I rubbed my eyes in shock. The man, who just rescued us, threw the knife aside and wrapped his injured hand with a sleeve.
“I wanted to visit you, but I didn’t know I would be involved in something like this,” the man said.
“Mr. Lee!” I gasped. “W... What are you doing here?”
“I just said I wanted to visit you.” Mr. Lee glanced at the attacker carefully. “And what do we have here?”
Then we heard a shot and flinched. Grumpy and the others caught up with us. Grumpy fired a warning shot. We all froze, waiting for attacker’s move. He clucked with dissatisfaction and ran away. Grumpy swore and ran after him. Mr. Lee sighed and sat on the ground.
“Are you okay?” I asked worried. He took a direct hit on his hand. My members came closer to us. “How did you find us?”
“One of your staff told me about the current situation. I was going to meet you at the police station, but I saw this situation and couldn’t help myself but to rescue you.”
“It was too dangerous!” I protested angry.
“Do I have to hear it from your mouth?”
I bit my lip nervously. Did he know all the mess we were in?
“Well?” He looked at us one after another. “Did you get it?”
“Get what?” Inseong asked.
“What these numbers refer to?”
I didn’t answer but stared at him surprised.
“How did you know about the numbers?” I blurted finally.
“How? Oh, come on! Before I came here, I was in the company. Everyone talks about it.”
“Oh, is that so?” I muttered. I wanted to stand up, but someone pulled me back to the ground. Right, I forgot about E.T. “When Grumpy... that detective will come back, ask for help. I don’t think you’ll be safe anytime soon.”
“And whose fault is that?” E.T. growled. He pushed me and got up himself.
“Your,” Youjin said sharply, poking E.T.’s chest with a finger. “If you did LISTEN instead of jerking proudly around, showing how great you are, you would be safe!”
“Hyung...” I grabbed Youjin’s hand, standing on my feet. Only now I realized that I had dirty hands. I must have squeezed the pipe too hard.
“W... Whatever!” E.T. snorted with contempt. “I’m going home.”
“Go to the police station!” I ordered him. “Anytime –”
“Don’t you dare –!”
“I’ll go with him,” Mr. Lee said suddenly, grabbing E.T.’s arm.
“What the heck, man!?”
“But your hand –”
“It’s nothing, Jihun-ah. Go with your manager to the dorm. I’ll meet you there.”
Few hours later Mr. Lee came to our dorm, as he promised. We were already sitting there with manager. Grumpy said he’ll join us as soon as he deals with his work. And from what we heard, E.T. safely reached his dorm. Their security will be strengthened.
“Why didn’t you tell me you were coming, Shinam-ah?” manager asked with disbelief.
“Surprise?” Mr. Lee laughed, but after a moment he became serious again. “So, what is it about? With these numbers, hooded man and police?”
“I still can’t believe everyone talks about it like it’s some show,” manager muttered, but was ignored.
Well, Mr. Lee already knew so much, so we told him everything we knew. Then we started to analyze the numbers once again.
“The first ones tell us the date,” I said. “We’re sure about this. But we still don’t know if it’s 7th of March or 3rd of July. Two numbers remain unknown.”
“Let me explain it to you then.” We heard and Grumpy hurried toward us. He nearly threw himself on the sofa next to me, and bit the cigarette. Manager snatched it from him irritated, but Grumpy was so excited, that he didn’t even realize that. “Give me coffee, boy,” he said to Youjin.
“Did you solve it?” I said shocked. It could be the only reason why he was so energetic.
“Almost. But we’re close, kiddo. Give me these.” He took the numbers and started to explain. “These three are the date, right? We had two options, but it seems that the right one is 3rd of July.”
“Why?” Seungjun asked.
“The culprit called Choi Seoyun, because he was her close friend. From what we know so far, Seoyun was a heiress to a huge fortune from her grandfather, here in Seoul. She was really close to her twin sister, who died from illness on 3rd of July five years ago. As you know, people usually take the important date to hide something, as long as few people know about it. Fortunately, her aunt was so devastated after Seoyun’s death that she told us everything. When we heard about the date of her twin’s passing, I remembered these numbers. Seoyun had also an apartment in Hwang-ya, then maybe that’s why she was murdered there. If it really was all about the money, these two last numbers may refer to the bank.”
“The bank?” I repeated. “But why... What are you doing?” I asked Mr. Lee, who was going round and round our dorm, as if he was looking for something.
“HA! Got you...” He grabbed something from behind the fridge. He showed us a tiny black equipment. “You wondered how this psycho knew about your every move.”
“Right!” Inseong shouted suddenly. “We were talking about everything mostly in our dorm! Also in a car and company –”
“I’ll call them to check,” manager said and went out to make a call.
“When... ?” I gasped, but I probably already knew the answer. He was here earlier. And he took a photo of me and E.T. in the company, so he must have been there too. Into the car he could got anytime, for example when we were panicking outside the haunting house...
God, he really was around us all the time... I suddenly felt sick when I thought about it. I ran to the bathroom. Seungjun went after me. He was massaging (and scratching, by taking the opportunity) my back, while I was coming back to my senses. We returned to the living room after five minutes and could continue the talk. Meanwhile manager found out that there were bugs in the company and the car, as we expected.
“So...” Youjin said silently. “Let’s say that the last numbers refer to the bank. What now?”
“Now we’ll go to the bank and check if they have a safe with number six or seven under Choi Seoyun’s name.”