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The Untold Story - Chapter 4


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Chapter 4

“Shifu, Golden Huaken Building, that okay with you?”

 

The driver looked at her and hesitated . Yang Zhao thought she’d been rejected, but to her surprise, the driver nodded and said quietly, “Get on . ”

Yang Zhao could hardly believe her ears . “Excellent,” she told the driver . “Just a sec! I need to move something!” Yang Zhao had to yell at the top of her voice to make sure she was heard amidst the rumbling thunder and pouring rain .

No longer caring about her umbrella, Yang Zhao carried the box to the car, stuffed it into the backseat, then rounded back to sit in the front passenger seat .

The car windows rolled up, and the door was shut . At last, she was separated from the heavy rain .

 

Being completely drenched, she wet the seat as soon as she sat down . Evidently noticing this, she apologized to the driver, embarrassed: “Sorry for being so wet . I’ll pay you more later . ”

The driver shook his head, “No need . ” He started the car and turned towards the Golden Huaken .

The car was moving very slowly but smoothly . Perhaps afraid that the floodwaters would kill the engines, the driver drove very carefully .

Unlike the previous driver, this driver made no small talk while driving . Yang Zhao could not hear anything else apart from the sound of the rain and the windshield wiper .

Her head felt somewhat heavy; she suspected that she caught a cold . Absently, she cast a cursory glance at the driver’s license information displayed before the front passenger seat . ID photos were everyone’s nightmares, but this driver’s photo turned out well . The man in the photo had clean cropped short hair and a poker face . All in all, he looked very neat and proper .

Yang Zhao read on .

 

Chen Mingsheng

License plate number: J4763 .

 

J4763, Yang Zhao recited inwardly . This string of numbers sounded vaguely familiar . Suddenly, it hit her: J4763— Wasn’t that the car plate number of the driver who fought with Yang Jintian a few days ago?

Yang Zhao straightened up in her seat and surreptitiously cast a sideways glance . Absorbed in driving, the driver hadn’t noticed .

Previously, back in the police station, the man had stood in a dimly lit corner of the room, and Yang Zhao never did manage to get a good look at his face . Yang Zhao didn’t know if that person was him .

However, she dimly recalled his voice . In that slightly noisy police station, the way he spoke had made an impression . His manner of speaking was very mild, and he hadn’t argued with Yang Zhao .  

After thinking back to how he’d told her to get on just now, Yang Zhao was certain that the person standing in the corner that day was this person .



 

Before, there was a moment where he paused after rolling his car windows down . Was that because he recognized her?

Yang Zhao felt bad . This man could have ignored her, but he still let her get on . He hadn’t said anything, as if he didn’t know her .

 

Or perhaps… thought Yang Zhao cynically, he was afraid I’d demand money from him .

 

While Yang Zhao was lost in thought, the car rocked violently without warning and came to a stop .

Yang Zhao looked out the window . They were very close to the Golden Huaken building . But the sudden stop was obviously not the driver’s doing . Her worst fears were realized after all: The cab stalled while crossing a gutter .

It’s not a good idea to start a car that’s submerged in water, so Yang Zhao turned to the driver and said: “Let’s get off and try pushing the car . I’m very familiar with this area . It’s not too deep out here . We should be able to push it out . ”

The driver grasped the steering wheel, as if absorbed in thought . It was not until Yang Zhao called him that he snapped out of his reverie . He told Yang Zhao: “We’re almost there . You can get off now and walk back . ”

“It’s no problem,” said Yang Zhao . “I can help with the pushing . ”

The driver shook his head . “No need, just go . ”

Yang Zhao wasn’t too happy about this . She felt that this Chen Mingsheng was very petty .

If you say so, thought Yang Zhao as she rooted out some bills from her wallet . As it happened, she had enough small change . She placed the money on Chen Mingsheng’s dashboard and wordlessly got off .

 

The omnipresent rain continued to fall .

Yang Zhao went to the backseat to retrieve her parcel . During the entire process, Chen Mingsheng sat in the driver’s seat without moving an inch .

Yang Zhao shut the door and started walking towards her apartment .

 

At length, Yang Zhao looked back . Chen Mingsheng was still sitting in his car .

“Inexplicable…” Yang Zhao muttered to herself . She sneezed again . She quickened her steps .

 

Yang Zhao slowed down upon reaching the first floor of the apartment building, unable to stop brooding over tonight’s events . This driver’s actions weighed on her mind and made her feel like a wicked person .



Yang Zhao slowed down upon reaching the first floor of the apartment building, unable to stop brooding over tonight’s events . This driver’s actions weighed on her mind and made her feel like a wicked person .

Eventually, Yang Zhao left the box with the security guard’s office at the courtyard entrance for temporary safekeeping and went back .

 

The entire time while she walked, Yang Zhao felt that she was going crazy .

Even as thoughts ran through her head, her feet never stopped moving towards the place where the car had stalled .

 

Almost ten minutes had passed . She didn’t know if that person had already pushed the car out . Yang Zhao turned at an intersection . Through the misty rain, she spotted that figure with a glance .

 

The driver was wearing a black top and pushing the car’s rear . Without using an umbrella . Yang Zhao made her way over in spite of herself . That driver didn’t see her .

The way the driver was pushing the car struck Yang Zhao as odd . Normally, one would lower one’s body and keep a low center of gravity before pushing . But he was facing sideways, and wholly relying on the left side of his body to push the car .

Moreover…

Was it just her imagination, or was this driver rather weak?

He appeared to expend a great deal of energy when he pushed, yet his efforts did not translate into much success . He was not the skinny type, and in fact Yang Zhao felt that he had a relatively robust physique .

 

Moments later, after apparently exhausting himself, he made his way to the car door to fiddle with the steering wheel .

In the short steps he took to go from the back of the car to the car door, Yang Zhao finally managed to figure out what was so odd about him .

 

When this driver walked, he would support his right hip with his right hand . His entire leg was extremely stiff, and walking itself took a fair amount of effort .

 

This driver… Yang Zhao cocked her eyebrow .

 

No wonder the cop helped to pass the slip of paper on his behalf back then .

 



 

Yang Zhao walked over .

Chen Mingsheng discovered Yang Zhao’s presence when they were approximately 10 meters apart . As soon as he saw her, he stopped short . Yang Zhao crossed over to the car’s rear end . ”Come on,” she called to him . “We’ll push together . ”

Chen Mingsheng stared at Yang Zhao . The rain fell heavily all around them, obscuring both of their faces . Yang Zhao told him: “The car won’t get out by itself if you just stand there . ”

Chen Mingsheng bent his head . Dragging his leg, he hobbled beside Yang Zhao .

Only then did Yang Zhao realize that Chen Mingsheng was very tall .

They pushed the car’s rear end . Even though she’s a woman, it was still an additional source of strength, and with her help the car was successfully pushed out .

 

Yang Zhao rolled up her damp pants and said to Chen Mingsheng: “Do you want to try restarting the engine?”

Chen Mingsheng shook his head . “The engine’s waterlogged and the car’s too old . If you suddenly start the car, the connecting rod might get damaged . ”

Yang Zhao knew how to drive a car, but she was clueless about its mechanics .

“What next?” she asked Chen Mingsheng .

“Push it to the side,” said Chen Mingsheng, “then get a mechanic from the auto repair shop to come over . ”

“Auto repair shop?” Yang Zhao snorted dismissively . ”You must be joking . You want to call them now? Can they make it over here? Tell me, which auto repair shop would be so dedicated? I’d like to be their customer too . ”

Yang Zhao’s rapid fire questions made Chen Mingsheng lapse into silence again . Yang Zhao suddenly stopped speaking . The two continued to get drenched . After a while, Chen Mingsheng was the first to speak up .

“You can go . Leave the rest to me . ”

Yang Zhao said, ”This is a development zone . There isn’t a place you can go to take shelter . How are you going to settle it?”

Chen Mingsheng shot her a look . His hints for her to leave had been far from subtle . This woman was not stupid, so why did she pretend not to understand?

 

Yang Zhao wiped away the rainwater on her face . It got wet again . She didn’t know what she was thinking when she blurted out to Chen Mingsheng: “My home is nearby . Leave your car at the side and we’ll take shelter at my place . ”

For the first time that night, Chen Mingsheng’s expression changed . He did not seem to have heard Yang Zhao’s words properly, so she repeated it again . Chen Mingsheng lowered his head and rejected her: “Thanks, but I’ll pass . ”

 

Yang Zhao said: “I’m not afraid, so what are you afraid of?”

It was very childish of her to try to provoke him in this manner, but it was very effective against men .

Yang Zhao said: “I’m not afraid, so what are you afraid of?”

It was very childish of her to try to provoke him in this manner, but it was very effective against men .

Chen Mingsheng frowned . “It has nothing to do with that . You should leave . ”

“Are you bearing a grudge over last time?” asked Yang Zhao .

 

Chen Mingsheng locked gazes with Yang Zhao through the heavy rain . Chen Mingsheng understood that Yang Zhao had recognized him . He lowered his head and said quietly: “It has nothing to do with that . I’m still preparing the money . I’ll hand it to you soon . ”

Yang Zhao said: “I’m not asking you to pay up . ”

Chen Mingsheng didn’t want to say any more . Dragging his leg along, he opened the car door . He lowered himself into the seat with some effort . Yang Zhao stopped the door with her hands and looked down at him: “You’re refusing?”

Chen Mingsheng did not meet her gaze . “I can settle this by myself . ”

Yang Zhao could see the crown of Chen Mingsheng’s head from this vantage point . The rain had caused his his wet hair to clump together . Chen Mingsheng’s hair was short and stiff, the sort that stood on their ends even when they’re soaked .

Yang Zhao stared for a moment, laughed grimly and said: “This is not a discussion . ”

Chen Mingsheng remained silent .

Yang Zhao said coolly: “What kind of strings did you pull to obtain the cab driving license?”

 

She felt Chen Mingsheng stiffen . Though Yang Zhao’s head felt a little woozy, she retained the ability to think clearly .

 

“I don’t remember China having a law permitting handicapped people to become cab drivers . The cops from the police station seem to be pretty chummy with you . Did they have a hand in falsifying your papers? What did you do, send gifts? Offer bribes? If i reported you, how do you think you guys would be penalized?”

Chen Mingsheng’s hands were firmly pressed on his right leg . His hands gripped his outer pants so tightly that they almost formed fists . Yang Zhao cocked her head and looked inside . When Chen Mingsheng turned his head, Yang Zhao saw that his pupils were very black . Perhaps it was just an illusion caused by the rain, for she felt that his eyes were so dark that they shone .

 

The suppressed anger in Chen Mingsheng’s voice was evident .

“What exactly do you want?”

Yang Zhao collected herself and said evenly: “Like I said, leave your car at the side, and take shelter at my place . If you don’t do as I say, well, just wait and see . ”


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