Chapter 66 Strange Computers

On this day, I had a small meeting with several guys near Hangzhou and explained everything to them. At four that afternoon, I lay back in bed and soon fell asleep again, waking up around midnight. I couldn’t sleep anymore, so I went to the balcony to smoke a few cigarettes under Hangzhou’s gray sky.

Just when I was feeling a little uncomfortable from the cold and wanted to go back inside to get my coat, I suddenly noticed something strange in the room.

I had turned off the light in the room when I went out so it was supposed to be dark, but when I went back inside, I found a strange light in a corner of the room.

It wasn’t a lamp, nor a fire, but a kind of miserable cold fluorescence.

I paused for a moment, looked at it carefully, and suddenly found that the computer on Uncle Three’s desk had lit up.

I frowned and thought to myself, when did that turn on? I had definitely turned it off when I was finished using it earlier, so why was it suddenly on? Was there something wrong with it? I went to the front of the desk and sat down, only to find that there was nothing on the screen. There was, however, a small prompt bubble in the lower right corner.

“You have a new message.”

I looked around, feeling even more confused, but then I thought of several possibilities. First, maybe the computer was turned on by several assistants in the afternoon, and I just hadn’t been aware of it. But what did they want?

I wasn’t worried about that since Uncle Three’s computer itself was blank. No matter what reason the guy who turned on the computer had, he wouldn’t get anything.

The second possibility was that the computer hadn’t actually been turned off and was in a sleep state where the motherboard could wake up.

But the strangest thing was that this computer definitely wasn’t online, so where did this email come from? Did Uncle Three even know anything about email?

I sat down by the computer, moved the old mouse, clicked on the bubble, and watched as the message window popped up.

The first thing I noticed was that it wasn’t a reminder email automatically sent by windows email software, but a real email from another address.

It had only two sentences:

You finally returned. How’s the plan going?

I sat in front of the computer and stared at these sentences for half an hour.

I thought hard about these sentences, my mind churning out all kinds of possibilities.

First off: Uncle Three actually had a secret inbox.

I knew that he could use computers, but I didn’t know what all he could do. I figured he was just like my dad, but setting up email software on a Windows 2000 computer was a relatively advanced skill, especially for an old man like him. Did someone else set it up for him? But the core problem was that this computer was only used for reading e-books; I never knew it had internet access.

But the internet was obviously available.

He had clearly been hiding this.

The second point was that there was actually a person who was using email to contact Uncle Three. Even if nothing happened, I was still very curious about who this person was. And judging from this simple email with only two sentences, they were obviously very familiar with him. There was no heading, no signature, only two sentences that went straight to the point.

Moreover, the question this person asked contained the word “plan”.

Judging from all the information I had now, I knew that Uncle Three did have a plan that involved various aspects. It was this plan that had freed the Mystic Nine from its powerful control, and had caused everything—even the seemingly incomparably powerful “it”—to fall apart.

The Wu family had sacrificed almost three generations for this plan—of course, the third generation ended with me—and Uncle Three would never allow the plan to be implemented and then stopped when it was only ninety percent complete. He had to finish the plan a hundred percent to the end so that there wouldn’t be any chance of a repeat.

Was it related to the plan I had heard about? Did this email come from a key figure?

I checked the mail software and saw that there was no other email in the inbox, only this one.

If this computer could access the internet, such a thing would be impossible. Uncle Three must’ve deleted all the previous emails, which showed that he attached great importance to the emails sent to and from this inbox.

I suddenly felt that this was a chance. It was just so unexpected that things would develop like this.

I had to reply to this email, but the message was too short and I needed more information to make any further judgments.

How should I reply?

I lit a cigarette, looked at the email, and thought for a long time before typing:

The plan has changed. Some information is unknown. I’ll give you detailed information tomorrow. How are things on your side?

I pressed the reply button and the email was sent out in an instant. I leaned back in the chair and waited for his reply, my hand constantly tapping on the table. I knew that under normal circumstances, people who sent such inquiries wouldn’t leave the computer after sending them, so there should be a reply soon.

Sure enough, in less than ten minutes, a bubble appeared on the lower right corner of the monitor.

I immediately clicked it open:

I am fine.

The three words flashed on the computer screen, but there was nothing else there.

I continued smoking my cigarette as I thought about what to send back, but then I suddenly retracted my hand.

I had sent two messages: the first was that I would send him another email tomorrow; the second was about his situation.

He only replied to one, and the response was very brief.

With Uncle Three’s cautious nature, were they used to such concise communication? If I sent another email, would I give the impression that something wasn’t right and be noticed by this person?

I looked at these three words, thought for a long time, and decided that I absolutely couldn’t reply. To be on the safe side, it was better to email this person tomorrow. It was only a few hours away anyways. Besides, it would be better to spend these few hours thinking about the contents of my reply since I couldn’t sleep.

I stood up and started pacing back and forth in the room, all of my calm thoughts disappearing as I immediately returned to my initial state of anxiety.

I looked down at myself and thought about it for a long time before I finally realized that the email I had sent back was wrong.

The plan has changed. Some information is unknown. I’ll give you detailed information tomorrow. How are things on your side?

That meant that my email tomorrow had to contain the contents of the plan, but I didn’t know what the plan was—I did know, but my cognitive level was completely different from that of Uncle Three’s. I didn’t know what he knew, so even if I could mention some of the contents of the plan, the other party would probably feel that something was off.

For example, the real plan could be that the United States was ready to attack Iraq, but my email to the United States was probably still saying that I thought our plan to attack Iraq was feasible.

I went to the balcony and continued smoking, now with several plans in mind. First, I had better learn where the other party was before they found out. Based on what my friend had said before, this should be feasible through an email address inquiry. But even if I called him, he would arrive here tomorrow night.

So I couldn’t send tomorrow’s email too early; otherwise, the other party would leave as soon as they sensed a problem, and I would make the same mistake I often made before.

I couldn’t imagine how cautious people in this business were. Back in Banai, Ghost had proved that just a few of our actions could result in so many shocking things. In order to prevent his plans from being disclosed, this person definitely wouldn’t take any risks. I had no doubt that once he felt that something was wrong, he would immediately take the most effective measures.

But after careful consideration, I didn’t think that it was a bad idea to reply immediately, nor did I think that my response was wrong. This was because I couldn’t reply to his email at that time—which would contain the contents of the plan—so what I wrote back actually bought me more time.

So, what if I couldn’t find the other party?

As a matter of fact, I knew the most basic routine since I had fought a battle of wits with these people so many times. I knew that the simplest way was to tell this person that something had happened here and to make it sound very serious in order to hopefully force him out.

But if the other party was an extremely cautious person, they would be more likely to disappear so I couldn’t use this trick until the very end. Moreover, if there was some tacit understanding between Uncle Three and the other party, they might think that the situation on Uncle Three’s side had collapsed, and it was necessary to find someone to kill him. Then I would be the unlucky one, wouldn’t I?

I smoked all of my cigarettes and still hadn’t come up with any solutions, so I had to go back in.

But after entering the room, I found that the computer was lit up again. A random thought popped into my head—it had been dark just now.

I immediately walked over and found another email.

Go to bed early, we still have a long way to go. You need to break that habit of standing out in the cold. (1) 

I looked at the balcony and felt my heart jolt.

Shit, he can see me!

My first reaction was to immediately pull the curtains closed, but I thought that would be wrong and immediately stopped myself. I sat on the stool for almost three minutes before I could finally suppress my shocked reaction.

It seemed that this person’s relationship with Uncle Three was more complicated than I had originally thought. And judging from the tone, I guessed that they weren’t a lover, but maybe a senior or an older brother who was sending Uncle Three emails.

I wrote back:

I understand, we’re in this together.

After sending it, I immediately went back to my room, closed the door, took out my own cell phone, and immediately texted my friend.

I had a hunch that I could guess who this person might be.

If they were who I thought they were, then what happened next would be completely out of my expectations, and everyone’s fate would be changed for the better.

<Chapter 65> <Table of Contents><Chapter 67>


TN Notes:

(1) Characters for that last sentence are 别老是吹风. Doesn’t translate great in English I guess, but here’s Tiffany’s analysis: Since Wu Xie was on the balcony smoking, it was probably cold and windy outside. It sounds like Uncle Three also had this habit. The other party was worried he was going to have a cold because of it. Senior or older people like to say something like this to younger counterparts.


Updated 6/27/2021

One thought on “Chapter 66 Strange Computers

  1. Если не ошибаюсь, это мог быть и старший брат, в смысле, Второй дядя? Он ведь, по идее, и поможет У Се закончить начатое Третьим дядей?


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