Chapter 361 We have a spy
Post-battle rebuilding was a very tedious process, because the ruins would have to be cleared up first before the structures could be rebuilt. They had to experience pain before they could receive a new lease of life.
Ren Xiaosu took the lead in burying their dead companions. He initially wanted to erect a stele for each of them, but later, he realized some of the bandits did not even have names.
If Ren Xiaosu had not established this settlement, these people would have been forgotten after their deaths.
He took out a pen and a notepad from his storage space and handed them to Yang Xiaojin, saying, “Make a record of those who are still alive. This will be our future roster.”
A regular army should first have a roster. It meant that everyone’s names would be recorded, and the people on it would be recognized.
But when Yang Xiaojin started the recording process, she was put in a dilemma. The bandits did not report their real names to her. Instead, they gave their nicknames such as Rat, Crow, Mud Pit, Rotten Egg…
Just by their names alone, you would know they were not respectable people!
Yang Xiaojin said patiently, “This roster is only for recording your real names. Besides, aren’t your nicknames really…”
Jin Lan chuckled and said, “Boss Lady, you should allow them to use their nicknames. If you call them by their real names, they might not even respond. All of us are bandits, so we should be called by our nicknames.”
Yang Xiaojin thought for a moment and said with a smile, “Sure!”
But at this moment, Xu Jinyuan, who was in charge of the clean-up crew, suddenly came up to Ren Xiaosu and said, “Boss, we found something in the ruins.”
Ren Xiaosu looked at the thing Xu Jinyuan was holding. It turned out to be a satellite phone! Seeing that the satellite phone was already damaged, he asked Xu Jinyuan curiously, “Where’d ya find it?”
“It was hidden under the bed in the ruins of our brick house.” Xu Jinyuan said, “There were twenty people sleeping in that house, and I remember that a bandit called Old Fox slept on that particular bedroll.”
“Where’s Old Fox now?” Ren Xiaosu said, “Get him here, I want to question him.”
“He’s dead.” Xu Jinyuan said, “That’s why I secretly came over to seek Boss’s instructions.”
Ren Xiaosu frowned. The satellite phone was definitely not something bandits could own. The owner of this satellite phone must’ve used it to report information to a consortium.
He wondered which consortium this satellite phone was linked to.
Was it the Qing Consortium? Or the Zong Consortium?
Anything was possible.
These two consortiums had been eyeing the valley for a long time now, so they might have planted quite a few spies.
“Don’t breathe a word about it. If it doesn’t belong to Brother Old Fox, his reputation will be tarnished after his death if this matter gets out.” Ren Xiaosu said, “This satellite phone could also belong to somebody else.”
Ren Xiaosu even suspected the phone could be Xu Jinyuan’s. He had read in a detective novel back at Stronghold 88 that stated how more than 40% of the witnesses and discoverers of a homicide turned out to actually be the real murderer.
However, Ren Xiaosu did not bring up that doubt and let Xu Jinyuan continue working.
Yang Xiaojin walked over and asked, “What’s the matter?”
“I’m afraid we can’t stay here any longer.” Ren Xiaosu said, “After we go back and get Yan Liuyuan and the others, we’ll head northwest to look for a more secretive location to settle down again. Our activities here have likely been leaked. It’s not so bad if it’s the Qing Consortium, but if it’s the Zong Consortium that planted their spies here, we won’t be able to fend them off when their military attacks us here.”
“Mhm.” Yang Xiaojin agreed with him. She did not think it was wrong for Ren Xiaosu to be more cautious.
The reason why the Zong Consortium had trouble fighting the bandits was because the bandits were always wandering around. If they settled down here, it would be extremely easy for the Zong Consortium to deal with them. So Ren Xiaosu wanted to head deeper into the mountains and find a new place to reestablish the settlement.
In the evening, Jin Lan went to look for Ren Xiaosu. But when he came up to him, he heard Ren Xiaosu whispering to Yang Xiaojin, “The northern bandits have killed so many of our brothers, so I’ve already contacted Old Xu and told him to lead his troops here next week. We’ll settle the score with those northern bandits then!”
Jin Lan was a loudmouth. Once he learned about this, everyone in the settlement would find out about it as well.
Ren Xiaosu turned to Jin Lan. “Are you looking for me for something?”
“Oh.” The dumbfounded Jin Lan came back to his senses and said, “Our brothers wanted to ask you… uh, I forgot what their question was!”
“Then go and remember before coming back here,” Ren Xiaosu snapped at him.
After Jin Lan went back to the others, the news of Xu Xianchu coming here with troops next week started spreading.
The bandits were stunned when they heard this. Everyone was fervently discussing how Master Xu would definitely bring others from Stronghold 178 with him. In that case, they would all have to start putting on a good performance from tomorrow onwards so that they would not disgrace their boss, Ren Xiaosu!
The days of the post-disaster rebuilding were very dull. It wasn’t like people could always wallow in pain and sorrow. Everyone had to continue leading their lives.
Jin Lan and the others were working harder than before as they were still thinking about the motorcycles.
Three days later, a figure left the settlement in the middle of the night while everyone was asleep.
The settlement was not quiet, as the bandits snored loudly.
When the person was about to leave, he suddenly turned around and had a look at the settlement. It was as though he had a reluctant look in his eyes. But after struggling for a minute, he still decided he was going to escape north. He was going to leave this place and head north!
But before he could even take two steps, that figure saw Ren Xiaosu waiting in the shadows and looking at him with a smile.
Ren Xiaosu chuckled, “So it was you. What’s your nickname? Rat?”
The bandit named Rat immediately knelt down. “I… I had no choice.”
“Where did you come from?” Ren Xiaosu asked.
Rat replied softly, “I was originally from the bandit lair at Mt. Dingyuan in the north. The bandit leader at Mt. Dingyuan sent me to Mt. Daban. Later on, I came here together with the bandits of Mt. Daban, but they also had someone supporting them from the shadows.”
“You’re pretty honest for telling me everything.” Ren Xiaosu sighed.
Rat was getting a little anxious. “I didn’t want to leave either. But even if I stayed, I wouldn’t survive when those people at Mt. Dingyuan started spreading the news that I’m a spy.”
This was the awkward situation that a spy had to go through. If the beginning was already a mistake, it would lead to the wrong ending. Rat had also been tempted in recent days to stay here and lead a good life, but how could he still stay? When the time came, both sides would probably not spare him.
“Is that thing yours?” Ren Xiaosu asked but did not explicitly mention what he was referring to. “What were you doing with it?”
Rat said, “The satellite phone was issued by my previous leader some time ago. It’s used for sending intel.”
Ren Xiaosu nodded in acknowledgment. That matched precisely with what he was asking.
But what should he do with Rat? Let him go? Ren Xiaosu was not that kind.
But when he thought of the days they spent together, Ren Xiaosu felt a little melancholic.
Ren Xiaosu whispered, “If you didn’t try to leave or betray me, I might not have done anything to you when the truth came to light. Xu Jinyuan was originally a spy too, but he made the right choices. Rat, let’s become bandits again in our next lives. But for now, it’s goodbye to you.”