Chapter 204

San stepped forward leisurely and stretched out his right hand to raise his sword.

Seti swung his sword forward and hurriedly snapped his body back. However, the man he was dueling with was faster and stronger than Seti could have ever imagined.

Clank-Clank- San approached Seti leisurely, swinging his sword from side to side as if playing a game. Seti clenched his jaw. He gripped his sword so tightly that his sword started trembling relentlessly. Seti couldn’t believe that this was reality. His opponent was a mere human!

Even though he wasn’t a combat sage, he was still an accomplished sage. However, Set immediately realized that he had no chance. Whether Seti attacked, blocked, or disengaged, San would relentlessly pour out attacks.

Furthermore, the huge roars and stinging winds from San’s attack made Seti grow nauseous and want to faint. Seti felt he needed to quickly accelerate to the 6th Stage.

Suddenly, San’s movements accelerated. The tip of his sword seemed to be stabbing from all angles.

‘Is he attacking my feet?’ Seti instinctively swung his sword down to parry the attack and pulled his leg back. His upper body moved forward a little in the process.

‘?’

Seti’s eyes widened. San’s gloved palm suddenly obscured his eyes. He felt the strong grip of San’s fingers digging into his temples.

Seti felt his head become unbearably hot. Seti heard his opponent’s muffled voice.

“Go, now.”

Pop!

With a popping sound, Seti felt his opponent’s hand release and slowly move away. The outline of the world was blurring. Seti felt a foreign substance on his face.

Something seemed to be leaking from every orifice on his face. Red, white, and yellow substances. The memories of his 150 years of life were quickly being erased.

The extreme killing skill, which San called the ‘Brain Melting Qi,’ came into existence in this world. It was the first time San had openly used a skill he had only theorized about.

“Effective distance 20 centimeters. Time before full execution, 0.3 seconds. Sages are definitely different. It’s a little tricky to use, but the effects are clear,” San muttered as he looked up from his watch.

Biyeon’s dagger cut through space. Setin rolled on the floor with an ugly look. However, she couldn’t do much else. She was completely overwhelmed by Biyeon’s power.

A handful of dust entered her mouth. Pew! She spat it out as her eyes shone fiercely.

Setin was below her opponent in both speed and information processing ability.

Setin’s main ability was sowing confusion through mental attacks. She could cause hallucinations, confusing her opponent with spatial illusions, and attack the other’s mental world through suggestion. However, none of her abilities worked on the human woman in front of her.

Just a moment ago, she saw her colleague crumble and collapse onto the ground with blood freely flowing from the corners of his clenched mouth.

Swoosh!

The sound of Biyeon’s dagger was heard again as it whipped through the air. Setin rolled her body on the ground again. She became terrified by the sound.

The tip of Biyeon’s dagger suddenly appeared from various angles and parts of space that it shouldn’t naturally be coming from. Setin was barely able to detect the attacks even though she was in the 5th Stage of Acceleration.

‘A sword skill that utilizes the properties of space. Actually, it’s more than that.’

The tip of Biyeon’s dagger pierced more than twenty places on Setin’s body at the same time. Biyeon’s attack seemed to fold space.

Setin’s head, neck, chest, stomach, waist, back, arms, and legs screamed with excruciating pain as the attacks all landed simultaneously. It was like a singular attack, but how could so many attacks from such different angles come through at the exact same time? She couldn’t even think of counterattacking.

Setin’s own limit of folding space and attacking was limited to four attacks. The principle was like cutting out a corner of a multi-fold paper and unfolding it again, creating several holes.

“Ugh…”

Setin let out a moan. Where would the next attack come from? This time, the attack wasn’t from Biyeon’s dagger, but from her pistol’s muzzle. Setin suddenly recalled how Sage Tuk met her end. 

‘Those… those bullets are dangerous.’

She quickly twisted her body. However, an extreme sensation of heat soon flashed across her chest.

Bang- Bang-

The second and third bullets also pierced through her body. As Setin predicted, the bullets exploded once more inside her body. A cold liquid started pouring out of her wounds.

Acid? Setin wriggled her body in pain as she tried to control and regulate her circulatory systems. She thought she could handle this much.

“?”

Setin raised her head. The human woman started taking a few steps backward. From about three feet away, with her arms crossed, Biyeon stared at Setin.

For Setin, it seemed as though her opponent had no intention of attacking. Instead, her opponent was looking at her wristwatch.

“Don’t mind me. Keep doing what you need to survive. I’m just observing. I developed a magic bullet made of super-strong Nectar, so I was curious about its effect. Perhaps sages will react differently?”

“What have you done?” 

“Left arm.”

Instead of answering, Biyeon muttered. Setin’s left arm trembled uncontrollably. Her left arm was ignoring its master’s will and moving freely according to Biyeon’s orders.

Up, down, rotate…

“First Stage blast. Left.”

A small explosion came from Setin’s shoulder area. Her left arm drooped down as if all the bones in her arm had been shattered. Setin screamed uncontrollably as the pain rushed up her neck. Biyeon tilted her head.

“Right, Second Stage blast.”

Setin’s right shoulder bulged out for a moment before deflating.

Both of Setin’s arms drooped by her side lifelessly. She heard Biyeon’s voice in her ears. The sound of her voice resounded harshly in Setin’s ear.

“I saw the experiments you guys did on the summoned humans here. Did you really have to go so far? To neither be dead nor living… to be in a perpetual state of pain… what the hell did you all want to see?”

“…”

“Anyway, we killed them all. The first time I had to kill one of your human captives, I cried, but I still made sure to kill everyone. I’ve also killed your subordinates and everyone else in this forsaken area…”

“…”

“Heart… blast.”

Setin’s heart fluttered like a rapidly deflating balloon. Her body momentarily trembled before collapsing onto the ground. In Setin’s rapidly dimming mind, she recalled the orders the Master had given her.

- Try negotiating, and if it doesn’t work, retreat.

- Take your time, if possible, don’t start a conflict.

- The samples of those two are far more important than all of you combined.

- If you must fight against them…

A meaningful expression appeared on Setin’s face before she fell to her death.

***

The two stared blankly at the screen.

They were in Section 27. This was the last among all the sections. It was also the place that they had spent a year in when they first arrived in this strange world. The facility was in shambles.

The section had already been closed, but San and Biyeon were able to find what they were looking for. It was something that they had wanted to see with their own two eyes since a long time ago.

“Thank goodness…”

“Yeah, really.”

They saw the things they wanted to see.

They’d now be able to do what they wanted.

Perhaps this was all part of the clever being, the Master, who operated this summoning program. The two smiled bitterly.

“Hmm… so, he wants to see the end, does he? Still, he’s still a piece of shit.”

“Well, I guess he does have some manners.”

With this, everything was sorted out. The expression on their faces as they left Pian was bright. The longer match and war would still go on, but it was now unlikely that it would progress one-sidedly.

San clenched his fist. He marveled at the delicious cigarettes that he hadn’t smoked in such a long time.

“Now, all we have to do is kill those we want to kill and save those we want to save. And we’ll survive until the bitter end.”

Confrontation – Chapter 6

D–40

“Was this the Creator’s workplace?”

With a tired expression, San looked back at the place they had just passed.

“It was a huge living lab. The sheer size and diversity of this place…”

“There seems to be no end or limit. If we consider how far we crossed, I think it’s about the size of Siberia.”

“It must be a continent connected to the North Pole. There’s no sea.”

They marched further north, not south. Biyeon pulled out a compass. The needle wasn’t pointing in any direction. It was constantly oscillating.

“It’s the north pole.” 

“We should put down a flag.”

San narrowed his eyes. They were at the point where the continent ended. Or, where all the continents began. Anyway, the ends of the world.

As far as the eye could see, the whole world was white. At the edge of the horizon, the never-setting sun stayed in place.

The aurora scattered by the solar winds caught in the planet’s magnetic field was shining throughout the sky like a computer desktop screensaver.

The bitter cold and fierce gusts of wind seemingly wanted to threaten them, but it did not attract their attention.

They were dressed in thick fur and thick animal skins, and they built a house made of ice that resembled an Eskimo’s igloo. They were currently nestled inside.

In the center of the igloo, a bonfire was lit to heat the inside space. The heat would melt the ice from the inside, but the steam would soon refreeze, so the temporary house wouldn’t be destroyed.

They secured enough food and water to last a few days. They even completed the installation of other necessary convenience facilities.

“Do you really think we can talk freely here?”

“Believe me. Check if you want. Are you hearing any signals when you’re in the 6th Stage of Acceleration?”

“It’s just full of static.”

“No matter how cunning the gods are, the limits of noise and communication are unavoidable. Could it be that a relay base station wasn’t installed up here? Besides, the magnetic poles here are very unstable, so wireless communication is nearly impossible to achieve due to the frequent magnetic storms and solar winds.”

“That’s why you said we should come here.”

“Now, let’s discuss our future in earnest. So far, we’ve communicated through spirits, but we need a more sophisticated and focused conversation.”

“First of all, shall we summarize what we’ve found out through our scouting?”

“Let’s start with the task the Master has left us.”

“Okay, let’s start there. He plays a big role in this operation. We destroyed his base, so how do you think he’ll respond in the future?”

“I sent Kirky, so we should be able to get in touch with him soon. If our conjectures are correct, the Master won’t be able to refuse.”

They conducted an in-depth conversation using all their mental faculties of logical deduction, induction, and reasoning.

They refined ‘The Last Operation’ in detail. The basic idea had been established, but they weren’t able to materialize any results due to various limitations.

Previously, there was no clear separation between the two of what should be known to their enemies and what shouldn’t be known. Though they had a general sense, they were now clear on the matter.

Unlike before, the atmosphere was serious. There was a clear expression of irritability and anger in their faces. They were trying to keep the mood bright, but the heinous trauma they suffered wasn’t the kind of joke that could be easily tossed aside.

“When was the last contact from the gods?”

“Three days ago.”

“Then it must have been 48 hours before that, so it must have happened five days ago. Did you get the profile on that guy named Loki?”

“They say he’s the arbiter who forcefully terminated Episode 138. He’s known to be very cunning and clever. He’s also capable of controlling the behavior of animals and plants through his consciousness.”

“Do you think he’s chasing us now?”

“Based on the last correspondence I received, I heard it was Loki and three combat sages.”

“What is the level of Loki’s fighting power?”

“I’d estimated that he’s in the 9th Stage of Acceleration. Up to now, there’s been no sign of him conducting any activity in this world yet,” Biyeon said quietly. 

A moment of silence passed. San wiped his mouth.

“He’s terrifyingly strong.” 

“Very.”

An awkward silence ensued. They felt the weight of fate pushing down on them.

Even without this news, they were already going through some internal turmoil from all the pain and struggle that they had accumulated throughout the year… pain and struggle that they were never able to fully expunge from their hearts. Rage. Hate. Anger. Disappointment. Petulance.

“How many such people like Loki are there in this world?”

“Four? Or maybe more… amongst the Original Beings, I heard that there’s Satan, Loki, Pasoon, and Set… but I’m not sure if this is the entire list. There might even be a Shiva or Baal. Maybe Cronos and the Titan will also make an appearance…”

Biyeon giggled.

“It seems that the evil gods in myths and legends lost their jobs on Earth and formed a group in this town.”

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