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Chapter 70

 

Opening the second door I saw the same flea-bitten, two headed mutt as last time, though I did not know whether it was the same monster as before. I knew that it was stronger than other mutts, and the system had named it a warrior. In the past, the E class hunters had to charge it en-masse to kill it, and the only positive thing was that it was the nearest monster to the door.

The monster behaved the same as my recollections, and it flung aside the other mutts running towards me from behind and growled, asserting its dominance.

The sounds made by the twin heads were fierce, and no other monsters dared to come forward. However, I knew that they would become hyenas and rush at me to pull me down as a pack, should I be weakened by the Alpha. I backed away as the monster came toward me, as my strength was too low to face it hand to hand. I retreated to create a space where I could move, as the monster had to lower its head to come through the door. The doorway was an advantage.  Since a monster that big had appeared, it was natural that Yeonhee Woo’s breathing became rapid. I glared at the monster.

 

“Are you a wolf or a mutt? Keep the curs back.”

 

While it would not understand me, the monster must have felt something.  One of its heads turned back and made a warning sound to others. As the other continued to glare at me, an ambush would be impossible. I would need to counter the first rush by the boss, as this situation was more effective when I was at a disadvantage. The boss will not call for the other mutts to swarm me if it thinks it can bring me down by itself.

The head that had turned back now looked at me, and the monster’s body bristled, and its glare had a different light. The monster was ready, and I remembered my fear from the first time. However, I had fought mutts one-on-one countless times, and if I did not fear it, I could do this. I used Iron Skin to reinforce my left arm as my shield, and began.

 

***

 

‘Give me an order!’

 

Yeonhee Woo was about to scream to Sunhoo to let her heal him. The blue sparks following Sunhoo’s dagger did not look as dangerous as they had before, as the monster did not flinch when he stabbed it. Instead, the monster had struck Sunhoo down, and while he managed to  stand up again, there was blood flowing from his mouth. While Yeonhee Woo did not know much about battle, she knew that the monster was too strong as Sunhoo had warned her. It overpowered Sunhoo in both strength and speed, and the monster did not flinch when it was wounded.

On the other hand, every moment was dire for Sunhoo, as the monster would just bite or strike him no matter how much he attacked it.

 

‘No!’

 

Yeonhee stifled a scream when Sunhoo’s body flew, and the monster strangled him against the wall. Sunhoo managed to strike with his dagger once before his body went limp. Yeonhee Woo’s gaze followed the dagger Sunhoo had dropped from his hand to the pool of blood. She was desperately trying NOT to use her skill or her arrows.

 

-Do not use any skills when I fight the twin-headed monster. I may look like I’m dying, but I will be waiting for the Man Who Overcame Adversity to kick in, and when doing so, you must…

 

Yeonhee Woo remembered Sunhoo’s orders, and her gaze moved towards the door.

 

-You have to run away as fast as you can should the mutts go after you.

 

Sunhoo had been right as the monsters beyond the door growled louder and louder in excitement. She wanted to cover her ears and knew that the time to run was near. Yeonhee Woo saw Sunhoo in pain and remembered a memory from her past. The entire family had gone fishing, and a fish had escaped from the bucket. While it had writhed and flopped around on the ground, it became still after a while, and her father had picked it up. It started flailing again, but the movements told her the fish was dying.

Sunhoo was like that fish now, and she wanted to do anything that would free him from the monster’s grasp. She had done so countless times in her head. However…

 

-Do not use Marie’s Hand at this time, as that is for the boss fight. You cannot endure such deep wounds. Just think of your survival even if I look like I’m dying. I won’t be able help you in that situation, so remember this.

 

Yeonhee Woo needed to follow those words if she wanted BOTH of them to survive, so she shed her backpack so she could move faster.

Sunhoo’s scream was not loud, but it was a signal for her, as the monsters began to roar and ran after her. She turned away from Sunhoo and started to run. The baying of the hounds were close by the time she returned to the first room. Yeonhee Woo looked around, her breathing rough. The room layout was confusing since it was dark. She was aiming for the entrance room because she remembered that he had setup traps there, as their final contingency. Survival instincts made people discover hidden talents and raise their concentration, and Yeonhee Woo thought fast and decided quickly.

She did not go to the entrance because the trap had been for when everything else failed. However, she dared not open another door and ran along the wall.

She ran into a corner and looked behind her with her bow raised with shaking hands. However, it was then she saw a message window.

 

[You have completed the Quest ‘One on One Combat.’ Please decide who will receive the reward.]

 

Another message popped up.

 

[You have been distributed 1 point.]

[Declan Extermination: Exterminated Declan Soldier 28/60]

 

Then, the first message popped up again.

 

[You have completed the Quest ‘One on One Combat.’ Please decide who will receive the reward.]

 

A new message came up to replace all others.

 

[You have been distributed 1 point.]

[Declan Extermination: Exterminated Declan Soldier 29/60]

 

Yeonhee Woo realized that Sunhoo had won and was coming to her, but her expectations shattered instantly. Sharp teeth and jaws came out of the darkness. Yeonhee Woo suppressed her instinct to shoot immediately.

 

-The first shot is important. You will be eaten if you cannot critically injure a monster with the first shot, so be calm and shoot for the eyes.

 

The monster ran to her as she shot her arrow.

 

***

 

I ran dripping blood, one mutt had disappeared despite most of them swarming me. I could not chase it, as there were twenty rushing me. I managed to kill the Declan Warrior using the insignia and Adversity Overcomer, but my body was creaking despite not feeling any pain. Real fights were different from imaginary ones, as the monster had been too powerful. However, these mutts I could manage. I kicked one as it charged me, and while I stumbled a bit, I managed to remain upright. The one next to me lost its arm, and I finished killing them all within twenty seconds.

 

[You have completed the quest ‘Declan Extermination.’]

[You have gained a Silver Box as your first-place reward.]

[You have gained 28 Strength points.]

[Strength: F(50)]

 

I had no time to read the messages and focused on the one that followed her.

 

[You have completed the Quest ‘One on One Combat.’ Please decide who will receive the reward.]

 

That meant that Yeonhee Woo was still alive, as I would automatically receive the reward if she was dead. I walked with a limp and realized that the Adversity Overcomer had ended when I entered the first room. I could not see or feel anything as I fell to the ground. She should be in the entrance room, and the trap would have helped her survive. She may be shaking, traumatized and afraid. I could not speak despite a healer being over there, and my eyes dimmed.

I thought it was blood at first, but it tasted of salt, not the metallic flavor of blood. Something wet was falling in drops on my face.

 

Edited by Userunfriendly

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