Reaper of the Drifting Moon Chapter 530

September 23, 2023 • 11 min read • 572 views

Namgung Seol was never a passive woman.

She was always on the move, proactive in her actions.

As soon as she thought of Pyo Wol, she felt compelled to investigate his whereabouts.

“I can’t use the Silver Lotus Hall or the Golden Heavenly Hall.”

Both factions, directly or indirectly, were related to Pyo Wol.

She had to get out of his reach and find out.

The Assassins’ Guild would have been a good link, but their contact had been cut. That left only one place.

“I’ll head to the Hao Clan. Please prepare.”

“Are you referring to the Poyang Lake branch?”

Ahn Ji-san cautiously responded.

He was the leader of the Snow Flower Swords, followers of Namgung Seol.

Namgung Seol asked.

“You know about it, right?”

“Yes!”

Since the outbreak of the Kangho Great War, the Poyang Lake branch of the Hao Clan had been hiding in the shadows.

In warfare, the most important thing is gathering information.

Both the Golden Heavenly Hall and the Silver Lotus Hall knew this fact and reached out to the Hao Clan to gain information. But they didn’t stop there; they tried to bring the Hao Clan over to their side altogether.

In order to gain the upper hand in information, they wanted to get the Hao clan on their side.

An offer that was unacceptable to the Hao Clan.

Hence, proclaiming their neutrality, they concealed themselves.

They were willing to sell information, but pledged to join neither side.

The Golden Heavenly Hall and the Silver Lotus Hall both desperately searched for the Hao Clan’s branch, but to no avail. However, Namgung Seol found the location of the Hao Clan branch at Poyang Lake without their help.

“Let’s go.”

“Understood.”

Namgung Seol and Ahn Ji-san stepped out shoulder to shoulder.

As they came out, a dozen or so Snow Flower Swords followed, waiting as if it were a given.

Just as they were about to step out,

“Where are you rushing off to?”

A familiar voice reached their ears.

Namgung Seol’s brow furrowed slightly, but she soon looked in the direction of the voice with a calm expression.

“Wol, it’s you.”

The man who spoke to her was her brother, Namgung Wol.

Namgung Wol asked again,

“You must have some urgent business, judging by the way you’re dragging your followers
along.”

“Your words seem prickly, it’s not just my imagination, is it?”

“Don’t dodge the question, just answer it. Why are you taking your followers with you?”

“You don’t tell me anything about the internal affairs of the Silver Lotus Hall, so why should I tell you anything?”

“That’s because you’re coveting the Silver Lotus Hall.”

“Oh, dear brother! If you want to gain something, you have to give up something else. That’s the way the world works. You’re still too naive.

“You’re making things up, sister. Trying to get the Silver Lotus Hall with just words”.

“You resist now, but soon you’ll offer the Silver Lotus Hall yourself.

“Sister!”

“Don’t raise your voice like that. There are many people on the street.”

“You really are…”

“I’m busy right now, so I don’t have time to deal with you anymore. I’ll see you later.”

Leaving Namgung Wol with a gust of cool wind, Namgung Seol walked past him.

Namgung Wol watched her retreating figure with a furrowed brow.

“What is that witch planning now?”

Although they shared the same blood, there were times when Namgung Seol felt more ominous than a stranger.

That’s why Namgung Wol always kept an eye on her.

‘What on earth is she planning?’

He stared at Namgung Seol’s receding figure for a long time.

Feeling the piercing gaze on the back of her head, Namgung Seol chuckled.

“It’s no use, little brother, you’re still a long way from following me.

With a dismissive laugh, Namgung Seol swiftly moved away from Namgung Weol.

The place to which Ahn Ji-san led them was one of the many rivers that flowed into Lake Poyang.

There were many rivers connected to Poyang Lake like a spider’s web. Even people who had been at the lake for a long time couldn’t have a complete picture of all the rivers.

“We’re here.”

At Ahn Ji-san’s words, Namgung Seol frowned.

This was because the place he was pointing to was a dilapidated warehouse on the docks of an abandoned port.

The ceiling was half-collapsed, the walls were torn down, and a foul smell emanated from the warehouse.

A nauseating smell wafted out from it.

“Are you sure this is the right place? Can people stay in a place like this?”

Just a whiff of the smell was enough to give you a throbbing headache.

Even if they belonged to the Hao Clan, she doubted anyone could stand the stench all day.
Ahn Ji-san also scrunched his nose as he responded,

“I’m certain.”

“Then make contact quickly.”

“Understood.”

Ahn Ji-san cautiously approached the dilapidated warehouse.

There was no response from the warehouse until that moment.

Ahn Ji-san knocked on the warehouse wall a few times and spoke.

“I am Ahn Ji-san, the leader of Snow Flower Swords. I seek an audience with the chief of your sect.”

“……”

There was no reply from the warehouse. However, Ahn Ji-san patiently waited.

A moment later, a shabbily dressed man emerged from the shadows of the warehouse.

He asked Ahn Ji-san,

“Did you say you’re the head of Snow Flower Swords?”

“Yes! I have come with Lady Namgung Seol.”

“Hmm!”

The man from the warehouse looked at Namgung Seol, who was standing some distance away.

“Only you and Lady Namgung may enter.”

“Understood.”

Ahn Ji-san signaled Namgung Seol as he responded.

Namgung Seol approached with a deeply furrowed expression.

The closer she got to the warehouse, the more revolting the smell became. She couldn’t keep her composure anymore.

The man chuckled at the sight of Namgung Seol.

The sight of a lady notorious for her icy demeanour unable to hide her emotions amused him.
Namgung Seol’s face hardened. She had obviously seen his laughter.

‘Oops!’

The man quickly wiped the grin off his face.

Provoking Namgung Seol any further wouldn’t end well.

“Follow me.”

He led the two guests into the dimly lit interiors of the warehouse.

“I will lead our esteemed guests inside.”

Moments later, with a muffled sound, the floor of the shadowed area moved. Where the floor had been, a staircase leading underground appeared.

The three of them descended the stairs to the basement of the warehouse.

The basement was extremely dark.

There were occasional torches, but they were nowhere near enough to illuminate the darkness.

This only made the atmosphere more sinister.

The deeper they followed the man into the building, the more rancid the smell became.

Unable to bear it any longer, Namgung Seol used her internal energy to cut off the air entering through her nostrils. Immediately, she found it easier to breathe, and she used the spare energy
to survey her surroundings.

The underground space was akin to an ant nest.

A myriad of passages were entangled in a bewildering array.

‘What an effort they’ve put into this.’

Namgung Seol once again acknowledged the formidable strength of the Hao Clan.

In reality, it was harder to dig tunnels underground than it was to construct buildings above ground. However, the Hao Clan had not just dug a subterranean space, they had intricately designed it like an ant nest.

She could sense the eyes of sentinels everywhere.

Those in the connected tunnels were clearly watching their every move.
Surely there must be several passages leading outside in preparation for an invasion. It wouldn’t be easy to conquer this.

She had just entered and already lost her sense of direction. It was certain that newcomers would get lost in this maze.

She also didn’t know what traps or mechanisms were installed within the ant nest.

If she were in their place, she would have set up a few to protect against outside intrusion.

‘So, that’s why they revealed the inside so boldly.’

Although it was only a small part, it was a testament to the Hao Clan’s confidence.

“Here we are.”

The man knocked on a steel door at a dead end, and a small window opened. After the person inside confirmed the man and Namgung Seol’s identities, the person inside opened the door.

“Please, come in.”

“Aren’t you coming in?”

“My role ends here.”

To Namgung Seol’s question, the man replied and stood next to the door.

Namgung Seol and Ahn Ji-san passed by the man and entered.

Inside the iron door was a fairly large room.

Inside the room was a small table and two men.

The man standing was the one who had opened the iron door, and the man sitting at the table was undeniably the master of the room.

Namgung Seol greeted the man sitting at the table with a bow.

“My name is Namgung Seol. And you are?”

“I am Hong Yushhin, the chief Inspector of Hao Clan.”

“Inspector?”

A light of interest sparked in Namgung Seol’s eyes.

She had anticipated meeting, at most, a local chief of the Poyang Lake branch, but the person
in front of her was a much bigger fish than she had expected.

“Being the chief inspector of the Hao Clan, you must be very busy. Did you come all the way to Poyang Lake?”

“There is no place more urgent than the Poyang Lake.”

Hong Yushin answered with a composed expression.

His demeanor was much sharper than before.

Having suffered in the Unreturnable Prison had made him sharper.

Hong Yushin cut to the chase.

“What brings lady Namgung to our Hao Clan?”

“There is only one reason to find the Hao Clan.”

“I have been foolish. Yes, what information do you seek?”

“The movements of the assassin guilds.”

“Pardon?”

“Exactly as I said, I want to know the current movements of the assassin guilds.”

“That’s a difficult request.”

“Are you saying it’s impossible?”

“Yes.”

At Hong Yushin’s response, Namgung Seol furrowed her brows.

She hadn’t anticipated that the Hao Clan would reject her request outright.

“And why is that?”

“I’m sorry. It’s difficult for me to say.”

“Is it something related to the Hao Clan?”

“No.”

“Then why can’t you tell me?”

“Because of internal matters.”

“……”

Namgung Seol’s delicate brows knitted together in a deep frown.

Despite her piercing gaze, Hong Yushin maintained his impassive expression.

At that moment, Ahn Ji-san interjected.

“That’s disappointing. To think the Hao Clan would refuse our request.”

“We apologize.”

“Do you think you can safely reject our proposition?”

“Are you threatening us now?”

“Not an impossibility.”

Ahn Ji-san smirked slightly, to which a faint smile crept onto Hong Yushin’s lips.

“So if you turn against our Hao Clan, would you prefer to side with young master Lee Geom-han?”

“Why are you bringing up young master Lee Geom-han?”

Ahn Ji-san’s voice grew louder.

Instead of responding, Hong Yushin turned to look at Namgung Seol.

Namgung Seol’s face was as rigid as if she wore an iron armour.

Hong Yushin resumed speaking.

“The Hao Clan and the Mad Martial Sect have had a good relationship for a long time, thanks to the bond with Lee Gwak, the founder of the Mad Martial Sect. But time has passed. Just as the Mad Martial Sect is not what it once was, neither is the Hao Clan.”

“Is that a warning?”

“Advice.”

Namgung Seol glared at Hong Yushin.

She was highly adept at reading others’ emotions and thoughts, but she could discern nothing from Hong Yushin.

Namgung Seol bit her lip.

Staying here would only lead to more embarrassment and hurt her pride.

“Let’s leave.”

“Please be careful on your way. I won’t see you out.”

“We’ll be watching the Hao Clan’s actions.”

“I’d better be careful then, very careful.”

Bang!

Namgung Seol and Ahn Ji-san exited, slamming the iron door behind them.

After they left, Hong Yushin finally let out a sigh that he had been holding in.

“Phew! What a woman, keeping me on my toes.”

“Is it alright to just let them go?”

The other man in the room cautiously asked.

He was the head of the Poyang Lake branch.

Hong Yushin responded,

“And what if we didn’t?”

“Perhaps we should put them under surveillance…”

“She’s not a woman who screams on the outside. She’s the type to nurse her resentment and
sharpen her sword in secret. That woman is…”

“Hmm!”

“Tell our people to be cautious. We can’t afford to cross paths with her.”

“Yes!”

Hong Yushin murmured, twirling a ring on his finger.

“Nevertheless, it’s amazing. To think he has already subdued most of the Assassin Guilds. The true overlord of the assassin guilds will be born soon.”

Even though he requested it, he didn’t expect it to proceed this quickly.

“He could no longer foresee the effect that the birth of the Overlord of the Assassin Guilds would have on the current Kangho.”

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