Chapter 913: Black eats black, no making without breaking

By shutting down the casinos in Three-Way Black Market and re-opening them elsewhere under a different name, Han Yunxi’s method was also known as “there’s no making without breaking.” Her solution enlightened the members of the room to a new realm. It was such a simple solution, a small trick common to the marketplace. But why couldn’t their brains think fast enough to come up with it?

Golden Wing Hall had already made it impossible for casinos to go on in the Three-Way Black Markets. Even if they salvaged the situation, Golden Wing Hall would just keep picking faults with them. All businesses feared nitpicking. Compared to wasting their time and money here, they might as well try elsewhere. Han Yunxi’s words were absolutely correct. Gambling had no end of customers; in other words, it was a business that would last forever.

Now the casinos here had lost trust, so the gamblers would be even more anxious to find a new place to play. If they could seize the chance to open a new casino nearby, it’d definitely attract a lot of guests. Then their profits from the gambling houses wouldn’t have to stop.

All of the elders exchanged glances. Despite the grudges most of them bore against Han Yunxi, they had to admit she had a solution. Uncle Cheng clenched his fists and thought it over before asking, “But Your Royal Highness, the swindlers’ ways have already been exposed. How are we supposed to keep playing?”

Han Yunxi pointed out his faults without mercy. “Uncle Cheng, that’s wrong. Any source of business rests on a foundation of trust! Without that, even the biggest business is liable to fall as it advances. Thousand Gold Pavilion is one such example!” 

The head elder was quick to rush in with an explanation. “Your Royal Highness, the dealers’ rules are the norm in other gambling houses too. All casinos in the world operate by the same standard. If we don’t do that, how are we supposed to rake in higher profits?”

Han Yunxi grinned. “Then let’s run in the opposite direction.”

The head elder was about to continue defending himself when Uncle Cheng hastened to ask, “What brilliant idea does Your Royal Highness have? This subordinate will listen with respectful attention.”

The gambling houses that didn’t encourage cheating from the house had no high profit margins at all. If that was the case, they’d be better off doing some other business. Uncle Cheng admired Han Yunxi for her ideas, but was worrying over how to fight back against her when this opportunity all but fell in his lap. He took a death grip to it, determined to see what amazing scheme she’d do.

But as it turned out, Han Yunxi shocked them all on the first try again!

She said, “We’ll only provide the premises and services, not act as the host. The gamblers themselves can chose to be hosts if they want. We’ll start a membership for the casino so that all accepted applicants need to pass stringent inspections to qualify. Anyone with less than 300 million to their assets will be refused membership. If losers default on their debts, then the casino is responsible for chasing it down. Therefore, the gambling house will deduct 30% of a gambler’s winnings to clear a loser’s costs. However, all members will need to pay an annual fee to stay within the casino. Additionally, hire new dealers. All of them must be new faces. They’ll be in charge of supervising every bout of gambling. Any cheaters will be made to pay back 10 times their earnings and banned from the casino forever.”

Han Yunxi had only sketched out a rough idea, but it stunned her listeners. After all, Cloud Realm Continent’s casinos had been hosting its customers for thousands of years. No one had ever done this before!

Not every round in the gambling house had cheating dealers, so they had gains and losses everyday. They could only calculate their profits by the end of the month. However, Han Yunxi’s solution meant that they’d be making money everyday! No matter whether the gamblers won or lost, someone would win something eventually. As long as they did, the casino could deduct a percentage! Moreover, Han Yunxi had limited the number of members in the casino to those wealthy types worth 300 million or more. Their plays wouldn’t be very low.

All the men present were old hands in business, so Han Yunxi only needed to sketch them a rough idea for them to understand. They could smell business opportunities from this setup. Profit would not only come from deductions from the winnings, but the required membership fees and other things. They could offer private boxes for people to play and even bring in things like servants and restaurants.

“Good, good, good! Your Royal Highness, this is an ingenious idea!” the head elder couldn’t help but praise.

The rest of the elders nodded and crowed in agreement. They couldn’t help but start discussing all sorts of ways to make money. Uncle Cheng’s eyes flashed with a complicated gleam as he too, had to submit. But he didn’t like it, and dragged out another stumper. “Your Royal Highness does have a good idea, but…”

“But what? Please share, Uncle Cheng,” Han Yunxi was behaving very well even as doubt flashed through her eyes. She was sharp to begin with. Combine her senses with the difficulties these people had caused her and Uncle Cheng’s words, and she could tell he was hostile towards her. In terms of the business, the elders should be more sensitive than Uncle Cheng, so why were they lost in their joy while Uncle Cheng remained sober enough to continuously ask her questions? What was the reasoning?

Moreover, if she recalled correctly, Uncle Cheng was the closest man to Ning Cheng and knew all about his master’s affairs. Thus, he should know the truth behind the “hostage” situation too. Where was Uncle Cheng when she was meeting with Ning Jing and the head elder? Why didn’t he step out to say anything? What was his stance?

“But a limited membership for those worth 300 million or more won’t get us many customers. The total profits wouldn’t compare to the past,” Uncle Cheng said seriously.

The head elder was quick to add, “There’s no need to fear that. As long as we open another gambling house and lower the entry requirements, we can attract more gamblers all the same! Her Royal Highness’s method is ingenious because it focuses on the casinos, not us playing hosts! Uncle Cheng, the casinos at Three-Way Black Market act as the wind vanes for the rest of the continent. Anything that starts here will turn into gales and storms outside. I believe the news of the cheating dealers should have spread to all the other casinos by now. It’s no good eating from a broken bowl, so how are we supposed to recover our profits all at once? We have to strike while the iron is hot and open a new casino as soon as possible. We’ll used the cheaters as a pretext to grab the first chance!”

Uncle Cheng pursed his lips, unable to retort. Even the head elder was opposing him now, so what else could he say? At least when it came to the casinos, Han Yunxi had won the head elder’s heart.

Her eyes turned sly as she said, “Uncle Cheng, I’ll give you full powers to open up another casino. You have to seize this chance, or won’t be able to explain your screwup to Ning Cheng when he comes back!”

Uncle Cheng’s heart lurched as he looked at Han Yunxi, then averted his eyes. He felt flustered--had she noticed something? Was this a warning? He had his sights on the gambling houses from the start, yet Han Yunxi had pushed all responsibility onto him. How could he play any tricks now? They’d only come back to bite him! In hindsight, he realized that he’d underestimated Han Yunxi. Now he could only leave his hopes with the auction hall. Han Yunxi had handed the casino over to his hands, so there was no way she’d leave the other elders high and dry. She wouldn’t give him management of the auction halls too, right? As long as that wasn’t in his hands, he didn’t need to take responsibility and could be free to act as he wished.

“Yes, this subordinate will do his best!” Uncle Cheng endured things for now.

“Then you should hurry and find a spot,” Han Yunxi’s tone wasn’t very friendly. Uncle Cheng had wanted to wait and hear about her suggestions for the auction hall, but Han Yunxi had deployed him elsewhere. He could only withdraw for now and inquire into details later.

The situation at the auction house was that the genuine goods had been switched for fakes by a spy. The buyer wanted both compensation and the original items. 

“Fellow elders, what are your insights into this matter?” Han Yunxi asked.

“Your Royal Highness, this subordinate suspects that the buyer and a spy colluded together. We’ve already to pay back 10 times the value, which most customers wouldn’t refuse,” Second Elder replied.

“This subordinate heard a rumor that the seller might be from Golden Wing Hall. Your Royal Highness, both the auction and gambling house incidents are fishy! Third Elder chimed in.

Han Yunxi harbored suspicions as well, but she couldn’t figure it out. “Why would Golden Wing Hall target us like this? It doesn’t do them any favors if we’re ruined too.”

“With Golden Wing Wall, it’s always been well water avoiding river water. Nor have we ever interacted with each other,” the head elder said helplessly. He had discussed the subject multiple times with the other men. 

Han Yunx got straight to the point. “Since we don’t know the reasons, then we’ll deal with them the same they’ve done with us! Tie up that seller and interrogate him thoroughly!”

“Definitely not!” the head elder cried. “All of Three-Way Market is talking about this. If you truss someone up now, it’ll be hard to avoid censure! We’ve already ruined our trust when someone discovered fake goods at our hall. If we tie up the seller next, who will dare do business with us in the future?”

“Tie the person up, then send out a grand scale of men and horses to search for the items! Spill the dirty water right back at Golden Wing Hall,” Han Yunxi said coldly. “Never forget that human hands write the history books. Whether it’s printed or spoken, historical records always call the victors kings and losers bandits. Whoever has the loudest voice becomes the voice of reason. Thousand Gold Pavilion hardly got into trouble when Golden Wing Hall made things worse. They’re provoking us on purpose! I refuse to believe that no one’s suspected their side.”

Using black against black was Han Yunxi’s norm! 

It had to be said that everyone had a deeper understanding of her character now. They never expected her intelligence to go hand-in-hand with such fast-acting ruthlessness. If she had been born a man, she’d be unbelievable. Even so, she didn’t lose to any man now! Perhaps she really did have the power and guts to properly lead West Qin.

“As for the business at the auction hall, Head Elder doesn’t need to worry. I naturally have ways to attract customers.”

Seeing the man hesitate, Han Yunxi continued to speak. “I suppose everyone’s already seen East Valley Private Bank’s account books. The money is enough to prop up Myriad Merchant Hall for one and a half years while amply supporting the Di Clan’s army and various other expenses. The other’s side already attacking us on our doorstep. Are you satisfied with swallowing your resentment? Where’s the dominance of Cloud Realm Trade Consortium?”

The elders’ hearts immediately shook at her words. Fifth Elder stepped out first. “Everything will be as Your Royal Highness says!”

Afraid that Fifth Elder would get all of Han Yunxi’s favor and supplant him someday, the head elder quickly expressed without hesitation, “Your Royal Highness is wise and brilliant!”

If Han Yunxi knew that Golden Wing Hall belonged to Gu Qishao, who’d only screwed Myriad Merchant Hall to take revenge for her sake, what would be her reaction? She had Fourth and Third Elder help out Uncle Cheng, Second and Head Elder manage things at the auction house, and kept Fifth Elder behind to coordinate various tasks within Myriad Merchant Hall. 

Once the meeting adjourned, she said to Fifth Elder in a lower voice, “Go find the guests who smashed up the gambling house recently and tie them all up. I’m going to force them to sell out Golden Wing Hall no matter what!”

After that, Han Yunxi quickly went back to Ning Jing’s courtyard. She was vexed and worried: just how could she get Tang Li out of jail at this rate?

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