Chapter 49 - Who Is The Winner (1)

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There was only one person who didn’t react like us at the bomb Hae Ack-chun threw.

The twin, Song Woo-hyun, didn’t understand or didn’t bother, he just looked ahead with wide eyes.

Seo Kalma, who looked at Hae Ack-chun with surprise asked,

“… what is that supposed to mean, Hae hyung?”

“As I said. Compared to your poorly behaved disciples, who we can call bastards at a glance, aren’t the disciples of mine better, right?”

Ah…

Please don’t make it what I am thinking.

But then again, this crazy old man was someone who didn’t care about things. Could there have been another man who would suit the title of Ghastly Monster?

“… are you saying that Hae hyung’s disciples are better than mine?”

“Those are obvious words.”

“I have a lot of confidence in my disciples.”

Seo Kalma’s words came out cold. The atmosphere was odd. It looked like he didn’t want to continue this anymore.

“Huh! Aren’t you being overconfident?”

I couldn’t figure out why this old man was coming out this strong.

If the fight wasn’t too sudden, then the twins and I would be first-rate warriors.

On the other hand, the disciples of Seo Kalma had been studying martial arts for a long time and were way ahead.

-Look at their faces.

Even Go Eunjae, who was looking down, and Ho Geum-won the sahyung smiled faintly at us.

If it wasn’t for Hae Ack-chun, they would have laughed out loud. Seo Kalma turned his head and looked at Hae Ack-chun and he said,

“Then I think this would be solved easily.”

Tak!

Seo Kalma moved to the bamboo sheet.

“Please let this happen in the Six Blood Valley. I think it would be a good idea to compete with my disciples at this meeting and see who would be a good match for Hae hyung’s disciples.”

It seemed like the atmosphere was happening like this. In the end, the way this is how any murim people would get the results they want.

“Since you are so confident with your disciples, you wouldn’t oppose, right, Hae hyung?”

asked Seo Kalma. If Hae Ack-chun refused, then it would signal a retreat.

“Good! Is there anything I wouldn’t do?”

As expected, he didn’t refuse. Seriously, is there any way that the man would refuse?

“Let’s proceed.”

“Even if it is a one-on-one confrontation, shouldn’t it be fair?”

“Fair?’

Hae Ack-chun pointed at us and said,

“No matter how excellent the disciples of mine are, it is only a year since they began to learn martial arts.”

“So, what do you mean? If you were going to take all those things into consideration, you shouldn’t have bothered bringing the topic up”

“Isn’t there a simpler way?”

“Simpler way?”

“To close down the internal qi flow and use just their techniques. Hehe.”

Hae Ack-chun was using his head, but there was a problem this time too. Even if the flow of internal qi was stopped, there was no doubt that they would still be more experienced than us.

What distinguishes them from us wasn’t just internal qi, but the presence and absence of enlightenment.

“Close the flow of qi? Hahahah!”

This time Seo Kalma burst into laughter.

He was looking at Hae Ack-chun with sneering eyes. He was thinking the same as me.

He was this confident looking because he knew the disciples of his had been honing their skills for a longer period of time and had an overall advantage.

“Why? Not confident?”

Hae Ack-chun continued provoking him. To this, Seo Kalma said,

“You won’t regret it, right? Hae hyung would know better than others that the difference in internal qi and external strength is meaningless, right?”

“It doesn’t matter.”

“You are so arrogant.”

With that, Seo Kalma turned and looked at me,

“If you think you have the chance of winning just because your disciple inherited the sword technique of the South Heavenly Swordsman, I will tell you, you are wrong. The more strong a technique, the more powerful the internal qi flow should be.”

At his words, Hae Ack-chun’s eyes twitched. Maybe he felt cornered? But soon, he smiled, crossing his arms,

“Isn’t that the same for your disciples?”

“Huhu. Think so?”

Looking at Seo Kalma’s attitude, it seemed like he didn’t believe he would lose.

If so, then the probability of winning with a sword technique that they learned a long time ago would be stronger than ours. But I didn’t know the reason for using such a long blade, though.

“Fine. I will take up the offer of Hae hyung. Then can I make a suggestion too?”

“Suggestion?”

“I am trying to amplify the entertainment of the fight.”

Seo Kalma wasn’t the one to suffer, so he said he would accept and put forth a condition.

“Fine.”

“Let’s make it a true match of sword techniques.”

“Of course it…”

“I am not talking about a simple fight.”

“What?”

“Let’s make a pact between the two sides that we won’t care even if a leg or arm is lost in the fight.”

‘…!!’

Seo Kalma was talking about life and death.

-Asshole.

There was not an inch of retreat. Seo Kalma had two targets with this.

One was to make Hae Ack-chun give up the confrontation due to the threat to his disciples’ lives.

-And the second one?

‘… they are going to make us limp or dead.’

It was the same as removing any source of power struggle right away, as they were sure of me being a strength to Hae Ack-chun. Following the progress of the sword technique I had learned, I would be nothing but a thorn in their eyes.

“Ahem.”

Hae Ack-chun hesitated for a moment, realizing what their intentions were. It was natural to think when the opponent was coming out this strong.

This had to be a real dilemma, and at that moment, I heard Hae Ack-chun,

[Huh. Seo Kalma is really using his head.]

Unless one was an idiot, they would obviously say this. Now it all depends on the choice of Hae Ack-chun. Will he send his disciples to die?

Anyone could see that this would be a disadvantage for Hae Ack-chun.

[Unleash your hidden skills.]

‘…!!’

As soon as I heard it, my heart pounded.

Hae Ack-chun knew that I was hiding my skills.

If that was the case, he could have prepared a better way for this fight to happen.

[… teacher. What do you…]

[Huh. Don’t lie around me. Did you think that you can deceive the eyes of mine?]

[Uh?]

[You have already reached the Master level.]

No.

Did this old man really notice this? But his next words could only confirm this.

[Even if your internal qi isn’t up to par. You have broken through the wall of the first-rate warrior. How can I not know after fighting with you every day?]

[…]

[I can tell by looking at the movement of your sword.]

I felt glad but surprised too.

This man was still unaware of the innate qi I used. But he was convinced that I had overcome the first-rate warrior level with the numerous training matches we had done.

He was looking into me, and I didn’t even notice at all. This old man was different!

Was he pretending not to know?

[… I apologize.]

[Look at you. I don’t need an apology. If I hadn’t been trying to train you, even I wouldn’t have noticed.]

It did sound honest.

Well, hiding my skills wasn’t an easy thing. I thought he would yell or something, but this was an unexpected outcome.

[Go with the determination to win unconditionally. But… if you cannot handle it, feel free to step out.]

[Yes?]

[It is fine to admit defeat.]

I was surprised by the sound of Hae Ack-chun. This old man, who hates losing, was saying I could admit defeat.

That meant he didn’t want me to get hurt.

‘This old man…’

Just looking at his rough attitude, I thought he was the kind to abandon people at any moment. but now, looking at this, he truly cared for this disciple.

This was unexpected.

[Huh! don’t misunderstand. It is because I don’t think you will be able to beat a guy who was learning for a much longer time than you.]

‘…’

It felt strange. This crazy old man was worried for me.

This was unexpected.

Shh!

I got up from my seat and took a bow at Hae Ack-chun.

“I will live up to your expectations.”

At those words, Hae Ack-chun’s eyes shone. On the other hand, Seo Kalma was glaring at me,

Tch tch, to make your disciples give up their limbs.”

“Huh! you are the only one who hopes for that from people.”

Hae Ack-chun yelled at him and grabbed the edge of the table.

Kiiik!

The table was pushed to the end of the room. Thanks to that, there was space to fight.

“Why delay it when we can do it now?”

At that time, Han Baek-ha, who was watching, came out.

“Stop it. The Lady did not express her intentions to accept the second elder’s conditions. She only…”

Before she could say…

[I like it.]

Baek Ryeon-ha behind the bamboo sheet said.

I wasn’t sure if she was accepting the condition or the spar, but I didn’t expect that she would say this.

“My lady!”

Han Baek-ha frowned. On the other hand, Seo Kalma was worried that she would change her mind, so he said,

“I appreciate your decision for…”

[But I have a condition too.]

Seo Kalma, who was delighted, became confused. Again, it was impossible for a smart woman like Baek Ryeon-ha to give up her freedom.

“What condition?”

[You said that the person who wins would be called the one I marry, so shouldn’t they meet my conditions too?]

At her words, Seo Kalma looked at bamboo feet. He seemed concerned that she was making reckless conditions. But then accepted,

“Please say it.”

[If it is my spouse, of course, shouldn’t the skills be better than mine? I will also compete with similar conditions.]

“Uh? The Young Lady will?”

Her declaration to fight.

Seo Kalma’s expression changed as he hadn’t expected this. It was probably because her skills were good, but I didn’t know of her skills.

“Kuahahaha. That is indeed right. If you want to be a match for the Young Lady, of course, we have to see her level of competence also.”

Hae Ack-chun helped her. Seo Kalma hesitated and nodded,

“All right. That is a sensible thing to say.”

He was worried, but he was confident about the skills and abilities of his disciples. But her words didn’t end there,

[But what if they don’t meet my conditions?]

“Uh? What is that…”

[I am asking what do we do if they cannot defeat me. You told me to make sacrifices regardless of my will. Then if I win, will Uncle make sure to follow my choice?]

“You mean… if you win, you want me to hear your choice?”

[Right.]

Seo Kalma’s expression hardened. Because he guessed what she was thinking.

And the thoughts were right.

[If I win, Uncle Hae and Seo must wear an oath of allegiance to me and support me.]

Even Hae Ack-chun seemed shocked now. What started out as a fight for pride had grown way too huge.

A lot was being put at stake now.

-She is smart.

I agreed with the words of Short Sword. In the meantime, watching her take care of her words and status to say this wasn’t an easy thing.

If two people were dragging her out, then she could not be someone who fights for the sect leader’s position. Like a woman who dreams of becoming the sect leader, she is strong-willed.

-How will the crazy man come out?

‘The answer has been decided.’

-Huh?

In the first place, it was the fact that Hae Ack-chun’s heart was focused on Baek Ryeon-ha. If not, he wouldn’t care for all this.

Shhh!

Again, as expected. Hae Ack-chun bowed to the bamboo sheet,

“Kulkul, I will obey the words of the lady.”

And if he made up his mind, there was no reason to refuse this.

If he wins, he gets his disciple put on her side, and if he loses, the two of them will have to support her. There will be no unfavorable outcome here.

[Will Uncle Seo not accept it?]

Seo Kalma, who was flustered by this, sighed. It was because he realized that if he backed down, he would lose the cause for trying to save Baek Ryeon-ha by coming here. He, too, had no choice but to join in.

Shhh!

Seo Kalma took a bow and said,

“I will follow the will of the Young Lady.”

The face of Han Baek-ha, who was anxiously watching, turned brighter. A confrontation was finalized, with so much depending on its outcome.

And what had to be done was decided. I walked in front of Seo Kalma.

Everyone, including the old man, was shocked by this.

Shh!

I took a bow to the man and said,

“For a fair fight, Second Elder, please stop the flow of my internal qi.”

The expression of Seo Kalma looking at me turned strange.

Even though this was a life-threatening battle, it felt like he didn’t understand this dignified action. He gently placed his palm on my dantian. Warm qi flowed into the body from his hand.

-What is he doing?

‘Checking me out.’

It was to check if I had something hidden. And his lips smiled as he checked me.

He was convinced that I was just a first-rate warrior.

“Hae hyung’s disciple has his flow stopped. For the sake of fairness, I will entrust my disciple to Hae hyung.”

“Good.”

Hae Ack-chun accepted it, and Ho Geum-won moved ahead. This made it impossible for both sides to use their internal qi. And this was fair.

“Everyone move back to the wall.”

Han Baek-ha, who decided to be the notary, took charge. Song Jwa-baek moved back with a worried expression.

Normally he would have come out and said something, but he was worried now. He seemed concerned that life would be at stake here.

[Yah! If you cannot, give up. Don’t die like a fool.]

That idiot told me. Did I even hear this from this guy for the whole year we stayed together? Hearing this from him now…

[He might be a skilled one, and this old man will kill you if you lose.]

I smiled at him to reassure him, but he only clicked his tongue.

“The two of you who will compete keep distance.”

At the instructions of Han Baek-ha, Ho Geum-won widened the distance. And he said,

“If you give up now, your body will survive. You still have a bright future.”

Advice to give up. Looking at the confident expression, it seemed like he was convinced.

He was saying it out loud for Baek Ryeon-ha to notice this. The truth was, of course, that it would make him look good.

Shhh!

I said to him,

“It is fine. I want to compete with no regrets.”

At my words, Ho Geum-won shook his head.

And then he spoke,

“I will not take your life. But be prepared to lose your arm.”

Seo Kalma must have ordered him to do that. Perhaps what he was aiming for was my life as a swordsman, meaning the target would be my right arm.

“I won’t take your life either.”

At my words, his face twitched. It must have felt offensive for such a guy like me to be warning him. But he pretended to be calm,

“You truly are the disciple of the Fourth Elder.”

And then he grabbed the long blade. I also caught the South Heavenly Iron Sword.

With that, the Bloody Hand Witch signaled the start of the bout.

I stared into his eyes. Perhaps the glare touched his heart, the man’s eyes were filled with a dark look, and Han Baek-ha raised her hand,

“Start!”

Han Baek-ha shouted to start. It was then.

Ho Geum-won’s eyes widened suddenly and made him stagger. And in one fluid motion, I drew out the sword with the speed of lightning.

“What are you doing!”

Shocked, Seo Kalma shouted during the fight. And thanks to that, Ho Geum-won came to his senses, but it was already too late.

Chak!

The elbow holding the long blade got sliced.

Seeing his arm fall to the ground, he fell down, grabbed the cut section, and screamed in pain.

“Kuaaaak!”

Shhh!

I pointed the sword at his neck. His eyes were in pain,

“I said I will not take your life.”

‘…!!’

As if no one expected the result, the room was filled with silence.

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