If this notice was released, his dignity would be completely crushed, and he would never be able to raise his head in public ever again. He would become the talk of the entire town, and this shame would effectively destroy the prestige that the Dan Clan had built up over several centuries.

It would be thorough social suicide.

"Sign the document," Xue Qin said with a cold and pressurizing voice.

"Third Young Master, you mustn't sign the document! Once you do, the reputation of our Dan Clan will be in shambles!" Elder Yi had also read the document from behind Dan Xiaotian, and he immediately kneeled down and cried in protest.

Even death was not as fearsome as seeing the clan that he had devoted his life to serving humiliated in such a manner!

"I…" Dan Xiaotian was at a loss.

He knew very well what would happen if he signed the document, but if he did not, the other party would still back out of the marriage agreement, and the outcome… would likely be much worse than this.

He was already backed to a corner. There was nothing else he could do.

At that moment, even suicide had become an option for him. He had never desired so much to end his life and let all of this come to an end. However, when all seemed lost, a voice suddenly echoed in the air.

"If you don't wish to sign the document, don't sign it."

Everyone immediately turned around, only to see a young man wrapped like a mummy leaning against the doorframe. He was looking at them with a smile on his lips.

This young man did not seem to possess any cultivation at all, but his eyes were completely devoid of fear despite standing before an expert of Xue Chen's caliber. It was as if everything that was happening before him was nothing more than a small scuffle.

"Who are you? If this matter doesn't concern you, you will do well to keep your mouth zipped. Haven't you heard of the saying that disaster originates from the mouth?" Xue Chen glared at Zhang Xuan threateningly.

If possible, they wanted to resolve the matter with Dan Xiaotian without resorting to violence, or else there was a risk that word could get out. Thus, Xue Chen had no choice but to hold himself back from making a move.

With an unfazed smile, Zhang Xuan said, "I am just an insignificant figure whom Brother Dan has saved. I didn't want to interfere in your business, but I was afraid that Brother Dan would regret his decision if he signed that document, so I couldn't help but advise him so."

"Brother Zhang…" Dan Xiaotian's eyes could not help but light up in gratitude.

Even if Zhang Xuan did not know of Xue Qin and Xue Chen's true identity and the tremendous power that they wielded, it should be apparent that those two were figures that could not be trifled with from their conversation.

Yet, despite the risk of possibly bringing trouble upon himself, the other party still chose to speak up. Such sentiments left him feeling slightly touched.

"Regret? Hahaha! What kind of regret could he possibly have? Does this brat still think that it's possible for him to get together with the Second Young Mistress?" Xue Chen scoffed. "Snap out of your daydream! Why don't you take a good look at yourself first? A toad like you actually dares to lust for the flesh of a swan? Learn your place!"

"I'm glad to see that there's at least one thing the both of us can agree on. The two of them indeed shouldn't get together." Zhang Xuan nodded calmly in response to the other party's insults. "It's apparent that this Second Young Mistress of yours isn't worthy of Brother Dan! There couldn't be a worse insult to him than if he married someone like her!"

"What did you say?"

Xue Chen had been nodding gleefully when Zhang Xuan spoke the first part of his piece. However, by the time Zhang Xuan finished his words, Xue Chen's eyes were already dripping with murderous intent.

"You don't believe me?" Zhang Xuan looked at Xue Chen with an incredulous expression, as if he was unable to believe that the latter could not understand something so obvious. "I guess you really have to see with your own eyes in order to tell the obvious, huh? Very well, come back in three days, and we'll see the results!"

"After all that was said and done, it seems like you are just trying to stall for time. Futile!" Xue Chen sneered coldly. "As long as Dan Xiaotian doesn't sign this document, I can assure that what he will lose isn't just his dignity but his life as well!"

Zhang Xuan shrugged nonchalantly and said, "If it's gone, so be it… Someone like Brother Dan wouldn't care about something as trivial as that!"

"Huh?" Somehow, Dan Xiaotian felt that there was something very wrong with the words that had just been spoken.

It seems like Brother Zhang is a person with extremely strong opinions… But what do you mean by 'if it's gone, so be it'? This isn't a trivial matter at all… My life is on the line here!

Turning his gaze away from Zhang Xuan, Xue Chen looked at Dan Xiaotian with a look so cold that it seemed like it could freeze hell over. "Is that your decision?"

Dan Xiaotian shuddered a little under Xue Chen's glare, but he gritted his teeth and replied, "Brother Zhang's words reflect my intention!"

He had no idea why Brother Zhang would put so much hope in him, but it was clear that he had no path of retreat anymore.

If he had to weigh the dignity of the Dan Clan to his own life, he would indubitably choose the dignity of the Dan Clan. The Dan Clan did not belong to him only; it had been built up with the effort of his predecessors, including his deceased grandfather, father, and brothers. He could not trample on their efforts just so he could live!

Besides, once the marriage agreement was annulled, he would be as good as dead anyway. With this, the decision that he had to make could not be any clearer.

"You do have some backbone, don't you? Let's see where your decision brings you, shall we?" Hearing Dan Xiaotian's final decision, Xue Chen flung his sleeves furiously. He turned to the young lady beside him and said, "Second Young Mistress, let's go!"

On the other hand, Xue Qin looked at Dan Xiaotian disdainfully and spat, "Humph! I hope that you won't come begging for your life when the time comes!"

Following which, she turned around and walked away. Throughout this entire period, she did not even spare a glance at Zhang Xuan, as if it would sully her eyes to look at an ordinary human.

As soon as the two of them were out of the courtyard…

"Teacher…" Xue Qin looked at Xue Chen worriedly.

Xue Chen quickly scanned his surroundings to confirm that there was no one around before reassuring the young lady. "Don't worry. We won't even require three days to resolve this problem. The Dan Clan is nothing at all. Let's see if they can even survive tonight!"

Those words made Xue Qin heave a sigh of relief. "I had a good impression of him initially, but who could have known that he would turn out to be such an arrogant brat? Let him die then! A person like him doesn't deserve to live in this world!"

The two of them got into a carriage, and it did not take them long to disappear into the distance.

Shortly after Xue Qin and Xue Chen left the residence, there was a brief moment of silence before Elder Yi spoke up worriedly.

"Third Young Master, this won't do. We can't just blindly wait here for our deaths… Let's leave the city!"

He knew that the City Lord Manor was not as gracious and magnanimous as it seemed on the surface. In fact, he suspected that the massacre and eventual downfall of the Dan Clan had been orchestrated by the City Lord Manor.

Since they were willing to go that far, it was likely that they would have no qualms dispatching assassins against Dan Xiaotian, especially after his decisive rejection earlier.

Furthermore, with the means of the City Lord Manor, it was likely that they would be able to erase all traces of their involvement.

Since that was the case, the best thing they could do was run as far away as they could.

"Run away? Do you think that it's still possible for us to run away?" Dan Xiaotian shook his head bitterly.

The fact that the Second Young Mistress had come personally to reject the marriage showed their determination in ensuring that this matter was resolved without a hiccup. As such, there was no way the City Lord Manor would allow them to escape.

If they could not cancel the marriage agreement, would the Second Young Mistress not have to spend her entire life in loneliness, waiting for him to come back?

"Brother Zhang…" Dan Xiaotian turned to Zhang Xuan, hoping to ask the latter for some guidance as to what he should do in this situation.

Since the other party had made huge promises such as 'come back in three days, and we'll see the results', perhaps the other party already had an idea in mind.

"I'd like to confirm your intentions one last time. Were you willing to sign that earlier document?"

"Of course not!" Dan Xiaotian shook his head. "If I signed that darned paper, how could I face my predecessors even after my death?"

If he sullied the Dan Clan's reputation like that, even his death would not be enough to atone for his sins!

"Are you afraid of pain?" Zhang Xuan asked.

"Even death is no longer that frightening to me, so what does a little pain matter?" Dan Xiaotian had no idea what Zhang Xuan was getting at, but he still answered the question honestly.

"Do you wish to exact vengeance for the humiliation you have suffered today?"

"Of course! It isn't just today's humiliation. If I could, I would exact vengeance for all of the insults I have suffered ever since my parents' death, but…" Dan Xiaotian looked at his own leg with a crestfallen look.

How could he possibly feel nothing when being insulted in such a manner?

But with his leg in such state and his inability to cultivate, such intentions would only remain intentions in his head. They would never come to fruition.

If he had still been that talented youth, he would not have to live his life so subserviently…

"Good! Since you have made up your mind… the last thing you have to do now is acknowledge me as your teacher!" Zhang Xuan said.

"Acknowledge you as my teacher?"

Did Brother Zhang's head bump on something that resulted in a concussion?

What am I supposed to learn from an ordinary human?

Could it be that your promise of 'come back in three days'… referred to this?

Dan Xiaotian's lips twitched as he suddenly felt as if he had been bamboozled.



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