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Perhaps his fatigue had piled over time, but Sanghyuk had slept for 7 hours when he intended to sleep for 5. As soon as he woke up, he took a shower first and warmed up his body by stretching.
Although he overslept by 2 hours, he wasn’t in such a hurry. Being hasty to log into EL just because he had overslept was not his way of doing things.
Oversleeping was just oversleeping. He did everything independent of that fact. He exercised lightly to warm up his body and had a full meal as well. Since he only had one or two meals per day, he had to eat properly when he did.
Only after preparing himself like that, he did enter to the capsule.
Having entered EL, Sanghyuk didn’t immediately go to the Golden Anvil and first stopped by the commissioned sales store. Since the items he had put on sale on the commission was considerably good at this point in the game, everything was sold out.
Sanghyuk paid the fee and checked the time after he received the gold.
‘It will take a couple of days for the bone whip to be completed so should I put the sewer dungeon up for sale?’
Rumors about secret dungeons were starting to spread among the users. The exact truth was still unknown, but the fact that there were things called ‘secret dungeons’ and how they were juicy hunting zones were starting to spread.
This was the best time to sell his secret dungeon.
Dungeon trading was done in many ways, and the safest way was to do it through commission or through auction. Since no one put up a dungeon for sale, they just didn’t know that it was possible to do so.
If he put up the 77th Sewer dungeon up for sale, then an item named ‘D-rank secret dungeon 50/150’ would appear in the commissioned sales store.
The details about the dungeon would be revealed according to how much Sanghyuk wanted to reveal about it. Right now, even if he put all details secret, there would be a lot of users interested in just from the fact that it was a secret dungeon.
The commissioned sales store fundamentally guaranteed the safety of all transactions. So the actual transaction of the dungeon was done in a manner so that it had to happen.
In other words, whether it was Sanghyuk, the seller in this case, or the buyer, they could be at ease if they traded through the commissioned sales.
Sanghyuk hunted lightly around Falcon City after putting his sewer dungeon on sale. After around an hour, a trade request message came to him from the commissioned sales store.
A pitch-black metallic armor that covered the entire body…… it looked very crude, but it was a full set.
And this person was wearing a black robe on top as well, so not to mention face, even the hair couldn’t be seen.
‘Man, this guy looks very stifling.’
In front of Sanghyuk was the user that requested to buy the secret dungeon from him. The figure wasn’t that big, but the problem was the attire.
No matter how high defense metallic armors were, there was nobody that wore full body armors like this. On top of that, wearing a black robe showed the extremes of stifling fashion. It felt like this user was trapped in the metallic armor.
But that wasn’t the end.
[Can I receive it immediately?]
A message came instead of words. Surprisingly, this user was conversing through public message instead of words. Although he could see it in Korean due to the instant translation, it could be seen that this user was someone who used English.
‘Whew, type-talking?…… No one uses type-talking in Dream Network after the instant translation was nearly perfected…… this is one peculiar user…… Oh! Black metallic armor over the whole body and the type-talking. Is it the ‘Dark Knight’?’
Two words flashed by Sanghyuk’s head. Although he didn’t think of this when he just saw the armor, he remembered the words ‘Dark Knight’ when that user talked by typing.
‘Is it the same Dark Knight I know of?’
Sanghyuk scanned the opponent once again.
The Dark Knight seemed to have a height around 170 cm, and considering how the full set of plate armor covered the body, the figure didn’t seem to be that tall. A very large black shield as well as trying to conversing through type-messaging…… this all seem to correspond to what Sanghyuk knew about the Dark Knight.
“Oh! I’m sorry. I can proceed with the transaction right away. It’s just that you need to have above ‘close friends’ familiarity with the Falcon Security.”
[I am already.]
The buyer, no, the user that could possibly be the Dark Knight answered curtly.
“That’s good, then please follow me.”
First, Sanghyuk took the Dark Knight to the basement of Falcon Security office. He kept thinking about what he knew of the Dark Knight on the way.
‘Once known as the greatest tanker of the beginning stages of EL…… but became a legend by disappearing after the first large-scale patch, ‘The Rise of the Dead’ and the 2nd planet, Tume, was added…… The impact the Dark Knight showed in the 2 years was so large that it was a talk for a long time even after the disappearance.’
Although Sanghyuk was completely unrelated, he knew quite a lot since the user was very controversial.
‘Is it really the Dark Knight? From what I’ve seen, it’s very likely…….’
Thinking about various things, he arrived at the sewer dungeon quite soon.
‘Should I check if it’s the real Dark Knight?’
Sanghyuk liked being sure about things and wanted to check if the opponent was actually the Dark Knight. That was why he threw a question that wasn’t on his plan before he sold off the dungeon.
“Are you alone?”
“The recommended party is 3……. But will you be fine?”
[Is it hard?]
“It’s not too hard, but there are some tricky bits.”
Even though he easily cleared the same dungeon 100 times, he tried to scare the other party. Of course, he wasn’t entirely lying. It was because it was Sanghyuk that the clear was so easy. Normally, any user would have a hard time conquering it alone.
Having put on the bait, Sanghyuk immediately spoke when the other didn’t reply.
“If you so wish, I can tell you the tricks while running the dungeon around 10 times. But, it won’t be for free.”
Checking if the opponent was the Dark Knight and dungeon-carrying were separate matters, so he had to receive money.
[Can’t you just do one?]
The buyer put up the message after some time.
‘Confident in your ability? Well, I only need to check if you are the Dark Knight.’
Since he had another objective anyway, running the dungeon once didn’t really matter.
‘But is it the real Dark Knight?’ (T/N: Stop, asking, already, urgh.)
Sanghyuk peeked back while registering the buyer in the 77th sewer dungeon. This would all be solved if he entered the dungeon along with the buyer.
Sanghyuk knew of a trait that was more characteristic to the Dark Knight other than the type-talking or the outer appearance, so he just needed to look for that.
The Dark Knight was heavily silent to the point that the nickname ‘Silent Tank’ was given. The Dark Knight always put up a message when it was absolutely necessary.
Perhaps it could be considered very stifling, but it wasn’t that much so when playing in a party. The reason was…… the easily understandable hand signs as well as the ability to fulfill the role of a tanker at 120% efficiency.
The Dark Knight raised a hand and pointed forward with three fingers. Then rushed forward without any hesitation.
With a huge tower shield enough to cover all of the body, a charge was thrown towards the monsters.
*Clang clang clang*, despite the small figure, a strong power surged forth, and the three monsters at the front were all pushed backward.
Like that, the Dark Knight started beating the monsters to death with the shield.
*Bang bang, crunch! Crunch!*
With the shield, the monsters were literally made into bloody pulp. The Dark Knight definitely wasn’t ordinary.
Sanghyuk nodded his head while watching. He didn’t need to check anymore.
‘Unique hand signs and Shield Charge techniques…… with this, there’s 99% chance of that he’s the Dark Knight.’
All information pointed that the user in front of him was indeed the Dark Knight.
‘I don’t think his level is high, or his equipment is any good…… but that’s pretty good. Oho, is that shield parry something he learned naturally? The rumors I’ve heard definitely aren’t exaggerated.’
Sanghyuk was surprised after looking at the Dark Knight fighting. He had seen many pro gamers up close in his life as a director. He also looked at the gameplay of promising amateurs as well.
Since he did, he had the confidence to judge another user better than anyone in EL.
‘He’s using the shield as if it was a part of his body. I don’t think his talent has blossomed yet…… but he might become a better player than the ‘Adamantine Wall’ Qing Yuan or ‘Mr. Perfect’ Ivan.’
Qing Yuan and Ivan were two of the best tankers he knew of. Their performance was quite special even among the highest-ranking people, but from what he saw, the Dark Knight had a potential that surpassed those two.
When Sanghyuk told the Dark Knight the characteristics and walkthrough of the 77th sewer dungeon, the Dark Knight would, in turn, edit the walkthrough to fit the situation.
Just from that, the potential the Dark Knight had as a player could be seen. In the end, the Dark Knight perfectly cleared the 77th sewer quite soon. Considering how Sanghyuk only spoke of the walkthrough and the warnings and did not participate in the actual battle, the Dark Knight practically cleared the dungeon solo.
After clearing the dungeon, the Dark Knight gave him the compensation and nodded.
Sanghyuk looked at the Dark Knight after accepting the money.
‘Why did he quit the game after 2 years? I heard he was a faithful user that always kept his promise and never let allies down……, just what could have happened?’
Even though they just went around a dungeon together once, Sanghyuk liked the Dark Knight quite a lot – the sturdy gameplay style as well as the tremendous potential.
Although he had returned in time and was now trying to become a ‘main character’ that attracts all attention and not just a side character like the director, Sanghyuk was still very greedy for good players, something which he generated when he was a director.
‘I won’t make a loss by knowing him so I’ll leave a connection behind.’
“Can we register as friends?”
At Sanghyuk’s sudden request, the Dark Knight seemed to ponder a little before replying with a nod.
“Nice to meet you. I’m called Immortal.”
Sanghyuk put his right hand forward while mentioning his name and the Dark Knight accepted his handshake without a word. Mentioning one’s name and offering a handshake was the process of requesting friends. Accepting the handshake was the accepting as a friend.
The Dark Knight, no, ‘Aspice’, was added to Sanghyuk’s empty friends list. Of course, the Dark Knight would also get the name ‘Immortal’ in the empty friends list as well.
“Let’s see each other again when we have the opportunity.”
Although they became friends, it wasn’t like Sanghyuk had something that he wanted from the Dark Knight. He was just purely impressed at the Dark Knight’s performance.
Separating from the Dark Knight, Sanghyuk thought up of something and logged out for a moment. Although he logged out of the game, this didn’t mean that he was logged out from the Dream Network.
He searched for a few pieces of information inside his D-room.
‘Byungil shouldn’t have started the game yet…… so, do I need to just look for Jungwoo and Jungsoo? But I heard these two were complete wimps when they began…….’
The ones Sanghyuk was looking for were those he could call ‘friends’ in his previous life. To be exact, they were the ones who helped him out until the end without betraying him. It was a sad thing that he could only believe 3 people in his long gameplay of EL, but it was fortunate that there were any at all.
Sanghyuk knew that it was a lot more painful when he was betrayed by someone close to him than some complete stranger so he couldn’t make any friends after some time.
Sanghyuk searched for a while for any traces of Kim Jungwoo and Kim Jungsoo. They were twins. Actually, the two just had an ordinary talent for gaming and became rankers through sheer effort.
Sanghyuk looked for the two for quite a while, but couldn’t find any traces of them.
‘Well, these two did become rankers through effort alone, so it would take some time for them to become famous.’
He wanted to help them if he could find them, but the problem was that he couldn’t find them. He knew their IDs, but EL allowed multiple of the same account name, so it was near impossible to find a person through their ID. Moreover, requesting friends was also only possible through meeting the opponent and shaking hands while mentioning one’s name, so he could do practically nothing with just an ID.
‘Looks like you two will have to suffer again in this life.’
Sanghyuk wished for the good luck for Jungwoo and Jungsoo who would be suffering in some part of EL before stopping his search.
Instead, he searched about a few guilds and users he remembered. The guilds and users he was looking up right now were not colleagues but targets of revenge.
“So ‘Gold Rush’ is so active even at the beginning. Those f*ckers…… they’re probably threatening little kids in a not well-ventilated basement to work.”
Muttered Sanghyuk after he found traces of Gold Rush in various places.
Gold Rush was the guild the managers of the workshop that made him a cripple after making him work for 5 years, had made. Of course, they were disguised as normal guilds on the outside, but they were actually a trash guild that grew with the insane production ability of the workshop as the foundation.
‘I’ll just be watching since it isn’t time yet, but I’ll shred you to pieces after you become fat!’
Crunch, Sanghyuk gritted his teeth and clenched his fist.
After that, Sanghyuk looked up various other powers and users that made him taste the bitter aspects of reality. There were some that turned up, and some that didn’t.
‘Phew, looks like I had a hard life. I was also like some of the wimps in my previous life…….’
Kind, nice, pure – he had no thoughts in wrapping himself to look like that.
He just thought that he was foolish and idiotic.
Actually, that was true. Sanghyuk was always on the losing end because he didn’t know the cruelty of reality. Although he did gain success as a director later, he was betrayed yet again.
‘I will not believe in anyone, anymore. Justice? Friendship? Those have long been disappeared from my head. Now, I will only believe in myself.’
Sanghyuk stood up quietly after closing all the search windows in front of him. He could check that one thing was sure after searching his ties with good people and bad people.
It was that…… he had a lot more debt to receive than to pay.