Back in the pavilion at the back of Masquerade Club.
Master Rane was still sitting there but he wasn’t playing chess. He was just seated there with a slight frown on his face for quite a while.
Broken Sword sat across him and was equally silent.
The wind gently blew in and formed ripples on the surface of the nearby pond.
“I didn’t expect this at all,” Master Rane finally spoke up after a long while. “This young fellow is so impressive.”
It was way beyond what he had imagined.
“Impressive is right. Those thirty men were pretty much trash just three months ago,” replied Broken Sword calmly. “But of course, when you look at them now, they’re just better looking trash.”
He didn’t add on that since they could improve this much in just three months, then they could go a much longer way in the future. But how far they could go depended entirely on that man.
“You’re sure there’s no sign of the north?”
Master Rane asked Broken Sword one more time. This was totally unlike him. He never asked the same thing twice.
“There is only one family with the surname ‘Hunt’ in the north, but that family doesn’t have anyone with this name. But of course, he could use a pseudonym.”
But to Broken Sword, a genuinely highly skilled fighter would never care to use a pseudonym. “Are you worried that he’s coming for us?”
It was difficult not to think so.
“The families of the north are in a big fight now, and the one backing us isn’t in a good position right now,” sighed Master Rane. “If someone wants to replace me at this point, it’s only normal.”
He couldn’t interfere nor say anything when it came to a clash between that level of power.
Master Rane could command the illegal circles of Riverport, but he was merely a spokesperson for that person in the north. To put it bluntly, he was just that person’s dog.
Now that Ethan had suddenly risen in Greencliff, the older Master Rane couldn’t help but suspect that someone wanted to replace him.
Broken Sword frowned slightly. “I’ll go and kill him.”
Master Rane shook his head. “Don’t be rash. We still don’t know if he’s a friend or a foe.”
Besides, Broken Sword had said that Ethan’s capabilities were no less than his own. So even if he managed to kill Ethan, Broken Sword might be severely injured as well, and Master Rane didn’t want that to happen.
As for whether Ethan was a friend or foe, actually Master Rane had an idea already. Ethan was probably not a foe, but it would be hard to be friends.
“Zed,” Master Rane called out for Butler Zed who was standing outside the pavilion. “Update me.”
Butler Zed came forward. “Yes, Master Rane.”
Butler Zed was Master Rane’s eyes. He would get information from Masquerade Club on everything happening in Riverport, then report to Master Rane.
“The change in Greencliff is tremendous. The legal circle and the illegal circle is very well coordinated, so regardless of whether you’re talking about the city’s economic development or the orderliness in the illegal circle, it’s really shocking.”
“Ethan is working behind the scenes all this while and hasn’t really made any appearance, instead using Tom Foster as his representative. So it’s very hard to tell what he’s doing right now.”
Master Rane and Broken Sword raised their heads at the same time and there was a curiosity in their eyes.
“They have no illegal dealings or even businesses in gray areas. Everything is legal, and besides earning enough to pay their staff and subordinates, the rest is donated to build schools, libraries, parks and to help the needy.”
Master Rane’s eyes narrowed slightly, while a look of surprise appeared on Broken Sword’s face.
They had never heard of anyone doing something like this before. Who on earth in the illegal circles would do such a thing?
Nobody would make money just to do charity. That was probably a cover for something else.
“Master Rane, they’re not doing this just to cover up something else. They’ve been doing this all this while.” Butler Zed knew Master Rane well and could tell what he was thinking about. He laughed and said, “This time Wesley Allen and the other bosses went to Greencliff to try to snatch some territory away, but besides not getting anything, Ethan took $250 million from them!”
“And Ethan used this $250 million to repair roads and build bridges.”