Chapter 4: Faction of the Misty Clouds
In the main hall, Xiao Zhan and the three clan elders were talking excitedly with the strange elder. The guest seemed to have something weighing on his mind, yet every time when it seemed as if he was about to broach the subject, he would swallow back the words and change the topic. Each time he did this, the delicate girl next to him would give the elder a subtle yet firm glance…
After listening on to their conversation for a while, Xiao Yan was bored by their conversation and his head was slowly drooping…
“Brother Xiao Yan, do you know who they are?” Right when Xiao Yan was about to fall asleep from boredom, Xun Er who was beside him opened her ancient book and asked Xiao Yan.
“Do you know?” Xiao Yan curiously looked at Xun Er.
“Did you see the symbol of a silver sword with the clouds on the cuff of their robes?” Xun Er said with a light smile.
“Oh?” Xiao Yan looked towards the cuffs of the three and indeed, there he clearly saw the embroidered symbol of a sword sparkling in the clouds!
“They are from the Faction of Misty Clouds?” Xiao Yan asked in bewilderment.
Even though Xiao Yan had never gone out into the real world, he had read from books about this faction. Xiao Yan’s clan lived in a city named Wu Tan City which was part of the Jia Ma Empire. Even though this city is listed as being one of the bigger cities within Jia Ma Empire, it was still dwarfed by the size of the empire, despite having the Magic Monsters Mountain Range behind it.
Within the city itself, Xiao Yan’s clan was the biggest. Besides the Xiao Clan, there were two other clans that competed with the Xiao Clan, but even after 24 years of blood and strife, they were unable to overtake the Xiao clan…
If the Xiao Clan was the strongest power in Wu Tan City, then the Faction of Misty Clouds would be the strongest power in the entire Jia Ma Empire! The difference between the Xiao Clan and the Faction of Misty Clouds was enormous, to the point where Xiao Yan’s father Xiao Zhan, who normally kept a strict and harsh face, was extremely respectful in front of these guests.
“Why are they here?” Xiao Yan whispered.
Xun Er’s slim fingers paused, “Maybe it’s related to you, Brother Xiao Yan …”
“Me? But I don’t have any relationship with them!?” Hearing Xun Er’s response, Xiao Yan paused before shaking his head and whispering back.
“Do you know the name of the girl up there?” Xun Er glanced at the girl.
“No, do you?” Xian Yan furrowed his brows as he examined the face of the girl Xun Er pointed out. He cannot recall ever having seen her before.
“She’s Nalan Yanran!” A curious expression floated on Xun Er’s face.
Xiao Yan stiffened, “Nalan Yanran? The granddaughter of Nalan Jie, the Lionheart commander of Jia Ma Empire? She’s… she’s my fiancée that was set between our families, before I was born?”
“Hehe, grandfather and Nalan Jie were like blood brothers and at that time, you and Nalan Yanran were born around the same time, so the two decided that you guys would get married. But, unfortunately, three years after you were born, grandfather died in a fight with a clan enemy and as time passed, Xiao Clan’s relation with the Nalan family became weaker…” Xun Er paused and looked at Xiao Yan who was absorbed in Xun Er’s story, “Nalan Jie is not only arrogant, he also puts extreme emphasis on promises. The marriage was decided by him so even though your name has been quite bad the past few years, he has never once thought of annulling the marriage…”
“That geezer sure is quite obstinate…” Xiao Yan smiled.
“Nalan Jie has the final say in all matters within the family so even though he really is very fond of his granddaughter, no one in the family has stepped up to oppose the marriage…” Xun Er’s beautiful eyes lightly glanced at Xiao Yan before continuing, “But 5 years ago, Nalan Yanran became a student under the faction leader of Misty Clouds. In these 5 years, Nalan Yanran demonstrated incredible talent. When a person has enough power to change the path of their life, they would try their hardest to change things that they don’t like and unfortunately, she absolutely hates her promised marriage with brother Xiao Yan!”
“You’re saying… that she came to CANCEL the marriage?”
Xiao Yan’s face darkened. At this moment he was furious, not because Nalan Yanran did not want him as her husband but rather, because Nalan Yanran is trying to cancel the marriage with the entire clan present! If that happens then his father would lose much of his dignity and respect within the clan!
Xiao Yan slowly breathed in, the cold air calming his raging thoughts. Within his sleeve, Xiao Yan curled his fist, thinking, if I was a Dou Shi, who would dare to trample over my dignity?
It was true, if Xiao Yan was a Dou Shi, then, even if Nalan Yanran had the backing of the Faction of Misty Clouds, she would not be able to do such a thing. A 15 year old Dou Shi,,there were only a few that had such high accomplishments in the entire history of Dou Qi Mainland. And the few people that were at that level when they were that young are now some of the most influential people in the entire Dou Qi world.
A small fragile hand cleverly evaded Xiao Yan’s sleeves and held onto Xiao Yan’s hands. Xun Er softly said, “Brother Xiao Yan, if she really cancels the marriage, then that’s her own loss. I believe that in a couple of years, she will be regretting her decisions today!”
“Regret?” Xiao Yan sneered. “With my current abilities, I don’t have that kind of luxury.”
Xiao Yan paused before changing the tone of his voice, “Wait, Xun Er. How are you so familiar with them? The things that you’ve just said, my father might not even know some of them. How do you know all these?”
Xun Er stiffened but did not say anything.
Looking at Xue Er’s avoidance on the subject, Xiao Yan could only helplessly smile. Even though Xun Er was also part of the Xiao family, she and Xiao Yan didn’t have any relation by blood. In addition, Xiao Yan had never seen Xun Er’s parents and every time he asked his father about them, Xiao Zhan would shake his head and not speak. Soon, Xun Er’s parents became a taboo subject, something that they seemed to fear speaking about.
For Xiao Yan, Xun Er’s identity was always veiled in mystery. No matter how hard or how cleverly he tried, Xun Er would always stay silent.
“Ugh, whatever, if you don’t want to say it then don’t.” Shaking his head, Xiao Yan’s face suddenly darkened again. The guest elder, under the repeated signals from Nalan Yanran, finally stood up…
“Heh, using the Faction of Misty Clouds to pressure father? This Nalan Yanran certainly is using some shameless tactics…” Fury began to build within Xiao Yan’s heart.