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Chapter 53: Downtown—Jillian

As Rosa teetered on the brink of becoming a slave to gold and succumbing to the grind of corporate life, Jillian, in high spirits, was drinking at the usual bar counter.

It was just the time of dusk.

“I’m soon bidding farewell to this town,” Jillian said with a faint smile, informing the bartender on the other side of the counter.

“What kind of dreamy talk is that? Unless you’ve got exceptional luck, those who grew up here can’t leave. Instead of talking nonsense, settle your tab at this bar,” the bartender said with an exasperated smile.

He seemed to have a liking for Jillian and always let her drink on credit.

Jillian grew up in the slums.

Not extraordinarily beautiful, she had a charm that never left her in want when it came to men.

Living a more leisurely and carefree life than Rosa, she spent her time without working much, yet managed to lead a reasonably prosperous life.

She always had several men accompanying her, ensuring she never had trouble with food or shelter.

If she wanted a new dress, there was a man who would buy it for her. If she lacked rent, she had several places secured where she could stay.

Most of the men she associated with were devoted to her.

However, her scope was limited to this district, and she couldn’t escape from this downtown area.

Living in the prime location of the capital city was nothing but a distant dream.

But that dream was about to come true soon.

Jillian was about to leave the residents of the downtown area and become a resident of the prime location in the capital city.

“Alright, I’ll cover it,” she said, passing several silver coins to the bartender.

“What’s going on, Jillian? Are you taking on some strange side jobs again? You seem to be quite well off,” the bartender said, surprised.

“Well, you know, you can’t make a living as an actress,” she replied.

“Don’t get involved in dangerous jobs, especially with the Master Marpin affair,” the bartender cautioned.

“Oh, it’s fine. I won’t be asked to do anything illegal. I can’t give you the details of the job, but I’ll be referred to jobs that require acting skills,” she reassured, smiling at the bartender’s concerned advice.

“By the way, I have some clients coming in later. I’ll take that table in the corner,” Jillian said, pointing to a dimly lit booth in the corner of the bar.

“Hey, is it not a suspicious deal? Anyone who sits at that table ends up in trouble. Be careful not to end up floating in that nearby gutter,” the bartender warned, pointing in the direction of the downtown’s drainage canal.

“What are you telling the customers? Honestly,” Jillian said with an exasperated expression.

“Enough; I’m bidding farewell to this run-down place. Tonight might be the last time we meet.”

In her mind, she stuck out her tongue.

“Hey, did you know? Noble girls are surprisingly easy targets.”

“Huh? What are you talking about? We don’t even have a chance to talk to those noble folks,” the bartender shrugged.

“That’s where you’re wrong. When you’re an actress like me, you get those opportunities,” she explained.

“Oh, really? Did you find yourself a good husband?” The bartender seemed to half-listen, considering Jillian’s words as drunken rambling.

“No way, it’s different. I’m talking about noble daughters, young ladies. They turn out to be quite the catch. They don’t know the ways of the world, so they easily throw away outrageous amounts of money. It’s a piece of cake. Damn it, if only there were more handsome faces like that, I could have squeezed out even more,” Jillian said.

In front of Rosa, Jillian pretended to doubt, but she actually knew that Rosa was an out-of-place noble girl in this downtown area. Probably Rosa Croitzer herself or someone related.

The smell, face, skin color, and atmosphere were completely different from the women in the downtown area. Fair skin, impeccably maintained even to the tips of the nails. So beautiful that it made one doubt if they were the same species.

Jillian soon moved to a table in the dark corner of the bar.

In the dimly lit interior, she sipped cheap fruit liquor, not getting too drunk. A woman with a tattered shawl covering her face and hair entered the bar.

Jillian grinned, raising her hand to invite the woman to the corner table.

“Looks like luck has finally come my way,” she said, realizing her good fortune of being able to eat and drink with other people’s money in this downtown without working much.


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