I knew this would happen.
This god damn Hell Difficulty never lets me off easy.
I didn’t stop moving while I complained inside.
Why do I have to suffer this trouble because of those crazy orangutan bastards?
Running through the jungle with tightly packed woods was harder than I thought.
The ground is bumpy and slippery. Also, it is easy to get tripped over the tree roots. The view is completely covered by the leaves. Viewing anything beyond 10 meters was difficult.
I wish I could just fight them for a while and end this vicious cycle.
Unfortunately, the orangutans did not agree.
After killing the orangutan that I met first, I killed the other orangutans that came running after hearing that one’s roar.
These monsters also roared before dying, and other orangutan monsters appeared.
This cycle repeated over and over.
The problem was that, having confirmed the difference in strengths, these pricks didn’t even rush at me anymore.
Keeping their distance, they screamed from the distance to annoy me. When it looked like I was letting go of my focus even just a little bit, one or two of them attempted surprise attacks as if they were suicide squads.
They scattered and ran away when I approached them.
Do these assholes not even have basic survival instincts?
The orangutan monsters gladly tossed their lives away for the sake of disrupting my focus and interfering with my resting.
Like that, the frustrating standoff continued for almost a day, and I had no choice but to escape the place.
If they are extremely weak, I could just beat them to death one by one, but they are not that weak.
Every one of the orangutan monsters have the minimum combat abilities becoming of the residents of 12th Floor of the Hell Difficulty.
They have gigantic scythes on their shoulders, and they are very quick.
Also, they are very intelligent.
They are cornering me and chasing me like how hunters hunt wild animals.
Even when I put distance between us using Talaria’s Wings and Blink, somehow, they get right on my tail again.
I was flying low for a very short duration, trying not to draw attention from other monsters in the jungle. Because of this, I was not able to lose the orangutan monsters.
Even so, I don’t want to encounter new dangers by flying high for a long time.
Compared to the two dinosaurs I ran into when I first entered the 12th Floor, the orangutans are not much of threat.
It is just that there are many of them, and they are clever.
The orangutans already set up a wide perimeter to surround me. They are moving the perimeter along with my movements so I cannot escape the formation.
Damn it. I would feel better if they just swarmed at me in hundreds right now.
Is it going to take acting like I collapsed after being wounded for these bastards to let their guard down and attack me?
Ah, there is one more.
The reason why it is so difficult to deal with these orangutans.
Each of these bastards have unique skills.
It seemed this was not something special to the orangutan monsters. It seemed this was the special characteristic of this jungle.
The two giant dinosaurs I met earlier used barrier and fire breath.
It was so out of the blue.
They were in middle of physical struggle, but all of the sudden, they used magic based techniques.
It does not make sense.
No matter how I think about them, they are skills.
Just like how I obtained them and used them in the Tutorial, these guys each have a skill.
The first orangutan had invisibility skill. The second one used physical strengthening type skill and wind type magic attack.
I don’t know which bastard is going to shoot which kind of attack. This is getting really complicated.
Damn it. Only if the environment was something that I am more used to…
No… Only if the surrounding was more open…
An orangutan that was hiding in the bushes jumped out to the front of me. It seemed it was hiding and waiting along my route that I was taking in attempt to run away.
I knew all along that you guys were hiding in there.
Along with that sound, my right hand pierced the monster’s chest.
After that, I kicked the other orangutan monster that came at me after a delay.
The one that I kicked rolled on the ground. When its scythes touched the ground, the dirt became stained in black along with sparking sound.
… What is that. Electricity?
Are you Pikachu?
The orangutan monster was trying to get up quickly. I started to run again after sending its head off flying with the edge of my hand.
Gosh… you annoying pricks.
I think I killed over a hundred of them. Just how many are there?
Because they are only continuing to bother me in small groups of two or three, I cannot determine exactly how many there are.
While running, I looked at a large cliff that could be seen through the gaps between the tree branches above.
I just need to get there.
When I get there, I should go up using Blink and Talaria’s Wings.
Those insane orangutans do not have hands.
They have scythes instead of arms.
They probably can’t chase me by climbing the cliff.
Even if they do get to the top of the cliff by going round and round the cliff for a long time, I would be somewhere else by then.
The problem is how long it will take me to get to that cliff. It seems pretty far.
Half a day… or a day even if it takes long?
* * *
I looked at the orangutan monster in the distance that was glaring at me and clicked my tongue.
Wow… This is just too much.
Even though I don’t want to swear, I cannot help myself but to do it.
These sons of bitches.
Haven’t you guys had enough?
These guys don’t know when to quit.
These complete morons’ guerrilla tactic is continuing for two days.
I thought I’ll get to the cliff soon, but I don’t feel like I’m getting any closer although I had been going in the direction.
The cliff was huge. The jungle was vast, extending to the end of the horizon. Also, my field of view was blocked by lush forest. Because of them all making things worse together, I could not measure the distance to the cliff accurately.
Now, I am really getting closer to the cliff, but I’m slowly losing faith in my sense of distance.
I have not had anything to eat or drink in the past two days.
Of course, I didn’t get to sleep either.
Actually, resting was not the problem. I didn’t even have time to poop.
“Hey, you moron bastards! Are you assholes going to take responsibility if I crap in my pants?”
Of course they won’t. You irresponsible bastards.
I used Soul Cry Skill and shouted that, but it is not doing anything.
Ever since I killed all orangutans near me by provoking them to come out using the Soul Cry Skill, they are lurking around just beyond the range of the skill.
Of course, the suicide squads ambush continued periodically.
Just how intelligent are these guys?
The sophistication of the perimeter that the orangutans formed is no joke.
I feel like I’m getting an indirect experience for what it feels like to be inside the thousand-mile formation described in Murim warrior fictions.
There are traps and ambushes here and there along my path.
The interval of their ambushes is incredibly annoying.
There are others glaring or screaming at me from the distance to add to the frustration.
Those are not all.
I tried multiple times to escape the formation using the wind spirit and suddenly changing the direction. However, I failed every time.
It seems they formed the perimeter in a complete circle.
On top of that, it is layered after layer.
I think there are at least four layers.
Is this even possible?
When we are in a jungle where I can barely even see past 10 meters?
How could such a large number of monsters make such accurate movement in a place like this?
This is impossible unless there is a control tower where the locations of all orangutans and my location could be observed along with the full open view of the surrounding terrain to carry out tactical level plans.
It is to the point of making me wonder if these bastards actually have incredible science and have artificial satellites and radio communications.
Is it a skill?
It is plausible.
These bastards each have a special skill.
They were mostly the kind that were directly useful during combat. However, just like the invisibility skill that the first orangutan had, they each had all sorts of extraordinary skills.
If some of them had skills that allowed one to see the terrain from the sky and enabled mass communication to all orangutans in the jungle…
Also, if they have a commander that can lead them using those skills…
It is a plausible explanation.
Also, it is a plausible explanation that is not solving anything for me.
I thought about it as I dodged the ambush by orangutans jumping down from the tree branches above and smashed their heads to the floor.
If my theory is true, then I don’t think I can escape this formation.
Let’s organize the choices I have.
Find the enemy’s control tower and kill their commander.
Use the Talaria’s Wings and run using high altitude flight.
Go over the cliff.
The first choice is impossible.
The second choice is too dangerous.
Considering the range of these bastards’ formation, I’ll probably have to fly for quite some time before I can escape it.
Also, if I tried it just to escape these annoying orangutans and end up encountering one of those bogus dragons, that will just make the problem bigger.
In the end, that leaves the third choice, going over the cliff.
[Kim Min-huk, 30th Floor: Hey. Are you busy?]
[Lee Ho-jae, 12th Floor: Yes. I am. What is it?]
I threw a rock at an orangutan that was lying low under the bushes as I replied.
[Kim Min-huk, 30th Floor: I got a weird info. It is not urgent, so I’ll talk to you later.]
What was that for? You are leaving me hanging.
I roughly erased the thoughts about the message and focused again in running.
* * *
After running and running, before I realized, the cliff looked closer.
Now, it really feels close.
I haphazardly dodged suicide attacks by the orangutans who were throwing themselves at me. I used Blink several times to move up.
I used the Talaria’s Wings as soon as I got to be in midair.
The flight effect of the Talaria’s Wings was activated. Like that, I started to fly.
Finally, I am free. I am so sick of you bastards!
The bastards were screaming at me as they watched me flying up. I sent them a fist potato and focused on flying.
Near the cliff, I flew as I slowly raised the altitude.
There better not be a dinosaur like the one I met on the first day.
As soon as got to the top of the cliff, what I saw was an open field.
Also, there were orangutan monsters. At a glance, it seemed there were over a thousand of them.
What are these guys doing here?
I thought about that as I landed at the edge of the cliff.
A thousand… Two… three thousand…
On top of that, there are ones that are significantly bigger than the orangutan monsters I had seen so far.
Why are they all here?
Although I am thankful that they are all gathered in one place.
I guess I can just leave these guys here and go down the cliff by flying again.
I realized why they were gathered here after the orangutan in the front swung its arm.
[Talaria’s Wings is sealed temporarily.]
I didn’t even think about this being possible.
Having their forces ready at the top of the cliff based on my current heading and sealing my flight ability when I get to the top...
These guys are super smart.
Countless orangutans gathered at the open field roared.
Their roars contained revenge, animosity and belittlement.
Fuckers… Looks like they are excited.
There are about three thousand orangutan monsters, and my flight ability is sealed.
The difference in combat potential is overwhelming.
It is a fight I cannot possibly lose.
[Soul Steal (Lv.5)]
Description: You produced surprising result that no god in Pantheon thought would be possible. A nameless god who wishes to hide the true identity is gifting you this power.
When you cast it, the enemies within the range will be marked in their souls and slowly drained of their energy.
When you kill the marked enemy, you will absorb its soul which will heal your body.
It is the skill that I obtained after clearing the Sixth Floor which made me go through the worst possible hardship and grinding since I entered the Tutorial.
Since then, the skill allowed me to clear up to the 10th Floor as if I had a free pass through them all.
This skill lowers enemies’ strength within the range, and there is the healing effect from defeating them.
Moreover, the enemies lose strength even more over time.
Since then, a group of monsters with so-so strengths was no match for me.
On top of this, now I have a new passive power skill.
Description: It is a gift from the God of Adventure.
This power will give you strength when you are facing difficult adversities, especially during the most trying times.
Your combat abilities will increase by a small margin in proportion to the enemies’ number and strength.
Your combat abilities will increase by a small margin in proportion to the number of comrades you have standing behind you.
Your combat abilities will increase by a small margin in proportion to your exhaustion and wounds.
The effects can overlap with multiple situations happening simultaneously.
Additional attributes: A certain amount of resistance will be given to you against mental magic attacks and stress.
A perfect chance for testing the Perseverance Skill’s boost effects came.
With the Soul Steal starting to drain strengths from the monsters, they were starting to panic. I watched them and smiled big.
It’s good that you guys read the opponent’s mind and set a trap, but…
Taking a chance could lead to danger.
Did you know that the most certain tactic for victory is continuing with the same tactic once you got the upper hand?
“Don’t even think about running! Come at me you little bitches!”
I used the Soul Cry as soon as I noticed some of them hesitating and running away.
[Additional Attributes: Enemies who are not as powerful as you cannot ignore your cry and run.]
You cannot run because of the provocation effect of the Soul Cry.
Where do you think you are going?
Since there are many, this will take a while.
However, that’s the only downside to this.
I am not worried at all about the outcome of this battle.
I am the expert when it comes to slaughtering a large group of monsters.
Their beastly roars exploded. Various mid-range skill attacks were launched from them.
Having confirmed the trajectory of their attacks,
I penetrated deep into the group and swung my hand that was covered in mana.
Orangutans’ bodies were cut off every time I swung my hand, and blood gushed out.
Every time I harvested each death, the Soul Steal’s effect returned them as my energy.
The bloodbath, which started like that, continued until not a single one of them remained standing on the field.
* * *
I washed the blood off of my face using the drizzling rain.
On the field, there was just me and blood and dead bodies of orangutan monsters.
I think this place will develop horrible stench of blood soon.
Fortunately, there is rain falling right now.
It will wash away the smell of blood a little.
For now, let’s get away from this place.
From loads of dead bodies on the ground, I picked up a cut off leg and opened the Talaria’s Wings.
The seal on the Talaria’s Wings was canceled only after I killed the caster.
I started to glide after jumping off from the cliff, and I landed on a suitable place after gliding for about ten minutes.
Now I am back to where I started.
To point out a few changes, I am pretty tired now, and I’m holding an orangutan’s leg.
What should I do now?
I could think of eating, sleeping, finding a camp site and gathering. However, I ignored them all.
I had one thing left that was more important.
I need to poop first