“They will catch up!”
“Damn… Infinite light of Buddha.”
Heo Sanja, who almost swore, corrected his words into a sutra. His mistake indicated that his heart was anxious right now.
‘Just how did this happen?’
There was nothing wrong with getting into the Sword Tomb. No, it was the same even after that as well. Even if all the people gathered out there came into the tomb too, Heo Sanja wouldn’t have paid much attention.
Because none of them were strong enough to go against Wudang.
However, the number of people who came in was smaller than he expected, and among those who gathered, only the strong ones entered, which twisted the situation into something he hadn’t expected.
At first glance, it must have been a good situation for Wudang, who entered the tomb first. However, things didn’t always work according to plan.
If there were so many people, then reaching an agreement would be tough. However, if the number of people was small, there would be an easier exchange of opinions. But strong people of a small number were gathered, which in turn made him feel burdened.
And now Wudang was being threatened by the group of people who decided to form a coalition amongst themselves.
They must have probably agreed to stop the Wudang Sect first. And then they would destroy their alliance.
There was urgency in the voice of Heo Sanja.
“Why is it so wide!”
“This place will have to end soon!”
Heo Sanja didn’t seem to feel relieved.
‘Damn it. What the hell was Yak Seon thinking when he created this place?’
If it is often the case when it comes to treasure, that traps are laid. But who wouldn’t be excited to enter a treasure tomb? Usually, the treasure is hidden for direct descendants, and not for strangers. Hence the traps.
And this was why places with treasure could only be entered by strong people who were qualified enough to handle the traps.
But wasn’t this the tomb of Yak Seon?
Yak Seon, a person who helped people…who would have imagined that a tomb of such a man would be filled with so many traps?
‘This is weirdly horrible!’
Heo Sanja had already passed the test of death several times. As they were moving ahead, their group was the first to deal with traps. The falling ceiling, a trap where the floor rose up, and in addition to that, there were many more terrifying traps that genuinely scared him.
There were traps awaiting them in the front, and those who tried to stop them from behind were hoping that it would take the Wudang Sect down. There had only been a few situations in his life that were so painful.
Heo Sanja bit his lip.
‘This is no coincidence.’
He kept thinking that someone intentionally made the situation like this. He knew it was unlikely, but the thought didn’t leave his mind.
Wasn’t it strange that there was no one who blocked their entry? And the ones who entered were only the strong ones?
‘Maybe that little brat…?’
He thought of the man called Chung Myung of Mount Hua gathering the people by giving out the information about the Sword Tomb and wondered if it was him who did this.
But then he shook his head.
It felt too far-fetched. That little brat couldn’t have planned this far ahead and done this. It was difficult to predict what kind of person he was, but this wasn’t something a man without any experience in Kangho could do.
Moreover, wasn’t this a situation where not even a single elder of Mount Hua had come to Nanyang?
Baek Cheon? Maybe that disciple could lead others. But it was a delusion to think that people who had never stepped out of their clan could have anticipated everything and come up with such a plan.
“Elder! They are coming!”
Heo Sanja exhaled.
“Stop as many as you possibly can, lead our disciples, and bind the feet of our pursuers.”
“I will lead a few of them and advance quickly.”
Heo Gong answered firmly and moved back.
“Follow me! Follow me! We need to get our hands on the pill!”
Heo Sanja quickly jumped ahead.
Taking precautions to check the rear with their entire group would lead to them losing a lot of time. It would be a greater burden for those who stayed back if Heo Sanja got caught up by the ones rushing ahead. Even if it meant making sacrifices, he needed to get that pill… he needed to get the Soul Vitality Pill.
Heo Sanja, who was widening the distance, clenched his teeth!
As soon as he said that, sharp arrows fell immediately in front of them. Seeing the arrows, which were glowing green, it was clear that they had poison on them.
Heo Sanja used his sword to deflect the arrows which were coming in from all directions. Not a single arrow passed through the sword.
“Yak Seon, the man who made medicines and pills, is dealing with poison! What the hell is this place!”
And that wasn’t the end.
“Elder, I feel a presence ahead.”
Heo Sanja frowned at Jin Hyeon’s words.
He couldn’t feel any qi, so why was this disciple saying…
It was then.
Heo Sanja stopped running. And looked ahead in disbelief.
In the dark.
Something was moving in the darkness, which they couldn’t see with their naked eyes.
They became panicked as they realized that there was something moving ahead of them that they couldn’t detect. Heo Sanja frowned, holding the sword.
‘I don’t feel any vitality1 from it.’
Something was moving, but there didn’t seem to be life in it. If it was moving, then logically, it had to have life in it, but he could feel nothing of the sort.
What was moving then?
Heo Sanja felt the hair on his body stand up at the strange sound which came from the darkness. Eventually, when the confirmed presence moved, he had no choice but to swear.
He had never seen something like this with his eyes before.
However, it was clear that whatever he was seeing now wasn’t alone…
A moving dead body.
A corpse that had no life in its eyes, and had greyish skin, was approaching them. Just looking at it, an instinctive fear rose within them.
Heo Sanja cried out in anger and shock.
“What in the fucking world is this place?”
But there was no time to be shocked.
“E-Elder! They are coming!”
Heo Sanja grabbed his sword. Whatever was coming, he had to clear it.
“They are the dead who cannot rest even after death! Have pity on them and put them to sleep!”
Heo Sanja bit his lip.
‘What the hell were you thinking, Yak Seon!’
Maybe he misjudged the character of the man? Then…
‘Maybe no one will get out of this place alive.’
Heo Sanja put aside the thoughts in his head and began to recite sutras as he went for the kangshi.
It was unfair.
Hong Dae-Kwang was flustered.
What was so wrong about making a mistake?
‘I made a mistake.’
He had no excuse to make for that… but even if he did make a mistake…
“I am an adult!”
Chung Myung raised his hand, and Hong Dae-Kwang, who flinched, went closer to the wall.
“Ugh, trying to pull out the age card now!”
If Chung Myung was the Chung Myung of the past, the Plum Blossom Sword Saint, then Hong Dae-Kwang wouldn’t have even stayed alive now. However, strangely, when being hit, it felt like an older person was hitting him.
And then it ended. But Chung Myung still kept looking at Hong Dae-Kwang with an irritated face.
“Ugh. My insides are a mess.”
Hong Dae-Kwang looked around with a sad face, not knowing what Chung Myung was feeling.
But the only thing he got from other people’s gazes was ‘be alert’.
“I knew that man would bring trouble onto us one day.”
“We were completely buried. Thank God we have Mount Hua’s Divine Dragon with us! Thank God!”
“How did our branch leader even get to meet such a nice person!”
“If you want to die, you should do it alone!”
It was sad.
It was even sadder that it wasn’t the disciples of Mount Hua cursing him, but the disciples of the Beggars Union.
As Hong Dae-Kwang thought that, he felt that his eyes and ears were stinging from all the cursing of the people of his own sect. Still, the only comfort was that the room was dark, so they couldn’t see the bruises on him.
“This is why I never like dealing with beggars!”
“… don’t, don’t call them beggars! They don’t like it.”
“Then let’s make them into perfect beggars!”
Hong Dae-Kwang kept silent, knowing that any more words from him would only bring more harm to himself.
Chung Myung glared at Hong Dae-Kwang. It felt like he was thinking of something new to swear. Hong Dae-Kwang just twisted his body at that gaze.
Baek Cheon approached Chung Myung and changed the topic. He was someone who had a sort of leadership figure here.
“We aren’t going to waste time here, right?”
Chung Myung exhaled. In his mind, he wanted to grab the man and shake the life out of him, but he couldn’t do that now.
“Do well from now on.”
He looked at Hong Dae-Kwang as if he didn’t like him anymore and turned around.
“The Beggars Union of the past wasn’t like this. Why do things keep getting worse?”
Which Beggars Union was he talking about?
Hong Dae-Kwang felt like injustice was being done to him, and Baek Cheon and Yoon Jong silently approached him and patted him on the shoulder.
“Don’t comfort me. I will start crying!”
Hong Dae-Kwang shook off the feelings and sighed.
“But where is this place?”
Chung Myung looked around. The place they were at was at the end of the hallway, and it was now a spacious stone room. And at the end of this room was another door.
Chung Myung looked at it with strange eyes.
The gate was firmly closed.
“There is no sign of people moving in front though?”
Chung Myung grunted.
“There was a side road in the middle. Normally we would have taken that, but the beggar broke the damn ceiling and brought us here!”
He kept saying beggar this and beggar that!
Outside the Sword Tomb, he was treated like one of the best talents in the world, but now, with this man, he was ‘just a beggar’.
“… then we went the wrong way?”
“Tch, how can we know if it is wrong? We can just keep going for now.”
Chung Myung looked behind and said,
“The way back is blocked.”
Everyone’s faces went stiff at once.
Unlike a little while ago, they could climb back up and open the blocked entrance, but now they would have to dig a whole tunnel inside to get back. So, moving ahead seemed to be the better option.
“I will go ahead and check. So, all of you, stay close and follow me.”
“If anyone touches anything strange, I will cut their damn hand off this time!”
“… We understand.”
Chung Myung rolled his eyes and opened the door. And then he titled his head.
“What is it?”
“Nothing; it feels fishy in here.”
“Nothing. Keep going in.”
Carefully Chung Myung opened the door and walked inside. It was different from the hallway they had just run through. It felt like a natural cave and not an artificially done one like before.
‘Like a narrow cave, but…’
Chung Myung frowned, slightly hurried ahead and then stopped.
It felt like they had been in this place for a long time.
“Don’t make a sound.”
“I said to not make a sound.”
“Then what is that sound? Did I make it then? Did I…”
Chung Myung stopped and turned his head up.
It was at that moment.
Hundreds of small red dots appeared at the same time, as if a bright red paint was suddenly scattered inside the walls of the cave.
This looked seriously messed up.
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