Auto Hunting - Chapter 150
The state of Hawaii was made up of several islands.
Honolulu, the busiest capital city, was located at the southern end of the island named Oahu. It was the largest and most populated island. It was also where the crack would appear.
The crack was scheduled to open a little over the highest peak, ‘Mauna Kea.’ Temporary control centers were being built there at the moment.
Everyone felt nervous. Those within the barrier line were not in top condition because of the accumulated fatigue that had also been plaguing hunters all over the world. However, more than anywhere else on the planet, the hunters in Hawaii were the most affected.
Ali, the boss of the Kowala Company, closed his eyes and took a deep breath. He was one of the direct descendants of Hawaii’s ‘Last Clan,’ who had imparted their Tech among other Hawaiian residents. One of the Kowala Company warriors approached him.
“Ali… Sorry, I have no intention of disturbing your meditation, but…”
“What is it?”
“On the southern beach… they were seen preparing their equipment.”
Last night, a group of hunters directly affiliated with the mainland capitalists had arrived in Honolulu by yacht. Just like Oh Yoo-seong, who’d arrived just an hour ago, they had turned out to be uninvited guests.
-We came here for a vacation. Why are you guys so sensitive?
The guy in charge had been lying through his teeth. Their hunting equipment was all laid out on the deck of the yacht.
Of course, unless the Kowala Company gave up their exclusive rights and sought support, they wouldn’t be able to use their equipment.
‘They were sent to provoke us, just like Oh Yoo-seong.’
It was the only reasonable explanation that came to Ali’s mind. Otherwise, he couldn’t explain why they had come at this time.
Perhaps it was to laugh at the Kowala Company as they watched them struggle, or perhaps it was to remind them that they could always get help if only they’d reach out.
‘Never. There will be no such thing.’
Even as he tried to convince himself, Ali wasn’t sure of it either as he looked around.
The hunters around him all looked exhausted. It seemed as if only their sense of duty was holding them up.
‘I can’t let anyone get injured… or die.’
If their manpower were decreased even by one, it would burden the entire company. Of course, there was a greater reason even than that.
Every one of them was part of his friends and family. Even with those who weren’t hunters, it wasn’t strange to feel a sense of connection to someone who hailed from the same place.
Moreover, as hunters on the same team, they had protected each other’s lives so many times.
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Like everyone, Ali was also exhausted. He couldn’t help but second-guess himself sometimes. Perhaps all this resistance was pointless. Maybe his stubbornness would cost the lives of his colleagues.
Something caught Ali’s attention.
The hunters around him began speaking excitedly. He turned his head and saw something he did not expect.
“Danny!” he yelled out in surprise.
The young man was walking toward them, his face painted with regret. He was one of the youngest employees in the Kowala Company, working as an apprentice. An hour ago, he’d also played a thrilling role as Ali dealt with an uninvited visitor to their island.
He’d left him behind in Honolulu.
It was not safe for an apprentice to be part of a big operation. Ali was sure that Danny knew it.
‘But why is he here?’
Then, behind Danny’s large frame, he saw Oh Yoo-seong!
Yoo-seong looked up at the Mauna Kea in admiration.
“Wow, that’s a pretty sight.”
It was as if he weren’t aware of the angry Ali rushing toward them.
“I’ve only seen it in photos before, but now, in front of the real thing…”
“Hey, you!” Ali barked at Yoo-seong from just a hand span away. “I thought I told you to leave this island?!”
Oh Yoo-seong acted innocent as if he had genuinely been disturbed from sight-seeing.
The poor Danny looked at his boss with pleading eyes. He wanted this situation to end.
“Tell your boss this,” Yoo-seong said to Danny. “I changed my mind. I thought it would be a waste to leave Hawaii without seeing its splendid scenery.”
‘I swear,’ Danny thought, ‘if Ali could understand the nuances, he would explode in anger.’
That was why the young man delivered a refined version to Ali.
Veins still popped out of Ali’s forehead.
“You rat!” Ali stepped backward as he exclaimed. At the next moment…
At a speed that could have been called a flash…
Ali’s thick hands grabbed Yoo-seong’s collar.
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Even Ali hadn’t expected that his action would be successful. He’d thought Yoo-seong would avoid his hands. However, Yoo-seong did not even blink as he allowed himself to be caught.
With an unreadable expression, Yoo-seong spoke in simple and crude English. “Try it.”
Ali’s eyes widened.
“This damn bastard…!”
Still, Yoo-seong’s cold tone made Ali’s hands tremble. Looking at the situation, Yoo-seong had done nothing wrong so far. It wasn’t particularly against the rules for him to walk up to the barrier line. So, if Yoo-seong filed a complaint, it would result in a huge problem for Ali.
But right now…
The problem was that there was no emotion in Yoo-seong’s face or voice at all.
“Thing to do. More important. But if not, hit me. I will pay you double.”
Ali had no choice but to let go. What Yoo-seong had said, despite the broken English, appealed to his reason.
At any other time, perhaps he would have pursued the fight. However, right now, he could not afford to, not just before a significant operation.
Everything he had been standing up for could be gone in a moment of vain anger.
“Why are you here?” Ali asked Yoo-seong as his hands returned to his sides.
He thought Danny would have to interpret what he said, but instead…
“It’s simple,” Yoo-seong replied right away. It seemed that he could understand that much.
“It pays off,” Yoo-seong added.
“What?” It was Ali’s turn not to understand.
“When it’s finished. You will fall in front of me.”
‘What is this?’ Ali pressed a hand to his forehead. ‘Is he provoking me even though he doesn’t know how to speak English well?’
Maybe, right now, Yoo-seong had no other intention but to stand here and annoy him.
“Oh well.” Ali sighed. “As you said, there’s important work to do. I can’t afford to waste time on you.” With that, Ali turned his head and began walking inside the barrier line. “But if you intervene,” he said, without looking back, “I will end you in accordance with the same rules you used as a shield.”
Danny conveyed the words to Yoo-seong.
Yoo-seong just shrugged as they watched Ali lead his warriors toward the crack. The sky was darkening, a sign that the crack was just about to open. Now wasn’t the time to care about Oh Yoo-seong or anything else.
‘Our job is to close that crack,’ Ali thought as he resolutely marched forward.
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‘No matter the cost.’
When Ali and his warriors were beyond their view, Danny nervously turned to Yoo-seong.
“W-What are you doing…?”
Yoo-seong was stretching and doing warm-up exercises. It was obvious to anyone that he was about to use his body.
“You can’t do it… You can’t do it!” Danny’s voice broke with desperation. “You said you didn’t come here for that purpose! Why did I… I believed you!”
The young man’s expression was filled with disappointment as he felt betrayed by the man he looked up to.
‘If I’d known he would be like this,’ Danny thought, ‘I would not have brought him here.’
Even as Yoo-seong provoked his boss, Danny had refused to accept that his idol was that sort of person. But now, it had proved to be too much. He had been fooled.
“You motherfucker…” Danny clenched both his fists.
His anger was clouding his judgment.
As Yoo-seong stood up and approached him, Danny realized something. The man who had sighed on the sandy beach as he sympathized with Danny’s story, and the man who had provoked Ali just now…
They seemed to be completely different people.
And now, the man approaching him with cold, silent eyes was an entirely different person again.
The man before him was unmistakably a hunter.
With a gentle voice, Yoo-seong said, “Thank you for guiding me here. There won’t be much trouble. Don’t worry, keep calm.”
Just like that, all of Danny’s anger dissipated.
‘He sounds so sincere.’
He might really be an irredeemable idiot, but…
Danny had no doubt in his heart that this person would not do anything bad.
“What are you going to do?”
Yoo-seong smiled bitterly at him.
At this moment… What else would a hunter be doing?
Yoo-seong tapped the young man’s shoulder and made his way inside the barrier line.
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