Side Story 54. Poison With Poison, Evil With Evil (1)

Pzzzzzzzt!

Large bolts of lightning rose from the monster’s body. Its half-broken head drooped down.

Seol Jihu took out his hand that was digging into its scalp. After confirming that the monster had been neutralized, he hurriedly turned back.

Jumping into the air, he swung the Spear of Purity and cut off the chain. After gently laying his falling comrades on the ground, he poured one Elixeer into each of their mouths.

The effect of the Elixeer was indeed superb. The physical injuries on their bodies were healed in an instant. However, most of them failed to open their eyes.

What Taihi said was probably right, and they must have suffered non-physical damage.

It seemed he would need to use Elixeers and Seo Yuhui’s holy spells to keep them alive and then transport them back home as quickly as possible and then search for a way to save them.

“Mm…. mmm….”

Seol Jihu had mixed feelings watching Eun Yuri take the Elixeer like a baby. A part of him felt that something wasn’t quite right.

‘It was certainly stronger than a divinity-released Army Commander, but….’

Seol Jihu was also surprised when he used the Punishing Vengeance Spear. Even Sung Shihyun was driven to a groggy state in one blow, yet the monster had endured it and counterattacked.

But it was also true that it was weaker than Seol Jihu expected. Of course, Seol Jihu had confidence that he would also be able to overwhelm both Team 1 and the rescue team. Although he could understand why a Heaven-rank 6 Divine Wish didn’t work, he couldn’t say the same for the Parasite Queen’s essence or a higher-ranked divinity.

‘It didn’t feel like anything special….’

It was then.

Kikikiki. A low laughter suddenly rang out in the silent room.

‘It’s laughing?’

Just as Seol Jihu looked back at the limp body of the monster…

“Uek!”

A terrifying energy abruptly pressed down on him.

The oppressive energy had a clear will.

It wasn’t that Seol Jihu heard something. There wasn’t a voice inside his head like when he talked to the Seven Sins.

But, Seol Jihu suddenly felt an unknown will transmitted to him from the ceiling.

‘Why…? Why am I hindering you…?’

The moment he thought this, a piece of fragmented memory was transmitted into his head.

[Your Imperial Majesty! Please reconsider this matter…! Please heed our voices!]

[My will shall not change.]

‘What?’

A look of disbelief appeared on Seol Jihu’s face as he processed the information flowing into his brain.

[Paradise belongs to this imperial lord. Although it will be stolen from me due to my lacking strength, do you really believe I will hand it over so easily?]

[The Empire has fallen, but Paradise has not! Many kingdoms are left standing, and there are also the foreign races…!]

[How can the kingdoms survive when the Empire has not? And aren’t the foreign races lowering their heads to the alien race?]

[Your Imperial Majesty!]

[Stop! Now that we have come this far, this lord’s will shall not change!]

The last emperor of the Empire commanded with tears of blood.

[I have lost my kin, my loyal servants and subjects, and even my beloved nation!]

[Losing everything that I must protect…! How truly grievous, lamentable, and woeful!]

[But one day, this lord will return this emotion to the alien god!]

[Heed my command! Activate the Otherworldly God Summoning Circle!]

Seol Jihu couldn’t hide his shock after processing the memory.

Perhaps he should say he was dumbfounded.

No, it wasn’t that he didn’t understand. No one would have denied at that point that Paradise practically fell into the Parasite Queen’s hands.

And so, the last emperor of the Empire planned revenge. No matter how powerful the Parasite Queen was, she would not be able to act as she pleased if a god of the same rank existed in the same world.

But ultimately, his wish did not come to fruition. Although he managed to activate the summoning circle, the Parasite Queen had noticed it at the last second and came running in a hurry to stop it.

Despite temporarily halting the process, the Parasite Queen was put in a troubling position. She tried to cut off the connection, but the summoning circle remained connected. This could only mean that the connected god was of a higher level of existence than her.

Thankfully, she was able to use the law of causality to prevent the god’s entry to Paradise, but as long the god did not give up, it would most certainly be able to enter tens or hundreds of years later.

In the end, the Parasite Queen could only delay the inevitable as long as possible and hope that the god gave up. Meanwhile, she would prepare for the worst, a new war.

However, the Parasite Queen could not achieve her goals in Paradise. With her death, the secret of the Empire was also buried in history.

Of course, although no one knew of the matter, it was still progressing. After all, the Parasite Queen was no longer present to keep an eye on the summoning circle.

The otherworldly god had expended considerable efforts to enter Paradise. However, the Parasite Queen had entered the planet first. The restriction she placed by devouring the Chief Deity was so powerful that the otherworldly god could not do anything about it.

But thanks to the Parasite Queen dying, the otherworldly god was able to hasten the process and even succeeded in sending in a servant.

But that was it. The otherworldly god could not enter through the tiny hole in the planet’s defense, and because of the unstable connection, it could not scheme anything using its servant either. At best, the otherworldly god could only meaninglessly wander around the summoning circle.

If this ruin were never found, if the summoning circle and the otherworldly god’s servant remained buried, there would not have been a problem in Seol Jihu’s lifetime.

But the ruin was found during the Empire’s reconstruction, and Team 1 became the first sacrifice. By devouring the rescue team after Team 1, a huge possibility was created. A chance of doing something now, not hundreds or thousands of years later.

And so, the otherworldly god asked Seol Jihu.

It had come only because it was called. It came all this way to hear the summoner’s request. The Parasite Queen blocking it was one thing, but why was a human trying to block it too?

‘No…’

Seol Jihu shook his head and thought. The Parasite Queen has perished. And so, there was no need for it to come.

Seol Jihu did his best to explain the full story, but he was not expecting much. After all, gods seemed to be a rather self-centered bunch.

His expectation was spot on.

“Keuk…!”

Seol Jihu grunted. An immense rage could be felt, and contained in this rage was an indescribable evil will.

I came all the way here because you called me. Am I someone you can call and dismiss at your will?

Seol Jihu sympathized with having to wander in space due to the Parasite Queen’s obstruction, but...

‘Damn it…! Couldn’t you have just gone back…!?’

Woong!

At that moment, an intense sound filled the area. The pounding vibration spread and the room turned into a strange space where no sound rang out.

Soon, dust fell from the surrounding walls, revealing shining geometric symbols. Dyed in light, the symbols started traveling upwards.

It was at that moment that Seol Jihu realized the truth. The preparation was mostly done by the time the rescue team was captured. If it wanted, the otherworldly god could have formed a complete connection before it fully arrived.

It just didn’t do it to make the connection more stable. It had been waiting for Seol Jihu to get devoured as well for a more secure descent.

The otherworldly god certainly must not have expected its servant to be defeated. That was why it was giving up its original plan and making a move now.

“Damn it!”

Seol Jihu hurriedly swung the Spear of Purity. Reinforced sword qi flew out in all directions and destroyed the symbols, but the activation of the summoning circle did not stop. Even when Seol Jihu turned on his Nine Eyes, all he saw was black.

‘How…!’

I have to stop it! Looking around the surroundings, Seol Jihu came to a realization. The symbols were heading to a single spot, almost as if that was their supreme task.

Seol Jihu immediately ran forward. Raising the Spear of Purity high, he activated Aerial Movement.

Shwiiiiish!

Seol Jihu’s body soared up.

‘Please…!’

Seol Jihu stabbed the Spear of Purity into the center of the ceiling at the same moment as the shining symbols gathered in one spot.

Just as Seol Jihu detonated the reinforced sword qi….

“Ah…!”

His eyes shot open.

Boom!


*


Same time.

An uproar broke out in a penthouse of the SY Apartment building.

“I hate you, Daddy!”

A door closed shut with a cute cry.

“Suna. Suna?”

Kim Soohyun knocked on the door several times. When there was no response, he turned back with a flustered face.

“How angry do you think she is?”

He asked, looking at a floating blue orb.

—She’s lying down on her bed with her face buried in her pillow.

Zero Code spoke clearly.

Kim Soohyun sighed. But it seemed he had no intention of changing his mind as he started walking back to his room silently.

—I’m surprised. I thought you wouldn’t refuse your adorable daughter’s request.

“I almost agreed… but what’s not allowed is not allowed.”

Kim Soohyun shook his head.

“That world has already become a mess. If it keeps borrowing external power, it will only bring about a worse result in the long-run. You should know that too.”

—I won’t deny that, but it also can’t be helped. You can’t just say they were unlucky.

“Even if that’s true, there’s no reason for us to step in.”

Kim Soohyun turned the doorknob to his room. He then glanced back at Suna’s room.

“Besides…”

He spoke.

“It is protected by someone stronger than me. I don’t know what she’s worried about.”

Zero Code paused.

—Hoh. I didn’t expect you to say that.

“I’m not just talking about his martial prowess.”

Kim Soohyun murmured quietly.

Martial God — a legend who changed the fate of a world and achieved an undefeated myth.

He knew a bit about Seol Jihu.

A man who changed the future by only sending his emotions back, a trailblazer who paved the way for an ideal future for all.

Kim Soohyun was not able to do so. Though he managed to achieve his goals by using any means necessary, when he looked back from the apex, all that remained was regret. Only after borrowing Zero Code’s power was he able to lessen his guilt.

If he went back to those days and sent only his emotions back like Seol Jihu, would he be able to achieve the same result?

Kim Soohyun could not confidently say yes. As he had regarded everyone, including his comrades, as mere chess pieces, the result would have been the same no matter how many times he redid it. After all, he could not achieve it even when he went back with his memories.

It was simple, really. Kim Soohyun couldn’t succeed with more favorable conditions, and Seol Jihu succeeded in a poorer environment.

So how could Kim Soohyun not hold him in high regard? He was even envious of him!

“...He’s a monster in a different sense. And I say that sincerely.”

—It sounds like you really mean it.

“There’s a lot I can learn from him. Moreover, he defeated my wives in a head-on battle. That’s something I could never do in a billion lifetimes… I’m actually curious how he is with his family members. They must be full of laughter and peace, right?”

—….

Zero Code did not say anything.

Closing the door, Kim Soohyun sat down on a chair. Seeing Zero Code floating in, he smiled bitterly.

“Anyway, I’m surprised too. I didn’t think you would be so interested in him.”

—Rather than interested… I’m curious.

Zero Code spoke.

—Aren’t you curious as well?

“Hmm?”

—Permasnow, Hell’s Conflagration, Primal Fire, and even your daughter. They are all pinnacle-rank gods.

“And?”

—The Golden Constellation has caught the attention of such beings. His potential is also said to be above yours.

Kim Soohyun’s eyebrows went up slightly.

—But my thoughts are a little different, hehehehe.

Zero Code laughed in a low voice.

—That’s why I’m curious. Curious to find out who’s right.

“Jeez, that’s what you want to know?”

—How can I not? This question would have been answered long ago if Paradise’s Seven Sins didn’t pull such a ridiculous trick.

Kim Soohyun’s eyes widened at what Zero Code said. He then muttered ‘Ah,’ as if he realized something.

“Don’t tell me. That world’s gods purposely placed a restriction on him fearing his growth?”

—I won’t go that far.

Zero Code spun.

—But from a third-party perspective, I can’t help but criticize. The Golden Constellation has grown too much for the purpose of that world’s salvation.

“What do you mean by that?”

—Each person has a set of gloves that fit their hand. He could have tried on different gloves, but the Sins forced him to wear one particular glove.

Zero Code continued in a calm voice.

—Of course, there was the advantage that the glove was suited for fighting his enemy, but since they guided his growth in a way that went against his natural disposition, result-wise, his growth was restricted.

“That’s true… It’s not like only good can defeat evil.”

—Precisely. Evil can be suppressed with an even greater evil. The Golden Constellation’s natural disposition is no different than yours.

“Really? He seemed like a kind person though.”

—No, I’m sure of it. His actions in that world prove it.

Zero Code barely held himself back from saying, ‘At least you didn’t wipe out an enemy clan the day you created your own because you didn’t like them.’

Kim Soohyun closed his mouth. He stared at Zero Code for a while before speaking.

“Even so, do I have a duty to help you satisfy your curiosity?”

—You don’t have a duty to me, but you do have it to that world.

“How so?”

—I won’t say it’s your fault, but everything indeed happened because of the Parasite Queen fleeing to Paradise. Can’t you at least consider it accidental homicide?

“Hmm, if you want.”

Kim Soohyun shrugged. He looked rather apathetic.

“Let me ask you something.”

He asked in a low voice.

“Do you want me to go to that world and help that man personally?”

—I know you drew a line saying it is not allowed. I respect your decision.

“Then are you hoping I send Goh Yeonju or Ahn Sol to help?”

—That’s a meaningless question. Even your daughter has to be careful around you. The Shadow Queen nor Saintess Angelus would dare to defy you.

“One last question then. Do you want me to order Suna, Mercedes, Gehenna, or Hwajung to bestow divinity to him?”

—Of course not.

Zero Code laughed.

—Why would I ask you to do something I can do myself? Plus, I wouldn’t have even asked if that’s what I wanted. The answer’s obvious.

“...Okay.”

Hearing this, Kim Soohyun nodded.

“Let me change the question then.”

Sitting straight, he suddenly tapped the desk with his finger.

“Then what is the thing you are asking me to do?”

Zero Code spoke as if it was waiting for this question.

—What I want is...

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