Chapter 2) Easter Egg
March 14th, 2016.
People would never forget this day.
72 dungeons simultaneously appeared with no warning on this day. The dungeons were large enough to be seen with the naked eyes so it was natural that they would block the sky.
People were at a loss from the giant shadow. The scale was so unrivalled that they had no choice but to be overwhelmed.
There were a number of assumptions such as an alien’s house, the dwelling place of a god, a subterranean world, etc.
In the end, some brave people were unable to overcome their curiosity. And most people who entered didn’t come back.
The survivors who returned from the dungeon alive trembled as they mentioned the monsters. Some people gained a mental illness and others committed suicide.
Then an American man called John posted a video on YouTube. It was a video of inside the dungeon that John took with a mobile phone and it caused a great shock to the world.
The dungeon was filled with all types of creatures. They were monsters that didn’t exist in this world. Any living thing was their enemy! The human body was simply torn apart in front of them.
“Hwiyu~ Is this CG?”
“This video isn’t a composite image. There is also no CG.”
“The earth will perish in 2020. It is due to these monsters.”
The world was embroiled in unrest as unsanctioned information spread across every country. YouTube, SNS, blogs, personal broadcasting, newspapers etc. Every type of media spread the topic.
Doubts were raised as more days passed. Discord grew over time. After a lot of speculation, the United States Defense Minister gave an official announcement about the dungeon.
“There is a cave. A dungeon. A common place found in fantasy novels have emerged here. We mobilized state of the art equipment in order to observe the inside of the dungeon but failed. No matter how small it is, the creatures inside will attack. Outside the dungeon….there is an invisible barrier that will invalidate all attacks.”
A melting pot of tension. The story of the dungeons was a hot topic in 2016. Information about it started pouring in.
The Defense Minister drank water and continued.
“We have dispatched the special forces to search inside a dungeon. However, firearms don’t seem to work properly inside the dungeons. It is like the space is distorted as bullets won’t fly in the desired direction and bombs won’t explode. We were about to capture some weak creatures but there was intervention from a strong presence. The strike was so quick that it wasn’t visible! We were finally forced to retreat.”
All the reporters and people watching the video were surprised.
It had been several months since the dungeons appeared. Yet it was surprising that the United State’s first words mentioned retreat
More than anything, the fact that modern firearms didn’t work inside the dungeons caused a real shock. The creatures were invincible inside the dungeon.
“Then….is there nothing we can do?” Won’t it be a big deal if they emerge outside?”
A reporter raised their hands and asked a question.
The Defense Minister shook his head.
“The creatures are only tricky inside the dungeons. No matter how powerful they are, they can’t deal with modern weapons once they emerge outside.”
The weapons became useless inside the dungeons. They were able to obtain some data from the creatures after risking their lives. As a result, they concluded that they could kill the creatures outside the dungeon despite considerable damage.
Guns were sufficient against the weak creatures. In contrast, there was a higher probability of a bullet hitting an ally inside the dungeon. So they didn’t commit troops.
Another reporter asked with a puzzled expression.
“Then are we letting the risk stay?”
The Defense Minister gave a shallow smile.
“Have you heard about a Hero? In the east, they are known as brave people.”
“Is that word being spoken these days?”
“Yes, that’s right. They are the only ones that can face the creatures in the dungeon.”
Dungeons had appeared. However, it wasn’t just the dungeons.
Heroes also emerged.
In other words, they had awakened. They appeared at the same time as the dungeons.
They called themselves Heroes. Their physical state was outside the limit of normal humans.
In particular, their attacks were fatal to the creatures. The creatures that didn’t die from guns were easy to handle.
“More than anything else…the Core will also give aid. It can even be called a Philosopher’s Stone.”
There was an uproar among the reporters.
A Philosopher’s Stone could be called a ‘complete’ material.
That’s why it was strange that those words would emerge from the mouth of the Defense Minister.
But they were forced to close their mouths as the Defense Minister continued.
If they hunted a number of creatures then a Core would emerge. The Core was the size of a baby’s heart but it contained considerable energy. It looked like a burning stone. And the conflagration would continue for some time. It also produced other energy. It could also be called New Energy.
If the Core was sprayed on wounds, they would be healed without a trace and pouring a little bit into water could cure illnesses. It could also enhance virility or make the body younger.
This alone was worthy for it to be called a Philosopher’s Stone.
“That is ridiculous.”
Very few people were aware of this fact. But today it was revealed to the world.
At the same time, the reporters were puzzled. Why did he come forward with this information?
The United States would’ve been able to obtain an astronomical amount of money with this information.
But the United States thought differently. 72 dungeons existed. The secret would be exposed one day. They were determined to use it to take the initiative.
Especially with the number of Awakened slowly increasing. A secret society would continue to cause huge chaos. In fact, that was on everybody’s lips at the moment. Humans were an easy race to turn evil. They produced a lot of problems in society.
That was why the United States determined that they couldn’t hide their rotten parts. They revealed the secrets of the Core.
“We don’t discriminate against the Awakened from any area. We will treat everyone equally.”
The reason the United States did this was simple. It was in order to attract more Awakened!
At first they tried to destroy the dungeons but soon realized the astronomical value of the Cores. The value of the Core was incomparable to oil. Nothing in the world could compare to the Core.
There was a limited number of dungeons but the creatures were terrible. A lot of Awakened were needed to obtain the Cores.
In the near future. If they were successful in their domestication…in additional to solving the world’s energy problem, the human race might ‘evolve’ further.
The Heroes would explore the dungeons and dig up the truth. The Core at the end of the dungeon couldn’t be compared to anything. This was an opportunity for the human race to reach the truth. At least they thought so.
“But is the Core really a complete material?”
The reporters still couldn’t trust those words.
The Defense Minister laughed at this.
“We are willing to share the Core we have. Any country can make a formal request for it. They can check the purpose of the Core for themselves.”
The United States shared he Core immediately after the press conference ended. It didn’t take a long time to demonstrate the effect of the Core.
This became the Era of Heroes.
* * *
‘The end of the Beginner’s Protection Period is approaching.’
Immediately after breaking through the training room, I examined the internal situation of the dungeon using the Dungeon Core. Everything was empty except for the 1st floor but I still needed to determine the status.
‘I think the situation should be fine despite my neglect.’
I couldn’t manage the domestic affairs when stuck in the training room. Looking at the status of the 1st floor, it seemed like it would endure for another few months.
‘But I can’t neglect it.’
There was a need to raise the dungeon guards and make them stronger. In order to do this, I needed to go through each floor organically.
|[Entered Domestic Mode.]|
The Dungeon Core emitted a hologram.
It was a small sized model of the dungeon. There was a total of 31 floors and everything was empty except the 1st floor. In contrast, the 1st floor had countless small, blue dots.
Some red dots were visible at the entrance which meant humans had entered the dungeon.
‘32,144 Kobolds. 87,112 Goblins. 12,246 Earthworms. Meat Rats…around 400,000? That is too many. I need to reduce it.’
I needed to properly control the ecology of the dungeon. In particular, the meat rats were ferocious creatures that would attack all living things in the area due to hunger. They would even eat their own kin.
‘There isn’t a natural enemy. But the number can’t increase.’
If the meat rats were installed on the 1st floor then they would be the only creature remaining there. It was an unhealthy phenomenon.
I pondered for a moment before asking Yihi who was snoozing on my shoulder.
“What is a predator of the meat rats?”
“Huup! Yes, yes? Yihi wasn’t asleep!”
“Wipe up your saliva.”
Yihi wiped her drool with her hands.
“Hmm. The predator of the meat rats? Yihi knows this very well. Cats, snakes and weasels.”
A cat or weasel would be easily hunted by kobolds or goblins. I needed to take care of the physical relationships between different members of the ecosystem.
“What about snakes? I hope for cheaper ones.”
The creatures would also cost dungeon points. Especially when needing a considerable number of predators. I needed to release something that could suppress the meat rats.
“The cheapest Ale Snake costs 20 points.”
The Ale Snake was among the lowest grade of creatures. Instead, it could quickly adapt and assimilate into the surrounding environment. They were suitable rivals for the meat rats who had poor eyesight.
They were also suitable opponents for brave warriors who entered.
“How many should I release?”
“This is how Yihi sees it. Wouldn’t 1,000 solve the problem?”
That would cost 20,000 pt. It was the value of a magic item. However, it was a necessary investment to preserve the ecology of the 1st floor.
“I’ll buy 1,000 Ale Snakes.”
A message window came up at the same time.
|[1,000 Ale Snakes have been purchased for 20,000 pt.]
[Specify a location to release within the dungeon.]
“Randomly on the 1st floor.”
|[1, 000 Ale Snakes have been randomly placed.]|
As soon as the message window disappeared, the number of blue dots on the hologram increased.
Purchasing large quantities of low grade creatures was very efficient. Their intelligence was too low and they wouldn’t follow the Dungeon Master’s command. They would just proliferate and die.
This investment was used to defend the dungeon from warriors. The 1st floor had been tidied up. Now it was time for the rest of the floors.
‘I need to adjust the difficulty of the 4th floor to make it slightly trickier. This will allow the sense of accomplishment when getting stronger. Adventures, exploration…releasing a few magic goods will release more motivation to become stronger.’
I intended to help them on various fronts.
A plan to cultivate the Heroes! This was one of several plans I set up.
The first step would be released right now.
I tapped my forehead and started to worry about the positioning of the creatures. The difficulty couldn’t climb too rapidly. The stairs needed to be placed step by step in order to be a benefit.
If the difficult increased too suddenly then the Heroes might not climb the dungeon or would wait until they became stronger.
This would take too much time. In addition, I couldn’t get the points if the creatures were too strong. The points invested could be reclaimed.
‘I will mix a handful of Orcs on the 2nd floor. Their breeding rate means I don’t need a lot of them. A few kobold and goblin leaders on the 3rd floor….’
The leaders of the various creatures were more organized. I should be choosy. The leaders were much better than the others in their species. It was necessary to use points to buy them for complex tasks.
‘100,000 points will fly away in an instant.’
I bought them in bulk so all the points seemed to evaporate in an instant. I had 240,722 pt so I needed to save it as much as possible.
‘The Demon World auction is held in 4 months. I need to buy things from there. It will be good to have more points.’
The Demon World held an auction once a year. The auction was held in the name of the Death Bringer. Precious items not sold in stores could be purchased at the auction.
240,000 points was insufficient for what I wanted to buy. At least 1 million points would be good.
‘In particular, purchasing a half-dragon is necessary.’
Slaves were available at the Demon World’s auction. Creatures purchased at the auction could be imported into the dungeon. Sometimes the Guardian of the Dungeon Core would come out.
The Dungeon Core was the most central and important thing in the dungeon. Of course an outstanding Guardian was required to defend it.
A half-dragon had the blood of a dragon running through it!
He was one of the guardians of a Grand Duke. He was renowned in his previous life as a demonic lancer who used a demonic spear. He was ranked in the top 10 of demon creatures. His strength could be felt through the skin.
Krasra was one that especially killed humans brutally. He poured his boundless hatred towards humans. Cruel demons would watch him with eyes filled with admiration. He wielded a spear and took the lives of countless brave humans.
That guy would be emerging in this auction. I couldn’t remember the winning price but it was considerable. 240,000 points was probably not good enough.
‘A creature that is measured among the strong.’
If I could get my hands on Krasra then I could get the 1st ranking. Even if I had to use all the points in my hand. He was violent but all slaves had marks on them that wouldn’t allow them to betray their masters. A Guardian of a Dungeon Core would get plenty of exercise.
‘I wish I can earn more points….’
I could get points if the creatures in the dungeon killed the heroes. But this was still the early days. Killing the weak warriors would only give a few points.
Doesn’t that mean I have to kill a lot of them? It would cause ridicule if I asked that question. I needed to wait for the golden goose to lay its egg.
‘Can I achieve something right now?’
Accomplishing a significant achievement could gain points.
Things like combining a unique skill combination for the first time or clearing out the training room. In addition, I needed to trade with some demons but the 4 Grand Dukes are so hostile that demons won’t want to do business with me.
‘Beginner’s Protection Period….hrmm. Something like wiping out all the monsters on the 1st floor might emerge.
I never heard stories about things obtained from the Beginner’s Protection Period. This was a busy time where demons were adapting. But I could still gain achievements.
Now my skills hadn’t died. My bad lucks means something like a Black Warrior or Dark Knight might be summoned.
Right now my skills were high ranking among the demons. The effect of the performance and title from the training room was enough to make me even with a Duke. Of course, they would become stronger as time passed but I had the upper hand for now.
‘I might not necessarily be first.’
The result at the beginning might not carry through. However, first time achievements were valuable. It would give benefits.
Dukes and Grand Dukes were in a different position and didn’t need to think about their 1st floor being wiped out. Their capacity at the starting point was different from others. Of course, they could easily wipe out the randomly summoned monsters.
If they didn’t like adventures then there would be no need to leave and other demons couldn’t touch them.
‘I need to do this in 15 days.’
There was no time left. The Beginner’s Protection Period only lasted for 15 more days.
I made the decision to exit Domestic Mode and moved to the 1st floor of the dungeon.
* * *
He was a ‘Starter’ who awakened at the same time that the dungeons appeared.
South Korea had 5 famous Starters. One of them was Kim Yong-woo.
Of course, each of the Awakened were different from the others. He settled on a dungeon invasion strategy where he could quickly build up ‘wealth.’ Hunting for the Cores that had astronomical value.
He created a guild called Heaven’s Will. The other four Starters also operated their own guilds but came second to Heaven’s Will.
The inner circle of the guild could make use of the Core. There were those with the jobs of blacksmiths or enchanters. They made weapons for easier dungeon hunting. They had sold weapons to other Awakened and already accumulated assets worth billions of won.
‘Life has reversed.’
He had only been awakened for 7 months. His previous life consisted of newspaper delivery, milk delivery and construction work. Now he was so wealthy, his guild owned a building in Gangnam.
‘Yong-woo ah, life is herbal medicine. Herbal. It is like a reversal on the 9th inning with 2 outs, kukuku…’
He experienced luxurious days he never dreamt about since awakening.
Kim Yong-woo. He was one of the chosen characters.
Heaven’s Will was named because he believed he was selected by the heavens. So what if there were a thousand orphans? What was the big deal with college graduates?
There were many in South Korea with money. He didn’t know it before but South Korea was a really good place to live when you have money. If you didn’t have money. You wouldn’t become anything.
Every day he would ignore the people now under his feet. Swimming in private pools in the morning and hot nights spent with models. Every day was like that. Previously he wanted to die dozens of times a day.
Now he was having fun on a daily basis. A laugh emerged from his mouth.
Was this a difference in perception? A place that made people? Like a butterfly evolving from a caterpillar, he was a completely different existence.
He even thought of the other Awakened as insignificant. He truly believed that the heavens selected him. In South Korea, he was the king.
But he was currently inside a dungeon. This place was in South Korea but it wasn’t South Korea.
He could make tons of money from the creatures in the dungeon.
Kim Yong-woo frowned at the wall. Blood was flowing down his thigh. His coat was ripped. The ripped cloth was tied tightly around his thigh.
It would be nice if he had a potion created from a Core but right now he had nothing. He also had no weapons because he ran away and abandoned his colleagues.
‘Those dogs. Stupid assholes.’
All 12 members of the team except for himself had died. He didn’t care that he was the only one alive.
No, the real problem was the monster that attacked them.
Rumours had drifted among the Awakened. Stories of monsters in the dungeons with different standards. It was impossible to come back alive after encountering those monsters.
Kim Yong-woo had laughed at them. He had entered dungeons dozens of times. He saw the same midget creatures every time. He was also confident in his abilities.
He raised his stats more eagerly than anyone else. Even his sleeping time was reduced as he devoted himself.
A large monster coming out. He never thought that way. Yet….today, the creatures had brought a monster. It was a situation where they aggroed it.
Kim Yong-woo’s confidence was shattered. The 12 team members were torn apart like paper.
Just visualizing it caused him to gasp quickly. This wasn’t a rumour inflated delusion. It was the real thing. It wasn’t over-rated but underestimated.
He was like a beggar. Wasn’t keeping his life like winning the lottery?
However, the possibility of that was low. He ran away without looking back but he ended up heading deeper into the dungeon. In a sense, it was like there was still a stranglehold around his neck.
‘I-I was selected. Heaven’s choice!’
Kim Yong-woo gritted his teeth together. And shuddered.
He was selected so he couldn’t die. That’s right. This was an ordeal from the heavens. The heavens had placed trials for humans to defeat. It was impossible that he wouldn’t pass the trials.
At the same time, his body became paralysed from fear. Kim Yong-woo slowly turned his head.
Saliva was dripping down. It had an appearance similar to a human but it wasn’t a human. Kim Yong-woo watched saliva drip down from the mouth of the monster dressed in black armour.
‘This is a trial. So this is an illusion. No, I’m still dreaming!’
However, the reality hadn’t changed. The humanoid monster in the armour was still there. It had fangs and nails sharp enough to pierce through skin.
A monster outside the normal standards. A monster that wiped out the team. He never thought there would be two of them.
Kim Yong-woo sensed his own death the moment he made eye contact with the creature.
The creature approached. Kim Yong-woo closed his eyes.
The creature stopped a few steps from him. Then it didn’t move for a while.
Kim Yong-woo opened his shut eyes.
“Dark Warriors…they are a bother.”
At the same time, he saw a man standing on the other side of the creature. He was good looking compared to the creature. A cold atmosphere could be felt from him.
But he didn’t seem as ferocious as the creature. He also had a sword at the waist. Nevertheless, he had a leisurely air around him.
There was a reason why the creature wasn’t jumping at the man.
The man glanced at Kim Yong-woo.
“A guest has come?”
“Ah, no…no, I….”
Kim Yong-woo spoke incoherent gibberish. It was different from his previous cursing attitude. He instinctively felt like begging.
The man said nothing. He just stared at Kim Yong-woo with a ‘hrmm’ expression.
What did he mean by immature? But Kim Yong-woo didn’t ask any questions. There was no possibility of asking. He felt like the man viewed him as food, just like the monster.
And he was ignored.
The monster began to move gradually. Then the man pulled out his sword.
Kim Yong-woo’s eyes became as large as a lantern. Heroes with the blacksmith profession. They were able to use a Core to smelt a sword. The Core and iron was mixed together and a very powerful sword was born. The Core would give off a smell.
It was the scent of magic but Heroes with a strong affinity could smell it. Kim Yong-woo was an Awakened that could smell the scent of magic.
And the black sword was giving off a very intense smell.
‘How can a Core smell like this? Is there a blacksmith that can refine the Core to that extent?’
There wasn’t anything within his knowledge. He heard it was only possible with a rare grade skill. There was a rumour that an Awakened in China had a skill of that rating.
But that was an attack related skill. There was no one with a rare secondary skill in smelting. Kim Yong-woo had gathered a considerable amount of information on each Awakened.
At that time, the battle began.
The man attacked the creature with his sword. Oh my god. The sword sliced through previously impervious skin! But the attacks did not stop there.
Kang! Kang! Kakang!
Kim Yong-woo didn’t even think of fleeing as he swallowed his saliva. The man’s movement was more than he could imagine. His eyes couldn’t see it properly.
However, it was the same for the creature. It’s head was targeted and it couldn’t retreat. Only once. It felt like one attack would cause the creature to lose its head.
‘The story has changed?’
Creatures with intelligence? Once again, there was no doubt about such a thing. But that didn’t explain the man fighting the creature now.
Kim Yong-woo felt a bigger shock than when he was Awakened. It felt like he was being eaten by rough waves.
He thought he was an elephant. Other humans were regarded as ants. Sometimes he would send curses to the ants. They might become heated up but their level wasn’t enough to fight him. An ant couldn’t afford to anger an elephant.
But…Kim Yong-woo was like an ant in that man’s eyes. If he was truly a chosen person then that man wouldn’t be in the same bracket.
The tower that was supporting the man called Kim Yong-woo started to collapse.
At that moment, the creature’s right arm was cut off. The arm that was harder than steel was severed.
The creature fell down on one knee. The man didn’t hold back. He instantly placed his sword at the creature’s neck.
The creature’s head rolled towards Kim Yong-woo.
Kim Yong-woo stared blankly at it with a shocked face and tried to retreat. But there was a wall behind him. There was no hole to fall back to.
The creature that had been his foe had been alive just moments ago. Kim Yong-woo was so frightened that he probably wouldn’t have notice if he wet his pants. The death of the creature just increased his fear of dying.
He sneaked a glance at the man. A pale face. His spirit couldn’t calm down.
He had to admit it. The man was an elephant. And he was considered an ant. He would die if stepped on. An elephant wouldn’t feel remorse for killing an ant.
Kim Yong-woo urgently tried to wake up his body after having that thought. He bowed with his forehead to the ground.
The man’s eyes turned towards Kim Yong-woo.
“Now you can safely escape from the dungeon.”
Kim Yong-woo’s body trembled and he felt like crying.
“Y-you will really spare me?”
“Do you want me to kill you or something?”
“Do you need money or….”
“It would be better if I kill you right now.”
Kung! Kim Yong-woo bowed his head again.
The man clicked his tongue.
“Go before I change my mind. 3 seconds. 3, 2….”
Kim Yong-woo greatly humbled himself on the spot. Then he ran towards the entrance of the dungeon without looking back.
The man gazed after him for a while with a hungry expression.
* * *
|[Unbelievable achievement! All the monsters summoned for the protection of the beginners have been struck down!]
[100,000pt will be paid.]
The end of a 15 day journey.
I managed to complete it minutes before the Beginner’s Protection Period would end.
‘It was almost too late.’
I shook my head as I checked the remaining time. There was only 3 minutes left. This time I was even forced to use my blood.
‘It is unfortunate that I am not the first.’
Sweat was flowing down my forehead. I wanted it but I hadn’t expected to be the first one.
‘100,000 points is still a decent performance.’
The first person who achieved it probably got 150,000~200,000 points so I regretted being a bit late. I cleaned it up neatly.
But 100,000 points wasn’t a small number. If the achievement window wasn’t displayed then someone else had received it.
‘Achievements not open to the public…’
Achievements didn’t exist indefinitely. The vast majority would disappear after being received 5 times. Therefore most demons didn’t disclose it unless to their faction.
Humans or solo players wouldn’t know about these achievements. That’s why killing the creatures randomly produced during the Beginner’s Protection Period was half a guess.
But I knew the approximate principle achievements. There was a high possibility I could get the related rewards.
3 minutes later, a message window flashed.
|[The Beginner’s Protection Period is over!]
[The total results of the 8 months.]
[Four achievements have been earned. The achievements gives a grand total of 1,250 points!!]
[Class 3 Easter Egg has been opened.]
At first I was baffled by the phrase. Shouldn’t the normal phrases about the Beginner’s Protection Period appear?
Yet the two lines below that were unfamiliar. Furthermore, the Easter Egg.
I never heard of such a thing. I saw it for the first time. It was at that moment.
|[‘Treasure of the Shadow Emperor’ has been opened.
In the Mado Era, magic had developed enough for dragon breeding. The Shadow Emperor was the worst and greediest tyrant of the Mado Empire. He was acknowledge as a god by the humans and his vast legacy has been sleeping for thousands of years.]
|[Rewards list has been updated. You can select only one reward.]
[Atasha’s Sword (Epic), Strength Potion (Medium), King Ma-ryong’s Horn, Homunculus, Cruel Army Commander….]
|[Warning! The heart of the Hell Monarch sleeping among the treasure has awakened!]
[Warning! The Hell Monarch is trying to invade your soul!]
‘Kakaka! Stupid gods! I waited for this point. I will be resurrected. Quietly in this flesh….?! W-wait a minute, this is? This is the body of a mere demon! Kuaaak!’
|[An unknown soul has destroyed the Hell Monarch.]
[The Heart of the Hell Monarch has arrived safely.]
[Reward selection has been completed.]
I grabbed the heart pouring red blood and collapsed to the ground. And my body started shaking like I had the chills. The heart disappeared into my body.
Numerous amounts of blood poured out of my mouth. Following that, blood flowed out of other pores include my nose and eyes. The feeling of blood draining out of my body!
My spirit couldn’t endure it.
It was like all the pain I’ve suffered in my life had combined right now. My body twitched like an earthworm. But I never let go of a thin lifeline.
This occurred too fast to prepare for. The pain was only growing stronger. A shallow moan emerged from my mouth.
It wasn’t long before I lost consciousness.
An unknown amount of time passed.
I sighed heavily on the spot. The blood had been washed clean. The pain had disappeared like a lie. It felt like just a dream.
I would’ve dismissed it as a dream except for Yihi staring at me with anxious eyes.
“Master! Are you okay?”
“Did I fall down?”
“It has been 3 days. Yihi thought Master was dying. Sniffle! Foolish Master. Sea squirt, sea cucumber, sea anemone…..”
Yihi hit me in the side with a teary face and runny nose. But I had no time to take care of Yihi.
I shook my dizzy head and thought about the situation before I lost consciousness.
‘Class 3 Easter Egg. Heart of the Hell Monarch.’
I was looking the rewards list when the Heart of the Hell Monarch had appeared out of nowhere. It appeared and forcefully transplanted itself into my body.
But the soul of the Hell Monarch had been extinguished for some reason. The only thing left behind was shuddering levels of pain.
‘What happened to my body?’
But now my body was light. It couldn’t be compared to before. I moved my body through multiple actions.
Something might’ve changed to update my status window. I stopped my movements and opened the status window.
|Occupation||Demon Earl (Dungeon Master)||Title||Indomitable Warrior (Ex U, all stats +2)|
|Strength||77 (+2)||Intelligence||63 (+2)|
|Agility||73 (+2)||Stamina||80 (+2)|
|Potential: (375 +10/500)
Uniqueness: Heart of the Hell Monarch has been transplanted (Full strength hasn’t been fully opened).
Skill: Skill Combination (R), Mind’s Eye (U)
|[Before and After Comparison]
Strength 78 Intelligence 50 Agility 74 Stamina 82 Magic 64 Potential (338+10/500)
Strength 79 Intelligence 65 Agility 75 Stamina 82 Magic 84 Potential (375+10/500)
A sound emerged. I was surprised at the extent of the situation.
My Magic and Intelligence had risen significantly. 15 Intelligence, 20 Magic…I never would’ve believed it if I hadn’t seen it directly. And there was still room to rise.
If Intelligence was high then my speed at learning things would rise. Naturally this meant that skill proficiency would also rise quickly. I could resist more statuses and skills.
Magic increased the destructive power of skills. No matter how good a skill was learnt, it was no use with low magic. In addition, there was a close relationship with dominance. My charisma?
Those two stats were inherently low for me. The stats were good but they weren’t easy to raise. However, that persistent problem was solved to some extent with the Heart of the Hell Monarch. I’m grateful that I only need to raise Intelligence a little more.
‘An unexpected gift.’
It was different if I lost control of my body but I had fully accepted the heart. There were many unknown things about the world and this situation fit with it.
I gave a smile.
‘The condition to open it is clearing several achievements in the Beginner’s Protection Period….’
The score seen earlier was the grade based on the achievements. And the Heart of the Hell Monarch popping up from the Easter Egg was unexpected. A warning message had popped out twice.
And there was a reason I was convinced of it.
‘Compared to ones shown on the rewards list, the Heart of the Hell Monarch is trash. Is this really a reward of the 3rd degree?’
The Heart of the Hell Monarch was completely different from the epic Atasha’s Sword and King Ma-ryong’s Horn. I didn’t believe that it would be the level 3 compensation.
‘Either the Heart of the Hell Monarch is a mistake or it has created a loophole in the system….’
I stiffened and my anxiety increased.
‘Don’t tell me I’m on an unexpected road?’
The transplant was already completed. If I tried to remove it then I would surely die. I believe that the Heart of the Hell Monarch intercepted the system. Doesn’t that mean I had to accept the side effects?
‘At any rate, it feels good.’
It was somewhat confusing but this was an opportunity to become stronger in the future. The unexpected harvest made me feel good.
Yihi blinked her eyes with confusion at the smile.
* * *
The incident was settled after 3 days. I modified my plans for the future while reinforcing the dungeon. It needed to be re-established in accordance with my level.
|[Points Remaining: 324,579]|
‘I didn’t earn any more points.
I frowned when checking the points. When I last checked, I had 240, 722 points. After adding 100,000 points, I had only earned 857 more points.
‘The level of the humans are still too low.’
I have no choice but to work for more achievements. The only way to quickly earn points was with achievements.
The Heroes needed to be safely raised in the dungeon. The goose that would lay a golden egg was still young.
‘The human I saw a few days ago didn’t have bad potential for a human.’
I had seen a human a few days ago. The name was Kim Yong-woo? He was scared and looked clumsy but the potential wasn’t bad. There was enough growth potential.
I used Mind’s Eye to gaze at his status window.
|Name: Kim Yong-woo|
Uniqueness: ‘Heaven’s Will’ Guild Master
Skill: Basic Swordsmanship (N)
This potential was strong among humans. If he grew up quite a bit then he would be able to hunt creatures alone. My memory couldn’t recall a human with that name. There was no uniqueness but his potential was enough.
‘Heaven’s Will. I’ve also heard of it.’
I placed my hand on my jaw and pondered. My memory wasn’t bad but it wasn’t superior Of course, I couldn’t remember everything from my past life. But the name Heaven’s Will was familiar so I searched through my memory.
I contemplated for a while before nodding.
My dungeon was in the territory between Korea and China. It was perched on the Bukhan Mountain.
The dungeon wasn’t resting on top of the Bukhan Mountain. It was floating in the air. An area of 21 km2, height of 4733m….? In fact, it was more than double that size but that was the extent visible to human eyes.
Anyway, Heaven’s Will was one of Korea’s top 5 guilds. Their fame was limited to Korea because they hardly ever hit the dungeons around the world.
Even so, I remember meeting the Guild Master of Heaven’s Will. The most famous magician in the world, the ‘Lightning Queen’ was among the 10 strongest humans. Low and medium ranked demons were unable to deal with her.
The Lightning Queen had quite a number of specific enemies. There was a thrill when lightning thousands of metres large would strike the ground.
In addition to the lightning, she had a strong army behind her. Riding the lightning was dangerous. I had seen her from a distance when she was fighting 12 people in a rage. I remember that Heaven’s Will contained powerful warriors.
‘The guild master has changed?’
Kim Yong-woo’s uniqueness showed that he was the guild master. Perhaps there was an incident that caused the guild master to be replaced.
‘There is nothing left in this dungeon.’
The Beginner’s Protection Period was over. The work in this dungeon was roughly finished.
‘The time has come to leave for the human world.’
I don’t have the slightest intention of being stuck in this dungeon. Unlike my previous life, I don’t think I will become strong from staying among the demons. I will mix among humans.
The reason for doing this…because of the 4 Grand Dukes.
They had insanely high pride. A strong belief in their own strength. It would be chaos if they mingled with humans and they would never tolerate such a thing. One assassination attempt could cause a war that would last 10,000 years.
In fact, they were impervious to assassination.
Apart from me, all the 71 other demons belonged to the faction of one of the Grand Dukes. So I couldn’t go against the Grand Dukes. If they shook things up then Earth would be eliminated in 10 years.
The problem was that the Heroes became stronger and placed strong pressure on the demons over time. The demons were divided into 4 factions but the humans were united. As a result, many demons were destroyed.
But I was an existence that rose from the bottom. I directly killed an Earl and took his spot. In other words, I was an irregular case. I had no restraints.
‘Now is the perfect time.’
My face was known in my previous life. I couldn’t try something like this. But this time was different. The humans hadn’t seen me as a Dungeon Master.
‘I am a Hero.’
A demonic hero?
It was ridiculous but it wasn’t a joke.
A Hero had high potential and could quickly build name recognition. I could also hit dungeons belonging to other demons. I would fly from behind or the front to augment my skills in the dungeon.
It was the perfect plan where the borrowed knife did the killing.
South Korea had many excellent Heroes. There were Heroes of many levels in this world of cramped land masses. The name of the famous Heroes were engraved in my head.
After determining a plan, a location rose in my head.
Now it was time to go out into the real world.
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