A roomy courtyard was where Shang Yan Fei set up the clan banquet.
It was an outdoor feast, because within the mountain, there was no need to worry about storm or rain.
The courtyard was neither luxurious nor elegant, it was even rather old.
There were a dozen or so tables arranged in a circle in the courtyard, which was already looking crowded from that.
There were some fruits and snacks arranged on the tables and also labels indicating which seat belonged to who.
Three seats were already occupied.
"Big brother, do you know why lord father called us this time?" Shang Chao Feng asked vaguely while popping a red fruit into his mouth.
The eldest Shang Qiu Niu was sitting upright, his eyes closed as he rested. Hearing the question, he opened his eyes by a sliver and spoke in a deep voice: "Lord father has recently come out of closed cultivation, he is holding this clan banquet because he misses us, what's so strange about it?"
"Big brother might be right, but when has lord father ever held a casual banquet? Look, don't you think there are a few more seats today?" From the side, Shang Pu Lao interjected.
Shang Chao Feng snickered, and Shang Qiu Niu closed his eyes again.
Shang Pu Lao's gaze flickered, he was in charge of the red light zone and managed brothels of all sizes; he would be the fastest person to get any news. In truth, he had already heard some talks, he was just about to continue when suddenly his ears twitched: "Someone has arrived."
All three's gazes turned towards the gate.
Creak, the gate was pushed open and three people walked in.
Wei Yang was at the front followed by Fang and Bai.
Fang and Bai had already been here before; it was that private residence they had been called to before.
"This private residence is the place where lord clan leader, when he was a young master, was suppressed by the alliance of other young masters. Lord clan leader took a step back and abandoned the position of young master of his own accord, becoming an ordinary clansman. During that fallen period, he stayed here. Later when he became the clan leader, he maintained this place as a reminder to himself and later generations. The clan banquets are always held here."
Wei Yang opened the gate and introduced.
Immediately after, he saw the three people in the courtyard: "Oh, three young masters are already here."
Shang Qiu Niu, Shang Chao Feng and Shang Pu Lao stood up one after another and cupped their hands to Wei Yang: "Our greetings, Elder Wei Yang."
Wei Yang was one of the five great generals under Shang Yan Fei and a major figure in Shang clan. Every single young master competing for the position of young clan leader has to go through his evaluation.
"My greetings to all three young masters, these two are esteemed guests invited by lord clan leader." Wei Yang also cupped his hands in greeting, his expression calm. He was an elder, his status was higher than the young master positions and as an important figure in the clan, he would not fawn on these young masters.
"Sirs, please take a seat." Wei Yang led Fang Yuan and Bai Ning Bing to their seats.
The three young masters looked at each other, they could see bewilderment, surprise and curiosity in each other's eyes.
This was a clan banquet, why would any strangers be invited?
Who are these two? Their seats are actually closer to lord father's than ours!
Wei Yang also sat down and continued on with a smile: "Let me make the introductions. This is Shang Qiu Niu, lord clan leader's eldest son, he manages the caretaking zone. This is clan leader's fourth son Shang Chao Feng, he manages all the Gu fighting arenas in the city. This is Shang Pu Lao, he manages all the brothels in red light zone."
Shang Qiu Niu was robust and his voice was deep, one could tell he was a calm person from one look. He was the oldest, already nearing thirty.
Shang Chao Feng had a messy hair and high nose bridge. He was giving off a wild aura.
Shang Pu Lao looked the most delicate; a thin physique, white face, beautiful eyes and a loose bearing showing that he loitered around with women all year round.
"Qiu Niu greets both esteemed guests." Shang Qiu Niu took the lead to cup his hands as a greeting.
Wei Yang didn't introduce Fang and Bai, the three were smart and naturally wouldn't stupidly pursue it.
"The three young masters are too polite. I am Hei Tu and this is my companion Bai Yun." Fang Yuan introduced.
The names were clearly fake.
This made the three young masters more confused about Fang and Bai's origins. They could only laugh and go through the motion.
As the time for evening banquet came closer, more young masters appeared.
Shang Pi Xiu who managed rock gambling dens; Shang Suan Ni who managed restaurants and silk stores; Shang Fu Xi who managed auctions; Shang Bi Xi who managed substitute refinement zone; and Shang Ya Zi who Fang Yuan was already familiar with.
Wei Yang introduced them to Fang and Bai; all these young masters more or less revealed strange looks as they saw Fang and Bai.
They sat down as talks commenced with the increased number of people, the small courtyard gradually became lively.
Just before the banquet started, the gate suddenly opened and a young master hurriedly rushed in.
He was tall and thin, thick eyebrows and fierce gaze; he was young master Shang Bi An who was in charge of Shang clan city's city guards.
The city guards handled all sorts of disputes and contradictions, maintaining the law and order in the city, so it was the busiest.
After greeting Fang and Bai, Shang Bi An was just sitting down, when a blood colored flame flickered on the main seat as Shang Yan Fei appeared.
Shang Yan Fei was wearing a white robe with gold inlaid cuffs. Scarlet hair flew around wildly before resting on his waist; combined with his extremely handsome face, it formed into an aura and charisma that was unique to him.
"Your children greet lord father." The many young masters stood up one after another before half kneeling down on the ground and greeting Shang Yan Fei unitedly.
"Lord clan leader." Wei Yang stood up.
At the same time, Fang and Bai also stood up to greet him.
"Take your seats." Shang Yan Fei laid back against the wide backed chair and casually waved his hand.
Immediately, seven colored beautiful lights sprinkled down like rain.
The beautiful lights landed on the tables and turned into all kinds of fine dishes, their fragrance immediately spreading in the small courtyard.
Fang Yuan instantly recognized the Gu as gourmet food box Gu.
It was a rank five Gu, especially used to store delicacies and maintain their state.
In his previous life, Fang Yuan tried hard to make a living in the caravan, he had no one to rely on after the destruction of Gu Yue clan.
The sudden emergence of an alliance of demonic Gu Masters on Yi Tian mountain overstepped the bottomline of the righteous paths.
All great clans formed an alliance and besieged Yi Tian mountain.
One of the heads of the allied forces, Shang Yan Fei used this gourmet food box Gu to provide for the armies.
With just a wave of his sleeve, tens of thousands of soldiers were provided with gourmet food, becoming an enormous help in raising their morale.
Since then, gourmet food box Gu became a symbol of Shang Yan Fei and was a conversation topic for many people.
At that time, Fang Yuan was able to become a small boss of the lowest level with his advantages as a transmigrator; he joined a sub-branch of a caravan which was in charge of transporting supplies to the righteous path allied forces.
He had personally be able to see the grandeur of Shang Yan Fei using gourmet food box Gu. Dazzling seven colored lights filled the sky and shone down upon the world; it was a magnificent and grand atmosphere.
"Never expected that I would see this gourmet food box Gu years in advance and also become an esteemed guest of Shang clan!" Fang Yuan heaved a sigh inwardly.
There was clear difference between his previous life and this life, this was the enormous advantage of rebirth.
And this advantage was from Spring Autumn Cicada which was the accumulation and accomplishment of his previous life's struggles.
Shang Yan Fei spread the dishes and immediately addressed his sons: "We have two esteemed guests with us today, you all need to toast them. Qiu Niu, you are the eldest, set an example."
With Shang Yan Fei personally telling them, Shang clan young masters did not dare to act slowly even though they were bewildered.
Shang Qiu Niu immediately stood up and raised a wine glass, saying with his deep voice: "Qiu Niu toasts the two esteemed guests."
With that, he swigged down the glass of wine.
Fang Yuan also drank down a glass of wine while Bai Ning Bing still drank water.
Qiu Niu was the oldest among these young masters; he was almost thirty but his appearance looked quite mature as if he was forty.
By contrast, his father Shang Yan Fei looked like he was a youth in his twenties. The contrast between father and son was quite an interesting sight.
"I had a good talk with the two esteemed guests before. Esteemed guests, if you have time later, you could come to my zone to have fun, Gu battles are truly interesting." Shang Chao Feng also stood up.
Fang Yuan's lips curled up into a smile, he knew quite a bit about Shang Chao Feng though this was the first time they met.
This man was very aggressive about winning and was ruthless and cunning. In Fang Yuan's previous life, at one time, he had been the biggest hindrance to Shang Xin Ci's position as Shang clan young master.
"Fourth brother's Gu battles are too bloody, the best is still the delight of beauties singing and dancing for you." Shang Pu Lao retorted Shang Chao Feng before proposing a toast to Fang and Bai, his beautiful eyes flashing with light, "I wish to talk about romance and love with the two esteemed guests."
"If we have time, definitely." Fang Yuan said with a smile and chugged down the wine.
This banquet looked like those for celebrities in his eyes.
Most of these Shang clan young masters would have their own story that would spread throughout the southern border in future.
Shang Yan Fei had many children but these people here were able to distinguish themselves in such an intense competition, clearly showing their abilities that surpassed others. One could call them a giant among men or unpolished jade stones.
Moreover, they each had their own ways and styles of doing things; right now as they converged together in the same place, it was like a pearl shining off with light and darkness.
For the time being, there was not much to say about eldest son Shang Qiu Niu, second son Shang Ya Zi, fourth son Shang Chao Feng and eight son Shang Pu Lao.
Ninth son Shang Suan Ni had a lion-like mouth and broad nose. He seemed to be using some type of Gu, as every time he breathed, light yellow smoke came out from his nose and curled around him.
Tenth son Shang Bi Xi was short and stout, looked honest and did not seem to have anything remarkable about him. But Fang Yuan knew Shang Bi Xi was hiding enormous strength that was higher than his by several times.
Twelfth son Shang Bi An would have a marriage alliance with Tie Clan, and come to become southern border's second divine detective after Tie Xue Leng.
Thirteenth son Shang Fu Xi was very intelligent, his advice when the righteous path allied forces attacked Yi Tian mountain caused huge damage to demonic Gu Masters time and again.
And the twenty-first son Shang Pi Xiu, he was the youngest and was a late bloomer. Many years later, when Shang clan fell into ruins, he threw himself into the demonic path and became a devil whose evil reputation spread far and wide over the southern border.
"Father, I am sorry I am late." As the toasts continued, the courtyard gate was opened and a girl walked in.
She was Shang Chi Wen, sixteenth daughter of Shang Yan Fei and held control over battle arenas. She had a fair face and her two eyes shone with a smart gaze. She was a lively and charming person.
After everyone finished toasting the wine, Shang Yan Fei raised his wine cup and faced Fang and Bai: "Thank you for protecting Xin Ci all the way, that was the only reason I could gain a new daughter."
Once he said so, everyone present was stunned.