Chapter 144 - War Between Criminals #3
Kazuo, who was in charge of the South Korean branch, died in an accident. Originally, it would’ve been a big event, due to a struggle over the successor of the branch.
Yamaguchi removed the seeds of the conflict by appointing a successor as soon as possible. Thus, Mister Park was promoted. He was Kazuo’s right arm, and oversaw the general operations of the Korean branch.
Yamaguchi came to the conclusion that the South Korean branch could be left to Mister Park.
There was a big TV screen in front of Yamaguchi, with a mysterious man wearing an opera mask declared war on the mafia on it. It was like a scene from a movie.
"A declaration of war to the mafia by one man alone might seem reckless but... According to reports, it isn’t the case.”
Then Mister Park, who was sitting at his feet, looked up and said,
"Yes, that’s right. Phantom has done impossible things on his own, and it’s almost like he’s using alter egos. So I investigated and...”
Yamaguchi pulled Mister Park up.
“You have been promoted, so don’t feel the need to be so submissive.”
“I-I see. I don’t think I have enough resources to stop Phantom.”
“Haha. Stop talking about Phantom for now. First of all, sit here. I will consider your opinion.”
Yamaguchi was the boss of the Japanese Yakuza that had thousands of members. Even Mister Park was like a young child in front of him.
Yamaguchi stroked his white beard as he read the information prepared by Mister Park.
“Phantoms. He really is smart. He doesn’t need to come directly. Just move the symbol, and he will get what he wants. Could you do this?"
Anyone could become a Phantom by putting on the mask. They would move little by little and deal damage to the mafia.
The Yakuza became family by sharing alcohol mixed with each other’s blood. It was a sacred ritual and betrayal meant death. They all worked under the Oyabun. However, the Phantoms became allies just be receiving a mask through the courier service. It was possible since Phantom used the symbol of the opera mask.
“How many Phantoms are there?”
“I don't know. Dozens or hundreds... No, maybe even more than that.”
The scariest thing about the Phantoms was that they were an enormous force on the Internet. Of course, unlike the Yakuza, none of them were willing to give their lives for Phantom. Most of them were just Phantoms for fun and felt satisfied to be involved with Phantom in some way.
The instructions also weren’t too difficult. They just needed to deliver an item or install something somewhere. As a result, people with special talents started to gather.
“The group is less than two months old, and yet it is like this... Truly an interesting man. Mister Park.”
"How much damage has he inflicted?”
"11 farms and 93 employees...”
Yamaguchi was speechless for a while after hearing Mister Park’s report. Then he coughed and said,
“Then the opponent’s damage?”
“...Sorry, there is none.”
"Huhu, I see.”
It was understandable why Mister Park had come. This might be the biggest defeat in their history.
"I want to see him directly. Unfortunately, that is too much. I should pull out the protruding nail, not batter it. Mister Park.”
"From today on, the Hayabusa will help you. With their power, you should be able to stand up against Phantom.”
The Hayabusa! They were a special group of criminals with various skills. Hackers, card cheats, terrorists, magicians, scammers, etc. They were normally scattered all over Japan. Once Yamaguchi called, they would gather to carry out his orders. Their abilities were enough to even assassinate a witness protected by the FBI. They specialized in intelligence and warfare.
Mister Park gulped. Yamaguchi wanted to collapse the Phantom system as well as Phantom.
"If Phantom wants to fight, then I will accept. With the help of the Hayabusa, find all of the identities of the Phantoms and kill them. Then all of South Korea will know that cooperating with Phantom will mean death.”
Mister Park looked determined.
"I hope to live up to your expectations."
"I will let you handle this work directly.”
Mister Park laughed. He also thought that this was the only way to deal with the Phantoms.
Caterina was the godfather of the Red Mafia in Russia. Her feelings towards Phantom were beyond obsession.
“Semon. What clothes should I wear the next time we meet?”
“Well. I’ll bring the best fashion coordinator and stylist if you want.
"Can you please do that? By the way, have you heard the news? After defeating the Yakuza, Phantom easily dealt with the Triads. How is this possible?”
Caterina didn’t have the dignity of a godfather. It was because she was lacking that Semon was helping her. However, Caterina had the ability to penetrate sharply into the essence of things. If she was raised properly, then she could someday become the queen of the Red Mafia.
But she changed after she met Phantom and he saved her life. She became a girl completely in love. She also ceased trying to talk like a tough man.
There was only one thing left. For the sake of the organization, and for Caterina as well, he had to put all his effort into making Phantom her partner. To do that, he would do anything.
"It is possible because the mask is the symbol of Phantom. And don't worry so much, Phantom definitely has feelings for you. Why else would he meet you so easily?”
“I-Is that so?”
"Perhaps the Phantoms was a plan he had put on hold before. And there is one prerequisite to do it.”
Semon coughed several times.
"Phantom is a free body that doesn’t belong anywhere. If he is working under the name of a criminal organization, then no one will want to join the Phantoms.”
Then it was understandable why he rejected Caterina’s courtship. It was surprisingly positive thinking.
“I was too short-sighted! I really thought Phantom didn’t like me...”
“And look at this.”
Semon pulled out a letter with the mark of an opera mask.
"It is an invitation from him. He is inviting you to a party.
Caterina laughed and clapped her hands. She seemed genuinely pleased.
“It is next week. Do you want to go?”
"Of course! Can you call the people you mentioned earlier? I want to give Phantom the coolest show!”
But they were mistaken. Unfortunately, the Red Mafia wasn’t the only ones to receive Phantom’s invitation.
"There are Phantoms here!”
Mister Park led the Hayabusa members to a house outside Seoul. They had been chasing the trail of the Phantoms for three days.
An enormous amount of manpower and capital was invested to find the clues left behind. If they found someone acting as Phantom and killed them, the group wouldn’t be able to act like they were doing now.
Mister Park checked his bulletproof vest and loaded bullets into the gun. It was a warning that anyone who cooperated with Phantom would die.
"They might have joined Phantoms as a game, but I will let them know this isn’t one. Rush in!”
It was like chasing the enemy king in chess. This time, he received Yamaguchi’s order to deal with the matter directly. He was able to get the Hayabusa’s cooperation thanks to that.
Mister Park clicked his tongue and murmured,
"First of all, I will spend the week killing Phantoms. Well, I don’t have to do too much. Once 10 people die, it will start dismantling on its own.”
Some Hayabusa members were monitoring from a van nearby. If the police starting moving, then they would leave in 10 seconds.
The door was smashed open and an ordinary family home appeared. There was garbage piled up, showing that it hadn’t been cleaned for a while. Despite the fact that it was a weekday, someone was watching the TV.
Mister Park laughed,
Yes, people who joined Phantoms had nothing to do. Mister Park aimed his gun at the person covered in a blanket and said,
"Ah, yes. It is wrong not to tell you the reason for your death.”
"You will die. There are three reasons. The first sin is signing up to join the Phantoms. The second sin is harming the Yakuza. And the third sin...”
At that moment, the man took the blanket off and stood up. Now a grey mask could be seen.
“...Oh, I was surprised! Y-Yes. You are a Phantom after being sent the mask. Isn’t it natural that you are wearing it? By the way, you are really into this, even wearing a mask when home alone."
The man in the opera mask smiled. He was smiling despite a gun being aimed at him? Was this person crazy?
“I made a joke because the atmosphere is too tense. This mask is scary, Mister Park.”
Mister Park’s hands trembled at the familiar voice.
“D-Don’t tell me...”
“Yes. I am Phantom. I didn’t think that Mister Park would come directly to kill my men.”
“S-Shoot! T-This is the real Phantom!”
Mister Park ordered the man to be shot. No matter how great Phantom was, it was impossible for him to avoid bullets shot by dozens of people in this room.
“Really? It seems like your hobby is suicide.”
Phantom pulled a bomb switch from his pocket. Then he calmly said,
"Pressing this will blow up the entire building. You didn’t think I would come here without any preparations? If you still want to then shoot.”
Mister Park slowly raised his hand. Yes, Phantom was a person like this.
"How did you know I was going to attack this place?”
"You have pretty competent hackers but I am above them.”
Of course, it was an absolute lie. Tae-hyuk smiled.
In fact, he discovered the Yakuza’s plan due to some events accidentally overlapping. He had created several dummy sites to recruit Phantoms. A few days ago, the traffic from Japan started to increase by dozens of times.
Tae-hyuk was suspicious and gathered information from the bug installed in the Yakuza’s offices. But there was nothing.
In the end, he had to move to find out directly. Then, by chance, he saw that one of the Yakuza members were buying a large amount of coffee and chocolate while watching them.
The conclusion was amazing. It was the place where the hackers belonging to the Hayabusa were working. They bought a large amount of snacks since they would be working all day.
Tae-hyuk caught this scene.
‘A hacker who has great skills to not be caught on the Internet was caught in real life. This is why detectives collect evidence.'
After knocking out a member who was buying snacks. Tae-hyuk disguised himself as that member and infiltrated the team. Then he heard Mister Park’s plan. It was simple after that.
He deliberately sprinkled information about the Phantoms and lured them here.
"Kuook... Y-Your purpose...”
"Oh, this time I didn’t come to fight. I just wanted to give you this.”
Tae-hyuk handed an invitation to Mister Park.
“Yes. Isn’t it difficult to continue fighting each other? Come to the place written there.”
Phantom’s invitation! Mister Park's hands trembled.
"Bah, who would go when it is likely to be a trap?”
"You don’t have to come. Then do your best.”
Tae-hyuk smiled and pressed the bomb switch. There was an uproar.
“Aaaaack! B-Bomb! Everybody get down!”
Mister Park and the Yakuza members fell to the ground. Then the bomb exploded.
However, it wasn’t a powerful impact.
Mister Park coughed as smoke seeped from different areas of the house. It was a smoke bomb.
“...D-Damn! C-Catch him! Catch Phantom!”
Mister Park commanded his men with an agitated face. However, Phantom had completely disappeared.
Phantom disappeared suddenly with the smoke. He only left one invitation behind.
Mister Park groaned as he looked at it.
The words, ‘Mafia Game’ were written on it.
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