The slave trader noticed the crowd getting bigger. He did not immediately sell the child slaves. Instead, he told his two brawny subordinates to push a huge iron cage up to the platform. Inside the cage were several muscular young men. Some of them were dark skinned, some were light-skinned, some were tall and some were short. The dark-skinned slaves were mostly barbarians from the Southern mountains while the light-skinned slaves were mostly natives of the Empire. Most of them were convicts who were bought out of prison by the slave traders as slaves.
“These strong fellows- buy them for work! One can do two… no, three persons’ worth of work! Look at their bodies! Look at their muscles! Feeding them two simple meals a day is enough! Five gold coins! Five gold coins for each slave! What? Expensive? It is not expensive! I do honest business! How about this? If you buy an adult slave, I will give you a free child slave! Buy one, get one free!”
The slave trader’s spit flew in all directions as he spoke. After that, he signaled his two brawny subordinates with his eyes. His subordinates understood the signal and used their whips to threaten the slaves in the cage. The slaves were frightened by the whip and stood up one after another. A few of the dark-skinned slaves were very angry and glared at the two subordinates.
”Look at this face! Look!” The slave trader shouted even louder. There were a few people, dressed in magnificent clothes, who stood below the platform. They continuously instructed their subordinates and servants to bid for the slaves.
“Why do these slaves look dispirited and weak?” Jojo could not help but ask.
Rody coldly replied, “If a person does have enough to eat for days, of course they would look dispirited! These people are young and strong. If they had eaten enough, they would be full of energy. I am afraid some of them might fight back and run away.”
Jojo sighed and felt discomfort in her heart. Although she had a few slaves in her home, she had never understood their suffering. The moment she saw those pitiful people, a trace of compassion formed in her heart.
The young and strong slaves were very popular. In a short period, the slaves were all sold out. That slave trader was very happy as he held the money. The slaves were sent to the back of the platform to be collected by their buyers.
When the cage on the platform was emptied, the slave trader’s subordinates slowly pushed the cage down from the platform.
The slave trader walked in front of a row of children. He pinched one of the little girl’s soft and lovely cheeks and shouted, “Take a look at her! Quick, take a look at her! What a fair and cute child! Although she is still young, if you buy her and raise her for three to five years, she will become a beauty! Masters, buy one back. She will become a delicate beauty! Ten golds! Just ten golds!”
The little girl was about eleven or twelve years old. She was so frightened that she turned pale and her eyes were full of tears. However, she saw the brawny subordinate holding a whip next to her and did not dare to cry out.
Below the platform, a fat man dressed in a gorgeous leather gown shouted, “Ten gold coins? That is too expensive! It was just five gold coins for an adult!”
The slave trader smiled happily and said, “Master, I am always reasonable when it comes to business! Ten golds to buy the little girl and I will give you a little boy free of charge. How about that?”
The buyers below the platform whispered to one another.
Someone immediately shouted, “What is the use of the little boy? He is too young and will not be able to work for us! If I bought him back, I would need to raise him for another few years before he becomes a laborer!”
In the slave trading business, middle-aged pretty ladies and strong men were the most popular among all. Other than that, young pretty little girls were also quite popular. However, nobody was willing to buy young little boys.
Nevertheless, the slave trader was very smart. He smiled and said, “Masters, look at these little children. I carefully selected each and every one of them. They are all smart and refined little boys. Buy them and guide them a bit. They will become clever and charming servants. Definitely worth it! On top of that, I am giving them to you free of charge! Masters, please think about it. With ten gold coins, you can buy a little beauty and get a smart little boy for free. It is absolutely a good bargain!”
The slave trader saw that audience still hesitated. He bit his lip and painfully shouted, “How about this? Eight gold coins! Eight gold coins! Buy a little girl and get a little boy for free!”
As he spoke, he pinched the little girl’s cheeks.
They saw that the little girl on the platform was really delicate and pretty. In a short period of time, a few well-dressed buyers were tempted. A few of them were actually involved in the prostitution business. They planned to buy the little girl, train her for a while and get her to start accepting customers.
Rody felt gloomy and angry. He was born as an ordinary citizen and he knew that some of the slaves were people brought back from pillaged villages at the borders. There were also some who were poor local citizens. They were forced to sell their children to survive.
However, slavery was legal in the Empire. It had been like this for 200 years. Although Rody felt that it was unfair, he was helpless.
Jojo felt extremely anxious in her heart as she had the intention of buying all the little girls and desperately pulled at Rody’s clothes. However, Rody was gloomy and silent. She could not hold back any longer and shouted, “Eight golds each! I want them all!”
While the audience still hesitated, Jojo had shouted and caused an uproar. The slave trader was attracted by Jojo’s words. He immediately looked at her and smiled as he said, “Miss, you have good judgment!”
Before the slave trader could finish speaking, some of the people had already quit. The other buyers were stirred up and did not want to let Jojo buy the little girls first. They were reluctant to let all the good stuff in front of them be bought by someone else and loudly protested.
A sharp and grating voice sounded out from the audience, “Miss, aren’t you being unreasonable? There are so many people here and yet you want to buy them all alone?”
A few muscular young men separated the audience. They surrounded and guarded a pale and thin well dressed middle-aged man through the crowd. The middle-aged man walked towards Rody and Jojo.
The others who saw the middle-aged man immediately shut up. Some of them were pushed away by his subordinates. Although they were unwilling, they immediately kept quiet and moved out of the way.
“Whatever I buy is my business. It has nothing to do with you! Who are you? How dare you control me?” Jojo’s face sank.
When the middle-aged man walked to the front, he saw a very charming young lady standing in front of him. His eyes turned bright and his originally gloomy expression became happy. He almost started to drool as he sighed.
She is such an extraordinary beauty! She is much prettier compared to the prostitutes at home!
He then looked at Jojo and laughed. “Miss, what are you trying to do buying so many girls? How about you let me buy them and we can become friends? How should I address you? You want to buy all these little girls, does that mean you also own a brothel? In that case, we are a family! How about it? Where is your brothel? I will visit next time!”
Jojo was angry and her face turned red. With her noble status, she was not going to bear such insults. Before she could speak, Rody coldly said, “Get lost!”
The person’s face sank. He was willing to give way when talking to Jojo. But when he talked to a man, he did not look pleasant. He was the most prestigious person in the local area. Before he could even speak, his subordinates had already shouted, “Who do you think you are? You dare speak to Master Trey like that?” Some of them pulled out their swords and waited for their master to give them the order.
Rody’s bodyguards had also pulled out their swords long before. Both parties glared at each other in the tense atmosphere.
Rody frowned. He did not want to cause any trouble. He was disgusted by slavery. That was also why he did not have any intention of buying slaves. He coldly glanced at the middle-aged man, pulled Jojo away and decided to leave.
However, Master Trey waved his hand, and his subordinates blocked them from leaving. Master Trey then looked all over Jojo’s body and suddenly laughed. “Great, you have some courage! It has been a while since I met anybody in West Hill City who had the courage to talk back to me like that! Boy, you are brave! Let me tell you, I want all these people today! I want the little beauties and also that big beauty! If you understand what I mean, you better move out of the way quickly! Otherwise, I will throw you into the city river and feed you to the fishes!”
Rody immediately stopped. Initially, he was unwilling to fight for pointless things like slaves. However, the middle-aged man had angered him and was asking to be killed. Rody had killed a lot of people in the Northwest and was no longer a meek person.
Trey could feel the brave and heroic young man coldly glare at him. Rody’s gaze sent a chill down his spine. However, Trey noticed that his subordinates outnumbered his opponent’s so, he had more courage. However, the slave trader was sweating and feeling anxious. He was just doing business but their subordinates had already pulled out their swords. He dared not offend either one of them and shouted, “Masters, please calm down! It is just a few slaves! I still have a lot more! Don’t be angry! You do not need to fight!” Unfortunately, everyone ignored him. Trey once again looked at Jojo. The longer he looked, the harder it was for him to breath. His eyes showed an ominous glint. He realized that he had more subordinates so he decided to kill Rody and his subordinates to get the beauty.
They looked unfamiliar. Trey believed that they were not locals. Plus, they did not look like ordinary citizens as well. However, based on his own power and influence in the West Hill City, he believed that the young man and woman would not be able to do much.
Trey gave an eye signal to his subordinates. A dozen of his subordinates immediately surrounded the other party. The crowd saw them revealing their swords and immediately moved far away.
Rody coldly asked, “What do you want?”
“What do I want?” Trey laughed and thought Rody was frightened. He shouted loudly, “Be a good boy and leave that young lady. Then I won’t make things difficult for you!”
Jojo didn’t wait for Rody to speak and laughed as she replied, “You talk as though you are a notable person. Does the entire West Hill City belong to you?”
Trey laughed and said, “Close enough. Young lady, you better be obedient and follow me back!”
Jojo looked to the side and pulled Rody’s clothes to prevent him from speaking. She then smiled and said, “You want me to go with you? I’m afraid my family will not consent.”
“They will not consent?” Trey smiled happily and said, “Where is your family? I will send my subordinates to talk to them. They will not disagree!” Trey almost lost himself when he saw Jojo’s smile.
Jojo deliberately sighed and replied, “My parents have passed away but my sister will definitely not agree to let me go with you!”
Trey’s eyes turned bright and said, “You have a sister? You are so beautiful. Your sister must be a beauty as well! How about this, I will send my people and bring your sister over so that both of you can go back with me!”
Jojo stopped smiling and said, “Well, if you humiliate me, at most, you will be arrested and thrown into prison for a few years. However, if you insult my sister, you are asking for death…”