Reaper of the Drifting Moon Chapter 26
Light Novel: Volume 2 Episode 1
Manhwa: Chapter 18-19
The first thing Pyo-wol did was to examine the topography of the Qingcheng sect.
All assassinations start by knowing the surrounding terrain like the back of their palm. It was to figure out the best intrusion and escape routes in advance.
Surprisingly many assassins tended to overlook this part. This was because preparation takes a lot of time and requires a lot of patience.
But more experienced assassins spend more time on these basics.
In that respect Pyo-wol was born with the nature of an assassin.
He never stopped being vigilant even for a moment and he had a habit of constantly observing his surroundings. The habit of not missing out on even the smallest change and taking note of everything helped him grow as an assassin.
Although this was his first actual battle he grasped the surroundings as skillfully as a veteran assassin who had already committed numerous murders.
The Qingcheng sect itself was like a heavenly fortress. The name Qingcheng (青城) was given because the mountain peaks which were lined up in a row looked like a wave.
The moon being protected by the waves which was the Qingcheng Mountain. Since the mountain was so steep it was not easy to secure an infiltration and escape route.
There were numerous guards throughout Qingcheng Mountain. All of them were members of the Qingcheng sect.
They usually live separately but when the Qingcheng sect has a problem they move as one body. It is safe to say that the true strength of the Qingcheng sect lies in the people scattered across Mount Qingcheng.
It was already difficult to succeed with the assassination but it was even more difficult to get out safely after succeeding.
Moreover the Qingcheng sect of today is at its best after decades. After the fall of the Tang sect there was no sect that could stop the Qingcheng sect in Sichuan.
As such the border of the Qingcheng sect was also ironclad.
It was almost impossible to figure out all the security rotations in one day.
It was beneficial for Pyo-wol to just give up hide and sneak out of Sichuan fortress after the siege was over.
Pyo-wol was aware of that too.
However his nature and instincts were refusing to back down. The client had him kidnapped against his will turned him into an assassin then now having him disposed of.
He wanted to stop having his fate be controlled by other people.
If he steps back now he will not be able to navigate his destiny by his own will until the end.
More than anything else Pyo-wol wanted to destroy the client who had manipulated his own destiny.
For whatever reason they withdrew the assassination and tried to destroy the evidence by attacking the children. They were trying to bury the fact that they had raised children and secretly attempted to assassinate them.
There was only one reason.
Things must have changed.
It was clear that their relationship with the assassination target had changed and that killing Woo Gunsang now was out of the question. There was no way to know the exact details but it was clear that the assassination target was not supposed to die anyway.
That was the reason why Pyo-wol continued to do the seemingly impossible assassination.
After examining Mount Qingcheng Pyo-wol came to one conclusion.
‘If I am not one of the people of the Qingcheng sect then I would never be able to enter the interior of the sect.’
Pyo-wol hid where the entrance of the Qingcheng sect was visible and observed people coming and going. As the number one sect in Sichuan Qingcheng was visited by thousands of people every day.
There were those who were affiliated with Jianghu and there were those that supplied goods.
The entire Sichuan Province was bustling with the search for assassins who tried to attack the Qingcheng sect but the actual party involved was living a peaceful life.
This demonstrates the appearance of a giant who is not shaken by such trivial things.
Merchants and outside soldiers were excluded from the subject.
In order to freely roam the interior of the Qingcheng sect it was necessary to be a member of the Qingcheng sect.
Pyo-wol’s eyes glowed.
It was because a young man who had just left the Qingcheng sect caught his eye.
He looked about four or five years younger than Pyo-wol.
He smiled brightly at the soldiers guarding the front door and went out alone. His detailed identity was unknown but given his attitude toward the other members of the Qingcheng sect it was clear that he was also a fellow disciple of the said sect.
Pyo-wol secretly followed him.
The young man hummed and walked without even thinking that someone would secretly follow him.
The young man was Dojin a third generation disciple of the Qingcheng sect.
Although Dojin was the youngest of the third-generation disciples he was very talented and friendly so he was loved by many. He was now on his way to the nearby area to obtain medicinal herbs under the orders of his master
His father-in-law belonged to the Yakseondang [약선당(薬善賞)]1 of the Qingcheng sect.
Naturally Dojin also belonged to Yakseondang following his master and was doing one of his chores. One of which was collecting herbs from a nearby mountain.
“I guess I’ll head to the nearest— Kurgh!”
Dojin stopped his muttering and immediately felt something on his neck.
Something had tightened around his throat.
He was not that far from the sect. If he can manage to scream the Qingcheng soldiers will jump right in. But in the end Dojin couldn’t scream.
The noose that tightened his throat suddenly lifted him up into the air.
Dojin’s body was flung onto a tree.
Dojin was about to shout when a sharp dagger pierced his thigh.
Dojin wanted to scream since his throat felt like bursting. But his screams could not flow out of his mouth. Because the man who had stabbed him in the thigh with the sharp dagger was covering his mouth with a strong hand.
It was Pyo-wol.
The moment he looked into Pyo-wol’s eyes Dojin froze.
Those were eyes which he had never seen in the Qingcheng sect.
It was a pair of eyes with an expression that could not simply be explained as either cold or emotionless.
The soft red light in his eyes reminded him of a snake.
Dojin was overwhelmed by Pyo-wol’s eyes and could not move.
He seemed to understand the feelings of a rat standing in front of a snake.
Now Dojin was a mouse. And Pyo-wol was a viper full of deadly poison that could suffocate him anytime.
Even though Pyo-wol’s bloodlust was suppressed Dojin still couldn’t move. Pyo-wol’s presence greatly overwhelms him.
Pyo-wol closed Dojin’s mouth with his hands and asked.
“Are you a disciple of the Qingcheng sect? If yes nod your head.”
Dojin nodded quickly.
“I’ll let you go now so you can answer my questions. You better not consider screaming for help.”
Dojin nodded once more.
When he felt Pyo-wol loosening his hands Dojin forgot his promise and tried to shout out loud.
He felt a fiery pain in his shoulder.
Pyo-wol covered his mouth again and drove a dagger. It was truly terrifying to see a blade as thin as a child’s finger piercing his shoulder.
Dojin’s eyes shook.
Pyo-wol’s eyes seemed to have changed even more terrifyingly. It felt like Pyo-wol was really going to kill him the next time he screamed. So he desperately suppressed his voice.
Only then did Dojin realize.
The fact that the man in front of him could kill him at any time. And in a way he couldn’t even imagine.
If the dagger stuck in his shoulder had pierced his neck he would be dead.
Yellow liquid flowed from his trousers.
He peed because of extreme fear.
Pyo-wol said as he loosened the hand that covered his mouth
“If you scream again you will be unable to see the world again with your own two eyes.”
Dojin replied politely.
“What is your identity?”
“I am a third-generation disciple of the Qingcheng sect.”
“Is that all?”
“I…I belong to the Yakseondang.”
“What does Yakseondang do?”
Dojin confided in everything he knew.
He was out of his mind because of fear.
He was not a second generation disciple he was only a third generation disciple. He was just a young boy who had recently entered the sect. It was impossible for him to possess the spirit that was prepared to die.
In order to live he confided everything he knew.
Pyo-wol scraped out all the information he could find out from him.
“I ask you one last time. What kind of person is Woo Gunsang?”
“Wa-wait are you talking about senior brother Woo Gunsang of the Great Star of Qingcheng [청성고성(青城孤星)]?!”
“Great Star of Qingcheng?”
Because it felt unusual from the start.
“Senior brother Woo Gunsang is the best disciple produced by the Qingcheng sect. At a young age he learned most of the Qingcheng’s martial arts and has reached a very high stage. It is said that the former masters of the Qingcheng sect have shown their interest in teaching him directly.”
Dojin told Pyo-wol everything he knew.
To sum up his words he said that Gunsang Woo was the son of Woo Jinpyeong the second-in-command of the Qingcheng sect and was a person of absolute talent.
His talent was so great that all of the previous masters of the Qingcheng sect respected him and taught him martial arts.
Thanks to his formidable talent he became a great disciple even though he was only ten years older than Dojin and he was expected to be the one who would further revive the Qingcheng sect.
‘This is the worst.’
Pyo-wol thought that Woo Gunsang was already a great being considering that seven years had to be invested in carrying out the assassination but he did not know that he was that much of a great existence to the extent that Woo Gunsang received all the expectations of the Qingcheng sect.
‘No… maybe it’s to be expected? That’s why seven years of training was needed.’
Although it is not possible to know the level of the opponent’s martial arts in detail it was clear that he was a great master if he earned the nickname of the Great Star of Qingcheng.
Pyo-wol was thinking of giving up. But it’s too late for him to step back.
When they find out that Dojin was gone they will surely come after them.
Even if he stepped back without doing anything the risk was the same.
Pyo-wol had no choice.
“Oh I’ve told you everything I know so please… spare me.”
Tears streamed down from his eyes.
Pyo-wol touched his face with his hand for a moment. Dojin trembled at the eerie feeling.
At that moment Pyo-wol put blood on his face. Dojin’s body hardened like a stone statue. He will be stuck for a day or so unless someone releases him.
Pyo-wol stood next to Dojin and began touching his face. The items he received from the Blood Phantom Group also included makeup tools.
Lime glutinous rice and honey were mixed and applied all over his face and makeup was applied in a color similar to the skin color. Soon Dojin and Pyo-wol’s faces became similar.
Dojin was appalled to see Pyo-wol’s face which has changed to resemble his own.
If someone would look closely they would be able to notice the difference but at first glance they both look indistinguishable.
In fact the best way was to remove Dojin’s face skin and use it. However the process of making a face mask using human skin was complicated and time consuming so it could not be used immediately.
Even if it was clumsy it was much more efficient to put on makeup. Of course the probability of getting caught was high but it was the best way for Pyo-wol now who was rushed for time.
Pyo-wol touched Dojin’s face to check his facial muscles. Then he took off Dojin’s clothes and wore them on himself.
He could not check his overall look because he didn’t have a mirror but he guessed it was passable.
Pyo-wol left Dojin alone and headed towards the main gate of the Qingcheng sect. His gait was similar to that of Dojin.
Not only his face but everything from his body shape walk and atmosphere all resemble Dojin.
The soldiers guarding the main gate of the Qingcheng sect found Pyo-wol and talked to him.
“Oh it’s Dojin. Why are you coming back already?”
“Oh! I’ve left something behind.”
“Jeez you scatterbrain! Stay focused you hear me?”
Pyo-wol scratched his head and made a sullen expression. Then the man who was guarding the front door smiled and opened the way.
He did not even suspect that the young man in front of him was not Dojin. Pyo-wol was the same as Dojin to that extent.
Pyo-wol calmly passed through the front door.
As he passed through the main gate the Qingcheng sect revealed its true form.
The appearance of a number of temples boasted great majesty. Nevertheless the reason why Pyo-wol was not overwhelmed was because he had experienced such a landscape like this before.
The exterior of the buildings that existed in the underground cave were similar.
It was similar yet different at the same time. First of all the size was vastly different. There were buildings all over the place that was not present in the underground cavity. However the overall layout has not changed.
He had been there for seven years.
Even if he closed his eyes and moved around he would be able to find his destination.
Pyo-wol proceeded as calmly as if he were at home.
He already knew where the securities were tight and where it was weak. He deliberately moved only to places with poor security.
Thousands of people passed by him but no one doubted Pyo-wol.
If someone would look closely at his face they would have noticed something strange but no one managed to notice because Pyo-wol was acting so naturally.
Occasionally when someone who knows Dojin Pyo-wol just calmly greeted them back and passed by.
‘Is it here?’
Pyo-wol finally arrived near his destination.
Bright Moon Palace [명월전(明月殿)].2
It was the residence of Woo Gunsang.
Yakseondang. 약선당(薬善賞). When i try to search for the meaning of the word the only information that appeared was a restaurant. And taking in the individual Chinese characters maybe the term refers to a family store specializing in medicine. It also explains why Dojin was collecting herbs in the mountain for his chores.
善 Goodness right value
賞 Reward praise
Bright Moon Palace was the name of Woo Gunsang’s residence. Using machine translation Myeongwoljeon (明月殿 Mingyue Hall).