Chapter 86: Fishing in Troubled Waters
The sentry realised that Ye Shang was not merely threatening him, but was out to kill when cold metal was pressed to his neck.
“I’ll speak! I’ll speak!” The sentry revealed everything he knew.
After listening to the confession of the sentry, Ye Shang knew he had found the right place. This group of people were the Lushan bandits. Except for a few lackeys who were out gathering information, almost everyone else was at the mountain pass. This was their stronghold. Ye Shang also found out the place where the two leaders were located.
Ye Shang reached out and stripped the sentry of his vest, then shook his head, “It’s not an unforgivable crime to be a mountain bandit, but you shouldn’t have massacred a family.” With a wave of his spear, Ye Shang slit the throat of the sentry.
Ye Shang put on the sentry’s vest and returned his reincarnation spear into the storage ring. He then brushed his hair to look more like the sentry before heading towards the mountain pass. He planned to infiltrate and observe the pass.
When he arrived at the mountain pass, Ye Shang did not enter it directly. Although he was unlikely to be discovered, he didn’t want to take risks.
He went along the mountainside, dodged two sentries, before sliding down the mountain and into the stronghold, walking in casually. Although he did not look as fierce and hardened as the other bandits, there wasn’t much of a difference. There was no need to be nervous since it did not seem likely for them to know everyone in the large group of bandits.
Ye Shang walked towards the innermost part of the stronghold where the two stone houses of Huang Jun and Huang Jue, the two leaders of the Lushan bandits, were located.
He walked confidently with the sentry’s sabre in his hand, pretending to be on patrol, while gradually getting closer to the innermost part of the stronghold.
Several bandits saw Ye Shang but did not question him, and he continued to close in on the two stone houses.
Two bandits stood on guard outside the stone houses. Ye Shang did not approach, but walked back and forth, and continued to pretend to be patrolling.
Right then, the door curtain of one of the stone houses was lifted, and out came Huang Jue in his tiger skin vest.
“Er Mazi, bring some jars of wine to my room,” Huang Jue yelled at the bandit standing guard.
“Just a second! You, come and carry the wine with me,” Er Mazi waved to Ye Shang.
Ye Shang hurried over, seizing the chance to get close to the two leaders of the bandits.
Er Mazi led Ye Shang to the east side of the stronghold. As he walked on, Ye Shang saw seven to eight naked women being imprisoned in a cell and became livid at the brutality of the bandits.
“What are you looking at? If you do well, I’ll put in a good word with the deputy. You will have your chance.” Er Mazi gave a dirty look, and steered Ye Shang into the storeroom, which had bacon and jars of wine inside.
Er Mazi carried two wine jars, and Ye Shang did the same. He then followed Er Mazi back to Huang Jue’s stone house.
In front of the other stone house, there was still someone standing guard. Ye Shang figured that the guard on duty was assigned to the leader Huang Jun, while Er Mazi worked for Huang Jue, the second-in-command. Huang Jue’s stone house was luxurious. The stone bed had a woollen blanket, the ground was covered with animal skin rugs, the candlestick on the table was made of gold, and the armrest of the chair which he was sitting on was hung with jewelled bracelets.
There was a stake on one side of the stone house, and a naked woman was tied to it. The woman’s hands were pulled apart and secured to the beam of the stake. Her head was lowered and Ye Shang could not see her face. He supposed she was still alive from the rise and fall of her chest.
“Dammit! My hands are itching for a robbery! You two, drink with me,” Huang Jue cursed.
Er Mazi opened the wine jar and poured a bowl for Huang Jue eagerly.
“Hold on, I’ve not seen you before,” Huang Jue peered at Ye Shang.
“Deputy, I’m new,” Ye Shang stooped.
“Dammit, how could Pizi Wu put someone new on patrol duty?” Er Mazi sneered.
“I don’t know. I just did what I was told,” Ye Shang had no idea who Pizi Wu was.
“Alright. There are many sentries outside, and no one will miss you. Come drink!” Huang Jue was still oblivious.
The three of them picked up their wine bowls and began to drink.
After they had emptied the first jar, Huang Jue got Er Mazi to send for some barbecue meat.
Ye Shang turned to reach for another wine jar, as he wanted to refill Huang Jue’s bowl.
When Ye Shang held the wine jar, an idea struck him. He kept the wine jar into his storage ring and took out the hard liquor Uncle Niu gave him. He turned to block Huang Jue’s view before opening the wine jar.
“This wine is so fragrant. Quick! Pour it!” Huang Jue was surprised.
“Good wine! It’s so strong. I didn’t think that the restaurant we robbed the last time had such good wine. Pour more,” Huang Jue’s face turned red after drinking a bowl but got Ye Shang to keep the wine coming.
Huang Jue could hold his liquor but soon felt dizzy after a few successive bowls.
Seeing that Huang Jue was about to get drunk, Ye Shang continued to refill his bowl, “Deputy, you can easily drink any of us under the table, more wine for you!”
“This wine is too good. Don’t touch it. This is only for the leaders,” Huang Jue might be drunk, but he still remembered that good things weren’t meant to be shared.
You wanna drink? Drink more with an opened neck! Ye Shang cursed inwardly and continued pouring wine for Huang Jue until he collapsed on the ground.
Ye Shang took out the reincarnation spear and stuck it into Huang Jue’s throat.
Huang Jue sobered up at the sharp pain, and his hands grabbed the reincarnation spear stuck in his throat, shaking. But the spear had pierced through his neck and nailed him to the ground.
After a few kicks, Huang Jue stopped moving.
“Save me.” Ye Shang heard a faint whisper.
Ye Shang turned to the source of the sound and found the woman tied to the stake had raised her head and was talking. Her lips were chapped and looked to have been tortured for a long time. She woke up because Huang Jue had kicked the stake while struggling.
Ye Shang turned around, opened the original wine jar and poured a bowl of wine for the woman. “Don’t make any noise. I will save you if I get the chance. Now I have to kill the leader or we won’t be able to escape.”
After listening to Ye Shang, the woman kept quiet but was gasping for air.
Ye Shang poured wine over Huang Jue’s throat. He was afraid that the stench of blood would arouse suspicion. After all, all the people living in the mountains were very sensitive to the stench of blood.
After that, Ye Shang stood near the doorway and waited for Er Mazi’s return. Before he took his next move, he had to silence Er Mazi. His careful infiltration would be ruined if Er Mazi returned and managed to raise the alarm to Ye Shang’s intrusion.
A quarter of an hour later, Er Mazi came back humming a tune. He froze at the sight of Huang Jue lying in a pool of blood after opening the curtains.
When Er Mazi was in a daze, Ye Shang made his move. He grasped Er Mazi’s neck with his left hand and twisted Er Mazi’s head hard with his right.
A loud crack sounded, and Er Mazi stopped moving. Ye Shang had broken his neck.