Chapter 160 - The Monkey King's Palace (4)

It was hard to see the marks if you weren’t paying attention. Although they were deep, they had also begun to fade with time, and it was only because of Extrasensory Perception that Yeon-woo could see them. There was a solid vestige within the marks that was different from the gloomy one that was attacking him and the others. This one had a strong and energetic aura, but it was split into different parts, which made it difficult to detect.

[You have discovered a ‘Very Old Sword Mark’.]

[You have discovered a ‘Spear Mark Made a Moment Later’.]

[You have discovered a ‘Dirty Footprint’.]

....

‘What’s all this?’ Yeon-woo was surprised as he discovered another vestige of the Monkey King. There was only one Monkey King, so how could he have left behind such diametrically different vestiges? What did it mean?

Yeon-woo was merely curious, but Hanryeong and Shanon, who were looking through Yeon-woo’s eyes, had more dramatic reactions.

Wow! This is…just…wow!

I…can’t believe it. It’s just beyond surprising. How did he come up with these thoughts?

Yeon-woo asked them, ‘Do you know what it is?’

Shanon seemed to be jumping up and down from incredulity. What? You’re at the level of master, and you don’t know what’s going on? You have a sword, but you still have a beginner’s eyes? Look closely!

Yeon-woo was a bit annoyed at Shanon’s scolding, but since he couldn’t refute anything, he focused with his Extrasensory Perception again. He could see the vestige in the different marks, which ranged from ones that were so faint that they were almost invisible to ones so long that it was hard to tell where they ended. Yeon-woo still couldn’t figure it out, so he continued to examine them until a message popped up.

[You have received intense inspiration.]

[‘Extrasensory Perception’ is being connected to ‘Draconic Eyes’ to locate the markings and read the imperfections.]

The two different skills, Extrasensory Perception and Draconic Eyes, were being connected for the first time. Yeon-woo was greatly shocked to see imperfections through his Consciousness for the first time. Everything felt new, and he adjusted as quickly as he could until he could finally understand what the markings in the cave were. ‘Mugong? No, is it from training?’

As he looked at the marks one after the other, he began to see a pattern. The messy gouges grew neater and more organized, revealing the training process of a master who learned to hone his skills beyond their limits. It was evidence of the Monkey King’s transformation.

At first, he had been furious at his imprisonment, and he spent around 100 years in a crazed state. Then, it was clear that he had come to a realization. He wouldn’t harm anyone but himself if he remained in such a violent and insane state. He made a decision to become stronger and break the seal on the mountain, and from that moment on, he began training in earnest to break the seal of the fifth mountain.

It was a difficult process since none of the things he wanted to master were simple. However, he had time, so the Monkey King didn’t rush anything but made sure everything proceeded step by step. Each time he made a discovery, he tested it out on the walls of the cave, and the impetuous monkey began to learn patience.

He grew into someone who had the ability to bend in order to achieve his goals, and after 500 years, he managed to break the seal. For a moment, Yeon-woo’s mind was blank, as though he’d spent all that time with the Monkey King. If he hadn’t grown accustomed to a speeded-up thought process thanks to Time Difference, he might have gone crazy.

Yeah, these are the traces left behind by training. Shanon said once Yeon-woo recovered. 

Yeon woo asked, ‘Is…this the Seventy-Two Bian?’

What? Seventy-Two Bian? Shanon shrieked at Yeon-woo in disbelief. You dumbass! That isn’t even close to this!

‘What do you mean?’

Shanon continued screaming in frustration. The Seventy-Two Bian is only a fraction of what the Monkey King learned. That’s just a small part of this entire thing!

It was only then that Yeon-woo finally realized what he was looking at. He was standing in front of the entirety of what the Monkey King had accomplished. He suddenly remembered what the Monkey King’s other name was: Sun Wukong.

The power that had transformed the Monkey King into Sun Wukong was literally right before his eyes. If the Monkey King had only left the marks, he wouldn’t have realized what they meant, but these marks also contained traces of what Sun Wukong had contemplated.

Really…how is this possible?

It grows more surprising the longer you look at it. I feel like I’ll be able to comprehend how the Monkey King fought gods and demons. How was it possible for a being like this to exist?

Shanon and Hanryeong didn’t know what to say as they peered at the traces, filled with respect for their martial arts senior. Even now, they still followed the marks of the Monkey King through the Extrasensory Perception and Draconic Eyes to learn.

However, Yeon-woo wasn’t as absorbed in the traces as they were. His comprehension was limited because he’d only just reached the level of master. However, he was aware that it was amazing, and he also exclaimed in astonishment when he observed certain sections. There was a lot to learn, but it was a little like asking a kindergartner to study rocket science. ‘I guess it’s better than Yin Sword.’ At least he could learn if he continued studying the basics.

Instead of trying to understand the Monkey King’s legacy right away, Yeon-woo tried to memorize what he saw so that he could learn at his own pace later. Fortunately, he was able to understand some areas with his Dragon’s Knowledge, and he was able to grow again. ‘This isn’t martial arts, magic, or alchemy. Is this Bian? No. It’s using magic but…it’s not limited to that term...it surpasses…’

His head felt like it was clearing up, and he was finally seeing a new horizon. Yeon-woo stood blankly for a moment, then something suddenly occurred to him. ‘Perhaps...the Yin Sword as well?’

***

There’s another fork in the road.』 Rebecca spoke in an annoyed voice as she looked at the three paths ahead of them. It had been hours since they first entered the dungeon, and they’d had to choose among several divergent paths frequently. Only a fool wouldn’t realize that the dungeon was as complex as a spiderweb.

They couldn’t find their way since they didn’t really know where they were going or where they even were. It would help if they could spread their Consciousness, but the Monkey King’s vestige ran at them every time they tried. Although no one said it, they all felt like they were going in circles.

‘It’s not just a feeling, but we’re truly lost.’ Unlike the others, Yeon-woo had already gotten a general idea of the cave structure. He narrowed his eyes. ‘Should I take the lead?’ He had hesitated to step up because he didn’t know what Kindred and the Devil Army were planning. Also, he’d been busy memorizing the legacy of the Monkey King.

However, by this point, they’d been wandering around the cave like mice trapped in a maze for some time. ‘The structure of the cave has been slowly changing, too.’ It was one of the reasons they’d been struggling to find the way. ‘And besides, I don’t know what that guy behind us is planning to do.’  

Yeon-woo shifted his Consciousness to the bats who were following them in the dark: Sol Luna. Even though she’d said she didn’t want to join them, she was using her skill to track them. Rebecca and Victoria hadn’t noticed anything because they were too focused on finding their way.

Sol Luna was probably planning on taking the Seventy-Two Bian for herself. Moving like this also wouldn’t attract any attacks from the Monkey King’s vestige. Yeon-woo had left her alone because she wasn’t a threat to them, but he was planning to do something soon.

Finally, Yeon-woo made up his mind to speak up. I— As soon as he opened his mouth, the Guai started screaming as they were flicked back into the Black Bracelet by a powerful force.

Ahhhh!

Grr!

They had clashed with something and lost.

‘What is that?’ Yeon-woo felt shivers down his back. He stopped abruptly, and Rebecca turned to him in annoyance. What were you trying to s—? Yeon-woo grabbed her wrist and pulled her towards him. Rebecca lost her balance and stumbled. She was about to shout at Yeon-woo when she felt something soar up from the place where she had just been standing. Her back grew cold as she realized it was a sharp shadow thorn.

Boom! Yeon-woo swung Carshina’s Dagger with Aura blade, and the thorn exploded with the Aura.

Is this…?

The Monkey King’s vestige seems to have decided to take another tack.

Yeon-woo clenched his teeth. The closer they got, the more physical the attacks were growing. Rebecca’s eyes trembled. She was an Apostle of the god of hunting, but she hadn’t managed to read the attack. Her signature skill hadn’t even activated. 

She had been feeling tired and restricted, as though she were tied up in chains, ever since they entered the cave. She could help gritting her teeth at the fact that a player from the lower floor had read the attack and even saved her. She knew that Yeon-woo wasn’t like other players, but it still hurt her pride that he was more useful than she was.  

Even though she’d heard that those climbing the Tower were shocked at Yeon-woo’s achievements, and she’d witnessed his impressive growth in the past six months herself, she was a high ranker. She couldn’t understand why Yeon-woo had managed something she couldn’t.

However, Rebecca wasn’t one to let pride get in the way. She organized her thoughts and said, Cain.

Yes?

From this point on, you take the lead.

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