“Did you hear that story? “They say it was two young men and women who defeated Meng Haochai and rescued the women captured there!”
“Although it was not a mountain temple large enough to be included in the Green Forest League, I heard that the owner of the mountain came from the government military and was quite capable.”
“Well, I guess he’s just a bandit.”
“That’s right. But is it normal for just the two of you to take down bandits over fifty years old?
“fifty? “There were that many?”
“What’s even more surprising is what they did after defeating the bandits. It is said that most of the goods captured from the mountain were distributed to the kidnapped women and arrangements were made for them to return home.”
“Oh, he’s a charlatan.”
“Especially the story goes that the woman is a member of the Tang family…”
A restaurant located on the first floor of the guesthouse.
I muttered while rubbing my chin while eavesdropping on the conversation between the men sitting next to me.
Just a little rumor spread in the nearby area.
It wasn’t that I gained great fame or a fancy nickname.
Above all, the story was mainly about Dangseoyeon rather than about me.
Since she came from a Sichuan Tang family and was a woman, it was bound to be a hot topic.
‘I didn’t expect this result.’
In fact, it didn’t really matter who stood out more.
What really bothered me was that he attracted the attention of the world just by defeating a few unpopular bandits.
Fame is not easy to obtain.
This is especially true if you have a poor background.
It is a mountain, a water, and a secret.
Even if you eliminate some of the criminals who are so spread out that they can get kicked in the foot, people won’t be interested.
I don’t know if it’s a large martial force that is as big as the Green Forest Alliance, the Yangtze River Waterway Alliance, and the Blood Rang Army.
‘I can kind of get a feel for it.’
There were two main reasons why people were interested in this incident.
First, the existence of Tang Seoyeon.
The second is the goods distributed to the kidnapped women.
‘Is this some kind of propaganda effect?’
The reason he distributed the captured goods to the women was not because he sympathized with them.
Saying it was annoying was just an excuse.
In reality, he just wanted to show off to Tang Seo-yeon.
< I am not interested in goods. >
< I just went out of my way to help that side. >
The goal was to make her feel psychologically indebted by conveying such intentions.
In other words, it could be said to be a paving stone in preparation for a future attack on Cheongija’s Bi-dong.
However, that calculated calculation was disguised as a conspiracy and was being talked about by the world.
‘It’s a trick to gaining fame. ‘It might be worth thinking about.’
I learned something good.
There was a need to increase his reputation in order to become an elder of the Murim Alliance in the future.
It would have been better to have a good name rather than simple fame.
Because hypocrites from political factions are passionate about righteousness and integrity.
‘It wouldn’t be a bad idea to do some basic work before the Yongbong branch opens.’
Of course, I had no intention of killing every bandit I encountered on the way to Zhejiang.
It was cumbersome, a waste of time, and above all, it was inefficient.
It was enough to waste my mental energy on a pointless fight.
‘If you’re going to win, you have to do it big.’
I was just wondering where I should spend the money I earned.
Although I have no interest in doing charity work, I was willing to take some losses if it was an investment for the future.
‘It would be a good idea to discuss it with the owner of Hwayang Sangdan.’
After gathering my thoughts, I called Jeomsoi and ordered a meal.
As I was waiting for my food to come out, a woman with a familiar face sat down across from me.
It was Cheon Ga-ryeong.
She suddenly raised her head and said.
“There’s a problem.”
“What does that mean all of a sudden?”
“Have you ever heard a rumor about a demon that appears in Shaanxi?”
“This is my first time hearing this.”
“Recently, a madman under the influence of demons went on a rampage in Xi’an, and it seems that more than one person was harmed at the time. “He’s such a newbie that he hasn’t been subdued yet.”
“What does that have to do with us?”
“That guy killed a disciple of the Huashan Sect last night. “I heard that the angry leader of the Hwasan faction issued an order to kill and blockade?”
“That can’t be true. “It looks like I’ll be stuck here for a while.”
I blinked with a blank expression.
What kind of sound is this, like banging on a pole in your sleep?
* * *
After finishing my meal, I left the guesthouse and headed toward the street.
Before long, I was able to spot a Taoist monk from the Hwasan Sect perched on a corner of the street, looking at passers-by with sharp eyes.
The plum blossom pattern drawn on the sleeve caught the eye.
‘That’s a pain in the ass.’
The story that the Volcanic Sect mobilized a large number of disciples to blockade the area to subdue the demons seemed to be true.
I tsk and click my tongue.
I never thought the schedule would be delayed like this.
‘There’s no particular reason to hurry, but…’
But it wasn’t like there was anything special to do in Shaanxi.
I wanted to avoid wasting time meaninglessly.
‘But I don’t want to join in helping the volcano faction track down the demon.’
In an instant, Dang Seo-yeon’s face flashed through my mind.
If she, a direct blood relative of the Sichuan Dang family, steps forward, wouldn’t even Taoist monks like Tiger and Malco obediently get out of the way?
There was plenty of possibility.
The problem was whether Tang Seo-yeon would come forward even at the risk of being looked down on by the Hwasan faction.
‘I don’t know. Should I go back first and ask Pyodu what he plans to do next?’
That was when I shook my head and tried to retrace my steps.
A young Taoist monk appeared as if blocking the path ahead.
“Infinite Buddha. Could you please spare a moment?”
“Is there a problem.”
“Could you tell me the name of the small cooperative?”
I couldn’t understand the intention of the question.
Why do you suddenly ask someone else’s name?
“Even if it’s annoying, I’d like you to answer my question.”
“It’s called Yeonsoun.”
“Do you have any means of proving your identity?”
“Why are you asking that? “No, before that, when asking for someone else’s name, isn’t it polite to reveal your own name first?”
“I’m sorry if I made you feel uncomfortable.”
Contrary to what he said, he didn’t look sorry at all.
A head held high and an overbearing voice.
The attitude made me feel bad as if I was interrogating a criminal.
“But it is a necessary investigation. “I hope you will cooperate.”
“Is there a connection between following the traces of a runaway demon and confirming the identity of a passerby?”
“there is. “He is an expert in disguise and transmutation.”
In other words, if a person was found with a sword at his waist, they would immediately arrest him and investigate his identity.
I scratched the back of my head and gave him the answer he wanted.
“There is someone at the guesthouse where you are staying who can prove your identity.”
“Then go there.”
The young Taoist naturally led me and followed behind.
I frowned and walked away, having unintentionally developed an annoying hump.
* * *
“This is Sojeo, Dang Seoyeon of Sacheon Dang Family.”
There was tension on the young Taoist’s face.
It seemed like he had never thought that the person who would prove his identity would be a member of the party.
As I watched him roll his eyes here and there with a puzzled expression, my uncomfortable feeling subsided a little.
“Infinite Buddha. “My name is Cheonwoo, and I am a great disciple of the Hwasan Sect.”
“Nice to meet you. Cheonwoo Dojo.”
I couldn’t help but laugh as I watched the young Taoist monk politely bowing his head and revealing his Taoist name without being asked.
This is why people need to have a good background.
‘When I asked him his name, he didn’t answer until the end and just stretched out.’
A young guru who is anxious to leave, and Dang Seo-yeon, who clings to the guru and constantly asks him questions.
It was an interesting sight.
I was able to reflect on my goal of becoming an elder of the Murim Alliance.
One day, I will gain omnipotent power and status and stamp down the noses of arrogant Taoist b*stards.
At that time, with the sound of rusty hinges, Cheon Ga-ryeong peeked her head into the room.
The young Taoist’s eyes opened wide.
It felt like drool would flow out of my open mouth at any moment.
I clicked my tongue and muttered to myself.
‘That kind of thing is also a guru.’
What can a practitioner who aims to become a sage be captivated by the beauty of a woman?
Cheon Ga-ryeong gave a signal with his hand as if telling me to follow him.
I asked for understanding from Tang Seo-yeon and the young monk and went outside the dormitory.
-Why did you call me?
-If you have nothing else to do, would you like to go grocery shopping with me?
-There is nothing particularly necessary.
-Your thoughts will change when you hear the destination, right?
-The place I’m going to is not the local street, but the dark city.
-Dark vision? Has a black eye opened around here?
-I heard it was open two days ago? From what I heard, it seemed like black merchants were also having trouble. The time to withdraw has passed, but because Jang Mun-in of the Volcanic Sect has issued a blockade, they cannot move to another area.
A global market where all kinds of stolen goods, stolen goods, and illegal goods are traded.
Not much was known about them as they wandered throughout the central region, opening markets and withdrawing repeatedly.
I was intrigued.
I also only heard about it through word of mouth, but I had no experience setting foot in black poetry.
-I’ve heard that the only things that can be used in black poetry are cash and goods. Don’t you have to stop by the battlefield and pick up the money?
-I guess so. Now take this.
-Fox mask? Why is this…
– Are you trying to show your face proudly in the dark?
– I understand what you mean.
-Take this too.
-What is this again?
-It is a proof card that shows that the holder is a guest of Heuksi.
-Is it okay for me to just give you something like this?
-You can return it after you use it.
-Can’t I just have it?
-no. Because it’s not something I can freely hand over to others.
I quenched my appetite with regret and fingered the golden plaque the size of my fist.
Perhaps feeling uneasy about that, Cheon Ga-ryeong spoke once again as if to emphasize it.
-You must return it.
* * *
Cheon Ga-ryeong led me to a deserted alley.
It took me a long time to cross the narrow and unsanitary alley.
She stopped in front of a nice two-story wooden building and lightly knocked on the door with the back of her hand.
Knock three times and take a breath.
Knock seven times and take another breath.
Finally, after knocking six times, the door burst open and a man seven feet tall appeared.
The man asked, looking at me and Cheon Ga-ryeong in turn with harsh eyes.
“What is your business?”