Serial Saturday #3: Secrets
Not really much to add about this part-- it's Part Three of Murder In Kinmen, 'Secrets':
Wei-Ting was sitting in the back of roll call, trying not to yawn. He hadn't slept all that well the night before. Turns out, Pei-Shan had been right. Every time he closed his eyes, all he could see was the body on the beach, staring sightlessly up at the sky. He had been awake for hours, evaluating his feelings, trying in his head to make sure that he was handling his first murder in a healthy way. The Academy had talked a lot about mental health and given everything he had gone through to get here to begin with, Wei-Ting was trying to be extra vigilant about it.
"Wei-Ting!" The Lieutenant's voice brought him back to the present.
"You hear your assignment?"
The Lieutenant scowled at him. "Fine, once more for the people in the back," he said. "Chang, Tseng, you've got Area 2 today- Jinning and Jincheng. Yang you get Area 1, Lieyu." The Lieutenant grinned as Yang groaned. "It's a short boat ride, Yang, Quit your whining. Shu-Ching, you get Area 3 Jinhu, Wei-Ting if you're awake now you get Area 4, Jinsha and that means--"
The shoulders of the last two officers slimped in defeat. "Kuan-ting, Cheng you get to trek out to lovely little Wuqiu. So finish those reports, will you?" He paused. "Any questions? No? Good," the Lieutenant stood. "Have a good shift. Stay safe out there."
Wei-Ting stood with the rest and made his way out of the squad room where he could Pei-Shan waiting for him in the hallway. "Come on, kid, you're with me today." Wei-Ting looked confused for a moment. "But the Lieutenant just said in roll call-"
"I cleared it with him," Pei-Shan said. "I need a ride to Jinsha anyway," she said. She turned on her heel and started walking to the stairwell that went down to the squad bay and Wei-Ting hesitated a moment before shrugging and following her.
A few minutes later, they were turning off of the narrow street that led to the Police Bureau and heading out of downtown Jincheng.
"Where are we going?" Wei-Ting asked.
"Mashan," Pei-Shan said. "The real observation post, not the tourist trap. The good Colonel is on an inspection tour of Lieyu today and I've got a favor I need to cash in." She leaned into the backseat for a moment and pulled a laptop out of her satchel. "Open that up, will you?" She said, handing it to him.
Wei-Ting did so and the screen flickered on. It was a document of some kind and by the looks of it, a lengthy one. "What am I looking at?" Wei-Ting asked.
"Forensic data from our victim's cell phone," Pei-Shan said. "There's a special computer forensics bureau that runs out of Tainan City PD. They sent it back via overnight courier."
"Yes, check otu her last few text messages. The very end of the document."
Wei-Ting scrolled through to the end of the document and began to read. "Whoa, she was texting with someone outside of China?"
"Yes," Pei-Shan said. "And from what the Geek Squad back in Tainan could tell me, she was circumventing the Great Firewall while she was doing it."
"No idea, kid," Pei-Shan said. "But it gets better! If you keep reading, you'll find out that she senbt some code via blockchain to someone."
"Whomever she's texting with. But that's our next mystery to solve."
"What's our first mystery?" Wei-Ting asked. As if in response, the squad car they were in slowed down and turned off of the main road. Wei-Ting knew they had to be getting close to Mashan by now, but didn't know where this street was going, as it curved along the shoreline. Their car slowed and pulled into a parking spot close to the beach. There was a man waiting on a bench a few yards to the east of them."
"Oh good," Pei-Shan said. "You stay here, kid. I'll be right back." She opened the door and stepped out of the car. Wei-Ting watched as she walked over to the bench. The man stood to greek her and handed her something. Then, she turned and walked back to the car.
"He came through," Pei-Shan said in satisfaction as she closed the door. She handed Wei-Ting a flash drive.
"Footage from the observation post the night she died," Pei-Shan said.
"How did you swing that?" Wei-Ting said in amazement.
"Everybody has secrets, kid."