Chapter 115: I would never grease my palms only, you know (5)

Yi Ji-Hyuk flew up using the flight magic, and shouted at Affeldrichae.

“Where’s my foothold, Miss Foothold Shuttle??” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

“A shuttle?” (Affeldrichae)

“Translate later, foothold first!” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

Affeldrichae quickly created a new platform and Yi Ji-Hyuk stepped on it before jumping up.

Kyyyahhck!!

As soon as spotting Yi Ji-Hyuk closing the distance from below, several Drakes began shooting flames out of their maws.

“What the hell?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

These b*stards… they can also shoot a Breath, too?

Well, uh….

I wouldn’t have known that. They are trashy mobs, so why should I care?

I used to blow away Drakes with a flick of my hand in the past, so it didn’t matter whether they knew how to shoot Breaths or not. (Yi Ji-Hyuk’s inner monologue)

Yi Ji-Hyuk wrapped his body up with the black tentacles and protected himself, but he still felt the heat through them.

“Eeeek!! Hot!”

He began gritting his teeth as the boiling-hot heat inundated him.

How can I be struggling this much against trashy mobs, and not even boss-level mobs?

How can this be? (Yi Ji-Hyuk’s inner monologue)

Yi Ji-Hyuk’s eyes became bloodshot in an instant.

“So, you wanna have a go, is that it? Hah?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

Jet-black Mana rose up from Yi Ji-Hyuk’s body like black smoke. He no longer cared about conserving his Mana and whatnot. That was not important anymore. What’s more important was the fact that his pride got hurt just now.

*SFX for flames erupting out*

The smoke erupted into black flames and soon, two wings of flames formed on Yi Ji-Hyuk’s shoulders.

Choi Jung-Hoon’s fists tightened in anticipation as he witnessed this sight.

To be able to create wings like that, as expected of Yi Ji-Hyuk!

His personality might be the worst in history, but at least, his abilities were the best of what humanity had to offer! Without a doubt, those were fantastic-looking pair of wings.

Now, soar higher and higher into the heavens!

“Lizard woman, foothold, nooooooow!!” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

“…….Wait a second. He can’t fly?” (Choi Jung-Hoon)

….Then, why did he create those wings?

Hang on a minute.

Before I ask that…. He flew around without those wings in the first place, didn’t he?

So, why did he make those things now, then?

Is it just to look cool? Is that it?!

Seeing that weird smile on his face, my guess was correct, wasn’t it?!

….Uhm, yeah, it does look cool, but… (Choi Jung-Hoon’s inner monologue)

Yi Ji-Hyuk, with his black wings and all, stepped on the foothold and jumped up again. That sight of him bouncing around on the platforms was… How should one go about explaining it…?

“It’s like….” (Choi Jung-Hoon)

Hearing Choi Jung-Hoon’s words, even Doh Gah-Yun was nodding her head in agreement.

He should’ve become a hawk and soared into the sky, but….

But, it felt like he had become a chicken, instead.

Bouncing around while adorned with a pair of cool wings like that, something about Yi Ji-Hyuk looked pathetic and pitiful. And it was… rather unbecoming, too.

“How mystifying. Really.” (Choi Jung-Hoon)

If Yi Ji-Hyuk was standing still, he’d have looked absolutely amazing.

Meanwhile, the Breaths fired from the Drakes were concentrated on Yi Ji-Hyuk’s position.

“Keuk!”

Each individual shot wasn’t threatening at all, but when they were combined like this, he could no longer dismiss them out of hand. With this much, wouldn’t it be almost on the level of a young Dragon?

He busily slapped, deflected and blocked away the Breaths using his tentacles and Shield magic, but even that eventually reached the breaking point.

“Keuk!”

A single Breath broke past his Shield and grazed past his leg. His skin cracked apart and burned where the attack kissed his skin.

If it was in the past, such a minor flesh wound would have healed up in less than a second, but the Yi Ji-Hyuk of now could no longer do that.

Grit.

Irritation began filling him up.

To waste his valuable time on these small fries!

Not only that, he was wounded, too?

The searing pain from the burns on his leg caused him to grit his teeth in anger.

“Haaaaaaah!”

Black flames intensified in both of his wings. The black flames licked and bellowed in an ominous fashion as they flew towards the flock of Drakes.

The individual Breaths lost their might after encountering Yi Ji-Hyuk’s flames and dissipated.

*SFX for monsters roaring out in pain*

Struck by the hellish black flames, Drakes cried out in anguish and fell helplessly to the ground. But, before they could hit the earth below, all the victims became nothing more than ash and scattered away in the winds.

“Keuk!”

He managed to kill dozens of Drakes in one go, but even then, there were still so many left that they blocked out the sun. And they were still firing their Breaths at him.

“Euh!”

Yi Ji-Hyuk was forced off course and missed the foothold, falling to the ground. He immediately activated the flight magic again, but the high-heat and the physical impacts continued to push Yi Ji-Hyuk back over and over again.

“Euaaah!! This is p*ssing me off!” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

If only they were standing on the ground; he’d have annihilated them all already!!

 

*

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“Not good.” (Doh Gah-Yun)

Doh Gah-Yun spoke up briefly and looked at Affeldrichae.

“….Foothold.” (Doh Gah-Yun)

Affeldrichae quietly studied her.

What could be the meaning behind this small human’s words? If she created footholds, would this small human use those to join in the fray?

This little human would?

A human who would turn into ash from a single Breath?

Wuoong…

Affeldrichae didn’t say anything and created a foothold in front of Doh Gah-Yun.

“Thanks.” (Doh Gah-Yun)

“M, Miss Gah-Yun!!” (Choi Jung-Hoon)

As soon as Gah-Yun stepped on the foothold, Choi Jung-Hoon cried out in alarm.

“It’s too dangerous!” (Choi Jung-Hoon)

“Be back soon.” (Doh Gah-Yun)

She jumped up from the platform and rose up higher, and Affeldrichae continued to create new footholds for her to step on.

*SFX for Doh Gah-Yun jumping on the platforms*

Doh Gah-Yun’s movements were unexpectedly swift and steady. Seeing her accurate movements, Affeldrichae created the next foothold at a slight angle, and soon, Gah-Yun bounded off them and nimbly soared into the sky.

‘She’s like a jaguar.’ (Choi Jung-Hoon)

Seeing her move like that, Choi Jung-Hoon could only gasp out in a shocked bewilderment.

Since when did Doh Gah-Yun possess a movement ability like that? Her stealth and infiltration abilities were unquestionably top-notch, but she didn’t have what you’d call a combat-related ability at all.

But that Doh Gah-Yun he was looking at right now was definitely not the same Doh Gah-Yun of the past.

She bounced around the footholds placed at a seemingly-random spots and soared towards the opposite of where Yi Ji-Hyuk was in no time.

*SFX for monsters roaring*

Drakes immediately spotted Doh Gah-Yun and changed the direction of their Breaths towards her.

Not many of them did, but still, that was enough for Yi Ji-Hyuk.

“You d*mn flying lizards!” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

Seizing that small respite, Yi Ji-Hyuk spread open his black wings and flew up in the air.

Meanwhile, Breaths rained down on him.

“How dare you!” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

Yi Ji-Hyuk’s eyes were now dyed in a deep crimson hue. His eyes were so bloodshot that he looked like he’d start shedding tears of blood at any second now.

*SFX for a Drake’s roar*

A lone Drake rushed towards Yi Ji-Hyuk with its maw wide open as if to swallow him up in one go.

“Hah….”

Even though he had lost his identity as a sovereign and his powers, how dare a trashy mob monster openly reveal its fangs at him?

He no longer cared about preserving his life or limbs. No, this was now the matter of his pride.

Several black tentacles shot out from Yi Ji-Hyuk and violently stabbed into the body of the Drake.

*SFX for the Drake shrieking in pain*

The Drake, now suspended in mid-air like a puppet strung up with steel wires, roared out in pure agony.

“Drain.”

*SFX for the Drake being crushed*

From the inside of the Drake’s body, noises of things twisting apart resounded out. And at the same time, Mana found inside the Drake traveled down the tentacles and entered Yi Ji-Hyuk.

Mana high in purity flowed into him. Unfortunately, it barely scratched the surface. This little bit of Mana was not enough to make him feel sated at all.

Yi Ji-Hyuk’s avarice-filled eyes turned towards the rest of the Drakes.

The tentacles discarded the dead husk of the Drake and flew towards the rest of the flock. But, unlike before when he tried to swallow them up, these tentacles pierced and stabbed into the bodies of their victims.

“Heup!”

Using the tentacles that had successfully pierced the Drakes as leverage, Yi Ji-Hyuk yanked himself into the Drake flock once more.

*SFX for Drakes roaring out*

As soon as he was within range, Drakes met him with their sharp fangs and talons.

“Keuk!”

He managed to evade the most of those, but a few talons still stabbed into his back. Yi Ji-Hyuk bit down on his teeth hard enough to nearly break them and flew forward as if he was rolling away.

*SFX for blood spray*

With a chilling noise, the flesh on his back split open and blood poured out.

That hurt.

Pain.

It f*cking hurts, seriously!

Been a while since I felt this kinda pain…. (Yi Ji-Hyuk’s inner monologue)

Yi Ji-Hyuk’s lips, blood dripping out from them, quivered deeply.

Yeah, it’s been a while.

It’s always been like this back in Berafe. (Yi Ji-Hyuk’s inner monologue)

He may have possessed the body of an immortal, but that didn’t save him from the agonies of pain. Living for a thousand-plus years, he had experienced and endured dozens of times the pain that others would have only felt once in their lives.

Wouldn’t he have built up a resistance to pain by now, then?

Not even close.

A human would never get used to pain! Pain would always remain as pain, even if it was a thousand years, ten thousand, or even a hundred thousand years later.

No, hang on a minute. Maybe one might be able to get used to pain, sure. But, Yi Ji-Hyuk’s unique case meant he would never be able to. Well, his mental state was refreshed over and over again, after all.

Instead of him getting used to pain, everyday was recurring nightmare of renewing pain and horrors.

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Having felt the searing pain ripping through his body, a first in quite a while, it was like his reasoning had came back.

“I will die at this rate….” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

Indeed, it wouldn’t end merely with him getting wounded. It wouldn’t end with him simply feeling the pain.

He’d really die if this continued.

And this revelation served to boil each and every cell in his body in pure rage. At the same time, black Mana poured out from his right hand like twisting vines. That black Mana began coagulating right in front of him.

“Euhaaahhhhh!!”

As a price for pouring out too much Mana in one go, Yi Ji-Hyuk’s right arm began twisting up like the trunk of an ancient tree. This was the result of handling a massive amount of dark Mana that no human being should touch in the first place.

However, he had no choice.

*SFX for bones breaking*

Along with the noise of his bones breaking, Yi Ji-Hyuk’s right arm bent and twisted at weird angles.

In the past, his limb would’ve returned to normal in the blink after breaking like that. But now, that didn’t happen.

*SFX for noises of something grating against something else*

Now, his arm began righting itself very, very slowly, accompanied by the agonisingly laboured and goosebumps-inducing grating noise. Yi Ji-Hyuk stopped looking at his right arm and focused on controlling his magic.

Stab!

It was then, a talon of the Drake broke past his Shield magic and penetrated into his lower belly.

Affeldrichae called out with an urgent expression on her face.

“Mister Ji-Hyuk!” (Affeldrichae)

The dark Mana began boiling even hotter inside Yi Ji-Hyuk’s body. He was getting ready to deploy another magic spell. However, by forcing his body to control that much dark Mana, he was accelerating his deterioration.

The damage to his body wasn’t important. No, the damage to his mind was – he not only no longer possessed the diamond-like impenetrable mental barrier, nor could his mind continuously refresh!

The black magic would eat away at his humanity and slowly corrupt his flesh. That was why she tried to assist him, so that he’d be able  to solve this situation with his own body, but now….

“You mustn’t!” (Affeldrichae)

Unfortunately, there was nothing she could do as she was right now.

Meanwhile, Yi Ji-Hyuk’s eyes became even more bloodshot.

Too weak.

Way, way too weak. (Yi Ji-Hyuk’s inner monologue)

He began guffawing uncontrollably at realising how weak he really was.

“That is why!!” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

The jet-black Mana coagulated and spun around viciously.

*SFX for Mana spinning around in the air*

Emitting a violent, wild roar, the black Mana gradually grew larger and larger in size. And an evil, devil-like smile formed on Yi Ji-Hyuk’s face.

“….I’m gonna devour you all.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)

He’d devour and devour some more. He’d continue to devour and grow bigger. Eventually, he’d touch the threshold again.

That threshold.

So, until I get there, I’ll just eat more and more and more, and then some more, am I right?

The black Mana spread throughout the world. It acted like a black veil shrouding the sky.

The bright middle-of-the-day sky was soon covered in descending darkness. The darkness spreading out with Yi Ji-Hyuk as the centre slowly spread out and swallowed up everything nearby.

“W, what the hell is going on?!” (Choi Jung-Hoon)

Choi Jung-Hoon stared at this unfolding spectacle with fear in his voice.

He witnessed the darkness that undulated like the surface of water suddenly appear in the middle of the sky, before proceeding to blanket every single airborne Drake.

Only Affeldrichae knew what the identity of this magic was and her expression hardened in an instant.

For sure, this magic would be the most ideal one to cast in a situation like this one.

However….

It was as if a jet-black moon had risen up in the middle of the day.

The ebony moon that had swallowed up all the Drakes reminded the onlookers of a giant doorway that sucked in the hapless victims and sent them to another world altogether.

“J, just what the hell is that, and what is going on here?” (Choi Jung-Hoon)

Choi Jung-Hoon bit down on his teeth.

 

*

 

Doh Gah-Yun quickly looked around her.

‘Footholds?’

They were still there.

Which meant that the inside of this darkness was not cut off from the outside world.

However, why couldn’t she see anything?

“Fuu….”

It was then when she heard a low groan of a person.

“Yi Ji-Hyuk?”

*SFX for flames erupting*

Suddenly, flickering flames erupted out and brightened this new world.

“…..Ah.”

The darkness that covered and blocked and blinded her ears and eyes was pulled away, and….

Doh Gah-Yun’s legs gave out and she plopped down on the floating platform after she witnessed the artificial world Yi Ji-Hyuk had created.

‘This, this is?!’

A sight so far removed from her scope of understanding was unfolding right before her eyes.

 

< 115. I would never grease my palms only, you know -5 > Fin.

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