Chapter 2 - Maker’s Mistake (1)
At the compulsion, Ian stiffened and shook his head. He was a man who had never succumbed to oppression. He slowly pressed his hand against his younger sister’s forehead in warning as she tried to forcefully push her upper body over the counter.
"If you don’t have any credits, then you are banned from accessing it.”
However, his sister Jung Yiyu didn’t back down.
"Just try connecting as a test. Oppa is always doing everything, which is why you don’t have a girlfriend.”
“Cash or credit?”
"Ah, why do you want to receive money from your little sister!”
"There are other customers waiting behind you, so please hurry.”
Yiyu’s face turned red as she heard the laughter behind her. She extended some bills clutched in her fist.
"You are lacking 500 won...”
"Shut up. I’m going to school!”
Yiyu stuck her tongue out and ran away from the cafe. Ian smiled as he looked at her back.
The customer waiting for their turn came up.
"Ian-ssi’s little sister is always cheerful.”
"I wish she was calmer. Did you want an Americano?”
As the man who ran a quiet cafe, Jung Ian always had a kind smile. His tall, slender body and gentle atmosphere meant that quite a few female customers stopped by to see him every day. It had been less than one year since he opened Cafe Reason, but the relaxed atmosphere meant that it was always frequented by regulars.
“Ian-ssi, are you playing Elder Lord?”
"I'm not good at games.”
"It’s a virtual reality game so you should be okay. Ian-ssi should give it a try. Don’t you think that there are more people playing the game than people not playing it?”
“Haha. Is that so? Here is your Iced Americano.”
"Please let me know if you ever start. I’ll help you, as my level is quite high.”
Elder Lord was a virtual reality game that started its service a few months ago.
It already dominated the virtual reality game market due to: the perfect reality that couldn’t be compared with existing games, the unique game system, and the fact that the rate of assimilation affected a player’s abilities.
Role-playing users who shot movies of their characters were broadcasted during the golden time, while the revenue of the rankers surpassed that of celebrities and sports stars.
The fact that virtual reality was starting to replace reality had now become a slogan. This was the age of Elder Lord.
Ian bought a connection capsule for Yiyu a while ago, but now she wanted him to join her. He could guess the reason why Yiyu was doing this.
Elder Lord was very difficult, and it was hard to level up and improve one’s abilities. Monsters and NPCs were also very strong, so most of the first-time users suffered. They were strangers who entered the world of the NPCs and started from the bottom, so soon after Yiyu started, she couldn’t help but whine to Ian to help her.
A person’s real abilities could affect their performance in Elder Lord. A player’s physical abilities depended on the character, but players could reproduce techniques that they already knew. It was rumored that rankers were people skilled in martial arts or acrobatics.
Ian had seen a war video of Elder Lord on television, and he didn’t like it very much.
“Ah, I’m sorry. What did you say just now?"
Ian’s hands shook as he entered the order. He held his trembling fists and then slowly opened his hand. The shaking stopped, and it felt like his hand was frozen stiff.
At one time, he had been on the battlefield and slept with death around him every day.
He wouldn’t ever play Elder Lord. After meeting the eyes of those dying on the battlefield, how could he cheer as he saw a sword slicing a man’s neck in a game?
"Won’t you try it once?”
Ian shook his head.
"What do you mean? I won’t do it.”
"This guy, why are you still caught up in the past? I saw that you were shaking when you were trying to shoot a gun.”
“It isn’t like that.”
Ian turned his gaze away.
The man who was facing him, Baek Hanho, burst out laughing. He wore an improved hanbok, but his hair had pomade in it, and he was wearing an expensive watch. He sipped the coffee that Ian brought and muttered, “Ehh, I can’t drink this.”
"Coffee was originally this bitter.”
"Life isn’t like that either.”
Baek Hanho spoke once again before gulping down the coffee. Baek Hanho tilted his head upwards and laughed after drinking all of it.
"You finished it.”
"Didn’t you say that coffee is originally this bitter?”
Baek Hanho laughed and stroked his chin. Then he continued, "I know that coffee is originally bitter water. That’s why I was afraid.”
"I hate it when you speak in zen riddles.”
"You are a coward.”
Ian's face wrinkled again.
Then Baek Hanho said, "Take a look at your sister, Yiyu. Isn’t she someone who grew up alone? Now her brother won’t even play a game with her. Tsk tsk.”
"I’m only joking, but you should seriously consider my words.”
Ian held his chin and started thinking.
Suddenly, the door opened and the notification bell was heard.
There were two people, one tugging at the other. They were both girls, the sound of their high heels heard by the entire cafe as they entered. Their words came out in an unstable tone. In all likelihood, they were the last customers of the day.
Ian automatically checked everything about them, his habits from the battlefield obviously still following him. He heard their voices.
"In regards to Elder Lord, I managed to level up due to Oppa helping me. What about you?”
“Wah...I’m envious. He changed yesterday. How irritating.”
"That pig suddenly touched my butt...I have truly bad luck.”
“What did you do? Did you report it? Why would he do that? Really?”
Ian’s eyes shook as he heard the conversation. Hanho placed a cookie in his mouth. Then he said to Ian,
“Hum hum. In fact, I am quite far in Elder Lord...”
Then he paused as he saw Ian’s eyes.
“What is it?”
"Elder Lord, how do I connect to it?”
"Have you changed your mind?”
Thus, Ian started the game to defend his sister.
Huge trees and lush foliage covered the sky. The sunshine pouring through the gaps disturbed his eyes. He stepped on soft soil. He could smell the forest, hear the cries of the birds and saw insects crawling around.
Ian was flustered.
“This...is a game?”
It couldn’t be. It was a reality. However, the message windows that surfaced before him said that this was a game.
[Welcome to Elder Lord.]
[Please check your status window.]
[Your starting point is Orcrox Fortress. Good luck.]
The message windows disappeared once Ian checked them. Once again, the lush forest that seemed like reality stretched out before him. Ian idly wandered and saw a puddle. A small squirrel that was sipping water fled when it saw Ian.
Ian confirmed his appearance in the water. He was a huge monster with green skin and huge tusks protruding from his rough face.
Ian, Novice Orc.
Achievement Points: 0
Orc’s Strength (Common)
Orc’s Recovery (Common)
He was an orc.
The users could select from the following list of species: the humans, elves, dark elves, dwarves, gnomes, and the orcs. Unlike the other species that had an appearance similar to humans, the orcs looked like an in-game monster. Their appearance couldn’t even be customized like humans.
Therefore, Ian chose it. The reason was simple: he wanted to surprise Yiyu.
However, when he opened his hands and checked his green skin and thick fingers, he felt uncomfortable, as if his soul was occupying the body of another being. The weight and center of this body was different from reality. It seemed like time was required to become more familiar with this body.
Sometimes animals would discover Ian and run away. Ian chased after them and dived in pursuit. He managed to grab a rabbit.
This body was heavy, but fast. The density of its muscles was different from humans. This was a strong orc.
Ian looked at the spires of the castle that were rising above the trees in the distance.
‘The cradle of the orc warriors, Orcrox Fortress.’
It seemed like he needed to go there. Ian walked in the direction of Orcrox Fortress and disappeared into the forest.
After Ian left this place, a new player appeared out of thin air. He also looked around like it was his first connection.
"Ohh, this is Elder Lord? Really? Doesn’t it look like the real thing? This is a virtual reality game.”
“Let's see... Put it in the ear... I do this...”
"Uh, I've connected. What do I do? Species? Orc. A man should be an orc... What? Do it again?”
“What? Wasn’t it in the introduction of the game? Why is an orc an error? A species that the game manufacturers accidentally opened? A dog-like species? The orcs of Elder Lord are too weak? People don’t choose them as a species? There is no one? None? Really none?”
"They all reset before level 5? No... Yes, you what?”
"Are you trying to be vicious to the NPCs, like a villain who steps on the underpaid contract workers below you? It is okay since this is a game? Users are much better than NPCs? Puhahaha. I understand.”
“Understood. Then, I will be a human. I’ll say it again, it is a lot of effort.”
[TL Note: The end is purposely meant to be confusing as the user is having a conversation with a person that we can’t hear the other side of. It will be revealed eventually.]
I have a Glossary of Common Korean Terms for any unfamiliar honourifics or other Korean elements that you might be unfamiliar with.
My editor Superposhposh also created a glossary to keep track of everything. Currently it is up to chapter 5 so be careful of spoilers. Glossary Link.
Current schedule: 2 chapters a day.
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