On a dark, drizzling night, in an open space of an empty mountain range where it would not be surprising for the Parasites to appear, Seol Jihu and his two comrades heard Seo Yuhui’s scream.
Though they rushed back to their campsite, they could only make dumbfounded faces upon arrival.
The situation had already winded down. Seo Yuhui was subdued, and Chohong was grunting with her hand pressed down on her side.
No one blamed Chohong. There were at least a few dozen people in view. Including the people hiding and in blind spots, the number of assailants could easily surpass a hundred.
Each of them was covering their face with a mask and their body with a cape, and they surrounded the campsite as soon as Seol Jihu and the two girls showed up.
Based on their agile movements, they seemed to have been trained for situations like this.
Moreover, the five people surrounding Seo Yuhui gave off powerful auras.
Seol Jihu quickly scanned them with the Nine Eyes, revealing them all to be Level 6s.
He smacked his lips and swallowed his saliva.
“Strange… I didn’t feel anyone following us.”
Hoshino Urara murmured as she spun a dagger with her finger.
“If they didn’t follow us, that must mean they were here already. After seeing the three of us leave, they pounced… So this whole thing was a trap?”
“…I heard you were just a crazy bitch.”
A husky voice rang out.
“Turns out you know your stuff.”
One of the people holding Seo Yuhui captive walked forward. Though covered with a loose robe, one could tell this person was a woman from her voice.
“Now, what should we do…”
The mysterious woman scanned Seol Jihu’s group of three.
“You better stay still.”
As Chohong clutched the Thorn of Steel, the woman sneered.
“You guys will be dying here without a doubt, but we’re considering giving you all a nice ending. If you move so suddenly, we can’t promise what’s going to happen to her.”
The woman pointed back by turning her chin.
A man boasting a large build raised his arm, dragging Seo Yuhui up by her neck.
As Seo Yuhui flailed her legs in the air, the burly man drew his face near her and took in a deep breath.
“Ah, this woman’s scent… I can’t resist it. What a bewitching fragrance. Heeuuu~”
Seo Yuhui trembled while scratching the cauldron-sized hand that was clutching onto her neck.
When she glared at the burly man revoltingly like looking at a disgusting bug, the burly man snorted violently as if it excited him even more.
“Kehehehe. The flower of Paradise that even Sung Shihyun couldn’t pluck is in my hands… Oi, can’t you get this over with? I don’t know if I can hold out any longer.”
“Shut it. I’m the one who decides.”
The woman retorted sharply.
The burly man smacked his lips regretfully and obediently fixed his posture.
“How does it feel, Representative of Valhalla?”
Until now, Seol Jihu stood in a daze, frozen stiff.
“How? Don’t you get what’s happening?”
She seemed to be mocking him.
Seol Jihu quickly took a look around. Then, he gritted his teeth and muttered with a trembling voice.
“Hmm? But I haven’t said anything.”
“We’ll give it to you. Gorad Boga is what you want, right? We’ll hand it over, so let go of Yuhui Noona. Hurry. We’ll leave right away.”
Silence descended on the campsite.
“…Jeez, do you really not get it?”
The woman muttered dumbfoundedly.
“You must have heard the Archer next to you. Are you trying to deny reality? …Well, this must be the first failure for the hero who’s always walked a regal road. With death staring down at you, I guess you must be quite shocked.”
Snickers rang out from their surroundings.
“What do you mean? Isn’t Gorad Boga what you want? Isn’t that why you’re here? To steal it from us?”
Seol Jihu shouted again.
The woman sighed before looking back at Seo Yuhui.
“Do you think this place is Gorad Boga?”
Seo Yuhui didn’t answer.
She only glared at the woman while taking deep breaths.
“This isn’t Gorad Boga.”
The woman said firmly.
Seol Jihu furrowed his brows.
“I’ll tell you since you’re too pitiful. Did you really think a place like Gorad Boga exists?”
“What… The bishop said he confirmed it personally…!”
“Can you be any more stupid? And here I was thinking you’d at least have a brain.”
The woman clicked her tongue.
“Your Archer was right. We’ve been waiting here in ambush for several days now. In other words, we knew you would be coming here. How’s that? Are you now starting to understand what’s going on?”
Seol Jihu blinked.
He then made a shocked face, dropping his jaw.
“Don’t tell me—”
“Finally! That’s right. You’ve been running circles on the bishop’s palm this whole time.”
“Seol! What do you mean? Didn’t you say you found out about Gorad Boga?”
Chohong asked with a frown.
Seol Jihu didn’t reply. His lips trembled intensely as he shook his head in denial.
“But he even gave me his holy artifact…!”
“We can simply retrieve it.”
The woman walked over to Seo Yuhui and then pulled the ring out of her finger.
Seol Jihu yelled.
“What are you doing!? Without it…!”
Seol Jihu bit his lower lip in the middle.
“Well, we put in a lot of effort too.”
The woman shrugged.
“We buried offerings everywhere so that you’d think this place is Gorad Boga.”
Seol Jihu widened his mouth. He looked like he was struck speechless.
He dropped his head in the next moment and muttered.
“Why are you doing this!? Aren’t you guys Earthlings too!? We’re on the same side! So why…!?”
“That’s what you think. Who told you to piss off the wrong people?”
The woman rejected Seol Jihu’s notion.
“You’re the one who brought this upon yourself. Haven’t you thought that the Parasites might attack humanity instead of the Federation because of you?”
“Ah, I understand how you feel. I’m sure you feel wronged given how hard you have worked. But we’re not here to debate who’s right and who’s wrong.”
The woman continued.
“I didn’t mean to talk for this long. Why don’t we start wrapping this up? Are you going to fight? Or are you going to die gracefully?”
Seol Jihu gripped the Spear of Purity with a scowl.
“Die? Oh please, like we’re supposed to believe that. I’m sure you want to take at least one of us down with you.”
The woman cut him off.
“But why don’t you take a moment to think?”
“Two Level 6 Warriors, one Level 7 Archer, and one Level 4 Magician. An average level of 5.75… We get it. You guys are strong. If we both went all-out, I’m sure we’d have to shoulder a great loss.”
“But if you think about it… the fact that I’m saying this must mean that we looked into your battle prowess and made ample preparations to win, right?”
The woman crossed her arms leisurely.
“I’m being honest with you since it’s all over. Several organizations sent their most prized elites to dispatch you, so we’ve got quite a crowd here. As the leader in charge of this mission, I want to bring as many of them back alive as I can.”
“Of course, if you’re really unwilling, we’re happy to fight. But considering what’s going to happen afterward… I can’t promise you anything.”
The woman emphasized the last part.
“You can’t promise anything…?”
“Like this, for example.”
The woman gave a signal, and the burly man eagerly grabbed the hem of Seo Yuhui’s clothes and pulled it down.
Chwak! The huge part of the gown and the priest’s robe that Seo Yuhui wore as an outer garment rolled down.
Seol Jihu’s eyes shot open.
However, the priest’s robe became tattered in an instant and narrowly revealed Seo Yuhui’s bare skin.
The burly man exclaimed.
“Auu! Look at this bitch’s tits. These cow-tits!”
Seo Yuhui twisted her body left and right in an attempt to hide the faintly visible skin, but it was futile. Those who saw her milky white skin cheered.
As if to respond to the crowd’s cheers, the burly man tried to pull down her underwear too.
“Stop here for now.”
However, the woman stopped him.
“You know something? The Star of Lust who’s currently in my comrade’s hands. There are more than a few people who are enamored with her.”
“You hear that? Paradise’s legend-cum-flower is in our hands, and everyone’s dying to pluck her.”
The woman snickered.
“If you choose to fight, my comrades here will be very angry about losing their friends. And in their fit of fury, they’ll try to find someone to vent their anger.”
Seol Jihu’s expression stiffened.
“Your companions are all quite pretty too….”
She glanced at Eun Yuri, Chung Chohong, and Hoshino Urara before continuing.
“You don’t want to see that either, right?”
“The woman you love and your precious comrades being passed around like whores from man to man, panting endlessly… Do you really want to see them suffer through all kinds of humiliation before ultimately being killed?”
The woman flaunted her tongue while purposely speaking in a vulgar manner.
“I personally don’t. I can’t think of a more humiliating way to die than being gang-raped to death. That’s why I’m giving you a choice.”
She then pointed at Seol Jihu.
“Just die peacefully. Then as a show of thanks, we’ll kill the rest swiftly and cleanly before they can feel any pain. I promise.”
“If you don’t believe us, we can kill your woman and your comrades first. That much, I can do. Of course, you’d have to cut off your arms so that you can’t retaliate once they’re all dead.”
“Seol! Don’t listen to her!”
Chohong shouted, unable to bear listening to the woman any longer.
“Just fight! These bastards are nothing compared to the Parasites’ Army Commanders!”
“Oh? How shameless. It’s not like you beat them solely with your own strength.”
The woman sneered.
“Whatever, do what you want. I’m confident. Anyway, that’s all I’m going to say. If you agree, throw down your weapon.”
Chohong gritted her teeth.
Hoshino Urara looked indifferent while Eun Yuri dropped her head.
‘Just what is Oppa thinking…’
Beads of sweat dropped from Eun Yuri’s forehead. Though it was partially because she was nervous, it was mainly because she was focused on doing what Seol Jihu asked her to do.
The woman stood leisurely as she watched Seol Jihu’s face contorting with rage.
She didn’t urge him on purpose.
If Seol Jihu agreed to her deal, she would be able to kill him with ease, which would undoubtedly be the best possible outcome.
Even if he didn’t agree, it didn’t matter. The reason she took her sweet time and even gave him time to think was all a part of her back-up plan.
It was then.
After a few minutes had gone by, Seol Jihu dropped the Spear of Purity.
The surrounding assailants stirred as if they didn’t expect him to comply.
The woman was also surprised, but she calmed down and spoke.
“Throw it over to us.”
“Ah! Don’t! I’ll be fine!”
Chohong shouted at the top of her lungs. She looked to be in disbelief.
However, Seol Jihu kicked the spear forward.
The woman snatched the spear out of the air and smiled in satisfaction.
She didn’t think things would go so smoothly, but it seemed the bishop was right when he said the two of them were head over heels for each other.
“Now this is unexpected…”
One of the four men behind her murmured.
It was the voice of a young man.
“With your reputation, I wanted to try fighting you… I’m disappointed, Representative Seol.”
“What do you mean? I can see that he’s smart.”
The woman spoke quickly.
“They’re all going to revive on Earth anyway. If they make another intense, unforgettable memory, it’s only going to be harder on Earth. It’s much better to die a clean death. I think he’s being realistic.”
Speaking excitedly, the woman took a look around.
“Now then, can you ask your friends to disarm themselves?”
Seol Jihu let loose a deep sigh.
“…Sorry… it’s all because of me…”
“Are you crazy!?”
Chohong screamed. Her eyes were glistening with tears.
Seol Jihu muttered helplessly with his eyes on the ground.
“Drop… your weapons..”
Chohong howled like a beast.
She smashed the ground with the Thorn of Steel multiple times before throwing it to the side violently.
Hoshino Urara shrugged and chucked the two daggers in her hands.
Eun Yuri was still unmoving.
The woman nodded. The situation seemed to be wrapping up.
“Good, very good.”
Clang! She pulled out a katana.
“Oi, are you really going to kill them? Can’t you—”
“Shut it. A promise is a promise.”
The burly man, who was holding onto Seo Yuhui, spoke regrettably, but the woman was firm.
“Thanks. It’s my turn to keep the promise. So who should I kill first? Your girlfriend?”
Seol Jihu took a deep breath.
He stood still for a long time and then…
“…Let me ask you something. Before I die.”
He asked with a voice tinged with despair.
“Mm… Sure, as long as you’re not going to waste time asking why we’re doing this.”
The woman nodded her head.
Seol Jihu quietly said.
“Attacking Yuhui Noona in Haramark… Trying to besmirch my name… Were you guys responsible for those things as well?”
“Did the bishop order you guys to do that too?”
The woman sniggered quietly before lifting her chin up.
“You just figured it out? Well, our bishop is pretty scrupulous in how he does things.”
“So it’s true…”
Seol Jihu clenched his fists. He raised his head, but just as he was about to say something, he widened his eyes.
“You guys… Huh? Ah, really?”
He spoke while staring into the air, or more precisely, at Seo Yuhui.
“Ah… sorry. I must have gotten too absorbed in my role. No, no, don’t kill them. This is a good opportunity, but I still have use for those five.”
What was certain was that he wasn’t talking to the woman.
Just as the woman started to believe that he went insane from shock…
“Yes, you can come here now. Looks like we already got most of the important information out of her.”
The woman asked back in doubt.
And then a loud scream burst out.
The burly man writhed in pain while clutching his hand.
Seo Yuhui, whom he inadvertently dropped, was floating in the air.
Even in the pitch-black darkness of the night, the woman could see clearly.
A cloud of black smoke was flying toward Seol Jihu while coiled around Seo Yuhui.
‘W-What the hell?’
She couldn’t help but be shocked.
She was never told anything about such an ability or artifact.
[Sorry, I know I was supposed to wait for the signal, but it looked like this unni was in too much pain…]
“No, it’s fine. I was about to give the signal anyways.”
Seol Jihu looked down.
Seo Yuhui was sitting in a curled up position, shaking like a leaf.
Her breathing was rough. She was deserving of an Oscar if she was acting, but it didn’t look like she was.
It seemed she received quite a big shock.
Seol Jihu immediately took off his cape and draped it around Seo Yuhui’s body. As he placed his hand on her back, he could feel her shaking subside.
Soon, Seo Yuhui nodded. She seemed to be saying that she was fine and that he should go ahead with the plan.
Seol Jihu muttered in a low voice while looking up.
The woman unknowingly frowned.
Her instincts were screaming that something was wrong.
Rather than things taking a wrong turn, she felt like she’d been on the wrong path from the beginning.
But what sign did she miss?
“I was wondering how I should drag the information out of you… Who knew you’d confess on your own!? You really helped me out. Though, I’m sure you were scheming something too.”
Not only the woman but everyone around them was completely frozen. They seemed incapable of keeping up with the sudden turn of events.
The woman suddenly had a thought.
What if Seol Jihu was acting this whole time?
Then why did he pretend to have fallen for their trap?
Just what was his aim?
“W-What… what the hell happened?”
Even Chohong looked puzzled. With even someone on the same team as Seol Jihu being fooled, how could the enemy notice?
“Two, three years in Haramark… seven years in that place…. That’s about ten years.”
Seol Jihu murmured quietly before reaching out with his hand.
At the same time, the woman almost fell forward.
Whiish! The spear in her hand shot out of its own accord before spinning back to Seol Jihu’s hand.
“Have you guys heard?”
Seol Jihu spoke.
“They say that time heals everything. That time heals all sorrows.”
Seol Jihu cracked his neck.
“Turns out, it’s wrong. There are things you can’t forget even after ten years go by. Rather than forgetting it, you get angrier the more you think about it and end up sharpening your sword.”
The woman stood straight and subconsciously stepped backward.
Not once, but several times.
She didn’t understand what was going on, but one thing was for certain.
The immature hero from a shonen manhwa had changed in an instant to an aged, veteran who seemed to have suffered through ten years of war.
That thing wasn’t something like a hero.
In this pitch-black night drizzling with light rain, the entire mountain range suddenly held its breath.
The campsite became dead silent.
“W-What the hell happened?”
The burly man shouted in fear.
It was because everyone could feel it.
A never-felt-before killing intent that seized control over the area with crushing pressure.
Their bodies shook from an unprecedented sense of unease.
But it was far too late. By the time they grabbed hold of their senses and looked straight, a demon enshrouded by darkness was standing with a white spear in his hand.
Tak! A spark of electricity crackled from his feet.
“I’ve waited for ten whole years.”
From his body and from his frightening eyes…
“Just to beat the shit out of all of you…”
Flares erupted everywhere.
The movie had yet to end. In fact, this was only the beginning.
Seol Jihu smiled beamingly.
“You all can look forward to what is to come.”
It was at that moment.Previous Chapter Next Chapter
T/L: The original title of the chapter is a Chinese idiom that translates to: a gentleman can wait ten years to exact revenge.