Chapter 103

The halberd fell from Soobin’s hands. He could no longer hold it due to the pain in his arm.

‘Good!’

Sungyoon rejoiced. His enemy had lost his weapon, and he hadn’t used a shield in the first place. The only equipment he possessed were defensive gears like the helmet, armor, shin guards, and vambrace. Even if he tried to unsummon and then summon his halberd, he would need at least five seconds. It was the same if he wanted to activate his other Gems.

However, Sungyoon didn’t dare to let his guard down. He kept track of Soobin as he stabbed harder with his spear.

Hoo-oong!

Despite the injuries inflicted on him, Soobin had seven years of battle experience to fall back on. He swung his uninjured arm. The Gem which had enhanced his physical abilities was still active. His fists were absolutely dangerous to Sungyoon.

Sungyoon took a step back as he tried to extract the spear.

Duhp-suhk!

Soobin grabbed the spear shaft, and at the same time, he kicked out. Sungyoon had no choice but to back away, as he unsummoned his spear.

Poo-shoohk!

More blood erupted from Soobin’s wound. The spear had been causing damage when it remained impaled within him. So when the spear disappeared, Soobin’s face looked a bit less strained.

However, Sungyoon wasn’t going to let this relief continue any longer.

Toohk!

Sungyoon placed his right hand on his injured left arm. His wound throbbed, but he endured the pain as he activated his Gem.

Hoohng!

His healing spell caused the Gem to vibrate. It was a Purple rank Gem, so a purple light surrounded his wound. His wound became visibly less angry, and he felt his wound starting to heal.

Sungyoon looked towards Soobin. Soobin had opened up the distance between the two of them, and he had also placed his hand on his wound. As expected, he had a Gem with a healing ability.

‘I won’t let you do that!’

He had worked so hard to put his enemy in such a disadvantageous situation, so why would he give him time to recover?

‘I won’t give you 5 seconds!’

It didn’t matter how many Gems Soobin had. It didn’t matter how great those Gems were. They were all useless right now. The only advantage Sungyoon had over Soobin was the activation time of the Gems. He had to make the best use of this fact.

Toohk!

Sungyoon placed his foot under the halberd and kicked it up into the air. He grabbed it and immediately swung it towards his enemy. Sungyoon didn’t hesitate to use the long reach of the halberd to his advantage. He quickly removed the distance created by the desperate Soobin.

Soobin quickly unsummoned the halberd. Sungyoon held the weapon, yet it was his Gem. Moreover, there was no delay in unsummoning the weapon.

The halberd in Sungyoon’s hand disappeared.

Soobin let out a sigh of relief. In the time Sungyoon swung with his empty hands, Soobin thought he would be able to finish healing up.

However, this was a gamble taken by Sungyoon. It was to induce Soobin from not retreating any further.

‘Wait a moment!’

An image flashed inside Soobin's head.

‘Didn’t he summon his spear really quickly…!’

Sungyoon needed several dozen seconds to activate his Gem. This information was too deeply ingrained in Soobin's mind. He had seen Sungyoon summon his spear and use his healing magic really quickly. However, the battle had deteriorated too quickly for him, and the pain due to his wound was excruciating. Hence, he wasn’t able to override the old information with the new information.

Soobin realized that a spear had appeared in Sungyoon’s hands when the spear blade had already arrived at his neck.

Suh-guhk!

The cracked spear blade sliced past Soobin’s neck.

Poo-shoohk!

Blood erupted into the air. Soobin became aware of his new wound. Fear appeared in his eyes.

Ooh-oong!

It seemed five seconds had already passed. Soobin’s hand, which was pressed against the wound, started letting out a light.

‘I won’t let you do this!’

Sungyoon didn’t know if the healing spell would heal only a single wound or his entire body. If he wasn’t careful, the critical wound on Soobin’s neck might be healed too.

As he had that thought, Sungyoon summoned his mace.

Puh-uhk!

He swung right above the vambrace where the forearm was exposed.

Puh-uhk!

This time he swung the mace at the opening of the helmet.

Puh-uhk! Puh-uhk!

He swung the mace as if he were a mad man. He didn’t know when his enemy would finish healing. He didn’t know when he would start his counterattack. This fear urged Sungyoon to move.

Puh-uh-uhk!

The mace hit Soobin’s face once again.

Ooh-jee-jeek!

He felt the sensation of bones breaking. Soobin’s body fell backwards. Finally, Sungyoon stopped his attack. If he saw anything a bit suspicious, Sungyoon was ready to attack once again. He kept a firm grip on his mace as he glared down at Soobin.

However, Soobin no longer looked like a human. His face and anywhere that wasn’t protected by his defensive gears had turned into a bloody mess. His bones were all broken. He looked boneless like a mollusk, and his flesh had burst open into a bloody pulp.

The most horrifying part was his face. No, it couldn't be called a face anymore. The face was completely caved in, so there was no shape left. Gray matter of the brain, pieces of broken bones, and pulverized flesh mixed to form a grotesque sight. His helmet was like a pot holding in this grotesque mixture.

Sssk!

The flow of magical energy to Soobin’s Gem had stopped, so they stopped working. His defensive gear went away. All the amplified physical abilities went away.

Sungyoon was finally sure of it.

Soobin had died.

Tul-suhk!

He flopped down to the floor.

“Oohk!”

As soon as the tension was gone, pain struck his palms. Sungyoon raised and looked at his hands.

The hands holding the mace had ripped wide open. Blood dripped out of the wounds. His bones ached. In the end, he hadn’t even aimed as he started raining down indiscriminate blows. It seemed he had been injured by the rebound. 

The mace wasn’t undamaged either. The handle was drenched in blood, and the mace-head had taken a significant amount of damage.

Sungyoon ignored the pain as he got up. If he had his way, he wanted to just lie down.

However, he couldn’t do that. He was in front of the entrance, but he was still within the labyrinth. He didn’t know when a monster would show up.

‘I’m not in a state where I can fight.’

He staggered on his feet as he walked forward. His stamina was still fine, and he had healed his wounds. However, he was mentally drained.

Sungyoon looked at Soobin’s corpse.

‘… should I take that?’

If he left it in the labyrinth, monsters would eat the corpse. He didn’t care what happened to the bastard’s corpse, but there would be fallout from this. Things would go more smoothly if he had the corpse.

He recovered the Gold Gem, which had been flung into the distance. Then he grabbed Soobin’s leg and dragged the corpse towards the entrance, leaving behind a bloody trail.

Pah-jeek!

Sungyoon was tired, and he only focused on getting out of the labyrinth. This was why he hadn’t heard the small sound of destruction.

As if it had pushed itself to the limit, the Blood Gem broke apart into fragments. Its life had come to an end. The fragments turned into dust as it dissolved into the surrounding. The only thing left behind was the necklace type Device with an empty slot.

After exiting the labyrinth, he just let go of Soobin’s corpse. He just needed to prevent the corpse from being eaten by the monsters. Aside from that, it was of no concern to him.

‘Since it is out in space, I doubt the corpse will rot.’

He immediately headed towards his Moon Surface Vehicle.

But his eyes winced when he saw his vehicle.

All the wheels had been destroyed.

He didn’t even need to guess as to who had done this. He felt anger rise when he saw his completely broken vehicle, which was worth a couple of million dollars. However, his anger lasted only for a brief moment. He was too tired to be angry.

Fortunately, only his wheels were destroyed. Sungyoon opened the door, and he entered the vehicle. The communication equipment was intact. Sungyoon tried to contact Armstrong city. A woman appeared on the screen. It was one of the government workers of Armstrong. Since there was no air within the Moon Surface Vehicle, he had to explain his situation using the small keyboard.

The woman’s face quickly stiffened. She told him a rescue team would be sent as soon as possible. She would also contact Sungyoon’s company. After she informed him of this, she ended the call.

‘I did everything I need to do right now.’

It would be fine now. Sungyoon crawled into his bed, and he closed his eyes. He immediately fell asleep.

* * *

After being contacted by Sungyoon, Armstrong city quickly moved into gear and immediately dispatched an investigative team. Then, they contacted Jimin and Soobin’s company.

Unlike the mayhem unfolding within Armstrong, Sungyoon’s surroundings continued to be silent. 

Sungyoon awoke from his sleep. He looked at his watch. He had slept for 12 hours.

He thought about yesterday’s incident. Sungyoon got off the vehicle and walked towards the entrance of the labyrinth.

It was still there.

The horrifying sight of Soobin’s corpse was still there. His face didn’t have a shape. It was just a bloody mess. Did space have minimal effect on the corpse? Or was his unbeating heart still protecting the body even in death?

However, Sungyoon hadn’t been in a position to think about such things.

He had fought a life or death battle yesterday, so he had been too tired. He hadn’t been able to process everything. However, he had gotten enough sleep, and when his mind started to get back into gear, he saw Soobin’s corpse. The reality of what had happened hit him all at once.

He didn’t have any positive feelings towards the being called Kim Soobin. In fact, he was overflowing with hostility towards that man. Sungyoon didn’t care if he died or not. He was worth nothing to Sungyoon.

However, he felt differently now. He had created the corpse in front of his eyes. 

He had killed a human.

“Oohk!”

He dry heaved. He was experiencing emotions that were on a different level as the ones he felt when he killed an animal or a monster. His head started spinning.

‘It’s fine. I just did what I had to do. If I didn’t kill him, I would be dead.’

He wasn’t coming up with an excuse. It was the absolute truth. Even if one was being objective, Sungyoon held no blame for this situation. However, the logical portion of his brain couldn’t control his emotions.

Sungyoon stood there absent-mindedly for a long time. 

However, he soon took out a picture. It was the picture of Shinhae. Strength started to return to Sungoon’s eyes as he looked at the picture.

He couldn’t fall apart here. He had to walk forward once again for his daughter.

As if he was protesting against his own feelings, Sungyoon looked away from the picture and glared at Soobin’s corpse.

‘… I was really lucky.’

If he was being honest, he had been outclassed against Soobin. He didn’t know the exact ranks of the Gems Soobin possessed. However, when he thought about the explosive power he displayed, Sungyoon realized that Soobin must have had Gems that were several ranks higher than what he had.

Sungoon’s victory was a miracle created by a mixture of his special ability to activate a Gem quickly and his enemy's complete disregard for him.

‘I didn’t expect such a gamble to work so well...’

Sungyoon had expected to be wounded, yet the wound turned out to be relatively minor. When Sungyoon had executed his final attack, Soobin had misjudged Sungyoon’s activation time of his Gem. It had all been luck.

‘I did reinforce the idea that it took me several dozen seconds to activate a Gem, but...’

He hadn’t known if it would work or not. It was very fortunate for Sungyoon that his ruse had worked.

‘This guy recently graduated from the Beginner’s Labyrinth?’

It was nonsense. Sungyoon knew the level one needed to clear the Beginner’s Labyrinth. At Soobin’s level of power, he should have graduated from the Beginner's Labyrinth a long time ago. Was it a problem with his party? However, Soobin had been affiliated with one of the famous conglomerates. There was no way his company would pair him with weak party members.

Also, Soobin had wanted to show off his strength throughout the battle. It was the reason why he hadn’t immediately killed Sungyoon.

‘Was he that resentful of his lack of skills?’

In Sungyoon’s eyes, Soobin had been plenty strong. Maybe, Soobin wasn’t considered strong within a large company.

‘I have no idea.’

He couldn’t come to an answer at all.

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