Episode 228. The Level is the Bomb (2)

He didn’t want to abandon the Holy Sword or give up his current strength. Then, there was only one option left.

“Then, become stronger than the Demon King.”

The only way was for the warrior to grow and go beyond the Demon King’s level. 

“Be stronger so that Balmung won’t think about sacrificing you.”

If the warrior’s strength overwhelmed the Demon King, then there would be no reason for the Holy Sword to use excessive measures like sacrificing its master.

The only reason Balmung tried to sacrifice its master was because Park Joon-min was weak. 

“Of course, that won’t be easy. Maybe even impossible.”

The countless people who died in the West became the Demon King’s XP and Kim Seon-Hyeok knew how considerable that was, since he felt it with his entire body.

“I’m guessing that the Demon King’s level is much higher than yours and mine combined.”

“No, there’s no way…”

Park Joon-min had become more mature after gaining back the memories of his death. But when he heard that, his mouth dropped open and he looked surprised as if he didn’t think the Demon King’s level would be that high.

“Is it even possible for me to go beyond the Demon King?”

Kim Seon-Hyeok shook his head when he saw that Park Joon-min’s complexion had become noticeably paler.

“At this point, we don’t know.”

His slightly irresponsible answer caused the warrior to look dispirited.

“You never know unless you try it.”

Kim Seon-Hyeok looked straight at Park Joon-min when his shoulders slumped.

“But you’ll still have to do it. If you can’t, then you’ll most definitely die.”

Light returned to Park Joon-min’s eyes. He realized once again that he had no choice.

“Then, what should I do from now on?”

The warrior’s face was full of expectations. He believed his brother would lead him to a new domain.

“What do you mean, what should you do?”

Kim Seon-Hyeok grinned at him. But that smile was neither kind nor gentile.

“What else is there to do but work to raise your level?”

As if foreshadowing the path of hardship waiting for the warrior, the smile on Kim Seon-Hyeok’s lips was ominous. 

Kim Seon-Hyeok stopped the warrior as he was trying to leave for the nearest battlefield.

“Why? What’s wrong?”

“Do you want to take the safe but slow route? Or do you want to go the quick route even if it’s a little difficult?”

There was nothing to think about.

“I’ll take the quick route.”

The warrior knew that if he wanted to lessen the gap between himself and the devil, then he had to strain himself a bit.

“You won’t regret it, will you?”

But when Kim Seon-Hyeok asked such a weighty question, even the warrior hesitated for a moment.

However, since the answer had also been given, Park Joon-min wasn’t in a position to be picky.[1]

“Alright, then. I’ll take it as decided.”

“But what exactly is it?”

Instead of answering, Kim Seon-Hyeok asked him another question. 

“Do you know what the best type of hunting is?”

The warrior shook his head

“The best type of hunting…”

Kim Seon-Hyeok looked at him firmly.

“Is battle.”

***

At first, he didn’t understand what Kim Seon-Hyeok meant. However, as time went on, Park Joon-min realized what he was talking about.

Screams. 

The warrior frowned when he heard the footsteps of the earth-shaking creatures.

There weren’t that many coming towards him. Usually, he would have torn the herd apart and dealt with the surviving creatures.

That was, if that herd was the first herd today.

“Aghh! Again! Are you serious?! Again?!”

But unfortunately, this wasn’t the first or second time the demons were gathering. 

Maybe twenty times? No, maybe thirty times?

When he dealt with one group, another immediately gathered. He fought continuously like that for two days. He couldn’t remember how many of them he dealt with.

“Oh, come on!”

After barely managing to deal with the gathered crowd of demons, he saw a dust cloud in the distance as the Northern cavalry rushed towards him. Behind them, he could see hundreds of demons chasing after them.

“Please, stop sending them!”

He didn’t know where they were finding the demons, but the Northern cavalry was endlessly luring them in.

“As a human, it’s too much!”

He screamed and protested, but it was useless on Kim Seon-Hyeok.

“What bullshit. You’ve clearly got a lot of energy.”

A warrior’s greatest strength was the vitality that was like a cockroach. He might've been tired and injured, but since a single spell by the Holy Sword, he was still energetic after two full days of fighting.

Of course, that was Kim Seon-Hyeok’s thoughts. Park Joon-min thought differently.

“If this is your method!”

Park Joon-min shouted at him as he cut down one of the lesser demons in half.

“Then your method!

Divine light shone from the Holy Sword and swept away all the remaining demons.

But the cavalry brought another group of demons before disappearing elsewhere and the warrior was once again surrounded by demons.

“Is no different from Balmung’s!”

Kim Seon-Hyeok snorted at the warrior’s screams.

“They’re completely different.”

They were very different.

The Holy Sword pushed Park Joon-min into battles that its master wouldn’t be able to overcome, while he created a battlefield that Park Joon-min could overcome.

The only thing was, Seon-Hyeok was giving Joon-min a very short(?) break time.

“Even if I’m doing it quickly, does it have to be like this?”

When the three-day battle ended, the warrior was completely crushed. He wasn’t exhausted. He had used up all his mental power after fighting without any breaks.

“This is the fastest way.”

Park Joon-min must’ve been really tired because he just sighed instead of talking back after looking into the air. 

Guess after checking his status, he couldn’t think of anything to say.

 “Ugh. But can’t I take breaks as I do this?”

“Stop making a fuss. You don’t want to give up the Holy Sword nor do you want to die. Weren’t you expecting this much hardship?”

Kim Seon-Hyeok didn’t let him off and continued to push the warrior as strictly as he had never done before.

“If you don’t think you can do this, then just give up. Forget about the Holy Sword and the Demon King and go hide somewhere. Or if you don’t want to do that, then follow your insidious guide and die fighting the Demon King.”

“Hyung-nim, I’m sorry. I was just complaining because I was tired. I wasn’t thinking things through.”

Park Joon-min apologized with a contrite look. 

“Haa. Joon-min.”

Kim Seon-Hyeok sighed as he looked at him. 

“The Holy Sword’s power is too strong. This is especially the case for those who are demonic.”

The Holy Sword was a predator that ate demons and those who were evil, it was the natural enemy of the Demon King. The warrior was too dependent on such a sword.

“That’s your biggest weakness.”

Park Joon-min’s fighting style was too stationary. He merely stood in one place, holding the Holy Sword and poured his divine energy at the enemy running towards him.

In Kim Seon-Hyeok’s eyes, that wasn’t a battle or anything else.

“You’ve never really had a fight. When it comes to fighting, the Adenburg Kingdom’s Two-handed swordsmen is better than you.”

Medicine is always bitter. That was the case right now.

Park Joon-min looked shocked by Kim Seon-Hyeok’s harsh and acrimonious words. He looked as if he had been physically cut by those words.

But Kim Seon-Hyeok’s biting remarks weren’t finished yet.

“You’re also weak mentally. You’ve died four times, but you’ve never desperately pushed yourself to the limit to do something before.”

Park Joon-min had all the disadvantages that were possible for a warrior to have - he had a powerful weapon that he was completely dependent on.

And that was all because of the insidious Holy Sword. From the start, that wretched guide never had any intentions of properly raising its master. 

“You’ve got a long way to go, Joon-min.” 

Park Joon-min ducked his head. He looked completely depressed.

“I’ll try harder.”

But that was only for a little bit. Park Joon-min quickly regained his resolve as he looked determined. 

“Good choice.”

Kim Seon-Hyeok smiled and patted him on the shoulder.

“We’ve got enough rest. Let’s start again.”

The cavalry was running towards them with demons chasing right after them.

But this time, there were too many of them. Even scarier was the fact that that wasn’t it.

The west, the north, and the south. The scattered cavalry was returning one after another with thousands of demons on their tail.

“If you don’t stop them, then they’ll go after the base.”

Kim Seon-Hyeok, who had retreated far away, spoke up as if he was watching a fire from across the river.

***

Park Joon-min fought against the demons in a completely different way from before. Instead of raising his divine power and fighting easily, he moved his whole body as he dealt with the demons.

“He’s doing great.”

Kim Seon-Hyeok smiled as he realized he hadn’t wasted his breath talking.

Although it was dizzying to watch as the warrior used his hands and feet to fight the demons, it was clear that Park Joon-min was trying to change himself. 

“Don’t butt in.”

He had been watching the battle for a long time when he warned in a low voice. 

“I know how much Qeishas value their companions, but if you were to interrupt right now, it wouldn’t be helpful to him.”

“Unlike you, he’s still weak.”

The masked man who had suddenly appeared was Park Joon-min’s Qeisha companion.

“Just because he’s weak right now doesn’t mean he’ll always be weak. Especially if you’re a warrior meant to face the Demon King.”

The male Qeisha couldn’t refute it. He could only stare at him with disapproving eyes.

Hm, he doesn’t like me. 

It would be strange not to be hated.

When Kim Seon-Hyeok had almost killed Park Joon-min during their fight, the Qeisha had been watching from afar. But he hadn’t been able to think of an excuse to engage in a one-on-one duel that was borrowing the guise of a training spar. 

Seeing how Kim Seon-Hyeok had nearly beaten Joon-min to death, and now, was harshly overworking him, it was only natural that the Qeisha didn’t like him. 

“I won’t stop you if things actually become dangerous for Joon-min. But that’s not right now.”

The male Qeisha disappeared again without responding. 

While they had been talking, Park Joon-min had been continuously fighting against the large number of demons. Although he was bringing forth his divine powers from time to time, it was clear that he was using his body to deal with the enemy as much as possible. 

“Guess all the bastards from the vicinity were dragged over.”

Kim Seon-Hyeok had been watching the warrior fighting for a while when Darun showed up and informed him of their surrounding situation.

“Then only the ones in the West are left.”

The best warriors in the tribe have gone, so they’ll be coming over soon.”

If the frantic Park Joon-min heard that, he would have freaked out, but Kim Seon Hyeok smiled with satisfaction.

While the warrior had grown, there was a different reason he had picked this place as the battlefield.

This was like the corridor connecting the Demon King’s land with the kingdom. And this was also a location that the Adenburg’s expedition would have to cross if they were returning from the West.

“If we keep cleaning them up, then it’ll be easier on the people who are returning.”

This was the best way for him to help the expedition without going against Ophelia’s order not to go out onto the front lines any longer.

Of course, dealing with the occasional demons that escaped was an unintended bonus.

“Since I’m not going out to find them. They’re coming to me.”

“If that’s the case, you’re certainly not hiding your vigor.”

“That’s just how I feel.”

This place helped the warrior grow up, it cleaned up the way for the Adenburg expedition, and he could also kill enough demons to gain the experience to level up himself. Overall, it was a great location. 


1. The raw wrote that Joon-min wasn’t in a position to pick between warm rice or cold rice.

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