They made a circle, seemingly creating a large confinement around Li Qiye. They had no choice but to go all out just once, leaving it all to fate.
Accepting defeat didn’t work. Negotiating didn’t either. What more could they do? Getting on their knees and prostrating was too much for them to handle.
People of their level required face and prestige. Even if complete subservience could save them, they would still choose against it.
Plus, they have experienced enough things in their lives. Dying here wouldn’t leave them with many regrets.
“Buzz.” This circular formation from them seemed to be cutting the nearby spatial zone apart into a separate dimension.
The area continuously rippled like water as they become ethereal, seemingly melting with space.
“Creak.” A great gate began to open in this separate dimension. There seemed to be a hidden world in the sky.
The ancient gate slowly opened to reveal an entirely new kingdom before the crowd.
“Rumble!” Loud blasts resounded as a majestic power rushed out, akin to an endless primordial flood.
Everyone’s eyes brightened due to a gradually rising sun. It was more blinding than anything and made people close their eyes. The kingdom behind the gate was full of divinity and brilliance, making observing quite difficult.
“What is that?” Someone barely saw the kingdom in the sky through the blinding light.
Multiple great figures emerged in this kingdom. They were as big as mountains so others had no choice but to look up at them.
They resembled stone statues yet not due to their divinity and gave everyone the feeling of possessing actual flesh.
“Look, aren’t those five figures at the front the five merchants?” Someone observed carefully and shouted.
These figures lined up in a triangular formation - fewer in the front and more in the back.
The person at the very front was an old man with gray hair holding a walking stick made from deer antlers. Behind him were five figures - the five merchants. 
Further to the back were numerous experts lining up; all at the Eternal level. In other words, anyone below this realm wasn’t qualified to be standing here.
“It’s the entire Trade Federation! Look, that’s Venerable Deer Merchant at the front!” Another yelled after getting a good look.
“They’re all here in person? That’s unreal, a dozen of Eternals or so, who will be able to stop them?” A young cultivator didn’t fully grasp the situation.
The federation consisted of many reclusive ancestors. Their appearance together could even cause the three behemoths to feel dread.
Of course, it wasn’t easy for all of them to gather in the same place since these Eternals were all over Imperial Lineage.
“No, the real bodies of the five Eternals are still over there, I believe those are just dao images.” Another youth disagreed, thinking that the figures in the kingdom weren’t real.
“The rumor is true.” One ancestor said.
“What rumor?” An expert became curious.
“The kingdom of the gods.” This ancestor elaborated: “After starting the federation, Venerable Deer Merchant summoned all the Eternals of the federation and created a dimension emulating an immortal realm. These Eternals left behind their arts and avatars, forever co-existing with this dimension.”
“An immortal realm? Is this true?” The crowd became startled.
“It’s one possibility.” This ancestor said: “Venerable Deer Merchant might have visited Immortal Lineage before on top of reaching the Everlasting World there. Of course, this is all hearsay, but apparently, this gave him enough insight to create this kingdom.”
“The Everlasting World? No one has been there before, it simply doesn’t exist.” Skepticism arose.
“This is only a speculation, who knows if it is true or not?” The ancestor replied: “Same with the deer merchant’s trip to Immortal Lineage.”
“No way because why would he come back, not to mention the difficulties in returning. The stronger the person, the harder it is.” Another expert added.
“However, he is indeed qualified to go there, given his powers. He just chose against doing so.” One more joined in.
The five merchants flew into the kingdom and fused with their figures.
“Boom!” The kingdom quaked from the fusion and became even more resplendent.
The aura of Eternals poured out in a boundless manner and drowned the area. A more frightening matter occurred. All of the Eternals inside this kingdom, whether it be Venerable Deer Merchant or anyone else, opened their eyes in this split second.
The entire kingdom has awakened. A while ago, it resembled a slumbering giant but no more. This explosive eruption could crush the firmaments.
“This is the real might of the federation. This kingdom can be opened anywhere by its members. Once fused with their own figures, it’ll wake up the kingdom. The more fusions, the more power.” This ancestor said.
“Since these Eternals have left behind various powers here, all of them being summoned together will result in something devastating. It’s definitely on the same level as the foundation of a system.” Another expert became startled.
“This is what makes the federation formidable.” The ancestor nodded.
“Junior, do you dare to come in here?” Green-robed Heavenly Merchant challenged. The five merchants have regained a sliver of confidence after waking up their kingdom.
The crowd glanced at Li Qiye. He would be walking into the tiger’s den by doing so.
“Why not?” Li Qiye smiled and flew straight into the kingdom.
1. Not sure on this walking stick, it is “deer” + “stick”. The Lu in Lu Keweng means deer
“Junior, have it your way!” The five merchants made up their mind and started floating higher.