Reaper of the Drifting Moon Chapter 14
Light Novel: Volume 1 Episode 14
Manhwa: Chapter 11
First Sword took off his mask with a heavy sigh. An expression of an elderly man appeared. In the middle of the old man’s face a deep black scar was carved diagonally.
It was a wound he suffered when he was put on his first mission. The assassin who people would tremble when they heard his name was now an old man who’s over sixty years old.
Although his strength and senses were lower than it had been before he filled in the gaps with his skillfulness. But as time went on it became more and more unavoidable.
The name of the First Sword was Lim Sayeol. However his name was only known to him and the Captain.
He was usually just called the First Sword so he had never heard his name through anyone else’s mouth. His name seemed unfamiliar.
“I guess the time for me to die is nearing. For me to be so sentimental.”
For the past six years he’s been pushing the kids really hard.
They didn’t even care about sacrificing the children. He only cared about raising children successfully. As a result thirty children passed all the tests and became assassins.
From the three hundred people who were first deployed only a tenth of them survived.
Two hundred and seventy victims died to raise thirty assassins but they felt no guilt.
The Jianghu he knew and experienced was a harsh place where anyone would die if they couldn’t kill others. Compared to him who started from the bottom the children here are more fortunate. They received systematic training to become an assassin.
The door opened and the Second sword and Third Sword entered.
They were startled to see the First Sword taking off his mask. It’s the first time for them to see Lim Sayeol take off his mask since coming here.
“Why did you take off your mask?”
“It’s just stifling… Don’t you think six years is enough?”
“You’re free to take it off as well.”
The Second Sword and Third Sword looked at each other. After quarreling for a while they took off their masks.
They simply had their mask removed but the air coming into their lungs seemed different.
For them masks did not simply work to cover their faces. When they were wearing their masks they felt no sense of ethics or guilt. To them walking the path of assassins the mask was an indulgence and another face.
They don’t feel any guilt while wearing the mask but after taking it off like this they seem to feel weak without realizing it.
The name of the Second sword was Gu Shinhaeng and the name of the Third sword was Sang Ilshin.
The three of them took off their masks revealing their true faces and sat down at the table.
Lim Sayeol said.
“Alcohol is best drank at times like this. What a pity.”
“We can drink as much as we want when we get out here can’t we?
“It’s not too long before we get out.”
There was a glimmer of anticipation on the faces of Gu Shinhaeng and Sang Ilshin.
They spent six years here teaching the children. They did not have much greed in the world but it was a great pain for them to have to spend such a long time in a place where there is not a single point of sunlight.
Now the promised time is about to run out.
It will soon be seven years and if nothing else happens the children will be sent to assassinations.
They had no idea what the fate of the children involved in the assassination would be.
They treated children thoroughly.
The children were not their disciples.
They were just a one-time use and throw away tools.
If they showed affection to their tools they would be the only ones who would get hurt.
Lim Sayeol asked.
“What are the levels of the children?”
“Their skills have improved beyond our expectations. So I’m quite hesitant.”
“Why? Are you afraid you won’t be able to control them?”
“Yes. Some children have already gone beyond the level of the instructors. Geum Pyeong said that he did his best but he couldn’t find Pyo-wol who practiced the Turtle Breathing Technique.”
Lim Sayeol let out a sigh.
It was Lim Sayeol the First Sword who paid more attention to the potential of Pyo-Wol more than anyone else. Although his martial arts did not rise as expected he excelled in the art of stealth and infiltration.
It can be said that he is the best at tracking and hiding but if he deceived his attention he could see that he already had superior skills than the instructors.
“It’s a waste.”
“What do you mean?”
“The fact is that we have to use them once and immediately throw them away.”
“We can’t help it. Because that was the original contract’s request after all.”
“Who the hell is the target of the assassination? Do we really have to do this? Now that the mission is almost over don’t we need to know too?”‘
“I’m sorry. I can’t tell you until the mission is over.”
Lim Sayeol firmly shook his head at Sang Ilshin’s words.
It was such a dangerous task.
It was enough for the Captain and himself to be the ones who knows the identity of the assassination target. If the name of the assassination target leaks out by mistake the Blood Phantom Corps will disappear from the world.
Gu Shinhaeng and Sang IlShin understood Lim Sayeol’s intentions.
To maintain secrecy the fewer people who know the better. The more people who know then the greater the chance of a leak. They knew all too well that a man’s mouth is never heavy.
“Now we must begin the final step.”
Lim Sayeol’s gaze turned to the desk.
An anonymous booklet (無名) was placed on the desk.
* * *
The children looked at Lim Sayeol with curious eyes. To be precise they were looking at the booklet in Lim Sayeol’s hand.
There were no letters written on the yellow cover.
It was literally an unknown booklet.
Lim Sayeol said throwing an unknown booklet among the children.
“Three of you must learn this.”
The children frowned at Lim Sayeol’s incomprehensible words. But no one opened their mouths. Because even if they don’t ask Lim Sayeol will teach them.
As expected Lim Sayeol continued his explanation.
“In this booklet the martial arts technique of a certain faction is roughly arranged. Three of you must master this technique while the remaining twenty-seven must attack those who have mastered this technique and succeed.”
Everyone’s eyes fluttered at Lim Sayeol’s words.
Because they understood what his words meant.
They were children who were reborn as assassins after six years of rigorous training. The way the children murder was enough to threaten the instructors. It was said that children who will learn the martial art technique presented by Lim Sayeol should be attacked by such children.
Not just one or two people but a sneak attack by all 27 people.
As always there was nothing they can do to take care of the situation. If they do it like in a real battle there will surely be casualties.
It was set up so that those who learned the martial art technique had no choice but to be at a disadvantage. Those who have mastered the martial art techniques are exposed while the other children will attack in the dark by any means possible.
They wouldn’t be able to feel safe when they’re eating resting or sleeping. Even they have to be careful of their breathing.
The children knew just how good their assassination skills were. Even if only one only aims for one person breathing is dangerous but if you are targeted by as many as 27 assassins it is safe to say that there is no chance of survival.
‘Such a dog…’
‘It’s like this until the end…’
The children shuddered.
They really didn’t expect that things would come down like this until the very end.
In their heart they wanted to start a rebellion at any moment. However knowing that they could not get out even if they killed the instructors in this place they had no choice but to hesitate.
Lim Sayeol and Gu Shinhaeng saw through the minds of the children.
‘You won’t be able to escape our hands forever.’
The children were hunting dogs.
No matter how ferocious and wild the hound was there was a way to control it. They already have a number of ways to control the children. So there was no reason to be afraid.
Now that the whip is blown it’s time to give the carrots.
The children’s eyes were focused on Lim Sayeol’s face.
“This will be the last time. After this training we won’t do any training until we get out of here.”
Lim Sayeol’s words shook the children’s hearts.
In the meantime the children hadn’t let down their guard. That’s because the instructors severely pushed them hard. Thanks to that the children’s minds became as devastated as a desert and they stopped trusting anyone.
If there is one wish they have it is that they want to rest in peace even for a moment. But as if trying to pierce their hearts Lim Sayeol came out with the sweet bait of rest.
It was a proposal that is bound to shake the hearts of the children. With only three sacrifices the remaining 27 people could rest comfortably.
They just don’t have to belong among the three people who would be learning the unknown martial art technique.
Pyo-Wol was also surprised by Lim Sayeol’s demonic heart.
‘No it’s not his plan. It’s probably the idea of a person called Captain.’
Through his experience Pyo-Wol knew that Lim Sayeol didn’t have such an excellent mind. Although he was able to perform the given task perfectly he did not have the brain to plan and invent something for himself.
That was the Lim Sayeol that Pyo Wol knew.
There was no way that Lim Sayeol could have come up with such a plan on his own.
Pyo-wol looked at the unknown booklet thrown on the floor.
it was not known which swordsmanship was written on the anonymous booklet. However it was clear that the result would be different from the martial arts they had learned so far.
Pyo-wol was greedy for an unknown booklet.
The problem is that once you learn the martial art technique he would become a target for other children. If Pyo-wol would become the target of the children who learned how to kill to the extreme like So Yeowol Song Cheonwoo and Kang Il it would not be easy to handle.
‘They threw the poisoned bait properly.’
The other children did not know but the bait that Lim Sayeol threw was very tempting to Pyo-wol.
After saying what he had to say Lim Sayeol went out with the custodians. There was an unspoken pressure in deciding which of the children will learn the martial arts on the booklet.
The children looked at each other without saying a word.
It was better to not expect that the children who had not mastered the martial art technique would not take care of the situation. (그들이 사정을 봐주고 싶어도 교두들이 그렇게 내버려 두지 않을 테니까.)
Even if they want to take care of things the custodians won’t let them do that.
Knowing that fact no one dared to learn martial art technique.
Pyo-wol thought scanning the children’s faces.
‘There is a high probability that the martial arts in the booklet are the martial arts that our target of assassination is learning. Even if it is not exactly the same he must be learning martial arts similar to it.’
It was a pretty detailed plan.
It was a highly sophisticated technique that allowed the children to experience going against the martial arts directly while simultaneously identifying its loopholes.
‘I can’t be strong if I don’t take the risks. I can’t stop here.’
Pyo-wol made his decision.
When he picked up the booklet that had fallen on the floor the attention of the children was focused.
“I’ll learn this martial arts technique. The other two can decide for themselves.”
“Are you deciding to be a scapegoat of your own accord?”
So Yeowol asked with an expression that showed she did not understand Pyo-wol’s decision.
“Well whether I will become a scapegoat or a wolf remains to be seen.”
“Why did you make that choice? There’s no way you’d make that choice for nothing. Did you see any potential in the booklet?”
“Are you curious? Then you can learn this martial arts too.”
“No thanks. It’s not my taste to sit back and defend. You learn the martial arts in the booklet while I’ll attack.”
So Yeowol shook her head.
Pyo-wol smiled as if he expected her reaction.
“When someone decides who will learn the martial arts come to me. I’ll hand it over to you. Now I’ll be going first.”
“You’d better be careful. Everyone in this room will be aiming for you.”
“I’m looking forward to it.”
Pyo-wol waved to So Yeowol and the children then headed to the dark area where his room was. Until then the children only stared at each other’s faces and did nothing. But Pyo-wol knew.
That the children will soon start moving. Someone has to decide who will learn the martial arts among them. It didn’t matter who.
The important thing was to memorize and grasp it perfectly before handing it over to someone else. As soon as Pyo-wol returned to his residence he opened an unknown booklet.
[Seventy-two sword strikes crash like waves and even large rocks are swept away like sand.]
It was the first verse of the booklet.
Pyo-wol couldn’t take his eyes off the first verse.
It was because he felt an unknown ringing in his chest.
“…Seventy-two sword strikes crashing like waves?”
He imagined himself firing seventy-two sword strikes. However even if he used all his imagination he couldn’t see him wielding the sword more than 20 times. Rather than simply wielding a sword he had to wield it with all his strength with his own strength.
The basis of his imagination was his objective level of martial arts.
‘This is my limit.’
Pyo-wol began to realize his limitations. But he was not disappointed.
He still had plenty of time left.
As long as he survives he will surely become stronger one way or another.
Pyo-wol thought so and read the booklet again.
The slaughter continued.
[No matter how strong the sun was the waves continued to crash non-stop this is not different from the ways of the sword.
When the opponent is strong I will continue my breathing and when the opponent is weak I will cut off his breathing.
……All waves cannot escape from this flow. If you learn this deeply you will also learn the other martial arts of the main school (如反掌)].
There was clearly the name of a particular sect written in the verse. However the person who obtained the booklet definitely crossed it out given the blackened ink on a certain part.
It wasn’t just that.
In the booklet there were a lot of deleted phrases.
It seemed that an important structure in the flow was deleted.
‘It’s not a complete copy of the martial arts technique.’
Pyo-wol made a sad expression for a moment.
In this case there was no reason to take risks and learn the martial art technique.
This is because the core is removed and only the shell remained. But Pyo-Wol did not give up.
It was Pyo-wol who found a trick in the method of the Thunder-Splitting Cultivation that everyone neglects.
Although it is currently just a shell right now if he digs deep he will surely find something useful even in the nameless technique.
Thank you for taking the time to read! Commenting or reacting to the post would be highly appreciated~ it gives me motivation to translate and edit chaps <3