Chapter 296

Shock, silence, and confusion swept through the court.

Hyunwoo had suddenly confessed.

“You... you son of a bitch!”

Of course, the first one to regain his senses was Dongin. He charged toward Hyunwoo.

“Wh-what nonsense are you spouting!”

“Order! ORDER!”

The judge pounded the gavel, and the policemen on standby rushed in to pry Dongin off of Hyunwoo. Dongin started kicking and screaming curses, but the policemen succeeded in pulling him away.

“Then… Mr. Sung Hyunwoo, do you plead guilty to all charges?”

“Yes.”

He didn’t even need to think about it. There was no regret in his voice.

Dongin’s acrimonious curses grew louder.

Squeeze!

Sungyoon had been holding Jimin’s hand, and she squeezed his hand when she heard it all. He then glanced at Hweeyoung and Aiin; the two women looked half out of it.

Dongin yelled again.

“You... you! What's the meaning of this! If something bad happens to my Fabion, I’ll make sure you regret this.”

It seemed as if Dongin was on the verge of vomiting blood, and the reaction Hyunwoo gave to him only poured fuel on the fire.

Hyunwoo laughed. He didn't have to pretend anything; his laughter contained pure delight. He was acting in a way that didn't make sense, and this elicited fear from the people watching him.

Hyunwoo uproariously laughed as if he had purged all his stress. Then, he looked at Dongin.

“Hey, Lee Dongin.”

A sneer appeared on his lips.

“Did you just say, ‘My Fabion’?”

There was true contempt in his voice.

“Are you trying to suggest that you deserve all the credit for growing Fabion to this extent?”

“What! Of course, I’m the one who developed Fabion to this extent!”

“This is why you didn’t even know you were being used. You're proud as a peacock.”

“What?”

“Your proudness is the reason I could maneuver behind your back in many instances. I made it so that you could find the hiding place of the Moon people. I made sure our people could discreetly go in and out of the Moon to eliminate Plu-El. Your greatness isn’t the reason we were so successful, you idiot.”

Dongin had a fit of anger once again. However, the policemen lifted his body as he swung his arms and legs.

Tahng! Tahng! Tahng!

The judge once again pounded the gavel.

“I understand where you stand now, Mr. Sung Hyunwoo! Why are you telling us all of this right now? Until now, I heard you pleaded the fifth.”

“I’m giving up.”

“What?”

“I’m human.”

Hyunwoo was saying these statements out of nowhere after confessing to his crimes, and this surprised everyone.

“As a human, I prefer Earth to the desolate Moon. It's more comfortable to live here. This is especially true now that Armstrong city has fallen. I tried to do my best to stall and stay here a little longer. However, things turned out like this. It can’t happen anymore.”

Hyunwoo shrugged as he continued.

“I no longer need to be here.”

“What do you

Boom!

The courthouse's wall blew apart before the judge could finish his question.

“Ooh-wahhhhhhhk!”

“Kyahhhhhhhhhhk!”

People screamed, and everyone ducked at the same time. 

Sungyoon placed himself in front of Jimin, Hweeyoung, and Aiin. He had been allowed to wear his Gems and Devices on Earth, and he activated them.

Hoo-oohng!

After ensuring the safety of his wife and mothers-in-law, he pushed through the falling debris. However, he soon had to raise his shield.

Kwahhhhng!

“Kyahhhhhhhhhhk!”

Another round of screams rang out. The explosion sounded a bit closer, so everyone was terrified. Several people placed their hands over their ears as they screamed. 

Sungyoon thought that he had heard his family scream too, so he was worried. However, he wasn't in a position to check on them. A heavy force was pressing against his shield, and he felt the heat transfer through the shield. As Sungyoon defended the attack, on the other side of the shield, a demon started laughing.

- It’s been a while.

“Kevil.”

- Koo-koo-koohk! You know my name!

“Hoo-oohp!”

Instead of conversing with Kevil, Sungyoon let strength flow into his body. When Kevil saw his actions, its eyebrows twitched.

Flap!

Kevil flapped its wings in the air, as Sungyoon pushed it back.

- You’ve become quite strong.

Kevil’s eyes turned cold. Unlike its fiery outer appearance, northerly winds and cold snow raged in its eyes.

- Let me test you again…

“Let it go, Kevil.”

Kevil had transformed its fire sword into a whip and was about to charge forward when a voice stopped it.

Hyunwoo calmly stood on the dock in stark contrast with everyone else beside him, who crouched on the floor. He brushed the dust off his clothes as he looked at Kevil.

- Let it go? What are you

“Your mission is to extract me. That's all. Nothing good will come from dragging this out. The defenses against monsters are still active. In fact, Earth's defenses have become much stronger now that all of the Connectors are here. You should remember that you aren’t on the Moon.”

- Shit!

Kevil stomped toward Hyunwoo.

Chwa-roo-roohk!

It swung its fire sword toward him, and the chains binding him fell to the ground.

“What? Are you still here?”

Someone rushed through the hole in the wall.

“You, you, you! Kim Jinsoo!”

Dongin shouted his name when he realized who the person was.

Jinsoo’s gaze headed toward Dongin.

“Ah-ha-ha-ha! You usually treat people like bugs. Hey, Lee Dongin, who looks like a bug now?”

Dongin had thrown his body flat on the floor in an attempt to save his own life. He really looked like a bug struggling on the floor.

Jinsoo cackled.

“Stop playing around.”

“Yes. Yes.”

Jinsoo threw something toward Hyunwoo. It was Hyunwoo’s confiscated Devices and Gems.

‘This is dangerous!’

Cold sweat ran down Sungyoon’s back.

Sung Hyunwoo and Kevil. Sungyoon couldn’t contend with any one of them, yet he now had to face both.

‘Where are the guards?’

The only ones that could immediately help him were the guards. However, he couldn’t expect much from them. The government couldn’t hire high-rank Connectors like Bruce and Russell for a whole year.

Moreover, monsters posed a bigger potential threat to Korea, so all the Connectors of Korea couldn’t be brought in to guard the courthouse. They were spread across the whole country.

In the end, Sungyoon had to rely on the monster defense system to function as intended. He had to work with the assumption that reinforcement would be coming soon.

However, that soon was still a while away.

Hyunwoo activated his Devices and Gems, then looked at himself to see if his equipment were all there. After that, he glanced at Sungyoon.

“Kooht!”

Boom!

Hyunwoo’s sword slammed into Sungyoon’s shield, and Sungyoon felt a heavy sensation run up his arm.

“Koo-ooh-ook!”

He gritted his teeth, and his muscles started to bulge.

“Hmm.”

Hyunwoo spoke as if he was assessing something, and he immediately retreated.

“He really is stronger than before. Did the level of his Gems increase through recent events? No, that can’t be the only reason.”

Hyunwoo stroked his chin for a moment, then lightly struck his palm with his fist.

“I see. The rabbits used that.”

- What are you talking about?

“Nothing.”

Hyunwoo tapped on the nearby debris with his sword as Kevil frowned.

- You bastard! You told me to not attack him, yet you attacked him!

“It was a test. I was just testing out his skills.”

Hyunwoo turned his head away as if he had become disinterested in that topic.

“Let’s go. We no longer need to stay here.”

“You, you…”

“Huh? I think that cockroach has something to say?”

Dongin finally stopped acting like a bug. He pushed off the ground using his hands, while Jinsoo moved up behind Hyunwoo and made fun of Dongin.

“Do you realize now?”

Hyunwoo didn’t even look at Dongin as he spoke in a low voice.

“You didn’t build your empire. My friends and I were helping you from behind the scenes. You just never knew about it. Everything kept working out in your favor, yet you never took the time to ask why.”

As Hyunwoo continued speaking, Dongin’s face turned from red to blue to ashen.

“You can try it out now. You can work as if your life depends on it. However, the only thing left for you is to die a lonely death in a cell.”

After saying those words, Hyunwoo exited the courthouse. Kevil and Jinsoo followed him.

Sungyoon quickly ran toward the hole in the wall and saw several flying type monsters disappear into the distance. Hyunwoo, Jinsoo, and several Connectors were riding these monsters.

They had left behind the courthouse in a state of chaos.

At the very least, Sungyoon and his side weren’t in a position to attack these monsters.

Kwahng!

Sungyoon struck the broken wall with his fist.

***

After Hyunwoo was gone, the damage he left behind had to be dealt with. An unsettled atmosphere settled within the courthouse.

Thankfully, there were no serious injuries, nor deaths. The ambulances were quick to arrive, and the medical staff took the injured in ones and twos.

“We were really lucky.”

Jimin, Hweeyoung, and Aiin were part of the group that had come out unscathed.

It had been only an instant, but Sungyoon had exchanged blows with Kevil and Hyunwoo near these women. That was why Sungyoon had let out a sigh of relief when he saw them.

“Hyunwoo ahjussi… No. I never expected Sung Hyunwoo to have a connection with Grenoid.”

She would no longer call him ahjussi.

“Then Mr. Sung Hyunwoo really killed Jungbum?”

“He confessed to it. Moreover, everything that has happened today reinforces that fact.”

“Son of a bitch! How could he!”

Aiin and Hweeyoung had calmed their surprised hearts, but they still cussed out Hyunwoo.

Small teardrops had even welled up in Aiin’s eyes. She was having a hard time accepting the events that had taken place. It had happened so suddenly, and the information only overwhelmed her.

“You should take the two of them back home, then you should all rest.”

“That sounds like a good idea.”

Jimin helped her mothers walk as they all left.

They looked fine, but Sungyoon still told them to go to the nearest hospital just in case. After the three women had safely exited, Sungyoon approached Plu-El, who quietly stood in the corner of the courtroom. She was placed there so she wouldn’t be swept up in the chaos.

“Did Jimin and the other two leave? Are they ok?”

“Yes. All of them are uninjured.”

“That's good to hear.”

The two of them looked at the dock. Policemen were dragging away the people of Fabion, minus Hyunwoo, to a different facility. As for Dongin, it looked as though his spirit had left his body. It was quite the scene, and Sungyoon engraved that scene into his memories.

Even in this chaos, he found a small piece of happiness.

“I never expected Sung Hyunwoo to have allied himself with Grenoid.”

“We had no idea either. I never expected a spy to be present amongst humanity.”

Moreover, this was Sung Hyunwoo, a world-famous Connector. The aftershock caused by his defection would be enormous.

However, Sungyoon had another problem to solve before anything else.

“I have a question I would like to ask you.”

“What is it?”

Sungyoon pushed something toward her. It was a Gem.

“Do you know what this is?”

“Isn’t it a Gem? Moreover, it's a lowly Blue rank

Plu-El abruptly stopped. Her eyes widened, and she snatched the Gem out of Sungyoon’s hand. Then, she brought it up close to her eyes and observed it.

As Plu-El had said, it indeed looked like a Blue Gem. As if to prove its identity, it let out a bright blue light. However, one could also see a black sheen to the blue light sometimes, and this proved that it wasn't a regular Blue rank Gem.

“… Where did you get this?”

“I received it.”

“From whom?”

“From Sung Hyunwoo.”

Plu-El’s eyes widened further.

“W-when?”

“Right now. He acted as if he was attacking me, but he used that opportunity to leave a bundle. I thought he was dropping a bomb or something similar. However, I found this on further inspection. Do you know what it is?”

“I'm not certain. However, if the story passed down by my ancestors is true...”

Plu-El spoke. It looked as though she couldn’t comprehend what was going on.

“This is the Mage Gem.”

‘I knew it!’

It was one of the four special Gems, the one which had been missing.

At a glance, Sungyoon had spotted the Blue Gem's similarity to the special Gem he possessed. Thus, he had a suspicion about this Blue Gem's identity. However, even though Plu-El confirmed his suspicion, his confusion only deepened.

This was what they needed the most right now, and they had acquired it in the most absurd way possible.

‘What's that bastard up to?’

Hyunwoo had declared his hostility toward Sungyoon, yet he gave Sungyoon an item that would be helpful to him. It was as if he were doing Sungyoon a kindness.

Sungyoon gripped his head as he thought about that odd smile Hyunwoo had shown him.

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