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New York Wise Detective

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"New York Wise Detective" is a riveting detective novel with undertones of mystery. This tale fuses archaeological exploration, treasure appraisal and collection, detective reasoning, and enigmatic analysis - intertwined with stories of ancient and modern folklore. Let's dive into this mysterious world together! The protagonist of the story, Kirk Hull, is not a master detective, but rather the epitome of an unlikely hero. Hull is innocently yet inevitably drawn into a world of archaeological adventure, treasure collection, and detective riddles. This narrative is imbued with suspense and drama, intriguing readers and keeping them on the edge of their seats. If you find pleasure in unraveling mysteries and detective stories, "New York Wise Detective" is a must-read. New York is a bustling metropolis known for its enigma, underlining the uncanny character that befits the city's very own eccentricity. The novel "New York Wise Detective" follows Kirk Hull, a likable and witty protagonist with an unlikely stroke of sleuth aptitude. The narrative begins with Hull, an ordinary man who accidentally immerses himself in a world of antique appraisal, archaeological exploration, and detective reasoning. His adventures span from the discovery of a long-forgotten tomb in Egypt to the bustling antique auctions in the heart of the Big Apple. The mysteries and treasures he uncovers along his journey are the subjects of folklore, creating intricate storylines that are as thrilling as they are enlightening. Throughout Hull's escapades, he is not only confronted by baffling mysteries but also given the chance to explore and understand the incredible world of archaeological treasure. The narrative maintains a careful balance between Hull's bumbling nature and the gravity of his discoveries, keeping readers engaged and rooting for him. As the story unfolds, Hull's genius in solving complex puzzles and mysteries becomes apparent. The narrative weaves in with tales of ancient civilizations, appraising and collecting valuable treasures while embarking on thrilling yet dangerous expeditions. His adventures reveal the enigmatic cultures of both the past and present, showcasing a captivating blend of mystery and drama. The novel boasts suspenseful plotlines and clever reasoning keeping readers intrigued and awaiting the unfolding of every antique item or archaeological find. "New York Wise Detective" represents not only a tribute to detective reasoning and intriguing mysteries but also the exploration and appreciation of our diverse world's mysteries and treasures. The narrative is a must-read for anyone invested in suspenseful detective tales intertwined within a world of historical and cultural enigmas.

Late Night Tip-off

Beep, beep, beep...

The spring chill is still nipping; under the pitch-dark night, the streets in the midnight hours are eerily quiet. The sharp ringtone cuts through the heavy curtain of the night, its piercing sound is much like a knife through the throat—the metallic scent of blood spreading into the air.

Jeff Minghella's hands dance rapidly on the keyboard, unconsciously letting the phone ring. But, when it starts buzzing relentlessly like the infamous "ring from midnight," Jeff loses his patience. He takes his eyes off the computer and glances around the room. It's empty.

The office at two A.M. is chillingly cold. Whatever warmth still lingers in the air seems to have been devoured by the frozen night. He can hardly feel his toes, the March temperature in New York was still wintry. If possible, he would rather crawl under the covers than munching cookies in the office.

Jeff is irritated — it's always he who stays late.

But what can he do?

In the newspaper industry, having writing skills and capability means nothing without proper resources and networking. No unique stories mean no success; other than trying his hardest, he's got no other choice.

All he is waiting for is a break in his dwarfed career - just one exclusive story.

He picks up his coffee cup, gulping down every bit of the black liquid. Then, he realizes that it's already cold, sending a chill down his spine.

Beep, beep...

The phone continues its relentless ringing.

Grumbling, Jeff finally picks up the phone, "New York Times, Jeff Minghella."

A voice distorted like Donald Duck comes from the other end: "Did you know there's a serial killer targeting homeless people in New York?"

"What?" Jeff hasn't had the chance to recover from the cold coffee.

"You heard me. Let me clue you in - he's already killed seven homeless black men. Each of them had their throats cut and a little finger severed. But no one seems to care."

Jeff: ……

Involuntarily, he holds his breath as his brain jolts awake from the cold, clearing up in an instant — much better than caffeinated beverages.

Stay calm, just stay calm.

"Who are you?" Jeff needs to take control.

However, the person on the other end of the phone is not making it easy, "So you're just like the NYPD, not interested?"

Jeff seizes on a new key word, NYPD, his voice shaking revealing his innermost desires and urgency, "No, I'm interested. Extremely interested. Blacks? Are you saying all the victims were black?"

"Yes."

"But why hasn't there been any relevant reports so far?" Jeff tries to calm himself down, thinking it could be a prank call.

However!

Adrenaline rushes him, overriding his better judgement, "Who are you? How did you know all this? Are you the killer?"

Three questions in a row.

Jeff can't help but hold his breath.

The English translation to the given excerpt is:

But on the other end of the phone, there is no sound, as if it has quietly slipped into the darkness.

"That voice calmly flowed out of the abyss, "Jeff, you're not listening".

Jeff couldn't help but shiver.

The elegant and composed dialogue was not at all hostile; on the contrary, it was comforting as a gentle breeze, but the warmth hidden in the tone was chilling.

Jeff wasn't aware himself as he unconsciously swallowed, unable to make any noise.

“Jeff.”

"Oh... Jeff, Jeff, Jeff."

Calling out, over and over again, like a soft murmur, but it grabbed and held onto Jeff's attention, making him extremely tense.

“Jeff, I'm just a concerned citizen. My hands are not covered in blood, but NYPD's are.”

“People inside the bureau don’t care about this at all. They care about their overtime pay, they care about elections, they worry that such a case will appear this year.”

“Perhaps, the only thing they don't care about is these lost lives.”

Jeff, enlightened in an instant, all the clues are pieced together—

The year 2012, an election year, everything becomes sensitive, with various factors influencing the situation.

If a serial killer targeting black people emerges in New York at this time, it wouldn't be good news; it could even cause a series of uproars.

So, what would the investigation bureau do?

Even if there are consecutive bodies found, they refuse to link the cases, they deny the existence of a serial killer and treat them as separate cases.

Dig deeper, the homeless are marginalized people, without family or friends, their deaths might even go unnoticed. The investigation bureau can hastily close the case as accidental or natural deaths, or put it on hold for lack of clues. It won’t catch anyone's attention, they can easily cover it up.

Thus, a potential serial killer case gets devolved into seven unrelated homeless men's accidental death cases.

No wonder!

No one cares.

Moreover, the other end of the phone uses the subject "Investigation Bureau", not the commonly known NYPD, it's evidently not particularly referring to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, but a specific division under the NYPD.

Details are key, immediately he can tell this is an insider.

Jeff's sleepiness is all gone, the light bulb in his mind lights up, his thoughts start running again.

At this point, Jeff can't feel the darkness and cold at all, a surge of adrenaline rushes towards his heart.

He needs to stay rational.

The heavier the news, the more careful; the more sensational, the cooler he needs to be. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, he needs to grasp it tightly.

This is his exclusive scoop.

His brain starts working again.

“But how do you prove these?”

“You know I can’t just believe a stranger and publish a news with no sources on the New York Times.”

Usually, such a special and impactful event requires at least two news sources for confirmation before they can report the news.

If they want to further confirm the nature of truth, the reliability and credibility of the news source also need to be confirmed. Otherwise, the editor won't give the green light—

After all, this is the "New York Times", not a tabloid, nor internet rumors.

Jeff's statement is actually trying to get the other end of the phone to reveal their identity.

However, he failed.

"Well, that's your problem, not mine. Otherwise, I should be the one working for the 'New York Times', not you, right?"

Jeff: …… Was he just scoffed at?

D*mn!

“But!” Jeff stands up abruptly.

Only to be interrupted by the voice, “There’s no but.”

“You need evidence, I can give you evidence, I decide, so, have you got a pen and paper ready for note-taking?”

Jeff listens to the order given from the receiver, hesitating for a second, finally, he obediently takes out a pen and paper, then waits.

And then—

“Hey, Jeff, are you ready?”

In an instant, Jeff feels like he's back in the dictation hour of his elementary English class, the kind and friendly voice is much like a gentle English teacher.

“Yes.” As soon as his firm answer escapes his lips, Jeff realizes that he’s in an unfavorable position, wishing he could bite off his own tongue.

D*mn!

“Good boy.”

From the other end of the receiver, Jeff isn't sure if it's just his imagination, but the Donald Duck-like voice seems to have a hint of laughter in it.

He wanted to curse.

But this time, the other party didn't leave Jeff any time to react, he continued speaking—

"Chris Adams."

"Dennis Curtis."

And so it goes...

Soon, Jeff understands that the names were all victims', may they rest in peace, seven in total.

This is the best form of evidence.

Each name represents a life, no need for further explanation, a chain of deaths laid out in front of him.

As long as he has these names, he will be able to start his investigation in the police's public archives and confirm the keywords, “throat cutting,” and “little finger” etc. Using the list, he can also confirm with his trusted sources within the police department about some of the details that haven’t been made public.

When that time comes, it will be impossible to hide the truth.

Jeff's heart is pounding uncontrollably, almost out of breath, the cool early morning filling his head and heart with scorching heat, cultimating overwhelming excitement. Using the remaining rationality he has left to control himself, he asks for confirmation once again.

“These are the names of the victims, right?”

On the other end of the receiver, silence ensued.

One short second, but it felt like a century.

“Good night, Jeff.”

The next second, the phone hangs up, leaving Jeff with only the busy tone.

……

On the other end of the phone, Kirk Hull exhaled a long sigh, putting the voice changer into his pocket and stuffing his hands into his pockets as well.

Unconsciously, he had traveled from China in 2023 to New York in 2012 for a full three weeks.

Being a private detective now, compared to his previous work as a policeman, had many differences, but there were also more commonalities than imagined, and it wasn't difficult to adapt.

Exactly ten days ago, Kirk received a commission from a black man, Richard Curtis.

This was a somewhat famous character in Greenwich Village, New York. He owned six different types of bars, each with its own unique style. He nurtured countless famous singers, and to this day, numerous independent musicians aspire to step onto the performance stage of these bars, with styles ranging from jazz to folk, rock, and blues.

Curtis’s only son, around three years ago, had a falling out with his family, ran away from home, and then completely disappeared.

It wasn't until three weeks ago that Richard received a phone call from the police station inviting him to identify a body.

Once, Richard kept telling himself to act as if he didn't have a son. But when he actually saw his son's body, he aged ten years overnight.

The sorrow of an older man sending off a young man hadn't had time to subside when the police station, citing "a high probability of a violent incident caused by a robbery but due to the large mobility of the homeless and a lack of direct evidence, the suspect cannot be confirmed", gave no progress in the investigation and it seemed to be completely stagnating.

Richard found this hard to accept.

Richard did not trust the police. His grudges with the NYPD were his entrepreneurial history, but also a history of blood and tears. So, he turned to Kirk.

He offered a hundred dollars an hour.

Richard wanted to know what happened to Denis over these three years and what he experienced that led him to such an end.

Kirk took the job.

After preliminary investigation, Kirk found something suspicious.

"Little finger missing", this crime detail was not publicized but recorded in the investigation report, and it did not seem like a simple case of violent robbery.

Later, Kirk found that there were at least seven similar cases in the NYPD files during this period.

More importantly, all the victims were homeless.

There was a very, very high chance that it was the work of a serial killer.

Kirk thought that it would be difficult to investigate with his own abilities.

After all, the biggest difference between a serial killer and ordinary cases is that the latter starts with the individual, and the motive for the crime can be traced; the former must start from the case, and the different clues from different cases must be connected to find the modus operandi, different in nature.

The workload and nature of the work were completely different.

However, Richard offered Kirk an irresistible condition:

Find the truth and the hourly wage would double; if the offender could be brought to justice, the wage would double again, with an additional bonus -

"In that case, there would be no need for me to hire a professional killer."

So Richard said.

Storm is Brewing

The serial killer case was a challenge, but not impossible to tackle.

If they were to launch an investigation, the NYPD would need to be mobilized.

On one hand, the clues are plentiful yet scattered.

Due to his limited energy, Kirk would need to use official resources to his advantage; then, based on the NYPD's investigation, sift through the clues.

On the other hand, in order to arrest and prosecute the murderer through legal means.

The evidence gathered by a private detective cannot be used in court for criminal cases, so Kirk had to lead the NYPD's investigation as well.

This was difficult, yet the payoff was rich.

So, Kirk took the case on.

Starting off, Kirk made Richard Curtis publicize his discontent about the lack of attention his case received. Through his contacts, he would draw attention to the case, gather public support, and put pressure on the NYPD. The ultimate goal was to push the investigation forward.

Heroes

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