My Exclusive Tower Guide chapter 61

My Exclusive Tower Guide

[Chapter 61]

On the third floor of the Demonic Archive, while most cadets were busy searching for the martial walking techniques they desired, some groups seemed to be at ease. The conversation of Jomugun and his group could be heard from afar. Even though they were only whispering, to me, who possessed an absolute sense of hearing, their words were crystal clear.

“The exam is four days away, it’s too long.”

“Why? It’s not like you can perfect a walking technique in one or two days. Isn’t it too short?”

“It’s too long because it cannot be perfected in one or two days. Practicing for four days won’t make much difference anyway.”

“Ah…”

The one grumbling was Jomugun himself. He seemed to wish he could take the test immediately. After all, having suffered a humiliating defeat in the previous stage, he must be eager to redeem himself.

“So, Mugun, are you planning not to choose any books from the Demonic Archive during these four days?”

“Of course, I’ll choose. There was a walking technique book I wanted to see. But it won’t take me more than an hour to memorize its content.”

“An hour? Is that even possible? I’ve heard that you’re a genius at memorization!”

Jomugun smirked and replied, “Is it hard to memorize? Or to truly learn it?”

“Still, an hour is…”

“It’s enough for me. Just right. And there’s the book I was looking for.”

“Death’s Step?”

It seemed that the walking technique book Jomugun had chosen was called ‘Death’s Step’. It might not be necessary for someone like Jomugun, given his family likely taught him advanced walking techniques from a young age.

Scanning the star ratings in the archive, I approached them. As I got near, Jomugun’s group subtly greeted me with their eyes. However, Jomugun still seemed to harbor ill feelings towards me, as his eyes suddenly hardened. I wasn’t there for a staring contest; whether he shot lasers from his eyes didn’t concern me.

My gaze naturally shifted to the ‘Death’s Step’ book he was holding. Four stars. It was half a star higher than the book I had recommended to Chae Yiseul. Jomugun had easily selected a high-level rising technique book. It made me think that growing up in a prestigious family has its perks, as they were privy to different levels of information.

“Death’s Step. You’ve chosen a good book.”

“Crafted by one of the twelve great grandmasters of Shin Sect. Difficult to master and not well-known because of it.”

Of course, I didn’t know all that. What caught my eye was the star rating, the highest among the books I had scanned so far. Jomugun continued to drivel about the ‘Death’s Step,’ seemingly boasting that he knew more than I did. It was a useless effort.

“You!”

“What is it now?”

He was trying to say something, suddenly putting on airs.

“Admit it now.”

“What are you talking about?”

“Admit the reason you could rank first in the poison exam! Honestly, you have…”

This guy was really tiresome. Jomugun seemed to think I had a toxin-resistant constitution, a trait that appears in individuals with a very low probability. Not just Jomugun, many instructors and cadets suspected the same. If they’re going to let their imagination run wild, they might as well say I’m immune to all poisons, since that’s closer to the truth.

“No comment.”

“What?”

The English phrase slipped out unexpectedly, and it shook him. He had never heard Earth’s English before, but he tried not to show it.

“No comment,” I repeated.

“No comment, huh? So that’s how it is.”

I couldn’t help but think that Jomugun might actually be insane. He suddenly changed the subject, flustered.

“You know about the third stage tradition of the Heavenly Demon Challenge, right?”

“What’s that?”

“You don’t know?”

His expression brightened for some reason, but there was also a puzzled look on his face as if thinking where on earth did this guy come from.

“I told you. I don’t know.”

“It doesn’t seem like you’re mocking me…”

Jomugun grumbled to himself and continued, “In the third stage, the cadets always nominate each other for duels. Unless something extraordinary happens, that will likely happen this time as well.”

This was new information to me, as my implanted memories contained nothing of the sort. Perhaps the Sage’s System would have given me details eventually, but this time Jomugun was the one to teach me something useful.

“And I’m planning to nominate you.”

“Me?”

This was a bit troublesome. Even though he seemed like an easy target, Jomugun was one of the top contenders among those participating in the Heavenly Demon Challenge. As I had observed in the last round, his inner power was of the highest level.

“Yes, you.”

He may be slightly lacking in basic skills other than inner strength, but still, Jomugun was a challenging opponent for me.

“It will be an interesting match.”

Though I responded that way, my concerns deepened. The third stage of the Heavenly Demon Challenge was likely to be a duel focused on the use of walking techniques. With Jomugun announcing his intention to challenge me, I had to come up with a strategy within the next four days.

* * *

After recommending a book to Son Seoyeon and meeting with Jomugun’s group, I spent quite some time unable to choose a book for my own training. My only criterion was the star rating, but I couldn’t find anything over four stars like the one chosen by Jomugun. There was no reason to rush and choose something inadequate.

In this martial world, obtaining…

The knowledge I gained would surely provide a solid foundation for my future cultivation in the tower. All I wanted was to select the best.

After scouring the library for an entire hour, a ray of light finally shone upon me.

‘This rating can’t be real, can it?’

Displayed before me was an astonishing seven-star rating.

I had roamed, hoping for a simple five-star volume, yet before me lay a fortune surpassing my expectations.

‘Mumyeongbo?’

To my surprise, the name of the tome was ‘Mumyeongbo.’ Considering that in Shingyo, the most worthless inner strength technique was known as Mumyeongsimbeop, the ‘Mumyeongbo’ appeared to be a set with the Mumyeongsimbeop by name alone.

It was a curious discovery – not only that a seven-star tome like this one was present on the third floor, but that such an ascending manual remained unnamed was beyond my understanding.

Even Jo Mugeon, who had picked the four-star ‘Sasinbo,’ had obviously been unaware of this tome’s existence.

Fortune was truly in my favor.

The ‘Mumyeongbo’ had remained untouched until all the disciples had finished selecting their tomes.

Carefully, I extracted the ‘Mumyeongbo’ from the shelf.

It was not particularly thick.

At this rate, I might be able to memorize it entirely.

Ever since acquiring the status window of a sage, I certainly felt smarter.

I quickly flipped through the tome, delving into the principles and intricacies of ‘Mumyeongbo.’

There was no space to practice in the library, so I planned to head to the practice yard after gaining a theoretical grasp.

‘But it’s much easier than I thought!’

There was no trace of the difficulty that a seven-star secret manual should possess.

Although my improved intelligence could be a factor, the difficulty level of the tome itself didn’t seem all that challenging.

To ensure I hadn’t overlooked anything, or missed hidden meanings within the text, I carefully reviewed the pages multiple times.

But, the inescapable conclusion remained – it was easy.

I decided to head to the practice yard and put theory into action.

There might be a difference between what’s learned in the mind and confirmed by the body.

* * *

The practice yard was empty.

It was still early for the disciples to begin their practical training.

Most likely, they had not even come close to understanding half of their chosen tomes. In comparison, my presence here was abnormal.

Nevertheless, it was good to practice in such a tranquil environment. I began to replicate the movements I’d seen in the tome.

Atop the foundation of the internal technique ‘Hwamyeongsimgong,’ I began applying ‘Mumyeongbo,’ integrating it with ‘Muyeongchuheongeom.’

While perusing ‘Mumyeongbo’ in the Demon Library, it had vaguely occurred to me that these three techniques would mesh well together. And indeed.

‘Oh?’

The combination worked even better than I had anticipated.

‘Mumyeongbo’ served as an excellent bridge between ‘Hwamyeongsimgong’ and ‘Muyeongchuheongeom.’

I could feel it distinctly.

With the addition of this manual, my ‘Muyeongchuheongeom’ now bore an even more refined edge.

Despite this being my first attempt, the movements felt incredibly natural.

As though I had long been familiar with them.

It’s a preposterous notion, but somehow, mastering this technique quickly seemed quite possible.

And then, that moment came.

‘Someone’s here.’

I could sense someone’s presence near the practice yard.

Chills ran down my spine.

With my hyperawareness, even as engrossed as I was in training, to only now notice it was unusual.

Only one person was capable of concealing their presence from me to this extent, someone even Elder Taemujeong couldn’t emulate.

There was only one person I knew could do this.

My master.

Upon this realization, a secondary wave of chills erupted.

“It’s you!”

“Eh?”

My goosebumps subsided as quickly as they had arisen.

It was not my master.

An elderly person appeared before me.

“You’re the one who caused quite a stir in Cheonmaji.”

He seemed to be about in his sixties.

Not my master, but clearly a peerless expert.

‘An individual above the Elders!’

There were only a few within Shingyo who clearly held superior standing to Elder Taemujeong.

Apart from my master, the head of Shingyo, it would only be the deputy sect leaders and the Left and Right Protectors.

I immediately showed my respect.

“Disciple Lee Hoyoung greets the honorable Protector.”

Not knowing whether he was the Left or the Right Protector, I expressed my address broadly.

It could not be the deputy leader.

According to information instilled in me, the deputy leader was female.

“Youngster from a distant part of the organization, you recognize me well. I am Left Protector Jincheon.”

Just as I thought.

Left Protector Jincheon was considered the third powerhouse within Cheonma Shingyo.

“Just as I heard, you possess an interesting sword technique. But tell me, why are you here in the practice yard instead of the Demon Library at this hour?”

“I have finished reading all the manuals from the library. So, I came here to the practice yard to see if I have understood them correctly, by practicing with my own body.”

“You’ve finished reading them already?”

“That’s correct.”

“Indeed, an intriguing fellow. What was the manual you chose?”

“The ‘Mumyeongbo.’”

I responded and awaited Jincheon’s words.

Surely, Jincheon would know something about ‘Mumyeongbo.’

I hoped he would comment, possibly giving me insight into the manual.

“‘Mumyeongbo,’ you say?”

“Yes, Left Protector.”

Indeed, ‘Mumyeongbo’ appeared to be a fine technique.

But it left one to wonder, was it truly worthy of seven stars?

Maybe Jincheon had the answer I sought.

– To be continued in Episode 62 –



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