“People from the Tang family have come. They have said that they will pay for all the damage, including the cost of repairing the collapsed pavilion.’
Jo Pyung shed a slight sigh at Jo Gul’s words.
“It isn’t some shocking thing. As surprising as it sounds, they are a family with dignity.”
“But for the Lord to come himself…”
Jo Pyung had a strange expression.
“The Tang family is a family that knows how to protect their name. If they inflict harm due to their mistakes, they will compensate for it completely, even if it becomes a bit excessive. But I’ve never before heard of something like this… for the Lord of the Sichuan Tang family to personally come and offer an apology…”
Jo Gul clenched his fists.
“The financial compensation is indeed great, but it is nothing compared to the apology obtained from a Lord who couldn’t get himself to bow his head to others. And this time, the Lord has personally come to apologize.”
Jo Pyung looked at Jo Gul.
“The fact that you, a disciple of Mount Hua, is my second son, must have had a great influence.”
“It looks like what you have accomplished outside of this family is far greater than I thought. Seeing that the Sichuan Tang family’s Lord himself has decided to save our face in public…”
Jo Gul listened without saying anything. Now wasn’t the time to speak.
As he became silent, his father spoke in a low voice.
“So, when do you plan to return home?”
Jo Gul bit his lip.
This was uncomfortable and irritating.
But he would eventually have to go through this one day.
“I like Mount Hua.”
“More than this family?”
“It is definitely not like that. But…”
Jo Gul looked him straight in the eyes and said,
“I think this is the path I should take.”
“I am proud of my family. I think what father and hyung are doing is an amazing feat. But this isn’t where I belong.”
Seeing Jo Gul’s firm eyes, Jo Pyung’s lips began to twitch.
“I apologize. Father, if I have just one life, I want to live as a disciple of Mount Hua.”
Jo Gul sighed.
“Do you know what my dream is?”
“…I do not know.”
“It isn’t something huge. I just want you and your hyung to help each other and continue on this business we inherited from our ancestors.”
“That was my dream since you were born.”
As he heard that low voice, Jo Gul bowed his head.
Jo Pyung continued with a light strength in his voice.
“Now I understand. My dream isn’t yours. If I have a dream, you get to have one too. I shouldn’t trample on yours for the sake of achieving mine.”
“That is what disciple Chung Myung did. You are the one who decides. It sounded very cocky back then, but now I understand what he meant. Just because I am your father, it doesn’t mean I decide your life. You, too, have your dreams. And you deserve to go after them.”
Jo Pyung smiled brightly and tapped Jo Gul on the shoulder.
Jo Gul looked at his father with trembling eyes.
“I am sorry, father.”
Jo Pyung, who felt awkward as he heard that, coughed and spoke.
“Don’t worry about the family. Because your hyung is here. And… even if you live under the roof of Mount Hua, don’t forget that we are always cheering for you.”
“I will keep that in mind.”
Jo Pyung smiled brightly.
“Yunnan is a scary place.”
“Seeing what you did in the Tang family, I think you can handle Yunnan. But… parents can’t get rid of their feelings for their children, and therefore I cannot put my worries away. So, come back safely.”
Jo Pyung tapped his son’s shoulders, and Jo Gul felt the warmth of it.
“Are these the people?”
Kwak Gyung, the one who was in charge of the Peace Merchant Group, looked at the disciples of Mount Hua with curious eyes.
“It is a request from the Lord, so take good care of them and make sure they aren’t inconvenienced.”
Kwak Gyung looked at Tang Gunak.
And then whispered.
“But… accompanying these foreigners to Yunnan is a task that places a great burden on our group…”
“I must burden you then.”
“How can we ask a favor from the Lord of the house? Just know that we will do our best to fulfill the request of your family.”
“Of course, I will.”
“Thank you. Thank you, Lord!”
Kwak Gyung bowed and then turned to Baek Cheon, who was in charge of Mount Hua.
“If there is something you feel uncomfortable with, do let us know. And tell us when you are ready.”
When Kwak Gyung went back to his post, Baek Cheon looked at Tang Gunak.
“Thank you again for taking care of us so many times.”
“Considering what Mount Hua has done for our Sichuan Tang family, this is nothing. Yunnan is a place that we aren’t allowed to enter, so please be careful.’
“I will make sure to remember that.”
Not being convinced, Tang Gunak added.
“It is no exaggeration to say that Yunnan is under the Nanman Beast Palace. And their people hate the inhabitants of the Central Plains and are enraged at our sight, so be extra careful. If you want to achieve something in Yunnan, it will be better to not fight with anyone as much as possible.”
“I will keep that in mind.”
Baek Cheon bowed to Tang Gunak.
“I hope we meet again with smiles on our faces.”
As soon as Tang Gunak finished, Tang Soso, who was in the back, appeared. Smiling, she said.
“Bye! I will see you again once I join!”
Chung Myung groaned. Did he really have to…
Well, it was the Sect Leader who would have to decide.
Tang Soso, who saw his expression, frowned and said.
“Don’t do that. Especially now that we’ll soon be eating the same food!”
Baek Cheon smiled lightly.
“If that is the case, let’s have a good relationship.”
“Yes! I wish you all the best for the….”
Tang Gunak cut short her words.
“If you really intend to become a disciple of Mount Hua, you should forget that you are a daughter of the Tang family.”
“Yes. I was having the same thought.”
“The same thought? How dare you talk like this to grownups?”
“Are you going to Mount Hua as a daughter of the Tang family? Or are you going there to become a disciple of Mount Hua?”
Hearing that, Tang Soso straightened up.
“Head back to the sect with good health, sasuks. And sahyungs… from this moment on, I am not a woman of the Tang family. I will go ahead first to Mount Hua and learn the rules and laws of the place.”
Baek Cheon smiled brightly. Yu Yiseol’s sharp eyes finally loosened a little.
‘Such a tsundere.’
Chung Myung smiled, seeing Tang Gunak’s antics. He publicly scolded Soso, preventing any possible rebellion from the family members. This was also how he was showing just how much he cared for his daughter.
It would take time for Tang Soso to adjust within Mount Hua, but…
‘Well, everyone is the same there.’
The future of Tang Soso looked bright when one compared her to Jo Gul, who used to run around wildly like a bull.
If it doesn’t work… then they would just have to take her to the tallest peak and give her a scare. That would bring her back to reality.
Tang Gunak, who had no idea what Chung Myung was thinking about, spoke to Baek Cheon.
“As soon as you leave, I will go to Mount Hua and speak about what happened here and finish getting Soso initiated into the sect.”
“Sect leader will welcome you all warmly.”
Chung Myung titled his head.
“But then, when you head back here, will the Tang family even be present?”
“Hmm. Will it take that long? Besides, if you are going deep into Yunnan, it might take longer than our road to Shaanxi. The roads heading to Yunnan aren’t well kept, so it will take longer than you think,”
“Ah, is that so?’
Chung Myung glanced at his sahyungs.
“A long journey is fine too. We will have a lot to do.”
The disciples of Mount Hua, who felt his gaze, trembled.
‘Are we going to do that again?’
‘All the way to Yunnan? Despite everything that we’ve learned until now?’
‘…maybe I should just look after my family?’
The disciples of Mount Hua had all gone stiff as they remembered what happened on their way to Sichuan.
Tang Gunak approached Chung Myung and whispered.
“You must never misuse what I gave you. You understand?”
“Don’t worry. I am no child.”
‘I’d worry less if you were a kid.’
‘I am worried because you’re you, you brat!’
Tang Gunak let out a deep sigh.
“Then, we will leave.”
Baek Cheon bowed to Tang Gunak.
“We were treated so well. We will stop by on our way back.”
“…you will come here on your way back?”
Tang Gunak shut his eyes.
“Then, we need to go, Lord.”
“Take care, Lord.”
Baek Cheon stepped ahead and dragged Chung Myung.
“What nonsense are you saying to the Lord! We have already stayed here too long! Come on!”
Chung Myung waved his hands despite being dragged.
At that moment, Tang Soso, who was watching them, jumped ahead of them and spoke to Yu Yiseol.
Yu Yiseol glanced at her.
Despite having something to say, she couldn’t speak as she looked at her. As if she guessed that, Yu Yiseol asked.
“Do you have any regrets?”
Yu Yiseol nodded.
“Let’s clear them up in Mount Hua.”
And that was the end. Yu Yiseol turned back without any regrets.
Seeing that, Baek Cheon smiled.
“You were so disappointed once since there were no women in the third-class disciples, but that one seems exactly like our youngest.”
“I have no interest.”
“But I am worried. She won’t be an easy person to deal with since she’s from the Tang family.”
Yu Yiseol turned at the words of Baek Cheon.
“…it is hard?”
“Well, Chung Myung isn’t happy with her around, right?”
“Because now she is someone’s child.”
“All the disciples of Mount Hua are equal. Perhaps, when we meet again, he will grab her by the head and roll her on the ground.”
Sweat began to flow down Baek Cheon’s back.
‘Is he going to beat the daughter of the Tang family?’
‘…well, he is that kind of a person.’
‘Didn’t the sasuks get hit by him too?’
“Before that, there is time. If she adapts to Mount Hua, she will be fine. But…”
Yu Yiseol’s eyes turned cold.
“If she acts as cocky as a woman from the Tang family, I will break her head before Chung Myung does.”
Baek Cheon closed his eyes and prayed.
‘Please don’t make Tang Soso regret her choice.’
“They are gone.”
Tang Gunak sighed, seeing them move along with the group.
“They really swept through our home like a storm.”
“…are the Central Plains filled with people like them?”
‘Such people can never be found even if one searched the entire world.’
Tang Gunak, who thought that, spoke,
“We need to do our best too. Soon they will bring that storm into the Central Plains.”
As long as Chung Myung was alive, Mount Hua would not have a peaceful day. And it was clear that the child would grow fast.
In order to keep up with his pace, the Tang family would also have to run. They had to reform their rules and keep up the pace with Mount Hua.
“You have a burden on you.”
“Don’t worry, I will do my best.’
Tang Gunak nodded and smiled.
“Then let’s go and check.”
“What other kinds of people Mount Hua has.”
“Yes, we will leave right now.”
Tang Soso and Tang Gunak looked around.
Tang Gunak took a couple steps back and then turned back. Looking in the direction in which Chung Myung had left, he mumbled with a smile.
For the first time in Tang Gunak’s life, he got to call someone a friend.
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