- translated by Tianic, edited by Jiem & MadSnail
Characters in this chapter:
- Cohen Kheda: The main character.
- Fischer Summers: Cohen’s friend and the prince of the Swabia Empire.
- Jack, Marfa, Wilder, Moya: Cohen’s childhood friends and firm supporters.
- Iva Merlin: A Rivalzian nobleman who currently lived in Winper City.
- Dior Merlin: Iva Merlin’s daughter, a businesswoman.
- Sky (Amart): A pimp.
Note: Sky’s name translation and transformation
If anyone is interested in the original text.
Fischer and I sat by the table as we listened to Jack’s report. During the last two days, Jack and Marfa had brought a few men with them and cleaned a total of approximately ten villages located on the outskirts of Winper City. Jack was confident that the cleanliness of the villages they had visited was comparable to that of the royal kitchen. Everything that I considered to be rubbish was eradicated without a single trace left behind.
“We managed to rescue many people and following the methods you had carried out prior to this, they have been asked to seek refuge in Dark City!” Jack said, “The personnel you have requested from Dark City are on their way as well.”
I glanced at Fischer. He made a sign for me to continue.
“Good, you’ve done well!” I said, “However, we still have to attend to two urgent matters and they need to be carried out immediately.”
“Just tell me!” Marfa smiled, “We’ve been idle for a good while.”
“First, you need to find out who is Winper City’s current alpha dog, including the number of men working under him; the various locations of their recent activities; the location of his headquarters…” I thought, “I want to visit him at a proper time.”
“Secondly: do you know about the clothing store downtown?”
“Yeah!” Marfa said, “But, haven’t you already bought something?”
“I want intel on absolutely everything regarding that shop; put your special attention on the owner!” I said, “Be it related to the shop, her house, and even her personal life! Marfa, listen well; I want to know everything about her in its entirety! The more details, the better.”
“Don’t you worry, boss!” Marfa said, “Matters like these have always been a hobby of mine since childhood…”
I could tell that Marfa truly did have a passion in carrying out such matters. Within the span of one day, not only did he track down everything on the Winper boss, he even found out about the color of the store owner’s underwear.
“The owner of the store is called Dior Merlin. She is from a noble lineage. Her father is a baron and called Iva Merlin!” Marfa slowly said as he was sitting next to me: “Due to various hobbies of Baron Merlin the businesses of the Merlin family in the Rivalz empire had gone bankrupt… In addition to the store they own a mansion in the town and a villa by the coastal village…”
“A villa!” I said, “Nice life.”
“Yes, a villa.” Marfa continued, “Dior Merlin was strong-willed, resolute and comparable to males since childhood. She rides without side-saddle, her fencing is also remarkable. Surprisingly, she has been independently controlling family matters after the death of her mother. Baron Iva Merlin would have died long ago if not for this store…”
“A trademark aristocrat with many hobbies.” I asked.
“A trademark nobleman. He has many nobility hobbies. He likes to hunt and play poker. Once he lost semiannual earnings of her daughter by gambling for short amount of time. They nearly went bankrupt. He is a man of decency and noble etiquette. He would avoid arguing with his daughter in public.”
“Do they argue a lot?”
“According to their cook, they argue a lot. The main cause is that Dior wants her father to quit at least one or two of his expensive hobbies…”
“How did Baron Merlin reply?”
“The worst occurrence was at the point where Baron Merlin threatened his daughter by pointing a dagger at himself.”
“Haha! I love it!” I laughed, “What do you think about the estimated value of their properties?”
“Hmm…” Marfa pondered for a second, “Less than 1500 golds, including real estates.”
“I see… what else?”
“Her villa… is very close to our preliminary selected smuggling hideout!” Marfa replied.
“What?” I was surprised. The hideout was chosen after a field investigation by me and Fischer. It was an abandoned castle near the coastal line. There was a well-preserved deepwater wharf where locality was scarce. Fischer admired the town villa next to it, which he never expected it to belong to the Merlin family.
“We don’t have time to reselect!” I sighed, “Troubles…”
“Boss…” There was a trace of concern in Marfa’s tone, “Are you alright?”
“Nothing, you have done a good job!” I shook my head, “You have three days. Gather your men and get ready for the initial shipment.”
“Send people to Dark City and ask for more personnel, speed up!”
I sighed, leaned back to bed and took a piece of towel from Lily to wipe my face carelessly.
“What’s wrong with you?” Fischer kicked in, “Why the long face?”
“If she found out about our business…” I said, “Then our bet is invalid and she has to be instantly terminated.”
“Makes sense!” Fischer was unaffected and said, “I’m just curious about if you’ll purposely let her know it…”
I glanced at him and Fischer promptly shut his mouth.
“Let’s get ready. We’ll visit the Winper gangsters by nightfall!” I said with closed eyes, “I assume he has a considerable amount of cash reserved as a boss…”
I was a boss, and the one destined to hand me his money was also a boss, “What a miserable job!”
Sky’s legs trembled as he stood by the gate.
The current alpha dog of Winper’s underworld was behind this door. I called in Sky to do my business because I needed to keep a firm hand on Lucy. Before Lucy could show her complete loyalty to me, Sky was my hostage of some sorts. I will make up for this as compensation later on.
“Young Lord, I…” Sky was on the edge of crying, “I… dare not…”
He had been calling me like this since hearing Lily address me as ‘Young Lord’. I intended to distinguish the class between me and my subordinates, thus there was no need for correction.
“Calm down!” I patted Sky’s shoulder, “Remember what I’ve taught you?”
“Alright, put your heart back in the stomach. You have my back.” I kicked him in the door without many reasons.
The gate collapsed as Sky groveled in the yard. It seemed that he would need time to rise again.
“WHO IS IT!”
A violent shout echoed while came at the same time with dozens of men stormed out. Some were with wine decanters, some with half-devoured chicken legs.
Sky had finally stood up. He was like a lamb waiting to be butchered in front of those fierce-looking men.
“Ah… hahaha!” A boss-like guy laughed, “Who am I expecting! Sky! Did your Mama change her mind and sent you to invite me over?”
The rest chuckled and guffawed.
“No, it’s not!” Sky replied in a hoarse tone, “I have… other stuff… for you.”
“You pile of shit!” The boss raised his hand, “Ya think you two still get to talk terms? I tell ya! My kindness is due to sleep her! If only your Mama looks still a bit something… haha… I could have raped and killed her, right, brothers!”
“Yayaya! Boss fucks women really good!”
“Right boss! Just rape and kill her! The brothers can rape and kill, rape and kill… hahaha…”
Sky shivered but quickly steadied.
“I… am telling you…” Sky said, “If you still want to live…”
“Slap~~” The boss gave Sky a hard hit in the face.
“Then… pack up your stuff…” Sky continued and “Slap~~” again, he got hit one more time. Jack wanted to give him a hand but was stopped by me.
“Leave all your money and… piss… the f…fff…uck off!” Sky had finally finished with both hands covered on his nose.
Hearing what Sky had said, the Winper gang boss’ face turned silly, so as his men who stood beside. Then all of them burst into laughter.
“Ha… haha…” He laughed until tears flowed down, then he snagged Sky and said, “You… what did you say?”
“I… I will take your place!” Sky seemed desperate.
All went dumbfounded once again.
“Well said!” I went in clapping, Jack followed, “Impressive.”
“I wondered why this rat came here?!” The boss said, “Turns out he has backups.”
“Yeah, I’m the backup!” I said with kindness, “Problem?”
“You wanna do what?” The boss kicked Sky off to a corner.
“I’m not interested in ‘what’!” I said, “I’m into your money… so, I wanna do your money.”
“Don’t think I’ll chicken out to you Dark mage! Anyhow, I am a… AHHHHHHH…”
He bounced away the way Sky was treated previously. Jack and the IGTs(Imperial Guard Troops) did not idle once I initiated the fight. For a moment, chaotic sounds echoed from the courtyard. Our enemies were merely gangsters who were capable of scaring commoners at times. How could they triumph over men who survived from the battlefield? The sounds of miserable screams indicated their defeats, which left me with nothing to do.
“Young Lord…” Sky touched his belly and approached step by step to my side. He squatted, “You are mighty…”
“Say, why are you called Sky?” Thus I chatted with him as screams resounded around us.
“Young Lord, I… I have been bullied around since I was a boy!” He said, “When I was young, I was always hung in the sky by others. So… a while after, I winded up being called Sky.”
I coughed as I was almost choked to death by his reasoning.
After I had eased myself, Sky was gazing at me innocently.
“Young Lord! Please give me a new name!” Sky anxiously said, “You can read, you are mighty and control so many powerful men! Can you give me a name powerful enough so that no one dares to step on me!”
What the hell! Why did everybody ask me for a name!
“Young Lord… please…”
“So no one dares to step on you…” I thought and said, “How about poop! No one wants to step on crap…”
“Can I not… Young Lord!” Sky grappled my calf, “It stinks…”
“You said my naming stinks, right!”
“No, no, no, Young Lord! It’s not. I meant the name you gave me sounds awful…”
“Makes no difference!” I said, “You are telling me the same thing!”
“Young Lord… I… I…”
“Alright, alright! You had me!” I thought again, “How about Angel…”
“Angel?” Sky said blankly, “No, Young Lord, I’ve no wings…”
“Wings? What do you want for wings?”
“Angels have wings…”
“You heard me wrong!” I loosened Sky’s palms, “I said: Andeuce! Angel’s deuce! How about that! Not even God wants to step on you…”
Sky cried out with a squashed mouth. The sounds of bodies collapsing resounded by this time and I noticed the defeat of the enemies.
“Boss!” Jack the rabbit jumped up, “It’s clean!”
“Good!” I nodded, “How many are alive?”
“Five! Including that boss guy.”
“Ask them where the money is!” I said, “And don’t kill them yet.”
“Roger!” Jack turned away and left.
“Get up on your feet!” I gave Sky a kick, “You’ve got things to do.”
“Listen to me, Sky!” I said seriously, “Your cowardliness is not one to be changed by simply a name change. You’ve got to discipline yourself from the inside to the outside, and say farewell to the old Sky.”
“Stop crying! Cry your mother fucker!” I flipped the hand and slapped him to make a swirl, “Quit whining!”
“Yes!” Sky swallowed back the eagerness to scream.
I handed Sky a dagger. The latter gazed at me in confusion.
“After Jack gets the money out,” I said, “You go in and get rid of those guys. I’ll be outside.”
“Young Lord… I…”
“Either you kill them and be the boss!” I exited, not bothered to looked back, “Or you and your Mama go begging on the street, your call.”
A while back, my IGTs were out with money. Then Sky showed up, head lowered.
Jack who followed nodded at me, “He did well.”
I laid my hand on Sky’s head.
“There is no one to protect you in this world. Many times, a guy’s gotta protect himself!” I said, “Your body is weak, and you act cowardly. If you don’t buckle up, your Mama Lucy will get raped and killed for real next time. There’s nothing I can do for you.”
“I’m aware of it, Young Lord!” He looked up to me, “I want some wine… I feel sick…”
“You do!” I gripped his shoulder and declared to everybody, “From now on, there’s no more Sky! Here’s to Don Amart!”
“Don Amart!” All cheered three times, then came one by one to bump his chest and touch his head.
His new name came to me moments ago. If I had known that his name will be listed as ‘The Three Bitches of the Empire’, I swore, I would take time to think of a mightier name.
I locked myself indoors for another day to come up a plan against Dior Merlin. The plan had produced a long shopping list I had Amart to purchase. I had to get fully prepared for it was the first time I did a thing like this.
In less than two hours, this new boss of Winper came back to my room and put a pile of goods on the table.
“Young Lord! All are ready!” He said, “They are the things you required, nothing is missing.”
“Good! You are dismissed!” I answered, “Get something for yourself, and change your outfit.”
Fischer tipped around the stuff on the tables, “These are… my dear Mr. Turner, though we got some extra money from last night,” Fischer said in dissatisfaction, “You don’t need to buy all these nobleman’s garments and accessories. And not my style…”
“In your dreams!” I said, “These are props for the show! By the way, how good are you with poker?”
“Poker…” Fischer did not even frown, “Not a problem, what do you want?”
“What do I want? Heyhey! Haha…”
“Cohen, you are drooling! What exactly do you want?”
“I’ll…” I leaned in and whispered in Fischer’s ear.
“You… you, you… evil!” Fischer swore, “What then?”
“Then it’s gonna…”
“You… you, you… despicable!” Fischer declared again, “What then?”
“Next up I’ll…”
“You… you, you… shameless… what then?”
“Last is sure to…”
“I’m not listening!” Fischer yelled, “I can’t listen to those words!”
“I’ve finished talking…”
“Are you even a human being? What kind of scheme is that?”
“I was forced!” I said, “By you. You are the one to bet on it!”
“O… Ms. Merlin! I am a sinner…” Fischer said in agony, “Please forgive me!”
“Quit the fuss and fetch me those cards. I’ll teach you!”
As thus, a grand plot aiming the business whiz: Miss. Dior Merlin had officially initiated.