“Hang on a minute!” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
Choi Jeong-Hoon quickly approached the units in the front getting ready to enter the building, and raised his voice.
“The entrance being too small shouldn’t be the problem. The real issue should be, why does everyone have to go in there at once?” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
“If they have planted explosives inside the building, then all of you will get killed.” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
The Japanese agents began sneering after hearing that.
“People present today aren’t ordinary by any stretch of imagination, so we won’t get crushed to death by something like that.”
“Yes, you’re all sturdier than regular people. However, if this whole building blows up, none of you will remain unscathed. The building collapsing on top of you isn’t the main thing to worry about. Do you think you can withstand the heat of the explosion, for instance?” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
After hearing Choi Jeong-Hoon’s argument, others began nodding their heads, perhaps thinking that he indeed had a point.
“Let’s revise our plan. We’ve wasted too much time already to send in scouts or search the area again, so let’s send in the body reinforcement type users first.” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
Opinions were quickly exchanged among the members of the U.S. special forces tasked with planning of the operation. The report must’ve been then sent to Christopher McLaren as well, because they silently waited for the radio chatter. After nodding at the returned message, they agreed with Choi Jeong-Hoon’s idea.
“In that case, please select the entry personnel right away.”
“Alright.” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
What with all these lengthy delays, they had to pick the right people from each of the countries as quickly as possible.
From the NDF side, it was….
“Isn’t this, you know, way too unfair?” (Park Seong-Chan)
Park Seong-Chan was pouting so much that his lips now resembled a duckbill, and he shot a glare in Choi Jeong-Hoon’s direction. The latter could only smile awkwardly.
“Seriously, dude! All I have is this slightly tough body of mine, yet you want me to waltz in there where traps might be waiting for us? Isn’t that just too unfair?!” (Park Seong-Chan)
“Hahahaha….” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
“You shouldn’t be laughing, man! Mister Choi Jeong-Hoon, do you have something against me personally? If you do, why don’t we talk about it first like men??” (Park Seong-Chan)
“Eiii, you know I’m not asking you to go in there because of any personal issues.” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
“But, that sounds exactly like it??” (Park Seong-Chan)
Kim Dah-Hyun sneaked in closer to Park Seong-Chan and whispered quietly.
“Hey, bro. You look like a narrow-minded fool right now.” (Kim Dah-Hyun)
“Shut up, you dumb*ss!!” (Park Seong-Chan)
Park Seong-Chan continued to explode in his resentment-filled rage, but after seeing the other countries’ body reinforcement-type ability users starting to gather, his lips could only quiver in silence, realising that he had not much of a choice left now.
“Fine! We’ll see after I come back, you hear me??” (Park Seong-Chan)
“Hahahaha.” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
“Stop laughing, okay?! You might make me miss you!” (Park Seong-Chan)
Park Seong-Chan continued to grumble away right up until he joined the group gathered at the front. The American special forces took the lead once more and without giving everyone enough time to get ready, they guided Park Seong-Chan and the rest of the ability users into the gates of the Kumsusan Palace of the Sun.
Seo Ah-Young wordlessly observing the scene turned her head and asked Choi Jeong-Hoon.
“What should we do in the meantime?” (Seo Ah-Young)
“…..How about some popcorn, ma’am?” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
“This isn’t entertainment, you know.” (Seo Ah-Young)
“I was just joking to ease the tension…” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
“How can you crack a joke in this situation??” (Seo Ah-Young)
“I’m sorry.” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
Choi Jeong-Hoon shifted his gaze over to the palace with a dejected expression.
‘How spooky.’ (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
With the exception of the infamous Ryugyong Hotel, the Kumsusan Palace was considered the most luxurious structure in the whole of North Korea. Unlike how it was with that hotel, where only the exterior was mocked up to look nice to the onlookers, even the palace’s interior was meticulously maintained, since it was undoubtedly thought of as the North’s symbol.
It wasn’t an exaggeration to say that the North’s ruling elite paid a lot of attention to the building as it housed the remains of both Kim Il-Sung and Kim Jung-Il. But seeing how it was so spookily dark like this, it strangely felt like they were looking at a massive mausoleum, instead.
“Did you hear something just now?” (Seo Ah-Young)
“Pardon?” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
“Sounds like gunfire?” (Seo Ah-Young)
Seo Ah-Young’s words caused Choi Jeong-Hoon to tilt his head.
“Gunfire? But I didn’t hear….” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
His mouth stopped moving. Almost at the same time, his eyes shot towards the entrance of the Sun Palace.
“W-well, we expected there to be resistance of some kind, so it’s not that strange for some gunfire to…” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
Blam, blam, blam, blam!!
It was then, the sound of sustained gunfire echoed out.
“Aren’t they, like, firing indiscriminately?” (Seo Ah-Young)
Choi Jeong-Hoon wiped away the flooding sweat off his forehead.
“They are Americans, alright?! The Korean soldiers are taught to fire only in burst mode or in single shots, but Yanks are known for shoot first and ask later policy, aren’t they?! I mean, they don’t need to sweep the floors to find the ejected shells like our poor soldiers, too.” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
“Is that how it is?” (Seo Ah-Young)
Despite his own mouth uttering that out, even Choi Jeong-Hoon was dismayed by himself. The thunderous, continuous stream of loud gunfire resembling a roaring waterfall could not be created by one or two people firing their weapons nonstop.
Something was definitely happening inside that place.
“S-someone came out!”
It was then, Park Seong-Chan keeping his head low dashed out of the wide-open front gate of the palace with great haste.
“Eh?” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
That guy wasn’t the type to run away before everyone else. Did something really happen?
Choi Jeong-Hoon’s confusion was solved pretty quickly, however.
Park Seong-Chan raised his pale-as-sheet face and began shouting like a madman.
“Mister Choi, Jeong, Hoooooooon!!” (Park Seong-Chan)
“…..Y-yes?” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
“Yi, Yi Ji-Hyuk!!” (Park Seong-Chan)
“Yes??” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
“Call Mister Yi Ji-Hyuk here! Right now!” (Park Seong-Chan)
“NG???” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
Even before those words came to an end, more people began flooding out from the building’s gate.
“W-what the hell?” (Seo Ah-Young)
Seo Ah-Young cried out in fluster.
What were any of them supposed to do now when the brave folks sent in to take the head of the piggy all came out with tails between their legs like that?
She was about to shout something at them, but her mouth clamped shut when the ear-splitting screeches exploded out from inside the building.
Seo Ah-Young and her slightly hardened expression shifted over to Choi Jeong-Hoon next.
“Isn’t that the noise we’ve heard a lot before from somewhere?” (Seo Ah-Young)
He replied to her with a bitter chuckle.
“I was wondering what madness drove the higher-ups to deploy the NDF in a war, but there was a deeper meaning to their decision, it seems. Looks like I owe Prime Minister Song Jeong-Su an apology.” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
To think that they would run into their speciality this far from home.
“Why don’t we quickly end this and….” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
“Ah, right now in there…!” (Park Seong-Chan)
Park Seong-Chan became even more animated and pointed at the Kumsusan Palace of the Sun. Choi Jeong-Hoon realised the situation was probably worse than it looked, so he narrowed his eyes and carefully observed the building.
A short while later.
Rumble, boom! Bang!!
The noises of heavy machinery pounding and destroying a building resounded out, and the whole of the palace began shaking precariously.
The escaping ability users shouted something or rather in their native tongues, and Choi Jeong-Hoon could see their respective camps hurriedly getting ready to fight.
Right after that….
A thunderous boom akin to a descending lightning deafened everyone, and the front of the building collapsed in a spectacular fashion – only to reveal all sorts of monsters gushing out of there like flood water breaking free from the collapsed levee.
“Son of a b*tch!!” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
The spectacle briefly reminded him of the blackish tsunami waves crashing in during the massive earthquake that rocked the east of Japan in the past.
A familiar spectacle, yet oh-so alien, too.
Choi Jeong-Hoon roared out.
“Everyone, get in the formation, now!!” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
Everyone moved lightning-fast after realising the situation was grave.
“Retreat?” (Seo Ah-Young)
“Not feasible!” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
Retreat from here?
They couldn’t even dream of doing such a thing. Right behind them were five million civilians without any consciousness whatsoever. Them retreating from here meant all those people would end up as monster snacks.
Even if their nationalities were different, others seemed to be thinking the same thing, as well. That made sense, though – who could possibly remain nonchalant about the idea of five million sacrifices?
“We must not let them get past! Stop them right here!” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
Choi Jeong-Hoon turned his head and looked at Kim Dah-Hyun.
“Roger that.” (Kim Dah-Hyun)
Kim Dah-Hyun dashed out and began maintaining the formation. Meanwhile, Choi Jeong-Hoon ran towards the back, pulled out his radio and shouted into the device.
“Connect me to Mister Yi Ji-Hyuk! Right now!!”
“Don’t you have anything to eat?” (Jeong Hae-Min)
“No.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“Isn’t there anything inside your fridge or something?!” (Jeong Hae-Min)
“How should I know that?!” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“If you don’t know what’s in your own fridge, who will?!” (Jeong Hae-Min)
“Euh, euh….” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“You can find out for yourself, so I don’t understand why you’re bothering oppa like this.” (Kim Dah-Som)
“Why are you butting in here for?” (Jeong Hae-Min)
“I can’t help but wonder, is it okay for you to eat so late at night? Won’t you gain weight that way?” (Kim Dah-Som)
“It’s fine for me to eat since I’m so active these days. I need lots of calories, you see.” (Jeong Hae-Min)
“….But, your love handles surely don’t agree?” (Kim Dah-Som)
“Wanna die?!” (Jeong Hae-Min)
Jeong In-Su stared at this trio with a somewhat numb expression.
Some time ago, Jeong Hae-Min barged into Yi Ji-Hyuk’s house with an excuse of being bored of waiting alone after her housemates all went to bed. But not too long after that, Kim Dah-Som somehow cottoned onto what’s going on like some kind of a phantom and also barged in unannounced, as well.
This was the end result.
‘He’s rather… popular, isn’t he.’ (Jeong In-Su)
It wasn’t so strange if he thought about it for a second.
Someone like Yi Ji-Hyuk was easily the best son-in-law material, after all.
‘Wait, now that I thought about it some more, it’s all true.’ (Jeong In-Su)
Not only Yi Ji-Hyuk made a lot of money, he was also the type to not care much about the running of the household, either. Someone like him was definitely the type to toss the bank balance book at his significant other after getting married and live a jolly life while playing video games all the time.
‘But wait, wasn’t he married already?’ (Jeong In-Su)
Didn’t I hear that info from somewhere before?
Completely ignoring the deeply-confused Jeong In-Su, the trio continued to bicker among themselves.
It was then, Jeong In-Su’s phone went off.
“Jeong In-Su here.”
– “Mister Yi Ji-Hyuk, is he there with you?”
“Yes, he’s with me.” (Jeong In-Su)
– “Have him come to the operation command centre, right now! Hurry!”
Jeong In-Su didn’t need to hear anything else but the urgency in the voice alone was enough to know that the situation had turned for the worse.
‘Things have gone wrong for sure.’ (Jeong In-Su)
“I shall have him mobilised right away.” (Jeong In-Su)
– “Please hurry.”
“Yes, sir.” (Jeong In-Su)
Jeong In-Su ended the call and stood up from his spot immediately.
“Mister Yi Ji-Hyuk.” (Jeong In-Su)
“Yes?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Yi Ji-Hyuk sighing nonstop between the two girls raised his head at Jeong In-Su’s call.
“It looks like things have gone sideways. We need to head to the Blue House right away.” (Jeong In-Su)
“Hmm.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Yi Ji-Hyuk also stood up from his spot.
“Let’s go.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“Oh!” (Jeong In-Su)
Jeong In-Su’s expression brightened considerably when Yi Ji-Hyuk got up without any arguments whatsoever.
“Looks like you’ve realised the severity of the situation.” (Jeong In-Su)
Now normally, it was Yi Ji-Hyuk’s style to add lots of unnecessary comments even to the things he should obviously be doing. Jeong In-Su couldn’t help but feel moved by how he readily recognised the severity of this situation threatening the very survival of their nation.
“…Doesn’t matter where, it should still be better than being here.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
At Yi Ji-Hyuk’s resigned muttering, Jeong In-Su shifted his gaze over to the two girls bickering away, noticing that they were almost ready to tear each other’s hair out.
‘…Is that their version of contributing towards world peace?’ (Jeong In-Su)
Well, Yi Ji-Hyuk was willing to make a move thanks to them, so maybe they should be awarded with an appreciation plaque or some such.
“In any case, let’s be on our way.” (Jeong In-Su)
“Sure.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Yi Ji-Hyuk waved his hand and generated a Gate. But just before he could enter it, the door to the room was pushed open to reveal a familiar face walking inside.
Yi Ji-Hyuk looked at the women entering and frowned heavily.
“You two, where have you been?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Erukana and Affeldrichae who had been absent for some time recently were striding into the living room. Their entrance brought about a brief halt in Kim Dah-Som and Jeong Hae-Min’s bickering as well.
Erukana formed an uncharacteristically sombre expression and opened her mouth.
“….Darling, there’s no time to fool around here like this.” (Erukana)
“What are you on about?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“It has begun.” (Erukana)
Yi Ji-Hyuk’s expression hardened instantly.
“What did you say?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“The doorway is opening up. Soon, this world will be connected to the demon world.” (Erukana)
“Hold up.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Yi Ji-Hyuk waved his hand and spoke.
“The North Koreans haven’t opened the doorway yet, right? But you’re saying that it’s already open?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Erukana nodded her head.
“This is merely the beginning. No one can stop it. The pathway to the demon world is opening up right now.” (Erukana)
< 381. Call Mister Yi Ji-Hyuk here! Right now! -1 > Fin.