Chapter 353 – Sky Water City
Zhao Hai looked at these docks and turned his head to Stack, “Brother Stack, what are these docks? Do these also belong to Sky Water City?”
Stack nodded, “Yes. Even though Sky Water City has a very good harbor, there are a lot of ships passing through. River ships, sea ships, all kinds of vessels come here everyday and all of them wouldn’t be able to fit inside the city. Although these small piers were still quite a ways from Sky Water City, they could still transport the goods by land. This method beats just waiting for a free space to dock on.”
Zhao Hai nodded, “Yeah, it’s really quite far away. Can we get to Sky Water City this evening?”
Stack shook his head, “We can’t get there tonight. We’ll find a pier to dock on and then rest. Tomorrow we’ll arrive at Sky Water City. The Shelley Family has a private dock inside so we can go there and disembark, we don’t need to wait for another ship to free up some space.”
Zhao Hai nodded and simultaneously developed an understanding of Shelley Family’s forces inside Sky Water City. According to everything he has heard of until now, Sky Water City was a place of wealth and prosperity. For the Shelley Family to have their own private port there meant that they had quite some standing inside Sky Water City.
Evening came and Stack docked their ship at something called the mercenary’s pier. From the name, there were a lot of mercenaries present everywhere in the pier. Some mercenaries acted as guards for the ships while some carried cargo between the ships and the docks.
A mercenary as a coolie? This may sound absurd, but its not. What were mercenaries? They were only ordinary civilians in the first place. Most of them lost their home because of various reasons. In order to survive and not become slaves, they could only be mercenaries.
Because their fighting power was very weak and the fact that they have families to feed. They wouldn’t dare take very dangerous tasks. They can only take jobs like being a courier for letters. These tasks weren’t dangerous but their remuneration weren’t high, only enough to live by.
But since these jobs weren’t available everyday, what other thing could they do? They could only do manual labor, so generally one couldn’t distinguish between coolies and mercenaries.
Piers like these that were outside Sky Water City and wasn’t managed properly by the Calci Family were very unregulated. With mercenaries from different backgrounds mingling with each other, there was only one word to describe these docks, chaos, they were very chaotic.
When their ship stopped at the pier, Stack told Zhao Hai that it was best for them to not disembark at this pier. Although Zhao Hai was strong, there’s no benefit in provoking another group.
Zhao Hai didn’t want to go to the pier either. Such small pier couldn’t catch his attention. Like what Stack implied, these mercenaries were quite rough people; who knows what they’ll do when they see beautiful women like Laura and the others? Zhao Hai didn’t want to know the answer.
They didn’t have to worry about mercenaries while being onboard a ship. For the mercenaries, the people onboard were their providers for food and clothing. No one would intentionally go inside a ship just to look for trouble.
They rested inside the ship that night and when morning came, Zhao Hai finally moved closer towards Sky Water City. After another two hours of sailing, they could already see Sky Water City’s wall vaguely.
The nearer they are from Sky Water City, the more surprised Zhao Hai became. His expectation for how big Sky Water City was blown away. The city was much much bigger than River Law City. River Law city has about 1 million citizens, but looking at how Sky Water City was three times bigger than River Law City, its population could possibly be 3 million!
There weren’t many large cities such as this in the continent. And for the Calci Family to be able to control all of such a city was a very amazing feat. One should know that even the emperor of Rosen Empire couldn’t touch this city, this showed Zhao Hai how much power and influence Calci Family held.
Zhao Hai didn’t believe that the Radiant Church didn’t know that Calci Family was a family of Dark Mages. The Radiant Church certainly knew, but they couldn’t do anything about it. This made Calci Family look even more formidable. No wonder the family was the major pillar within the League of Dark Mages, only they have this kind of strength.
Soon, the ship slowly entered a small dock right next to Sky Water City. The dock wasn’t big, maybe it could fit five or six ships like theirs. It was a small pier, but Might told Zhao Hai that even though it was Shelley Family who constructed this, they still needed to pay a million gold coins as fee every year. If they don’t, the Calci family would confiscate this pier.
For a pier of this size costing 1 million gold coins per year explains how large of a treasure trove Sky Water City was. For the Calci Family to have complete hegemony of this city, they surely did have formidable strength.
When the ship docked at the pier, Zhao Hai noticed that there were already people waiting there. Most of these people wore silken clothes mostly used by merchants, they looked very conspicuous.
Looking at these people, Might turned his head to Zhao Hai and said, “They came to meet us. The family already sent me a message to treat mister and his group with utmost courtesy.”
Zhao Hai froze for a moment then shook his head, “This is too much. I may not be worth it.”
Might smiled faintly, “It’s absolutely worth it. Mister suffered because of your milk wine cooperation with the family. Mister is certainly worth it. Let’s head down.”
Zhao Hai didn’t say anything, he just followed Might in disembarking from the ship. Their carriage was also naturally unloaded, as well as their bulls.
Just as the two men arrived at the pier, the merchant dressed men immediately welcomed them. The one at the front was a fat man that looked to be 40 something years old. He laughed and said to Zhao Hai and Might, “The head of Sky Water City’s Shelley Hotel, Marriott, has met Mister Wales and Captain Might.”
Might also gave Marriott a salute and said, “I won’t dare, Manager Marriott is too polite.”
Zhao Hai laughed and said “For this one to make Manager Marriott come, this one is certainly humbled.”
Marriott laughed and said, “Mister is too polite, putting your life on the line to help Shelley Family, Mister is very well worth it. Sir, please get on the carriage, the hotel has prepared a meal and is only waiting for mister to come.”
Upon hearing Marriott, Zhao Hai smiled and said, “Then I’ll be impolite. Then, Manager, please.” Then the group got onto their respective carriages and headed towards Sky Water City.
While entering the city, Zhao Hai sized Sky Water City up. The city certainly deserved to be called Sky Water City, inside the city were numerous small creeks as well as bridges. Taking this as a whole, the entire city looked very unusual.
The city was bustling with people, pedestrians weaving through the traffic. Although there were a lot of creeks inside the city, the streets were extremely spacious. There were also a lot of shops along the street. Various carriages and people could be seen entering and exiting these shops. Businesses on these stores were very good.
From time to time, Zhao Hai could see people wearing standard issue leather armor, they were carrying a two-handed sword and were walking on the street. These people were looking around the place as though monitoring for something. On the leather armor of these people, the insignia of the Calci Family was printed, it seems like they were people from the Calci Family.
Looking at these people, Zhao Hai turned to Laura and asked, “Laura, who are these people? Are they the City Garrison? Does the Calci Family send them to maintain public security?”
Laura smiles and answered, “From what I heard, Sky Water City has a unique organization called the Urban Administrative and Law Enforcement Bureau. They were tasked specifically to handle public security. They were also responsible for cleaning the streets and other miscellaneous work. Their influence inside Sky Water City is quite big.” 
Zhao Hai was stunned. He didn’t think that he would hear the words Urban Administrative and Law Enforcement Bureau again after coming to Ark Continent. Isn’t it too weird? Did the Calci Family also cross over? Otherwise how could such a specific name arise?
Gently shook his head and threw out these useless ideas, Zhao Hai continued to observe everything inside the city. It must be said that Sky Water City was the most prosperous city Zhao Hai has ever seen. But such city was actually placed second next to Carson City, it made it difficult to imagine what Carson City looked like.
After travelling or about an hour, their carriage stopped. Zhao Hai looked outside and saw that they had reached a tall multi-story building. This was the highest building Zhao Hai has seen after arriving at Ark Continent.
In front of the building was a big square with a flower bed in the middle. Inscribed on the flower bed was Shelly Family’s insignia composed of flowers of different colors.
Zhao Hai got down from his carriage as Might and Marriott came to greet him. Marriott bowed to Zhao Hai and said, “Mister, the food and wine are ready. Today, the hotel will treat mister with our hospitality.”
Zhao Hai laughed and said, “Then, Manager, let’g go. I’m famished.” Marriott replied, “Then, Mister, this way please.” Then the group entered the hotel together.
Zhao Hai didn’t know if he was under an illusion or something. He felt that Manager Marriott was extremely enthusiastic about him. He had an overwhelming amount of energy in him.
What he didn’t actually know was that when they travelled towards the city, Might already told Marriott that Zhao Hai was a Space Mage. To any power, grabbing a Space Mage to their side was top level priority. When Marriott knew that Zhao Hai was a Space Mage, naturally he would get extremely passionate; he’s afraid of showing a low amount of hospitality to Zhao Hai.
Sky Water City’s Shelley Hotel was very luxurious, it was full of high quality services. The people coming in and out of it were all well dressed and looked well educated. One only needed a glance to know that the business was doing very well. All of the guests they met greeted Marriott, it can be seen that these people see some importance in the hotel’s manager.
Zhao Hai saw that these people must be small nobles and didn’t have that high of an identity. Although they were inside the Shelley Hotel as guests, that didn’t dare offend Marriott. They also flatter the manager from time to time, which was good for their families and businesses.
But Marriott didn’t look down on them just because of their status. He also greeted the people who approached him with a warm reception. There wasn’t an ounce of disrespect given to them, elevating Zhao Hai’s evaluation of Marriott. The hotel’s manager looked like a well-mannered gentleman.
Before long, the group entered the hotel’s elevator and went up ten floors. While heading up, Marriott turned to Zhao Hai, “We have two dining halls in the hotel, one at the first floor while the other one is at the tenth floor. The restaurants on the first floor are open to everyone to dine in. But the one on the tenth floor is different, not even guests on the hotel can just get access to that dining hall. Only a few people are able to dine there, namely, the hotel’s VIPs. The chef on the 10th floor dining hall is one of the pinnacle chefs inside Rosen Empire. Even if you compare him to the Imperial Chef, he wouldn’t lose.”
Zhao Hai smiled, “The Shelley Hotel is already extraordinary just by seeing that they managed to build their business throughout the continent. Now, seeing people like manager, no wonder the business is doing very well.”
Marriott looked proud, “Mister overpraised me. Inside Shelley Family, there are a lot of people like me, as numerous as the hairs on an ox. I’m just a small hotel manager.”
Might actually laughed and said, “Manager Marriott is too modest. There are around 11,200 Shelley hotels in the continent. And if we just base on income generated, Sky Water City branch could rank in the top ten. This shows how formidable Manager Marriott is.”
Upon hearing this, Zhao Hai looked at Marriott under a new light. He didn’t expect that this fat man could be so formidable that among the 11,200 hotels, he would actually rank in the top ten. Wasn’t this extremely amazing?
Although the hotels have the same reputation, the cities that they were located in were different. It was not easy to rank in the top ten among this number of hotels. Even if you’re placed on a favorable location, there was still a lot to do regarding relationships, staff management, guest management and more. When you look at it in this perspective, you could see how a formidable of a businessman Marriott was.
When Marriot heard what Might said, his smile became even more radiant. Then the turned to Might and said, “I couldn’t compare to Captain Might. Captain Might is a captain of the family headquarters’ garrison force. He couldn’t be dispatched easily, the power he wields is much bigger than us small officials.”
Might stiffly smiled, “I’m just a little captain, not that powerful. Manager is too polite.” Then the group laughed as they headed towards the 10th floor dining hall.
When the elevator’s door opened, Zhao Hai and Might became surprised. They didn’t expect that someone else would be present at the dining hall. And the person was already eating and drinking inside.
- Coolie, 苦力(Kǔlì) n. an unskilled native laborer in India, China, and some other Asian countries.
- The Urban Administrative and Law Enforcement Bureau, commonly shortened to Chengguan (Chinese: 城管; pinyin: Chéngguǎn), is a local government agency that has been established in every city in Mainland China.