Invincible Teacher Chapter 23
23 Chapter 23
The location was Kang-hyuk's residence.
Baek-gap was pounding his back with his left hand.
"Ah finally, there are only fifty roots left!"
He proudly gazed upon the stacks of candied Baby Ginseng roots he had made with his own two hands.
Nonetheless, at the thought of the remaining roots he had to turn into candy, his feeling of pride disappeared, transforming into a sigh.
'Damn it! When am I going to finish all of these?"
While he was grumbling, he suddenly heard the sound of footsteps and rushed outside.
It was Kang-hyuk.
"Seonsaengnim, you're back!"
"Yes, I'm back."
An unfamiliar young woman stood beside Kang-hyuk. She was wearing red clothes, and would be considered quite a stunning beauty.
"Who is the person next to you?"
Kang-hyuk replied, "She's the new maid who will be working here from now on. Didn't you say that we needed a maid?"
"I uh...I did say that, but is she really a maid?"
"Why would I be lying? Anyways, her name is Ae-rin. You can let her know what needs to be done."
Baek-gap felt completely elated.
'I can finally be free from kitchen work! Now, my original task can begin! Hahaha!'
He felt like dancing at the thought that they now had a maid.
Baek-gap cleared his throat.
"Well, my name is Baek-gap. You can call me Baek So-yi Nim (1). And without a doubt, I am a servant."
Baek-gap felt that his position, as he implied, was higher in rank than that of a maid.
"That's fine with me. Anyways, what needs to be done?"
Baek-gap frowned at her informal way of speaking to him.
"Who do you think you're talking informally to? My position is higher than yours, so you should be using honorifics in your speech!"
The maid's mouth became twisted at his outburst.
"I heard that the positions of servant and maid were equal. Did I misunderstand anything?"
She was in fact, correct. A kitchen maid was in charge of preparing the master's meals after all, and so, her role was different than that of an ordinary servant or maid. It still ranked below a nanny, but it was nonetheless equal to the position of a servant.
"Well, that's true."
"Also, I don't tend to use honorifics with anyone, aside from the master I'm serving."
Baek-gap could feel a furious energy emanating from her. The energy was so intense that it felt as though it was going to cut his throat.
'How could a mere maid have such furious energy!'
He was in awe, but quickly changed the subject.
"Er, so about lunch."
Kang-hyuk, who had been observing their conversation silently, finally spoke up.
"We already ate lunch. You can go eat."
"Anyways, I'm going to head off to Yeongyowon."
As soon as Kang-hyuk was out of sight, Baek-gap spoke in a dignified manner, despite the fact that his dignity had been lost a while ago.
"You heard, right? You can prepare my meal for now. You'll find the kitchen tools easily, but if there's any confusion, you can ask me."
Baek-gap grinned as she entered the kitchen.
'It's strange, I feel as though I've seen her face before. Also, her name. Ae-rinAe-rin I feel like I've heard that name somewhere. Where did I see that red hair? It almost feels as though I'm speaking to my grandmother.'
Inside the kitchen, Byeok Ae-rin was reveling in her new position and change of surroundings.
It was rare for her to have to cook a meal with her own two hands.
'I'll have to think back to my Kwaepungdae days.'
She could cook quite well, but this wasn't always the case.
She laughed as she recalled how the members would urgently search for water after eating a meal prepared by her.
However, as they were out of town with Kwaepungdae business ten out of twelve months of the year, there was no option but for her to cook and for the members to eat her food.
As she had to cook so frequently, her skills gradually improved over time. She had also had a good cooking teacher.
She was a member of Kwaepungdae as well, who was also her junior.
'I wonder if Myeong-ah's doing well.'
She quickly prepared the meal and placed it in front of Baek-gap.
Baek-gap looked at the meal. He felt that the dish was flawless.
'She seems to be an experienced cook.'
He picked up the chopsticks and ate a little.
He had completely forgotten. It was because the food was tastier than he had expected. But, Baek-gap proceeded, and stubbornly put down his chopsticks.
"What is this?! Is this what you call food?"
"What do you mean?"
Byeok Ae-rin looked at him benevolently. Her gaze reminded Baek-gap of his mother when she prepared a meal. However, he remained firm in his will.
'If I act weak, she won't be disciplined.'
With this in mind, Baek-gap's behaviour became a bit more extreme.
He pushed the bowl away from him.
Within a few moments, he had thrown the bowl off the table, causing the food to spill all over the floor.
"How dare you make me eat such crap! If you don't want to be thrown out, immediately make me a new dish!"
Baek-gap himself felt that his actions were extreme, but he felt compelled to do so, as he didn't want to be defeated by the maid's energy from the beginning.
".If you don't like it, then there's nothing else that can be done. I guess I'll have to say it."
"Even if you're trying to discipline me, there's no need to go so far as lying, is there?
Baek-gap jumped, as she had gotten straight to the point of things.
"What? L-lying? When did I lie to you?"
"If the food I made was so disgusting, then why did you eat and swallow the first mouthful?"
"Also, it's bad karma to carelessly waste food."
"This, you.you're only a maid, how dare you try and teach me!"
Baek-gap had become furious, and without him realizing, he had gotten up and had his hand raised, ready to slap her cheek.
However, his hands paused in the air. It was due to somebody having grabbed his arm.
"Who are you!"
Baek-gap turned at the familiar voice.
He was startled.
The man, who had stopped him, was none other than his boss, the Jimilgak head, Hong-man.
Hong-man immediately sent a punch flying towards the direction of Baek-gap's face.
The force of his fist pushed Baek-gap backwards onto the ground. Baek-gap clenched his teeth at the waves of pain rippling through his back.
"What on earth are you doing?"
"I asked you...what were you doing!"
Baek-gap was scrambling in an attempt to think up of an excuse.
"That, well, we hired a maid so that I could fully concentrate on my mission.and, I was in the middle of disciplining her."
Hong-man sighed, and looked at Byeok Ae-rin, who was standing beside him.
"You came quite quickly! How did you know I was here?"
"Even within Ilmibanjeom, there are Jimilgak warriors. Also, there is a secret passage leading to Jimilgak in the forest right next to this house."
"Ah, I see!"
"But, you're working as a maid here! What on earth were you thinking, Elder Byeok?"
Baek-gap's eyes widened.
'Elder Byeok? Didn't that maid say that her name was Ae-rin.Then Byeok.Ae-rinAaah!'
Baek-gap, who had finally put one and one together, became incredibly alarmed.
There was only one person he knew who was called Byeok Ae-rin and was an Elder.
That person was none other than the ex-Head of Jimilgak.
'Then with that youthful face, is she using Ju-ansul? No wonder I felt as though I had seen that face somewhere, and the name was so familiar.also, that powerful furious energy I felt before makes sense now as well.'
Baek-gap cautiously spoke in the direction of Hong-man.
"That, Gakjunim, by any chance is that person.Byeok Ae-rin the Elder?"
Baek-gap began to recall his recent actions in regret. He did not only just tell her that the food she had prepared was disgusting, but he was even going to slap her cheek.
'I guess I'm as good as dead now!'
But Baek-gap didn't want to die. He immediately kneeled in front of Byeok Ae-rin.
"Plea-please spare me! I-I was unable to recognize you, Elder!"
Byeok Ae-rin responded to his cries benevolently.
"It's fine. It was because you were unaware. You may lift your head now."
Byeok Ae-rin smiled as Baek-gap slowly lifted his head.
"Well, if you had done it whilst knowing who I am, you wouldn't be alive right now, but seeing as you didn't know."
Baek-gap began to calm down. With her nickname of Mad Fox, he would definitely not have been left alive if he had known!
"Why? Did you perhaps do it knowing who I was?"
Baek-gap, thankfully, really had no idea of her true identity.
"No, no-not at all! Absolutely not!"
"Then raise your head. Didn't you say that I was a maid and you were a servant? Right?"
"Yes, I did say that but."
Baek-gap became nervous from Byeok Ae-rin's gaze that exuded benevolence.
"I understand that you've been sent from Jimilgak to watch over Kang Seonsaeng."
"Then why haven't you followed him to Yeongyowon?"
"Are you talking back to me right now?"
Byeok Ae-rin turned her head and looked at Hong-man.
"The level of the Jimilgak warriors seem to have really fallen."
"I-I apologize! I will look into the issue immediately!"
Byeok Ae-rin fixed her gaze upon Baek-gap once more.
"What are you doing?"
"I'm asking, what are you still doing here and not going to where Kang Seonsaengnim is!"
Baek-gap jumped up and speedily left to go to Yeongyowon.
Byeok Ae-rin sighed as she watched him leave. Hong-man spoke up timidly, "That Elder? I was wondering why you've come here as a maid."
"Why? Are you scared?"
Byeok Ae-rin smiled as Hong-man intensely nodded his head.
"As the Head of Jimilgak, you should be tight-lipped, right?"
"Of course. I'll even cut my tongue if you want me to."
"Has the Clan Leader already informed you of Kang Seonsaeng's identity by any chance?"
"He hasn't told me.but I can make a guess as to who he really is. Is that why you're here as a maid?"
"Yes, that's why. If it wasn't for him, I wouldn't even be alive right now. He is the reason for my existence, so of course, I would follow him here to be by his side."
"If so, why didn't you follow him eight years ago when he retired?"
"He had expressly asked me not to. He told me to stay by Mu-jin's side and watch over him for at least a year."
"Anyway, did you say that that fellow was a rank of seventy three?"
"Why is such a stupid fellow by his side! I'll have to take him aside one day and give him a disciplining of my own!"
Hong-man himself had undergone a hell-like disciplining from Byeok Ae-rin, so he was well aware of its implications.
His skills had most definitely improved since her drilling, but even the recollection of those days gave him nausea.
'I wonder what kind of disciplining one would receive after directly trying to attack the Elder. I benevolently pray for his soul.'
As soon as Kang-hyuk had entered Yeongyowon, he looked over the trees the students were practising on.
All of a sudden, he could sense soundless footsteps getting closer to him.
'Could it be a student? But why would it be soundless?'
He focused his sight into the distance. He could see the figure of the student Baek Mun-ji walking towards the site.
'Is that the student who was acting a little strange earlier in the morning?'
Kang-hyuk immediately hid behind a tree, activating the martial skill of being invisible so that his presence would be completely unnoticed.
Baek Mun-ji, with his freckled face, had soon arrived, beginning to look around.
After he had confirmed that no one else was present, he collected water from the nearby stream, and sincerely sprinkled it onto the bed upon which he and Dang So-mun had sown flower seeds.
His actions were completely opposite than that of the morning where he had barely watered the seeds.
Baek Mun-ji squatted by the bed for a while, then sighed and got up again.
His face looked troubled, completely different from his usual cheerful expression.
He sighed once more, then left Yeongyowon.
Kang-hyuk emerged from behind the tree.
'What kind of situation is this?'
Kang-hyuk stroked his chin as he watched Baek Mun-ji leave.
'Why is that student hiding his level of cultivation?'