Reaper of the Drifting Moon Chapter 318
Light Novel: Volume 13 Episode 18
He was once a handsome man who was said to be better-looking than Pyo-wol.
He had delicate facial features that could hardly be considered masculine the kind of pretty boy that would unintentionally captivate any girl who laid eyes on him.
But now his face bore no resemblance to its former self. No traces of his past appearance could possibly be found anywhere.
Something must have happened to him during that time as his face was terribly disfigured to the point that just looking at him could make anyone involuntarily feel a surge of disgust.
Nevertheless Pyo-wol recognized him in an instant.
“I see so you still remember.”
“What happened to your face?”
“This? Well consider it the price I paid for escaping the Heaven and Earth Net that day.”
Go Shin-ok stroked his face with a nonchalant expression. The sensation of the skin he felt on his fingertips was rough and coarse like tree bark. Nonetheless Go Shin-ok smiled.
Even if his face might have been ruined at least he was still alive and breathing.
“It’s all thanks to you Pyo-wol. Since you created a gap in the Heaven and Earth Net I managed to escape and survive until now.”
“What about So Yeowol and Song Cheonwoo?”
“I don’t know.”
“Didn’t you escape together with them?”
“The Heaven and Earth Net wasn’t easy enough to break through for all of us to escape together.”
The Heaven and Earth Net deployed back then mobilized the entire population of Sichuan.
The children who were raised as assassins were caught in the Heaven and Earth Net and miserably died one by one.
Go Shin-ok was almost destined to meet the same fate.
When faced with danger So Yeowol and Song Cheonwoo abandoned him and fled together. Left alone Go Shin-ok had no choice but to fight a desperate battle.
The warriors of Sichuan saw him as prey.
Go Shin-ok had to endure their relentless pursuit.
In the end someone threw a corrosive substance at him causing his skin to melt and dissolve his skin.
If Pyo-wol hadn’t killed Woo Gunsang of the Qingcheng sect their assassination target back then and shaken the Heaven and Earth Net to its core then Go Shin-ok wouldn’t be alive to this day.
Pyo-wol’s sudden attack greatly shocked the martial artists involved in the Heaven and Earth Net creating an opportunity for Go Shin-ok to escape.
Go Shin-ok fled in desperation.
He didn’t even dare stop to treat his wounds caused by the corrosive substance.
That’s how he escaped barely making it out of Sichuan.
The aftermath of the corrosive substance was severe.
Go Shin-ok would constantly feel a burning pain on his skin whenever he was exposed to the sunlight.
“That is the reason why I have to wrap my whole body in bandages. But it’s okay since I’m still alive.”
He bared his teeth and laughed.
Pyo-wol stared at Go Shin-ok without saying a word. Pyo-wol’s reaction and appearance unknowingly got on Go Shin-ok’s nerves.
“How about you? What happened to you? You look even more beautiful than before.”
“There have been as many events in my life as in yours.”
“Hehe! Yeah I’m sure it must have been like that. It must have.”
Go Shin-ok nodded as if he understood.
There was a hint of indescribable madness emanating from him.
“Pyo-wol. Have I ever asked you for a favor even once?”
“Then let’s make it the first time today.”
“I have no desire to listen to you or give you anything you ask of me so just don’t bother.”
“You asshole. You really haven’t changed a bit.”
Go Shin-ok glared at Pyo-wol his eyes filled with madness.
It was impossible to see a hint of his old self in his current appearance.
Go Shin-ok had changed too much.
Pyo-wol then asked
“What do you mean?”
“Why are you on this ship? Are you related to the Kowloon Assassin Guild?”
Gao Shin-ok cackled involuntarily.
He had been caught off guard by Pyo-wol.
But Go Shin-ok’s face immediately hardened.
“How much do you know?”
“I know enough.”
Go Shin-ok stared into Pyo-wol’s eyes.
He would oftentimes be able to read a person’s thoughts just by looking at their eyes but he couldn’t tell what Pyo-wol was thinking at all.
Pyo-wol had always been like that.
Even when everyone else was lost and adrift in the underground cave Pyo-wol seemed able to see through everything without a hint of hesitation and prepared for it.
Although they breathed the same air in the same space it would always feel as if Pyo-wol was living in a different realm altogether.
Pyo-wol was truly an enigmatic person.
In front of those emotionless eyes it seemed impossible for any secret in the world to be kept perfectly.
“How did you find out? There are hardly anyone in Jianghu who know that name.”
“I happened to find out by accident.”
“By accident? Ha! Don’t joke around. The Kowloon Assassin Guild isn’t so easily penetrable as to be discovered by chance.”
“It’s not easily penetrable but it’s not perfect either.”
Pyo-wol shrugged his shoulders.
Every action of Pyo-wol irked Go Shin-ok.
From his smallest movements to even his breathing.
Everything about Pyo-wol irritated Go Shin-ok.
But this is also part of Pyo-wol’s plans.
Pyo-wol didn’t even consider the fact that the Phantom Fleet might be connected to the Kowloon Assassin Guild. He just had a feeling that something was amiss so he tried to bring it up and it just so happens that Go Shin-ok reacted more strongly than Pyo-wol expected.
Now Pyo-wol needs to provoke Go Shin-ok as much as possible to uncover more truths.
“I’ve always wondered. Where exactly does the Kowloon Assassin Guild gets its martial artists from? To raise such well-disciplined warriors practical experience is essential. But as you know Jianghu has been peaceful for the past few decades. So as a result most of the martial artists in Jianghu currently lack a sense of danger. But the martial artists of the Kowloon Assassin Guild are different. They all seemed to be sharpened to the bone.”
“So that just means that those martial artists experienced real battles somewhere. Intense battles to be exact… So I’ve been thinking if there’s no such place in Jianghu then it must be outside right? The most representative place would be outside the Central Plains such as in the Western Region. A place where civil wars have lasted for a long time with countless people constantly dying.”
Go Shin-ok clamped his mouth shut.
He tried his best to appear nonchalant but Pyo-wol didn’t miss the subtle tremor in the corners of Go Shin-ok’s eyes.
“That’s how the Kowloon Assassin Guild grew stronger. They would deploy their warriors in actual combat to enhance their skills. Furthermore to fully build and develop the organization’s power they would have needed the civil war to last for a long time. So they would stir up unrests and rebellions to prevent the war from ending. Perhaps the Phantom Fleet was also created for that same purpose. Traveling back and forth between the Central Plains and Western Regions raiding and inciting chaos looting and plundering goods and transporting warriors. That’s how the Kowloon Assassin Guild grew their forces. “
Go Shin-ok’s pupils shook uncontrollably.
What Pyo-wol was saying was close to the truth.
At this point there was no concrete evidence proving the existence of the Kowloon Assassin Guild. Whether it be the great masters and prominent figures of Jianghu not one of them knows about the existence of the Kowloon Assassin Guild.
Yet based on a few pieces of circumstantial evidence Pyo-wol managed to make deductions that were close to the truth.
It was terrifying for all the people watching.
Even at that moment Pyo-wol’s words continued
“Now the question is why did they have to keep their existence a secret? If I had to guess I’d say it’s because they haven’t reached their desired level of power yet. Perhaps they’ve learned a lesson from the downfall of the Demonic Cult and the Celestial Demon Union. Perhaps they realized that if their forces were exposed to Jianghu’s coordinated attacks they would inevitably collapse. That’s why they strengthened and grew their power in the dark hidden from people’s sight. Now there’s only one thing I’m curious about. So who is it that created the Kowloon Assassin Guild and for what purpose?”
Even if Pyo-wol was looking at Go Shin-ok his words weren’t actually directed at him.
Pyo-wol was only speaking to himself.
Ever since Jin Geum-woo’s death he had repeatedly encountered the Kowloon Assassin Guild.
It was a question that had been lingering in his mind since then. But he always lacked information to unravel the mystery.
The Kowloon Assassin Guild had always concealed its presence thoroughly where they would only leave fragmented pieces of information behind.
And with those fragmented pieces Pyo-wol had to deduce the truth. But with so many missing pieces it was impossible to draw the big picture.
To align countless fragmented pieces Pyo-wol needed a key element. A piece that would seem like nothing to others but to someone who’d been searching for it for a long time it could be the key to a solution.
For Pyo-wol Go Shin-ok was that piece.
Go Shin-ok didn’t provide a single clue to Pyo-wol. However the mere existence of Go Shin-ok was the key to putting the pieces together.
The moment Pyo-wol saw Go Shin-ok all the scattered pieces suddenly fell into place.
“Considering that the organization learned its lesson from the fall of the Demonic Cult and the Celestial Demon Union and the fact that their power is not yet complete it’s highly likely that the Kowloon Assassin Guild is only founded a few decades ago. In the meantime they avoided Jianghu’s eyes and fostered turmoil in the Western Regions to build their strength in terms of resources and talent. Lee Yul is probably one of those individuals who were nurtured in such a way.”
Now Pyo-wol understood why Lee Yul had the scent of someone from the military.
It’s because that was how and where he was made from the beginning.
An organization emphasizing rules and regulations.
Pyo-wol might not know who the founder of the Kowloon Assassin Guild is but he was sure that that person is obsessed with the rules to the point of obsession.
They probably experienced a significant sense of loss due to the violation of rules and regulations.
Go Shin-ok’s eyebrows twitched.
He realized in hindsight what kind of state Pyo-wol was in.
He belatedly understood that Pyo-wol through his own ingenuity was gathering all the fragmented pieces of information to create a coherent narrative.
Even as he spoke Pyo-wol weaved and imagined picturing scenarios and drawing out the truth in his mind.
If left alone like this Pyo-wol would completely uncover the secret of the Kowloon Assassin Guild that had been hidden for a long time.
He couldn’t leave him alone like that.
The Kowloon Assassin Guild might hold an unknown significance to Pyo-wol but to Go Shin-ok the organization was akin to a benefactor of his life.
It was the Kowloon Assassin Guild that had saved him when he was on the verge of death.
They had treated him placed him aboard the Phantom Fleet and sent him to Western Region to kill to his heart’s content.
As he freely indulged himself in slaughter in the Western Region his skills improved/
Go Shin-ok was satisfied with his life like that.
He couldn’t let Pyo-wol shatter that life.
Go Shin-ok screamed and attacked Pyo-wol.
In an instant Pyo-wol’s reverie was shattered.
The door to the truth which seemed like it would open when he reached out firmly closed again.
To open the door to the truth in the future Pyo-wol would need an even greater immersion or solid evidence than he currently had.
Go Shin-ok’s sword was blocked by Pyo-wol’s phantom dagger.
But Go Shin-ok was not disappointed.
His attack was only just beginning.
Over the past few years he had shed blood in ways that Pyo-wol couldn’t even imagine.
Thrown into the battlefield with no information and completely defenseless Go Shin-ok had to survive on his own.
That was the test of the Kowloon Assassin Guild.
There was no room for mercy for those who could not survive their test.
At first Go Shin-ok despaired. And then he wandered.
After passing through many near-death experiences Go Shin-ok realized.
He realized that there was no one to help him in that place except for himself.
After that Go Shin-ok became resolute.
He honed his assassination skills and successfully carried out numerous slaughters.
In this way Go Shin-ok progressed and eventually gained recognition from the Kowloon Assassin Guild allowing him to take charge of the ship the Phantom Fleet.
By the time he reached his current position he had killed well over tens of thousands of people.
With so much blood on his hands his assassination techniques became more and more perfect.
He was no longer the Go Shin-ok who had been chasing after the backs of So Yeowol and Song Cheonwoo in the underground cave.
Although he had lost the beauty of his face his hands ended up becoming even more cruel.
He was confident that even if So Yeowol or Song Cheonwoo came to him the two would no longer be worthy opponents.
A sound like the tearing of silk reverberated within the cabin.
It was the sound of Go Shin-ok’s sword slicing through the darkness.
Like a cat chasing a mouse his sword was relentless.
If an ordinary person were to receive his attack they wouldn’t even last a few seconds. Their limbs would go numb.
His attacks were both relentless and penetrating seeking to exploit any of Pyo-wol’s weaknesses. However his sword did not manage to touch Pyo-wol’s body even once.
Pyo-wol defended with his phantom dagger/
Although the dagger was only the size of a child’s palm it was enough to protect Pyo-wol.
No matter how long a sword was the area it would ultimately strike was only as big as a child’s palm.
The key was accuracy speed and boldness.
And Pyo-wol just happens to possess all three qualities.
Pyo-wol deflected all of Go Shin-ok’s attacks.
Whenever Go Shin-ok’s attacks didn’t work his face would contort slightly.
He didn’t like the indifferent expression on Pyo-wol’s face that remained unchanged even in the face of his attacks.
No that’s not why.
It’s because he despises Pyo-wol’s face which reminds him of the beauty he has lost.
No matter how indifferent he pretends to be the loss of his former beauty sometimes haunts him.
Suddenly greed sprouted within his heart.
And soon his greed blossomed gradually consuming his mind and heart to an uncontrollable extent.
“Give me the skin of your face Pyo-wol!”