48 Hours a Day
Chapter 390 - Meet at Mary’s Cafe
Chapter 390 Meet at Mary’s Cafe
“Don’t you think we’ve gone too far?” Philip worriedly asked as they ran.
“Err… Too far?” Waldo repeated. To justify his multiple trips to the bathroom, he had forced himself to cram food down his already overloaded stomach, then pretend like he was not already past his limit. It wasn’t too bad when he was walking, but right now, as he tried to run, it felt as if his entire stomach was tumbling around inside him.
“Luke did save Justina and me from the casino’s men regardless, and he knows Edward too. What if he really wants to help?”
“Z said that the enemy is too powerful. We cannot take any risks right now. Don’t worry; he’s not in any real danger. The cops will soon realize that they were mistaken, and he’s not a fugitive. What we need to do now is to get away from this place before that happens!”
Waldo pushed the door open.
“Wait, that’s the second floor,” Philip reminded him.
floor, really? It felt 1
Waldo shook his head in exhaustion. “Second floor, really? It felt like we’ve been running for a very long time,” he panted. “That’s because you’ve been living in the attic for too long and need some exercise…”
Huffing and puffing, both men ran all the way to the parking lot and jumped into the car.
“Hurry! Hurry! Hurry! Move it!” Waldo urged as he repeatedly glanced behind them.
Philip, however, still took his time to buckle up his seatbelt. He then adjusted the rear-view mirror, looked left and right to make sure that no one else was following before finally starting up the car.
“Are you for real? At a time like this?!” Waldo looked at his partner in disbelief.
“Sorry, it’s become a habit,” Philip apologized as he stepped on the gas pedal and drove to the parking lot exit.
The two scrambled to pay the parking fee and even refused to take the change. They then sped away from the place. As they got further and further away from the department store, Waldo heaved a sigh of relief and collapsed in the passenger seat.
“Phew. That was close. We finally got rid of that problem. Victory high-five?”
“No, no!” Philip shook his head. Although he said that, he still offered up a palm and high-fived Waldo. “These few days have been the most exciting days in over twenty years of my life. Hey, you should contact the magician and the others, and tell them that we’ve escaped.”
“Alright.” Waldo took out his cell phone to make the call, but before he could dial the number, his phone rang.
Who is it?”
“Oh, it’s Little Boy. She had to stay behind to clean up the elevator and the security camera room making sure we didn’t leave any trace,” Waldo explained as he answered the call.
The voice that came from the other end, however, was Zhang Heng. “Meet me at Mary’s Café in fifteen minutes.”
Zhang Heng hung up as soon as he was done talking, not giving Waldo the chance to ask questions.
Less than ten minutes later, the white Mercedes-Benz pulled up in front of the café. Shortly after that, the car of an elevator maintenance company also stopped nearby, and two individuals exited the vehicle. They began to survey the area together with Philip and Waldo.
Zhang Heng turned to the petite girl next to him, in a baseball cap and dressed like a boy. “Let’s go,” he said.
The girl harrumphed and tried to yank her arm free from his hand, but failed.
Even though he was prepared for this outcome, being fooled put Zhang Heng in a less-than-good mood, especially since he had to tase a security guard to escape as quickly as possible. He did not mind the fact that Philip and Waldo escaped. They both must have thought that they were stealthy, but in reality, their secret eye contact with the girl in the baseball cap upon entering the department store didn’t escape his eyes.
With the experience gathered from Black Sail, Zhang Heng felt that their acting skills were seriously lacking, which was why he didn’t panic even though he lost sight of Phillip and Waldo. After shaking off the mall cops, he waited for the girl in the baseball cap to leave the mall before following her. Then, when she was crossing the road at the traffic light, he pressed the taser gun against her waist and contacted Waldo using her cell phone. Now, both parties would meet again at Mary’s Café.
This time, Zhang Heng was finally able to speak directly to the team behind Philip and Waldo.
“Are you their leader?” Zhang Heng looked at the ponytailed middle-aged man who resembled an artist.
“No, you seemed to have misunderstood something. We don’t have a leader. We are just a loose organization. In fact, we all have our own careers and life. On normal days, we are busy with our own things-our activities almost never clash. Many of them too just met for this assignment,” the man replied, “so, you can see us as a sort of interest group. I am the oldest in the group, so, if you’re looking for a leader, then I guess that’s me.”
“What you did is not something an interest group could do,” Zhang Heng retorted, “why did the security guards and plain-clothes suddenly attack me?”
“That’s because we did something to make them mistake you for a fugitive,” Ponytail answered. “Sorry about that. According to Waldo, you are very skillful—they wouldn’t have been able to escape under normal circumstances. We only did that as a last resort.”
“You hacked into the police systems?”
“That would be too much trouble. All we had to do was impersonate a police officer and call the manager of the mall and convince him that a wanted criminal is loose in his building,” Ponytail explained, “It’s all very straightforward. There are telecommunication operators called business phone systems, and there are loopholes in their regulations.
“This service was originally set up to facilitate the needs of businesses, where they could choose to change their phone number displayed on the other person’s phone. However, thanks to the aforementioned loopholes, the service can also be used to disguise your number as the police, the fire brigade, or even the bank when making a call or sending a message. Of course, such a service is only made available to specific customers—so, we still had to tweak a little something. Anyway, you can also use rented legal business phone networks to modify certain fields of the Initial Address Message (IAM) in the ISUP (ISDN User Part). Doing that will also achieve the same goal.”
It would have been better if the man hadn’t explained anything at all, because even after he did, Zhang Heng was still completely clueless. It gave him a clue, though, as to who this guy was. “You guys are all computer experts?” Zhang Heng asked.
“Uhh… although we each specialize in different things, we are about the same. We’re all geeks.”
“Even her?” Zhang Heng pointed at the tiny girl in the baseball cap he had kidnapped earlier.
“Yup. Little Boy. She’s our communications expert.”