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

On our way out after meeting the last suspect, Bok Man-Chun, I asked Constable Cheong Cheon, “Is the will real?”

“Probably. Quite a few of our sources have suggested that Old Man Heo wrote a will shortly before he died.”

“Then why didn’t you tell me about it before?”

Still wearing his typical expressionless face, Constable Cheong Cheon answered, “Because we haven’t been able to confirm the truth of its existence. Old Man Heo never told anyone where he hid it, nor what the contents were. To prevent unwanted rumors from spreading and instill widespread chaos, we decided to keep quiet about it for now… But I have to admit, I never imagined that Bok Man-Chun would be the first one to bring it up, especially while he was being questioned.”

Simply put, Constable Cheong Cheon didn’t trust me and Ak Yeon-Ho. Well, that’s only natural… Still, as long as Constable Cheong Cheon doesn’t cooperate with us fully, catching the culprit will be extremely challenging.

I stopped walking, put on my most sincere-looking face, then said, “Mr. Constable, the outcome of this case is just as important to the Murim Alliance as it is to you. A civilian was murdered by someone suspected to be a demonic arts practitioner. If we don’t catch the culprit soon, there might be even more bloodshed.”

“I know.”

“While I understand how difficult it must be for you to trust random strangers like us, I wish to reiterate that the Murim Alliance is an organization created to serve justice and protect civilians. We never act for personal gain.”

“…That seems to be the case, yes.” Constable Cheong Cheon nodded hesitantly.

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I lowered my head and placed my hands in a fist salute, pleading, “Then, would you please help us? As a member of the Murim Alliance, I hope that we will be able to combine our individual strengths toward catching this criminal.”

In order to convince the constable, I repeatedly emphasized the Murim Alliance’s involvement and honor.

”Erm, Hyung-nim? Since when did we join the Murim Alliance?” Ak Yeon-Ho said telepathically.

However, I ignored him. Do you know how hard it is to add a line to your resume, you idiot? You need to learn to use every tool at your disposal.

Constable Cheong Cheon closed his eyes and sighed in resignation, “Fine, I understand. I’ll share the information I have with you two.”

“Thank you very much.”

“…We actually found several contradictions between the rumors going around about Old Man Heo and the facts in his account books. To most, Old Man Heo was a notorious loan shark, but there was a different side to him. The interest rates he offered were often much lower than other known moneylenders, and he often tailored them to match the borrower’s financial situation.”

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“So he was something like a kind-hearted loan shark?”

“You can think of it that way. Moreover, we discovered that he donated a lot of money to a nearby orphanage.”

“Why the orphanage, of all places?”

“Because he was also an orphan. Quite a number of orphans have already benefited greatly from his donations, as he paid for them to go to school.”

Shocked, Ak Yeon-Ho frowned and muttered to himself, “And here I was thinking that all loan sharks were heartless villains… I wonder if his atypical behavior was one of the reasons why he was murdered? No, that’s not likely…”

“Not only that, when the orphans grew up, Old Man Heo hired many of them as management staff for his brothels and gambling dens. It was never a one-sided relationship; it was a good investment for him as well.”

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So by establishing himself as their benefactor, he earned these kids’ lifelong loyalty and gratitude. In the past, the unorthodox sects often used this method, too. I nodded at Constable Cheong Cheon, egging him to continue.

“Uhm, occasionally, there were exceptions…like myself.”

““What?”” Ak Yeon-Ho and I opened our eyes wide in astonishment.

Ak Yeon-Ho asked, “You were one of those orphans, Mr. Constable?”

“Yes. I never knew my father, and my mother raised me single-handedly. Unfortunately, she passed away before I could grow up. If not for Old Man Heo’s support, I would never have had the opportunity to become a government official.”

“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to bring up the past…” Ak Yeon-Ho apologized, his face ridden with guilt. welcomes you.

“Don’t mind it. I didn’t tell you about this because I don’t want to involve my personal feelings in this case.”

“……” I said nothing, but just then, a strange thought hit me. Even when he was talking about his past, Constable Cheong Cheon’s expression never changed. Are his facial muscles simply that stiff?

We resumed walking until we reached a crossroads, then it was time for us to part. We’d originally wanted to visit the murder scene as well, but as Old Man Heo’s corpse was found in his mansion, once the doors were shut for the night, not even we could enter easily.

“It’s getting late. Shall we go to the murder scene tomorrow instead?”

“See you tomorrow, then.”

“We’ll meet you at the government office early tomorrow morning.”

Constable Cheong Cheon returned to the government office, and we headed to the inn where we were staying. As the constable walked off, I stared closely at him as he disappeared into the distance.

“Wow…” Ak Yeon-Ho let out a sigh of admiration.

“Wow what?” I asked.

He pointed toward Constable Cheong Cheon and said, “Don’t you think he’s cool? He gives off the aura of a very dependable man, despite his tragic past… Although his looks are quite average, I think a man like that is a different kind of handsome, wouldn’t you agree?”

“Tsk, do I look like I care about that kind of bullshit?” I knew it, I was wrong to expect anything substantial out of this guy. welcomes you.

However, Ak Yeon-Ho then proceeded to tease me, saying, “Oh my, then why did you stare so hard at the constable as he left? In truth, you think he’s cool too, right?”

A shiver ran down my spine at his suggestive words, but I shrugged it off and replied, “No way. It’s just, observing people closely and analyzing them is an old habit of mine.”

I couldn’t help it. It was this very habit that had kept me alive in the Blood Cult for decades.


After returning to the inn, we bathed and then gathered in my room for a discussion.

“Who do you think the culprit is, Hyung-nim?” Ak Yeon-Ho asked.

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After washing up, I now realize that this pretty boy’s face is actually as white as tofu… Ahem, I should ask for his opinion first.

“What about you? Who do you think it is?”

“I kept thinking about it while soaking in the tub, but in the end, I concluded that Heo Il, the son, is the most suspicious…”

Ak Yeon-Ho then proceeded to elaborate on why he thought Heo Il was suspicious. To sum it up briefly, his line of reasoning was: 1) I don’t like him, 2) he’s human trash, 3) my instincts tell me that he is the culprit, 4) my instincts have never been wrong.

I sighed, saying, “He is suspicious, but so are the other two.”

  • Suspect #1: The mistress who often argued with the victim over the running of the brothel.

  • Suspect #2: The troublemaker son who seemed to be eagerly awaiting his father’s demise.

  • Suspect #3: The martial master bodyguard who used to be a freelancer.

All three of them are equally suspicious. Additionally, has the will…really not been found yet? Could one of them be hiding it? If we had the will, we might be able to narrow down our list of suspects, as I doubt the person Old Man Heo chose to give his inheritance to would murder him.

Regardless, the thing I’m most concerned about…is the demonic art which was used to kill him. I have to confirm if it truly is one of the Blood Cult’s demonic arts…


“Hyung-nim, do you also agree that Heo Il is the mostly likely suspect?”

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“Just go to sleep and leave the thinking to me.” I stood up, walked to the window, and opened it. Not far away, a dim red glow lit up the night sky. Wait…is something on fire?

“It looks like there’s a fire in town.”

“And it’s a big one, at that.”

It was said that fights and fires made for the most interesting entertainment, but I didn’t care for such things. I moved to close the window, when a sudden thought struck me.

That direction…wasn’t it where we went earlier today?

“Wait, don’t tell me…!” I spun around and dashed out of the room.

Behind me, Ak Yeon-Ho screamed, “Huh? Where are you going, Hyung-nim? I’ll go with you!”

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Together, we sprinted down the streets toward the fire. However, we soon ran into Constable Cheong Cheon, who was running in the opposite direction.

“Old Man Heo’s mansion is on fire,” he said with his usual expressionless face, although his voice was pitched somewhat higher than normal.

“Did you come straight from the scene?” I asked.

“No, I heard about the fire from someone else and am heading to the government office to inform everyone.”

Huh? Something doesn’t seem to make sense here? The direction he came running from was obviously…

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I opened my mouth to express my doubts, but Constable Cheong Cheon quickly continued, “Tell you what, if you can help us out, I’ll take you there first. Follow me.”

We thus followed the constable to Old Man Heo’s mansion, but by the time we got there, the fire had already gone past the point of no return.


Scarlet flames licked the walls of a mansion so large, it might as well have been called a palace. The firemen were already hard at work passing buckets of water along a human chain.

“Go get more water!”

“Hurry up!”

“There’s someone trapped inside!”

We waited for the flames to be brought under control, but by the time it finally happened, the sun had already risen. There was barely anything left of the mansion, and all we dug out of the rubble was a burnt corpse.

Constable Cheong Cheon said in his usual monotone, “…It seems that Heo Il is dead.”

There goes one of our lead suspects.


Later that day, we gathered at the morgue to conduct an autopsy on the burnt corpse and discuss what had happened.

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“According to our investigation, we think that Heo Il committed suicide by setting fire to his own mansion.”

“How do you know it’s suicide?”

Instead of answering me, Constable Cheong Cheon handed me a letter, saying, “This letter was delivered to me this morning.”

“…….” I opened the letter, and Ak Yeon-Ho leaned close to me so that he could read it as well. It was a confession.

The rough contents of the confession were as follows:

1) During a drunken argument, Heo Il accidentally murdered his father.

2) When the authorities labeled him a suspect, he panicked and decided to commit suicide.

“He didn’t seem like a person who would feel remorse for his crimes to me…” Ak Yeon-Ho said.

Constable Cheong Cheon apathetically added, “He could have been drunk while writing this. There’s also a chance that he plotted to fake his death while actually escaping from the burning mansion, but failed in the end.”

Dejected, Ak Yeon-Ho mumbled, “Regardless, the case has been resolved, and we’ve found the murderer. Although, he’s dead…”

“Yeah…” Though is this case truly that simple? It’s strange, but everything feels like it’s proceeding too smoothly…

Seeing that the two of us were at a loss for words, Constable Cheong Cheon said, “The Murim Alliance’s cooperation was very helpful to us this time. If you two hadn’t questioned Heo Il and pressured him into committing suicide, we wouldn’t have identified the culprit this quickly.”

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“You don’t have to force yourself to praise us, you know?”


Just like that, we reached the conclusion of Old Man Heo’s murder case. We waved Constable Cheong Cheon goodbye, then left the government office.

As I walked, I gradually fell into deep thought, and my face darkened. “…….”

“Hyung-nim? Hyung-nim?” Ak Yeon-Ho poked me in the side repeatedly to cheer me up. “We still found the culprit in the end, right? That should be worth some bonus points in our resume, right?”

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“Yeah, bonus points…”

What the heck, bonus points were not the issue here. I was more upset that the case was closed without addressing the most major point.

I stopped in my tracks and turned toward Ak Yeon-Ho, saying, “You go ahead. There’s something I have to discuss with the constable. Alone.”

“Something to discuss? Like what? Can I come with you…?”

“……” I frowned and silently stared at him.

Ak Yeon-Ho pouted and grumbled, “Fine, I’ll wait for you at the inn.”

After making sure that Ak Yeon-Ho was gone, I returned to the government office and found Constable Cheong Cheon.

“Did you forget something?” he asked, puzzled.

“I want to talk to you. Could you spare me a moment?”


“Would you mind going somewhere with more privacy? The thing that I want to talk about is a little sensitive.”


We headed for somewhere deserted, and as we walked, I carefully observed the constable’s face out of the corner of my eye. The bloodshot irises and dark bags under his eyes suggested that he hadn’t been sleeping well lately, and had probably also cried very often.

When we finally reached a quiet place, Constable Cheong Cheon paused and turned toward me, saying, “I think this is far enough. What did you want to talk to me about?”

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“Since yesterday, I’ve been trying very hard to figure it out, but…”

The two of us were finally alone. I didn’t have to keep up the pretense any more.

“Why did you kill them?”


For the first time, the expressionless mask on the true culprit’s face slipped.

Translator’s Note: I finally found a new raw source for this series (hooray booktoki!), so I’m restarting it. Translating from the phone app was too annoying and I couldn’t use mtl to help me think how to phrase things (Korean grammar structure is totally different, and there are no tenses)…

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Previous Chapter
Chapter 18: Did You Find the Will?
Next Chapter
Chapter 20: Why Don’t You Give It to Me Instead?