48 Hours a Day
Chapter 167 - A Well-Protected Flower
“Malcolm’s the reason my father is in prison?”
Carina was left in a complete shock, not knowing what to do when she heard the news for the first time. She also felt uncomfortable when she saw a half-blind and broken nosed black man standing in front of her.
“For now, we don’t have any solid evidence.”
Zhang Heng then poured a cup of wine for Carina to calm her down.
“I have to say, the timing of your father getting captured and put in jail was just too much of a coincidence. Redmond’s suspicion makes perfect sense. Your father was one of the black-market alliance’s biggest obstacles when they were being set up. Once your father is out of the game, Malcolm will benefit the most. Billy asked a couple of black-market merchants about your father and discovered that a large number of them believe that somebody must have gotten your father in jail through means of foul play. You must have visited him at least once, right? Did he say anything about this?”
“Before we were allowed to visit him, we had to pay a huge sum of money to the prison guards. To make things worse, we were only allowed to see him for a tiny amount of time, so my mother and sister used up most of it. I only had a few minutes to talk to him. At that time, I told him that I would take over his business. We didn’t discuss anything else apart from business. Even though my father handed me his ship and his connections, he didn’t agree on me coming to Nassau. In the end, he told me that the most dangerous people in Nassau are not pirates and asked me not to trust anyone just like that.”
Carina paused for a moment before continuing.
“Actually, Malcolm treated me well when I first arrived in Nassau. He told me that the black merchants not working on any pirate ships were not allowed to join the black-market alliance and get their share of profit. He also said that he couldn’t convince the other black-market merchants to give up on dealing with my father’s ex-pirate partners. During that time, there were a couple of powerful pirate groups who had still not join the black-market alliance. Malcolm gave me a list and asked me to convince them.”
“The fact that I’m a woman didn’t make this task easier. I only knew a few people when I came to Nassau, and there was nothing I could offer when I tried to convince them to join the black-market alliance. Of course, I didn’t have enough money to bribe the important personnel on their ships. In the end, I failed to convince them to join the black-market alliance. At that time, I was truly grateful for Malcolm helping me to settle down in Nassau. He was one of the few people willing to help me. I won’t go against the black-market alliance if I have other options to solve my problem. I simply couldn’t have ever imagined that he had something to do with my father being sent to jail.”
Carina took a sip of the wine, but it did little to calm her down. Suddenly, she stood up and said, “No way. I have to confront him right now and ask him to release my father!”
“Are you planning to make him admit that he was the one who got your father in jail?”
“If he doesn’t set my father free, I will let this matter be known to everyone in the alliance. He could easily pull off the same stunt to others if he could this to my father.”
“What you are about to do may get him into some small problems. But, as I said, we have no solid evidence to prove that Malcolm is responsible for putting your father in jail. Besides…”
Zhang Heng then turned around to look at Laeli.
“Your only witness was a slave. Technically speaking, all I did was overhear the conversation between Redmond and Malcolm,” said Laeli.
“I have another piece of bad news. Your very existence has brought a negative impact on the black-market alliance. Malcolm is about to do something about you,” said Zhang Heng to Carina.
Carina was shocked. She somehow expected that the black-market alliance would eliminate her the moment she decided to work with the Jackdaw. Still, there was a lot for her to swallow as she tried digesting what Zhang Heng said. If her father could be sent to jail because he went against Malcolm, she wondered what the black-market alliance would do to her since she followed in her father’s footsteps.
From the first day she arrived in Nassau, she knew that this was a path of no return. At first, her only intention was to earn enough money to free her father from jail. After making a tremendous amount of money from selling the spices, Carina found out that she actually loved being a black-market merchant. Indeed, this sounded crazy. Only a few months ago, she was a rich lady frequenting salons and balls, mingling with the upper-class society. She had no inkling on what the other part of the world looked like.
Until she came to Nassau, wanting to take over her father’s business, she had face a lot of obstacles along her path. She had tasted hardship that she never experienced before in the past 20 years. To join the black-market alliance, she chose to give up her dignity. She went around the island, looking for her father’s friends for help. She even negotiated with the pirates that she despise, reluctantly givubg in to their demands as she did her best to convince them to work with her.
Entering a man’s house in the middle of the night was something that the old her would never do. Carina was wondering how was managed to keep her sanity. She used to be a well-protected flower that grew up in a safe environment. Now that she had thrown herself in the wilderness, she finally matured up after going through all those hardships. This was the kind of life that she would never get to experience if she still lived in an upper-class society. The wilderness was filled with countless threats, betrayal, and challenges.
Carina could feel a surge of passion bursting through her heart, something that she never experienced before. Before all this, the thought of returning to where she came from after her father’s rescue constantly plagued her mind. However, after tasting the satisfying reward of surviving the hardship, she decided that she would never return to her comfortable life.
“I will be ready. I will not be trampled on no matter who my enemy is.”
“I’m afraid that it’s not enough. After this, I hope that you will work even harder. You need to exert more pressure on the black-market alliance. At the same time, I will make use of your father’s incident to divide Malcolm and Redmond. However, I must tell you that you may face more threats in the future if we do this. Right now, the conflict that we have with the black-market alliance is minimal, but if we decide to treat them as our enemy, I’m afraid that Malcolm might employ some despicable methods to deal with you. You have to remember that we are racing against time. Between you and Malcolm, let’s see who will win the race.”
“I have no other options, right? No point dwelling on it then.”