Invincible Teacher Chapter 45
46 Chapter 45
"But from tomorrow onwards, in other words, for the next two days, you will be able to receive points. These points will go towards your final grade. And also from tomorrow, whilst the teachers will be watching over the task, they will not help you."
"The task is fairly simple- the group that collects the most red ribbons will be declared winners. The red ribbons are scattered in different locations all around the site. This is what the red ribbons look like."
Ok Hae-mi then held up a long, thin piece of red cotton.
The end portion of the ribbon was embroidered in black thread with the Academy's insignia.
"Keep in mind that whilst duelling over the red ribbons is permitted, points will be deducted if the opponent is grievously injured in any way."
Ok Ha-mi then looked at the students.
"There will be groupings in this task. It would be unfair to organize the groups by years, as students of different years will be at different levels. Therefore, as previously announced, the four groups will be mixed with students from different years, from first year students to fourth year students."
She then looked at the drum beside her.
"You have until dusk to find ribbons today. The task will officially commence at the strike of the drum, and will stop once you hear the strike of the drum one more time. Are there any questions?"
The students shook their heads.
"In that case."
Ok Hae-mi looked over at Eun Myeong-myeong, who nodded his head. The task had officially begun.
*Sound of a beating drum*
As an assistant repeatedly beat the drum, the groups hurriedly sprang into movement.
Each group was looking for another group to team up with.
Kang-hyuk was part of the third group that had combined with the eighth, thirteenth and eighteenth groups.
"It looks like we're together!"
"Let's work together well!"
As the teachers of the respective groups exchanged greetings, Kang-hyuk looked over at Cheon Hae-gwang, who was standing in front of Ok Hae-mi.
The teachers' assistants were temporarily transferred in preparation for the activities of the next day.
The respective seniors and juniors of each team also gave their introductions to one another.
"So, who will be the head of the group?"
The fourth-year stick martial arts teacher addressed the students.
His name was So-hun. He had a peak level of cultivation.
The students simply glanced at one another at his question until one of students put their hand up and answered, "I recommend Chun-hak for the role!"
At the suggestion of one student, the other students then joined in on the recommendation of their fellow classmate named 'Chun-Hak'. The student seemed to be well-known and popular.
"Alright then. Chun-hak shall be appointed the head of this group."
"I'll try to do my best."
Chun-hak, who had a virtuous aura about him, immediately bowed. Kang-hyuk looked at him and nodded.
'He's pretty impressive.'
He had a first-class level of cultivation.
Considering that most students have a second-class level of cultivation, it was quite an achievement.
Whilst Dang So-mun would be considered a genius for having second-class cultivation at the tender age of fifteen, strangely enough, he failed to stand out in the same way that Chun-hak did.
Kang-hyuk also found his friend, Baek Mun-ji, who seemed to be hiding his second-class level of cultivation rather suspicious.
'I'm sure we'll be able to suss him out with further observation.'
Chun-hak had already taken the lead.
The third and fourth year students of the Academy accompanied warriors of the Hwacheon Clan on their missions as a form of apprenticeship.
Despite it being a slight hassle to the warriors, they understood that it was an important undertaking to nurture the talents of the future.
They too had used such experiences as a stepping stone in their youth to have reached their current ranking and position.
Chun-hak, as a fourth year student, was putting this experience he had on missions into full application for the field trip.
"Right, I'll explain our strategy. I'm going to divide us into four groups once more. There will, of course be an even mix of upper and lower years within the groups. I expect each team to put their utmost into finding the red ribbons. We will reunite for lunch, and count the ribbons at this same place."
After Chun-hak had calmly explained the strategy, the four groups scattered to look for the red ribbons.
'Should I go as well?'
The teachers had been assigned as well to one of the four groups, with Kang-hyuk being paired with So-hun.
His group included Chun-hak, Dang So-mun, Nam Goon-min, various other students, along with four female students.
'Did Chun-hak deliberately put the female students in his group to look over them?'
It was most likely that this was the case.
Despite the common teaching within Moorim to be careful around women, children and the elderly, most of the female warriors of Moorim had mastered cultivation.
Paradoxically, this also meant that only the warriors that had reached a level of mastery survived, as the others had died.
Within Moorim, there were many enemies that had their eye out for women.
This meant that taking the female students under his wing would only create more burden for Chun-hak.
'That fellow, he's a student worthy of being a leader.'
Kang-hyuk had yet another student with his eyes on.
As Eun Myeong-myeong looked at the students who had entered deep into the forest for their task, the concern in his gaze grew deeper.
He turned his head to look at Ok Hae-mi, who was standing behind him.
"What's the matter?"
"You look worried."
Eun Myeong-myeong smiled bitterly at her words.
"Do really think so?"
"Is it because of yesterday's interrogation of that man Heuk-sim?"
"I can't say that there's no connection to that incident."
Eun Myeong-myeong then sighed.
"How could I not be worried if there's a rat within the Academy that I'm in charge of?"
"That's why you'll need to take extra caution in all matters from now onwards."
Eun Myeong-myeong then suddenly recalled the time when Shim-gu had sought him out. He thought that it was bizarre that Shim-gu asked him for a position as a cleaner, but did not dare to ask him the reason.
For some reason, he felt as though Shim-gu's gaze said, 'I'll crack your back into two if you ask me why!'.
'I-it can't be!'
Eun Myeong-myeong's eyes sparkled all of a sudden.
'Maybe Elder Shim was already aware about the rat that infiltrated the Academy.....'
He felt that this was the most reasonable explanation.
'Ah! I still have a long way to go to get to Elder Shim's level!'
He was simultaneously admiring Shim-gu's talents while lamenting at his own naivety.
And here, yet another misunderstanding was underway.
"Damn it! It's so high up, how will we be able to reach it?"
"Right! Honestly, it's a bit much."
"You should be using this time to think, not to grumble!"
Deep in the forests, the students were running around in all directions in their desperate search for the red ribbons.
In every corner, there were disputes over the ribbons, but no serious disputes resulting in injuries had occurred.
This was due to them being under the careful observation of the teachers.
Kang-hyuk, accompanied by the stick martial arts teacher So-hun, was following behind the group led by Chun-hak.
The red ribbon that had been found was hanging on the branches of a particularly tall tree.
The tall tree was around five meters in its height.
'It really is tall. Wait a minute, this tree is most definitely that tree. Then, someone with a transcended level of cultivation must have hung the ribbon.'
The entire group, which included Chun-hak, Dang So-mun, and Namgoong Min, were agonizing over obtaining the ribbon.
The likelihood of chancing upon a ribbon wasn't as common as one would think. Therefore, despite the difficulty of its location, it was pivotal to the group to somehow obtain it.
The number of ribbons they were able to obtain equated to the amount of points they would receive for the field trip, and this in turn would affect their academic grade.
As the success of the students depended on their academic performance, they put their full effort into the task of the field trip.
For the students, the greatest success would be to obtain a post within the Hwacheon Clan.
But a desire to obtain a post didn't mean that they would automatically obtain one. Due to the high number of applicants, roles were given to those who had graduated with the highest grades.
The reason as to why disciples of various martial sects were sent to be admitted to the Academy wasn't just so they could build connections, but the biggest reason was so that their sect could be seen as being affiliated with the Hwacheon Clan.
This was why the rising stars of martial sects and clans were admitted to the Academy. However, if they were unable to enter the Hwacheon Clan, they would live the rest of their life in shame.
There were even some that committed suicide after being unsuccessful in procuring a position within the Hwacheon Clan.
In comparison, the situation of children that came from warrior families was considerably better. They would not be in such a forlorn state that they would be driven to suicide after being rejected from a position within the Clan.
After having graduated from the Academy, children from warrior families would officially begin practising as a warrior, undertaking duties within their family.
However, in the case of famed and large warrior families like the Namgoong family and Sacheon's Dang family, the admitted students wouldn't just be limited to the offspring of the head of those families.
There would be the offspring of the head's siblings, as well as the offspring of their cousins. And because of that, there wasn't a sufficient amount of positions available within the family to satisfy this number of people.
This was why most of them felt that the best way to procure one's success in life was to secure a role within the Hwacheon Clan.
If not, they felt that life would be hardship after hardship.
"Chun-hak Seonbaenim (1), I'll climb up the tree."
"The tree's bark is quite smooth, so it won't be as easy to grip. Also, this tree."
Namgoong Min offered to climb the tree.
Kang-hyuk looked closely at the exact position within the tree from which the red ribbon was hanging.
The ribbon hung upon a branch of the tree that was stretched out, swaying in the wind.
All of a sudden, Dang So-mun spoke, looking at Chun-hak.
"Seo-seonbaenim, this tree...something's weird about it."
"I too thought that something was strange about it. There are no insects on the tree."
"Exactly. I remember learning that you can identify whether a tree is poisonous or not by the presence, or the absence of insects on it."
Chun-hak then addressed Namgoong Min.
"Don't climb the tree, wait a minu."
But alas, Namgoong Min had already climbed up. Chun-hak then cried out.
"Come down right this instant!"
"It's dangerous to casually touch this tree!"
At that moment, Namgoong Min felt a throbbing pain in his hand, immediately letting go of the tree.
It was obvious what would happen to someone who let go of a tree whilst climbing it they would fall onto the ground.
"Ooh. Ooohhhh! Arghhh!"
Namgoong Min fell onto the ground, moaning in pain.
Whilst he had escaped injuries as he had fallen from a lower part of the tree, his palms were still red and swollen.
Beads of sweat were forming on his forehead as his pain increased.
Chun-hak sighed at his state.
"Look what happened when you moved before I permitted you to."
"Bu-but...I thought you had given me permission."
"If you asked, you should have waited for my response before you moved into action."
"Leave it. Let's have a look at your hands. Hold them out."
Chun-hak observed Namgoong Min's hands with his eyes only. He had learnt that only a person that had knowledge of medicine was qualified to touch the hands of someone who had come into contact with a poisonous tree.
The situation seemed to be quite severe.
His palms had completely swelled, being a shade of red. Chun-hak then looked at Dang So-mun.
"Do you know a method of treatment by any chance?"
"I apologize. Seeing as I don't know what kind of tree this is, I don't know what treatment I should use either."
Chun-hak sighed at Dang So-mun's answer.
It would take up too much time to go to the medical teacher that was at the campsite.
He directed his gaze towards Kang-hyuk, and then bowed.
"Please excuse me, but could you be of help to us?"
Kang-hyuk then replied, "Me?"
"Yes. Seeing as you're well versed in horticulture, you must know of poisonous trees, and what kind of tree this is, so I ask that you help us with this so that we can treat Namgoong Min's hands."
Chun-hak's words were correct.
Kang-hyuk was aware of the identity of the tree, and the method that could be used to treat injuries sustained from coming into contact with its poison.
(1) Seonbaenim - Senior