Light Novel: Volume 11 Episode 9
Pyo-wol poked his head out of the water without making a sound.
His hands held the hull of the ship.
The people on the ship did not notice the Pyo-wol’s presence at all.
Pyo-wol touched his chest with one hand.
His flesh was slightly torn causing a bit of blood to flow out.
Before getting hit by Ji Gang-pyo’s sword, he pulled his body back as much as possible to minimize the part that touched the sword.
He could have completely avoided Ji Gang-pyo’s attack, but that would only arouse his suspicions, so Pyo-wol had no choice but to take a little bit of damage.
Pyo-wol channelled and focused his internal energy on the wounded area. The blood flowing out slowly stopped as the wound closed.
Without knowing that Pyo-wol was attached to the ship like a cicada, the ship continued to glide leisurely across the water.
Pyo-wol relaxed his body as much as possible and surrendered himself to the flow of the current.
With his skill and mastery in swimming, Pyo-wol was able to maintain calm even against the rough flow of the current.
Pyo-wol looked at the surrounding scenery while holding on to the hull.
The ship had already been riding down the river for more than half a day. They have already travelled quite a bit of distance from Runan.
He didn’t know how much longer these people would travel by ship.
Still, Pyo-wol didn’t feel nervous.
Pyo-wol recalled the conversation the warriors had on the ship.
‘The items loaded on the ship are called Demon Transformation Pills.’
He had never heard of such a thing before, but its name alone was giving off sinister vibes.
Objects tend to follow the name it’s been given. So while Pyo-wol didn’t exactly know what the Demon Transformation Pill does, it’s clearly an ominous object.
Although the Snow Sword Manor is currently fighting the Jin family, they are still an orthodox sect.
If the Snow Sword Manor had been a demonic or unorthodox sect, then the Shaolin Temple would not have tried to deal with them so smoothly.
But since it was a fight between orthodox factions, the Shaolin Temple tried to mediate between the two, otherwise they would have immediately sent out their troops to punish them.
In any case, the Snow Sword Manor is an orthodox sect, even if it’s just on the surface.
Yet such an ominous object was created from the Snow Sword Manor. If this fact is known to others then they would immediately be driven out of Jianghu.
Pyo-wol didn’t think that Seol Kang-yeon would be capable of doing such a thing.
The Seol Kang-yeon he knew might be a greedy person, but he is not someone who would do something that could drag down his sect into ruin. If he was that kind of person in the first place, then he would not have tried so hard to support and raise the Snow Sword Manor until now.
‘This must be Lee Yul’s doing.’
Even if Pyo-wol did not know the identity of the person who he saw in that secluded mansion, the energy and atmosphere he felt from him resembled Lee Yul. People who do the same kind of work often have similar atmospheres.
Pyo-wol thought this was better.
His target after all is Lee Yul.
He found Lee Yul’s character pretty suspicious and dodgy. He was completely different from any Jianghu warriors whom Pyo-wol met so far.
It wasn’t simply a matter of his martial arts or appearance. His temperament, eyes, and way of thinking was greatly different from other people.
He was an enigma, just like Pyo-wol.
There was no way that such a person would have fallen from the sky. Nevertheless, he’s sure that the people on this ship right now will guide him to know more about Lee Yul.
Pyo-wol closed his eyes.
The ship continued to drift on the water for the entire day after that.
The place where they arrived was on an unknown island.
The location of the island is so exquisite with how it’s surrounded by canyons on all sides. It would have been impossible for a person to know of its existence not unless they have wandered inside the canyon.
The island was so vast that it was unbelievable that it’s on a middle of a canyon.
The ship carrying the warriors anchored at a dock built on one side of the island.
When the ship docked, a group of warriors staying on the island came out to welcome them. Among them, a middle-aged warrior spoke,
“Captain! You’re back?”
The captain nodded as he got off from the ship.
“How’s the monk?”1
“He’s not someone who gets harmed easily.”
The subordinate smiled as he shook his head.
The captain pointed to the ship and said,
“Unload all the cargo stored on the ship. Keep them safe since we will use that later.”
“I don’t know why the Assassin’s Guild makes such things. That thing only causes great damage to the body. It doesn’t have any benefits at all.”
“Why would they bother making it if it didn’t have any use at all? The Demon Transformation Pill is a pill that can momentarily boost a person’s power three or four times in an instant. There’s going to be some important use for it in the future.”
“That’s true, but–”
Despite the captain’s answer, the middle-aged warrior did not look happy.
“It’s something that the monk made with great effort. He made it with us in mind so keep it well.”
After the middle-aged warrior answered, he gestured to his subordinates. Then, the warriors who came to welcome them, climbed on top of the ship and unloaded the boxes filled with Demon Transformation Pills.
“Let’s go in.”
The middle-aged warrior politely replied to the captain.
The attitude he showed toward the warrior was unusually polite.
The name of the captain is Mok Hanseong.
He is the person the middle-aged warrior admired the most in the world. He would even willingly follow Mok Hanseong to the depths of hell.n𝓞𝐯𝞮.𝓁𝔟/In
It wasn’t only him, but the same goes for everyone here.
That’s what people called them.
The middle-aged man’s name was Jong Rigu, the vice-captain of the Ghost Brigade.
Jong Rigu followed Mok Hanseong and entered the island.
* * *
The last box was unloaded from the ship.
After unloading all the boxes, the Ghost Brigade surveyed their surroundings once again. They know how near impossible it is for someone to sneak and get on the island, after all it’s surrounded by canyons, but nevertheless, they stayed vigilant. They were unlike most ordinary warriors. They remained disciplined and alert from beginning to end.
One of the Ghost Brigade warriors shouted,
“Since all of the boxes have been unloaded from the ship, activate the Ten Li Illusionary Array Formation3 again!”
Immediately after answering, thick mist began to form around the island. The thick mist swallowed the island in an instant, making it disappear from sight.
A lot of time has passed.
Then, a Ghost Brigade warrior suddenly came out of the mist.
He looked around the dock and muttered,
Even after activating the Ten Li Illusionary Formation, not all members of the Ghost Brigade went back to the island. One stayed and waited just to double check if there were any pursuers.
They exercised a great deal of caution.
Only when the warrior disappeared again into the mist did Pyo-wol come out of the water. He was relieved that he waited a bit more before coming out of the water. If he had decided to follow them immediately then he would have been caught right away.
Pyo-wol walked towards the mist.
He had never heard of an array formation called the Ten Li Illusionary Array Formation. However, judging by its name, he guessed that it’s a kind of array that subjects a person to illusions by messing with their senses.
While Pyo-wol has yet to experience this specific kind of array formation, he has experienced a similar kind in the underground cave.
Pyo-wol closed his eyes and used his internal energy to completely block his hearing.
An array formation usually works by deceiving the person’s sense of sight and hearing.
The eye delivers around eighty percent of the information human’s need to perceive the world, and with illusions, it causes a person to perceive wrong information by distorting what they see.
Hearing also plays a big role.
Sound is a way of rousing a person’s imagination. By emitting certain sound waves, it can cause a person to hallucinate or imagine things wrongly.
When those who did not know this fact entered this kind of illusion array formation, they were bound to suffer from it.
And if they are already immersed and distracted by the illusions, once they continue to walk around the area, they could possibly end up triggering a trap or having their whereabouts discovered.
The Ten Li Illusionary Formation works the same way.
It was for this reason that Pyo-wol blocked his eyesight and hearing. He wanted to prevent the inflow of false information.
Ordinary people would have their mobility greatly affected if their vision and hearing are suddenly blocked, but it was different with Pyo-wol.
After living in the dark for a long time, all of Pyo-wol’s senses have become incredibly sensitive.
In particular, Pyo-wol’s senses work best in the dark.
Pyo-wol walked without hesitation.
Humid air clung to his body like a spider’s web. The hot and sticky feeling would have already made an ordinary person feel sick, but Pyo-wol continued to walk without much difficulty.
Mist doesn’t just play a role in showing illusions. It also served as a curtain to hide hidden machinery and traps.
If a person is not careful enough, they’ll end up setting off the traps and machinery, and thus announcing their presence.
Pyo-wol took utmost care not to touch any traps or machinery.
After walking for a long time, the humid feeling on his skin faded away.
Only then did Pyo-wol open his eyes carefully.
What greeted him is a completely different scenery from before. He saw a flat plain that seemed to have been recently mowed. There’s also a dozen or so shacks around him, which Pyo-wol guesses must be a temporary residence.
The shacks were so roughly built that it looks like it can be abandoned at any time. It was clear that these shacks were not built by professional workers, but rather constructed by the people staying here.
Outside the shacks, a group of warriors were sitting on the ground.
The warriors appeared to be relaxed at first glance, but in reality, they were on guard and wary of their surroundings even while they were talking to each other.
Even with the Ten Li Illusion Array Formation set in place, they did not fully rely on it.
Pyo-wol crouched on the floor, trying to go unnoticed.
Pyo-wol knew people who smelled like them.
The Black Cloud Corps led by Jang Muryang and Heo Ranju.
The Black Cloud Corps had strong discipline, reminiscent of a military squadron rather than that of a simple group of mercenaries.
The people sitting in front of the shacks also smelled similar to the Black Cloud Corps. The only difference is that they are smaller in number and have a much more dangerous feel to them.
Pyo-wol took a closer look at them, still hiding himself.
Those warriors didn’t let their guard down even for a moment. Even as they were talking, not a single one failed to neglect their surroundings.
Usually, people who are exposed to a familiar environment for a long time tend to naturally lower their guard, but they didn’t do that at all.
However, there is not a perfect person, they are bound to have gaps somewhere. These warriors cannot endure being on edge forever.
The moment when they let down their guard is bound to come. All Pyo-wol has to do is to patiently wait until such a moment comes.
And No one came close to him in this kind of endurance battle.
Pyo-wol waited for the warriors’ attention and vigilance to dissipate. While waiting, he completely stopped his bodily activities by using the Turtle Breathing Technique.
It was late in the evening when the warriors in front of the shacks moved. They took a last look around before going inside their residence.
It was only then that Pyo-wol got up from his seat, releasing his Turtle Breathing Technique.
Darkness fell on the island that is still covered in mist. This further created an optimal environment for Pyo-wol to work.
The night was Pyo-wol’s stage.
Pyo-wol began to move without leaving a trace.
There were a total of ten shacks built around the flat land.
Pyo-wol climbed onto the roof of the nearest shack. After landing on the roof silently like a stray cat, he then peeked through the cracks on the roof.
Inside the shack, he saw four beds made of wood set side by side. If there are four beds in each house then close to forty people stayed on this island.
The inside of the shack looked desolate.
There were no other items or furniture beside the beds.
Pyo-wol was now sure that this place was just a temporary residence for these warriors.
The warriors inside the shack did not talk much. Some sat cross-legged while working on their internal energy, while others were passing the time by reading a martial arts manual.
He didn’t see any signs of impatience or boredom on their faces. They looked very used with this kind of lifestyle.
Pyo-wol checked the other shacks as well.
It wasn’t that much different from the first one he saw.
Even while living their own lives, they never seemed to be disturbed.
In particular, some of them were radiating such sharp momentum that even Pyo-wol could not afford to take them lightly
Their aura was so great that if someone other than Pyo-wol had sneaked in, they would have been caught right away.
‘Where did these people come from?’
Pyo-wol had already met many warriors belonging to orthodox sects such as the Wudang sect and the Shaolin Temple. This caused him to be well aware and familiar of the aura and atmosphere of warriors belonging to such sects.
But these warriors on this island radiate a completely different aura from them.
Their aura was wilder and more ferocious than the Black Cloud Corps.
‘How come these people aren’t well-known yet in Jianghu?’
Pyo-wol was also able to access a lot of information about Jianghu.
He wasn’t all familiar with regards to the small sects, but he knew most of the movements of quite a few clans. However, there was no mention of these warriors anywhere in the information he obtained.
If such a group of warriors who emit this kind of aura moved, they would surely stand out. After all, it’s not simple to possess such aura by simply learning martial arts.
Only those who had spilled a lot of blood could have such aura. And if such a group killed that many people, they would naturally be known in all of Jianghu.
So the fact that these warriors are not known to the public means that they act in secret so as not to gain the public’s attention, or they are active in a place out of the public’s eye.
It was then.
Suddenly, a flash of light went over Pyo-wol’s head.
Thank you for reading!
Monk. Raws: 수사(修士). Ghost Brigade. Raws: 귀무대(鬼武隊). 鬼 guǐ – ghost; spirit of dead; devil 武 wǔ – military; martial, warlike 隊 duì, suì, zhuì – team, group; army unit Ten Li Illusionary Array Formation. Raws: 십리환상진(十里幻像陣). 十 shí – ten, tenth; complete; perfect 里 lǐ – unit of distance; village; lane 幻 huàn – illusion, fantasy, mirage 像 xiàng – a picture, image, figure; to resemble 陣 zhèn – column, row or file of troops