Chapter 36 - First Night As Leader

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The meeting concludes peacefully, just like my mind.

That’s how good I am at running fruitful meetings. I send the officials on their way, and while So Gun-pyeong takes the Golden Dragon Pavilion men to the iron fence, I am faced with a quiet and serene night.

It is also the day I am overflowing with the energy of the Heavenly Pearl.

As I am breathing quietly in the hall with a mask on, a servant approaches and asks.

“Leader, would you like to have a meal? Or should I prepare a bath?”

Does the servant know their leader has changed? Or are they not aware? If they are only staying indoors and doing chores, it’s natural not to know. I reply to let them hear my voice.

“No need for the bath. I had pork ribs earlier, so I’ll pass. I got blood on my face, so bring me some water.”

“Yes, I’ll be right back.”

The servant does not notice the difference and hurries somewhere. I am lost in thought for a moment.

‘Is my voice similar to the rabbit bastard’s?’

We both have low-pitched voices but have very different vocal tones.

I take off my mask while watching the servant walk over with a basin.

The servant is shocked as they look at my face and drop the basin full of water on the floor.

The servant’s eyes widened in surprise.

I glance at the water spilled by the servant and say in a low voice.

“Go get a new bowl of water. Clean the floor as well. That was quite the reaction.”

“Ah, yes……”

“Don’t freak out. Don’t spill it this time.”

“I apologize. I’ll be mindful next time.”

After a few moments, the servant brings another wash basin with trembling hands, and as soon as he places it on the table, he bows his head.

“You don’t have to be scared. No harm will come your way. I am the new Black Rabbit Union Leader.”

“Yes, Leader. Nice to meet you.”

I wipe the bloodstains off my face and then ask the servant as I wipe the bloody mask clean.

“Is my voice similar to the former leader’s?”

“Not anymore.”

“Not anymore?”

“Yes, I didn’t realize the difference because his voice changes slightly when using the mask.”

“I guess it sounds similar when I speak in the mask.”

“Yes.”

Looking at it now, the insides of the mask are made of a hard material, and the mouth area has holes that allow air to escape. Still, the voice seems to be altered due to the enclosed design. If so, it’s safe to assume that just my voice won’t reveal my identity. So it’s possible, to some extent, to imitate the voice or tone of the former leader.

As the servant keeps stealing glances at me, I ask.

“Why? Am I that handsome? For you to keep staring?”

“My apologies.”

“Hm.”

Why did he apologize? I couldn’t tell if he apologized because I wasn’t handsome or for staring at his leader.

“As you know, today is my first day as union leader. Please show me around. And let me know where my sleeping chamber, personal training hall, and medicine storage room are. Lead the way.”

“Yes, Leader.”

I follow the servant and check out the various places that belong to the leader. Nothing is lacking in the luxurious building. There are fitting rooms, two bedrooms, a private bathroom, and an area with only one wooden bed.

“What’s with this room? There’s only one bed in here.”

“The previous leader would come here to loosen his muscles on days of physical training.”

“Who gives him a massage?”

“The servants come together and massage him.”

“Why is he doing useless things instead of training…”

The place I am then led to is a room serving as a personal training chamber and a medicine storage room.

I order the servant.

“Call all the servants and tell them to wait at a place further away. You don’t have to stop anyone that comes near. Just ask them what brings them here, and I’ll take care of the rest. You understand what I mean, right?”

“Yes, Leader.”

I dismiss the servant and close the door.


The room contains rarities that some may go their lives without seeing. Some of the medicine here includes those that are common, popular, and obscure.

Very few people have access to these panaceas.

Clan heirs, sect successors, Kangho warriors in their primes who gain rare medicines through fate…

Combining them all, there are not many.

Therefore, most Kangho warriors live and die after just taking the ones that are widely accessible.

The widely accessible type of medicine is a high-quality oriental medicine made by physicians. For this reason, Kangho warriors sometimes use the word Great Doctor (神醫) to refer to a person who is good at making high-quality panaceas.

I happen to know a guy like that.

He is a very problematic and very miserable man. On top of that, he is one of the guys I must seek out first, alongside the Left Hand of Illuminating Light.

I don’t want him to die a miserable death again. This guy will run into problems with Dae Na-chal in the future. What’s clear is that the sooner I kill Dae Na-chal, the less likely this guy is to live a miserable life. However, considering the timeline of my past life, I am still at the time of being an Ilyang Prefecture errand boy, so there is time to spare.

I open each small drawer and check all the popular panaceas.

There are diverse types of panaceas to be found inside.

Panaceas heal internal injuries and antidotes mixed with antiseptics, so I can’t ingest them thoughtlessly. This is how they are classified, and there are more detailed classifications. Among them, the most representative is Beast Panaceas (禽獸靈藥).

Beasts in this case include both birds and land animals.

These medicines are fed to carrier pigeons (傳書鳩, a pigeon that delivers messages) or to horses (馬) to permanently increase their endurance and explosive power. Perhaps the Black Rabbit Union uses carrier pigeons since these panaceas are included here.

The reason why the Murim Alliance is powerful is that they mass-produce these popular panaceas. Relying on their strong funding, word of mouth about consuming these panaceas spread throughout the realm. They used this excuse to operate an unofficial cavalry made up of men from Kangho.

The Demon Cult is even worse.

They never see humans as humans in the first place, so they hunt animals and conduct inhumane experiments on them. All these experiments are done to deal with the elite cavalry of the Murim Alliance, resulting in the enormous sacrifice of innocent beasts.

While fumbling through the drawers, I finally find three of the Flaming Heart Pill (心熱丸), a high-quality and popular panacea.

The reason why it’s still here is simple.

Just like the saying that taking one pill of the Flaming Heart Pill is plenty, the pill has severe after-effects of fever as if one has caught the flu. I have my fair share of knowledge on the Flaming Heart Pill as I’d suffered many fevers and suffered from Qi Deviation.

The best time to take the Flaming Heart Pill is when I have accumulated too much extreme Yang energy.

Coincidentally, that’s the current condition I am in right now. I listen closely to my surroundings and swallow all three Flaming Heart Pills simultaneously.

Sometime after, my body begins to heat up.

With a flushed face, I sit down in a lotus position to meditate with the Strolling Golden Turtle Technique. Now that I have reached the state of the Fire Chicken, the heat from Flaming Heart Pill is gradually subdued.

I close my eyes for a moment and am briefly caught in a strange imagination.

I can vividly visualize the process of my heat consuming the heat from the pills before I can even execute the technique.

It is a scene where masters trapped in the Heavenly Pearl pounce and rush forward like beasts to eat up the heat of the Flaming Heart Pill.

I jolt internally.

‘Damn, that gave me a fright…’

Even before I can start the complete circulation process, I can faintly feel the energy of the Heavenly Pearl becoming more intense. The panacea’s energy instantly combines with the Heavenly Pearl as if it is being absorbed.

It feels strange, so I reach out, drawing from the Strolling Golden Turtle Technique’s essence, and channel it through my hand.

I extract the Wooden Chicken’s energy in my hand and then convert it to the Fire Chicken’s energy. As the flames condense, my palm (掌心) is gradually dyed red.

‘This is strange.’

I can’t exactly put my finger on what feels off about my energy.

The Heavenly Pearl is created by absorbing and accumulating Qi, vitality, and essence of living martial art warriors.

But suddenly, in my body, or more specifically in the Heavenly Pearl that I’ve absorbed…

Doubts begin to arise in me on whether or not the Heavenly Pearl has some bizarre ability (異能) to absorb other energy.

I murmur with a rapt look on my face.

“No, that can’t be.”

All I want is to live my life as a lunatic.

I have no intentions of going overboard and becoming a monster-like cult leader. I take a deep breath with my eyes closed and calm my mind like a chicken turning into wood.

Meanwhile, I hope nothing is wrong with my body.

Because there are still too many monkey butts that I need to kick.

But just to be sure…

I think I should give it a name if I really have this strange ability.

Absorption Technique, Energy Absorption Technique, Heavenly Absorption Technique, Heavenly Pearl Absorption Technique…

Heavenly Pearl Ultimate Absorption Technique, Heavenly Pearl Demonic Absorption Technique, Crazy-Demon Heavenly-Pearl Ultimate Absorption Technique…

‘Absorb (吸)… Forget it.’

As expected, naming is the most challenging thing in any profession.

No name with the word ‘absorption’ rolls off the tongue. I decide to think about it later as I contemplate it further. I don’t think I have an accurate understanding of this bizarre ability yet.

I didn’t execute any Qi breathing techniques in the personal training chamber. I have only been repeatedly channeling the Fire Chicken energy through my palm to check this bizarre ability. Realizing this isn’t working, I quietly meditate in a cross-legged position.

The Left Hand of Illuminating Light’s words and my prediction are fusing together.

I explore the nature of the Heavenly Pearl with reasoning and imagination.

I also quietly observe the condition of my body.

Then I put myself in the Demon Cult Leader’s shoes.

What would the cult leader do as soon as he got his hands on Heavenly Pearl? Perhaps, it is a matter of great importance that the Cult Leader is unrivaled. The Demon Cult would’ve been more thoroughly guarded than ever. The guards would have waited nervously and held their breath around the cult leader.

Would he only use a Qi breathing technique…?

Probably not. The Cult Leader would’ve carried out the Great Magic (大法) at the same time to become the Demon God (魔神). The martial arts of the Demon Path (魔道) are remarkably different from regular sects, after all.

My imagination restores the image of the Cult Leader. Perhaps he would use the Heavenly Pearl and apply the Great Magic simultaneously. If he had succeeded, he would’ve become an other-worldly monster that no one can defeat.

So I must have been given an unbelievable opportunity to return back in time.

After meditating, I contemplate with my arms folded for some time and channel palm force using the Absorption (吸) principle of the Assisting Hand Technique. I extend my hand out to the drawers containing the panaceas.

For a long time, nothing happened.

Though nothing is happening, I review my strategy with my hands stretched out like a fool and go through the process of using my flexible mind to identify all the different variables.

Inventing martial arts that are never seen in this world is something only lunatics would do anyway.

Only without following other people’s thoughts and ideas can things created from nothing appear.

Even though I’m not capable of levitating objects (虛空攝物) at my current martial arts state and level of Qi, I re-evaluate all my knowledge about the world of martial arts I have learned. As I continue to think, my hands are still held out like a statue.

And I throw away all the martial arts theory I had built up till now.

On a blank slate (白紙), I inscribe the power of the Heavenly Pearl and the principle of absorption with an imaginary brush and invoke its profound power, dyeing my hand red again.

Then, with a rattling sound, a small drawer storing a panacea surges through the air and falls into my palm.

Thud!

I quickly grab the drawer and breathe in and out, calming my restless heart.

“Haa…….”

The enlightenment comes in a flash. In addition, I came up with the name of the ability immediately.

The Great Absorption Technique of the Heavenly Pearl (天玉吸星大法).

However, since the Heavenly Pearl is a secret that I can’t tell anyone, I will omit the last part.

On my first night as the leader of the Black Rabbit Union, I thought of nothing but martial arts.

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