"Jae Hwan-ssi, you don't happen to have amnesia, do you?"
Jae Hwan carefully inspected Mino's face.
She had a beautiful face.
A beautiful woman insisting that he was suffering from amnesia.
"Didn't I say it wasn't amnesia?”
Even still, Mino spoke with a smile on her face.
“That's right. Then can I ask you a question? It's something you should know if you don't have amnesia.”
"……is that right.”
"Our current location, do you know where this is?"
From the beginning, Jae Hwan couldn't speak.
What could he say? There were a lot of things he had picked up here and there of course. But of the information he had picked up, he wasn't sure what the most accurate answer would be.
As Jae Hwan fell into silence, the party members exchanged strange expressions with each other. Their interests were focused on what was going on. Not willing to make an embarrassing remark, Jae Hwan did not say a word.
Mino's voice suddenly resounded in Jae Hwan's head.
[The answer is 'Chaos'.]
Since he had no other choice, Jae Hwan replied with the answer he was provided.
"Hm, so you already knew?"
Looking at Mino's smiling face, Jae Hwan couldn't help but have a strange feeling. She was a strange woman who went around bragging about her breast size.
[I wasn't sure, but you really didn't know?]
While looking at Jae Hwan, Mino's eyes took on a playful look.
"It's really strange. I could have sworn it was amnesia."
[Seriously, you're very strange. How do you not know this?]
He heard two voices at the same time.
Mino was using the「Whisper」Skill to learn more about Jae Hwan. It allowed her to say something out loud but relay a different message to the recipient. She was using a unique skill to pass on her message.
Having put on a show, Mino laughed on the inside.
“Well, let me ask you another question.”
“……sure, I guess.”
“Does Jae Hwan-ssi know where《Chaos》is located?”
There was no way he would know.
Once again, Mino's voice resounded in Jae Hwan's head when he fell silent.
[The answer is Illusion Tree. Chaos exists within the 'trunk' portion of the《Illusion Tree》.]
Jae Hwan looked at Mino and answered.
"Chaos exists within the trunk of the Illusion Tree."
When Jae Hwan answered the second question correctly, the Red Fox party members' interest in them rapidly disappeared. It looked like they were thinking something like 'oh what the hell, it was nothing.'
Kang Hoon took up the reins and tried to resolve whatever problem may have risen up.
“Haha, looks like Mino-ssi seems to have misunderstood something. Isn't that right, Jae Hwan-ssi?”
Jae Hwan silently nodded while Mino spoke out again.
"It seems so. I guess there was a misunderstanding. I'm really sorry Jae Hwan-ssi."
Although those words did come out of her mouth, what Jae Hwan heard in his head was different.
[I don't know who you are or why you don't know such basic and fundamental things. But there are two things that I know for sure. First, I know that you do not want to draw too much attention to yourself. Second, you are very strong.]
Jae Hwan silently listened to what she was saying.
[I think we can strike up a decent deal, what do you think?]
Regardless, he felt as though things felt good.
After some time, Jae Hwan listened to the information that Mino had for him.
One, the members of this party was an unsavory lot.
Two, for personal reasons, Mino had to 'annihilate' this party by any means necessary.
Three, Mino was currently unable to reveal who she was and what she do for personal reasons.
Four, if the party wasn't taken care of by tonight, then the ones to die would be Jae Hwan and Mino.
In the end, the current situation could be summarized by the following thought:
‘She's asking me to kill all of them.’
However, he could not condone or accept such a request.
It wasn't a good idea to judge these people based on the report given to him by someone who was clearly prejudiced against them. For example, the blacksmith Jay from the Nightmare Tower looked like a gangster, but turned out to be a good man.
[It doesn't matter, you'll find out soon. Those punks, it won't be long before they set their sights on you. Well, your belongings that is.]
And like that, the night began to descended.
Since the light was starting to fade, the one to suggest camping outdoors was the leader, Kang Hoon. If they were to go a bit farther, they would soon arrive at a village. But despite that, they insisted that everyone make camp for the night since traveling in the darkness could attract dangerous monsters.
Jae Hwan pretended to go to sleep and used「Doubt」.
It wasn't long before he started to hear a conversation being held in secret.
[Are you for real leader?]
[That's right. I inspected it closely to confirm and that weapon is without a doubt a 'Soul Weapon'.]
[If it's a Soul Weapon…….]
[Yes, a weapon that grows stronger by devouring other equipment. A weapon of enormous value that the sovereigns of the Great Lands use.]
[Ha, a weapon that even the sovereigns use!]
[That sword is incredibly strong.
Anyways, you guys understand? This is an enormous opportunity.]
Jae Hwan sighed to himself. In the end, everything was playing out like the woman had said it would.
‘No matter how you look at it, the Soul Weapon they are referring to is my sword.'
It was a bit surprising. If what Beastrain had told him was correct, the items from the 《Nightmare Tower》were considered garbage compared to the items that appeared in the《Great Lands》. It was thanks to that information that Jae Hwan hadn't expected his items to garner attention.
‘It must be a pretty good sword.’
He did think that his sword's ability to eat whatever he fed it was fairly impressive, but he didn't think that it would be as amazing as the others made it out to be. 'Should I just say I didn't have any other swords I could use?'
"The party members continue to speak."
[But leader. Isn't that guy really strong?]
[Of course he's strong.]
[He was someone who killed a Two-Horned Beast in one blow. How could we win against him?]
[You kids only know one but not two.]
Kang Hoon spoke again as he lightly laughed.
[Didn't you guys see how he killed the Two-Horned Beast?]
[Yes……that, something went syupat, and then.]
[That punk, he killed a Two-Horned Beast with a single thrust]
The man responded with a confused voice.
[How was that possible?]
[It's impossible of course. And let me assure you, even if you were to flip over all of《Chaos》, those who could kill a Two-Horned Beast in one blow with a simple stab can be counted on one hand.]
[Th-then doesn't that mean he's far more powerful than we thought?!]
[Wow you are actually really dense…… hey stop sitting on your ass and turn on the spirit power measure device and see what his spirit power is at.]
A few moments later.
[H-huh? Leader. It says that this guy's spirit power is the same as a Non-Adapter. It's even lower than mine!]
[Right? See I told you, I knew it was going to be like this.]
Kang Hoon snickered to himself.
[Then just how did that guy kill a Two-Horned Beast?]
[Have you already forgotten about what we were talking about a few moments ago?]
[Uh……you don't mean?!]
[It's exactly what I mean.]
[S-soul Weapons are that powerful?!]
[From what I know, most, if not all, Soul Weapons come from the 《Abyss》. Even you should know some things about the Abyss, right?]
[You mean the 'branches' of the Illusion Tree, right? That《Abyss》?]
[That's right. I'm talking about that Abyss.]
[Then if it's something from the 'branches'……]
The branches. Having heard the conversation, Jae Hwan laughed.
‘How surprised would they be if they found out that I brought this from the root.’
It was at this point that Jae Hwan had unintentionally obtained most of the information that he was looking for. In the process of getting swept up in this whole debacle, Jae Hwan figured out the structure of the Illusion Tree and the location where he was at.
The root's《Nightmare Tower》.
The branches'《Abyss》 .
The Illusion Tree was separated into three major categories.
‘The Nightmare Tower that I was in was but one of the myriad roots of the《Illusion Tree》.’
He had travelled through the 'root' and into the 'trunk'.
Like that, he arrived in the 'trunk' known as《Chaos》.
The party members continue to talk in hushed voices.
[But leader, just how did that guy get his hands on a Soul Weapon? If by chance he came down from Abyss…….]
[But then why would he do that? Do you think that Abyss is your backyard or something?]
[If not that, then could he be a native born Adapter from a Grand Family? It's possible since he has a Soul Weapon.]
[Those who come here from a Grand Family are required to first report that they're coming. From what I know, the most recent message is from the Nokmyeong guys, but does this guy look like he'd be from Nokmyeong?]
[That's true. I heard that the Nokmyeong guys have antennae on their heads.]
Kang Hoon nodded his head.
[Plus, there's a pretty conclusive evidence that he's not from a big family.]
[What is that?]
[What do you mean by smell?]
[Don't you think he has a strange scent around him.]
Kang Hoon laughed while tapping his nose.
[That's right. Dream scent.]
[The dream scent usually comes from the 'root' or the 'branches'…… Then that means that this guy must be from one of the two places. So he is either an「Abyss Champion」or a beginner]
Jae Hwan gulped.
He didn't know that there was such a scent.
[There's no way that he's a powerhouse from Abyss. Does it make sense for someone from Abyss to be a Non-Adapter.]
[Then if so, doesn't that make him a beginner?]
Nobody replied back, but the atmosphere said that everyone already knew the answer.
Following their desires, the men began to move.
[……what about the woman?]
[Just do as you see fit. This is more important.]
[Hm, then we'll take care of the woman.]
The men finally began to move.
‘This is how things were to go after all.'
What Mino said was right.
These guys were the bad guys.
He had expected it, but he hadn't thought that they would so easily act according to the bad guy archetype. It was because he didn't expect it that he was taken aback.
It's just how things worked out in life.
But maybe it was because they didn't do it all the time.
At that time, something rolled up against him.
Boing, it felt like a woman's chest had bumped into his right elbow.
It was without a doubt the size 65D chest.
“Oh dear, I didn't know that you were sleeping here Jae Hwan-ssi. At least change your expression."
[What do we do! Those guys are starting to make their move!]
"Omo! Jae Hwan-ssi! Those guys are taking out their swords!"
[Hurry, do what we went over!]
"Ggayak! Save me! Jae Hwan-ssi!”
[Wow so cheap, are you gonna keep the promise you made?]
Their original plan was to turn on these guys and fight them. On Jae Hwan's end of the bargain, the conditions he had to fulfill were as follows.
‘Wait, Red Fox! 'Huhu, I am an「Abyss Champion」here to punish you.'
But there was no reason for him to say something so stupid. He didn't know what an「Abyss Champion」was, but for her to want to use that title and make him do her dirty work was a bit shameless.
[Ah, what are you doing! Those guys are running at us with swords!]
Mino urgently cried.
Jae Hwan just shrugged his shoulders.
Strictly speaking, Jae Hwan didn't actually agree to her terms. Everything was just a one-way agreement that Mino made.
A sword flew into the sky.
Flustered, Mino looked and Jae Hwan and rolled her eyes. The party members stabbed their swords into the ground where they were standing.
"What are you doing! Take out your weapon! That black sword, take it out! Use that to get rid of them!"
"I don't have it."
"I said I don't have it."
Jae Hwan silently pointed towards Kang Hoon. Mino's eyes widened like saucer plates. The Soul Weapon that should have been in Jae Hwan's possession was in Kang Hoon's hands.
No, why is it over there?
"I let him borrow it earlier."
"WHAT? WHY THE FUCK?!”
"He said he wanted it while he was on watch.”
"You let him borrow your Soul Weapon for that reason?!"
Naturally, he wouldn't have lent his weapon for that kind of reason. In fact, it was for a different reason that Jae Hwan lent out his sword.
‘Now I can observe this girl's true abilities.’
Looking at the other party's rushing swords, Jae Hwan simply laughed.