Reaper of the Drifting Moon Chapter 612

October 23, 2023 • 11 min read • 1662 views

A smile tugged at the corners of Pyo Wol’s lips.

It was the moment he had been waiting for.

The formless poison that erupted within a hundred steps was completely absorbed by Gwia without leaving a trace. Even if it hadn’t, the poison would have had no effect on Pyo Wol.

Because Pyo Wol was the embodiment of Ten Thousand Poisons Invulnerable Body.

The poison resistance he had acquired from living with tens and thousands of snakes was beyond imagination.

Using such a poison against Pyo Wol was like trying to teach a sage how to write.

Swish!

From his fingertips flowed the Threaded Serpent Qi.

The Threaded Serpent Qi like a clothesline, aimed for Wi Shin-ho’s throat

Whoosh!

Immediately, flames surged from Wi Shin-ho ‘s palms.

It was a phenomenon that occurred when one unleashed the Zhu Rong’s Fiery Palm to its utmost limit.

Infuriated by the death of Jeon Yeop, his brother-like companion, he mustered all his might.

The intense heat that could melt even a giant boulder in an instant flickered.

Wi Shin-ho had no doubt that he would melt the Threaded Serpent Qi.

Thud!

However, the outcome defied his expectations.

The Threaded Serpent Qi penetrated his palms and lodged itself in the center of his forehead.

Flickering atop the Threaded Serpent Qi was the black lightning.

It was the Black Lightning Threaded Serpent Qi.

At the moment of the clash with Zhu Rong’s Fiery Palm, Pyo Wol had overlaid the Threaded Serpent Qi with black lightning, amplifying its power many times over.

“What the…?”

Wi Shin-ho’s eyes flickered for a moment before rolling back to show their whites. His body fell to the ground, stiff as a piece of wood. The Black Lightning Threaded Serpent Qi that had pierced his forehead then vanished, reabsorbed by Pyo Wol.

Outwardly, Wi Shin-ho appeared to be intact, but his brain, through which the Black Threaded Serpent Qi had passed, had completely melted, reduced to a mushy state.

Then, voices called out.

“Master Pyo!”

“Are you alright?”

Two elderly monks rushed towards him from a distance.

They were none other than the elders of Shaolin, Grandmaster Unil and Grandmaster Un Gyeong.

They had rushed over when they heard the news of Ji Gyeong’s assassination .

“Master Pyo, are you alright?”

Grandmaster Unil, his face filled with concern, examined Pyo Wol closely.

Pyo Wol nodded in response.

“I’m fine.”

“That’s a relief.”

Grandmaster Unil’s gaze then shifted to the fallen body of Wi Shin-ho in front of Pyo Wol.

“Is this fiend responsible for Ji Gyeong’s death?”

“Yes!”

“And who is he?”

“He is certainly a close associate of Jang Cheon-hwa, but I am not sure of his exact identity.

The duo known as the Black and White Immortals had never revealed their true identities to Pyo Wol.

As a result, he neither knew their names nor the faces behind their masks.

Moreover, the face and upper body of the White Shadow, Jeon Yeop, had melted, making it impossible to identify him.

Pyo Wol removed the black mask that had covered Wi Shin-ho’s face, revealing a stern, middle-aged visage.

Both Grandmaster Unil and Grandmaster Un Gyeong studied Wi Shin-ho’s face, but they couldn’t recognize his true identity either.

And for good reason; both the Black and White Immortals had operated in the shadows, never revealing themselves to the world.

Pyo Wol searched Wi Shin-ho ‘s clothes, but there was no item that could determine his identity.

Grandmaster Unil sighed deeply.

“Amitabha! Truly cunning. Not only did they silence Ji Gyeong. They also left no evidence linking them to the Heavenly Martial Sect”.

With Ji Gyeong’s death, all evidence of Jang Cheon-hwa’s involvement in the murder of the Shaolin’s mediator disappeared.

And they couldn’t investigate based on the bodies of the Black and White Shadows either.

If Jang Cheon-hwa played dumb, they would be at an impasse.

“Amitabha! To think that the master of the Heavenly Martial Sect could be so crafty. Who could’ve imagined?”

Grandmaster Un Gyeong also shook his head in disbelief.

Despair filled the two elderly monks’ faces.

While they were furious at Jang Cheon-hwa and the Heavenly Martial Sect for mocking the Renowned Shaolin Temple, a part of them also felt an overwhelming fear.

If this had been the old Shaolin that once dominated the Kangho, they would have been prepared for such incidents. But ever since the Heavenly Martial Sect and the Mad Martial Sect had taken over the reins of power, Shaolin had lost its edge.

Shaolin had become like a stable-bred horse.

A tame horse, big and strong, but unable to break through the high fences of the stable on his own.

Thus, they were unprepared to handle such unexpected crises.

“Amitabha! Amitabha!”
***
The Shaolin Temple had been thrown into turmoil by the series of events.

In the heart of the Shaolin Temple, a second class disciple, Ji Gyeong, had been assassinated

Although they had fallen for the enemy’s schemes, they had been too passive in defending their own grounds.

The fact that the Black and White Immortals had roamed freely within the temple’s precincts without anyone noticing struck a deep blow to their pride.

Hence, a heavy gloom pervaded the atmosphere of the Shaolin Temple.

The air was heavy with despair, especially among the monks who had been assigned to guard Ji Gyeong’s dwelling. They were plagued with guilt for failing to protect Ji Gyeong from the poison.

Fortunately, the poisoning was soon neutralized, but the guilt left them unable to lift their heads.

A single assassination attempt had thrown the entirety of Shaolin into chaos.

As a result, visitors such as Pyo Wol, Hong Ye-Seol, and Soma were somewhat neglected when they arrived at the guesthouse. The temple was too busy restoring its internal harmony to attend to its guests.

Yet Pyo Wol, Hong Ye-Seol, and Soma bore no resentment.

They understood the situation at Shaolin.

Had they been in Shaolin’s shoes, they would have acted the same.

It was only three days after the incident that the head of Shaolin, Grandmonk Unji, summoned Pyo Wol and his group.

The trio was invited into the Great Hall.

Inside, the hall was filled with Shaolin elders gathered around.

Master Unji stood up to greet Pyo Wol as their representative.

“Welcome, Master Pyo Wol! My apologies for not attending to you sooner.”

“It’s fine!”

“First, we must express our deepest gratitude. Without you, Master Pyo Wol, we might have missed the perpetrators behind Ji Gyeong’s assassination. Fortunately, with your intervention, Ji Gyeong can now rest peacefully.”

No sooner had Master Unji finished than the other elders fervently expressed their gratitude.

“Thank you for your help.”

“Master Pyo Wol is a benefactor of Shaolin.”

“We are in your debt.”

Elder monks, their beards thick and white, rose from their seats to bow deeply.

It was the highest form of respect one could receive at Shaolin.

Master Unji motioned to Pyo Wol and his group.

“Please, have a seat. Let’s discuss matters further.”

Upon his invitation, Pyo Wol and his group settled in.

Pyo Wol then inquired, “Have you formulated any countermeasures?”

“Alas! We’ve deliberated for days but haven’t come to any conclusive decision. We are truly sorry to disappoint you.”

“So, you haven’t found a way to confirm the identities of those two?”

“Exactly. Despite mobilizing all our disciples outside the temple, we couldn’t find any evidence linking the person you killed to the Heavenly Martial Sect.”

“That’s a shame.”

“If it wasn’t for you, Master Pyo Wol, we wouldn’t have even seen their faces. We are truly ashamed.”

They were unaware of the movements of the Black and White Immortals in their temple.

If not for Pyo Wol, they might have only discovered Ji Gyeong’s assassination much later.
Shaolin Temple was in a tight spot.

Although they had suffered greatly at the hands of the Heavenly Martial Sect and Jang Cheong-hwa, they hadn’t been able to gather any concrete evidence against them.

They couldn’t accuse such a powerful organization as the Heavenly Martial Sect without solid evidence.

Nor could they retaliate with force.

There was no martial artist capable of defeating Jang Cheong-hwa, and in terms of influence and power, Shaolin was clearly outmatched.

Pyo Wol asked,

“So you plan to sit by and do nothing?”

“That’s not our intention.”

“Then what is?”

“We plan to send an investigation team to the Heavenly Martial Sect.”

“To gather evidence?”

“As they are mere mortals, there must be some vulnerability. We believe that by sending our disciples, we’ll eventually uncover some proof.”

That was the decision they reached after intense discussions over the past three days.

Once they secured evidence of the Heavenly Martial Sect’s involvement, they’d have justification to retaliate.

“That said, Master Pyo, would you be willing to assist?”

“Help in finding evidence?”

“Indeed. Given your profound knowledge of Kangho, you might unearth clues more efficiently than we could.”

“I refuse.”

“Master Pyo?”

A look of disbelief crossed Master Unji’s face. He hadn’t anticipated such a decisive refusal.
Another elder, Master Unil, interjected cautiously,

“Please reconsider. In the current Kangho, you are the best hope against Heavenly Martial Sect’s schemes. Not just for Shaolin, but for the greater good.”

“Gathering intel isn’t my forte.”

“But…”

“The chief inspector of the Hao Clan is in Dengfeng County. If you ask him, he’ll find the evidence.”

“Is that true?”

Master Unil’s eyes widened in astonishment.

There was no group or person who could match the Hao Clan in gathering information and evidence.

If the chief inspector of the Hao Clan was really in Dengfeng County, it would be much better to entrust this task to him.

“He came to Dengfeng with us.”

“Blessings be! Then we shall request his assistance.”

“If it’s the chief inspector of the Hao Clan, he’s trustworthy.”

Relief washed over the elders.

Pyo Wol observing them, pondered,

‘They lack the will to actively intervene in Kangho’s affairs.’

If another clan or force had faced such an incident, they’d have stormed in with life-and-death determination.

It doesn’t matter if there is evidence or not.

What really matters is the will to act.

But Shaolin’s commitment was lacking.

Perhaps their Buddhist roots, which emphasized compassion, had robbed them of their wild instincts.

Most importantly, they had much to safeguard.

Though their reputation might have waned over the years, they still possessed vast lands, followers, countless martial arts scriptures, and disciples.

Assets amassed over a millennium acted as chains, restraining their actions.

They might deny it themselves, but to Pyo Wol, it seemed the Shaolin were trapped in a cage of their own making, without the will to break free.

The fact that they willingly deferred their responsibilities to the Hao Clan when he mentioned it was telling.

They were unconsciously avoiding difficult and arduous tasks.

Pyo Wol stood up.

A look of surprise crossed Ambassador Unji’s face.

“Are you leaving already?”

“I’m tired.”

“Hmm.”

“It doesn’t seem like staying will help…”

“Understood.”

Ambassador Unji did not try to keep him any longer.

Ambassador Unil rose to follow Pyo Wol, speaking,

“Let me accompany him to his lodgings. The rest of you continue your discussion.”

“Amitabha! So be it.”

With Ambassador Unji’s permission, Ambassador Unil and Pyo Wol headed out.

“I apologize.”

“For what?”

“For showing you such a poor spectacle.”

“…”

“I know what you think of the elders now. You probably see them as indecisive. There’s some truth to that. Shaolin indeed possesses strength comparable to the Heavenly Martial Sect or the Mad Martial sects. But they can’t use their power recklessly. It’s not because they are indecisive or lack the will to fight.”

“Then why?”

“This is because Shaolin is powerful. If a power like Shaolin moved without a just cause, what would happen? If they retaliated and acted on impulse, how would they be different from the evil sects? Kangho would fall into greater chaos. Other sects would follow. That’s why, even though it’s frustrating, Shaolin has to act slowly and wait for a solid reason that everyone can accept.

“You have a complicated life.”

“It’s the destiny of the powerful. There’s a reason they talk about the dignity of the strong.”

“So how long will they endure?”

Pyo Wol stared at Ambassador Unil.

Without avoiding his gaze, Unil firmly replied,

“Until there’s a just cause.”

“And when there is?”

“Then the world will see. They’ll understand why Shaolin had to be patient and the true extent of Shaolin’s strength. That’s why I’m asking you to help Shaolin until then.”

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