Martial Artist Lee Gwak Episode 53

December 26, 2023 • 11 min read • 300 views

(The More People Gather, The More Incidents Occur (3))

The man who called Dan Li Yeon and Mok Seon Wol was a handsome martial artist who appeared to be in his early twenties.

He was as tall as Lee Gwak, wore a splendid martial robe embroidered with gold threads, and carried an antique and ornate sword sheath at his waist.

As he approached the two women, he opened his mouth.

“Did you two really dine at such a shabby street stall?”

“Sir Yeom!”

“We thought you were in a hurry to leave, but we had no idea you would dine at a place like this.”

The man called Sir Yeom smiled broadly and looked around the stall and its surroundings. But despite his smiling face, his eyes were not so favourable.

The man’s name was Yeom Gi Ho. He was a disciple of Jianghu’s highly regarded martial arts faction, the Seven Absolute Sect, and although he was not in the Ten Lesser Skies, rumours suggested his martial arts skills were no less formidable.

Because the Seven Absolute Sect was a renowned sect, Yeom Gi Ho’s pride was sky-high. He was often considered arrogant, but he paid it no mind.

His heart had fluttered with excitement at the prospect of attending the Jade Heaven Alliance’s Talent Gathering, seeing it as a golden opportunity to meet the famous female warriors of the Jianghu, whose reputations were well known.

The shock he felt upon seeing Mok Seon Wol and Dan Li Yeon in person was indescribable. They were more beautiful and mysterious than any other women he had encountered.

He and his peers had tried to get closer to the two women, but unfortunately, they were met with cold indifference.

There was an invisible barrier surrounding them. It seemed almost impossible for Yeom Gi Ho to breach this barrier, leaving him disappointed. Thus, stumbling upon them again was a delight.

His gaze then settled on Lee Gwak, who stood beside the two women.

“And who might you be?”

“I am Lee Gwak, the outer hall squad leader of the Jade Heaven Alliance.”

“Lee Gwak?”

His eyes narrowed.

Lee Gwak sensed the subtle hostility in Yeom Gi Ho’s eyes. It was clear that Yeom Gi Ho was interested in Mok Seon Wol and Dan Li Yeon.

Lee Gwak, not wanting to provoke trouble, decided to leave.

“I just happened to share a table with them. I must return to my duties now. Farewell…”

“Wait a moment!”

Yeom Gi Ho called out to Lee Gwak.

As Lee Gwak looked back in surprise, Yeom Gi Ho approached and clapped him on the shoulder.

“I just wanted to wish you a good journey. Take care. Ha ha!”

Lee Gwak’s expression subtly changed.

Turning back to Mok Seon Wol and Dan Li Yeon, Yeom Gi Ho smiled.

“Since we’ve met again by fate, why not continue the conversation we missed earlier?”

“Sir Yeom!”

Suddenly, Mok Seon Wol’s voice turned as cold as ice, causing a perplexed look to appear on Yeom Gi Ho’s face.

“Why… are you behaving this way, Miss Mok?”

“What are you trying to do right now?”

“Huh?”

“You just used the Internal Destruction Technique on him.”

“That’s…”

Caught off guard by Mok Seon Wol’s unexpected words, Yeom Gi Ho stuttered, clearly flustered. He hadn’t anticipated that she would notice his discreet use of the Internal Destruction Technique on Lee Gwak’s shoulder.

His reasons were simple. The mere fact that a mere outer hall martial artist sat in the company of the women he cared for was enough to infuriate him.

Yet, he showed mercy, using just enough of his internal energy to cause a few months of suffering, but not enough to be lethal. If he had used his full power, Lee Gwak would have died on the spot.

The real issue was that Mok Seon Wol had noticed the Internal Destruction Technique he had secretly used.

“Why did you do that?”

A chill emanated from Mok Seon Wol’s entire body.

Usually calm and serene, Mok Seon Wol could unleash a storm-like chill when angered.

“Tch!”

Watching her, Dan Li Yeon clicked her tongue.

She had also realised that Yeom Gi Ho had used a covert move. To them, who had reached far higher realms, his deception was futile.

Dan Li Yeon knew Mok Seon Wol as someone dignified and non-interfering, but she couldn’t tolerate injustice.

In Mok Seon Wol’s eyes, Lee Gwak was someone vulnerable who needed protection. It was only natural for her to be enraged at Yeom Gi Ho for using a covert technique against him.

Mok Seon Wol’s aura swelled rapidly like a snowball.

“Miss Mok, you seem to have misunderstood, please calm down.”

“Why don’t you try using the Internal Destruction Technique on me?”

Yeom Gi Ho’s face hardened under Mok Seon Wol’s relentless pressure.

“Stop this, Miss Mok. If you continue, even I cannot hold back.”

“What if I don’t?”

“Miss Mok!”

“Always so bold against those weaker than you?”

Suddenly, Yeom Gi Ho felt his rationality snap. Unable to contain his anger any longer, he attacked.

“Yaaah!”

Whoosh!

His powerful force, like a storm, surged towards Mok Seon Wol. His Rock Shattering Palm, capable of pulverising even large boulders, rushed at her.

Yet, Mok Seon Wol didn’t even blink.

Only when Yeom Gi Ho’s force was inches away did she move.

Swoosh!

Mok Seon Wol vanished from Yeom Gi Ho’s sight.

“What?”

As Yeom Gi Ho looked around in confusion for her…

Bang!

“Ugh!”

With a loud explosion, Yeom Gi Ho was thrown to the side.

Mok Seon Wol, who had disappeared from his sight, reappeared beside him and struck him with a fist. Yeom Gi Ho barely managed to block her attack with his elbow, but the impact was too strong, sending him flying.

Blood trickled from the corner of Yeom Gi Ho’s mouth. Despite his internal organs being jolted and his energy shaken, he prepared to counterattack. But Mok Seon Wol was faster.

Ssssh!

The whip wrapped around her waist, like a venomous snake, lashed out and coiled around Yeom Gi Ho. It was a substitute for her usual hidden sword.

“Ugh!”

Yeom Gi Ho tried to summon his internal energy to tear the whip apart, but it was futile. The whip, as unyielding as steel chains, tightened around him with immense pressure.
Helpless, Yeom Gi Ho was bombarded by Mok Seon Wol’s rapid palm strikes.

Papapapap!

“Argh!”

He rolled on the ground, screaming after being hit more than ten times in quick succession.

Though renowned outside for his strength, comparable to the Ten Lesser Skies, Yeom Gi Ho’s skills were meagre compared to Mok Seon Wol’s.

“Hmph!”

Mok Seon Wol retracted her whip, scoffing. Contempt flashed across her face for the first time.

Yeom Gi Ho had been so arrogant with just this level of skill.

Mok Seon Wol spoke, feeling the weight off her chest,

“Sir Yeom, you should focus more on training yourself rather than using underhanded tactics on the weak. If I catch you in such an act again, I won’t be so lenient.”

“Ugh!”

Clutching his chest, Yeom Gi Ho was unable to utter any excuses. His face was filled with shame.

He had never imagined being overpowered so easily without landing a single blow. If this became known in the Jianghu, he could never hold his head high again.

‘I won’t let these women get away with this. I will have my revenge.’

With a vow of vengeance, Yeom Gi Ho struggled to his feet and left.

Mok Seon Wol, having watched him stagger away, turned to Lee Gwak with a concerned expression.

“Are you alright?”

“Oh, I’m fine.”

“I’m sorry for dragging you into this.”

Mok Seon Wol looked sincerely apologetic.

If it weren’t for her and Dan Li Yeon, Lee Gwak wouldn’t have been involved and targeted by the Internal Destruction Technique.

Lee Gwak was unharmed. Although Yeom Gi Ho’s Internal Destruction Technique was dangerous, it couldn’t harm him. At the moment of infiltration, a massive snake within him had devoured it. However, Mok Seon Wol, unaware of this, was naturally worried.

Victims of the Internal Destruction Technique usually suffered severe internal injuries and died in agony. Even if lucky enough to survive, they needed at least a year of immobile treatment to recover.

Dan Li Yeon intervened,

“He’ll be fine.”

“How so?”

“I’ll give him this.”

She pulled out a black wooden box, from which a fragrant scent wafted.

“Could it be?”

“Yes! This is a Recovery Elixir. It can completely heal the internal injuries caused by the Internal Destruction Technique.”

Recovery Elixir was a secret and precious elixir of the Jade Heaven Alliance, known for enhancing internal energy and healing internal injuries.

“Is it alright to give away something so precious?”

“It’s unnecessary for me. Since he suffered because of us, it’s the least we can do. Besides, I owe him that much.”

“Owe him?”

Mok Seon Wol looked puzzled, but Dan Li Yeon didn’t elaborate.

Whenever she saw Lee Gwak, Dan Li Yeon felt a burden on her heart. Initially, she didn’t understand why, but upon reflection, she realised the truth.

Unintentionally, her brother, Yong Cheon Myeong, had stolen Lee Gwak’s lover. And she had presumptuously advised Lee Gwak not to act rashly in his grief.

It seemed that these actions had left a deep impression on her heart.

Even though the Recovery Elixir was said to be a rare artefact in the Jade Heaven Alliance, Dan Li Yeon didn’t need it. The time had long since passed for her to use elixirs to improve her cultivation. So she offered it to Lee Gwak as a way of repaying her debt.
Lee Gwak waved his hands in refusal.

“I cannot accept such a precious item.”

“Just take it and use it. Otherwise, you’ll suffer for a long time.”

“Right. I don’t really need it, so please accept it. Without it, your vital energy will be severely damaged, and you won’t be able to live normally.”
With Mok Seon Wol joining in, Lee Gwak could no longer refuse. Moreover, the two of them looked genuinely sorry.

“Then, I gratefully accept it.”

Lee Gwak had no choice but to accept the Recovery Elixir.

“Don’t save it for later; use it tonight.”

“I understand.”

“You promise?”

“Yes!”

Only after Lee Gwak’s firm reply did Dan Li Yeon show a satisfied smile. She also wanted to compensate the old lady who had been inadvertently involved in their scuffle, as her stall had been damaged during Mok Seon Wol’s fight with Yeom Gi Ho.

However, the old lady adamantly refused any compensation.

“I’m fine, really.”

Despite selling Spicy Hot Pot at her stall, the old lady was astute.

She recognized the high status of Mok Seon Wol and Dan Li Yeon within the Jade Heaven Alliance. Thus, she tried to decline their offer. Nevertheless, Dan Li Yeon forcefully placed money in the old lady’s hand.

“Keep it. Consider it a prepayment for your food. So, make sure to serve us delicious Spicy Hot Pot when we come in the future.”

“But this is too much.”

“Haha! We will keep coming here. This year, next year, and beyond. So please continue your business here for a long time.”

“I understand, miss. I promise to serve you delicious Spicy Hot Pot for a long time.”
Eventually, the old lady replied, her eyes moist with gratitude.

‘Well done.’

Mok Seon Wol smiled and nodded at Dan Li Yeon, pleased with her handling of the situation.

“Well, we should be going now. Take care of yourself, Leader Lee.”

“See you next time.”

After bidding farewell to Lee Gwak, the two women returned to the Jade Heaven Alliance.
Lee Gwak watched them leave, then glanced at the Recovery Elixir in his hand.

Just like Dan Li Yeon, Lee Gwak didn’t really need the pill. His time for enhancing internal energy with elixirs had also passed.

Since opening his sixth energy gate and gaining the Heart Eye, Lee Gwak’s internal energy had skyrocketed. While he wasn’t sure how much the Recovery Elixir could enhance his internal energy, it would likely be as inconsequential as a small stream joining a vast river.

Nonetheless, he had promised to use it someday.

Tucking the Recovery Elixir into his robe, Lee Gwak murmured to himself,

“Fate is indeed unpredictable, as they say…”