Chapter 83 - I am a Noble #1
[You have been promoted to Noble.]
[Crime Skill: Bomb Manufacturing has been learnt.]
[Crime Skill: Torture has been learnt.]
[Crime Skill: Illegal Surgery has been learnt.]
After Tae-hyuk was promoted to a Noble, notification messages constantly popped out in front of him. Most of them were notices of crime skills that he had learned. The unpleasant fact was that they were all in the temporary skills window, and quickly disappeared like the salary of a worker.
'Indeed, I couldn’t learn it because of my rating.’
Tae-hyuk looked down at his body and sighed. Naturally, there was no apparent change.
‘Of course. This isn’t an online game where I become more handsome due to an upgrade.’
It had been six months since he first got the crime skills.
‘…When I think about it, many things have changed.’
After gaining the memories of the future, the first thing he did was catch Yoo Cheol-ho. Even now, he couldn’t help smiling as he recalled it. There had been many things since then, such as being involved in the cheating incident of a politician’s son, as well as having his parents’ keepsake stolen.
He solved them using skills acquired from the other person and then he became stagnant for a while. But now things had changed.
'Eh? One thing that I saw in the status window...’
“T-Tae-hyuk... Sorry but please take this.”
Cho Kang-suk asked for help with the plastic bags full of food on the ground. Unfortunately, it seems like he would have to look at the Demon Revealing Mirror later.
“Ohuhu... I bought food that is suitable to eat with tteokbokki.”
Ha-ran followed after him with a big smile.
They were ready to have a tteokbokki party.
“Wah... This is a lot of food.”
Tae-hyuk looked at the prepared food with his mouth wide open. Far from making him hungry, it was such a huge amount that his stomach hurt at the thought of eating it all. Kim Soo-bin also muttered with an embarrassed expression,
"I don’t think that even Alibaba and the 40 thieves could eat all of this.”
"Bah. If we say Open Sesame, won’t it all go into Detective Cho Kang-suk’s mouth?”
Song Hye-mi spoke to Soo-bin like they were real sisters,
“Kukuku... If you don’t eat then there won’t be anything left for you!"
Kang-suk threatened with an open mouth, causing Kim Soo-bin to laugh. Fortunately, she seemed to have recovered to a certain extent from the Doll Play event.
"Now, everyone please sit at the dining room table."
Ha-ran finished setting out all of the food and beckoned towards the party. Kim Soo-bin and Song Hye-mi were hungry from the cold winter and started eating. They consciously didn’t say anything about Kim Soo-bin’s injury.
Therefore, the topic naturally turned to Phantom.
"I didn’t know that the person who saved Unni would become so famous.”
“Yes. He felt like a dark hero active in the darkness. All of a sudden, he appeared on TV...”
Cho Kang-suk scratched his head and sighed.
Phantom was wanted for bombing T Medical Centre and aiding in murder. He was now a criminal, but Hye-mi and Soo-bin were treating Phantom like he was a superhero in a movie. It was the same with the netizens on the Internet. Fan sites for Phantom were growing like bamboo shoots in a bamboo forest.
He did all types of illegal acts, but it was true that he judged criminals that the police couldn’t catch. As a result, Kim Soo-bin and four children kept their lives. Plus...
"Omo, Kang-suk. Could you look at me for a moment?”
Seo Ha-ran wiped the tteokbokki sauce from Kang-suk’s mouth. Then a cry burst out from the side.
"Both of you, are the two of you dating? There is a suspicious atmosphere.”
“Hum hum... Anyway, Soo-bin. What do you plan to do with your donations?”
Kang-suk blushed and coughed a few times before saying uneasily,
“T-That... I don’t know. It still isn’t mine.”
Kim Soo-bin benefited the most from Phantom appearing on TV. She became a victim of the horrible incident, losing one arm and barely surviving. In addition, she was the first person that was saved by the dark hero, ‘Phantom.’ It was like the heroine of a movie had popped out in reality.
Thus, Kim Soo-bin instantly became famous. A considerable amount of money was collected from all over the country for her. The sum was almost more than 500 million. There were even companies that started a scholarship foundation to support her university tuition and those who offered her a job. It was evident that they wanted to piggyback on Phantom’s fame.
But to Kim Soo-bin, it was like a ray of hope had started to shine in the darkness.
Kang-suk hesitated for a moment before slowly opening his mouth,
“Did you know that your father came to the hospital?”
Even though the domestic violence caused the police to issue a restraining order, he was persistent. He claimed that he should be able to manage Kim Soo-bin’s money as she was his daughter and she was underage. Legally, he was Kim Soo-bin’s father. If he filed a lawsuit then the situation would become complicated.
In the end, Cho Kang-suk proposed a solution.
"So I was thinking. I will become your guardian and take care of you until you are an adult. H-H-How about it?”
Kang-suk stuttered out the last line. Kim Soo-bin covered her mouth with her hands at the unexpected suggestion.
Kang-suk explained his thoughts in a low, subdued voice.
“I’m a detective. It is my job to catch criminals, and also my mission to protect the citizens. But this time, I couldn’t do anything. Phantom did what I should’ve done. He is obviously a criminal that should be arrested. However, if he was in front of me right now then I would like to thank him. So, I wanted to do something that he couldn’t do.”
There were bugs after the money. After Seo Tae-hyuk got his first large amount of money, didn’t moneylenders come after him? In addition, Kim Soo-bin was a soft girl.
"Of course, the most important thing to me is Soo-bin’s thoughts. Don’t you become an adult in a few years? If you allow me then I will be your guardian until that time.”
“T-thank you Detective-nim...”
She didn’t know about other adults, but she could believe Cho Kang-suk. He had supported the orphanage for several years already. She also knew that he was the Santa who visited every year. Such a man being her guardian...
It felt like she had acquired an army behind her.
Hye-mi, who was busy eating, spat out something.
“Didn’t Phantom calculate this when he came on TV?”
“D-Don’t tell me... Then that...”
Kim Soo-bin recalled Phantom’s last words.
Kim Soo-bin survived like he said. Furthermore, she found an unexpected guardian. Was all this Phantom’s plan?
“Hrmm? Did he say something?”
Kim Soo-bin told Kang-suk about her conversation with Phantom. His eyes reddened without realizing it.
“Damn... He is a criminal, but he is a really great guy.”
Tae-hyuk listened to the conversation between Kim Soo-bin and Cho Kang-suk and realized that his plan was successful.
'This will make Phantom a symbol.’
He was fighting to escape the fate of being framed and imprisoned. His weapons were his crime skills. He walked alone while committing crimes. Even without being framed, there was always a possibility of going to jail for the crimes he did commit.
Thus, the existence of Phantom the God of Crime emerged. He was a distinct symbol completely separate from Seo Tae-hyuk. In the future, he would be able to do things more freely.
'In order to do that, I have to hide my identity more completely.’
It wasn’t enough to simply change his voice. Tae-hyuk saw new possibilities in his crime skills. Evolution into a top skill...!
It was one of the best perks that Tae-hyuk received from becoming a Noble. Tae-hyuk pressed on the details of the Voice Modulation skill. Then an explanation that he hadn’t seen before emerged.
[If you satisfy the conditions, it will evolve into the top skill ‘Disguise’.]
The name evidently meant that it was a skill to change his appearance. It was a skill that Tae-hyuk needed.
‘It would be good if I could gain it for free.’
However, it was likely that a great deal of work was needed to obtain it.
“If you allow me then I will be your guardian until that time.”
At that moment, Tae-hyuk almost spat out the tteokbokki he was eating. How much had he struggled to get Kang-suk and Ha-ran together. What? Guardian? Of course, he had guessed based on Kang-suk’s character but he hadn’t expected this offer.
‘N-Noona! Then Kang-suk hyung will come with a family. Is this the time to be looking with such a warm expression?’
The time for dating seemed to be reduced even further.
He should make Kim Soo-bin able to live alone as soon as possible for the sake of those two. The first thing to take care of was her arm.
'Well, maybe it would be good to give her another arm?’
In the early days, a mannequin arm that looked awkward would be used. However, technology was evolving and a number of smart robot technology was being actively researched. The replacement wouldn’t be better than her original arm, but at least she could live a normal everyday life.
'The problem is the price.’
So far, the technology wasn’t commercialized. He didn’t want to invested hundreds of millions of dollars into a mechanical arm that didn’t work well.
‘Then I can steal it.’
He also wondered if he could copy it with Forgery. If he could copy a number of robots then the utilization would increase.
‘It is worth a try.’
Tae-hyuk looked at Kim Soo-bin like she was an experimental guinea pig.
“Ohh... I am also a student.”
After a short winter vacation, Tae-hyuk went to school and languished on his desk. Despite his bad looks, the teacher’s heavy hand disappeared after he became a model student. But human nature didn’t change that easily. Every time he sat on his desk, a yawn would emerge.
“Where is Class President today?”
An Eun-young wasn’t sitting next to him. It was uncommon for her personality. Did something happen?
"Let’s send a message.”
An Eun-young opened the door and entered with a joyful smile. She ran to Tae-hyuk to deliver the good news first. An Eun-young approached Tae-hyuk and took deep breaths.
“Eh? You seem to be in a great mood. It was only a few weeks of holiday...”
"That’s not...I got into university.”
"I mean, I was admitted through special admissions. I did the entrance exam during the vacation because of the principal’s recommendation. I got lucky and narrowly passed."
Narrowly passed? It was a clear pass.
“Yes. I’m sure my mother will be very happy.”
“Then what university did you get into?”
“Uh, yes. S Uni...”
“Wait a minute. That is the best!”
“Hehehe... Yes, I was lucky.”
A special admission to the nation’s top university. It was natural for An Eun-young, who studied so much that she got the studying skill. Her effort paid off.
Tae-hyuk’s eyes shone.
‘Didn’t S University have one of the largest robotics research laboratories in Korea? If she passed then she will be allowed on a tour.’
Tae-hyuk started plotting. An Eun-young misunderstood his look and poked her fingers together.
“B-But don’t worry. I won’t graduate early as I plan to go next year. T-The promise to go to university together is still valid...”
“Yes. Thank you.”
An Eun-young’s cheeks reddened at his answer.
“T-Then... I am going to meet my mother after class today. Do you want to come along?"
An Eun-young then realized what she was saying. It was almost like she was introducing a boyfriend to her parents. Of course, he had met her dad a few days ago but this was the first time meeting her mother.
An Eun-young looked away from Tae-hyuk.
Of course, Tae-hyuk instantly welcomed this offer. It wasn’t uncomfortable if they could take a tour of the university together.
An Eun-young nodded vigorously.
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