Tea Leaves and Gold Pins

Curiosity, File, and Second Warning

Match Twenty: Curiosity, File, and Second Warning:


Since last spring, I can't help but to think about that file I found in the storage house. Why was Fei in such a panic when he saw it? More importantly, if he, Hen-to, and father destroyed it in a fire years ago, why was it back in the storage house? I keep trying to guess what's inside it. I can only think of something criminal or worse.

Judging by what Fei and Hung-to were talking about before we got to work filing everything, it must be the worse. But, why would it be worse? I just had to see.

I kept thinking about that file while I was studying for my history exam. I became tempted to stop what I was doing and go ask my advisors about that file. They probably won't tell me the truth anyway. I lowered my pencil on my notebook. I happened to glance over at my right and spotted the blue file on the corner of the coffee table. I looked at it slightly confused.

Huh?, I thought. Didn't they try to burn this last time? What is it doing in my house now? How did it get here? I slowly reached over to pick up the blue file. I paused for a moment before picking it up and opening it. I blinked at what I first saw. The first article was in Japanese, just like the rest of the papers inside. I can't really read Japanese. Maybe I should get someone to translate it for me? Judging from the first picture I saw, this newspaper article about a protest or something. I tried to form an educated guess in my head.

"Ju-furen!" I heard someone yelled. "What the hell do you have in your hand?!" I looked up to see Fei raced over to me and snatched the file out of my hand. He pushed me to the ground in process.

"Ow!" I wailed. "What are you doing?" He whipped around and grabbed me by the shoulders.

"How did you get this file?!" he shouted. "How did you get this file?! How did you get this file?!"

"I don't know!" I shouted. "It just appeared on the coffee table! I'm not lying!" I guess he felt me trembling in his big hands as I looked at him with big eyes of worry. He paused and took in a breath to calm down.

"Forgive me, my lady," he said in a low voice. I looked at him, blinking.

"Fei- xiansheng?" I asked. He turned away from me at a moment.

Once everything had cooled down, we sat on the couch, talking. Fei-xiansheng clenched the file in his hand.

"Now, tell me again," he said. "How exactly did you get this file again?"

"I'm telling you," I said. "The file just appeared on the table when I was thinking about it." I turned to him. "You don't believe me, do you?"

"No, I believe you," he said. "This isn't the first time that this has happened."

"Huh?" I asked. Fei-xiansheng looked me dead-on in the eye.

"My lady," he said. "Are you familiar with your father's business dealings in Japan?"


Fei placed his hands on his lap. "Thirteen years ago, your father and translator went to Tokyo for a trading deal from a politician running for office at the time. The deal went successful and they went home. Should have been the end, right?"

"But it wasn't, was it?" I asked.

"Your father sent the translator back to do a follow-up on the payment when the money didn't come through," Fei continued. "We still have no idea what happened to him there. But he came to this house bloody and in such a state. He clutched this article in his hand." He showed me the very first page.

"That guy said only one thing before he died," Fei went on. "Akuma ga watashi o shutoku sa sete wa ikenai." I raised an eyebrow at him.

"What does that mean?" I asked.

"Don't let the devil get me," he said. I looked at him just as puzzled.

"What's that supposed to mean?" I asked.

"That's as far as our second translator got," Fei explained. "There were more notes, but they don't go as far as page three."

"Why? What happened?" I questioned by this point. He gave me a grave face. Something told me that I wouldn't like where this answer could be headed.

"Your father had that translator translate the file that we found in an airport locker," Fei went on. "Weeks later, he wouldn't return our calls. So, we went over to his house. He hanged himself in his bathroom." I lowered my head at those words.

"Oh…" I said quietly. Fei suddenly rose to his feet and walked to the front door. I lifted my head at the sound.

"Fei-xiansheng?" I asked. "Where are you going?"

"To destroy this file—again!" he shouted. As he opened the door, Fei-xiansheng turned back to me.

"My lady, don't get involved," he warned me. Then, he walked out the door. I only sat there in silence. Somehow though I don't understand yet, I get the feeling that it's too late for that.

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