Isaac had finally arrived at his destination. Out of habit, he pulled out a cigarette from his pocket and lit it. A great ca.n.a.l ran through the two cities. To the east was Port City with its clean streets and elegant manors. To the west was New Port City where countless warehouses and loading stations lined across the ca.n.a.l. Isaac glimpsed behind to see a tunnel so large that it was akin to a dragon’s lair.
“What a f.u.c.ked-up place.”
Just like Isaac’s first impression of the city, New Port City was a f.u.c.ked-up place. The two cities were situated on the edges of the Minolen Mountains, which lay on the boundaries between the middle and southern territories of the Empire. Between the Minolen Mountains and Lake Levonen was a small plain where Port and New Port City existed. The two cities were a prime example of how disgusting human greed could be when pushed to its limits.
Lake Levonen was naturally connected with straits which branched out to the west, east, and south, making it the ideal hub for transport and trade within the Empire. They were the ‘Heart of the Empire,’ and all goods from the east, west and south travelled through here to reach its destination.
When only Port City existed on this place, a crazy man instigated the populace to support the construction of a new ca.n.a.l. This ca.n.a.l was to be dug through the Minolen Mountains which acted as a barrier to the north, making a direct trade route toward the centre of the Empire. One by one, the people agreed to the idea, and an official plan was soon made along with the funds and manpower to begin the project. This was a project funded purely by the citizens without any support from the Empire’s government. Countless n.o.ble families and merchant guilds went bankrupt during its construction, and only after fifty years did human greed triumph over nature. That was just 10 years before Isaac arrived here. With a direct connection to the centre of the continent, it proudly proclaimed itself to be one of the greatest cities within the Empire, second only to the Capital. But problems began to emerge after the construction had finished.
The fifty year construction period had forced the workers to settle in a nearby area. Workers who couldn’t find a place in the affluent Port City with its rich soil and excellent view had to settle on the western side of the Lake. The place was not suited for a comfortable life with its many swamps, wetlands, branching rivers and hills, but the poor workers gathered here regardless.
The real problem was after the construction was completed. All of the workers had suddenly become unemployed. By this point, many generations of workers had started to call this place home and few wanted to leave this place. While the original workers of the city stayed put, more people from across the Continent came to the city in search of work, resulting in overabundance of labor. Only the landlords and merchants of Port City were happy about this, since this resulted in a sharp decline on the wages.
As unhappiness grew amongst the labourers due to pitiful earnings and difficult work, Port City requested to split the city into two separate economic regions in fear of riot from the workers. This was quickly accepted, and so a hundred thousand citizens were split away and founded the now New Port City.
All of the properties within New Port City were already owned by the landlords who lived in Port City, so all of the hard earned money within New Port City naturally flowed back to Port City. The people of New Port City struggled to earn enough money to survive while Port City was enjoying a golden age. More and more citizens became dest.i.tute and soon the slums within New Port City expanded.
At first, mayors who were transferred into New Port City were filled with determination to change this place. But after struggling against its poor conditions and financial issues, they all disappeared. The seat of the Mayor had been empty for many years now.
The growing slums, lack of public order and the absence of ruling authority made it a haven for criminal syndicates to spread their wings. The rough sailors, workers, pubs and brothels were great targets to fund their sinister deeds.
The lack of public order led to an increase in crimes such as murder, robbery, and rape, this led to emigration of what little middle cla.s.s citizens there were. The empty houses were in turn filled by people of the slums. It was a downward spiral which saw no end, and now New Port City as a whole was a giant slum.
“They chose well. This is a perfect place to get stabbed in the streets if I tried anything rash.”
Isaac nodded and stomped on the b.u.t.t of his cigarette. He remembered the doc.u.ment Mazelan handed to him during his brief visit in Gabelin.
It was the cradle of corruption and crime. With the lack of a mayor or an administrator, it was the criminal syndicates who ran this city. Among the many small and large syndicates that spread across this city, there were five syndicates which truly ruled this city. Isaac couldn’t stop himself from laughing when he heard that out of the 5 syndicates, four of them were connected to the four prominent faction leaders of Port City while the last syndicate was the police force of New Port City.
When Isaac questioned why the Empire didn’t put at least the police force into custody, Mazelan smiled bitterly and pleaded him to understand that the Empire was overlooking some form of its corruption as the mere presence of the police force helped to stop the crimes from escalating further. But Isaac was ready to bet his life that Mazelan’s eyes were smiling, because he found this situation to be interesting.
New Port City followed the Empire’s traditional administration strategy and split the city into five regions. The Ceta District was in the centre, the Alpha District in the East, Beta to the West, Zeta in the north and Meta district in the south. The four prominent criminal syndicates have already taken over one of the outlying districts for themselves, happily sucking the citizens dry while the Police Force of New Port City took over the Ceta District in the Centre.
Most of the city was in a complete mess since no proper city planning was made in its construction, but at least the City Hall and the neighbouring regions seemed to have some planning for its construction.
Isaac arrived at the Ceta District and looked at the City Hall. It was a small two-story building which seemed to be in decent shape, at least on the outside.
“It seems better than I expected. I thought it’d be completely run down by now. I guess the people still treat this as a government property.”
Isaac got up the stairs to open the doors. The door opened with an irritating creak and Isaac sighed when he looked inside.
“It only looks fine on the outside.”
It was akin to an abandoned house inside. Not single furniture was in one piece and a table sat in the middle with one of its legs broken. Bags of rubbish were stacked near the windows, suggesting that people have been secretly throwing their trash in here. Meanwhile spider webs were spread across the entire building like a giant fishing net… Isaac didn’t even want to step foot in this place.
Isaac contemplated as to how long it would take to clean this place up. He shrugged and turned around.
“I guess I need some help for this.”
The best part about having money is that you can pay people to do something you don’t want to do. With this place being a giant slum, there were many people willing to work just for a single loaf of bread.
Isaac got back outside and sat on the steps which lead to the main gate. He shuffled through his bag to look for something to eat and looked around the area.
The City Hall was situated in the plaza which was circular in shape. To the left of the plaza was a building cleaner and fancier than the City Hall. It seemed to be the Police Headquarters, as there was a man in uniform who guarded its entrance. The guard seemed to be staring at Isaac. It was understandable, since in his eyes Isaac was some weirdo who just entered an abandoned building only to come straight out and was now chomping on some food.
“What a perfect place to have those.”
Most of the buildings which stood next to the plaza were brothels. Many headstrong police officials would go mad at the sight that the police headquarter stood in the centre of so many brothels.
Isaac looked around the plaza which seemed quite empty, perhaps because it’s still daytime. The only hygienic place around seemed to be the Police Headquarters, while the rest of the area seemed to be filled with trash. In every alley there was at least one body lying on the ground, and Isaac couldn’t tell if they were just drunkards or corpses.
From beggars watching the barren plaza with their empty eyes to children who rummaged the belongings of those who had pa.s.sed out in the alleys, the plaza was everything you’d expect from a slum. Considering that this was one of the richer districts in the city, Isaac could only imagine just what the remainder of the city looked like.
Isaac turned around when he sensed someone was near his side.
A group of starved children with sweat covering their filthy clothes revealed themselves to Isaac. These were the children who were at the bottom of the food chain in this city, those who couldn’t even join the others who looted the trash or dead bodies. Their only choice was to rely on the pity of others to extend their miserable life or succ.u.mb to starvation and die. A common sight within the slums.
The children sucked on their thumbs as they stared at the bread Isaac was holding. When Isaac finished the entire thing in a single bite, the children simply turned away without a hint of disappointment. For the victims of this cruel world, even disappointment was a luxury they couldn’t afford.
Isaac called out to the children and took out another bread from his bag and threw it at them. The bread landed right on the children’s feet.
Isaac couldn’t hide his surprise when he saw what the children did. He had seen how people turn into demons when they’ve suffered the pain of starvation. He had experienced it himself, since he survived from fighting in a company that had been cut off from its supplies. He expected the children to turn into ghouls and fight for a larger share. Isaac didn’t intend this out of mean spirit. He just wanted to entice the children to clean the City Hall for him with more bread.
But instead of fighting for the bread, they carefully looked at their surroundings. They picked up the bread, and after bowing at Isaac in grat.i.tude, they started to share the bread with each other. They were careful not to waste any of it, not even its crumbs. Their shares were so small between them that it would make their feeling of starvation worse, but still they shared with each other. The bigger children would give a larger portion to the smaller children, and Isaac was shocked that these children were doing this with a smile on their faces.
Isaac let out a small noise. It turned to a snicker, then into a full blown laughter.
The sight of Isaac laughing out loud had gathered everyone’s attention, and the children who received the bread from him were shaking in fear as they just watched what he was going to do next.
“Ahem, excuse me.”
The sudden voice stopped Isaac’s laughter, and Isaac turned to see where it was coming from. He saw a small middle aged man with a face of a mouse. Even his natural stance seemed to show his grovelling nature. The children’s faces went pale at the sight of him and quickly scattered away.
Isaac talked to the man as he watched the children disappear.
“Who are you?”
“Eheh. Do you happen to be Sir Isaac, the newly appointed Administrator?”
“Oh! It is good to see you. I am Ratt, vice-captain of New Port City’s Police Force.”
As he introduced himself, he quickly glimpsed at the left chest of Isaac. He flinched when he saw the emblem representing the College with its golden stars. The College was something he never wanted to encounter, let alone work under. He didn’t know why a graduate of the College was appointed to New Port City, but there was no harm in having a good first impression.
Isaac briefly looked at Ratt’s face before making a reply.
“I am in a good mood right now.”
“Eheh, that’s good to hear.”
“Yes. It’s a very good thing. And because of that, I want to tell you that I know nothi-.”
“That’s why I’m here. I am here to explain to you how this city is run and also to throw a welcoming party for you, who will be doing his utmost to…”
Isaac stopped Ratt’s speech by flicking his finger, telling Ratt to come closer. Ratt was offended by this, but he kept it inside and did as he was told.
“Eheh, is there something you’d lik… Kuk!”
Isaac slammed onto Ratt’s nose with his fist like he would with a hammer.
“Aaah! My nose!”
Isaac said to Ratt as he struggled with his bleeding nose.
“I’m going easy on you because I’m in such a good mood. If you cut my words again I will fry your throat with the sludge from the sewers.”
“Kuk! What have I done to deserve this?! You’re going to have a hard time if this is how you’re going to start your career!”
“That’s none of your business but I do agree that a welcoming party is necessary. Sadly, I am very lazy and I hate unnecessary things. So we are going to have the party here.”
Ratt looked blankly at Isaac as he held on to his bleeding nose.
“Didn’t you hear me? We are having a welcoming party. Here. Tonight. Tell everyone who calls themselves the rulers of this city to attend the party. Anyone who fails to attend will be carved into my memories and I will make sure to give them a bad time. Ah! In addition, I prefer my table to be so full of food that it looks as if I haven’t even touched it by the time I’m done. Understand?”
As Ratt scrambled on his feet to send the message, Isaac grabbed onto his shoulder.
“And where do you think you’re going?”
“Huh? To send your message of course…”
“Oi, I guess you’re as dumb as you look. If you’re gone, who am I supposed to use for my ch.o.r.es?”
“I, I will make sure to send some men to serve you.”
“But I don’t want that?”
“I don’t want that.”
As night approached, the Ceta District plaza, which was usually populated with customers for the many brothels in the region, was instead occupied by thugs with their threatening appearance. At the plaza in front of the City Hall was a circular table and the bosses of the five criminal syndicates sat around it. On the main street connecting to the plaza were two rows of tables where the subordinates of the bosses sat. Their food, which was transported from Port City, laid in front of them just waiting to be consumed. Yet, no one was able touch it. All they could do was look at the City Hall’s doors.
Many eyes could be seen in the gaps of the alleyways who were tempted by the food arranged on the tables, but no one was brave enough to beg the most infamous mobsters in the entire city. They were simply waiting for this party to finish so they could clean up whatever was left behind.
Meanwhile, Ratt was having the worst time of his life. After a string of orders from Isaac, he finally allowed Ratt to bring in his subordinates to clean up the City Hall. But this was quickly followed with Isaac scolding Ratt in front of all his subordinates asking why he wasn’t doing any work. Isaac ordered Ratt to join in on the cleaning and as Ratt managed to finish the cleaning duties while keeping his boiling anger in check, he demanded a bed be transported into the City Hall. Isaac spoke with all seriousness that he will kill anyone who comes to wake him up and then locked himself into his room.
Time had pa.s.sed and the preparation of the welcoming party was over long ago. Even all of the guests have arrived, yet Isaac still didn’t seem like he was coming out. Everyone was silently pressuring Ratt to wake Isaac up with their stares.
Just when Ratt was about to break from being stuck between a rock and a hard place, a loud creak echoed and Isaac stumbled out of the City Hall.
“Yawn! That was a good nap. “
Isaac appeared out of the gates with a bushy hair and his eyes still half asleep. He looked around the plaza then got to the table in front of him and poured himself a gla.s.s of water while ignoring the others who also sat on the table. His actions were quite insulting to the bosses of the syndicates, and the mood of the entire situation worsened.
“Kyaa! That water tastes nice. Well then, let’s see how the food is.”
Isaac began feasting on the food that has been well seasoned with many spices, along with a side of bread and soup. The others, however, grit their teeth in anger as their murderous intent rose.
“Huhu. It seems our Administrator is quite peckish. Why don’t we have ourselves a meal too?”
An old man with a respectable aura tried to ease the tension in the air as he spoke with a mix of laughter, but the others were still staring at Isaac. After a much-awaited silence, the other five began grabbing for their utensils when Isaac suddenly stopped his feast and looked at the five who sat with him.
“What the f.u.c.k are you guys doing?”
The old man replied as if he was ready for this moment.
“I apologise for my late introduction. I am the one in charge of the New Port City’s Police…”
“I don’t give a f.u.c.k about what you are. I’m asking what you are doing now.”
Many who wore police uniforms rose up in protest to Isaac’s words. The old man stopped his men from unsheathing their swords with a wave of his hand, and replied to Isaac without a hint of emotion.
“We have gathered to this welcoming party for you. It seemed you were hungry, so we were going to delay our introductions after you’ve enjoyed the…”
Even before the old man finished his words Isaac threw the fork in his hand and spoke as if he’s lost all interest on the food in front of him.
“Ah, you just ruined my appet.i.te. Who are you?”
The police officers grit their teeth at Isaac’s impudent behaviour. Once again the old man urged his men to be patient and bowed respectfully at Isaac.
“I will introduce myself again. I am Dinozo, Captain of the New Port City’s Police Force. This is…”
“I don’t give a d.a.m.n about what you do. You’re Dinozo right?”
“That is correct.”
“You’re a commoner right?”
“That I am.”
“Everyone else on this table are also commoners right?”
“… That’s right.”
“I’m a n.o.ble you see.”
“Since when did a n.o.ble share the same table with a commoner for a meal? This is why you can’t let commoners get everything they want. You keep on giving, and soon enough they want to be above you.”
A muscular man covered with scars slammed onto the table with his fist even before Isaac was done with his words. He stood up and growled at Isaac.
“I see you’ve lost your f.u.c.king mind! You think that n.o.bility of yours is going to stop a knife from going up your a.s.s?!”
A group of young men who seemed to be his underlings stood up with him and started to make profane insults towards Isaac, worsening the situation.
After watching the man, Isaac turned his head to Dinozo and asked.
“He is Foxt, president of the Alpha District’s Youth a.s.sociation.”
“What do you mean a ‘Youth a.s.sociation’? He seems more like a f.u.c.ker who steals money from workers in the name of protection.”
Foxt pulled out a knife from his pockets and slammed it on to the table.
“You better watch what you’re getting yourself into. You think the t.i.tle of Administrator is going to protect your life?”
*** You are reading on https://webnovelonline.com ***
“Wow! I’m so scared. You’re going to kill me? Here?”
Isaac slapped his stomach in satisfaction. He lazily took out another cigarette and finally spoke to Dinozo.
“Introduce the rest.”
Dinozo pointed at the bald man with a thick beard to make up for it.
“This is Axlon, President of the Miner’s Union in the Zeta District.”
Axlon didn’t know what to do after the introduction so he gave a small nod to Isaac. It wasn’t the most respectful behaviour from him, but Dinozo found no reaction from Isaac. Dinozo moved on and began introducing the only woman on the table wearing a fancy dress that wrapped tightly around her attractive body.
“She is Milena, President of the Woman’s Rights Protection in the Beta District.”
Unlike Axlon’s emotionless greeting, Milena made a charming smile toward Isaac, highlighting her exposed cleavage.
“Hohoho, I am Milena. I am pleased to meet a reliable Administrator such as you.”
Isaac decided to accept the pleasing view from Milena and replied.
“As a n.o.ble and official Administrator of the Empire, I only remember the names of those who are worthy of my memories. Therefore that idiot who made a ruckus at the start will be Dumba.s.s, and the f.u.c.ker who tried to act smart will be Smarta.s.s. That mute one runs the mines so he’ll be Pickaxe. And only a crazy woman would walk around with a dress like that so I’ll remember you as Crazy b.i.t.c.h. That will be your names and I expect each of you you to come immediately when I call you out.”
The four whose names have been changed against their will could feel the anger rise inside. But they must hold on for now. They’ve already lost the initial conflict and Central, who stood behind him, was too formidable of an obstacle. Instead of making a scene on their own, they needed to follow the orders of their masters in Port City. There, influence and intricate connections with the government may come with an answer.
But even so, they were annoyed that Dinozo wasn’t mentioned by Isaac.
“What, you feel wronged? Our Captain of the Police Force is different from you criminals. At least he has a proper t.i.tle.”
That’s what Isaac said. All they could do was grit their teeth in anger.
Meanwhile, Dinozo, who remained emotionless throughout the whole ordeal, sighed at their reaction in his heart.
Those idiots couldn’t even see Isaac’s obvious attempt at creating a rift between them. They were simply too busy thinking about how unfair this treatment is. He was amazed that they even rose to the rank of Boss and led an organisation of their own.
“I hate it when someone bothers me, so send me someone who would serve by my side. Ah. Actually there’s no need. I can just keep him instead. He is so fun to tease.”
Ratt’s face went pale at Isaac’s words, but no one here was on his side.
“We wish to hear which direction you wish to lead New Port City, now that you’re in charge. That way, we may be able to cooperate with you to our fullest.”
Isaac waved his hand with an annoyed face when Dinozo spoke those words.
“You guys have been doing well enough without a mayor or an Administrator until now. Just do as you’ve always done.”
The faces of the five changed slightly to Isaac’s words. Since the t.i.tle of Mayor has been empty, the balance of power and order was in the hands of the Administrator. A single action from him could send the syndicates into chaos. That was the entire reason they either eliminated or enticed the Administrators. But they could only stand baffled when they were told that Isaac didn’t want anything to do with it.
“But you have to keep one condition.”
Indeed, it was too good to be true. Of course there was one condition.
The five stood trying to think just what Isaac’s condition could be. Was it money? Women? Or something else?
“Don’t starve the children.”
The five stood in silence to that incomprehensible order. Isaac lit another cigarette and continued.
“I don’t care whether you mug or murder your way through this city. But you better feed the children. Breakfast, lunch and dinner. From today onwards, if I ever see a starving child, I will personally go to that district and kill myself. So if you don’t want to see Central knocking on your doors, you better do your job well. That’s all I’ll say, so you can all f.u.c.k off.”
The five stood looked at each other contemplating Isaac’s words and Dinozo spoke out as the representative.
“Much preparation had been made for this Welcoming Party. Don’t you think at least the food should be…”
Isaac flicked his finger and called Ratt to his side.
“Hehe. What seems to be the… Uck!”
Ratt, who quickly answered to Isaac’s call, was once again punched in his nose. The swelling had finally started to go down but this just put him back to square one.
“Did you not send my message properly? I prefer my table to be so full of food that it looks as if I haven’t even touched it by the time I’m done.”
“I, I understood it as you just wanted to prepare as much food as possible…”
“d.a.m.n it. I hate it when idiots try to look for a hidden meaning to a straight answer.”
“T, then what do we do with all the food…”
“Throw it out.”
“Throw. It . Out.”
Ratt could only listen for the orders he received from Isaac with his blood dripping down his nose. This extravagant meal had cost him so much to prepare that he needed to get a loan to cover it. Most of the members of the syndicates were also looking forward to this, since the food that was prepared was something they would only see in a fairy tale.
And Isaac was telling them to throw it out.
While Ratt was at loss for words, Dinozo stepped in and spoke in his stead.
“Then we shall head off.”
Now wasn’t the time to argue about food, but rather to come together and think about how to deal with the walking disaster called Isaac. It seemed everyone else on the table had the same thought and made a quick farewell. The speed at which they disappeared seemed to show that they didn’t even want to stay for a second longer. The subordinates under the bosses had no choice but to exit the party with them.
Everyone had left while Ratt was still confused as to what had happened. Suddenly Isaac slapped the back of his head.
“What are you doing?”
“Do you know how expensive this food is?! And where can we possibly throw out all this food?!”
“We can throw them away into their stomachs.”
Isaac pointed to the alleyways around the plaza. When Ratt followed Isaac’s fingers, he could see the orphans of the slums slowly leaving the alleys, their eyes fixed on the food in front of them.
Report on Surveillance Target 728
Surveillance target 728 has safely arrived at New Port City. Unlike the prediction of his death made by some in the HQ, the target had managed to make all of the bosses of the syndicates submit by using his own life as a threat. (Details are attached to this doc.u.ment.)
We need further monitoring on the reactions from the criminal syndicates and Port City, but according to our observers they predict that target 728 isn’t a type 3 or 4 invader, but a man with severe anti-social behaviour who holds little value in his life or that of others.
Therefore, we believe a debate is required regarding the benefits of recruiting the target or proceeding with the plan the target had mentioned himself.
After a.n.a.lysis, proceeding with the plan Target 728 had made himself would lead to great benefits on increasing our influence over Port and New Port City. The HQ is currently split in two on whether to ‘eliminate’ the target or not. After much debate, everyone as agreed to monitor the situation to find out the true meaning behind the questionable order the Target presented to the syndicate bosses. The Target’s actions are to be closely monitored.
Credits: MOYOYO, Pyrenose, Jaiki
*** You are reading on https://webnovelonline.com ***