Chapter 42: Collision
Translator: WQL Editor: Geoffrey
"Then I will not invite you for dinner..." By the time Donder had said this, Zhang Tie had already rushed out the grocery store long ago like a soaring arrow.
"Be careful on your way!" Seeing Zhang Tie running off so hurriedly, Donder shook his head. As Donder had already realized that Zhang Tie was absent-minded today, he let him go back earlier than usual. However, it really surprised him that the boy had already rushed out of the door the instant he said "dinner".
Zhang Tie was very excited at this moment. He couldn't wait to get back home and see what the "Leakless Fruit" looked like. He even forgot the soreness and pain from his body.
There was only one thought in Zhang Tie's mind - returning home!
As a result of the recently added midnight curfew in Blackhot City, just before midnight, the railway station would be bustling as more and more people gathered at the flea market and surrounding shops.
In order to get back home as soon as possible, Zhang Tie didn't select the usual route; instead, he used a shortcut and ran into the populated alleys and streets near the railway station. Although these kinds of places had people of all walks of life and lacked security, Zhang Tie had always passed through this area for several years and found nothing strange about it in the least. However, there was always an exception. At a corner between an alley and a street, due to the darkness, Zhang Tie ran into another man who was exiting the alley. Neither of the two had expected that they would crash into someone else at this intersection.
That man's body only shook a bit, while Zhang Tie bounced back and fell onto the ground. All of a sudden, Zhang Tie became dazed and made a furious harrumph.
"Boy, you wanna die!?"
Zhang Tie widened his eyes and saw a tall, masculine man around the age of 40 standing in front of him. Like the average pioneer, the guy ferociously stepping towards Zhang Tie had a long, vicious face and brown hair.
Zhang Tie had not yet recovered. From this fierce crash alone, he felt like his bones were almost broken and struggled greatly to get himself off the ground. Never would he have imagined that the man in front of him would be so vicious. After having seen Zhang Tie fall onto the ground, the man had actually wanted to step on him. Seeing the man's large feet and muscles, Zhang Tie realized that he would be severely wounded if not killed under his feet.
"What's wrong, Huck?" From the alley behind the manly fellow came a thin shadow wearing a pioneer uniform. Seeing what Huck was about to do, the man instantly stopped him as he slightly raised his chin towards a certain direction. Following the direction of his chin, Huck saw a team of patrolling soldiers in a street far away. Seeing the patrolling soldiers, Huck stopped.
"Young man, are you ok?" The thin yet tall man moved from behind Huck and squatted in front of Zhang Tie with a smile. Looking into the man's slim eyes with yellowish pupils, Zhang Tie felt like he was being stared at by a cobra. At that instant, Zhang Tie felt the hair on his body standing on its end. The instant that man drew close to him like a snake, Zhang Tie smelt a fishy scent, which made him feel like vomiting.
Thinking of how Huck had raised his foot, Zhang Tie hurriedly picked himself up. No matter what, it was too dangerous for him to remain lying on the ground.
"I'm fine, I'm fine. I was running just now. Sorry about that..."
"Hoho, you're so careless. Are you hurt? Come on, let me give you a hand!"
"No need... thanks..." Seeing the man stretching out his hand toward him, Zhang Tie hurriedly sat up.
"Come on, I mean it. To tell you the truth, we didn't notice you either..." The thin guy smiled, instantly grabbing Zhang Tie's hands as he intended to pull him up. Feeling the tight grip on his wrists, Zhang Tie did not have the time to say anything before he felt as if his hands were licked by a snake. Following that, he felt as if the man had searched every part of his body; from the palms, wrists, and elbows to his shoulders, armpits, waist, chest, and belly. Finally, he even searched Zhang Tie's crotch, shanks, and ankles as he pretended to pat off dirt for him. All this happened before Zhang Tie had a chance to realize what was happening. The thin man then shook his head towards Huck.
"Since it's evening, take care on your way back!" The thin man forced a weird smile at Zhang Tie as he left with the ferociously staring Huck. Soon after, they disappeared in the populated street.
In just a few seconds, Zhang Tie realized that his back had already been drenched with sweat. When the night wind blew, he shivered. Instinctively, Zhang Tie realized that he seemed to have just escaped a huge crisis.
Zhang Tie quickly left. "God bless me. I don't want to ever meet those two terrifying guys again!" Zhang Tie muttered to himself as he moved forward. Several steps later, he felt something beneath his foot. With widened eyes, he bent down and picked up the item. Under the moonlight, Zhang Tie saw a palm-sized cloth bag that contained something within. It felt neither like a rare metal nor money. Being surprised, Zhang Tie took the object out of the bag, revealing a dark red triangular wooden plate that had cracks at its center. There was nothing on the wooden plate - no patterns or characters. It seemed to have been made of common red pine, which was not very expensive. The moment Zhang Tie intended to throw it away, he noticed that the wooden plate was very smooth as if the plate was regularly used and handled by people. Zhang Tie then became curious as to why a useless plate would be held so solemnly inside this bag. Realizing that Huck had dropped the bag, Zhang Tie smirked as he placed it back within cloth bag before foisting the bag into his pocket. He then rushed home.
Half an hour after Zhang Tie left, the two men returned. Unlike before, their faces had turned pale with an indescribable fear. With oil lamps in hand, they lowered their bodies onto the ground and searched almost every corner on this patch of land. Unfortunately, they had failed to find what they were looking for.
"What should we do?" At this moment, Huck did not look vicious; the only thing that could be seen on his face was an uncertainty that would be seen during the end of the world "Snade, why not go directly to them?"
"Are you crazy?" The snake-like man called Snade stared at Huck. "You know the rules of our organization! You know what they would do if they don't see the token! Without the token, we would be killed the instant we told them who we are!"
"What should we do If we can't finish this task?"
Remembering what their leaders had done to the followers who made mistakes, Huck and Snade turned utterly pale.
"It must have been that kid. It's really unbelievable that we lost the token. You had checked it when we left the railway station. Additionally, we did not come into contact with anyone else. The token must have been stolen by that kid!" Snade concluded ferociously.
"But you had checked him just now and found nothing at all!"
"That kid is definitely experienced. He must have thrown it away when he got our token. It was too dark just now and we didn't pay attention to our feet. After we left, that kid probably picked it up and ran away!" Besides mistaking Zhang Tie as an experienced thief who lurked near the railway station, his judgment was completely correct. "Now, we can only hope that he didn't throw it away. Otherwise..."
"Otherwise, I will definitely kill all his family members and chop him into meat paste!" Huck's fat face trembled. "What should we do now? Should we go look for him?"
"No, we should go get another thief and let him lead us to that kid. If that kid frequents the area near the railway station, other people must know him!"
Within Blackhot City, the neighborhood near the railway station was the most disorderly place. There were many criminals here who did bad deeds such as pickpocket, robbery, rape, etc. Those guys cooperated with the magistrates near the railway station stealthily. They were definitely an evil force in the Blackhot city. However, that night, the two more sinister men would finally deal with them tonight due to a "trivial" matter...