Auto Hunting - Chapter 78
The sound of something clicking and locking into place awakened Seoyu. She opened her eyes slowly.
“Ugh!” she groaned.
She tried to rise, but it felt like she was restrained. Seoyu was unable to move to either side.
She glanced down. There was some kind of medical contraption placed around her torso.
At this point, she had realized her ribs were broken.
Yoo-seong must have called an emergency team to help her while she was unconscious.
“You’re awake,” she heard Yoo-seong’s voice.
She moved her eyes towards the direction where the voice came. As soon as she saw Yoo-seong, she was fascinated.
He had just finished ‘mounting.’
It was the process to fully deck out with the battle suit to try it out. He should have done it sooner, but due to various circumstances, it had only been delivered to him the day before.
‘It’s been a long time,’ Yoo-seong thought, as he checked himself in the mirror.
He was finally wearing the Queen’s Hug once again.
Yoo-seong tested its mobility.
As always, it was perfect.
What’s more, it had undergone several reinforcements to suit Yoo-seong’s new requirements.
“Was it your first time to faint?” Yoo-seong asked her.
She did not respond immediately.
“The doctor said you have no serious fractures, but she said it would be better if you rest for a while and be careful about eating. It would be best if you stay at the hospital…”
“But… I haven’t done all of my duties. The Dive is going to happen soon…” Seoyu felt helpless.
Yoo-seong shook his head.
“Don’t pressure yourself. If everything goes well, this could be my last day here. ” Yoo-seong smiled at her.
Seoyu felt that something was different with Yoo-seong.
The man before her was completely different. It was not just his tone.
Something felt weird. Then, she realized what it was.
Yoo-seong had been kind to her. It felt like this was his real self.
It was as if he had been wearing a mask all this time.
She thought hard about it.
During their first meeting… Yoo-seong was in a foreign country, where he couldn’t trust anyone. He had to break Seoyu’s spirit.
Then, he had to face people like Lee Hwi-min, and the Red Dragon Society.
Yoo-seong had been playing the image of an arrogant hunter to fit in. Now, before his last mission, he could finally relax and be himself.
Yoo-seong poured a glass of lukewarm water and brought it to Seoyu along with a pain reliever pill. “Take it,” he spoke gently.
There was no made-up pride or toughness.
All Seoyu felt was the gentleness and courtesy that Yoo-seong originally had.
“I have not yet filled up the pre-Dive forms. We only have six hours left, so time is pretty tight,” Yoo-seong said.
He brought Seoyu’s laptop to her and placed it gently on her lap. Seoyu’s lips trembled.
It was Yoo-seong’s first and possibly last act of courtesy toward her. She felt tears roll down her cheeks. She couldn’t seem to understand why she was crying.
Filling up the forms was indeed not a difficult task.
Yoo-seong could do it himself, with the help of the translator app. However, he was giving her the chance to do her job.
It was very trivial, but…
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She felt that her value had been recognized. In terms of administrative skills, there had been a lot of better candidates than her for this position.
Like her uncle thought, Jin Wei-baek’s reason to choose her over them was probably that he wanted her to seduce Yoo-seong.
However, Yoo-seong had treated her as a professional, not just a body to use.
She was respected.
Yoo-seong noticed Seoyu’s tears, but he did not say anything. After a few moments, Seoyu opened the laptop and started doing what she had to do.
“Meanwhile,” Yoo-seong told her. “Thank you.”
He was sincere.
It was thanks to Seoyu that he had been able to focus solely on his personal affairs. Yoo-seong turned and left the room as soon as Seoyu stopped typing.
She wanted to say something.
However, even after she heard the door close, she couldn’t open her mouth.
She wanted to say goodbye to him. She knew what she wanted to say.
‘Thank you. I am honored to be your acquaintance.’
Once again, feelings overwhelmed her.
She tried to focus on something else. She checked her work on the laptop screen again. Suddenly, she noticed a couple of programs open on the taskbar.
The first one was a PDF file.
The other was the notepad.
The PDF file was a copy of her resume, but translated into 100% Korean.
She felt confused.
Then, she opened the notepad.
‘If you lose your job because of what happened yesterday,
It wouldn’t be bad to try changing jobs.
I will consider hiring you.’
“Nothing changes. Whatever happens. You know?” Lee Hwi-min spoke.
At this, Ha Yuk-il remained silent.
“When the Dive is over, I will reclaim the rights I gave you.”
There was still no answer. Lee Hwi-min looked at him with disgust.
‘The man’s eyes are dead,’ he thought.
‘This is what happens to guys who use fame as their driving force. When they get attention, they develop fast. However, when they lose their popularity, it looks like this.’
Since the last broadcast, Ha Yuk-il had wasted away.
How could he not?
Everyone all over China had witnessed him getting embarrassed in front of Yoo-seong. For Lee Hwi-min, there was no other choice.
The ‘Heir to the Volcano’ title, which the Goryong Company gave him, must be handed over to others.
“If you don’t want to be like our five hundred friends, it would be better for you to cooperate with the take over as much as you can,” Lee Hwi-min tried again.
“Although the value of your name has fallen to the ground, you would not like to live the rest of your life without your core…” he said ominously.
At last, there had been a reaction.
Ha Yuk-il’s eyes widened.
“I will do my best… I will do whatever you instruct me to.”
It was clear how valuable CE was to hunters, even those who had fallen.
Removing their core was like breaking a bird’s wings.
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“Please! Sir! I will-…” Ha Yuk-il pled.
“Lower your voice, friend,” Won Jeong-cheon cut him off.
He and Jinchung were sitting opposite Lee Hwi-min and Ha Yuk-il.
They were inside a special vehicle for operations.
“Even if this vehicle is sound-proofed, think of all the people out there who are watching us,” Won Jeong-cheon warned.
They were parked just below the center of where the crack would open. They were not the only ones at the site.
The sound of several helicopters could be heard inside the vehicle. Of course, this Dive’s purpose was to give the people a show.
There were several news helicopters, as well as several ground cameras from numerous broadcasting stations.
“Soon, everyone will see you. Are you going to leave the vehicle with that kind of pathetic expression?” Won Jeong-cheon smiled.
As he spoke, he was plucking the string of his bow in a leisurely manner.
“But… It’s not like that, but-”
Ha Yuk-il instantly felt a sharp pain in his cheek.
“I told you to shut up,” he heard Won Jeong-cheon.
He could feel the vibration of a trembling arrow centimeters away from his face.
It happened in an instant. He didn’t see it.
The whole process of taking out an arrow, feeding it to the bow, aiming, and firing happened quicker than the blink of an eye.
Won Jeong-cheon was still in the same posture as before, with one hand leisurely stroking the string of his bow. Won Jeong-cheon shook his head and turned to Lee Hwi-min.
“Why did you give this idiot the Volcano?” he said with a smile. “If you have given it to me, I would have saved you time.”
“You’re right,” Lee Hwi-min sighed with him.
Won Jeong-cheon was as successful as Ha Yuk-il.
However, he was more talented than he was. He also knew how to suppress his emotions.
The problem was that, when his pent-up emotions exploded, he went way too far.
“Listen up, stupid,” Won Jeong-cheon turned to Ha Yuk-il again.
“Get this through your stupid head. You only have two things to do. First, stop frowning and smile when we step down from the vehicle.”
He placed his palm on Ha Yuk-il’s chin and lifted it slightly. “Like that.”
“Then, once we go inside the crack, slice that cheeky guy with your sword. It’s not difficult. Just one slash, and it’s done.”
Won Jeong-cheon’s eyes glinted. “Of course, if you can’t, it doesn’t matter.”
Ha Yuk-il raised his arms desperately as soon as he heard the sound of the bowstring. However, he knew he wasn’t fast enough.
If Won Jeong-cheon really fired an arrow, it would have pierced his head even before Ha Yuk-il realized that he was going to attack.
“If you act as you did during the last briefing,” Won Jeong-cheon spoke, “I’ll shoot your head from behind.”
Jinchung folded his arms silently and stared at Ha Yuk-il with contempt. Lee Hwi-min was deep in thought as he observed the hunters he was with.
‘The next successor should be one who is stable, even if they are less talented.’
He needed someone who had a cool head and a calm manner, someone who can’t be swayed by fame or intense emotions.
It had always been what he wanted for the Volcano.
The problem was that he had never seen anyone who had that personality.
Perhaps, what he was looking for did not exist at all.
“Ready,” he said, and the doors opened for them.
Four hunters stepped out. Outside, two were waiting.
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Yang Biyeon of the Red Dragon Society, and Yoo-seong, representing Tenz.
Lee Hwi-min immediately felt something was wrong.
“Cool armor,” Won Jeong-cheon spoke while stroking the string of his bow.
If he had been in an environment where he could use it, Yoo-seong would have fallen like a bird, Volcanic Martial Arts or not.
His stare burned through Yoo-seong’s eyes, openly provoking him.
It wasn’t just him.
Jinchung and Ha Yuk-il were also throwing Yoo-seong daggers with their stares.
However, Yoo-seong seemed uninterested at all.
‘Deep,’ Lee Hwi-min thought unconsciously.
He wasn’t just ignoring his emotions. He was focused on the task at hand.
Surely, he must be feeling the threat from the hunters before him. However, he appeared as if he wasn’t worried at all.
Lee Hwi-min realized that he was looking at a different Oh Yoo-seong than the person he encountered in a hotel room a while ago.
‘Is this Oh Yoo-seong as a hunter?’ He wondered.
There was a roar of thunder from above.
Everyone, except Yoo-seong, lifted their eyes toward the sky.
The crack was now opening.
Hunters immediately stopped the monsters from pouring out while the military protected the civilians on site. Then, it was time for the six hunters to move in.
As soon as they were inside, a four against two battle would unfold.
No matter how good Yoo-seong was, he would not be able to deal with Ha Yuk-il and Jinchung in an instant.
That instant was enough for Won Jeong-cheon’s arrow and Lee Hwi-min’s Tech.
The four members of Lee Hwi-min’s team were like a perfect team.
‘We won’t kill him right away,’ Lee Hwi-min decided.
First, he would figure out from him how he was able to draw out the original plum blossoms.
Above all, he needed to take back the amulet that was stolen from him last time…
Suddenly, Lee Hwi-min’s eyes widened. At that moment, the amulet appeared on Yoo-seong’s hands.
It was the amulet of teleportation.
Yoo-seong did not hesitate. He took out a lighter and lit it.
Then, he wrapped Biyeon’s waist with one arm.
Biyeon was not surprised. She had known this in advance.
And, she trusted Yoo-seong.
The amulet burned down to the end in seconds.
Yoo-seong and Biyeon disappeared.
Lee Hwi-min’s nostrils flared with anger as he looked up at the sky. Biyeon appeared inside the crack that just opened.
It was his first time using the teleportation amulet.
When he re-appeared, only his legs and knees were firmly inside the crack.
He was only half-way in. His upper body dangled down the crack.
The magnetic field caught him from the waist up, making it hard for him to pull his body in. From far below, he could see Lee Hwi-min and his underlings.
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‘Like hungry dogs waiting for a chunk of meat to fall,’ he thought.