Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 1021
“It’s me, Gerald!”
Before Gerald could even say anything, the door to his room was pushed open and Haven popped her head in before entering.
“Didn’t you head back to your room to rest, Haven? Why are you here again?” asked Gerald with a resigned smile on his face.
Haven had immediately looked for him the moment he returned to the manor, intent on finding out how he was so powerful.
Not seeing any reason to hide anything from her, Gerald had earlier chatted with her for a while before sending her off.
He truly hadn’t expected to meet her again so soon.
“Well, the more I thought about it back in my room, the more I felt that something just wasn’t right! Humph! You’re not being a very good friend at all! Have you already forgotten that we had agreed to be friends back when we were still on the train? It took me a moment to realize, but you never came looking for me in the end! How do you plan on explaining yourself?” said Haven as she took a seat.
“Haha… Guilty as charged!” replied Gerald with a wry smile on his face.
Staring at him for a while, Haven then smiled sweetly before asking, “Then answer me honestly. Do you truly treat me as a friend?”
“Of course I do!”
“Great! So… Could you please teach me how to throw daggers? I want to learn how to do that too!”
“What kind of society are we even living in now? Why would you even want to learn a skill that could be used to kill?”
“Well, it’s because by this point, I’ve already encountered several powerful and skillful people who have abilities that easily surpass the limits of ordinary people! I want to be like them too!”
“You’ll have your chance in the future… Fine, why don’t we do this? I’ll teach you a trick or two tomorrow under the condition that you’re fully energetic to learn them. In order for you to achieve that, you’d better leave now and get some well-deserved rest!” replied Gerald as he smiled.
“Deal! Remember to keep to your word, or you can’t call yourself a man anymore! Well, I’ll be taking my leave first!” said Haven before skipping happily toward the door to leave.
As soon as she opened the door, however, she immediately said in a surprised tone, “Sister? Why are you here?”
“So you were as well, Haven! I’ve come to discuss some things with Mr. Crawford, so run along first!”
Hearing that, Gerald realized that it was Xareni’s turn to meet him. Haven herself was too busy daydreaming about learning new skills tomorrow so she simply left without thinking too much about her sister’s motive for being there.
“And here I was worrying that you’d already be asleep by now, Mr. Crawford! After all, it is pretty late now,” said Xareni as she walked in with a smile.
Looking at her briefly, Gerald then asked, “Is there anything else you’d like to say?”
Well aware that she was a person who enjoyed scheming, Gerald didn’t really have a good impression of Xareni.
“Indeed! You know, I heard from my father that you’re here in the Logan Province because you wish to look for holy blood within the Everdare Forest, Mr. Crawford. Perhaps our family could help you with the matter since we’re already well acquainted by this point. Also, while this may feel out of topic, what are your plans in the future, sir?” asked Xareni.
Since Gerald had already proved his strength, Xareni herself no longer had any traces of contempt in her eyes.
“I’d very much prefer if you stopped beating around the bush. If you haven’t noticed, I’m ready to retire for the night!” replied Gerald casually.
“Alright, so here’s the thing, Mr. Crawford. The Lovewell family is willing to treat you as an honorable guest, just as we treat Mr. Merrett. If you join us, then all your descendants will also receive the same benefits as you will! What do you think of that, sir?”
It was obvious by now that Xareni had been sent over by her father to pitch the idea to Gerald. Though she looked to only be around the age of twenty-five, she was extremely witty and smart, making her a master at negotiating. Even if she were to face the most experienced businessmen in the world of business, seven out of eight of them wouldn’t be able to outwit her.
Regardless, after seeing how casually Gerald dressed, she was certain that he wouldn’t be able to resist the temptation of money and women.
“Are you trying to hire me to work for the Lovewells?” asked Gerald.
“That’s right! I honestly see absolutely no reason for you to turn down our offer, Mr. Crawford. After all, you’ll be able to live a luxurious and extravagant life if you agree, and you’ll also be respected by everyone!” said Xareni as she squinted her eyes slightly, feeling that it was going to be a piece of cake to get Gerald to join them.
“Who even are the Lovewells to want to hire me?” replied Gerald casually.
Xareni was instantly startled upon hearing that statement.
“Look, I get where you’re coming from, but I’ll say right now that anything you try to say beyond this point will be useless. Just bring me the Book of Beasts tomorrow so I can have a look through it. I’ll return it to your family once I’m done reading it. Now if there isn’t anything else, I’d like to get some rest!” added Gerald rather unceremoniously.
‘This man really doesn’t know what’s good or bad for himself!’ Xareni thought to herself angrily.
“Well, while the Lovewells may not mean anything to you, I wonder if you’ve heard about the Moldells from the Logan Province…?”
As soon as she said that, Xareni took a peek at Gerald’s face with her beautiful eyes. She wanted to see how horrified he was since she knew that the more frightened he was of the news, the easier it would be for her to talk to him.
To her dismay, Gerald retained his indifferent expression as he said, “The Moldells? Who even are they?”
Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 1022
Upon hearing Gerald say that, Xareni instantly retorted, “You!-”
Before she could say anything rash, however, she simply nodded before remaining silent for a while to calm herself.
A few seconds later, she smiled angrily before saying, “Well since you clearly look down on our small temple, then I guess the Lovewell family will just hand over the Book of Beasts to you tomorrow as our token of appreciation, sir!”
The moment she was done speaking, Xareni instantly turned around and left his room. Upon closing the door behind her, she took in a deep breath before glaring daggers at the room.
It was early the next morning when Haven pushed the door to Gerald’s room open before shouting, “Good morning, master!”
“Master?” replied Gerald as he couldn’t help but shake his head while looking at the girl who had brought a cup of ginseng tea along with her.
He didn’t even have a chance this time to remind her to knock first before entering this time. Despite her intrusion, Gerald still ended up smiling.
“Yeah, master! Hahaha! You said you were going to teach me some skills, so of course I’d call you that! Anyway, I brought along some tea to formalize our master and disciple relationship!” said Haven with a grin.
“Now you’re just exaggerating it… I’m just going to teach you some self-defense skills as a friend!”
Clearly ignoring what he had just said, Haven simply replied, “Please accept this tea as a form of respect from your disciple, master!”
Bowing before presenting the tea before Gerald, he simply shook his head before taking the cup from her.
After taking a sip, he gave her a wry smile before saying, “Will this do?”
“But of course! Now let’s go! Teach me something already!” squealed Haven as she hopped excitedly in place.
Smiling, Gerald then stood up to leave with her…
However, the moment he did so, he immediately felt an excruciating pain in his stomach! Holding on to his belly, his pale face scrunched up in agony as he shouted, “The… the tea!”
Getting increasingly worried as she watched Gerald get drenched in cold sweat, Haven instantly replied, stuttering, “H-huh? What’s going on? What’s wrong?”
“T-the tea… It’s been poisoned!” said Gerald in his extreme pain as he sat back on the bed before rolling back and forth, clenching tightly onto his stomach the entire time.
“P-poisoned? P-please don’t scare me, Gerald!” squeaked Haven whose anxiousness had peaked after seeing how much pain Gerald seemed to be in.
By the time her sentence ended, Gerald was already clasping onto his head with his hands.
“I-is your head not feeling well too? Please don’t scare me!” said Haven as she gently began shaking his shoulders.
It wasn’t long after before Gerald stopped struggling. His eyes were now closed as his hands had gone limp!
“G-Gerald…? Gerald! Oh god, please, wake up! Men! Men! Get in here!” cried out Haven.
Almost instantaneously, the door to Gerald’s room was flung open and the first person to enter was none other than Xareni.
“S-sister! Gerald seems to have been poiso-!”
Haven’s sentence ended prematurely for a reason. After all, she had noticed by then that right behind Xareni was her father, Second uncle, and many others as they slowly entered the room as well.
“I have to admit, Second, the Scatter Pill really works its magic! Even the incredibly strong Gerald wasn’t able to resist the pill’s effects!” said Zander as he nodded while laughing.
“Hahaha! Truth be told, I was skeptical as well when the Moldells handed me the pill. After seeing Gerald’s capabilities, I truly wasn’t sure whether he could even be poisoned! What more, the Moldells told me that I didn’t even need to use an entire pill to get him seriously poisoned! From what they said, as long as he takes a single sip of the tea, the poison would work its magic no matter how strong he was. Despite that, I slipped in the entire pill, just to be safe! Thankfully, he seems to have taken quite a big sip of the tea as well!”
“Based on what the Moldells said, Gerald will continue sleeping like this indefinitely, right, Second uncle?” asked Xareni while straightening her hair.
“Dad? Sister?! What are all of you talking about? Were you the ones who poisoned him?!” asked Haven in her disbelief.
“You have nothing to do with anything here anymore, Haven. Butler! Take Haven to her room so she can get some rest! And don’t let her leave without my permission!”
“Dad! Gerald’s our ally! He saved us!” cried out Haven as the butler quickly dragged her out of the room.
Seconds later, a subordinate walked in before whispering, “Old master, the Moldells are here!”
“Oh? Then hurry up and invite them in!” replied Zander excitedly.
Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 1023
“So I heard that you’ve successfully captured Gerald Crawford, Mr. Lovewell. On behalf of the Moldells, I really don’t know how to thank you enough,” said an elderly man—who was leading seven other members of the Moldell family—as he laughed out loud.
“You’re being far too modest, Mr. Yaster. After all, the Lovewells and the Moldells may as well be considered to be one big family in the Logan Province by this point. Gerald himself is a mere outsider. Why would we ever favor an outsider to someone from our side?” replied Zander with a subtle smile.
“Well I’ll be d*mned! That really is him! You have no idea how much effort we had to put in order to find him!” said Yaster, his voice overjoyed as he approached the unconscious Gerald.
Yaster himself was a senior figure within the Moldell family in Logan. In fact, his job was to manage the entire family in the province. Therefore, successfully capturing Gerald would definitely be a great achievement on his part. He was already wondering how his second uncle, Kort, would reward him for his achievement.
“It’s truly been a pain to track you down… Now that you’re finally unconscious due to the potent poison of the Scatter Pill, let’s see how you’ll worm yourself out of this one!” scoffed Yaster coldly.
“Still, even though you described him to be all-powerful, I really don’t see what’s so great about him, Mr. Lovewell!” added Yaster who was clearly in a very good mood.
“I’ll have to correct you there, Uncle Moldell… Most of the Lovewells have already witnessed his true strength and capabilities by this point, and just as my father had described, he truly is that strong. We were only able to subdue him today thanks to my younger sister’s help and the wonderfully potent poison of the Scatter Pill you gave us! Otherwise, it would’ve definitely taken a lot more effort to get him to his current state!” replied Xareni as she straightened her hair while smiling.
“Ah, my niece seems to be an extremely eloquent speaker! You’ve truly made a great contribution in this matter, Xareni! The Moldell family will never forget what you’ve done for us! Regardless, it’s true that anyone who consumes even a little of the Scatter Pill—regardless of how much they’ve previously trained—will end up falling unconscious with little chance of ever getting up again!” exclaimed Yaster.
Waving his hand, he then ordered, “Come over, men! It’s high time we brought Gerald back to the Moldell Manor! Once he’s there, we’ll just wait for the second elder’s instructions once he’s returned from Northbay!”
“Right away, sir!”
Just as Yaster’s men were about to carry Gerald away, a cold voice from behind them suddenly called out, “Hold it! What are you planning to do to Mr. Crawford?”
Turning back to see who had said that, everyone saw a white-haired old man standing behind the crowd.
“Oh? It’s you, Mr. Merrett! Here, we’ve retrieved the Everdare Forest map for you. Still, the map is an ancestral heritage from the Merrett family! I still can’t bring myself to believe that you actually gave it to that kid so casually! Gerald wasn’t even content with just having that! To think that he’d eye on the Lovewell family’s Book of Beasts as well! He really doesn’t know how to behave till we force him to!” replied Zander, evidently shocked to see Kaleb there.
In all honesty, Zander had secretly been observing Kaleb’s behavior for a while now. He had reason to since Kaleb seemed to be getting quite close to Gerald.
Still, he wasn’t really all that worried in the beginning since both he and Kaleb had already been friends for so many years by now. As a result, he had believed that if something were to truly happen, then Kaleb would definitely be on his side!
However, he realized just how wrong he was after the events of last night. After all, it was then when Zander realized that Kaleb had told Gerald about the Lovewell family’s Book of Beasts. From that point on, Zander found himself getting increasingly wary of Kaleb.
It was also the reason why he was trying to antagonize Gerald now in his embarrassment.
“Zander, do you honestly take me as nothing but a child? I’ve already heard everything that I needed to earlier. It’s clear as day that you’ve colluded with the Moldells to betray Mr. Crawford! He saved the lives of everyone in the Lovewell family, Zander! To think that you’d actually repay his kindness with acts of evil! Do you even still have a conscience?!” yelled Kaleb as he pointed at Zander.
Though momentarily stunned, Zander’s expression turned cold as he replied, “He tried to take the Book of Beasts from our family! He was certainly asking for all this to happen! Please, Mr. Merrett! Stay out of all this! I’m only saying this since we’ve been friends for so many years by now! Just go home and rest while the Moldells take care of the rest!”
Despite Zander’s persistence to send him back, Kaleb simply said, “Go home? As long as I’m around, none of you will even be able to touch a single strand of Gerald’s hair from here on out!”
Gulping, Zander then nodded with a heavy heart as he replied, “…Fine then, Mr. Merrett. Since you can’t tell what’s good for you, then don’t blame me for being rude and ruthless!”
‘Since the Moldells are here today, you won’t be able to even touch me!’ Zander thought to himself as he turned to look at Yaster.
Yaster could instantly tell what Zander was hinting at.
“If there’s anyone to blame in all of this, it’s yourself for meddling in other peoples’ businesses!” shouted Yaster coldly as he immediately dispatched a few of his subordinates to fight Kaleb.
Kaleb, was a skillful man who had already achieved the title of champion. Due to that, he normally didn’t have to take ordinary men seriously at all.
Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 1024
However, his current opponents were from the Moldell family.
Even so, he was ready to give it his all. After all, Gerald had saved his life during the decisive battle with Damian last night. His action alone had made Kaleb feel respected like never before.
It truly touched Kaleb, and from that moment onward, the old man felt as though he no longer had to suffer through any more humiliation.
As a result, Kaleb had pledged his loyalty and allegiance to Gerald back there and then.
It was the reason why he was fighting so hard now for Gerald’s sake.
Even after fighting for a while, it seemed as though the Moldell family’s subordinates weren’t really Kaleb’s opponents.
Seeing that, Yaster shook his head with a bitter smile on his face as he said, “He truly is worthy of the title of a champion! I guess this guest of the Lovewells isn’t as simple as he looks!”
“Well that’s probably because you haven’t made a move yet, Mr. Moldell. Who in the Logan Province doesn’t know that you’re the top master in the entirety of Weston?” replied Zander with a smile.
“Haha! Is there even a need to fight so many rounds when your opponent is only Kaleb Merrett? Fall back!” shouted Yaster.
After everyone quickly made way for him, Yaster stared at Kaleb for a moment… Before suddenly firing up an immense aura from his body as he dashed toward Kaleb!
From Yaster’s initial analysis on the old man, he could tell that Kaleb’s injuries—that Damian had inflicted on him last night—had yet to completely heal.
Using that knowledge to his advantage, Yaster acted swiftly and immediately struck Kaleb’s head with a potentially deadly blow!
Unable to block it in time, the moment Yaster’s attack connected, Kaleb ended up flying backward as blood spurted out of his mouth.
“Hah! And here I thought that an old man like you would be more skillful and capable! It turns out that you’re nothing more than a piece of trash! Since you were clearly courting death by opposing us, I’ll gladly oblige to ending you right now!” announced Yaster as he slowly walked over to Kaleb’s limp body.
“Zander Lovewell… You’ll definitely receive the retribution you deserve one day! To think that the Merretts have always been kind and benevolent toward your family… You’re even more despicable than a beast, Zander! I, Kaleb Merrett, hereby vow that I’ll return to haunt you as a ghost if I have to!” growled Kaleb as he gritted his teeth in anger.
“Hahaha! No matter what you say, you won’t be able to worm yourself out of this one! You only have your bad luck to blame this time around! To think that you had trained and developed your strength and abilities all this time for nothing!” sneered Yaster as he stood before Kaleb.
Just as he was about to deal the finishing blow to end the old man for good, a voice suddenly shouted, “Pipe down! I barely slept last night so at least allow me to sleep a little longer!”
The moment everyone heard that, the room instantly fell into complete silence. Turning around in utter shock, everyone now had their eyes on Gerald who was still laying on the bed.
Xareni herself had gone fully red in her extreme anxiety.
“…Who… Who said that?” said Zander who was so stunned that he took a step back.
“…Could it be that he didn’t truly pass out?”
“You’re sure that you poisoned him, right, Miss Xareni?”
“How frightening! Could he just be talking in his sleep?”
As everyone continued discussing the current situation—with their eyes still glued on Gerald—they all froze in place the moment they saw Gerald sitting up and yawning.
Stretching as though he had just woken from a nap, Gerald then rubbed his sleepy eyes as he looked at everyone in the room.
Straightening his neck, Gerald’s voice turned frigid as he asked, “I’m assuming everyone is already here.”
“…W-what? You… You weren’t affected by the poison?!”
By this point, everyone was beyond horrified.
Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 1025
“You call that a poison? I used it as a sort of medicine to supplement my health over half a year ago! Did you truly just try to use that to poison me?”
After soaking his body so much in all sorts of medicinal herbs and other materials—that Finnley had provided him with—back then, Gerald was already immune to certain poisons. It was evident that the poison that they had tried to use on him was one of them.
In all honesty, Gerald could already tell that the tea—that Haven had served him earlier—was poisoned, long before he sipped on it. After all, he was an expert when it came to pharmacology.
He was also well aware back then that Haven would never try to harm him. With that in mind, he knew that it was definitely one of the Lovewells who wanted to harm him. But who?
Wanting to find out, Gerald pretended to pass out so that he could wait for the true culprits to show themselves.
“You brat! Have you any idea how hard the Moldells have been trying to find you this entire time? Though we failed to poison you, don’t think you’ll be able to escape easily!” sneered Yaster.
Kaleb, on the other hand, immediately stood up and smiled while holding onto his chest when he realized who had spoken.
“S-sir! You’re fine! What absolutely great news!”
“I am, Mr. Merrett! Also, I appreciate that you stood up for me earlier!”
In truth, Gerald had been planning to test Kaleb on whether he was sincerely loyal to him sometime after all of this was over. Now that he had personally witnessed Kaleb risking his own life to save him, Gerald knew that no further testing was required.
Touched by his actions, Gerald immediately brought Yaster’s attention to him when he saw how close Kaleb was to death.
“There’s no need to talk any longer with this brat, Mr. Moldell! Allow me to take care of him once and for all!” said one of Yaster’s young subordinates as he smiled contemptuously before rushing toward Gerald.
However, when he was only a step away from Gerald, Gerald swiftly stretched his hand out and grabbed him by the face! Immediately after, the man’s limbs froze as his entire body began twitching uncontrollably.
All it took was a simple tilt of Gerald’s wrist for a loud ‘crack’ to be heard from the subordinate’s neck.
With that, Gerald tossed the lifeless body before the seven remaining Moldells who were now all wide-eyed in shock.
They were rightfully stunned since the younger generation of the Moldell family all had excellent strength and capabilities. Despite that, Gerald had ended that man’s life so easily. It was almost as though that subordinate was nothing but a sheep to Gerald. A sheep incapable of defending itself that could only tremble when attacked.
“You… You brat! I would’ve never imagined that you’d become so powerful after just one year!” growled Yaster, his eyes still wide open.
Waving his hand immediately after, he then ordered, “Gang up and grab him!”
Hearing that, the remaining six Moldells obeyed and sprinted toward Gerald!
In response, however, Gerald simply raised his head brazenly as he glared intensely at all six of them.
All of a sudden, the air in the room suddenly felt much colder than it should have. Even the subordinates couldn’t help but slow down slightly as they felt chills run down their spines.
Gerald was now ready to fight.
These people were part of the family that had pushed him into such desperate situations before. The family that had forced him out of his own home. The family that had utterly humiliated him as though he was nothing but a deprived dog that only deserved to be treated harshly.
What more, their family was still trying to rob the Crawfords of their assets and properties!
An immense bloodlust filled his heart as he made his first move!
With his great skill and his hunger for revenge, Gerald was now practically invincible. As a result, the six men currently trying to attack Gerald were naturally no match against him.
One by one, the men approached him and promptly died without even getting a single chance to land a hit against him.
As blood splattered across the room, Yaster’s eyelids twitched violently as he said, “….S-so powerful…”
From the moment Gerald made his first attack, Yaster already knew that he was never going to survive a duel against Gerald. He needed to escape! And quickly!
The moment he turned around to flee, however, he felt a piercing feeling at the back of his neck.
It was a second later when he realized that a thrown dagger was now lodged there! Blood now flowing out of his mouth, Yaster turned around weakly and said, “…Y-you… you…!”
Those were the only two words he managed to mutter before falling to the ground, dead.
Seeing that, Xareni was now so terrified that she screamed while covering her mouth before rushing to a corner of the room to hide.
As for the other Lovewells, none of them even dared to breathe as they stared at Gerald, fully paralyzed in fear.
Zayn, however, was well aware that he was the one who had played the biggest part in the decision to call the Moldells over. As a result, he immediately stepped forward and, in an apologetic tone, he said, “…Hahaha… Ah… Um… So… Y-you see, Mr. Crawford, it was the Moldell family who forced us to do this…”
Hearing no reply, Zayn ended up touching Gerald’s arm to see if he had heard his plea for forgiveness. The moment his hand came into contact with Gerald, however, Gerald revealed that the murderous intent hadn’t left his eyes as he grabbed Zayn by his neck.
As Zayn—who was now spurting blood all over the place—found himself being tossed out the window, he could only twitch a few more times after landing before finally moving no more.
Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 1026
“P-please spare our lives, Mr. Crawford!” cried out Zander as he immediately knelt in fright. Seeing that, all the other Lovewells did the same.
Taking in a deep breath, Gerald closed his eyes for a brief moment before opening them again. The rage in his eyes was no longer present.
Since Gerald was still enraged earlier, Zayn had made the fatal mistake of touching him while he was still in an extremely hostile state.
Now that he was much calmer, Gerald turned to face Zander and walked toward him before saying, “…Spare your lives? After you’ve gone against your promise to hand the Book of Beasts over to me? And don’t even get me started on the fact that you colluded with the Moldells to harm me…”
Upon saying that, he gently grabbed onto the top of Zander’s head. Zander himself already had a face filled with tears and snot as he stared at the demon of a man standing before him.
Just as Gerald was about to amplify the force of his grip, Haven suddenly rushed in while shouting, “G-Gerald! Don’t!”
“H-Haven! You’re here! P-please save me!” wailed the terrified Xareni as she instantly ran toward Haven and hid behind her.
As Xareni stared at Gerald with fearful eyes from behind Haven, Haven herself said, “G-Gerald… I know what my father did was wrong… But he wasn’t in the right mind when he agreed with the plan! Here, I’ve brought the Book of Beasts along with me! You can have but please, please let my family go…”
Now already in tears, she then walked toward Gerald with the book in hand.
“D-don’t, Haven! He’ll kill you!” pleaded Xareni as she grabbed on to her sister’s arm.
“It’s fine, sister. Gerald already told me that we were friends, so I’m confident that he won’t hurt me!”
With that, she loosened Xareni’s grip on her arm before continuing to walk over to Gerald. Once she was standing before him, she held the Book of Beasts out before saying with teary ears, “…Gerald… If you really have to kill my father just to relieve all your hatred, then please kill me instead… Once you’ve done that, I hope you’ll be willing to let my father and everyone else go… Though you’re not obligated to do so, please consider my wish as a friend, okay…?”
Upon hearing that and seeing Haven’s trickling tears, Gerald felt a sudden pain in his heart. He had initially planned on killing off the rest of the Lovewells. After all, they were no better off than the Moldells at this point.
However, he could see that Haven truly regarded him as a friend. After all, the girl had been extremely nervous earlier when she found out that he had been poisoned. Knowing that, Gerald couldn’t bear to break her heart any further.
“…I’ll be taking the Book of Beasts for the time being. I’ll return the book once I’m done reading it!”
With that, Gerald took the book from Haven’s hands and immediately left. Seeing that, Haven jogged after him to see him out.
Zander himself remained in his kneeling position, still too terrified to even feel his legs. At that moment, a young man suddenly rushed in, shouting, “M-Mr. Lovewell! Something bad is happening! There are many people outsi-”
His sentence ended prematurely the moment he saw the carnage that Gerald had left behind in the room. After a brief moment of silence in his shock, the young man finally snapped out of it.
Gulping, he then continued, “…A… A lot of men in black suits are here…”
Haven herself—who was already at the door since she had seen Gerald out—was already staring at the many men standing in her family’s courtyard.
They were Welson’s subordinates.
“Let’s head out!” said Gerald casually as he got into one of the cars and left.
Once the cars were gone, Haven found herself taking a few steps backward.
To think that she had once thought that Gerald was a restrained young man… She realized just how wrong she had been as she recalled all of Gerald’s cruelty and ruthlessness today.
If she had looked down on Gerald just as her sister had done, then her entire family would’ve probably already been wiped out by this murderous demon by now.
‘…So it turns out that this is who you truly are, Gerald… Now I finally know…’ Haven thought to herself.
It was sometime after Gerald left that Xavia came along with her bodyguards. Seeing Haven standing at the door, she approached her before saying, “What a coincidence, Miss Haven! Your father should be rather free now, right? I plan to visit him…”
Xavia’s sentence trailed off the moment she realized that Haven wasn’t even listening to her. Instead, the girl was simply muttering what seemed to be the same word over and over again in a tiny voice. Seconds later, Haven turned around to leave without ever looking back.
“…W-what did you say…?” asked Xavia nervously, finally finding her voice as she watched the girl slowly walk off into the distance.
“The second young lady seems to be in a bad mood today, Miss. I propose that we go visit Mr. Zander directly,” suggested the bodyguard standing beside Xavia.
Seemingly ignoring her guard’s comment, Xavia then muttered under her breath, “…No… She couldn’t have said his name… right? Haven… Were you truly muttering Gerald’s name…?”
Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 1027
‘But… There’s just no way she would even know who Gerald is… Unless… Could he truly be in the Logan Province…? Hold on, she may not even be talking about the same Gerald!’ Xavia thought to herself.
With so many questions swimming in her head, Xavia couldn’t hold herself back from chasing after Haven. She desperately needed answers.
Fast forward to two days later, Gerald found himself in the hinterland of Everdare Forest which was located at the border of the Logan Province.
With a heritage that spanned over thousands of years, the trees within Everdare Forest grew extremely densely atop the many mountains that also grew particularly close to each other. Aside from the immense variety of flora that could be found there, several species of predators were also known to lurk within the forest.
“Careful when plugging the hole! We can’t let the beast escape again with how cunning it is!” said one of the many men standing in front of a hole that the holy fox had been cornered in.
With Welson being in charge of the operation, it was evident that the group consisted of Gerald and his men.
Since Kaleb had given Gerald the map of Everdare Forest, they had made twice the progress with half the effort in their search for the holy fox. After all, the map was quite detailed and having it alone was akin to having a seasoned navigator of the forest.
While Gerald and the others were successful in locating the holy fox’s tracks at dawn yesterday, to their dismay, the fox managed to slip away from them.
That marked the beginning of a series of confrontations they had with the extremely cunning fox. None of them could have ever anticipated how truly capable the holy fox was.
After all, even after working hard to catch it throughout the night, their restless endeavors seemed to be pointless. Though they had confronted the fox for well over a dozen times by then, the fox always seemed to be a step ahead of them!
Eventually, however, they were finally able to trap the holy fox within the hole it was currently in.
Finally getting some results, Welson was now extremely excited.
Gerald himself nervously said, “Don’t allow the beast to escape again! From what I’ve read in the Book of Beasts, not only is the holy fox extremely fast, but though its body is completely white, it’s an expert at concealing itself as well! However, the most worrying thing is the fact that it’s capable of quickly seeing through plans and routines. Once that happens, it’ll easily find a way to escape! The book specifically states that its IQ is even higher than most human geniuses!”
Since Gerald had thoroughly studied the Book of Beasts the night before they began their hunt for the fox, he had learned everything he needed to know about the holy fox alongside other beasts.
As a result, he knew that if they were to allow the fox to escape their grasps this time, tracking it down again would be near impossible
“The beast is about to show itself! Everyone, hush!” ordered Welson as he gestured for the rest to be silent.
Hearing that, everyone held their breath as they surrounded the hole’s entrance. Gerald himself could already see hints of a white tail squirming out from within the narrow hole.
From the moment the fox entered the hole, their plan had been to smoke it out from the other end. Due to the subordinate—who had been stationed on the other end—constantly fanning smoke into the hole, the fox was finally showing signs of exiting it!
However, when the fox was about half a meter away from the entrance, thick, suffocating, green smoke suddenly began pouring out of the hole!
Since Gerald and the others had been lying in wait right in front of the hole, only Gerald managed to retreat and cover his nose in time. Everyone else there, however, ended up getting smoked!
Squeaking could soon be heard as everyone turned to look at the fox. It was almost as though the fox was laughing at them!
With one final squeal, it dashed out of the hole with lightning speed, running past Gerald’s men and making its escape!
“D*mn it! It escaped again!” shouted Welson in his frustration.
“After it!” ordered Gerald as he swiftly began chasing after the fox himself. Not wanting it to escape again, Gerald made sure to run as fast as he could.
Though Welson and the others were initially hot on their heels, eventually, they lost sight of both Gerald and the holy fox! They couldn’t find any traces of him at all!
“What should we do, Mr. Welson? We’ve lost sight of him!” said one of the subordinates.
“We’ll try our best to locate both of them first! If we still can’t find them, then we’ll just have to return to base and wait for him there!” instructed Welson.
Meanwhile, the holy fox was making mocking cries as it bolted to the top of the forest, not unlike an arrow that had just been fired.
Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 1028
Despite that, Gerald wasn’t giving in that easily.
Utilizing a skill that allowed him to tread extremely lightly, his feet almost never touched the ground as he sprinted after the fox.
After running for quite some time, the holy fox came to realize that Gerald didn’t seem to be slowing down. Understanding that it wouldn’t be able to get rid of him easily by simply running around, the fox dived into a bush.
The moment it entered the bush, Gerald lost track of it almost instantaneously!
“D*mn it all! Did you really just escape again?!” said Gerald to himself as he stopped running, feeling slightly depressed.
However, he hadn’t given up yet. Holding his breath to remain silent, he quickly and carefully scanned through the area around him.
If he wasn’t careful to pay attention while he could, Gerald feared that the fox would end up entirely leaving the area.
He was surprised, however, to suddenly hear voices shouting, “D-don’t kill us! Please don’t kill us!”
Looking in the direction of the shouts, Gerald saw a few people running toward him, screaming in horror as though they were running for their lives.
Gerald could only frown as he thought, ‘Why at such a crucial time…? Why couldn’t you have come earlier or even later?!’
Seconds later, a few thuds could be heard as the screams of horror finally ended. Though it was evident that those screaming had already met their end, Gerald really couldn’t be bothered about that right now.
“Since the few of you followed me all the way out here, what other choice do I have but to kill you all?” sneered an old man as he approached the fresh corpses with his hands against his back.
While he was inspecting the bodies, however, the corner of the old man’s eyes caught a glimpse of Gerald who had been staring off into a distance for a while now.
The old man felt his eyelids twitch after realizing who the person standing there was.
‘So it’s you! It seems that you’re stupid enough to choose your own doom when there are obviously better alternatives!’ Thought the old man as he sneered.
“If it isn’t Gerald! Or should I say, Mr. Crawford! I believe you’ve been well since we last met?” said the old man with murderous intent in his eyes as he approached Gerald.
Gerald himself had been completely focused on detecting any sounds of movement he could register from the environment when he heard his name being called out. Turning around by reflex to see who had called out to him, Gerald was startled to see who it was.
“Oh, it’s you.”
Realizing that Gerald was no longer focused on it, the hidden holy fox—which had been lying silently in wait this entire time—knew it was high time to make its next move.
Sprinting off, it took one leap after another as it quickly disappeared into the valley.
The valley itself was constantly brimming with miasma, making any sight-based navigation attempts a nightmare. Adding that to the holy fox’s immense speed, Gerald couldn’t even see it anymore by the time he realized where the fox was escaping to.
“Don’t run!” shouted Gerald as he gritted his teeth with resentment before jumping into the valley as well.
‘…Oh? So it seems that he’s become pretty skillful now! Since the kid is a rich young master and I’ve already obtained most of the necessary ingredients I need to make the elixir, using his heart as the final ingredient will definitely make the elixir more potent compared to using the hearts of these small fries! It’s decided then. I’ll kill him!’
With his mind made up, the corners of the old man’s lips curled into a smile as he swiftly began following Gerald’s tracks.
Gerald himself was now anxiously pulling his hair as he sat atop a rock that he found in the valley.
‘Should it successfully make a full escape, I don’t even know when I’ll be able to catch the beast again!’
As he tried recalling everything he had read in the Book of Beasts in hopes that something useful would come up, he suddenly came to a realization.
Blood essence. That’s right, he could still use blood essence!
He had been so anxious and in a hurry that he had almost completely forgotten about the method.
Smiling as he stood up, Gerald remembered reading about how intelligent the holy fox was, even when compared to human geniuses. However, it had one fatal flaw, that being its greed.
According to the Book of Beasts, the holy fox loved drinking human blood, especially if it came from a person who had had incredible abilities and a well-trained body.
Regardless, as long as Gerald was able to get his hands on some human blood and refine it through blood essence, the beast would certainly be unable to withstand the temptation to drink it.
Blood essence, in this case, was an extraction method that also doubled as a way to purify blood.
While getting the idea had certainly excited him, soon after, Gerald became dejected again.
After all, he had already run quite a distance from where he had last stood. He now realized that he could’ve just used the blood of the people that the old man had killed earlier!
Since the distance from where he currently was to the corpses was anything but short, the idea of gathering blood from the bodies didn’t seem too appealing to him. After all, by the time he got there, he wouldn’t even know if the cunning fox would still be within the valley!
He couldn’t injure himself just to draw the holy fox out either.
Could it truly be that he was fated to never get his hands on the holy fox? Was he doomed to end up becoming a bloodthirsty demon in the future?
As the depressing thoughts filled his head, Gerald suddenly heard faint rustling not too far away…
Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 1029
Turning to his side, Gerald noticed that the one making the sounds was a puppy that was slowly limping toward him! Upon closer inspection, the puppy seemed to have a broken leg. What more, there were visible scars all over its body as well.
When it finally reached Gerald’s side, it lay at his feet before promptly starting to lick the tip of his shoe.
Gerald was more startled than anything. After all, he hadn’t expected to bump into this little one so deep inside the forest. In a way, it was a miracle that this puppy was still alive with so many predatory beasts lurking within the forest.
“…Could you be asking me to save you?” asked Gerald.
Barking twice in response, it then continued licking Gerald’s shoe.
While Gerald’s first thought—upon seeing the puppy—was to extract its blood to make blood essence, after the puppy started licking his shoe, he realized two things. First of all, the puppy was simply too small to make a worthwhile blood essence extraction.
Secondly, he realized that the puppy had a somewhat spiritual nature. After all, it had managed to survive this long in the hinterlands of the forest. What more, it was now begging for his help! With all that in mind, Gerald now knew that killing it would be near unbearable for him. After all, he wasn’t that cruel.
“How pitiful… I’ve no idea who abandoned you here, but you’re fortunate that you happened to bump into me!” said Gerald as he shook his head while patting the puppy’s head.
“Unfortunately, I can’t spend too much time idling around here, though I will help to bandage your wounds up first. From there on out, however, we’ll be parting ways. I simply don’t have the time to help you escape the forest, understand?” added Gerald as he swiftly began patching the puppy’s wounds up.
Not long after, he successfully managed to stop the puppy’s bleeding and bandage any open wounds he could find.
“How nice it would be if Grandpa Welson and the others were able to catch up to me now… After all, since the fox prefers human blood anyway, each of us could just contribute a little of our blood! We’d then be able to lure the fox out again for sure! But who knows how long I may need to wait for them to arrive… If I wait any longer, the fox could very well escape the valley and I wouldn’t even know it!” muttered Gerald to himself in a depressed tone as he did one final check on the puppy.
The now bandaged puppy, on the other hand, crawled in front of Gerald and simply rested its head again on Gerald’s food.
“Hey now, I told you that I didn’t have any further time to worry about you, right? I’m sorry, but there’s just something important I have to do now…” said Gerald as he smiled bitterly while watching the little puppy latch onto him.
However, the puppy simply refused to leave Gerald alone.
At that moment, Gerald’s ear twitched slightly. Someone was coming toward him. The puppy itself instantly got up and began barking in the direction the sound was coming from.
After a few barks, it began wagging its tail excitedly as it looked back at Gerald before blinking its eyes.
Turning to look at the puppy—whose tongue was now hanging out—Gerald simply asked with a wry smile on his face, “So you’re as alert as I am! Still, aren’t you afraid of the possibility that the person who comes over will kill you after you’ve attracted their attention?”
Oddly, the puppy simply raised its head a bit higher while continuing to look at Gerald, a strange clarity in its eyes.
“…Hmm? Could it be that you were listening to my mumbling earlier…? Do you know that I require human blood? Is that why you’re deliberately trying to attract that person over?”
Gerald was only making such a bold claim since after reading through the Book of Beasts, Gerald could now more or less tell what most animals meant by their actions.
Upon realizing that its message got across, the poppy instantly nodded before wagging its tail happily.
“Well I’ll be d*mned! You truly do have a spiritual nature!” said Gerald as he patted the puppy’s head.
It wasn’t long after when a figure could finally be seen from afar. Swiftly making their way toward Gerald, the person who finally emerged from the miasma snorted coldly before saying, “No wonder I couldn’t track you down no matter how hard I searched for you! So you had escaped here this entire time!”
Naturally, it was none other than the old man from earlier.
Gerald himself was extremely delighted to see the old man. Rubbing the puppy’s head gently to indicate that it did a great job, Gerald then replied, “Oh? You were hunting me down? I really hadn’t noticed!”
Gerald Crawford:The Secretly Rich Man Novel (Invisible or Poorest) Chapter 1030
With that, he laughed. While he was excited to find a source of blood, he was also genuinely surprised by the old man’s statement.
“Indeed! You’ve been a huge waste of time and effort, you know? Regardless, since I managed to bump into you while looking for one final essential ingredient for my medicine, I believe that both of us were destined to meet here. While it was a pity that I wasn’t able to kill you back then in the Salford Province, it seems that you’re just itching to die since you brought yourself right to my doorstep this time! It’s high time we settled all our past grudges and grievances today, Mr. Crawford!” replied the old man, his gaze frigid.
“Ah, yes, you were still working for the Schuylers back then in the Salford Province if I remember correctly. We didn’t even hate each other yet at the time. Sometime after that incident happened, however, I was surprised that you weren’t even present when I returned to the province around six months ago. So it turns out that you had moved to the Northern region!” said Gerald as he stared back at the old man.
The old man quite literally had both halves of his face painted black and white respectively. It made his face look like the symbol of yin and yang.
Back when both of them had first met, the old man—who went by the name of Julian—had been under the guise of Yael’s butler. From the moment they met, Gerald could already sense that Julian wasn’t an ordinary person.
His gut feeling eventually turned out to be right, and Julian had left a deep impression on Gerald ever since that incident. Gerald had also found it odd that Julian wasn’t present back when he destroyed the Schuyler family for good.
“Well, I was initially under the impression that the Schuylers would eventually be able to overtake the Fendersons. If all had gone according to plan, then the Schuylers would’ve easily and consequently used their newly acquired power to destroy the Crawfords! However, from the moment I realized that Noah had secretly tried to curry favor the Crawfords under the pretense that he was going to destroy the Fendersons, I knew from that point on that even if Noah managed to eventually take over the Fenderson family, he would never have the balls to actually go against the Crawfords! After all, I understood him far too well by that point. That was the main reason I left them!”
“Wanting to continue improving my strength, I ended up coming to Everdare Forest in search of ingredients for me to brew an elixir to grant me just that! After searching for so long, I’ve finally managed to gather all the necessary medicinal herbs that I need to brew it. However, there is still one last ingredient I need that is essential to perfecting the elixir. And that’s a heart! Since I actually managed to meet up with you here, I’ll definitely be using the heart of a Crawford to complete the elixir! What perfect timing for you to show yourself at this moment! Hahaha!” explained Julian with his hands still behind his back.
“What did the Crawfords even do to you for you to hate them so much? For you to resort to all sorts of trickery and make endlessly attempts to get me?”
“Heh, it’s simple really. Did you know that the Crawfords are far too powerful? Your family holds so much power that even a single order that they give is enough to wipe out an entire clan. Even though those from the Laker family only hurt one of the Yaleman’s young masters back then, your family retaliated by taking the lives of hundreds of the Laker’s family members! And just like that, my family was almost completely wiped out, despite the fact that we were one of the four major families in Yanken at the time!” growled Julian, his rage reflected in his eyes.
Upon hearing that, Gerald was finally able to see the bigger picture. Recalling what his grandmother had told him, there were once four major families in Yanken. Since his mother had eloped with his father back then instead of going through the arranged marriage that the Yalemans had promised with the Lakers, the Laker family had expressed their dissatisfaction by attacking his fifth uncle who was still in a vegetative state today because of them.
In retaliation, his father then exterminated most of the Laker family. It was now evident that the old man now standing before him was a descendant of the Lakers.
“Hahaha! God truly is on my side this time! I guess my trip to the Logan Province wasn’t a wasted decision after all!” added Julian with a booming laugh.
“…I’m sorry!” replied Gerald.
“Heh! How ridiculous! Do you think apologizing will help you evade death?” scoffed Julian as he pointed at Gerald while shaking his head.
“Well, it’s less to do with that and more to do with the complicated feelings I’m currently experiencing… After all, I don’t even know whether I should thank or sympathize with you!”
“…You want to thank me?”
“Indeed. After all, I’m in dire need of human blood now since I wish to lure the holy fox out. Not only are you human, but you’re also fairly capable and well-trained! You’re the perfect sacrificial candidate to get it to show itself! I don’t really know how else to express my gratitude since you’re going to be dead soon anyway, but I’ll promise to kill you quickly and painlessly! I’ll also be leaving your body fully intact so don’t worry about that!” said Gerald extremely sincerely.
Immediately frowning, Julian then retorted, “You… You brat! Did it only take a year for your mental state to regress that much? Do you honestly think you can even lay a finger on me?!”
“You’ll see in a second. Please understand that I have no better choice!” replied Gerald.
“That’s enough nonsense! You’ve clearly gone bonkers! Regardless, I’ll be taking your life now, Mr. Crawford! I really want to see the look of Dylan’s face once he receives your corpse! Hahaha!”
Upon ending his sentence, Dylan immediately made a mad dash toward Gerald, aiming a punch at him!
Gerald himself retaliated with his own punch, and as their fists collided, the sound of snapping bones could instantly be heard.
It took Julian a second to register the pain, but when it finally hit, he realized a second too late that he was already falling to the ground. Spurting blood in between screams of anguish, the old man had a terrified expression on his face.
It was as though he had come face to face with the most powerful force he had ever encountered in his entire life.
Not giving in that easily, Julian immediately got up again—albeit a bit wobbly—as he attempted to make another punch! However, the moment his fist collided with Gerald’s chest, it felt akin to him punching an immovable mountain. In fact, the impact of the blow probably hurt Julian even more!
“…Y-you… You…!” growled Julian, spurting blood the entire time as he looked at Gerald in utter disbelief.
All the paths to his vital energy flow had been severed by this point, just because of a single punch from Gerald. It had only been a year since they had last met.
How was he this strong now? It was simply impossible, right?