Chapter 103 Secluded in the Castle of Grief
Manhattan’s Chinatown was a neighborhood in Downtown Manhattan, New York City. Buildings and facilities in that area were rather old and shabby, and were far inferior compared to the other parts of Manhattan.
Zhou Qingfeng was walking along the streets. He followed a map for guidance as he soon reached a fire station nearby. However, he suddenly encountered another problem: Someone was setting up a roadblock on his route.
Several streets where the Chinese usually gathered were blocked. The Chinese were seizing their own territory. They prohibited any outsiders from entering and leaving the area in an effort to protect themselves.
“I saw a patrol team and some sentries camping on the top of the roof. There are at least thousands of people gathered in that area.” Zhou Qingfeng looked at them using his binoculars. He could see that his compatriots had actually done quite well in defending against the illegal immigrants and the urban gangs.
“Chinese have always been ruthless when it comes to killing.” Katrina too had observed a Chinese patrol team hauling a few corpses. It seemed that the corpses belonged to a few white men who tried to infiltrate their barricades.
“I always thought that we, as Chinese, are always bullied in foreign countries.” Although Zhou Qingfeng felt happy for his compatriots as they were able to find a spot to live in, his route was blocked by them. He might need to face against another group of gangsters if he went around them.
“Stop bullsh*ting, Chinese are actually the most ruthless among all races!” Katrina disagreed with what Zhou Qingfeng had just said. “When I was still a mercenary in Africa, I once encountered a group of Chinese.
“Every time you guys get attacked, you will cry out to the whole world as if you guys were the most pitiful people around the globe. However, when it’s you guys attacking others, you guys never mention anything about it. Chinese are usually ruthless, especially when it comes to fighting for territories.”
“Oh, really?” Zhou Qingfeng showed a happy face when he heard what Katrina had just said. He felt that the Chinese were able to succeed nowadays simply because they were willing to live without dignity.
However, Katrina changed her tone as she mocked, “But the Chinese have always been fighting each other within their own country. You guys want to achieve the first place in everything. You guys will be unhappy when you are not first.”
“Stop, stop, stop. How about we come back to our problem, shall we?” Zhou Qingfeng felt ashamed as he listened to Katrina, and thus he stopped her from continuing.
“What else can we do? I think we should probably just go and greet them, and ask them if they could let us walk past them. I know that the Chinese are usually willing to communicate as long as the right method is used.
“There’s no way we can kill everyone in Manhattan. Even if we don’t face them today, we still have to face them someday in the future.”
Katrina even pushed Zhou Qingfeng, making him ask curiously, “Are you asking me to approach them?”
“Don’t tell me you’re trying to get the British to approach them.” Katrina rolled her eyes as she replied.
Zhou Qingfeng felt helpless. It seems like I really have to approach them myself.
Zhou Qingfeng was not accustomed to facing his opponent directly, but he had no other choice. He could only stand up and yell at the sentry stationed far away from him, “Hi, I’m Chinese! Can I talk to you?”
The sentry immediately pointed his gun at him. Zhou Qingfeng felt frightened as he hurriedly hid behind a wall of the building. After some time, the sentry finally spoke in Chinese, “You can walk slowly toward us, but I need to see both of your hands clearly.”
“Come on, the descendant of the Dragon.” Katrina patted Zhou Qingfeng’s shoulder as she jokingly mocked him, “I hope you have some expertise in negotiating.”
Zhou Qingfeng shook his head several times. After confirming that there was no danger to him, he finally walked out from his hiding spot. He even raised both his arms above his head to indicate that he meant no harm. However, as he slowly walked toward them, a man showed up behind the barricade. The man talked to Zhou Qingfeng after throwing a few glances at him, “Aren’t you the guy who killed the Chief Officer of NYPD?”
It seems like the ill-fated Chief Bratton had indeed brought fame to Zhou Qingfeng!
“That’s right!” Zhou Qingfeng proudly nodded his head. “I am Zhou Qingfeng, and Victor Hugo is my English name.”
There were a few Chinese standing behind the barricade with guns in their hands. A middle-aged man then shouted enthusiastically, "Come in, young man! We need a warrior like you who could dare to fight fearlessly. We’ve watched your news before on the television, and I believe that their reports about you are not completely true. There’s no way you’re in a gang with those white and black men."
The middle-aged man was obviously their leader. He then patted Zhou Qingfeng’s shoulders and praised him, “Boy, you’re indeed well-armed! It seems like you’ve got yourself a handful of equipment from the NYPD!”
Zhou Qingfeng was still carrying the equipment he snatched from NYPD personnel. He said cheerfully, “Uncle, can I discuss something with you?”
“You want to join us? No problem. My surname is Zheng, and I’m from the Hebei province. From now on you can just call me as Uncle Zheng.” Uncle Zheng was truly warm and friendly. He grabbed Zhou Qingfeng’s hand and pulled him to the back of the alley, wanting Zhou Qingfeng to meet the others.
Zhou Qingfeng felt that there was no easy way to tell Uncle Zheng about his original intention, so he could only follow him. He soon walked into a restaurant. The interior of the restaurant had already been transformed into a command post.
“Come on, come on, meet this kid! He’s Victor Hugo, the kid who created the chaos in New York City just a week ago. His real name is Zhou Qingfeng, and he came specifically to visit us today,” Uncle Zheng shouted inside the restaurant.
Zhou Qingfeng originally thought that he would be cheered. However, he was only treated with a few cold gazes. More than ten people were inside the restaurant, which consisted of both old and young people. All of them sat around a dining table, frowning. It seemed that they had just finished a serious discussion.
“What happened? Why did you guys frown? Aren’t we now living quite well?” Uncle Zheng might be overly optimistic, as he insisted on introducing Zhou Qingfeng to the rest of his team. “This is Father Li. He’s Fujianese and had migrated here since a long time ago. Meet Young Tang. He only moved here seven years ago. This is Marco. He used to serve in the U.S. military and is one of the main strengths of our team.”
Uncle Zheng was busy introducing them to each other, while Zhou Qingfeng was busy shaking their hands. However, when he tried to shake Marco’s hand, the young man, who had a buzz cut and was wearing a military training suit, mocked him, “Let me guess…. You’re here to seek help from your compatriots only because you’re struggling to survive in the outer world, am I right? The only problem is that we too do not have any spare food for you!”
“So be it.” Zhou Qingfeng could actually understand their situation. The Chinese people right in front of him used to be rich and powerful. As a consequence, they consumed supplies in large quantities. They were frowning because, without a source for their supplies, they were now secluded in a castle of grief. “Actually, I’m here to ask if you guys can let us pass through.”
“Pass through?” Father Li, who sat on the other side of the table, interrupted their conversation with his Fujian accent.
“My companion and I are planning to head to Broome Street, which is just a few streets away from your territory. However, all the streets nearby were blocked. Therefore, I’m here to ask if you guys can let us pass through your area.”
“You even have a companion? How many of you guys are out there?”
“There are only two of us; me and a British woman. We’re planning to get our hands on one of the fire trucks from Broome Street.”
Father Li shook his head when he heard that there were two of them. “We can let you pass through if you came here a few days earlier. However, I’m afraid that you could no longer make it through, as all our surrounding are now blocked. Everyone was fighting for territories, and hence everyone became afraid of their territories being occupied by others. As a result, no one can be trusted at this moment.
“As for now, everyone has started to realize that New York is doomed. We too wanted to escape out of this place, but Broome Street is occupied by another group of people. Thousands of us are trapped in this place, and we could not escape even if we want to!”