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For the Downfall of My Beloved Chapter 20

Updated: Feb 19

Gion stepped out of Hyunhwa Cave and quietly observed the forest. 

  

In less than half a day, numerous events had taken place. 

  

Nevertheless, the world kept moving, and the forest remained peaceful as if nothing had happened. 

  

"......" 

  

Gion stood dazed, covered in blood. 

  

At that moment. 

  

Crrrack. 

  

The ground began to split as if a drought had struck, and vibrations followed. 

  

Soon, a wave of dark energy began to envelop the surroundings. 

  

The forest, once bathed in sunlight, was suddenly swallowed into darkness. 

  

With a fluttering sound, numerous birds took flight in panic. 

  

"It would be wise to stop here." 

  

Walking over the shattered remains of rocks, someone approached Gion. 

  

His calm voice carried an overwhelming presence that anyone could feel. 

  

But Gion, limply dropping his shoulders, muttered, 

  

"... Great General." 

  

The Great General, once a commander of massive military strategies and now a demon in front of Gion. 

  

Though not having faced Gion as a general in the Biryu battles, he had survived many wars. 

  

He still had the long white hair and beard he was last seen with. 

  

Though his eyes were wrinkled, his physique could still rival that of younger men. 

  

And the chilling aura he emitted was unmistakably that of a demon. 

  

Gion, who had made a name for himself as a general in Biryu, recognized it instantly. 

  

The Great General's aura was stronger than that of the five guardians. 

  

The fact that he could envelop Hyunhwa Cave, Sihwan's domain, in dark energy in an instant was proof. 

  

Thud. 

  

Gion approached the Great General. 

  

The squelching sound was heard as the dark energy seeped into the ground. 

  

Despite the gentle fluctuation of the dark energy, the Chunhwa Sword seemed to sense danger and started blinking in a light green color. 

  

Yet, without any change in expression, Gion continued to step towards the Great General. 

  

"What? Are you suggesting I stop?" 

  

Gion asked, his empty eyes questioning. 

  

The Great General knew what those eyes meant. 

  

It was a look he had often seen in soldiers during the five-year-long war. 

  

People who, worn out, discarded everything unnecessary and moved only for one purpose. 

  

People like them showed such emptiness. 

  

"How long do you intend to live like this?" 

  

The Great General spoke. 

  

"A hundred years have passed. Demons have infiltrated the White Flower Kingdom to a level you can't even imagine, and it's not just the five guardians involved." 

  

"......" 

  

"You can't do anything now." 

  

The Great General spoke, but Gion did not respond to the question, only holding his sword.

  

"Step aside." 

  

Ssshhh. 

  

The Great General, even as Gion approached, sword in hand, solidified the dark energy and continued, 

  

"If you stop here, I'll give you what you want." 

  

"What I want…" 

  

Gion, his shoulders relaxed, gazed at his reflection in the damp, dark energy. 

  

"... Do I look like someone who wants something?" 

  

The blood on Gion's face had dried, cracking with each word he spoke. 

  

The blood, now turning brown, seeped into Gion's body while drops of red fell from the Chunhwa Sword. 

  

The Great General, observing Gion, said, 

"There was a child particularly fond of you. That child is alive." 

  

"......" 

  

"I can let you meet that child." 

  

The Great General glanced at the shattered rocks. 

  

"I'll make it as if none of this ever happened – your killing of the guards, your disturbance in Hyunhwa Cave." 

  

After saying this, the Great General couldn't help but shift his gaze to Gion. 

  

And for a good reason. 

  

Gion had just snickered. 

  

"Great General." 

  

Gion asked, his expression hazy as if he'd just woken up, 

"Do you think I'm someone who would just stop here?" 

  

Swoosh! 

  

Gion sliced through the Great General's dark energy. 

  

A gap opened, and sunlight fell through. 

  

"If that were the case, I wouldn't have saved you back then." 

  

The Great General's eyebrows twitched. 

  

His offer to let Gion meet the child was also a threat that if Gion didn't stop, he would never see the child. 

  

Yet, Gion, undisturbed, murmured softly, 

  

"That child would understand me." 

  

"Are you saying the glory of the White Flower Kingdom is more important than your loved ones?" 

  

The Great General's gaze was fixed on the brilliant white qi surrounding Gion. 

  

"Isn't this a life you regained? A life that those who fought alongside you in battles longed for." 

  

"......" 

  

"Are you going to destroy everything, clinging only to the glory of the White Flower Kingdom, whose realization is uncertain, and end this life as well?" 

  

"Even you, once called a master of rhetoric, seem to have regressed over a hundred years." 

  

"......" 

  

"The glory of the White Flower Kingdom…" 

  

Gion bowed his head, then murmured calmly, as if stating an obvious fact, 

  

"That's what's keeping me alive." 

  

Humans naturally desire a better life, but not even that small desire was visible in Gion. 

  

The Great General was silenced by the single sentence Gion uttered with a vacant expression. 

  

Laughter leaked from Gion's dry lips. 

  

"Do I really look alive to you, living after losing everything dear to me?" 

  

"......" 

  

"Do I look like someone who longs for a better life?" 

  

Gion, almost mockingly laughing, stopped abruptly after his question and just sighed. 

  

"... What more could I possibly desire?" 

  

*** 

  

"Sir Sihwan…" 

  

A young boy among the tribesmen approached Sihwan hesitantly. 

  

"Those people... they'll all die at this rate…" 

  

Sihwan gave no response. 

  

He just stared silently at the cracked statue, gripping his fist tightly. 

  

"Don't give them a single drop of water until it's finished." 

  

Numerous humans were climbing ladders, repairing the cracked statue. 

  

The clanging noise was deafening. The boy watched those who tirelessly continued the repair work without rest. Exhaustion was evident on everyone's faces, and some were so overcome with sweat that they even started to vomit. 

  

"With Sir Sihwan's powers... it could be repaired immediately…" 

But the boy's words were left unfinished. 

  

Sihwan passed by the boy, casting a chilling glance. 

  

"Do you suggest I squander the power of the Black Tortoise now?" 

  

The boy didn't say anything; he just bowed his head. 

  

Sihwan approached a man who was repairing a statue. 

  

Even as Sihwan approached, the man kept hammering and sculpting the statue silently. 

  

Despite sweating profusely and gasping for breath, he showed no change in expression, continuing his work. 

  

"Gion is alive." 

  

Sihwan's words stopped the man's movements. 

  

But soon, the man resumed his hammering. 

  

"That guy shattered the rocks blocking the entrance and the statues of Hyunhwa Cave with just a single piece of light." 

  

"......" 

  

"He tore through the guards and demons to invade this place." 

  

Sihwan grabbed the man's shoulder and asked, 

  

"If you know something, you need to speak now." 

  

The man set down his hammer and replied, 

  

"If it's about the general, it makes sense." 

  

Sihwan furrowed his brow and retorted, 

  

"Even for Gion, it's impossible to shatter Hyunhwa Cave's rocks with just one piece of light. Are you taking his side because you served him?" 

  

"Don't you remember that time?" 

  

"What?" 

  

As Sihwan removed his hand from the shoulder, the man resumed pounding the statue. 

  

"Why do you think he was chosen over many others to become a general and lead the army?" 

  

"Are you referring to that incident?" 

  

Sihwan laughed in disbelief. 

  

There was a time when Gion went to battle, not as a general but as another soldier. 

  

It was his first deployment, and everyone hoped Gion would return safely. 

  

But Gion decapitated a commander who was the defensive tactician of the enemy. 

  

Gion was only twenty years old then. 

  

Reports went up to the king that Gion had made the kill, but people didn't believe it at the time. 

  

As a soldier, Gion was neither the inventor of a sword technique nor specialized in defense. 

  

The site was engulfed in flames, full of smoke, and the battlefield was chaotic, so few believed that Gion actually beheaded the commander. 

  

"Are you saying that incident was true?" 

  

"Yes." 

  

The man spoke decisively, without a hint of hesitation. 

  

"You weren't even at the scene at the time." 

  

"That's right." 

  

"So why do you believe it?" 

  

"The general said it was true." 

  

"... You believe in him almost like a god." 

  

The man wiped his blistered hands carelessly and looked at the statue. 

  

"You know that he's not someone who would fabricate events to elevate his status." 

  

Drip. 

  

Moisture from the ceiling started to drip and pool on the floor. 

  

"It doesn't matter. That guy is fated to die anyway." 

  

"Is there anyone who can kill the general now?" 

  

Sihwan turned his back on the man and replied, 

  

"Do you think I'm the only one who wants to kill that guy on the battlefield of Biryu?" 

  

Hearing that, the man looked at Sihwan. 

  

Sihwan, holding a divination piece in his hand, spoke. 

  

"If we summon them, even Gion might find it challenging." 

  

*** 

  

"How did it go with what I asked you to find out?" 

  

In front of Seosan's Jeokmungwan. 

  

The night sky was adorned with a full moon. The moonlight peacefully illuminated Jeokmungwan. 

  

Gion stood in front of Jeokmungwan, quietly observing the Fifth Chime. 

  

"......" 

  

The Fifth Chime frowned. 

  

The Fifth Chime had been given by Gion three days, and on the third night, he came to Seosan to meet them. 

  

Even though he knew the Fourth Chime was looking for him, Gion willingly entered the Red Gate Library. 

  

The Fifth Chime clenched his unhealed wounds, grinding his teeth. 

  

"Did you think I would follow your words?" 

  

"......" 

  

"I am not your follower, but the Fourth Chime's—" 

  

The Fifth Chime couldn't finish his sentence. 

  

Swoosh! 

  

"… Cough." 

  

Gion swiftly slit the Fifth Chime's mouth. 

  

Wielding the Chunhwa Sword, Gion imbued it with dark energy. 

  

"It seems you thought I was someone who needed to repeat myself." 

  

The Fifth Chime, clutching his mouth, spat out blood and shouted, 

"This is Seosan! The Fourth Chime will not let you—" 

  

Thud. 

  

Gion plunged the blade into the Fifth Chime's solar plexus. 

  

"Aaagh!" 

  

Crunch. 

  

Gion twisted the blade, beginning to break the Fifth Chime's bones. 

  

Looking at Gion's expression, which seemed disturbingly indifferent, the Fifth Chime trembled with fear. 

  

To Gion, it didn't matter that this was Seosan. The fact that it was the Fifth Chime who felt a chill from Gion's fearless demeanor. 

  

"Wait, just wait! Three days were too short! Give me a little more time…!" 

  

At that moment. 

  

"......" 

  

Gion hesitated for a moment, then withdrew his sword. 

  

Unlike before, when he swung his sword without a word, was he considering listening? 

  

A flicker of hope passed through the Fifth Chime's eyes as he was about to speak. 

  

"It's been a long time." 

  

Gion spoke, gazing into the void. 

  

The moonlit Seosan showed no sign of a passing squirrel, but Gion was intently staring at something. 

  

Ssshh. 

  

No sooner had Gion finished speaking, shadows began to reveal themselves one by one. 

  

Leaves rustled violently, fluttering and falling. 

  

The shadows, spreading as if to engulf Jeokmungwan, made even the Fifth Chime hold his breath. 

  

The shadows cast in the moonlight were pure black, untainted by any color. 

  

"Just wait a bit. I have something to finish." 

  

Thud. 

  

The Fifth Chime's neck was swiftly severed, his body, now purposeless, slumped to the ground. 

  

The Fifth Chime, unable to even scream, began to slowly fade away. 

  

Gion threw the Fifth Chime's head to the ground and walked towards the approaching shadows. 

  

"You must have something to discuss with me." 



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