Chapter 438: Rules
Translator: Irene Editor: TYZ, KLKL
Calm down... calm down...
Zhao Boan repeatedly encouraged himself. Seeing the dense crowd raised his heartbeat. Heavens have pity on him, he was merely a small merchant and had never seen such a scene.
Cotton Tree Tavern was just a small guesthouse, its narrow lobby about to explode because of this crowd. The boss, who was initially displeased, quickly became friendly and even offered tea upon seeing major figures.
Of course, everyone ignored him and rushed toward Zhao Boan instead.
"Snow lava right? Is that what it's called? Can I buy it now?"
"How much is it? Is there a special price for bulk purchase?"
"How do we establish a long term business relationship with you?"
The crowd asked their questions all at once. The alleyway was bustling.
A few in charge from big enterprises sat at a corner without a word. They looked on cooly as those small enterprises moved about eagerly, trying to secure the lowest price.
They shifted their gaze to Shi Xueman, bewilderment rising within their chests.
Among the gang, Shi Xueman was undoubtedly the most eye-catching person, since she was very beautiful. Plus, she was out in this world alone so she must have outstanding abilities and a powerful background. Her clothing and armor were evidence of that.
Who was she?
The managers were racking their brains, trying to search for similar targets in their minds.
When they first realized that the owner of the fire liquid was staying in an unknown guesthouse, they figured he must be hard pressed for money. They formed an alliance privately, agreeing to place pressure on the owner.
They'd cooperated many times for similar matters. Their enterprises were the three biggest ones in Clearwater City. Once they made a joint decision, other enterprises dared not disobey.
But seeing Shi Xueman made them uncertain.
They made eye contact and agreed to wait it out.
Ai Hui mumbled softly, "Luckily Zhao Boan is here or else us non-businessmen would be at a loss."
Shi Xueman rolled her eyes involuntarily. She'd wanted to comment that he was the real unscrupulous businessman, but seeing him looking all innocent and sincere she knew it would've been a waste of time talking to him. This fellow had the thickest skin ever.
Lou Lan nodded his head repeatedly. "Yes, Ai Hui's right."
Shi Xueman wanted to turn around. How could you say such unconscientious words? However, she felt more envious than anything else. Ay, this fellow is really lucky to have Lou Lan!
Seeing the crowd closing in, Ai Hui licked his lips, his eyes lighting up. "Snow lava is actually A-grade! Hahaha, Lou Lan, we're going to be rich."
Lou Lan smiled widely, his eyes forming two lines. "Ai Hui, we're going to earn lots and lots of money."
"That's right! Lots and lots indeed!" Ai Hui answered excitedly, waving his hand. "We're going to have money so what do you want, Lou Lan? I'll give it to you!"
Lou Lan opened his eyes wide. "Really?"
Shi Xueman couldn't endure it any longer. "Whatever you want, I'll buy it for you now, Lou Lan."
Lou Lan opened his eyes even wider and exclaimed even more gleefully, "Really?"
Ai Hui was displeased. What's the big deal? Acting so arrogantly just because you have the money? Teasing other people's sand puppet just because you have the money? Ai Hui decided to use reality to teach Iron Lady a lesson.
He snorted and said in all self-righteousness, "I want it too!"
Shi Xueman was slightly taken aback. She was shocked by his shamelessness.
Ai Hui felt more than accomplished knowing that he was responsible for the exciting expressions that emerged on Iron Lady's ice-cold face.
Zhao Boan seemed satisfied and had gradually calmed down from his initial fluster and confusion.
He was born into a merchant family after all. How could he have possibly missed the fact that they were in possession of a rare commodity after seeing the commotion before him?
He'd accompanied Ai Hui and gang to the market for the past two days and hadn't seen even a drop of A-grade fire liquid. B-grade fire liquid was sold at ten essence elemental beans per drop so for how much should he sell snow lava, which was a grade higher?
He had no idea, but did not make it apparent.
Zhao Boan smiled. "It's been a long time since an A-grade fire liquid made an appearance in the market. It is very difficult to determine its price value. In order to allow more people to utilize snow lava without spending excessively, we are going to auction them off in batches. Don't worry, everyone. We've prepared enough, so hopefully everyone will get to purchase some."
A few major managers made eye contact and saw the haze in their eyes. Auction was their most hated sales method since it meant that they were likely to pay much more than needed.
Bullshit like "everyone will get to purchase some" did not cool the crowd down. They weren't dumb. Even if snow lava was a refined fire liquid, the refining process required much manpower and resources, and was definitely challenging.
In this era where ordinary fire elemental energy materials were in deficit, no supply of A-grade fire liquid could satisfy the market demand.
Zhao Boan continued, "Of course, other than holding auctions, we are very willing to work with capable enterprises. We need to procure large volumes of goods. Here's a list for everyone to see what your enterprise has to provide. Enterprises able to supply us with more goods at better prices will be on our priority list for the sale of snow lava. We will also offer you a special price and consider establishing a long term cooperation."
Faces of a few major managers cleared up slightly. These conditions were targeted at big enterprises.
When they took the list over their gazes stiffened. The numbers had given them a shock. They were all experienced and could tell a lot just from looking at this list.
Personal training would not require this much material. They were convinced that there was a city behind these fellows.
Only a city would consume this much material.
They had a grave expression on their faces. Their wish to push prices down disappeared instantly. The opposite party was more than what he'd revealed. And Zhao Boan did talk about establishing a long term cooperation, which moved these big enterprises.
If their enterprises could sell A-grade fire liquid steadily and for the long term, their influence would increase exponentially.
The few enterprises that had a secret agreement immediately turned hostile.
A few major managers were about to stand up when a cold voice rang from the entrance of the tavern. "I heard someone's selling A-grade fire liquid here?"
The cold voice was like a breath of cold wind, blowing through the tavern lobby. The lobby, lively just a moment ago, was now in dead silence.
A skinny, bamboo-like figure appeared by the door.
He walked forward, as if no one was around, and the crowd opened up a path for him.
He was thin and ugly. His face resembled that of a horse and his features were flat, as if drawn on. His expression was very cold and terrifying. Five big fellows followed behind, each fierce and ominous looking. The elemental energy waves radiating from their bodies carried strong murderous spirit.
The tall and skinny man was Yang Wuchang, nicknamed Fickle Yang. He was a terrifying scoundrel from Clearwater City, known to extort and blackmail, collect protection fees, poll tax and do the dirty on other villains. Basically, he did not shrink from any crimes.
His was ruthless and domineering. Those who made him an enemy either died dubiously or disappeared.
Even though he'd offended many people, he was living free and unfettered because he had solid backings.
Master Yang Xiaodong, consecrated by Clearwater City, was his uncle.
Even the mayor, Qiao Meiqi, had to bow down to Yang Xiaodong.
Yang Wuchang was aware of the power he had, but never committed sabotage when it came to the mayor's properties. He knew that his uncle wasn't interested in his insignificant income but if there were any rare items or objects that appeared mysterious, he would immediately present them to him.
He'd done it a few times in fact. Seeing how sensible his nephew was, Yang Xiaodong protected him even more.
Yang Wuchang also borrowed his uncle's might to get fighters onto his side. The notorious guys following behind him were known as the "four fickle devils". Evilness stained their hands. The hands that killed countless lives.
Yang Wuchang strutted in and threw out a money bag. "I'm buying all of the fire liquid."
Faces around him turned ashen, but because of Fickle Yang's evil reputation no one dared utter a sound.
Zhao Boan looked at the money bag on the ground. Just by listening to the sound it made he knew there couldn't be more than a hundred essence elemental beans inside. He responded coldly, "Did you not hear the rules? I'm not selling!"
"Rules?" As if he'd just heard a joke, Yang Wuyang laughed it off, his expression abruptly turning malicious. "You're here in Clearwater City and you want to talk rules with me? I'll let you know what rules are!"
Before he finished his sentence Yang Wuchang reached his palm out toward Zhao Boan.
Zhao Boan's teeth would shatter if this hit landed.
A resounding slap sounded.
Zhao Boan remained motionless. Yang Wuchang flew backward like an empty burlap bag.
No one knew when, but Shi Xueman's ice cold figure had appeared in front of Zhao Boan and that resounding slap was produced by her.
Ai Hui stood behind her, mocking, "Is this the rule? What a good rule!"
He wasn't the least bit embarrassed about hiding behind a woman's back, his voice cheerful and satisfied, as if that slap had been let loose by him.
The onlookers looked at him disdainfully.
As a servant, how could he let his master take actions personally? What was he for then?
Shi Xueman's slap shook everyone present.
Faces changed and even a few managers from respective enterprises turned pale. They knew that their fire liquid was about to slip through their fingers.
When had Yang Wuchang ever suffered such humiliation?
This turn of events came too suddenly and shockingly, causing the lobby to fall into dead silence within ten seconds.
Yang Wuchang was out of it, his ears buzzing non-stop. He regained his senses ten seconds later, half his face swollen like a bun. He flew into a rage. "Are you idiots waiting for death? Kill this slut! Do not let anyone off!"
As if awakened from a dream, the four devils saw the malevolence and murderousness in their master's eyes and knew that he was thoroughly pissed.
They looked at each other before drawing their weapons and pouncing on Shi Xueman.
Ai Hui had no intention of assisting her. Instead, he stood behind her watching in sympathy and admiration at the four quickly approaching figures.
Did you call her a slut? You guys are daredevils.