C8—– Late Night Fire

In the darkness of the night, Wang Daquan followed by the two brothers Li Damao and Li Ermao, tiptoed around outside the shantytown, pouring the gasoline evenly under the back window of the northern residence.


“Don’t pour so much.” Li Ermao grabbed a gasoline bucket, fawning over Wang Daquan, “Brother Wang said we won’t burn people.”


Li Damao wrapped his sleeves and trembled as he said, “It’s so cold and the wind is strong, if it’s too little, it won’t burn.”

Wang Daquan frowned with a cold expression, “Burning someone to death caused a lot of attention, but it also caused trouble.””


Li Ermao nodded repeatedly, “If you really carry human life, you’ll have to take a bullet.”


Wang Daquan’s eyes flashed with a stern light, he looked around, and specially went to a house under the eaves, pouring more gasoline.


It was the home of Qiu Mingquan, which he had deliberately scouted.


Squinting his eyes, Wang Daquan took out a lighter and lit a match and threw it into a winding gasoline line at his feet.


The flames burst as soon as they touched the ground, instantly forming a thread of fire. Wang Daquan coldly looked at it, covering the back of his scalded hand, he felt a surge of joy in his heart.



Forget about the others, that little wolf like cub. He’d burn it all tonight. It was best to burn him to death! For a moment, his evil thoughts surged in his heart.


Just they proudly watched the flames getting bigger and bigger, suddenly, the wind behind them grew heavier.


Wang Daquan turned around in dismay, only to see two figures in the night, a large and a small, holding a thick stick, the heavy stick smashed down on their heads, the Li brothers shouted at the same time and fell to the ground with a bang!


Shit, they were ambushed!


A voice shouted: “Son of a bitch, go to hell! I told you to set fire to people!”


A boy’s voice exploded in the quiet night at the same time: “Everybody get up, someone is setting fire, come and put out the fire!”


The courtyard exploded, countless rooms were lit up, and the owners of the houses close by had already seen the fire and rushed out in a panic, clad in clothes: “Put out the fire! Bring water!”


The Li brothers were beaten on the ground screaming, Wang Daquan’s heart pounded, seeing the situation wasn’t right, he got scared, and hurriedly turned to run.


Liu Dongfeng and Qiu Mingquan left the two people, turned around and chased Wang Daquan who had fled, it was dark and he was anxious, Wang Daquan tripped over something at his feet and suddenly fell on his face.


The fire there had just started, and was soon extinguished by the people who came to hear the sound, and now looking at the perpetuators, the neighbors filled with hatred, were emboldened and shouted together: “Kill them! He is trying to kill us!”



Wang Daquan wretchedly rolled over and sat up, seeing several young and strong men had pounced on him, he was startled, then he raised the remaining small half of the barrel of gasoline in his hand, and splashed it towards the chasing crowd!


They were caught off guard by the gasoline showered all over.


Wang Daquan roared at the top of his lungs, “Don’t even come over, I’ll burn whoever comes over.””

With a ‘click’ sound, he smiled grimly and suddenly lit the lighter in his hand, igniting a cluster of faint flames in the dark.



Qiu Mingquan caught up at the forefront and suddenly stopped. He reached out to stop him, “Everyone, don’t move.”


Liu Dongfeng roared coldly, “Put down the lighter quickly! Surrender honestly!”


“Let me go or I’ll burn you all to death!” Wang Daquan shouted heartlessly.


Step by step, Qiu Mingquan walked towards the front. He was small and thin, and looked non-threatening, but when the calm little face in the firelight looked in Wang Daquan’s eyes, a chill came out of nowhere.


It was him again! This wolf cub of the Qiu family, the lifeless little devil!


“Don’t come over!” He waved his lighter in terror, the mouth of the gasoline barrel he had just thrown away was askew, and the rest of the gasoline poured out silently, flowing into a stream at his feet, which he was unaware of under his extreme tension.



“Xiao Quan, don’t go over, it’s dangerous!” Liu Dongfeng shouted sharply, ignoring the gasoline on his body, to rush forward, but Qiu Mingquan turned around and sternly shouted.


“Don’t come over, I don’t have gasoline on me, I’m not afraid of him.” He whispered, his gaze serious, surprisingly, Liu Dongfeng was shocked in place.


Qiu Mingquan walked five or six steps in front of Wang Daquan, looked at him and raised his eyebrows slightly: “You wanted to burn my house.”


Not a question, but a statement.


Wang Daquan forced down the panic in his heart and gave a fierce laugh: “So what? You’re lucky I didn’t burn your family to death!”


Qiu Mingquan’s body had just changed, and President Feng sighed softly, “I’ll give you one last chance to give up. If not-”


He half tilted his head, the gaze like looking at a dead man: “You have to go to death.”


The faint light of the fire behind him reflected his cold eyes, the vicissitudes in his gaze were as deep as a dark pool, and Wang Daquan suddenly got chills, his mind “buzzed” and threw the lighter in his hand at Qiu Mingquan!


Burn him, he is an evil spirit! He didn’t know why, Wang Daquan thought with horror in his heart.


The child across the street dodged gently amidst the shrieks of panic.


The lighter flew around and landed near him.


The fire suddenly flared up, and it went along the winding line of oil on the ground, directly to Wang Daquan!


–The leaky line of gasoline met the open fire that ignited, and instantly wrapped Wang Daquan. With the crowd’s horrified gaze, he instantly became a fireball, a miserable cry in this winter night resounded through the night sky.


“It was really unexpected, really unexpected.” In a real estate company, President Zhou kept his voice down to the phone in his closed office, “when setting fire, he was found by the poor people in the shanty town. They not only put out the fire, but also caught all the arsonists.”



On the other end of the phone, the voice was mild and elegant, there was no ripple: “What I heard is that the one who led the fire was burned into a charred black gourd?”


“Yes, Wang Daquan wasn’t lightly injured, I’m afraid that he may involve me.”


“Don’t worry, that man burned like that, he shouldn’t be able to survive.” The other side of the phone said indifferently, seemingly unconcerned.


“That’s good, that’s good!” Mr. Zhou’s heart was relieved, “You can rest assured that the other two people, don’t even know about our existence.”


The other end of the phone was silent for a long time before he faintly said, “We?”


Mr Zhou was shocked, even in this cold winter, his forehead was almost covered with sweat, “No no! You can rest assured! No matter what, this matter will not be expanded any further!”


The person on the other side of the phone seemed to ponder for a while, “I’m going to prepare a newly registered real estate company for you, next, don’t use those unseen means, just come out in your name and acquire it directly.”



After thinking about it, he seemed worried that he didn’t understand, and then admonished a sentence: “”Speak with skill, and don’t use intimidation and suppression. You don’t need me teach you sentence by sentence, right?”


“Of course, of course.” Mr. Zhou said flatteringly, “Don’t worry, it will be done this time!”


Somewhere in the spacious office, a middle-aged man slowly put down the phone with little expression on his face.


His fingers slowly knocked on the table a few times, before picking up the insulation cup, he slowly and methodically sipped, the tea was excellent, even in winter, it had a very dense good tea fragrance.


Then, he picked up the phone again and dialed a number.


“Chief Fei, I heard that you arrested a few criminals there yesterday? The burned one?” The ghostly cold light behind his gold-rimmed glasses flashed and he said meaningfully, “This kind of scum is really abominable. In fact, living is what is irresponsible to society, especially the kind that takes the lead, don’t you think?”


The chaos of last night had passed, and when they got up in the morning, the whole compound was in a state of jubilation.



One of the arsonists who were transferred to the police station overnight was the infamous Wang Daquan, who was badly burned – the leader was this fierce bully, and now that he was in, what was there to be afraid of?


“Xiao Quan ah, your house is all right? Do you want us to give a hand and help you renovate it again?” The enthusiastic neighbors were yelling in the yard early in the morning.


“It’s okay, no need.” Qiu Mingquan smiled. Last night’s fire was put out just in time, and the back window of his house was only slightly blackened, nothing serious.


The neighbors who were talking suddenly ran over to Auntie Wang and wriggled to bring over some big meat buns: “Xiao Quan, this is what Auntie steamed last night, at your age, you need to eat some meat!


Liu Qinhua laughed out loud, “Aiya, the sun is coming out of the west.”


Qiu Mingquan took the large meat buns amidst the laughter and handed one to each of his grandparents, saying “thank you” coyly.


Liu Dongfeng went to the police station overnight last night and hadn’t returned, last night’s big win against the hoodlums dispersed the gloom in everyone’s heart, the whole compound was cheerful.


His grandparents left the house after dinner, carrying the garbage bags. Qiu Mingquan then followed his long-established plan and went into the hut.


The bankbook in his grandfather’s name was under the bed in the blanket. Immediately afterwards, he opened the shoe box and found the cash and change inside.


The fixed deposit was only sixty yuan, and the cash had more than twenty yuan, a total of more than eighty yuan of savings, which was all the poor family had.


In this era when the average monthly salary of state enterprise workers was one or two hundred yuan, most families were living a tight life, and it was common to borrow a few yuan for emergencies at the end of the month. The two elderly scavengers relied on daily garbage collection and then sold it, the proceeds were only enough to just feed their family of three, there was no way to save any extra money.


Since learning of all the family’s savings, President Feng was extremely depressed and exploded in pain: “It’s so damn hard to accumulate the original capital for the poor!”


Qiu Mingquan held the bankbook and those crumpled bills, and suddenly panicked a little.


“Is it really profitable?” After all, he had no business experience, “What if we lose money? Will no one buy it?”



“You’re questioning me? Questioning the president of Shen Group, who had tens of billions of assets in your previous world? Questioning the business genius who was rich?” Feng Rui said with a smile on his face.




“If after being reborn again and knowing the nodes of all the important economic events, I Feng Rui still loses money, then why don’t you take a stone and smash this jade pendant of mine into powder and forget about it?”


Qiu Mingquan quickly stopped talking.


He put his bag on his back and caught a half-hourly bus along the main suburban road, and finally stood on the bustling Nanjing Road more than an hour later.


Although he had also been living in the bustling city of Dongshen in his later life, there was no overlap in his life path with these exquisite shopping commercial buildings.


Nor was there any image of them in his memory.


“Go along this way, and when you see the intersection, you’ll arrive.” Feng Rui pointed out, sounding extraordinarily familiar.


Sure enough, after walking for a short while, Qiu Mingquan saw the intersection marked Xizang Road, and over there, a grand and brand new shopping mall with shiny glass in front.

The words “Dongshen Boutique Commercial Building” were in big black letters.


Luckily, there was no mistake, Feng Rui quietly breathed a sigh of relief.



As far as he could remember, the “Zhenxing Shopping Center”, “Guanhai Shopping Center”, “Boutique Shopping Center” and “Chuangxing Shopping Center” were all places he used to visit when he was a child.



In the beginning, it was also the location of Donghai Leather Goods Store, Renli Clothing Store and Cai Zhi Zhai Food Store.


It wasn’t until early 1988 that the Huangpu District People’s Government decided to demolish these stores and relocate them to form the Dongshen Boutique Shopping Center here.


“Before you go in, get enough money first.” Great President Feng said to Qiu Mingquan.


Qiu Mingquan looked around, and sure enough, there was no shortage of banks next to the mall. Not far from the crossroads, a small ICBC office stood.


He ran in and handed over his fixed-term passbook and grandfather’s ID card from the high counter, which at this time had no computer, no magnetic stripe, and therefore no password.


The salesman at the counter examined him for a moment, counted out six ten-yuan cash notes, and settled the bulk of the demand interest to him.


Finally, the handwritten deposit and exchange figures were written on the passbook, and then stamped with the personal seal and the official seal of the counter.


This was in the late 80’s when inflation was more serious in China, and the interest rate for a three-year time deposit was 8.28%, so withdrawing the time deposit early was a significant loss of interest!


Standing in the lobby of the boutique building, Qiu Mingquan was a little dizzy.


Compared to those super shopping centers in the latter days, this small three-story building looked shabby, but he still could not afford to buy most of the goods that were operated here!


In the small radio at the entrance, the sweet female voice was doing the introduction of the new commercial building over and over again.


“Dear customers, this commercial building is in the trial period, and we are trying our best to provide you with the best service and shopping experience.”


“Boutique Commercial Building is a modern large commercial enterprise with a construction area of 7,500 square meters, a business area of 4,000 square meters and a total of 3 floors.”



“It mainly deals with middle and high-grade goods, including daily-use department stores, clothing, shoes and hats, household appliances, gold and silver ornaments, leather goods and bags, clocks and watches and other 16 categories of nearly 20,000 kinds of goods, mostly domestic and foreign famous, special, excellent and new products”


Feng Rui smiled slightly: “Go to the third floor, go straight to the high-end stationery counter.”


Qiu Mingquan gave an “oh”, his eyes skimmed over the glass counters on the first floor, which were full of goods, brightly colored women’s clothing, shiny men’s leather shoes, and straight high-grade suits.


After going up the stairs to the third floor, he finally saw a counter in the northwest corner under Feng Rui’s guidance.



Under the exquisite glass counter, rows of beautiful fountain pens lay quietly in black velvet boxes, with only a few samples having their caps opened, deliberately revealing their golden iridium nibs.


Under the sunlight, those 14k gold nibs glittered, emanating the pride of history and time.


“Hero pen” had strong words trademark, inscribed on the side of the counter, it looked extra high-grade and dominant.



Wang Juan, the clerk at the stationery counter in the boutique shopping mall, had been feeling depressed these past few days.


Not long after the mall was newly opened, leadership was highly discussed and a special counter was opened next to the original Parker pens and Montblanc counters for local hero pens, claiming to support domestic high-quality products.


But this business had always been lukewarm. Look, she had been open for more than ten days, and the entire Hero Gold Pen counter had only sold a few.



It wasn’t surprising to say that Chinese people either bought cheap pens for a few yuan each as writing tools, or they specialized in buying high-end foreign gold pens as gifts. The positioning of domestically produced gold pens with slightly higher prices was really awkward.


It wasn’t as expensive as those high-end foreign goods, but it was also enough for a working family to pay for meals for several days. How could ordinary people be willing to buy them?



She sat at the counter, lazily looking at the boy in front of the glass cabinet. She ran alone to look at the pen and had been looking at it for so long.


It looks like he had no money.


The boy finally lifted his head, he seemed a little shy and nervous, and said to her: “Auntie, this pen, can you take it out for me to see?”





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