Reaper of the Drifting Moon Chapter 554

September 25, 2023 • 11 min read • 618 views
  1. Few were left in the Sol Family Pavilion.

Pyo Wol and Hong Ye-Seol, Sal-no and Thunder Eye, ten men from the Black Shadow Assassins, and around thirty assassins from other groups. That was all.

The rest had been sent to various places for training. Thanks to this, the Sol Family Pavilion was quiet.

The fire was spreading at an incredible pace.

It was clear that it would reach the Sol Family Pavilion within half an hour.

It was then that Thunder Eye, who had gone to scout, returned.

He knelt on one knee in front of Pyo Wol and reported.

“The enemy has surrounded the forest outside. They’re spraying saltpeter, oil, and sulfur to set the forest ablaze”.

“Their identity?”

“I couldn’t confirm due to the flames. I apologize.”

Had it been an ordinary fire, they could have broken through. But the fire that was now consuming the forest was no ordinary fire. Saltpeter, oil and phosphorus had been mixed in a special mixture to raise the flames to their peak.

Once started, the fire would never go out until everything was reduced to ashes.

Thunder Eye watched as a burning boar squealed and jumped into the pond, only to be burnt to ashes.

The accelerant that caused this kind of fire was more savage than any secret martial arts technique.

It was impossible for an ordinary person or sect to acquire such a savage item.

It was an object that only the top forces in Kangho could acquire, barely escaping the eyes of others.

Upon hearing Thunder Eye’s explanation, Pyo Wol’s face hardened.

He looked at Sal-no.

“The escape routes?”
“We’ve prepared three, but two are in the forest.”

“They’re useless, then.”

“Yes! With this kind of fire, the escape routes must have burned as well.”

“The remaining one?”

“It leads down a cliff.”

“A cliff?”

“Yes! It’s dangerous, but with our skills, we can manage.”

Assassins are typically adept at martial arts techniques of climbing up walls like a spider.

Descending a cliff isn’t difficult for them. It just takes time.

The question is whether those who started the fire are going to leave the cliff, the only escape route, untouched.

If Pyo Wol were planning the attack, he would certainly place troops under the cliff in anticipation of an escape.

Certainly, those who started the fire here would have done the same.

“Going down the cliff will be useless.”

“Yes! They’ll dig a trap and wait.”

Sal-no answered with a smile.

Hong Ye-Seol and thunder eye nodded.

They had gained all the experience that they could as assassins.

That’s why they could understand the enemy’s intentions just by observing the situation.

Someone cruel and calculating enough to burn down an entire forest wouldn’t have left the only escape route untouched.

They probably wanted them to flee down the only escape route.

Besides, it was not in their nature to run away in fear of the unknown enemy.

Even if they retreated, they needed to identify the enemy and land a solid blow.

There was nothing more terrifying in Kangho than being underestimated.

They had to show that they had a hidden card and a strong attack to prevent such provocations in the future.

Pyo Wol spoke.

“Then it’s decided. You all know what to do, right?”

“Yes!”

“Of course.”

Sal-no and thunder eye replied confidently.

Hong Ye-Seol answered with a sinister smile.

Pyo Wol glanced at the advancing flames toward the Sol Family Pavilion, and said.

“Let’s begin.”
***
Dokgo Hwang watched the flames soaring to the sky with folded arms, taking in the sight.

The fire, spreading with tremendous force, had completely consumed the edge of the forest and was moving towards the center.

The flames, greedily consuming everything like a living beast, were not ordinary.

They were a monster created by a special mixture of saltpeter, human fat, and oil, along with a few other ingredients, a concoction called the White Flame.

Once it clings to a living creature, it won’t go out until it’s completely reduced to ashes.

Due to its extreme power, even in the Martial Sword Alliance it was a thing that was made but never used.

Dokgo Hwang hadn’t intended to use the White Flame; he had merely brought it on board in case of an emergency.

He had hoped not to use the White Flame. But faced with the death of Eom Soso, he lost his sanity.

He ordered his subordinates to use the White Flame.

He intended to burn the entire forest, executing Pyo Wol and the assassins by fire.

Of course, he also stationed a vast number of troops below the cliff, the only escape route.

Dokgo Hwang muttered as he watched the flames.

“Now, what will you do?”

His eyes radiated a fervent madness as hot as the blazing fire itself.

His appearance was so sinister that even his subordinates trembled with fear.

Dokgo Hwang and the martial artists of the Martial Sword Alliance advanced little by little, following the flames.

Where the flames had passed, only dark ash remained.

The martial artists of the Martial Sword Alliance stepped on it.

Crunch!

The ash crushed under their feet scattered.

The smell that stimulated their senses made the martial artists of the Martial Sword Alliance frown. The smell alone was enough to make their heads throbbing.

But nobody made a sound of complaint.

It was almost two hours after they had started following the flames.

“There, you can see the estate.”

“That’s Sol Family Pavilion.”

“The Sol Family Pavillion is there!”

The martial artist leading the charge spotted a large estate beyond the flames and shouted.

A murderous intent flashed in Dokgo Hwang’s eyes.

“So they were hiding in a place like this.”

The flames hadn’t yet reached the Sol Family Pavilion. However, they would soon engulf the entire courtyard.

Dokgo Hwang shouted,

“Be on guard, we never know when they might jump out.”

“Yes!”

The warriors of Martial Sword Alliance all answered in unison.

Five hundred of the seven hundred were gathered here. The remaining two hundred were waiting below the cliff.

No matter how many assassins there were, escaping from this place was impossible.

The most efficient way would be for them to perish in the fire without lifting a finger. But that wasn’t what Dokgo Hwang wanted.

“I will personally cut off your breath.”

Dokgo Hwang gnashed his teeth.

His killing intent was so intense that even his closest followers dared not approach.

Whooooosh!

The flames roiled at his killing intent.

The violent flames roared as if to engulf him too, but Dokgo Hwang didn’t blink an eye.

Whoosh!

Finally, the flames engulfed the Sol Family Pavilion.

The warriors of Martial Sword Alliance all held their weapons, staring at the Sol Family Pavilion.

If there were assassins in the estate, they would surely jump out, unable to withstand the flames.

They were fully prepared to attack at any moment.

But even after the flames had completely consumed the Sol Family Pavilion, not a single assassin appeared.

Dokgo Hwang frowned.

“What’s going on? Is there no one inside?”

“That’s impossible. Since Namgung Wol’s appearance, not a single person has left the forest.”

“Is there somewhere inside where they can escape the flames?”

Dokgo Hwang quickly shook his head.

The flames caused by the White Flame couldn’t be avoided by hiding in a sealed room.

Wherever people are hiding, there must be ventilation. The flames from the White Flame would infiltrate the ventilation and burn everything inside.

As Sol Family Pavilion burned, bright red flames shot up into the sky.

No matter how strong their martial arts skills were, surviving in those flames was impossible unless they were at a stage where they could spread their protective aura to shield their bodies.

‘Pyo Wol will survive. But the others will not.’

Dokgo Hwang was confident that Pyo Wol would appear soon. But despite the flames having almost completely burnt the Sol Family Pavilion, Pyo Wol did not show himself.

Only then did Dokgo Hwang have a hunch that something was wrong.

“Everyone, be careful.”

That’s when it happened.

“Argh!”

As if in response, a scream came from behind.

Dokgo Hwang hastily looked in the direction of the scream.

A warrior of the Martial Sword Alliance was clutching his throat, staggering.

Blood oozed out between his fingers.

Thud!!

The martial artist fell like a dead tree.

Then, a shadowy figure in black revealed behind him.

In the figure’s hand was a dagger, dripping with blood.

“An assassin?”

Dokgo Hwang’s eyes widened in shock.

The one who had killed his follower was undoubtedly an assassin.

“Kraak!”

“Argh!”

Screams resonated from various places.

“What’s happening?”

“What’s going on?”

It was then that the martial artists of the Martial Sword Alliance realized something was amiss and became vigilant.

Although only a few screams were heard, the dead numbered over dozens.

The killing had begun even before the screams erupted.

“What’s going on?”

“How did they get behind us…?”

The martial artists of the Martial Sword Alliance were thrown into confusion.

Obviously they were in a tight formation, leaving no room for the assassins to escape. It was beyond their comprehension how the assassins had appeared behind them and launched a surprise attack.

Had it not been for a few martial artists shouting, they would not have even noticed the attack.
Dokgo Hwang’s jaw tightened.

“How dare you!”

His voice echoed through the burnt forest.

In a roar filled with terrifying energy, the ashes became dust and soared into the air.

The rising dust even obscured the sun, plunging the world into pitch darkness.

“Gack!”

“Ash in my eyes…”

The martial artists of Martial Sword Alliance were tormented by the dispersed ash.

Ash entered their throats and eyes.

Coughing fits erupted, and eyes became bloodshot and blurry.

It was then that Dokgo Hwang realized his mistake.

The ash that had soared into the air lingered, tormenting his followers, and even provided the perfect cover for the assassins to hide.

The roar of anger, spat out without thought, had ironically created a situation that helped the enemy, like a dog helps its master.

Dokgo Hwang couldn’t believe that he had committed such a foolish act.

“Kraak!”

“Chok!”

From within the ash obscuring their vision, screams erupted one after another.

The assassins had resumed their activities.

Unlike the martial artists of the Martial Sword Alliance, whose vision and other senses were severely limited by the ash, the assassins were running around like unleashed wild horses.

They could move freely even with their eyes closed. Their masks prevented ash from entering their noses and mouths.

Thanks to this, they moved through the ash like fish in water, spreading their wings freely.

“Do they dare to mock me?”

In his rage, Dokgo Hwang launched a punch at an assassin attempting to ambush his follower.

Crash!

The assassin died without even a scream.

“Chaaat!”

Dokgo Hwang threw three more punches.

Crash! Crash! Bang!

With each sound, assassins fell dead.

Now, the assassins dared not approach Dokgo Hwang.

Dokgo Hwang yelled,

“Do not be alarmed. There is no need to fear these despicable beings who have nothing but their ambush.”

“Yes!”

Finally, the martial artists of Martial Sword Alliance collected themselves.

They tore their clothes to cover their mouths and noses, and squinted their eyes so that no more ash dust could enter them.

Thus, dealing with the assassins became considerably easier.

This made it easier to deal with the assassins.

Only then could Dokgo Hwang breathe a sigh of relief.

The assassins were feared for their ambush, but their martial arts were nothing extraordinary.

If only they had been prepared and faced the enemy head on, the Martial Sword Alliance martial artists would not have been defeated.

Dokgo Hwang examined the corpse of a dead assassin.

The assassin had been wearing some kind of cloth around his body.

Now he understood how they had been able to survive the flames.

“Fireproof cloth, is it? They must have used it to protect themselves, then dug into the ground and used their cultivation.”

Dokgo Hwang felt a chill run through his entire body.

He had thought it would be a perfect surprise attack, but they had been fully prepared all along.

“Pyo Wol!”

Shh!

The moment he called for Pyo Wol, a faint sound of breaking echoed.Reaper of the Drifting Moon Chapter 549