Next morning, Sungjin made his way down to the 1st floor of Ninety Nine Nights.
“Toast, and Vanilla Latte.”
He ordered his breakfast.
And noticed Cain, whom he had forgotten about.
“Ah, that’s right. Give Cain something too.”
After ordering food for Cain, Sungjin took his feet out of his shoes and rested them on top of another chair. Dalupin left to prepare his breakfast.
While munching away on the toast and Vanilla Latte, Sungjin thought of the next raid, ‘Greysoul Cemetery’. He felt his appetite draining. He put down the toast he was eating.
‘That’s not really a place I wanted to return to…’
Sungjin put down his half-eaten toast and left the ‘Ninety Nine Nights’ with his cup of latte.
Cain also, as expected, followed him out. The weather was beautiful. The ‘Black Market’ could be seen in the distance.
‘…Should I buy some Holy water now…?’
The thought ran through his mind. But he needed to save every black coin he could muster so that he may purchase a legendary item later on.
‘Operator, remaining time?”
[3 Minutes 12 Seconds.]
There was still some time left before the raid. Sungjin downed the rest of his Vanilla Latte and returned to the table he had his breakfast at. He decided to allocate his points the way he had planned last night.
“Operator, allocate 700 to Strength, 800 to Dexterity, and 700 to Endurance.”
[Strength has risen by 700, Dexterity by 800, and Endurance by 700 points.]
Sungjin was now prepared mentally for the upcoming raid. No matter how high his status points were, it was no easy feat to finish the chapters at 100% completion.
Soon, the Operator began her countdown.
[Raid will begin shortly. 10, 9, 8]
Sungjin pet Cain briefly.
“See you in a bit, Cain.”
And after a moment, he disappeared from Ninety Nine Nights.
Late at night, worn out street lamps dimly illuminated the surroundings, casting shadows upon the rows of tombstones nearby. A crow flies off of a twisted dried up tree devoid of leaf or life.
The place Sungjin was teleported to was an eerie Cemetery. The Operator began her explanations.
[Hello. Welcome to Greysoul Cemetery.]
[It is a place filled with regrets and grudges of the dead.]
[As announced before, starting with this chapter]
[There will be no more tutorials, and the raids will begin right away.]
‘….I can never get used to this place…’
Sungjin took a look around his surroundings and licked his lips. It still tasted sweet from the Vanilla Latte.
The space around Sungjin blurred for a moment, and four Hunters emerged. Sungjin read the titles before even looking at the teammates themselves.
‘Bear Hunter’, ‘Mid-level Samurai’, ‘Scout’, ‘Veteran Spearman’.
This time there were two impressive titles. ‘Mid-level Samurai’ and ‘Veteran Spearman’.
Sungjin inspected the owners of the two titles. Anyone could tell that the ‘Mid-level Samurai’ was a Japanese man.
He looked to be about in his early 20s, maybe even younger than the current Sungjin. He had grown out his chin hair and had shaved part of his eyebrows to make the tips pointy. Of China, Japan, and Korea, only Japanese men would sport such a look at such an early age.
‘I guess he’s a real Samurai.’
Sungjin took a look at the ‘Veteran Spearman’. This man was completely black.
Compared to black men in America or Europe, his skin tone was of an even darker shade. It was hard to make out his features due to the dim lighting, but the whites of his eyes were prominently visible.
‘…I think…. He’s African.’
The last two individuals lacked anything noteworthy about themselves. The ‘Bear Hunter’ was a tall westerner, and the ‘Scout’ was a thin, agile looking man. He guessed that he was probably from India.
Sungjin was checking the vibe of the group. If it was going to be awful, he wanted to tell them
‘Gather as four and go hunt small mobs’
Just like he had done with the others until now. But before he got his words out, the ‘Mid-level Samurai’ stepped forward and stole the show.
“Hey, you four should group up and hunt trash. I’ll go and solo the boss in a flash!”
The other four, including Sungjin, stared at the Samurai. Sungjin especially so.
The Samurai had invested well into his equipment. From top to bottom, he wore ‘normal’ to ‘rare’ items.
The Katana he held appeared fairly high spec. Probably an item sold in the ‘Last Edge’. Sungjin couldn’t help but think
‘He sure bought a lot of things.’
He must have been an ace in the other raids, carrying his team. The ‘Scout’ Indian man piped in.
“Well… isn’t it better if we…stick together?”
The ‘Bear Hunter’ agreed with the ‘Scout’.
“Yes, I agree. Chinese kid, no matter how strong you are, wouldn’t we be stronger if we all worked together?”
With the exception of the ‘Mid-level Samurai’, the rest of the team seemed rather agreeable.
“Hey! Don’t you see the katana and the title? I am Japanese! Japanese! Anyway, sure, we can go together. But, when we face the boss, stand back. No matter how hard you try, I’m going to take the highest contribution.”
Sungjin reflected over his actions.
‘Was I… Like that…?’
Chapter 3 -Greysoul Cemetery Raid
Objective – Hunt the Lich ‘Deathmond’
Time Limit: 25 Minutes
[Complete the objective within the Time Limit.]
[If you cannot, you will die.]
[The Raid begins in 3 minutes.]
Once the Operator completed her mission briefing, the White ‘Bear Hunter’ said
“Well, I think we should introduce ourselves before we begin. We are going to be fighting for our lives, and trying to yell ‘Hey Master Hunter, help me!’ might take too long.”
The White man was looking up at Sungjin’s title above his head.
“I will start. My name is Henrik Sondegaard. Since my family name is long, please just call me Henrik. What are your names?”
Henrik must be from the Northern Europe.
“Kultu. I am from Nepal.”
The man Sungjin assumed to be from India was actually from Nepal. And finally the ‘Mid-level Samurai’.
“My name is Watanabe Hiroaki. Shorten my name and call me Hiro.”
‘What a lively youth.’
Until now, he should have been through life and death struggles, forced to kill or be killed, yet he maintained such a positive attitude. He must be like this naturally.
The only two remaining men who didn’t reveal their names were the ‘Master Hunter’ Sungjin and the ‘Veteran Spearman’. Once the three men stared at him, Sungjin spat out words he had prepared beforehand.
‘I am K.’
He must have liked that his name was short. The last one remaining was the ‘Veteran Spearman.’ But he only stared blankly. After he had taken turns looking at the others, he said
And thus the introductions were over. The ‘Bear Hunter’ Henrik did his best to rally the team and exert leadership.
“Let’s work hard together. Don’t we all have a family we wish to save?”
The ‘Mid-level Samurai’ gripped his hands hard at Henrik’s words.
“Yes. My mother and sister are being held by them…”
Sungjin thought Hiro was perhaps not as crazy as he first seemed. The Nepali Kultu also nodded.
“I probably have the largest family to save. Since there are 30 members in my immediate family.”
Once again, Sungjin and the African were the last ones left. Sungjin, in particular, didn’t have anything to say; He grew up in an orphanage. The people the Operator showed him as a ransom for clearing the raids were just some orphanage workers.
They were good people, but it was nothing like a parent. No one knew what Akanna thought. He only blinked his eyes with a vacant stare. He did not speak up.
It wasn’t like he couldn’t speak, nor unable to understand. He didn’t seem normal.
[The Raid begins in 1 minute.]
The Operator informed the group about the remaining time. Now, the other men became nervous.
“You read the information pamphlet, right? Arrows don’t work against Skeletons. I will deal with the skeletons with my axe, so please take care of the zombies and ghouls if I am busy.
Hiro approached Sungjin meanwhile.
“Hey, Kei, what country are you from? You’re definitely not Japanese. Chinese? Korean? Probability wise, you’re most likely to be Chinese, but I feel like you might be Korean.”
Hiro might have been interested in Sungjin for choosing the same weapon. Sungjin continued to stare expressionlessly, but Hiro did not stop there.
“Wait, you’re still using the basic katana! Where did you spend all of your Black Coins? And what is that shackle for? Why are you swinging your sword while being bound with chains?”
Even though Sungjin did not give a single word in reply, Hiro continued to speak.
“I actually finished 1st place in Kendo Regional Championship in Osaka. After taking the regional title, I was preparing for the Nationals, but I ended up here instead.”
That last part sounded interesting. Sungjin had also taken Kendo. If he had taken first place in Osaka, he must have had considerable skill. So Sungjin gave a single word of reply.
“So… that’s how you got the title of Mid-Level Samurai.”
“Yeah! This Operator or whatever has good eyes. This Title is awesome. It gives 20% increased damage to all attacks done by a Katana. How is it? Amazing isn’t it?”
Sungjin was at a loss for words. He wanted nothing less than to quickly kill the boss and search for the hidden boss.
“What’s that title, though? Master Hunter? It sounds really cool. What are the effects?”
“…Go get it. You’ll know then.”
“Yeah, I’m going to smash this Raid or whatever! I’ll take all the titles and all the items!”
His confidence was great. But his contribution from this particular raid wasn’t going to be high at all. Unless Sungjin decided not to participate.
‘How should I proceed with this raid?’
Sungjin took a quick glance at the others. These were all somewhat talented individuals with potential. At their level, they should be able to survive this chapter without protection.
‘Problem is contribution…’
But the most important factor is ‘who are the last few survivors at the end’. There was no reason to be considerate with every random stranger he meets at the beginning.
Because the chances of them surviving to the end was minuscule. The only ones who are needed to complete all raids and objectives are the final few individuals.
To eliminate uncertainty caused by having to rely on good teammates and cooperation, he needed to be overwhelmingly powerful. Enough to finish all the raids solo if need be.
Sungjin decided on his course of actions. And just like he had done every time, he let the others know.
“I… Will go alone.”
And as was with Hiro, the others turned to look at him.
“Truthfully, I am more of a lone wolf. If there is any need of my assistance, I will come to help. Please…stick together as a group of four and hunt only the normal monsters.”
Henrik, who tried hard to encourage teamwork, was shocked.
“What? What’s wrong now? Why are you saying this?”
Kultu also chimed in.
“He’s right. Isn’t it better to hunt together?”
Hiro was actually impressed.
“Ho… Kei. How cool. Alright! It’s a race!”
Finally, the Operator began her countdown.
[The Raid begins in 10 seconds. 10,]
Sungjin took out his Katana, and stood in front of the gates of ‘Greysoul Cemetery’.
[9, 8, 7]
Henrik tried one more time to change Sungjin’s mind.
“Hey Kei, don’t do this. Let’s talk about this.”
But Sungjin only turned to say
“I can’t. This raid… It’s like this.” (TL NOTE: at the bottom for context)
Henrik’s eyes grew wide. Sungjin felt pangs of guilt.
“Just… consider me a troll. You probably had one or two until now.”
[3, 2, 1, 0]
And the moment the gates opened, Sungjin ran ahead. Alone.
This part is REALLY SUBTLE. In the Korean version, this sentence implies that betrayal is part of the raid’s design; One person sacrificing the entire group to take all the reward for himself. He’s basically apologizing to Henrik for screwing him over for the next round.
He considers his own action as a direct threat to the well-being and survival of his teammates in the next round; Same as if he attempted to kill them himself. Hence, he considers himself a ‘Troll’.
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