Yang Chen blurted out when he saw her stern expression, “Why are you suddenly telling me about this?”
Tang Wan sighed, “I didn’t tell you previously because I was busy with work. I also looked into stuff and found out about some secrets circling the four major clans.”
“Mmh…I followed my grandfather’s last words and I wanted to find out about the man who murdered my father and what relationship he had with Hongmeng but…I found out that the hidden clans were behind the Ning clan.”
Yang Chen was slightly taken aback, “How did you know that? I only thought about it when I saw two Ning clan members who are in the Soul Forming stage.”
“What? the Ning clan members are out here? It looks like the Ning clan is planning to intervene with the mundane world.” Tang Wan said.
Back when Yang Chen fought with Yan Buwen, he heard from Tang Zhechen that the Tang clan was associated with Hongmeng. His son, Tang Lun died because of Hongmeng but no one knew about the exact details.
Tang Wan went through Tang Zhechen’s belongings in Beijing and went through some documents before she understood what had happened.
“I found a book from my grandfather’s hidden documents. He wrote everything he knew about the relationship between our clan and Hongmeng. The reason why our clan focused on our businesses instead of the military was because our clan had been providing resources to Hongmeng for generations. Thus, our clan isn’t as strong as the other three clans when it comes to military powers.”
“Hongmeng need resources from a mundane clan?” Yang Chen was puzzled.
“Of course,” Tang Wan pulled Yang Chen onto a long bench, “Think about it, the hidden clan members train in the mundane world, this meant that they would also bring all sorts of resources back to the borders. Then Hongmeng wouldn’t just send one messenger out. They are humans after all, especially those who had grown up in the borders. Their parents might be cultivators, but they still need to eat and drink in the beginning. Besides, Hongmeng needs all sorts of ingredients to make pills and artifacts. I’m not sure how big the border is but their resources must be limited. Ingredients cost money, so instead of searching all around the world, they’d rather find a fixed supplier.”
“So Hongmeng helped the Tang clan. Even though your clan is focused on doing business, you guys can still be part of the four major clans because of them. Am I right?” It finally dawned on him.
Tang Wan nodded, “That’s right, at least that was how things were when my grandfather was still alive. Before that, our clan has been servicing Hongmeng for centuries but now that my grandfather has died and not only did we have conflict with Yan Buwen, we also killed the Hongmeng messenger, so I doubt Hongmeng will trust us for the time being. However, it won’t be that easy for them to find a new clan that is as wealthy and influential as our clan to help them source for material and resources. They won’t be able to succeed easily. So…Hongmeng messenger visited our clan last week and contacted us. Since Tang Huang and I have equal standing in the clan, we’re the only ones who knew about this.”
“Are you…referring to the Absolute Sword Taoist?” Yang Chen asked.
Tang Wan was startled, “How did you know that?”
Yang Chen told her about the time when the Absolute Sword Taoist came after Rose and how he bribed the Taoist. Tang Wan was amused by the story.
“It’s him. He was so cocky, but since we couldn’t fight back, Tang Huang and I listened to his commands. Only then we know we have a team in our clan that only listens to the clan leader’s commands. They are in charge of transporting the resources to the borders of Kekexili. The Absolute Sword Taoist received orders from Hongmeng that we are still appointed to supply resources to Hongmeng. If Hongmeng has any requests, the Hongmeng messenger will inform us and we will send it to the borders.”
Yang Chen nodded and asked, “What about the reason behind your father’s death, did you find out about it? Why did your grandfather say it was Hongmeng’s fault?”
Tang Wan sighed, “I don’t know, grandfather didn’t write it down. From what I remembered, my father was losing sanity and he killed my mother before killing himself…I didn’t dare to think about it a few years ago. From what I remember, there wasn’t anyone from Hongmeng…”
While saying so, Tang Wan shook her head, “I don’t want to think about it.” “I’m not done talking, from my grandfather’s notes, I found out that amongst the hidden clans, the Xiao and Luo clans are weaker whereas the Ning clan is the strongest. Through a century long collaboration with Hongmeng, we learnt that the Ning clan in Beijing is a branch of the Ning clan from the hidden clans. This was why the Ning clan had always been influential.”
Yang Chen was puzzled, “I knew that but how is this related to Ruoxi?”
“Of course it does!” Tang Wan said, “Even though Ning Guangyao is part of the branch, he’s still in control of an independent major clan in the mundane world. The hidden clan wants Ning Guangyao to keep their bloodline going, regardless of their achievements. But, Ning Guangyao’s only son, Ning Guodong has been missing for a long time. Even though he kept the information hidden, he can’t hide it from us. If the Ning clan fails to find Ning Guodong, doesn’t it mean that he no longer has successors? Do you think the hidden clan will let him be in charge of the mundane clan?”
It felt as if a mine had gone off in Yang Chen’s brain. His gaze turned cold and he sneered, “No wonder he was desperate to become a kind father. So he’s looking for a successor to secure his position.”
“Why, he went to find Lin Ruoxi?” Tang Wan asked.
Yang Chen nodded, “The day when I met the two Ning clan cultivators who are in the Soul Forming stage was when Ning Guangyao came to our house to persuade Lin Ruoxi. But he did too many disgusting deeds so she couldn’t accept him.”
Tang Wan was worried, “I’m worried that she will accept him eventually. If that happens, Ning Guangyao might manipulate Lin Ruoxi to trick you. After all, you must have gained the attention of Hongmeng and the Great Ancient clans. They just aren’t ready to leave the borders. But Ning Guangyao is from the mundane world and is the representative of the Ning clan in the mundane world. He can do anything for his own benefit, he can sacrifice anyone…”
Even though Yang Chen was secretly worried, he rocked a smile, reminded of the time when Lin Ruoxi begged him to let Ning Guodong go, “I don’t think so, Ruoxi shouldn’t be that gullible.”
Tang Wan smiled faintly, “I hope so...”
“Alright!,” Yang Chen stood up and stretched his body, “I came out to relax with you, not to talk about serious stuff. Come, let’s continue to shop.”
Tang Wan didn’t want to think about it anymore either. She linked arms with Yang Chen and visited multiple shops in an excited manner.
Half a day passed by as they shopped and Yang Chen finally felt better.
Night time arrived and they went to a restaurant near the shopping mall. It was a perfect time for them to have dinner together, since Yang Chen didn’t need to go home for dinner and Tang Wan was staying alone for now.
Right after they ordered a few dishes, Tang Wan suddenly suggested, “Let’s have some drinks. It’s cold outside so it’s perfect to have some alcohol.”
Yang Chen chuckled, “I know you’re trying to comfort me by asking me to accompany you but I’m not planning to relieve my frustration with alcohol.”
“I didn’t say it’s for you, I want to relax too.” Tang Wan chided.
Yang Chen obliged and asked the secretary to bring them two bottles of Kaoliang. They didn’t need Maotai or Wuliangye, normal alcohol worked well since they were in a small restaurant.
Tang Wan wasn’t used to drinking such strong alcohol but she didn’t want to change it. She kept eating a few bites of food with every sip, like a cat who is eating hot food. couldn’t stop itself from eating spicy food.
Yang Chen chuckled, “Stop drinking if you aren’t used to it. Your face is flushed.”
Tang Wan licked her lips and furrowed her brows, “I usually only drink wine and champagne, it’s quite interesting to drink something strong occasionally. It’s fine, you can send me home if I get drunk anyways. I don’t need to be afraid of bad guys.”
Yang Chen shook his head, feeling speechless.
After some time, Yang Chen was about to stop her from drinking when a couple walked into the restaurant and Yang Chen looked over with a puzzled expression.
The man was tall with sharp features and the petite woman next to him was smiling as they made their way in.
Yang Chen sensed their existence ages ago because this man’s cultivation was at the final phase of Xiantian. His Xiantian True Qi was domineering.
Yang Chen was bewildered to see them walking towards him. He hadn’t seen them in a long time.
Tang Wan glanced over but she didn’t know them so she kept drinking quietly.
“Young master Yang, it’s been a while. You’re still dashing as ever, oh wait, you’re far dashing than before.” Tianlong chuckled.
Yezi looked at Tang Wan curiously as they recognised her, “Brother Yang, Miss Tang, you wouldn’t blame us for interrupting your meal right?”