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Hunter of the Ruined World 5

by


Translated by Paul M.

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A Monster is a Beast (1)


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Beck Gu continued to speak with a flushed expression.

“What kind of monster is capable of grouping together giant wolves, who otherwise would never form a pack? The only monster in the world that could make monsters of other species form a pack is a devil. This is a known fact. A devil definitely brought a wolf pack and smashed Jado city to pieces.”

“I can’t believe you know such a thing…”

Zin was so dumbfounded that he was even impressed. It was shocking that a guard from the countryside knew this much about devils.

The problem was that Beck Gu was truly convinced that giant wolves formed a pack and attacked the city, and that he was so sure that devils were involved.

“Every time a stranger came to visit, I asked them all kinds of questions. I only know what I know, but there are a lot of things I’ve heard. Don’t you also think I’m right?”

As he looked at Beck Gu, resolute in his belief that it was the devil’s doing, Zin shook his head.

“Hey Beck Gu, do you even know what a devil is?”

“A devil? A devil is a devil, what else would it be?”

“What you said refers to just one type of devil.”

Since he was going to spend the night here anyway, Zin decided that it would be alright for him to tell this naive young man more about the subject.

“The term ‘devil’ refers to a total of 7 different types of monsters.”

“7 types? Aren’t devils all the same kind?”

“Like I said, 7 types.”

Beck Gu’s eyes were glimmering, and Zin started to feel pressure from the attention. However, since he had already decided to tell him, Zin slowly began to talk. In the past, even just mentioning the names had made him feel like he was being cursed. All of that was behind him now, however.

“Dragon.”

“Demon.”

“Vampire.”

“Phantom.”

“Immortal.”

“Alien.”

“And Witch.”

After hearing the 7 types of devils, Beck Gu tilted his head.

“I’m not sure what they all are. I think I’ve heard of some of them.”

“Of course you have.”

Zin spoke quietly.

“Because now they no longer exist in this world.”

“They no longer exist?”

“Yeah.”

Zin was speaking of the world’s secrets to an uncomfortable but great listener, but his attitude was no different from speaking at a dinner table.

“The dragons were put to sleep, the demons were eradicated, the vampires burned to death, the phantoms were purified, the immortals were sealed, the aliens were banished, and the witches were annihilated.”

Zin had already planned from a long time ago to say this when describing the current world’s state. However, Beck Gu wasn’t smart enough to detect this from the nuance of Zin’s speech. Zin stared intently at Beck Gu and spoke to him.

“That’s why it couldn’t have been the act of a devil.”

Seeing that Zin was serious, Beck Gu slowly nodded his head.

“Then why do you think Jado city collapsed?”

“We have to go there to find out. I’m just saying there is no possibility that it was a devil’s doing.”

Beck Gu nodded.

“I don’t think you’re a typical hunter. My intuition is quite accurate.”

“Well, I also think you don’t look like a typical security guard.”

“Naw, I’m just an idiot.”

“Most people who call themselves idiots are not actually idiots.”

“Nah, really? Anyway, what was the term used to call special hunters…”

Beck Gu thought that the special kind of hunter people talked about could be standing right before his eyes. It didn’t take him long to think of the term.

“Oh yeah! I remember! Devil hunter. You’re a devil hunter!”

Beck Gu was making a fuss. Zin was sure this naive young man had no idea what ‘devil hunter’ actually meant. If he did, he wouldn’t have been as excited as if he had met a celebrity. Zin didn’t reply. After calming himself down, Beck Gu spoke again.

“I have a question.”

“What?”

“You said that there are no longer any devils.”

“I did.”

“Then what does that make a devil hunter? Mm...it’s like...there’s no crops. What’s the use for a scythe?”

What’s the point of being a devil hunter in a world without any devils - Zin thought Beck Gu’s analogy was funny. There are no crops but there is a scythe. What use is the scythe without crops?. That analogy was immature but quite accurate.

Zin answered.

“Well.”

He continued.

“I also want to know.”

“That’s discouraging…”

Beck Gu sighed as if he thought this was lame, while Zin laughed like a maniac.

“Then why are you wandering around?”

“To hunt devils.”

Zin played along.

“But didn’t you say there aren’t any more devils?”

“Yeah.”

“You truly believe that there are no devils out there. Then, why are you looking for them?”

“Hmm…”

Zin thought for a while before speaking calmly.

“I don’t think I’ve thought about that.”

Beck Gu shook his head as if he thought Zin was crazy.

 

When the night arrived, Zin lied down on a dirty but soft mat and stared up at the ceiling of the prison cell. He knew that he could sleep soundly tonight thanks to the thick walls. It was always a blessing to not have to face the aggressive night on a field.

‘He’s clever.’

Zin thought that Beck Gu was quite intelligent. If he was able to come up with that kind of hunting method on his own, then he had the potential to become an excellent hunter.

However, there’s a big difference between being a great hunter and a great person. Becoming a hunter can never actually be a blessing because a hunter’s fate is to die in a field.

It’s probably better to live within the walls. It was too far to go to a nest that didn’t have a good education system anyway. Zin didn’t have any intention to bring Beck Gu all the way there, either.

In the end, it’s just a fleeting encounter. Zin knew that it was meaningless to cling to such a thing.

Even though Beck Gu’s talent was wasted as long as he remained as a security guard, it would most likely be wasted in the process of trying to slay an undefeatable monster.

Zin was also too exhausted to build a relationship with someone, and it was all just a pain the ass.

If you start something bothersome, then more and more annoying things will happen.

This was one of the proverbs that Zin lived by.

 

Zin left the town the next day at dawn. Beck Gu gave him a few potatoes, and Zin felt touched by such a thoughtful act that had disappeared from this world long ago.

‘What a strange town.’

Ard Point was a silent and strange town that used a prison as their walls. Generally, if a town is not open for visitors to roam freely, it shuns strangers; but during his whole stay in the town yesterday, Zin hadn’t felt neglected. He wasn’t enthusiastically welcomed, but the residents looked peaceful. The Elder cared for the people, and the people respected the Elder.

Compared to the countless cities and towns that Zin had traveled through, Ard Point seemed like quite a nice place to live in. But Zin knew that a town that hasn’t forgotten compassion is the quickest to fall. There is a reason why people remove compassion from their lives. Kindness is weakness, and weakness is risky.

‘They should last 10 years at most.’

The reason why humans are cruel towards one another is not because they want to be, but because that is the only way they can survive. Humans have always thought about ways to survive, and that hasn’t changed. However, in this era where civilization has disappeared and technological advancement is extremely difficult, the only thing that humans can choose is to become cruel and brutal.

That is the only secret to longevity and key to survival.

-Bang!

In fitting juxtaposition to the thoughts going through his head, Zin shot a stranger that was coming towards him from a distance.

 

Zin slung the rifle over his shoulder and slowly walked towards the corpse. There was no movement from the corpse. He had shot it straight between the eyes.

A hunter is no different from a slaughter. To be more exact, all wanderers are the same. Apart from yourself, every being is your enemy. Attack before you are attacked. It’s difficult to determine whether the person on the other side is an enemy or not.

It’s easier to kill first without consideration. If it’s an innocent person, think of that bitter taste in your mouth as the price of living to see another day.

‘That was lucky.’

Zin muttered after seeing that the corpse’s blood was a thick reddish brown. The person was a vagrant addicted to CP (Chaos Poison).

‘Oh boy, is the monster’s anger already in progress?’

As soon as he saw bubbles rising in the spilled blood, Zin quickly took out some tinder.

-Boosh!

After lightly feeding the fire, Zin dropped embers onto the pools of blood and ran forward.

-Boom!

Soon, a violent explosion set a fire ablaze. From the shock of the explosion, Zin rolled over a few times before standing up again, brushed off the dust from his coat, and continued walking, leaving behind a scene that looked just like a gunpowder explosion.

“OOOOOoooowwwwwww!”

The monster that was born from the corpse struggled inside the fire in its incomplete form, but Zin didn’t bother look in that direction. Only hunters, bandits, slaughters, vagrants, and refugees wandered through this wilderness. Minus refugees, nobody was innocent, and there was a high possibility that even the refugees were far from being innocent.

The man just now was a vagrant that could have become a monster at any time, and Zin had once again ensured his safety by attacking first.

There were still at least three days to his destination. There was still a long way to go.

 

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