"How can I help you?" His goal had been achieved, and Tong Tong had returned, so Chen Ge had nothing to worry about.
"It's like this. I've considered what you said, and I feel like you might not be wrong."
"Why did your attitude suddenly change?"
"When I reached home and saw my son, he was reacting very strangely. He gestured for a long time before I understood him." Jiang Ming lowered his voice. "Someone has been to my home."
"See, I told you. Check under your bed, in the closet, and in the bathroom. Perhaps the person hasn't left." Chen Ge sounded serious, but his lips were curled upward.
"I have already taken a quick look around. There's no one in the house, and nothing is missing." Jiang Ming disliked talking to Chen Ge, but he had no other choice now but to ask for his opinion.
"It is not a good sign that you have nothing missing because that can only mean that the person came looking to claim a life." Chen Ge paused for a while like he was seriously considering this.
"Life?" Jiang Ming seemed to remember something. He sank into silence and did not speak.
"Sometimes, children can see things that we adults are not able to. That is all I will say on that topic. If you really run into any difficulty that you cannot solve, I suggest you go and contact that Votive Master. Be nice and ask him for help. He might be able to point you in the right direction." Chen Ge hung up the call. He hailed a cab and returned to New Century Park.
Entering the underground scenario, Chen Ge summoned the group of doctors. "Are any of you familiar with a good and reputable ear doctor? One who knows how to do cochlear implant surgery?"
"I have a student that is a specialist in this field, but we have not met each other in a very long time." Doctor Wei had taught many excellent students in his years of service in education. He gave Chen Ge another surprise. "But why would you suddenly want to know something like that?"
Chen Ge told them about Jiang Ming's story-a drunkard father, a mother that was born mute and deaf. The doctors felt sorry for what had happened to Jiang Ming.
"My student should be working at a hospital somewhere in Xin Hai. He is one of the best in the field. You can call his hospital to book an appointment with him."
"Elder Wei, with our relationship, do we still need to book an appointment? Can't you just go to his dreams and ask him for a favor tonight?" Chen Ge knew how to get what he wanted from Doctor Wei, so he quickly added, "The boy is in such a poor condition, and he is being targeted by a Demon God, so I plan to use my own money to help sponsor his surgery. However, I am sure you know how expensive this cochlear implant surgery is. I do not come from a rich family. I am already in my twenties, but I have no car and no house. I still need to sleep every night at the haunted house. If anyone ever heard about this, I'd be the joke of the century."
Chen Ge rubbed his eyes that were brimming red with tears. "These past few months, I have been saving money because I wanted to buy a motorbike for myself, but due to this sudden accident, my already financially-strained life will be more difficult in the foreseeable future..."
"Enough, enough, I will help you. Are you satisfied now?" Doctor Wei rubbed his temples. "It is not that easy to just jump into someone's dreams. You can try to contact him first. Tell him my name. It was me who sponsored him during his first two years at medical school, so he will definitely help, but please do not go and scam the poor boy."
"I promise!" After thanking Doctor Wei, Chen Ge returned to the staff breakroom. As his head landed on the pillow, he drifted off to dreamland. He had no time to waste. There were many important things waiting for him to complete the next day. Chen Ge woke up punctually at 7 am the next morning. After taking a cold shower, he put on an outfit that looked presentable. When his employees came to work, Chen Ge put on make-up for them in the dressing room while conducting a simple morning meeting.
After ensuring every scenario was working fine, Chen Ge grabbed his backpack and left New Century Park again. When he was inside the taxi, Chen Ge used this travelling time to call Lee Zheng to get the latest update on Jia Ming. Lee Zheng had gotten used to getting calls from Chen Ge. It had now become as consistent as him clocking into work. He told Chen Ge that the operation would be conducted that night, but he did not reveal the exact location and time to Chen Ge.
Chen Ge did not press. Actually, he had faith in the law enforcement of Jiujiang. Ten minutes later, Chen Ge arrived at his destination. It was an old, squat looking apartment building. This was the address that had been given to him by the old lady, the place where Jiang Ming stayed before he was adopted by Jiang Jiu. When he arrived at this place, Chen Ge noticed something very interesting. This was where Fan Yu and his aunty had lived when he first encountered them. Chen Ge had been there several months earlier.
"The government has been intending to renovate the old part of the city, but the demolition was stopped halfway through. Looks like I have to pay attention to this place."
After entering the alley, there was a faded stench that permeated the air. It was unclear whether it came from the underground sewer or one of the tenants. After walking for some time, Chen Ge came to the center of the old city. Jiang Ming's family was staying in one of the flats there. He entered the stairwell. It felt as if the world behind the door had overlapped with the real world. Chen Ge felt like he had just visited to this place the previous night. The sound of an argument came from somewhere down the corridor. Chen Ge looked down that direction. He saw two ladies about thirty standing at the entrance of Jiang Ming's home. They appeared to be workers from the apartment community. They were holding many forms with official-looking stamps on them.
"Ladies, what's going on?" Chen Ge sidled over. He saw that the two women are wearing their working IDs. The one with curly hair had the surname Mei, and the elder one had the surname Lee.
"We are from the neighbor committee. We have received multiple reports of domestic violence from this family. The mother of the house is covered in bruises. We are here to take the woman away and bring her to the hospital for a medical check-up." Ms. Lee used her body to block the door and refused to let the owner close the door.
"Is the mother home? Why doesn't she come out and go away with you?"
"You have no idea how poor this woman is. She was born mute and deaf, and I believe that multiple beatings from her husband have stunted her mind. It was after we took the fact that the woman is unable to care for herself that we made the decision to forcibly take her away with us." Ms. Mei started to help her partner. These women were truly angels of the society. They blocked the door and refused with brute force to let the man close the door from the inside.
"Looks like I have come to the right place." Chen Ge reached out to press against the door and push very hard. The door was flung backward. Chen Ge followed behind the two ladies as they entered the room. The smell of alcohol hung in the air, empty bottles littered the room, and there were glass shards that needed to be cleaned up sitting on the ground. The tables and chairs were toppled over. The cushions of the couch were left on the ground. Something awful had just happened here earlier.
"Jiang Dawu! If you dare to stop me again, we will call the cops!" The two ladies were furious.
"Go ahead and call then! Who gave you the right to intervene into my family's private business?" The man who spoke was bare-chested. He was bald and on the bigger side, tall and imposing.
"Those threats are not going to work on us. The neighborhood committee has gathered more than enough evidence. We are here today to save her. We will not leave until we take her away with us."
"Take her away with you? That depends on whether she wants to leave with you or not!" The man picked up the cushions from the ground and placed them on the sofa. He grabbed a half-empty bottle of beer and sat in the middle of the living room. The curtain that led to the kitchen was pulled back. A woman wearing a long-sleeved top, long pants, and an apron stood at the door to the kitchen. She wished to take one step out, but she hesitated. The two ladies walked toward her. They wished to pull her out, but the woman kept shaking her hands as if she was very afraid. Ms. Lee kept persuading her as she nudged the woman out of the kitchen. They were making their way through the living room when the man suddenly slammed the beer bottle against the table.
"What will happen when your son returns if you leave? Do you not want to see him anymore?" The man knew that the woman was deaf, so he tossed a clean little school bag at the woman. He glared at her and said, "I can send him away, so of course, I can bring him back."
"Jesus, you are one horrible human being." Chen Ge could not rein in his anger anymore. He walked to the middle of the living room, picked up the small school bag, patted it, and handed it to the woman. "Take her out of here. Let me talk to him."
"You?" The two ladies accepted the help from Chen Ge, but before they left, they warned him, "The man has violent tendencies. You must be careful."
"I will." Chen Ge nodded. Seeing that Jiang Ming's mother was still unwilling to leave, he knew that she was worried about Jiang Ming, so he took out the letter that he had prepared from his pocket and handed it to her. "Take a look at this."
Chen Ge had written the letter when he was riding on the taxi. The content of the letter was that he planned to sponsor Jiang Ming's cochlear implant surgery. After Jiang Ming's mother read the content of the letter, the tears fell naturally out of her eyes. She wanted to thank Chen Ge, but she was stopped by him. "Leave here first."
After the three ladies left, Chen Ge closed the door.
"Where the hell did you come from, and what was in the letter that you showed her?" The man grabbed the bottle, but he did not move from his spot.
"It is nothing important. I just persuaded her to divorce you and get away from a horrible man like you as fast as she can." After Chen Ge said that, the man's expression changed immediately, and the fire of wrath coursed through him.
"Divorce is impossible! Now get the hell out of my house!"
"There is no need to act so rashly." Chen Ge took out a credit card from his wallet. "There is 150,000 on this card."
"150,000 and you wish for me to divorce her? If you like her that much, you will understand that 150,000 is far from enough." The man's eyes had been following the card that Chen Ge was holding ever since he took it out.
"Looks like you have really never treated them as your family before. They were just objects for you to sell and trade to make money. In any case, you have misunderstood me. This 150,000 is for Jiang Ming's cochlear implant surgery. It has nothing to do with you." Chen Ge put away the card. He saw Jiang Dawu's eyes trailing greedily along it. "You must be thinking about how you can convince me to give you the money that will help save Jiang Ming, mustn't you?"
Even though his horrible thoughts had been exposed by Chen Ge, the man did not deny it. He tossed back a mouthful of the beer.
"Do you know? I was giving you one last chance earlier. If you'd shown the slightest bit of love toward Jiang Ming or your wife, this would not have happened." Chen Ge pressed the play button on the recorder and took out a pair of red high heels and placed them on the table. Instantly, the color of blood filled the whole room. With the cooperation between Xu Yin and the red high heels, they shoved a pile of blood vessels that they had collected from the world behind Jiang Ming's door right into Jiang Dawu's mind. The blood vessels were filled with Jiang Ming's feeling of helplessness and despair. They included his fear and many other negative emotions. The cherry on top was the curse from the red high heel.
"Jiang Dawu, you will experience what your child has been through." The man who sat on the sofa clamped his hands over his ears like he had been possessed. It appeared like more than a handful of people were currently whispering into his ears. Seeing Jiang Dawu being tortured by this, Chen Ge showed no pity at all. What Jiang Dawu was experiencing was practically what he had put his own son through, so he merely got what he deserved. A tooth for a tooth as they said. "When you have atoned for your sins, perhaps the curse will end on its own."
Chen Ge unsummoned Xu Yin and the red high heels. He shook his head lightly. "I do not have many days left in my life, and I am still going around helping people. Now that I think about it, I am such a noble person."