Mercenary Black Mamba - Chapter 207
Mu Ssang ran his hands over the snakehead as though he was greeting a long lost lover. That was the guy he’d bore the brunt with, in the Sahel’s rough deserts, empty lands, and steppes. He was overjoyed to meet his old friend.
Moreover, its 600cc double horsepower engine was overwhelmingly powerful. Combined with his physical abilities, it could easily jump over the mountain’s rocks and streams.
Monk Dae Woo clicked his tongue. His b*stard of an apprentice had bought a Pony, followed by a foreign four-seater car, and a strange monster that couldn’t even be called a bike. There were a lot of things to ride on, for a person who didn’t even use a bike.
“You brat, why are you so interested in things that emit gas rather than Jin Soon? You should be bringing in a wife, what’s with all this? Running and walking are training, too. What are you going to do with these things? Do you want to become a car dealer? Tsk tsk.”
“Hmph, you’ll change your opinion once you take a ride, teacher.”
“Eh, you brat. If I get distracted by that kind of junk, I’m a damned feather, not a damned fool.”
Monk Dae Woo used homophones to assert his stance. He had never been in a car or even ridden a bike before. Monk Dae Woo’s opinion altered within an hour.
Mu Ssang brought his teacher on the Panda and drove him to the three-river harbor, which was located in Yecheon, Poongyang.
“Huh, it doesn’t even make a sound.”
“It is soundproof and has a soft engine.”
“Uh-huh, expensive cars are really good. It slides like the sled that I rode in my youth!” monk Dae Woo kept exclaiming.
The scenery around him didn’t even catch his attention.
The next day, monk Dae Woo finished his morning service and rushed his apprentice along.
“Shamua, let’s hurry up and go.”
“Yes, I’m going, going.”
Mu Ssang’s mouth twitched into a smile as he headed out with the car keys. The previous evening, his teacher had suddenly asked him to pay for driving school lessons. His mouth had opened wide at the explosive statement. His teacher’s age was uncountable. Disregarding his age, the fact that his teacher had asked him for driving school lesson fees was astonishing.
Monk Dae Woo immediately enrolled for the regular first class lessons and attempted to take the driving test. The comfort and speed of modern technology had shaken his master’s strong will at 90.
Mu Ssang worryingly asked his teacher on their way back, “Teacher, why didn’t you apply for the second class?”
“Brat, what’s the point of getting a second class license? The least I’ll have to drive around when things get hard is a taxi, right?”
“Aigoo, don’t even talk about things that won’t happen. Why are you worried about food? I’m trying to tell you that the first class license is difficult to earn. You should change it, at least for now.”
“Hum, you’re looking down on your teacher, aren’t you? What are you going to do if I earned the first class license?”
“If you pass within a month, I’ll bow 3,000 times.”
“And if I fail, I’ll teach you the military techniques that I know.”
“Yes, a human who knows the scripts doesn’t go back on their words!” Mu Ssang shouted in delight.
Dagger techniques like the Krav Maga were nothing but short-handed tricks. The military techniques of the Goryeo tradition were the true finishing edge for the five combined movements.
A week later, monk Dae Woo ruffled around his clothes after the evening service. He pulled out a plastic card the size of a name card. He rubbed some saliva on it and plastered it on his forehead. It was an immature move that he saw the children attempt while playing Ddakji-chigi. Mu Ssang’s disgusted expression landed on his master’s forehead. Upon recognizing the card, he shouted.
Earning a first class driving license within a week had to be a scam. The second tier’s passing rate was 30 percent, but the first class license was 13 percent on average. That was only after people had driven around some old run-down truck for three weeks in the driving school. It was a fact that he had confirmed while earning his license.
He couldn’t stop his teacher who had passed, but he found the examiner who had passed him more incomprehensible. The examiner’s eyes must have gone blind. There wasn’t a power handle on the testing porters. Those taking the test had to sweat over a handle, which didn’t even turn.
The trucks on the testing grounds had a stiff handle, a clutch at the wrong degree, and a ruined brake lining. Testers had to drag the porter through an S-course and a T-course while sweating heavily. With a single mistake, they were requested to get off the truck.
What of the driving test? The engine would automatically turn off if the clutch and excel’s timing was slightly off. The truck was bound to slide back during a climb. There were countless people with stamps on the back of their application forms. Gaining a license within a week was impossible.
“Hahaha, I received my theory test ahead of time, you see. That’s right, I got 82 points for that and finished my driving test in one go.”
Pride spread across his teacher’s face as though he was bragging about how amazing he was. It wasn’t the kind of face a teacher of the heavenly wills should make.
“No. That is impossible.”
“Hm, I do find my apprentice’s denial of the obvious truth very pitiful. You can’t believe it, hm?”
“Of course. It doesn’t make sense, does it? Oh, I see. Teacher, you used your powers, didn’t you? You created confusion in the examiner’s mind and…”
The bamboo stick came flying as always.
“You b*stard, are you accusing me of cheating? To begin with, your teacher has amazing athletic senses! Kekeke!”
Mu Ssang zoned out while his teacher laughed loudly to the point that his Adam’s apple could be seen. The way he laughed was rather awkward.
F*** athletic senses, he’s used all the heaven-seeing power in his arsenal.
He had used his dimensional sight when he applied for his driver’s license in France, after all. It wasn’t something unjustified. Mu Ssang, now bound for 3,000 encouragement bows, crumpled his face.
“一切有爲法 如夢幻泡影 如露亦如電 應作如是觀, everything is a dream even if it is organized, an illusion, a bubble, a shadow, the dew, or the lightning. One should know impermanence and show it. F*** impermanence!”
He added an expletive at the end. Mu Ssang shoved down the Diamond Sutra. The golden candlelight wavered at its force. He’d finished 3,000 bows and chanted the Diamond Sutra 100 times, but the chaos in his mind couldn’t accept his actions. There were more concerns rather than relief in his head.
Candles flickered with the wind, and with a victim came an assaulter. The one who used violence was the attacker, and the one who was beaten up was the victim.
He refused to live in a world where the perpetrator and victim had to be categorized. “The one who has thus gone” were meaningless words. The Serengeti plains’ approach to eat or to be eaten was more suited for the unattached soul.
It was a silent night in the mountain.
The wind tapped on the wind chime hanging on the edge of their roof.
The barn owl’s hoots were the only sound in the darkness.
“Ha, I guess this is why teacher said that I didn’t have an affinity with fire.”
He pulled out a notebook from his pocket. The edges of the palm-sized notebook had worn out. It was made from cheap material and much time had passed anyway.
There was a scary sentence pressed onto the outer cover of the notebook. The writing had slightly faded over time.
[Repay Favors Ten Fold, Vengeance a Hundred Fold]
Those were the words he had written after leaving his uncle’s house on the bridge at the age of 13. He had been mature for his age. It was said that a Korean tiger didn’t forget the hunter who made it bleed for 10 years. A Paranthropus was a much fearful predator compared to a tiger.
He opened the notebook. Its insides had turned yellow. Names were listed on the first page in small letters.
[Mother, Jang Pil Nyuh, Pak In Bo, Pak Hwa Ja, Kim Dal Su, Jang Chi Soo, Hand-axe—]
There were more names on the next page.
[Lee Kang Chul, Kang Young Sook, Kang Choon Shik, Moon Mi Ja, Lee Ki Chul, Waterfly—]
[Ha Dong Ajumma, Sam Chul Ajussi, Director Lee of Ki-Sung Oil, Sang Han’s parents]
The names on the second line—Kang Young Sook, Kang Choon Shik, Moon Mi Ja, and Waterfly—had been crossed out. They were humans who had already died, or he’d taken revenge on. There were only five names recorded on the third page.
“They should be living well so they can greet when Azrael visits. Hehehe!”
An eerie smile seeped out. Just like he’d thought, he wasn’t someone who’d knock on wood and chant some prayers.
Mu Ssang’s neck was drawn in.
“Prepare another room.”
“Yes, teacher,” Mu Ssang answered immediately.
His teacher was really amazing. He had recognized the sliver of murderous ki behind the several layers of walls. It seemed as though his teacher was preparing to greet a long-term guest from the way he had asked for a new room to be prepared.
“Hm, I suppose there’s no reason to worry about the firewood as long as the debt remains.”
Mu Ssang shoved the notebook into his pocket and let out an exhausted sigh.
On the second day, the still Chun Sung Temple became crowded like the marketplace because of the crowd of workers who filled the temple since mid-breakfast. Teacher had asked him to clear out a room, but he had turned over the side temple instead.
It was a small act of resistance against his teacher, who had restricted his actions. On the other hand, he wanted his teacher to be comfortable.
He built another building with three rooms. He got rid of the steep stairs towards the main temple and installed a long rampway. He modernized the temple kitchen and added a dining room. He upgraded the toilet stalls too. He also hired an old granny who didn’t have any children from the Gong Yang province.
Monk Dae Woo treated the entire chaos as though it didn’t exist. He laughed, like always, and left them to do what they needed. With his newly gained driver’s license, monk Dae Woo would drive the Fiat whenever he wanted. The teacher, who was enamored by driving, had no time to interfere with his apprentice’s actions.
It took two months to remodel the side temple. Mu Ssang had to concentrate on his work, study, and train without being distracted. He gathered herbs and mushrooms like the old times and sold them to the market. He also caught rabbits and deers for their meals.
He thought it was a waste of money to buy beef and pork for himself to eat. Mu Ssang was the kind of guy who would concern himself over the price of his meals but would not hesitate to spend it on his teacher and Ha Dong’s family. He was a rich man, but the monk apprentice, Shamua, remained the same.
Monk Dae Woo’s overall physical appearance had also improved. It was because of the healthy food that his apprentice had prepared for him in the past few months. Mu Ssang had once lectured him about food being more important than Buddha’s energy. As a result, he had to drag three truck tires around the temple grounds, which was three times larger than the neighboring school track grounds.
While Mu Ssang had his hands threaded to his nose, the Paris’ minister of the Department of the Interior, Manuel Pione, was down with a strong headache.
“Ah, f***, why are these b*stards going around Paris, of all places! Tell them to die in their own lands!”
The minister of the Department of the Interior, Pione, glared at the Army Military Police director, commander Allen Majif, and the director of the GIGN Military Police Department of the Interior, Ordo. Majif and Ordo kept their mouths shut and stared at the wall. There was nothing to say. What could they say about terrorists crawling everywhere like cockroaches, even if they did kill them?
The cases behind the terrorist attacks went back to April ’82, with the explosion on Champs-Élysées Rue Marbeuf. The terrorist attack on Rue Marbeuf had been a result of Iraq and Syria’s discord.
The target on Rue Marbeuf was an Iranian newspaper company known as the Al-Watan Al-Arabia. The terrorist organization had attacked the company’s building under Syria’s orders. 60 people had died due to this incident.
France was a benevolent country when it came to immigration and asylums. There was an endless flow of immigrants and refugees from Africa and the Middle East, and a rising number of illegal immigrants.
Due to that, there were countless gunfights between Israel’s intelligence members and PLO officers and bloody revenge between sects from the Middle East in France.
The country’s security authorities tried not to interfere, taking into consideration the opportune relationship they had with the colonial countries. They left them alone to tear and fry each other.
The Marbeuf explosion had an entirely different nature. Several French citizens were sacrificed. France felt unjust as the victim. It was like two intruders fighting in a stranger’s house, and the house owner dying in the process.
The incident didn’t end there. With the Marbeuf terrorist attack as a starting point, several terrorist attacks occurred in the following days. On top of that, foreign diplomats were killed.
When it was revealed that the captured terrorists were from the ANO, the French government reached the limits of their patience. The gendarmerie started annihilating the cockroaches.
Gendarmerie was a paramilitary that acted as the police and soldiers at the same time. It had over 100,000 members for a specially-run French organization armed with tanks, field artillery, and helicopters. It seemed as though the terrorist attacks had died down, thanks to the strong gendarmerie.
A year from then, in April of 1983, France’s national rail had exploded. The TGV from Paris-Lyon barely escaped the accident. Following that, the leftist writer Jean Ede Hyie was kidnapped and killed by the terrorists, while the head diplomat of Morocco was sacrificed to the terrorist explosion.
The ANO had brought about much organized and widespread attacks compared to the Marbeuf attacks. The GIGN of gendarmerie had sent out a full force of 40 units, but it wasn’t enough. The terrorists kept crawling like cockroaches.
The DGSE had chased the terrorists’ backers restlessly until they revealed that the Syrian secret police, the extreme leftist faction RAF, was the true mastermind. The terrorist organization, which had moved during the Marbeuf attacks, moved once more.
As the minister of the Department of the Interior, who was in charge of internal and external security, it was something to go mad and rage about.
 Red Army Faction