“Because I promised to give you lots of chapters during break. Well, I only did that to the Reddit community, but meh”
Chapter 68. Cho Mu Ryung’s Choice
Gongson Chun Gi lost a lot of strength trying to get rid of all the Guardians like Guardian Ju and Guardian Wu, who begged him to have a drink with them after taking care of the coronation.
He had managed to escape from them one way or the other, but the road in front of him was blocked by yet another man. When Gongson Chun Gi saw the man, the first thing out of his mouth was a complaint.
“Even you, the medicine man, has business with me? Let me go. I’m tired.”
Sunwu Jo Duk grinned when he saw Gongson Chun Gi’s face that was riddled with annoyance.
“You worked hard trying to shake off those muscle heads.”
“Yeah, I did. Why do they have to be so strong……. they’re probably gonna be healthy for another decade or so.”
“From the looks of it, they’re probably going to easily last several more decades, actually.”
“Damn it, you’re right. So, why were you waiting for me here, anyway? If it’s more alcohol, then I’m done. All that alcohol I drank with those old men made me full.”
Gongson Chun Gi groaned as he pointed at his belly.
“To think I’d do something this dumb because of a disciple……. I didn’t even know you could get full from alcohol.”
“It’s good that you didn’t get drunk.”
“There isn’t any type of alcohol in this world that could make me get drunk.”
When Gongson Chun Gi said this with a smirk, Sunwu Jo Duk smiled with him. Then, he then began surveying the surroundings. Gongson Chun Gi, who became tired of the man’s actions pretty quickly, looked around slowly, then opened his mouth.
“You can just talk. There’s only my people around here.”
Everyone in the area was Gongson Chun Gi’s personal bodyguard. He was basically saying it was ok to say anything since there was only his people around. But Sunwu Jo Duk shook his head.
“It’s……. it’s about my family.”
“The Sunwu family?”
Gongson Chun Gi licked his lips. This was a matter of a single family. It would be something embarrassing to talk to someone about in the first place.
“You heard him. Move aside while we talk.”
Lim Hak Gyum quickly disappeared along with the Mara’s Wind Brigade. When he did so, Gongson Chun Gi looked back at Sunwu Jo Duk.
“You can talk now.”
There was only Gongson Chun Gi and Sunwu Jo Duk in the area now. Even after knowing that, Sunwu Jo Duk hesitated.
“Why did you ask me to get everyone out of here if you were going to be embarrassed about saying this anyway?”
When Gongson Chun Gi sat down on a nearby bench, Sunwu Jo Duk finally managed to let out a sigh and open his mouth.
“There are strange movements within the church.”
“Yes. It concerns the Heir’s life.”
When Sunwu Jo Duk said this with a determined face, Gongson Chun Gi just looked at him with a calm face.
“And that movement is related to your household?”
“It’s embarrassing, but yes. I failed to manage the household properly.”
When Sunwu Jo Duk looked down with a sorry face, Gongson Chun Gi just smirked.
“So you’re talking about how the four families are planning against my disciple.”
When Sunwu Jo Duk asked this with a surprised face, Gongson Chun Gi lightly nodded his head.
“I was expecting it to happen. You see, I actually happen to be a smart man.”
“I have nothing to say.”
When Sunwu Jo Duk bowed down with an apologetic face again, Gongosn Chun Gi became a little annoyed.
“Why are you being like this? You did nothing wrong here.”
“This is a selfish request, but……. please, the people of my family are young and foolish. Please forgive them with grace.”
If Gongson Chun Gi knew about this plan in the first place, it was safe to say that the likelihood of the plan of the four families succeeding was more or less nonexistent.
Their plan was to kill the Heir. They were using the Life-Death fight of the Heir as an excuse, but in reality, their plan was downright disgusting.
‘A dirty plan.’
It was almost treason, if one thinked about it.
If Gongson Chun Gi tried to exterminate the Four Families, he would suffer from a bit of retaliation, but he would achieve his goal easily.
The current Pope was just that powerful. To Sunwu Jo Duk, who was thinking about all the terrible punishments his family would face, Gongson Chun Gi’s answer was very unexpected.
“I’m just gonna ignore them.”
What was this? Sunwu Jo Duk was confused. Gongson Chun Gi simply took out a fruit out of his sleeve, and threw it to Sunwu Jo Duk.
“First off, I kind of want to see what they’re going to do……. actually, that’s just about the only reason why I’m letting them off with this.”
Sunwu Jo Duk replied with a bewildered face.
“Just what are you trying to achieve by observing them? These people are just trying to kill the Heir himself.”
Gongson Chun Gi took out another fruit from his sleeve, and bit into it.
Gongson Chun Gi talked whilst chewing the fruit in his mouth.
“Doesn’t matter. And it would be good if they tried assassination. It wouldn’t be a bad attempt on their part.”
Sunwu Jo Duk shouted out as he frowned deeply. He thought the Pope was going too far with his joke. Wasn’t this his precious disciple they were talking about here? Did he truly want to lose his disciple just like that?
“Do I seriously look that dumb to you? Would I be so dumb as to be unable to follow your thoughts, old man?”
Sunwu Jo Duk closed his mouth. That wasn’t the case. The man in front of him was the greatest man in the world. Come to think of it, wouldn’t the Pope have already come up with a plan, especially when he predicted all of this already?
‘So he has a plan in mind?’
He had heard that Un Hui had become the Heir’s personal guard. Did the Pope believe that Un Hui would be able to help Cho Ryu Hyang?
‘No, he wouldn’t be enough.’
An expert of the harmonious stage was indeed rare and special.
But there are thousands, if not tens of thousands, of ways to kill a human. Even a harmonious expert wouldn’t be able to deal with all of those ways.
And the four families were unparalleled experts when it came to murder.
It was very easy for the four families to kill a little boy like Cho Ryu Hyang.
The only reason why they didn’t do it was because they were afraid of the consequences of doing so. They were very afraid of the Pope in particular.
“I have no desire to imprison the boy in a safe place to let him grow. It’s not like I can always be there to protect him.”
“You see, the martial world has far more dangerous things than what the four families can cook up. It would be good for Cho Ryu Hyang to experience a taste of what that would be like before going out to the martial world.”
Sunwu Jo Duk’s eyes got filled with admiration. Lions were said to push off their own kin down cliffs on purpose.
Was this not the best way to grow someone up to become the strongest lion? Gongson Chun Gi must be thinking that exact thing.
“I’m actually thankful to the boys over at the four families. They’re basically solving all my problems at my stead. They’re really busy about it, too. That really shouldn’t be easy for them, especially at that age.”
Gongson Chun Gi showed a toothy grin.
“But it wouldn’t be that easy to kill my disciple.”
“Aren’t you trusting Un Hui too much? The power of the four families isn’t something a single harmonious expert can handle.”
Gongson Chun Gi simply smirked.
“You think I trust Un Hui?”
“You mean, there’s someone else other than him?”
The Heir didn’t even get started on learning martial arts yet. The boy didn’t have any way of fending off the four families.
“Unless I myself intervene, there are very few people in this world who can manage to kill that boy.”
“He’s really quite something, that boy. So you pay attention from now, too. He’ll be the first one in a hundred years to show the world what the Moon Edge Blade Technique is really like.”
The fruit in his mouth truly was sweet. He decided not to tell Sunwu Jo Duk about the boy’s skill with formations. After all, the man was already rendered speechless.
Gongson Chun Gi.
The one he trusted the most was not Un Hui, nor was it the bodyguards that would be guarding them from the dark.
Cho Ryu Hyang.
He was trusting the boy himself.
“So you should just go ahead and try your best to help out the four families, too. It might be actually possible to kill the boy if you used poison, actually.”
Gongson Chun Gi lightly tapped on Sunwu Jo Duk’s shoulder as he chewed on the fruit. He then walked past the man, and walked to where his disciple was waiting for him.
Sunwu Jo Duk just stared at the Pope dumbly.
* * *
“My name would be Cho Mu Ryung.”
Gongson Chun Gi became a little concerned when he saw Cho Ryu Hyang’s father introduce himself. He was about to act all high and mighty as usual, but the man’s identity troubled him.
It was hard for him to treat the man like whatever, especially because the man was an outsider, and his disciple’s father at that. But his position made it so that it was pretty awkward to give the man a proper introduction as an equal.
After all, he was the representation of God, the master of the Heavenly Demon Church.
‘This is troublesome, isn’t it? What did teach do in this situation?’
His eyes met Cho Ryu Hyang’s at that moment.
The boy’s eyes were filled with worry. Gongson Chun Gi felt how agitated his disciple was from that gaze alone, and smirked. He introduced himself to the father.
“This one is called Gongson Chun Gi.”
Cho Ryu Hyang’s worries got blown away at that moment. It seemed that his teacher understood what he was trying to say.
Cho Mu Ryung nodded after receiving the Pope’s introduction. His first impression of the Pope was better than he had expected.
‘I had heard that the Pope was a demon that massacred thousands of people with a smile on his face…….’
Rumors weren’t meant to be trusted, after all. The person in front of him seemed kind, and easygoing. The Pope seemed to be the exact opposite of what the rumors had said.
“Let’s sit down and then talk.”
When Gongson Chun Gi offered him a sit, everyone in the room sat down around the round table in a triangular formation.
Cho Ryu Hyang took his seat, and moved it closer to his father. Gongson Chun Gi found that to be quite heartwarming.
[Don’t worry. I’m not going to eat your father or anything.]
Cho Ryu Hyang tried to say something in retaliation when he heard that, but couldn’t, because of his father. He just puffed up his cheeks and stayed quiet.
“Thank you for taking care of my son.”
Gongson Chun Gi stopped smiling, and nodded.
“He’s quite talented. It’s a very rare thing for the church to take in an outsider as the Heir. This boy is talented enough for me to do that. You really have raised quite something.”
There’s no one who wouldn’t get happy when his child gets praised. Especially when the person who was praising the child was the strongest man in the world.
Cho My Ryung was unable to maintain a straight face when he heard such a thing. Gongson Chun Gi’s words were straightforward, and contained honesty.
Right then, Gongson Chun Gi opened his mouth.
“Would you like to tell me anything you have against the church, if you have any? I would like to clear up any misunderstandings you might have. The church isn’t as evil as you might think.”
Cho Mu Ryung became a little troubled when the man got on topic straight away. He was going to get to it after some time, but then Gongson Chun Gi brought it up without having him think about it.
Gongson Chun Gi quickly opened his mouth while Cho Mu Ryung tried to think of an answer.
“This is actually a top secret info of the church, but since you have close ties with the church, I’ll tell you. The church is trying to expand into the Sichuan territory. We must try to send large amount of materials to Sichuan because of this. To think you would be managing a trading company like this, this really must be fate.”
Cho Mu Ryung became confused. Move materials to Sichuan? Why?
“Would you tell me what you mean by expanding into Sichuan?”
“Isn’t it obvious? The church is trying to expand its influence into Sichuan.”
Cho Mu Ryung became extremely surprised when he heard this.
“But……. Isn’t Sichuan heavily influenced by the Alliance?”
Gongson Chun Gi grinned when he heard Cho Mu Ryung.
“You think the Alliance can stop us?”
Truthfully speaking, the Alliance couldn’t. That was already proven once.
“Even the entirety of the Alliance couldn’t take on the church. You think the people in Sichuan can stop us?”
Cho Mu Ryung couldn’t say anything. There were about four thousand people in Sichuan.
But the thing was, most of the major forces within the Alliance were stationed there. This was different from the fight in the Qilian mountains. The church was going to destroy the Alliance’s main base.
Cho Mu Ryung’s mind became chaotic due to the overwhelming news he just heard. Right then, Gongson Chun Gi said another shocking thing that basically overwhelmed him even more.
“It would be good if you would help the church when we expand into Sichuan. After all, your company is stationed in Sichuan, and we have a very special relationship with each other now, do we not?”
Cho Mu Ryung couldn’t say anything when Gongson Chun Gi said that about their relationship. Gongson Chun Gi simply smiled, and took out the document he prepared in advance.
“I hope that you would take care of all the materials we would have to send to Sichuan. This document contains all the materials we have to transfer, as well as the rewards you will receive.”
Cho Ryu Hyang realized something when he saw the document in Gongson Chun Gi’s hands.
‘He had expected things to turn out like this from the start.’
His teacher had expected how his father would react, and what he would think from the very start of the conversation.
Cho Mu Ryung looked at the document, then back at Gongson Chun Gi several times over with a dumb face. Gongson Chun Gi faintly smiled, and opened his mouth.
“What is it? Is the reward not good enough for you?”
There was no way it wasn’t good enough. Actually, the amount of money Cho Mu Ryung would be recieving was so great, he wasn’t sure what to do with himself.
But Cho Mu Ryung didn’t give an answer to Gongson Chun Gi. Truly, something like this would only come once in a lifetime.
That was why he had to think. Cho Mu Ryung thought as much as he could while trying to keep a straight face. The document, or rather, the contract, had no errors in it.
And the benefits he would get from this was too good. He would be a fool not to take this job.
‘I really don’t know if I’m doing the right thing here.’
Taking this job would mean that he would be turning his back to the people of the Alliance located in Sichuan.
But he didn’t think much there. Right now, the world was in the hands of the Heavenly Demon Church. All of the organizations in the world right now were struggling to become allies with the Heavenly Demon Church, even.
Thinking about how long the Heavenly Demon Church would be a major power in the martial world was something he would consider later.
‘It’s not like I had much of a choice from the start, anyway.’
His son was already a major figure in the church from the start, wasn’t he? Cho Mu Ryung didn’t even have to think about this.
Cho Mu Ryung stamped the document, all the while thinking of his relationship with the church.
Like this, the church’s expansion into the mainland was decided.