“The situation?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“It’s so bad that it can’t possibly get any worse, unfortunately.” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
“…But, things look pretty normal, considering?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Yi Ji-Hyuk swept his gaze around the vicinity while saying that.
Seeing how all the lights were still on, the supply of electricity probably wasn’t affected, and as the surroundings were rather quiet, it didn’t seem like a monster wave was happening, either.
Despite that, it was really bad…?
“Mister Yi Ji-Hyuk. I know that this is not the right time to ask you this. You’ve only just managed to regain your consciousness, so I can only apologise, but… It seems that you need to head to the Blue House right away.” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
“Hmm…” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Yi Ji-Hyuk scratched his cheek.
“Sure. Well, I also need to see what the situation is like, anyway. Let’s go.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Affeldrichae gently pushed Yi Ji-Hyuk’s shoulders down.
“I’m sure you can already sense that your outside being healed doesn’t equate to your inside being healed as well. If you force yourself now, you might never fully recover again.” (Affeldrichae)
Yi Ji-Hyuk smirked back at her.
“Oh, so by recuperating, I’ll recover back to how I was?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Affeldrichae couldn’t reply to him. As she was unable to lie in the first place, keeping silent was the best she could do.
“Miss, I don’t have any inclination to lie on my backside and wait for my death to come. While we’re on that subject…” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Yi Ji-Hyuk chewed each and every word out.
“Where are Alpha and Park Seong-Chan?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“…It’s unknown at this stage.” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
“Really?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Yi Ji-Hyuk rubbed his chest.
“They got me real good the last time, didn’t they?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Just like what Alpha had said, Yi Ji-Hyuk did have a weakness in close-quarter combat. More specifically, he didn’t have much of an aptitude in defence whether it was against long or short distance attacks, never mind overpowered abilities geared towards self-preservation. Completely in contrast to his offensive capabilities, in other words.
Why? Because he couldn’t get killed in the first place.
Since he’d revert back to his original state no matter what the attack was, he stopped paying attention to his defence a long time ago. Which naturally led him to develop such a weakness.
Even then – if only Yi Ji-Hyuk’s physical body was ‘complete’, he wouldn’t have been done in by the likes of Park Seong-Chan. Compared to back when he just arrived in this world, he managed to gather a lot more Mana now, but in turn, his physical body had deteriorated greatly in the meantime.
This was a separate issue from Ether reinforcing him.
Awareness, intuition, and instinct.
His defence mechanisms that allowed him to predict and dodge enemies’ attacks had become incomparably shabbier than before.
‘I’m definitely getting closer to death, then.’ (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Despite the situation he’d been wishing for so long creeping closer, Yi Ji-Hyuk was not in the mood to earnestly celebrate it.
The threat facing this world was far too grave for him to calmly welcome his impending demise. He wanted to quietly die alone, and certainly didn’t plan on taking the entire Earth with him on his journey to the netherworld.
“For now, let’s go and see. See what the heck is going on out there.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“Mister Yi Ji-Hyuk.” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
“Yes?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“What exactly does it mean for a doorway to open up?” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
“Mm…” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Yi Ji-Hyuk scratched his cheek again while making his reply.
“Think of it as assimilation.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“Assimilation?” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
“Well, several points of contact between dimensions will appear. Something like, various zones where you can travel between the demon world and Earth will show up all over the place. Even if the two worlds won’t actually become one.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“…Meaning, you can now travel between the two worlds through several shared locations.” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
“What’s wrong?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“Phenomena similar to what you described have already occurred.” (Choi Jeong-Hoon)
Yi Ji-Hyuk saw that hardened expression on Choi Jeong-Hoon’s face and could only sigh at length.
“Fire! I said fire! Shoot everything you have!”
The Picacho Peak State Park in Arizona was currently choke-full with soldiers. However, the expressions on these people’s faces were clouded with despair and terror.
“Just where did all those monsters come from?!”
The endless hordes of monsters so vast that they seemingly blanketed the entire world, were trudging lazily towards the human soldiers.
These brave men and women had already experienced more than their fair share of monster invasions in the past, but these new creatures were definitely different from the ones that showed up before.
First of all, monsters of the past would attack in a maddened frenzy as soon as they saw humans. However, these new creatures were maintaining their leisurely pace despite discovering the soldiers as if there was no urgency at all.
Their numbers were in another league altogether.
Just looking at the sheer number of monsters completely, utterly filling up the desert’s endless horizon robbed the human soldiers of all desire to fight back. One couldn’t help but question if using up every arsenal at their disposal would be enough to stop the advancing monsters.
“Humans of this world sure do use interesting weapons.” (Goldibera)
The 53rd demon king Goldibera watched the explosive shells rain down and extended its lengthy tentacles.
“Is that explosive powder? How can such powder display this level of destructive power? Truly surprising. I always thought that the talk of humans being able to suppress even the demon world if left unchecked as nothing more than pure nonsense, but now…” (Goldibera)
“It seems that humanity’s potential exceeds our estimation, my lord.”
“Looks that way.” (Goldibera)
Goldiberan snatched up one of the flying shells.
“Does it explode after receiving an impact? No matter what, I don’t sense any traces of magic, so how…” (Goldibera)
The shell caught in the tentacle exploded, and Goldibera formed an unreadable expression.
“…I guess not.” (Goldibera)
Although the demon king couldn’t tell how this alchemic harmony had been achieved, two things seemed certain, at least – one, humanity’s technology had exceeded that of the demons, and…
“They won’t be able to stop us with only this much.” (Goldibera)
It was then, a chorus of strange noises reverberated throughout the sky.
“Hunks of metal are flying in the air?” (Goldibera)
Goldibera tilted its head as if it couldn’t understand.
“Again, no magic is involved so how can they do that? These existences called humans, they are truly bizarre, aren’t they?” (Goldibera)
“Some objects are descending, my lord.”
Bombers began dropping their payload on top of the monsters from the air. As if humans wanted to change the terrain itself, an endless deluge of bombs fell to signal the commencement of the war that relied on the sheer amount of supplies humans possessed.
If the enemies on the ground happened to be human troops, then they would’ve been wiped out a long time ago, but unfortunately, what received the falling bombs was not human at all.
“…That stings.” (Goldibera)
Goldibera waved away the dense smoke and smirked deeply.
“How amusing. So amusing! When I heard that we’d be conquering humans, I thought it’d quite a boring battle, but now, it might prove to be a good source of entertainment, instead.” (Goldibera)
“My lord. There are also the 13th and the 99th demon kings residing in this world. The rumour says that they oppose us.”
“Makes sense with the 99th, but even the 13th wants to oppose us? Hmm. Well, those two have been living together for a very long time, so it’s not surprising to see that her head has developed a problem or two.” (Goldibera)
Goldibera observed the half of the monster horde that turned into bloody piles of ruined meat, feeling genuinely impressed.
“Amazing. This level of firepower should rival a wide-area killing magic activated by an arch mage. To think that humans can actually reach so high of a level. Even without relying on magic, they can still bring out this much destructive power? Humanity is indeed a species full of surprises.” (Goldibera)
“My lord, isn’t the 99th demon king a human as well?”
“That guy is excluded. He’s a bloody calamity, after all.” (Goldibera)
As the bombardment continued, Goldiberan formed a strange little expression. Then, its tentacles suddenly began extending out.
The demon king’s tentacles stretched towards the skies seemingly endlessly, before grabbing onto the bombers flying up there.
Bombers were torn to pieces and began crashing back to the ground.
“Compared to their firepower, their defensive capabilities seem lacklustre. Will I even feel entertained at this rate?” (Goldibera)
Goldibera turned its head, scanned the soldiers blocking its path, and began licking its lip.
“Time to find out, then.” (Goldibera)
“Oh my god.” (Georg Slikk)
Germany’s chancellor, Georg Slikk, had no choice but to look on with a despairing expression as the city before his eyes burned away.
The military and the ability user force that claimed to be the best in Europe were rendered utterly helpless against the monsters appearing in the suddenly-changed city of Munich.
As if to announce to the world that all the monsters the Germans had faced until now were nothing more than weak small fries, these new creatures, armed to the teeth with impenetrable steel-like carapaces and claws harder than metal, were freely ransacking and destroying this historic city.
“Sir! We need to evacuate!”
‘Evacuate?’ (Georg Slikk)
Georg Slikk heard the secretary’s urgent words and could only chuckle.
To where, exactly?
Where could anyone evacuate to?
If those monsters were not stopped, then this world wouldn’t have any places left for humans to live. Not anymore.
Europe would be conquered, then Africa and Asia would fall to their hands next.
Should the humans cross the sea, then?
In that case, wouldn’t those monsters chase after them?
And a similar event was happening in America, anyway. So, as the chancellor of Germany, should he evacuate all of his citizens to an uninhabited island or something?
“Gather all of our forces here.” (Georg Slikk)
“Request the Union for assistance. We must stop them here!” (Georg Slikk)
“But sir, doing that means the losses will be…”
“You think the losses will be less if we evacuate everyone? In this situation? Right now, we should be searching for a way to ensure the continued survival of not just Germany, but Europe itself! No, beyond that, even the entire world!” (Goerg Slikk)
Georg Slikk’s determined tone of voice caused the secretary to form a stiff expression. The latter stood at attention and replied.
“Sir. I’ll do as you ordered.”
“We are the leader of Europe. Since we proudly claim that title, we cannot turn tail and run away from the enemies. We shall stop them.” (Georg Slikk)
Georg Slikk closed shut his mouth next.
‘I didn’t expect we’d be paying for our sins in this manner…’ (Georg Slikk)
He certainly didn’t think that the debt in the heart of every German citizen would be paid in this way. He didn’t intend for this, so he certainly couldn’t welcome it with open arms.
“Dam*ed demonic b*stards! Do not look down on humanity! We shall show you the true fighting spirit of the Germans!” (Georg Slikk)
“W-we need to escape.”
Chengdu in Sichuan, China, was already in smouldering ruins. Not even a single trace of the city with its rich history remained – other than a massive crater in the middle, and some destroyed buildings fading away in ash colour.
Those buildings were now set alight.
The 62nd demon king, Araksis shuddered in ecstasy while watching this spectacle unfold.
“You see, me? I find the moments of this thing called civilisation being destroyed really enjoyable. Taking a life erases one vestige, but wiping out entire civilisations means humanity’s tracks built up over thousands, tens of thousands of years would completely vanish from existence.” (Araksis)
Araksis cackled as its eyes caught the sight of the approaching human army boasting a massive scale.
The demon king harrumphed and turned around to face the human ability users rushing towards it.
“However, I don’t particularly mind personally taking lives, too.” (Araksis)
Araksis licked its lips and slowly strode towards the humans.
“I wasn’t really planning to seek you out, but if you’re seeking me out first, well, I should welcome you all, then.” (Araksis)
Lengthy claws extended out from Araksis’s hands. These claws dyed in reddish black hue were gleaming mysteriously under the light as if they would suck out the souls of all living humans nearby.
“Scream for me. Let me hear your screams and enjoy myself.” (Araksis)
Araksis shuddered in delight as it watched the human ability users and their bloodshot eyes rush in. The thick concentration of hatred and pain emitted by humans on the brink of death were like narcotics for the demons.
“Although I’ve been told to hold myself back…” (Araksis)
Araksis wanted to take it slow and enjoy the proceedings, but was there really a need to let any of these offerings leave with their lives intact when they were delivering themselves like this?
The demon king gladly accepted this veritable feast prepared for itself.
A feast that could be called rather special in many ways.
Doorways were opening up in various parts of the world, and demon kings as well as demonic beings, plus hordes of monsters, were crossing over.
The hour of despair had begun.
< 393. Just What Is Going On? -3 > Fin.