He Ping stopped his work to listen to the shrieking that pierced the silence of the night. Those sounds were normal at the House with the Red Door, but tonight something was different. The air felt charged and the scream…the scream had been filled with more than pleasure. He set down his tools and opened the small cottage’s front door to listen again, but there was nothing. No sound, not even the crickets in the brush.
There was no way to know the Madam was in danger.
He stepped down the path heading towards the house, following where his feet guided him when someone raced out the back door of the main house. He Ping only caught a glimpse of a man, drenched in blood, before he disappeared into the shadows.
He Ping’s heart shuttered in his chest as his mouth uttered a whispered no of panic. Without wasting another second, he sprinted into the house, heading straight upstairs to the Madam’s room. The door was cracked open and the moment he saw what lay inside, he collapsed to his knees as silent sobs racked his body. There on the bed he found his beloved lying lifeless, a frozen look of horror on her beautiful face. She’d been stabbed several times, but by whom he had no way of knowing. She’d kept her clients secret. It was her way of protecting them, but who had protected her?
His love for her, kept secret for a decade, could not endure this loss. He Ping knew what he must do.