The first person’s face to pop up was Franz’s. He seemed like he was still half asleep, he answered while blinking his eyes.
“Hmm? Mr Kei? How did you…”
“What’s this, you haven’t gotten up yet?”
“I was just about to start getting ready.”
“Get up, let’s have breakfast together.”
“But how did you…”
“I have a new item.”
Then from the other side of the screen, the Cube asked Franz
[The Chooser is requesting your summon. Do you accept the summon?]
He looked at the cube briefly before answering
“I’ll head over after I wash my face then.”
The second person to appear was Serin.
She was already sitting at a table in the inn’s dining room. She had her full combat gear on, and had probably completed her preparations for the raid.
“It’s a new item… Have you had your breakfast already?”
“No, I was about to order…”
“Then come over on this side and let’s eat together.”
“Ok, I’ll do that, Oppa.”
Both of them appeared near simultaneously before Sungjin. They glanced around Sungjin’s Ninety Nine Nights. This would have been the first time they had traveled to a dimension other than their own.
But there was nothing in particular that they would find different. Other than the lamp and the blue giant. Sungjin said to them
The two of them sat in the closest chair looking uncertain. And then they finally began glancing at each other. Sungjin wanted to introduce them to each other, but Nada was not here yet.
‘It’s easier to just do the introductions once…’
But Franz extended a greeting to Serin first.
“Nice to meet you. I am Franz Hosenfeld.”
“Hello, I am Serin Han.”
But there was still no response from Nada.
‘What is this… did it not work properly?’
Sungjin was checking the sceptre when Nada’s image finally popped up on the screen. Sungjin immediately knew why her response was delayed.
In the screen, Nada only had a bathrobe on. He must have initiated the summon in the middle of her shower. She asked with slightly raised voice
“What’s the meaning of this?”
Sungjin was panicking, but he replied in as calm a tone as he could muster.
“Ah… I’m trying to have all the Chosen ones meet…”
She looked past Sungjin to the two others sitting behind him. And her cube said
[Do you accept the summon? No response for 3 minutes will end in automatic rejection.]
She gave her cube a look and said
“…alright. I’ll be there soon.”
And two minutes later, she also appeared in Sungjin’s dimension. Her outfit changed to that of day clothes, but her brown hair was still slightly wet. She must have had to hurry.
Nonetheless, the four of them were finally seated together around one table. Sungjin clapped once with his hands and said
“Now… I’ll officially introduce everyone to each other, in the order chosen… First Franz… Your last name is Hosenfeld, right?”
“Yes, Franz Hosenfeld. Austrian. He uses a two handed sword… He’s skilled and very passionate… so I picked him. After having some serious crossing of swords of course.”
Franz must have remembered what had happened as he put his hand through his hair and said
“Franz. Nice to meet you all.”
“Second is Nada. She is from Spain.”
Then she said
“Hmm? How did you know? I don’t think I’ve told you that?”
Sungjin froze when he heard that. She had told him her nationality during the first round of raids, close to the chapter where everyone was wiped out.
“… You told me last night, you can’t remember?”
Nada pursed her lips as she tried to search her memories. She was right, but she was led to believe that she somehow forgot about telling him since there was no other way she could think of how Sungjin would know otherwise.
“Anyway, she is a master of both dagger and black magic. So I chose her.”
Nada crossed her arms as she said to Serin and Franz briefly
“Finally, Serin Han. A Korean like me. An interesting fact is that she was one of the nation’s representatives in the Olympics for Archery and had won the Gold Medal.”
Franz opened his mouth to say
“Ahh… I thought I saw her before… I think I’ve seen her on the internet. On the list of beautiful Women Olympic stars….”
Serin lifted up one hand and covered her reddened face. Sungjin grinned as he said
“Well, in our country she was already a national hero. She’s probably a better archer than anyone else.”
Serin bowed while keeping her hand covering her face as she said,
“Nice to meet you all.”
Once the introductions were complete, Sungjin pointed at the information sheet before him.
“From now on, if there isn’t anything going on, I want to call everyone over for breakfast and speak about the upcoming raids.”
“Then let’s order first. We can speak while eating. Dalupin.”
Sungjin called for Dalupin. All four hunters ordered breakfast from Dalupin with much familiarity. Sungjin and the people chosen by him filled the tables as they shared stories over breakfast.
“Now that I think of it… Nada uses magic, what about Franz and Serin you two? Do you use any spells?”
“No, I almost don’t use any magic at all.”
“Me too. I have tried in the past, but investing into Strength or Dexterity is more cost effective when using the bow.”
“Yeah, I know. But you have stats you got from me; Magic Power and Mind Power.”
“If you want to take advantage of what you have, then why not have a spell or two learned?”
“I guess that’s true as well.”
“Once this raid is over, both of you head to the Black Market to see if there are any spells that fit your style of fighting and learn one or two. If it’s possible, pick from just one color of magic to learn.”
“But why do we need to pick a color?”
Serin asked, but Nada answered instead.
“Titles regarding Magic tend to benefit a single school at a time. Like giving bonus effects to Black Magic, or lowering Black Magic spell’s mana costs… things like that.”
“Ah… really? I see, thank you, Ms. Nada.”
The three of them were able to hold pleasant conversations without the need for him to get involved.
“But where did Ms Nada learn to use the dagger?”
Sungjin listened to the three of them converse with his arms crossed. Now that he thought of it, picking members solely based on his own preference could lead to issues later.
In the Final 10 before his regression, there was a subtle issue between members. They didn’t always openly antagonize each other, but Illich despised Mustafa for being sly, and Araujo was always scolding Edward.
Nada also mentioned that she avoided Umkhuba for giving her strange looks, and Ryushin picked on Shunsuke for his Japanese Imperialism and caused a fight.
‘The Three people so far seems fine… but the others have to get along with them as well…’
Sungjin thought of such things as he ate breakfast. And then meanwhile, he recalled about Jeremiah’s Eye’s ability to listen to others’ thoughts.
‘…Should I test it?’
It just so happened that the only person who should be aware of the earring’s existence was sitting on his left side. Sungjin pretended to lean on his arm as he touched the earring to activate it and listened in on the others’ internal dialogue. For 10 seconds
‘How lucky to be able to share breakfast with such beautiful ladies. I’ll be able to go into the raid with full motivation.’
Franz was a very simple man. Sungjin liked this about him.
‘But even if we have comrades… what’s the point if we can’t enter the raid together?’
Nada was thinking of something else entirely different.
‘Wow, look at Ms Nada’s breasts. So large…’
Serin must have been sneaking glances at Nada’s breasts. Her ‘Endowments’ must be the subject of attention even for people of the same gender. But then her voice continued by saying
‘Now that I think of it… She called Sungjin oppa Mr Boobs…’
Sungjin paused from ripping his croissant by coughing. Well, at least it didn’t seem like they had any deeper thoughts about each other so far. To begin with, seeds of discontent are sown during raids; peaceful breakfast time like now couldn’t easily cause any friction.
‘Well, it would be nice if they could become friendly until then.’
Sungjin finished the rest of his food. Once the breakfast was over, Sungjin waved his hands towards the three others.
“Then let’s meet each other tomorrow morning once the raids are over, everyone.”
Each of the three others returned to their dimensions. It was roughly 30 minutes before raid start. Once everyone had left, Sungjin crossed his arms and sat down on his spot.
The next raid was another 5 man raid. After going through a 10 man raid three times alone (especially after fighting Ariane), a 5 man raid could no longer give him any sense of anxiety.
‘The next 10 man raid was… Chapter 14 was it?’
Sungjin’s focus was already set on the next 10 man raid.
‘From this point onwards… I have to set my goal to be able to take on a 10 man raid alone.’
Sungjin made up his mind. The best way to reduce uncertainty in raids was to just become stronger himself.
‘I just have to give it my best each time.’
And now, each time he grew stronger, his Chosen ones grew stronger with him. He now needed to make an effort not only for himself but also for the people he had picked.
And for a moment, Sungjin thought of the merchant in Darker than Black.
‘Perhaps even a rebel’
This was a difficult problem to solve since it was impossible to read into their core nature. Sungjin grasped his earring
He took a look at it. Inside the purple gem, there was a sleepy looking eye staring back at Sungjin.
‘This only lasts 10 seconds…’
Sungjin stared at the eye. But then he thought of an incredibly simple solution.
‘What if I grow so strong that it never occurs to them to rebel?’
It was true. Last time, the Friar who had been looking for an opportunity to troll was unable to dare commit the act after seeing Sungjin’s overwhelming power. This might be the simplest and the most effective way to prevent problems.
‘Chosen Ones get 20% of my stats… and the stats I get from Master Hunter title is 30%… so they can never surpass me using the bonuses. I will always win in a 1v1. If a rebellion is to succeed, they would need a minimum of two…’
Sungjin thought about it for a moment, how it would be to fight Serin, Nada, and Franz at the same time. Somehow, the three of them were Swordsman, Mage, and Archer; none of them had overlapping roles or position.
‘Hmm… It wouldn’t be easy’
Sungjin continued to play the scene out in his mind.
‘So summon Cain and Soldamyr first… Have Romance of the Three Kingdoms to auto-read itself… ah, and Serin also has the Thousand and One Nights. Hmm… In that case…’
He sat for a few minutes running simulations through his mind. Sungjin eventually came to a conclusion.
‘It’s close, but I can just barely win.’
It would be hard, but he was confident he could win. Before Khal Gal’s Raid, he would have definitely lost, but Sungjin now had the power of the Ring of the Great Sage on his side.
The main problem was being stabbed in the back during an all out brawl. This was the most vulnerable moment for a betrayal. The reason why Edward’s troll led to the team’s annihilation was because he had betrayed the group as they were facing the Demon King.
Edward was strong, but he could not have possibly won a fight alone against just 2 of the Final 10 members. Sungjin closed his eyes and continued to think.
‘I have to filter the members well… and monitor them carefully… and… I need to get so strong that I can remove any elements of instability so that I can bring the raids to an end.’
And then he was teleported. To the Eleventh chapter. To the Kariharan Frostplains.
Note: In an earlier chapter it was said that raids will be 10 man format instead of 5. It’s an error in the raws itself as we can see here that there will be 5 man raids and a few 10 man instead. We will ask the author for correction of verbiage in the earlier chap.
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