Chapter 83 - Because I'm A Man 1

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“Please wait a moment.”

I came alone since I received an invitation from the Nanming Society.

The point isn’t that I came alone but in person. Many of my subordinates wanted to tag along, but I am the most knowledgeable about the Nanming Society.

If I come along with my forces, things will only end with the Nanming Society’s downfall. This organization is a very tight-knitted one.

I’m not particularly interested in annihilating another unorthodox faction, and I would’ve lost more than a dozen men.

To prevent that, I end up coming alone to meet the Nanming Society Leader.

The main gate opens, and the Nanming Society officials appear one by one and settle at the long table where I am sitting.

Nam Yeon-poong is one of them.

Perhaps because of the strict discipline of the organization, Nam Yeon-poong and the other officials do not speak up in the main hall.

As I watch the officials’ faces, I am dozing off.

“…….”

The reason why I keep dozing off recently is that I am staying up all night circulating Qi. It feels like I’m extracting Qi with my hands from the depths of the Heavenly Pearl. I’ve reached the state of Fighting Chicken in a short period of time, so I feel tired easily. But it’s not a problem to doze off. My body’s reflexes react faster than my consciousness to surprise attacks anyway.

Perhaps because it is a stern organization, no one screams or clicks their tongues as I doze off.

Therefore I get a moment of shut-eye.

By the time I feel the saliva leaking out of my mouth, I hear someone’s voice.

“Is everyone here?”

“Yes.”

As I open my eyes, I see Nam Ga-rak, leader of the Nanming Society, walking into the room.

‘Oh, it’s him.’

Nam Ga-rak asks his lackeys as he sits in the top seat.

“Bring me the Black Rabbit Union Leader.”

Nam Ga-rak orders his subordinates without spotting me among his cadres. Then, the official sitting to Nam Ga-rak’s left tells him quietly.

“He’s here, Leader.”

“What?”

I wipe the saliva off my chin using my thumb and make eye contact with Nam Ga-rak. I open my eyes wide on purpose to the point that I can feel double eyelids forming.

Nam Ga-rak asks me as he furrows his brows.

“Black Rabbit Union Leader?”

I yawn and then answer.

“It’s me.”

There is a moment of silence in the hall.

Nam Ga-rak looks at the officials’ expressions and asks me again.

“Are you here alone?”

“I’m here alone.”

I nod and then say to a waiting servant.

“Fetch me some water. What’s wrong with the hospitality here?”

The servant bows and replies.

“Understood.”

As soon as the servant answers me, he realizes he’s made a mistake as he sees the officials’ expression. When the servant stands frozen in place, Nam Yeon-poong interferes.

“It’s okay. Bring him water.”

“Yes, my lord.”

Only then did Nam Ga-rak, who has calmed his surprise, tell his executives.

“All of you, stand.”

The officials jump up simultaneously, move away from the table, and stand in place as if surrounding the main hall.

Nam Ga-rak introduces himself while looking at me.

“I am Nam Ga-rak of the Nanming Society.”

I also introduce myself out of courtesy.

“I’m the Black Rabbit Union Leader, Lee Zaha. Ilyang’s e…”

I think I’m not fully awake yet.

The servant puts down the glass and tilts the kettle to fill it up directly. I look at the servant and then say.

“There’s no poison, right?”

The servant bows his head and steps back.

“No, there isn’t.”

After gobbling down the glass of water, I loudly sigh. I feel a little more alert now.

“Hah…”

As I pat myself on the cheek with both hands, Nam Ga-rak asks.

“Did you doze off here?”

I nod and reply.

“That’s what happened.”

“How did you end up coming on your own? I heard you have quite some men.”

“It’s the human courtesy to come when you’re invited. My men find it troublesome, so I came alone.”

Nam Ga-rak gives me a flustered smile.

“Ha.”

I finally take a closer look at Nam Ga-rak.

He looks relatively young, between his late 20s and early 30s. He has a handsome face with sharp eyes. He’s the type of man that emits an intimidating aura that women would fear.

If Dokgo Saeng is the all-around scary type, his expression shows he’s a man of great responsibility. Men who have been in leadership positions since they were young often have this aura.

Nam Ga-rak keeps looking at me and says,

“Why did you kill Ouyang Bok?”

“I went to do a sparring gamble but discovered it was a fraud. He sent women who hid aphrodisiacs in their hairpin and was caught by me.”

“A union leader went to do a sparring gamble?”

I nod.

“I went because I heard people saying this guy called Dong Bang-yeon can fight quite well. His nickname was King of Sparring Gambles, but he doesn’t live up to the name.”

Nam Ga-rak then says.

“I heard Ouyang Bok revealed that he sent money to the Nanming Society before he died.”

“Yes, he did.”

“And yet you killed him.”

I look at Nam Ga-rak with an indifferent expression.

“Would you have spared him?”

“…….”

Nam Ga-rak can’t answer.

I guess he called me here to give me an earful and get money offerings, but his expression changed at every moment of the conversation.

I only speak informally as politely as possible since Nam Ga-rak has done nothing against me. Even I am amazed that I haven’t said a swear word yet.

Nam Ga-rak asks the officials.

“Did he really come here alone?”

The question sounds as if he is asking if this man is indeed the leader of the Black Rabbit Union.

The officials reply.

“Yes, that’s him.”

It seems like both the officials and Nam Ga-rak are confused. No faction leader has ever behaved this way after causing conflict.

Perhaps because he is speechless, Nam Ga-rak eventually raises the money issue.

“I heard you raided Ouyang Bok’s fortune. What are you going to do about the money the Narak Society used to offer us?”

As soon as I hear about money, I become offended.

“Are you a beggar? So what? You want me to pay in his stead? Are you declaring war or what?”

Nam Ga-rak’s face turns red.

In the end, one of the observing officials can’t stand it and says to Nam Ga-rak.

“Leader…”

Nam Ga-rak points with his finger and interrupts.

“Shut up,”

I ask Nam Ga-rak.

“Leader Nam, I guess your men didn’t give a proper report?”

“What report?”

“I called the entire Narak Society to the fighting pit and faced them alone. It was a sparring gamble Ouyang Bok agreed on. The winner takes everything. A game is a game. A gamble is a gamble. I got Ouyang Bok’s fortune because I won. Ouyang Bok earned his wealth by gambling anyway. Even if Ouyang Bok comes back to life, you can’t blame the money issue on me.”

I also hint at the time when I killed Dae Na-chal.

“I also single-handedly killed the former leader of the Black Rabbit Union and his master, Dae Na-chal. That’s how I became the Black Rabbit Union Leader. How can you ask me what to do about the money offerings? What a twisted question.”

I have nothing left to say if he still doesn’t understand after all this explanation. All that’s left is to stab the Moonlight Dagger on the table…

Nam Ga-rak replies shortly.

“You’re right. Then why did you come here?”

“I’m here because you invited me.”

The officials let out a dry cough here and there.

I look around at the officials and nod.

Nam Ga-rak was killed by the Spright Clan, and as all of them fought for their lives at that time, they all seemed brave. Thus I’m going to overlook some of their cheeky behaviors. Those who can risk their lives should be respected.

I’m sure Nam Ga-rak called me here to kill or make me his lackey. I’m just here to see Nam Ga-rak and his men in person.

“I heard from my subordinates that the Nanming Society rejected to merge with a powerful faction, the Bajian Society (覇劍會), and did not respond to the invitation of Nam Cheon-ryeon (南天陽) and continued to run the faction independently. I’m curious about who you are, so I came. By the way, if you continue to reject the demands of the Bajian Society or Nam Cheon-ryeon, you’ll have to shed blood once. Do you have a plan?”

Actually, my subordinates didn’t tell me this. I am just making a guess.

In any case, the Spright Clan is an assassin faction, and someone could’ve put a bounty on the Nanming Society Leader’s head. Of course, the Spright Clan will be swayed by such a request, and the Nanming Society will be destroyed entirely. I doubt powerful Unorthodox Factions and warriors like Bajian Society and Nam Cheon-ryeon would plot to take out both. In particular, most clans may end up ruining their livelihood due to the high commission fees.

Nam Ga-rak then says.

“There is no such thing as a plan. I don’t want to bow to the Bajian Society or Nam Cheon-ryeon. If we have to see blood, we will see to it.”

I nod.

“You’re facing them head-on.”

It is an expression I like to use, but there is no reaction. In any case, a manly guy should respect a person’s decision.

I suggest to Nam Ga-rak.

“Look, Leader Nam, just as all Orthodox Factions know about transparency, not everyone in the Unorthodox Factions is trash like Ouyang Bok. I deal with my opponent by distinguishing between good and bad. I can help you if the Bajian Society or Nam Cheon-ryeon bothers you.”

“…….”

When Nam Ga-rak, who seems puzzled for a moment, bursts out in laughter, the officials smirk along with him.

Nam Ga-rak, who has been laughing for some time, then says.

“Then are you asking for money offerings?”

“You don’t have to do that. I don’t receive bribes from the subordinates of the Black Rabbit Union, the Black Hurricane Castle, Mister Su, Four Generals, or Ilyang. Ouyang Bok’s funds have already been distributed to my subordinates. Those who wanted to farm were funded, and those who wanted to do business could leave. I also supported people who wanted to learn carpentry or blacksmith. Only those who don’t know what to do are under me. In fact, I didn’t kill many of Ouyang Bok’s men. I think I only killed five or six people. The rest must look for ways to make a living since the gambling house is demolished.”

I convey to him the notion that I’m different from the regular Unorthodox Faction leader, but Nam Ga-rak has never met a person like me, so he looks like he doesn’t understand.

“How could you do such a thing with other people’s money?”

“Ouyang Bok’s money is useless anyway. It’s better if at least one person finds their passion. I do not take pity on morons’ sob stories. I just provide support to those who want to try something. All I ask from them is one thing. When I ask for help one day, they have to reunite under the name of the Low-Down Sect.”

For some reason, I even tell him of the Low-Down Sect.

Nam Ga-rak says.

“Were you originally the leader of the Low-Down Sect?”

“Something like that.”

I get up from my seat.

“If you want to go to war with me, do it. If you want to join Low-Down Sect, you’re welcome to. I will respect you no matter what you choose, enemy or ally. But don’t ask me for money, threaten me, or bully my men. And don’t ever let me hear that the Nanming Society is bothering merchants, vendors, or ordinary people. Then it’s war. This is what the Low-Down Sect is. I came to explain it to you because there was never an organization like this.”

I notify Nam Ga-rak, who is listening to me with wide eyes.

“Think about it and give me an answer.”

I glance at the officials and walk to the main hall entrance. Then Nam Ga-rak calls out to me.

“Hey, Low-Down Sect Leader.”

“What?”

“Don’t you have to show me your skills for me to decide?”

Turning around and looking at Nam Ga-rak, I smile.

“Leader Nam, don’t make fun of your subordinates because you have some. Do you want me to show you?”

“…….”

I point my finger at the officials and then tell Nam Ga-rak.

“I can line your guys up in the main hall according to their skills. Just watch, and you’ll know.”

After reaching the stage of Fighting Chicken, I have become more sensitive to sensing other people’s energy levels.

Energy level refers to the overall energy that circulates in the body. When a Kangho warrior mentions energy levels, they often look at a combination of the atmosphere, inclination, physique, and energy. Just as physiognomy predicts one’s character or fate, Kangho warriors can roughly predict someone’s ability from their energy levels.

Nam Ga-rak asks me.

“Who looks the strongest except for you here?”

I simply answer his obvious question.

“You.”

Nam Ga-rak rises to his feet.

“Then let’s talk after the face-off. 1:1.”

Well, is it finally time for the 1:1 that I like?

Nam Ga-rak then says in a calm tone.

“If you lose, all the forces in the Low-Down Sect will come under the Nanming Society. I thought you were just a lunatic because you were dozing off, but I changed my mind as we talked. You’re a man of your word. Do you accept the obligation on conditions?”

“If you lose?”

Nam Ga-rak looks around his subordinates and replies with his forehead in an eight (八) shape.

“Will that ever happen? How ridiculous.”

“Hahahaha.”

Only then do his subordinates laugh. I also smile and say to the entire Nanming Society.

“How absurd. I’m speechless. What nonsense. That’s ridiculous. What a joke.”

“…….”

“This is so absurd and bewildering that I’m getting goosebumps.”

Nam Ga-rak, whose laughter fades, mutters with a stern expression.

“That’s enough.”

I also imitate Nam Ga-rak’s expression and furrow my brows in an eight (八) shape.

“…How ridiculous.”

A man who has to win in an argument, a man who failed from his previous to present life in becoming a chivalrous hero, a man who deliberately nodded off and led the atmosphere of the talks, and a man who stormed in alone and eventually drag the opponent into a 1:1 duel, it’s ridiculous, but that’s me.

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