Chapter 74 - Something seems to have changed in Mount Hua (4)

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Baek Cheon narrowed his eyes.

‘Who is this guy?’

He was nothing short of absurd.

From the moment they entered this place, he felt a sense of incongruity. Now that he looked closely, he understood why he felt that way.

Why was there a child, who might have just turned 15 this year, ordering all of this expensive food and alcohol?

Of course, it wasn’t impossible.

The sons of high-ranking officials or the children of wealthy elites could do this. The children of the merchant families also often enjoy such pleasures from a young age.

The problem was that this was Hua-Um.

As far as Baek Cheon knew, there were no high-ranking officials, no descendants of wealthy families, or children of wealthy merchants here. Even if they were here, Chung Myung’s age doesn’t match up.

So, who was this child that was drinking alcohol alone in Hua-Um?

Cough.”

The child coughed and waved his hand.

“I’m just a passerby. Don’t worry about me and continue with your meal.”

“A passerby.”

Baek Cheon’s eyes softened.

“Right, that was also possible. Alright, then. Since we ended up meeting here, why don’t we introduce ourselves? I am Baek Cheon, second-class disciple of the Great Mount Hua.”

Chung Myung grunted a little as he covered his face with his long sleeves.

Ugh, this bastard! Why is he so persistent?’

He couldn’t back out or beat him up now.

If the fact that Chung Myung had beaten Baek Cheon so that he could run away spread around Mount Hua, then the sect leader would be enraged, and Un Geom, who began to nag him a lot these days, might run wild and try to cut Chung Myung down.

Then, everything Chung Myung had built up would come crumbling down.

‘I can’t let that happen.’

He can’t let himself get tangled up with this young man for no reason. Chung Myung coughed twice.

“I really don’t have a name worth offering….”

“Isn’t it a bit ungentlemanly to cover your face while having a conversation?”

‘Gentleman? What gentleman? You should just leave me alone, you bastard!’

Chung Myung’s emotions were slowly overwhelming him. For now, the first thing he needed to do was avoid further interaction.

Chung Myung quietly got up.

“Well, I need to leave.”

“Hold on.”

“Let’s have a talk the next time we meet.”

Chung Myung, who was turning around, smiled as he grabbed the alcohol bottle on the table and bowed with his face half-covered.

“Goodbye.”

“Young man. I would like to speak with you a bit longer.”

“I’m sorry, I have no interest in playing with men. Farewell.”

As Chung Myung rushed to the entrance, Baek Cheon’s expression went stiff, and he quickly stretched out his hand.

‘Where does he think he’s going!?’

The moment his hand went to grab the hem of Chung Myung’s clothes.

Swoosh.

Chung Myung smoothly side-stepped his grasp and avoided Baek Cheon’s hand, which merely cut through the air.

Huh?

“Take care!”

Chung Myung jumped out of the window next to the table and left.

Baek Cheon looked at the place Chung Myung had left with blank eyes.

‘He avoided it?’

He definitely used the Grasping Joint Lock at the last moment. Even if it didn’t reach the pinnacle, it was still enough to catch a child.

But it was avoided?

“Sahyung. Why didn’t you catch him?”

“… What?”

“Didn’t you let him go?”

A look of embarrassment appeared on Baek Cheon’s face.

How should he answer this?

“… holding a young child against their will isn’t something a Taoist should do.”

“As expected from Sahyung. Haha.”

Baek Cheon put on an awkward smile.

‘There must have been some mistake.’

He must have been tired from the long journey, or maybe he was too relieved by the fact that he came back to Mount Hua.

There was no way he could have lost that child if he had seriously used the technique.

“I thought there were more people in Hua-Um, and now there are many faces I’ve never seen before.”

“Hua-Um isn’t a small place, so there’s no way we could know everyone. If there is a chance, we might meet again.”

“Yes, Sahyung.”

Baek Cheon smiled and went back to his seat. But his smile wasn’t as bright as before.


Ugh! What rotten timing!”

Chung Myung kicked a stone lying on the road.

“Why did he have to come there and make a fuss! There were a lot of other people around! Anyway, have I run out of luck? Even the weakest bastards come to step on my toes!”

How unfortunate.

When he thought of the food he didn’t get to finish eating, his stomach hurt. How much money did he waste!?

“At least I saved the alcohol.”

As he climbed up to Mount Hua, Chung Myung continued to drink from the bottle.

Ah, it lingers on the tongue.”

’If only there were snacks to go along with this. ’

Chung Myung smacked his lips and threw away the empty bottle.

Ah. Climbing a mountain is so difficult.”

No matter how many times he climbed the mountain, it seemed like he could never get used to it.

‘But that Baek Cheon kid….’

Suddenly, a group of people outside of Chung Myung’s plans appeared. Of course, their presence didn’t bother him, but….

‘It might get a little annoying.’

Chung Myung’s life has been so comfortable on Mount Hua because of the preferential treatment he got for his achievements. But that wasn’t all.

The biggest reason was the age difference between the elders and the third-class disciples.

Compared to the elders, who were all over fifty years old, the third-class disciples were children below twenty. This gave them a bit of leeway to work and train.

The scariest person for a soldier in the army isn’t the general or the emperor. It is his immediate supervisor. Isn’t it common sense that a corrupt boss with a short temper is more frightening than a distant mastermind?

There wouldn’t be anyone that would think otherwise.

Ugh. Baek Cheon huh.”

First of all, it seemed strange.

Heh. I shouldn’t have laughed back there.”

But he couldn’t control it.

The words he heard from Baek Cheon were so absurd.

“Overtake the Southern Edge Sect?”

On what basis?

Chung Myung clicked his tongue over and over.

If only those idiots, who ran their mouths, could at least defeat the third-class disciples of the Southern Edge Sect.

“Oh my, Sahyung. In this era, just look at these fools that are considered disciples of Mount Hua. Seriously, kids these days! Phew!

Chung Myung was more shocked than when he saw the state of the third-class disciples.

How much martial arts could the third-class disciples even learn? They wouldn’t have even gotten a clear taste of what martial arts is, so it wouldn’t matter.

But the second-class disciples are different.

The third-class disciples are taught the foundation, second-class disciples grow through training, first-class disciples reach the peak, and when they become an elder, it is natural for them to complete their own martial arts path.

Right… that is the standard.

“Oh, my God.”

Chung Myung took a deep breath.

When he saw the second-class disciples, Chung Myung felt his stomach-turning. However, they were also disciples of Mount Hua, so Chung Myung should embrace them…

“I shouldn’t be wasting my precious time like this.”

Seeing the second-class disciples, an unknown sense of urgency grew in him.

Ugh. How much longer will I have to wait for these disciples to grow into competent martial artists?”

It was still a very, very long way off.


“Jo Gul sahyung! All the third-class disciples have been asked to gather!”

“Why?”

“Our seniors are returning.”

“Well, okay. Did you tell Great Sahyung?”

“Yes! He said he’ll be there soon.”

“Okay.”

Jo Gul took off his training clothes and changed into new ones.

The sunset was approaching.

‘Come to think of it, I wonder if he’s back yet.’

Jo Gul opened the door, went out, and opened the door to Chung Myung’s room.

Kuha… ugh…!”

“…”

When he saw Chung Myung on the bed, Jo Gul was left speechless. He was lying down in a weird way and mumbling in his sleep…

“Did he seriously get drunk!?”

Where was the smell of alcohol coming from?

Flustered, Jo Gul ran to Chung Myung, grabbed him by the shoulders, and shook him.

“Chung Myung! Sajae! Chung Myung! You crazy basta—”

Huh?

“—ah, nothing. Forget that last one.”

He kept shaking him.

“Everyone was asked to gather, the Sasuks are back. You should quickly wash up, you look terrible right now.”

Ahhh.

Chung Myung stretched himself out.

“I guess I dozed off for a bit when I took that break.”

‘That wasn’t a break!’

Chung Myung, no creature in the world would sleep the way you did. Just say you got drunk and fell asleep.

“You, wash up first….”

Ugh!

Chung Myung released a little qi and quickly scattered the scent of alcohol. Jo Gul, with his eyes wide open, was about to say something…

Huh?

That overwhelming smell of alcohol disappeared in an instant. Jo Gul sniffed, just to be sure, but he couldn’t smell anything.

Uh? Why don’t I smell the alcohol anymore?”

“Alcohol? What is wrong with you? We walk the path of purity, Sahyung, why would we have such things? We would get punished.”

“… No? I definitely…”

“Let’s go. We might be punished if we’re late.”

Jo Gul felt that the situation was a bit unfair, but Chung Myung was right about being late for now, so he hurriedly followed after him.

“But why do we need to go greet the seniors just because they’re returning?”

“We need to at least welcome them back. They are returning from a long and arduous training session.”

Arduous?

Do they think that staying in some closed space would promote growth?

They probably just went and locked themselves in some building or cave with no light for two or three months, ate fasting pills, and swung their swords a few times.

They probably thought to themselves…

‘Ah, I got so much training done.’

How pointless.

‘A bunch of young men and women, isolated in pairs, wielding swords or whatever. Such cheeky training. Yet, they arrogantly ran their mouths about how difficult it was and how they can overtake Southern Edge with just that.’

It wasn’t like that back in Chung Myung’s day!

It was inconceivable for such a thing to happen in Mount Hua a hundred years ago.

“They said they’d take down the Southern Edge sect bastards no matter what. This time, they really are coming back with great results. Even the sect leader wholeheartedly supported their training.”

“Is that so?”

“Yes. Baek Cheon Sasuk strongly requested it.”

Chung Myung snorted.

“Sure, sure.”

“You should also be careful of your attitude. Baek Cheon Sasuk is strict, so if you behave like you usually do, you’ll get in trouble.”

“Sure, sure.”

“I meant it.”

“Sure, sure.”

Leaving Jo Gul, who was nagging him, Chung Myung joined the third-class disciples. By the time Chung Myung arrived, quite a few people were already gathered.

The sect leader, elders, and the Un sasuks too. Everyone stood at the gate, waiting for the second-class disciples to return.

“They’re coming.”

“Open the gate!”

The newly built gate opened to the left and right. Soon, Mount Hua’s second-class disciples entered the scene, draped in black robes.

Oh!

“Look at the change in atmosphere.”

“It’s really amazing.”

The Un sasuks admired them and applauded. The elders also welcomed them with happy faces.

There was only one person with a dull face.

‘When will this end?’

Chung Myung wanted to go eat.

Baek Cheon, who led the disciples, responded to everyone with a dazzling smile.

‘Wow, look at this.’

Indeed, this disciple was unquestionably handsome.

Of course, even Chung Myung had people who called him handsome in the past. When he got dressed up and went down to Hua-Um, beautiful women would fall—

– Have some conscience.

Oh, come on Sahyung!’

Chung Myung shook his head and was just about to clap.

Huh?

Baek Cheon’s eyes, which accepted the others’ greetings, fell on Chung Myung. Baek Cheon, who paused for a moment, tilted his head.

After watching Chung Myung for a long time, he arrived in front of Chung Myung and smiled with confused eyes.

“By any chance….”

Baek Cheon smiled and stared straight at Chung Myung as he spoke.

“Haven’t we met before? Young man?”

“…”

Was he going to get caught this time?

‘Do I really need to beat the hell out of this guy?’

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