Jiang Chen’s seething desire to kill caused a river of blood to flow in the street. The second wave of attackers were decapitated without exception as well.
The bloody scene scared off the onlookers. They fled in terror, worried they would be swept into the slaughter. However, the young man didn’t lose his reason and refrained from expanding the scope of his killing to the bystanders. Cutting down those who’d harassed him was enough.
A faint smile hung on his face as he swept his gaze across the crowd. Countless fearful eyes all around involuntarily avoided his.
“You, come here.” Jiang Chen beckoned at a young cultivator.
The cultivator in question instantly paled, his teeth chattering.
“Tell me, who are these people?” Jiang Chen turned to consider the corpses.
“T-they… they’re f-from the Silversword Gang,” the young cultivator stuttered.
The Silversword Gang?
Jiang Chen had never heard of the name before. He knew little of Myriad Abyss’ matters; his knowledge was limited to the Ten Divine Nations and some second-rate factions.
The gang ran rampant upon Warmspring Island, but that didn’t mean it was important elsewhere. It was a local menace at best. In Myriad Abyss proper, it wasn’t even a fifth-rate faction.
“The Silversword Gang belongs to Warmspring Island? How many members does it have? What does it usually do?”
The young cultivator pulled a pained expression. “Please don’t make things hard for me, friend. Everyone knows the answers to these questions here on Warmspring, but who dares gossip behind the gang’s back? I plead for mercy.”
“Oh? You’re concerned about Silversword’s retaliation?” Jiang Chen frowned.
The cultivator smiled wryly. He was silent, but his meaning was evident. This made Jiang Chen unsure how to respond.
“Get out of here then.” He saw no reason to make an innocent’s life difficult.
He suddenly produced a pill. “I have a pill here called the Emperor Supremacy Pill. It has a seventy to eighty percent chance of improving a great emperor’s level by one. Anyone who provides me information on the Silversword Gang will receive it.”
He knew that a hefty reward was more likely to prove a source of courage. There were always people unafraid of death in the world of martial dao.
Moreover, his prize was incredibly enticing. No one had heard of the Emperor Supremacy Pill, but the advertised effect was simply too good to be true. Many great emperors present lit up. They began to consider the pros and cons of taking the bait.
“Friend, is your Emperor Supremacy Pill really that good?” a sallow great emperor asked cautiously.
“If you don’t believe me, I can offer another reward,” Jiang Chen answered coolly.
“No, no, the pill is fine. You have to guarantee that you haven’t over-exaggerated its effects, though.”
“I promise you that what I said about it is entirely true. If you’re interested, then take a bet. If not, I won’t force you.”
The cultivator pondered it for a few moments, then grit his teeth. “Come with me, friend.”
He’d clearly come to a decision, but was unwilling to complete the transaction in the eyes of the public. He led the way without turning back. Jiang Chen smiled faintly and followed.
It didn’t take long for the second cultivator to zigzag around several corners to an out-of-the-way alley and a secluded residence.
“This will do. I think it was abandoned for a while, and barely anyone comes here.” The cultivator halted.
Jiang Chen glanced around to ensure nothing was out of place before nodding. “Take the pill. Don’t try any tricks.”
He tossed the Emperor Supremacy Pill to the cultivator to win his trust.
The cultivator took it in hand and played with it a moment; his eyes burned with desire when he realized how extraordinary it was.
“Don’t worry, the pill is real.” Jiang Chen smiled.
“Alright. What would you like to know about, friend? I’ll tell you everything I know.” The cultivator was very pleased with his new pill.
“The Silversword Gang, that’s all.” Jiang Chen frowned. He felt that it was rather odd they had targeted him in the first place. Was there an ulterior motive?
“The Silversword Gang rose to power in the last hundred years or so here on Warmspring. It’s not particularly strong, but it did expand with alarming rapidity. I hear the head of the gang is a seventh level empyrean expert! He has multiple bodyguards who are sixth level empyrean as well. All in all, his gang is probably the strongest faction on this island.”
In Eternal Divine Nation’s capital, the Silversword Gang would be fourth or fifth-rate at best. On Warmspring Island, it was unrivaled.
“What do they do for business?” Jiang Chen asked again.
“Haha… well, truthfully, the Silversword Gang does a bit of everything. The business it does best at, though, is the criminal kind.”
Wariness flickered in the cultivator’s eyes. “I’ll be frank. After this mutually beneficial exchange, I’m leaving Warmspring Island right away, and I doubt I’ll ever return. I advise you to leave soon, friend, otherwise…”
“What kind of criminal business? Please elaborate.”
“Robbery, extortion, and slave trade. They pick on lone cultivators specifically. Because of the Silversword Gang, the slave market here on Warmspring is the biggest of all its dozen or so neighbors. The most common mode of operation for the Silversword Gang is to strike up a conversation and pretend to be your friend, then lead you into a dark alley or something. You’ll be a lamb to the slaughter at that point.”
Jiang Chen fully understood now. The Silversword Gang appropriated both material goods and their owners, making out like well, bandits, after wringing every last drop of value from their marks.
He’d witnessed Veluriyam Capital’s slave markets in the past, and had been exceptionally disgusted by the practice even back then. Any lingering shred of remorse for his extreme actions earlier was gone.
The Silversword Gang had lost its humanity. For what reason would he not exterminate such a faction, once he’d encountered it?
The cultivator felt the intensity of Jiang Chen’s killing intent. “Friend,” he kindly reminded, “if I were you, I would leave Warmspring Island now. But that’s enough from me. I’ve said my piece. Take care!”
“Hold on.” Jiang Chen called out to the cultivator.
“What else do you need, friend?” the cultivator stopped as requested, but his eyes anxiously darted toward the outside. He was clearly worried that the Silversword Gang would arrive any minute.
“Where is the gang’s headquarters?” Jiang Chen asked.
“You… you’re going to their headquarters?” The cultivator was positively ashen. He looked incredulously at Jiang Chen. “Friend, why are you being so rash? The Silversword Gang may not have a rich history or the deepest coffers, but it has plenty of experts. If you’re going to their headquarters…”
“Enlighten me. Consider this part of the exchange,” Jiang Chen replied evenly.
The cultivator could do little against Jiang Chen’s stubbornness. He thought a moment before answering, “Their headquarters is in the Purple Sun District, I believe. Not far from here.” Having answered, he left unceremoniously, putting on a mask and a change of clothes before striding off hastily.
Jiang Chen was completely liberated after hearing about the Silversword Gang’s misdeeds. The regret at having killed so many had entirely dissipated.
The Silversword Gang!
Though he wasn’t a particularly righteous youth, he disliked the Silversword Gang to his core. A gang could do many things to profit in Myriad Abyss. Only completely malevolent factions that reveled in evil would commit the most heinous of crimes in pursuit of wealth. Such depraved acts invited karmic retribution.
“The Silversword Gang has likely done this for years. Xing Hui and Xing Tong, as well as Yong Fan’s family… I wonder if the gang targeted them when they came here to Warmspring?”
Even if they had, it had been so long that Jiang Chen doubted an investigation now would yield any clues.
Still, he hoped that misfortune hadn’t come to pass. Xing Hui was a prudent man who had enough wisdom to avoid such disaster. As long as Xing Tong’s beauty hadn’t been discovered, they should have been safe from predation. There had been nothing particularly noteworthy about them otherwise.
Yong Fan’s family, on the other hand, would have proven a more desirable targets due to the presence of children.
What could Jiang Chen do but pray, though? He couldn’t change the past. Hopefully, they had all stayed safe.
He left the derelict residence. The situation outside was clearly tenser. There was chaos everywhere in the street.
The Silversword Gang’s executives had clearly received news that many of its men had been killed in broad daylight. The entire gang boiled over.
Because of this, Warmspring Island was in a state of unease. The Silversword Gang’s wolves searched for the man responsible for killing its own.
Many passages in and out of the island were guarded. Those quicker on the draw would’ve left the island right away. Those not as quick found it significantly harder to do so now.
Jiang Chen didn’t know what to say when he saw the ruckus the gang caused. Did Warmspring Island not have an administration? Why was the Silversword Gang being allowed to run amok?
Perhaps the gang had bribed the local authorities. But if it were allowed to scorn the public peace like this, there would be great disaster in the island’s near future.
The gang’s activities had begun to seriously affect Warmspring’s reputation abroad. If everyone thought that the island was a wretched hive of scum and villainy, who would bother coming here in the future?