Possessing Nothing - Chapter 81
Editor: Yui & Shichi
(T/N: Please give chapter 80 a read again, we’ve uploaded a new edited version of it!!)
He had never heard of the name Jihak. But Bul-yeong, the GrandMaster of Shaolin, had mentioned Jihak as ‘The future of Shaolin’.
Lee Sung-min did not have any complaints. Even if he was defeated, there would still be something he would gain.
This was the case with Namgong Hee-won. In his fight with Namgong Hee-won, Lee Sung-min learned about his shortcomings from his defeat.
Under the auspices of the Grand Master Bul-yeong, Lee Sung-min faced the intellectuals. Jihak was unarmed. On the other hand, Lee Sung-min lifted his spear.
Lee Sung-min looked at the Grand Master Bul-yeong body gently to ascertain whether it was okay to use the spear, but Grand Master Bul-yeong only laughed after receiving his attention.
“Can your spear pierce the Geumgangseok?”
That being said, Lee Sung-min contemplated for a while. If the words of Grand Master Bul-yeong were true, then Jihak had achieved the peak of Geumgangseok, the gold standard.
Lee Sung-min gulped and looked at Jihak. Looking at Jihak’s physique, his body did not appear to be significantly different from that of Lee Sung-min’s.
The fight soon started.
And it ended after a mere 100 seconds of exchanging blows. It was Lee Sung-min’s defeat. Lee Sung-min, who sat down on the floor, looked up at Jihak with a dismayed look, fists clenched. Jihak didn’t have even a single wound on him and Lee Sung-min’s body’s situation wasn’t looking that good. Grand Master Bul-yeong laughed loudly as he watched Sung-min’s body fall on the ground.
“Indeed. I know why that boy asked me to look at your martial skills.”
Lee Sung-min gritted his teeth as he watched Grand Master Bul-yeong clap his hands in amusement, letting out chuckles. Did it make sense? Now, Lee Sung-min was close to knocking on the door of what was beyond the Peak. However, Jihak had played with Lee Sung-min as if he were a child. Although he had suffered defeat at the hands of Namgong Hee-won, he wasn’t treated like a child in their fight.
“Jihak, how was it? ”
Jihak, who bowed his head while he sat down, raised his head and looked at the GrandMaster.
“… How should I respond? ”
“Best to answer honestly.”
Lee Sung-min had never felt that the Grand Master Bul-yeong gave off an impression of a highly virtuous monk. Jihak’s lips that were previously pursed tightly, opened up.
“It is not enough.”
These words became a dagger and penetrated into Lee Sung-min’s chest deeply.
“What he lacks most is experience. It must be that the art of wielding the spear should be exquisite but his flow of Qi isn’t as smooth, going hay-wire in parts. He just uses the spear to cut and block, but doesn’t combine them with Qi.”
These words were also said by Namgong Hee-won.
“He is inexperienced in dealing with balancing inner Qi. He doesn’t seem to have a lack of inner qi, but the overall flow is all jumbled up and a matter of concern.”
“This is because there is no balance between the heart, the spirit and the body. It is bizarre that his body didn’t explode, but gave way to greater strength. His Spirit and Qi are increasing, but his body lags behind. It’s dangerous.”
GrandMaster Bul-yeong added to Jihak’s answer.
“Oh. You don’t seem to understand what I mean. So… It’s like this. If both legs are of the same length, there should be no problem walking or running. However, if one leg is excessively long or short, it will be extremely difficult to walk or run. If you forcibly try to walk or run, You will have no choice but to fall. The analogy is that even if one can do this in a normal manner, your condition is not that simple and easy. ”
“… What should I do?” Lee Sung-min asked.
“The first thing to do is to improve the Qi vessel, your body. If luck comes along, it will solve the problem. As the flow of Qi becomes smoother, the imbalance will disappear from your body. In fact, the easiest way is to get rid of the bones and change every… Giggle! Overhaul is not easy to handle. ”
In saying so, GrandMaster Bul-yeong rose up from his throne.
“Jihak, for the time being, take him with you and look after him. ”
Jihak came back into the cave after sending the Grandmaster back. Lee Sung-min sighed and stood up to follow Jihak.
He had climbed to the peak of Mush’s mountain and realized his strength in his fight against Aine. He… he had thought he got stronger.
In fact, he was not wrong. Lee Sung-min had indeed become stronger. The level he had reached in his previous life had already been far exceeded. Lee Sung-min was not weak anymore. Among numerous cultivators of diverse ages, Lee Sung-min would still be called one of the best.
However, the reason was actually that his opponents were not suitable for him. Namgong Hee-won was the next generation of Namgong lineage. He was regarded as a king among cultivators, regarded as Sword Master.
“Don’t be too discouraged.”
It was the same with Jihak.
“Your strength is never lacking in an objective sense. It is rare for a man with No class to reach that level at the age of 18.”
“… But did you not treat me like a child? ”
“I don’t like saying this because I think it’s self-praise. I am saying that this is the best institution that has existed since Shaolin was established on earth. Even before I took a step, I was in Shaolin, and as I grew up, not only GrandMaster Bul-yeong, but also the outstanding warriors of Shaolin taught me martial arts. I shared their enlightenment and grew up consuming all of Shaolin’s martial arts and elixirs.”
Jihak uttered those words in one flow, his expression unchanging. That said, Lee Sung-min was tired. “The future of Shaolin.” He finally understood why GrandMaster Bul-yeong had said that while introducing Jihak.
“Even so, I couldn’t beat Minor Heavenly Demon.”
Jihak murmured in a small voice, fists clenched. Lee Sung-min’s eyes flashed excitedly.
“Have you ever fought her?”
“Minor Heavenly Demon… Why did Wijihoyeon come here?”
“I’m not sure either,” Jihak replied with a grumpy expression.
“It was a sudden visit. She… she went over the mountain of Shaolin by herself. Then she said, “I want to see the power of Shaolin.”
It was an ignorant act. Lee Sung-min commented to himself.
“This is what a 17-year-old girl who had not yet fully matured had said. But no one there was able to rebuke or laugh at her. I was there too … it was a… very mysterious, humiliating… It was an astounding experience. I had never thought that one’s presence could overwhelm the people around them so much. ‘
“… After that? ”
“I heard that after she visited, GrandMaster Bul-yeong came directly. After that, GrandMaster Bul-yeong talked with Wijiho-yeon. I don’t know what type of conversation took place between the two. Then… I had a duel with Wijihoyeon. Wijihoyeon said that she wanted to see Shaolin’s power, and Grand Master Bul-yeong commented that he saw me as the future of Shaolin. ”
Lee Sung-min was already aware of this.
“The world is vast.” Jihak muttered softly, closing his eyes.
“Was it a little over 100 seconds? no… That’s not it. If it were a life and death duel, it wouldn’t last even 50 seconds. She called himself Minor Heavenly Demon, but I couldn’t understand that title. If she is the son of a heavenly demon, who could possibly be the heavenly demon?”
Lee Sung-min does not know the current Wijihoyeon. He had never met her after being reborn. He had thought that Wijihoyeon would have become stronger, but now, he couldn’t even imagine how strong she must have gotten.
Wijiho-yeon had defeated Jihak effortlessly, the same Ho-yeon who used to play with Lee Sung-min as a child.
“… Wijiho-yeon … how… What level is he?”
“I do not know. But one thing is certain. She is already beyond Peak. I don’t know if she is on the threshold, or if she has already crossed. … What is your relationship with Wijihoyeon? ”
“Is that so.”
Jihak nodded, his gaze lingering on him. Lee Sung-min stumbled and raised his body. Jihak asked again, looking at Lee Sung-min holding the spear.
“What you lack the most is experience. I have seen you … You are not using your strength properly. It will and can only be complemented by going through various battles. ”
“What I’m saying … may sound a bit dry. But don’t get too frustrated if you lose. ”
“You don’t have to worry about that.”
Lee Sung-min said with an amicable smile.
“I’m used to frustration. I am also used to standing back up again and again,” said Lee Sung-min.
He was too familiar with it.
It was not easy.
He felt that it was too far.
Lee Sung-min, who left GrandMaster Bul-yeong’s, went down to Shaolin. It was not the way to Shaolin that felt distant to him.
Dim … He thought he was getting closer. He didn’t have to be at front, if he just ran a little further. He thought that would be enough.
Enough for him to reach her if he extended his hand a bit more.
It was just an illusion. Wijihoyeon was going farther than Lee Sung-min had imagined. Maybe Wijihoyeon wasn’t that far away, but Lee Sung-min was just too slow.
He was lacking. Lee Sung-min looked down at the spear in his hand. The spear was not heavy, but Lee Sung-min missed the heaviness he felt back in Mush’s mountain. The invisible eyes fixated on him, watching his every move, the nostalgic odor, the never-ending noises and more. If he thought about it, even though it was so hard that he felt he would go crazy, wasn’t it more worth than any moment Lee Sung-min had lived?
What did he do after he came down the mountain?
He walked down the mountain without running. Lee Sung-min contemplated himself while listening to the buzzing of wild insects.
After descending Mush’s mountain… He went to the mercenary guild and became a mercenary.
An S-class mercenary. In his previous life, he would be satisfied with this high grade that he couldn’t even get close to. He thought the asceticism he had done on the mountain had been proved, and was delighted that his “current” self was different from his previous self.
A few months later, he made money while performing a quest. The spear was crafted with the money he earned. Satisfaction at its finest… . He was delighted to finally be able to hold a good weapon..
It has been for months. He had been working hard, fighting and moving on for self-satisfaction.
Because he had always wanted to be recognized, he was happy that he became an S-class mercenary. Power that he had never had before was filled in him.
In the mercenary guild of Behengerr, it was fun to see people he knew behave differently than before. For some moments, he was not that eager to practice, persevering felt futile to him. But since he had memories of his previous life, where he had always used the tool called sheer hard work and persistence, he just wanted to rest for a bit this time.
He didn’t even know whether it was safe to do so.
(T/N: Probably talking about relying on his previous life memories.)
Depending on the memories of his previous life, he tried to cross over the wall he had faced.
‘Effort. … effort?’ Lee Sung-min laughed. What he accomplished for some few years on Mush’s mountain was purely because of effort.
He had put in his everything, worked like crazy everyday.
In the end, Lee Sung-min was not much different from his previous life. He earned enough to live a day. It was no different from when he was a Class C mercenary. He could play because he had risked his life and had made a living. Drinking alcohol, hugging a woman.
What was different now and then was that; he lived day by day, based on a certain psychology.
‘It was okay to take a little rest, as he was an ascetic from Mush’s mountain.’
He had done his best, exerting efforts in a body with no talents. He knew the road of martial arts was arduous and long but he still wanted to see the end, the end which he had no idea of.
He now knew reality.
He thought that he had already transformed into a cicada, a larvae who had taken off its hard covering…
It was just an illusion.
Lee Sung-min was still a larva. He had a long way to go.
(T/N: In the raws, many parts addressed Wijihyeon as ‘him, but we are sticking to ‘her’ to avoid confusion. We hope that this chapter was acceptable to you all and please continue to support us as always. We wouldn’t be anywhere without your support (ﾉ´ヮ´)ﾉ*:･ﾟ✧)
This translation belongs to Centinni.