*SFX for a monster’s loud roar*
The Ogre spat out another massive ear-busting ‘Howling’. More people collapsed to the ground while covering up their ears, their bodies writhing in pain. The terrifying ability possessed by the upper-class monsters, ‘Fear’ had come into effect.
Several ability users also lost their fighting spirit after getting struck down by the ‘Fear’ effect, and fell to the ground while desperately covering their ears.
“D, do something!” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
Choi Jung-Hoon pointed at the Ogre and moaned in pain.
Completely unaffected by the Fear, Yi Ji-Hyuk strolled right up close to the monster and carefully observed it for a while.
The Ogre tilted its head after seeing him approach without a care in the world.
What a strange thing this was, to see such a tiny little lifeform show not one speck of fear while walking closer. This was the first time something like this happened, so even the Ogre found the situation a bit interesting and stared at Yi Ji-Hyuk.
*SFX for a monster’s low growl*
However, that interest only lasted for a brief second or two. Having lost its interest, the Ogre raised its arm and took aim at the tiny human below.
One swing – that would be enough to rip this little man into bits and pieces. And afterwards, the monster was planning to rip into the other humans and sate its hunger…
The human continued to walk closer.
Arriving in front of the Ogre in no time at all, the human even opened his mouth to speak.
“Hey, you. Don’t you recognise me?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
The Ogre tilted its head again.
This voice…. why did it sound so familiar?
“What the?! You dumb b*stard! You know me, right?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
*SFX for a monster hurriedly falling on its knees*
When that sharp voice dug into its ear canals, the Ogre subconsciously fell on its knees and began kowtowing while its entire being shuddered from terror.
And right afterwards, it began emitting the kind of whimper that didn’t fit its massive frame.
“Hul……….” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
Choi Jung-Hoon’s jaw hit the floor as he looked on at the unfolding spectacle. Even with his whip-smart brain of his, for the life of him, he couldn’t figure out what the bloody eff was going on here.
Even the Ogre couldn’t understand why its body fell so hard on the ground and grovelled like that. It ungainly stood back up, looking uncertain and confused.
“Hoh, would you look at this guy over here?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
The Ogre eyeballed the human once more. And, having carefully observed this human’s facial features…. it began to slowly creep backwards almost instinctively.
See, the thing was, it was difficult for a normal human to distinguish different Ogres. Conversely, it was nigh-on impossible for an Ogre to differentiate human faces, too. However… There was this inexplicable sense of familiarity coming from this human. And that caused its hulking body quiver in apprehension.
But, how could it be?
There was a ‘man’ this Ogre knew, though. And he was the ultimate god-like being who could casually rip its muscle-bound body apart into bloody shreds, with just the energy floating around in the vicinity.
But, there was simply no freaking way that this weak-looking human could be him.
….After all, he had vanished from the other world, see.
Then again, that sense of familiarity meant the Ogre couldn’t dare to pounce on the human in front, leaving it in a sort of rock and a hard place.
“Oh, looks like you finally recognised me, didn’t you? You a Berafe native, am I right?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
The Ogre continued to retreat while hurriedly shaking its head in denial.
“Hah? What the hell?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Now feeling a wee bit peeved off, Yi Ji-Hyuk reached out with one hand, and the jet-black Mana erupted out from there.
“Looky h….” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Almost as soon as the Ogre saw this, it screamed out in desperation, turned around, and madly ran away. With the speed that easily exceeded that of a cheetah at full tilt, the monster hurled itself at the Gate, trying to go back into it.
“Hul…” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Now feeling really dumbfounded, Yi Ji-Hyuk stared at the monster.
The Gate didn’t allow the poor Ogre to go back inside, and instead, the screaming monster got bounced away multiple times. The monster grew even more desperate as it grabbed on to the edges of the Gate and began crying out in anguish.
Seeing this ‘spectacle’ unfold, Seo Ah-Young couldn’t help but spit out a long, long sigh.
“Just…. just what kind of a human being is he to earn that kind of reaction?” (Seo Ah-Young)
Seriously now, they were talking about a dang Ogre. An Ogre!!
Just how many ability users and modern military personnel had to be sacrificed in the past in order to subjugate a single one of those damnable things? Even that was not enough and some people went as far as to consider the use of nuclear weapons, just to bring the creature down!! It was a ferocious monster that instilled pure terror in the hearts of many!
The Ogre was the worst possible monster to emerge from a Level 5 Gate. It proudly displayed the kind of destructive and defensive might that no other monsters from a Level 5 Gate could even hope to match.
An Ogre’s body was so strong, it could easily deflect a shell fired from a tank like a little pebble. And its insane strength meant it could chuck a tank like a little toy into the sky.
Its powers were almost in defiance of the laws of the nature. That, in a nutshell, was an Ogre.
But… what the hell was up with this absurd situation?
The big monster was whimpering so pathetically as if it was a wayward puppy that unluckily ran into a mighty lion. And after seeing such an unsightly scene, Seo Ah-Young’s mental state was already far past the level of being surprised, and into the realm of bitter, hollow chuckle escaping uncontrollably from her mouth.
“How did this situation turn out like this, I wonder?” (Seo Ah-Young)
Seo Ah-Young alternated her gaze between Yi Ji-Hyuk and the monster and fell ever deeper into the pit of unanswered questions.
However, Choi Jung-Hoon was trying to decipher another quandary at the same time.
‘The monster knows him?’ (Choi Jung-Hoon)
One would only be able to feel such an amount of terror, when one knew who the other person was, or at least have a rough idea. To put simply, that Ogre definitely knew who Yi Ji-Hyuk was.
‘….Another dimension?’ (Choi Jung-Hoon)
If Choi Jung-Hoon considered the likelihood of the Ogre being a creature from another dimension, then could there be a possibility that Yi Ji-Hyuk was also related to that said dimension in some way?
It was as if the tip of a faint thread was dangling in front of him, one that could allow Choi Jung-Hoon to start unravelling the mysteries of the five missing years in that youth’s life.
Regardless of what anyone else was thinking of, the Ogre still clung on to the Gate and continued to wail out. Yi Ji-Hyuk leisurely walked closer and while ignoring the crying Ogre, placed his hand on the surface of the Gate.
“Hmm….” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
He sensed this strange Mana fluctuation coming from it.
‘This is like, the Ogre hasn’t crossed over directly from Berafe, nor from the demon world, isn’t it?’ (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
He thought that the monsters were ‘summoned’ to a different dimension, one he perhaps didn’t know of, and then, were sent over to here. Well, it wasn’t as if the dimensional link to the demon world only existed in Berafe, so something like this seemed rather feasible, although a bit cumbersome.
“What a funny little thing this is, huh.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Yi Ji-Hyuk felt a strange sense of longing bubbling within the back of his mind. Then, he abruptly turned his head to look at the Ogre – which had opened its maw real wide and was about to swallow his head.
“Hul. Were you thinking of biting me just now?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
The Ogre’s maw slowly closed shut.
It was thinking of going for a sneak attack while his attention was diverted elsewhere, but that plan ended up as a failure. But, since the matter had come down to this…!
Both the arms of the Ogre shot towards Yi Ji-Hyuk’s position with the speed that didn’t match its massive body.
“Huh. Huhuh…” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Yi Ji-Hyuk lightly evaded the Ogre’s arms and leaped into the air as a bitter chuckle left his mouth.
He was flabbergasted right now. No, more than that, his pride was wounded.
If it was another monster, he might have been a wee bit more understanding. Well, if the monster didn’t know who he was, then sure, it could attack him. Fine.
However, this Ogre was a creature he knew pretty well. This was the monster he had summoned from the demon world and ordered around as one of the mid-bosses in his army, due mostly to its hardy body and violent nature.
Sure, he wasn’t close enough to the Ogre to give it a nice name or something. Still, they knew each other. Didn’t he order this creature for around close to a hundred years or so?
Yet, such a creature dared to attack him?
Yi Ji-Hyuk finally understood how a 4-star general might feel when he got kicked in the back by a mere private. He began gritting his teeth.
“If your memories aren’t functioning right, then let me make it work for you!!” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Yi Ji-Hyuk’s right hand became dyed in black.
Then, he descended like a bolt of lightning and slammed into the head of the Ogre.
A sound of powerful explosion rocked the entire world.
Seo Ah-Young had silently come closer to Choi Jung-Hoon’s position and the pair continued to watch the bizarre spectacle in front of them, before she opened her mouth to speak.
“So, can you tell me what is up with this crazy situation?” (Seo Ah-Young)
“….Well, I wonder about that myself.” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
Even Choi Jung-Hoon was at a loss to how to explain it.
In front of their eyes, Yi Ji-Hyuk was in the midst of mercilessly beating the Ogre up into a pile of dog poo.
Ggegeng!! (TL note at the end)
Seo Ah-Young rubbed her ears to make sure she heard that right.
If someone asked Seo Ah-Young to string along two words that would never gel together in a sentence, then surely, she would have thought up of ‘Ogre’ and ‘ggegeng’ on the spot.
But that Ogre was getting thrashed to death while spitting out ‘ggegeng‘ over and over again.
“Am I dreaming?” (Seo Ah-Young)
No, hang on. It’d be better if this was a dream, instead.
Because, this was already beyond the level of surreal and into the realm of a feverish nightmare.
Choi Jung-Hoon stared at the sight and tilted his head slightly.
“Wait. Isn’t the reactions of the Ogre…. just a bit strange?” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
“I’m pretty sure it’d be quicker to look for something that’s not strange here…” (Seo Ah-Young)
“No, that’s not what I meant…” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
Even after getting beaten up that badly, the Ogre still managed to whimper and make the ggegeng noises while writhing this way and that. That meant it wasn’t hurt too badly.
If that was the case, why didn’t it try to retaliate? Why was it simply rolling around the ground while shielding its head?
“What the? You try to dodge? Really? Did you lose your dang mind or something?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Yi Ji-Hyuk kicked the Ogre and shouted out.
“Hah, this b*stard! Seriously now… You know, I was trying to be as gracious and understanding as I can be. I mean, this is not Berafe, after all. Here I was, thinking of ways to send you back safe and sound since I know you and stuff, yet, you tried to bite me instead? Wow, will you take a look at this guy’s rotten heart of, uh… monster?!” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
….You should decide between beating the monster to a pulp, or nagging the hell out of it! One of the two! (The author’s own inner monologue)
The Ogre finally realised who Yi Ji-Hyuk was as it was bombarded by the black magical energy. It couldn’t even dare to put up a sliver of resistance and could only writhe on the ground rather pitifully.
“Hey, get up.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Hearing that confused reply, Yi Ji-Hyuk scratched the back of his head after realising something. Obviously, this monster couldn’t understand a lick of Korean.
“Get up.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
When he spoke to the Ogre in the demonic language, the monster stood right back up in a blink. Although it wasn’t possible to hold a civilised conversation, thankfully the monster was quick-witted enough, and it could understand what he was saying. Well, it did possess the level of intelligence that was a bit higher than a dog, so there.
Yi Ji-Hyuk beckoned with a finger, and the Ogre ran up to him in a hurry and began grovelling on the floor.
“Oh, well. I’ve become a lot softer, haven’t I? If it was me of the past, you’d be busy looking for your missing arm or a leg by now… Uh-whew.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Although the Ogre couldn’t understand the words, it could still get the gist of them. And so, a strand of cold sweat trickled down its face.
‘Oh. So, even monsters sweat like that, huh.’ (Choi Jung-Hoon)
As Choi Jung-Hoon stood there percolating in his own astonishment, Yi Ji-Hyuk was busy ordering the monster to “Sit”, “Stand”, “Sit”, and then, “Hand”, in that order. And when the monster followed his orders without a single mistake, he nodded his head in satisfaction.
“Yep, that’s how it’s supposed to be. Good boy.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Well, if something didn’t work out as it should, the best medicine was to beat the living daylights out of it. That’s the cure. There was nothing in this world that couldn’t be solved this way.
“M, mister…. Yi Ji-Hyuk?” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
“Yeah?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“Uhm, about that monster…” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
“Yeah?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“A, aren’t you going to, you know, kill it?” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
“You mean, this kid over here?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
If it’s not that one, than what other monster is there?! (Choi Jung-Hoon’s inner monologue)
Choi Jung-Hoon forcibly suppressed a very strong urge to scream out loudly at the top of his lungs, and continued with an unsteady smile on his face.
“I, I think you gotta do something about it….” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
“Mm. Yeah, that is true.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Yi Ji-Hyuk murmured in contemplation, as he began rubbing the belly of the Ogre, now lying down on its back and exposing itself so obediently.
“So, like… It’s kinda cute, so killing it is a bit….” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Did you just say ‘cute’?
Did the Hello Kitty or whatever brainwash you when no one was looking?
How can you label that monster as cute, unless everything you see is bathed in blooming pink?! (Choi Jung-Hoon’s shocked inner monologue)
“Can’t I keep it? I’ve got my, uh, reasons for that. So, killing it is a bit, you know.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
This guy slaved under Yi Ji-Hyuk’s tyrannical rule for almost a hundred years. That tiny little vestige of conscience, found deep within the forgotten recess of his psyche and no more than a nanogram in size, was wriggling ever so slightly.
He had worked it to death, and now, he had to literally kill it? No way.
“I know it’s the fate of livestock to slave away and then turn into slabs of meat for dinner at the end of the day. But, isn’t that just too pitiful? You know, don’t you? That I have a gentle nature and all.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“A gentle nature…. Yes. Sure. Fine. A gentle nature, indeed….” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
Now that Choi Jung-Hoon heard those words, he was reasonably confident of not finding the event of a three year old perfectly recalling the theory of relativity ridiculous at all.
“Oh, yeah. By the way…” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“Y, yes?” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
“You know, isn’t it normal for a horde of monsters to pop out from a Gate? Where are they, though? Are things different for larger Gates or something?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“Huh?!” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
Choi Jung-Hoon sobered up immediately after hearing that and quickly shifted his gaze over to the Gate.
He had been distracted by the massive existence of the Ogre. But the thing was, an incredibly large horde of monsters that easily rivalled the size of a battalion would rush out of a Level 5 Gate!
And just like a clockwork, all sorts of monsters began pouring out from the Gate right away.
“Hul…..” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Even Yi Ji-Hyuk was surprised by the sheer number of monsters rushing out of the Gate – he had been lulled into thinking that monsters would only drip out at a manageable rate, thanks to the Gates he saw until now.
Hell, with this many monsters pouring out, it was almost at the level of Yi Ji-Hyuk’s own warp gate! Of course, the quality of the monsters were vastly inferior to his, though!
Then, his eyes began gleaming dangerously as he looked at the horde.
“How about this?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“Yes?” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
“You heard of an old saying about a horse that achieves a lot of merit won’t get eaten?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Where did you even come up with a rubbish like that now, you crazy a*shole?! There’s no such old saying! (Choi Jung-Hoon’s inner monologue)
A swearing nearly jumped out of Choi Jung-Hoon’s throat, but now wasn’t the time to argue.
“In other words, you gotta achieve lots of merit now, Oh-Sik-ah!!” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Instantly coming up with a new name for his pet/minion, Yi Ji-Hyuk lightly pet the Ogre on the shoulder.
And why would he name an Ogre “Oh-Sik”?
Because, well, it resembled Chang-Sik, that was why.
*SFX for a really loud roar of Oh-Sik the pet Ogre*
As if it understood the intentions of his words, the Ogre, no, Oh-Sik promptly shot back up and rushed towards the horde of monsters pouring out of the Gate.
“That’s right. Good boy. Nice going.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Yi Ji-Hyuk nodded his head in satisfaction while watching this scene.
As for Choi Jung-Hoon, he looked at the Ogre unhesitatingly ripping apart his brethren like there was no tomorrow and simply emptied the whole bottle of pills into his mouth.
“Hey, you might get a stomach ache if you take all those pills like that.” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
If you have any conscience whatsoever, you would be too embarrassed to say that!!
This is all because of you!! (Choi Jung-Hoon’s inner monologue)
Choi Jung-Hoon’s stomach did indeed issue a sorrowful lurch.
However, Yi Ji-Hyuk’s attention was snapped away in an instant. He had sensed a certain damp and shady aura in the air.
“Spectres?” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
Yi Ji-Hyuk dazedly stared at a ghost-like shape floating in the air for a brief second or two, before shouting out in a hurry.
“Get back!! Now!!” (Yi Ji-Hyuk)
“Eh?” (Choi Jung-Hoon)
And, as Choi Jung-Hoon stood there in confusion, the group of Spectres pounced on the soldiers forming the defensive line.
< 60. It’s time to go home -5 > Fin.
(TL: The Korean onomatopoeia “ggegeng” is a sound made by a cowering/whimpering dog. I’ve never been too good with animal sounds, and thus I couldn’t come up with a suitable English equivalent for it. Left as is.)