“Then thank Professor Dong for me.” Ma Wenmin’s expression was very calm, so that people couldn’t clearly see the emotions in her eyes.
The man smiled sarcastically, then nodded to Li Zheng and others, before trotting away.
“Teacher Wen is sick?” Zhong Peng couldn’t help but ask. He had met him couple a few times, and still had a good feeling about the young man who had ideas.
The corner of Ma Wenmin’s mouth showed a bitter smile, “Advanced liver cancer, they can only try to replace the liver.”
The success rate of liver transplantation in the 1980s wasn’t high, and the patient’s healing process was relatively poor. If not a last resort, few people would choose such a high-risk operation.
There was a moment of silence.
It was Ma Wenmin who first broke the silence, “Mr. Li Zheng, you came to Dongchen University to look for us, and then gave up for other reasons, right?”
Li Zheng was surprised that Ma Wenmin still had the heart to care about this matter at this time.
He hesitated for a moment, but still nodded his head.
When Ma Wenmin saw this, the bitterness on her face grew even more, “Because of the so-called plagiarism of the paper?”
Li Zheng’s face showed a hint of embarrassment. Indeed, plagiarism was the most important reason for Li Zheng to move these two out of the candidate list.
But facing the couple in such a situation, he really couldn’t bear to say this out loud.
“I don’t know if I have the honor to ask Mr. Li Zheng and Professor Zhong to come to my house? Just give us a chance to defend ourselves.” Ma Wenmin said with a forced smile.
Li Zheng and Zhong Peng looked at each other and nodded their heads in agreement. The two men couldn’t refuse.
When Ma Wenmin saw this, she finally showed a real smile.
“Please wait for a moment, I will get my bicycle.” She said, while jogging towards the carport not far away.
Just now, when she was pushing the bicycle in the shed and saw Li Zheng and Zhong Peng, she spilled something on the ground because she was in a hurry, she hurriedly picked it up and threw it into the bicycle basket, then pushed the bicycle towards the two.
“Mr. Li Zheng, Professor Zhong, let’s go.”
So Ma Wenmin pushed the bicycle, Li Zheng and Zhong Peng followed behind, and slowly walked towards the outside of Dongchen University.
The three of them had no words all the way.
About twenty minutes later, Ma Wenmin stopped in front of an old residential building.
The residential building had beige walls and was slightly yellowish, Li Zheng slightly surveyed, about eleven or twelve floors, it seemed to be an elevator house. This neighborhood support was also quite complete, at least the couple’s days weren’t very embarrassing.
After placing the bicycle at the stairway, Ma Wenmin led the two to the elevator.
The elevator stopped at the ninth floor, which was a four-family structure, one in the east and one in the west, and two more were facing the elevator.
Ma Wenmin took out the key and opened the one facing the elevator, “Mr. Li Zheng, Professor Zhong, please come in.”
Zhong Peng waved his hand, “I have left Hong Kong University for a long time, so don’t mention the title of professor. Call me by my name directly.”
Ma Wenmin froze for a moment, and then said, “Then I will just call Teacher Zhong, you can afford the title of teacher.”
“Wenmin, who is it?” A hoarse male voice came from the room, and a slim man walked out from the room.
Wen Xuefeng wasn’t very old, just in his early forties, but his hair was mostly white, his face was withered and dull, and his wide jacket was loosely slung over his body, as if it would fall off.
His hand was attached to the handle of the room’s door, and the dry, wood-like palm was alarming.
“It’s Mr. Li Zheng and Mr. Zhong.” Ma Wenmin quickly stepped forward and put the contents of the bag on the dining table and held him.
Li Zheng and Zhong Peng spoke at the same time. Zhong Peng was far less calm in his heart than he appeared to be on the surface.
He remembered when he first met Wenfeng and Ma Wenmin, thirteen years ago, when these two were still around thirty years old, when Xuefeng was still full of hope for life despite the setbacks he had suffered, and his vigorous and energetic appearance made several of them envious.
However, now he seemed to be wrapped in skin and bones, although he wad still smiling he exuded a dead feeling.
“Teacher Zhong, Mr. Li Zheng.” He smiled and nodded to the two.
“Xuefeng ah, take care of your health!” Zhong Peng said in a deep voice.
Wen Xuefeng smiled and didn’t answer.
Ma Wenmin quietly wiped away the tears at the corners of her eyes and said to Xuefeng with a smile, “Xuefeng, you go in first and rest, I will entertain Mr. Li Zheng and Mr. Zhong just fine.”
According to a survey, most cancer patients died not because their cancer cells had spread but because they couldn’t bear the pain of cancer and die. Wen Xuefeng was already in the advanced stage of liver cancer, he had to endure the torture of cancer pain every day, Ma Wenmin looked at him with pain in her heart.
Wen Xuefeng’s eyes were slightly downcast, and he glanced at his anxious wife, then he slowly got up with Ma Wenmin’s help and slowly walked into the room.
Ma Wenmin closed the door, then went to the study to get a large stack of information out.
The information was very thick, and Li Zheng swept past it with a glance about fifteen centimeters high.
“This is the entire scientific research results of Xuefeng and me in these years. I implore you two to take a look.”
Li Zheng pursed his lips and picked up the topmost volume and flipped through it.
Seeing this, Zhong Peng gestured to Ma Wenmin to put the stuff on the table, and then he drew a copy of the information from the bottom and flipped through it.
The living room fell into a silence, only the “swish” sound of turning pages echoed in everyone’s ears.
The more Li Zheng looked at it, the more he frowned, and after turning one book, he quickly picked up the second.
For three hours, Li Zheng kept flipping through the data. Zhong Peng stopped reading when he saw the second book, because genes were involved in this book and he wasn’t good at it, so he could only see something superficial.
Li Zheng wasn’t very good at this aspect, but he at least had the memories of his last life, so reading this stuff was much easier.
When he finished reading the last line, Li Zheng’s mouth had been tightly pursed into a straight line. This information from the project, to the last stage, the second stage of the demonstration, clear data, clear logic, many of the wrong route were marked out, and detailed data and theoretical arguments were noted. After years of research, Li Zheng dared to say that someone who could produce such a detailed manuscript, was definitely the absolute owner of this research result.
However, these data and conclusions, Li Zheng had seen it a few days ago in an authoritative journal, and the author wasn’t Wen Xuefeng or Ma Wenmin.
“Dong Juncheng took the results of your scientific research?” Li Zheng frowned and asked, Dong Juncheng was the old professor that Li Zheng thought was good at the beginning, he published a series of papers about genes.
If the paper was really plagiarised, Li Zheng really wanted to scold him to his face, he actually took the scientific achievements of the younger generation to get noticed.
Ma Wenmin bit her lower lip, the bitter expression on her face almost overflowed.
“When Xuefeng and I arrived in Hong Kong, we only had the academic qualifications to teach, so we could only be hired as lecturers. Lecturers weren’t allowed to have their own laboratories, and Xuefeng was a person who couldn’t live without the laboratory. It so happened that Dong Juncheng was as interested in genetics as we were. He was very interesting, and Xuefeng and he hit it off immediately, and we joined Dong Juncheng’s lab as ordinary researchers.”
“At that time, we only formally signed a letter of appointment, which didn’t specify the ownership of experimental research results. Dong Juncheng often said that we shared the same interests, and that this letter of appointment was only for show, we were free to use the laboratory and we discussed academic problems together.”
“At the beginning, we all got along very harmoniously, and when we were too busy, Dong Juncheng would ask his assistant to help. But we were all in the same research direction, there is no time when there wasn’t friction. When he found out that our research process was faster than his, Dong Juncheng’s attitude obviously changed.”
When Ma Wenmin said that, her face showed a hint of irony, “I remember very clearly, that day Xuefeng went out with a letter with great enthusiasm, that was the results of our first stage of research. He said that as long as this paper was published, we could be rated as associate professor or even professor, then we could apply for our own lab.”
“However, a few weeks later, the sample journal arrived, but the sample journal didn’t contain our paper, instead, it was replaced by an academic paper signed by Dong Juncheng with similar data and similar argumentative logic.”
“At that time, Xuefeng was very angry, and took the sample journal and angrily broke into Dong Juncheng’s office. Do you know what Dong Juncheng said?”
Li Zheng fondled with the watch on his wrist, he had already guessed the ending after Ma Wenmin talked about signing the appointment letter. Although the employment letter didn’t stipulate the ownership of the academic results born in the laboratory, but which working man could say that because this product was made by me, its ownership is mine.
Li Zheng guessed that Dong Juncheng at the beginning, indeed had love for talent, at Dong Juncheng’s age, maybe he even the idea of passing his mantle to them. But the strong may sympathize with the weak, pity and lend a helping hand to show their superiority, however, when he found that the weak he thought was not weak, even stronger than him.
That was when Dong Jun Cheng’s mentality changed.
Because Wenfeng and Ma Wenmin’s experiments were done in Dong Juncheng’s laboratory as his employed researchers, that Dong Juncheng became the corresponding author of these papers wasn’t wrong, but he completely erased the contribution of the couple in this research project,.
But this accusation, was only a moral condemnation, and the loss compared to the couple, was really not worth mentioning.
“I remember Dong Juncheng’s papers in this series only made it to stage two. No other experiment was done in his laboratory?” Li Zheng suddenly spoke.
Ma Wenmin shook her head, “We also only made it to stage two, and we naturally refused to continue there later. But Xuefeng and I don’t have our own lab either.”
She paused here, “We stopped for two or three years, and now Dong Juncheng’s conclusions of the third stage are almost out, we can’t catch up.”
“You guys …… don’t want to try?”
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