Chapter 48 - The Shape-Shifting Demon, Um Mugi (1)

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Obviously, a wealthy family had spacious accommodations—spacious enough that Seol-Hwi could practice in the side-room attached to his bedroom.

“I need to learn the Wind God skill…” He’s neglected the technique for a while because he was occupied with pondering the “perfect” movement for a while. But he couldn’t ignore this ability—it was the best of the skills he had.

◆ Four Peaks Demonic Martial Arts – Table ◆

Wind God: → N(Neutral) ↓↘, A <4.5x speed>

He didn’t know what “neutral” meant, and he definitely didn’t know what “4.5x speed” meant. The only clue he had was how fast he saw the AI use the technique.

“But doing this…” Mimicking the AI didn’t make him feel anything. Unlike in the past, he couldn’t use the skills even though he knew how.

“It seems like my body needs to be moving ahead…”

Seol-Hwi went back to the start. Judging from the AI’s unusual speed, Seol-Hwi would need to be twice as fast—or at least, that was how he interpreted it.

Then there was that “neutral” he needed to deal with.

“Hah!” Same action, faster movement. Small changes for a little extra speed.

Seol-Hwi tweaked it dozens, even hundreds, of times. He had to have been at it for at least half an hour.

He could hear voices, thanks to the hearing skill he’d learned during his training.

“He really came?”

“What are you doing? You need to stop this.”

“Where is he?”

Seol-Hwi glanced out the window and saw people moving around, but the voices died down after a while and he picked up his sword again.

But then Seokdu showed up.

“Did you hear that, squad leader?”

“...Hear what?”

“Yeah, the workers here were saying that Miss Ju’s future husband is coming here. Everyone is curious about what kind of man he is.”

“Marriage?”

“Yeah, that’s why everyone is going to check him out. Do you want to go, squad leader?”

“Why would I?” He was in the middle of struggling with the Wind God technique. He had no intention of taking a break.

“I knew you would say that. But they say he’s from Mount Hua—won’t we be able to fight…?”

“Mount Hua? Did you just say Mount Hua?”

“Yes, that’s what I heard.”

Seol-Hwi’s face twisted. That was the sect that the Supreme Pavilion fed his squad to. Hearing that one of their people was coming here made his bones grind, and it felt like his blood was flowing backwards.

“Let’s go.”

“Huh?”

Seol-Hwi was interested now.

“Let’s go see his face.”


In the center of the back garden was the Life Force pavilion. The name referred to the engraving of history; Ju Wangil liked pottery, so he named his most beautiful pavilion after it.

One of the staff was pouring tea, carefully watching the air.

Ju Wangil and Ju Sohye sat on one side. Zheng Mu-Yeon sat on the opposite side. The idea that all of them were gathered here to promote her marriage made Ju Sohye deeply uncomfortable.

“If I had known you were here, I would have found you sooner. No girl would expect you to come over without a word.” Ju Sohye made her opinion known as soon as she sat down. Despite that, she kept her face as calm as possible.

“I apologize, my lady. I wanted to see you so much that I asked Elder Ju to let me in.”

Zheng Mu-Yeon didn’t take her comment seriously, so Ju Sohye prepared another biting comment, hoping to get the reaction she wanted.

“Don’t apologize,” Ju Wangil interjected. “I chanced upon Young Lord Zheng on the way home and asked him to join us.”

“I see. Next time I’ll make sure to check if they came deliberately or by chance before I speak.”

“Sohye.”

“It’s fine, Lord Ju. You don’t need to say anything, I’m obviously in the wrong here.” Zheng Mu-Yeon smiled calmly, as if he expected her reaction, and smoothly changed the subject. “They say the two most scenic locations in Cheonghae are Haixin mountain and Lord Ju’s mansion. I see the rumors were not exaggerated.”

“Ohohoho, I’m so embarrassed. I just like to show it off to people; I think the rumors got out of hand.”

“So humble! Even after nurturing such wonderful things, Lord Ju found time for charity.”

“Hohoho. Young Lord Zheng is really giving this old man far too much credit.”

Zheng got along well with Ju Wangil, unlike his granddaughter.

Zheng Mu-Yeong sipped his tea and looked around. He noticed a crowd of people a little ways away. Judging from their numbers, they had to be the mansion staff that had come out to see him.

He saw two men and he frowned.

“But has the sect leader’s health improved?”

“Huh?”

“Um, didn’t you say something about an unhealthy stomach last year? So, after helping the sect, he went to rest.”

“Ah, right.” Zheng Mu-Yeong nodded. “It seems it will take some time for him to get better.”

“Hm? Weren’t we told he would be fine a month ago?”

“Yes… everything will be fine.”

Ju Wangil cocked his head, puzzled. Ju Sohye looked confused as well.

“My lady,” Zheng said, his voice suddenly cold. “I promise I’ll contact you before I come next time.” He stood and turned. “I think I just found someone unexpected.”


“Hey squad leader, didn’t that woman seem interested in me?” Seokdu pulled a face.

Seol-Hwi didn’t care.

“Seokdu.”

“Yes, squad leader.”

“Is that man really from the Mount Hua sect?”

“Yes, what about it?”

“Who?”

“What?”

“Who told you that he was from Mount Hua?”

“I think he was around here somewhere…” Seokdu looked around and scratched his head.

“Right.” Seol-Hwi nodded. “And didn’t you say you would always be able to recognize Um Mugi?”

“Of course, how could I miss him?”

“Is that so?”

Seol-Hwi turned back to the pavilion.

[Status]

Um Mugi [First Disciple of Elder Baekhon]

Health: 400k

Internal Energy: 120k

Combat Power: 1.68 million

If that wasn’t false, it seemed Um Mugi had stolen a quite famous identity. The 1.68 million combat power really stood out.

However…

[Status]

Seol-Hwi [Hidden Truth Squad vice-leader]

Health: 700k

Internal Energy: 1.2 million

Peak Grandmaster

Combat Power: 5.9 million

It felt like the first time Seol-Hwi had his opponent outmatched. It was an interesting feeling, but he didn’t linger on it.

How do we… Seol-Hwi was concerned that if he used demonic martial arts to fight Um Mugi, he’d forfeit the potential mission from Ju Sohye. He wanted the rewards.

As long as his cover wasn’t blown, it would probably be better for Seol-Hwi to follow Um Mugi and then subdue him.

It was then he felt Um Mugi’s gaze on him.

Or maybe not? When he looked closer, it looked like the man’s gaze was slightly off to the side—he was looking at Seokdu, not Seol-Hwi.

“Squad leader… You think it’s him?” Seokdu seemed to have noticed his gaze as well, but Seol-Hwi didn’t answer. It was better to stay silent for now.

“Huh, seriously. Didn’t I tell you I know just how he acts? Look at that guy. He isn’t the one.”

Seol-Hwi saw Zheng Mu-Yeong stand up.

Did he notice something…?

Zheng Mu-Yeon and the Ju family walked towards them.

“There are some interesting people here.” The fake Zheng Mu-Yeon looked at the two of them.

“They are my guests,” Ju Sohye said.

“Guests…” The man’s face hardened. “Your jokes are out of line,” he said coldly. “People like them aren’t easy to find in Cheonghae—”

“He is talented enough to stand out in Cheonghae. He even stands out to Young Lord Zheng, too, right?”

“They don’t stand out because they’re strong…” Zheng looked Seol-Hwi and Seokdu in the eyes. “Am I wrong, brothers?”

Seol-Hwi didn’t answer. He let Seokdu handle this.

“Hahaha. We are kind of special people! The lady invited us here after seeing our martial arts.”

“Ah, is that so?” The man narrowed his eyes but soon turned to Seol-Hwi with a relaxed expression.

He must know martial arts. Seol-Hwi could sense the demonic energy in the man’s eyes. He couldn’t recognize the level of martial arts, however—Um Mugi seemed to be hiding his demonic energy and using a normal cultivation method instead.

“How rude.” Ju Sohye stepped forward. “What are you doing to my guests?”

“Don’t get me wrong, my lady.” He looked back at her. “I just wanted to greet them and find out who they are.”

He smiled brightly, but no one was buying. The fake Zheng Mu-Yeong realized his cover was falling apart and tried to bow out, but Seol-Hwi was a step ahead of him.

“Did you think we wouldn’t find you?”

Um Mugi froze.

“Did you think hiding your demonic energy and pretending to be someone else would work?”

Seol-Hwi took a shot in the dark and was rewarded with Um Mugi’s flustered expression.

“You should have hidden better—hidden well enough to deceive everyone. But even then—” Seol-Hwi drew his sword. “—I would have found you.”

[A great opportunity! Found a weakness in Um Mugi. How would you like to respond?]

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