Chapter 108: W, why are you coming out from there? (3)

“Okay, here you use the skill found in….. Right. Well done.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

“No, wait. You should back off ther…. Right, you did really well defeating that guy….” (Choi Jung-Hoon)

The number of words leaving Yi Ji-Hyuk’s and Choi Jung-Hoon’s mouths gradually lessened.

Just what was up with this woman?

What was she? A freaking machine born only to play games?

At first, she couldn’t get used to the keyboard and mouse and ended up making an utter fool of herself, but only after two rounds, her hands were now moving so fast that humans eyes had trouble following her.

Could this be yet another one of her inborn talents?

Did this mean that Berafe’s Lord of all dragons was also the top dog in the online gaming scene, too?!

“I, I……..” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

Yi Ji-Hyuk, who was the top dog of Berafe once upon a time, could only shed sticky sweat in his mind.

“Hmm…..”

Affeldrichae shrugged her shoulders after achieving one of the most outstandingly smooth triple kills ever in the history of online gaming.

“Although the game looks complicated, it’s actually not that difficult. Constantly moving around, timely placed assaults, and evasion. All I have to do is to perform these three actions.” (Affeldrichae)

….It’s those three actions that are hard to perform properly!!

This ain’t even like a guy who got accepted into the Seoul University telling others that the secret of his passing lay with preparing thoroughly and studying the textbooks!!

No, someone like that would still go and get extra tuition behind everyone’s back, anyways!

But this woman here, she’s speaking her opinions honestly, isn’t she?!

Screeeeeeeeew this sh*t!!!! (Yi Ji-Hyuk’s inner monologue)

Having been unable to break out of the bottom 3% of the rankings for the last three months, anger and anguish began reddening Yi Ji-Hyuk’s face once he saw how good she was.

“Are you feeling unwell somewhere?” (Affeldrichae)

“…..No.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

“Your temperature’s rising up, though…. Mm, perhaps the flu?” (Affeldrichae)

“I’ll start to feel better once you get out of my sight.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

“You still like to make those strange jokes, don’t you.” (Affeldrichae)

It’s not a joke!! I’m being honest here!!

When it’s completely useless, you go around driving me insane with your antics, yet why can’t you read my mind all of a sudden?

Hah, I really want you to disappear from my sight! For real!! (Yi Ji-Hyuk’s inner monologue)

Even as Affeldrichae engaged in small talk with Yi Ji-Hyuk, there was a peerless dance of a goddess unfolding inside the computer monitor. The blood squirting out from the characters in the screen looked real to his eyes now.

This, this is no longer an MMORPG but an AOS, no?

Why do the enemy players look like a trashy mob now? (Yi Ji-Hyuk’s inner monologue) (TL note at the end)

In the meantime, the chat window was going into overdrive.

 

– What the hell?! Could that be a helper? Can’t you just give us a break? How do you expect us to dodge all these?!

– This must be a smurf. But what is a smurf doing here?

– I still can’t figure out how I died just now.

– I can’t even get angry anymore.

– Can’t even follow with my eyes.

 

Wasn’t this reaction quite different from when Yi Ji-Hyuk was playing? Wouldn’t people normally start swearing at a time like this?

Well, whenever an enemy went on a rampage like how this woman’s doing, I’d start spamming the chat with every insult that I can think of….

So, how come their reactions are like this? (Yi Ji-Hyuk’s inner monologue)

“Mm…”

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Affeldrichae tilted her head to the side.

“No, wait. It is a little more difficult that I thought.” (Affeldrichae)

“Eh?”

“I expected others to take the most logical option available, but they do not. They would’ve survived if they went to the right, but they didn’t. Small errors keep cropping up on my initial calculations. I’ve been making tactical decisions accordingly but I still have to modify them on the fly and that results in slight losses. Humans are indeed unpredictable creatures.” (Affeldrichae)

“…..It’s just you who’s gone insane.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

“Pardon?” (Affeldrichae)

You’d not be a human anymore if you can figure that out in such a short period of time, and move in the most optimal way!

Even the top pro gamers wouldn’t be able to do that, you dang lizard woman!!

Hah!

Even if our species are different, shouldn’t there be some kind of a balance here?

A monkey might be behind a human in terms of intellect, but at least it’s better at climbing trees, you know!!

What can a human do better than a dragon?!

She’s better at games than man, even!! (Yi Ji-Hyuk’s inner monologue)

“Mm. It’s getting harder as I play.” (Affeldrichae)

Stop saying such things while getting an easy double kill like that!! (Yi Ji-Hyuk’s inner monologue)

“….And what is harder?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

“The more I play, the harder I find to understand what the motivation of my comrades and the enemy combatants are. Why are they there, what are they aiming for now…. There is a lot of confusion. Once more, I realise that humans are difficult creatures for me to figure out what they are thinking about at any given moment.” (Affeldrichae)

….They aren’t thinking about anything, probably.

Why would they need to have a reason?

What meaning is there when your puppy starts running at you all crazy and like, and then it suddenly starts rolling on the floor?

It might be trying to do something, sure, but when a human sees it, it’s nothing but a waste of time.

Surely, this woman is thinking along the same line while playing the game with other human players, no? (Yi Ji-Hyuk’s inner monologue)

Yi Ji-Hyuk offered a silent prayer for the human players busy moving around the map as reflected on the mini-map.

If he were to be subjected to such a treatment, he’d probably destroy his monitor out of sheer humiliation.

“Certainly, their movements lack consistency. Why would they react and behave differently to the exact same situation? Is this the true form of Chaos?” (Affeldrichae)

Why are you talking about Chaos and stuff while playing a game?!

This woman also lost a few screws in her head, too. (Yi Ji-Hyuk’s inner monologue)

“How long are you planning to play?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

“I’m actually researching at the moment.” (Affeldrichae)

“Okay, fine. How long are you planning on researching, then?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

“It is wrong to disturb those burning with scholarly ambitions.” (Affeldrichae)

“….But, that’s my seat.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

“I know.” (Affeldrichae)

It’s not ‘I know’, you know!!! (Yi Ji-Hyuk’s inner monologue)

“Get out of my seat!” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

“I’m… I’m almost finished.” (Affeldrichae)

“I get it, so get out of there!!” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

“I said, I’m almost finished!! I only need a little more time!! I’m so close to an overall victory!!” (Affeldrichae)

Huh? What is this?

Is this a case of deja vu?

Where have I seen a situation like this one before?

Could I have made a…. mistake? (Yi Ji-Hyuk’s inner monologue)

“Stop it, before I pull the power cord out………..” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

Uh? What the hell? Again?

I’m getting a really weird vibe here. (Yi Ji-Hyuk’s inner monologue)

“Argh! I said, I’m almost there!!” (Affeldrichae)

….Don’t do that.

I’m feeling really sad and depressed right now for some reason.

Ha-ah, so this is how my mom feels, huh. (Yi Ji-Hyuk’s inner monologue)

With a sorrowful expression, Yi Ji-Hyuk crumpled into a seat next to Affeldrichae. Not even caring whether he did or not, Affeldrichae’s eyes never left the computer monitor as her hands continued to move around faster than a streak of lightning.

“That woman, what is she doing?” (Jeong Hae-Min)

At Jeong Hae-Min’s question, all Seo Ah-Young could do was to simply shake her head.

She was feeling rather dizzy after seeing Yi Ji-Hyuk half-slumped over the chair having had his mind broken, as well as Affeldrichae’s calm, calculating eyes and her amazingly speedy hands.

‘There are two idiots in here now.’ (Seo Ah-Young)

Not just one, but two…..

Uh-whew.

 

*

 

Inside another office, around the same time….

“A Gate is opening up, sir?” (Ito Sana)

Ito Sana’s head tilted slightly.

Wasn’t Gates popping up a pretty common thing by now? So, what could be the reason for her superior officer to call her into the office and tell her that?

Was he telling her to stop the Gate? But, that couldn’t be.

She was an ability user, alright. But her combat potential was close to nil. Even if she went to help out on a Gate subjugation mission, all she could do was to stay far away and fire a few rounds with a gun. That was all.

Something like that could be performed by a random ahjumma passing by, so there was no reason to call Ito Sana in today.

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However, her question didn’t go unanswered for long.

“For now, watch this footage.”

Ito Sana shifted her glance over to the monitor, and saw a footage recorded from a CCTV somewhere. There was a small Gate about the size of a person.

“That is the problematic Gate?” (Ito Sana)

But, how come? A reply didn’t come, but she got to see the footage roll forward at a much quicker rate.

“Mm?!” (Ito Sana)

And sure enough, her eyes opened up extra wide in shock.

“B, but how?!” (Ito Sana)

The Gate in the footage was getting progressively larger as time passed by. She couldn’t believe her own eyes.

“Is it still growing as we speak, sir?” (Ito Sana)

“That’s right.”

Ito Sana’s jaw dropped to the floor.

A Gate was growing bigger? If that was the case, then how could anyone estimate what level this Gate was?

“H, how big has it become?” (Ito Sana)

Her superior wordlessly pressed a button on the remote.

The footage in the monitor switched to the one being transmitted in real time, and Ito Sana got to see a massive Gate big enough to fill up the entire screen.

“….This…. What level….” (Ito Sana)

“It’s still at the upper limits of what we can label as a Level 5, but at the rate it’s growing, it should become a Level 6 by this evening.”

“A Level 6….” (Ito Sana)

There was no strength left in her voice.

That was a Level 6!

Japan hadn’t even experienced a Level 5 yet! But now, they had to fight against a Level 6?

Her country somehow managed to escape being one of the targeted nations when the Level 5 Gates appeared all over the world. Back then, the country rejoiced at their lucky escape, but now, they had to do something about a Level 6?!

“What will happen now, sir?” (Ito Sana)

“The fate of Japan lies with how we deal with this Gate that no one knows how big it’ll become.”

“Of course, sir.” (Ito Sana)

Even a three year old could see that. However, what she wanted to hear was a concrete plan on how to defend against such a Gate!

She was not interested in something anyone could’ve come up with!

“What about assistance from other nations?” (Ito Sana)

“For now, we have a verbal assurance.”

“For now, sir?” (Ito Sana)

The superior’s low sigh helped her to figure out the hidden meaning behind the words ‘for now’.

“….They are not coming.” (Ito Sana)

“On the surface, they also don’t know when a Level 6 Gate might appear in their territory, so it’d be hard for them to send assistance.”

“But, under the surface?” (Ito Sana)

“They probably would prefer to see us ruined. Even I’d feel the same.”

For the so-called allied nations, the best outcome for them would be Japan’s government collapsing after a suitably large chaos unfolded here. They would then swoop in, claiming to help the stricken citizens while turning Japan into a vassal state or some such.

If the infrastructure of the country was destroyed and the manufacturing slowed down as a result, such an event would negatively affect the intrinsically-linked global economy, but then, the benefits from having a vassal state would easily outweigh the negatives.

“So, what is the conclusion, sir? We need to handle this matter with our own power, is that it? Did you call me here to tell me this?” (Ito Sana)

“Of course not. But, there is indeed something you can do for us.”

“What is that, sir?” (Ito Sana)

The superior smiled.

“Go to Korea for us.”

“….Could it be?” (Ito Sana)

“That’s correct.”

“….I hope you aren’t telling me to bring Mister Yi Ji-Hyuk over here.” (Ito Sana)

“Why wouldn’t I? That’s precisely what needs to be done.”

What the hell? Didn’t this guy read the reports?

Don’t you receive real-time reports on what that man is up to? Yet, you still want someone like that here? (Ito Sana’s inner monologue)

“Looks like you really wish for Japan to sink beneath the ocean, sir.” (Ito Sana)

“If you fail to bring Yi Ji-Hyuk over here, then you will get to find out what Japan sinking beneath the ocean looks like.”

“But…..” (Ito Sana)

“Agent Ito Sana.”

Ha!

Ito Sana corrected her posture and stood upright.

“What I am saying right now isn’t me trying to persuade you, nor is it up for discussion. No, I’m giving you a direct order that could very well be the only way for us to survive this calamity. Do you understand the meaning behind my words?”

“Yes, sir!” (Ito Sana)

“Then, go and bring Yi Ji-Hyuk to me. If you fail to do so, don’t bother to return. I’m sure it’ll be rather amusing to see Japan get destroyed from across the ocean.”

“There will not be such an event, sir.” (Ito Sana)

The superior spoke in a low, grave tone of voice.

“There is hope. According to Kitamura Ren’s reports, he himself has become an integral part of the NDF. On top of that, it seems he has maintained a cordial relationship with Yi Ji-Hyuk. I want you to use that relationship to your advantage.”

Ha!

She performed a sharp military salute and turned around to leave. There was a resolute determination on her face.

However…..

‘Did he just say that Kitamura Ren was over there?’ (Ito Sana)

 

*

 

“….Oh, you came, Oh-Sik?” (Kitamura Ren)

Kitamura Ren spat out a groan as Oh-Sik trudged in closer to his position.

He pulled out one of the pet food bags piled up on high to the side of the NDF building, and opened it. Next, he poured the contents of the bag into a huge plastic wash basin on the floor. Oh-Sik wordlessly began munching on the pet food as if it was the most obvious thing to do in the world.

“Enjoy yourself.” (Kitamura Ren)

He was Kitamura Ren.

He was one of the most respected healers hailing from the nation of Japan. He was dispatched to Korea as his country’s proud representative. He was an elite among elites.

And currently, he was in charge of feeding the pet dog.

“…..Yeah, enjoy yourself, okay.” (Kitamura Ren)

Kitamura Ren sighed again.

At first, he was not subjected to such cold shoulders from everyone.

Without him, no matter how good the NDF agents were, they wouldn’t have survived inside that black warp gate. However, the real problem came after that.

Having survived the ordeal inside that black gate, the agents had become way more stronger than before, and as a result, they could take care of Gates appearing here and there without so much as a scratch on them.

Them not getting hurt was a good thing, of course.

Initially, Kitamura Ren was rejoicing in his heart. Well, things he had to do decreased considerably, after all.

But the happy feelings only lasted for a few days.

As it turned out, he really had nothing to do.

As soon as people realised that they weren’t getting hurt, he began receiving the cold shoulder treatment, and suddenly, he was being looked at as if he was an eyesore.

Since he was here on an assignment, he could’ve just taken it easy and not do anything, but the strong bond formed between them while surviving together in that hellish place had somehow morphed into jealousy after others saw him do nothing but play around.

‘A bunch of rotten b*stards.’

And with that, all sorts of mundane tasks began falling on his lap. Sometimes, documents of nature so sensitive that he had to wonder whether it was okay for him to have access to, would be thrown in his direction simply because Seo Ah-Young found the whole thing just a big bother.

“Ha-ah. Just what has happened to me…..” (Kitamura Ren)

“What a pathetic sight this is.” (Ito Sana)

“Mm?”

When Kitamura Ren turned around to look, he found Ito Sana standing there.

 

< 108. W, why are you coming out from there? (3) > Fin.

 

(TL: The author obviously made a mistake with LOL’s genre, I think. Or maybe the MC was playing something else. Anyways, I have no idea what this AOS could be. Some kind of a genre or a name of a game? Google wasn’t much of a help, so I just TLed as it was in the raw.)

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