༺ Necessity (2) ༻
I put the letter inside my pocket and went out to the streets with Muyeon.
I went through the same route as last time, but I wasn’t out of breath this time.
My stamina has increased thanks to my training.
‘Maybe it was abnormal for me to be tired from walking this much in the first place.’
I smirked at the thought and went through the alley.
After I walked for a little while, I saw the same building I saw last time. I arrived at Hao Clan’s branch headquarters.
The only thing that was different from last time was everyone was wearing the same clothing as the branch manager.
When I walked towards the building, someone greeted me.
“Welcome, Young Master.”
“Huh? You are formally dressed this time.”
“I apologize for the last time.”
It was the man who cursed at me last time. He was a completely different person now that he was all dressed up formally.
“I don’t mind, so where do I need to go? Cellar like the last time?”
“No need for that, Young Master.”
When I turned to the voice, I saw Dwoon-Chu walking down the stairs.
“Different from last time huh, you are here right away.”
“I should be here right away for our precious customer.”
“You’re telling me that I wasn’t a customer last time then?”
Dwoon-Chu chuckled at my small joke. I also didn’t push this matter any further.
I could have if I wanted to, but I wanted to get this over with as soon as possible and return home.
I followed Dwoon-Chu to the second floor. Unlike the first floor where there was dust everywhere, the second floor was squeaky clean.
When I settled down, one of the servants of Hao Clan brought me tea, but Muyeon refused.
He didn’t trust them.
When the servant made a somewhat annoyed face at Muyeon who rejected the tea, Dwoon-Chu admonished him.
“Fix your expression, you are in front of a precious customer.”
In a cold tone of voice.
“…I apologize, branch manager.”
“Don’t apologize to me, apologize to the Young Master.”
“I apologize, Young Master.”
I waved my hands signaling that it was fine and turned my sight to Dwoon-Chu.
‘What a hassle…’
I knew already that what they were doing here was an act.
They knew that Muyeon would act this way in the first place.
Dwoon-Chu reprimanding his servant as well.
I knew that it was all an act.
Either they were trying to show me their respect, or they were trying to look good in front of me which just served as an annoying hassle for me.
“I don’t know what you’re trying to show me here, but you are wasting my time so let’s just get down to business, branch manager.”
I had no time for useless acts.
Dwoon-Chu was stunned upon hearing my words. I couldn’t read what he was thinking because of his unreadable expression, but I think I got the message through.
Dwoon-Chu spoke after heaving a sigh.
“…I’m not quite sure how to edit the information you gave us last time.”
“Like I said last time, the information I gave you is all correct so there is no need for you to change anything.”
Dwoon-Chu takes a small sip of the tea and finally gets to the point.
“The deal you made with us last time, if we fulfill your request how much will you tell us?”
“How much? Aren’t you going to ask me to divulge everything I know?”
“We work in information trading. We know better than anyone exactly how much value your intel has.”
The missing man, who couldn’t be tracked even when all the members of Hao Clan were looking for him.
I knew about his whereabouts.
Of course, I had no plan to divulge all of the information in one go.
The ‘Reclamation of Hao Clan’s Lord’ occurs a few years later.
The Lord of Hao Clan is supposed to die during that event, but he would still be alive for a few years before it comes to pass.
But obviously Dwoon-Chu doesn’t know that, so he must be desperate.
‘I don’t know what kind of relationship Dwoon-Chu has with the Lord of Hao Clan, but they must have some sort of deep relationship considering Dwoon-Chu becomes the next Lord of Hao Clan.’
If they didn’t have any relationship, he wouldn’t even try to initiate the plan to reclaim the Lord of Hao Clan in the first place.
But even in his current situation, Dwoon-Chu isn’t showing any desperation in front of me.
I didn’t know whether he was either hiding it, or thought that it was necessary for him to stay calm in order to get the information.
To be more precise, I wasn’t really bothered.
Whatever relationship Dwoon-Chu had with the Lord of Hao Clan didn’t matter to me.
But if they did have some sort of relationship.
I had to take advantage of it.
‘Obviously, if it’s absolutely necessary to do so.’
“Do you even believe me to begin with, Branch manager?”
Even I wouldn’t believe some random kid that just appeared, claiming to know about something important.
Dwoon-Chu chuckled at my question.
“Not like I’m in a situation where I could be picky.”
Those were the words I said last time.
“…If you say so, but I’ll tell you all the information you need so don’t worry.”
“Yes, Young Master.”
Dwoon-Chu didn’t make any comment on my words. He started explaining about my request instead.
“We are thinking that it would take around a month. We could probably get it done faster if we so tried, but it won’t be later than a month.”
“…A month huh.”
It would be summer by then. It wasn’t too long of a wait.
Dwoon-Chu spoke while I was organizing my thoughts.
“…May I ask a question?”
“If I can answer it.”
Dwoon-Chu stops. Maybe he was trying to ask about whether he was alive or not.
I knew well that it might be important information for him, but it didn’t matter to me.
I spoke to Dwoon-Chu.
“You realize that your question won’t really help your case, right?”
It was only a suspicion I had that Dwoon-Chu and the Lord of Hao Clan were familiar with each other. Dwoon-Chu asking about him only confirmed that they did have an important relationship.
Of course, this could also be an act.
Dwoon-Chu remained silent.
Whether it was a mistake made by him due to desperation, or if it was all an act.
I had no way to tell just by looking at his masked-face.
Not that he would let his expression show it in the first place.
I spoke to Dwoon-Chu after thinking for a little.
Dwoon-Chu’s eyes widened upon hearing my words.
A mountainous area in the south. It wasn’t exactly where the Lord of Hao Clan was, but it was one of the mountain ranges that’s within the domain of the Black Palace.
‘Not that I know which mountain he was being held in.’
The reason why I told him about this specific mountain was because there was information that Dwoon-Chu needed there.
“This is an early payment, which is enough for now.”
Whether he chose to believe or not didn’t matter.
“If you are going to check it out you might want to bring some people with you.”
Black Palace definitely had security in the area.
The reason why the Murim Alliance struggled to find the main base of Black Palace was because of how they hid themselves.
The conversation came to an end.
I turned away from Dwoon-Chu and stood up to go back to the clan.
‘One month huh.’
It was rather a long time for me to wait.
* * * *
On my way back home, I was buying yakgwas as if it became a habit. Obviously, they were for Wi Seol-Ah.
Wi Seol-Ah seemed to have gained a bit of weight because of the way the servants kept showering her with copious amounts of snacks.
Breeze was blowing as I kept walking.
“It’s still cool because it’s still spring… but starting next month, it’s going to scorching hell due to the beginning of summer.”
Muyeon said so.
Summer is going to start next month. Like Muyeon said, next month will be the start of summer.
I felt like there was something I needed to remember for next month but I struggled to do so, which made me feel uneasy.
Why do I feel so uneasy?
I stopped my steps. I finally recalled what I needed to remember.
A big incident was looming on the horizon. It was supposed to happen in summer.
“…Why did I just remember this?”
Next summer, the secret vault of the martial arts clan ‘Golden Nature’ would be discovered.
The first clan to find the vault was the Tang clan from Sichuan, but the one who took the vault was Heaven’s Gate Clan, which was from the Unorthodox Faction.1TL note: – Romanized TL was Gaecheon Clan – Gae-cheon (“Opening of Heaven”) refers to 3 October 2457 BCE, the date when Hwanung (환웅) descended from heaven to live with mankind.
Both clans were from the same area, so they didn’t have a good relationship.
And one day the demonic cult appeared and took over Heaven’s Gate Clan.
‘The secret vault of the Golden Nature Clan is also in Sichuan.’
I thought about the whole process.
The secret vault was supposed to be discovered in late summer, and I would love to take the vault for myself rather than letting it fall into the hands of Heaven’s Gate Clan, but the location was a problem.
‘I had no way to go to Sichuan right away.’
Hao Clan told us that they would take a month for my request, so I would love to go to Sichuan in the meantime.
But I had no good excuse to use in order for me to go to Sichuan.
Do I just tell them I’m going for vacation?
‘No way the clan would allow me to do that.’
If I randomly told them I was going there to retrieve some sort of treasure, there was no way they would believe me.
The secret vault of the Golden Nature Clan didn’t have any actual golden treasures inside them, but it had martial arts scrolls that were hard to come by.
This was also a reason the Lord of Heaven’s Gate was able to reach the ‘Fusion’ realm before he became a demonic human.
‘I want to at least stop Heaven’s Gate from getting the vault.’
Even if I couldn’t have it, I didn’t want the vault to get into the hands of people who would become demonic humans in the future.
Of course, it would be even better if I could have it.
But if I couldn’t, I had to find a different way.
“Maybe I’ll tell Beggar’s Sect about this.”
Not many would believe me even if I told them, but it might be able to change the event just by a little.
Not that I was sure that rumors would be spread fast even if I told Beggar’s Sect.
The reason why I was hesitating so much even though I had easy solutions was simply because of my greed.
I was going to live a peaceful life because I was given a second chance thanks to regression, but the moment I saw an opportunity to hoard treasure, I began reaching my hands towards it.
“I’m acting selfish again, I need to know how to give up when I’m aware that I can’t have it.”
Even though I was beaten up so much in my previous life, I hadn’t learned my lesson yet and was still greedy for so many things.
Why did I have to remember this now…
I just felt disappointed. I turned my head around looking for something to eat that would ease my disappointment.
I saw steam of dumplings from far away which made me move my steps instantly. This was because of how it was so delicious last time.
“You are gonna buy dumplings too, Young Master?”
“The dumplings I ate last time were delicious.”
“But you told me earlier you used all your money on the yakgwa you bought earlier…?”
“Hand them over.”
“Hand them over.”
“Yes, Young Master…”
Don’t make such a sad face. I’m gonna pay you when we return…
‘Come to think of it I don’t think I paid him back the last time we did this…’
I turned away from Muyeon who was taking out his money with a sad expression.
I suddenly felt guilty.
‘I’ll pay him for real this time.’
For real, I was going to.
I returned to the clan after buying dumplings. When I arrived, the sun was already about to set.
When I walked towards the entrance, Wi Seol-Ah hopped over to me to retrieve my outer garment and I gave yakgwa to her along with the clothing.
She smiled upon seeing the yakgwas, and ran over to the servants happily, which made me feel satisfied.
‘I’m a bit bummed out about the whole Golden Nature secret vault incident, but it wasn’t mine to begin with.’
I was a fool for being disappointed about something that I had no relationship with in the first place.
But what can I do if there is no solution to this problem.
…Is what I thought but…
“My name is Gu Jeolyeob. I wish to have a duel with the direct descendant of Gu Clan.”
The solution to the problem came to me with their own feet.
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- 1TL note: – Romanized TL was Gaecheon Clan – Gae-cheon (“Opening of Heaven”) refers to 3 October 2457 BCE, the date when Hwanung (환웅) descended from heaven to live with mankind.