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Chapter 11

Plague Doctor
     Chapter 11: Lai Sheng Technologies and Research Pte Ltd

    Larbre Studio  Larbre Studio

    The evening sky was pitch black, not a trace of stars or cool moon to be found.

    Beside Mt. Qingyun, Eastern University School of Medicine stood. It basked in the cool shade of the mountain. Be it day or night, all kinds of birds can be heard. At night, there are songs of mountain doves, collared owls, nightingales, and so on. However today, something was off. There was nothing but silence. Despite the dry weather and attentive listening, no birdsong could be heard.

    Gu Jun stood by the balcony of his dormitory, looking wistfully at the dark and ominous night sky. It seemed to reflect his mood, sullen and heavy. He had rewatched the clip several times. Thoughts churned over and over every time he did.

    That line of bloodied words and multiple visions was undoubtedly linked to the mysterious power looming at the Longkan Marine Trenches. Most probably, the investigations that the Seabird was conducting were related to this power.

    "Dad… Mom…" Two familiar yet blurred faces surfaced inside his mind. He realized that he actually did not understand them that well.

    Mom, Dad, what were you doing? How did you get embroiled in the accident? What happened to the Seabird? Are you dead or alive?

    5

    "I'm going to investigate again starting from scratch," Gu Jun swore solemnly with resolve in his eyes. He held the weight of Li Yuerui's phone. "This is my life-long mission."

    

    5

    Lai Sheng Technologies and Research Pte Ltd, the Seabird was a property of this company. His parents were also working under the company.

    Many years ago, Gu Jun had already investigated the incident. He had also paid for private investigators to help him investigate, but nothing suspicious was found. Everything uncovered was as Lai Sheng's public statement said. However, he was not believing a single word from those documents!

    I'm sure that the corrupt company certainly hasn't closed down. He thought to himself. I bet the organization behind just changed their name and is hiding under cover.

    2

    Alas, Lai Sheng had relocated their headquarters five years ago. Their original building had been demolished, and the area had been redeveloped into an amusement park. On the internet, not a trace of Lai Sheng could be found. Worse, Gu Jun had lost contact with those liaising with him about his compensation issues. With all routes cut off, he wondered where to start.

    6

    The road he had chosen was shrouded in a hopeless bleak. Like the peaks of Mt Qingyun, it was hidden by the night sky's darkness. Hazy and dark, but still majestically colossal. On this path, several obscure secrets were buried. Without a doubt, he would meet several challenging obstacles.

    Suddenly, Gu Jun's eyes lept to attention. He saw the ominous man again in the corner of his eyes. Immediately, his gaze whipped towards the dormitories' ground floor pavement. The street laps were run down. Their orange glimmer was weak and flickering. The sidewalk was deserted and quiet, and not a soul was to be seen. The only movements he saw were from a stray cat, slowly sauntering across the road and disappearing into the bushes at the side.

    2

    However, Gu Jun was absolutely sure about what he saw. That man... He was stalking… no, he was keeping his actions under surveillance.

    "Could it be… This man is after Li YUerui's phone? Is he from Lai Sheng?"

    Putting on a calm and relaxed front, Gu Jun continued staring at the night sky for a bit. He then retreated into his own room.

    He did not pull his curtains. Instead, he climbed up his bed and faced the wall. With this, he made a blind spot. He then took out Li Yuerui's mobile phone again and scoured through it for possible clues. He had turned off the network connection of the mobile phone, fearing that logging into an APP would expose the location of the phone.

    Right now, there was no room for privacy concerns. Gu Jun carefully vetted through all the phone's pictures and videos. Nothing of particular interest was found. It was all about travel. There was not even a trace of anything that could count as an invasion of privacy. Looking at the data, he was certainly disappointed.

    Continuing with the phone's contacts, he saw a few hundred different numbers. However, with the lack of a SIM card, no calls or messages got in.

    Looking through the phone, there was no other clue other than Li Yuerui's extensive contacts.

    Scratching his head, Gu Jun took a deep breath to calm himself. Thinking back to the day of the accident, he recalled the conversations that the trio had. The news they received and their secretive actions. Li Yuerui had said, "If you guys don't believe me, at least trust that guy!" Wu Dong had also frantically screamed, "My gods. It's real! The rumours are real!"

    The news and rumours were probably regarding the mysterious powers lurking within the Longkan Marine Trench, and the unexplainable accidents that occur in this region.

    However, who's that man they refer to as "that guy"?

    2

    Repeatedly, Gu Jun played back the scenes of that fateful day and pondered on a lot of unanswered questions.

    "Li Yuerui and the ret are not from this industry. They caught wind of news from the outside, rushing over to the trench. They seek the fun of exploration. If they were not captured by "that guy" and trouble came to me, it's very much possible that "that guy" sent someone to keep watch over me."

    1

    "Since mom and dad had researched the area for such long years, they should be part of the industry. Their company, Lai Sheng, should be a company in this industry. If this company still exists, they would probably be keeping tabs on the activities around the trench. My exploration in this area probably landed in their ears. Sending people to watch my movements shouldn't be surprising."

    Regardless who sent that man, I cannot make any careless movements. I don't even know the situation I'm in. Should things go badly, I might even die. I need a place to act from, somewhere to get a breakthrough… Something to get me into the industry. To make me a part of this industry. Only then, can I uncover the truth.

    Turning around, Gu Jun took a long deep breath. He really did not have the faintest idea as to how to get into the industry.

    As his thoughts circled around his head, the night sky darkened further. Suddenly, the doors opened, and Cai Zixuan walked in while holding the thermos flask.

    Withdrawing his thoughts, Gu Jun turned to Cai Zixuan. "Zixuan, any soup left?" Being deep in thought for the entire night, he was famished.

    "Nope, everyone devoured it till the last drop." Cai Zixuan smiled and revealed a radiant and affectionate mother-like smile. He was somewhat proud as he lamented, "Only love and food do not let people down. After drinking the soup, everyone was brimming with vigour! The leader even mentioned making this a weekly routine, one soup a week."

    1

    "Oh…" Swallowing a dry gulp, Gu Jun pouted slightly. "How's your experiment going?"

    "Quite smoothly." Walking to the basin of the balcony, Cai Zixuan wore a pair of old medical gloves. He washed the utensils and thermos flask. At the same time, he recounted their plans, "The tumours are growing well on the mice. These few days, we have begun Photodynamic Therapy. Those aren't that difficult, it is the steps after that are a pain. We have several other steps to do on the tumour tissues. Fixing, hydrating, dehydrating, paraffin embedding, sectioning, HE staining and immunohistochemical detection."

    4

    As he spoke, Cai Zixuan got louder and faster, saying a bunch of other jargons, "Professor Gu has said that these steps are tedious, but every small action makes a magnified impact on the results. He thought that it would be difficult for undergraduates like ourselves to professionally execute these procedures, so he had invited the Pathology Professor, Professor Chen, to come down and personally instruct us. He would even teach us specific steps and how to interpret the final product! I can't believe it! This guy is Professor Che Zhiming! How lucky am I to learn from two super influential doctors of the medical world. If the 5-year course students hear this, I bet they will turn green with envy!"

    "Let me follow you to the laboratory tomorrow." An idea suddenly struck Gu Jun. "Learning from the sidelines. That's fine right?"

    What does that line of bloodied words mean? Until now, he couldn't understand. If only he could have a second look at the vision, he might figure something out. So far, he had only seen the visions in the laboratory where Wang Ruoxiang and the others were working. Perhaps, that particular laboratory was unique.

    "I guess you can." Cai Zixuan turned over while washing the dishes. "But aren't you nervous about the makeup exams?"

    3

    "Nah, it's fine. I'm not that much behind." Gu Jun wasn't lying. He left campus for just half a semester. What's more, the eight-year course had numerous general education courses, which had less emphasis on medicine. In these past few days, he had caught up by quite a bit.

    "If you say so." Cai Zixuan no longer questioned. He was clear about the talent of this friend. If it's him, he definitely will not find it difficult to catch up.

    Humming to himself, the bloodied words on the wall together with the dilapidated laboratory appeared in his mind again.

    Somehow he felt that he was missing some details from these visions; some extremely critical information.

    1