Possessing Nothing - Chapter 39
Descending Down the Mountain
When Sogo left the mountain, Sungmin was completely alone. His body was still heavy and was plagued by noise. The nightmares were constant, and then Sungmin started to remember them as well.
They were unique. There was one that he was fighting with monsters and finally succumbed to his injuries. There was one where he wandered a labyrinth with a monster. Just running away, just falling, just getting tortured, there were many.
There was no pain in dreams. If someone said that to him, Sungmin would have slapped him hard.
Sungmin received pain in nightmares. It went away when he woke up, of course. Dreams were dreams, and reality was reality. But his memories still stayed the same. Nightmares didn’t hurt less even when he knew that they were nightmares.
The hardest one was.
“You didn’t change at all.”
The meeting with Wijihoyun was a nightmare. 10 years passed, and they met in Tobes. Wijihoyun was… just as he expected.
But sungmin didn’t change at all. If Wijihoyun was what Sungmin expected, Sungmin wasn’t what she expected.
“What did you do during 10 years?”
He answered. He did everything. He tried his hardest. But Wijihoyun wasn’t convinced. She looked at Sungmin coldly.
“That was your limit,” she muttered.
It wasn’t physically painful, but the emotional pain was heavy. It was something that he was afraid of in real life. He felt horrified at his own weakness and uncertain future.
What if… that actually happened.
Fatigue Recovery. Mental cleansing. Magic was only just a short prevention method. It was impossible to completely overcome nightmares. And they continued.
He couldn’t stop Sogo’s death.
It was horrible.
He wanted to stop it. He didn’t know what happened in that dungeon. He wasn’t there. But what was true was that in 7 years, Sogo went in there with Wijihoyun. And died.
Sungmin didn’t think that WIjihoyun was a bad person. But she wasn’t a good person either. She was a neutral. Wijihoyun would kill without hesitation.
He didn’t know what happened in there. But most likely, WIjihoyun had no choice but to kill the others.
Sungmin rubbed his headache. Mental Cleansing. Maybe his mind gotten used to magic. Or the nightmares got stronger. HIs mind didn’t get any better.
‘He needed to be as strong as her.’
That couldn’t be the answer. The answer… was to stop Sogo from entering. But Sungmin knew that not everything went how people thought it would. So he needed to prepare for the worse.
Not even to win against her. Just to stop Sogo’s death. He only had 7 years.
Summer came. The Cicadas started to cry. Sungmin couldn’t hear them, but… he could see them on the trees. The noise in his ears could sound similar to their cries.
The cicadas lives 10 years underground to become a full grown cicada. Yes, even bugs used that much time to grow.
7 years. Isn’t that a short time for a larva to grow into an adult. What could he do in 7 years. No, not what he could do. He had to.
The noise that he felt in the mountain was not quiet. His heavy body and terrible food was not comfortable. Nightmares made days longer. There was no one there. There could be more trainees coming in or trainees leaving, but he didn’t care about them
The world changed when Sungmin changed. There was no limit to his energy supply. The spear techniques were getting better, and his HIgh Heavens skill level was getting higher. He felt freedom when he used Shadowless.
But it wasn’t enough.
He wanted more. Therefore, Sungmin started to work more. He slept less. He couldn’t sleep much anyway. He trained harder instead of sleeping. His body’s weight became heavier everyday, but his spear techniques and Shadowless became sharper everyday.
And then the next penalty.
He prepared for this. He became used to his surrounding to the point where he could walk without seeing. He put in food inside of his pocket, and prepared smoked meat so it wouldn’t rot as easily.
He had gotten the penalty of his two eyes.
The world turned black. He couldn't rely on his senses. All he had left was his touch. He felt the wind against his skin. It wasn’t as easy as it seemed. He had to be sharper than his sense. He used the Amethyst Cloud. He survived by eating his provisions.
He could finally move after a week. His branch became his way of transportation/. He used it to walk around and swing it around the place.
After a month, he succeeded in hunting. He was happy. There was no one who could compliment him, but Sungmin was happy that he did it. It was a meaningful hunt, but the food still talked terrible.
The voices that were in his ear was the cries of the cicada. It was their screams as well as their cries. Screams felt like Sogo’s while the cries sounded like Sungmin’s. His two eyes made up a black world filled with nightmares, and Sungmin forgot time’s flow. He wanted to be a machine. A walking machine. A martial artist machine.
In his darkened world, he couldn’t see the form of his spear techniques. Where does the spear head. The target of the spear. Where does his body head when he used Shadowless.
Do I want to be a cicada. Do I want to come out after a long period of staying underground only to cry loudly and die. No. Sungmin didn’t want that. He wanted to something more. He wanted something way more.
What is that?
What do I want to become. Why am i doing this. Why am I here for. What reason did I come back for.
The wind’s temperature changed. It was winter, but Sungmin’s daily life didn’t change. Sungmin always moved in the world. He prepared for winter. Hunting wasn’t hard at all. Sungmin was lonely in his world, but he didn’t stop practicing or surviving.
And then half a year passed, and Sungmin received the penalty of not changing clothes. The only way of telling time was the wind’s temperature and Mush’s arrival.
And then 3 years passed.
It was time. Mush. Sungmin called her to him. What was it. Mush asked to Sungmin’s mind. Sungmin breathed slowly and said.
I want to finish my training
Mush didn’t answer right away. The ragged God looked at the trainee that was standing right in front of her.
The reason why it was so hard to survive 3 years was because the penalties add up. Plam kept adding emotional oppression, while the trainee tried to survive through these penalties.
Not everyone who comes in this mountain leaves before they get what they want. They usually give up before that. They can’t survive.
That human… that human who defied the principle. He was hardened. Sungmin’s recent one year in this mountain was almost impossible to survive.
But he held on.
“Did you get what you wanted?”
Mush asked. Sungmin didn’t answer. After a while, Sungmin mouthed.
If I was a genius, maybe.
He didn’t get what he wanted because he wasn’t genius. A bitter reality. Perhaps, it was impossible to surpass his limits.
But he saw something.
Sungmin muttered. He wasn’t content with that though. More, more things he wanted. Sungmin was happy that he came back. He was happy that he surpassed death.
So he could feel something like this.
“Do you think the training was useful to you.”
I wouldn’t have became this me if I didn’t come here.
Mush liked that answer. She waved her hand and took away all the penalties that Sungmin had.
When all the penalties were removed, Sungmin felt strange. 3 years. 3 years of heaviness disappeared from his body. His light body seemed awkward. The smell that he felt disappeared. The noise in his ear was gone.
His eyes opened.
Sungmin felt his own voice.
“It’s a nice feeling.”
Sungmin looked at Mush and smiled bitterly.