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TL: FoodieMonster007; ED: TheGreatT20 If you see this, you are at the wrong site!

“Ugh!” Yong Mu-Sung groaned as he was sent flying, his clothes and Dragon Scale Blade stained red with blood. His body was shaking, his legs were weak, and his eyes were bloodshot from the immense pressure of Jo Cheon-Woo’s qi.

As a master martial artist, Jo Cheon-Woo’s bare fists were his most powerful weapons. He didn’t even need to use techniques anymore; every normal punch of his was equivalent to a lesser warrior’s strongest technique.

With a single strike, he shattered Yong Mu-Sung’s Dragon Scale Blade Art and still had enough power left over to overwhelm him.

On the contrary, no matter what technique Yong Mu-Sung unleashed, Jo Cheon-Woo easily deflected it and counterattacked.

It wasn’t long before Yong Mu-Sung was covered in wounds.

“Keuk!” Yong Mu-Sung wiped the blood from his mouth with his sleeve.

So this is the strength of a warlord who aims to rule the world?

His opponent was a man who was commonly referred to as an absolute master, and for Yong Mu-Sung to have survived so far against such a person was a feat in itself. However, simply surviving was meaningless.

Hurry up and come back, damn it!

Out of the corner of his eye, he cast a glance at his men. The Iron Brigade and the White Dragon escorts had formed a defensive circle, but the Tyrant Fist Sect elites had them completely surrounded.

Suddenly, Jo Cheon-Woo sneered, “I’m surprised you can afford to look the other way while I’m standing right in front of you.”

Yong Mu-Sung bit his lip until it bled and scrambled back to his feet. “You’re so old and weak that you can’t even kill a fly. Is that the best you can do?”

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“Pfft, are you trying to taunt me…? How uncouth,” Jo Cheon-Woo coldly replied, even as his eyes glowed with rage.

Yong Mu-Sung realized that his taunt had succeeded, because a strange air current began to flow around Jo Cheon-Woo’s body, whipping around him like a whirlwind and stirring up the rocks and leaves on the ground.


An instant later, the leaves and rocks were ground to dust, disappearing without a trace.

Jo Cheon-Woo was unleashing the Fist of Heavenly Domination (覇天神拳), the most powerful barehanded martial art in the history of the Northern Army. Originally, it was a martial art that could only be learned by the Lord, but when the Northern Army fell with the death of Jin Kwan-Ho over a decade ago, Jo Cheon-Woo stole the martial art manual.

Jo Cheon-Woo had always admired Jin Kwan-Ho, but he felt that if he mastered the Fist of Heavenly Domination, he would be equal to his former leader. Therefore, for the past ten years, he had focused only on mastering the Fist of Heavenly Domination, and in the end, he achieved what he wanted. He was confident that at his current level, he would be able to compete with Jin Kwan-Ho.

Shit, I must have hit a nerve. Yong Mu-Sung grimaced. Maybe he had gone too far with the provocation, because his senses were screaming at him that Jo Cheon-Woo meant business.

He pushed all of his remaining qi into the Dragon Scale Dao, and it roared in answer.

“Fuck, I only have one life to lose anyway! I should at least see how far I can go.”

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Dao Qi wrapped itself around his Dragon Scale Dao like a coiling dragon.



Kwak Moon-Jung stuck the last flag into the hard soil.

“Haa… Huff…!” he gasped. His legs were wobbly and his heart was pounding, making it difficult for him to stand, but he couldn’t afford to rest. Even at this very moment, the warriors of the White Dragon caravan were fighting for their lives, and the longer he delayed, the more people would die.

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He waved his hand wildly at Ha Jin-Wol, who stood in the center of the defensive circle.

Ha Jin-Wol grinned, picked up a nearby rock and threw it into the center of the flag formation.


A translucent fog began to swirl around the battlefield.


“Fuck! It’s a formation!”

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The Tyrant Fist Sect warriors, who were confident of their victory until the fog appeared, started to lose their composure. One moment, they were blinded by a flash of light, and the next, they were plunged into pitch blackness. It was so dark that they couldn’t even see the faces of their comrades next to them.

“This is the Dark Phantom Illusion Formation (幻靈暗黑陣). It originated in the evil sects, but that doesn’t make it any less effective than any other top-notch debilitation formation,” Ha Jin-Wol muttered as he watched the Tyrant Fist Sect’s elite descend into chaos.

One of the most important effects of the Dark Phantom Illusion Formation was that it deprived enemies of their sight, impeding their senses and restricting their movements. For a master of Jo Cheon-Woo’s caliber, such a thing wouldn’t be a problem, but for ordinary martial artists, losing their vision alone was enough to make them feel extremely restless.

“Now we add this to that…” Ha Jin-Wol took out the porcelain bottle that Tang Gi-Mun had given him.

The martial artists of the Iron Brigade watched the scholar with bated breath. Not only had he reversed a situation where they were bound to be annihilated, he was now protecting them with uncanny techniques that didn’t seem like they could be executed by a human being in the midst of battle.

Jongri Mu-Hwan was by far the most taken aback of them all. Although he had heard of the Dark Phantom Illusion Formation, as far as he knew, setting up the formation was an arduous endeavor that required the perfect terrain, time, and a lot of equipment and manpower. It wasn’t something that could be done with only a few flags. If it were up to him, he would need at least three days to create the Dark Phantom Illusion Formation.

How can anyone be that brilliant? Goosebumps crawled all over his skin.

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This was a different kind of shock than the one Jin Mu-Won had given him, and in a way, it was much worse. Jin Mu-Won was a master martial artist, and Jongri Mu-Hwan could console himself by thinking that he was more of a strategist than a warrior.

However, Ha Jin-Wol was different. Like himself, the scholar was a strategist who relied more on tactics than martial arts, but was so skilled that he was like an unscalable wall.

Ha Jin-Wol smiled and sprayed the Qi Dispersion Poison toward the outer edge of the Dark Phantom Illusion Formation. The poison spread out on the wind and slowly swirled along with the mist.


“I-I can’t use qi.”

The Tyrant Fist Sect warriors who were outside the Dark Phantom Illusion Formation hastily retreated, but some of the unfortunate souls who were slow to react fell to the ground, poisoned.

Ha Jin-Wol sat down on top of his ox cart. “I’ve done everything I can. All we can do now is wait for him to return.”

Over time, the Qi Dispersion Poison would disperse to the winds, but until that happened, it was enough of a threat to keep the Tyrant Fist Sect at bay and prevent them from advancing forward.

Moreover, seeing their hesitation, Ha Jin-Wol made a momentary opening in the formation for Kwak Moon-Jung to enter.

“Haa… Haa…!” Kwak Moon-Jung panted. In the short time he was exposed to the Dark Phantom Illusion Formation, he had also been poisoned by the Qi Dispersion Poison and lost the ability to control his qi.

Tang Gi-Mun patted Kwak Moon-Jung on the head. “You did great. Many people have been saved because of you.”

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“I-I can’t gather my qi.”

“That’s because you’ve been poisoned by the Qi Dispersion Poison. Don’t worry though, the effects will only last for two hours.”

“O-Okay!” Kwak Moon-Jung nodded and collapsed on the ground. His entire body was screaming from the extreme muscular strain and the pain from his injuries. He badly wanted to pass out, but he couldn’t. They weren’t out of dire straits yet.

As he lay resting, he watched the fight between Yong Mu-Sung and Jo Cheon-Woo.


A series of eruptions exploded between the two behemoths. Although Yong Mu-Sung’s Dragon Scale Dao was coated with Blade Flux, his attacks were blocked by Jo Cheon-Woo’s own pitch black qi and erased each time they clashed.

Despite pushing himself to the limit, Yong Mu-Sung was still at a disadvantage.


“We shouldn’t just stand here watching, we need to help him!”

Suddenly, the Iron Brigade warriors tried to rush out from the protection of the Dark Phantom Illusion Formation.

However, Ha Jin-Wol refused to open a path for them. “Don’t do useless things,” he chided.

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“Get out of the way. If you try to stop us, we’ll cut you down.” Gongson Chang glared furiously at Ha Jin-Wol, ready to murder the scholar if he continued being stubborn.

In the face of Gongson Chang’s threat, Ha Jin-Wol stated matter-of-factly, “Even if you join him, you won’t be able to change anything.”

“We still have to go. We can’t leave our commander alone.”

Realizing that he couldn’t convince the Iron Brigade, Ha Jin-Wol asked Jongri Mu-Hwan, “What about you? Do you think the same way as these guys?”

Jongri Mu-Hwan wavered. His heart told him that he should help Yong Mu-Sung, but his mind warned him that doing so was tantamount to suicide. One look at Kwak Moon-Jung’s current condition was enough to describe what they could expect if they attempted to break through the Qi Dispersion Poison. In that state, never mind helping Yong Mu-Sung; they’d become sitting ducks for their enemies.

“We…will stay here.”

“V-Vice Commander?”

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Gongson Chang, Im Jin-Yeop, and the other Iron Brigade members violently objected.

Jongri Mu-Hwan looked at them and narrowed his eyes. “Mister Ha is correct. If we leave the formation now, we’ll only get killed meaninglessly.”


The Iron Brigade warriors were stunned by Jongri Mu-Hwan’s decision, even though he had done it in their interests. Even though they understood his concern in their heads, it was hard to accept it in their hearts.

Chae Yak-Ran grabbed Jongri Mu-Hwan’s shoulder.

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“Believe in our Commander. He will be fine,” Chae Yak-Ran insisted, even as she tightened her grip. Of all the Iron Brigade members, she was the one who was most worried about Yong Mu-Sung.

Ha Jin-Wol looked at the two vice commanders. The Iron Brigade is a very united group. Yong Mu-Sung is a far better leader than I thought. Such camaraderie cannot be created simply by living together. It must be Yong Mu-Sung’s sincerity and sensitivity in addition to his competence that earned him the unquestionable faith and support of his subordinates.

Meanwhile, outside the formation, Yong Mu-Sung felt as if his heart was going to burst and his whole body was going to fall apart. His left collarbone was shattered, his right shoulder dislocated, he had at least three or four broken ribs, and his qi center was devoid of internal energy. The blood he’d lost made him dizzy, and he couldn’t think straight.

He didn’t have the strength to lift the Dragon Scale Dao anymore, but still he did not let go of the weapon. He knew that the longer he stalled Jo Cheon-Woo, the higher his chances of survival.

Damn it! I really want to lie down now. Why isn’t he here yet? Or…did something also delay him? Barely holding on to his consciousness, Yong Mu-Sung mentally chastised Jin Mu-Won.

Jo Cheon-Woo approached him. “You are one of the few people who have earned my admiration. If you had stood by my side, we could have enjoyed all the riches of the world together.”

“Ptui!” Instead of answering, Yong Mu-Sung spat at Jo Cheon-Woo.

Unfortunately, his spit was blocked by an intangible qi barrier and did not reach Jo Cheon-Woo.

“I admire your fighting spirit, but fighting spirit without skill is nothing more than recklessness.”

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Jo Cheon-Woo raised his fist.

He was going to end it all with one final blow.

Yong Mu-Sung closed his eyes. Fuck fuck fuck! Is this the end for me…?


Suddenly, the sound of iron being struck echoed across the battlefield.

Yong Mu-Sung slowly opened his eyes, only to find Jo Cheon-Woo gazing at a nearby mountain peak. To Yong Mu-Sung, the metal sound had been very faint, but to Jo Cheon-Woo, it was as loud as a bell ringing right next to his ear, jarring his soul.

“Are you taunting me, this great Jo Cheon-Woo…? How dare you!” Jo Cheon-Woo growled furiously at the unknown person who had dared to focus the sound waves on him before instantly forgetting about Yong Mu-Sung and charging straight in their direction.

Once he was gone, Yong Mu-Sung collapsed, but before he could black out, someone caught him and asked worriedly, “Are you okay?”

It was Hwang Cheol.

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