Dr. Shen's House of Healing
It had been a few days since the now ambassador of Tian had visited Dr. Shen's House of Healing. In the days since, the House of Healing had been running a massive advertisement campaign for the House of Healing's opium addiction rehabilitation program. As drug use in the city was rampant among both the rich and the poor, such a service could help set people back on track with their lives. They had already gotten several customers. For well-connected nobles, they treated them in earnest, earning the House of Healing a steady profit, as such rehabilitation would require many repeat visits. This also boosted the reputation and perceived efficacy of the House of Healing's rehabilitation program, thus establishing trust and bringing in more customers. For the less fortunate and easily forgotten, they were 'disappeared'. For those in between, opium was prescribed to wean them off the substance, but they were given a special, far more potent breed of the drug. This was so their addiction would worsen, until they ruined their lives and severed their connections to others. Once vulnerable, they could be 'disappeared'. Certain samples were also distributed among various street gangs in an attempt to incite gang wars and increased drug use. The destabilization of poor neighborhoods would mostly go unnoticed, while pushing the residents to desperation, thus getting themselves further involved in gang violence and drug use. In this way, entire communities could be 'disappeared', and the explanation that the authorities would arrive at would be that they succumbed to gang wars. Granted, this was the long term plan, and some of this had yet to take place, but undisturbed, it would continue smoothly, thanks in part to the negligence of the nobles and the well-to-do, and plenty of live bodies would be provided for the Ambassador's needs. Of course, Dr. Shen had had to merge into the building to expand its underground storage capacity to accommodate the sudden influx of people.
Overall, plans were going smoothly and business was good, LinMu reflected. But something still ate at the back of his mind. He was sure that at some point, worshipers of the Old Gods were sure to pay him a visit, probably to assign him some task involving some slaves; victims of the Iron Decree, and nobles with knowledge of the Old Gods. He still found the idea distasteful; working with ancient, outdated religions. 'Let sleeping gods lie', was Dr. Shen's motto concerning religion; that and 'all you need is love'. He decided that instead of sitting inside and of worrying about something he might never have to see or experience, he should take his mind off things and take a walk, and absorb the chaotic beauty of the city of Venedig. Perhaps buy a snack from a street vendor. Getting up, he headed out into the bright light of the bustling city.