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    Find a Way, No Matter What

    Later, Na Junghae instinctively rubbed his neck. It was a confirmation procedure.

    A careful task to check if his neck was safe.

    It was a way to confirm whether he had been deprived of

    the qualification to live out the rest of his life.


    Fortunately, his neck was intact. Having confirmed that it was safely attached to his body without being separated, Na Junghae let out a sigh of relief for now. One of the six brushes that had been stuck in the brush holder was missing. When he carefully turned his stiff neck to check behind him, wasn’t there a brush deeply stuck in the stone wall? It was not the handle part but the brush tip.

    With this single move, Na Junghae completely erased the thought of looking down on Bi Ryu-yeon from his mind. He also reproached himself for his carelessness and frivolity. In the martial arts world, it was strictly forbidden to judge an opponent based solely on their appearance, yet he, who worked in the information industry, had made such a mistake.

    Na Junghae was utterly bewildered. Fortunately, there were no wounds, but a chill ran through his entire body as if it were boiling. Cold sweat flowed down his back like rain, and his clenched fists were filled with sweat. His legs trembled and shook like a quivering tree. There were still five brushes left in the brush holder. If the aim were to be off, it was as clear as day that he would be sent to the afterlife, but unfortunately, mistakes were something anyone could make, and in this world, there clearly existed intentional mistakes. Bi Ryu-yeon’s hand began to fiddle with one of the remaining brushes in the brush holder. Only a light smile accompanied by a slight grin drifted across his face.

    “Can’t get in? So wait another year?”

    Bi Ryu-yeon muttered to himself in a low voice and began to roughly fiddle with the brush he was teasing with his hand. The clattering sound echoed loudly, and this sound was enough to pierce through Na Junghae’s eardrums and make his heart shrivel. As of today, it seemed as if his lifespan had been reduced by several months from his destined amount.

    “A year is too long. I can’t wait… What should I do?”


    “But you’re telling me to wait a year!”



    This time, the wind brushed past his left ear. Another brush had left the brush holder and flown to be stuck in the stone wall. There were still four brushes left. It was a sufficient number to end Na Junghae’s life. A faint smile still lingered on Bi Ryu-yeon’s face. But this time, to make matters worse, Bi Ryu-yeon kept his gaze fixed elsewhere, feigning ignorance while fiddling with the brush. If things went wrong, he would send it flying without even looking.

    Faced with this absurd sight, Na Junghae’s liver shrank as much as it could, but he became even more anxious because he had not yet found a solution. He had to put all his effort into calming his violently beating heart.

    “You know what? I hate waiting. I really hate it. It’s so annoying. Nothing good comes out of it.”


    “But to wait.”

    “Smack! Smack!”

    Two striking sounds rang out simultaneously. Without even looking and while feigning ignorance, he had sent not one, but two brushes flying. To commit such a dangerous act that could determine life and death as if it were nothing, Na Junghae was seized by the desire to open Bi Ryu-yeon’s skull and examine the structure inside his head, if only he had the ability. However, due to his lack of strength, ability, and talent, he had no choice but to reluctantly abandon his grand plan and yearn to carry it out in his dreams or in simulations. Bi Ryu-yeon’s hand was still fidgeting. Every time his fingers moved playfully, Na Junghae was gripped by the illusion that his lifespan was being shaved off by a year. Still, a bright smile that didn’t match the current situation was plastered on Bi Ryu-yeon’s face.

    “And I really hate it when what I want doesn’t come true. So if I happen to find myself in that situation, I have a rather persistent personality that challenges the possibilities even if it’s a bit unreasonable.”

    The words spoken with a smiling face were quiet, but his hands were not as quiet as his words. This was a very unfortunate situation for Na Junghae.

    “Smack! Smack!”

    Two more brushes brushed past him and flew to be stuck in the stone wall. Now there were no brushes left in the brush holder. Unfortunately, it had become an empty container. All the brushes that had been stuck in the brush holder had been used up in an effort to increase the chances of success even a little, and there were none left. Only after all the brushes in the brush holder had disappeared could Junghae finally let out a sigh of relief, as if he had barely escaped from a life-threatening situation. However, his relief came a bit too early.

    Even though the brush holder was empty, Bi Ryu-yeon’s words showed no signs of ending. He was still being unreasonable. As he had said, he had a rather persistent side to him.

    “You know, I hate people the most who say they can’t do something even though it’s something they can do. If it doesn’t work, you have to make it work. That’s your job, isn’t it? Don’t you think so? I clearly came here knowing that. You wouldn’t disappoint a customer who came with unwavering faith, would you? This place isn’t so pathetic as to give up so easily, right? I came here because I heard that this place has a reputation and information-gathering ability that people recognize. Aren’t you ashamed to give up so easily?”

    Na Junghae silently vowed to track down the person who had told that bastard such things and chase him to the ends of the earth to make sure he met an untimely end. Exaggerated advertising and inflated promotion were meant to enhance his and the organization’s interests, not to become a pretext for their downfall.

    But in order to keep his vow, he first had to preserve his own life.

    “But… but…”

    Na Junghae tried to make a poor excuse. At that moment,


    Bi Ryu-yeon’s hand, still wearing a smile, struck the brush holder, and soon a loud noise echoed.



    Na Junghae was once again had his soul flies and spirit scatters,[1]. The cold fear of death engulfed his entire body. His mind went blank, leaving only the single thought that he must live and absolutely must not die.

    As the brush holder shattered into pieces, each fragment transformed into a terrifying weapon, assaulting Na Junghae’s entire body. Any one of them, if it struck a vital point or nearby, possessed sufficient power to send Na Junghae on a tour of the underworld, turning into dreadful lethal weapons.

    He didn’t dare to block or move. It happened so instantaneously that he didn’t have the leisure to respond in time. He had no choice but to entrust his fate to the heavens. The sixteen fragments of the brush holder, transformed into rays of light, narrowly brushed past Na Junghae’s entire body. However, the traces left by the fragments were clearly and evenly distributed throughout his body.

    His clothes were tattered, the string tying his hair was pitifully cut off, and his hair flowed down in disarray. But dramatically, there were no traces that threatened his life. By sheer luck, he had narrowly escaped the blade of the Grim Reaper. Relieved that he had survived unscathed, Na Junghae let out a great sigh of relief. It even felt like an illusion, as if nothing had happened, like a daydream.

    Only the sixteen wounds left on his clothes proved what had just occurred. No blood was drawn from those traces. The arrows of the fragments had generously and exquisitely cut only the fabric of his clothes, passing by without leaving a single injury on his skin. However, although he had not suffered any direct physical wounds, the psychological impact Na Junghae received from this incident was immense. Na Junghae, who had shed enough cold sweat to easily fill a basin due to the heart-sinking shock, felt as if his lifespan had been reduced by ten years.

    But despite having committed such an act, Bi Ryu-yeon was smiling brightly and innocently, as if to say, “Did I do something just now?”

    “Oh? It broke. What should we do about this?”

    “It, it’s alright. We can just buy another one.”

    Na Junghae managed to open his mouth while forcing a smile. The law was far away, and fists were close, so how could he dare to protest even if that rosewood brush holder was a high-end stationery item that he cherished? Although it was regrettable, it wasn’t more regrettable than his life, so he had no choice but to endure it.

    “No, no. We can’t just let this slide. It would be best to go to the brush holder’s place of purchase and file a complaint. Selling such a flimsy, defective product as a proper item, they are truly deplorable people. Make sure to receive compensation for the damages. Tsk tsk… The state of this nation’s commercial ethics…”

    Bi Ryu-yeon put on a deliberately dismayed expression and expressed concern for the future of the martial arts world’s business sector.

    ‘Despicable bastard!’

    Honestly, if there was anyone Na Junghae should receive compensation from, it was none other than Bi Ryu-yeon himself. Considering the material and mental damage he had suffered from him so far and his reduced life expectancy, it was beyond the point of being able to convert it into money. When it was said that life was something whose value could not be measured in gold, Na Junghae’s argument was that the amount he would have to claim was so immense that even an approximate calculation was impossible with his own numerical concepts.

    In this situation, Na Junghae couldn’t help but find Bi Ryu-yeon’s series of actions and the bright smile hanging on the corner of his mouth so despicable. He couldn’t possibly be pleased with someone who was arbitrarily reducing others’ lifespans according to his whims. Of course, it wasn’t just Na Junghae; anyone who found themselves in this situation would have thought the same as him.

    Na Junghae’s pitiful situation was enough to garner sympathy and compassion from those around him, but as Blazing Blade, who had sparks flying at his own feet, he had to enter the Heavenly Martial Arts Academy by any means necessary. He no longer wanted to suffer from Bi Ryu-yeon’s nagging. He wasn’t in a position to have the leisure to care about others’ circumstances like a gentleman.

    Being tormented by Bi Ryu-yeon was a really bothersome and annoying thing, a shortcut to shortening one’s lifespan. As a martial artist living in the martial arts world, he had no great attachment to life, but still, if possible, he wanted to live out his allotted lifespan and die like ordinary people. To do so, there was no other way but to find a solution, even if it meant persecuting Na Junghae.

    “So, are you saying there’s absolutely no way to solve this? Even if you die?”

    Blazing Blade emphasized the last part in particular. If it really didn’t work, he was ready to go that far. Blazing Blade had sufficient intention to do so.

    Indeed, when faced with a crossroads between life and death, hidden potential tends to be revealed. As if proving the amazing mystery of the human body, Na Junghae’s brain thoroughly combed through all the experiences, knowledge, and information that had been accumulated so far, and finally fished out a clue to break through the situation. He had grasped the lifeline in the infinite sea of information.

    “Oh, no. There, there is. There is, of course. How could there not be!”

    Na Junghae answered in a hurried, trembling voice. If he didn’t speak quickly, he would not only be shattered but also, to make matters worse, his life would be taken away, so as soon as the thought occurred to him, he spoke in a hurry.

    “Oh, really? What is it?”

    At his positive answer, Bi Ryu-yeon’s eyes sparkled and regained their vitality. After observing Bi Ryu-yeon’s complexion for a moment, Na Junghae carefully brought up the subject when he confirmed that his face had a grayish tinge. His question was not about Bi Ryu-yeon but about Blazing Blade.

    “Well… I have one question. Is Sir Gwak also thinking of entering the Heavenly Martial Arts Academy?”

    “Of course!”

    Before Bi Ryu-yeon could even answer, Blazing Blade directly threw an answer to his question. The words he uttered were really short. But this might be his way of communicating. As concise and short as possible!

    “I had a hunch, and it turns out I was right. I can’t believe it. However, according to the Heavenly Martial Arts Academy’s Entrance Eligibility Regulations, the age of academy entrants is strictly limited to 25 years old or younger. It means they don’t need anyone who isn’t young blood. Moreover, if you enter at an older age, it’s disadvantageous in many ways, both in terms of qualifications and martial arts achievements, which is why they have an age limit. Of course, it’s also clearly stated in the Heavenly Martial Entrance Regulations. ‘Absolutely no one over the age of 25!’ it says.”


    A fierce, murderous light flashed in Blazing Blade’s eyes. At that gaze, Na Junghae felt his body stiffen once again. Instinctively, his neck shrank. Just receiving that gaze once, his entire body’s muscles stiffened, and a chill ran down his spine. It was because he could feel Blazing Blade’s impatient temper that was undeniably revealed in the flashing, murderous gaze.

    “Yes, so… Therefore, I apologize, but at Sir Gwak’s current age, you definitely do not meet the entrance qualifications.”


    “Yes, so Sir Gwak cannot enter the Heavenly Martial Arts Academy. As a student, that is.”


    Blazing Blade’s voice grew colder and colder. He seemed to be losing his temper at the sight of Na Junghae dragging out the conversation. For his impatient personality, listening to Na Junghae’s roundabout, indirect story was very frustrating and made his anger boil up from deep within his chest. As if unaware of Blazing Blade’s state, Na Junghae continued to ramble on unnecessarily. It was a suffocating story that was still far from reaching a conclusion.

    “In my humble and lowly opinion, someone of Sir Gwak’s status doesn’t need to enter the Heavenly Martial Arts Academy…”



    Blazing Blade struck the floor with his terrifying fist, as big as a cauldron lid. In an instant, the floor sank, and Na Junghae could feel his buttocks shaking from the shock wave. Blazing Blade’s angry voice resounded through the room, which was about 3 pyeong in size. Finally, unable to hold back, he exploded. A furious roar burst out from deep within Blazing Blade’s lungs.

    “So what are you trying to say? I must enter the Heavenly Martial Arts Academy. So just answer one thing. Is there a way to get in or not? If there is, you will live, and if not, you won’t survive.”

    A tense feeling welled up that if he spoke nonsense just one more time, Na Junghae’s head would be permanently separated from his body in a flash of light. According to the information circulating in Nanchang, which Na Junghae, who controlled 30% of it, had grasped, Blazing Blade was more than capable of doing so. This person already had a glamorous history of such incidents several times in the past. Considering the precedent of the Green Forest warriors who had stood in his way and died in vain, and the several unorthodox sects that had been dismembered for the crime of offending him, getting rid of one of himself would be as simple as having a cup of tea after a meal. When his thoughts reached that point, Na Junghae’s body collapsed into a prostrate position out of fear.

    “I will find a way. No, I have found it. There is. A way.”

    A solution that comes out so easily after a single threat, can it really be trusted…? But no matter how short the time, Na Junghae’s brain, which belonged to a rather extraordinary category, repeated fierce revolutions as if to show what human potential was.

    “Tell me.”

    “Yes, Sir Gwak’s age has long passed twenty-five. Therefore, you cannot enter the Heavenly Martial Arts Academy through normal means. Rules are strict rules, after all. However, Sir Blazing Blade Gwak is one of the Five Great Bladesmen under the Heavens, a person of great fame and reputation in the martial arts world. For someone with such godlike martial prowess to enter the Heavenly Martial Arts Academy as a mere disciple is absurd, nonsensical, something that cannot and should not be. Sir Blazing Blade Gwak’s martial arts are equal to or surpass those of the Heavenly Martial Arts Academy’s martial arts instructors. When the whole world knows this fact, how can such a person set foot in the Heavenly Martial Arts Academy as a mere disciple?”

    As if oiled, Na Junghae’s tongue moved smoothly without tiring, and all sorts of flowery language and flattery spewed from his mouth. Na Junghae spewed out an impassioned speech and flattery as if he had covered his face with a powerful, unrivaled iron plate.

    “In other words, you become not the learner, but the teacher. Then, all problems will be erased in an instant.”

    1. 魂飛魄散[]

    I bet the guy’s pissed his pants…

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