Little did he know that Xiong Xiao was now fearful of the consequences and the person he was currently afraid of was Yang Qing, the man who now governed two Manors and held a position of great power.
As one of his oldest subordinates, it was unlikely that Xiong Xiao didn’t know how difficult it was to deal with Yang Qing. He’d gone from a nobody to a Cave Master, eventually becoming a Manor Head who held control over two Manors. Everyone had witnessed Yang Qing’s methods.
Now, Xiong Xiao was beginning to feel afraid. It wasn’t as if he didn’t understand why Yang Qing had taken away one of his mountains. He had done it to discipline Xiong Xiao, and to make it clear that he knew the true meaning between his meeting with the Hall Master.
It was evident that Yang Qing was issuing him a warning that he could easily take back what was given, so he’d better be on his best behavior. Now wasn’t the time for him to jump ship yet, otherwise he would have to face the consequences!
Deep down, Xiong Xiao understood this all too well. Although the Hall Master had meant what he said, Xiong Xiao still lacked the qualifications to govern a Manor. If a serious incident were to happen between him and Yang Qing, it was obvious who the Hall Master would favor between them. It certainly wouldn’t be Xiong Xiao, and he would be immediately cast off.
This was similar to that time when Yang Qing had sided with him when he’d gotten into an argument with Miao Yi.
If he dared to brazenly strike out after being reminded, Xiong Xiao was afraid Yang Qing’s opinion towards him would change.
Honestly speaking, he was still very apprehensive of causing Yang Qing any vexation. He knew quite well that Yang Qing could keep him on tenterhooks to his dying day. Zhang Decheng had served as a warning to him.
There was no need to be like this—worried and at the edge of his rope—all for the sake of those three prisoners of war.
After he gestured with his hand to drive the Changfeng Cave Master back to his own territory, Xiong Xiao remained silent for awhile. He slowly drew in a breath of air, before taking out a jade archive and wrote an explanation for everything in the form of a report. Passing it to Dong Xue, he said, "Summon the spiritual eagle. Send this to Ever Peace Manor!"
Dong Xue responded by taking the item, soon leaving in quick steps.
Xiong Xiao then sat back on his seat. He tilted his head to gaze at Chun Xue who had her head lowered. He then gently patted his thigh.
Taking the hint, Chun Xue obediently went over and sat down on his lap.
Caressing her soft waist, Xiong Xiao took pleasure in the soft and warm flesh of her jade-like body, sighing, "I know what’s on your mind. When have I not desired to kill that piece of scum? But now the situation is a bit different. For the time being, we must endure. The moment the right opportunity presents itself, I will pull out his tendons and rip his bones away to dispel the hatred in my heart!"
"Everything will depend on the Mountain Chieftain’s arrangements!" Chun Xue obediently replied as she nestled against him in his arms, slowly offering her own tenderness...
Within the Central Lake Pavilion at Ever Peace Manor, where a beautiful lake and vast mountain landscapes could be found, Yang Qing of two Manors was personally entertaining guests at a banquet.
Those attending were the Sword Deviate Sect’s Elder Hu Cunxin, the Jade Lady Sect’s Elder Lu Yuhua, as well as the School of Imperial Beasts’ Elder Cheng Shengtang.
These three sects were the three largest sects in the realm of the Fifth Earthly Branch domain. Every single one of them possessed an extraordinary strength. And the three elders before him had attained the cultivation of the Red Lotus realm. Among them, the strength of the Sword Deviate Sect was the most valiant—just their disciples alone were over ten thousand in number.
The three esteemed guests were all invited by Yang Qing, for no other reason than that there were still eight hundred vacancies under him. He would require men from these three sects to fill the seats.
Actually, prior to when Yang Qing was still the Mountain Chieftain of Mount Shaotai, he had already made the move to contact them. But to no avail, as their high profile statuses attracted greater scrutiny and so they were afraid to participate in such matters, fearing they would be targeted by the Realm Beyond Heaven. They had no choice but to take great care in their actions. Thus, with no further available options, Yang Qing had to form an alliance with the School of Blue Jade and was forced to be under their control.
Now things had changed. Yang Qing governed two Manors and was in a position of power. No one would voice out any objections if he were to directly replenish the troops under him. This was permitted by the rules of the game.
The three sects gave thought to their disciples so they naturally agreed without delay, each of them sending out their respective Elders of the Red Lotus realm to attend the banquet.
Truthfully, nobody was willing to give up their disciples to be used by others. But there were no other options available. The world’s incense and power of will were dominated by the Six Sages. If they didn’t enter into the game which the Six Sages had set up, none of them would be able to get their profits.
All sects were actually well aware of the tricks the Six Sages had up their sleeves. Their purpose was nothing more than to constantly consume the strength of each sect, and the replenished troops they received were used to fight and seize other territories for the sake of profits. Once the troops were consumed, they would again find another sect to replenish their troops from. Using such a cycle to consume the cultivators in the world, it was simply to prevent from challenging the Six Sages’ positions and to allow the game to carry on. Ultimately, the true reapers of benefits would always be the Six Sages.
However, they were seriously out of options. Without the help of the Orbs of Will, they were incapable of raising their cultivation bases quickly. There were also numerous disciples under them who wanted to stand out among their peers. The upper echelons of the sect would not be able to suppress them any longer, and for those disciples with no chance to excel, why would they listen to them? Thus, each sect could only help them to find a way out.
Of course, such methods weren’t entirely disadvantageous to the upper echelons of the sects. The sects had taken great pains to cultivate the disciples, so they would need to reciprocate the favor as well. For instance, they would need to give up some of the Orbs of Will they received annually to their sect.
With this method, the disciples would be content and the upper echelons of the sect would be satisfied as well.
Should the disciples under the sect succeed, it also acted as a form of protection to the sect. For example, Sword Deviate Sect had a disciple who became a Hall Master, and the Jade Lady Sect as well as the School of Imperial Beasts each had a disciple who assumed the position of a Manor Head.
But Yang Qing had learned his lesson from the School of Blue Jade. He would no longer again place all his eggs inside one basket, so he invited representatives from three sects to meet him.
The eight hundred seats would be divided by the three sects, so the three Elders were in low spirits as they each wanted to hog everything to themselves. Yet they were afraid to do anything to Yang Qing, who had all Six Sages acting as his benefactors. In comparison, the trio’s own cultivation at Red Lotus realm seemed unimportant, and they found themselves having to sit beneath Yang Qing, occupying the seats on his left and right, as they patiently exchanged small talk. They had to put on a smiling front and didn’t dare to give him attitude. This was defined as having status.
Qing Mei and Qing Ju constantly poured wine for the trio behind Yang Qing.
At last, they came to a decision. Sword Deviate Sect would provide three hundred men while Jade Lady Sect and the School of Imperial Beasts would each provide two hundred and fifty men.
The three great sects signed the Commandment of Conformity with Yang Qing, guaranteeing to Yang Qing that there were no issues in the men they supplied. Should there be any problems, the three great sects would bear responsibility.
Once the guests and host enjoyed themselves to the fullest, Yang Qing personally escorted the three Elders out of Central Lake Pavilion. He cupped his hands to bid goodbye over the pontoon bridge, his eyes trailing after the three Elders as they speedily returned to their respective sects, each of them cutting through the sky.
He had just sent off the three great sects’ Elders, when a spiritual eagle swept down from the sky. It perched on the railing by the lake and cried out.
Qing Ju stepped forth to retrieve the jade archive from the tube at its leg, revealing an odd expression as she examined its contents. She passed the jade archive to Yang Qing. "It’s a report from Mountain Chieftain Xiong."
"Xiong Xiao?" Yang Qing’s gaze instantly shifted. After receiving the jade archive and examining the contents, he thought it was relating to some matter of importance. Yet it was just those two brats at it again. He coldly scoffed, "I fear that Xiong Xiao’s accusation is correct. There’s a high chance that this was done by that brat. He really is a man unwilling to suffer losses. Xiong Xiao sent out his masked men to try to kill him before. This time, Miao Yi has sent out masked men to pay him back."
As he said that, he casually passed the jade archive to Qing Mei for her to read. There were some matters that needed to be made known to his two handmaidens. By doing so, they would be kept informed and able to assist him in settling such matters if he weren’t available.
Therefore, such personal handmaidens weren’t just pretty faces who did menial chores. They were the most trusted of his trusted aides.
After reading through, Qing Mei shook her head and said, "This is just a one-sided statement from Xiong Xiao. There is no proof that pinpoints such a thing was done by Miao Yi. How are you going to deal with this?"
"What else can I do? That brat has made it clear he will humiliate Xiong Xiao. Xiong Xiao stubbornly denied his guilt last time, and now it seems that Miao Yi might do the same. How could Xiong Xiao himself not know? That brat Miao Yi is just a measly Cave Master and he persists in stirring up trouble. If I made him a Mountain Chieftain, what would become of him? Why did I ever accept such a troublesome kid? And now he’s learned how to use the rules of the game to play the rascal." Yang Qing laughed. Lifting his hand, he added, "Come up with some pretense and give an explanation to Xiong Xiao. Then send a message to Qin Weiwei and request her to investigate."
Very soon, a spiritual eagle took to the sky, flying towards Mount Calming Sea at breakneck speed…
Upon receiving the message, Qin Weiwei was slightly at a loss for words. The news had originally been leaked through her. She knew very well what was going on, except that she never expected that the great Cave Master Miao would move so fast. It had only been a day and even the Manor Head had caught wind of it already.
Lu Liu cried out in surprise, "Cave Master Miao is really fast to act on such matters! Doesn’t he need to make preparations beforehand?"
Even Hong Mian was slightly dubious as she asked, "Is it possible that someone else has done it and purposely pinned the blame on Cave Master Miao instead?"
Little did she imagine that after she had divulged the news and left, Miao Yi had immediately sent out his men to do the deed. Not even a bit of time was wasted.
"I’ll go take a look." Qin Weiwei made a decision.
"Is there a need for you to go personally?" advised Lu Liu. "It’s fine if me or my sister headed over instead."
"The Manor Head asked us to investigate. We have to at least look like we followed orders." Qin Weiwei denied the proposition.
Soon after, Qin Weiwei brought along Hong Mian to personally lead five soldiers out of Mount Calming Sea, charging to East Arrival Cave posthaste...
Once they arrived at East Arrival Cave, they didn’t even need to investigate since both Qin Weiwei and Hong Mian already knew what was going on. This was because East Arrival Cave was currently undergoing a large scale reconstruction.
Out of the three thousand conscripted from East Arrival City, around five hundred manual workers had already arrived, and were frantically working hard.
The great Cave Master Miao was wealthy. He could afford to double the wages for all ten thousand manual workers.
The piles of debris and remains were currently being cleared. The dozen corpses hanging from the destroyed beams were also gone from sight. The revival of East Arrival Cave was just around the corner.
The great Cave Master Miao had sworn not to rebuild East Arrival Cave until he had gotten his revenge. When he got wind of news that the Mountain Chieftain had personally come to his abode, he had already commanded his subordinates, quickly rushing over to welcome the Mountain Chieftain.
Although he didn’t get along with the Mountain Chieftain, the expected customs still needed to be carried out. He wasn’t a three year old kid who couldn’t even grasp this principle. He wouldn’t behave that excessively yet.
Qin Weiwei’s eyes flickered when Miao Yi came before her to greet her. She flung her white skirt and dismounted her dragon steed, walking towards the direction of the grand hall. As she did so, she asked, "Are you rebuilding East Arrival Cave?"
Falling behind by a step whilst accompanying her at her side, Miao Yi laughed, "Mountain Chieftain is brilliant! Yes, it wouldn’t be a probable solution to have everyone living in a shack for a long time."
Walking next to Qin Weiwei’s other side, Hong Mian couldn’t resist the urge to stifle a laugh, "Cave Master Miao, didn’t you say that the weather was too cold to carry out construction last time? What made you change your mind this quick?"
"Did I say that before? Oh! I recall now!" Miao Yi calmly smiled at her. He added, "It was because I have been enlightened by Elder Auntie’s words which led me to change my mind."
Hong Mian appeared stunned. "My words? I don’t think I have said anything."
Miao Yi cupped his hands. "Elder Auntie mentioned it before so I considered it seriously for some time. In the end I realized that even though it wasn’t convenient for us to carry out construction in this cold weather, it was still possible to clean it up in advance. Once spring arrives, we will immediately begin the full operations."
Qin Weiwei and Hong Mian subconsciously turned to look at him, their eyes clouded with deep emotion. They realized that this bastard didn’t even need to plan out a script for his lies.
Suddenly, Hong Mian was hit with a pang of worry deep down. If the Mountain Chieftain seriously fell for a man who could easily lie like this, she was unsure whether it would be a good or a bad thing. Why did she feel so worried?
Miao Yi felt thoroughly disconcerted from their sudden scrutiny. He coughed wryly, changing the topic as he asked, "After coming all this way, what does the Mountain Chieftain require of me?"