1709 Swordsman the Cloud
"Hong Qing, what's wrong with you?! Can you show some compassion?!" said the woman unhappily, who had brought Jiang Chen to the team out of good intentions.
"I just want him to be mentally prepared. It won't be so easy to ransom someone from the Bloody Killing Gang."
The youngster called Hong Qing, did not restrain himself. He stood up instead. Pointing at the middle-aged man who had spoken to Jiang Chen, he said, "That man has been here for days. He has enough ransom, but with no one backing him up, he hasn't even got the chance to go onto the mountain."
Everyone there knew something about the middle-aged man.
His daughter was kidnapped there. He was already broken in order to raise the ransom, but he still failed to find enough money.
"Just you, such a little guy, and that three-star guy, why would they see you?"
Hong Qing also saw Ma Wei, who was standing behind Jiang Chen.
Ma Wei had just tied the horse. He did not expect to be looked down upon as soon as he came back.
He was, after all, a boss, too. He was going to flare up right away.
But he did not forget about his situation. He snorted but did not do anything.
Hong Qing sat back complacently.
"I hope you won't mind. That's Hong Qing. If you are with us, it will be easier to ransom your family," the woman said to Jiang Chen, soothing him.
"I don't care," said Jiang Chen.
Hong Qing, already sitting back, threw him another sharp look.
Not minding and not caring were different.
Jiang Chen said he did not care. He apparently was trying to irritate Hong Qing.
"Forget about it."
Those around Hong Qing put their hands on his shoulders so that he would calm down.
"Xiao Yun, stop being so nice all the time. You'll bring troubles to us in such a situation," said a short-haired woman aggressively, who obviously took fancy to Hong Qing.
Xiao Yun felt awkward. She did not expect Jiang Chen to be so difficult.
She called him over because his young look evoked pity in her.
She did not expect Jiang Chen to be so proud.
By then, she could not kick him out of the team, either, so she had to brace herself and sit down, despite the awkward feeling.
"You won't regret," Jiang Chen said in a low voice.
Xiao Yun was struck dumb. Then she smiled helplessly, without speaking.
All of a sudden, the teenage girl sitting at the center burst out crying.
The team panicked instantly.
They were comforting the girl while blaming Hong Qing and Xiao Yun for their insensibility because they made their apprentice younger sister feel bad.
From those voices, Jiang Chen learned the girl's name was Zhao Ying.
It was a small and sweet girl, with two dimples on her baby face.
She was crying like a pear blossom bathed in the rain at that moment, quite delicate and touching.
It was her mother that had been kidnapped by the Bloody Killing Bang not long ago.
These people were her sibling disciples. They came here specifically to help their apprentice younger sister.
"Mother… Mother will be fine, won't she?" Zhao Ying just could not be comforted.
No one knew how to answer her.
"Take it easy. The Bloody Killing Gang is the leader of all dark forces. They have their own morals that they value. They will neither kill nor hurt their hostages."
"That being said, if the deadline has passed and still no one comes with the ransom, men will become slaves, and women will be sold to whorehouses."
Popping his head out, Ma Wei tried to comfort her.
The first part of his speech was all right, but the second part made Zhao Ying cry harder.
"Damn your morals."
Jiang Chen said unhappily. Did he know how to comfort people at all?
Ma Wei was struck dumb and had no idea what he had said wrong.
Zhao Ying kept crying. She was already out of her senses. No one could calm her down.
"You are Zhao Ying, right?" Jiang Chen said at that moment.
His soothing voice struck people dumb. Zhao Ying looked up at him.
"As long as I'm here, your mother will be fine," Jiang Chen said seriously.
Others were extremely puzzled and had no idea why he had the confidence to say that.
However, Zhao Ying, looking into Jiang Chen's's eyes, felt a soothing magic. She stopped crying involuntarily.
Nodding at Jiang Chen, she curled up into the corner again, not saying a word.
The others were very surprised. They did not know how Jiang Chen had made it.
"You are really daring to say that. Don't you know what you are capable of, and you are not?"
Hong Qing complained silently. If it were not for fear of making Zhao Ying cry again, he would tease Jiang Chen hard.
"I guess I did something unnecessary."
Xiao Yun laughed at herself. Judging from Jiang Chen's tone, he would not need her help at all.
Jiang Chen did not say anything more. He swallowed some elixirs to cure his injuries.
The second part of the night passed fast. At daybreak, everyone stood up and gathered before the mountain gate, except Jiang Chen.
"Leave him alone," Hong Qing said unhappily, seeing Jiang Chen still sitting in meditation.
Xiao Yun did not say anything after thinking.
Soon, a group of hideous-looking men walked down the steps.
The leader was a bearded man with a flat face, but his eyes were strangely big and round.
"Line in order!"
The man yelled in a loud voice, looking down at the crowd after stopping on the tenth step.
Soon, a line appeared in front of him.
The middle-aged man who was going to pay the ransom for his daughter was at the front. Showing the money he had raised, he looked up with hope.
However, the response he got pushed him into an abyss.
"Why? Why isn't it enough? Boss Yue, that's exactly the amount we agreed on last time."
Stuttering, the middle-aged man begged, sweating heavily.
"The ransom has risen again. Can't we do that? Baron Du, I'll just be honest with you. Our leader takes fancy to your daughter. No matter how much money you bring, it won't work, unless you can find us a strong enough man."
This Boss Yue smiled coldly. By a wave of his hand, the middle-aged man's death sentence was announced.
The middle-aged man was so pissed off that he was going to explode. But not long after the hatred showed on his face, it turned into reluctance and grief.
In the end, he was pushed aside by the gangsters of the Bloody Killing Gang.
Hong Qing, Xiao Yun, and their team were the next.
"Boy! What a great team! What happened? Are you going to hold a competition here?" said Yue Laosan, teasing, looking at those talented youngsters.
The other gangsters burst out laughing. Seeing those arrogant people forced to put their pride aside and beg them, they felt great.
Hong Qing came forward with a hard face.
"You are apprentices of Swordsman the Cloud! Did you come for that pretty woman? I vaguely remember."
Yue Laosan was not surprised to learn who they were.
"My master told me we should give the leader of the Bloody Killing Gang this face and follow the rules. This is the ransom. Please release her."
Hong Qing did not hand him the ransom. Instead, he left it on the ground.
Squinting, Yue Laosan kicked Hong Qing in his chest after staying quiet for a few seconds.
"Who do you think you are?!" he cursed.
Getting up to his feet in anger, Hong Qing was going to start a fight. But feeling the killing intent of the Bloody Killing Gang, he had to hold his temper.
At that moment, Yue Laosan's attention had been diverted. He was sizing up Zhao Ying.
"For the sake of Swordsman the Cloud, I won't be angry with you. Let this filial daughter go onto the mountain to pick up her mother," said Yue Laosan.
Zhao Ying was pleasantly surprised immediately.
"You should bring her here. Isn't that the usual way to do things?"
Extending her arm to stop Zhao Ying, Xiao Yun asked Yue Laosan.