Martial Artist Lee Gwak Episode 135

April 9, 2024 • 10 min read • 247 views

Cause and Connection Come Together in Bad Fate (1)

A dense killing intent was emanating from the Phantom Armored Cavalry.

The fact that they couldn’t protect Gwan Il Hyeon despite being vigilant angered them.

Sang Gwan Cheong instructed his subordinates,

“The injured bitch he’s carrying means he couldn’t have gone far. He must be nearby, so don’t let your guard down.”

“Yes!”

Sang Gwan Cheong was confident that Lee Gwak and Han So Cheon were not far away. His instincts were telling him so.

That’s when it happened.

Whoooosh!

Suddenly, a thick fog started to envelop the area.

Sang Gwan Cheong frowned.

There were no lakes or rivers nearby. It was not a terrain where fog could naturally form.

‘Could this fog be artificial? Perhaps a formation?’

Just as he was about to warn his men,

Whoosh!

With a sharp sound, one of the Phantom Armored Cavalry martial artists fell off his horse, a deep gash on his back.

“It’s an ambush. Everyone, be cautious.”

“A formation has been set up.”

The nearby martial artists quickly realized that the sudden fog was man-made.

Lee Gwak had laid down a simple fog formation.

Originally, Lee Gwak wasn’t well-versed in formations. However, after spending time with geniuses like Lim Ji Moon and Lim Sobo, he had picked up the basic principles.

Although complex formations were beyond him, creating a simple fog formation posed no problem.

The fog formation served merely to obscure the vision and hearing of the Phantom Armored Cavalry. The real trap was the simple pitfalls he had prepared within the fog.

Lacking materials, he could only create rudimentary traps, but combined with the fog formation, they proved quite effective.

Horses stumbled into wooden traps, broke their legs or fell over. While horses could be a great asset in a cavalry formation, they became a liability in an area full of traps.

Fortunately, the Phantom Armored Cavalry warriors were all highly skilled martial artists. Even if their horses fell, they didn’t sustain serious injuries. However, the moment they landed, Lee Gwak’s ambushes followed.

Swoosh!

The Meteor Awl showed its effectiveness.

Striking like a viper, it quickly punched a hole through the chest of a Phantom Armored Cavalry martial artist.

Lee Gwak wielded his blade with his right hand and manipulated the Meteor Awl with his left. Occasionally using hand axes and throwing knives, Lee Gwak employed every means of attack at his disposal.

The casualties among the Phantom Armored Cavalry skyrocketed.

Already, about a dozen martial artists had fallen to Lee Gwak.

“Leech!

Sang Gwan Cheong trembled with rage.

He had never faced a martial artist like this before.

Utilizing swords, Meteor Awls, throwing knives, and axes, along with setting up formations and traps.

It was astonishing that one man could possess and utilize so many talents. It was like living a nightmare. However, they couldn’t just keep being on the receiving end.

He shouted,

“Everyone, dismount!”

Sang Gwan Cheong decided to forsake the Phantom Armored Cavalry’s greatest advantage, their horses.

The cavalrymen hurriedly dismounted, having already sensed the disadvantage of fighting atop their mounts.

“There!”

“There he is!”

Once they dismounted, Lee Gwak’s figure became more visible. They moved to pursue him.

Swoosh!

Sword and blade qi flew towards Lee Gwak.

Boom!

Where Lee Gwak had dodged, the weapons struck, causing an explosion and creating a crater. The hastily set up fog formation collapsed.

Being hastily made, it couldn’t withstand even a small shock.

As the fog cleared, the crude traps were revealed.

“Ahh!”

A look of disappointment crossed Lee Gwak’s face. But soon, a resolute light filled his eyes.

That the fog formation and traps held up this long was already impressive. Now, it was time to confront them with his martial prowess.

“Come at me!”

Lee Gwak called out.

Whoosh!

Sang Gwan Cheong and the Phantom Armored Cavalry surged forward like a black tidal wave to engulf Lee Gwak.

****

Han So Cheon opened her eyes in the pitch-dark darkness.

“Ugh!”

Suddenly she bent over and vomited black, putrid blood.

After spitting out the blood, she felt much better.

She hadn’t fully healed her internal injuries, but she managed to somewhat stabilize her agitated insides.

“Sigh!”

Han So Cheon straightened up.

Though she had calmed her internals to an extent, a critical hurdle remained. She had to remove the daggers that Gwan Il Hyeon had implanted in her body.

Han So Cheon tore off a piece of her sleeve and bit down on it. Then she forcefully pulled out the dagger embedded in her body.

Crack!

Flesh tore along the serrated edges of the dagger.

She wanted to scream at the excruciating pain. Even though she was used to pain, the pain of having her flesh torn from the inside was unbearable. But she bit down on the cloth and endured the pain.

If she screamed out and exposed herself, Lee Gwak’s efforts to save her would be in vain.

After removing the dagger, Han So Cheon sprinkled a haemostatic agent on the wound, which caused bubbles to form and brought another wave of pain.

She was tempted to lie down and rest, but she resisted the urge and continued to draw the blades.

Each time she did, flesh tore and blood flowed freely.

By the time she had removed all the daggers, she was nearly a wreck.

Han So Cheon wrapped the wounds with cloth and then stood up.

‘Oraboni!’

She didn’t know how much time had passed, but Lee Gwak hadn’t returned yet.

She was worried about Lee Gwak.

Was something wrong? Had something happened?

Numerous thoughts and temptations plagued her.

Han So Cheon pushed aside all temptations and focused on healing her wounds in the cave.

Going out in her current state would only burden Lee Gwak. Though worried and anxious, the best she could do now was to improve her physical condition.

That was the best course of action for Han So Cheon.

Then,

Rustle!

Suddenly, there was a noise at the entrance of the cave.

Han So Cheon clenched her jaw and cautiously picked up her sword, keeping her presence hidden as she watched the entrance.

Even with severe injuries, her assassin’s instincts remained sharp.

“So Cheon!”

If it hadn’t been for Lee Gwak’s voice at that moment, she would have attacked without hesitation.

“Oraboni…?”

Clang!

The sword she was holding fell, emitting a clear metallic sound as it hit the ground.

The intruder entering the cave was Lee Gwak. Han So Cheon rushed towards him.

As she got closer to Lee Gwak, a foul smell of blood assaulted her nostrils.

Han So Cheon’s eyes wavered at the sight of Lee Gwak, soaked in blood, resembling a blood-soaked warrior.

“Are you alright? Oraboni.”

“Let’s go!”

“Shouldn’t we treat your wounds?”

“There’s no time. Let’s move. We can treat the wounds later.”

Convinced by Lee Gwak’s words, Han So Cheon nodded.

The two quickly left the cave.

Han So Cheon squinted at the intense sunlight. Exposing her eyes to such bright light after a long time felt like they might burst.

She calmly waited to adjust to the light. When her eyes no longer hurt, Han So Cheon fully opened them, and the surroundings came into clear view.

“My God!”

Dozens of corpses were strewn around.

These were the bodies of the Phantom Armored Cavalry who had been pursuing Han So Cheon. Having faced them directly, she knew well their strength.

They were formidably strong. Especially when utilizing their cavalry formation, their destructive power was such that even top martial artists of the Jianghu found them challenging to handle.

Yet, the Phantom Armored Cavalry had been annihilated by Lee Gwak.

There had been a time when she speculated.

Perhaps Lee Gwak was concealing his true martial prowess. But she had never truly known the extent of his abilities.

“Oraboni…!”

“Let’s go! We can’t be complacent yet.”

Lee Gwak pulled Han So Cheon by the hand, but the touch felt odd.

Looking at their clasped hands, she saw they were drenched in blood. Fresh blood ran down Lee Gwak’s hand.

It was impossible to know how many wounds he was hiding beneath his clothes. His trembling hand indicated he had sustained significant injuries.

Gripping tightly, Han So Cheon clasped Lee Gwak’s hand. He turned his head slightly to look at her.

“Alright!”

Han So Cheon nodded firmly.

This was the man who had returned to this hellish place to save her. Despite her distrust in everyone, Lee Gwak was the one person she believed in.

‘My… man!’

For the first time in her life, she felt she had something of her own.

Determined never to let go of his hand, Han So Cheon moved forward.

The two of them swiftly left the battlefield behind.

Both Lee Gwak and Han So Cheon were injured and exhausted. Yet, neither of them uttered a word of complaint.

They were accustomed to pain and hardship, possessing strong wills and patience.

Lee Gwak concentrated fully on finding their way, and Han So Cheon silently followed him.

Unable to utilize qigong due to their injuries, they could only walk, slowing their pace.

Lee Gwak moved carefully, choosing paths that would leave no trace. He navigated around
large rocks and trees and followed streams to erase their tracks.

His meticulousness surprised even Han So Cheon. Of course, she could do the same.

Raised as an assassin, erasing one’s tracks was second nature to a skilled assassin. However, Lee Gwak wasn’t an assassin. He had never undergone such training.

Yet, he was just as thorough in covering their tracks as Han So Cheon. His meticulous and careful approach was astonishing.

They crossed valleys and climbed mountains.

Even when it seemed like time to rest, Lee Gwak never stopped.

Han So Cheon’s face was streaked with sweat. Her condition was dire, yet she never voiced her discomfort.

She couldn’t afford to be a burden to Lee Gwak.

Eventually, Han So Cheon’s consciousness began to blur. Her legs wobbled, and her body swayed.

Had Lee Gwak not spoken then, she would have collapsed.

“Let’s rest here for a moment.”

Only then did Han So Cheon sit down.

Lee Gwak had chosen a high vantage point that provided a clear view of the surroundings.

There were escape routes in every direction, making it easier to retreat from any surprise attacks.

Lee Gwak said to Han So Cheon,

“Practice your internal cultivation to heal your injuries somewhat.”

“What about you?”

“I have things to do.”

“Aren’t you tired? You need to treat your wounds, too.”

“I’m fine. Start your cultivation quickly.”

Lee Gwak gave her a reassuring smile.

His complexion was pale, and he was in a visibly terrible state. Still, he claimed to be alright.

Han So Cheon gritted her teeth and nodded.

“Yes!”

It was because of her that Lee Gwak couldn’t rest.

The best she could do for him was to heal her injuries a bit to be of some assistance.

Han So Cheon began her internal cultivation.

Lee Gwak, seeing her start, then went into deep contemplation.

‘Soon, the enemies will be upon us.’

Sang Gwan Cheong had mentioned before his death that a vast network was laid out, making escape impossible.

Lee Gwak needed to prepare for the net.

He recalled the terrain of the area, thinking from the enemy’s perspective on how they might use the network.

Lee Gwak’s gaze momentarily shifted to Han So Cheon, who was cultivating.

‘I won’t let you die.’