Chapter 6: Collecting Interest
Long Chen turned to look at the people entering and his eyes turned cold. A group of people were hovering around a certain fellow like stars around the moon, grovelling.
He seemed to be carved out of jade and appeared extremely handsome. He was none other than the person who had beaten Long Chen on the martial arena to the point where he had almost died, Man Huanghou's direct descendant Zhou Yaoyang.
Zhou Yaoyang was the noble heir of Man Huanghou, and his cultivation base was at the peak amongst his peers. Therefore amongst his fellow noble heirs his popularity was very high.
Just as Zhou Yaoyang entered he saw Long Chen's group, and slightly smiling he walked over. Looking at Long Chen he said, "Many apologies for what happened last time. I didn't expect that my one blow would cause you to not even be able to recognize your own mother."
Although his mouth spoke words of regret, his face didn't have even the slightest trace of apology. His words were filled with disdain, just like he was a king far above others, looking down on Long Chen.
"Don't worry about it, very soon I'll beat you to the point where you don't even recognize your own grandmother." Long Chen indifferently smiled, but inside he was secretly furious.
When he had awoken that day only his mother and that old alchemist had been there. Therefore this news must have been transmitted by that old stick.
Zhou Yaoyang's one sentence was equivalent to him telling Long Chen that that old man had been one of his people. And furthermore Long Chen's injury that day might have been extremely frightening but in reality it wasn't actually a life-threatening injury; even the injury on the back of his head had only appeared bad due to the amount of blood, but it was not actually too severe.
Therefore there had basically been no point in using an expensive medicinal pill in order to treat it. The old man had clearly been trying to frighten his mother and make sure that he could suck up all of his mother's savings.
Something like this basically had no impact on himself, but instead weakened the Long family's resources. With their current living situation it was like adding hail onto snow. To think there was actually such a hidden plot behind his back….
"Long Chen are you looking to die? I think that you seem to have forgotten the pain now that your wounds have healed. Don't tell me you want to once again be beaten half to death by brother Yaoyang?"
"That's right, a trash who's incapable of cultivating actually dares to open his mouth viciously, obviously he's looking to die."
"What an idiot. Letting such an idiot count as a noble heir like us is just an insult to us."
Zhou Yaoyang didn't even need to speak before the people beside him began cursing Long Chen, their saliva spraying wildly.
"Long Chen, you might be a noble heir like me, but one of us is in the heavens while one of us is on the ground. You are just a small ant, and all you can do is stare up at me.
Therefore even if I am bullying you, all you can do is suffer in silence. Otherwise the consequences will be just like last time, and you will end up being beaten into a dead dog." Zhou Yaoyang said, lifting one his finger to point at Long Chen's nose.
Long Chen indifferent smiled, and suddenly he extended his hand, and before anyone reacted he tightly clenched on to Zhou Yaoyang's extended finger, and using a slight amount of force a snapping noise rang out.
Zhou Yaoyang emitted a miserable cry as the the pain of his snapped finger shook his whole body. His Ten Finger One Heart technique was easily broken and snapped by Long Chen, forcing his body down.
Even though he was a strong person at the Seventh Heavenstage of Qi Condensation, as long as a person hadn't stepped into the Blood Condensation stage they would only be slightly stronger than ordinary people.
In addition, when he was taken by surprise he didn't even have the time to move his Qi to defend himself, so he was basically no different than an ordinary person.
Long Chen condescendingly looked down on Zhou Yaoyang whose face was contorted in pain, and with a questioningly tone he asked, "You think you're above others? Others are nothing to you? Are you sure you're not talking about yourself?"
The sudden unexpected turn of events shocked everyone, and Zhou Yaoyang was in such pain that he was unable to reply. Only then did the others react and throw themselves at Long Chen.
"Bastard, hurry up and release brother Yaoyang!"
"Whoever dares come over will be beat to death by me."
When the people beside Zhou Yaoyang saw that Long Chen had dared attacked him they all shouted and swarmed around him. Just as they were about to make a move on him, a large figure suddenly appeared beside Long Chen and furiously bellowed at the others with a roar that was like thunder, shaking their eardrums.
Long Chen smiled when he saw that it was. Who else could it be but Shi Feng?
The noble heirs who were about to charge forward all stopped when they saw it was Shi Feng.
Shi Feng was someone who was proud and aloof, and he didn't like being pulling into any certain social group. However his cultivation base was top tier within the noble heirs, and adding on his large and superior stature he managed to intimate everyone back.
For a moment everyone descended into silence, and within the entire literature hall the only sound that could be heard were the pained moans of Zhou Yaoyang.
"What are you guys doing?!"
Suddenly an angry rebuke came over from the side and an old man walked over. Everyone's expression became much more timid and respectful when they saw this old man.
This old man was one of the lecturers of the literature hall. He was a Confucian scholar, and it was known that he was an honest and strict person, a dignified man who spoke few words.
"Fighting within the literature hall is punishable by one month's custody. Do you guys want to try it out?" The old man coldly snorted.
Long Chen released Zhou Yaoyang's finger which had already crushed and bent. Hurriedly turning towards the old man he smiled, "Teacher, you've misunderstood. Just now we weren't fighting, we were just doing a test."
"Oh? A test hmm? What kind of test?" The old man obviously wasn't so easily hoodwinked and he coldly questioned Long Chen.
"We were testing how long the strength of one finger could hold out against the attack of five fingers.
Through this test we reached the conclusion that the power of cooperation is something that cannot be stopped.
No matter how strong a finger is, it is still isolated. Its power will weaken from time to time, and only by relying on a partner can power be released in a steady flow, making it stronger and enduring.
This time's test allowed both Zhou Yaoyang and I to obtain an understanding of how to properly use power, and it will have an extremely large benefit towards our future cultivation. Brother Zhou, what do you think about these benefits, hmm?" Long Chen summarized, as he stared with a hidden meaning towards Zhou Yaoyang.
Zhou Yaoyang was angered to the point of nearly passing out, but this grievance could only be swallowed by him, or if he denied it he would be sent into custody with Long Chen. Even a noble heir couldn't break the literature hall's rules.
"Yes, that's right."
Zhou Yaoyang did his best to keep his voice calm, but the pain was causing even his voice to sound rough like the sound of iron weapons scraping against each other.
The old man looked at Long Chen and a trace of ridicule flashed within his eyes, but he still nodded and said, "Since it was like this, this old man won't blame the two of you. But remember, in the future you cannot make a ruckus in here."
Everyone secretly sighed that Long Chen had good luck when they heard this. The old man clearly knew that Long Chen was just making up nonsense but he still let them all go.
Zhou Yaoyang bit his teeth, and using a voice that only the two of them could hear he called out to Long Chen.
Long Chen's hand attack had been extremely vicious; not only did it break his finger, but in addition he had used some kind of unknown method in order to turn the meridians within his finger into mush. Otherwise Zhou Yaoyang would not be in such intense pain and end up as such a sorry figure without the slightest strength to fight back.
"Brother Zhou, feel free to come find me again to do some tests."
Today is just a small payment on the interest I owe to this bastard. The worst is yet to come… but on the outside Long Chen just courteously smiled.
Over two hundreds noble heirs calmly and quietly took their seats. The old man nodded his head in satisfaction and started lecturing. But his material was vague and incomprehensible to them, and basically all of it fell on deaf ears. It caused everyone to become drowsy, but no one actually dared to sleep.
Although that old man didn't have the slightest cultivation base, but within the entire Imperial College Palace he had the final say in everything; if anyone angered him they would immediately be kicked out and could just forget about any intentions they had of entering the martial arts depository in the afternoon.
"This can be compared to do eggs; one has gone bad and one is still good. But if you want to eat the good egg you have to eat the bad egg first."
The old man continued to talk about all sorts of things… history, classical works, how to rule a flourishing nation, agricultural knowledge… even Long Chen almost dozed off.
However people like the fatty actually listened very attentively. They couldn't cultivate, so they had to rely on an education for the future, hopefully obtaining some work with the government.
Under this slow torment the time slowly passed until noon. After eating lunch everyone swarmed towards the Battle Skill Pavilion.
Even the people who had no way of cultivating also followed. Within the Battle Skill Pavilion were countless Battle Skills and cultivation techniques, and going through them might offer them a lucky encounter.
The Battle Skill Pavilion had three floors, but only the bottom layer was opened to all the noble heirs.
Even though it was just one floor there were still seventeen bookshelves completely packed with all kinds of Battle Skills and cultivation techniques. It was a brilliant sight that dazzled people.
"Big brother Yaoyang, I already have a life and death battle agreement with Long Chen. This time I'll definitely kill him to help take revenge for you." Li Hao respectfully said. Who knew when but Li Hao had at some previous time stealthily ran over beside Zhou Yaoyang.
At this point Zhou Yaoyang had already used his energy in order to suppress the pain in his finger, but the important thing was that the meridians had been fried and so he had to find an alchemist to help him treat it.
"It's still not the right time to kill him, otherwise I would have killed him last time." Zhou Yaoyang shook his head. Suddenly he asked, "That's right, how did you end up getting beat by him last time?"
"Ai, actually it was just me being careless, and Long Chen happened to catch that opportunity. The result really infuriated me, to think that a trash could actually beat me one time." Li Hao answered with endless regret.
His one loss from that time caused his reputation to plummet, and the people whispering and gossiping about him behind his back drove him crazy with anger. He believed that last time was simply a small moment of carelessness and so this time he definitely had quite a bit of killing intent towards him.
"Long Chen cannot be permitted to die, at least not for now. Don't mess this up." Zhou Yaoyang worried that Li Hao hadn't understood so he purposely repeated himself.
"Then what should I do? Just let him off like this?" Li Hao somewhat unwillingly asked.
Zhou Yaoyang looked at his twisted broken finger, and grinding his teeth in anger he said, "Although you can't kill him, but if you wanted to take back a couple things on his body that would be fine."
When Li Hao heard this his eyes brightened with excitement, "Excellent! This time I'll take his balls, oh and I think I'll also take one his eyes too. Tch, seeing the expression in his eyes really pisses me off."
Zhou Yaoyang and Li Hao grinned, but they didn't notice that Long Chen who was faking interest in the manuals also smiled. However his smile was much colder compared to theirs, like a leopard staring at two bleating sheep.
From Long Chen's current position he was perfectly placed so that he could use his spiritual energy to investigate what the two of them were talking about. Although he couldn't hear what they were saying clearly, but looking at their expression he could still infer most of it.
Observing the two of them start acting like nothing had happened and begin browsing the ancient manuals on the bookshelf, Long Chen was also disinclined to go deal with them. Instead he switched to looking for his actual objective.
Within his memories, other than the Nine Star Hegemon Body Arts the rest was all knowledge on refining pills. Right now he absolutely needed to obtain a Battle Skill.
Long Chen finally settled on a Battle Skill and was just about to reach out his hand to take it when suddenly a dark faced fellow grabbed onto it before him.
"I'm sorry, this book has taken my fancy."
That person didn't even look at Long Chen, and acting like no one was beside him he started browsing the tome.
Long Chen frowned slightly. This was very obviously done on purpose, but Long Chen didn't take action and instead switched to a different bookcase.
Just as he saw a palm Battle Skill and reached out the dark faced fellow who had long since been waiting to the side once again grabbed it.
"I'm sorry, this…."
A ruthless slap on the face landed on that dark face, interrupting his words and sending him flying.