The Hero Returns

Chapter 24



Chapter 24: Chapter 24


At that moment, Su-hyeun’s new form had disappeared.


Caw—?


The Gorger Ravens, which momentarily lost their target, glanced around left and right in search of him.


Stab—


Su-hyeun’s strong hand grasped the Gorger Raven’s wing tightly to prevent further movement.


“Firstly…”


Kyaaaa—!


As the Gorger Raven’s wings were broken, it lost its sense of direction.


Caw—!


“One wing.”


Su-hyeun, who had his fist in the air, slammed straight down onto the raven’s back.


The raven’s wing, which has already been broken, could not overcome the force and fell to the ground.


Swick—


Su-hyeun stepped on the falling Gorger Raven’s back and leapt into the air.


The only monster that could fly in the air was the Gorger Raven.


The other monsters were on the ground.


Taking the lead, Lee Ju-ho pulled out his sword and blocked the incoming monsters while Ahn Min-seok shielded the others by swinging the knuckles on his fist. The long distant support members went on an attack spree on the monsters. They were all fighting well in their allocated positions.


<>


True, one would have to struggle from the start and have to paint the remaining picture accordingly.


Now, all that was left was for them to color the picture. Su-hyeun trusted that they would be able to do their part.


<>


There was no way he could support the fight upfront right now. They didn’t seem to be in danger either.


Su-hyeun went to the monsters’ rear. The eleven monsters quickly fell apart, unable to withstand the simultaneous attacks.


Rip—!


The thick spider’s abdomen was slashed in half, and green blood spilled out.


As if a habit, Su-hyeun shook off the blood on his sword after he got rid of the last of the monsters. They had defended three rounds of attacks up until now.


After the first round of attack, they were given 10 minutes of rest. Following that, the monsters’ attacks continued. With this pattern, the members were able to defend themselves from the monsters.


<>


The exhausted Lee Ju-ho looked at the relaxed Su-hyeun who was wiping his sword, unlike the rest of the group.


<>


The opponents were never easy. The number of monsters entering through the door was increasing. Furthermore, the monsters’ levels weren’t decreasing, taking a toll on everyone physically and mentally.


In fact, the others were sitting in a corner without any words. Their mana had also reached their lowest points.


<>


Throughout the battle, Lee Ju-ho looked at Su-hyeun as if he were bewitched.


<>


Though he had that feeling before the trial started, Lee Ju-ho always felt amazed at Su-hyeun’s fighting. It wasn’t because of his high magic level, outstanding stats, or a wide variety of skills. Such things were irrelevant.


It was purely his fighting ability.


Su-hyeun knew how to utilize his physical abilities and made use of them to fight to his advantage. In fact, it was as if he were showing others how to use the 100 percent potential in their own physical and magical abilities.


“Isn’t it embarrassing?” Kim Ba-reun spoke, walking up to Lee Ju-ho and plopped down next to him.


Kim Ba-reun was looking at Su-hyeun as well.


“Really… wondering if that guy is really a C-rank awakener like me.”


“That could be the truth since there wasn’t much of a difference between both of your magical skills.”


“Really? Then what do you think sets us apart?”


“Do I really have to say it out loud?”


It was a question not worth even thinking about.


“Just… It’s just a gift.”


Not everyone was able to have such fighting skills. Even Lee Ju-ho, who had joined countless dungeon attacks, could not yet imitate such fights.


“A gift…”


“Why? Are you jealous?”


“What about you? Don’t you feel so?”


“Well, a little.” Lee Ju-ho muttered after letting out a deep sigh. “Instead of jealous… I’m more envious.” Jealousy was a feeling that one would experience when the shoe fit. Now, Lee Ju-ho just felt envious of Su-hyeun, who had such gifts.


“Hey.”


“What is it?”


“After this dungeon attack ends… I’m considering climbing the tower.”


Kim Ba-reun was shocked at Lee Ju-ho’s words. “Are you for real?”


“Why are you so surprised?”


“Wait, isn’t it obvious? You were just thinking that it’s a joke to be climbing the towers a few days back.”


“Right. I did say that.” Lee Ju-ho looked at Su-hyeun with a bright face.


“Honestly… I was conceited.”


<<“You really don’t wish to climb up any further?”


A long time ago, when Kim Ba-reun had asked him the same question, Lee Ju-ho replied with a sneer.


“It’s enough at this point. What’s there to risk your life for by going further?”


“Hey, but if we continue going up…”


“Forget it, it’s enough. This is just nice.”>>


He really was conceited.


He understood now. The real thing existed separately, and it wasn’t too far. And now, he wasn’t close to being strong enough.


“I must thank that friend when we get out of here. If it weren’t for him, we would have all been dead… I wouldn’t be able to stay sane, too.”


He was grateful to Su-hyeun. He felt his mind clearing up a bit. He couldn’t see the need to climb up the tower any further before, but now he was given a new motivation and determination to do so.


“Hmm…”


Kim Ba-reun placed his chin on top of his knees and asked, “Could it be real?”


Lee Ju-ho turned around, ignoring Kim Ba-reun’s question and asked, “Really?”


“I meant Kim Su-hyeun.”


“…Ah, are you talking about that again?” Lee Ju-ho turned once more and looked at Su-hyeun. Su-hyeun was sitting against the wall and resting up.


“I had thought that he wasn’t the one at first.”


He was certain.


A mere C-rank awakener. The gap was too wide for the Su-hyeun who stood before them to be the heavily rumored Kim Su-hyeun. But after witnessing his abilities, his thoughts had changed.


Maybe… They could be the same person.


<>


A sudden question flashed across his mind.


How could he only be a mere C-rank awakener while having such abilities?


If one had climbed the Tower of Trials for a year with those abilities and had accumulated an extraordinary amount of achievement points, his level must have been way above that.


<>


But it was hard to imagine that two awakeners of the same name would have the same characteristics. It was unlikely that such coincidence existed.


<>


Lee Ju-ho shook his head clear.


Such complicated thoughts would only affect his rest time. Survival was of utmost importance now.


“Ha, ha—.”


“Huff. Huff—.”


Lee Eun-mi and Ahn Min-seok took deep breaths while looking down at the blood on the floor.


It was crazily exhausting.


“Now… how many rounds are we left with?”


“Ah, it should be the last round now.”


Both of them were unable to reply immediately, as they seemed to be quite exhausted. The other members were almost the same.


Su-hyeun was alarmed that most of them were too exhausted to speak.


<>


They had successfully defended nine rounds of attacks.


Monsters’ corpses were piling up on the ground, and the members were both physically and mentally exhausted. More than anything else, the number of monsters pouring out from that door was increasing.


<>


Lee Ju-ho was probably the only one with quite a bit of stamina left. As a powerful awakener, he had better physical abilities and skills compared to the rest of the party.


<>


As if exhausted, Su-hyeun too sat against the wall and looked around at the other members.


<>


When the rest had collapsed and were exhausted, Su-hyeun found the only one who was moving.


<>


Stomp, stomp—


There wasn’t much time left until the last attack.


Beyond the door, noise could be heard as the monsters kept banging against the door.


Slide—


She slowly approached the door. As she came closer, the monsters’ cries and anger could be heard much more clearly.


<>


The monsters would rush out from there.


A nervous moment.


She reached her hands out. She grabbed the doorknob and picked up the key was that hanging there.


Until now, no one else had spotted her actions.


<>


Though it was a little disturbing, it wasn’t tough.


It was a skill that was not obtainable through stores, but through the trials: Invisibility.


It was a skill that had yet to be revealed until now.


Although B-rank awakener Lee Ju-ho had a good chance of getting caught with invisibility, she had waited until everyone was exhausted.


Even Lee Ju-ho, too, was too exhausted to recognize her existence.


<>


Creak—


She placed the key into the lock. At that moment, a voice could be heard from behind.


“There, over there!”


It was too late.


Click—


The key turned, and the door that had been obstructing the monsters’ way started to open slowly.


[A minute later, the monsters will rush out.]


[The door behind has opened. Escape to survive.]


Great, it’s done.


“Well done.”


“…?”


She turned around at the voice that spoke. A familiar face came up close to him.


It was Su-hyeun.


“H, how…”


No, there wasn’t time for that.


Soon, she left her position and escaped quickly.


Flick—


“What do you mean, how.”


Clack—!


Su-hyeun grabbed Kim Ye-eun’s neck quickly. Before she knew it, she had passed by him.


“Cough!”


Kim Ye-eun’s eyes widened.


She could not understand what was happening around her.


‘Just… how…’


A rare skill, invisibility, which she had obtained by luck through passing a trial.


She was now in the state of invisibility, transparent to the naked eyes of others.


It was the effect of the invisibility skill that killed her existence and made her transparent within a specific range.


Unless it was under normal circumstances, now the members were all exhausted, and she had thought she could completely kill her existence. The right time was now.


‘How did he find me?’


No, before that…


‘Just when, was he behind me?’


“Cough, cough!”


An incomprehensible situation.


Just as she had opened the door with the key, Su-hyeun approached her from behind.


No, he didn’t approach her.


‘No way… He waited until I opened the door…’


But why?


“I wondered when you would make your move.”


Slam—!


Su-hyeun grabbed her neck and plummeted her on the ground.


Kim Ye-eun felt pain rushing throughout her bones as she was forced into the ground.


Her questions still remain unsolved.


‘Did… he knew everything?’


It was as if he was waiting for her to make her move.


He knew of her existence. Even so, he had been waiting for her.


‘But why?’


He could have stopped her from opening the door.


‘Moreover, he told me earlier that I had done well…’


Confusion, fear, and questions were tangled up in her mind. She could not escape from Su-hyeun’s firm grip.


“Was this a test from the Dump Guild?”


Kim Ye-eun’s eyes widened in shock once more at Su-hyeun’s whispers.


Su-hyeun’s mouth twisted at her reaction. It was a look of displeasure and contempt.


Dump, a guild that was created and meant for the criminals who were abandoned.


It was a group that Su-hyeun had despised and detested the most.


“I was just guessing… But it seems that I’m right.”


“W… wait…”


“What do you mean wait?”


Grind, grind—


As Su-hyeun added strength in his grip, Kim Ye-eun’s neck began to break.


“In fact, I had intended to kill you even if it wasn’t the truth.”



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