"You bribed Miri to bring Black Phantom to the scene as soon as the assassination was discovered, wanting to spark a conflict so that the scrimmage would bury more clues. You also arranged people to kill Miri during the battle."
Xiao Jin listed many pieces of evidence. Su Dinghua closed his eyes in pain and softly spoke to himself. "I knew this day would come. Being found out means death."
Then, Su Dinghua looked at his assistant and said, "I did kill our leader, but I'm not the mastermindhe is. Raylen gave me many benefits and promised me even more, so I did things for them. He's a spy sent by Raylen to monitor and control methis plan was also suggested by him!"
The assistant looked at Su Dinghua in anger and said, "You've lost your mind"
"You think there's a way to get away alive?" Su Dinghua stopped him and said, "I did things for you people because of the benefits you gave, which won't be of use to me anymore. Now that I'm exposed, Raylen won't have an easy time either."
The assistant's eyes suddenly turned white. His lips became purple, and white foam came out of his mouth. He died while twitching. When Su Dinghua was talking, he knew that he would definitely die, so he crunched down on the poisonous capsule between his teeth and committed suicide. The guards all followed his lead.
The people of Raylen were known for being cold-blooded and loyal, so no one was surprised.
Han Xiao stood aside and watched with no intent to stop them. Very soon, Su Dinghua was the only one left alive.
Xiao Hai sneered and said, "It's too late to save yourself."
"I'm not planning to. I know that death is my only option." Su Dinghua shook his head.
Xiao Jin cut in and said, "Su Dinghua, you have been a member of Alumera for a very long time. The leader treated you well, so why did you do it?"
"Hahahahaha!" Su Dinghua suddenly laughed so loudly that even tears came out of his eyes. He said with a mocking tone, "Xiao the second chair, this doesn't seem like something you would say. Your blood is much colder than mine."
Xiao Jin remained expressionless and was not affected by it, but Xiao Hai slapped Su Dinghua and said, "Seems like you want a slow death."
The people from other factions have arrived for quite some time. They watched this scene in shock and confusion.
Su Dinghua laughed for a while, then suddenly said with sorrow, "I will apologize to the leader myself."
Xiao Hai took out a whole set of torture devices and said coldly, "Then you have a lot of time to think about what to say."
"Enough, he has already confessed. Bring him back then interrogate him," one of the chieftains of the Northern Faction said. Su Dinghua was a high ranked official of the Northern Faction, so interrogating and torturing him in public would bring a lot of shame to the Northern Faction.
Su Dinghua was a traitor who did not represent the Northern Faction's position, but it did bring them shame.
Xiao Jin looked at Han Xiao with inquiry in his eyes. The others looked over as well.
Black Phantom was the one that had been framed, so his opinion was very important.
"The real killer has been found. Anything other than that has nothing to do with me," Han Xiao said. He then turned away and left.
The real killer that assassinated Darryl had been found. The whole plan had been Raylen's, and Han Xiao was cleared of suspicion.
Su Dinghua died in the interrogation. He spat out quite an amount of intelligence before he died. He was a very important chess piece to Raylen, and the assassination was to spark conflict between Alumera and Dark Net, but the plan had gone south. Han Xiao's strength was far beyond their expectations. They had thought that Black Phantom would be captured or even killed, so the hatred between Alumera and Dark Net could not be resolved easily, but to their surprise, Han Xiao had the upper hand.
The assassination only went so well because of Su Dinghua's years of planning. Raylen suffered a huge loss when he died.
Xiao Jin was a huge contributor to finding the real killer. He gained a large about of prestige, and the Home Faction had to thank him even if they did not want to.
Everything was settled. However, Black Phantom, who had cleared his suspicion, decided to stay. No one knew what motives he had. The factions did not have time to care about him since they were all busy with the election of a successor.
In the room, Han Xiao looked at the mission [The Real Killer] on his interface. Su Dinghua had been caught, but he did not turn in the mission.
This thing has yet to end.
A flash of coldness appeared in Han Xiao's eyes; one thought had become clearer in his mind.
Three days after capturing Su Dinghua, Xiao Jin brought Xiao Hai along and came to visit.
"Why are you looking for me?" Han Xiao asked.
"I should be the one asking. What's your goal in staying here?" Xiao Jin asked back.
"I was framed out of nowhere, and your people wanted to kill me. I need compensation."
Xiao Hai was shocked and angry. "This whole thing was planned by Raylen, and you even killed our people. How dare you ask for compensation"
"Raylen is too far away, so I'm getting money from you guys first."
"You're robbing us!" Xiao Hai was filled with anger.
"That's correct." Han Xiao nodded calmly. He looked at Xiao Hai mockingly and said, "What can you do about that?"
Xiao Jin pulled the furious Xiao Hai back, then wrote a number on a piece of paper and said, "I will compensate you personally. Is this amount enough?"
Han Xiao gave it a quick look and said, "Barely acceptable."
Xiao Hai was frustrated. He did not understand why Xiao Jin was willing to pay; there was absolutely no need to in his eyes.
"There's another reason for you to have come to find me, right?" Han Xiao crossed his legs.
"Indeed, I have something to ask your help for. Darryl is dead, and the leader position is now vacant. Alumera is a large family, so there needs to be a leader. In two days' time, an internal election will be carried out in a vote from the high ranked officials. Todd from the Home Faction, Se Qi from the Red Island Faction, and Angleton from the Northern Faction are all strong competitors. When I was focused on investigating Darryl's death, they were already approaching the high ranked officials and drawing votes. I'm now at a disadvantage, so I hope you can help me," Xiao Jin said in seriousness.
"Why should I help you?"
"For the sake of me helping you clear your suspicion, please help me."
"I need a reward," Han Xiao said coldly.
"How ungrateful. If it wasn't for Father, you would still be the biggest suspect. Don't push your luck!" Xiao Hai could not take it and yelled in anger.
Han Xiao looked at him and said calmly, "You should be grateful for me not killing you, or you would all be corpses."
Xiao Hai's expression turned twisted and furious. He trembled in anger because of Han Xiao's attitude. He could only look at Xiao Jin, hoping that his father would do him justice. However, he was bound to be disappointed. Xiao Jin had remained calm all along.
"How much do you want?"
Han Xiao touched his chin, pointed at the piece of paper, and said, "Three times this."
"Maniac" Xiao Hai was stunned. This request was outrageous.
However, Xiao Jin accepted the terms without hesitation and said, "No problem."
"Father!" Xiao Hai yelled in disbelief. He could not understand why Xiao Jin kept listening to Han Xiao. "It's no use getting help from him. Outsiders cannot interfere with internal elections. He has no position in the internal meeting no matter how strong he is!" Xiao Hai said hastily.
"I have a way," Xiao Jin replied coldly. "Mr. Black Phantom, are you willing to join us Xiao Faction?"
Join the Xiao Faction? What does that mean?
Han Xiao raised his eyebrows and asked with interest, "What do you mean?"
"Join my family with the same seniority in the family as me. My children will be your stepchildren."
The atmosphere suddenly turned weird.
Xiao Hai almost staggered and fell. He was completely shocked. Xiao Jin had never discussed this with him, and now suddenly he's going to have a stepfather?
"Damn, you can do that?" Han Xiao's eyes twitched. Xiao Jin's level of shameless exceeded his expectations. "Would such a childish method work?"
"Politics has always been childish," Xiao Jin replied coldly. "As long as you join the Xiao Faction, you can attend internal meetings. Your strength will signify your power, and as long as you appear, it will represent a threat. However, you will be a part of the Xiao Faction by then, which means you're not an exterior threat. The other factions will give up automatically in fear."
The meaning of a family member and an outsider showcasing strength was different. One was an exterior threat and would only attract displeasure, but if it was a family member, it would mean that Xiao Jin's power had grown tremendously and that he had earned a strong ally for Alumera in the big picture. It would mean a huge contribution for the family. Given the power that Xiao Jin had gathered through the years and the recent prestige that he earned by finding the real killer that assassinated Darryl, the other factions would wisely give up.
Up till now, Han Xiao had already gotten a basic guess of the entire situation. He smiled and said, "I see no benefits in joining the Xiao Faction, why should I do it?"
"You join the Xiao Faction, and when I become the leader of the family, Alumera will become your ally."
"Seems like you're willing to pay everything to become the leader." Han Xiao laughed. He then said teasingly, "Okay, I will join the Xiao Faction and reluctantly become the stepfather of your children."
Xiao Hai was so angry that he was losing his mind. He had to give Han Xiao benefits just to become his stepson. He had never been in such a shameful situation before, and the part that angered him most was that Xiao Jin had actually agreed. He began to suspect that his father had been brainwashed.
Han Xiao looked at Xiao Hai and smiled mockingly. "Come, let me hear you call me stepfather."
Xiao Hai's face turned green. He was an arrogant person, so this was a fate worse than death. However, he saw Xiao Jin's strict face, then suppressed his anger with all his might and forced the words out through gritted teeth.
Han Xiao dug his ears and teased, "I didn't hear that clearly."
"Stepfather!" Xiao Hai yelled. He used so much strength that blood came out of his teeth, and a metallic taste filled his mouth.
"Hehe, good boy." Han Xiao could not control his laughter in his heart. His body's origin was Xiao Hai's younger brother. What would Xiao Hai think if he knew the truth?
Xiao Jin reached out his hand and said, "I look forward to working with you."
Han Xiao accepted the handshake.
The father and son of the Xiao family stood up and left, neither of them saying a word as they did so.
After returning to Xiao Faction's mansion, Xiao Hai could not hold back his questions. "Father, why did you do this?"
Xiao Jin replied without an expression on his face, "Black Phantom is greedier than I imagined. I thought that clearing his suspicion could make him grateful, but I didn't expect to spend so much for him to join us. Anyway, it's worth it. At least we are the only faction that could approach Black Phantom and get his help. When I become the leader, these losses can be made up with ease."
"I see, when you become the leader, you won't have to care about Black Phantom anymore," Xiao Hai realized.
Xiao Jin suddenly turned to look at his son and said with a strict voice, "You're wrong. There's even more need to fulfill Black Phantom's terms after I become the leader. It's suicide to kick someone to the curb when they've outlived their usefulness. This is a world where the strong live, and the weak feed. Black Phantom is standing at the peak with his strength; his personal strength is as threatening as an organization. As long as Black Phantom is part of the Xiao Faction on the books, we can rely on him, and the other factions won't dare step out of line moves. I know that you don't accept this deep down in your heart, but don't act on your impulses and ruin my plan."
Xiao Hai had objections in his heart, but he could only clench his teeth and accept it.