Rooftop Sword Master - Novel - Episode 9
“Hey, does anyone know why there’s so much noise coming from the rooftop every night?”
“Oh my, you can even hear it from the 3rd floor? My husband and kids couldn’t sleep because the screaming continued for at least two to three hours this morning. Jeez! It’s infuriating!”
“Hey! At least you’re living on the 4th floor. We live on the 5th floor, and we’re literally dying up here. I don’t know what the hell he’s doing these days, but day and night, all we hear is pounding from above. It’s driving me crazy!”
“My husband is more curious than angry about it though. He asked me, ‘Is anyone even living up there?’”
“Well, it is pretty weird, isn’t it? None of us have actually seen the owner, right? You said you’ve rented on the 5th floor for over two years now? Have you ever seen the landlord?”
“You’re right. I don’t know if the landlord is male or female, or what their age is. I should have at least seen something.”
“That’s what I’m saying.”
The tenants from the 3rd, 4th, and 5th floors gossiped in front of the stairs leading up to the rooftop. In front of them, the rooftop door was secured with an automatic locking system and auxiliary lock. As if that were not enough, two chains were wound tightly around the iron door, preventing them from rushing onto the roof.
Since the door was blocked, and no one could check on the owner inside, the police should have been notified at the time of the person’s scream – claimed the woman from the 5th floor, who was one of the building’s oldest and longest-lasting tenants.
However, the women on the 3rd and 4th floors, who belonged to the young generation, argued against intervening despite their complaints and worries.
After all, when they all first arrived as tenants, the real estate agent had warned them not to interfere with the rooftop room for any reason, pressuring them into stifling their curiosity. After a series of bitter arguments, the tenants came up with a way to pass their grievances on to a third party.
“Hello. Ah, yes. This is Se-young Villa. Well, in the last few days, I’ve been hearing thumping all day and night from the rooftop room. —Yes? Yes. I think it’s been about a week.”
The oldest woman tenant from the 5th floor spoke with a real estate agent designated to Se-young Villa. As she spoke, the women from the 3rd and 4th floors whispered at her, mouthing and miming the word “scream.”
“Because I heard screams! We were so shocked! Shouldn’t that warrant a police call? When? Today! Yes! I’m sure! Yes? No, not just today. Yesterday, and the day before that, and the day before that, I heard screaming…… Yes.”
The 5th-floor tenant’s passionate tone suddenly dimmed.
“Yes. Yes. I see. Yes, yes. Then I will.”
“What did they say, Ma’am?”
“What’s going on over there?”
As soon as the call was over, the woman from the 5th floor was bombarded with heated questions.
Her expression trembled as she repeated the agent’s response.
“Whether you heard screams or loud noises, as long as the person himself doesn’t have any problems, there’s no need to make a fuss. It could be screaming, or it could be something else……”
“Well, did you respond back to that? Did you tell them you can hear someone screaming?”
“He said he was outside at the moment and would call the landlord to check on him later. We’re supposed to wait till then to see.”
As the sun rose, the women who had vowed to band together quickly lost their train of thought and returned to their houses.
Se-young woke up screaming.
The memory of the pain from before he fainted remained imprinted in his brain, causing him to cry out involuntarily.
Se-young’s breath leaked out of his mouth, like vapor from a dumpling steamer. On top of that, steam was pouring out of his entire body, forming hazy curls in the air. In fact, even though Se-young had been lying on the cold rooftop floor, on a cold day, in the winter, for several hours, his entire body overflowed with heat, as if he had been submerged in a hot bath.
However, Se-young didn’t seem to be even the least bit concerned with what was happening to his body. The events that took place right before he passed out were of little importance.
In his mind, as he rationally sorted through the day’s events, what happened to his body didn’t even hold a candle to the torrent of information that had just filled his head.
No, not just the head…
Seyoung gently grasped his chest.
Did I experience the life of the sword’s first master while I dreamt?
It was a sudden thought.
He felt bubbling joy, incomparable to anything he had ever experienced before. He felt his whole body shudder with despair and grief at his inability to protect.
The feeling of being unshakeable, unbreakable, unbending, fearless, full of courage and fighting spirit. The tragedy of losing everything precious and then some, reaching sorrow so deep even the heart shriveled up and died.
Everything remained vividly imprinted upon his soul. As if it were more than a dream – like he had actually experienced it in real life. In his head, an endless period of time rushed by like a ferocious river.
Se-young, who was about to stand up, groaned and hesitated. He shot a belated gaze at his right arm, which felt like it was clasped around an object.
Se-young’s mouth dropped open in shock. The two-handed sword, the root cause of all these events, lay innocently inside of his grip. Seyoung’s gaze automatically shifted to the spot where it was originally embedded.
The place where the sword had been planted for several days was in perfect condition. Even after he rubbed his eyes and squinted at it, and went on his hands and knees to sweep the spot with his hands, Se-young couldn’t find a single scratch, let alone the deep fissure that should have been caused by the sword. He shifted his attention back to the two-handed sword laying on the floor.
The sword is way longer than I thought it would be.
When it was stuck in the roof, the exposed part alone was almost as tall as Se-young, but after being pulled out, the sword’s length had increased by over 1m.
If it was that long, shouldn’t it have pierced through the ceiling downstairs? Se-young thought idly.
He bent down and grasped the sword with both hands. Though his hands were spread apart, they couldn’t even cover half the handle.
I haven’t even tried to lift the sword yet, but my arms already feel so heavy.
As if lifting a large rock, he took a deep breath and pulled at the sword with all his might.
As he tried to lift the blade, he couldn’t even stand properly, and he felt his body start to give out under the overwhelming weight of the two-handed monstrosity. Se-young staggered forwards and backward as his body was swept away by the sword blade’s unstable oscillations.
After just barely managing to balance the sword vertically against the middle of his chest and face, Se-young let out a deep sigh. At that moment, his legs turned to jelly as his whole body drained of its strength.
Se-young scanned the sword, tracing his gaze from the bottom of the handle, past the grip and guard, to the end of the long blade.
The War Sword
He remembered the name of the sword was something like that. At the same time, other titles began to pop up in his head.
Bringer of Thunder and Storms
But that wasn’t the sword’s real name. It was just some random moniker, made up by some random person that just happened to stick.
Suddenly, a burning sensation bubbled up inside of his heart and his eyes grew hot with agitation.
What’s wrong with me?
Se-young felt embarrassed by the unexpected whirlwind of emotions.
His grip on the sword seemed to amplify his heartbeat, which became a deafening roar. His whole body was overcome with a feeling of courage and an indomitable spirit. His view of the two-handed sword in front of him overlapped with a scene from his vision which spontaneously popped into Se-young’s head.
With both arms raised, he traced out a circular arc with the tip of the sword, swinging it skywards while both feet rotated smoothly and stepped forward. His body moved backward in the same manner.
Advancing again, retreating again.
Advancing again, retreating again.
Despite holding a large, dull sword that was seemingly impossible to balance, Se-young’s footsteps were light and elegant, like he was dancing the waltz. The circle traced out by the sword tip and the circle drawn on the ground with his two feet combined to create an even larger circular motion.
Feel it through both hands!
Seyoung’s dark eyes shone with a bright glow, and he unknowingly let out a shout.
The fierce warrior cry morphed into an embarrassingly bewildered scream.
The weight of the sword, which was already too heavy for Se-young’s muscles to handle, was sent even further out of control by the rotational motion of the swing. As the sword swung out of his grasp, the hands and feet that Se-young used to try to forcefully stop its motion twisted at an unnatural angle.
Se-young collapsed onto the ground, all curled up like a shrimp and screamed in pain. Both of his hands, which failed to hold onto the blade, now convulsed non-stop.
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