At this moment, in one of An family's establishments, a blonde man with an aquiline nose walked in.
He seemed around 37 years old. But appearance wasn't a good gauge since Americans tended to look more mature than Chinese.
He was dressed casually, his movements strong and swift. He wasn't bothered about civilities but carried himself respectably, removing his hat when he entered the dining area. "Is Qin around?"
The butler was startled by his appearance but quickly regained his elegance. "Young Master is in the study room."
The man moved quickly since Qin would definitely provide insights to the case he had on hand.
When the study room's wooden door was pushed open, Qin Mo glanced up, expecting to see the youngster at the door but instead it was an old friend.
"Judging from your urgency, I doubt it's just to deliver the documents." Qin Mo folded his legs, placing his pen down.
He was an extremely renowned inspector of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Steven. He pulled a chair out and sat down. "Qin, I need help on a case."
Qin Mo stood up, walking towards the newspaper on the dining table before scanning through it.
Steven couldn't seem to calm down. "Qin, I'm serious, there are many doubtful points, the case..."
"The criminal knows hypnosis," Qin Mo interrupted. "The crime scene was touched and the general direction of the investigation doesn't seem right."
A shock ran through Steven, "You've seen the crime scene? That's not possible!"
Qin Mo passed the newspaper over, his fingers tapping the front cover. "It's here, serial suicide. There are suspicions on whether a murderer is involved and the photo was taken by the media."
"That's the case." Steven wasn't as tense as before. "I thought you were physic, watching over the case from China."
Qin Mo was still watching the photograph on the newspaper, his voice measured. "Do you know why hypnotists always succeed? They don't just divert people's attention, they also understand how ordinary folks think and don't only receive the news once they reach the crime scene."
Steven shrugged. Alright, he was now relegated to be ordinary.
"There has to be a link between the victims." Qin Mo glanced over. "Find that link."
Steven stood up, prepared to leave. His emotions were in turmoil.
Qin Mo frowned slightly. "My documents."
Steven replied, "I have given you everything I have about Z. Besides, didn't she go to China? Why are you here?"
With that, Steven seemed to have realized something. He turned abruptly, a crack in his usually calm demeanor as he stuttered. "Yo-you mean that sh-she is back again?"
Qin Mo glanced over. "No."
Steven muttered, "That's good or I will have reports to write again. I don't understand what my subordinate Smith is thinking, he insisted on heading to China to capture Z but now that he is back, he seems to be broken, in a perpetual state of depression..."
"Smith?" Qin Mo arched a brow.
Steven nodded. "Smith. What is it?"
"Nothing." A meaningful smile was on his face. "Officer, you should be going."
Steven: ... Didn't the Chinese like having guests? Especially friendly foreigners like him. He must be a fake Chinese!
But it hadn't been a futile trip. When Steven entered his car, he installed a police siren.
Qin Mo chased him out because too much time had passed and it was about time someone came back. He tapped his phone, calling a number. Her phone wasn't on?
Before leaving for overseas, they had activated data roaming to ease their communication.
Qin Mo's eyes dimmed but he didn't call Movie Queen An. Instead, he dialed another sting of numbers, his voice deepening. "Talk a look at Young Master Jiu."
"Young Master Jiu is still removing his makeup, it isn't convenient for me to enter," the person at the film set answered. It was the shadow he had arranged to follow Bo Jiu.
Qin Mo frowned. "Removing her makeup? How long has it been?"
"Half an hour, the other actors take about the same amount of time since they have to change out of their clothes as well."
It may be normal for others but it wasn't for a certain someone. Qin Mo's voice dimmed. "Ask the staff if he is really inside."
"Yes." The shadow sensed smoothing amiss with his young master's orders. After he had confirmed with the staff, his mouth went dry.
Qin Mo didn't hang up. "What's the situation?"
"Young Master Jiu didn't remove his makeup, this..." The Shadow made sure he had entered the makeup room but the next second, he seemed to have recalled something. "It's that person!" Someone had blocked his vision for a period of time which was probably when Young Master Jiu had escaped.
Qin Mo tightened his grip on the phone, his voice stiffening. His precautions hadn't been enough?
"Get the others and find him." Malice and frost radiated from his eyes. "Focus on Fifth Avenue."
Qin Mo wasn't sure how he had hung up the call. That person had left without a word, without any address, and without saying goodbye. Qin Mo sat there, feeling empty and hollow.
Before they had arrived, he could still hear her calling him Brother Mo. She always seemed to be scheming during mealtimes, looking like a little fox with her furry hair. Her actions were always swift and clean but yet, she still seemed like a kid. Regardless of when, she would always require taking care of.
Hugging her and inhaling her smell was enough to make him feel better.
Everything seemed so near and yet he couldn't catch hold of anything.
He swiped his phone screen open to a photo of them.
Qin Mo suddenly felt a sharp pain in his chest, so painful he could barely stand. It wasn't possible to just stay seated.
Qin Mo had to personally visit the filming set. Movie Queen An was still filming her scenes but Qin Mo wasn't looking for her, he went straight to the director.
"He completed all his scenes? In just one day?" Qin Mo's frown deepened.
The director sat back, finally having time to rest. "The progress is unbelievable but Jiu managed to portray the character perfectly, all his scenes were completed in just one take and are all better than I had imagined. It is as though he was made for the role, simply amazing!"
The director started getting agitated, tapping into one of the youngster's last few scenes.
The scene was originally meant for the start of the movie. Thus, the youngster wasn't wearing a black trench coat but rather a white shirt.
She sat below a luscious tree, her face covered by a book and when she heard a ring, she seemed to awaken from her slumber. With one hand, she removed the book from her face, her eyes as bright as the stars. A radiant smile was on her face as she tilted her head in the direction of the cameras. Her silver hair was a mess, the top two buttons of her shirt unfastened. She looked carefree and natural.
A stray leaf fell from the trees, landing on the youngster's shoulder. She blew on it softly, the entire scene capturing the brightness of youth.
As the movie progressed, this very youngster wore a black trench coat that further accentuated her features.
Qin Mo watched the screen, emotions thick in his gaze. He suppressed himself, a hand on his knees, tightening and releasing. "Thank you, director, I will take my leave." Qin Mo stood up, heading straight for the cars.
He knew in this moment that the youngster had planned it from the start even though, as the director had mentioned, it wasn't possible for many to finish their scenes in one day. But from the looks of it, she didn't have many scenes after all and many of them had been of her back view, with only three scenes with the front of her face. Hence, it was possible to finish the scenes in one day if she wanted to.
Qin Mo sat inside the car, a tight grip on the steering wheel. He had known she was planning to leave but he hadn't expected her to leave so heartlessly.
Qin Mo started the ignition, moving off at a startling speed. But right at that moment, another car sped behind him. The car came from the side, its smooth body and black sheen looking royal and mighty.
"Master, as an acceptable sports car, I have to give you sincere advice. From the speed that car is moving at, he must be mentally unstable. Should we prepare some backup?"
With a beautiful swerve, Bo Jiu stopped the car, feeling guilty. "It's fine."
The navigation perked up: ... I have never seen Master guilty before.
"All I need is the pills Grandfather Butler gave me." Bo Jiu tilted over towards the passenger seat.
The navigation perked up once more: ... How is that feeling guilty?! Humans are indeed complex beings.
"I have to find a way for the Almighty to stop." As Bo Jiu remembered the phone in her pocket, she unlocked it and saw twenty unread messages. Her guilt intensified; she could sense his anger through the phone screen. But since the situation had escalated to such a state, she couldn't waste a single second. She had to kidnap him!