Chapter 370: The Dark Side of the World
Clarissa stared blankly into space.
Although the brotherhood frequently did stupid things – such as seeing who could get the most drunk during their entrance ceremony or who could spit the farthest – it was undeniable that Redwin himself was rather crafty. Furthermore, the several hundred members of the brotherhood followed his every command. Even if he told them to strip naked and light their asses on fire, they would do it.
Although it seemed like he and his brothers did a lot of random and stupid things, there was often a reason behind it. Redwin was absolutely not an idiot who relied simply on his family background.
“Why aren’t you all doing anything? Hurry up and greet big brother.”
Redwin wiped away more blood from under his nose as he laughed loudly and said, “You guys might not know this, but I extremely admire those who are not afraid of violence – true men who do not back down in the face of force! This is the mentality of our brotherhood! For our brothers, we will never back down regardless of the opponent. No matter how powerful the enemy is, we will always fight hard for each other!”
“This guy has shown no fear even though he is facing so many of us, and he dared to hit me not once, but twice, even after I declared my identity as the son of the lord of Rapids City. He is a good brother. An unyielding soul who is unafraid of force! And his strikes are so swift, I was unable to react to either one. Truly admirable.”
“Is this guy not a good friend and brother?! Hurry and greet your big brother!”
Following Redwin’s enthusiastic declaration, the boys behind him simultaneously shouted, “Big brother!”
Could these fellows be even more idiotic than Stingham?
Rinloran felt completely speechless.
“Hey, what is your name? Regardless of whether or no you join our brotherhood, you are now our good brother. And because you are stronger than me, I shall call you boss,” Redwin said warmly as he stepped forward with the clear intention of embracing Rinloran.
“Idiot! Stop bothering my training.”
Rinloran could think of nothing else to say as he coldly spat out this one thought once more before turning and entering the training room.
“Haha. This temper, I like it. I’m so used to having people lick my boots, your directness is refreshing. A man who lives for himself without any pretenses.” Redwin showed no sign of anger, and instead became even more excited, as he turned to Clarissa and asked, “What is boss’ name?”
“My insults made him happy?” Wrinkles appeared atop Rinloran’s forehead.
This guy, if he met Belo, who told everyone he met to lick his feet, wouldn’t he go crazy with joy?
Furthermore, just how could River Bend Academy, which always ranked amongst the top institutions within the Kingdom of Eiche, contain so many idiots?!
With his high rank Elven Bloodline, it should be very easy to determine who he was. It was like they weren’t using their brains.
“Aha! Boss Rinloran! Great! Tonight, let us all drink together!” Redwin laughed heartily as he charged towards the training room after Rinloran.
“No!” Clarissa’s expression turned grim as she realized what had just happened. “He’s already gone in?!”
“What is wrong Clarissa? It’s just a training room. What’s with your face?” Redwin asked cluelessly.
“This is the Peerless Swordsmaster’s training room!” Clarissa shouted thunderously.
If not for the chaos caused by the appearance of Redwin and his group, she would have been able to explain some more things to Rinloran and prevent him from rushing into it so hastily.
“What? This is the Peerless Swordsmaster’s training room? The same one which gravely injured Teacher Senlin?!” Redwin and his brothers all jumped in fright.
“It’s too late. We can only hope he comes out alive.”
Clarissa’s face paled and she grit her teeth as she heard the air begin to whistle within the training room.
Four arcane masters with messy hair wearing thick robes speckled with grains of salt stood coldly in a corner of the free trade market.
A large cloth canvas was erected above them, somewhat hiding their figures.
“It’s about time. Nissan should have moved and drawn away that annoying arcane team.”
At this time, an arcane master who was missing a left ear with a scar running down the left side of his face tossed away the sand hourglass in his hand as he put on a metal mask designed to look like a red lizard and stepped forward.
The other three arcane masters with him silently donned their red lizard masks and followed.
At this moment, a cold wind seemed to blow through the free trade market.
“It’s the Red Lizard!”
Countless whispers echoed around the free trade market as all the people, and even goods, slowly disappeared until it was completely clear, as if swept away by the cold wind.
Completely clear except for a red haired youth who seemed to be one of those disciples from a rich house. This youth continued to walk through the market, only to finally realize that all the stalls around him were empty.
The four red lizard mask wearing arcane masters quickly emerged from the surrounding streets and circled around the youth.
“Obediently give us the things around your neck and we will spare your life,” threatened the one eared arcane master from under his mask, his voice full of icy killing intent.
“How sneaky. Is this how all of you bandit gangs do things? Just a simple robbery, and you still try to throw the blame?”
A gentle voice abruptly rang out from a canopy behind the one eared arcane master. “You guys are obviously the Rippers, yet you have put on the mask of the Red Lizards.”
The four red lizard mask wearing arcane masters all turned and looked at the speaker.
Sitting atop the canopy was none other than Carter.
Rui, Donna and Minlur slowly emerged beneath three of the other booths.
“The Holy Dawn Evil Six! And Donna!”
Strong arcane energy fluctuations rose around the four masked arcane masters.
“Heh, making the first move? But do you truly think that you can defeat us with your strength?” Donna sneered.
The four masked arcane masters trembled as a cold sweat soaked through their thick robes.
A light flashed through Rui’s eyes as he turned and looked towards a nearby street.
A cloud of smoke and dust silently rose from the ground.
“Donna, Carter. If there is a matter, let us discuss it peacefully, and not with swords drawn and bows bent.”
A deep male voice rang out as three arcane masters wearing tight fitting crimson robes walked out from the smoke.
“The Burning Corps?”
Carter immediately discerned the origins of these three newcomers from their robes. As they revealed their appearances, Carter couldn’t help but stiffen slightly. “Roy Wayne?”
“It’s been a while.”
The arcane master called Roy Wayne chuckled as he said in a voice which contained a trace of arrogance, “If you wish to deal with them, you must do so lightly. For they are now under us, which means they are also under our protection.”
By this time, Moss had already run to Carter’s side.
He quietly observed Roy Wayne, who seemed about the same age as Carter and the others. He had yellow hair which stood up like a porcupine’s and bushy yellow eyebrows, and a smile which seemed like it was never going to go away. He looked extremely wispy, as if he could be swept away by the wind at any moment.
“Teacher Carter, what kind of corps is the Burning Corps?” Moss couldn’t help but ask as he realized that these three arcane masters had quite a backing.
“They are the corps in charge of guarding the area north of the Graywater Lake region until it collides with the Forest of Wolves. It is one of the most powerful corps controlled by House Tyrell of the Nine Great Families,” Carter replied in a low voice. “Their purpose is to serve as a defense against House Stark to their north.”
“Why are you here, Roy Wayne?” Donna seemed to rather well acquainted with this arcane master as she immediately relaxed upon hearing his voice.
“Black market business,” Roy Wayne replied as he shrugged his shoulders and stepped forwards. “Much of the underground black market here is controlled by us. In fact, these four before you just happen to be some of our most important people in our black market operations. If these guys die, we will lose a lot and it will cause us quite some trouble. If I may ask why they have received your attentions?”
“Black market business?” Moss’ eyes widened in bewilderment. “Teacher Carter, they are a corps, yet they have stuck their hands into the black market?!”
“They are merely managing it for profit from the shadows,” Carter explained. “Due to endless demand for the black market, there is no way of getting rid of it. As a result, while the black market seems extremely chaotic and messy on the surface, there are actually many powerful forces at work behind the scenes. This applies especially to the corps because they have such high costs to maintain. Furthermore, you’d rather see the money in your own hand than someone else’s… so yes, countless corps run such operations.”
“Boy, are you Moss, the youth with a giant bloodline from Holy Dawn Academy?” Roy Wayne did not wait for a response as he, having seemingly heard Carter’s words to Moss, revealed a slight smile and said, “You are still young, so you might not understand, but most people do not have your level of talents. They, ordinary people, are stuck living a life of mediocrity without any accomplishments. Because of this, the will to train and improve eventually disappears. This is when the dark side of their mind emerges. They start dreaming of paying sums of money to buy better things, or things which can bring some stimulation to their boring everyday lives. For those who have always kept their dark desires suppressed within their hearts, the underground black market offers a place for them to obtain satisfaction when they otherwise would not have been able to. If you are interested, I don’t mind taking you the underground arena. It will allow you to see how crazy ordinary people can become. Your mind will be introduced to a whole other world. And then, perhaps, you will realize that the world is not as pure as you imagine.”
Moss stiffened. But before he could say anything, Rui had already furrowed his brows and asked, “There is an underground arena here?”
“Naturally. After all, this is the largest city in the Golden Roses Plain, it is the largest city in the kingdom’s most prosperous region. How could there not be one. So what do you say, boy? Are you interested? Only in the underground world can you can find the fiercest thugs, those who don’t care about morals if they receive enough money, and all kinds of crazy people. Do you want to take a look?” Roy Wayne continued to try and pique Moss’ interest as if he was trying to recruit Moss into his corps.
After a slight pause, he abruptly blurted, “Oh! That’s right! Would any of you be interested in participating? If several powerful newbies suddenly appeared, the audience will definitely go nuts.”
“I don’t know about the others, but we might want to change Belo’s plans,” Rui turned towards Carter and whispered.
“Since there is such a place… this kind of environment should suit him perfectly.” Carter nodded in agreement.
“Hey, are you really interested in participating?”
Roy Wayne seemed to be thrilled. But in the next moment, he suddenly shouted, “Wait wait wait… you guys still haven’t told me… why you have come looking for these four.”