What the hell is this?!
N-no, rather than that, how can there be crap like this?? (Choi Chang-Sik’s inner monologue)
Chang-Sik was freaking out for good now.
What on earth could this ‘thing’ be?
Is it a monster? Yeah, it is one, right?
But, what kind of a monster looks like that? (Choi Chang-Sik’s inner monologue)
His thoughts might be on the lengthy side, but his response was simple in nature. He quickly turned around and ran hard in the opposite direction.
“Uwaaahk!!” (Choi Chang-Sik)
Unfortunately, there was no way that he could run at his full speed when the ground was vibrating so viciously like this. In an instant, Chang-Sik lost his balance and crashed to the ground.
“Urgh, screw this sh*t!!” (Choi Chang-Sik)
The only thing coming out of his mouth was swearing. He turned his head around and saw that the semi-transparent viscous fluid thing had caught up to his heels now.
It looked to be creeping along at a really slow pace, yet it was surprisingly quick, as it turned out. It hadn’t been that long when he saw the creature way over there, but the thing had already reached where he was.
“Uwahh-!!” (Choi Chang-Sik)
He tried to scream. Too bad, it got stopped before leaving his mouth properly.
The viscous fluid enveloped Chang-Sik in an instant.
‘D*mn it!!’ (Choi Chang-Sik)
Along with this bizarre sensation of his entire body being trapped inside this soft, malleable jelly, his view began to grow blurrier.
“Uwah…. What am I suppo… Uh? Hey, I can still talk?” (Choi Chang-Sik)
Even though he was surrounded by this liquid-like thing, he could still hear his own words. What a strange situation this was.
Too bad, he could only do that and nothing else besides. No matter how hard he swung and flailed his arms about, his body remained trapped with the ‘jelly’ and didn’t even move an inch forward.
“Haaa….” (Choi Chang-Sik)
This was how he’d die, then.
A sense of hopelessness dyed Chang-Sik’s eyes.
But, I haven’t even gotten married yet…
Heck, I haven’t even graduated from high school….
I also haven’t returned Tae-Min’s shoes I stole, and, and…. I got a lot of pocket money for this month, so to think, I’ll die like this…. (Choi Chang-Sik’s inner monologue)
Tears began forming on the edges of Chang-Sik’s eyes.
“Mom, I’m sorry.” (Choi Chang-Sik)
He was the only son in the family, yet he couldn’t even act like a filial child, not even once, before getting killed. How hurt his mom would feel now?
Why did you make me come out here and buy these stupid clothes, why??!!
Mom, this is your fault!! (Choi Chang-Sik’s inner monologue)
His thoughts continued to change directions with every passing second.
“….Why aren’t I dead yet?” (Choi Chang-Sik)
Now this was so weird.
His current situation was not so different from being devoured alive by a monster, but there was no change to his body at the moment. On the contrary, he could breathe just fine, he couldn’t feel the vibrations from the earthquake, the surrounding temperature was perfect, and also, it kinda felt like he was lying on a soft, plush water bed or something, so, this….
“….Hey, this is really comfortable, isn’t it?” (Choi Chang-Sik)
Choi Chang-Sik’s mentality began to ascend to higher realms now. It felt oddly warm and cushy here, so he also felt a bit drowsy, as well.
“Should I take a nap for a bit, then?” (Choi Chang-Sik)
He already tried resisting. He tried to bite, struck out with his fists, even tried to kick, but the end result was the same; no matter what he did, he couldn’t escape from the current situation.
If that was the case, what meaning was there to continue resisting? Indeed, it was wise to give up now.
Chang-Sik arrived at that conclusion and laid his body back in a reclining position. The squishy liquid didn’t act like any other liquid he knew and supported his body perfectly.
“Yup, let’s just go to sleep.” (Choi Chang-Sik)
He wouldn’t get anywhere by worrying, anyways.
Wasn’t there an old saying about ‘A ghost who died after a good sleep looked nice?’ In that case, might as well get some shut-eye now…. (TL: No, there is no such saying in Korea. However, there is one about a person dying after eating well looking great, though.)
It was right then, the fluid surrounding him suddenly began wiggling about rather intensely.
“M-mm??” (Choi Chang-Sik)
Is it finally starting? (Choi Chang-Sik’s inner monologue)
He was momentarily taken over by the sensation of the fluid shifting his body, and indeed, he was now being transported to some place.
“What the hell?! What are you doing?!! I’m not going!! I don’t wanna goooo!!” (Choi Chang-Sik)
He cried out, but too bad, there was no way that a monster would understand human speech from the get-go.
I know that already, but!! There’s no harm in grasping at straws, is there?! (Choi Chang-Sik’s inner monologue)
His eyes completely filled with despair now, Choi Chang-Sik screamed and cried out, before twisting his body around. He kicked and struggled mightily, but nothing changed.
Like a potato being carried on top of a conveyor belt, his body was smoothly being transferred to an unknown destination.
He didn’t know where he was being shuffled to, but he could make a pretty good guess. Just like how an octopus transported a fish towards its mouth, this monster’s mouth should be waiting for him at the end of this journey.
“My life, filled with so much regrets…”
Sure, I haven’t been alive for long, but… No, hang on a minute, isn’t it precisely because I haven’t been living for long that there’s so much regret in my life?! I don’t want to die!! (Choi Chang-Sik’s inner monologue)
Chang-Sik pulled his smartphone out from his pocket.
He thought that, since these might be his last moments, he should at least say proper goodbyes to his family.
He switched the camera on and began recording his message. With a tearful face, he opened his lips to speak.
Although he was pained by the fact that the only person he could think of at his final moments was his mother, he nevertheless got to realise how precious one’s family was after ending up in a situation like this one.
His so-called friends would only go through the motions of mourning for a few days before forgetting all about him through the help of booze and cigarettes. Probably.
As for those who might remember him, it’d only be Yi Ye-Won and no one else, too.
“Mom, I think I’m going to die soon. I’m sorry for causing you so much trouble all this time. Mom, that 100 grand that went missing? I’m the one who did it. I took it out of your wallet when no one was looking. Oh, and the vase you liked so much, it’s me who broke it. I lied and said that ‘Chi-chi’ did it, but actually, I broke it while going to the toilet in the middle of the night. So, please stop being mean to Chi-chi.” (TL: No idea who this Chi-chi is, but sounds like a dog to me. Also, 100k Won = $86)
Feeling like he was in a confessional booth, he carried on.
“And the last time, I went out while wearing dad’s business suit, but it got all torn up after I got drunk and fought with someone. I didn’t lose it at the dry cleaner’s, you know. Yeah, I took it from them and wore it and got it all damaged, so I threw it away. So, you gotta apologise to the dry cleaner’s owner uncle, okay? And, and, what else was there?” (Choi Chang-Sik)
He had committed lots of wrongs, but now that he tried to recall them all, I couldn’t remember most of them in detail. Still, Choi Chang-Sik managed to confess to a few more of his wrongdoings and at the end of the call, sighed out deeply and said his goodbyes.
“Mom, I think I’ve been caught by a monster, so I’ll be dead soon. I’m sorry for hurting you for so long. Mom, I’m sorry!” (Choi Chang-Sik)
Finally ending what he wanted to say, he added that he’d be more filial in the next life and that he loved her before ending the recording to send it to his mom. He wondered if the video would be sent without any issues, but contrary to his worries, it got through just fine.
“Now, I don’t have any regrets.” (Choi Chang-Sik)
He then bravely and confidently accepted his death. Indeed, a man was supposed to be brave towards his end. He didn’t want to die while cowering in his boots. It wasn’t as if he’d not die because he did that, anyway.
However, if he had one final wish before dying, then that would be….
It’d been nice if he could see her face one more time before kicking the bucket, though. Tears formed on the edges of Choi Chang-Sik’s eyes.
“What a life filled with regrets!!” (Choi Chang-Sik)
Choi Chang-Sik roared out at the top of his lungs, only for his vision to suddenly open up wide and be greeted by the face he so longed to see.
“Uhh?” (Choi Chang-Sik)
…A dream, maybe? (Choi Chang-Sik’s inner monologue)
He looked at Seo Ah-Young’s face completely filling up his view and wondered whether he was dreaming or not. A person was supposed to have flashbacks to his life the moments before his death, so could this be it?
But then, Choi Chang-Sik felt wronged, somehow. No, not because he was going to die. These flashbacks were supposed to be imaginary in nature, anyway, so if that was the case, couldn’t she, you know, look a bit different to her usual self?
It’d been good if she was smiling brightly. Or, at the least, with no visible emotion on her face. No way she’d greet him with such an annoyed and disgusted expression on her face if this was his imagination, now was there?
Besides, her face was getting progressively closer and closer, as well.
Isn’t this… a prelude to a kiss???
Well, uh, I’m imagining things anyway, so how about trying one before dying…. (Choi Chang-Sik’s inner monologue)
It was right then – Choi Chang-Sik was greeted by an incredible amount of pain coming from his side.
“Kkah-ruuuk?!” (Choi Chang-Sik)
While issuing a rather bizarre scream, his body crashed into the ground.
“Aaaaahhk???!!!” (Choi Chang-Sik)
What the hell is this sh*t?!
Why does it hurt so much?? (Choi Chang-Sik’s inner monologue)
While Choi Chang-Sik was shedding a flood of tears because of the pain from his side, Choi Jung-Hoon was busy scolding Seo Ah-Young.
“Why are you kicking a civilian, ma’am?!” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
“He had the look of a pervert on his face, that’s why! And he’s still so young, too!!” (Seo Ah-Young)
“How can you tell that from just his face alone?!” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
“Because I can!!” (Seo Ah-Young)
“But, hoooow?!” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
“A woman’s intuition!” (Seo Ah-Young)
I can even retort if you say that….. (Choi Jung-Hoon’s inner monologue)
Choi Jung-Hoon promptly gave up on talking to Seo Ah-Young. Trying to argue with her here would be a total waste of his time, and besides, she wasn’t the most important matter to worry about currently, anyway.
“Are you alright?” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
“D-do I look alright to you, uncle?!” (Chang-Sik)
“No, not really.” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
Choi Jung-Hoon stared at Chang-Sik with pitying eyes.
Although she didn’t kick the kid with malicious intent, even a light kick from an ability user would prove to be very painful, what with their Ether-reinforced bodies and all. He couldn’t help but worry if the kid’s ribs were still intact.
“Can you breathe?” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
“Ah, yes, more or less….” (Chang-Sik)
Wondering what the heck was going on, Choi Chang-Sik quickly took a look around himself. The viscous fluid that surrounded them were busy ejecting people one by one at the moment.
Ah, so that’s how I got here.
But, who would do something like….. (Choi Chang-Sik’s inner monologue)
“….Hul!!” (Choi Chang-Sik)
Choi Chang-Sik jumped up on his both feet and then began running at full tilt in a certain direction.
“Ng?” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
Choi Jung-Hoon couldn’t figure out what’s going and simply watched the back of the departing boy.
“What the heck?” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
What’s gotten into the kid? He looks like he’s seen a grim reaper or something. (Choi Jung-Hoon’s inner monologue)
Choi Jung-Hoon shifted his gaze over to where the kid had run off to, and nodded his head in understanding.
Yup, that makes sense. (Choi Jung-Hoon’s inner monologue)
“Mm?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Yi Ji-Hyuk heard the voice coming from his back and looked behind him.
“Eh?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Who is this human-type Ogre?
No, hang on. Should I say he’s an Ogre-type human, instead? (Yi Ji-Hyuk’s inner monologue)
A male human with a countenance scary enough to make people wet their pants was bowing his waist 90 degrees towards him.
“Oh, you’re….” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
The face seemed familiar, but…. He’s Ye-Won’s friend, and….
“Hyung-nim, it’s Chang-Sik.”
“Ahh, Chang-Sik. So that’s who you were.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Only now remembering the boy’s name, Yi Ji-Hyuk lightly patted Chang-Sik’s shoulder.
“Okay, sure. By the way, what are you doing here?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“Ah, that. I was trapped inside that strange thing, so….” (Chang-Sik)
“Oh, is that what happened?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Yi Ji-Hyuk lightly clicked his tongue.
“You should’ve been more careful out there. Okay, so. Are you hurt anywhere?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“Eh? N-no, I’m fine, hyung-nim!” (Chang-Sik)
Feeling deeply moved now, Chang-Sik looked at Yi Ji-Hyuk.
The Yi Ji-Hyuk he knew wasn’t someone who’d be this nice to anyone. No, that man would yawn in disinterest even if someone died right next to him.
Such a man was asking him if he was alright.
Sure, his name might have slipped from Yi Ji-Hyuk’s mind, but still, didn’t that mean Choi Chang-Sik was being valued greatly in the latter’s mind?!
“Just what’s going on here, anyway?” (Chang-Sik)
“Well, things happened, and this is what you see. You might get hurt, so step back now.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“Yes, hyung-nim.” (Chang-Sik)
Chang-Sik oh-so obediently followed after Yi Ji-Hyuk’s words.
“M-mm?” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
Choi Jung-Hoon watched that spectacle from the distance and tilted his head.
He was aware of that kid named Chang-Sik already. When the KSF was initially investigating the background of Yi Ji-Hyuk, the kid proved to rather…. ‘special’ and ended up being etched in Choi Jung-Hoon’s memories.
A neighbourhood thug, a younger boy somewhat related to Yi Ji-Hyuk since young, and also happened to be a friend of Yi Ye-Won. And also, the most dangerous individual out of all the high schools located north of the Han river.
A human weapon, and a legendary high school bully that, just from hearing the name ‘Choi Chang-Sik’ alone, the tails of the neighbourhood thugs would firmly disappear down between their legs.
Such a kid was being overly polite to Yi Ji-Hyuk.
Was it because the latter was an ability user? But, that couldn’t be it….
A high school thug of that age, especially the one who was deeply confident of his own fighting ability, wouldn’t be that obedient even if his opponent happened to be an ability user.
Because, that was how it went usually.
“Excuse me…?” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
Choi Jung-Hoon called out to Chang-Sik busy retreating away from the scene.
Would you look at his face when answering back?
A nervousness akin to minding a sleeping tiger next to them could be sensed from the boy’s face.
“Are you a personal acquaintance of Mister Yi Ji-Hyuk?” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
“Ah, yes… He was the neighbourhood boss, actually…..” (Chang-Sik)
Specifically, the boss who ruled with an iron fist, that was.
“Are you two close?” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
“W-well, rather than close, uh…. I’m not sure?” (Chang-Sik)
Choi Chang-Sik sneaked a glance behind him. He then shuddered a bit after spotting Yi Ji-Hyuk’s back and quickly shook his head.
“Why are you asking me that, though?” (Chang-Sik)
“There’s something I’ve been curious about, you see.” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
“About what?” (Chang-Sik)
“That guy, what was he like when he was still in school?” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
Chang-Sik’s complexion paled instantly. Choi Jung-Hoon then immediately realised that he had asked one question he shouldn’t have.
“W-when he was back in school?” (Chang-Sik)
“….No, never mind. We can talk about it later.” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
“Ah, yes….” (Chang-Sik)
Choi Jung-Hoon groaned and shifted his gaze away, only to spot Yi Ji-Hyuk’s cackling back as the later walked towards the Cyclops.
‘What did you do in your past, exactly?’ (Choi Jung-Hoon)
Yi Ji-Hyuk seemingly replied with his bouncy shoulders. He then leaped up into the air and shot towards the Cyclops.
< 239. What did you summon, then? -4 > Fin.