Chapter 138 – Striking First
Neither of the two elders of the Qian family, third layer Qi Practitioners, were easy targets. It was impossible for Diao Fei to kill either of them so easily in a direct confrontation.
However, they never thought that someone would actually attack them at this banquet while in the eyes of the public. They died on the spot without even being able to put up a struggle.
From now onwards, the Qian family no longer had any third layer Qi Practitioners.
The masters of the Qian family were among the guests as well. Under the encirclement of several dozen Qi Practitioners, Diao Fei approached Li Qingshan nervously. This was the first time he had discovered that being close to a certain person would offer a sense of safety.
The night before, Li Qingshan had only told him three things. “Don’t tell Qian Rongzhi. We’ll do it during the banquet tomorrow. Leave Qian Yannian to me!”
Those three things left Diao Fei conflicted for an entire day and night. Finally, he made up his mind to throw his life on the line.
Li Qingshan completely ignored the several dozen Qi Practitioners. Instead, he took out the document from the Hawkwolf Guard and read it aloud, “Due to reports from Qian Rongzhi, the Qian family has broken many rules as listed below. One, killing the innocent. Two, plotting to murder government officials…”
His voice that had been imbued with true qi was even louder than the explosions from earlier. It even reached the foot of the mountain. Everyone stopped eating, raising their heads to listen.
“Qian Rongzhi!? That’s impossible!” Qian Yannian was about to attack him, but when he heard Qian Rongzhi’s name, he was stunned. Out of all the children, how could the smartest and most well-behaved girl who brought him great joy betray him? However, when he looked back in surprise, Qian Rongzhi had already stopped standing beside him at a certain time.
Li Qingshan continued reading without interruption. “…Under the orders of the Black Hawk commander of Jiaping city, Zhuo Zhibo, we have come to investigate, and after verifying this matter, we will be executing Qian Yannian and his accomplices on the spot!”
Qian Yannian searched through the crowd for Qian Rongzhi. She had already crossed through the crowd and arrived beside Li Qingshan and Diao Fei. She looked at Li Qingshan with a sunken face. He had completely destroyed her plans.
The three words, ‘on the spot’, reverberated through the surroundings. All schemes, all plots, were rendered useless before Li Qingshan.
Li Qingshan placed down the document and said, “Those unrelated to this, please leave immediately, just in case you get drawn in. If you get in the way of the administration of justice, you will be executed without mercy!”
Qian Yannian’s eyes widened. “Was it really you? You slut!”
Gong Liangbai said, “Miss Qian, is this all true?”
Qian Rongzhi bit her lip. “This is all true. You are welcome to ask any citizen of Ancient Wind city. They all know about it! Our commander Zhuo is on the way right now, so everyone please leave quickly!”Although she utterly hated Li Qingshan, she was forced to stand on his side at a time like this, or the furious Qian Yannian would destroy her.
Every single person near Jiaping city had heard about Zhuo Zhibo before. Who would actually be willing to get in the way of the Hawkwolf Guard over the heinous Qian family? The Qi Practitioners all looked at one another. Someone moved first, causing them to all scurry outside. However, they looked at the trio like they were dead people.
They did not plan on staying behind and helping out the Qian family. A very important reason to that was because the Qian family did not require their assistance at all. A third layer Qi Practitioner and two second layer Qi Practitioners would be instantly destroyed before Qian Yannian’s wrath.
That was what they thought, but they instead fled even faster. If Zhuo Zhibo really did arrive and saw the corpses of three Hawkwolf Guards, wouldn’t they face an unexpected disaster if they were treated as accomplices of the Qian family?
They moved very quickly, and the guards and attendants all used this opportunity to flee as well. In the blink of an eye, the hall was empty. Only the people of the Qian family remained, along with two corpses.
Countless guests fled down the mountain. Only the people of the Qian family moved against the flow, rushing towards the hall.
Li Qingshan said, “Qian Yannian, it’s time for you to face retribution for your crimes.” Compared to stealthy assassinations, he preferred something like this much more—direct confrontations that would be as straightforward as it could get.
Li Qingshan looked back at Diao Fei and Qian Rongzhi behind him. He had used a special method to band these two conflicting colleagues together with him to face the opponents before them.
Qian Yannian stomped over furiously as the tiles cracked. He stared straight at Qian Rongzhi. “You ungrateful slut!” With Li Qingshan’s announcement, he no longer had any room to maneuver about. All schemes and plans were useless now. Even if he killed the three of them now, the Qian family would enter the blacklist of the Hawkwolf Guard, becoming targets for them to hunt down. The Qian family was approaching the edge of destruction.
Qian Rongzhi, who he had taken great pains to nurture from young, had caused all of this. He roared out hoarsely, “I gave you everything!”
Qian Rongzhi smiled instead. She smiled very sweetly. “Grandfather, haven’t I come to return the kindness?” Afterwards, she said to the remaining second layer Qi Practitioners in the hall. “We’re only killing direct descendants of the Qian family. You’ve all been oppressed by Qian Yannian for all these years. Do you plan on dying with them now?”
Out of the five second layer Qi Practitioners, only one was a direct descendant of Qian Yannian. Originally, all of them had been glaring at Qian Rongzhi furiously as well, but with that, they began to look at one another.
The furious Qian Yannian would never spare the three Hawkwolf guards, but they all knew the consequences of killing Hawkwolf guards in public! If they remained here, they really might end up becoming suspects of this horrible crime, turning into criminals who would be hunted down across the world. No place would be able to shelter them anymore.
“Shut up!” Qian Yannian attacked out of anger. A palm strike condensed from true qi tore through the air towards Qian Rongzhi.
With a flash of light, a blade was drawn from a sheathe, sounding just like a tiger’s roar.
A Wind-entwining blade was placed across Qian Rongzhi’s pale face, cleaving the palm strike in two; the redirected force struck the ground and the door frame. It left behind a great ditch in the ground, and the entire door frame collapsed. Between it all was the pale-faced Qian Rongzhi.
Li Qingshan gripped his Wind-entwining blade as he said to Qian Rongzhi without looking back, “Keep talking!” This woman really did have a clever tongue that was rather useful.
However, Qian Rongzhi’s response was turning around and fleeing!
Li Qingshan was taken aback. As it turned out, he still ended up overestimating this woman. However, he had never thought that the second layer Qi Practitioners of the Qian family would all flee from the hall as well, bursting out the windows. Even the second layer Qi Practitioner related to Qian Yannian by blood, basically his son, did the same.
This was not only due to Qian Rongzhi’s words, but also due to Qian Yannian’s control over the past few years, which had left the entire clan disjointed. They had no sense of unity at all. He was able to keep them together using the threat of his strength and offers of pills during usual times, but once they faced a great threat, they immediately collapsed like a pile of sand.
Qian Yannian ignored Li Qingshan and Diao Fei. He launched another palm strike and slammed a second layer Qi Practitioner against the wall. All of his bones and organs shattered. The Qi Practitioner looked at Qian Yannian and cried out, “Father!” Out of these people, he was Qian Yannian’s only son.
Qian Yannian said with bloodshot eyes, “All traitors will die!”
“I’ll leave here to you. I’m going to go hunt them down!” With that, Diao Fei actually left as well. He did not have the courage to face a fifth layer Qi Practitioner.
Due to different reasons, the main hall had become a place of disaster that all people had to avoid. The only two people left were Li Qingshan and Qian Yannian.
Li Qingshan muttered to himself, “That works too. All the benefits are mine then!” Afterwards, he raised his head and said to Qian Yannian, “Today is your birthday, then the same day next year will be your death day.”
Qian Yannian made his way towards Li Qingshan. His stature that was as skinny as an old monkey suddenly became much larger and taller; he almost cast down a shadow that enveloped Li Qingshan.
A hundred and thirty two years ago, a child was born in Ancient Wind city. He was born into a poor family, where he even struggled to keep himself fed, constantly harassed by others. This continued until he caught the eye of a passing daoist one day, who took him into the mountains to cultivate.
Thirty years later, he emerged. He had already become a middle-aged man approaching his forties. He went knocking on doors and killed every single person who had once harassed him; these people were also near their forties. Afterwards, he founded the Qian family.
He never had any experience with women, so he took wives and concubines like a madman. Every single woman who caught his eyes became a plaything to him. He did not have a proper dwelling, so he took the property of the local aristocrats, building the current Qian estate. He wanted to make up for everything he had once lacked in the past.
Almost a century had passed since then. The Qian family became the only large clan in Ancient Wind city, having five generations living under one roof. There were several hundred children and grandchildren. He wanted his own bloodline of authority to continue.
Qian Rongzhi rushed out of the hall as she thought rapidly, I need to escape from here as quickly as possible and find a place to hide. After Qian Yannian kills Li Qingshan, I’ll be next.
“You slut, you bitch! How dare you betray our Qian family? You will suffer a horrendous death! Grandfather will kill you!”
Before Qian Rongzhi had travelled far, she heard a series of curses directed at her. Looking back, she saw that it was the eldest grandson of the Qian family, Qian Xingwei. He was afraid of becoming involved with a battle between Qi Practitioners, so he had used the flow of people earlier to arrive outside the hall. However, he refused to leave, so he hid in a corner, waiting for his grandfather Qian Yannian to resolve everything.
Qian Rongzhi stopped. She turned back and looked below the mountain. The people of the Qian family were currently rushing over to kill her. There were countless familiar faces among them, which also floated through her head. Lecherous faces, gazes of disdain, threatening punches, and so on melded into a mess with the countless faces.
She rubbed her temples as she experienced a splitting pain in her head. Two thoughts began to entangle and conflict with one another.
One was life. One was death.
Qian Xingwei saw how Qian Rongzhi had stopped, lowered her head, and was now trembling uncontrollably. He thought she was afraid, so he roared, “You slut! You whore! The Qian family should have never adopted you! I should have skinned you alive before!”
Qian Rongzhi raised her head. She was smiling. She even used her slender fingers to fix her hair as she made her way towards Qian Xingwen.
Life was the desire to survive, while death was the nefarious flames of revenge!
At that moment, life was no longer important. Death filled her mind.
“W- what are you trying to do?” Qian Xingwei finally experienced a tinge of fear. Due to Qian Yannian’s presence in the past, she would never resist no matter what he did to her. He was accustomed to her obedience as well, which was why he was bold enough to stand forward and curse her. Only now did he seem to remember that Qian Rongzhi was a powerful Qi Practitioner.
“Save me, grandfather!” Qian Xingwei used his movement technique to leap outside as he called out.
Qian Rongzhi extended her right hand and grabbed him by the shoulder, pulling him before her. She pressed her index finger against Qian Xingwei’s forehead. “What are you running for?” Her long nail pierced his skin, drawing blood.
“S- stop! I’m your elder brother!”
Qian Rongzhi said gently with a clear smile, “You wanted to skin me alive. Is this how you do it?” Like a sharp paper knife, her nails slid down as horrendous shrieks filled the area before the hall.