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Chapter Forty-Seven: Property
Zheng Xiu said nothing else, and turned to walk into her study. Treading on the path outside the study, the yellow-robed man was satisfied.
Some things were dull if they were said directly. In these years, Zheng Xiu had not valued the opinions of the family, and just like what he said, she spoke with implied threats. But unlike what he said, Jiaodong Commandery had been unable to give a strong response and counterattack to Zheng Xiu’s threats.
Zheng Xiu could leave Jiaodong Commandery. If she left Jiaodong Commandery, she was still the empress of the Qin Dynasty. But Jiaodong Commandery could not leave Zheng Xiu. If they left her, they may be nothing. Even if they possessed some secret and powerful cultivators, but to the entire Qin Dynasty, in the mind of everyone, they were far from as important as Spirit Void Sword Sect and Min Mountain Sword Sect.
Especially after taking back Yangshan Commandery, and the Deer Mountain Conference. Jiaodong Commandery appeared to be a shining chariot in the eyes of others. They had reached a peak. But in the eyes of Jiaodong Commandery, this chariot was driving on the edge of a cliff. While powerful, it was too heavy, and they could not stop it from slowly slipping down the abyss. Because they could not give it up, they could only wait.
The wait was worth it. At least in Jiaodong Commandery’s view, as the people around Zheng Xiu died, she had no one to use and was now the weakest she had been since becoming the empress. Even though today’s talk was not pleasant, she could not use a strong resistance, and could only obey.
The war against the Chu in the spring was too important to Jiaodong Commandery. So just like how all rivers flowed into the ocean, all this came to the time that Jiaodong Commandery had to interfere. The chariot that had left its tracks came back on track. The overall trend could not be resisted. At least, the yellow-robed man thought so.
But Zheng Xiu did not think so.
Even you think that I am perfect. Since I have no weaknesses, how can you win against me?
Looking at the flawless lotuses in the spirit spring, she thought coldly as she listened to the departing footsteps of the man.
The Silver Moon Gambling House was not the most conspicuous in Changling, but all of Changling’s gamblers knew that this gambling house was the most different.
In the seemingly ordinary three ring compound, there were many tables scattered all over the place which contained terrifying business. For gamblers, whether or not a gambling house was awesome was how much flowed on the tables, and if the gambling house had many legends.
The Silver Moon Gambling House had both of them.
Few people could estimate how much cash the Silver Moon Gamble House had now. In here, there was no upper limit to what could be bet at each table. As long as one could afford it and dared to, they would accept it.
The legend was, once a person had lost an entire fleet of ships here. There had also been a person who did not have a cent to his name, but in the end, he had won dozens of Changling’s shops, and an entire street. There were many tables here where the amount of money moving in a night surpassed the money vault of a wealthy family. The bigger the plate, the more rich people there were.
In the past, all the tables in this gambling house would be full, and there would be no place to stand. But today, the air was different. It was very quiet around the dozens of tables in the innermost courtyard.
The quiet came from the innermost table where the bet was the simplest odds and evens with bamboo chips.
This game with bamboo chips was unique to some of Changling’s gambling houses. Both the house and the gambler would have a certain amount of chips in their hands. Each time, before putting down their bets, the two of them could put as many bamboo chips in a special container. Then the gambler would bet odds or evens. In the end, the number of the bamboo chips would be counted to see if the gambler was right. This kind of gambling was the fairest. The bamboo chips and the container were made in a special manner. Even cultivators could not sense through them.
But on this table, there was a middle-aged man with a dark face who had won over twenty matches already. He was still standing steady in front of the dealer and appeared that he would continue to win like this.
Other than this rich-looking middle-aged man, and the dealer, there was no one else.
When the gambling house could not prove that the other was cheating, they could endure some of the losses, and let the player leave with the money. But the gambling house was not a charity. There were rules. If one did not understand the rule of leaving once you won, and continued to sit here and win a lot of money, then the possibility was that they were here to ruin things.
Two old shopkeepers in black robes had been standing in a corner of the room and looking for a long time. In the end, they confirmed that they needed to request a numen from inside.
The numen who walked out with a man in indigo brocade robes. He had a handsome face. A person who could be a numen in a place like the Silver Moon Gambling House, eat and drink well, must be a powerful cultivator, and his face would end up looking younger than his real age. But this man’s face was slightly haggard and old. While he felt like he was in his thirties, he had a face like he was in his late forties. His skin, especially at his palms, were very rough. He was like a farmer that usually worked in the fields.
Yes at a glance, this numen of the Silver Moon Gambling House did not walk to the table where the betting was continuing, but to another table with a small game. He sat down opposite a young person.
“Do you want to continue?” he looked at the grandly dressed young person and asked without emotion.
The young man laughed. At the other table, the middle aged man who looked slightly rich stopped.
“How could you tell?” the young man looked with interest at the numen and asked.
“You have no interest in gambling. The wins and losses here, in your view, are small, so you are not a gambler.”
The numen looked at the middle-aged man, and then the idle man not far from the young man who seemed to be just watching the spectacle. He said, “Your cultivation is not powerful, but the attention of two powerful cultivators are frequently here. So you must be the person in charge.”
The young person laughed. His laughter was full of satisfaction. “Wu Guang, what someone else said of your judgment was very right. In terms of intelligence and cultivation, you live up to it all.”
The numen’s eyebrows rose. “How do you know my name?”
The young man did not answer. He said, matter-of-factly, “I have enough strategists, and many cultivators. I even have many assassins, but I lack a grandmaster like you who is strong enough to keep me safe everywhere.”
The two old shopkeepers in black robes exchanged a look, and found it ridiculous.
One of the thin old men smiled warmly, but his voice was very cold. “This young brother, do you know, there once was a gangster called Wang Taixu. He received the support of Warden’s Office, and controlled almost all the business of the gamblings houses. But our Silver Moon Gambling House was not in his control…”
“I know that the Silver Moon Gambling House is a solitary business in Changling. But so what. The Silver Moon Gambling House could do this mostly because you have such a powerful numen.” The young man looked at the shopkeeper and said, “The key is Mister Wu’s own intentions.”
The old shopkeeper looked at this junior who did not know the height of the sky. He sneered. “Since you know that our gambling house has someone like Mister Wu, do you not know why Mister Wu is here?”
The young person looked disdainfully at the old man and said, “Of course I know his mother is gravely ill, and needs valuable medicine for many years, so he is here.”
“Do you not know what honor is?” The old shopkeeper was a bit angry. He was not willing to talk to this young person any longer, and wanted to throw him out.
“I am a young person, and not in a hurry. You are so old, so why be in such a hurry.” The young person looked at the old shopkeeper with disdain. After a pause, he said, “Of course I know what honor is. But this Silver Moon Gambling House is my property. So strictly speaking, what the Silver Moon Gambling House spent on him over the years, and the favors to him are mine. I ask Mister Wu because I respect his opinion, and want to see if he wants to stay here, or at my side.”
At his words, the two shopkeepers in black robes were astounded. The young man had no patience now. He took out a carved black rhino token and placed it on the table in front of him.
In the view of the outsiders, and even the other people in the gambling house, the Silver Moon Gambling House belonged to the two old men. But the two knew clearly that they were just taking care of this place for someone else.
This gambling house had changed hands several times, but the person with this token was the true master of the house. But they had never expected that the master of the gambling house was now a young man like this.
Wu Guang had been silently listening to the talk between the shopkeepers and the young person. Now, he took a deep breath, and prepared to speak.
“In reality, I do not want you to refuse. The matter is urgent, and only a cultivator like you can deal with it.” The young man stopped smiling and looked seriously at him. “If you go with me, it will be dangerous, but if you refuse, I shall not demand. You can stay here and continue taking care of the gambling house for me.”
“You are not false, in both honor and business, one should speak clearly first.” Wu Guang nodded and looked at the young person. “I will go with you.”
The young person stood up, and bowed seriously to him. Then he put away the token that represented the master of the Silver Moon Gambling House, and turned to leave.
The two shopkeepers panicked.
“Boss, please wait…”
The old shopkeeper who had spoken already bowed as he asked, “Just now in the game, how did you win?”
For the two old shopkeepers, this was the business that they were concerned about. They could not understand. In the odds and evens that could not be cheated, how could this boss’s person cheat? Even more importantly, if someone could do something, then others may be able to do it again in the future.
“I like the most brutal and direct methods. You cannot do anything to the equipment, but you can bribe a person. So in the future, when you do not understand, do not work from the things, change your mind, and think of the people.” The young man turned slightly, glanced at the two shopkeepers and the dealer.
The two old shopkeepers’ eyes widened in shock. This problem that they could not understand were the dealers that had been switched several times. They had all been bribed by the young person. So the betting had been arranged from the start?
What was the price to bribe these dealers that had been fine for many years?
This was really a brutal and direct method.
This young boss…was really extraordinary.
“Who are you?” Wu Guang followed the young person out of the gambling house. He looked at the several carriages and the servants on them. He could not help his curiosity.
The young person smiled faintly. “Xie Changsheng.”
Wu Guang stilled.
“Do not be shocked. The Xie Family does not have such means.” The young person seemed to read his thoughts and said, “This has nothing to do with my family. This Silver Moon Gambling House is a property that my friend gave me.”
Wu Guang still could not speak.
“Very powerful, is it not?” The young person was Xie Changsheng. He smiled, still with his arrogant air. “In terms of making friends and spending money, I am very powerful. If I say I am second, I fear no one dares to say they are the best.”
Wu Guang took a deep breath. After following Xie Changsheng into the carriage, he asked, “You already have such powerful retainers and servants. Not many in Changling can compare to you. But you still came to find me. What urgent matter is this?”
“There is an assassination. The people involved are all powerful people.”
Xie Changsheng looked at the drizzle of rain outside the carriage, and his expression grew stern. “I have a friend who cannot come out, and needs me to help.”