Act 3: Lee Myung-ryong’s Humiliation

ACT 3 Lee Myung-ryong’s Humiliation

“What on earth did you do?”

A grey haired middle aged person asked with a sharp glance. He was the section chief of the Police Agency’s SWAT forces, Cho Young-hwan.

“Nothing much.”

The person replied in a curt voice. Bad dress, bad posture, bad attitude……the man was the captain of the number 1 SWAT team, the number 1 hooligan known as Lee Myung-ryong. Cho Young-hwan shot Lee Myung-ryong an annoyed look and said.

“Are you really going to act like this?”

“What do you mean?”

“I don’t know the circumstances but did you bark at someone at the top?”

“Barking wouldn’t change anything.”

Cho Young-hwan approached the desk.

“…..That is why this situation happened.”

“I never denied that. I just didn’t want to say it.”

“Hey, Lee Myung-ryong.”

Cho Young-hwan pressed a finger to his temple and rebuked him.

“Don’t I know you? Don’t you know me?”

“We’ve gone to the public baths together so of course I know you.”

“Don’t joke around. But yes, there are many members of the Police Agency who knows all the scars on my body. It is a part of our lives. In the field, one mistake can mean being unable to dodge a bullet or having a sashimi knife stabbed in your back. And everybody in the police force is prepared for that.”

“You should’ve gone to the National Assembly. You would gather all of the police’s votes.”

“Don’t joke around!”

Cho Young-hwan struck the desk with his fists. The fists which hit the desk were covered in scars. Although he was now sitting at a desk, a few years ago he was also a member of the SWAT team. The Bear of the National Police Agency. It was the nickname the delinquents gave to Cho Young-hwan.

“I’m a public servant. Wearing wound dressings is useless. But it’s done. Someone at the top aimed a bullet at me and it hit.”

Lee Myung-ryong replied coldly.

“Hwa-rang sunbaenim also exited the Police Department with a limp.”

“You really!”

Cho Young-hwan jumped and blushed. Lee Myung-ryong noticed this and glared while muttering.

“I don’t need to complain to section chief. Don’t you know? It is an amazingly accurate hit to be random.  No, it is like they’re trying to make it look accidental.

“……”

Cho Young-hwan was silent for a moment before pulling out a cigarette. Before the smoke reached Lee Myung-ryong, the cigarette butt was pressed into the pile of butts on the ashtray. Cho Young-hwan took a deep breath and inhaled the smoke into his lungs.

“I know how you feel…..but there are quite a few people you’ve offended.

“Offended? Yes, I am furious.”

Lee Myung-Ryong gave a cynical smile and nodded. Yes, fury was building up in his throat even though he was laughing. He wanted to search for the criminal but he was quite cynical……An incident took place this morning. He had exited the gym after finishing his usual workout. All of a sudden he was summoned to the section chief’s office and told that he would be joining the Special Crimes Countermeasures unit.

‘That asshole….!’

Lee Myung-ryong had a quick mind. No, he wasn’t smart in the conventional sense.  He had entered the police force thanks to his history as a national taekwondo representative.  He had barely passed the test to enter.  But he had a keen sense of smell about shady dealings. Special crimes countermeasures……

It was the name of the department which dealt with violent crime. However, it wasn’t the ‘investigation’ but ‘measures’ unit. That meant gathering information at a desk about the criminals before the committed an incident. And then handed over the clues to the investigation department. It was a paid position which required little work. The normal workers would’ve graduated from college, but to have a SWAT team member join it……yet the announcement was that Lee Myung-ryong would join that department. However, Lee Myung-ryong immediately understood the situation when the section chief explained it. No, he had actually been expecting it for several days.

Lee Kyung-Ho. Not long ago, he went to Hyun-woo to visit Andel’s father. He used to be a part of the prosecution office and was extremely close to the chief of the police force. And Lee Myung-ryong happened to not get along with the police chief. He had confrontations with the police chief after Gwon Hwa-rang was forced to retire. Therefore Lee Myung-ryong was an eyesore to the Chief of the National Police Agency. But since Lee Myung-ryong had good results, he couldn’t openly punish him. So Lee Kyung-Ho used his police connections to help smooth the way. This situation was rigged by those two people. It was obviously the wishes of those two humans. They wanted Lee Myung-ryong to either become angry and disobey or resign.

‘Those civil servants…..I would love to beat him up…..’

Lee Myung-ryong definitely wanted to go to Lee Kyung-Ho and throw his letter of resignation in his face. Since he knew all the circumstances, Lee Myung-ryong wasn’t just going to follow their plan. If Lee Myung-ryong left then Hyun-woo would definitely notice.

‘That guy calms me down pretty quickly.’

He smiled while thinking about Hyun-woo. He felt a sense of pride. He was a teacher after all.  He didn’t want to involve his disciple in this kind of dirty situation.

“Dammit, it’s impossible. That bastard…..is the police force his playground? You must know something since you’re not arguing about it.”

Cho Young-hwan smoked his cigarette with annoyance.

“Anyway, that’s it.  Don’t write the resignation letter immediately.  I’ll wait and observe the situation a little bit more. Please think of it as a couple of months holiday.  I’ll look for something in the meantime.”

“Yes.”

“I’ve contacted the section chief there. That fellow will find you a suitable position. He’s a friend so he’ll look after you. You can go now.”

“Yes, I’ll return if possible.”

Lee Myung-ryong replied and left the section chief’s office.

He talked roughly but it seemed like Cho Young-hwan had been truly worried that Lee Myung-ryong would resign. So he contacted the Special Crimes Countermeasures department beforehand to organize a position.

“A desk job…..I don’t know how long I can endure it.”

Lee Myung-ryong sighed and slowly headed towards the Special Crimes Countermeasures department. At this point, Lee Myung-ryong never imagined the work that he would be undergoing.

“Ah, you’re the one Section Chief Cho mentioned.” I’m Choi Deok-pil and I’m in charge here.”

Someone approached him as he entered the Special Crimes Countermeasures department. He had the appearance of a typical white-collar employee.

“Yes, I’m Lee Myung-ryong.”

“Hahahah, no need to be so formal here. I understand that this announcement must’ve been very unpleasant for you. But after seeing Section Chief Cho’s reactions, you shouldn’t be here that long. Well, I hope we bond as a family while you’re here.”

“What do I need to do? Copy? Coffee errands?”

“Hmm, I think I can put a SWAT team member to better use. Just as well. A position recently became available and I was worried about it. It might suit you. Come one.”

Choi Deok-pil led him to a small corner office. Even though it was called an office, there were none of the usual machines. There was just a big circular capsule.

“What’s this? A newly excavated dinosaur egg?”

“Is this the first time you’ve seen it?”

“Yes, I’m not interested in archaeology.”

Choi Deok-pil looked at him before letting out a burst of laughter.

“This machine is a game unit. It is a computer designed to connect to a virtual reality game. This unit is dedicated towards the game called New World.”

“New world?”

Lee Myung-ryong’s eyes widened.

“Don’t tell me you haven’t heard of it?”

“No, I’ve heard of New World.”

“I’m glad. You almost seemed like a caveman just then.”

Choi Deok-pil nodded his head. But Lee Myung-ryong had no interest in the middle aged Choi Deok-pil. He was curious about the unit after listening to Hyun-woo’s words and asked in an inquisitive voice.

“But what does this have to do with the police force?”

“You don’t seem to understand yet. These days it isn’t very rare to investigate online games. And it increases the department’s results.”

Choi Deok-pil gave a brief explanation. Those who commit a crime tend to have an excessive amount of free time. Since they can’t carelessly wander around, they’re forced to stay in a dimly lit room all day. It is surprisingly hard to endure. Sometimes the criminals even become depressed from hiding and surrender themselves to the police. A virtual reality game is a good way for a criminal to escape their lives. They don’t have to risk themselves going outside and they can wander around a different world.

“Most of those guys are satisfied living through virtual reality games. They even have a guild in the game…..ah, meetings as well. Those guys even have regular meetings where the exchange criminal information and laugh. In that case, findings clues for the meeting is not that hard.”

That’s because police personnel were also sent into the game. These investigation methods had been started 10 years ago and were getting satisfactory results.

“Then this unit is…..?”

“Yes after the commercialization of New World, we’ve received information that those fellows have flocked towards that game. So a few months ago, we requested support from Global Exos and received a few test models. This is one of those.”

Now he knew why there was a unit in the police agency. But there was still a part which didn’t make sense.

“As far as I know, I heard that you need to create a user ID to access the game. And the ID must list the social security number and personal information….. If so, couldn’t you simply request the information from the company?”

“Ah my friend, we can but it is not that simple.”

Choi Deok-pil shook his head like he had a headache.

“You said that they must enter personal information to create an ID. But that’s in the old days, now they create an ID using retina scans. Personal information is more hidden than ever. So it has become much more challenging. But that is exactly the problem.”

“That’s the problem?”

“Don’t you know? Ever since companies have changed security measures to body data a few years ago, the human rights laws have made it incredible difficult to access that data.  Currently, the privacy-related data that is stored in the black boxes can’t be accessed unless it is related to terrorism at a national level. So the police has to work even harder to get that information.”

Choi Deok-pil scratched his head. His mind became complicated just thinking about it.

“But what will I be doing?”

“That’s simple. It shouldn’t be that different from actual investigation. Just look for the suspects or the guild based on the information that we give you. Once you’ve found the suspect then please approach and discover as much information as possible.  Their address, telephone number, information about the incident…… The game also has the ability to videotape such information. Once you record such information than the rest of the team will take care of it.”

“You want me to investigate in New World?”

“That’s right……isn’t that what we do?”

“But I only know how to beat people up.”

“That’s the reason why you’re suitable.”

“Yes?”  Lee Myung-ryong was bewildered and Choi Deok-pil explained with a grin.

“In fact, I’ve never tried it out so I don’t know. According to your predecessor, New World is different from traditional virtual games. The game is said to be not that different from reality.”

“Isn’t it still a virtual reality game?”

“That’s right. But New World has a different meaning. The user can utilize their previous knowledge and experience. It isn’t 100% of course, but the person with a developed physical ability will be more advantageous.  That’s why you were recommended. Although you’ll only have a little bit of time to learn the game, your physical abilities have been developed over many years.”

“What are you saying……?”

“Like I said I don’t know. It is something your predecessor said.  So just learn the game step by step and identify the suspect. Since we can’t check their personal information, you won’t know who is a suspect inside the game.

Choi Deok-pil handed him a thick stack and papers and continued.

“The problem is that all these people have been in the game for a long time and having a considerably high level. With the level difference in online games, even you would have a hard time if you met them. Your predecessor lived in the game for two months and didn’t spot even 1 suspect. So we thought of you who is a member of the SWAT team.”

Choi Deok-pil took a deep breath and tapped Lee Myung-ryong’s shoulder.

“However, we want you to play the game casually since investigations inside the game are a supplementary method. For now just casually get used to the game.”

“Hrmmm…..”

Lee Myung-ryong rubbed his chin and looked at the unit. Choi Deok-pil wore a subtle smile and asked.

“How is it? Will you try?”

“Well, it is better than fetching coffee.”

Choi Deok-pil nodded and tapped his shoulder.

“I thought so. The first time isn’t that difficult. Because your predecessor raised the character to level 150. The money earned is also quite high. Your predecessor even shed tears when he was forced to go to another game. The porridge has been cooked and given to you. The other employees have more things to do so I’ve been quite impatient. Frankly, this is a special employment.”

“Huh?”

Lee Myung-ryong’s expression should that he didn’t understand.

“Didn’t this game use raw data? But how can I inherit a character that someone else raised?”

“Yes, that is usually the case.”

Choi Deok-pil nodded.

“But like I said earlier, this is a Global Exos test unit. It is used by maintenance staff who check the system, so it is designed to connect with a common username and password. The username and password is written on this piece of paper.”

Choi Deok-pil handed him several more pieces of paper and left the office. Lee Myung-ryong and the unit were the only things left in the office. Lee Myung-ryong crossed his arms and stared at the unit.

“You’re the controller for New World?”

The work that he had to do felt strange. New World……Hyun-woo had raised his curiosity so he tried to play it once. However, he was also called back whenever he tried to enter the game room. He never thought that he would end up playing the game like this.

“Well, okay. It isn’t bad for a holiday.”

Lee Myung-ryong finally entered the unit. He emerged in a small town filled with users.

“Oh, is this really the game?”

The man looked around curiously. It was a small town, with houses scattered around and a few people visible. The scenery was also different. It was a quiet mountain village surrounded by forest.  It was a place for users to rest while travelling around New World. But the commonplace landscape seemed entirely new to the man.

‘This is a virtual reality game? The earth, wind, and smell…..everything feels real.’

His worn clothes and heavy bag proved that he wasn’t a novice in New World. However, he acted like he was accessing the virtual reality for the first time in the way he touched everything and moved his limbs. Yes, it was Lee Myung-ryong who logged in from the police department’s unit. The documents he received included the variety of materials left behind by his predecessor. But looking through documents was not his style. Wouldn’t a person who tried soybean paste understand it better than having it explained to them? Therefore Lee Myung-ryong shoved the documents into a corner before accessing New World. Lee-Myung-ryong’s reaction when logging into the game was similar to a normal person. Most novice users would marvel at the amazing technology of New World. Even with a dozen years of training his keen sense to the limit, he was still unable to distinguish the difference between reality and the game.

‘Huh……Hyun-woo really wasn’t joking when he was talking about the game. How did they manage something like this? I’m freely moving my limbs so am I really sitting in the unit?’

Lee Myung-ryong froze for a moment. He had entered the game but he didn’t know what to do. Then, a semi-transparent object flickered in the corner of his eyes. Character information window, bags, etc…..it was the icon to view the related information. In fact, most users set these icons as ‘hidden’ in order to maximize the realism and used commands to open them. However, Lee Myung-ryong’s predecessor set the icons for him. Luckily Lee Myung-ryong knew these icons even if he was an idiot with games.

‘I have to know what type of guy I am. This is?’

Lee Myung-ryong touched the icon of a person with his fingers. The character information window showing various numerical values opened. Usually the information of a user who first started the game was simple. However, Lee Myung-ryong’s character was level 150. The various additions and changes in the meantime had made the information window complicated. The only things he learnt was his name ‘Isyuram’ and that he was level 150.

“Isyuram…..the name is not bad.  It somehow seems strong.”

Although strength, agility and stamina were all common stats in RPGs, they were simply numbers to Lee Myung-ryong.  He didn’t know what was high or low.

‘Sheesh, I don’t know what any of this means. I’ll slowly examine it later…..’

Lee Myung-ryong clicked on the icon shaped like a bag. This time the bags opened and a huge number of items were shown. He also saw that he had 800 gold. Although the bags were filled with all kinds of items, he didn’t know what they were used for or why he had them.

‘800 gold? Is this a lot? But what are all these things? Bunch of Rapana leaves? Unicorn horns? Pearl sand? Why the hell am I carrying around things like these?’

Other users would’ve drooled if they saw the bag full of expensive items. But Lee Myung-ryong didn’t know the value of goods in New World and just saw it as trash.

‘Oh, I don’t know. Let’s do something. According to Hyun-woo, you can catch monsters in New World.  Will it be similar to a real battle? Okay, first let’s look for a monster. But where can I go to find a monster? I just ask someone.’

Lee Myung-ryong…..no, Isyuram closed the window. And then he roamed around the village for someone with information.  Then he saw an old man at the entrance of the village grabbing several people.

“You really can’t?”

“…..I’m sorry.”

“It should be quite quick with everybody’s skill.”

The old man begged with a pleading look in his eye. However, the people wearing leather and holding a sword shook their heads.

“We’re aware of that.”

“We’ve often fought that monster when we came here.”

“We’d love to help you if we have enough time…..”

“But we’ve been hastily summoned by the guild.”

“We’ll help you next time we drop by.”

“Hey, we have to hurry.” We’ll be late for the summons.”

“Okay, let’s leave.”

The warriors hastily left the village.

“Ah, even though they were the first warriors I met after several weeks….”

The old man muttered in a desperate voice.

At that time, Isyuram who had been watching the situation approached the old man.

“Did you mention a monster?”

“Huh? You look familiar but who are you?”

“Oh, I’m Lee Myung-ryong…..no, Asura. No, Isyuram? No, wait a minute.”

Isyuram still hadn’t adapted to the game and opened the information window again.

“Oh, yes I am Isyuram. I heard you mention something……there is a monster?”

The old man was confused about the names and just stared at Isyuram. But he just sighed and then nodded.

“I’m tired of those monsters. They came here several weeks ago and started threatening us and hunting our herds. Therefore it is dealing considerable damage to the village. But as you can see, not many adventurers come to this mountain village. Those were the first warriors I saw in a while and asked them to exterminate the monster. But as you saw, they were too busy and refused to talk to me. Now I don’t know what to do…..”

“Then this game really has monsters?”

“Are you making fun of me?”

The old man stared at Isyuram strangely.

“Shouldn’t you be experienced with monsters?”

“Anyway, there really is a monster?”

“Uh huh, but will you be enough? Yes, it’s a monster. So what do you want?”

Annoyance showed in the old man’s eyes. However, Isyuram ignored it and spoke quickly.

“Since this is a game then shouldn’t I deal with it for you?”

“What?”

The old man looked Isyuram up and down. And then he asked incredously.

“Were you serious just now?”

“Why wouldn’t I be?”

“Ah, no…..I honestly would love any help just now…..if you get rid of the monsters then I’ll be grateful….ah, right. Do you have any colleagues with you?”

“No, I don’t need any.”

“Eh? There is no one?”

“Just leave it to me. Where is it?”

“That hill over there is where they first appeared. If you dispose of 50 then I’ll be grateful…..”

A message window appeared in front of Isyuram after the old man finished speaking.

Gnoll extermination (Repeatable Quest)

You’ve met the old man in the unknown town who is in a predicament.

A group of monsters has appeared and is threatening the safety of the village.  If you kill 50 gnolls and collect their tokens then the old man will compensate you. But you shouldn’t expect a great reward since it is a small village. You can expect warm food, a bed and some silver.

<Difficulty level: D>

Would you like to accept the quest?

‘Oh, so this is a quest. It’s similar to the complaints that the police receive. Then the old man is not a real person. A NPC? He is created really well.’

Isyuram paid close attention to the old man. The old man looked at Isyuram suspiciously and his body trembled.

“W-why are you looking at me like that? I-I have a wife and a child. Such a strange hobby…..”

“It’s nothing. Then I’ll be going!”

“Eh? Hey, wait a minute!”

When Isyuram turned around, the old man was surprised and immediately shouted. However, Isyuram had already shot out of the town.

‘Huhuhu, I know enough. Hyun-woo has already told me how to complete a quest. Now, where are those monsters?’

Isyuram had often heard about New World through Hyun-woo. While he didn’t know everything, Isyuram understood enough. More realistic battles than reality! In addition, the practical techniques in reality can be applied as skills in the game. Hyun-woo was not the only one. Some of the members in his SWAT team also played New World. When they gathered, they exchanged information about how actual fighting techniques could be applied to New World.  Even though he heard those information, Isyuram hadn’t felt the attraction of New World yet. He possessed the old fashioned way of thinking that ‘the game=for children.’ Why would he want to fight with a character created by the computer?  Even if it was realistic, it couldn’t actually compare to real life. However, Isyuram underwent a 180 degree change once he was actually in New World.

‘The old man was just like a real person!’

After seeing the environment and the NPCS, he was looking forward to the battles! Since it was a game, wouldn’t the levels of the fights also increase?

‘Hmm, okay. There is nothing different about moving my body. No, it feels even better than reality. In this condition I shouldn’t have any problems killing the opponent. Huhuhu, I don’t have to stress about it. What kind of standards are the monsters in New World?’

Isyuram smirked and quickly climbed the hill.

“Kyaaaaak, a human!”

“Grrrrrr, he came up here alone to die.”

“Then I’ll kill him!”

“Kikikik, let’s eat the fresh meat to our heart’s content.”

Ugly voices were soon heard from the hill. The ugly voices continued as they stepped through the forest. Their faces resembled a huge dog while their mouths were filled with sharp fangs. Their appearance would be frightening if this was a dream. Normally people’s hearts would jump if it was the first time they saw such monsters. However, Isyuram just slightly raised his eyebrows.

“Oho, this is a monster? A dog…..these guys are actually quite shocking to see. They would look good served with boiled soup and soju…. It is possible to eat real food in New World, so can I possibly eat them?’

An unimaginable response! There weren’t many users who would look at a gnoll and think of dog soup. Instead of Isyuram flinching, the gnolls ended up jumping instead.

“Grrrrrrr. What the? What is this guy?”

“This guy…..is he actually a tremendous warrior?”

“Grrrrr, no look at him….that is…..”

“Isn’t it? Isn’t it?”

While they were busy talking, Isyuram rushed up to them.

“Okay, shall we begin?”

Isyuram said as a gnoll raised its arm. It was definitely a very threatening attack. But who was he? He was a former member of the national taekwondo team and the captain of the number 1 SWAT team, someone who fought against gangsters and criminals every day. He was the owner of a steel heart who wouldn’t blink an eye at that attack in reality. So Isyuram was convinced of his victory.

‘Those guys at the village earlier said that it wasn’t very hard. So these monsters are very weak.’

The warriors who had rejected the old man’s request seemed like children to him. With Isyuram’s eyes, he was able to grasp if someone was strong or not.  Even though it was in a game, their posture and gait wasn’t too different from reality. So he could sense their strength using such aspects.

‘If these monsters are easy for them than the difficulty is clear. These are my first enemies but aren’t they too weak? Well, when I return to the old man then I’ll search out stronger opponents.’

Figuring out the pattern of attack was so easy that Isyuram yawned.

Kuaaaak!

It approached closely and swung the axe.

‘Kukuku, this dog head tried such a simple attack.’

Isyuram laughed and quickly used some footwork to dodge the attack. Then he closed the gap to the enemy and…..wuduk!

‘Eh? Wuduk?’

Isyuram’s body suddenly stopped in the middle of his counterattack. Then his ankle collapsed and he tilted sideways. An information window then appeared in front of him.

Your action has gone beyond the limits of your strength and agility and sprained your ankle!

<For 30 minutes, your speed and reaction rate -30%>

It was a truly ridiculous information window.

“Eh? Ankle sprain? Ouch!”

What did it mean? Isyuram was able to run wearing a lead bag but now his ankle sprained from this little movement?

But he didn’t have time to be amazed. There was a red gauge visible on the lower left corner. But that was not the problem. Just like the message window said, his movement became incredibly slow. Although he could move 10 metres in his mind, he wasn’t even capable of moving 1 metre. In the end, Isyuram had to roll onto the ground to avoid the subsequent attacks.

“Dammit, why did my ankle sprain all of a sudden? Is it because I didn’t warm up before the fight?”

The same physical state in reality was also applied to New World…..that was what he thought, but Isyuram was still ignorant of the problem. And there was no room to worry.

“Huh, look at the ankle. My ankle sprained going against such insignificant dogs!”

If his movement was slowed then it would be better not to move. Isyuram took a light step and relaxed the muscles in his body. Then a gnoll rushed forward and swung a club. Isyuram rocked his body, avoided the attack and then transferred the power into a counterattack.

Bakak-!

There was a loud sound as flash and bone collided. The allocation of power, timing, posture……everything was perfect for a counterattack.

‘All right, it is perfect this time! Huhuhu, that is stunning!’

Isyuram had a look of satisfaction on his face.

Grrrrrrr!

Isyuram’s fist quickly took down a 2 metre tall figure! A blow to the temple turned the dog’s head 90 degrees.

You have no knowledge of Hand-to-Hand Combat so the unreasonable attack has broken your wrist!

<100 damage, for 30 minutes your attack power and attack speed is -50%>

You have no knowledge of Hand-to-Hand Combat and the movement has caused your spinal discs have slipped!

<100 damage, for 30 minutes your upper spinal disk movement is restricted>

“Huk, what, what the hell is this….!”

Isyuram couldn’t understand what was going on. It was also the same afterwards. Even with an ankle sprain, broken wrist and restricted spinal movements, Isyuram’s fighting spirit burned until the end. But after 13 more fractures, he became dog food within 2 minutes.

“What the hell is going on?”

After a while, Isyuram revived at the town’s quartermaster.

“Tsk tsk tsk, as expected.”

The old man standing at the entrance to the village clicked his tongue and muttered. Isyuram became very embarrassed and tried to explain.

“Old man, this time was a mistake.”

“You failed and now you want to try again? If you’re an experienced adventurer then you wouldn’t have any trouble with an opponent like that. As an adventurer you must have some experience. But an experienced warrior is an expert at swinging a sword. With a poor body like that, how can you even lift a sword?”

“Eh?”

Isyuram now looked at his body properly. Since his movements were normal, he thought his body was the same. He had spent years training his body and optimizing it for his techniques. However, this body was completely the opposite of his real body. Bony arms and legs stuck out from his leather clothes while his ribs were slightly sunken. Although it was a model-like body, Isyuram just thought that he looked malnourished.

“Huk, what is with this body?” Well, it is quite a decent body for a merchant…..”

“A merchant?”

Isyuram once again opened his information window. He hadn’t checked it properly before, but ‘merchant’ was written down as his profession next to his level. Isyuram had no way of knowing but merchants were users who carried around goods. It was a job that dealt with trade and contracts. So his contract related skills were higher than other merchants while his strength and stamina was lower. The old man couldn’t understand Isyuram and muttered.

“I thought your face was somewhat familiar and I finally remembered. Weren’t you the merchant trying to gain exclusive contracts with our village last week? But you’re acting like this is the first time. Did you bump your head and lose your memory?” That’s right, Lee Myung-ryong had taken over the character of Isyuram from his predecessor. He changed the profession to a merchant because it was easier to gather information trading then hunting monsters.

Since he was level 150, as a merchant he invested his stat points into wisdom, intelligence and luck. It was reasonably decent stats for a merchant. Then suddenly the owner of the body changed. And he tried to move the poor merchant like he had a superhuman body.  In other words, it was similar to a F-1 racing engine being installed into a truck.  So Isyuram’s body couldn’t keep up with Lee Myung-ryong and broke. It was the difference between reality and games…..

If Lee Myung-ryong started off at level 1 in the novice village then he would learn the knowledge naturally and be experienced in the movements. That was the reason why the novice village existed. However, he just took over a level 150 character with no experience.

“I’m thankful that you wanted to help but please stop.”

The old man said before turning away. Isyuram couldn’t speak and stood there dumbly. He had imagined New World like a playground. As a SWAT team member, he was experienced with all sorts of martial arts. When he went out on police business, he was the power of the ‘tyrannical authorities’ and would pull out the teeth of hooligans.  Of course, the police agency wasn’t a tyrannical force. No, really. However, there definitely were victims who received damage.

While most people considered New World a paradise where dreams come true, it was here that a martial artist was suffering frustration. He was not aware of what happened…..a disgraceful merchant? It was the reason why he couldn’t experience the allure of a real battle in New World? The captain of the number 1 SWAT team, feared by other gangsters and he couldn’t fight because of this body? Hyun-woo and the other team members……no, even a child was able to defeat a monster that he couldn’t damage?

“I can’t! No, there is no way!”

Isyuram clenched his fist and shouted. His pride had been damaged and he couldn’t possible accept it.

‘A poor body? A merchant? I am the captain of the number 1 SWAT team, Lee Myung-ryong. Am I going to run away scared because of this merchant body? Don’t be ridiculous. I’ll just create a proper body.’

Just like he helped train Ark’s body, Isyuram believed that hard work would strengthen a body.

‘There are some differences between a game and reality. If it’s too easy then it wouldn’t be a challenge. I will become the winner and beat this game! Who cares about investigation. I won’t leave this place until I can defeat those dogs!’

Isyuram ran to a corner of the town.

“First I have to create a body. 5,000 punches! 5,000 kicks!”

And he began to exercise like crazy.

“What, what the?”

“Who is that merchant?”

The NPCs flocked around and started gossiping. However, Isyuram ignored them and only concentrated on remodelling his body. No matter how many times he broke his ankle or wrist, Isyuram just clenched his teeth and continued hitting the pillar. But this was Isyuram’s mistake. Actually, only the commercial version of the unit for New World had the option to regulate the pain.  Normally the system determined the amount of impact the user received after being attacked by a monster.

But the red gauge on this unit was set to ‘reality.’ ‘Reality’ meant the pain was similar to reality and was the highest option. In other words, he really felt like his arm was broken.

“Jajaja, shoryuken!”

Wududuk, snap!

Ouch! It is a virtual reality game…… but it’s really painful like my arm actually broke.  But Hyun-woo and the other members also suffered this much. I won’t die from this much! Hiyah!”

His character was experiencing flesh and bone remodelling.

 

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60 thoughts on “Act 3: Lee Myung-ryong’s Humiliation

  1. Pingback: Ark volume 10 chapter 3 | Ark Machine Translations

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    1. blaze

      well, that’s what happen if u play a game on a high lvl character when you are just a newbie who doesnt know how to play

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  4. css

    More proof of this companies incompetence. It’s like, hey, let’s start a fire, then build the fireplace. Why in the world did they decide it’s a good idea to test a game like that? To develop the technology, maybe you need to be dangerously reckless, run the ‘best of the CIA interrogation’ playlist. But once that’s out of the way, either leave it off or build the safety first.

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    1. Faust Voncleave

      Dude, if it developed the technology even a few weeks faster then it was well worth. I’m sure they informed the testers about the risks and paid them handsomely.

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      1. css

        Laughable justification, barely plausible. If speed is the priority, and for some reason they aren’t going by a set release window, it is still faster leaving the feature out until later.

        Sorry let me elaborate. To develop the game, they need, say, 1000 units. The same amount of resources to develop the pain software would allow would naturally be less, for pay and CYA-type expenses.

        Either they develop it in parallel, or serially starting with game development, then redirecting resources to pain development.

        If they were aiming for a specific window of days, there is even less reason to believe the speed justification.

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    2. Fnors

      I think it’s the other way around. You need to develop a system that is 97%+ realistic and to do that correctly you need to have some pain, since it comes with moving as one wishes too.
      When you get perfect movement and sensation, you can start trying to remove the pain sensation while leaving everything else intact.

      So test machines had pain, then marketable machines had it removed as more research was done.

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      1. css

        Yes. Develop the technology. That is a prerequisite. Like I said, playing the CIA “not-torture” playlist. That’s not what unit is for. They said it was to do system testing. As in, the game system, not sandboxed proof of concepts, if the ability to connect means anything. It’s a really crappy way of debugging and development though. Mistaking development of the tech and the game is like mistaking a Model T with a Corvette. No, it’s like designing the space shuttle before the Wright brothers take flight. Either a sloppy oversight or bad planning.

        To try and put it better, when displaying a graphic in black and white, it’s a mistake to edit for color.

        Yeah, grand exaggerations.

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      2. Itsutsu kami

        Err this story is fiction. If you think too much about details it will onyl get in the way…. ah hell why am i being a kill joy? Sorry, continue.

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  5. icecreamhunter

    If I were him, I would start a new account so that I can use the most of my abilities. He could try to get all the belongings from the merchant to his new character or sell them with the merchant and give the gold to the new character.

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    1. zarethknyght

      He’s not a gamer or even versed in VRMMORPGs like you are just from reading this light novel. His actions are fairly realistic. Whether something happens from it or not, we’ll see.

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      1. FrozenFeet

        I agree, from how they built up his character/personality, he seems to be the type to do that, he didn’t use items or even check what his stats are for, he sees the game as another reality. So what do you do when you’re weak? You train, plus he’s too prideful to ask for help immediately.

        Liked by 2 people

    2. wezart

      NO I think his reactions are highly possible. It is his pride speaking. But tat the end I think the aftor was getting out of hand whit the pride-thingy

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  6. braiamp

    Thanks Turtle.

    I know you don’t correct spelling or grammar but there’s an untranslated sentence here:

    > “You failed and now you want to try again? If you’re an experienced adventurer then you wouldn’t have any trouble with an opponent like that. 그리고 자네는 그만한 경험을 가진 모험가임인 게 확실해. But an experienced warrior is an expert at swinging a sword. With a poor body like that, how can you even lift a sword?”

    Phrase could be:

    “You failed and now you want to try again? If you’re an experienced adventurer then you wouldn’t have any trouble with an opponent like that. And being an adventurer, you should have that kind of experience. But an experienced warrior is an expert at swinging a sword. With a poor body like that, how can you even lift a sword?”

    And maybe you have deleted some word in this sentence:

    > If Lee Myung-ryong then Hyun-woo would definitely notice.

    should be

    > If Lee Myung-ryong leave the police then Hyun-woo would definitely notice.

    Thanks again.

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  7. Greenfox

    That … is godly.

    Uhu? Bones break… naw just keep hitting.

    A skinny merchant hitting a wooden pillar to literally masochistic styleed selfhurting …. wow.
    NR1 S&M Member.

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  8. Unknown

    Thanks for the chapter. Hoho, I can see it now. They call Weed the God of War even in Royal Road and he achieved it with his Moonlight Scuplptor job. Lee Myung-ryong aka Isyuram going to Literally and Forcefully remodel his Boney Merchant body, then soon he will become a Top Class Legend in New World, he may even earned a Unique Battle Class Merchant.

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  9. snowflake

    Surprisingly enjoyable. I’m wondering if he will end up as one of the heroes. Thanks for the chapter.

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  10. Guy

    Dang, I would love to start reading about his progress like i would arks when he was a noobie, I hope they don’t make us wait long. The idea of a warrior merchant is intriguing!

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