Chapter 18: Refusing To Meet
“Six Blood Boiling Realm cultivators, fourteen Qi Drawing Realm cultivators, and a hundred Body Tempering martial artists had him surrounded and the exits closed off, yet he still got away? And not only did he get away, but he also took my son and Lian Ao’s daughter with him?” Long Qingjiang asked calmly, sitting in the main hall of the Long Clan’s palace.
He tapped his jade-like finger on the lacquered armrest, generating a resounding noise that seemed to echo in Sang Maoyuan’s heart.
He knelt on the ground and replied, “Yes. Su Chen used a king of fog medicine that obstructed our vision, and it was difficult to disperse. He then took advantage of the chaos and escaped.”
Long Qingjiang squinted his eyes. He thought for a long moment before asking, “This person…… what is his background?”
“As far as we know, he came from the Hidden Dragon Institute, but we aren’t sure about any other specifics. I originally planned on sending some people to investigate his background, but Young Master said that there wasn’t any need to make things so complicated over just a Knowledge Executor. He pushed to gather manpower instead and do things by force.”
Long Qingjiang harrumphed, “Gather manpower? Where was his manpower? Why didn’t you go? Why didn’t He Lianwei go? Why didn’t Hai Zhen go? Why did only a few Blood Boiling Realm cultivators and a bunch of trash go?”
Sang Maoyuan lowered his head and said, “He Lianwei went to the eastern betting grounds because someone was there making trouble. Hai Zhen went to train in the southern desolate swamp. I originally wanted to go, but something came up that delayed me. Young Master said that there was no need to use a sledgehammer on a walnut and left without waiting for me. That Lian Jiao girl didn’t even say anything to the higher-ups before leaving on her own. In any case, this arrangement shouldn’t have been too weak anyways – six Blood Boiling Realm cultivators, fourteen Qi Drawing Realm cultivators, and nearly a hundred or so Body Tempering martial artists should have been more than enough to deal with an average Yang Opening Realm cultivator, let alone a single Blood Boiling Realm cultivator. Who would have expected that brat to have such a trick up his sleeve? That was a miscalculation.”
“So what you’re saying is that my son made the mistake of underestimating his enemy?” Long Qingjiang said shadily.
“Your servant doesn’t dare! Your servant is just replying truthfully!”
“Even so, I don’t like to hear that truth of yours,” Long Qingjiang sighed.
Sang Maoyuan lowered his head, remaining silent.
Long Qingjiang waved his hands. “Drag him out and give him fifty strokes.”
People had already stepped forward and pulled Sang Maoyuan down the steps. Soon, the sound of wooden boards smacking flesh could be heard.
Those wooden boards weren’t just ordinary wooden boards. They had been soaked in a medicinal bath so that even a Yang Opening Realm cultivator would have his flesh split open by those strokes.
An old housekeep, standing to the side, said, “Master, Young Master is still in Su Chen’s hands. What should we do?”
Long Qingjiang squinted his eyes and didn’t speak for some time as if he had fallen asleep.
After a long time, he said, “If he captured my son, evidently he wants to negotiate with us. As long as he wants to negotiate, we won’t have to worry about their safety. How about this? Su Gaoye, why don’t you go to the Su Residence and try to ask him about his conditions for letting them go? Tell him that I can forget about everything that happened in the past as long as he is willing to let my son go. Of course, the Long Clan’s prestige cannot be harmed, so he must sincerely apologize to the Long and Lian Clans. Thus, our two clans will preserve our faces, and Su Chen can keep himself safe.”
Housekeep Su said, “Master truly is magnanimous. But Master, what if Su Chen doesn’t agree to these conditions?”
Long Qingjiang stared at his old housekeep. “Do you think that my conditions aren’t generous enough?”
The old housekeep chuckled, “Naturally, they are generous enough, but there are always some people who don’t understand the situation they’re in. It seems like Knowledge Executor Su is someone who is like this; otherwise, he wouldn’t have made a move even after finding out that Sun Mao and Yu Chengshui were from two great Bloodline Nobility Clans.”
“Oh.” Long Qingjiang thought for a moment, then nodded. “When you put it that way, that makes sense too. If that’s the case, then take Sun Mao and Yu Chengshui with you. Tell him that if he wants, we can give those two to him. That way, we can demonstrate that Bloodline Nobility Clans still abide by the law.”
“What about the apology……” the old housekeep asked.
Long Qingjiang’s expression sank. “The apology needs to happen; otherwise, where will the face of our Long Clan be in the future? Go talk things through with Knowledge Executor Su. After all, you share the same family name; if there’s something that needs to be said, you can discuss it civilly.”
“Yes!” Housekeep Su replied. However, inside his heart, he didn’t have much hope for this negotiation.
But even though he expected Su Chen to not meet Long Qingjiang’s conditions, he hadn’t expected that he wouldn’t even get a chance to see Su Chen……
“What? Su Chen doesn’t want to see me?”
The next morning.
Housekeep Su stood outside the Su Palace and yelled, “Did you tell him that I am the Long Clan’s Housekeeper?”
The person standing guard was a bandit who had already received instructions from Su Chen. He said impatiently, “I already told you. My Master said that he doesn’t want to meet with anyone from the Long Clan. If you want to talk, come back in two days.”
Housekeep Su’s said with a dark expression, “Knowledge Executor Su captured someone from the Long Clan but doesn’t want to negotiate. What is the meaning of this?”
“Don’t ask me what this means; come back in two days means come back in two days. It’s not just you. Look over there; even the Lian Clan’s Chief Steward wanted to meet with Su Chen, but he was also turned down.
Housekeep Su turned around and found a person standing underneath a tree not too far from him, a small carriage behind the person. If that person wasn’t the Lian Clan’s Chief Steward Lao, who could it be?
“Hey, Chief Steward Lao, how come you’re resting here too?” Housekeep Su walked over to him to greet him.
Upon seeing Housekeep Su walk towards him, Chief Steward Lao laughed bitterly, “Old Su, you’re here too? Could I not be here? Our Young Miss got captured, so I can only come here to try and negotiate. But you’re even distant relatives; how can he capture people yet not be willing to even meet us?”
Housekeep Su hurriedly waved his hands. “No, don’t say that we’re distant relatives. I don’t know him; we just happen to have the same surname. Who knows what rock this unexpected little seed sprouted out from.”
“Sigh, he really is an unexpected seed. Logically speaking, he should have some level of perceptiveness since he is a Knowledge Executor. How can he offend two great Nobility Clans as soon as he gets here? It seems like he’s tired of living.”
“Whether he’s tired of living or not, I don’t know. It’s making quite the headache for me though. No matter what, the Young Master and Young Miss need to go home. But if he isn’t willing to meet us, how do we even report back to our higher-ups?
Chief Steward Lao shook his head. “Who knows what kind of plan that guy is preparing. I think that all we can do is report back and then come back two days later.
“That’s all that we can do.”
The two of them thought for a bit more, but they could only return and report back to their higher-ups regardless of how unwilling they were.
Just before they left, Chief Steward Lao suddenly thought of something and said, “Hey, do you think this kid will try and take the opportunity to run?”
“Run?” Housekeep Su squinted his eyes in thought, then said pensively, “He shouldn’t. But we should probably keep a few more people here to keep watch just in case.”
They waited for a group of people to hurry over and surround the Su Palace to keep an eye on it before leaving.