Ning Que didn’t realize that the owner of Red Sleeve Club was staring at him coldly on the top floor. He didn’t know that this owner was angry because the girls were chatting with him instead of focusing on the business. Ning Que sat causally next to Lady Shui Zhu Er, chatting with everyone while also collecting information about Zhang Yi Qi’s death without people noticing.
“I like your smile, your dimples are so cute, “Shui Zhu Er laughed and winked at him, “But all things aside, since you are applying for the Academy you need to study hard. Or else if you failed to enter, then everyone would think us girls were the reason for your failure. How are you going to compensate such negative rumors?”
“Don’t pull us in, Ning Que comes everyday and only chat with you, what does this has to do with us?” A girl joked.
Although Shui Zu Er’s words seem to be a joke, but she actually cared about Ning Que’s future performance in the entrance exam. Ning Que’s heart was filled with warmth and replied casually. He was just saying rubbish like he was done with his work and they don’t need to worry about his grades. Sang Sang was aside with her head down eating seeds and talking with the maid, Xiao Cao. She thought to herself, “Master, your words are not rubbish but rather lies. There are six topics in the entrance exam of the Academy, and I reminded you everyday to study. In the end, do you even know how many topics there are?”
Although for her appearance Sang Sang didn’t need any make-up for camouflage to act as a servant, but the keen eyes of the girls in brothel already knew she was a girl. Xiao Cao was chatting with her on the side and thought to herself with sympathy, “Ning Que definitely disliked Sang Sang because she’s not pretty, that’s why he visits the brothel everyday shamelessly.”
In the room on the top floor, the middle aged man wearing the green advanced next to the owner of the Red Sleeve Club and looked down into the building. He saw the youngster chatting with the girls around him and couldn’t help but smiled. His sharp and steady eyes were brightened.
“If this youngster is truly the last tenant of Forty Seventh Street, then there is no reason for me to allow him to stay.” That man smiled, “If I get him out of there, all of the rental approval will be in my hand. Then I can transfer those approval to the government, and what other reasons can you use to reject the requisition of Forty Seventh Street from the Chang An government?”
“All of the shop owners of Forty Seventh Street were once gone when you interrupted, but have you ever see me lower my head?” The middle aged man in green shirt smiled, “Besides….. you can’t get this youngster out of there.”
“I can’t?” The man stared into his eyes quietly and suddenly laughed, “Sure, who dare to act unwisely in front of Lao Chao of Chun Feng Pavilion?”
The middle aged man smiled but didn’t replied. He turned around and sat back into his chair.
Earlier in the day he has received messages from his fourth brother (In this case, Fourth Master Qi). He knew what happened today in the Forty Seventh Street. A young foreign student was not afraid at all between two gangs’ heated situation and actually gained benefit from it. Ning Que basically robbed a whole year worth of rent from him, but that youngster didn’t try to raise the price any higher. Ning Que’s way of doing things are mature and knew when to stop, in another words, he’s very generous.
The first day Old Brush House was opened, he went to Forty Seventh Street not for the purpose of avoiding the rain, but he was rather interested which idiot was brave enough to rent his shop. But after the observation, he then knew that this youngster may not know the events that was happening between the Chang An’s gangs, but he’s not an idiot.
There isn’t a single idiot in this word that could write with such delicate penmanship. There is no idiot that has such thick skin on his palm that hold swords. Thinking back to the firm and steady writings hanging on the walls of Old Brush House, he felt a hint of murderous scent. Relating this back to Forth Qi’s description to today’s event, the middle aged man was suspicious that perhaps the youngster killed people……no, he was suspicious that perhaps the youngster killed a lot of people.
Only fifteen or sixteen years old, the youngster has already killed a lot of people. Even to the middle age man, who constantly walked in the darkness with blood on his boots, it wasn’t really a believable fact. For a youngster like him, if he’s not willing to move himself, then who is able to force him to?
“Chao, in the very least I’m representing the prince mansion today, can’t you be a little bit more respectful?”
The middle aged man raised his head and noticed that his mind wasn’t concentrating because he was thinking about that youngster. He couldn’t help but smiled apologizing. The prince mansion didn’t affect him one bit.
The man who was talking with him is named Cui De Lu. Although it was a very common name, but he was definitely not an ordinary person. The man who could take care of the best brothel in Chan An couldn’t be ordinary. Most of the Chang An citizens thought this brothel’s background was a powerful official, but only figures like the middle aged man knew, Cui De Lu relied on the prime stepward of prince mansion. Some people even believe that this brothel was the business of the prince.
“Red Sleeve Club is in troubles recently, I never thought you have the time to talk about these things.”
Cui De Lu’s face got colder, “The prince doesn’t want Forty Seventh Street, you know this. It’s only because the military department couldn’t interact with this kind of business, therefore they asked us to help them. Who knew you are so stubborn and wouldn’t let go of that space, which irritated the big figures in the military. Now this thing became huge, a few days ago the Chang An government came and you pushed them back, now even the Yu Lin military was sent out……”
Hearing Yu Lin Military, the middle aged man’s eyebrow raised, as if the word hurt him so.
Seeing his expression, Cui De Lu switched his topic and laughed, “Of course you should know, the prince mansion is helping the two departments to solve their problem. In the end there would be benefit for us. Even the prime stepward said, the prince admired you. Once after he was drunk he mentioned your name and said you do things with rules in Chang An and knew your place.”
The middle aged man was still silent, but that hint of darkness grew in his eyes.
Cui De Lu continued seriously, “You also know that there was a censor who died in my building. This thing is pretty troublesome. That idiot died himself but his family raised the trouble all the way to the government of Chang An. The prince was related to that censorer and therefore couldn’t speak in a situation like this, therefore I could only solve this problem myself. If you could help me out in a situation like this, then I will never interrupt the business in Forty Seventh Street ever again.
Although the man was just a owner of a brothel, although he kept saying himself and himself only, but the middle aged man knew very clearly that he was representing the attitude of the prince. What he said was the voice of the prince. He thought for a moment and smiled, “Even if the prince was related to the censorer, but it should be very easy to calm the situation down. How would he need gangs to help him out?”
Cui De Lu’s face got gloomier, “Do you not understand or are you pretending not to? If it’s the previous one, then there is no more Chao of Chun Feng Pavilion in my eyes, because you are an idiot. If it’s the latter on, then there is no more Chao of Chun Feng Pavilion in my eyes, because you are too smart but doesn’t know when to appreciate favors.”
The middle aged man answered calmly, “The business of Forty Seventh Street is no trouble. It’s not a trouble to the prince, nor a trouble to me, Chun Feng Pavilion’s Chao. If a department of the government really needed it, I will give it to them without questions. But……you shouldn’t pressure me because of this.”
“The rule of us, Chun Feng Pavilion, is to not interact with the power struggles in the government. No matter the prince, the military, or the government, if they are related to power struggle, then I will walk as far away from them as possible. The more you pressure me the more I will do so.”
“Chun Feng Pavilion’s Chao is the head of the biggest gang in Chang An. You have thousands of people under you to feed. The government gave you the business of transporting goods, and now you want to walk away? Do you think you could walk away? Where do you want to go? Where could the three thousand brothers under you go? The jail of Department of Justice or the military prisoners in the boundaries?”
Cui De Lu stared at him ghastly, “In the previous years the Court was calm and it was possible of protecting yourself. But now the Fourth Princess has returned and she wanted to make her brother the crowned prince. Yet the queen is still alive, and the queen also has a son! of course these royal business has nothing to do with you, but if you don’t state your opinion clearly right now, then……both sides wouldn’t accept you!”
“Is it a must to find an owner as a dog?” The middle aged man sigh deeply and asked, “So you are representing the prince to accept me?”
“Yes. Now everyone in Chang An who’s capable are pressuring you. Why? because you are a dog without an owner. In this kind of situation if you are willing to take refuge under any side, no matter the military or others, if you got an owner, then people would think twice before bothering you because of your background.
“Can I ask a question?” The middle aged man suddenly smiled and asked.
“Between the queen and forth princess, who would the prince support?”
Cui De Lu said without a trace of hesitation, “He wouldn’t support any side. The prince is forever loyal to the emperor. Whoever the emperor says is right, the prince will support whoever.”
The middle aged man heard this answer and was silent for a long time. Then he raised his head slowly and smiled, “I’m sorry. As a man of Tang, I’m not used to being a dog.”
Cui De Lu was stumped and he pressured his irritation down and advised, “Everyone will be a dog in some point of their lives, some people couldn’t even be a dog if they wanted to.”
The middle aged man stood up and wrapped his sword on his waist and gestured carefreely, “Owner Cui, you are not a suitable adviser, because you don’t know my personality.”
The face of Cui De Lu got uglier, he stood up and spoke deeply, “Are you worrying that your decision wouldn’t convince your underlings? don’t worry, the prince said that if you are willing to join his side, even just symbolically, he will make the military compensate and give you two heads. Can’t you, as the leader of them, convince your three thousand brothers then?”
Since the conversation has advanced to this point, he couldn’t care about using the prime stepward as a cover up anyone, he directly mentioned the prince in his words. But the middle aged man seemed to not care and directly walked out of the door. No one noticed that when Cui De Lu said, “As the leader,” the middle aged man smiled mysteriously.
“Just you wait, Chao.” Cui De Lu stared at his back head ghastly, “It seemed that you and your brothers are living too well in Chang An and forgot how to spell the word ‘respect’. But I must remind you, these people are the most powerful figures. It’s not a world that a cockroach like you who dwells in the sewers can understand.”
The middle aged man gradually slowed down, but he didn’t turn back his head.