Chapter 50 – Gwangmyeong City(1)
The sudden appearance of monsters had destroyed modern day civilization in a matter of hours.
In light of such events, humans had no choice but to become the monsters and beasts themselves.
“P, please save me.”
The same was true for Gwangmyeong City.
All semblance of civility had collapsed with the sudden appearance of monsters. Electricity was cut off, communication was paralyzed, and the absence of gasoline and oil served as the fuel for the degeneration of humanity.
Those who had scraped by and survived the initial onslaught all ended up having to become like the monsters that had attacked them in order to survive.
“What’s this? A boy?”
“I thought it was a bitch, but turns out it’s a baby boy! Fuck, you made me exert myself for no reason.”
“Ah, this son of a bitch. If you’re gonna get caught, then be obedient! You think you can run away?”
Out in the cold within a forest of buildings stood four men surrounding another man.
“S, sorry, I’m sorry. Please, my life……”
It wasn’t difficult to understand what the situation was like.
As such, it would be difficult to be upset at the eventual outcome.
Of the four, a man wearing boots kicked the collapsed victim’s head as though it were a soccer ball.
The man screamed as he retreated backwards. Although the man looked pitiful, the man who kicked him apathetically placed his foot on his chest.
His intention was to break his ribs.
The man could do nothing but tremble, his breathing ragged. He was trembling out of fear and pain.
The four men began to talk to each other.
“Looks like a real bitch. Damn it, I ran like crazy because I wanted a taste.”
“What should we do? Should we just kill him right here?”
“Just kill him. It’s not like you can get a taste by taking him to the hideout, right? You can’t eat him either.”
“Well who knows. There might be someone who likes that sort of thing.”
“But it isn’t your taste?”
“What the fuck are you assholes looking at me for!”
“Shut up. A monster might hear you and come here. Then we’ll end up dead.”
One of the four who couldn’t stand the disgusting conversation was forced to speak out.
“S, spare me, s, spare me.”
However, it didn’t produce the outcome that he wanted.
One of the four frowned while listening to the poor man who had suddenly begun to beg for his life again.
“This bastard is so damn loud. What do you guys think of ripping his tongue out first?”
The man who was begging for his life quickly shut his mouth and clenched his teeth. The man felt a sense of desolation.
It was because of that.
The others were able to sense it as well.
“W, who is it!”
A solitary man approached the group of men.
The man’s outfit was fairly unique. He was wearing a black, leather protective jacket and a vest over a blue outfit, making him look like a member of the police special forces.
But it was not a police commando.
Although he was wearing an outfit similar to that of a police commando, it was what he was carrying on his back that made it clear that he wasn’t a commando. They couldn’t help but notice a sword slung on his back.
If society hadn’t collapsed, he would have been seen as a cosplayer, a drama actor, or an actor in a movie.
But on top of that, it was still strange to see a man like that in a lawless city where civilization had long since collapsed.
So they were nervous.
If it was before the collapse of civilization, the men would have merely looked upon the man with disdain, but things were different now. Seeing the strange outfit, they weren’t sure of how to approach the situation.
“Hey, who the hell are you!”
One of the four men couldn’t help but call out to the man in the strange outfit.
Instead of replying, the man that had suddenly appeared simply lifted up a black object he held in his hand. He stroked the object lightly with his left hand.
Instead of replying back, he simply held out a K5 Pistol.
They couldn’t quite tell what it was since they were quite at a distance, but when they heard the telltale sounds of a gun being loaded, the four men began to panic and retreat.
It didn’t take experience to tell that four unarmed men could do nothing in front of a pistol, especially when at a distance.
Only one of them dared to speak facing the muzzle.
“W, we’re members of Messiah! Messiah!”
A last ditch effort.
The intimidating man with a gun in his hand furrowed his brow. Anywhos, it looked like he knew what the name ‘Messiah’ meant.
So was that the reason why?
“Touch us, and our organization won’t sit still!”
“Yeah! If you touch us, you’re dead!”
They began to threaten the man as a last ditch effort.
It was like looking at a group of kindergarteners indiscriminately threatening others.
Despite that, the man put his gun down onto the floor.
‘D, did he understand?’
‘W, we’re saved!’
The four men simultaneously let out a sigh of relief.
One of the men noticed that the pupil’s of the man in the distance had turned black.
The sound of relieved sighs fell flat in the air.
A hole the size of a pinky finger appeared in one of the men’s temple, a mixture of cerebrum and blood gushing out of his body.
As soon as one of the guys realized what had happened, he began to panic, his breathing turning ragged and choked and his pants soaked in urine.
“Messiah…… it looks like the naming sense of surviving humans is similar everywhere.”
While laughing and talking to himself, the gunman, Kim Tae Hoon, returned his pistol to the holster strapped onto his right thigh.
He approached one of the men who had lost all strength in his legs and had collapsed onto the floor.
“I want to ask you something.”
The man merely whimpered in response.
“S, spare me please.”
Choi Gisun, he was there during the sudden outbreak of monsters, and he had survived.
There were two ways in which the initial survivors of the monster outbreak could survive.
You had to choose between killing monsters or killing humans.
Choi Gisun was the latter.
He had gathered other humans and had lived his life as a lawless figure.
Rape, robbery, and murder.
If South Korea’s justice system were still intact, then his crimes would have been enough to revive the death sentence.
In fact, he had committed more crimes than the amount of meals he had eaten. Securing a meal was more difficult than anything else after the monster outbreak.
Those that had survived began to gather in one place.
That was how the group Messiah was formed.
But in the end, their group became not one to save others, but one that resorted to looting.
It was a group that ignored morals and sought any means necessary to survive.
“That’s all I know. Please, please spare me.”
Choi Gisun was just a bully that had the backing of a bigger group. So before the threat of death, he couldn’t help but capitulate.
“Please, if you spare me, I won’t forget your mercy. I swear, I’ll change my ways. I’ll reform and live like a saint.”
He even pledged to reform in a way a child in elementary school would.
While glaring at Choi Gisun, the events of the last three days flashed through Kim Tae Hoon’s mind.
His memories began when Kim Tae Hoon emerged victorious against the Flame Spitting Crocodile and swallowed the monster stone that had once resided within the crocodile.
“Boss, this is an emergency.”
Although everyone in the Mek Guild had started to cheer and celebrate as Kim Tae Hoon ingested the monster stone, Chang Sung Hoon approached him with a stern expression.
“The green ranked monster has disappeared from the map.”
He only needed a few words along with his expression to convey what he wanted to say.
“The one in Gwangmyeong City.”
The taste of victory promptly disappeared from Kim Tae Hoon’s mind.
The two of them quickly headed into a nearby cafe where Kim Tae Hoon heard a more detailed story from Chang Sung Hoon.
The green light in Gwangmyeong City had suddenly disappeared.
It hadn’t been too long since he had taken his eyes off of Daedongyeojido.
“It either has an ability that lets it disappear from the map, or its speed is so fast that it flew outside of the boundaries of the map……”
Chang Sung Hoon promptly told Kim Tae Hoon the possibilities that he suspected.
“Or maybe someone else had already hunted it down. I would guess it would be one of these three scenarios.”
There were three scenarios.
There was only one thing Kim Tae Hoon could do in light of these new developments.
He would need to enter Gwangmyeong city and personally observe the situation.
It was a natural progression.
If the green ranked monster had the ability to disappear from the map, then you wouldn’t be able to deal with it with the aid of Daedongyeojido.
If not careful, the strong castle that the Mek Guild had built could become nothing more than a sandcastle overnight.
So of course, he had no choice but to investigate despite the risk.
He had to confirm if it had left to a far away land. There was a need to secure the facility for the manufacturing of photovoltaic batteries in Gwangmyeong City, but before that, their was a need to do a preliminary search before that.
‘There’s nothing wrong with someone stronger than me. All of the Awakened have different starting lines in regards to their first abilities. And if you were to couple it with a strong artifact……’
He needed to confirm whether or not an Awakened had killed the green ranked monster.
‘Maybe he’s the one that kills me in the future.’
Any Awakened that can kill a green ranked monster in such a short amount of time is much, much more dangerous than a green ranked monster itself.
So soon after Kim Tae Hoon had made his preparations, he entered Gwangmyeong City.
That was three days ago.
During that time, Kim Tae Hoon had scoured Gwangmyeong City. He avoided engagement with monsters and contact with survivors.
It was only a short time ago that Kim Tae Hoon was convinced.
At present, Gwangmyeong City was not home to either a green ranked monster or an Awakened, powerful enough to kill the said green ranked monster.
That was why Kim Tae Hoon had finally showed himself.
“I’m telling the truth. If you let me live, I’ll completely change the way I live.”
Kim Tae Hoon snapped back to reality and stared at Choi Gisun, who had become nothing more than a sheep for the sake of saving his life.
Looking at him, Kim Tae Hoon lightly nodded.
It’s fine if he leaves.
It would not be an exaggeration to say that his gesture was a universal signal of approval throughout the world.
“T, thank you. Thank you, thank you very much.”
As soon as he freed himself from his own fear, he started to move away from Kim Tae Hoon, slowly shuffling away, still wary of Kim Tae Hoon.
As soon as he reached the streets and the buildings started to block Kim Tae Hoon, he began to run.
“Son of a bitch, you’re fucking dead.”
He mumbled his revenge as he ran away.
Kim Tae Hoon didn’t take his threat too seriously.
“E, excuse me!”
A pitiful man lay off to the side, his ragged breathing pervading the silence and his busted lips evidence to the beating he had received from the other men.
He was a slim man, and very feminine– so much so that many would mistake him to be a woman from a distance.
“Th, that man, it was a mistake to let him go.”
Even his voice was feminine. It wasn’t unbelievable to see why four men had surrounded him whilst thinking he was a woman.
He continued to speak in a feeble voice.
“If you leave that person alive, he’ll be sure to come back to exact revenge. He’ll bring the Messiah organization and punish you in terrible way! Some of the Messiah members even have guns!”
After confirming the time on his watch, Kim Tae Hoon put his left wrist down and spoke in a loud voice.
Kim Tae Hoon felt no risk in the face of that threat.
In other words, the single most dangerous creature in all of Gwangmyeong City was Kim Tae Hoon.
So Kim Tae Hoon had no mind to restrain himself because of a simple threat.
“That’s why I let him go. I guess I should talk to you now. Tell me everything you know.”
Of course, Kim Tae Hoon also had no desire to extend an olive branch to this fragile looking man.
In this world where monsters roamed free and dominated the overworld, Kim Tae Hoon had no intention to die any time soon.
To let down his guard before this fragile looking man was simply the same as asking for death.