Chapter 28. Central Island (1)
Hansoo looked at the Central Island that he could see afar from the boat.
An island that was huge even in comparison to other islands.
“You’re always out of the expectation. Heehee. Don’t worry. We don’t spread things like this around.”
The fairy looked at the needle on Hansoo’s hand which was still dripping of blood as Hansoo looked at the Fairy expressionlessly.
Killing humans wasn’t comfortable even if they were going to die anyway and he was just sending them off in a more comfortable way after judging that leaving them alive would be more painful for them.
But he had no thoughts of hesitating if it was necessary and didn’t interfere with his plans.
Since he hadn’t come to play hero.
The fairy might have gotten awkward as Hansoo stared at it expressionlessly as it shrugged it’s shoulders and started to explain.
“Welcome to the Central Island. You are the last person. We will start now”
And at that moment, everybody who was on the landing area teleported into one place.
Everybody looked around.
A giant castle.
Thousands of people were looking around after being teleported high above the walls.
And soon the fairy which had appeared above their heads started to explain the situation.
“Hello, 1912 participants in the Central Island. I guess I need to explain three things first basically. There are three things of utmost importance on this island. Castle. Demon Lord’s Castle and Underground Dungeon.”
Everyone made a bitter expression at those words
There was only the underground dungeon marked on the island maps.
The underground dungeon of the central island was filled with beasts with good rewards and that they could get strong and armed quickly.
And that was why everyone had used three tickets in order to come to the central island.
The castle they were standing on was one thing, but what was the demon castle.
The fairy laughed as it continued to speak.
“My explanation was a bit lacking but these aren’t lies. Can you see the castle afar?”
At those words everybody above the castle looked at something on the edge of the island.
It was an island but it was so big that they had to focus really hard with their eyes in order to see and figure out that it was a castle.
“That is the Demon Lord’s Castle which is your final destination. Well you would all die if a real Demon lord were to come out so we specially prepared a weaker version of the demon lord for you instead.
‘A Demon Lord…’
He thought of the thing that would be causing a massacre against the other races on the 7th level of the Abyss.
If that thing did really come here then everyone would’ve been killed off just from a simple breath.
The people here, including Hansoo, were not of the level to kill it even if it was a weaker version.
“The Demon army is largely separated into the demons and undeads. The demons are the ones that give bountiful rewards that you think of. But the undead do not give anything. No item, no rune no anything.
The fairy rested for a moment and then continued to explain.
“And the castle is where you guys are at. There is 1 month. If you can withstand the attack of the Demon Lord and protect the crystal in the center of the castle you will win. You can also win by just taking over the Demon Lord’s Castle.”
Everyone made a bitter face at these words.
Since they could see the swarming armies on the way to the Demon Lord’s Castle at a glance.
When would they have the time to break through them.
It was obvious that defense was easier than offense.
“And finally, I should explain the underground dungeon. You can see multiple entrances on the insides of the castle right?”
Everyone nodded as they looked towards the inner parts of the castle.
There were multitudes of suspicious looking dungeon entrances located in numerous places.
There were entrances on the castle walls and even entrances in the drill hall.
“These are the same as the underground dungeons that you know of. If you hunt in there then the runes will drop like flies and artifacts will drop as well as you knew”
And then the fairy talked about colorless runes and artifacts.
And then everybody’s expression changed.
A lot had happened but it had only been 10 days since they came here.
They had become stronger physically but they only at a knife at most as a weapon.
But a chance to earn higher runes and artifacts.
The fairy persuades them to go into the dungeons asap in order to become stronger.
‘That damnable thing’
Since he knew what would happen if things went on like this
“Now. You will need a tutorial right? Since it’s only the first day there’ll only be about three attacks. There also won’t be any demons. Start!”
And soon a large amount of skeletons started rising up at a scary rate outside the castle with clacking sounds.
“Damnit… Isn’t that a weak mob that we fought around level 1?”
A person mumbled atop the castle walls.
The skeletons with blue fire burning in their eye sockets or the ghouls who were screaming out terrifying roars were not weak mobs in anybody’s eyes.
No, they were actually armed better than themselves who only had a sword at most.
Since they were even wearing armors.
And soon the undead who had formed a battle line started to charge towards the castle door and the castle walls.
And soon the adventures and the undead started to clash with a fearsome energy.
One of the Lords spoke with a fatigued expression.
There were a few Lords between adventurers.
The Lords had armed their forces and came into the Central island by getting three tickets in order to recruit stronger people.
There were 12 clans and Lords gathered in the Central Island.
They weren’t even half of the two thousand people here but it was enough to speak out with power.
Since the other adventures didn’t even have anything driving them.
But there were expressions of fatigue on the faces of 12 Lords after the defense had ended.
‘Damn…It’s really gruesome’
The owner of the symbol on Jimin, Yerin, grinded her teeth.
The attack continued for an hour, then they were given a three hour break only to continue fighting for another hour.
This had repeated three times.
When they first fought, about 30 didn’t fight so about 1900 people fought above the castle walls.
1500 fought during the second time above the castle walls.
There were only 700 people left above the castle walls during the final fight.
And thanks to that the castle was almost invaded by a mere tutorial attack.
‘Those damnable bastards…’
It wasn’t that they had died or got injured.
At first only 30 people had escaped.
The 30 people who had discreetly went below came back completely different after fighting two to three hours.
They had gained a large amount of runes and artifacts in that short moment.
The fairy did not lie to them.
Hunting in the underground provided a way for them to improve very fast.
The problem was after that.
After seeing the 30 people get strong, people who were defending the castle walls had gotten jealous.
The undead who were charging at them didn’t drop any runes nor artifacts.
So they realized after one defending wave.
That they couldn’t get strong defending the castle walls.
And at that moment around 400 people left.
They couldn’t even control them.
Since the entrance to the underground dungeon was everywhere, they just simply escaped during the chaos of the battle.
But it was fine to this point.
Since the conscious that the undead’s attack was threatening and that they needed to protect the castle was still alive.
The problem was the third wave.
The thirty who had entered the dungeon while the others had become a mess whilst defending had come out with a complete makeover.
They had fought relatively safely and collected a large amount of runes and artifacts. And the might of these artifacts were indeed very strong.
The people who were below the Lord received the symbols because they naturally had good teamwork and good potential.
They were a level above the others in terms of skill.
But this gap was closed within a few hours.
And the 400 people who had entered whilst ignoring the second wave had also come out stronger.
And this had made people anxious.
They couldn’t become strong if they didn’t enter the dungeon.
So the people who had become anxious all left during the final wave and then the people left above with good consciences were just barely able to defend the wave.
The first day. Despite it being the tutorial.
They couldn’t even imagine how they would defend starting tomorrow.
‘Damn..Now it’s hard to control them’
The people who had entered first got well along with each other so they got together to create a laughable group called <Semi-Basement Union>.
If their name was at least cool then it might’ve been less infuriating but it made them even madder.
And people who had escaped the defense line had been gathering under that group.
They had solved their guiltiness of betraying their comrades and going to the dungeon for their own benefit by grouping together.
They would be treated as traitors around the defenders but there was nothing to be embarrassed about when they grouped with others who had done the same thing.
And thanks to this the Semi-Basement Union had become as strong as the twelve clans combined.
And the root of the problem was that the twelve Lords thought they had to defend the castle and had not entered the dungeon.
They had to hunt in turns even if they had to defend a little harder.
They had focused on defending because they didn’t think that the gap would be closed in a day like this but the effect of hunting in the underground dungeon was beyond their imagination.
And they had even created justification.
— In order to defend against the undead’s attacks then you must become stronger below.
And this justification had been excusing away the guilt that the Semi-Basement Union and the others had been feeling.
Yerin’s beautiful face crumpled.
The justification was good.
And she approved of it.
They couldn’t just defend in order to defend this castle.
They had to rotate between defending and attacking.
If they improve too much than they would invaded due to the weak defense and if they defend too much than they would get overwhelmed by the forces getting stronger and stronger.
But when would they actually come out?
The people were now setting camps in front of the dungeons and were going back and forth.
And they were acting like this while their powers were around the same level.
If their strength increased than they could see what would happen very clearly,
‘Damn… How do we solve this.’
While the Lords were racking their brains like this a commotion was going on below.
“This bitch! It’s a hero of justice really!”
They had poked their heads outside the windows with confused looks.
Seonghoon, one of the original members of the group, shouted aggressively.
A change starting from tomorrow.
What was this nonsense?
Hansoo nodded at those words.
“Yeah. Since we played our fill today, we need to start earning for our own food starting tomorrow. The people who had been defending shall go into the dungeons tomorrow”
“…You damnable fellow”
Seunghoon grinded his teeth.
He was one of the 30 people who had first entered the dungeon.
Why was he acting kind after he had started the whole thing.
And then Koonjin, who had been standing in the back, spoke as he walked out.
“Calm down. We aren’t saying that we won’t go out. If we hunt for two more days then we can defend it properly after getting stronger. We can trade then. Let’s not fight between ourselves”
Hansoo smirked at those words.
By then the Lord clans would have become a huge mess.
‘That’s why it’s difficult’
Then there was no reason to splitting it perfectly like this.
“Dismissed. Starting tomorrow, everyone will go up to fight”
Gukjin crumped his expression at those words.
‘This guy had some guts…’
The reason why Gukjin had stopped the fight was because he felt that Hansoo was still very useful.
Since he had been advancing in the dungeon with that weird psychic powers.
They couldn’t have become that strong by themselves.
But the situation was now different.
“You were definitely stronger before but… if you come out like this then things might become difficult”
Gukjin looked at Hansoo coldly.
They all had one or two colorless runes originally.
And from today’s hunt they had all accomplished in getting over 2 new colorless runes.
And a few people succeeded in making colorless runes for strength, stamina, agility and perception.
And because of this they knew.
Their colorless perception runes told them clearly.
That that guy only had strength colorless runes.
Hansoo chuckled as he touched his ear.
[Kang Hansoo] Strength(Colorless): 0.03%
Physical Resistance: 85
Magic Resistance: 85.3
‘Of course I can’t win like this’
There was a huge different between one and four colorless runes.
And there were even differences in numbers too.
Hansoo looked around at the thirty people around him.
He didn’t like to interfere but they had to at least work their worth.
If the people here who only cared about self gain went crazy then the castle will get destroyed.
“You won’t listen if I just talk right?”
Hansoo smirked as he put a cloud snack in his mouth.
‘There’s a lot to do in order to destroy the Demon Lord’s Castle in one month, I need to do things properly in the beginning’
They needed to work non stop for the whole month.
And even then it was just a possibility.
The difficulty of the Demon Lord’s Castle was that high and because of this it was necessary to clear it.
Since that’s the only way to challenge the final dungeon.
This was something that even Mad Monarch couldn’t clear, he just went up after defending fervently.
There was only one person whom he knew that had cleared it.
‘Eres. Well I won’t be able to clear like you but…’
As long as you reach the destination, that’s all that mattered.
Hansoo, who had inhaled the smoke, looked around as he laughed coldly.