Childhood Friend of the Zenith Chapter 217

Omen (4)

༺ Omen (4) ༻

 

 

  It was time for the Elder’s Meeting. 

 

  The Lord usually made most of the decisions, but sometimes he needed help from the important members of the clan. 

 

  They were mostly Elders, and there were four of them in the Gu Clan. 

 

  Well, three now. 

 

  The Third and Fourth Elders had their own duties in the clan, like the First Elder. 

 

  The First Elder controlled Gu Sunmoon and the Third and Fourth Elders were in charge of the clan’s businesses.

 

  ‘It’s strange that the Second Elder didn’t have any duties in the clan.’

 

  But Gu Ryoon, the Flaming Fist, never wanted to be an Elder. 

 

  He was forced by Father, the Lord.

 

  ‘Is that why he always goes outside the clan?’

 

  He said he was responsible for the clan’s outside affairs, but he seemed to just hang out. 

 

  He always brought back some random things from his drinking bets.

 

  ‘Though I don’t know anyone else who would bring a different clan’s treasure every time he went out.’

 

  I also asked the Beggar King to get me some information. 

 

  He hadn’t done it yet.

 

  ‘I hope he doesn’t run into any trouble.’

 

  But he might. 

 

  The Beggar King looked weak. 

 

  He used to be strong, but now he acted like a normal beggar. 

 

  And I asked him to find out about the Dishonored Venerable. 

 

  That made me nervous.

 

  [I heard it from you, but it’s still shocking. For a master like him to disguise as a Young Prodigy.]

 

  ‘…He must have a reason.’

 

  The Dragon Warrior, Bi Eejin. 

 

  He was from the Bi Clan, the same as the Dishonored Venerable, Bijuu. 

 

  He was the second son of the Lord, but he didn’t inherit anything. 

 

  Now, he was one of the Six Dragons and Three Phoenixes. 

 

  He was the Young Prodigy of the Bi Clan, who disappeared after his first tournament. 

 

  He was famous because he was related to a Heavenly Venerable, and he had the Dragon title. 

 

  But people didn’t talk about him much anymore. 

 

  They only remembered him as a talented relative of the Bi Clan. 

 

  But his real identity was the Zenith of Fists.

 

  One of the Three Venerables.

 

  The Dishonored Venerable Bijuu.

 

  ‘Eternal Youth. I can’t believe he has that.’

 

  Eternal Youth. 

 

  It was an ancient topic. 

 

  It happened when a martial artist reached the true peak of their level, and their body became young again. 

 

  It gave youth back to an old martial artist, and some thought it was a chance to reach a higher level. 

 

  But it wasn’t. 

 

  Eternal Youth had more drawbacks than benefits. 

 

  That’s why the Dishonored Venerable hid from the world, like the Sword Venerable. 

 

  And he didn’t come back until the Heavenly Demon brought calamity to the world.

 

  ‘And if that didn’t happen, he wouldn’t have come back either.’

 

  If the Heavenly Demon didn’t appear, he would have stayed hidden. 

 

  I would have done the same.

 

  Eternal Youth sounded like a miracle. 

 

  It lets a person become young again and live longer. 

 

  But it had a big drawback.

 

  ‘You have to give up everything you have.’

 

  The realm that a martial artist worked hard to reach, and the martial arts that they learned over time. 

 

  They had to throw them all away for Eternal Youth. 

 

  The only thing they kept was experience. 

 

  It was like my case, when I went back to the past.

 

  ‘But no, it’s different.’

 

  Eternal Youth had a major problem. 

 

  The body of a Heavenly Venerable, who reached the pinnacle of an absolute, was perfect. 

 

  It was decided from birth, along with natural talent. 

 

  It helped a martial artist overcome their limits. 

 

  But Eternal Youth blocked the body’s potential.

 

  A weak body. 

 

  A small vessel.

 

  The body after Eternal Youth was so weak that it could collapse from a light hit. 

 

  The Dishonored Venerable said it himself. 

 

  The only thing left after losing everything was a weak body with old memories. 

 

  But he still chose that, for some reason.

 

  And he had to hide in his clan, away from the world.

 

  ‘Did the Second Elder know about this?’

 

  He got a recommendation letter from the Dishonored Venerable, and a ring too. 

 

  He must have known his situation.

 

  ‘But he left that shit to me?’

 

  My head hurt. 

 

  The false rumor of me being his disciple was still going on. 

 

  All because of that stupid letter.

 

  ‘Why me, out of all the fist practitioners in the world?’

 

  The Dishonored Venerable didn’t use any ranged martial arts, only close combat. 

 

  That letter caused all this trouble.

 

  ‘And I never used it properly either.’

 

  It didn’t help me at all. 

 

  It only made people misunderstand me. 

 

  I felt like my head would explode.

 

  ‘I hope he doesn’t hear about this and cause any problems.’

 

  I knew a bit about his personality. 

 

  I prayed that he wouldn’t find out. 

 

  That’s why I asked Chuwong.

 

  ‘And the Silent Fist… it would be nice to know more about him, but it’s not a big deal.’

 

  I didn’t know how much information Chuwong could get for me. 

 

  But I did it to get closer to the future Beggar King. 

 

  It wasn’t that important. 

 

  I didn’t know if Chuwong knew that or not.

 

  ‘But I can’t focus on those things right now…’

 

  I felt the gazes on me. 

 

  Four pairs of eyes. 

 

  They looked at me fiercely, except for the Steward. 

 

  He was kind.

 

  I forgot. 

 

  I was in the middle of an important meeting. 

 

  The Elder’s Meeting, for my punishment. 

 

  I had to stand there, facing my father.

 

  The Lord’s seat. 

 

  Father sat there and looked at me.

 

  “…This Elder’s Meeting is to discuss the incident caused by the First Son.”

 

  His words made the atmosphere heavy, even without Qi.

 

  “First Son.”

 

  “Yes.”

 

  “Do you have anything to say?”

 

  “I do not.”

 

  I told him the truth. 

 

  I had nothing more to say. 

 

  I had already told everyone, including Father, everything. 

 

  They would check it soon.

 

  “Ahem…”

 

  Someone coughed from my left. 

 

  He wasn’t happy with my answer.

 

  “If you have nothing to say, do you admit that you killed the First Elder?”

 

  ‘Is it the Third Elder?’

 

  I hadn’t seen him for a long time. 

 

  I couldn’t remember what happened to him in my past life. 

 

  I think he was still alive when I left the clan.

 

  I answered him without hesitation.

 

  “I don’t need to admit anything. I killed him.”

 

  “Ha…! You killed a clan member, an Elder, with your own hands. How can you be so calm!”

 

  He roared at me. 

 

  I frowned. 

 

  He was up to something.

 

  “Anyone who does wrong should be punished, clan member or not.”

 

  “But why were you the one to decide the punishment?”

 

  “Who else?”

 

  “What?”

 

  “Would you have done something if you knew what the First Elder did?”

 

  He looked shocked. 

 

  He didn’t like my answer.

 

  “Even if what you said is true, the Lord should have decided the punishment after an investigation.”

 

  “But the Lord was away, and the criminal could have escaped. So I did it.”

 

  “Did you… call an Elder a criminal?”

 

  “He sinned. Should I treat him like a hero? Why are you asking nonsense?”

 

  “You…!”

 

  “If you have dementia, go to your room and sleep. Or maybe you’re worried about something like the First El-”

 

  Slam-!

 

  Something wrapped around me and I stopped talking. 

 

  A dense atmosphere filled the room.

 

  “Don’t cross the line. Don’t forget why you’re here.”

 

  “…I apologize.”

 

  The old man annoyed me with his words. 

 

  I spoke rudely without thinking.

 

  [Didn’t you say that you would improve your personality?]

 

  ‘But how could I hold back when he was clearly manipulating the situation?’

 

  I didn’t understand these people. 

 

  They deserved to be burned and jailed, but Father didn’t do anything.

 

  Father spoke.

 

  “As the First Son said, we found a secret room in the First Elder’s house.”

 

  They found it, thankfully.

 

  “But it has strong barriers. We need to confirm what’s inside.”

 

  “Lord, you can’t let this go easily.”

 

  The Fourth Elder, who was quiet, spoke.

 

  “This is a case where a direct relative attacked an Elder. We can’t-”

 

  “I don’t intend to let it go easily.”

 

  “…Hm.”

 

  “But we should confirm everything the First Son said about the First Elder first.”

 

  Father looked at the Fourth Elder briefly.

 

  “Or do you want him to be punished before we confirm everything? That would break the rules too.”

 

  “Well, no…”

 

  The Fourth Elder answered weakly. 

 

  The Steward spoke up to organize the meeting.

 

  “This meeting is not just about the Young Master’s punishment for killing the First Elder.”

 

  Father’s eyes were fierce as he looked around.

 

  “It’s also about him acting without the Lord’s approval and breaking out of jail before we confirmed anything.”

 

  That was true. 

 

  Not everything was confirmed yet. 

 

  This meeting was to punish me for what was confirmed.

 

  ‘Don’t try anything.’

 

  That was the warning.

 

  “Do you admit your sins?”

 

  “I do.”

 

  I did all this knowing I would be responsible.

 

  “I will let you off for the jailbreak because you did it to rescue the First Daughter and you helped a lot.”

 

  He said that before. 

 

  I used the Marble of Celestial Captivation to help them find and rescue Gu Huibi. 

 

  He gave me a pass for that.

 

  But Father took the Marble of Celestial Captivation back. 

 

  Gu Huibi complained, but he scolded her. 

 

  Her intentions with the marbles were not good in the first place, so I was satisfied.

 

  “However, you acted without anyone’s approval, even when the Lord was away.”

 

  “And you killed an Elder. You will be punished for that.”

 

  If the First Elder was alive, we could have gotten information from him. 

 

  But I acted recklessly and killed him. 

 

  I could have waited after overpowering him.

 

  “First Son, do you have any objections?”

 

  “I do not.”

 

  The Elders talked to each other after hearing me. 

 

  They were surprised I didn’t object.

 

  ‘…I threw a tantrum at the last Elder’s Meeting.’

 

  A big one.

 

  -How is it my fault…! She started it…!

 

  -Do you think I don’t know that none of you are on my side in this damned clan?

 

  I didn’t want to remember those memories. 

 

  But they came back easily. 

 

  I wanted to erase them.

 

  Father looked at me, then spoke again.

 

  “…We will now decide the First Son’s punishment.”

 

  They didn’t talk much, but the meeting was already ending. 

 

  Why did he call the Elders then? 

 

  He would have decided by himself anyway.

 

  ‘Is this really okay?’

 

  The Elders might not be happy with the punishment. 

 

  They might argue with Father.

 

  Did he have a plan?

 

  [You don’t seem scared.]

 

  ‘Why would I be scared at this age?’

 

  [Yet you argue like a child with an old man at this age?]

 

  ‘I don’t consider him the same species as me.’

 

  I waited calmly for Father’s words. 

 

  I had broken a lot of rules. 

 

  So, I expected to be confined for a few months.

 

  ‘The Elders want to delay me becoming the Young Lord, but that won’t happen.’

 

  I wanted that too. 

 

  But I knew better than anyone that it wouldn’t happen.

 

  Father eventually discussed my confinement.

 

  “The First Son will be confined for two months.”

 

  “…Two months?”

 

  I said that without thinking. 

 

  It was far shorter than I expected.

 

  The Elders thought the same. 

 

  As they stood up with shocked faces.

 

  “Lord of the Clan… you-” 

 

  “In addition.” 

 

  Father interrupted the Elders before they could comment. 

 

  “As soon as your confinement ends, I order you to join the Swordsmen Army on the battlefield for a year.” 

 

  “…Pardon? What did you say?” 

 

  “The discussion is done.” 

 

  “Wait… Father?” 

 

  I called out to him in a hurry, but he left the building as soon as he finished speaking. 

 

  ‘…What did he just say? Swordsmen Army?’ 

 

  I would be confined for two months and then forced to spend a year on the battlefield? 

 

  ‘That’s a lie, right? I must have misheard him.’

 

  The battlefield was the Fifth Army’s responsibility.

 

  Furthermore, they were led by Gu Huibi. 

 

  That meant he was telling me to spend a whole year on the battlefield with the Fifth Army under Gu Huibi.   

 

  It was the same hellish punishment that I had received in my past life and the memory of it made me sick just by thinking about it. 

 

  But I had to do it again? 

 

  “…Fuck.” 

 

  Now I felt like I understood. 

 

  The reason why Father didn’t bother asking the Elders’ opinions. 

 

  ‘It’s because he was going to give me a punishment that they would approve of, so he didn’t have to listen to their opinions.’ 

 

  I remembered what my father had said to me yesterday. 

 

  -I won’t take your side either

 

  Yeah, he wasn’t kidding at all. 

 

  “But even so, you were way too harsh…” 

 

  This was the moment when I told myself that I needed to run away from this household as soon as possible. 

 

******************

 

  When I went outside, I saw a familiar face waiting for me. 

 

  “Young Master! Here!” 

 

  The one who came running to me was Wi Seol-Ah. 

 

  And for some reason, she had tofu in her hands. 

 

  “…What is this?” 

 

  “It’s said that you eat tofu when you come out of jail.” 

 

  I took a bite of the tofu that Wi Seol-Ah offered me with a sour expression.

 

  “…It’s tasty.” 

 

  “Right?” 

 

  “It’s so good. So good that I might cry.” 

 

  “Huh? Really? I’m glad I bought it then!” 

 

  When I saw Wi Seol-Ah smile brightly without knowing how I felt, I could only sigh and pat Wi Seol-Ah’s head. 

 

  It made me feel a little better. 

 

  “Young Master, Young Master.” 

 

  “What?” 

 

  “There… someone is waiting for you, Young Master.” 

 

  “Hmm? Who?” 

 

  I followed Wi Seol-Ah’s gaze. 

 

  Then, I saw a familiar red uniform. 

 

  I thought it would be Namgung Bi-ah or Tang Soyeol, but contrary to my expectation, it was someone who was rather hard to deal with. 

 

  “…Hello.” 

 

  He looked haggard, but his handsomeness was still there.

 

  After all, his face remained the same, despite his clear exhaustion.  

 

  And he was someone who probably hated me right now. 

 

  “…Young Master.” 

 

  The Young Leader of Gu Sunmoon, Gu Jeolyub, was waiting for me.

 

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Childhood Friend of the Zenith

Childhood Friend of the Zenith

천하제일인의 소꿉친구
Score 9.4
Status: Ongoing Author: Released: 2021 Native Language: Korean
Instead of struggling meaninglessly, he acknowledged his place.

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