"What are you trying to say?" Garen didn’t show any sorrow in his eyes. Life and death, old age and sickness are normal for human being. He had already experienced it once in his past life, and after experiencing Old Man Gregor’s death, he only felt calmness this time.
Suddenly, Fei Baiyun grabbed his hand and started to tremble violently, as if he was hit by a bout of hysterics. Even the bed started to shake.
Trembling, he stuffed a Blackwood Ring into Garen’s palm.
Worried, Corinne and Simon rushed outside to get a doctor.
Fei Baiyun did not care much for his health, his gaze toward Garen was as sharp as a knife and as bright as the sun, and his hand gripped Garen’s with the strength of an iron plier.
"Rosetta… Find her… Kill her!"
Fei Baiyun forced out the sentence before he tremored fiercely and jerked backward. Eyes rolled back, he fell onto the bed. Dead.
Garen gently closed his eyelids with his palm and stood up.
He looked at Master Fei Baiyun, who no longer have a pulse, feeling a dark calmness wash over him.
"I will avenge you."
When Corinne and Simon returned with a doctor, Fei Baiyun had completely flatlined with no possibility of resuscitation.
Corinne and Simon went silent, grieving. In the period when they took care of Fei Baiyun, it was hard, but whenever he’s conscious, he would give them nuggets of guidance which helped a lot.
"Any news about Rosetta recently?" Garen asked suddenly.
"First senior brother’s friend had news of First Senior Sister Rosetta.* She was spotted at the Swan Lake in Lake Shore West City." Corinne answered with her eyes reddened by grief.
"Let’s go, it’s time for White Cloud Gate to clear out the bad seeds."
Garen marched out of the hospital room, his face projecting a dense killing intent.
Simon and Corinne glanced at each other, and followed closely.
The burial for the Founder of White Cloud Gate, Fei Baiyun, was held in modesty. There were only a few older visitors, including some master pugilists of yesteryear with better relationship with Fei Baiyun. The rest were comprised of Garen’s associates, Su Lin’s people, representatives of The Golden Hoop, Seven Moon Group, Circling Dance Gate and others.
At the burial ground, the sky gloomed, and the rain poured heavily.
The coffin was transported to Huaishan City Cemetery.
Garen was dressed in a black suit, he held an umbrella above him, watching the burial ceremony in silence.
The invited nuns from the monastery sang their requiem resoundingly while two strong men lowered the coffin slowly into the tomb. A bunch of white lilies were placed on top.
Rain clattered on the black umbrella.
Garen held a taut expression on his face, the free hand was inside his pocket, softly caressing the Blackwood Ring.
Corinne and Simon stood behind him, holding an umbrella each.
Third Senior Joshua was there as well. He looked remorseful. It was not clear when he arrived, but he stood there, wet, without the intention to get an umbrella. He looked at the coffin quietly.
"Third senior brother." Garen looked at Joshua.
Joshua nodded, took a step forward, took the shovel that was handed to him, and walked to the side of the tomb in the rain.
He shoveled some dirt and slowly drizzled it onto the coffin.
Garen noticed Third Senior Brother Joshua’s left arm was slightly crooked, as if he was hurt. He also knew about the damage Joshua suffered in his absence, when he protected the White Cloud Gate, against the wishes of his family, and was surprised by a sneak attack during a fight with the Black Mark Association. It was still healing.
After the first shovel of dirt, the people around the tomb started filling up the hole shovel by shovel.
White Cloud Gate’s members watched in the rain, utterly silent. Farther away, there were the plump Bouvini and his gang, the branch manager, the main hall’s pupils, and some newly signed up disciples of Simon and Corinne.
Even farther away were the other guests who came for the funeral.
Garen watched as the dirt rained on the coffin, his heart calmer by the second.
"The airplane you wanted is ready," The representative from the Golden Hoop whispered behind Garen, "This is a public resource. On a separate note, your authority allows you to mobilize up to fifty men from any nearby army camps, as well as firepower below Grade C."
He passed an identity document to Garen.
"This is yours, please take care of it. Use public resources reasonably to strengthen your influence. Your strength will influence the strength of the Golden Loop."
The old man with a hooked nose bowed slightly to Garen before stepping aside. He placed a bouquet of white roses in front of the tomb, gave it a salute and left.
The other funeral guests would offer a word of comfort to Garen without exception.
Garen peeked at the identity document, it was a document secured with a piece of crystal. In the middle of the black hard cover, there was the national miniature bird emblem engraved.
Flipping open the cover, the inner pages were padded with black felt.
The page on the left was the national emblem and the logo of the National Security Division.
The page on the right was his half body shot, as well as a serial number: No. 9.
Keeping the identification hidden, Garen stood on the side, observing each guest as they pay their respects.
I wasn’t long before Su Lin’s people was up next.
She was a young and beautiful, yet cool-looking woman. She dressed like an office lady*, her long blonde hair flowing past her shoulders, her body curvy where it needs to be.
She approached Garen and shook his hand.
"The news you asked for. Rosetta is still at the Swan Lake."
"Thank you." Garen murmured.
Lake Shore West City, several hundred kilometers from Huaishan City, Swan Lake.
The sun was setting, painting a dark golden shine on the irregularly-shaped, jade-colored lake.
Scattered around and in the lake were bunches of golden reeds and weeds, a few white swans lazed around on the surface of the lake.
At the bank by the shore, a man and a woman in police uniform squatted awkwardly, drinking the lake water with their palms. Their faces were muddy, their faces unrecognisable.
In the woods not far behind the two stood two other people in black cloaks. At the back of the cloaks, a white arc arching upwards were sewed in.
"How are we dividing for this mission?" One of the black cloaks was a woman.
"We get one half each. After that we’ll take another mission, I should be able to get what I wanted." The other cloaked figure is a man. "Of course, if you become my woman, I can give you half of what I own."
"This is the Lake Shore West City, your old nest. If anyone from the Crimson Sand Sword found out, you’ll run home crying." The woman teased, unamused.
"They won’t be able to catch me anyway. Better take care of your own problems. White Cloud Gate is not far from here. Sky Warrior Garen, tsk tsk, that’s an incredible title." The man retorted, unwilling to lose. "Maybe then you’ll even accept my offer, one night for every help."
"Hmph." The woman did not say anything more, "The stuff is on their hands?"
"Maybe they’re going to get it somewhere."
"Now if the Immortal Palace Alliance look the other way, every other people has been dealt with, no one would help them stop us Behemoth Gate." The woman spoke in a low voice. "Following them would lead straight to the thing."
"Anyone who tries to stop us, we’ll kill them." The man said unaffectedly.
Before he finished his sentence, the two police seemed to have drank enough. They stood up and took off speedily, anyone would know they’re trained in martial arts.
The two black cloaked figure immediately chased after them.
After Garen meted out some issues with White Cloud Gate, his return forced some of the less stable forces into hiding, the stress Corinne and Simon faced decreased dramatically.
He explained to his family about taking over the White Cloud Gate now that he is officially the new Master of White Cloud Gate. His family didn’t feel much of a difference, but they were curious how the youngest Garen could take over the dojo. They got the news later and didn’t show up at the funeral.
No matter what happened, Garen seemed less and less familiar to them. From not realizing the importance of White Cloud Gate, they slowly resorted to a stunned silence after learning about the guests at the funeral.
White Cloud Gate, more specifically Garen’s influence is far too much for them to handle, it surpasses the definition of a mere dojo caretaker.
Suddenly, they realized, like Garen’s uncle, couldn’t see through Garen at all.
But no matter what, after being exposed in the funeral, Garen’s name spread throughout the Huaishan City, becoming a fad of its own. Anyone who knows anything about the modest funeral talked about how it’s simple, but full of surprises.
Garen who was in the lead became famous overnight, even the Governor noticed and paid attention on this event, sending someone to deliver a wreath and a eulogy.
Following the funeral, anyone who paid attention would have known that Garen’s social network even extended beyond Huaishan City, as even influential organizations from nearby cities sent representatives to attend the funeral.
His network radially covered over half of the Galantia Province, even the powerful son of the Seven Moon Group, Rampas, came to grieve Fei Baiyun’s death after.
Because of the Seven Moon Group’s misdecision after Garen and Andrela’s battle, the board of directors unanimously voted to release the former chairman, Great Elder, from his duties, and elected Second Elder, Rampas’ father to succeed him. The Seven Moon Group’s reputation dropped significantly in the martial arts community. Fortunately, their businesses had a strong foundation and were not affected considerably.
The election of Rampas’ father elevated Rampas’ status, and as Rampas was already siding with White Cloud Gate, his naturally has to appear in person to grieve.
However, to the people who don’t know about the martial arts community, his appearance was more than shocking.
At this turn of event, Ying Er’s admiration to her brother only grew. Shengying Nobles Academy even listed Garen on their Wall of Fame, and even wanted to invite him to give a speech. However, this all happened during Garen’s flight to Lake Shore West City on the military plane.
Along with him, Garen brought Corinne, Simon, as well as Third Senior Brother Joshua. Aside from the core disciples whom Garen personally picked, two sharpshooters were arranged to take care of Joshua’s safety, one of whom reminded Garen of Yoda.
Who’s Yoda? He was the best gunman of the generation!
It just happened that he was planning to talk to these two about the level classification of marksmanship in the plane.