A Monster Who Levels Up
(This extra chapter is brought to you by these guardians of good tastes: Julius V. B., Dale B, Keneth P, Jack T, Cristi N, Alex D, and Misraim V. Thank you for your support!!)
– When one more condition is fulfilled, the Wolf Form will evolve into ‘Lycanthrope’. (2/3)
– After ingesting a ‘divine’ material, an unknown ability has been unlocked.
– A new Monster Form, ‘Feeble Sea Monster’ is now available.
– The host can now move and breathe under water as if he’s on land.
– A Passive Skill, ‘Ruler of the Water’ (Level F-) has been acquired.
– A Passive Skill, ‘Leviathan’s Scales’ (Level F-) has been acquired.
It felt like his innards were boiling. He didn’t even have enough leeway to read all the rising alert windows. He could only think about returning home right now.
Somehow, he had enough power of reasoning left to ask a favour from Yu Sae-Jung. She panicked somewhat and called for a car when he told her that he needed to get home right away.
He couldn’t remember what else transpired after climbing into the car.
As he tried very hard to control his burning insides and the unstable consciousness, he found himself back inside his house already, having changed into the Wolf Form after exhausting the time limit for being human, which happened while he was blacking out intermittently.
He breathed out a sigh of relief and made a solemn promise to himself never to eat anything that looked even a wee bit suspicious from now on.
Kim Yu-Rin opened her eyes. The first thing she saw was an unfamiliar white ceiling.
‘I must have fainted.’
It was an obvious result since she had used up the very last scrap of Mana inside her.
She relaxed her aching body with a gentle stretching of her muscles and slowly raised her upper body. There didn’t seem like anything was amiss, only that her back felt a little stiff.
Where am I? She looked around the room and tilted her head.
To call this place a hospital… her room was just too big and luxurious for that. But it did seem like a hospital, as there was a needle in her arm connected to an IV drip, as well as the strong stench of medicines wafting in the air. Well, the definite proof was the patient gown she had on at the moment.
Kim Yu-Rin stood up from the bed and slowly walked towards the door to the side.
When she grabbed the doorknob and pushed it, the door opened incredibly smoothly.
…And there was yet another room.
"Ah, you’ve woken up!"
A young girl lying on a comfy couch in this living room (?) quickly bolted up. It was Yu Sae-Jung.
"Uh… Miss Sae-Jung? Where am I? How did I end up here?"
"This is a hospital. The Dawn Hospital’s VVIP room, to be exact. That’s that, but is your body alright?"
"Oh, I’m feeli…"
"Please, feel free to talk to me without honorifics!!" (TL: yes, Kim Yu-Rin has been using honorifics when talking to either Yu Sae-Jung or to our MC.)
Yu Sae-Jung’s eyes were sparkling brightly. As that appearance was adorable like that of a puppy, Kim Yu-Rin ended up giggling as well.
"If you’re okay with it, then… I understand. I’m feeling fine. By the way, what happened to other situations?"
As expected of her, what she wanted to know the most was the current status of the situations - the news regarding the Monsters rampaging around in the Nam Mountain in Seoul, in the city of Busan as well as in the Monster field of Gangwon Province.
"Thanks to the timely mobilisation and perfect prior preparations, they have all been suppressed successfully. And because of your intervention, we were able to prevent the Leviathan from causi
ng lots of harm, too."
Yu-Rin tilted her head. Indeed, she was responsible for knocking out the Leviathan, but the real decisive contributor to ending the threat early was the Hunter Kim Sae-Jin. But, why hasn’t this girl mentioned his name, too…?
"What do you mean by that? And also, where’s Mister Sae-Jin right now?"
"Sae-Jin Oppa went home as soon as the incident ended, saying there was something he needed to attend to urgently. But… what’s wrong?"
When Yu Sae-Jung asked with a delicate gaze, Yu-Rin scratched the back of her neck while replying to her.
"Well, that… Actually, Mister Sae-Jin played the biggest role… Wait, are the media also saying I did it alone?"
"…Eh? Sae-Jin Oppa did what?"
Behind the surprised Sae-Jung, a news broadcast from the TV could be heard.
– The Knight responsible for ending the Leviathan incident has now been identified as the 41st Highest Tier Knight in Korea, Miss Kim Yu-Rin. Knight Kim Yu-Rin continuously demonstrated her overwhelming martial skills to beat down and knock out the Leviathan twice before the creature could start causing harm to the city…
Yu-Rin let out an odd sigh.
Being omitted from the results of a battle - it was one of the mistakes she intensely disliked while serving as the country’s Highest Tier Knight. If one looked at it in a different way, then it was also akin to stealing one’s achievements from the battle, which was an act she abhorred with passion.
"…We need to correct this. A press conference sh…"
"You want to hold a press conference?"
Yu-Rin nodded her head.
"It’s because the Hunter Kim Sae-Jin’s role was crucial, you see. It was him who cancelled the summoning, after all."
Yu Sae-Jung’s eyes went totally round at the revelation of something she had no idea of. Then, as if she remembered something in this instance, she quickly spoke out.
"Ah, I think there is…. no need to do a press conference, actually."
"…Mm? Why not?"
When Yu-Rin showed a puzzled expression, the smiling Yu Sae-Jung took a couple of steps to reach and grab the curtains covering the windows.
"Well, we’ve got a plenty of reporters camping outside."
*SFX for opening a curtain*
Then, she pulled the curtains wide open.
Almost at the same time, countless small explosions of lights went off, as if to embroider the night sky. They were from the flashing cameras of the reporters who seemed to supernaturally realise that the curtains were about to be pulled.
Yu-Rin dumbfoundedly stared at those fireworks of lights.
– It was the Hunter Kim Sae-Jin who braved the dangers to dive deep beneath the river to erase the summoning magic circle of the Leviathan. I was only there to provide support…
While watching Kim Yu-Rin’s interview on TV, Sae-Jin was talking to someone on his mobile phone.
– "I’m truly sorry. I also didn’t expect things to devolve this way… Oh, did you have to buy a new phone?"
"Yes. But it’s quite alright. I was planning to buy a new one anyway."
The person on the other side of the line was the one doing the interview, Kim Yu-Rin. After finding out about Sae-Jin’s condition, she procured his numbers for the new mobile phone from Yu Sae-Jung and gave him a call.
"And that…. well, it’s not something to feel bad about, I guess. Actually, it worked out better for me."
The impact from Kim Yu-Rin’s interview was huge.
He had become the no.1 real-time search topic, and requests for interviews flooded in; and the officials from the city of Seoul asked him if he could make some time to come and receive an award of commendation.
Also, several Knights Orders called him. They were not the famed Orders ranked 5~6th position or higher, but almost all the Orders below them did contact him. They all asked him if he ever thought about becoming a Knight, instead.
Kim Sae-Jin refused them all and bought another phone.
This phone was registered under his own name. The previous one was actually registered under Hazeline’s name, as that device was kind of like a gift she gave to him.
– "Is that so? But, still…"
Kim Yu-Rin blurred the end of her sentence, her tone still apologetic.
"No, I’m really alright. But if you insist… well, you can buy me another meal later on, then."
– "…Will that be really alright with you?"
– "Well… then, in Seoul…"
"No, for me, Seoul is a bit…"
– "Oh, is that so? Then, I’ll go to Gangwon Province next week."
Sae-Jin ended the call with Kim Yu-Rin here and got up from the couch.
Today, there was still one more thing left to do.
It was a decision he had arrived at after a lengthy deliberation.
He went to the Yoseon Alchemy House.
"The building in front of ours?"
Outwardly, the purpose of his visit was to rent the building in front of the Alchemy House.
Hazeline had even resorted to getting a loan in order to buy buildings in front and next to her Alchemy House; and now, Sae-Jin was requesting to rent the one in front.
"Uh……. But why? I’d like to listen to the reason first."
She originally planned to set up a special exhibit for the Goblin Alchemist in the front building, so she was asking him in a slightly reluctant tone.
"That… I was thinking of opening up an armoury."
Sae-Jin was getting tensed up for some reason.
Sure enough, Sae-Jin was planning to confess the truth of him being the Orc Blacksmith to Hazeline here today.
"Aha! So, it’s for your friend the Blacksmith, right? Then, of course, I welcome it!!"
"A frie… eh? What do you mean?"
When Hazeline reacted positively while clapping her hands, Sae-Jin’s expression became momentarily dumbfounded.
"Ah… I’ve got pretty keen senses, you know. I thought that voice in the Grand Finale of the Blacksmiths Tournament sounded really similar to your own voice, but since there are people with similar type of voices, I didn’t think much of it, until…"
"Some weird people started showing here - those morons… ahem, I mean, slightly lacking individuals. Saying stuff like the Orc Blacksmith was a woman and such…"
At her words, Sae-Jin scratched the back of his neck.
It was a blunder on his part. It couldn’t be helped since he had to somehow communicate with the judges in the Blacksmiths Tournament, but it was him who trusted wholesale the words of the TV station people when they said they would keep the secret…
"That’s when it clicked for me. Your friend is the Orc Blacksmith, and you acted as the Orc for your friend who, for personal reasons, could not appear in public."
Speaking up to here, Hazeline let out a triumphant snort.
However, she was utterly mistaken.
And he had to correct her right this instant.
Even if it was just one person, he wanted to tell the truth about him to someone he could trust. He just could not live while hiding his f*cking situation forever, nor did he plan on doing that.
"…Miss Hazeline. What I’m… about to tell you, until I’m ready, you must keep it as a secret between us."
Out of all the connections he had built up with his two hands like building a sand castle, didn’t the one with Hazeline run the deepest?
Although it had only been half a year, Sae-Jin hadn’t known anyone for a longer period of time than he did with Hazeline and also, even if it was actually just her investing for the future, she still lent him a large sum of money without hesitation.
Even if this trust was only a one-way street and she only thought of him as a product…
The current him needed Hazeline’s connections, her talents, and most importantly, her friendship where he would be able to discuss things without reservations.
Hazeline’s eyes went round, her head tilting slightly at the sudden seriousness of Sae-Jin’s atmosphere.
Sae-Jin breathed in deeply, before continuing on.
And on that day, Sae-Jin was able to clearly witness with his own two eyes, what would happen when a talented Dark Elf Wizard was utterly shocked to the ends of this universe and beyond.
Really, seriously, he got to experience the phenomenon of the ‘Poltergeist’.
Hazeline delayed the Alchemy House's extension plan for now, and converted the top floor of the building in front to the Orc’s armoury. She figured that even without advertisement, potential punters would queue up and so, instead of opening the armoury on the ground floor and having a swarm of riff-raff there, it’d be a lot smarter for marketing purposes to operate on the ‘customers reserve their products’ basis.
On one of the walls of this yet-to-be decorated interior, Sae-Jin hung the golden plaque that read: ‘The ORK Blacksmith, affiliated with the The Monster’. For now, it was gold-plated, but soon, it’d be in real gold…
"Are you almost done?"
As he stood there thinking, Hazeline approached and asked him.
"Yes. All that’s left to do, is to find someone to work here…"
"You don’t have to worry about that one. I’ve already got a Dark Elf with heavy lips ready in the wings. Before that, though, have you received orders already?"
"Of course. I’ve received word from the Dawn Knights Order that, as long as the product is better than a Mid Quality, then they’d pay a minimum of $2.7 million US. I hear that, since there are a lot of people trying to place orders, they are handing out numbered tickets as well."
< 12. A Development that’s not a progress (3) > Fin.