"Why would the bandits agree?" Fiona asked. The bandits prevented her business from rising up, so she was curious as to why they would let Aile's business grow.
Aile said: "There are two reasons for that. One this would be profitable to them. They mostly loot money and need a source to trade their money for goods. Two, a monopoly in the market is bad for the development of a place, compared to multiple successful markets. Thus, this would actually be to their benefits."
Fiona agreed with what Aile said and nodded, "What do you want me to do?"
Aile grinned at her and said: "I want your help to run the whole thing!"
Fiona was surprised, she did not expect this.
Aile said, "I know you can achieve that. We will have an advantage as the bandits will be with us, so we would not have losses. The other businesses will not be able to compete with us. However, you have to be in the shadows, I do not want people to target you."
Fiona nodded, she always liked doing business, and this was a perfect opportunity for her. She agreed immediately. She fully trusted Aile and did not need to be worried about the details, Aile had proven his intelligence and planning to her.
Fiona looked at Aile and asked, "Where do we start?"
Aile opened the chest that he had brought with him. Fiona looked at the gold and treasure in it and was surprised. Aile had told Fiona that he had gotten some wealth from jack but seeing the amount flabbergasted her.
Aile told her the first step of his plan, which was to take over Jack's estate. He gave her the deed of Jack's estate and told her to change the ownership to the name "Shadow" and then hire good security to secure the estate. Aile had kept an eye on Fiona's personnel, and he found out she had a good-eye for picking loyal subordinates.
Aile wanted a secure location to make their base of operation. Aile then explained to her his plan to take over the financial sector of Port Kiar, and she listened attentively. She occasionally added her insight to make it more applicable.
They finished their conversation late at night. Fiona and Aile were both excited about the future. Aile then said: "We will meet Xue tomorrow, at Fatty's house, and we can assign her some work."
Aile then remembered how the security of Port Kiar is degraded. He explained to Xue the risks and urged her to secure the estate as soon as possible. So that they could have a safe location in case of a problem in the city.
He then gave Fiona 200 gold coins for expenses. He also gave her three third-level defence-talismans, a few talismans that increase speed and hides presence for escaping a dangerous situation.
Fiona was happy to see how much Aile valued her. She happily accepted the talismans. Aile wanted to go to bed, but Fiona made him take a bath first. Then, Fiona went to sleep as she had a lot to do tomorrow, and Aile was tired of today's experiences.
He soon fell asleep.
When he woke up, he saw Diana there with his breakfast. He saw her beautiful brown hair and her eyes that were shining blue from the reflection of the light. Then he saw the sad expression on her face that gave a sense of melancholy to the situation. Aile had been accustomed to her sadness, seeing her depressed again he sighed.
He then smelled his aromatic breakfast. From the smell, he could guess that it was his favourite things. He savoured the scent by taking in a deep breath. He was enjoying the aroma until his stomach started to rumble. Noticing his dissatisfied stomach, he quickly washed his face and came to have his breakfast.
In front of him was warm "Partzel" milk, and a sandwich that had the tastiest eggs and a mango-like fruit. The sour and sweet taste of the mango-like fruit along with the eggs complemented each other making Aile drool at before eating.
Aile always curses the chefs for only sending one sandwich every time. He could no longer wait, and he started to dig in. Aile wanted to savour the taste, but after the first bite, Aile just could not hold back. He finished the sandwich in a few seconds. Aile gasped "If only there was more!"
Diana smiled and said: "So you want me to tell them to make another one for you?"
Aile shook his head. "They never make the second one as good."
Diana softly giggled at Aile's usual antics.
She then picked up his plates and took them back to the kitchen. Aile started to get ready with his daily routine.
After his morning training, he noticed that Diana had returned with the same melancholic look. Aile sighed he could not understand her pain, but one thing he learned about her was that she was very hardworking and caring. He wanted her to join his side. However, her daughter Ellie is taken by Marcus and can be used as a weakness to exploit her.
Ellie always seems miserable with Marcus, and on the occasions that she is with Diana, she is very cheerful. Thus, Aile had come up with a method that could possibly save her, but he does not want to give hope to Diana yet as he is not sure if he wants to go along with it.
Seeing the sad Diana, he wanted to have a talk with her to find out where she stands.
He looked at Diana and said: "Are you sad about Ellie?"
Diana nodded, "Yes, it has been too long since I saw her last."
Aile said with a cheery tone, "You know she will have to marry and leave you eventually. You cannot remain sad like this forever."
Diana replied, "Yeah, but I am worried that she could end up like Danny, my son."
Aile sighed, "Accidents happen, sometimes, not all the times. You should look at the positive when she comes back, she will be more powerful and capable of protecting herself."
Diana replied, "Why would she need that for, she does not need to start training this early. I could have slowly taught her."
Aile said: "I think she will definitely need the training."
Diana was surprised, Aile had always been supportive of her. She did not expect Aile to say she needs to start training so soon. Telling Diana that Ellie needed training was the same as siding with Marcus's opinion. Therefore, she had a thoughtful and questioning gaze at Aile, she wanted to know why Aile would say something like this.
Aile smiled and said: "When she grows up and becomes like her beautiful mother, she needs to be able to protect herself from all of her pursuers."
Diana finally had a wide smile. She had a little bit of blush and said with a happy tone, "Such a sweet talker, I will make sure she stays away from you."
They continued their conversation for a while, and Diana was a bit more cheerful. After they talked for a bit, Diana felt more comfortable and became more open to Aile. She explained her challenges of taking care of her son Danny and her worrying about Ellie. Aile listened to her attentively and let her vent out her emotions. She talked for a long time until she finally calmed down.
Aile was pondering about her situation. Diana noticed Ailes expression and asked, "What are you thinking about?"
Aile replied, "I am thinking about your situation."
Diana was curious and asked, "What do you think about it?"
Aile looked at her seriously, "Are you sure you want me to tell you? It will not be something you like."
Aile sighed and said: "I think you are wasting your life, and your indecisiveness will eventually make you lose everything."
Diana felt annoyed and angry, but she wanted to know what Aile had to say. She knows that Aile is far more mature than his age.
Aile continued, "Danny has lost the ability to use his legs, and that will not change. Have you thought about his future? Are you going to let him feel useless, guilty for the rest of his life? You are not helping him to cope with his situation and find a way out. If you force him to stay here, how long do you think it will take him to find a way out and leave? Does anyone want to become imprisoned in their own home? You are making him resent you."
Aile was silent for a while, giving her enough time to understand the situation.
Aile continued, "You worry about Ellie all the time, but you do not have a plan to get her back. If you were more powerful, you could get her back and protect her, but you have not progressed in your cultivation. Fiona and Emily have advanced and could possibly even rival Marcus, but you have remained stagnant. Your talent and cultivation manual is the same as them if not better, and yet your progress is below them."
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