Yang Chen picked up the call. “What’s the matter?”
“Your Majesty Pluto, it would seem as though the situation was not as we predicted it to be. The Red Thorns Society’s members on duty seem to be involved with the incident. When we were searching for other potential explosives in the compound, we stumbled upon a piece of information. We found out that there was some internal conflict of power within the Red Thorns Society.
“Some of them even tried to take the initiative into their own hands to undermine their own members. Their target was your family. But thanks to their internal conflict and lack of cohesion, we managed to swoop in at the last second and stop any more potential plots against your family.”
Molin’s explanation instantly supercharged Yang Chen’s rage. He had been lured away so that the enemy could attack his family!
“Hubby, is everything ok? Why do you look so pale?” Rose asked, worried, as she supported Adeline.
Yang Chen then ordered Molin to continue his sweep and notify him if anything else arose.
“Rose, did you… send your father to Sweden?” Yang Chen asked.
Rose seemed slightly surprised at his insinuation. “Hubby, are you suggesting that… all this… was my dad’s doing?”
“Our opponents were Swedish military veterans that are now part of a mercenary organization. From planting the explosives under your residence to the cleanup crew, the targets were clearly the both of us. I can only assume that the culprit has substantial knowledge of us and possesses so much suppressed hatred that they would seek to bring me down with you,” Yang Chen explained.
Rose’s pupils lost her focus as she mumbled, “I did send him to Sweden, in hopes that would stop him for good, that it would put an end to his schemes. I never thought that he would one day return. Certainly not like this...”
“If I was your father, I’d take advantage of the internal conflict within the society to stage my revenge,” Yang Chen laid out simply. “The same people that you sent to protect you, a portion of them just staged a mutiny a while ago in an attempt to cleave through your household. I assume a good number of them might be from the West Union Society. They must have caught wind of your dad’s return and decided to plan a coup.”
Rose nodded in agreement. “So what do we do now?”
Yang Chen turned back and surveyed the hill once more. “We’ll wait for updates before making our move..”
Meanwhile, several meters below the hill at its base was a Mercedes-Benz S600 stopping right in front of the row of neatly arranged sedans. From it, came a woman dressed in red. It was Chen Rong.
Chen Rong appeared visibly burnt out, as she dried the sweat trickling down her forehead. She commanded the people from the Red Thorns Society to make their way through the rubble and up the hill.
Since Mount Xunshan was barely considered a mountain, the men were able to reach Yang Chen’s location in no time.
It wasn’t long before they noticed the huge artificial crater in front of Yang Chen’s sight, and in between were burnt unrecognizable corpses.
Chen Rong subsequently arrived and breathed a sigh of relief to see Yang Chen and Rose, which left her with a wide, enthusiastic grin. “Brother Yang, Sister Rose, I’m so glad to see that you are safe. I just received news from my men that your house got blown up into pieces. It was a miracle that you weren’t home. But then I realized that you might be ambushed at your usual training spot.”
Watching the tearful Chen Rong, Rose’s initial skepticism towards her was now mostly relieved. I guess there’s no way she would gather such strong motivation to undermine me and Yang Chen… she thought.
From the looks of it, Situ Mingze himself was the sole mastermind.
Yang Chen then asked, “Did you find out the culprit behind this?”
Chen Rong nodded as she replied, “We discovered certain plots here and there. It appears that some of the former West Union Society members stirred up the plot. Our best guess is Situ Mingze who has secretly made his return from Sweden. We knew he has left as his residence in Sweden was abandoned recently.”
“Where is he now?” Yang Chen quickly followed up.
Chen Rong was caught off-guard as she lowered her head in disappointment. “My apologies… Brother Yang. We are still unable to pinpoint his exact location as of now.”
Yang Chen contemplated for a bit before he turned towards Rose. “Let’s go back first. Adeline is our top priority right now.”
Rose might be eager to get to the bottom of the plot, but she too agreed that it was best to take Adeline, her lifesaver, to safety and proceed with her much needed recuperation.
As the members returned to their respective rides, Chen Rong sat in the front passenger seat next to the driver, while the three of them comfortably placed themselves in the back. Once they arrived, they were able to pass Adeline to the Sea Eagles for further treatment.
Chen Rong made a number of calls to the sub-society leaders, with commands for them to closely monitor the movements of every member across the society.
After she ended the series of calls, Chen Rong turned towards the back row as she earnestly inquired, “Sister Rose, should we dispatch a scouting group outside the borders of Zhonghai? My guess would be that he might have planned an escape route should his plan fail.”
Rose was just about to nod in agreement, but Yang Chen quickly stopped her.
“There’s no need for that. Rongrong, I want you to gather everyone who holds a position in the Red Thorns Society. I want you to get them all to gather at Zhonghai’s southeast harbor. I distinctly remember having a private cruise ship docked there,” Yang Chen demanded.
Chen Rong was perplexed. “Brother Yang… what is this for, may I ask? Are we going out to sea?”
Yang Chen stoically continued, “Just do as I said.”
Chen Rong noticed Yang Chen’s stone-cold gaze and felt a chill run down her delicate back. She immediately nodded and went to make the calls necessary to make that happen.
Yang Chen then added out of the blue, “Tell them that attendance is mandatory. Not showing up is the equivalent of digging their own graves.”
Chen Rong was horrified, understanding that Yang Chen was not joking around.
Rose seemed to be in deep contemplation as she glanced towards Yang Chen but ultimately chose to maintain her silence.
A couple of minutes later, they arrived at the wide pavement by Rose’s house.
Standing at the plot of burnt land where her house once stood, she turned towards the disfigured neighboring house, which belonged to Lin Ruoxi. Rose cracked a bitter smile. “Hubby, I guess it's time for both of us to move again.”
“Let’s do it then, I’ll help you out with that. But we have some things to settle first,” Yang Chen said with a gentle smile.
The party left the car with Rose assisting Adeline as they made way into the garden. Adeline was rather reluctant to receiving help from her client but Rose was adamant in her assistance.
Back in the garden, the sights awaiting them were not for the faint of heart.
A row of disfigured corpses were neatly lined up on the garden front. Blood tainted the ground and ran throughout the estate grounds.
A muscular Caucasian man with golden brown hair came before Yang Chen and bowed. “Your Majesty Pluto, they are the traitors who have been slaughtered. My sincere apologies for tainting your garden with the sinful blood of these imbeciles.”
Yang Chen placed a hand on his shoulder. “Good work, just on time. I will personally contact Sauron in regards to offering you, alongside Adeline, a lofty bonus. It’s about time we leave anyway, don’t bother with the mess.”
Even if Yang Chen could instantly vaporize the corpses into dust, he did not see the need for it. After all, he tried not to make it a habit to use his cultivations.
He wanted to try and avoid the heavenly tribulations which were out to get him. But recent events had led him to believe that keeping his powers at bay might prove to be useful when the enemy had yet to figure out the true extent of his powers.
To avoid a potential ambush, Lin Ruoxi, Guo Xuehua, and everyone else stayed obediently within the parameters of the house.
Yang Chen thought it was not time for him to enter the house. After making sure they were all unscathed, he left Adeline at home while she waited for reinforcements to come and pick her up.
He then left with Rose towards the harbor.
The luxurious cruise ship with a huge Red Thorns Society symbol was in place ready for departure. The ship was originally used for occasional celebrations, or handle illegal dealings on international waters. But this time, it was being used for a purpose even the captain wasn’t notified for.
Rows of extravagant cars were parked by the cruise ship harbor as more began to pile in. The higher-ups of the Red Thorns Society slowly filed in one by one as they speculated on why they were being called in under a death threat.
Since the establishment of the Red Thorns Society, the society was no longer the modest organization it once was. The sub-clan leaders were now respectable figures among the Zhonghai nobles.
This was very much intertwined with Zhonghai’s solidified status as a major economic hub within the country, alongside their effective partnership with Beijing’s own Green Dragon Society.
Upon Yang Chen and Rose’s entrance onto the cruise, alongside Chen Rong, the leaders were seen gossiping with speculations.
As the actual head of the society, Rose was rarely involved with the management of their internal affairs, excluding a few core decisions and missions. Most of the day-to-day operations were managed by Chen Rong instead.
As for Yang Chen, most elders within the society would comprehend and accept his involvement in the matter, but those who were absent from the war among Zhonghai’s mafia were uninformed of Yang Chen’s delicate existence.
Once everyone was on board, Yang Chen allowed Chen Rong to organize the meeting, as people freely mingled on the ship, which was about to leave towards the direction of the international waters beyond Zhonghai’s territory.
The top-level members started speaking among one another, and before long, nearly everyone on board was accustomed to the presence of the young outsider calling the shots. He was the lover of Rose herself, not to mention his efforts in securing the spot for Rose and to exile her father Situ Mingze. Just that knowledge alone left many bewildered while simultaneously curious about what that young man was capable of.
After around ten minutes, the sound of the horn signified the ships departure to international waters.