Solo Swordmaster

REAPER SCANS

 

Solo Swordmaster

[Translator –  woni]

[Proofreader – sharlottle]

 

Chapter 6: An Unexpected Visit

"Excuse me, boss. There's something I really wanna ask."

"What?"

"Why do I have to be suspended with you?"

Yoo Na-kyung sullenly asked, sipping from her soju glass. 

"The boss' fault is his subordinate's responsibility," Limon responded apathetically. "Do you think it's more likely the boss would mistakenly defend their subordinates, or push the blame onto them?"

Yoo Na-kyung shedded another tear, and replied with confidence.

"Obviously the former! Well, if the boss was someone with morals."

"Yep, and that's how the good bosses lose their jobs while the bad ones get promoted, making the latter more common."

"Why are you so cynical?!"

"You didn't know? There's no hope or dreams in the real world."

"Wow, how awful."

Yoo Na-kyung acted shocked, as if she was a child who had just learnt Santa Claus wasn't real. 

Limon let out a laugh. Of course, that was just a joke.

If their superior, Kang Jungsoo, really did dump the responsibility onto them, it wouldn't have ended with a mere suspension.

Yoo Na-kyung, blankly muttering to herself, also knew of this.

"How ironic."

"Hm?"

"Our director's probably working his ass off after reprimanding us. And yet here we are, comfortably drinking after being suspended."

"Well, what can we do? He's the director for a reason."

Limon laughed hoarsely. 

It was a case involving not just any regular player, but a Monarch's family member being violated. Kang Jungsoo was probably sweating his scalp off handling this incident. Perhaps it's made his head even shinier. 

'Maybe I should get him a nice hair growth solution next time.'

If Kang Jungsoo could read Limon's thoughts as of now, he would've begged him to just stop making a mess. But his pleas would never come to fruition.

If they did, Limon would have never been demoted from the hero of a past nation to just a team leader in the first place.

"Besides, It felt good."

"Did it?"

"Yeah. He was so full of himself, that guy. The way he turned a blind eye to almost killing people, and only talking about his money and compensations."

"That bastard would have said the same shit even if he did kill people."

"No way, right? He's still a human."

"Once shits like him are drunk on power, regular people stop looking like such."

Limon smiled coldly.

People usually feel human only when with others they're equal to. That's why people find common ground like age, location, jobs, and hobbies to socialize and relate to one another.

But not those drunk on power.

The essence of power is domination.

Limon, who had seen many innocent people corrupted by power, was well aware of this fact. 

And above everything else, Seo Yongchan had always had a cow's head. It wouldn't be strange if he didn't feel anything towards other humans. 

"…Now that you mention it, I still don't understand why you kept him alive."

"What? Was I not supposed to?"

"No, it's just odd. I thought you were going to kill him for real."

"Well, I did want to kill him."

"Then why didn't you?"

Yoo Na-kyung tilted her head. It was a genuine question she could ask only because she was drunk.

The Limon she knew wasn't someone who'd take into consideration someone's background, regardless of whether it was the brother-in-law of the Infinite Monarch, or anyone else with a powerful background.

Limon's answer was simple.

"Civil servants get fired if they murder as they please."

"……That's it?"

"Mmhm. Where else would a goner like me go if I get fired?"

"How realistic."

Yoo Na-kyung snickered as she emptied her glass. Limon smirked and poured more soju into her empty glass.

 

***

 

It had been quite a while since they started drinking together in a shabby caravan. 

Only after empty bottle after empty bottle was stacked on top of each other, did Limon toss a dead-drunk Yoo Na-kyung into her home and walk out onto the streets.

Muttering as he looked up into the night sky,

"I miss the old days."

Before there were players.

If it was the Heroes' Age, he could have done whatever he wanted with Seo Yongchan, whether he killed him or sold him into slavery.

The Swordmaster was the Absolute Ruler back in those days.

He was more god-like than all Ten Great Monarchs combined.

It was to the point where if he killed a regular man and called him a monster, people would have believed and cheered for him.

But that was all in the past.

As players and their skills rose to the top, Swordmasters only fell. Just as the warship— once called the 'fortress of the sea' —became no more than scrap metal after the development of aircraft and anti-ship missiles.

The Sword Tower that once had countless disciples couldn't handle the operating deficit and went bankrupt.

And those who boasted about their connections to Swordmasters gradually distanced themselves. Soon, the title of Swordmaster became a title of ridicule — that they were just goners drunk on their past glory, who knew nothing besides swinging a sword.

'Well, that doesn't really matter.'

Limon wasn't affected by that fact alone.

Losing power and meeting his downfall was separate from why he spared Seo Yongchan.

There was only one reason he let Seo Yongchan live.

He had felt something from Seo Yongchan's head turning into a cow's.

Something… else.

He didn't notice it at first.

But after thinking about it more closely, Limon realized.

He had felt displaced by Seo Yongchan's head.

But what he didn't realize then was that it originated from a mix of two different auras. And the combined, disgusting aura cleverly disguised between that of a human's, was like watching a half-rotten brain wriggle. 

'I don't know whether he was possessed, amalgamated, or if it's a parasite…'

But it wasn't just some ghost. Nothing like a chimera, either. It was a rare mix of auras that even Limon, who's been around for a rather long time, had never seen before.

One thing he was certain of was that whatever that thing with Seo Yongchan was, it was not fundamentally human.

'It's not something I can be rash with.'

What was it, and what was its relation to Seo Yongchan?

He couldn't just kill him when he didn't know anything. Not only could Limon end up unleashing a greater evil by killing him, he could also gather more information by keeping Seo Yongchan alive.

And if that caused a problem in the future?

That would just give Limon the justification he needs to kill him then.

'Although, maybe even this is an old-fashioned way of thinking.'

Limon chuckled. 

He couldn't help himself. No matter how much he tried to adjust, he was still an old timer.

After all, he was just a goner behind the times.

 

***

Reaper Scans

Translator - woni

Proofreader - sharlottle

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〈The backwaters of the Yangtze push the front waves

The front waves collapse from the shoals

If the front waters go back to the ocean without collapsing

They will stay unsunken and return to being the backwaters.〉*

*t/n: in hanja

Was it because he'd thought of memories that meant nothing anymore? Maybe he was just getting particularly drunk from the moonlight today.

Mumbling to himself with no one to listen to him, Limon strolled aimlessly through the dimly lit streets.

He was suspended, anyway. He was going to take his time on his night walk home, since he wouldn't have anything to do for the next few days.

But less than a few steps in, Limon stopped in his tracks.

〈The backwaters of the Yangtze push the front waves

The front waves collapse from the shoals

If the front waters go back to the ocean without collapsing

They will stay unsunken and return to being the backwaters.〉*

*t/n: in hangul

"Hm?"

Limon narrowed his eyes as he heard a voice echo in the silent night sky.

Not because it returned his words, or its clear, beautiful voice. 

It was because he'd noticed them approaching too late.

"Who are you?"

Limon asked curiously.

Regardless of what anyone said, he was still a Swordmaster. 

His senses were sharp, unparalleled as compared to most Tracers.

Of course, if the Tracers heard of this, they'd be offended. 

"How dare you compare me to some goner?!"

But what could they do? Sometimes, the truth's a bitter pill to swallow.

It was incredibly rare for someone to be able to go under Limon's radar and get that close to him, even for the Monarchs.

Who was it that accomplished such a feat?

The owner of the voice slowly revealed themself to Limon.

"I apologize for the discourtesy."

Straight, black hair tidied with a jade binyeo*. An oriental dress embroidered with silk and silver threads. Fair skin shining white under the moonlight. 

*t/n: korean ornamental hairpin

The visitor walked out of the dark as if to remove the curtains of the night. 

Too noble to be a girl, but too young to be a woman.

"Pardon me. Are you the Master of Swords*?" She asked politely.

*t/n: = Swordmaster but in hanja/chinese

"Master of Swords… I was once called that, yes."

Limon had a strange expression.

Back when the Swordmaster was the Absolute Ruler, people would give him several names, such as 'the nation's hero' or 'Guardian of Humanity'. One of them was 'Master of Swords'.

But Limon hadn't heard that name in a long time.

Not only were most of his titles forgotten, there was also only one group of people who called him that.

"And the answer to my question?"

Flinch—

She shivered slightly, as if she was scared of how Limon would react if he knew her identity.

But that only lasted for a moment. As if to prepare herself, she raised her head. Looking straight into Limon's golden eyes, she said in a trembling voice,

"Would you believe me if I said I was Li Chingwei, Princess of the Black Dragon Clan?"

"How could I not?"

As opposed to her worries, Limon didn't get angry. Nor did he draw his blade.

He'd already guessed her identity the moment she stepped out of the darkness.

It was obvious. There was no way Limon, of all people, wouldn't be able to recognize a Psionics technique. And no matter how big the world was, there was only one Psionics user that could stay out of Limon's radar.

"So, what business does a Princess of the Seven Dragons Association have with me?"

"I'm here to ask you for a favor, Master of Swords."

"You? A favor? From me?"

Unbelievable. 

It'll be more plausible for the moon to randomly shatter into pieces.

A member of the Seven Dragons Association would never ask a favor from him. Especially not the Princess of the Black Dragon Clan.

"Yes."

And yet, it happened.

After a moment of blankly staring at her, Limon looked up to the moon.

'Times really have changed.'

Why did the norms change so drastically every era?

Complaining to himself, Limon asked Li Chingwei.

"What is it?"

Limon braced himself. It couldn't have been a light matter if the Princess of the Black Dragon Clan came all the way to ask him personally. 

He told himself he wasn't going to be surprised, no matter her request.

And yet…

"Marry me."

Limon couldn't help but be completely stunned.


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