A Monster Who Levels Up
Although the Orc Chieftain’s body was far smaller than an Ogre’s, his battle prowess was, simply put, overwhelming.
Whenever his mace came in contact with the flesh of Ogres, their limbs and bits of the body would be ripped asunder. When the mace hit the ground, a deep crater was formed. And even when swung in the empty air, the mace created powerful ripples of shock waves that danced like crashing waves.
Since the most powerful combat force of the Ogre army, the Boss Ogre, was tied up by Kim Yu-Rin riding on the back of Cornlak, the overall battle situation was greatly favouring the Orcs. Right now, 51 Orcs were busy beating down on twenty-odd Ogres, and more importantly, these Orcs were not just ordinary Monsters either.
‘It’s going well.’ (Sae-Jin)
From just about everywhere, grotesque sounds of maces hitting flesh and the said flesh being ripped off resounded out, nonstop. And as the time continued to flow on, sounds of giant things crashing down to the ground intermittently shook the world. That was the countless Ogres falling down while leveling the trees of the forest.
As more and more Ogres fell, 51 Orcs became progressively more drunk by the sweet taste of victory and moved even more energetically.
30 minutes later.
They only required 30 minutes to kill off all the other Ogres besides the Boss. To kill 20 Ogres, only 19 Orcs lost their lives in the process.
Only then, Kim Yu-Rin stopped circling around the Boss Ogre to infuriate it, and climbed off Cornlak’s back.
Khoong, khoong, khoong, khoong!!
In front, the Boss Ogre was rushing towards her direction while blowing his top off with boiling rage, and behind her, Orcs covered in Ogre blood were getting ready for the final showdown.
“Everyone, block the Boss Ogre, please.” (Kim Yu-Rin)
The initial battle had ended only about a second ago, yet, with a single word from her, the Orcs madly dashed towards the Boss Ogre. And as they delayed the Boss, she readied her Gungnir. The pure-white blade shined in brilliant golden light as it morphed into a spear-like shape.
The ‘purpose’ of this attack was simple.
‘One minute of unconsciousness.’
Normally, a minute was a really short amount of time, but it was a different story during a battle. No one would dare to assign a value to one minute of time during an intense battle like this one.
However, unexpectedly, Mana contained within her entire body got sucked out into her weapon. This meant that it was not possible to carry out her ‘purpose’, so Kim Yu-Rin had no choice but to withdraw her Mana back from Gungnir.
Mana she couldn’t withdraw in time left her body for good, and her remaining reserve was only 50%. She didn’t do anything, yet ended up losing half of her fighting strength, in other words. Obviously, she couldn’t comprehend this situation. Her Trait allowed her to put a summoned Leviathan to sleep for five minutes, yet why couldn’t she do the same to an Ogre…?
The screams of Orc Warriors floated into the stupefied Kim Yu-Rin’s ears.
While she remained dazed, time marched on and Orcs were getting killed.
‘If I no longer have teeth, then I will use my gums!’
Just as she resolved herself and gritted her teeth…
From behind the giant Ogre, a cute lifeform flapped its wings and flew up into the air. It was a familiar enough shape to instantly rouse her anger simply by looking at it. And it was none other than the same bastard that stole away her Mana when she was trapped
underground with the Orc.
The ‘Korean crow-tit’, that white bird.
“That f*cker!!” (Kim Yu-Rin)
They said enemies would encounter each other in the middle of a narrow bridge. She so badly wanted to pluck out every single feather off that thing and BBQ it right there and then….
But Kim Yu-Rin did her best to calm her trembling hands and her madly pounding heart. For now, she really needed to take care of the Boss Ogre first.
She poured Mana back into Gungnir once more. She didn’t bother with placing a ‘purpose’ this time around. No, all she wanted to do was to pour every drop of remaining Mana into her weapon and pierce the heart of the Boss, that was all.
Gungnir resonated with her Mana and glistened brightly in golden light. Emitting a divine aura and causing tremors to break out on the ground, the Gungnir fired off a single white line of blinding energy beam.
The firing and hitting the target happened almost simultaneously. The heart of the Three-Headed Ogre was penetrated in an instant, and Sae-Jin the Orc, who had timed his jump to perfection, poured all his strength into the mace and fiercely struck the back of one of its heads.
Without a doubt, Kim Yu-Rin’s lethal attack on the Boss’s chest wasn’t going to be enough. However, it was now combined with the terrifyingly fierce strike from Sae-Jin as well, so the Ogre didn’t even have the chance to show off its infamously tenacious vitality.
*SFX for a pathetic roar of a dying Monster*
In the end, the Boss Ogre issued a low cry as it slowly collapsed on the ground. Following that, excited roars of the Orcs spread throughout the mountainside.
“No, wait!! It’s not over… Kkheuck!” (Kim Yu-Rin)
However, it was still early for the victory celebration. She needed to let the Orcs know. Unfortunately, Kim Yu-Rin could only grasp near her heart and fall to her knees. It was an adverse side effect of extracting too much Mana all at once.
Thankfully, though, the words she wanted to say, Sae-Jin shouted out loudly instead.
“It’s not over yet!! ….Oi, you okay?” (Sae-Jin)
Sae-Jin approached Kim Yu-Rin while maintaining the Orc’s vigilance.
“Yes, I’m fin…..!!” (Kim Yu-Rin)
At that moment, Kim Yu-Rin dazedly froze up. Soon afterwards, a huge shadow was cast over his head and to the ground. Sae-Jin hurriedly turned around, and found the Boss Ogre with its eyes shooting out chillingly dangerous light throwing a punch that burned with intense jet-black energy.
Sae-Jin pulled Kim Yu-Rin into an embrace and immediately retreated from there.
Fortunately, the Boss’s attack was one step late. Unfortunately, right in that moment, towards the direction he had retreated, a Breath attack rushed in.
“Kkhyaaah!!” (Kim Yu-Rin)
Sae-Jin quickly chucked Kim Yu-Rin away to a far off distance with a strength that could easily throw her several mountains over, and evaded the Breath. However, this Breath attack curved around the corner and followed his path of retreat. At the same time, the swift punch of the Three-Headed Ogre flew in as well.
Funnily enough, the Boss’s punch should have been a lot slower than this. But it was not so. Even the Monster’s eyes gleamed differently. They were far more violent and oppressive than ever before.
Only then did he remember. One or two fortunate Trolls, when somehow surviving the near-death experience, would go on a rampage akin to going through the “terminal lucidity”.
The destructive fist came flying in along with the Breath attack. If Sae-Jin evaded the fist, then he’d be struck by the Breath, and if he evaded the Breath, then it would be the fist, instead.
However, there was one other option left to choose. And the instincts of the Orc pulled Sae-Jin towards this choice.
Firstly, he increased the flow of blood within his body. Then, at the same time, he used the Skill ‘Warrior of Reversal and overlapped it with the increased blood flow. And finally, he added in the increased physical strength and defense he ‘gained’ from the Bathory woman.
This was the essence of purely chasing after the most powerful physical body attainable. And this feeling gave the most profound sense of enhancement ever felt in his entire life, to the slave creature born only to fight – the Orc.
Firmly standing on the ground, he began to endure the Breath attack that came washing over him. Because he was rescuing Kim Yu-Rin, he had to discard his mace some time ago. But that didn’t matter anymore. Just his bare fist was enough…
The fists of the Ogre and the Orc collided in the air. A huge explosion blew up like a blinding lightning where the two fists met and dyed the world in pure white, while the ground below disintegrated without a trace.
Nothing could be seen. But still, Kim Sae-Jin felt the Ogre’s arm in contact with his fist slowly disintegrate as well, and he closed his eyes.
[Condition cleared: Commitment and sacrifice.] [The Monster Form, the Orc Chieftain will be upgraded to the Great Orc Chieftain.] [Acquired the Orc’s unique Skill, the ‘Essence of the Orc’.] [The ‘Essence of the Orc’ resonates with ‘Bathory’s muscle composition & bone density’ as well as the ‘Mana Body’!! Special property, ‘The Most Pure Divine Body’ will be…]
Kim Sae-Jin’s eyes slowly opened within the blurry darkness.
That goddamn white bird…
Seeing that the first thing he did was to get angry, it looked like he was still in his Orc Form. But there were lots of problems; he could blink just fine, but his body wouldn’t budge an inch. Perhaps this was the expected result, after having been hit by the Boss Ogre as well as taking a Breath bath all over his body.
His voice still managed to leak out, somehow.
Suddenly, he got curious. He did fight to the death with the Boss Ogre, but what happened to that white bird? That bastard’s body seemed to have gotten a little bit bigger than before, too.
He felt sleepy and a yawn came out all on its own. He rolled his eyes somehow and took a look at his own body that resembled a charcoal. This was on the level of a miracle, him surviving all of that. It seemed that he had unconsciously used up as much as 30 healing potions in one go, judging by the alert window for the Spiritualisation that said [90/100].
And just how much time passed by since then?
Suddenly, he thought of something else.
‘….This might be the good time to retire the Orc Chief, isn’t it?’
Currently, the most useful Monster Forms had been set in stone already. Even though this Form had evolved into the Great Chieftain, this was the limit for the Orc as a species. So, it made sense to utilise the limitless Leviathan Form as well as the Lycanthrope that had near endless potential all of the time from now on. As an aside, he had given up on his Goblin Form a long time ago.
But, before he could do that, there was one sticking point to consider.
She had this ‘special’ feeling towards the Orc. And he couldn’t tell exactly what type of feeling this was. He could only suspect that it was a bit deeper than friendship or loyalty felt towards one’s comrades.
Beside all of that, though – the one thing he had to do first, was…
“…For now, I should really go home.” (Sae-Jin)
He had no idea how many days had passed since the battle. And there was someone waiting for him back home. Sae-Jin changed into the Leviathan Form and summoned up what little Mana he had left to activate the ‘sorcery’.
The destination for his instant transmission was the underground secret conference room. He came here, since Yu Sae-Jung might get shocked by his sudden intrusion – although she knew that he could change into the Leviathan already. Other Forms were still a secret from her, though.
“It was only a day?!” (Sae-Jin)
As soon as he arrived, he checked the calendar first, yet it only had been a day. What a relief that was. Breathing out a sigh of relief, Sae-Jin fell back down on the couch, and as sleep slowly encroached on him, he thought about calling Yu Sae-Jung on the phone…
He got shocked out of his slumber by a foreign voice greeting from somewhere and hurriedly shot up from the couch.
The voice belonged to Lillia.
“Wha, what the hell?! What are you doing in here?” (Sae-Jin)
“We ran away. Our plan failed, after all.” (Lillia)
“And also, Mister Sae-Jin personally told us this as well – to re-establish our sanctuary below The Monster’s grounds and continue living in the meantime.” (Lillia)
She came closer while talking to him, and handed over a bottle of potion.
“You shouldn’t sleep like that. Please, drink a potion before falling into a slumber.” (Lillia)
“Oh, uh, thanks.” (Sae-Jin)
Since he drank a potion, he thought might as well, and switched on the TV.
During the short news broadcast informing the viewers about the chaos near Pyongyang being taken care of, the incident related to the Orc came on and took up the top billing.
In short, Kim Yu-Rin had survived, thankfully. Apparently, Cornlak had rescued her amidst the explosion that resembled a nuclear warhead going off, caused by the Breath attack and two fists violently colliding. The end result was that a radius of 10 KM around the blast area had become nothing but ash and collapsed into utter ruin.
In other words, the fate of the remaining Orcs were unknown.
Did they all perish? Sae-Jin felt his chest tighten after hearing the news.
“That’s causing quite a bit of chaos at the moment. I hear that the Orc sacrificed himself to kill a dangerous Boss Monster?” (Lillia)
“Miss Hazeline was really stunned when she heard the news, saying what if you really died there. All the media outlets are reporting that the Orc Chieftain and the Boss Ogre engaged in a bitter battle to the death and both died in the end.” (Lillia)
Kim Sae-Jin stared at Lillia and smirked.
“Tell them to alter ‘Chieftain’ to ‘Great Chieftain’ instead.” (Sae-Jin)
Lillia’s eyes slightly arched up. Sae-Jin’s brows narrowed instead, seeing her relaxed reaction.
“Hang on. Why are you smiling like that as if you knew already?” (Sae-Jin)
“Did I do that?” (Lillia)
“…What the. So you really knew about it already?” (Sae-Jin)
“You can think of it any way you like. Well, please excuse me. I have too many matters to attend to.” (Lillia)
She got up from her seat after handing over a mobile phone to him.
“Also, you should not forget to call the Madam of the house.” (Lillia)
On a particularly clear afternoon, Sae-Jin paid a visit to Kim Yu-Rin’s hospital room. As soon as he cracked open the door, he spotted Cornlak, its body much smaller now. He sent a mental order to the wolf, telling it to act like it hadn’t recognised him. Cornlak loyally carried out his order and remained lying down on the floor.
“Oh, hello Mister Kim Sae-Jin. Nice to see you again.” (Kim Yu-Rin)
Kim Yu-Rin greeted him with a bright smile that was completely out of his expectations. Flustered slightly, Sae-Jin sat down on a nearby sofa while feeling rather disappointed for some reason.
“How are you feeling?” (Sae-Jin)
“I’m feeling fine, thank you.” (Kim Yu-Rin)
“….That’s a relief.” (Sae-Jin)
Sae-Jin replied in confusion and shifted his gaze to the LED TV’s screen. Contents regarding the Hero Orc were on at the moment. And probably because of the programme, not much of a conversation happened between the two of them.
Sae-Jin was cautiously observing the situation, while Kim Yu-Rin was looking at the TV with a healthy smile on her face.
– The Chieftain of the Hero Orcs is believed to have lost his life during the great explosion. Countless citizens, saddened by the loss, have formed lengthy queues to pay respects, and…
While listening to the anchor’s voice, Sae-Jin mustered up enough courage and asked Kim Yu-Rin.
“…That Orc, did he really die?” (Sae-Jin)
Her swift and assured answer surprised Kim Sae-Jin. While clutching her right fist tightly, she continued.
“Definitely, he’s alive somewhere.” (Kim Yu-Rin)
Then, she looked at him and smiled brightly.
He belatedly discovered the Orc’s pennant clutched within her right hand. He, too, smiled along with her.
“Oh, that’s right. Guild Master?” (Kim Yu-Rin)
Winds gently blew in from the open windows and scattered her hair like the falling and dancing petals of a cherry blossom tree. As he was thinking, how beautiful, she spoke to him in a resolute voice.
“Maybe, just maybe, I’m asking you, but… Do you still wish to seduce me?” (Kim Yu-Rin)
“……I beg your pardon?!”
< 43. A Hero, an Orc, a Human (4) > Fin.