Mumu sat cross-legged and put the pill into his mouth as Jin-hyuk sat behind him.
“Do not swallow it yet.”
“These pills are made for the purpose of increasing your internal energy.”
“From what I know, the pill of the Shaolin sect is known to have the greatest stability and highest absorption rate among those made from the various sects.”
As Jin-hyuk said, this pill he had given Mumu was from the Shaolin sect and was famous for being the most stable. The more stable a pill or elixir is, the more energy the body can absorb.
For example, a regular pill would have an absorption rate of 40 to 60%, but this pill was known to have 60 to 80% absorption effectiveness.
This effect could only be possible because of the Shaolin sect’s teachings and methodology.
[The pills of the Shaolin sect, such as the Supreme Pill and others, are known to have the best absorption rate. However, drawing out the energy within is difficult by using just one’s own skills.]
Those were the words spoken by his teacher, Mak Il-woong. Jin-hyuk couldn’t help Mumu as his teacher did for him, but he could at least ensure that the energy being absorbed would be higher than if Mumu attempted it himself.
“I will help cultivate the energy within you, don’t think of it as a hindrance. Use that as a flow to absorb the energy within the pill.”
“Even if you cannot, I will be helping you so you would be able to absorb a good amount.”
This was the disappointing part.
Typically, whoever consumes it should get close to 80% of the effectiveness from this pill. Of course, even if that wasn’t guaranteed, they would easily be able to get 6 years of cultivation’s worth of internal energy.
And that much would be excellent for Mumu.
“Now, instead of what you have been doing, do the cultivation technique of the Four Gods’ Initial Heaven.”
“Yes. Even if what I taught you before is stable, in terms of efficiency, it is inferior to other techniques.”
After Mumu answered him, Jin-hyuk placed his palms on the center of Mumu’s back. This was to help the flow of energy move smoothly.
“Even if it tastes bitter, chew it and then gulp it.”
Following the advice of Jin-hyuk, Mumu bit down on the pill.
As soon as he took the bite, a bitter taste spread through his mouth. It was so bitter that he wanted to spit it out. Mumu frowned and chewed on it before swallowing it with a gulp.
As soon as he swallowed it, he felt warmth radiating inside his throat. It was amazing. When he had bitten it earlier, it just tasted bitter.
At Jin-hyuk’s words, Mumu began to cultivate. However, the cultivation method was different as it followed the words he saw on the ceiling within the third basement.
It was Mumu who realized that using this method would be more effective than other techniques.
‘Abyss of the Heart…’
He kept recalling the words and his breathing became stable.
The energy, which was created while absorbing the pill within him, began to resonate. Jin-hyuk also helped Mumu.
As soon as the energy began to move, Jin-hyuk could feel the energy flowing. He could even feel the heat coming out of Mumu’s body which caused him to frown.
‘What is this?’
Something felt strange. This doesn’t happen at the start of cultivation.
But as he put his palms on Mumu’s back, he could feel the energy wriggling in Mumu’s body as it spread throughout.
‘What is this….’
Most methods of cultivation would focus on the body’s main meridians. However, right now, Jin-hyuk was feeling the energy flow through all of Mumu’s blood vessels.
‘How am I supposed to help with this?’
There was no such thing as a set order regarding the cultivation of energy in the body. The energy entered through the throat and moved around as breathing happened and would touch all the major meridians.
But right now, it felt like even Mumu’s skin was taking part in the cultivation and helped spread the energy throughout the body.
This felt close to how amphibians breathed.
’ Did the energy of the pill and the energy within his skin lock in together?’
He couldn’t think of anything other than that and thought this probably wasn’t a huge deal.
But then, vapor began to come out from Mumu’s body, and his skin began to turn brighter.
‘Is the energy moving harmoniously?’
It seemed like it. Jin-hyuk lifted his palms away and looked at Mumu. This was different from the standard method, so he couldn’t help Mumu.
He decided to just stand and watch him.
‘Did such a cultivation technique ever exist in the world?’
Jin-hyuk was surprised at the appearance of Mumu, who was breathing in energy through his skin.
‘Is he really doing it?’
He asked Mumu to do a specific cultivation method, and he thought his adopted brother was using it. He simply thought it would be an advanced form of cultivation.
But he had no idea that it would yield such an extraordinary sight. With this type of cultivation technique, it seemed like one could cultivate the energy in any position, and there would be no need to sit cross-legged.
‘… I couldn’t predict this.’
It was difficult to know the result of this technique compared to normal ones. As Jin-hyuk watched, an hour passed.
He thought it wouldn’t take much time, considering Mumu was breathing through his skin, but it took longer than he thought.
Mumu opened his eyes, and they looked full of life.
“What do you think? Did your internal energy increase?”
At Jin-hyuk’s question, Mumu nodded.
“Yes! It doesn’t seem like it increased much, but it seems to have increased a little.”
Jin-hyuk took a deep breath.
Right, it seemed like the absorption rate had dropped due to this unusual cultivation technique. Of course, even if it worked, Mumu would only get the internal energy worth 6 to 7 years.
‘If he is saying this, did he absorb an amount equal to 6 years of cultivation?’
“I’ll take a look.”
Jin-hyuk placed his palm on Mumu’s stomach and then checked how much effect the cultivation had, but…
Jin-hyuk’s eyes widened.
He didn’t expect it to increase much. But,
If the size of the dantian was this big, it must have been at least 10 years’ worth of energy?
It would be no exaggeration to call it equal to 12 years’ worth of energy, either.
‘… this is a little?’
A third-rate warrior has around 5 years’ worth of internal energy, a second-rate warrior has about 10 years, and a first-rate warrior would have about 20 years’ worth. Of course, this was when a lot of factors supported their growth, but Mumu was already equal in energy to a second-rate warrior.
Exceeded the effect of the pill. He obtained more than what could be obtained normally.
‘How did this happen?’
“Is it big?”
At Mumu’s question, Jin-hyuk couldn’t answer. Within an hour of forming his dantian, he was now at a second-rate level.
This was a tremendous rate of growth. Even with the help of pills, wouldn’t he have to train for another 5 years to reach a second-rate warrior’s level?
‘… do I have to continue to teach him?’
From the start, his talent and growth were different. And this fast growth is what he feared the most.
He wondered if there would be a situation where Mumu would surpass his own growth in a couple of years.
[Like your older brother, you have talent.]
This was what Jin-hyuk’s masters had told him, but looking at Mumu’s growth, he felt like a normal child.
‘What is this guy?’
He was seriously doubting it now.
Mumu was eating with his friends in the dorm dining hall.
While eating, he heard from Mo Il-hwa, who had been told about last night’s discussion.
“I knew it was like that! That Ha-ryun was so suspicious!”
Hae-ryang, too agreed with her.
“If the powder Ha-ryun used on us and what the arsonists used were the same, there has to be a connection.”
“That is so scary. To have someone among us aiming for the students.”
“This depends on how many of them are around.”
It wasn’t known if it was just one person or several.
Mo Il-hwa spoke to Mumu who was busy eating.
“But how do you plan to discover the truth from him?”
“He is a weird one. He pretended to be crazy then spoke weird things, and isn’t that why the academy only placed him in the self-discipline cell?”
At her words, Jin-hyuk nodded as he remembered that. At that time, he recalled that guy banging his head on the ground.
He would never speak the truth if he did all that to deceive them.
“Any other way to get him to confess?”
Mumu answered that.
“Won’t he just spit it out if we beat him to a pulp?”
Mo Il-hwa kept staring at Mumu.
“What if he doesn’t speak despite being beaten?”
Mumu tilted his head.
From the previous situations, everyone ended up speaking once they were given a good beating. Mo Il-hwa then clicked her tongue.
“You just have to mess with his head. His head.”
“Right. When the other person is using their head, we need to make them spit out the truth without realizing it. It is about making them answer without knowing they are doing it.”
“Deceiving them in the same way they did to us?”
“Oh. My Mumu understands my words so well. I praise you for it.”
Mo Il-hwa said as she stroked Mumu’s head. Mumu’s hair became ruffled as she did.
As they were all having fun, Jin-hyuk turned his head to see that someone had entered the hall.
“Mumu, look there.”
It was Ha-ryun.
Ha-ryun, who had just entered the hall with a dark expression, also made eye contact with Jin-hyuk, who was looking at him. He then bit his lip and left the hall.
It was all too fast.
Ha-ryun noticed that Jin-hyuk was pointing at him like he was looking for him specifically.
He felt something ominous and hurriedly ran out and tried to get as far away as possible.
‘Why are things so twisted?’
Still, he was a member of the Eight Evil Families. He was boiling with anger last night, which made it tough to sleep. In the meantime, he couldn’t figure out why all of this was happening.
Ha-ryun’s head had become messed up.
‘Is this for real?’
And he then concluded.
It was undoubtedly a backlash.
Jin-hyuk, Hae-ryang and Mumu blocked the start of the great war. Which meant they must have noticed his secret too.
Ha-ryun felt like he was on the edge of a cliff. It felt like all his hard work in the White Valley was being bunched up like trash.
If the Heavenly Martial Arts academy found out that he and his allies had a relationship with the fallen Forces of Evil, everyone would be finished.
‘What do I do?’
He had to avoid them right now. They would try to question him, and then everything would come to an end.
‘Should I take my life?’
There was an option of running from the academy, but if that happened, it would prove him to be one of the arsonists.
He was raised to handle pain for the last 17 years. And he knew that he should be confident.
Obviously, this was the answer, but he hasn’t been pushed far enough into a corner to do this yet.
Suicide wasn’t as easy as it sounds. As he thought that…
The sound of something breaking could be heard, and someone stepped in front of him.
He was doing his best to run, but this man caught him and said,
Ha-ryun stared at Mumu’s face. He was still confused about what happened last night.
He saw the jade plaque here, but then there seemed to be another who claimed to be the future lord.
This felt like a contradictory situation.
Ha-ryun already had complicated feelings about everything happening. Fortunately, there was no one around to see it.
It was just him and Mumu. That means that if Mumu was the real one, there was no need to act.
So he knelt down on one knee and said,
Mumu couldn’t hide his shock at this action. Come to think of it, he also said some similar things before the beating in the past.
Suddenly, he thought of Mo Il-hwa’s words.
[Twist his head. His head.]
Mumu, who remembered her words, looked at Ha-ryun, who was kneeling, and said.
“Right. I am your lord.”
As soon as he said that, there was a sigh of relief, and Ha-ryun looked happy.
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