Chapter 172: Quelling the Chaos
On the top floor of Ah Fu’s Gun Shop.
Bai Chen placed the Orange rifle on the edge of the rooftop and fired down in a rather awkward posture.
Among the wilderness nomads attempting to break through the barricades at the courtyard’s entrance, one person fell face down, blood flowing.
Bai Chen wasn’t greedy; she immediately retracted her body and dodged the group’s subconscious counterattack.
After a round of random firing, the group of wilderness nomads—who had lost their leader and commander—could only retreat in a rather messy manner due to the relatively abundant firepower in the courtyard.
They fled in different directions.
Long Yuehong heaved a sigh of relief when he saw this. He quickly checked his firearms and reloaded them. This was a rifle that he had borrowed from Ah Fu’s Gun Shop’s boss, Auntie Nan’s brother; it could be used as a sniper rifle.
He and Bai Chen used this opportunity to occupy the high ground and cooperated with the neighbors behind the barricade to deal with the scattered wilderness nomads and a small number of city guards, who had lost their discipline.
Long Yuehong had also grasped sniping techniques during training. However, he usually didn’t have the chance to familiarize himself with them. After wasting more than ten bullets, he gradually got into the groove. He could now take an enemy out with two to three bullets.
Compared to him, not only did Bai Chen hit every target with one bullet, but she was also good at observation. She could always find the enemy leader and target them.
This way, the enemies would become disorganized and disperse after a few shots.
“I wonder when it will end…” Long Yuehong looked down from the rooftop and sighed.
Although their defensive efforts had been very successful and easy, nobody knew what awaited them as long as the city continued to be in chaos.
“Soon.” Bai Chen looked back at North Street. “As long as Weed City’s upper echelons aren’t wiped out, these wilderness nomads won’t be a match for them when they catch their breath and regroup.”
The simplest fact was that the city guards had yet to counterattack. No matter how bad they were, they were regular troops that had undergone training and often fought in the wilderness. It was impossible for them to collapse so easily.
Furthermore, in the residences of the nobles at North Street, every family could produce multiple cannons at any time, take out a few machine guns, and organize a very capable private army.
In addition, Bai Chen had also heard that the Castellan used the Hunter’s Guild to cooperate with Mechanical Paradise closely. It was possible that they were hiding some secret weapon.
Just as she said that, Bai Chen heard a slightly deep rumble.
Boom! Boom! Boom!
Salvo continuously boomed from North Street, and the ground gently shook.
Long Yuehong felt the building tremble. For a moment, he didn’t know if the city defense forces had finally counterattacked or if the wilderness nomads had seized enough cannons and begun bombarding the barricade.
After this round of firing, intense gunshots sounded.
Before long, a commotion surged south from North Street as if a large number of people were running toward the city gate.
Right on the heels of that, a loud voice sounded through the clouds. “Put down your weapons and squat down with your hands on your head. As long as you surrender, you will receive aid. You can also enter a manor and become a slave.”
The repeated warnings echoed in the city as the commotion and gunshots slowly subsided. As long as there was a way out, very few people would stubbornly resist to the end.
Long Yuehong and Bai Chen looked at each other and exhaled. “It’s finally over…”
Castellan Manor, Aristocratic Council Chamber.
Sitting at the end of the long table, Shang Jianyao stroked the small speaker with a blue bottom and a black surface as he spoke to everyone in satisfaction. “Isn’t it nice how everyone is so harmonious, working together to fight against an external enemy? If there really is any conflict, just have a dance battle or an arm wrestle. Or perhaps see who can stare without blinking for the longest time.”
Xu Liyan took a deep breath and agreed. “That’s right! We’re all brothers and sisters, so how can there be any obstacles that we can’t surmount?”
“No, no,” retorted the slow talker, Merrick. “We need to have a hierarchy. You still have to call us uncles.”
Xu Liyan was just about to respond when a guard came over from the door and reported happily, “Castellan, the first counterattack has scattered those wilderness nomads! Due to the promise of aid, many of them have given up resisting. Order in the city is slowly being restored. The city guards that we previously lost contact with have been found and organized.”
Xu Liyan heaved a sigh of relief and smiled. “As expected, things need to work in concert. We can’t be stingy at a time like this. Mercy might not necessarily be worse than selfishness. Different situations require different methods.”
After this battle, Xu Liyan felt that his authority had been established to a certain extent. However, everyone was a brother, so there was no need to force the issue.
After Xu Liyan gave the orders to deal with the aftermath, he saw another guard rush to the door.
“Castellan, the wilderness sentry in First City’s direction reports: A regular army from First City has appeared and have met up with a few slave hunter teams.”
Xu Liyan narrowed his eyes. “As expected…”
Jiang Baimian wasn’t surprised at all. After confirming Father’s true goal, she suspected that there was a faction in First City behind the matter or that it was the direct will of First City’s Senate.
They had long wanted to swallow Weed City—a fat piece of meat with great autonomy—completely.
Xu Liyan then looked around and smiled. “If we can’t resolve the chaos quickly, they will have sufficient reason to station themselves here and stabilize the situation for their subordinate faction.”
With that said, he turned to look at Uncle Liu. “Send out a drone team and bomb the wilderness plains in front of that army. Tell them that we’ve quelled the unrest and ask them not to approach to prevent any collateral damage. Heh heh, these large-scale fireworks should be able to entertain both the guests and the host.”
“Yes, Castellan!” Uncle Liu replied before reminding him, “Bear in mind that harmony is still the most precious thing.”
“I understand.” Although Xu Liyan was angry, he didn’t lose his reason.
For them, be it the resources they could obtain, the trade they could participate in, the protection they could obtain, or the degree of autonomy, staying under First City’s protection was the best choice.
Upon seeing that the situation had been reversed and all matters were on track, Jiang Baimian signaled Shang Jianyao with her eyes.
Shang Jianyao quickly stood up. As he placed the small speaker back into his tactical backpack, he said, “We still have something on; we have to go.”
“You have to come to the ball after things calm down!” Zhao Zhengqi’s eldest son extended an invitation, reluctant to see Shang Jianyao go.
“If I’m free,” Shang Jianyao replied with glistening eyes.
Xu Liyan looked around. “Don’t you still have three people with you? It’s inconvenient without a car. Men! Drive my custom bulletproof SUV to the door.”
After giving the instructions, he looked at Shang Jianyao and sincerely said, “I hope you will like it.”
“Then, I won’t stand on ceremony,” Shang Jianyao replied with a smile.
The military-green bulletproof SUV drove out of Castellan Manor and slowly headed toward the municipal building along North Street.
Jiang Baimian looked at Wei Yu and the others in the backseat and asked Shang Jianyao—who was in charge of driving. “How long can your Inference Clowning last?”
This would determine how long they had to escape from Weed City.
During the previous search, they had—without any surprises—discovered Wei Yu and the other members of Lei Yunsong’s team.
Originally, an intense battle was inevitable, and it was very likely that casualties would arise. However, Oudick happened to be involved. With the help of suppressive fire, he found an opportunity to put Wei Yu and the others into a deep sleep.
As many guards were nearby back then, Jiang Baimian didn’t let Shang Jianyao use Inference Clowning to deal with the aftermath. She also didn’t directly wake Wei Yu and the others up and attempt to snap them out of Hypnosis by exchanging pleasantries.
She chose to anesthetize them superficially and bring them back for treatment.
As Shang Jianyao drove, his body swayed slightly. “They’ve already formed a circular loop. If nothing goes wrong, it will last for at least half a month. Usually, even if you encounter something contradictory to your inferred outcome in life, it will be drowned away by the circular loop of facts as long as it’s not something especially intense or completely at odds with you. This will accumulate until it reaches a critical point.”
“That’s good.” Jiang Baimian nodded first before asking curiously, “You only made them think that you were a brother and that they were touched by your spirit, so they chose to help. This has nothing to do with many things in real life. The possibility of a negative example appearing is rather low. What will happen if there’s no negative example at all?”
Shang Jianyao seriously made a guess. “The Aristocratic Council will become a Brotherhood Council then.”
Jiang Baimian laughed. “That’s unlikely since they have real-life conflicts with each other. As time passes, they will discover something amiss sooner or later.”
At this point, Jiang Baimian turned around and looked at Shang Jianyao. She then asked seriously, “Do you think you did anything wrong regarding what happened just now?”
Shang Jianyao thought for a moment and said, “I should’ve sent you away first!”
Jiang Baimian rolled her eyes. “That’s the wrong choice!”
She sighed and helplessly said, “At least give me a signal before you do something. Don’t launch a sudden attack. If I had reacted a little slower, we really would’ve died!”
“Alright.” Shang Jianyao agreed.
When they returned to the alley where Ah Fu’s Gun Shop was, the city’s order had already been restored. All the obstacles blocking the courtyard entrance had been removed.
After settling Wei Yu and the others down, they didn’t go out again. They stayed in the room and listened to the sporadic gunshots.
At 5 p.m., the sky gradually darkened, and Weed City finally stabilized.
Shang Jianyao and the others split into two groups. They left the alley and went to South Street to confirm their current situation.
At this moment, people were sitting in front of many shops—which had been smashed to smithereens. They were either bending their backs and looking at the ground, sobbing softly, or looking at the street in front of them, crying silently.
The streets were filled with patrolling city guards. Many citizens and nomads helped collect corpses in order to obtain more food.
The dead were dragged away one after another, leaving behind blood-red streaks on the ground.
Long Yuehong suddenly felt a chill run down his spine, and he subconsciously looked up at the sky.
The low-hanging clouds were like lead. Glistening shards of ice fell down in increasing numbers.
Long Yuehong stared at this scene dazedly. As he stretched out his right hand to receive the snow, he said softly, “It’s snowing…”