SPACE 2. In Another Time
Ark scratched his head.
“Here….I mean….who are you?”
Ark looked at the man in front of him with confusion. He had overcome some hopeless circumstances and was about to look for loot when the man jumped in. He hugged Ark and spat out saliva while clamouring away.
“Wuhahaha! Hyung-nim, you’re safe! Well, I always believed in you! Has it been one or two days since I saw Hyung-nim? I never doubted that Hyung-nim would pass!”
But Ark couldn’t help asking.
“Who are you?”
This was the first time he saw that person. The man was a huge 2 metres tall with black skin. Ark didn’t know anyone who looked like that. He was also wearing armour made of crystals and carrying a shield larger than his body. He had no memory of this guy so he didn’t understand how they could have a close brother like relationship. The man just laughed and spoke while grabbing Ark’s hand.
“Hey, Hyung-nim is making such a silly joke…..”
“I’m not joking?”
“Hehehe, please stop. Does it make sense that Hyung-nim doesn’t recognize me? It has been 10 years since I left home with Hyung-nim so if you don’t recognize Basak then you must have dementia.”
It had been 10 seconds since they’ve met, not 10 years.
‘What is this bastard? No matter how I look, he isn’t a user….is he crazy? A crazy NPC? Ha, it really is all over the place. First invisible people and now a crazy NPC has appeared? Is this the influence of the bug? Why did he have to deal with a crazy NPC after falling into a black hole? No, where on earth is this place? Is this space really a bug?’
When he was within the darkness, Ark was 100% convinced that this was a bugged space. That’s because Ark had never experienced something like this. But after taking care of the mummy, the space started to shake and a wall opened.
Currently Ark’s main role in New World was to take care of bugs. Humans couldn’t create a perfect game so naturally there would be errors. There were times when New World was updated and even more errors were caused. Over the past year, Ark had used the power of the master code to fix the bugs.
Ark was suddenly in the darkness so he thought the situation was due to a bug. It reminded him of a bug and he couldn’t think of any other possibilities.
‘But this distortion doesn’t seem like a bug even more.’
Ark exiting the darkness, Ark realized he was in a cave on a stone mountain. And a desert stretched out endlessly in front of him. Everywhere was just a bleak landscape of sand.
‘Did I really come to this place due to a bug? Then the black hole? The Silver Star? And the other team members? I need an explanation if it isn’t a bug!’
Ark was in large state of confusion. He couldn’t blindly think that the situation was due to a bug anymore.
‘I don’t know what is going on. If this isn’t due to a bug then the situation has become more serious. Apart from Slayer and Kaya’s group, the way to restore Tori, Ellain and the Silver Star will be lost. Before making a rash decision and filing a bug report, I should try to find out their whereabouts.’
Just as Ark was thinking this.
Basak saw Ark’s expression and asked.
“What are you thinking about? Did you perhaps hit your head?”
“No, that’s not it…..”
His head hurt because of this crazy NPC. However, even a mad NPC might be helpful. Ark considered the atmosphere before talking to Basak.
“I’m fine. By the way, have you seen any other people around here?”
“Other people? You know that there is only Teacher-nim and I here.”
“Well, you passed in the end.”
Then another voice was heard from close by. Ark thought that Basak was the only one here so he flinched at the unexpected voice and turned his head. And his eyes widened with shock. Next to the 2 metre tall Basak- he might’ve even been there from the beginning, was an old man not even half the size. The old man’s green skin had so many wrinkles that it was difficult to guess the age. His huge eyes that occupied half his face could be seen when the old man looked up at Ark!
That was the only name he could think about. Yoda stroked his sparse beard and continued talking.
“Huhuhu, I never had any doubts. My eyes didn’t lie when I saw the makings of a great warrior in you. I understood the moment I saw you at Minahem Shrine.”
‘….Isn’t this just like Yoda?’
If his name was also Yoda then it would be a complete hit. It was great even if he wasn’t Yoda.
“And you passed through the trial wonderfully just now. You didn’t tell me beforehand but you passed the Cave of Darkness. This is the place where generations of Elim successors have trained. By passing this trial, it is evidence that you have the quality of an Elim.”
Yoda continued. No, Tot continued talking as Ark’s eyes flashed.
“Eh, the Elim?”
“That’s right. Elim. The title of the strongest warrior that represents the Murat!”
“T-the Murat? Then the both of you are Murat?”
“It has been 10 years since I took you in and you’re talking such nonsense. Did your brain disappear after wandering in the darkness for several days? Then where do you think this is? Now, take a look. The 3 suns Ra, Shu and Tefnut that shines on and protect this great land! This is the home of the Murat, Muratio Star! Why on earth are you asking if we’re the Murat?”
Tot pointed towards the 3 suns floating in the sky and said.
Irina fell into a state of panic in the middle of the universe. A black hole that swallowed up the stars was in front of her. Organization X, their underground base and planet exploded which a dark hole. The black hole was worthy of being called a space devil.
Fortunately Hawk had discovered the explosion beforehand and the team members were able to escape from the black hole’s sphere of influence. But not all the teams were successful in escaping. 3 ships, no the other 2 spaceships were completely unrelated.
The only one important to her was the Silver Star. And Ark was inside that ship.
“Ark-nim, please answer! Ark-nim!”
“It won’t work. Even the radio waves have been caught.”
“Sergeant Camel, turn the ship! It isn’t possible to just leave them there!”
“It is impossible! It is already too late!”
“The Silver Star is just thousands of kilometres away!”
“That is true Ensign-nim. But don’t you know? No matter how small, that is still a black hole! The sphere of influence is becoming bigger so if how engine output slows even for a moment then we will be sucked in! Much less returning to it. It would just be suicide!”
“Ark-nim wouldn’t want you to behave like this.”
Camel spoke firmly to Irina. Then Hajin who was steering the ship turned around with a dark look and said.
“There is no hull response. The spaceships belonging to Hawk, Ark and Ferguson. The reaction of the three spaceships completely disappeared after being sucked into the black hole. It is regrettable but….it is over.”
Irina flopped down into the captain’s seat like a doll with its string broken. She wasn’t the only one. The same expression could be seen on the faces of 10 people on the screens in front of her. The black hole was a danger zone where not even light could escape once captured! Now the shocking scene of Hawk, Ark and Ferguson’s spaceships being sucked into the black hole had been seen in front of their eyes.
“They were drawn in by the black hole!”
“W-what should we do? Go in and rescue them?”
“Are you crazy? Do you think that is a manhole in front of you? It is a black hole, a black hole! Don’t you know about black holes? It is the end once you fall in. It is a place that is impossible to escape!”
“Then what will happen to them? Did they die?”
“It is still unknown……”
“They won’t be able to leave even if they’re alive.”
“So what should we do?”
There was silence after hearing those words. And naturally their gazes were concentrated on one person. It was Irina who was staring at the black hole with a dumb struck expression.
Now that he was drawn into the black hole, their leader Hawk couldn’t be expected to return. So they had no choice but to turn to her for leadership since she had the backing of the galactic federation.
Camel saw the members’ eyes on Irina and spoke.
Fortunately, Irina managed to find some degree of calmness at this time. The scene of her partner being sucked into the black hole was shocking and Ark would receive considerable damage but it wasn’t the worst possible situation.
“The good part is that Hawk was drawn into the black hole as well. If Ark-nim had been drawn in by himself then Hawk would probably try to expel him from the investigation team again. But if even Hawk was sucked in then he can’t expel Ark-nim.’
He could avoid the worst case situation of losing his ship and being expelled from the team.
‘Then what we need to do is simple. Hawk and Ark-nim registered at the Fairy on Turan. If Hawk and Ark died then they should revive in a number of days. So we just need to go back to Turan and rest while waiting for them.’
“Everybody please pay attention.”
Irina was just about to speak her thoughts. Hajin who had been looking at the dashboard turned and shouted.
“Ensign-nim, there is a huge surge of energy heading here from the 3 o’clock direction at a tremendous speed! The energy seems to be from a particle cannon! An enemy is attacking!”
A sudden emergency situation! Although she was in a state of panic from Ark’s death (?), Irina was a user who had joined the galactic federation. It was a sudden situation but she didn’t have time for things like ‘?’, ‘hik!’ or ‘what should I do?’
“All members, deploy your shield!”
Irina’s voice rang out after Hajin’s report! Dozens of luminous lights crossed the space in seconds and hit the members’ spaceships.
Kwa kwa kwa kwang!
There was a ringing sound and sparks flew out everywhere. Irina shouted at the team members on the screen while the bridge shook wildly.
“It is an enemy attack! Grasp the situation later. All members immediately change to a battle formation. Mario, activate your wide area shield and protect the ships of our allies! The rest should spread at 10 kilometre intervals with Mario’s large spaceship in the centre and prepare your main guns!”
–Enemy attack! All ships prepare for battle!
The members were users strong in battle! They immediately prepared for battle after receiving Irina’s command. Meanwhile, 10 ships had arrived from the direction of the particle cannon. The ships approached in a ‘◇’ formation and were different from the investigation team’s ships. The armour that covered the hull seemed to be made out of wriggling flesh. No matter how wide the galaxy was, there was only one species that used this type of ship.
“Rama….why are they here…..?”
Irina looked at the approaching fleet and muttered with a moan. There was a noise as a screen unfolded and a Rama warrior wearing red armour appeared. He stared at the team members and shouted threateningly.
-Where? Come! We will conclude it this time, Ark!
That Rama warrior was….
Tot sighed. He glanced back at Ark before sighing again.
“It really is pitiful. This isn’t a third rate drama. Having memory loss at such an important time…..”
Ark chose this approach. At first he thought that Basak and Tot were crazy NPCs. However he changed his mind after talking to them for a while. Ark didn’t understand why but the contents were very logical. Furthermore, it was hard to imagine a bugged space being like this. This was so well arranged for a bugged space.
‘If I’m drawn into a black hole then I’ll die. When thinking about it, Galaxian didn’t have a rule like this. Just like other users, I thought it was impossible to escape once caught by a black hole. But what if it doesn’t cause death? And this isn’t a bugged space? There is one other thing I can think of.’
He hadn’t just played the game for a few days. Once he grasped it, an answer immediately came out. Event. He could only think that an unexpected event had been activated. Of course, there were still some unanswered questions.
If an event was triggered when he entered the black hole then where were the other members? What about Hawk and Ferguson’s groups? Why did he come to Muratio and why were Basak and Tot acting like they knew Ark?
‘There are several things I don’t know right now but…..’
One thing was clear. This wasn’t a bug so he couldn’t expect any help from the game publishers. In other words, he needed to find his team members and the Silver Star personally.
‘I need to understand this place first in order to do that. If this is an event then there must be a purpose. I need to figure out why I’m dropped in a place like this in order to find the members, Silver Star and enter into the universe again. Tot had talked about the Elim. This was the first time I met a NPC who knows about the Elim. I don’t understand while Basak and Tot know me or the purpose of this event but this is a chance to obtain information about the Elim.’
That was the conclusion Ark reached. It was also why Ark acted like he had amnesia. This was a common trope in 3rd class dramas. Of course, acting skills were required to take advantage of this. But this was an original skill of Ark. Since his early days in New World, he had often used this skill to flatter and trick NPCs.
“Basak….Tot…..the dark cave….um, I only remember a little bit. Yes, while travelling I met Tot-nim and came here. Yes, Basak! I remember you too. You are an old friend who left home with me 10 years ago. Why do I forget you?”
“Hyung-nim, you remember now!”
“No, not yet. It is only a fragment of a memory that I recalled. I don’t know why I came to the training centre or anything about the Elim successor that Tot-nim mentioned.”
“Ugh! To go through all that training only to suffer from memory loss…..”
Basak whimpered with tears in his eyes. However he quickly wiped off tears with his sleeves and hit his chest.
“Hyung-nim, don’t worry! You are still Basak’s Hyung-nim even if you can’t remember! 10 years ago I swore that you would be my Hyung-nim for life when we left home! My loyalty won’t change even if Hyung-nim never recovers your memory!”
“There aren’t many people who can receive the whole hearted loyalty of a Casain.”
This was the first time Ark heard that word so it caused a ‘?’ to form. Tot clicked his tongue and said.
“Tsk, you don’t even remember that? Well it can’t be helped. The Casain are a minority race that received the blessings of the Shire and have the ability of a guardian. However, they have a stubborn personality and will only serve a master of their own choosing. When a crisis formed occurred on Muratio, their numbers reduced and Basak is the only one left. A person who receives the loyalty of the Casain is a true warrior!”
“Yes! Hyung-nim is a true warrior! I can guarantee that!”
Basak exclaimed in a loud voice and Tot smiled and nodded.
“I chose you as an heir to the Elim and I also can’t ignore the existence of Basak. You’ve also passed the Elim training and returned my expectations. Unfortunately you lost your memory…..well, it wasn’t a big deal. A warrior can’t forget his bravery and sense of responsibility in battle. But I will say a few words to pass on some knowledge.”
Tot gathered the impression of a wise man and spoke. Although he was referred to as a teacher, this was the first time Ark saw Tot. His attitude really felt like he was the one who chose Ark to be the heir to the Elim.
“I’ll explain it to you. Follow me.”
Tot turned his body while carrying a staff and continued talking.
“Your memory loss is probably temporary. Over time you will naturally recover it. But right now there is no time for you to remember. Prince Kuhwen is going to the Holy Land to become the next Horus so there is no way to slow down the schedule.”
“The next Horus? Holy Land?”
“I told you when you came to the training centre but…..”
Tot stopped for a while and stared at the three suns floating in the sky. He sighed and began to explain about Muratio.
“Murat King Horus, this is a title and blessing granted by the 3 great suns Ra, Shu and Tefnut. Over the last thousands of years, he Murat managed to achieve an outstanding civilization despite the harsh environment of the galaxy under Horus’ name. But an unprecedented incident occurred a few days ago.”
“Set who was the chief of the Zodiac Garrison rebelled. Set dominated the scattered troops of the Zodiac Garrison, killed the Elim defending Horus and is impersonating Horus.”
“An Elim is the strongest warrior in the galaxy. The fully manifested power of even a single Elim could destroy planet. However he didn’t have enough time. He only inherited the position of the Elim a few years ago and has failed to awaken the Elim’s entire power. Moreover, the one who rebelled was the garrison leader Set. He grabbed Horus as a hostage during the unfortunate incident and made threats. He knew what would happen but had to yield to Set.”
“Seizing a hostage! That isn’t the behaviour of a warrior!”
Basak shouted with resentment. The Tot continued using his staff to move.
“Set isn’t a warrior! He is just a despicable traitor!”
“But how was Set able to control the army of the Zodiac Garrison?”
Tot flinched at Ark’s question.
He hesitated and sighed before moving again.
“It is due to the difference in political opinion.”
“Muratio Star receives the protection of the 3 great suns. The 3 suns emit a radiation that transform 70% of the earth to a vast desert and is the driving force behind the explosive growth of our civilization. But it isn’t eternal. Even a sun can’t escape from the laws of the universe itself. And it is clear that the Muratio Star is approaching the time of its end after lasting billions of years.”
“Over the last couple of years, an unusual amount of sunspot activity has been spotted in the 2nd star Shu. The astronomers investigated it and discovered the life expectancy of the planet. The energy will continue to amplify f or the next few decades before it reaches a limit and will collapse on itself. And the 1st star and 3rd star will also be affected by the collapse. A huge black hole will be created and this area of space will be lost forever.”
It was the end of this solar system. However, the Murat was already a species that could enter the galaxy. Just like Noah made an ark to avoid the end, the Murat created a huge carrier that could move them. It was for this reason that a problem formed.
Once again, the Murat were preparing to enter the galaxy. Of course, other civilizations had occupied the planets outside. Most of them had a lagging civilization but the Murat still respected the inhabitants of the galaxy as equals. If those civilizations were supported then they could grow in the right way. This was the reason why the Murat were praised as gods throughout the galaxy.
The Murat was a species that emphasised balance and moderation so this system had been maintained for a long time. But due to the end of this solar system and the relocation, matters started to change.
“The person who first raised an objection to Horus’ relocation plan was Set the Zodiac Garrison chief. At that time, Horus found a new planet and started terraforming it while slowly migrating the residents of Muratio. But Set opposed this. The Murat already had a presence in dozens of planets. He insisted that the Murat should move to one of those planets to form a colony.”
Even Ark thought that Set’s claims were more persuasive. The Murat weren’t philanthropists so why shouldn’t they go to an undeveloped planet if it would solve their problem? However Horus had reasons for this idea.
Once again, the Murat weren’t the only species in the galaxy with a developed civilization. They later became known as the 4 species called the Murat, Indus, Potamia and Oritious. If the Murat entered an area of the galaxy belonging to one of those species then they would defend themselves.
In such a situation, the balance between the Murat and the other three species would be upset. The four species had thousands of colonies so if a power struggle between them between them happened then the conflict would become widespread.
“The Murat, Indus, Potamia and Oritious are different but all of them possess the power to blow up an entire planet. There will be no winners or losers in a conflict between the four races. That’s why the Elim exist to act as mediator for any large or small disputes. A race that doesn’t belong to any of the 4 races can watch the situation and mediate from the perspective of a 3rd race. This is an absolute agreement among the species. This is the reason why a human was chosen as the next heir to the Elim.”
‘In his eyes I am a human.’
This was the first time Ark heard of his past (?).
Ark- based on the words from Basak and Tot- was a human kidnapped by space pirates. The Murat’s Elim were tracking the pirates and rescued him but Ark was an undeveloped earthling. The Elim took Ark in and raised him.
Ark discovered some important points in Tot’s explanation.
‘I guess it when hearing the talk about the Murat but this isn’t the galaxy I came from. No, it is the same galaxy but the time frame is different. This is a time when the 4 races prospered. It must be hundreds or thousands of years ago. I heard some physicists say that it was possible to use a black hole for time travel. This world was created against the backdrop of such a theory? So it was this type of system.’
Now that Ark obtained more information, he was even more convinced that this was an event. Then there was no need to worry about his missing items. In games, items that disappeared during special events would reappear again when it ended.
Now Ark just needed to successfully finish this event. Then he could search for his team members and the Silver Star to return safely. If he looked at the atmosphere, the person who probably held the key was Tot.
“The conversation drifted for a bit.”
Then Tot opened up again.
“Set was able to control the Zodiac army thanks to this. Horus attaches a great importance to peace but they were fed up with this mindset. They feel like Horus isn’t qualified to deal with the situation against the Indus, Potamia and Oritious. The commanders of the Zodiac Garrison moved on Set’s insistence. The Zodiac assisted in the rebellion that killed the Elim and Horus. But the great Ra, Syu and Tefnut have not forsaken the Murat.”
Just before the Zodiac rebellion broke out. Kuhwen the only heir to Horus had headed to the Holy Land on a pilgrimage. And the Elim’s spiritual mentor called Tot had arrived at the city after receiving word about some troubles happening in the Zodiac garrison.
“That’s why I have to meet Prince Kuhwen and go to the sacred place Tri-Force.
Tot turned his body and said with a pleasant smile. It seemed like he had something important to say….even if he spoke suddenly….fortunately Tot remembered that Ark had amnesia and gave a further explanation.
“Horus can only be inherited by the bloodlines of 37 pure bloodlines on Muratio Star so their exchanges with the outside world are limited. There is a ward around the planet called Abraxas that can be activated so that no spaceships can enter the atmosphere of Muratio. This was the reason that Set and the Zodiac Garrison could rebel. Thousands of Murat fleets have advanced into the galaxy so they don’t know about the Zodiac rebellion yet.”
Then the Zodiac cut off contact with the outside?
‘This system is what allows such a revolt.’
The words bubbled up in his throat but he pushed it down. This wasn’t the important thing.
“Abraxas can be operated with two devices. One of them is already occupied by Set while the other one is located in Tri-Force. Only Horus can operate Abraxas but it was also designed to respond to the Shire in their bloodline if there was a problem. In other words, Horus died so the only one who can manipulate Abraxas is Kuhwen.”
So the situation was simple. Prince Kuhwen needs to go to Tri-Force and release Abraxas. And then the Murat forces scattered throughout the galaxy would be told of the uprising. Then the Murat fleet would return, smash the rebel army and Muratio Star would regain peace again.
“But what about Set?”
“The fact about how to use Abraxas is a secret. Of course, Set knows that there is more than one control device. After the palace was controlled by the Zodiac, he probably has his soldiers searching for Kuhwen and the other control device. That’s the reason why I quickly gathered you who isn’t prepared yet and made you the Elim’s Heir.”
Tot looked at Ark and continued.
“Just before the rebellion occurred, Horus and the Elim called me here and Ra, Shu and Tefnut visited me. You have safely become an Elim successor and have inherited the sun gods’ will. Now your mission is to guard Kuhwen until he safely arrives at Tri-Force.”
Perhaps he came to the past because he possessed the profession of Elim’s Heir. When he thought about it, this role was limited to Ark. Maybe that’s why he wasn’t with his other team members, Ferguson or Hawk even though they entered together.
‘If I can’t find a way to escape here then there is no meaning in finding the team and the Silver Star. When looking at this situation, the only way to return will be to succeed in this mission. And I am currently the Prince’s defence. When the rebellion is suppressed, the Prince will become Horus the Emperor of the Murat. Then I can search for the team and the Silver Star.’
It wasn’t just to escape from this place. Ark was the Elim’s Heir but Xanax the last Elim had disappeared a long time ago. So he couldn’t learn many related skills despite it being a unique profession.
But right now Ark was in the home of the Murat, Muratio Star. And the NPC in front of him was the Elim’s spiritual mentor. Who knows? He might have a chance to earn a skill or item related to the Elim.
Anyway, it became clear what Ark had to do here. He needed to guard Prince Kuhwen while escorting him to the Elim’s Holy Land! Ark was thinking that when the sand under his feet moved. And it scattered until it changed into letters.
|-You have acquired undisclosed information about the ancient alien species called the Murat.
The universe has a long history and many alien civilizations have grown and declined.
Finding undisclosed information can help illuminate the history of the universe.
Hidden alien artefacts or technology can play a decisive role.
<Through some unknown force, you have arrived at the Murat planet Muratio that existed a long time in the past. And you discovered that a rebellion broke out on Muratio a long time ago. This information will be important to future research on the Murat>
+ Information about the ancient alien species Murat (3/15).
+ You have obtained 300 Adventure points for acquiring information about the Murat.
+ You have gained 5 Intelligence for acquiring information about the Murat.
There was no Nymphe so an information window was created through this method. Anyway, it was 100% certain that this wasn’t a bugged space. It was certain after Ark experienced the letters changing supernaturally.
“This is one of the sacred places of the Murat.”
Tot indicated towards a city with his staff. The sacred place wasn’t a prosperous city. It was just a historical or religiously important place. Anyway, that’s why the city Tot indicated wasn’t prosperous. No, in fact it was more like a shabby village so it was embarrassing to call it a city.
But right now the next Horus was in the city. If Prince Kuhwen successfully quelled Set’s rebellion then the city would probably gain another name.
“Hurry. Prince Kuhwen is waiting for us.”
Tot increased his pace.