Chapter 93 – How to achieve the highest degree of demonic form (Part 1)
He opened his eyes, but saw nothing.
It was like the whole world was engulfed in darkness.
Moving his hand, he felt a recoil in his body.
His body was wrapped in something sticky, as if he had fallen into a swamp.
His mind was a little clouded, as if drunk on drugs.
He felt as if he was seeing something pouring into this darkness.
‘Baek Kang Hyun.’ The guy began to recall what happened, the image of being devoured by a huge mouth.
An image of desperately trying to break out, but ultimately consumed by darkness.
As he watched Kang Hyun calmly sink in the ocean, he could not figure out what to do.
‘Need… to get out.’
He shook his head, but there was only darkness around.
The guy pushed off the void with his feet.
More and more.
And eventually, his body began to rise up.
Something grabbed him by the ankle and dragged him to the bottom.
The guy looked down.
A huge mouth sucked him in deep.
He sank even lower.
He was shaken.
Using all the power he had, he’d been able to pull out one leg, but the other was cut off from the sharp teeth.
The guy waved with both hands, pushing away with his remaining leg as he tried to swim higher out of the darkness.
But there were mouths on all sides.
The snow-white fangs of a predator and the jaws of a Devourer.
His whole body was immediately covered in bites, his arm was cut off again, and his face was ripped half open.
Even so, he did not stop.
He knew better than anyone that if he stopped now, there would be no turning back.
The guy looked up.
In the darkness, where nothing could be seen before, there was one open door.
He headed in its direction, but the devouring jaw almost reached his waist.
With cries of pain, he desperately tried to get to the door, but the devouring jaw did not want to let the guy go so easily.
His consciousness clouded again and everything floated before his eyes.
‘Ah…’ He did not understand where he was.
The guy could not even remember who he was: neither name, nor age, nor past – he did not remember anything.
In an instant, he even thought that the bottom of this ocean could be quite pleasant and comfortable.
— Kan… Kang Yu!
He heard a voice.
A woman’s voice.
Through the darkness, a faint light appeared again.
‘Get it together.’ He bit his lip.
He had to remember.
Who he was, why he was here, and how to get out of here.
A sequence must be made.
He reached forward and grasped the handle of the wide-open door, struggling to pull it toward him.
The door closed.
— Ka-Kang Yu! Are you okay?
The guy came to his senses.
Taking a deep breath, he opened his eyes and saw Echidna in front of him.
He shook his head, looking around.
The same place where he fought Kang Hyun.
— Where’s the rift?
— It disappeared after the demon died…
So the source has been eliminated.
The news brought calm to him, and he lay back on the ground.
Echidna, trembling, stared down at him, transparent tears rolling down her cheeks.
— You were going to leave.
Kang Yu remained silent.
— You summoned me, so I know for sure.
You almost just died.
— At times like this, you have to risk your life to keep being badass.
— It’s not funny!
Echidna was really angry and glared at him with displeasure.
— You said I wouldn’t be lonely anymore, that I wouldn’t be left alone!
The guy reached out to her, wiping the tears rolling down her cheeks.
— I’m sorry, I’m sorry.
She cried even harder, falling into his arms.
Kang Yu, lightly stroking her head, delved into thought.
‘As expected, it’s too hard to open the door now.’
Opening the door.
It’s a way to forcibly collect Man Ma Jung in one place.
Even in Hell, he’d used this method only in the most extreme cases.
It doesn’t take a genius to figure out why.
‘If something goes wrong, you’ll be devoured too.’
Man Ma Jung is great.
(Editor’s Note: Hard to find an English equivalent.
Generally great; huge; strong.)
Even in Hell, Kang Yu did not have time to fully explore this vast ocean.
Dozens, hundreds of demons.
To call that ocean in which all their great energy is collected another universe would not be an exaggeration at all.
That is why the place that gathers all their powers together is so dangerous.
‘But I usually never had problems with the first door before.’
Likely because the Gaia System sealed his powers, it became significantly more difficult to control Man Ma Jung.
‘I can’t mindlessly resort to this method.’
The risk turned out to be even higher than he’d anticipated.
If it were not for the faint voice of Echidna, who called him through the darkness… he could well have remained trapped at the bottom of the ocean of Magi forever.
From now on, he should wait for the moment when the lock set by the System weakens even more so he can access more Magi.
‘I can’t just die like this.’
Kang Yu looked down at Echidna hugging him.
Although not much time has passed since his return to Earth, a huge number of events have taken place.
He could eat tasty food again, relax, and enjoy a pleasant aftertaste.
And also… he has loved ones to protect.
He now had a meaning in life.
He received a series of notifications:
[You defeated the demon of the Eighth Thousandth Circle, Amudscias.]
[After surpassing the level limit, you will receive the accumulated points.]
[Magi increased by 5 units.]
[You have successfully mastered the Power of Blockade.]
— Oh, oh, oh!
Five units of Magi!
This immediately brought a smile to his face.
Given that he now has just under a hundred units of Magi, the five units were a really large number.
And with Kraken’s Wrath, the effect will be even stronger.
‘I’ve finally gone over 100.’
Kang Yu opened his status window.
Now he had as many as 103 units of Magi!
Previously, he only managed to reach a three-digit number with the help of Kraken’s Wrath, but now he had 103 units without intervention from a third-party.
‘I’ve heard that all World Ranker players have at least three-digit numbers in their stats.’
In order to qualify for evaluation from the judges, it was necessary to reach at least Level 85 and have one three-digit attribute.
Usually, Players question whether they can even advance to triple digits at Level 89 and Rank 9, but Kang Yu managed to do so while at Level 59.
Ultimately, the strength of Players is not determined by the level, but by the well-raised attributes.
That is why, even if he decides to fight someone from the World Ranker, he will be no worse than them.
On the contrary, considering all the Powers he has, it would not be surprising at all that he will be able to surpass them.
Only three months have passed.
Yet in three months, he’d risen to the level of World Players and was able to compete with them.
‘And the new Force is quite effective, too.’
The Power of Blockade.
This Force was so powerful that it could even block the powers of Kang Yu himself.
Despite the fact that it has a drawback – the glove must touch the target – it’s still incredibly effective.
‘I think I’ll be able to make use of it.’ Kang Yu smiled.
It’s a pity, of course, that he did not manage to overcome the Level 59 crisis yet again, but receiving a new Power and more Magi made him forget about it.
— Kang Yu!
— Kang Yu!
— Hey, are you okay?
Han Sol, Si Hoon and Young-ju ran towards him, with Dae Su, Eun Bi and Hwa Yeon trailing some ways behind.
— The guy nodded his head and tried to stand up.
But at that moment he staggered and fell back to the ground.
— Kang Yu! — Young-ju held out her hand to him.
The chains that flew from her wrists cushioned his fall.
— If it’s too hard, just lie down! Don’t make people worry about you unnecessarily! — The girl glared at him.
— And who allowed you to go alone? You yourself warned us how dangerous the Teachers are! So why did you decide to take care of everything yourself?! —
Kang Yu just laughed at her loud outrage.
Realizing that behind the anger hides sincere concern, the guy’s mood significantly improved.
— Well, anyway, everything was successfully resolved in the end, no?
— That’s besides the point! Do you know how much…
— Thank you for your concern.
— Kang Yu gently placed his hand atop Young-ju’s head.
She shuddered with surprise and recoiled sharply from him.
— I… I wasn’t worried! — The girl shouted, her face turning as red as her hair.
Without answering, Kang Yu lay back down on the ground.
As soon as the fight had ended, it felt as though his entire body was seized by fatigue.
Han Sol approached the lying Kang Yu and, placing her hand on his chest, concentrated her powers.
— Healing Light.
Although the fatigue did not completely disappear, the aching pain throughout his body began to subside.
— Not bad at all!
— Because this time I’m at the 5th rank.
— What? You’ve crossed Level 40?
Although he didn’t say it out loud, the speed of their increase impressed him.
— This time, Si Hoon got a special quest.
And once we completed it, our levels went up a lot.
— A special quest?
— Kang Yu, I’ll explain it to you later.
For now, I think you should rest.
— Kang Yu nodded his head slightly.
I feel like I’m about to pass out.’
Although he received the Healing Light and his body stopped aching, the pain remained.
— It’s hard for you to move, isn’t it?
— A bit.
— Kang Yu nodded.
She smiled the way hunters do, and lifted his body.
Although Han Sol had the appearance of a fragile girl, she was still a Player.
One way or another, physically she was definitely superior to ordinary people in strength.
That’s why it was not difficult for her to carry an adult man in her arms.
— I’ll take you home.
— Well, this is a little bit… — Kang Yu smiled awkwardly.
Whatever it was, Kang Yu felt strange upon realizing he was easily being carried in the arms of a cute girl.
‘I think it would be better if I ask her to put me down.’
Although it was difficult enough to move, he could still walk in a straight line.
— Thanks for your help, but…
At that moment, something incredibly soft touched his abdomen, causing a pleasant feeling that was impossible to describe in words.
His eyes bulged out.
— Think you can walk by yourself? — Han Sol questioned, tilting her head.
— Oh, well… ah…
Doubt immediately arose in him, generated by the struggle between instinct and reason.
However, his hesitation was short-lived.
Kang Yu sighed loudly and replied:
— Actually, I doubt it.
Oh well, there’s nothing I can do about it… Even though I don’t want to force you, it’s better than pushing myse…
— In that case, Kang Yu, I’ll carry you! — Dae Su said.
But that’s not it!
— Hahaha! It would be much more convenient if I carry you, not Noona!
(Editor’s Note: Noona is what men in Korea call women older than them, usually out of respect and intimacy.
Basically ‘older sister.’)
‘Don’t come near me.’
— Since you can’t walk, I can’t just stand by!
— Kang Yu! Come into my arms!
Dae Su took the guy into his arms and he immediately felt the solid, stone-like body with a stench of sweat.
— Kang Yu! I’ll take you home right away! Do not worry.
Guys, I’ll get him home safely!
— But… your house is in a completely different direction.
So… — Kang Yu tried to reason.
— Hahaha! For you, hyung, I’ll do anything!
— Well, put me down. Maybe I can walk on my own.
— Patients should not strain themselves! Relax!
Dae Su concentrated even more strength in his arms, ready to hit the road.
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The sweat that soaked up Dae Su’s entire shirt immediately splashed on the guy.
‘Oh, no.’ His face paled.
With a plaintive expression, he reached a hand out to Han Sol.
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