The young guard sat in a chair, with his hands tied behind his back and duct tape covering his mouth. The guard was built, his head shaved and had a goatee. He was currently unconscious with his head down.
Footsteps behind me get louder and louder until I see a figure standing in front of me wearing an all-black suit.
He rips off the duct tape, which awakens the young guard.
“Lā shǐ.” (Shit) The guard groans.
“Did that hurt?” Father questions.
Knowing that this is going to be a long interrogation, I grab a chair and sit in front of the scared, young guard and pull out a pack of cigarettes.
“Xiānshēng, nǐ zài zuò shénme?” (What are you doing, sir?)
Father roars, “What am I doing!? More like, what the fuck are you doing!?”
The guard looks behind him. “Xiānshēng, wǒ wèishéme bèi bǎng qǐlái?” (Sir, why am I tied up?)
Father doesn’t respond, he instead lights a cigarette, places it in his mouth and takes a drag from it. “Listen, Hao. I don’t particularly want to hurt you because I promised your father when he died that I’d take you in, but if you don’t answer honestly, well then we’re going to have a problem.”
He cries. “What? I don’t understand, sir!”
“It seems you have told the new whore about my history which is completely against the rules. You’ve pissed off the wrong people, Hao, which is why you’re in this current situation.”
I get up from my chair and walk towards a black bag that is off to the corner of the room. I pick it up and bring it over to father.
“Are you denying that it wasn’t you who told the whore about my rise to power?” Father seethes.
“It wasn’t me who told her, I swear! You’ve got the wrong guy!”
Li Wei begins to laugh.
“Wǒ shénme yě méiyǒu zuò, sir!” (I have done nothing.)
He points right into the young guard’s face. “You might think you’ve done nothing wrong, but you have. And you yourself know you have.”
He shakes his head. “Méiyǒu! (No!) I’m just a guy living a regular life. I’m just a guard for Christ sakes!”
Father walks towards the black bag and opens it. The guard stutters. “What are you doing?”
Father doesn’t respond.
“Do you see this bag?”
“I call this bag, my little bag of tricks.”
“Nǐ huì zěnyàng zuò?” (What are you going to do?)
Father pulls out a timer and sets it for ten minutes. “I’m going to set this timer for ten minutes, Hao, and if I don’t get the information that I need when the timer hits zero, you will die.”
Hao’s eyes widen as he looks from Li Wei to the timer. Li Wei grins. “I wonder what’s going through your head right now, boy. Knowing you have ten minutes to live, what are you thinking about? Your friends? Family? Or could it be that you’re regretting telling that whore valuable information about me?”
“No! I did not tell her anything!”
Father looks at Hao with disgust. He reaches into his bag and pulls out a scalpel. Father lunges at Hao and cuts just above his right eye. The young guard screams in pain.
“Liar! If I hear you lie again, the cuts go deeper and bigger. Don’t make me be the bad guy here.”
Hao’s screaming begins to calm down. Blood still remains dripping into his eye. “I’m not lying! I would never do that to you, sir!”
Father sighs. “Hao, I torture people. It’s what I do. It’s my job.”
Father looks at the timer. It’s 9:45.
I empty the black bag, pulling out salt, a gun, another scalpel and two knives. I then glance at the time, it reads 9:50.
“If you admit that you did tell her, I’ll let you go.”
Hao doesn’t say anything.
Father looks at the timer. “You do know that we have a time limit, right?”
“I don’t know want you want from me! You’ve got the wrong guy, sir! Please, let me go!”
Father takes one of the knives from me and throws it at Hao’s foot. The knife sticks out of his foot. Hao screams in pain.
“Fuck!” He screams.
Li Wei takes the other knife from me and throws it at Hao’s other foot. He screams again.
“Tell me what I want to know!” Father roars. Hao doesn’t respond, he instead looks at his feet. “I will kill you if you keep silent.”
He whimpers. “I don’t know what you’re talking about!”
“Tell me the truth otherwise I’m going to have to hurt you again.”
All Hao does is lower his head and shakes it.
Father picks up the scalpel from me and walks behind him. He takes the scalpel and cuts the webbing in between Hao’s fingers. The blood covers both of the men’s hands as father cuts each and everyone between the fingers. Hao screams in agony. Father walks back to the chair in front of Hao and takes a seat. “It will only get worse from here. Just admit it.”
Hao begins to cry. “Please don’t do this, sir! You’re killing an innocent man.”
“See, I don’t think I am.”
Hao looks up at the ceiling. “Please, let me go!”
Li Wei takes the scalpel, walk to Hao and starts peeling away the skin from his forearm. He then walks back and grabs the salt.
“Say it was you.” Hao remains silent.
Li Wei pours the salt on the wound, causing Hao to struggle in his chair and screams.
“Are you thirsty?”
Before Hao has a chance to answer, father leaves the room and comes back in with a kettle. Steam fills the air as Hao looks at it in horror.
“Well? Are you?”
He hesitates. “What are you going to do?”
I look over to see Kang and Chen enter.
“I take it that you are thirsty, so I’m going to pour this boiling water down your throat.”
Hao begins to struggle in his chair again. “No, please!”
Father glares at him, ‘You have the ability to stop all of this. Just tell me what I want to know, boy!’
They both silently stare at the kettle and the timer. Each second that goes down, father grins while Hao looks extremely nervous.
“I’m innocent, sir.”
Li Wei takes the kettle and walks over to the young guard. “Open your mouth.”
Hao thrashes his head side to side. “No!”
“Open your fucking mouth!” Li Wei spits.
Hao shakes his head no again. Father sticks the spout of the kettle into Hao’s mouth forcefully and pours the hot water down his throat.
The guard once again struggles in his chair. The water pours out of his mouth and all over his body.
Father stops and hands me the kettle. “Look at me.” Hao’s head hangs over and looks down at his feet. His voice is no doubt damaged from the water. “You don’t have much time left, boy. I had hoped that it didn’t need to come down to this.”
Hao glances at the times.
“Just nod your head and this will all be over.”
Hao struggles more in his chair, his hands still covered in blood. His whole body thrashes as he shakes his head.
Hao glances at the time again.
Father comes to me and takes the gun from me and cocks it. The young guard looks at it in horror.
Li Wei looks at him in disappointment. “You’re fucking lying. You’re full of shit.”
Father takes out another cigarettes and lights it. He leave the pack of cigarettes and his lighter by the table placed next to his chair.
“One more chance, boy.”
Father walks in front of the boy with the gun in his hand.
“Your time is almost up.”
“Any last words, boy?”
He remains silent and shakes his head.