The VIP level of Grand Valley Hospital experienced an unprecedented silence at midnight.
In the dimly lit ward, the lights flickered and abruptly went out, enveloping the area in darkness.
A momentary chaos ensued on the floor, but soon after, the power was restored.
In response, a group of nurses hurriedly rushed to the VIP level and entered various wards.
The police officer standing watch outside Benedict’s ward was just about to end his shift. The unusual
commotion raised his interest, and he asked an approaching nurse, “What’s going on? Why do you
need to enter the ward at this time?”
The young nurse explained anxiously, “Didn’t you notice the power outage earlier? Please let me in. I
need to re-calibrate all the equipment in the ward. It’s urgent! It could put the patient’s life at risk.”
The police officer acquiesced to her request considering the urgency of the situation.
There were no visitors in the ward. The nurse closed the door and identified her target, ignoring the
beeping of the malfunctioning monitoring equipment.
She dashed to the crib and grabbed the baby, still swaddled in his blankets. At the window, she
hesitated briefly instead of escaping.
Her assessing gaze roved across the ward. Why is everything different from my earlier rehearsal? No
one is keeping watch. This is happening far too smoothly.
Just then, alarm bells rang throughout the hospital, followed by an announcement, “There’s a thief in
the hospital! Someone is taking advantage of the chaos after the power outage to commit a robbery. All
staff, please be on alert!”
All the lights came on, leaving the nurse no time to think.
She hurriedly jumped out of the window and darted into a nearby alley with her young hostage.
Someone was already waiting for her in the alley. Thus, she dashed into a waiting car and made a
Sometime later, the men waiting at the secluded villa heard some noise from the front door and stood
Quintrell, who still wore his sunglasses despite the late hour, smiled and asked, “Do you have the
The nurse, who was actually his subordinate in disguise, nodded and handed the baby over.
“Not bad. Mr. Kron, you didn’t believe me when I told you, you were wasting half your money on your
subordinates. You still need my people to finish the last step.”
As he spoke, Quintrell carefully cradled the baby and smiled tenderly. “Darling baby, do you know how
worried your dad must be right now? I would pay a million to see his expression right now.”
As soon as he spoke, his smile froze in place the moment he lifted the blankets.
Quintrell’s gaze burned with fury in a matter of seconds. He raised his leg and kicked his subordinate,
demanding, “What is this? Were you carrying out your mission like some brainless robot?”
Taken by surprise, his subordinate fell to the ground. She had been expecting some praise for her work
and instead seemed horrified. “I-I didn’t make a mistake.”
“Take a good look at what you’ve brought back!”
The blankets fell to the ground and out rolled a fake baby doll.
The unease that struck her earlier returned. It was a trap!
She stammered, “W-We sent people in to confirm this earlier. They did see that Newton fellow move
the baby to this ward…”
A frightening expression appeared on Quintrell’s face, and his subordinate kept her head lowered. She
pleaded repeatedly for mercy, but he waved some men forward and ordered, “Take her away.”
Alas, her anguished pleas fell on deaf ears as she was dragged away.
Channing stood aside quietly and fiddled with the bangle on his hand. He finally spoke up for the first
time that night. “I said it before. My men are only responsible for creating an opportunity for your men to
infiltrate. What happens after is none of my business.”
Despite his wooden expression, his tone betrayed his expectations that the kidnapping would fail.
He yawned slowly and clicked his tongue before muttering, “Complaining about the caliber of my men
when your men also fell for his tricks? I wonder if you’d get to keep your head when Mr. Wendell finds
out about this.”
Quintrell turned around and shot Channing a piercing gaze. “Hmph, why should we be scared? We still
have a trump card on our hands.”
He straightened out his clothes and slowly stretched his neck. “Our lovely Mrs. Jenson must still be
waiting in the basement. Let me check on her.”
Jasper hurriedly stopped him and said coldly, “Quintrell, let me remind you that Mr. Kron was the one
who kidnapped Mrs. Jenson. She has nothing to do with you. Don’t try to have any designs on her
because you failed to find yourself another hostage.”
The capable subordinate was rapidly becoming an eyesore to Quintrell. He argued, “Mr. Kron, we’ve
already poked the hornet’s nest. If we don’t make use of Mrs. Jenson now, you’ll lose your opportunity
for a pretty penny.”
Channing shook his head and warned, “I’m sorry, but I’ve lost complete faith in you after this failure. If
you still desire a partnership, you’ll need to invite Mr. Wendell down in person.”
Even Quintrell knew that his humiliating failure would be difficult to forgive without Hamish’s personal
He eventually nodded in agreement after a prolonged staredown with Channing.
He dialed Hamish’s number, and the line connected quickly. Subsequently, a brash, masculine voice
drifted through the receiver.
Quintrell barely managed to explain the events that happened earlier before Hamish interjected
crudely, “A bunch of losers! Get Cedrick on the line now. His woman is in our hands now; I bet he
hasn’t slept a wink in days!”
Channing dutifully dialed Cedrick’s number and put the call on loudspeaker.
A man’s calm, deep voice rang out. “Who is this?”
“Mr. Jenson, have you been tossing and turning in your sleep since your wife went missing?”
Cedrick feigned distress and pleaded, “Let her go. We can talk about this.”
A wicked cackle escaped Hamish, who drawled, “Asking for her immediate release? How boring.
Missing your wife, aren’t you, Mr. Jenson? Would you like her arm or her leg? Why don’t I send one of
them over tonight?”
Even though he knew Hamish was boasting and that Gwendolyn was safe, Cedrick was still infuriated
by the man’s taunting.
I’ll slash him to pieces once I get my hands on him.
Cedrick knew he had to keep up his act until they had truly reeled Hamish into their trap.
Playing the part of a worried husband, he asked, “What do you want?”
Hamish scoffed and replied, “Dear Mr. Jenson, you and your wife are worth hundreds of billions, but I’m
only asking for thirty billion. Oh, and resign from your post in the Federal Bureau of Investigation. That’s
not too much to ask, is it?”
Silence ensued, prompting Hamish to say, “We’ll meet in person to verify the terms of this deal. See
you at ten in the morning tomorrow at Broadbay Hill. You must come alone.”
His tone turned downright eerie as he added, “Otherwise, Gwendolyn will be losing more than just her
The phone call ended abruptly.
A series of mechanical beeps were the only audible sounds in Cedrick’s car.
Neville and Swain exchanged a glance before rubbing their fists together. “Boss, that snake is finally
showing himself. We’ll make sure to capture him alive tomorrow!”
Instead of replying, Cedrick sighed to himself in relief. Fishing out the mastermind behind the milk
powder contamination case lifted a hefty weight off his shoulders.
He glanced at his subordinates and asked, “You make it sound so easy. We need thirty billion in cold
hard cash tomorrow. Are you going to prepare that for me?”
A dumbfounded Swain replied, “Wait a minute, Boss. Are you asking us to donate our salary? Are you
really that poor?”
The question earned him some eye-rolling from Neville, who chided, “You id*ot, we’re meeting him
tomorrow morning! The banks are already closed. Where can we find so much money? We’ll need
everyone’s help at the headquarters tonight.”
Cedrick looked up at the dark sky. A different hypothesis was forming in his mind.
His investigations had revealed Hamish’s close ties to the milk powder contamination case, and the
latter’s instructions to kidnap Benedict only made him more suspicious.
The sudden proposal to use Gwendolyn for ransom raised Cedrick’s guard.
Is he really after my money? It almost feels too easy. It can’t be as straightforward as it seems.
As that thought crossed his mind, Cedrick’s gaze darkened, and he ordered, “I want both of you to
each lead a team tomorrow morning. Also, arrange for additional guards at Grand Valley Hospital and
With Hamish’s objectives unclear, Cedrick could not afford to allow the man any opportunity to harm his
Meanwhile, messy footsteps sounded outside the basement of the villa that held Gwendolyn captive.
Channing raised his phone as he approached the basement and instructed coldly, “Open the door.”
Chains jangled before the heavy door was pushed open.
The heavy cloud of dust caused some of the men with Channing to cough violently.
Channing angled his phone so that it captured the situation in the basement for the man on the other
end of the video call.
The camera soon landed on Gwendolyn, who lay in a lifeless heap on the bed, looking like a filthy,
Still, the dust and grime could not detract from her beauty.
“Is she dead?” asked Hamish on the other end of the line.
“Of course not. She’s worthless if she’s dead. I can’t let her ruin my plan.” Channing tilted his jaw
toward Jasper and deliberately barked, “Check on her!”
Gwendolyn was roughly pulled up from the bed by the collar of her shirt.
Her eyes opened weakly into slits.
Hamish remained silent for a long while as he appeared to scrutinize Gwendolyn’s condition. Satisfied,
he said, “Not bad. Remember to give her some water and keep her alive.”
He hung up, and Channing’s expression immediately flipped into one of concern.
Gone was Channing’s earlier ferocity as he uttered, “You’ve been through a lot, Mrs. Jenson.”
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