to be ruthless. Lin Chen took another sip of his coffee.
Lu Xu shouted something and then nodded desperately. Finally, as if the window outside had blown enough, Xing Conglian let go, and Lu Xu fluttered to the floor.
He shivered, and his face was as white as a sheet of rice paper. He was so terrified that he couldn’t even make those disgusting groveling gestures.
Lin Chen glanced at Xing Conglian.
Xing Conglian squatted down and patted Lu Xu on the shoulder and said politely, “What I ask, you answer, just like the game you played last time.”
Lu Xu nodded his head fiercely as if he were pounding garlic. Xing Conglian stretched out his hand and took off the tape. Lu Xu panted suddenly and didn’t even dare to scream.
Xing Conglian took out his phone and started to read something.
“Three weeks ago, on the evening of April 15th, as Li Gaoqiang, you spent a total of 184,115 yuan using a credit card at the club named Royal One. May I ask if this credit card consumption was used to pay for all the entertainment consumption activities of CA Entertainment artists and employees at Royal One that night?”
Lu Xu kept his mouth shut. At this moment, all he would do was nod his head, as if he had lost his ability to speak.
“Was any money used to pay for sex services provided by Royal One?”
Lu Xu’s eyes rolled in half a circle, and he hesitated. “This…”
“Yes or no. Got it, Mr. Lu?”
“It was all normal alcohol consumption. You have to believe me. Although you know my background, our company…”
Lin Chen finally put the white porcelain cup down on the coffee table. He leaned forward slightly, staring at the fat face on the ground not far away, and said to Xing Conglian, “The answers just now are all lies.”
Xing Conglian shrugged and, without saying a word, pulled Lu Xu up and dragged him back to the window. Lu Xu was so scared that he hugged Xing Conglian’s waist and refused to let go.
Xing Conglian said with annoyance, “I say Mr. Lu, can you stop taking advantage of me?”
Lu Xu hurriedly let go, extremely frightened. He limped to the ground and no longer had any devious thoughts. “It’s… Actually, it’s not… The money wasn’t paid by CA Entertainment…”
Hearing this, Xing Conglian was quite surprised.
“What do you mean?” Xing Conglian asked.
“That… That CA…” Lu Xu looked up at Xing Conglian cautiously and said wretchedly, “It’s little artists from CA, sell… money from selling.”
Xing Conglian tugged at his ears and asked incredulously, “Money from selling?”
“Sell—selling their asses.”
In a rare moment, Lin Chen was also surprised. He looked at Xing Conglian and saw him point at the fat man who was spread out on the ground as he asked him, “Is there something wrong with my hearing?”
“What the hell is going on?” Xing Conglian said as he irritably kicked Lu Xu. “Speak clearly.”
“You see, it’s the unspoken rule of the industry. In such a big entertainment company, there are dozens of men and women, and there are those who don’t want to work hard but still want to get ahead, so of course…” Lu Xu shivered. The thumbs on his hands did a kissing motion. “There are some trainees who are resourceful. They can make a little money and get to know a big boss. It’s a win-win. But this isn’t rape. We’re not forcing them since they are willing to do it, really.”
Lu Xu finished.
What he meant was that he was actually introducing CA artists to provide sexual services to Royal One’s customers while earning an intermediary service fee.
Lin Chen felt that his worldview was a little shaken.
Although he had heard of the unspoken rules inside the industry, those things were far from his life. Even if he had seen breaking news about a certain artist being caught at a hotel in newspapers and on TV, it was just a flash of news that didn’t affect his reality, making it seem unreal.
In short, it was probably because the entertainment industry was too glamorous that it separated itself from normal life with an unbreakable film.
On one side of the film were the stars, and on the other side were people watching the drama.
But now, because of this whole case, they seem to have gradually touched the other world. Although they couldn’t break the membrane, they had touched strange things in it.
Xing Conglian’s reaction was faster. “Mr. Lu sure is busy. It’s not easy matching both ends every night, right?”
“It’s not about making a living,” Lu Xu laughed.
But even if Lu Xu was the matchmaker for both ends, why was this so-called prostitution fund paid by Lu Xu to the club?
“What’s the relationship between CA Entertainment and Royal One. Is it a subsidiary of the same company?” Xing Conglian asked.
“This, how can we match CA? They are a large multinational company that’s particularly successful in the entertainment industry. Compared to them, we’re just a small business here. It’s a matter of mutual benefit. Who doesn’t do it?”
“Why are you paying for it?”
“You see, this is actually an account. I don’t know how you found it. If CA directly pays Royal One, won’t it be obvious what’s going on? I’m a middleman. The bosses give me the money, I transfer it there, and then it gets transferred to someone else. The water runs deep. I can go undercover for you if you really want me to look into it.”
Perhaps seeing Xing Conglian suddenly had a good attitude, Lu Xu became weaselly again.
Xing Conglian glanced at him and said, “Financial crimes are not my responsibility.”
“I know you’re here because of Xu Ran’s case. I deserve my bad luck in Xu Ran’s matter. You shouldn’t have asked about Xu Ran. I really didn’t betray you last night.”
Xing Conglian was still polite. “Then I violated a taboo?”
“Xu Ran is a taboo.” Lu Xu got up from the ground, trying to get closer to Xing Conglian, but in the end, he supported himself at the table and didn’t dare to get up again. “Think about it. Although I’m not the boss, what’s the most important thing to a boss that opens such a big club?”
“Please enlighten us, Mr. Lu.”
“Of course, it’s the privacy of the guests!” Lu Xu shook his head as if what he was saying was profound. “You have to make your guest feel safe before others will come to spend their money, right? But Xu Ran actually went to sue a customer. This touched the bottom line. If a club can’t even protect the privacy of a customer, how can the boss keep his doors open?”
Lu Xu’s look became deeper as he fawningly looked at Xing Conglian, as if he knew everything while saying nothing.
However, Xing Conglian already had a clear idea and didn’t dwell on these details. He simply asked, “Answer me directly. Was Li Jingtian at Royal One that night?”
Lu Xu shook his head and asked with a smile, “Do you want me to answer yes or no?”
Like the wise saying, a dog can’t change eating shit*.
*(狗改不了吃屎) Idiom referring to nature is hard to change.
“Tell the truth.”
“The truth is that I really don’t know who ordered her, but if you want me to testify in court, that’s not a problem. I promise that I can lie seamlessly and help you nail that little bitch, Li Jingtian.”
Looking at Lu Xu’s cunning and oily face, Lin Chen looked at Xing Conglian in disappointment and shook his head.
The reason why he shook his head was because all of Lu Xu’s reactions were saying: I’m telling the truth. I really don’t know who was waiting for Xu Ran in the room that night.
Although all clues pointed to Li Jingtian, the club had already cleared all possible evidence for the so-called business in order to protect the privacy of their guests, so they still didn’t have anything substantial that could crucify Li Jingtian.
Lin Chen suddenly felt that Lu Xu’s suggestion just now was very enticing.
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