Chapter 163 – Slippery
‘Considering cousin Zhong’s cultivation, the team shouldn’t have any problems, unless they get attacked by a rare wild beast…’ Ye Wei thought, while looking at Ye Zhong’s silhouette exiting the mansion’s gate, ‘But… It’s better to be safe than sorry!’
‘If I follow cousin Zhong, I might be able to spy on the Lu’s and find out what their plans are. Furthermore, I can put the matter of protecting my family into my own hands. Like grandpa said, they are the foundation of the family’s future and I just can’t leave anything to chance!’
Led by a ten-star condensed prime Warrior sent by the Lu’s, the group of two thousand Warriors, assembled from the ten most powerful martial family of Green Moon City, left civilization and began to search the wilderness and the mountains at an extremely slow pace.
Wild beasts usually do not hunt during hours of daylight. Therefore Ye Wei decided to spend his days at the Drakehead, and his nights hidden in the dark wilderness, watching over his family’s squad. When there were wild beasts approaching to their camps, Ye Wei was able to finish them off without anybody noticing.
Nine days had passed in the blink of an eye. Ye Wei was cultivating all this time at the pond before sunset, trying to improve as quickly as he possibly could. With the help of this sacred place, he was only a few steps away from his breakthrough to the four-star level.
The Ye family had been keeping themselves save in the mansion. There was no unannounced Lu’s visits recently; the Ye’s were also save, watched over, guarded by their family’s dedicated young Runemaster.
On the ninth day since the Ye patriarch sent the squad for the search, Ye Wei routinely stretched his body after a half day of cultivating. The sun was setting over the horizon and then, as usual, he hurried towards his family squad’s camp.
Part of the troops led by the Lu family finally reached North Hill Bay. Ye Wei became more anxious with each day, scared that they might intrude his family’s sacred ground.
At the foothill of the Ye’s ancestral burial hill, a dispute was brewing, and the Ye’s were heated. The resting place of the family’s ancestor was a prohibited area.
The Du family insisted to help with the search and were very pleased to finally have a reason to invade the Ye’s ancestral land. The two families still remembered their fight for this plot of land and the Ye’s were not happy to see their enemies so close.
The Du’s had two hundred and twenty Warriors led by their Patriarch’s brothers, Du Ji, a five star condensed prime Warrior. The pressure of their force was hanging over Ye’s.
“Get out of my way, kid!” Yelled Du Ji as his cold gaze swept over the one hundred and fifty men the Ye’s assembled and finally stopped on Ye Zhong’s face.
“I, Du Ji, am here under the command of the Lu family! We are here to explore this land and report to them if there is any hidden abnormalities! Obstructing me to my task is the same as disrespecting the Lu, kid! Your pathetic family won’t be able to deal with the consequences!” He suddenly took a step forward, his mighty Qi presence, like a massive boulder, solidly pressed towards the Ye’s men and Ye Zhong.
The might of a five star condensed prime Warrior was fierce. All one hundred and fifty Warriors involuntarily took a step back. Ye Zhong was barely able to stand steadily, marginally withstood Du Ji’s offensive Qi burst.
“Du Ji, this is my family’s ancestral land! All of my forefathers were buried under the surface of this very hill. It is a sacred ground and I won’t let anyone disturb the peace where their souls rest eternally!”
“I will never allow anyone set foot on the hill! If you wish to do so you will have to step over my dead body!” Shouted Ye Zhong as he channeled his Qi, struggling to resist Du Ji’s force, but determined to protect his family’s burial hill with his life if needed.
During the past three years, due to the protection of Master Yi, the Du’s never dared to offend Ye family. However now the tides had changed, as they had the Lu family’s support they were no longer scared of the possibilities of Master Yi’s interference.
The Du family’s assets were irreversibly damaged by the rapid expansion of Ye family’s business, especially in the trades of scrolls and mystic arms. The Du’s were no longer a family everyone was scared of, and none of them were happy about the downfall and the suppression.
Therefore, even though the North Hill Bay area spread wide across more than thousands of miles, the Du’s deliberately set their eyes on the burial hill of the Ye family.
“Ye Zhong, I think your are overstepping yourself. As I have said, we are here under the Lu family’s command to explore this mountain. You have no other choice but to let us pass through, unless you want to deal with them instead of us!” sneered Du Ji, smiling viciously after he shamelessly name-dropping.
“As an established cultivator and reasonable man, I really do not want to fight you. I am no bully. But if you are going to be difficult, that leaves me no choice but to do exactly that! Well, I guess you can use a lesson on being respectful if you are dumb enough to mess with the Du family and the Lu family!” Du Ji threatened, grunting coldly.
‘Now with the Lu’s support, we are in the right. None of the Ye’s can do anything about it, even if I decide to paralyze Ye Zhong right here and right now. Obstructing the Lu’s search is not a small matter, if they hear about how the Ye’s are trying to sabotage their search, they might even reward me for my bravery!’
Du Ji’s eyes shone a sinister glow, he had actually been planning to start a fight with the Ye’s. Ever since the Lu’s came into the picture, the Du’s have been doing whatever they could to befriend the representatives from the state-renowned martial family, hoping that their new ally could help them with their revenge against the Ye’s.
It was clear to everyone in the Du family that once Ye Wei and Ye Zhong grew up to fulfil their cultivation potential, Green Moon City will no longer have space for the Du’s.
Aware of that fact, the Du family wanted nothing more than to get rid of the two youngsters, However, it was impossible for them to do so when the Ye family was under Master Yi’s watch and because the Ye’s influence was growing non-stop throughout the past three years.
‘This is the moment we’ve been waiting for! We can start the fight and the Lu’s can finish them for us!’
Currently the Ye family was in no position and simply was not on the level the Lu’s were on. With the Lu’s wide web of connections, even Master Yi was in no position to challenge one of the most influential force in the Qing state.
“Brother Zhong, Du Ji is just looking for trouble here. Let’s fight them!”
“Zhong, they do have two hundred and twenty, but I don’t think we will lose the fight!” All the Ye’s were overwhelmed by resentment, stood forth and unsheathed their weapons
Although the Ye’s were outnumbered, they were still better equipped than the Du’s, and a lot of them were even holding mystic scrolls and mystic arms.
The Ye’s were aware they were not at a disadvantage.
Three years ago, Ye Wei acquired a large amount of treasures from Bloodmist Valley, most of which he gave to his family. Since then, his family was actually richer than the Big Three and had more treasures in their vault than even Green Moon City’s City Lord.
Ye Zhong’s body became tense, he lifted his arm and signaled his men to stand down. He knew the situation was more complicated and delicate than it appeared to most. Although he was aware that the Ye’s might win, it was a risk he dared not to take.
‘Grandpa put these people’s lives in my hands! Every single one of these one hundred and fifty Warriors is a part of the family’s foundation, we cannot afford to lose any of them. Du Ji was a five star condensed prime Warrior, if the Ye’s were to win, they would have to keep the Du squad’s leader under control, which could not be done without sacrificing lives for it .
The consequence was too dire, Ye Zhong had no way to afford the loss, nor could the family afford to lose the loved ones they’ve invested time, care and resources on. After a fight like that, it would take the family more than thirty years to recover.
‘The Du family is clearly trying to turn the Lu’s against us. I can not make their wish come true and I shall not start a bloodshed here, right by where my ancestors were buried. They shall not step foot on the hill and they shall not shed their filthy blood here!’
Ye Zhong coldly stared at Du Ji, calculating, trying to figure out ways to counter the threat.
“Ye Zhong, kid, the Du family will not violate the the Lu’s orders, however I do know that we right now are standing on rightfully belongs to your family.” Du Ji’s rolled his eyes, chuckled and said: “I am going to give you one chance for you to prove your worthiness. If you are serious about protecting your ancestors’ resting place, I want you to take three punches for me! If you agree, I will order my men to back off and leave this hill alone! If the Lu’s will ask us what happened I will make something up so they would let you off.”
“So, what is it gonna be? Will you take three punches?” Du Ji strode forward and glared at Ye Zhong, putting him under more pressure in the tight situation.
The burial hill was the Ye’s land, Du Ji could feel that Ye Zhong would not decline the offer. ‘Ye Zhong would not refuse the only easy way out for the Ye if they wanted to keep their ancestral land’s integrity without harming anyone of the Ye’s Warriors.’
Du Ji’s smug smile was growing wider, he had already calculated the next steps. When Ye Zhong agreed, he was going to strike the young cultivator with no mercy.
‘I can pretty much destroy your body with one punch! You will never walk again!’ There was nothing more the five-star condensed prime Warrior wanted than to destroy their rival family’s future.
“Fine, you’ve got yourself a deal!” Said Ye Zhong in a low tone. He nodded heavily, sighed and stepped forward
“Brother Zhong, don’t fall for this trap! He just wants you dead! Don’t forget that he is a lot stronger than you are! Don’t expose yourself to danger like this!”
“Brother Zhong, I know it’s important to guard the family’s ancestral land, but don’t sacrifice yourself like that, guarding what the forefathers left us is a duty all of us must oblige.”
None of the Ye’s could stay calm, they talked over one another after Ye Zhong spoke.
“Don’t say anything!” Ye Zhong grunted low and loud to catch everyone’s attention. He was aware of Du Ji’s intentions and had sent a messenger back to the Ye mansion since the Du’s started troubles at the bottom of the burial hill. He was now just buying time, hoping the messenger had already reached the Patriarch and that help was on the way.
“Good boy, I admire your courage. Here comes the first punch!” A grim smile appeared on Du Ji’s face. He opened his hand wide and casually flicked his fingers, his Qi rushed out together with sequences of runes.
The runes flickered faintly as a huge fiery red fist appeared. The air began to ripple while waves of heat emanated from the fist.
Under Du Ji’s command, the fist flew towards Ye Zhong, dropping on top of him like a burning meteor.
‘Low-level Myst stance, Scarlet Flame Fist!’ The cold brutal smile on Du Ji became bigger.
Du Ji, the five-star condensed prime Warrior was much stronger than Ye Zhong and he knew that, but even so, he decided to use one of his strongest attacks right away.
A low-level Myst stance used by a five-star condensed prime Warrior was not something Ye Zhong could defend himself against.