Now it seems, things in Dongshigu village in northeast Shandong province are back to normal.
Blind activist Chen Guangcheng's hometown isn't the prison it used to be -- because local authorities have destroyed all signs of any kind of containment due to an upcoming investigation, including the "black houses" where Chen's supporters were detained and beaten.
"Not a shred of evidence is left after they've destroyed everything at the scene. Everything has been moved," Chen Guangfu said. "The two guard posts that were built specially for putting Guangcheng under house imprisonment at the entrance of the village," he said. "For the past two years, countless netizens endured violent beatings in these houses."
Instead of rings of thugs encircling the village, people can now move freely in and out after the two men's families were barred from leaving for years. The local authorities had encircled Guangcheng's home with walls, cameras and guards that apparently cost more than 30 million RMB ($4.7 million) a year.
But now all this evidence is gone as Chen had asked Premier Wen Jiabao in a video message to investigate local authorities who kept him a prisoner in his own home for two years after he was released from prison.
And so now when investigators come to Dongshigu village to see what is going on, they will see no signs of any kind of intimidation or incarceration, or surveillance.
They will write that nothing happened and all these allegations are false.
After they leave, the walls, guards and cameras will come back out again since they have so much money to spend.
So much for Chen trying to paint local authorities into a corner -- they have tricked him again.