Even a commoner would fly into a rage after being spoken to like that, let alone the most powerful gang in the city. Underground factions often conducted their businesses without any concern for the law. Compared to the legitimate factions, they were more likely to go to extreme lengths to achieve their goals. Establishing a good public image was not one of their concerns. When it came to solving issues, almost anything was permitted. Legality wasn't an issue and neither was public perception.
Long Xiaoxuan's words caused a huge uproar within the Heavensfall Society. Armed fighters began to appear in droves.
"Which bastard dares raise a huge fuss on our doorstep?!" The Society was incredibly offended after realized a kid that had barely just weaned had insulted them. They were the undisputed tyrants of Frostmoon City. Not many dared cause strife in front of them. However, that wasn't the case today. This was the height of capital offense!
Long Xiaoxuan's expression sank when he heard the word 'bastard'. He was pure-blooded true dragon! His blood didn't contain even the tiniest bit of impurity! He had an extreme distaste of the word. A cold glimmer appeared in his eyes as he pounced at the man who'd spoken.
Bam! Bam! Bam! Long Xiaoxuan gifted him eight consecutive slaps on both sides of his cheeks. The man was beaten into a swollen pig before he could even scream in agony.
"Y-you! How dare you beat our men in front of our gates?" The Society members were dumbfounded.
Jiang Chen made his way to the front. "Get me the person in charge," he commanded nonchalantly. Long Xiaoxuan was attracting a lot of hostility. Jiang Chen didn't stop the dragon, but this didn't mean he was fine with a complete fall out with the society.
Long Xiaoxuan was dejected. "I've yet to finish taking out my anger!"
"Brother Long, it's better to practice some restraint as we're here for business. We'll need you at your full strength if things turn sour. You should rest for now."
The Heavensfall Society guards realized that these two young men were of no ordinary background when they heard the relaxed banter. One of them had already left to notify a supervisor. Before long, an even larger group appeared from the base.
An old man with yellow eyebrows was walking at the very front of the group. He seemed extremely furious and was emanating incredible amounts of murderous aura. He was very offended to hear that his man had been beaten up. There were a few others behind him that bore a great amount of presence. They were obviously the senior executives of the Society. The old man stepped to the front and sized up Jiang Chen and Long Xiaoxuan with a ferocious glare.
"You did this?" he asked coldly while staring at them both.
Jiang Chen responded blandly. "And who are you?"
"Hmph! How dare you cause trouble within our grounds when you don't even know who our great elder is? You must be tired of living!"
"That's right! How dare you beat up our men? Elder Ke, you need only say the word and we'll immediately slaughter them!"
The yellow-browed elder made a dismissive gesture to shut them up.
"Young men, name yourselves so that we may know if we can afford to offend you." Elder Ke's tone was sinister. They were obviously ready to resort to violence if they were any further offended.
"Elder Ke, my brother over there may have offended you, but the Heavensfall Society isn't without fault either. We're here to talk business. Elder Ke, would you rather make money or enemies? Is there a need to continue meaningless fights?"
"Hah! What business?" Elder Ke guffawed with angry laughter. "The Heavensfall Society has done business with plenty of people, but this is the first time we've ever seen someone with a gall big enough to beat up our member within our doorstep! Don't try to change the topic! What business is there to speak of when this matter is yet settled?"
"What's done is done. What else do you want?" Long Xiaoxuan shrugged in a dismissive manner while smiling at Elder Ke mockingly. This enraged the gang even further.
Elder Ke laughed coldly. "Truly, you are a hero amongst youth. Color me impressed. If this is how you want to do it, then we shall return your hostility in kind."
Jiang Chen frowned. "Elder Ke, do you really wish to escalate this matter?"
"Brat, even a thousand tongues will not save you from this. I'll skin you alive today!" Elder Ke was a man who meant his words.
The senior executives behind him immediately surrounded Jiang Chen and Long Xiaoxuan. Almost everyone present had made a move. Their overall cultivation level wasn't half bad. The weakest among them was at the ninth level sage realm. Many were half step emperors, but there were also a few initial level emperors. Elder Ke however, was a high level emperor.
This wasn't the complete roster of the gang's senior executives as their gang leaders had yet to appear. They were only an underground gang, but their strength was already enough to rival many great sects. Long Xiaoxuan didn't panic. Instead, he was elated when he saw what was happening. He was roaring for a fight!
"Brother Long, do you really yearn for a fight that much?" Jiang Chen was speechless.
Long Xiaoxuan chuckled light-heartedly. "It's none of your business. You should look to yourself before you talk about others."
Emperor Peerless had been watching from afar, so he knew that he could no longer remain a bystander. He knew that nobody would be a threat to Jiang Chen and Long Xiaoxuan as long as Elder Ke was restrained. Society members had surrounded them, and Elder Ke was showing signs of joining in. With a flicker of his form, he stared down at Elder Ke.
"They may fight, but you must remain where you are." The emperor didn't stop them as he was rather admiring of Long Xiaoxuan's style.
It was obvious that this was extortion. The gang might not even hand over the prisoner after receiving the ransom. If that was the case, they might as well talk with their fists. If Jiang Chen won the fight, they might even get to take the prisoner away without spending a single spirit stone.
Elder Ke had only just realized that Emperor Peerless was one of Jiang Chen's accomplices. He was incredibly surprised when he looked at the direction where the emperor came from. It was Liu Zhen! The elder had a rough impression of who the short man was, whereas, he didn't immediately recognize Emperor Peerless because the latter wasn't as renowned as the other great emperors due to his wandering nature.
"Halt!" Elder Ke immediately yelled after noticing Liu Zhen.
Jiang Chen smiled mockingly. He was certain that Elder Ke had been shocked by the emperor's presence. However, Emperor Peerless hadn't flared his great emperor aura just now. Elder Ke must've told his troops to stand down for a different reason. The expression within his eyes wasn't that of fear, but of discovery.
But Emperor Peerless didn't point out this fact. It didn't matter what Elder Ke was up to. His tricks wouldn't work on the emperor.
Elder Ke pondered for a moment before flashing a sly smile. "Were all of you hired by that short man over there?"
The emperor snorted coldly. He couldn't be bothered to answer.
"So what if we were?" Jiang Chen replied
Elder Ke laughed slyly. "Does that mean you're here to redeem that short man's partner?"
Long Xiaoxuan yelled dejectedly. "Hey! Are we still fighting or not? Why are you so wishy-washy?"
This infuriated the Heavensfall Society greatly, but they had no choice but to swallow their fury as they'd been told to stand down. Their eyes were full of hostility as they glared at Long Xiaoxuan.
"Have you brought the 500 million saint spirit stones?" Elder Ke asked directly.
Jiang Chen signaled at Liu Zhen. The latter immediately ran to him.
"I'll leave you in charge of the negotiation. He's Elder Ke of the Heavensfall Society. Don't worry, just do what you need to do and don't be intimidated by him." Jiang Chen advised.
Liu Zhen's heart was racing, but he somehow managed to suppress his emotions. He knew that this was his only chance. There'd be no second chances if he failed to rescue his brother today.
"Elder Ke, I've prepared the 500 million you wanted. However, I want to see him first." Liu Zhen wasn't dumb after all.
"You'll see him after you hand over the money. I'll be frank, your friend is currently confined within our deepest prisons. Your promise alone isn't enough for us to let him out." Elder Ke had his bottom line as well.
Liu Zhen was in a dilemma. He looked at Jiang Chen for help. The latter nodded. "Give it to him."
Liu Zhen's hands trembled when he took out 500 million saint spirit stones. He hesitated a moment before handing them over to Elder Ke.
Jiang Chen noted the look of surprise on Elder Ke's face. He immediately warned. "Elder Ke, You've already received the saint spirit stones. We'd better clear things up now so that there won't be any room for contention. You'd best make sure that these stones are genuine, and that the numbers are correct."
He'd gained a lot of experience in dealing with these underground gangs after the incident with Third Master Jing. Jiang Chen might have seen through Elder Ke's plan, but the latter wasn't depressed. "There's no problem with the saint spirit stones. Wait here for a moment, I'll send my men to the deep prisons to get him. A word of warning, I can't guarantee that he's still alive after a stint there."
Liu Zhen immediately turned aghast. Jiang Chen also furrowed his brows. "Elder Ke, do you take me for a fool? Deep prisons? From what I know, the Heavensfall Society is only an underground gang. Can you even represent Frostmoon City? What rights to do you have to build a prison?"
Elder Ke flashed a crafty smile that didn't reach his eyes. "Friend, this is where you're wrong. Which clan or sect doesn't have its own hidden prison?"
Jiang Chen was just about respond but the emperor suddenly patted him on the shoulder. "Let's wait and see for now."
Jiang Chen was extremely furious, but since the emperor had already spoken, he had no choice but to swallow his anger for now.