A yellowish-brown van slowly pulled into the parking lot at Clean Water Street.
The black Honda motorbike that accompanied it took a gentle turn. It was now at the left-hand side of the van.
Lu Jinling lifted her arms and took off her helmet. Her eyes gazed at the karaoke box named Pure Gold ahead of her. The dancing neon colors of red, yellow, and green on the sign reflected in her eyes.
Stinky Two pulled the handbrake then wound down the window.
"Deer, we have never crossed paths with Naughty Bitch. You are welcome to be a spectator of this show, but please, don't get yourself involved in this."
"It's alright, don't worry," Lu Jinling said, not even turning her head to look at the driver.
"Hey, you gave us your word. Don't you get involved later. I'll call your brother if you do cross the road."
Stinky Two was a thug with ample experience in this particular field of work in Yun Hua. He was already twenty-eight years old this year. Even though he followed Lu Jinling from day to night everyday, he still addressed her as Deer. His main duty was to inform her brother of her movements and act as her guardian.
Stinky Two was found wandering around the fish market when he was thirteen. Back then, that place was called Seafood Wholesale Market. The boss in the market was Stinky King. His subordinates were Stinky Mouth, Stinky Leg, Stinky Thigh, Stinky Hand, Stinky Fish, Stinky Prawn, Stinky Snake, and a whole other bunch of mean people. Stinky Two had not managed to secure himself the title of Stinky like those mentioned before, but had instead named himself Stinky Two and became known as such over time.
After that... their gang was captured by the police. Stinky Two had managed to escape due to his young age, but his work slowly lost its meaning.
When he was older, he began looking for a stable job at Lu family's stall. He delivered goods and peddled fishes. He would occasionally threaten the stall owners outside the seafood market for the fun of it.
However, he was not related to Lu Haishan. He did not want to fight to earn a living either, so he was sent to Lu Haishan's very own sister.
Lu Jinling was seated on her motorbike like it was a bench. He had both her legs on the same side of the motorbike while the breeze caught her hair. She unzipped the top of her jacket and grinned.
"Do you think you would be able to make the call in time if I really do cross the road?"
"As long as we don't cause trouble, Deer King could settle everything with a phone call," Stinky Two meekly said, sounding nothing like his past brave, belligerent self.
Lu Jinling did not expect much from Stinky Two. Her eyes were fixed at the gaudy lights ofPure Gold.
"You better call that Rotten Fish Legs first. Why isn't he here yet?"
"Rotten Fish Legs needs to take the bus, so he'll take a while. We couldn't give him a lift as we were busy with the delivery of goods," said Stinky Two.
Bored, Lu Jinling took out her phone to play and waited for another half an hour. Finally, she saw Rotten Fish Legs with his dyed, red hair.
At that moment, some noise could be heard coming from Pure Gold.
"Should we go in?"
Rotten Fish Legs was abnormally excited.
"Don't even think about it."
Stinky Two muttered, "We are just here to take a look."
"If we're just here to 'take a look', then we should go in to do so."
Rotten Fish Legs stomped his feet. He was eager to make a name for himselftoo eager.
He was not even twenty yet, and it was the best time to make a name for himself.
Stinky Two's hands caressed his potbelly before he said contentedly while shaking his butt a little, "Rotten Fish Legs, if you dare set foot in that karaoke box, I will bludgeon you and make you the show of the day."
Lu Jinling silently played with her phone, sometimes raising her head to look at the doors of Pure Gold.
After a while, the long-awaited cries of battle appeared.
Lu Jinling stood up to take a look, and she spotted a group of men barging out of the karaoke box.
Apart from the big group, a few wounded men came stumbling out, clutching certain parts of their body like cute birds who had lost their way next to a group of swan geese returning back to their nest.
"Let's go" Lu Jinling drove the van away and pointed at the pallet jack used to transfer baskets of seafood. It was the silent instruction to have Rotten Fish Legs and Stinky Two fetch it.
Even though they did not understand what it was meant for, they complied all the same. Pulling pallet jacks was something they did every single day in the market, anyway.
Lu Jinling strode through the parking lot. Her long legs covered a substantial amount of distance. It did not take long before she came upon a thug leaning against the lamp post. Half of his body was covered in blood, and he had the thousand-yard stare on his face.
"Take him away." Lu Jinling pointed from afar.
"What?" Stinky Two and Rotten Fish Legs were confused.
"Lift him up to the pallet jack, then take him back," Lu Jinling said.
"No... What!" Stinky Two was confused. If she wanted to take a look at a fight, then so be it. Thugs watching their own kind fighting against each other was just like how the upper class of the society watched theatrical performances. It was good enough to just watch, but it would be too crass for them to get involved in it.
Lu Jinling mulled over her thoughts for a moment before she also came to the conclusion that pulling an injured person onto a pallet jack was too stupid. She approached the weakened man and said, "I have a van, I can send you to the hospital. Do you have the money to see a doctor?"
"You are Deer?"
The injured man recognized Lu Jinling and looked around before he asked, "The Deer King has come?"
"Just answer my question. Do you want to go to the hospital?"
Lu Jinling was getting annoyed.
"Call... Call my brothers, they'll pay on my behalf."
The thug's T-shirt was covered in mud and blood. It took a great deal of effort for him to extract his phone.
"Oh, new Apple. Sure, that will be 1,000." Lu Jinling nodded her head.
"Rotten Fish Legs, search through his wallet."
"There's 600 here." Rotten Fish Legs felt that he had a vague understanding of what Lu Jinling was up to, so he acted fast.
"Stinky Two, give him a bill. You could just use the bill we use for fish delivery and get him to the hospital. We usually charge 2,000, but I'll give you a 20% discount, so it's 1,600. I'll take the phone as your deposit. If you are willing, just sign here. If you are not, I'll just transfer other people." Lu Jinling had been working in her brother's shop for about three years. She was an excellent accountant, capable of writing even as she spoke.
Stinky Two was also rather familiar with writing these sort of bills. With a few swift strokes of the pen, he produced a bill which he held out for the wounded man to take.
"How should I address you, brother?"
"Turkey? What's your real name? Could you tell me your ID number?"
Turkey stared at the two of them as if he was hesitating about something.
The battle was already dying down. Those who could still move were either fleeing the site, or chasing those who were fleeing the site. There was no telling which side had won.
The ones injured and on the ground could only pray hard... Never before had their brothers come back for them. Normally, they would either call for the ambulance, the cab, or they would just wait for the cops to arrive.
Calling for an ambulance was not cheap, the starting price was 50 RMB and every kilometer onwards was 7 or 10 RMB. There was even a need to pay for the deadhead charge and the return ride. If these ambulances brought along doctors and nurses, they would even be charged with consultation fees.
Cabs and patrol cars were not as costly upfront, but if you happened to bleed all over the car seats and stain the interior, there would be a need to pay for the cleaning
Turkey grimaced in pain. More blood flowed from his body. He was starting to regret joining this battle, but he could not afford to bleed anymore.
"My name is Wang Ji. My ID card is in my wallet," Turkey weakly said.
Stinky Two smiled knowingly. He filled out the bill and had him sign it, complete with a palmprint.
"Rotten Fish Legs, get to work," Stinky Two shouted and felt his entire body filled with energy.
"Aye!" Rotten Fish Legs replied, feeling motivated.
'Chauffeuring passengers, such a lucrative business...' The pallet jack was quickly pushed to the parking lot, like how they often pushed fishes. They folded the backseats of the van down and threw Turkey into it before slamming the door shut.
At that moment, Stinky Two was already finished with the second bill. He handed it to the wounded Fire Bull and had him sign it.
Rotten Fish Legs then sent more people into the van. Stinky Two was giddy with excitement. He followed behind Lu Jinling and said approvingly, "Sister Golden Deer, this is a great idea. We have gotten ourselves three to four people, and there is now more than ten thousand RMB in this van. Furthermore, we can earn much more with all the phones and watches used as deposits."
Lu Jinling's lips curled into something that resembled a snarl. "You called me Deer before this, and now you call me Sister Golden Deer when you see the money?"
"I have always treated you as my lady boss, Sister Golden Deer. You have a good mind on your shoulders. Why don't we just fetch more wounded guys in the future instead of delivering fishes?"
Stinky Two was not embarrassed in the slightest. Well, what was there to be embarrassed about? As long as there was money to be earned, what pride did he have to guard? More importantly, Lu Jinling was the one who earned this money.
Having a van and manpower was one thing. Even knowing the details of their 'customers' ID was considered secondary. The bills they wrote, had the people sign, and their action of making these people offer up these items as deposits could only work when there was someone with a background like the Deer King supporting their actions.
A thug might not bring cash with him when he was out for business. The bill signed now might not be acknowledged later.
But with Deer King's support, the fee of a few thousand was something that no one would dare deny paying. They still needed to show some respect to him.
Deer King would probably support this, seeing that his sister Lu Jinling was able to make a living of her own.
"Pick the ones with minor injuries."
Lu Jinling pointed into the distance at a person who had been slashed on the thigh.
The wound looked severe, but it was, in fact, the easiest to work with. Lu Jinling believed that since Ling Ran was just an intern, messy wounds would be too much for him.
Stinky Two listened and nodded. "Minor injuries are good. We don't have to risk having people die on us, and we even get to save up on space. I could still take in two more."
Very soon, the van usually used for delivering fishes now carried five wounded thugs, and they now traveled on the highway to the city.
"To Yun Hua Hospital."
Lu Jin Ling locked her motorbike up and shooed Rotten Fish Legs to the back of the van. The man was forced to huddle up with the bloodied men in the back as she claimed his seat beside the driver.
Stinky Two stepped on the gas. He glanced at the rear-view mirror and said to the few people in the back of the car, "Sister Golden Deer is a kind woman. She could have thrown you guys into the horrible hospital ahead at the same price of two thousand, don't you agree with me?"
The few in the back of the car were not of the same gang. At that moment, they were staring and cursing one another out.
"By the way, you need to pay the deposit if you want to receive emergency treatment. Kindly fill in these bills from me. That'll be five thousand each. Treat it as a loan from me."
Lu Jinling had suddenly thought of this. In her heart, she said, 'Fortunately, I thought about this, or else Ling Ran would get an earful from the higher ups in the hospital.'
When Stinky Two heard this, his eyes brightened, and he once again praised her, "Sister Golden Deer is such a kind woman. She saved you when you were in trouble by lending money to you guys to treat your injuries. The interest rate is 40%, and you have three months to pay back. Reasonable, right? Those who are willing, sign the bill. Those who are not, get out of the car."
The injured men in the fish delivery van complained briefly. They were already broke, but they still needed to use the money to tend to their wounds, and getting the money here was the same as getting it elsewhere. They had no choice but to get it from her.
"Drive faster, if we drive faster, we can still make another trip."
Rotten Fish Legs was suddenly the anxious one. Stinky Two laughed with his face beaming. The Deer King himself had a small-scale loan company under his name, and commissions would be given out for every successful loan made.
Lu Jinling grinned. The more rounds she made, the more she could see Ling Ran. That was a pretty good deal, in her books.