Chapter 12. Messiah, Part III
Lee Jin-sung was a cruel man who had the innate ability to make cruelty more brutal and powerful.
'Something's happened to Master.'
'We'll die if we're late.'
The power of Lee Jin-sung was something that could not be dealt by the Awakeners who did not even know that they were Awakened, or who were awakened but did not even have E rank of some special ability.
At the same time, Lee Jin-sung was their hope.
'Damn it, we hope that there is no problem with the master's safety…'
'Without the master, we'll be finished, too.'
Lee Jin-sung was their most powerful force against monsters.
And now, he was the only possibility of killing the yellow-eyed devil, a scary monster that ruled the subway now and could only be quieted by a human offering.
In a world that now belonged to monsters, including the yellow-eyed devil, Lee Jin-sung was an absolute necessity to survive.
That was why Lee Jin-sung named the group "Messiah," and his subordinates stepped into the large mall without any help and or hesitation. They headed for the threat, through the heavy snowstorm, to help someone who dominated them through fear.
"Light the flash! Flash!
Soon after, eleven Awakeners arrived and entered the large mall with flashlights in their hands.
The first thing they saw with the flashlights inside the dark mall was a corpse.
"What the hell is this…"
There was the body of a general member who was killed in the grenade blast.
More bodies, which had a different kind of gruesomeness than those killed by the monsters, were also shocking to the Messiah Awakeners who had seen so much of such things.
'Did they get shot?'
'Did a bomb explode? But where was the bomb from?'
The Awakeners stiffened.
In that state, some courageous people walked through the bodies, flashing lights, and splashing through the rich blood.
It was the head that ate their courage.
The head of Lee Jin-sung had been cut off, and the body was missing.
The hairless shiny head reflected the glare of the flashlights.
'Oh, my God, that's horrible.'
Their words fell silent and nobody spoke.
Then a voice came from the darkness, "Put the flashlights on the floor and kneel down with your hands on your head."
"Who, who is it?"
"Where did that voice come?"
No one was on their knees at once, and everyone was too busy turning their heads around to find the voice's main character.
Taang! The gunshot woke them up.
"Aaaaaaargh!" A man who was swinging a light around fell to the floor and screamed, "My, my leg, my leg…"
"Every time I speak, one more person," the unaffected voice again came through the pained cries.
'When I hold up a light, I'll be the target!'
The quickest ones, with a keen sense of survival, quickly dropped their flashlights on the floor, and immediately knelt down with their hands on their heads.
Like dominoes falling down in succession, eleven Awakeners entered the mall lowered their heads.
Kim Tae-hoon appeared in front of them.
He was still hiding in the dark, of course, wearing a black jumper. So now, even though his light was shining on the floor, so they could not see him.
It was even more creepy. What they could not see, they could only imagine. It was not a good thing to think about right now.
Kim Tae-hoon slowly spoke while the Awakeners imagined Kim Tae-hoon's existence as a devil.
"There are two options: turn your back on this and leave here, or become a hunting dog under me."
Everyone shuddered at his words.
'A hunting dog?'
It was clear, at least, that he was not here for goodwill and justice!
"I know enough of what kind of group Messiah is, and you'd better get rid of the idea of being treated like a human being."
Everyone trembled again at his words.
He knew what kind of group Messiah was, and that they silenced the monster with sacrifices.
Everyone here knew what it meant to offer sacrifices.
Even if they could not help it, they should be prepared to be treated the same way the instant they treated a person as food, not a fellow human being.
His power had overshadowed their determination, and now they were the weak!
The fact made them swallow and despair. 'It will be over if we go this way.'
Someone put his brain to work. "Is it really okay if I leave?"
A man said, "If you don't want to come under me, you will be fine. "Kim Tae-hoon answered immediately.
"Well, I'll... go out. I'll stay quiet." At the answer, the person who asked the question rose from his crouch.
The name of the man who rose was Jang Yeon-seok.
'I must get out of here. If I stay under him, I will end up a consumable against a monster.'
He was the leader of a group that monitored and managed the people who would be sacrificed at a department store across the street.
In short, he was an executive.
Of course, he knew the Messiah organization better than any of these people.
'I'll go to the City Hall, join the others, and make a plan. That's the first thing to do now. If not, I will be good for nothing.'
Messiah was currently expanding its scope, spreading spider webs around Bucheon City Hall.
They were engaged in activities; securing food by occupying large malls, capturing survivors who came to the central City Hall building, and going out and capturing them. At the same time they identified the areas of powerful monsters that could not be killed, and then offered sacrifices to them to manage their movements.
'Once I go to the City Hall, twenty Awakeners are waiting there.'
Of course, there were a number of Awakeners gathered by Messiah. Many of them were waiting at the City Hall since the most sacrifices were there.
In addition, many of them were not awakened but ready to fight for the Messiah. If they didn't want to be a sacrifice, they had to be on the same side.
Joining them was far safer than becoming a hunting dog under a man whose identity was unknown!
Steeling his intentions, Jang Yeon-seok once again asked Kim Tae-hoon, "Really, is it really okay to leave?"
"If you don't want to come under me." Kim Tae-hoon gave another definite answer.
"Thank, thank you."
Only then did Jang Yeon-seok turn his back when he rose. After that, he didn't move right away and waited for a hint.
'Is he really going to send me off this way?'
He was suspicious, but there was no particular clue. Only then did Jang Yeon-seok turn his back and start heading back the way he had come.
A gunshot struck his back.
"Khuck!" With the short word, Jang Yeon-seok began to tremble after he fell to the floor. Hot blood flowed out from under his body, and began to pool on the floor.
The rest could not see it.
'Is team leader Jang dead?'
'Crazy, isn't he just letting us go?'
They felt that a colleague, a superior, was dying behind them.
"Wasn't it Messiah's way to cut off the head after killing an enemy or a traitor?" Kim Tae-hoon asked them again.
There was no answer, there was no question.
"Then the remaining nine of you are my hunting dogs now."
The situation was settled.
[The Sword of the Imperator]
- Relic Grade: Grade 2
- Relic Value: Special
- Relic Effect: It grows with the blood of killed monsters. The owner of the Sword is unknown yet.
[Flame Liquor Gourd Bottle]
- Relic Grade: Grade 5
- Relic Value: Rare
- Relic Effect: It changes Mana into flame liquor; if the owner breathes in the flame liquor and blows it out, the flame comes out. The more liquor the owner makes, the stronger the power of the fire is.]
Kim Tae-hoon, checked the stats of the relic through his smartphone, and immediately looked at the Sword of the Imperator in his hand.
He didn't know who it belonged to.
However, it didn't matter to Kim Tae-hoon. He did not care about historical records, and he didn't have any knowledge about it.
'It's like the Sword I saw in my dream, only the sheath is different.'
The important thing was that the Sword was different in color, but the shape was the same as the Sword in his dream.
That dream, of course, was the dream of the Golden Glass of Napoleon.
In that dream, Kim Tae-hoon took out various weapons to fight against the dragon.
One of them was similar to what Kim Tae-hoon saw now.
The sheath of the Sword right now was red, and the sheath of the sword he saw in his dream was blue, but the feel of the Sword was the same as the one he saw in his dream.
If it was the Sword that he saw in his dream, it was an amazing achievement. He had a powerful weapon to use against the dragon.
But Kim Tae-hoon could not be happy with the fact. No one knew whether this was the same one or not.
What Kim Tae-hoon saw was only a fragmentary result, and he did not know the process.
And even if there was another process, there was no guarantee that the results would be different.
Lee Jin-sung had given him some meaningful information before he died. He might just have been trying to buy time, but the information he had given out was valuable and strange.
'He said Bucheon is lucky, and the surroundings had become a powerful monster's territory.'
He said that Incheon City, Gimpo City, and Siheung City, which surrounded Bucheon City, were the lands that monsters now owned.
He also said that as powerful monsters settled down and claimed their territory, Bucheon, where the areas overlapped, was rather peaceful.
The truth was unknown, but the possibility was sufficient.
Monsters did not just destroy thoughtlessly. It was their survival instincts that moved them.
It's just that in order for monsters to survive; they had no choice but to eat humans and destroy their cities.
'It's the worst.'
However, if Lee Jin-sung was right, the situation was likely beyond Kim Tae-hoon's imagination.
'A million dead.'
The death toll might exceed ten million units, with over one million dead in Seoul alone!
'No, if something unexpected happened in winter, it could be close to ten million dead.''
The current season was winter, a harsh season for mankind to endure without the technology of civilization.
'China must be worse. The casualties would be hundreds of millions.'
Even so, such damage had occurred in South Korea, and it might not be possible to estimate the number of victims in areas where the population exceeded one billion, such as China and India.
At this moment, even Kim Tae-hoon felt skeptical.
It was skepticism about a reality more miserable than he thought, and skepticism about the fact that the human race that had survived in such a miserable reality would be struggling with each other for their own benefit, and would be supposed to just go extinct.
One of Messiah's Awakeners approached Kim Tae-hoon and spoke to him in a frightened voice. "Sir, as you've ordered, we've put them all together. We've brought all the general survivors, too."
Kim Tae-hoon rose from his seat at the man's words.
The glitter in his skeptical eyes went cold.
It was good to hope for the future.
No, you have to hope for a better future. It was important from now on to hope for a better future.
Messiah was not yet in Kim Tae-hoon's grasp. Furthermore, the remaining parties would not welcome him.
The survivors were also the same: not everyone who survived was treated as a sacrifice; those who were treated as sacrifices, and those who watched and managed them, would be different in their calculations.
Of course, if he left them alone, they would act for themselves.
Therefore, he had to make them fear so that they could not think of anything else. In this situation, clumsy love and care were meaningless and useless, and Kim Tae-hoon did not know what love and care were. He didn't want to know.
At the same time, he needed to show them hope, what line they must hold to survive, what must be valued as much as their lives by those who survived in the land of Bucheon at this moment.
Lee Jin-sung, the former leader of the Messiah, knew that well.
His actions were obviously not human, but now the world was no longer a world where human beings were common.
'Messiah has made things easier.'
In addition, Kim Tae-hoon knew that fact much better than Lee Jin-sung.
He was not a monster, but he had fought in a world where humanity was ignored enough to compare with monsters.
And he survived in such a world.
"It feels like an eel in the stomach is woven like mayonnaise. Try it that way."
At Bang Hyun-wook's words, three people, including Kim Soo-ji, began to focus and squeeze the Energy out of their guts.
"It feels like you're squeezing it out and sending it to your fingertips and tiptoes. Go on! How's it going? It's easy, isn't it?"
In the middle of the training, under the guidance of Bang Hyun-wook, the Awakeners were training to deal with Energy, In the corner, Ahn Sun-mi was holding the Cup of Therapy with her eyes closed.
The empty Cup of Therapy began to fill up gradually. Jang Sung-hoon spoke when the Cup was filled to overflowing.
"Okay, that's it! Sister, it is all full."
Ahn Sun-mi opened her eyes and put it in a thermos bottle that had been prepared for the Water of Therapy from the Cup.
"Yes, I'm the only one who's suffering."
"I'd like to suffer, but unfortunately you're the only one who can use the Mana on our side. Can I sing for you?"
At the words of Jang Sung-hoon, Ahn Sun-mi closed her eyes instead of answering, and again focused on injecting Mana into the Cup of Therapy.
It was preparation.
Among the Awakeners, those who were able to use Energy trained to handle it more skillfully, and in the case of Ahn Sun-mi, she wanted to secure as much Water of Therapy as possible when she had time to relax.
No one gave up on hard work, because it was a matter of life or death.
"Lieutenant!" Someone came in. He was a soldier. A soldier guarding outside was still covered with snow on his shoulder and head.
The training stopped.
"The Major sent a man." Everyone looked nervous at his words.
"This is a letter from the Major." The envelope was delivered to Kim Soo-ji.
Kim Soo-j took out the letter, quickly skimmed its contents, and spoke to everyone around.
"Does anyone have any experience working in a sushi restaurant or filleting raw fish?"
"Yes?" Everyone looked a little strange.
"Did he get a tuna? Why does he suddenly need a filleter?" Jang Sung-hoon asked the question as if he represented everyone.
At his question, Kim Soo-ji said with a steely expression, "From now on, the Mac Clan is ready to hunt the devil with yellow eyes!"
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