Chapter 43: The Truth About Red Street Market
8 P.M. at Red Street Market.
The police station and the Town Hall had already been evacuated two days ago.
In contrast to the places that were ruined by the battle and needed rebuilding, Red Street Market had already reopened for business.
The entire street was brightly lit, full of hubbub and people moving about. The lowest-ranking gang members beckoned with their hands from the dark alleys as they waited for people. They would negotiate for a while before hastily entering a single-storey house.
At the front of a premier club, elegant hostesses solicited all kinds of customers from old drunkards to awkward virgins, and those born in influential families to foul smelling merchants. With their dazzling service and eye-catching, naked bodies, they devoured their customers' wallets.
The best was the numerous, neatly dressed carriage drivers. Their low-profile luxury carriages did not carry any signs or emblems... They would stop at the various clubs. Their servants would then very respectfully invite the ladies, who emerged from the clubs into the carriages before driving off far away. They would only return the next day. These were the truly extravagant and powerful customers. Their hidden identities would have made even the bosses of the big clubs tremble.
Everything was just the same as it was twenty days ago. It was as though Red Street Market had not experienced the bloody and frightening gang fight at all, as though the protectors of the street and tax collectors had not switched from Blood Bottle Gang to Black Street Brotherhood.
Everything, except for Red Street Market Centre.
The ruins of a dozen houses destroyed by an explosion caused by the Air Mystic lay there on the pitch-black site.
At this pitch-black site, dozens of people were busy digging the rubble. The sounds of iron digging into the earth rang non-stop.
Under the moonlight, one of the Six Powerhouses of the Brotherhood, the Chief of Intelligence, Kobryant Lance the Sleepless Eye wore a scarlet cloak. He stood in the middle of the ruins. Looking at the darkness around him and the numerous lights from the distance, he could not help but frown.
'It's too near…' he thought.
'The area of business for that club is too close to our excavation site.'
At a distance, one of the Sleepless whistled. That was a signal. 'Two people passed by. Everything is normal.'
Lance nodded at the other Sleepless in the darkness.
However, he saw the lights turn on at the top floor of the club next door. The light reached the road at their location and illuminated it. Lance snorted.
"It's too near..."
Behind him, a Sleepless immediately departed and chatted with another Brotherhood member for a moment. The latter then walked briskly towards the club.
A little while later, the lights from the club dimmed and the ruins were enveloped in darkness again.
'Should have let Rick extend the prohibition on business hours. This affects our work too much. After all, we can only do this at night.'
However, Lance knew that it was better and faster to just have the nobles slice off a part of their territory to the Brotherhood than to prohibit Red Street Market from doing business, and make the nobles endure another day.
Lance slowly walked forward.
It had been ten days and ten nights. They had dug a full ten meters deep and twenty meters wide hole beneath the chess room. However, they found nothing.
'Right now, we can still hide behind excuses like "seeking for trails of the Air Mystic" or "finding out the truth behind the deaths of the Talon siblings and Moria". However, if we still cannot find it, we will risk being discovered by certain people,' Lance thought solemnly.
'No secret stuff or dead bodies. Nothing is hidden in the darkness, not even the likes of poisonous snakes. Regardless, Red Street Market already belongs to the Brotherhood now.
'Fortunately, the Air Mystic destroyed the surroundings with his explosion. Otherwise, we would have had to rack our brains and talk with those somewhat influential house-owners in Red Street Market. Then, we would have to seize their rights to their property before we can begin our excavation work.
'However, the current situation isn't that bad. If it had gone as planned, it could have taken more than a year and a half before excavation can even begin. But this time, excavation already started a few days after Red Street Market was captured.
'Naturally, excavating without a reason makes it harder to keep things a secret.
'That means I have to dig faster.' Lance could not help but feel depressed.
It was at this moment when a rough and triumphant voice shouted from a distance, "I found it!"
Lance could not help but move. He waved away one of the Sleepless and walked briskly ahead.
"I found it, Kobryant!" A tall and thin figure held a long object wrapped in a piece of cloth as he came over.
This man had a long and narrow face. He had dark blond, curly hair which draped over his shoulders. He wore black leather straps below his right and left ribs as well as at his waist, which held his three daggers. Thick bandages were wrapped around both of his arms. The man was tall, only slightly shorter than the two-meter tall Cenza. It was a pity that his thin body affected his external look.
The 'Ripper' Anton Lewandowski, one of the Six Powerhouses of the Brotherhood, was the leader responsible for smuggling strategic resources such as the Eternal Oil and Crystal Drop Ore. He held the long object covered in soil excitedly in his arms as he approached Lance.
There was another fat figure behind him, also one of the Six Powerhouses. Morris, who was in charge of the human trafficking business walked up towards them, feeling cross.
"This should be it! I opened it a little to take a look… Wow. It looks just like the picture…" Anton's voice sounded particularly piercing with his boorish accent.
"You'd never expect that after digging for ten days and almost reaching the sewer, you'd find it not buried under the ground but hidden in a partition between the basement floor and the ground. If I had not stepped on it when I was taking a leak… Hahaha. I've already said before that we should not complicate things too much for ourselves. You and Morris were like retards digging the ground for ten days... Hahaha..."
Behind him, Moris crossed his arms and gritted his teeth, looking unhappy.
"Look! I only came for five minutes and thought of peeing before I left…"
Lance, who had endured this for more than ten seconds could not take it anymore. For the last ten years, this Eastern Peninsular Nedanese man could never finish rambling.
"Shut up, thin person!" Lance grabbed the long object from Anton forcefully, regardless of the dirt on it. His hand trembled as he opened it up.
Anton wanted to say more, but Morris maliciously knocked into him from behind and caused him to stumble.
"Fatty… Perhaps you are jealous that I am—"
"Shut up, Anton!" Morris shouted fiercely.
Lance gently covered it again with the cloth.
"Right," Lance said softly. However, he could not hide the excitement in his voice. "This is it!"
Lance held the object as though he was gently caressing his lover. "After so much hard work, to grab Red Street Market without alarming the Mystic or Secret Intelligence—it has finally paid off!"
"Hey." Anton looked unhappy as he opened up his hands. "Who said we didn't disturb the Mystic? Who do you think caused this place to be in ruin?"
Morris calmly said, "The appearance of the Air Mystic was just a coincidence. Even the Black Sword could not draw him out. However, the Mystic does not know about this object. However, I was thinking that Asda might realize what this is, which is why he gave up the opportunity to kill the Black Sword and rushed back to the capital. He usually pokes his head into battles for the small territories—He may have knowledge that we are looking for a weapon that can deal with him."
"However, we have already found it right under the nose of the Air Mystic," Lance said as he looked at the outlines of the object.
As they spoke of the Air Mystic, the three became silent for a moment.
"When I got the news, I thought that you and Cenza were going to die in Red Street Market." Lance broke the silence and sighed.
Morris hung his head. His eyes were shrouded in darkness. "We were lucky. You should have seen Moria and the Talon siblings. He still likes to crush people into human balls."
"What happened to him?" Anton's eyes showed an astonished expression.
Lance held the package and closed his eyes. "He probably met his nemesis, but he is surely not dead."
Anton gritted his teeth hard, having mixed feelings of fear and hatred. "Having said that, it has been 12 years… Even now, I still do not dare to believe… I've personally seen the Black Sword kill him three times… three times…"
Morris somberly gritted his teeth. "Then he came back to life. He resurrected three times within two hours."
"Four times." Lance added silently. "Charleton killed that creature once after that royalty was poisoned outside the doors of the Imperial Palace."
The atmosphere around the three immediately became depressing.
Anton looked at the long object. With doubt and lingering fear, he asked, "We've been looking for this for over a decade, but is this thing really useful? After all, this continent is full of anti-mystic weapons."
Lance did not hesitate to speak, "Those things can only weaken the influence of the Mystic's power a little. Only the Sovereign State's legendary anti-mystic equipment can deal with a Mystic. Morat told me this when he was still a part the Secret Intelligence."
"I am not too keen on believing in your former boss." Anton's expression changed as though he had remembered something and he shuddered. "That old man… even his saliva is poisonous."
Morris asked, looking worried. "That's right. The Kingdom's Secret Intelligence has not interfered with our current operation? After all, according to your argument, this is a legendary anti-mystic weapon that is not found in the records. This is even more serious compared to privately owning a Mystic Gun."
'Privately owning a Mystic Gun, hmm?' Lance gently expressed disdain in his heart.
'Privately owning a Mystic Gun would only mean the death penalty. As for concealing a legendary anti-mystic weapon that's not in the records? Hmph.'
However, Lance simply shook his head. "The king is almost 48 years old. The selection of nobles is enough of a problem for them already. Besides, I've had dealings with Eckstedt's Secret Room. With Ramon attracting all of the Secret Intelligent Department's attention, Morat will not discover our objective. I understand my teacher too well."
"It is fortunate that both the Blood Bottle Gang's Mystic and the Secret Intelligence Department do not know the importance of this thing…" Lance pondered as he caressed the object wrapped in cloth.
"That's right. Do we not tell Cenza, Fischer and Roda about the truth of this matter?" As he spoke of the other three Powerhouses, Anton mimicked the two men and frowned. "In any case, the Air Mystic has vanished."
Lance solemnly shook his head and handed the package to Morris. "Nikolay and Catherine have gone out to look for the Blood Mystic. Believe me, I have seen the records of the Secret Intelligence. Along with the Blood Mystic, Asda is much more honest and kind compared to His Highness, Midier."
"Just us, the three Powerhouses and the Black Sword are enough to deal with the Mystics. It would be safer for the others if they know less." Morris nodded his head and tied up the object properly. He then said with a solemn voice, "For the former Nine Powerhouses."
Anton and Lance were also somber as they softly said, "For the former Nine Powerhouses."