Chapter 43: Zhang Feiming
When Xing Ye hurried over, Zhang Feiming was being forced by a few of class nine’s sports students to take off his pants. They said that they wanted him to see for himself how he could chase girls with that tiny little toy of his.
These sports students had nothing to do with Xing Ye. It was just his friend’s friend’s friend who took the money.
Seeing Xing Ye arrive, welcoming smiles immediately appeared on their faces. “Xing, you’re here? We were just about to help you teach him a lesson.”
The way they were teaching him a lesson was a bit childish. Did all high school students play like this?
“You guys leave first.” Xing Ye said, “Guard the door, don’t let others enter.”
“Yes!” The five sports students, each as big as a horse, walked out and saw a short, ordinary looking girl guarding the door outside.
“You didn’t come to see that boy Zhang Feiming, right? It’s useless, he’s done for now, daring to covet our boss’s girlfriend. Boss will probably finish giving him a lesson soon. You’re not allowed to tell the teacher, or…” The 190 cm tall sports student clenched his fist at Cao Qian.
Cao Qian: “...”
Whatever, she won’t bully ordinary people.
Inside the boys washroom, Xing Ye trapped Zhang Feiming in the corner and went right to the point. “Do you know Bai Xu?”
Zhang Feiming grew up to become very handsome, looking just like a scholar from a painting.
Liu Muqing’s genes were very good. She was beautiful and her relative’s attractiveness wasn’t low either.
Hearing Bai Xu’s name, Zhang Feiming’s face immediately turned red. His skin was fair, without the slightest blemish, which made his blush obvious. His feelings couldn’t be hidden at all.
“How do you know her?” Xing Ye was wearing a backpack. Seeing how Zhang Feiming wouldn’t speak, he reached into his bag as if preparing to take something out to frighten him.
Zhang Feiming clenched his teeth and didn’t make a sound, seeming like he wouldn’t say anything.
“It doesn’t matter, I know even if you don’t say it.” Xing Ye leaned on the wall. There wasn’t a single trace of worry on his face, as if he had already planned everything.
Just mentioning Bai Xu’s name prompted such a big reaction. He was inexperienced with the ways of the world and couldn’t hide his feelings.
Xing Ye didn’t need proof, so he didn’t need Zhang Feiming to say anything. He just wanted to confirm his own conjectures.
“Your painting isn’t bad, did you take it as an elective? You wanted to take the same class as Bai Xu?”
Zhang Feiming’s eyes were filled with astonishment, seemingly not understanding how Xing Ye knew that. It was a tacit approval.
The results were very good. Xing Ye continued to question him, “She’s very pretty. I saw her painting in the art room the other day and she looked just like a goddess.”
A trace of infatuation appeared on Zhang Feiming’s face.
“Say, how about I pursue her?” Xing Ye said maliciously, “I’m rich, and well, much better looking than you. She probably won’t reject me. I heard she wanted to study abroad but her family conditions aren’t that good. I wonder if she’d be willing to sleep with me if I help her.”
With every word, Zhang Feiming’s face grew redder and redder. At the end, he could no longer bear it, grabbing Xing Ye’s collar with one hand as he shouted, “She wouldn’t! She’s not that kind of girl, she’ll only be with me!”
The originally quiet youth suddenly started trembling, almost as if he had gone mad. His strength was unusually large and Xing Ye couldn’t help but grab the taser at his waist tightly.
“What happened?” The group of sports rushed in upon hearing the sound and saw Zhang Feiming unexpectedly dared to shout at Xing Ye. “Damn brat, you sure have guts! Just wa-”
Xing Ye shouted, “Cao Qian!”
Cao Qian rushed into the boys bathroom, kicking all the sports students out before nodding to Xing Ye and closing the door.
When Zhang Feiming saw the sports students rush in, he immediately let go of Xing Ye and crouched on the floor, hugging his head. It looked like he was often bullied.
The sports students attitude testified to this.
He was a boy with a naturally gloomy disposition, an inferiority complex, and an unhealthy level of obsession. Such a person was simply too easy to manipulate.
As for why there would be a youth running around on the night of the new moon? Xing Ye had done his research and found that Liu Muqing’s funeral was precisely on the first day of the month, the night of the new moon.
“Two years ago on April 9th, you kept vigil for Liu Muqing, right? The only one who should’ve been there was you, but then how did Bai Xu also enter the mourning hall? Did you help her?” Xing Ye asked.
Zhang Feiming’s pupils contracted, his eyes filling with terror. It seems the events of that night left a deep impact on him.
“Let’s change the question. We won’t talk about Bai Xu or what happened that night anymore. How did you feel about your cousin, Liu Muqing? She’s outstanding, and everyone I know praises her, saying her studies were excellent. No matter what the subject, she would always be great in it. I often hear people saying, look at that girl Liu Muqing-”
“She’s her and I’m me!” Zhang Feiming suddenly shouted, “Why does everyone have to compare me to her? Everyone keeps saying that “even your cousin is better than you”, that “she’s just a girl but you’re the Zhang Family eldest son, so you have to be better than her”. I didn’t want to start memorizing Tang poetry from when I was four, I didn’t want to do Math Olympiads, I didn’t want to learn calligraphy, I didn’t want to learn table tennis, I didn’t want to learn painting, I didn’t want to live my whole live catching up to Liu Muqing! I had to learn whatever she learned! I have my own likes, so why do I have to study like her and be better than her!”
Xing Ye looked at him coldly: “Liu Muqing’s already dead. Your nightmare should be over, but why do you still want to harm her? You knew she died with a remaining grievance and hadn’t passed on, right?”
“I didn’t harm her,” Liu Muqing cradled his head on the floor, “I was just about to take the high school entrance exams, but my family made me take a leave to keep vigil for her. They said my aunt and uncle had fainted from sorrow and were worried they wouldn’t be able to keep vigil throughout the night, so I had to go help.
“I still had to test for the high school she went to. It was such a difficult school to get into. Why, even after she was already dead, wouldn’t she let go of me?”
He had a dazed expression, seeming to have forgotten that Xing Ye was even there as he talked to himself.
Xing Ye aptly guided him, “When did Bai Xu contact you? Was it after Liu Muqing passed?”
When Zhang Feiming heard Bai Xu’s name, he looked as if he had fallen into a dream and saw his goddess. “Bai Xu… she’s so pretty and gentle. She treated me especially well in our preparatory courses. Every assessment, she would get second place while I got third. My family said that even if I can’t beat my cousin, I couldn’t be third and asked why I couldn’t paint better than them. It was then when Bai Xu said she noticed my difficulties and promised she’ll only take third place.
“From that point on, I really did get second every single time, reducing the pressure my family put on me. Bai Xu is just too kind. After my cousin died, she wanted to visit, but she said that because she was Lin Jingxue’s friend and was also there on the day of the accident, she didn’t dare to meet my parents. She begged me to help her see my cousin at night.
“I naturally wouldn’t refuse. After 2 am, my uncle and aunt could no longer persevere and had to be supported to bed. Once I was alone in the mourning hall, I gave Bai Xu a call and she soon arrived in a red dress. That day, she was very beautiful, with skin as white as snow. She looked at my cousin’s corpse and said… what did she say again?”
Zhang Feiming hugged his head, his face filled with pain.
Xing Ye had already gotten a rough grasp of what happened. The only thing he didn’t know yet was the situation with the human head.
He took out the human head from his bag and gave it to Zhang Feiming, asking him, “What’s this? Why did you make this? And you even hid it inside a basketball.”
Zhang Feiming’s face changed when he saw the human head. He grabbed it, his gaze aimless as he muttered, “I need to give this head to my cousin. I need to give it back, I can’t let her remain headless. Cousin, cousin, where are you?”
He hugged the human head, wanting to run out. However, when he saw the setting sun’s afterglow, he ran back carrying the human head, “I can’t, cousin can’t see the sunlight. I have to find somewhere to hide her, but where? Where do I hide it, where?!”
Xing Ye saw Zhang Feiming wanted to throw the fake human head into the toilet and hastily took out the things in his backpack before handing the bag to Zhang Feiming. “Hide it here.”
Zhang Feiming grabbed the bag and stuffed the human head in. He hugged it and hid in the bathroom, refusing to come out no matter what. Most likely, he would come running out once it turned dark.
He wasn’t a ghost, but what happened on the night of the new moon had too large of an impact on him. As a result, whenever that night came, he would turn crazy.
Zhang Feiming loved the daytime Bai Xu, but that night, he saw the nighttime Bai Xu. Something shocking must’ve happened, which made him want to make a human head to return to Liu Muqing.
He both admired and envied his cousin.
Liu Muqing’s brilliance was like the sun. It left others with no way to cover their shortcomings, causing their shadows to grow bigger and bigger under the sun’s glare.
This little sun who had yet to fully rise was killed by the wantonly growing shadows, just like that.
It was truly a pity.
Xing Ye didn’t try to drag Zhang Feiming out of the bathroom, giving him the chance to rest inside. He had been specially recruited into the school for his art, so the pressure on him was great from the beginning. Combined with the sports students’ bullying, Zhang Feiming did not lead a happy life.
When he walked out of the boys bathroom, he saw Cao Qian beating up the sports students one by one until they all knelt at the ground, calling for their grannies.
“What happened?” Xing Ye frowned.
Cao Qian: “The way they spoke wasn’t very clean, so I showed them who’s fist was bigger.”
Cao Qian waved her little fist and the sports students huddled against the wall, crying out in fear.
“My business with Zhang Feiming is done. I don’t need you guys to interfere. In the future, don’t bully your classmates anymore.” Xing Ye ordered casually, “There’s no hope for people who bully other students weaker than themselves to feel a sense of accomplishment. Of course, if you’re rich as me, it’s a different story.”
After saying that, he left the building with Cao Qian. He carried a pile of items as he went to the store to buy a new bag.
Cao Qian: “...”
He was definitely very handsome, but with the heap of things stuffed in his school uniform shirt, his image was completely ruined.
While Xing Ye was taking off his clothes and putting all the scrap items and money into his bag, he took special care to move the little mirror into his pants pocket, afraid he would accidentally fall out.
After Xing Ye bought another backpack and changed his clothes, Cao Qian asked him, “What did he say? What are we going to do next?”
Xing Ye gave her an account of everything before deciding, “Let’s go find the headmaster.”
Starting from the stealing incident, every event that had happened all had a certain figure involved clearly in the background. That person was the headmaster.
When Liu Muqing was framed for stealing, he didn’t immediately expel her and just had her temporarily suspended. In a way, this was actually protecting Liu Muqing. After the incident, the toughest period where rumors ran amok would have been over before she returned to school. He was also the one who, at Father Lin’s command, deleted the recordings of Liu Muqing’s unexpected death. This time, he was protecting Lin Jingxue. After all, she was a high school girl. If she really had to bear the crime of murder, her reputation would be completely destroyed for life. Hiding the incident with the prep room teacher was also a form of protection. Furthermore, when he hired Aunty Zhang to become the dormitory supervisor, his aim was to protect the students in the girls dormitory. After Xing Ye broke the piano, the headmaster also advised him to find the male prep room teacher, trying to protect him in fear Lin Jingxue would go to haunt him.
From start to finish, the headmaster had tried his hardest to protect the school’s students and teachers. However, he was never able to avert the tragedy that had happened.
“He must know something.” Xing Ye said.
Finding the headmaster was too easy. After all, didn’t he just break the equipment room and beat up a teacher?
Xing Ye went straight to the headmaster’s office and admitted what he had done. The headmaster was becoming bald, with only a few strands of hair over his forehead tenaciously holding on.
“Student Xing Ye, what exactly do you want to do?” The headmaster rubbed forehead, almost dying from worry. “Are you having a rebellious phase? If there’s something you’re dissatisfied about, we can talk about it properly. There’s nothing we can’t talk over.”
Xing Ye hinted for Cao Qian to guard the door before pulling a chair out, swaggering over and plopping himself in front of the headmaster’s face. It looked as if he was the one in power.
“Then let’s talk about Bai Xu. Last night, we went to the girls dormitory and we only managed to make a fortunate escape with Aunty Zhang’s help. Otherwise, you would be seeing a lunatic sitting here right now.” Xing Ye said, “You were the one who advised me to find the prep room teacher. Why did you do that?”
The headmaster had originally been fuming, but after hearing Xing Ye’s words, he deflated like a punctured balloon. He sprawled on his chair, his voice weak. “You know everything?”
“The only thing I don’t know is how strong Bai Xu really is right now and how much you, the headmaster, knows about everything. What role do you play in all of this?” Xing Ye asked.
“I…” The headmaster opened his mouth, but still found it hard to speak and closed it again.
“Lin Jingxue passed on. I gave her the piano and let her see Liu Muqing. The two were happy together.” Xing Ye said.
He was hinting to the headmaster to not try hiding anything.
“Sigh…” The headmaster finally gave up on resisting. “You know everything, so you should know that Bai Xu isn’t easy to deal with. After everything happened, I wanted to expel her, but she… At that time, she was like a lunatic, biting at her own fingers like crazy. She bit the flesh off her hands, but it immediately regenerated. She told me that she absolutely could not leave the school. Before she could defeat Liu Muqing and Lin Jingxue to become first, she could not leave.
“I was thinking, they already died, so what are you still fighting them for? However, she was just too frightening. Her strength was unimaginable. That was when I knew she was already no longer human. With no other choice, I could only let her stay at the school. Throughout these two years, I’ve found many master exorcists, but they all ran away in fear when they saw the girls’ dormitory and the daytime Bai Xu. There was just one expert who told me this: whoever hung the bell on the tiger’s neck must untie it. The only one who could defeat the brain eating demon was the one who started it, the person she had once been the most afraid of.”
With the headmaster’s words, everything came full circle. All the doubtful points were explained and valuable clues to defeat Bai Xu were provided.
After Lin Jingxue found peace, she left behind Peaceful Spirit’s Tune. Only she, with Liu Muqing and her personally drawn painting, could defeat Bai Xu.
“Why did you tell me about the prep room teacher? Didn’t you want to help him cover up the truth?” That was Xing Ye’s final question.
“Sigh, with his current appearance, do you think he is still human?” The headmaster shook his head, “At the start, I wanted to protect everyone. But who would’ve thought that in the end, I didn’t protect a single person and even harmed them. Mr. Qi… that’s the prep room teacher’s name. It would’ve been good to take the load off him.”
“Alright,” Xing Ye nodded, “If nothing unexpected happens, tonight will bring an end to everything.”
He walked out of the headmaster’s office and told Cao Qian: “There’s still two hours. We need to use this time to find as many QR codes as possible in order to improve our fighting strength.”
While he spoke, he took out the little mirror in his pocket again and used it to fix his hair.
Cao Qian: “...”