The cross-legged Abbot was being looked at by someone.
Except for the impressive white beard that had grown down to his chest, the Abbot was like any old monk who could be seen everywhere.
No one would pay any attention to this old monk if he didn’t wear the robes of Shaolin. To that extent, his appearance was quite ordinary.
But sometimes this man thought,
‘How many things does this man have in his head?’
Shaolin’s sect leader.
Some say that the Abbot was the sect leader of Shaolin, but his presence was too weak.
The sect leader of Shaolin had left deep footprints in the mighty generations, this was because only a highly skilled person could become the sect leader of Shaolin1.
Compared to his predecessors, the current Abbot looked too… easy. As a result, everyone thought he lacked the ability to lead Shaolin.
But this monk didn’t think so.
He, who was the closest observer of the Abbot, knew very well about the fact that this ordinary-looking old man wasn’t lacking in anything.
No, perhaps, in terms of the previous Abbots of Shaolin, he might be better than any that had come before.
The Abbot, who was sitting cross-legged, opened his eyes slowly.
Seeing the monk sitting in front of him, he spoke with a soft smile,
“How did the public react?”
“Amitabha. It is as the Abbot wanted.”
The Abbot spoke with a calm voice. It was like hearing the warm sun. It was like the most normal thing.
Seeing this calmness, the monk spoke,
The Abbot smiled,
“Your voice is shaking.”
“… I apologize.”
“Right. If you have anything to ask, ask it.”
The Abbot nodded his head, and the monk asked,
“Did you plan all of this from the start?”
The Abbot laughed at his question.
“A question must be asked by first conveying the right meaning to the other person. What is the question you are trying to ask?”
The monk gently lowered his gaze and looked at the four contestants’ names.
“Is this the picture you drew from the start?”
The Abbot laughed,
“You are wondering about something that doesn’t have much meaning? What about it if I did or not? The important thing is that a lot has happened.”
The monk took a deep breath.
As he thought he wanted to believe that Abbot had painted all the pictures.
Very simple. Because now this was the best situation Shaolin could have.
What was Shaolin aiming for through this competition?
Right. In other words, it was harmony.
“… the people often misunderstand.”
The monk continued to speak, looking at the Abbot sitting in the normal-looking room.
“Unity is something that can be created when we make concessions and understand each other.”
“How can that be misunderstood?”
“Because we forgot one important thing.”
The voice of the monk strengthened,
“In order to understand each other and yield to one another, it is essential to understand the position of others accurately. Wasn’t the Abbot trying to make the Nine Great Sects One Union understand this?”
The Abbot just sighed lowly and didn’t say anything,
“Coming all the way here, this foolish man seems to know what the Abbot was aiming for. Except for Shaolin, no single disciple of the Nine sects can be shown off to the public2. And coincidentally, Mount Hua is rivaling us in the place of the Nine Sects.”
It was more meaningful than one knew that the Nine Great sects, except for Shaolin, hadn’t occupied a position in this competition.
And what makes the meaning even deeper is the rise of Mount Hua.
If Shaolin could win this competition, then the Nine sects would be stuck between Shaolin, who had shown off their strength as the head of the Nine sects, and Mount Hua, who was growing at an incredible speed.
If that happened, the Nine Great sects would have to be led by the hands of Shaolin. Because there could be no better way to restore the honor of Shaolin, who proved their worth again.
In the end, it was everything that Shaolin planned.
‘It isn’t Shaolin but the direction of Abbot.’
For a moment, the monk felt a chill run down his spine.
Hidden in that gentle smile was a demon that could shake the world. But how many people knew this?
Those who did not know the true nature of the Abbot would think of him as a plain man.
“Abbot. I would like to ask one more thing.”
“You seem to be too curious today. What is it?”
“Did the Abbot expect Mount Hua to be this strong?”
The Abbot smiled at the question,
“Could that be possible?”
“If I can guess what I haven’t seen with my eyes, what is the difference between Buddha and me? I am not yet at that level.”
The eyes of the Abbot shone a bit darkly.
“I was just hoping for a good outcome for the sake of everyone. Shaolin would be good as it gets to prove its strength, and the Nine sects will be able to walk away from their deep-rooted arrogance and know their place, a long-term benefit, and Mount Hua…”
He went silent and sighed before he said,
“Mount Hua will be able to escape from the long darkness.”
And he mumbled this as he looked at the monk,
“Unity isn’t achieved by will alone. True unity is rather a law created through will. Even the Shaolin, who follows the laws, has a law that punishes disobedience too3. Talking about unity with those who do not obey the law is nothing but nonsense.”
“You are right.”
“When this competition is done, all the sects in the world will find their places.”
The monk closed his eyes.
When he sees the Abbot, he cannot even guess what it is4.
But… he knew one thing,
“Isn’t all of this only going to happen if Shaolin wins the competition? If… Hae Yeon fails to beat that child…”
“Are you talking about Mount Hua’s Divine Dragon?”
The Abbot’s expression changed.
It was difficult for the monk to hide the shock on his face. This was because, in an instant, he felt Abbot’s expressions change a lot, and this was a person who didn’t let his expressions out.
Sadness and anticipation too. Joy and sorrow,
“Mount Hua’s Divine Dragon… he is truly a talented one.”
The Abbot quietly shook his head,
“Mount Hua, the present Mount Hua, doesn’t have the skill to grow his talent. Mount Hua indeed had succeeded in reviving the Plum Blossom Sword technique through hard work. If it continues, returning back to the Nine Great sects wouldn’t be a dream. But that is all. Better to go beyond that. To get there, the plum blossom sword technique will not be enough.”
“It is a pity. It is a pity. If he had entered Shaolin, he would have been able to make history which would last a thousand years with Hae Yeon.”
Decisiveness was in his eyes.
“But if that is fate, then the child must also accept it. Even if the child is a genius, who is better than Hae Yeon? The plum blossom sword technique isn’t able to suppress ours. It is like a long sword as weak as chopsticks.”
“Amitabha. Then, there will be no disruption to Abbot’s plan.”
The Abbot narrowed his eyes.
‘And if the plans go awry…’
All the unity he was planning would be destroyed. The axis of the world would be divided between Shaolin and Mount Hua.
Now it was just a small crack, but…
‘Small cracks might lead the world to chaos like never before.’
The Abbot sighed.
He could not let that happen.
Yu Yiseol’s voice was light. Baek Cheon just looked at her.
‘She doesn’t seem nervous.’
Although of the same level, Yu Yiseol was a very unusual person the more he looked at her.
The person she would be dealing with today was none other than Hae Yeon.
Baek Cheon thought about what it would be like if it were him. Because no matter how much he thought about it, he could not be as calm as her.
Even though he knew he was the strongest one in Mount Hua, except for Chung Myung.
‘Well, samae has always been like this.’
If the essential quality of any swordsman was serenity, then maybe she was the quintessential swordsman of Mount Hua, like Chung Myung said.
“.. is that so?”
Although Yu Yiseol said just a few words, she opened her mouth, thinking something,
Yu Yiseol turned her head slightly and looked at the stage.
“It isn’t about winning.”
Baek Cheon looked at Yu Yiseol without saying anything more and smiled,
“Right. That is true. Winning isn’t all.”
They had forgotten about this. The competition wasn’t being watched for results.
When they first came here, they only wanted to say that Mount Hua was back. And their results now had achieved this.
What was left?
And grow more.
Even if the great sahyung forgot for a moment, she hadn’t.
‘This is why…’
Baek Cheon smiled bitterly and said,
“What do you wield your sword for?”
A useless question. Maybe the most awkward one to ask now, but Yu Yiseol turned her gaze away and asked,
“… plum blossom.”
Her gaze turned back to Baek Cheon.
“I just want to bring it out.”
“A plum blossom which can be shown.”
Baek Cheon shut his eyes.
He didn’t understand what it meant, but he knew these words were holding a weight to them.
And he spoke with a firm voice,
“This fight will move forward.”
“Then go out and fight and come back without regret.”
Yu Yiseol bowed her head to Baek Cheon. And immediately headed for the stage.
It was then that she saw with clear vision. The man sitting just ahead of her in the front seat with his arms crossed.
Normally she wouldn’t stop, but today she did.
And Chung Myung looked at her,
Yu Yiseol said nothing and just stared at him.
It was odd.
She already knew that Chung Myung wasn’t the encouraging kind, and she knew what she had to do.
Even so, Yu Yiseol felt like she needed to hear something from him, and he said,
“The sword doesn’t lie.”
“If sago has been true to the effort she put in so far, the sword will answer.”
It was difficult to call these words supportive.
However, Yu Yiseol nodded her head. Somehow, as soon as she heard it, her heart calmed down.
Tang Soso was looking at her with a worried face.
Yu Yiseol looked at her with an expressionless face and nodded,
That was all.
Then, the sword on her waist was touched as she climbed onto the stage. While receiving the gaze of others in Mount Hua with trust and concern.
Yu Yiseol, who got onto the stage, looked at the person there.
The one who succeeded in bringing Shaolin to the top. It was a battle that she wouldn’t win.
The opponent was a genius raised with special care in the most powerful sect and then came to Shaolin.
Yu Yiseol was just an idiot who was treated like an unusual person in Mount Hua who got expelled from the Nine Great Sects.
And those two were competing now?
Everyone could say who would win now. They could tell it was Hae Yeon’s victory.
Yu Yiseol drew her sword.
Right, Plum Sword
The oldest memory she had left was the figure of the man holding this plum sword.
Compared to that…
Yu Yiseol looked at Hae Yeon with sharp eyes.
“Mount Hua’s Yu Yiseol.”
“Shaolin’s Hae Yeon.”
Now all that was left was to prove it.
After taking a short breath, Yu Yiseol took a long breath. Her heartbeat subsided, and her muscles tremors too.
At the same time.
Yu Yiseol, who turned the sword into herself, rushed towards Hae Yeon like water spurting.
ED/N: It is trying to say that the Abbot left a mark in his generation, but this wasn't super remarkable since only a remarkable person could become the Abbot of Shaolin ↩️
ED/N: They had all gotten their asses beat, first by mt Hua, then the five great families, and then mt Hua again ↩️
ED/N: Even monks who are goody two shoes, still need laws to punish those who misbehave ↩️
ED/N: Remember monsters aren't people ↩️
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