Chapter 88 – Cornered Mice (Part 1)
With a heavy blow, cracks appeared along the wall.
Baek Kang Hyun was shaking, his eyes filled with hatred.
— What… what the hell is going on!?
Ten days have passed since the Shadows’ defeat to Young-ju.
And what happened since then was something that could not have happened.
The number of monsters in which were secretly implanted with pure power stones was rapidly decreasing.
So fast that he began to wonder if someone else had a device that pointed to pure power.
The sound was incredibly loud, as if a bomb explosion had caused it.
The Disciples sitting in front of him shuddered at every blow.
Reflected in their faces was undisguised horror.
Hahaha! How much progress was made?
— That is… everything stopped at 50 percent.
The stones with pure power were discovered before they could change the bodies of the monsters.
— Damn it to hell!
Another blow rang out.
Even under the red mask, his trembling gaze could be seen.
Their plan was crumbling.
It was like pitfalls appearing in a river on which they had sailed beautifully before.
But who, who the hell, was so skillfully and purposefully finding the stones with pure power?
Naturally, the guy considered:
‘Could there be a traitor among the Disciples?’
But as he continued to ponder this, he shook his head.
To prevent this from happening in the first place, they’d carefully selected each of their subordinates.
The chances of a traitor emerging were extremely small.
— We’re changing directions.
— Let’s move on to a different plan.
— Ca… Cardinal!
At the mention of this, the Disciples’ faces turned pale.
They did have a backup plan in addition to creating ‘splinters’ by implanting stones with pure power in them.
‘It’s pure madness.’
What they were about to do would be even worse than abducting people as victims.
Simply put, it was an act approaching genocide.
After all, even if the backup plan works, the consequences would affect the whole world.
The Devil’s Teachers in Korea were far from the strongest.
Even if you compare them with the Teachers from China or Japan, the difference is huge.
Therefore, if they move on to this plan, it would be no different from declaring war on the rest of the world.
— It… it’s too dangerous.
Perhaps it would be better to contact the School and discuss the creation of a new pl… kh!
With a wave of Baek Kang Hyun’s hand, the Disciple’s head fell from his shoulders.
— Create a new plan? Do you think that will fix everything? Ah?
— In a situation where the Japanese are already making their way to the finish line, are you saying we have the leisure to create a new plan?
When he mentioned Japan, anxiety mingled with hatred appeared in his gaze.
His memories of all the mockery and ridicule he’d endured immediately surfaced to mind, as well as his loss to Japan.
The sound of the next Disciple’s neck breaking reverberated through the hall.
Baek Kang Hyun examined the remaining Disciples with a crazed look.
— Get it ready.
I don’t intend to repeat myself twice.
— A-uh- understood!
The Disciples immediately rose from the floor and scurried to leave.
— Pleasant to the touch.
Kang Yu, looking down at the three stones lying in his hands, smiled contentedly.
Just today, they’d found as many as three stones with pure power.
As soon as Kim Si Hoon joined his search, the state of affairs immediately changed.
Before this, he’d looked for stones like a needle in a haystack, but with Si Hoon, the situation inevitably changed.
In the last ten days, with the guy next to him, they managed to obtain 14 stones.
Compared to the previous two weeks, during which he could not find even a single stone, this number seemed large.
— Kang Yu, are we done today?
The Gate is too crowded now.
Let’s keep going tomorrow.
— And what are these stones with pure power? Why do they have such an effect on the monsters?
— I’m not sure myself.
Kang Yu, even having lived ten thousand years in Hell, did not understand how Magi works and on what principle turns a man to a demon and a monster to a Hell being.
‘But it doesn’t matter.’
What matters is that they could interfere with the Teachers’ plans by removing these stones from the bodies.
And also that he could use them to his advantage.
‘They must be in shock.’
There was a high probability that they, being unaware of Si Hoon’s ability to easily locate the stones, would be unable to do anything.
After all, the situation could almost be compared to Kang Yu pointing out the treasure in an unknown place to thieves.
Most likely, they were completely discouraged by what is happening.
— Either way, I’m glad I can help you.
Si Hoon smiled faintly.
It was exactly this smile that made people feel flustered.
— Let’s go back.
Looking away from him, Kang Yu sat in the driver’s seat.
On the way home, he was lost in thought.
‘The effect is becoming more apparent.’
Of course, Kang Yu didn’t know how many stones the Devil’s Teachers had.
But the concentration of power contained in these stones was able to increase his Magi to almost 90 units.
It was frightening to imagine what could happen if they had tens, hundreds or even thousands more of these stones.
‘If so, they must be preparing for something serious.’
During the ten days spent with Si Hoon, they’d found 14 stones scattered across different Gates throughout Korea.
This showed that they very well may be in possession of many stones.
‘What will happen now?’
Of course, he did not believe that the Teachers would merely sit back and watch.
They were likely to either send mercenaries after them, or they will push themselves to try and follow the plan.
‘If only we had a little more information…’ The Teachers are clearly focused on splinters of the rift, but it remains a mystery what their main goal is.
Kang Yu would gladly guess, but there was so little information that he couldn’t even form a guess.
‘The Teachers know better than I do what’s happening.’
They certainly had much more information about the rift.
It was not difficult to guess this, considering how the Andras Guild knew it was necessary to use mana stones to form a rift, or how the Disciples, with the use of sacrifices, were able to summon a demon from the Seventh Thousandth Circle of Hell.
‘I’m sure we’ll find out soon enough.’
In this situation, it would be dangerous to assume their plans, and whatever else they’d be willing to do, with the lack of information.
— Ka… Kang Yu.
On their way from Suwon to Seoul, Kang Yu noticed Kim Si Hoon’s expression turning serious.
— What is it?
— I just got a message from the system…
Kang Yu, not understanding what the guy meant, looked at him questioningly.
They’re not even on a hunt right now.
How could he get a system message?
— What does it say?
Before Si Hoon could continue, Kang Yu answered an incoming call from Young-ju.
— Give me a sec.
— Where are you now?
— What’s going on?
— Fast! Where are you?! — The girl hastily shouted.
Hearing her speak so frantically as if she’d lost her mind, Kang Yu frowned.
— I’m on my way from Suwon to Seoul.
— Go to Isu Station! Right now!
— Chae Young-ju, — Kang Yu said in a low tone.
— Calm down.
— This is not the time!
— Calm down, I said.
Take a deep breath and focus.
Don’t jabber meaninglessly.
Rushing will not solve anything.
There was silence, and then he heard her exhale.
Kang Yu nodded his head.
— Well, explain it normally now.
— Gates appeared at the center of Isu Station.
— Gates appeared?
— Well actually, they can’t be called real Gates… They are more like… a rift.
Exactly the same blue cracks that appeared with Orias.
Kang Yu had a bad feeling.
— Are demons coming out of it?
— What is it then?
After a brief pause, Young-ju continued in a trembling voice.
— Black energy… it covers people… and… and then they…
Young-ju couldn’t continue.
Though she fell silent, Kang Yu could imagine what was going on there.
‘Magi is spilling from the rift.’
And then the Magi covers people.
Based on this, there were not many possibilities of what was happening.
— The humans… turn into demons.
More precisely, not demons.
An unprepared person, receiving such an amount of Magi, turns not into a demon but into a Hell creature.
Either that or… they die right there.
One way or another, the number of people who could remain unaffected by so much power was very small.
After all, even strong Players could not resist it, let alone ordinary people.
What was happening was comparable to the use of biological weapons in the city center.
No, this was something with an even more deplorable effect.
Because the people who turn into Hell creatures will attack ordinary citizens.
— Please… come quickly.
Hwa Yeon and I are headed to the station too.
— I’m coming.
Kang Yu turned his head to the guy sitting in the passenger seat.
— What was written in your message?
— The number of splinters is increasing… The system is telling me to stop it.
Kang Yu narrowed his eyes as the thoughts in his head began to spin at a great speed.
A rift that appeared at one of the most crowded stations.
The transformation of humans into Hell creatures with the help of Magi.
A growing number of splinters.
Looking at these three facts, the puzzle began to take shape.
Kang Yu’s expression twisted.
The Devil’s Teachers were going to keep the rift open with the help of the transformed Hell creatures.
It was because of him and Si Hoon that their original plan failed.
And in the end, cornered, the Teachers decided to choose quantity over quality.
But the problem was that the victims for this ‘quantity’ were not monsters, but helpless civilians.
Kang Yu had never thought of himself as a good person.
He did not feel sad about other people’s sorrows, nor sympathize with them.
He always distanced himself from people who could become an obstacle, and took advantage of everything that could be useful.
Cruel and cold.
All because he’d lived in a place where it’s impossible to live.
But even he knew the line.
No matter how greedy he was, he did not touch people who could not answer him.
(Editor’s Note: i.e.
those significantly weaker than him.)
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In this way, he maintained what little humanity he had left.
But the Devil’s Teachers have crossed all boundaries.
The guy pressed the gas pedal to the floor and the car jerked forward with great speed.
Having fallen into a desperate situation, they, like mice, were floundering and trying to get out.
Only, their floundering turned out to be more harmful than expected.
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