Chapter 147: Mountain of Penance (1)
“The curse of fate will…..!”
Yeon-woo brought down his foot on the last priest’s head like what he said wasn’t even worth hearing anymore.
And he looked around.
His surroundings were completely cleared by his Monster Portents.
About 300 players were lying strangely on the ground. Either their arms and legs were forcefully twisted, or they were impaled with a sharp shadow.
A similarity between all of them was that they were all in fear. Since they had been killed by horrid undead.
They were all players sent to target Yeon-woo sent by the three goddesses. Holy knights that were said to be blessed by the goddesses.
They fought in the name of the temples, but their efforts were futile. No one was able to swing their sword at Yeon-woo.
At the confusion from the Monster Portents, they eventually ruined themselves. He didn’t even need Dragon’s Authority.
The Monster Portents all disappeared into the ground holding the corpses. The bloodstains were all gone, like there had never been any fight in the first place.
[These guys are boring. Is this all you got?]
Shanon complained putting his sword back on his back.
Under his mask, there wasn’t a head, but it felt like he was pouting.
Hanryeong put down his sword that was dripping with blood and nodded in agreement.
He hadn’t even gotten out all 9 swords. 2 of them was enough.
Dealing with these players might’ve been an insult to his pride.
“More guys will come in the future. Don’t worry.”
[Well, if you say so. Next time, call some better guys.]
Shanon spoke and disappeared back into the Black Bracelet with Hanryeong.
After that, there were several more attacks.
And everytime, they completely lost in the one-sided fight, and Yeon-woo just collected souls without lifting a finger and was able to strengthen his Monster Portents.
The more powerful forces they brought with them, the better it was for Yeon-woo.
With the situation ending up like this, the Three Norns had to stop their attacks.
They acknowledged that there was too big of a gap in their forces. If this kept up, their religious body would be pulled up by the roots, let alone regain their holy power back.
And they had sued too many mercenaries and assassins, that they were financially struggling. And as word of Yeon-woo’s accomplishments spread, people denied their requests.
So although they hadn’t completely given up, they were going to chase after him again after being back to their original condition.
But Yeon-woo thought they wouldn’t be able to do that for the time being.
The condition of the temple of Skuld. The death of Urd’s apostle. And the holy knights that weren’t even that many in number had died. The temple of Verdandi was left, but it was still connected to the other two.
Obviously, the reputation of the three temples reached their bottom, and the believers who had stayed until the end were now turning their backs.
A god’s power came from their dignity.
Now that they had lost their dignity, the three temples were greeted with a cold winter.
They didn’t have the freedom to touch Yeon-woo for right now. Nor did they have the ability to.
‘Then what should I do about this holy power now?’
Yeon-woo looked at the holy power that he forced from Hepburn’s soul. He thought about what would be the best way to deal with this.
It had the power of Urd. So obviously, it was priceless.
The first thing that came to his mind were the souls binded to the Black Bracelet, but since they were opposite properties, it would be like poison to them. They began to show their evil property, so holy power wouldn’t help them.
He had to use it efficiently.
Eventually, he came to a decision.
If it was a magic sword that got the curses of countless heroes. Wouldn’t he cleanse it with the holy power and put it closer to its original state?
Recently, the curses had been washed off due to Aegis and Holy Fire, but the origin of the curse didn’t easily disappear.
Yeon-woo held Vigrid in his right hand and poured holy power in little by little.
So not a bit leaked out.
[Purification is being commenced. ‘Vigrid’ is rapidly absorbing the holy power. 35, 36, 37%…..61, 62%…..]
[The power of the holy sword is being revealed.]
The rust and blood on Vigrid began to become lighter. Instead, a white light came up and runes that were on the sword showed themselves.
At the same time, the sword started to become longer slowly.
Purification of the magic sword.
It would take some time to wake all of its abilities after cleansing the curse away.
Yeon-woo was already curious how Vigrid would look after everything was finished.
The sword that heroes had desired so much.
Yeon-woo began to quickly climb the floors again.
He already had the power of a ranker. And he could use the information in the diary and his Dragon’s Knowledge. The floors in the tens were easy, because they were lower floors.
Of course, that didn’t mean Yeon-woo lazily climbed them.
He carefully looked around the stage to hoard hidden pieces, and he gathered Karma to set records on each floor.
He still didn’t register his name on the Hall of Fame.
He was able to reach the 20th floor in a day.
[This is the 20th floor, gate of the Five Penance Mountains.]
‘This is it.’
Yeon-woo looked at the 5 mountains he could see from the start zone.
From the closest to the furthest, the mountains were standing in a line. They were all so tall that they pierced the clouds and almost touched the sky.
As you looked further, the height of the mountain became taller. From the third mountain, it was covered in snow.
Just looking at the forest around it relaxed people. It was a wondrous view.
It was a beautiful sight.
But this place was actually a place that players were opposed to. The same went for other floors, but there were so many things to be gained if one looked closely enough. However, this place was different.
It was a testing area, not a gaining area. It was a place that tested what players had achieved so far.
Like the white gate of the 10th floor. Every 10 floors, the Tower tests what the player accomplished. The 10th floor tests from the 1st to the 9th floor and the 20th floor the 11th floor to the 19th floor.
The Five Penance Mountains on the 20th floor are the same.
People who live here call it the Five Elements Mountains, and these mountains endlessly test players. The tests are so difficult that some players go back down to the lower floors to start again.
It was an infamous place.
But unlike normal players, the 20th floor was one the floors Yeon-woo couldn’t wait to begin.
[The trial of the 20th floor is starting.]
[Trial: People who want to become a god have to punish themselves and know how to overcome limits.
The five mountains here will help with your penance.
Your eyes will be covered to get rid of temptations, and your ears will be closed so you can have a silent calmness. In a world where scent and taste are gone, you will be free from obsession, and the gone stimulus will become a chance for you to look back.
Everytime you cross a mountain, you will be given a penance. Overcome all penances and become a perfect me.]
The 20th floor’s 5 mountains symbolized the five senses. Everytime a mountain was climbed, the chosen sense disappeared.
The first floor was sight, the second, noise, the third, scent, the fourth, taste, and the last mountain was touch.
People all reacted to the stimulus around them. When these were blocked, only the mind remained.
You had to climb the last mountain with only your mind.
You had to have a strong trust in yourself to do this.
A lot of players couldn’t get used to the limited senses and retired.
Even if they passed, they became sick of it.
But although it was a place of difficulty to some, to others, it was a land of opportunity.
This was for the people who wanted to train themselves. As you raised yourself to a higher position, the pressure of the five senses increased.
It was a place to train yourself thoroughly.
So the 20th floor was the most sought floor in the lower floors by rankers.
It was the perfect palace for Yeon-woo, who wanted to become stronger.
Especially to finish the homework the Martial King assigned him.
Yeon-woo opened Intrenian and pulled out a book.
It was a book the Martial King had given him saying it was a present before he left the One-horned tribe. He read it when he had time, but it was hard to understand even with his Dragon’s Knowledge.
It was the additional reward that Yeon-woo was supposed to receive after finishing the Martial God’s test.
But the Martial King had only pushed it back saying that it was too hard for him and gave it to him only after acknowledging his growth.
Climbing up to the 20th floor, Yeon-woo read the book when he could.
As his achievements with the Eight Extreme Fists became deeper, it would help to learn a new Mugong.
And Yeon-woo had an outstanding memory and understanding of what he read in the Archives.
But the problem was that was it.
He needed to memorize it, but he didn’t understand it.
He already had an overall knowledge of Mugong, and he was able to grow after awakening his Dragon Body.
But this was so hard that he couldn’t even flip the page.
Yeon-woo thought of a conversation he had with the Martial King before he left.
-Actually, the Yin Sword is a wish of our tribe that we have wanted to attain, along with the Yang Saber.
-Well, it’s not that well-known to the public. But if I try to explain. Hm. Ok. Do you know about our tribe’s origin?
-I only know that it’s a tribe that came along with the Tower when it opened.
-That’s close enough. We’re a founding tribe, and we inherited our god’s inheritance and live to continue making it better. That’s things like Mugong and Jinbup…..but there’s something that we haven’t been able to do for thousands of years. Damned thing.
-Are you saying…..?
-Yes. The Yin Sword and the Yang Saber. The combination of the two Mugongs takes us closer to the Mugong that our ancestor god used. Great Bright Pangu Sword. That’s our longtime wish.
Great Bright Pangu Sword.
He still remembered the madness in the Martial King’s eyes when he spoke about it.
The Martial King said that even he, who was a genius, couldn’t make himself touch the Yin Sword and Yang Saber.
It was a Mugong that even the Martial King who had led the One-horned tribe to a new era of prosperity hadn’t been able to learn.
And the Martial King continued to explain.
The Yang Saber could be inherited by Edora, since she had her Insight, but that no one had the Yin Sword.
So his disciple should succeed it.
And with that. Yeon-woo realized the Martial King had been looking for a successor of the Yin Sword.
A successor didn’t come from the One-horned tribe. So he had to look outside of it.
His past two disciples were probably nominees. The Sword God, and the person who could rival him.
‘And both failed.’
Yeon-woo might fail. Since it was a Mugong that the One-horned tribe hadn’t been able to learn for thousands of years, Yeon-woo couldn’t guarantee anything.
But the fact that he received the book meant that he had the qualification, at the very least, and Yeon-woo wanted the Yin Sword.
No, not only did he want the Yin Sword, he wanted the Yang Saber and the Great Bright Pangu Sword after it.
It was the Mugong that one of the three who opened the Tower used. Trinity Wonder’s Geumcheon.
He wanted to have it.
‘Let’s try it. Whatever I need to.’
And this floor was the perfect place for him to train.
After organizing his thoughts, Yeon-woo began to move.
Towards the first mountain he saw.