“You should’ve killed her.” Kang said from behind me.
I removed the mask off my face and peered at him through the rear-view mirror. “After tonight, you’re the last person I’d ever listen to.”
“Suí nǐ. (Whatever.) But just know that if this blows up in our faces, which it will, I’m not going to let you drag me down with you.” Kang muttered under his breath as he got out of the car and marched up to our home.
Chen shook his head. “Father won’t like the fact that you’ve allowed a witness to live.”
I looked over and glared at him. “And you’re going to tell him, are you?”
“I’m not going to tell him anything, but I doubt Kang will keep quiet about it seeing as he loves getting you in the shit.”
I tensed my jaw. “He won’t if he knows what’s good for him.”
Chen scoffed. “This is Kang we’re talking about. He doesn’t give a shit about anything, Yuta. But he’s right about one thing. You should’ve killed her.” Chen took off his seatbelt and left the car, leaving me all to myself to ponder.
“Gàosù wǒ yīxiē wǒ bù zhīdào de shìqíng.” I muttered. (Tell me something I don’t know.)
I too removed my seatbelt and opened my door. The cold air immediately enveloped my entire body. The layers of clothing I wore didn’t protect me at all against the deathly cold.
The path leading up to the house was full of cracks. Weeds and dandelions poke out from the cracks. White roses grew in thick batches by the gate. The moonlight casted a ghoulish glow on the mansion. Vines formed and twisted up the sides of the house, reaching all the way up to the rooftop.
A guard standing outside opened the door when he saw me approaching, and it begrudgingly creaked open.
I nodded to the guard. “Xièxiè.” (Thanks)
The mansion was built on two levels. The main living area was on the ground level. There was a spacious living-dining-kitchen area, fathers office, the master bedroom with an en-suite bathroom, laundry room and a double garage. On the lower level was the spacious game room, three additional bedrooms, two additional baths and a long covered porch. Above the garage was a huge bonus room with three single beds. On the main level of the house, there was another living-dining-kitchen area with vaulted wood ceilings, walnut floors and quality furnishings. The kitchen was an open galley style, where the dining area was surrounded by glass walls, bringing the outside in. The living room had a wood-burning fireplace, beverage center with an under-counter refrigerator, a sound system with speakers throughout the house and a comfortable sitting area. The master suite was a world into itself. Outfitted with a king-size poster bed, the room opens onto the covered portion of the deck. The bedroom had a sitting area, a big-ass large HDTV DVD player, vaulted wood ceiling and plenty of storage. The en-suite bathroom contained a deep soaking tub, a separate walk-in shower, a long vanity with double sinks, lots of light, wall hung TV and heated floors. On the front of the house was a comfortable and spacious office with tons of seating space. On the lower level, the stairwell behind the fireplace led to the den. In the den was a game room with a reclining leather couch and two reclining chairs facing the entertainment center. There was a 55″ flat screen high definition TV, a DVD player, and a PlayStation. Also in the game room was a full wet bar with a sink, under-counter refrigerator, and even a popcorn machine. There was a large pool table and a game table. The room opens onto the covered porch that runs the length of the house and provides a spectacular view of the mountains. The three bedrooms and two baths complete the lower level. One bedroom has a king bed and a private bath with another walk-in shower, a double vanity unit, sliding doors that open to the deck. Another bedroom has a queen bed and a wall of windows overlooking the mountains. The third bedroom is another queen room that has a spacious bathroom. On the main level, there are three decks. A small grilling deck with a large gas grill and a metal awning, a covered porch with comfy rockers and a dining table for four, and the spacious rear deck with teak rockers, a high bar table with swivel chairs and a hot tub.
Out of all the mansions we owned, this particular building meant somewhat more to me than the others. I didn’t have a mother. She was dead. Murdered to be more specific. This was the house my mother grew up in and sadly died in. Father had pissed off one of his enemies, and just like that she was assassinated.
Her name was Fei Hung, ‘a swan goose soaring high in the sky.’
I missed her. A hell of a lot. Sometimes, I wished it were the other way around. Sometimes, I wished it were the old man buried in the ground instead of her. And that was the honest truth.
“I heard you left a witness alive.”
With my hands in my pockets, I turned around and nodded at my father. “I did, yes.”
Without warning, he struck me across the face.
His nostrils flared in anger. “Why, Yuta?”
“Why did you let the fucking girl go!?” He yelled. “Did the conversation we had this evening mean nothing to you? We have to protect our organization at all costs!”
“I asked you a question! Answer it, boy!” He roared. “Why did you let her go!?”
No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t think of a reason why I allowed our neighbor to go unscathed.
“Yuta!” Li Wei roared.
I frowned as I stuttered. “Wǒ bù zhīdào.” (I don’t know.)
He mocked me. “You don’t know?”
I shook my head. “No, sir.”
He frowned. “Do you...care for the girl?”
“Do you…love her?” He asked in disgust.
I shook my head. “Absolutely not, sir.”
“Then why, Yuta!?”
I shrugged because there was nothing else I could do. “I don’t know, sir. I really don’t.”
He sighed and looked at me with disappointment written on his face. “Not once have you let me down, Yuta. This is the first time I’ve ever been disappointed in you, and it’s all because of a girl.”
I apologized. “Duìbùqǐ.” (I’m sorry.)
He ignored my apology and called me into his office where I saw Chen and Kang already standing sharp by the brick fireplace.
I gave Kang a scowl as I walked past him to stand next to Chen. I watched him as he lowered his head with a smirk on his face.
What a swine.
Father walked with his hands behind his back and sat in his chair. He brought his hands to rest on the desk and clasped them together.
“What do we do to witnesses, Chen?” Father asked.
Chen cleared his throat before he answered. “Kill them, sir. But if they’re women, they have the option of working as prostitutes under our establishment. Sadly, that option doesn’t apply to men.”
Father nodded, pleased with Chen’s answer, then sighed. “So, who is she?” He looked at the three of us individually. “Do you know who she is?”
Chen and I didn't utter a single word, but Kang, on the other hand, did. “Yes, sir. She’s our neighbor.”
Father perked up at Kang’s answer. “Zhēn?” (Really?)
Kang nodded again. “Yes, sir. She is.”
Father seemed pleased with the fact that the witness only lived next door, but still, he didn’t smile. Yet again, he never smiled. He’d always been a miserable fuck.
After pondering in silence for a few seconds, he moved his gaze over to me. “Yuta?”
He motioned to Kang. “Is what your brother said true? That she lives next door?”
I nodded. “Kang’s right. She’s Jae Hwa’s daughter.”
Father frowned. “The Korean model?”
He chuckled. “Perfect. If she looks anything like her mother, then that’ll definitely benefit us.”
Father rose to his feet and straightened his hand-made three-piece suit and pointed at the three of us. “I want you three to get her and bring her to the hideout. That’s an order.”
“You want us to kidnap her?” Chen asked.
“Is that a problem? It shouldn’t be.” Li Wei snapped.
“No, sir.” Chen murmured.
“Then, you are excused.”
At his dismissal, the three of us immediately bowed at the same time and left father’s office in a straight line without a word.
As we walked down the long hallway towards the front door, Chen suddenly stopped in front of me, turned around and pulled me aside. He spoke quietly into my ear. “Are we really going to do this? I mean, she hasn’t done anything wrong.”
I shrugged. “Who gives a fuck?”
“Brother, this isn’t just some random person we’re going to kidnap.”
She was the daughter of a Korean model.
Nobody was going to give a shit.
“People are going to notice that she’s gone.”
“I doubt anyone will notice that she’s missing.” I went to shoulder past him but he blocked my path.
“Yuta, let’s not do this.”
I frowned at his words. “Sounds to me like you want to disobey our father's orders.”
He ponders for a second. “I just don’t think this is a good idea.”
“And why should I give a shit about what you think?” I asked.
He sighed. “Yut....”
I leant in and spoke quietly to Chen. “I’m going to forget this conversation ever happened because to me, it sounds like you want to disobey the Boss. Nobody disobeys the boss. Not even his own sons.”
“I would never do...”
I cut him off. “Good. I’ve got a job to do and no matter what, I’m going to do it with or without your help.”
I raised a brow. “Now, are you coming or are you going to disobey our father, and get whipped for disobedience? We have orders. We should follow them."
Chen looked away and gritted his teeth. “Yes, I’m coming.”
I slapped him on the shoulder. “Wise decision, brother.”
Just as I walked away, Chen spoke. “Are you going to tell father about my reluctance?”
I smirked, then turned around. “If it were Kang you said this to, he would have told father in a heartbeat but because it’s me, be thankful that I’m going to keep my mouth shut about it.”
He bowed. “Thank you, brother.”
“But do it again, and I will not keep quiet. I don't give second chances. To anybody.”
“Understood.” Chen uttered.
As soon as I left the house, I took out a cigarette and lightened it.
Once alone, I began thinking of ways to kidnap the girl next door, and for the first time in a very long time, the thought of kidnapping a person excited me. The girl next door had fire in her eyes and not to mention she was fucking feisty. I loved a good fight and a girl who didn’t have a submissive bone in her body. It was such a fucking turn on.
Oh yes, I was going to have fun with this one.
And I couldn’t fucking wait to get my hands on her.