Han Li had his back facing Black Bear, who was standing alongside the battling crowd. Although Black Bear tried his best to soften his footsteps, how could it possibly escape Han Li’s notice?
As the distance between Black Bear and Han Li shortened to just a few steps, Black Bear started to sprint, moving frenziedly like a demon. Han Li lightly shifted his body slightly and pivoted to directly face Black Bear, revealing a smile on his face.
Black Bear was shocked out of his wits, but he could no longer stop his momentum. Helplessly, he could only roar as he extended his black hairy hands, grabbing ruthlessly towards Han Li. He estimated that Han Li was just someone without much battle experience, and should have been shocked immobile by his savage, demon-like rush, thus rendering him vulnerable
Upon seeing the black, burly man recklessly raise his hand against him, Han Li’s expression suddenly sunk. His body flickered and disappeared right in front of Black Bear’s eyes.
Black Bear’s roar became stuck in his throat as he quickly halted his steps, planning to run away. Suddenly, he felt the point of a sword that shone brilliantly like snow coming into contact with his throat before it disappeared once more. Black Bear rapidly covered the bleeding wound with his hands and attempted to speak. However, only some unintelligible grunts was heard before his corpse fell onto the ground.
The color of Sun Ergou’s face turned waxy yellow. He had witnessed the youth moving like a specter as he appeared behind Black Bear’s back and easily sliced Black Bear’s throat with a flexible sword he had drawn from his waist. Afterward, the youth took out a white cloth and wiped the blood off his sword.
The young man raised his head and flashed a smile at Sun Ergou, almost as if he could sense Sun Ergou’s gaze.
As if he had seen a poisonous snake, Sun Ergou quickly retracted his gaze. His long-time enemy, Black Bear, had just died, but he felt not a hint of joy or excitement. On the contrary, he felt sad and mournful, like a person in distress.
He was completely awake now, and he knew full well that this young man was no fat sheep, but rather a King Yan from Hell who wanted his life.
(TL: King Yan: the god of death and a ruler of one of Hell’s eighteen levels)
The only slight trace of hope that Sun Ergou had left was whether his subordinates were able to defeat Han Li’s giant bodyguard. If that were the case, then he would still have a chance at surviving, enabling him to negotiate with the young man and thus saving his insignificant little life.
But as soon as Sun Ergou saw the situation unfolding over there with the young man’s giant bodyguard, he became dumbstruck like a wooden chicken.
Lacking the strength to move even a single muscle, over twenty burly men were lying on the ground, bleeding profusely. The giant bodyguard glanced coldly in Sun Ergou’s direction.
Although a mantle was obscuring the giant’s features, Sun Ergou could still feel a bestial, bloody aura emanating from the large figure, causing his waxy yellow face to turn pale white.
Han Li observed the variation of expressions on Sun Ergou’s face, and from his movements, Han Li determined that this person did not know martial arts. Looking at Sun Ergou’s face of abject terror, Han Li disdained from dealing with Sun Ergou personally.
“Crooked Soul, kill him!” Han Li commanded.
“No! Please! I surrender, I’m willing to give up all my fortune to young master. I’m willing to work like a slave, and I know all the news floating around Jia Yuan City! I could be a good lapdog for young master…” Sun Ergou walked over, step by step, towards the large man, whom he viewed as a demon. Begging for mercy in a panic, he frightenedly limped across the ground.
“Ai!” Han Li originally wanted to ignore Sun Ergou’s words, but as soon as he heard that Sun Ergou knew all the news regarding Jia Yuan City, his heart was moved, he became filled with joy.
“Stay your hand for now.” He commanded to Crooked Soul, who was about to twist Sun Ergou’s neck. Han Li walked forward, stopping right in front of Sun Ergou.
“Are you very familiar with Jia Yuan City?” Han Li smiled as he asked, taking on the very appearance of kindness.
Just earlier, Sun Ergou had seen Han Li’s ruthless side, so how would he dare to be slow to reply? Immediately, his voice quavered as he shouted, “Very familiar, extremely familiar. I grew up here so I know everything that happens here as if it were on the back of my hand.”
Now it was as if he had grabbed onto a life-saving strand of grass; he couldn’t help but wish he could make himself sound more useful by a tenfold so that Han Li would feel that he was still of use.
Hearing Sun Ergou’s reply, Han Li touched his own nose in consideration before pulling a bottle out from his robes.
He took out a white, longan-sized medicine from the bottle and handed it to Sun Ergou.
(TL: a longan is a fruit belonging to the same family as the lychee)
“Either you consume this or you die.” Han Li told him in straightforward manner.
The hand that Sun Ergou extended to take the medicine trembled violently. He hesitated while looking at the white pill in his hands before shifting his eyes to meet Han Li’s cold gaze. Coughing a few times, he had no choice but to ingest the pill.
“Good, I can trust you now.” Satisfied, Han Li nodded his head.
“The name of this pill is Rotten Heart Pill, and it was personally concocted by me. Every month, you need to consume the antidote, or else your inner organs will rot, causing you to die. I believe that you are an intelligent man, and you will serve me to the best of your abilities.” Han Li coldly and threateningly stated.
Sun Ergou was already prepared in his heart, but upon hearing the effects of the pill he had just consumed, he couldn’t help but to wail pitifully, appearing extremely depressed.
“Relax. As long as you help me settle what I need to do in the Jia Yuan City, I will neutralize the poison and return your freedom back to you. Based on your martial skills, I can’t really put you to good use anywhere else.” Han Li used both the stick and carrot, giving Sun Ergou the assurance that as long as he completed his task well, there was still some hope that he would be freed.
“Truly, young master?!” Sun Ergou’s expression slightly trembled upon hearing this news.
“Take these taels of silver with you and clean up this place. I don’t wish for this matter to spread, do you understand?” Han Li commanded as he tossed a bag of silver over to him.
After catching the bag, Sun Ergou weighed it in his hand. It was heavy, as if there were about 200 taels of silver inside.
An expression of joy appeared on his face. He realised that if he could work for such a man with riches and authority, it might not necessarily be a bad thing.
“Young master, please leave this to me. I will handle this well, without creating any trouble for you!” He laughed as he patted his chest proudly.
“Okay, I shall leave first to find an inn. Tomorrow morning, come look for me. Since you yourself claim to be the local head in Jia Yuan City, you should be able to find out which inn I will stay in.” Han Li commanded again, without a trace of politeness in his voice.
“Yes! Yes! Tomorrow morning, I will be there, waiting for young master’s commands!” At this stage, Sun Ergou could only be described as “eager” to become Han Li’s lackey.
Han Li smiled as he gestured to Crooked Soul, who picked up the baggage, and left the alley. After walking a distance, Han Li turned back and glanced at Sun Ergou, only to find him him obediently standing there at the same spot. Sun Ergou was using his eyes to respectfully send Han Li off, showing an expression of fear and loyalty.
“Interesting!” Han Li suddenly felt that this person was extremely interesting and intelligent. Perhaps he could really put him to good use in a sticky situation.