Mercenary Black Mamba - Chapter 199
“What’s there to be worried about? Gaining a few more scars isn’t a big deal for us guys. Strong, good fighters are the best within mercenaries. I advanced straight through the ranks and earned a lot of money. You shouldn’t save your pocket money, yeah? Buy a lot of pretty clothes and eat a lot of delicious food.”
Jin Soon laughed inwardly at his bragging. Oppa was someone who had lied about having rice when there wasn’t enough for him the next day. He couldn’t have saved much money for himself either since he had paid for the five siblings’ education.
She was working part-time to save the money that oppa had sent her, but with four of her siblings in need, it was a great burden.
“Wow! Really? I should head to the department store tomorrow,” Jin Soon replied in fake excitement.
It was the money that oppa had earned from spilling blood. To buy clothes and dine out with such money was something punishable by the heavens.
“Yes, it marks the end of Jin Soon, the screaming girl on the bridge, and marks the new coming of happiness for Jin Soon, the beautiful nurse.”
“What’s the point, though? Oppa’s going overseas again.”
“No. I’m going to live here from now on. I only need to go to France when they need me.”
Surprised, Jin Soon had accidentally shoved the ear pick into Mu Ssang’s ears. Not even the Paranthropus could withstand that paink.
“Oh my God! Sorry, I’m sorry! Hahaha!” Jin Soon’s mouth split open.
Oppa doesn’t have to live overseas anymore. He is going to live in Korea. Her mood inflated like a balloon that floated around the sky.
“For real? You’re not going to return to the foreign army and live in our country instead?”
“Ha, I went through an extremely complicated and funny process over there, but the higher-ups there are letting me do so because they’re scared they’ll get beaten up by me.”
“Ha, I can’t believe it.”
“Uh, it’s real.”
Mu Ssang felt sad. Well, it wasn’t something that Jin Soon could easily believe, he supposed.
“You’re really going to live here, right?”
Jin Soon wasn’t interested in the receiving end of her oppa’s beatings. She was entirely pinned on the fact that he was going to live in Korea.
“Gosh, you brat, you really can’t trust me, can you? I’m going to live here and only go overseas when my job requires me to.”
“Wow, that’s great! That’s super great! Whoo!”
Jin Soon raised both her arms and shouted a cheer.
“I’m studying for the university examinations nowadays.”
“Oppa, you’re studying again!”
All kinds of emotions flashed across Jin Soon’s face. Past memories stifled her heart. Her oppa’s past sufferings and accidents had been brought about by that Jang woman and her relatives. She felt as though every twisted event was settling back in its place.
“Oppa, you thought well. Thank you so much. Your father in heaven will be so glad. You’re not going to leave those things alone, are you?” Jin Soon’s eyes gleamed in blue.
“If oppa’s not going to do it, I’ll open her head up with my sickle and crack it down the middle.”
Jin Soon gritted her teeth.
Oppa was someone who had to study. The In-dong street gang, prosecutor Kim Dal Su, and Jang Chi Soo’s street gangs were oppa’s enemies. That automatically made them her enemies as well.
“Jeez, you brat, are you a gang member? Why would you open up a skull with your sickle? You should learn to control your temper a little.”
“God, oppa, there’s nothing wrong with my temper.”
Jin Soon pouted at Mu Ssang’s advice. Mu Ssang smiled. Jin Soon had visited his single room during her middle school years to prepare food and even did his laundry. She was the only one who had learned the truth of the entire incident.
Despite her cheerful disposition, his heart twinged at the thought of Jin Soon worrying for him.
“Look, look. Those people who had shoved their nephew into jail and sent a gang after his life, are they worthy of being called humans? They aren’t humans. They’re the devil. Humans are humans, and animals are animals.”
Jin Soon’s face started to flush. Oppa had become more at ease after becoming the old monk’s student. It was fortunate that he’d gained his peace and returned to the person he was before. However, in times like this, she grew frustrated. She didn’t like how he glossed over things while spouting the words of Buddha.
“Hehe, a human who behaves outside the conditions of a human has no choice but to live like an animal. Should I thank them since they’ve helped me rear my talents and helped me earn lots of money?” Mu Ssang muttered.
“Oppa, stop reciting spells. Don’t you know that Wu Tak’s family have become very wealthy?”
“They created a company out of the money they have received from selling my father’s land, didn’t they? They’re people who have gathered money in heaps even before I left for France. They have also named the company Good Heart Lodgings which is unbefitting.”
Mu Ssang’s expression looked crabby. He knew exactly how his uncle had run the company, after all.
“That’s not all. A few years ago, they started a gasoline company and a medicine company. I heard they shoveled money into their pockets. I think it’s called Good Heart Oil and Good Heart Medicines.”
“Hehehe, Good Heart, huh! Do you think those things can be deemed as a hometown? Your oppa has brought a handful of money. Don’t worry.”
Mu Ssang grinned. How much could they earn in the countryside? In the past, he saw the buses lining in front of Good Heart Lodgings as undefeatable. Well, it was nothing now. With the money that he had currently, he could buy Good Heart Lodgings and more.
Jin Soon smiled. Her personality was easygoing and calm. It didn’t matter whether oppa had money or not. All she needed was her oppa. Money could be earned. She had her hands and feet, so what worries could she have!
“Oppa, you have a lot to do here. Do you need to keep attending that Legion place?”
“No. They would give me a hefty sum even if I played around here. There’s a lot of people who fear me, you see. The higher-ups won’t call for me as long as possible. Pick my ears for me, won’t you? I think those higher-ups are cursing me out.”
“Hohoho, oppa, you are scary. Who can go against you when you have plastered 30 gang members with knives and axes to the ground? What should I make you tomorrow?”
Jin Soon was the stereotypical daughter, the eldest of the family. Her cooking and living skills, which she’d learned even before entering school, had surpassed her mother, Ha Dong Daek.
“Remember not to leave behind the smell of meat when the teacher’s here. Just stew some bean paste soup and make some sprout paste for the side dish. Give the teacher something soft like soup.”
“But, oppa, you need to eat meat.”
Oppa could eat an entire chicken for a meal and finish five kilograms of soup in a single sitting. Jin Soon looked as though she’d leave immediately with her handbag.
Mu Ssang had felt conflicted. Jin Soon was someone who would pluck Hades’ nostrils for the sake of her brother. She was also someone who would walk the entire village towards the city to buy a box of meat for her oppa. He immediately changed the conversation.
“Soon, your body’s grown very well. You’re taller, and your skin’s an art. Where’s the girl who used to run around the field with tanned skin?”
Jin Soon’s face turned red as though it was burning.
“Really? My chest got bigger too.”
Jin Soon gathered her E cup sized breasts and raised it to the sky.
“Hm, it’s definitely grown. It’s more pleasing to see and perkier compared to that of the French women.”
Mu Ssang’s conscience was still stuck in the sibling relationship that was formed 10 years ago, but it wasn’t the case for Jin Soon.
Jin Soon shivered with a strange groan. Her head felt strange with that single comment. She threw her top aside and raised her blouse to her shoulders. Mu Ssang freaked out when her white skin was revealed.
“Hey, brat, what the hell are you doing!”
He immediately stretched out and lowered the blouse.
“I’m trying to show you my chest.”
Mu Ssang’s face turned into one of horror at Jin Soon’s calm reply, as though he had been shot by an RPG.
“Hold on. Are you trying to see your oppa with a nosebleed?”
“I’ve been yours since 10 years ago. I’m trying to show you properly since you always treat me like a small kid.”
“Brat, we’re family—”
“Ha, is the 104th cousin still family?” Jin Soon smiled.
“Fine, fine, God, I lost. It’s certain, okay? Your chest is very big.”
Mu Ssang wrapped his arms around his head.
Jin Soon laughed until her neckline showed. It was her first loud laughter she’d shown since her oppa’s lover had left for the States. Oppa hadn’t changed one bit. She’d heard several stories of how soldiers became animals from her father and uncles. Her heart grew tighter at his unchanged, gullible personality.
Jin Soon’s hands went over Mu Ssang’s chest. There were scars all over his hard muscles. Like worms, it caught on her fingers. Currently, she was studying to be a nurse.
She couldn’t imagine how horrible the battle must have been. Oppa had earned money by walking into hell, which allowed herself and her siblings the opportunity to study. Her heart twinged in pain every time her fingers caught a new scar.
A strong wind blew by. The wind chime which dangled on a weight shook, started clanging here and there. Spring rain started to fall little by little.
“Oppa, it’s raining outside.”
“A warm room, a loving sister, and scattering spring rain, nothing is lacking or needed.”
“Are you emphasizing on ‘sister’ again? I’m a woman too.” Jin Soon glared as she protested half-heartedly.
Mu Ssang replied with his eyes closed, “There’s a phrase that goes, 雨中作示子由詩 夜雨對牀. It means to put the beds together and listen to the raindrops. Since you’re putting two beds together, it refers to the brotherhood and sisterhood between family, and not that of husband and wife. I want to listen to the sound of rain with you with our bed, side by side, for the rest of my life.”
It was a pitiful voice.
Jin Soon felt the deep sadness hidden in his words. She felt unjust and sad, but her oppa saw her as nothing more than a sister. Oppa didn’t have a family. Oppa’s dearest wish was not to have a woman but to have a family.
Yes, that could be for the best. I could take care of oppa for the rest of my life instead of caring for my kids. Jo Jin Soon, you should have known oppa will be uncomfortable when you try to be greedy. Still, I want to be oppa’s woman.
Jin Soon’s heart split into two. Her tears flowed like the river, which followed the stream. The atmosphere settled heavily.
“Are they third graders now?” Mu Ssang asked suddenly.
“Yes, Yeon Soon and Gye Soon also went to university. They were clamoring to see you too, oppa.”
“Those girls who used to have stuffy noses all the time are already attending university? Hoo, time really has passed. Why didn’t you bring them along?”
“Why should I bring them? Those girls would be so busy talking over each other that I wouldn’t have time to talk. They all became b*****es, you see. They’re going to make a big ruckus over you, and I’ll be the cold rice.”
“I see, my popularity hasn’t gone down at all, hahaha!” Mu Ssang laughed jokingly.
“Ha, f*** popularity. Oppas who burned a woman’s heart should leave.”
“Eh, I get it. I’m going to go exercise.”
“Where do you think you’re going? Does a woman’s lap look so cheap?”
When Mu Ssang raised his head, Jin Soon pressed it back down to its place.
“Jin Soon, I want to find my mum immediately.”
“Of course. You aren’t a wanted figure anymore, and your sentence is over.”
Mu Ssang made a weird noise. The Sahel’s Kanma was a criminal in Korea. Laughter kept spilling out of his mouth. Even during his house confinement, he had to be careful not to miss the night hour patrols. He would be carried to the Three-Department’s Educational Center if he had made a single mistake, such as staying out past the curfew. He couldn’t do anything to his enemies despite him being right there.
“Teacher has ordered me to carry out the soul-refining service for a month.”
“Tsk, that old teacher who teases his sole apprentice.”
“Ah! Oh my God!”
Monk Dae Woo cleared his throat loudly from the large room next door. Surprised, Jin Soon flinched.
“Keke, teacher can hear everything from within 10 li. He can also hear you cursing him out even if you’re a 100 li away,” Mu Ssang lowered his voice.
The dry cough rang even louder. Mu Ssang’s neck retreated. Jin Soon giggled as quietly as she could.
“Teacher’s intentions weren’t to teach me the soul-refining prayer. He’s someone who thinks nothing of the Samsara. He isn’t someone who would get attached to purifying the soul.”
“Then what are his intentions?”
“He’s acting like that because he’s worried that his student will go mad. He’s telling me to cool down the boiling blood for a month.”
“Gosh, aren’t both of you living complicated lives? What’s there to life? You fight back when something attacks and dig through when the path is blocked.”
“Hehe, yeah, everything you say is right. It’s a life that won’t reach a century, so what’s the point of wasting life?” Mu Ssang’s voice grew smaller.
Mu Ssang fell asleep with his head on Jin Soon’s lap. He slept peacefully like a young child. Jin Soon stared down at him with sadness in her eyes. No matter what anyone said, oppa was someone with a lot of baggage in his heart.
That was the woman her oppa loved. It had been a steady two years of happiness for her oppa, but the woman had left to chase after her dreams. She left, like taking a gifted candy away from a child.
That selfish b****!
It was the sound of teeth grinding against each other. She didn’t know why the woman did so. She certainly didn’t want to know, either. Was there a greater reason for throwing love away?
If it had been herself, she would have died instead. If she had to follow her oppa overseas for 10 years to earn money, she would have willingly followed.
All she could think was that the old b**** had used her affection-starved oppa.
Jin Soon closed her eyes. Time flowed backward to 10 years ago. In the middle banks of the bridge where wild chrysanthemums had filled the grass, the autumn wind had snapped against the reeds and bushes as it passed.
Oppa had been sleeping underneath the thick willow. His face was swollen and blue. His lips had burst, and his nosebleed had dried on his face. She could see his half-filled basket and his sickle.
Those had been the marks from the beatings of his great uncle. Jin Soon had cried. She hated the In-Dong old man who had injured her brother all the time. She had cried because she pitied her brother, and she also hated herself for not being able to do anything. She wanted to do whatever she could for her oppa.
There was nothing a young girl could have done. She had only received things from her oppa. He had done the hard work in her stead, gave her crops, chopped the firewood, got rid of the weeds, and carried her across the deep stream.
When she grew older, her four siblings placed more burden on her oppa. The five siblings had drawn his blood for their studies. Thus, she kept on receiving and hurting for the past 10 years.