Chapter 2121 – Guest Elder
Zhao Hai looked at the building in front of him. Outside the building was a sign that said, ‘Blackwood Group’. Although the name sounded foreign, it wasn’t from outside. It was just a small gang in Raging Flame City. The reason for its name was because it was in Raging Flame City’s Blackwood Alley.
The reason Zhao Hai came here was because of a rule in Raging Flames City. Foreign rogue cultivators needed to register and pay a fee to a local gang in order to take tasks from the mission hall.
Most of the time, people would choose to register with the big gangs. However, Zhao Hai chose to register with a smaller gang. The big gangs have a stricter review for those who want to register. Smaller gangs like the Blackwood Group would be happy if someone registered with them and paid a fee. Their reviews also weren’t as deep as the big gangs.
The reason the Blackwood group was established in this place was because the gang leader grew up in Blackwood Alley. Although he’s only a rogue cultivator, his strength has reached the Soul Fusion Stage. After many years of wandering outside, he returned to Blackwood Alley. Then he found other rogue cultivators and established the Blackwood Group.
The gang normally did tasks for a living. Every year, they would give money to the Great Axe Group. This way, the Great Axe Group wouldn’t clean them up.
Blackwood Group’s reputation in Raging Flame City was very good. This was because the gang also taught people how to cultivate. By this point, plenty of gang members were from Blackwood Alley. They had a strong local presence, and they also supported the residents.
The Blackwood Group also doesn’t have anti-foreign policies. They would accept any rogue cultivator who joined.
Zhao Hai investigated a lot of things in the past few days. He also absorbed news about the relationship of each gang. In the end, he chose to join the Blackwood Gang.
To put it bluntly, Blackwood Group was a gang of rogue cultivators. To protect themselves and their home, the rogue cultivators grouped together. The headquarters of the gang was a large courtyard. It had no branches and the gang had more or less 50 people. Of the 50 members, 20 of them were rogue cultivators invited by the gang leader. Their levels were quite good. Most of them were at the Soul Fusion Stage or at the Clone Stage.
As for the other 30 members, they were people who grew up in Blackwood Alley. They had strength ranging from the Rebirth Stage to the Condensed Avatar Stage. They weren’t strong.
Like most of the gangs in Raging Flames City, the Blackwood Group belonged to the bottom-level gangs. They were a level higher than solo rogue cultivators.
Nobody would attack gangs like the Blackwood Group. This was because they have nothing worth attacking. Other gangs also won’t get any benefits if they attack the Blackwood Gang. It was precisely because of this that nobody was guarding the exterior of the headquarters.
Zhao Hai looked at the gate of the Blackwood Group and then knocked a few times before retreating two steps.
Before long, the gate opened, and a 20-year-old person walked out. He looked at Zhao Hai and asked, “What do you want?”
Zhao Hai smiled faintly and said, “Hello. I’m a rogue cultivator from outside. I want to take missions in Raging Flames City, so I’m here to register with the Blackwood Group.”
The Blackwood Group member stared for a moment when he heard Zhao Hai. He seems to be unable to comprehend what Zhao Hai said. It must be known that ever since the Blackwood Group was established, no foreign rogue cultivator registered with them. Most foreign rogue cultivators would register with the three big gangs. This was because even if the three big gangs ask a lot of their members, the amount one could earn with them was also big. Because of this, no foreign cultivators registered with smaller gangs.
After staring for some time, the Blackwood Group cultivator recovered. Then with an excited expression, he said, “Mister wants to register? Fantastic. Please come in.” After saying that, the member quickly opened the door and invited Zhao Hai in. Zhao Hai cupped his fist and then entered the courtyard.
The courtyard wasn’t big, at least in comparison to Zhao Hai’s courtyard back in the Tyrant Blade Sect. At this time, cultivators were practicing inside. Although they were using weapons, the strength they showed wasn’t much.
After the gang member led Zhao Hai in, he looked at Zhao Hai and said, “Mister, come with me.” Zhao Hai nodded and walked towards a room with the cultivator. The cultivators practicing in the courtyard looked at Zhao Hai with a surprised expression.
Before long, the two entered a room. After asking Zhao Hai to take a seat, the gang member left.
When he was left alone, Zhao Hai gave a cursory glance at the room. The room wasn’t big. Moreover, it was a small suite. He was currently inside a living room, and there should be a bedroom close by.
Before long, three people walked in from outside. One of them was the cultivator that led Zhao Hai in while the other two were older members of the gang. One of the older cultivators looked to be 50 years old. His strength was just close to reaching the Earth Monarch Stage. Zhao Hai knew that it was already an achievement for a rogue cultivator to reach this level. It was practically impossible to progress quickly as a rogue cultivator. The man wasn’t tall, and he actually looked like a mortal. However, one could see wisdom from his eyes.
Seeing this person gave Zhao Hai the feeling that they were more like a merchant than a cultivator. But at the same time, Zhao Hai was relieved. If this person didn’t have the tenacity of a merchant, he wouldn’t have been able to establish the Blackwood Group from scratch. Not only did he escape from being annexed, he also allowed the gang to slowly develop.
The other person was a two-meter-tall man. His muscles made Zhao Hai think that he was a gladiator. One could see immediately that this person was a body cultivator. However, Zhao Hai was fairly certain that the person was using a bad body cultivation method. Otherwise, his muscles wouldn’t have grown so big.
Body cultivation didn’t mean bulking up one’s muscles. Bodybuilding and body cultivation were two different things. Having larger muscles didn’t mean that one was a strong body cultivator. The purpose of body cultivation was to use the body to fight, not to grow big.
Seeing the three people entering the room, Zhao Hai immediately stood up. The cultivator who led Zhao Hai in said, “Mister, this is our gang leader, Liu Wei. This is also our vice gang leader, Li Shan.”
Liu Wei was the smiling middle-aged person while Li Shan was the body cultivator. Zhao Hai didn’t guess their status wrong. One was the Blackwood Group’s gang leader while the other was the vice gang leader.
Zhao Hai cupped his fist and said, “Zhao Ming has seen Gang Leader Liu Wei and Vice Gang Leader Li Shan.” Zhao Hai used the name Zhao Ming because the character ‘ming’ can mean the brightness of the sun or the moon. This implied the meaning of yin and yang. Therefore, Zhao Hai’s substitute name was specially created for the Yin Yang Elders.
Liu Wei quickly replied, “Mister is too polite. Please take a seat.” After that, everyone sat down besides the cultivator who led Zhao Hai in. Instead of joining the conversation, he left the room and then brought back a pot of tea.
Liu Wei looked at Zhao Hai and said, “Mister is from the outside? Where are you from?”
Zhao Hai knew that Liu Wei saw his cultivation level at the Soul Fusion Stage. Such a person like him coming to a small gang was naturally suspicious. Therefore, he came to inquire about Zhao Hai’s origins.
However, Zhao Hai was prepared. He smiled bitterly and said, “I might make the Gang Leader Liu laugh. I am a rogue cultivator from the Butterfly Sect’s territory. Because I offended an inner disciple, I had to run away. That disciple is very famous in the Butterfly Sect. If I stayed in the territory of the Righteous Dao League, I would be found by them sooner or later. So, I fled to Raging Flame City.”
Liu Wei stared, then he looked at Zhao Hai in confusion, “How did mister offend a cultivator from the Butterfly Sect? There should be no intersection between rogue cultivators and sect cultivators.”
Zhao Hai smiled bitterly and answered, “I offended Hu Jilong. This person is a famous inner disciple of the Butterfly Sect. During the alliance competition of the Righteous Dao League, he represented the Butterfly Sect and broke into the top 50. In the Butterfly Sect, he’s regarded as an expert of the young generation. In the end, he lost against Zhao Hai, a disciple of the Tyrant Blade Sect. This became the greatest shame of his life.”
“When I was talking with a brother some time ago, I said that Hu Jilong’s strength could never compare to Zhao Hai. I don’t know how, but my words reached Hu Jilong’s ears. He sent people to kill me. Fortunately, I have friends among the rogue cultivators that helped me escape.”
When Liu Wei heard Zhao Hai, he believed him. In his opinion, sect disciples have their eyes above their heads. A few words were enough for them to kill people. They were beyond arrogant.
Liu Wei didn’t immediately agree to Zhao Hai’s application. Instead, he gave Zhao Hai a look and said, “May I know why Mister chose the Blackwood Group? I know that we are just a small gang with close to zero potential. If you register with us, it would be hard for you to receive good tasks.”
Zhao Hai smiled faintly and said, “Gang leader is too polite. To be honest, I arrived in Raging Flames City several days ago. I used those days to get familiar with the affairs of the city. The three big gangs of the city might be good, but they are somewhat linked with the Divine Fire Sect. I want to be as far away from the sects as possible. Although the Blackwood Group is a small gang, it has the cleanest record among all gangs in the city. That’s why I came here.”
Upon hearing Zhao Hai, Liu Wei nodded. Although the Blackwood Group has no advantages over other gangs, it was the cleanest one of them all. For Zhao Hai who was burned by being in contact with the sects, choosing the Blackwood Group was a natural decision.
Liu Wei nodded and said, “So does Mister want to join the group?”
Zhao Hai looked at Liu Wei for a while, then he said, “I’ll join the Blackwood Group. But I can only be a member by name. To be honest, I won’t stay in Roaring Flames City for long. If you can agree to this, then I’ll join. Of course, I won’t disregard the matters of the gang. If the gang has matters to deal with, then I’ll stand by your side.”
Liu Wei wasn’t disappointed by Zhao Hai’s answer. Instead, his expression lightened up as he said, “Alright, that’s good. Mister’s words are enough. Please come with me. I’ll register you immediately. Later, you’ll carry the title of Guest Elder.” After saying that, he pulled Zhao Hai outside. Seeing the outcome, Zhao Hai didn’t know whether to laugh or cry.
However, Zhao Hai also understood why Liu Wei was happy. Although Zhao Hai’s surface strength of Soul Fusion Stage wasn’t much to sects, for a gang of rogue cultivators like the Blackwood Group, he was already an expert. This can be seen by the gang leader’s Soul Fusion Stage strength. It was normal for Zhao Hai to be treated as a guest elder.
Zhao Hai didn’t mind it and followed Liu Wei. Before long, the group arrived in an important room in the courtyard. Then Liu Wei took out a book. No mistake, it was a book. However, the book wasn’t made of paper, it was made with beast skin. The beast skin looked cheap; it was probably from an ordinary beast.
Liu Wei wrote Zhao Ming in the book and then wrote the title ‘Guest Elder’ right beside. Liu Wei also gave Zhao Hai an identity token stating that he was a guest elder. The token was made from cheap jade. This was the first time that Zhao Hai saw such a simple identity token for a Guest Elder. Nevertheless, it showed that he was a guest elder of the Blackwood Group.
Zhao Hai received the token. Then Liu Wei introduced Zhao Hai to the rest of the Blackwood Group. From this point, Zhao Hai became the Guest Elder of a small gang called the Blackwood Group. He was now Zhao Ming!