Translator: Henyee Translations Editor: Henyee Translations
Surrounded by a large group of family lords, a young man came into the room with confident and wide strides.
The young man's dark hair fell over his shoulders, contrasted against his pale and glowing complexion. The family lords surrounded and evolved around him as planets would to the sun. The appearance of the young man had quickly outshone any other members of his generation.
"He looks so much like Chen Beixuan."
A tall and attractive girl wearing a high split ballroom dress locked her dreamy gaze onto the young man. Her hands shivered a little.
She was Ai Jinqi, the girl Chen Fan met in Japan.
It had only been a year since her trip to Japan, but her appearance had matured significantly in a good way.
"Nah! He is not even close to Chen Beixuan. Chen Beixuan didn't need such a large crowd to lend him the appearance of power, he IS the power. That young man is no match against Chen Beixuan."
After some careful comparison, Ai Jinqi shook her head and drew her conclusion.
Although that young man had only a fraction of Chen Fan's overbearing demeanor, it was enough to subjugate the minds of all the guests of the banquet.
His powerful appearance had tugged at the heartstrings of many fine ladies at the banquet, making their eyes gleam with admiration.
"Everyone, allow me to introduce." Ji Luochen took a step forward and announced: "This gentleman is Lin Pojun from the Lin family of Southeastern China."
Everyone watched as the young lord of the mighty Ji Family had introduced Lin Pojun to everyone submissively as if he was Lin Pojun's subject.
The rest of the tycoons and rich heirs at the banquet were taken aback by the development. They all shot Lin Pojun surprised and submissive glances.
"He is the so-called Young Master?"
"He is the benefactor of over a few dozen family clans in Zhong Hai? Tsk… tsk… such power!"
"I have heard of the Lin family of Southeastern China before. My grandpa told me that they used to be the most powerful family in China. Are they making a come-back now?"
Many guests murmured to each other under their breath.
Although the Lin Family had been living in seclusion for over ten years, their influences were still present. The sight of Lin Pojun and the memories of the Lin Family's ruthless methods had terrified a lot of people.
"I have heard that the Ji Family, Tang Family, and the Tang Family had messed with the wrong person in Jiang Nan Province and was on the brink of destruction. Now they have gained the support of the Lin Family, I guess the situation is going to turn around for them?"
Some elites who knew the enmity between these family clans and Chen Fan were more shocked by the appearance of Lin Pojun than those who didn't.
Ji Luochen's face beamed from side to side and looked like a completely different person than he had been three months ago.
The same went for Lord Tang and Lord Nine as they both looked confident and spirited after having secured a powerful benefactor.
"Everyone, I am here to make a proposal to form a commerce guild in Zhong Hai. Our enemies are many, and only united we are strong. By joining forces together, and fighting as one team, we will be able to take on the powerful financial threats coming from Korea, Japan and the United States of America."
Lin Pojun got to the point right away and announced confidently.
His words had stirred up the crowd in the room.
Everyone was surprised by how quickly the confrontation had ended.
There were many Commerce Guilds in Zhong Hai, but never had there been an overarching body across all industries.
Lin Pojun was right, without joining forces, the firms in Zhong Hai would never be able to compete against powerful international corporations. Even the most powerful company in Zhong Hai has struggled to survive in the international market.
However, what would make Lin Pojun the rightful leader of such a powerful organization?
"The proposal will have to come from the richest men and women to convince us to join. You are just a young lad, and are we supposed to trust you?" Someone jeered at Lin Pojun,
"I wholeheartedly agree with Young Master Lin's suggestion." A voice came in from the entrance.
Everyone turned around and saw a stately middle-aged man with a broad smile walking into the room.
He was the richest man in Zhong Hai, Shi Hongyi!
He owned tens of billions of assets in China and was ranked top ten on the Forbes Rich List. However, such a powerful and wealthy person bowed to Lin Pojun respectfully, if not fearfully.
Many people were taken aback by the turn of the event.
"He is Shi Hongyi, the most powerful man in Zhong Hai! Why would he bow to a young man? Who the heck is Lin Pojun?"
Someone exclaimed with a trembling voice.
The others were quiet and they looked at each other with fear.
Meanwhile, on the second floor of the banquet hall, an old man was enjoying a cup of tea. A man standing beside the old man bent his back slightly and said:
"Shi Hongyi, Ji Family of Zhong Hai, Tang Family, Nin Family, and Shang family are all here. They make up one-fifth of the wealth in Zhong Hai. It's still a bit of a stretch to form a Commerce guild with less than half of the businesses in Zhong Hai, but it will have to do for now."
The man said as cunning and shrewd light shone through the thick glasses with thin golden rims.
"Xiao Cai, don't you forget about our host."
The stately old man took a sip of tea from his teacup and said lightly.
"Lord Zhou, do you mean the Hua Family also agreed to join?"
The man's face changed colors as he gasped.
Unlike the Tang Family, Nin Family or the Shang family, the Hua Family of Zhong Hai was the real force that safeguarded Zhong Hai's prosperity. The Hua Family was so powerful that even the Ji Family would pale in comparison.
If the Hua Family decided to join the guild, then Lin Pojun would have the entire Zhong Hai within his grasp.
No wonder Xiao Cai was so stunned by the revelation.
"My father used to tell me that the Ancestral Chief of the Lin Family had done a great service to the Old Man Hua, so the Old Man Hua would have to repay the Lin Family in some way. That being said, the Hua family wouldn't want to have their skin too deep in Lin Family's game either, so their involvement was more of a kind gesture than any real support."
The old man said as a flicker of concern flashed in his eyes.
The more Xiao Cai listened, the more fearful he had become.
He knew the authority and prestige Lord Zhou commanded in Zhong Hai. If even Lord Zhou couldn't deter Lin Pojun from spreading his influence, then no one in Zhong Hai could.
Once Shi Hongyi had publicly endorsed the plan, most people felt that the Commerce guild was not that much of a far stretch after all.
"Such an outstanding move! Young Master rallied Shi Hongyi to his side and gained the trust of half of the Zhong Hai's business world." Ji Luochen exclaimed, beaming from side to side.
Lin Pojun sat in his chair quietly with a faint smile. Everything was under his control.
An extraordinarily pretty girl topped up his cup with more tea. Even Ji Luochen was shocked by the girl's devastating beauty which reminded him of Su Xiao, Fang Qiong and An Ya.
"Young Master has consolidated his control in Lin Nan province, and now with the Hua Family on his side, he should easily take control of the Zhong Hai's business world. The might of the Lin Family is truly beyond ordinary people's comprehension."
Someone cracked a cold smile and said.
If Chen Fan was here, he would have recognized Lin Pojun's cronies and the spoiled brats were the same group of people.
"Once I have controlled the Hua Family of Zhong Hai, Lu family of Tian Nan and the Tang family of Jiang Nan, the entire underground world of eastern China should be within my tight grasp. I will then slowly nibble away the fragmented business leagues one after another, consolidate their power into one overarching Commerce Guild under my direct control. Once I have both the underground world and the business world at my beckoning call, I should have enough strength to take on the Ye family of Mount Yan," Lin Pojun said calmly.
The Lin Family had not only planned out this road map for Lin Pojun decades ago, but they had also taken actions to make sure their plan would come to fruition. Shi Hongyi, for example, was installed in Zhong Hai decades ago by the Lin Family; he was nothing but a pawn in the Lin Family's master plan.
However, no one knew that the planning for his moment had taken place decades ago. For most people, everything just seemed to fall into place at the perfect moment, as if by design.
Yichen was terrified by the scale of Lin Pojun ambition.
"But, Young Master… what about the Chen family of Jiang Nan Province?"
Ji Luochen asked hesitantly.
The question soured the smiles on Lord Tang and Lord Nin as well.
The Chen family was like a sharp blade hanging over their necks, constantly threatening their lives.
"Chen Beixuan is a mighty warrior, but my family also has Immortal State Cultivators to counter him. I bet Chen Beixuan would have to think twice now before harming any of you since now you are under the Lin Family's protection."
Lin Pojun said readily.
The Lin family of southeastern China used to be the most powerful family in China and, in Lin Pojun's mind, it still was. Lin Shuming had been the most powerful man in China a hundred years ago, and even the power of the Siberia werewolves was a far cry from his unimaginable abilities.
Chen Fan should have counted himself lucky for getting away with killing Lin Tatian and Lin Tashan. If he pressed any more buttons, Lin Shuming and the Ancestral Patriarch of the Hong Sect would join forces and end his life.
"Just so, just so."
Tang Family and the Nin Family members nodded in agreement. Just three months ago, they had no clue what Immortal State was, but by now, Immortal State had become public knowledge among elite families thanks to the CIA's re-publication of the Divine Roll.
As soon as they learned the terrifying power of an Immortal State Warrior, the Tang and the Nin family hurried to apologize to the Chen Family.
However, they were now under the protection of another Immortal State warrior who was supposedly even more powerful than Chen Fan.
The sight of the tycoons and family lords' ingratiating manner had taken Ai Jinqi by surprise.
"Shoot! If the Commerce Guild really comes to fruition, us small fish in the tank would be their free meals. What would happen to the Ai family?"
Ai Jinqi's mind raced.
His concern was shared by many people in the room, including Lord Zhou and Xiao Cai. Although there were a couple of other family clans in Zhong Hai that were as powerful as the Ji Family, the Hua Family's endorsement would be the final nail on the other family's coffin.
Lo and behold, the Xia, Gao and the Chu family quickly capitulated to Lin Pojun's might and signed up to the proposal of the Commerce Guild. The other influential families kept their silence, fearing to confront the Lin Family's aggression.
It was evident that everyone knew the Lin Family had an Immortal State warrior among its ranks.
Meanwhile, two leaders of the Hua Family on the top floor of the mansion, watching the development unfold.
"Teacher, I think Lin Pojun is about to get what he wanted."
Cheng Danqin said with a tightly furrowed brow.
"I would never have thought that the Lin Family could plan so far ahead of time and could be so patient."
Hua Yunfeng heaved a sigh.
The involvement of Shi Hongyi had caught him off guard.
"He really lives up to the reputation as the pride of the Lin family, a worthy heir of Lord Shuming." Even as Hua Yunfeng lamented vehemently, he caught a glimpse of three people emerging out of a Ferrari in the parking lot from the corner of his eye.
When he recognized the face of one of the visitors, his eyes lit up, body taut with excitement.
"What is he doing here?"