Chapter 47 - Day 12, 9th Floor Anglerfish
I was falling.
It felt like going down a waterslide without any water. I slipped through the stone passage for a while before falling into a room.
The distance between the ceiling and the ground was three metres. As soon as I felt like I was floating in the air, I quickly turned and landed on the ground with my feet.
My first impression of the 9th floor was the smell. It was a smell that I knew, but wasn’t familiar with. It was the smell of a zoo, or a house that raised a lot of dogs or cats. However, the smell was 10 times stronger than that.
I could see that the walls were made of bricks. The floor... Reeds? It seemed as if something like straw was rolled up on the ground. I see. This place,
“Hihyat!” It was a kennel.
I turned straight away and avoided the attack. The owner of the cry literally slammed against the wall.
There was a heavy sound and shaking as the heavy weight collided with the wall.
[Splatter Ape. Type: Primate-based. Variant. Rank C+. ]
[Created by the druids of the Empire, these chimeras are for the purpose of being a weapon. It has the intelligence and strength of a primate, mixed with the violence of a reptile. They desire killing more than anything else, and they relieve their desire for violence and murder on weak prey.]
In short, it was a gorilla covered in scales. The other features were the eyes and nails. It had the yellow eyes of a reptile rather than that of a gorilla. The hands also transitioned into knife-sized fingernails.
“Hiyaya...” The gorilla shook its head before preparing to jump in again. I formed a fist. Rank C+. It was the same rank as the lizardman on the sixth floor that almost wiped out a large number of my group. Fortunately, I was lucky enough to win at that time using an item I had obtained. And now?
“Hyat!” It jumped towards me. It boldly aimed to overwhelm me with its size. The height was 2.5m. I slammed my fist into the smooth abdomen.
It was like punching a rubber tire, but I didn’t get the feeling of my fist sinking in.
The gorilla shrieked and pulled away from me. The sharp nails pierced through the clothes of my back and cut my skin slightly. “Are you angry?”
“Hyaaat!” I had seen a TV documentary about the momentary speed of reptiles. The gorilla swung its long arms at a high speed. I narrowly avoided the nails. More and more red lines appeared on my body.
It seemed like the limiting factor was the gorilla’s endurance. The speed of the swinging arms slowed down and it gradually became less accurate. I immediately took advantage of it. I moved close and continuously struck the abdomen.
After the second punch, I felt something solid breaking. The gorilla stepped back, but its stamina had already fallen so I narrowed the distance again. After repeating this two more times, the gorilla’s knee was broken. There was fear and horror on the face that looked up at me. My fist struck that face.
“... Hah.” After the gorilla collapsed, I place a hand on my waist and restored my breathing. I took short breaths.
[Current Balance: 722/741]
This was the result of evading as much as possible with Limiter Release off. It would be been much quicker if I took a few risks and dived in. Although it would be more complicated if I needed to handle more than two.
“Hyaah...” As soon as I thought that, two big ones showed up in the darkness. Although my wounds weren’t deep, they licked their lips like I was tasty.
“I'm sorry.” One of them was impatient and rushed in first. “The tough experiment is over.” There was only a simple test left. I pulled back slightly and pushed my palms forward. Then I imagined the biggest explosion possible.
There was a loud roar and a flash. I couldn’t determine the exact appearance but I was certain that the gorilla had died instantly.
[Current Balance: 552/741]
I didn’t even think of lowering my palms as I looked in front of me. The straw strewn on the ground and the first corpse were on fire. In front of me were broken iron bars. The corpse of a gorilla had crossed through the iron bar and was caught in another one down the corridor. Almost half of its torso had disappeared.
I turned my head at the sound of footsteps. What was that expression on the remaining gorilla’s face? It was like it had seen a ghost. Maybe its instincts were saying something.
“I was surprised as well...” I muttered and raised my palms again.
“Hya... Hyaiiiik!” The gorilla turned around and ran away.
Once again, I imagined an explosion. Unlike earlier, it was a specific explosion. It wasn’t unnecessarily long and thick, but there was sufficient destructive power compressed within it.
There was a sound similar to an exaggerated gunshot. The gorilla collapsed. I wasn’t thrown back by the explosion because I had aimed for the legs.
[Current Balance: 541/741]
I approached the gorilla. The length was lacking so the explosion hadn’t penetrated its thigh.
I received some damage, decreasing my health by 10 points. However, that was restored due to my blood-sucking ability. Since the first explosion had consumed 170 HP, it was a costly power that consumed a lot of my health.
“Hi... Hi... Hiii....” I brought my hand directly over its head. Since it was an instant attack that killed the gorilla, my HP rose slightly instead of decreasing. I exited through the iron bars and stepped into the corridor. The corridor was quite long. There were many rooms with iron bars on both sides, and I was in one of them. As soon as I took one step, I raised my right hand.
A long thin blast burst out and hit the thigh of a female in the darkness.
The female screamed and fell to the ground. Based on her clothing, she wasn’t a Tellan. “Take your hands off the ticket.”
“Your hands need to tear it quickly. Or I will shoot this out one last time and see who is faster.” The woman’s hands left her ticket. I stepped on her torso and picked up the ticket.
“Spare me. I’ll do whatever you want.” The woman begged.
“...” The woman stared at me before pulling a bag from her inventory. A calorie bar and water emerged. I accepted and chewed on it. I was able to recover HP with my blood-sucking ability, but it didn’t apply to hunger.
“If you spare me...”
“Treat your injury. If I see something resembling a ticket in your hand then I will shoot your head.” I observed the woman. She was tall with good skin. The gym clothes she was dressed in seemed quite pricey. Judging by the shape of her body, she exercised for health purposes.
The woman poured a potion onto her leg. “I will submit to you if you spare me. There is also information that I know and...”
“Lead the way.” I interrupted a second time. The woman stared at my face for a moment before pulling a lantern out of her bag. Then she started walking down the corridor. I stared at the light from the lantern as I moved after her.
“Party...?” The friends I ran around with broke up on the eighth floor... I'm not sure but we fell separately... That's why I reflexively attacked you...”
I was prepared to a certain extent. On the eighth floor, Yang Su-jin and Yoon Ji-hee didn’t descend normally through the stairs. They were automatically bounced after I occupied the area.
Then were they sent to the forest staircases? But after the forest was integrated into Talia, all the stairs had faded away. I was forced to use the staircase in the centre of Talia. Maybe both of them were on this floor but I hadn’t met them yet, or maybe they had gone to another floor. They might not be able to reach the next floor unharmed.
“You... What is your name? I... I am Jang Yoon-mi.”
“You don’t need to know.” After leaving the corridor, there were railings and paths leading to the left and right. Before I picked the way, I turned and carefully examined the walls on both sides of the entrance to the corridor.
Rather than a pigpen, it seemed to be a fully-equipped facility. A type of facility like this would always have a map at each intersection.
“Ah! Map...” Jang Yoon-mi cried out. I looked in the direct that Jang Yoon-mi indicated and studied the map.
The kennel was here. Breeding Room and 1~3 Research Centres. There were personal offices and housing for people of various positions. A dining room. There was also a Cryopreservation and Incubation Room.
“You can read the words... Incredible.”
“What do you think?"
“Huh?” I could see Jang Yoon-mi’s surprised face due to the lantern light. She didn’t know what I was asking.
“Where do you think we should go to?”
“... Ah. I-I guess... There is the place called the Cryopreservation and Incubation Room...”
“There might be something like an egg that can be raised as a pet... Hoho. Is that too much like a game?’
“No. It sounds reasonable.” I nodded. A slightly touched expression appeared on Jang Yoon-mi at my words.
“My name is Kim Hee-chul. Use it comfortably.”
“Ah. Hee-chul... I see. Then will we go to that place?”
“I'm looking forward to it! If eggs are found there...” I glanced over her shoulder as she spoke.
“What is that?!” As I raised my voice, Jang Yoon-mi stopped with surprised and turned around. But she also stopped in her tracks.
It might be because there was nobody behind her. Or maybe it was due to my palms touching her back.
“I will eat well.” I said. Anyway, I triggered… No, there was an explosion.
I gained one more piece of information. If I fired an explosion in close proximity, there wouldn’t be a noise. I immediately searched the body.
Excluding the potions, Jang Yoon-mi’s equipment were just C and D rank garbage. I took all her tickets. I didn’t have any money left so I collected all of hers. The contents of her bag were food, water and a small English textbook. There were also a dozen fluorescent rods used for structural changes. In addition, one radio set to a certain frequency.
Yes. She separated from her group upstairs? Her belongings didn’t seem to say that. This woman belonged to someone else, and the leader was a pretty smart person. I turned on the radio. I waited a bit but I didn’t hear anything.
Even though a radio was handy, it wouldn’t be comfortable to use it carelessly in the dungeon environment. In addition, there was likely to be a password so the possibility of being caught was high.
I picked up the lantern. It was a pretty good item. Of course, I would normally never use something like this. Even if it allowed a clear view, carrying it around in the dungeon was like advertising my position. It would be a different story if I was asking for rescue or actively looking for enemies.
I cut off Jang Yoon-mi’s finger and turned on the lantern. I had grasped the path while Jang Yoon-mi was using the lantern. I had listened attentively while she was making a fuss. I waved the bait as I headed to the Cryopreservation and Incubation Room.
I was like an anglerfish waving its lantern in the deep ocean.
Previous Chapter Next Chapter