102 Chapter 102 Start of Volume 2
A young girl was looking around her surroundings, she could see sunlight coming from a small window, the metallic rods placed in it casting a shadow on the ground. She wasn't the only person in this room, there were several other girls of various ages leaning up against the walls. Some were hugging their own knees, some of them were crying, some just spacing out wondering how it came to this.
The young girl stood up, she was in a closed room that she was brought here by some scary uncles. She was dragged here while kicking and screaming, being sold off by her own family members that weren't able to meet ends meet. This wasn't something rare, human trafficking and slavery was quite common in these parts. If you didn't have a strong family backing, you could very well be snatched up in the night and sold at some shady auction house.
This was one of such places, the girls were brought here in the night and spent the rest of it locked up, worrying and not knowing what would happen to them. The most you could hope for was being sold to some rich clan member as a servant, but some families would beat you to death for any small mistake you made. There were no rules set up for the weak, the only way for them to subsist was to not stick out or beg.
The girls in here were mostly people from the surrounding villages, the clans would tax the farmers exorbitantly, taking well over half their earnings. They would leave them with only enough food and resources so that they wouldn't die of starvation. But they were quite inflexible, if the crops turned out to be bad, the farmers still had to give the same amount which in return made them starve. If you resisted, you would be lashed and strung up in front of the village as a reminder of who was in charge.
Ling Ling here was one of those cases, there was a drought this year so most of their rice fields dried up. The tax collectors weren't having any of it, if the farmers couldn't deliver the required amount of rice they would have to pay out of pocket to cover the losses. She was one of the daughters from the village that got sold off, the people in it rather doing that to girls than boys that were better at working out in the fields. Everyone knew that it was unreasonable and tyrannical, but no one cared about a couple of dead farmers.
The girls in the room ranged from ten to sixteen, they were all young. Some of the lucky ones would be picked up by merchants or some rich families that needed some workers, their life wouldn't be that bad. But the unlucky ones would be sold to brothels as toys for the rich young and old masters.
"I want to go home... what will happen to us?"
Sobbed one girl on the side her hands hugging her torso as she was cold, the only thing on her was old robes that weren't keeping out the cold dungeon air. Ling Ling, on the other hand, tried pushing the large door, it had a tiny opening at the top with more metal bars in them, but she wasn't tall enough to reach. The door was wooden and reinforced with some metal here and there, much too sturdy for any of the girls that had no cultivation to break open.
The girl could hear some people coming closer, this making her and the other people in the room move back. Soon they heard sounds of heavy footsteps, two large men were going through the corridor grinning and thumping on some doors that had other potential slaves in them.
"Hey brother Bo, the new 'goods' arrived today, right?"
"Right right, brother Weng they should all be in the last cell."
The two men walked slowly while talking witch each other.
"Have you heard, some trouble with the ruling clan, something happened last night."
"Ahh, you know those clans they always like to fight with each other, we'll just have to bribe them as we always do."
The two men grinned at each other as they strode towards the room that the young girls were in. Soon the girls inside trembled as they saw two old uncles staring at them through the small gap in the door, their eyes shining with lust.
"Ahh, it's such a tragedy that old fatty never lets us play with the merchandise."
"Haha, better not let him hear that you called him like that, you'll be lashed to death brother."
The two men laughed out, their voices echoing through the hallways, they were ordered to check the new girls and bring them over to a separate room for inspection. The person that owned this slave-trading establishment was known as Old Fatty Mu. He was quite the ugly looking fellow and had a really short fuse, he was well aware of this nickname and would lash out at anyone that mentioned it around him.
"Yeah, he even beat one of the working girls to death when she mentioned something about a diet."
"Hah, yeah such a shame."
The two slammed the door open, the girls scattering to the walls as they looked at the two scary uncles. The old master had a peculiar taste, he would inspect the girls one by one himself. Most of the time they came out unscathed, but sometimes he would beat or force himself on some that he was keen on.
"Don't be scared of this brother little ladies, I'm not going to bite."
One of the men said while licking his lips, his face making him look like a hungry wolf. The unlucky one came out to be Ling Ling, one of the men grabbed her arm and pulled her outside the cell door. They shut the door behind them and headed out, the girl squirming but unable to resist.
While passing some other cells she could see old, young, and malnourished people with the light in their eyes long gone. She tried resisting, but the more she did the more the strange uncles yanked on her arms.
She was tossed into a new room, this one looking cozier than the rest. It had a large bed in the corner, a desk with a large chair behind it. It looked like an office where you would do business. On that chair there was a person sitting, well the girl had to do a double-take as the number of chins that this person had was astonishing.
"Mister Mu, we have brought you the goods, have fun with her."
The girl tried to turn around to run once more, but one of the men held her hands while the other grabbed a metallic collar from the side. They put the item around her neck before pushing the girl down to the ground. They left soon after, the girl looking back to the large man in the chair.
"No use running girly, it would be better if you realized in what situation you are in."
He moved out his fat hand, his sausage-like fingers having many golden rings on it. One of these rings began glowing in a chilling light. The moment it did some strange patterns started appearing on the girl's collar, soon enough she felt pain running through her body. She screamed out while grasping the slave collar that she was now wearing, the pain subsides after a moment as the man moved his hand away.
"I bet you are smart and understand what that is, if you're good no harm will come to you, but if you're naughty... then... Bwe he he..."
He licked his lips while moving of his chair, his belly jiggled around in an obscene fashion as he slowly walked towards the girl. The shock collar worked like expected, the poor girl had tears in her eyes and her legs were shaking. She was terrified and unable to more, just looking at the ugly man moving towards her.
"That's a good girl, let uncle Mu take a good look at you."
He moved closer, the girl frozen allowing the man to grasp her hair. He walked around her, leaning his fat round head closer as he examined the scared farm girl.
"Not the prettiest thing, but I bet the other ladies can fix you up later. Guess I can pawn you off to a wealthy man as a plaything, or we can send you to the pleasure district you are old enough now."
The girl finally mustered up some strength to smack the man's large hand away, scooting back as she shouted out.
"D-don't t-touch me...y-you... fat pig!"
She moved backward, straight into the wall while the man's eyes started going red, but not just that his whole face was in the color of a tomato.
"W-what did you call me, you damn wench!"
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If there was one thing that this man didn't like, it was being called fat. His forehead was showing a large pulsating vein that looked like it would burst at any moment. The man had a whip strapped to his side which he promptly pulled out, in his mind, this girl needed some discipline.
"Ten...no... twenty lashes! I can't damage your face, but the rest is fine, get over here!"
He used the ring to shock the poor girl that tried to flee, making her spasm on the ground. He was ready to give her a good throughout lashing.
The room was sealed and soundproof from both sides, so the man didn't hear that noise which was the main shop's door being slammed open. Soon strange cultivators in blue robes burst in, the bodyguards and slave merchants looked frightened as fighting broke out. The slave shop wasn't a big one, so the quality of the guards was quite low, even old fatty Mu was just in the foundation establishment early stage.
The azure cultivators made short work of the weaker group, sending them flying against the walls. They put strange-looking bindings onto their arms while forcing their wrists behind their backs. Some of them remained behind while another group run further in, two peculiar looking people in the front were wearing even more distinct robes and stuck out like a sore thumb from the others.
Back in the lower soundproof room, fatty Mu was preparing to punish poor Ling Ling but before he could do that the door burst open. One of his guards flew in and crashed into the desk, splinters flying everywhere.
"What is this! How dare you! Do you know who I am!? I'll have you all killed!"
The mad fatty looked at the intruders, a person in a strange robe walked in. It was dark blue and he was wearing some kind of weird mask that was covering his face. The second person was clearly a woman due to the curvature of her body that was showing thanks to the robe being more form-fitting than a regular one.
"Shut up you damn fatty! Take this!"
An aura in foundation establishment early-stage burst out and the woman of the group charged at the bewildered fatty. The man snorted and used his whip to attack the charging woman, but she skillfully evaded his attack sending a palm strike towards his chest. The man screamed out in shock, this was clearly a seasoned fighter, not someone like him that mostly gained his cultivation thanks to expensive pills and elixirs.
The woman's attack coiled towards the fatty like a snake, smacking him good and sending him flying like a sack of potatoes. The man crashed into that already damaged desk and buried the passed out bodyguard under a mountain of his flesh. The woman cultivator looked at the trembling girl on the side, then looked back at the man that was coughing up blood.
"Pigs like you deserve death!"
She picked up the whip from the ground and started whipping the fatty with it. The man that was standing to the side moved his hands to his helmet to remove it. His facial features making him look like a snake, his eyes quivering as he looked at his clan sister delivering divine punishment to the slave trader.
"Sister Ai, we are supposed to take them alive, don't kill him, this was ordered by the Patriarch."
The woman quickly stopped as she heard the Patriarch being mentioned, the man was beaten and bruised the whip leaving a lot of bloody marks all over his rotund body. This was Zhang Teng and Zhang Ai, the members of Platoon 9. They were fulfilling a new mission that was given to them by the clan elders. They were wearing their old battle robes, but there was one thing that was different.
Both of them had a shield-like emblem stuck to the left side of their chest, there was a craving of a city on it with some words under it that read 'Police Department' and 'Moonlight City' under it.