Chapter 4- Unexpected action
Lilia released the switch and looked at her attacker who was now lying face down on the ground. She removed the sling from her wrist and placed the stun gun back to the side of her backpack. It was a gift from the doting grandpas and uncles from the restaurant. They knew that although Lilia was a bright child, her athletic skills left something to be desired. No, it was downright abysmal. Whether it was stamina or skills, there was no hope in her. Whenever they tried to teach her martial arts, she was absolutely hopeless.
“I hate extraneous physical activities! I’d rather use my brain and make others do the heavy lifting!” she declared after a practice session that left her muscles aching for a whole week.
So the protective old men had no choice but to give her a stun gun for self-defense (they tried giving her a Glock 19 but Grandpa Li got mad at them instead). It was, after all, better than nothing. And today wasn’t the first time she used it.
She was just lucky when this man was kicked down earlier; he stumbled with his back to her. All she had to do was stick the stun gun to his back and press the switch.
She looked at her surroundings and saw the other bodies sprawled unto the ground. There was blood everywhere. In the center was a man with a bloodied sword. She took deep breathes as she calmed down.
This wasn’t the first time she saw someone died. The uncles and grandpas from the restaurant were part of the mafia after all. She accidentally once saw Uncle Shan slit someone’s throat in the back of the restaurant. The blood gushing from the man’s throat spewed like a fountain. She remembered being dazed for a few seconds, her whole body trembling and then she bawled her eyes out. Her six year old self was frightened senseless from the sight. The old men from the restaurant were at their wits end in trying to calm her down.
This didn’t happen only once but a number of times. And it wasn’t always tied with the mafia; sometimes riots would occur, gang fights, accidents. There was always something happening in Chinatown. It didn’t help that this Chinatown was situated in a questionable part of the city.
Did she feel guilt from dragging these men to their deaths? No, she didn’t. These men lying on the ground wanted to kill someone, not to mention they tried to take advantage of Lilia earlier. She didn’t need to understand what they were saying to know what plans they had for her, their lecherous expressions said it all!
Lilia’s thoughts were interrupted when Su Ming knelt down in front of her, looking at her victim. Her victim only had the whites of his eyes shown and was drooling. His whole body was twitching every now and then.
Su Ming had his brows knitted together as he noticed that her victim was still alive. He looked at Lilia in awe with a traced of religious fervor. Why he looked at her like that, she had no idea.
“What? Did uncle think I killed him? I have a different- what are you doing?”
Lilia shouted as she tried to stop him but it was too late. The man had raised his sword and swiftly stabbed the man in the back.
Lilia couldn’t believe what the man just did. Her jaw dropped and her body trembled. When the man noticed Lilia’s reaction he looked away in shame. Women were really delicate beings. They were too gentle for brutality and killings.
He thought she must have found his actions despicable. He did kill three men; the last one was even unable to defend himself. She must have left the man alive due to her kindness. But having a survivor would be detrimental for their escape. He had no choice but to ruin this child’s good intentions.
Is this guy stupid? What use is a dead body? If you wanted to kill him, kill him after getting information! Lilia felt like her carefully formulated plan go down the drain. She was so upset she was shaking.
Everything was deliberate. When she realized that Su Ming was being chased, she had an idea on how she could prove if this guy had good intentions or not. She wanted to know if it was safe travelling with him. What if all this time Su Ming was the bad guy? For example, a criminal who did heinous crimes and was being chase by the authorities?
So when he was busy hacking the branches and tall grasses, Lilia secretly broke the small branches of shrubs. It was in the direction on where they were going to hide.
She had made an assumption based on the sounds that his pursuers were on foot. That means these people have different running speeds and stamina. Someone was bound to be left behind. She carefully noted how many they were and especially focused on their tone of voice. She barely understood what they were saying so she sharpened her ears and looked for those who sounded tired, exasperated, helpless or disappointed. These were hints that these people were those who could barely keep up with the group. When paired with the fewer people passing by she made a decision to make noises to alert these men.
She even intentionally let herself get caught. She wanted to know what their reaction would be. Were they good or bad people?
If there were good people, she would rather side with them. There was safety in numbers. She would even point Su Ming’s hiding place. She barely knew the other person so she didn’t mind betraying him to ensure her safety. If they were bad people, she had hoped that Su Ming would act. If he didn’t try to save her, she wouldn’t mind exposing his hiding place. Not to mention the stun gun was already in her hands.
She planned it all. Although she was disappointed with the group, at least Su Ming had proven that there are still good people in the world. That he was the kind of person that didn’t mind putting himself in a dangerous situation to save a total stranger. Still, Lilia wanted to gather information from other sources other than Su Ming.
“One-sided information is skewed information. Skewed information can lead to mistakes. Avoid making mistakes. Take risks but minimize slip-ups as much as possible.” said by certain a mafia member.
So it annoyed her that her other source of information just got killed. She was planning to quickly interrogate the man. Who were they? Why were they chasing this man? How many were they? Did they have reinforcements? Did they encounter strangely dress people like Lilia in this place?
These are some of the questions Lilia desperately needed to know the answer to. The last one was especially important. When she entered the antique shop, Grandpa Po was missing. What if he was also in this place? Lilia wanted to know.
It was what those old men in the restaurant would do. It was too late now though. What they needed to do was get away from this place. She didn’t know when but the pursuers will notice that they went the wrong way and will back-track their steps back here. And when they return they will see the dead bodies of their comrades.