As I entered the huge circular competition hall, dozens of pairs of eyes were focused on me.
A large warrior with his muscular upper body fully exposed, a middle-aged warrior carrying two clubs on both shoulders, a skinny warrior with strangely long fingernails, etc.
I felt somewhat frustrated as the warriors who had reached at least the peak level were all showing off their fighting spirit.
I withdrew my attention from the warriors and took a quick look around.
The area of the stadium was approximately seventy square feet.
Seeing that there was no separate podium, it seemed like there was no need to worry about being judged outside the venue.
Although it was the largest event in South Korea, the number of spectators was not that large.
Nearly one-third of the audience seats were empty.
Due to the chaotic situation in Namman, it was difficult for ordinary residents to move between regions, but the fundamental reason was the preparation period for the competition.
One month may seem like a long time at first, but it was too short a time to prepare for a competition of this scale.
The Yongbong branch hosted by the Murim League also took more than half a year to prepare.
‘If the five factions had not united and prepared for the event, all preparations would never have been completed within the period.’
As it was a hastily prepared competition, the number of spectators and participants was not very large.
The duration of the event was short, and the rules of the competition were significantly simplified.
Instead, the average level of participants was very high.
This was because the five factions had made a plan and mobilized their connections to attract talented people.
“I will explain the rules of the match!”
An old warrior standing on the outer wall of the competition hall exploded the lion’s hooves.
He was one of the elders who had previously appeared in the separate room where the Beast Palace Lord resided.
It seemed like he was going to preside over this match.
“There is no time limit! After every minute, the horn will be blown! “Anyone who can stand on their feet without falling until then will be able to advance to the next match!”
It was a simple yet exciting rule.
They crowd nearly 30 people into one place and engage in a melee.
If these rules had been imposed on the participants of the Yongbong branch, I can guarantee that there would have been a strong backlash.
“And one more thing! Everyone may be passive, thinking that if they just hold out for the time, they will pass! So, if more than half of the total number of people survive, it will be assumed that no one passed!”
The large warrior burst into laughter as if it were absurd.
The quality of energy emitted by the warriors has changed.
Is it because he recognizes that everyone around him is his enemy?
Everyone straightened their postures with very nervous expressions.
A breathtaking silence followed.
As I yawned and waited for the starting signal, the skinny warrior standing on my left looked back at me with an annoyed look and said.
“If you are not serious about competing, go back. “This is not a children’s playground.”
Why did this guy start a fight and make such a fuss?
As I glanced at him with narrowed eyes, the skinny warrior spoke with an intimidating air.
“Why don’t you wear a mask to an important match and yawn while explaining the rules? “I don’t know what I was thinking when I entered the competition.”
“Of course, I participated with the intention of winning.”
“Championship? You sound funny. “I guarantee you, you won’t even pass the preliminaries.”
“We’ll see the results after we see them.”
Please respond in a half-hearted manner for a while.
Finally, a heavy horn sounded.
As soon as the match started, violent crashing sounds and screams erupted from everywhere.
The skinny warrior licked his lips with his tongue and swung his long fingernails, aiming for my lower body.
I escaped the attack range by simply taking a couple of steps back.
Quad deud deuk!
Immediately after, something amazing happened.
Isn’t the ground splitting like tofu according to the path of the fingernail?
I felt like I could believe it even though it was not a human fingernail but a hozo (虎爪).
‘It’s not just about polishing your nails hard.’
A subtle odor that could not be easily detected by ordinary people penetrated my nose.
It seems that he had constantly poisoned his fingernails, creating a poisonous hand.
‘When I first saw him, I thought he was an unusual person.’
I felt like I had learned martial arts with a more proper system than I thought.
A bizarre technique was added to the walking method reminiscent of the movement of an animal.
It was quite a tricky combination.
“You’re a lucky guy! But you won’t be able to avoid the next attack!”
Perhaps he was impatient because he had not been able to land more than ten effective blows, but the skinny warrior burst out in anger and tried to close the distance between me and me.
Instead of retreating, I approached him face to face.
The moment the tightly clenched fist touches the skinny warrior’s abdomen.
Sigh! Wood clatter!
The sensation of bones breaking came through my fingertips.
The warrior who flew out, vomiting blood, hit the outer wall surrounding the competition venue and slipped down.
A precise blow.
With just one punch, the peak expert lost consciousness and fainted.
I feel sorry for the skinny warrior who must have entered the match with a serious mind, but the gap between them was too large.
It was a fight whose outcome was predetermined from the beginning.
Other participants who were circling around, looking for an opportunity to intervene, swallowed dryly.
I muttered to myself, scanning the warriors who didn’t dare to approach and were retreating.
‘The time limit is just one thing. The number of participants in the competition is approximately thirty.’
A fierce smile appeared on his lips.
Just one tip was enough.
To eliminate all contestants other than me.
There was no need to even draw the sword.
There was no need to waste my strength by using fantastic swords in a competition arena filled with only inferior opponents.
He stepped forward strongly and used the recoil to launch the new model.
The ground sank hard and debris flew in all directions.
A huge warrior who hurriedly covers his body with a huge curved sword.
The fist filled with brain energy instantly shattered the curved sword and hit the warrior’s face roughly.
The warrior who was thrown away rolled around on the floor, clutching his sunken face.
Since I controlled my strength, I wouldn’t die.
Without hesitation, I rushed straight towards the next target.
The middle-aged warrior, who instinctively felt a sense of danger, turned to look at me.
He then crossed the two clubs to protect his body and shouted.
“I belong to the Four Confucius faction…!”
* * *
Changin Dojang, who was watching the match from the audience, clicked his tongue.
‘It’s literally a one-sided massacre.’
The level of other participants was not low.
The fire cloud is too strong.
It was like a tiger jumping into a rabbit cage.
‘He is a master of flower scenery.’
I could still clearly recall in my mind the strong energy that Yeonsun had shown before.
How great was the shock you felt at the time?
Suddenly, a curiosity arose.
How do other audiences feel?
He sharpened his eyes and looked one by one at the heads of the five factions seated throughout the auditorium.
Confucius was very excited and was fiddling with the curved sword on his back.
This Confucius was having some kind of conversation with his subordinate sitting next to him with a meaningful smile on his face.
The three and four princes were shouting with perplexed expressions, and the youngest, Woo Hwa-yeon, was looking up at the sky blankly, as if she had no particular interest in the match.
Changin Dojang, who was watching their reactions with an interested expression, shook his shoulders in surprise.
Isn’t Confucius looking back at us with harsh eyes?
The two people’s eyes met in the air.
‘Surely you noticed my gaze on this street?’
Cold sweat broke out on Changin Dojang’s forehead as he instinctively turned his head.
I heard that Confucius said that he himself expressed his intention to participate in the competition.
When I heard the story, I thought he made a reckless decision because he couldn’t control his temper, but it turns out that wasn’t the case.
‘Perhaps the opponent that the Yeon Sohyeop should be most careful of in this competition is Il Confucius.’
* * *
“What on earth is that!”
Three Confucius, Wu Gyeong-gon, shouted as if he could not believe it.
A man with a fox mask who roams the length and breadth of the competition venue and subdues other participants.
The warriors who had reached at least the peak were falling down without much resistance.
Even the elites of the large tribes, who had been brought in through connections, could not withstand five rounds.
I felt a sense of discomfort.
No matter how sick he was due to old age, the beast palace lord was still the beast palace lord.
He thought that his father, whom he respected, could not have nominated the young Jisu later as the representative warrior without any thought.
‘But isn’t this too far beyond common sense?’
The Three Princes, who were glaring at the masked man with bloodshot eyes, let go of the railing and took a step back.
Then he slumped down in a chair with a look on his face that had lost his soul.
‘You got it right.’
Prince Four was expressing astonishment in a different way from Prince Three.
“What on earth are you thinking!”
I was well aware of Yeonsun’s inaction because I had experienced it myself.
The problem was that his great martial arts skills were being used to defeat warriors belonging to his own faction.
“What should we do by reducing our allies with our own hands?”
He held his head and lowered his head.
I had no idea what the Sacheon branch manager’s intentions were.
Isn’t this why there is no point in recruiting warriors and participating in the competition?
Meanwhile, Prince I was watching the match with concentration with a fierce smile on his lips.
“That’s amazing. “To be at that level at that age.”
The spirit of winning was boiling over.
I never would have thought that he would be a warrior with such outstanding skills.
I had a strong urge to confront him right now.
I was glad I decided to participate in the competition myself.
I almost missed a rare opportunity to fight against a midfield powerhouse.
He mumbled as he played with the curved sword on his back.
“Be sure to come up to where I am. “Sacheon Branch Manager.”
* * *
“Have you received a call from Hwang Bo-kyung?”
“I showed up at the appointed place last night and delivered the letter.”
“It’s a good thing I captured him in advance. I never would have guessed that the Sacheon branch manager was that talented. “Do I really have to say that this is a secret move prepared by my father?”
“Well, even so, it is unlikely that he will win the competition, but it would be better to get rid of any anxiety in advance. “Let’s execute the strategy we have prepared.”
The man, Confucius, raised the corners of his mouth and smiled.
The competition had begun and there was no more hesitation.
It was time to clear away the obstacles that were in the way.