His words caused Leah to hold her words, as she truly was going to ask for their forgiveness.
John shook his head at seeing this.
'She's far too kind for cultivation. She'll either need to toughen up, or resign herself to such fates all her life.'
His eyes once again locked on the three meek youths before him. While he wanted nothing more than to kill them now and rid his sect of such vermin, he knew he didn't have the authority to do so. Only the Enforcement Hall or the Sect Leader and Vice Sect Leader could make such a decision.
However, he could take other measures.
"Grovel before Leah and Elliot and ask for their forgiveness," John suddenly commanded.
The three youths each grimaced with unwillingness as they heard this command, but once glance at John's cold eyes stopped them from protesting. The lead boy grit his teeth and hesitated for a moment before dropping to his knees before Leah and Elliot.
The two others followed his lead, and groveled as well.
"This…" Leah exclaimed out loud. Elliot placed his hand on Leah's shoulder, as if to remind her of John's previous words.
"We're sorry. We'll never do this again," the lead boy apologized with a shaking voice. The two others repeated his words as well, as John looked down on them coldly.
"Again," John commanded.
John continued to command them to grovel and apologize, as a small crowd had gathered around them to see what was going on. Embarrassment washed over the three of them, but they did not do anything to displease John further.
Only after apologizing for quite some time did John allow the three of them to stand up. He slowly looked each in the eye, as he gave one final command.
"From now on, you'll be subordinates to Leah and Elliot. If they ask you to do anything, regardless of the command, you accept it. If I found out you haven't obliged with this command...well, you can put the dots together," John said to the three of them.
Each grimaced once more as they thought of such a fate. They had seen how John had easily and gruesomely cut down Hunter, and none of them wanted such a fate.
John stared at them for a bit longer in silence before dismissing them.
"You can leave," he commanded. Each of the youths breathed out a massive sigh of relief as the quickly stood up and prepared to leave. However, John's last words caused a look of panic and fear to appear on their faces once more.
"Oh, and you are to immediately report to the Enforcement Hall and state what you did. They will decide what to do with you. I'll be speaking to Elder Ragur within the day, and if I find out you didn't report yourself to them…"
John's voice trailed off, as he didn't need to verbalize his threats. The three nodded their heads and instantly ran off, wanting to be in John's presence for as little as possible.
John's cold face warmed up as he looked back to Leah and Elliot with a smile on his face.
"Come, lets have some food together and talk about our lives over the last half year," John said to the two of them.
Leah and Elliot were still in a daze after what had just happened, but happily accepted John's proposal. The three of them walked to the business district, and entered one of the finest restaurants.
John booked a room on the top floor, which was a private room with only one table. While the attendant at the front of the restaurant doubted John's ability to pay for such a thing, as he still looked like a homeless beggar, John's quick flash of a small pile of spirit crystals changed the attendant's tune.
Leah and Elliots eyes nearly popped out of their heads at the sight of the spirit crystals, as John was blowing more on a single meal with them than they had accumulated in six months as outer disciples.
The attendant happily escorted the three of them to the top floor, which was empty at the moment.
"Your table sir. And here are the menus. I will return shortly for your orders," the man said to John before leaving.
John quickly read the menu, his face lighting up at the descriptions of the meals. The ingredients used were quite incredible, and each made him nearly salivate upon reading. His eyes glanced over one dish, and immediately lit up....
'Golden Ox Steak, from a Meridian Forging Golden Ox!'
John had always loved the Golden Ox stew his mother made, but the Golden Ox she used was always at the Mist Creation realm. As animals grew in age and power, so did their flavor. The same was true for plants, fruits, and vegetables.
John had never eaten a Meridian Forging beast, but he was sure going to try it out today.
The waiter quickly returned, asking for their orders.
"I'm getting the Golden Ox Steak, with a side of the one hundred year Spiritdew Salad," John ordered.
"An excellent choice," the waiter replied with a smile on his face. He looked towards Elliot and Leah for their orders.
John quickly noticed the hesitation on their faces, most likely from the prices.
"Don't worry, I'm paying for this, money is not a concern," John said to them. He still felt bad about their stagnated cultivations, and was going to make it up to them in several ways. This meal was just the start.
After convincing them for quite some time, Leah and Elliot finally obliged and ordered their meals. The waiter left, and the three of them began to converse happily once more.
"How can you afford all this?" Elliot couldn't help but ask.
John smiled as he replied. "I've had quite a few fortuitous encounters with other sect members and also the mysterious wastelands," John replied.
At the same time, two spatial rings suddenly appeared in the air before him, and quickly floated over to Leah and Elliot.
"This?" Leah couldn't help but ask.
"Just think of it as a gift. And I won't take no for an answer, or I'll take it as you not considering me your friend" John replied.
The two grabbed the rings and quickly inspected them. Their eyes widened immediately as they saw the contents.
Pills, cultivation aids, and more spirit crystals than they had seen in their lives laid inside.
"We can't," Leah exclaimed. "This is far too much to accept."
John's smiling face slightly darkened as he looked at Leah. "Do you not consider me to be your friend?" John asked.
Leah paused for a moment, unsure of how to reply. Elliot knew refusing wasn't an option and quickly stored the ring and thanked John. Leah, after some hesitation, did the same.
John's darkened face instantly brightened once more as a smile appeared on it.
"Perfect. Oh, it looks like the food is here. Let's eat!"
The food arrived right afterwards, and all three ate to their heart's content. John's face lit up as he savored every bite of his steak, which was the most delicious meal he had ever eaten.
The three continued to converse over their meals, catching up on the last half years in each of their lives. Leah and Elliot became more and more shocked at John' story, finding it hard to believe most of it.
However, John's power and status in the sect was proof that it was all true. Their conversations lasted for quite some time before....
A small buzz startled John out of his conversations as he suddenly took out his sound transmission disk that Pill Emperor Thunderpill had given him. A voice sounded out of it.
"Your pills are ready. Come pick them up."