TN: As mentioned in chapter 1, the setting of the story is in China. If you are a Chinese reader or you have vast knowledge of China, understand that the novel uses the Korean equivalent names. For example, Zhu Yuanzhang was translated Ju Wonjang as that is how it sounds in Korean. Similarly Mt. Tae is China’s Mt. Tai.
Also, I wasn’t too sure on how to translate the chapter title, specifically the word “혈사” (Hyul-Sa). If anyone has any idea, feel free to contact me through email or comment. I will make the change if I think it’s right.
Chapter 5. Mt. Tae’s Bloody History
To the people of the Mid Lands, Mt. Tae was a famous sacred mountain. With its rugged and beautiful terrain, it definitely deserved its name as the Eastern Sacred Mountain*. As such, it was the tradition for newly enthroned emperors to climb to its peak and pay their respect.
[TN: Sacred Mountains of China. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sacred_Mountains_of_China ]
As soon as he left the cave, Yunmun headed straight down the mountain using the Heavenly Demon Flying Technique. Traveling close to a 100 Jang with every flash of movement, his appearance looked akin to a nimble swallow. Without even laying a foot on the ground, he traveled on top of the forest using the tree branches.
If anyone had been looking, his blurry figure would only be regarded as a gust of wind. As he traveled, not only did more and more Inner Qi surge out from his body, but his movement also became increasingly natural. The amount of Inner Qi he had was nearing 4 cycles. Though it did not amount to much in the eyes of Chun Ma, it would belong to an ultimate expert in the eyes of an average Murim-in. In fact, the number of people that could surpass him in Inner Qi level could be counted in one hand. Adding Chun Ma and Huineng’s martial art techniques, it was virtually impossible for anyone to take a blow from Yunmun.
“Haha, this feels great! What about you, Chun Ma? How does it feel to see the world after so long?”
-I’ve seen it more than enough. Why would I care?
“It’s a completely different time than when you were alive. The scenery must have changed quite a bit.”
-The scenery is still the same, but the people should have changed.
“Eh? Ah, that makes sense I guess.”
-Hold on, what’s that sound?
=Shizhu, please stop for a moment.
-Idiot. Can’t you hear that sound? We’re hearing from the same ears… how can you be so dense? You better not taint my name.
“Sound? What sound! The sound of leaves falling, cries of wild animals, flow of water, and… clang? Is that an iron sound?
-Stupid, that’s the sound of a battle.
“A battle? There’s a battle nearby?”
-Ugh, what a complete fool. I understand since you have no experience in Murim… but thinking about bringing you around gives me a headache.
Do you think you’re the one bringing me around? It’s the opposite! This guy’s talking back too much. But if there really is a fight, I must go see it.
-Hey, why are you blindly running towards it?”
-Did you learn the Concealment Technique for fun?
“Ah, you should have said that earlier.”
It feels like I’m getting dumber. It must be because I’m distracted by these two idiots in my head. Yep. Who am I? I’m the one who will become the Emperor of Murim!!!
“Fuhahaha, remnants of Jung Pa! No matter what you do, you will never break our spirits!”
“Everyone back off.”
“Impressive, Blue Faced Demon, Ha Gun Pyo! As expected of the Demon King that once dominated these lands. But your luck ends here today. Now that we, the North Swords, have stepped in!”
“Haha. You should’ve done that that earlier. Aren’t you bastards all talk, only relying on the backing of the stronger powers behind you? Although the North Swords are the dominating clan of the North, I too was once a leader of a clan! I will never surrender to the likes of you! Go tell your leader. I, Ha Gun Pyo, will one day come to take his head!”
“Still daydreaming? You won’t have the chance ever again. In order to capture you and the others of the 7 Kings of Ma Do*, the main Clan has sent 2000 men and the Nine Justice Alliance has laid down a net of 500 men! A great display for the likes of you, don’t you think?”
[Ma Do: lit. the path/way of Evil. Opposite of “Jung”, or Justice.]
The one talking was a middle aged man with a goatee and eyes slanted slightly upwards, a stereotypical representation of a schemer! After looking around at the bodies of the dead men with flashing eyes, he once again fixed his sight on his opponent. His entire face was covered in hair and his height neared 8 Chuk*! As his title suggested, his face shined with a bluish light. He tightly held a heavy sword with his bloodstained hands, and his body covered in wounds suggested that he had gone through numerous battles already. Even so, his spirit was still alive, as he intimidated his enemies with menacing eyes.
[TN: 1 Chuk = 30 cm]
“If you’re going to start, just start already. Think of the person waiting for you.”
“Huhu, your strategy has truly been outstanding. I will praise your bravery for creating an uproar to allow your brothers to escape. However, you met the wrong opponents.”
“Hm? What do you know? It looks like your brothers have gone ahead to the afterworld. Who knows, if you hurry, you might meet them on their death bed.”
It looked like the whistle noise was their signal.
“Chet, now that it’s come to this, I’ll be taking at least one more with me. You Jung Pa bastards must have set your eyes on ending the seeds of Ma Do, but it will not go as you wished.”
“Huhu, so you still believe in the leader of Ma Do… now that the Beihai’s Sword King and the Qinghai’s Grim Reaper have turned their backs, you can’t possibly think Hyuk Wujong alone can accomplish anything? He didn’t even send any men to save you siblings. Can’t you tell that he’s looking out for his own safety first?”
“Shut it. He will never do such a thing. Soon, he will shed blood to revenge the brothers of Ma Do!”
“I talked too much. Kill him!”
The surrounding swordsmen made their way towards the Blue Faced Demon while using a strange sword draw technique that stabbed or slashed from all sides. Facing these attacks, the Blue Faced Demon, seemingly tired from the previous battles, dashed forward with every ounce of his strength.
The Blue Faced Demon skillfully parried a swordsman’s attack and slashed at the attacker’s neck. Noticing another sword aura behind him, he quickly stopped his tracks and instead, rolled on the ground and slashed at the attacker’s feet.
The attacker whose legs had been cut in half rolled in his own blood. However, there was no time to admire such things, as numerous sword auras once again struck at the Blue Faced Demon.
“Haha, fine. Today will be the day I die.”
“Thunder Clap Swords – Cruel Demon’s Form.”
Holding the sword with both hands, he spun his sword like a pinwheel at his waist level, causing it to sweep an area of 3 Jang. Those standing near were unable to dodge and could only block with their swords. At the same time, the swordsmen standing further back all distanced themselves further. Hitting away the swords or breaking them in half, the Blue Faced Demon cut down the nearby swordsmen. It was partly due to that fact that they were caught by surprise.
Sounds of gruesome screaming continuously rang out, as the swordsmen’s upper body rolled on the ground separate from its lower body. The sight of their struggle as they drew their last breath further frightened the onlookers. The Blue Faced Demon did not let this chance go to waste. Rushing at the ones running away, he was breaking out from the siege.
“Thunder Clap Swords – Final Form: Endless Thunderbolts.”
“Dodge, these are Strengthened Blades.”
Although the swordsmen scattered in all directions, the Blue Faced Demon’s Strengthened Blades were too fast for them to dodge.
When one swordsman tried to block it with his sword, it easily shattered into pieces.
Having grabbed the chance, the Blue Faced Demon rushed out of the broken-down siege line.
Blue Faced Demon suddenly stepped back wobbling. He spat out blood and intently stared at the man who had just arrived.
“Y-You are the Three Swords of the Tianshan Mountains!”
“Haha, impressive. You still had enough energy left to use Strengthened Blades.”
Upon the arrival of these new men, the nearby swordsmen bowed in salute. From this, it was clear that they were in a position of high rank. A middle-aged man who looked like the oldest among the Three Swords of Tianshan Mountains stepped out.
“Of the Demon King Clan’s 7 Kings of Mado , you are the last one alive… with your disposal, today’s hunt will end. Struggle as much as you want. That way, we won’t be so bored either.”
“You… you motherfuckers! If I let you live, I won’t be able to die peacefully. Die!”
Without worrying about his body, Ha Gun Pyo charged at the Three Swords of Tianshan Mountains. It was clear that he did not have enough energy left over to use Strengthened Blades, as he only used Sword Qi that neared 3 Ja.
He easily blocked the Blue Faced Demon’s swords, while fiercely attacking his openings. Against the barrage of attacks, the injured Ha Gun Pyo could only struggle to dodge them. With his current state, it was just too hard to fight one of the Three Swords of Tianshan Mountains.
-So? Are you just going to stand by and watch?
[What, you want me to help?]
-It looks like he’s from the Ma Do, but you won’t help him? How can you call yourself the descendant of Chun Ma?
[What are you talking about? Why would I be your descendant? Plus, I have no reason to help him just because he’s from the Ma Do… I am not affiliated with the Ma Do nor the Jung Do. I only walk the path of an emperor.]
-All the more reason you should interfere. Are you going to miss this chance of letting the world know your name? If it were me, I would kill those bastards and save that pitiful guy.
[Shut it. I’ll be the one to decide whether I help him or not. You stay out of this]
His attacks seemed extremely odd. Their fight only looked like a cat toying with a mouse. If there was strong resistance, he would back up, and attack again once he saw another opening. The Blue Faced Demon also started to slow down from exhaustion. He had feeling in the hand holding the blade and he had lost too much blood. His eye sight started to dim with only death left follow after. Even so, he withstood tenaciously that the spectating Jung Do-ins secretly praised his bravery.
“Elder brother, let’s end it now. We should go back and rest.”
Having heard this, the first of the Three Swords of Tianshan Mountains, Tianshan’s First Sword Jung Dae-Hyo, raised his swords, as if to tell him the end has come. Looking at the Blue Faced Demon, he gave a light grin.
“I will give you the honor of experiencing the final move of Tianshan Mountains’s 27 Swords. Its name is the Invisible Sword.”
12 swords flew at him, pressuring all parts of his body. When it closed in within 3 Ja, just its aura was enough to tear apart his skin. Having felt the power of this sword technique, the Blue Faced Demon clenched his teeth.
The Strengthened Blades he used with the last of his energy contained some power and directly clashed with the Sword Technique of Tianshan’s First Sword. At that moment, something no one had expected occurred.
The two swordsmen stood still after having crossed each other. But who had one?
“Wha… What absurdity is this?”
The two stood frozen in shock, not to mention all the onlookers. The swords that should be in their hands were gone. They had both wagered their lives on that attack and the tension had been at its greatest, so how could their hands lack their swords? What had they done during their exchange? Just where did their swords disappear to?
“Haha, pathetic. You don’t even realize that your swords had been stolen… and you call yourselves martial artists?”
Everyone had turned to look at the source of this voice, but they couldn’t believe their eyes. Was this man really human? Everyone’s expressions were completely frozen. Why? A man sometimes blanks out in the presence of a beautiful woman. However, they were looking at a man of about 20 years old, a man that was extremely handsome! Furthermore, what he was spinning in his hands were the swords that had been in the hands of Tianshan’s First Sword and the Blue Faced Demon. Finally realizing what was in his hands, Tianshan’s First Sword glared at him in anger. With his face reddened, he yelled at the mysterious man.
“You bastard! Who are you to mess with us like this?”
Having said these words, Tianshan’s First Sword still could not believe what had happened. Was his strength so weak to be played around by this man? However, no one present could understand what had happened either. Of course, how would they be able to comprehend the skill of Yunmun who possessed all of Chun Ma and Huineng’s skills?
“Fools! Having one’s weapon stolen should be the greatest shame of a warrior. Kill yourselves!”
Tianshan’s Second Sword who had been standing quietly in the back stepped out with respect.
“Who might you be? Could you please tell us your title?”
Shit, what do I say? Come to think of it, I hadn’t decided on a name!
Unable to think of a name, Yunmun could only decide on the first name in his mind.
“I am Chun Ma’s disciple, Pa Chun.”
-Hahaha! I knew you secretly liked that name. How can you hide this from me as a man?
Damn it, why?
[Would you shut up?]
-Being this shy isn’t like you. Just go with the flow, eh?
“One hath beginning and no beginnings.”
-Agh. Alright, I get it.
“Yes? Ah, your title is Lord Chun Ma’s disciple, Pa Chun One hath beginning and no beginnings.”
“What? You idiot…”
=Amitabul. Pfft. Amita.. pffft.
“Will you guys shut up?”
Unable to watch this sight, Tianshan’s First Sword stepped out.
“Just because you know some techniques, you dare look down on us? Treating us like jokes… you cannot be forgiven. Since you said something about Chun Ma, you must be from the Ma Do as well. Everyone, capture him.”
-What a cocky brat. Are you still going to hold it in?
Damn, I was going to let this go, but it looks like I’ll have to make my first kill here. Fine, this was bound to happen one day.