Chapter 48: Song of The Wind (7)
The blood stains on the floor had been wiped clean and only a little bit of blood had dropped into the cracks on the floor. No one knew how many people had stepped on this floor that hadn’t been repaired in years and whose colour had turned dull, so much so that it almost blended in with the colour of blood.
Jin Cheng scraped some sawdust from the cracks with a dagger, then he looked at it carefully and said: “The blood stains should have been here for a long time. it’s definitely not recent.”
Tang Cuo continued to search the room and finally came to a conclusion: “Do you see that the distribution of these blood stains looks like a magic circle?”
This statement triggered Jin Cheng’s interest.
He directly prepared a basin of water and used water as a substitute of blood to link all the blood stains. After he was done, Jin Cheng stroked his chin and studied the picture carefully, saying: “This is indeed a bit like a magic circle. Do you know which one does it look like?”
Tang Cuo understood: “The incomplete painting?”
“Bingo.” Jin Cheng snapped his fingers. “That’s it. Some blood stains are undone, but looking at the overall pattern, this is very similar to the magic circle in the painting.”
But what did this point to?
The blood stains might have been there for a while and perhaps left behind by the previous tenant, but if such an obvious clue didn’t point to Bazz, it would be a bit difficult to comprehend.
But how could Bazz, a kind-hearted, enthusiastic and cheerful person, have anything to do with a magic circle of the Rose Sect?
Jin Cheng and Tang Cuo immediately carried out a more thorough search around the rented flat and finally found a letter in the crack of the bed board. To be precise, it should be called a dying letter.
[Today is finally a sunny day. The wind has pushed open the window and the wind chime is ringing again. It’s such a pleasant feeling.
The cold will always pass.
When this winter passes, there will be wonderful music on the street again. Beibei’s jam pies will also have new flavours, because the fruits of Yorkshire are about to ripe again.
I look forward to it so much.
Everything will be better.
And I hope only the wind will know about my death.]
This was a dying letter that wasn’t exactly a dying letter. It didn’t pass on anything and wasn’t signed either, but Tang Cuo and Jin Cheng could both agree that the writer was Bazz.
As they opened the window and looked out, the messily stacked-up black houses seemed as though they would collapse at any point tnow, and the people living in them were like weeds. Which weed would sincerely look forward to the music and miss the jam pie in Beibei’s Cake House?
It could only be Bazz with red, cotton-like hair.
“He was probably sick and wrote this letter when he was about to die. It was last winter, half a year ago.” Jin Cheng said as his eyes fell back to the only wooden bed in the house, feeling as though he could see Bazz lying there, struggling with sickness.
He continued: “This can explain why he knows Dr. Albert. Dr. Albert is also related to the Rose Sect, so a magic circle appears in his room.”
One clue was connected to the next and the truth had gradually surfaced. But if this series of happenings were all chained together, they still lacked a few important nodes.
For example, did Dr. Albert eventually cure Bazz, so that the magic circle was entirely erased? Was there any connection between Bazz and Lisa? Or which faction did Dr. Albert really belong to?
The two then left the rented flat, bought some food on the street and discussed their next course of actions while eating. The main mission hadn’t been updated yet, so it might be that they had to continue investigating in the White Leaf District and the next plot could only be triggered after they obtained some results.
Jin Cheng shamelessly sat down on the pavement and asked: “You’re a detective, where do you want to go next?”
As a noble knight, Tang Cuo naturally always stood upright. Even eating the cheapest cornmeal pancake wouldn’t make him compromise his aura. After thinking for a moment, he said: “They both have a magic circle in their place, but Lisa is dead and Bazz is alive. What do you think is the difference?”
“Their leader is different? Lisa communicates with Priest Peter while Bazz communicates with Dr. Albert. In other words, they’re not from the same faction?”
Tang Cuo had the last bite of the pancake and said: “I’m going to see Lisa’s body.”
After about twenty minutes, the two arrived at the small courtyard where the body was collected.
Following the same routine, Jin Cheng and Tang Cuo together sat on the roof of the house next to the courtyard, capturing the situation below from a high point. However, Jin Cheng only glanced at it once and concluded: “The corpse has been taken away.”
It was twilight now, almost five hours after Jin Cheng discovered that the corpse was sold to this place. It was likely that the corpses had been taken away altogether. According to Mustache Man, the corpses would be transported to the Locke Kingdom and sold to the noble necromancer.
“Does he experiment necromantic magic with corpses?”
“There seems to be no other explanation. The necromancers in Sicilit don’t seem to be screaming and killing people like those in some Western Fantasy tales. They use money to buy corpses. This business may sound inhumane, but if you think about it carefully, they don’t raid anyone’s tomb or experiment on living people. In fact, they are quite law-abiding.”
Saying that, Jin Cheng’s eyes swept through the entire place, then he casually knocked on the door.
Tang Cuo was still watching from the roof.
The one that opened the door was the servant who was responsible for tossing the powder on the corpses. Jin Cheng put up a miserable expression, saying that he had a corpse to sell and wanted to ask about the price. The servant made an offer, but Jin Cheng wasn’t satisfied and said he wanted to see the boss.
The servant’s attitude was cold and even mixed with a few hints of impatience. In the end, he only said that the boss had gone to the dock to deliver the corpses and shooed Jin Cheng away.
The dock was right in the White Leaf District.
The Principality of Flange had a wide river called the Honey Wind River that flowed through most of the country, and most of the cargo transportation in the whole principality relied on this river. To the east was the Pinwheel Harbour and to the south was the Kingdom of Hundred Flowers, which made the waterway a smoother route for travelling than the land.
The two immediately rushed to the dock.
After nightfall, the dock was extremely brightly lit, as though all the lights of the White Leaf District had gathered here and formed the only source of light in the dark night. The labourers clad in linen clothes were carrying the goods back and forth, from one ship to another and one truck to another. From a distance, the steward of the dock could be heard reprimanding them loudly.
“Be careful, if you accidentally drop the goods and the noble lords blame it on you, can you pay it back?!”
A long distance away, Tang Cuo couldn’t see the person’s face, and the evening breeze mixed with the faint smell of river water and sweat didn’t feel too great.
The two looked around for a long time but still couldn’t trigger the next mission. They made attempts to subtly ask the NPCs for information but couldn’t confirm whether the ship that transported the corpses had left.
An old boatman that was smoking a cigarette with a terrible smell reminded them: “Young boys, don’t ask so much. Otherwise, the corpse won’t be found, then you become corpses yourselves.”
Tang Cuo seemed to think of something.
Jin Cheng went to a nearby tavern to buy a bottle of wine to give to the old boatman, then he said with a smile: “I’ll just ask one question: You really didn’t see the ship that carried the corpses?”
The old boatman accepted the wine and grinned, revealing his teeth that were both black and gold: “No, I’ve been here for more than ten years and never seen any ship carrying corpses.”
Jin Cheng and Tang Cuo looked at each other. Something isn’t right.
As the two got up and walked back, Tang Cuo said: “Someone lied.”
Jin Cheng hugged his arms and seemed a bit intrigued: “Who do you think lied?”
Tang Cuo: “The corpse collector.”
Jin Cheng said: “Do you think that they never transported the corpses out of Flange at all?”
The old boatman was just a passer-by NPC they picked at random and not a key figure of the plot, so there should be no need for him to lie. What did “I’ve never seen any ship carrying corpses” mean? It meant that the merchants had given up on transporting via the sea, which was more convenient and efficient. Rather, they had chosen to go via the land.
Corpses weren’t easy to transport like candlesticks. If they went via the land, how many carriages would they have to prepare? Travelling on the road with a lot of corpses sounded creepy, and anyone with a brain wouldn’t choose such a route.
Thus, the corpses must still be in Flange. Then the real purpose of those collectors buying the corpses was worthy of suspiscion.
Was this really related to the necromancer of the Locke Kingdom?
The assassination of the Grand Duke, the attack on the church, the corpses that was taken away… One by one, everything that had happened within the day flashed by Tang Cuo’s mind. He suddenly frowned and hurried to the small courtyard just now.
Jin Cheng could guess what he was thinking and the two quickly ran back, only to find that they were still too late.
The small courtyard was utterly empty.
Tang Cuo’s face darkened, wondering if it was them who had scared those people away, or if those people had soon prepared to escape.
At this point, Jin Cheng slowly walked to him from behind. Seeing how the situation had turned out, he couldn’t help raising his eyebrows, then his eyes suddenly lit up. He smiled and asked softly: “Didn’t you want to see the corpse? Do you know that there’s still one more place in the White Leaf District that still has a corpse?”
Tang Cuo: “The church.”
Priest Peter was killed in the church after the assassination of the Grand Duke today. The guards had temporarily taken over the church and dealt with the priest’s body. It had only been half a day, so the body should still be inside the church.
Tang Cuo was afraid that something bad would happen if he was late and even used the ‘Sprint’ skill. Under the moonlit night, the two figures jumped over roofs and reached the church from the courtyard within fifteen minutes, startling all the soldiers guarding the gate.
Without wasting a second, Tang Cuo pulled out the badge of the Greenvines Alliance and flashed it before their eyes, then pushed the gate in. The stunned soldiers finally managed to react after half a second, but no one stepped up to stop him.
Someone from the Greenvines Alliance. As the leaders had said, this matter was under the alliance’s control.
Inside the silent church, only a few soldiers were dozing off with swords held in their arms. The sound of footsteps running awakened them, making them draw their swords and look around dazedly to eventually land their eyes on Theodore’s handsome face.
“Where is Peter’s body?” he asked.
“In… in the central court. We just buried him.” A guard recognised him and decided to step forward: “The Grand Duke ordered him to be buried in this church, and we also prepared a coffin for him.”
He’s already buried?
Tang Cuo frowned slightly.
Seeing his expression, the guard asked cautiously: “Sir Knight, what do you want his corpse for? We’ve examined Peter’s corpse and found nothing unusual, otherwise we wouldn’t have buried him.”
Tang Cuo didn’t answer.
However, Jin Cheng’s voice came from behind: “If you’ve buried him, dig him out. At worst, we can always bury him again.”
“Huh?” The guard’s doubts surged to the point of no return.
Five soldiers, each with a shovel, dug up the soil in the heart of the court and pulled out the buried coffin, while the two masters who insisted on digging up graves at night just stood by each side to supervise the work.
The atmosphere felt pretty bizarre.
Even more bizarre was that when they pushed open the coffin, it was empty.
“Where’s the corpse?!”
“How could this happen, I obviously saw him buried in it?!”
“Ghost… it was a ghost!”
The soldiers threw their shovels and backed away in fright. Tang Cuo walked to the coffin, carefully reached out one hand to touch the coffin wall and saw blood stains at the bottom.
Jin Cheng brought a lamp to him: “Peter’s wound is at the back of his heart, so the blood stain is in the right position. The extent of blood drying also seems correct.”
Tang Cuo: “Where do you think he went?”
Jin Cheng shrugged: “Maybe he’s peeping at us from a corner.”
This single statement was so terrifying that the soldiers immediately stepped back and looked around, as if a ghost would jump out in the next second.
Tang Cuo opened the system panel and found that the main mission had finally changed.
Jin Cheng also looked at his panel and asked: “My mission is to look for Peter and inform Celtic of the clues. What is yours?”
Tang Cuo didn’t want to speak.
[Kingdom Hidden In The Moonlight]
The second round: Song of The Wind
Main mission: Return to the rented flat to heal your injury and wait for Bazz.
Translator and reviewer at Strictly Bromance blog. In essence, she lives to indulge in plot-driven stories sprinkled with camaraderie and slow-burn drama-free romance, especially more so if they belong to adventure, mystery or supernatural genre. A trope that she always thirsts after: “Comrades who go through life and death together”.