Chapter 308 – Germane (1)
Translated by : betterdays
* * *
Teresa looked as if she could not possibly comprehend Lee Sungmin’s rejection.
Teresa asked in a confused voice.
“The things that are inside of you, one day you will surely kill you. Or make you not you anymore.”
Lee Sungmin was also well aware of the danger. Especially the so-called ‘poison’ that was inside of his body.
That poison was in reference to the magical energy absorbed inside of his body from the fear from the City of Endless Night that gave birth to the monstrous entity inside of his consciousness.
Although it may not be the same case as the Black Heart or the wandering soul that was referred to, which was Heoju, the power that was spreading within his body was indeed like poison to Lee Sungmin.
Oslo’s seal was not complete. Even if he was to suppress it temporarily, it would surely explode one day. Oslo had warned him several times.
It would not feel safe even if he suppressed the ‘poison’ right now through Teresa’s purification. He had to find a way to completely remove it from his body, not just suppress it,
Purification was a way that did completely heal it and remove it, but it would also remove the other things inside of his body like the Black Heart and Draconic Mana.
“The powers that are mixed up inside my body… I mean, can you purify only the poison that has spread throughout my body and not the mixed energies?”
“That’s… impossible. It purifies all the impurities in your body. It’s impossible to just pick out the poison and purify it’”
“Okay, then I will have to pass up on your offer. Sorry.”
Lee Sungmin knew it was a chance that would not come again. The Black Heart? He had benefited a lot from it so far. It was thanks to the Black Heart that he was able to inherit the power of his master and survive several life and death crises up until this point.
It had given him a new ceiling and room to become stronger, to move forward. Lee Sungmin would not have the power to grow stronger… enough power to stop the Apocalypse from happening if he did not inherit Sima Ryunju’s power through the Black Heart.
“I don’t want to be powerless ever again.”
That was not the only reason he had refused
Lee Sungmin did not want Heoju, the wandering soul inside of his body, to ever leave if he could help it. The purification would get rid of Heoju, and Lee Sungmin honestly did not know what he would ever do without Heoju at this point.
When Lee Sungmin had first met Heoju, he had wanted nothing but to get rid of him as soon as possible. Instead of those feelings of hatred and annoyance, Lee Sungmin now didn’t know if he could possibly function if he did not have Heoju’s grounding presence that had been with him through thick and thin.
Heoju was Lee Sungmin’s companion, colleague, and friend.
Also, in a sense, he was like a teacher or master to Lee Sungmin.
[What were you thinking about in the past? Putting me in a pile of horse shit? You really are the most ungrateful bastard I know!]
Heoju grumbled. Teresa nodded her head slowly as she came to terms with Lee Sungmin’s answer.
“If you ever change your mind, please let me know.”
“It probably won’t happen.”
“You don’t know what’s going on in your body. Ghost Spear, it…… it’s very dangerous. What’s inside your body is nothing but chaos, and if it explodes, your existence will not be able to withstand it and will be completely erased. And then what will you have in the end when that happens?
“I know that it’s certainly a possibility. I’m not that foolish.”
Lee Sungmin’s lips slowly curled up.
“But that doesn’t matter to me because it will be just crippling me in the end.”
“Do you really want to live with that kind of danger in your body?”
“I do. In the end, I need it more than anything if I want to continue.”
It was not something he wanted to lose.
Heoju and the Black Heart were completely necessary for him. The monstrous entity inside of him was a pain, but it also gave him a certain amount of power as well.
Lee Sungmin could not imagine how weak he would be if any of those things were missing.
If he didn’t have even one of them, he would not have become as powerful as he had in this life.
These things were nothing but byproducts of his luck, and he did not want to take them for granted. They made him what he was today.
Even if this was already predetermined with fate, he needed to keep these powers now.
“Let’s not forget the problem at hand here.”
Abel stepped in.
“What are the measures against Kim Jonghyun?”
* * *
“What are you going to do?”
After the conversation with Teresa, Lee Sungmin returned to Abel and the carriage they originally rode. They had already decided their next course of action.
Lee Sungmin and Abel, would assist the church and decided to attack Kim Jonghyun, who was occupying Germane with the army of Death Knights.
“Don’t worry, this much will be of some help.”
Abel, who returned to the carriage, immediately bit down on his pipe as he replied.
“Teresa doesn’t seem to know about the Apocalypse, but I’m not sure if it’s the case with the entirety of the Holy Church. Even if they did, they have no reason to step down from attacking Kim Jonghyun.”
“Are there going to be any other reinforcements?”
“It’ll be hard to get any kind of immediate help. Even with all the several tribes and monsters down here, do you really think they would want to help? We are entirely different kinds of creatures.”
“What about the Wizard Guild?”
“Don’t expect too much. It’s too far. Even if I order a call-to-arms as the Guild Master, it will take months for the Magic Tower Masters and Magic Corps to arrive here. Or are you going to use the Pegasus to move them back and forth?”
“Is it possible if I can do that?”
“It won’t be possible. Just because you can cut the distance down to nothing, doesn’t mean you can move them in this situation. In addition, continuous space leap puts a strain on your own consciousness, does it not?”
Abel grumbled and puffed out a long exhale of smoke from his pipe.
“I didn’t expect to have a numerical advantage over Kim Jonghyun. He’s a Necromancer and also is equipped with the most powerful legion of Death Knights in all of Eria.”
They had heard quite well how determined Teresa and the Holy Church were. That was why the Holy Church was the sole exception to the forces that could move as they were already determined to stop Kim Jonghyun for his massacres in the North and South.
Because of this, Teresa, who had never been publicly revealed, stepped forward, and hundreds of Paladins, Holy Knights and Priests were mobilized.
“We have thousands at most.”
But Abel’s answer was cold.
“What we can expect is a face-off between holy power and dark magic. But do you really think that holy power can make up the difference of ten thousand troops?”
“No it can’t.”
Lee Sungmin replied with a calm expression. It might have been possible if his master, Sima Ryunju was still alive. His overwhelming martial arts could have made numbers like these absolutely meaningless. However, Sima Ryunju was dead and there was nothing that could bring him back.
That was why Lee Sungmin knew. He knew that if his master was dead, he had to step up in his place and make up the difference.
“Are you going to run away from it then?”
Abel shook his head.
“We can stop Kim Jonghyun.”
Abel’s voice was unshakable in his conviction when he said so. In terms of troop size, Kim Jonghyun had ten times the numbers of them. Not only did Kim Jonghyun inherit all of Arbeth’s knowledge and mana, but he also became a half-devil and could use demonic energy. Since the Grimoire was a magical artifact that was written in the native demon language, Kim Jonghyun was now able to use its transcendent magical content as well.
“You can ignore the undead and ghouls that are merely just used for numbers and numbers alone. They can’t fight properly since their bodies are rotting and were used from the corpses of innocent civilians. The Death Knights will be stopped by Paladins of the Holy Church, and you will be the one to take on Volander.”
“What about you?”
“I’m going to stop Kim Jonghyun.”
Abel followed up quickly as he noticed Lee Sungmin’s eyebrows raise upwards.
“I’m not like you.”
Abel searched the inside of his robe as he spoke and took out his subspace pocket. Reaching his hand inside, Abel pulled out a small magic crystal.
“But you never know, I might have to ask for some help.”
“An old friend.”
It just so happened that Abel’s friend was in the South. Abel put his hands on the magic crystal ball.
Four days later, the carriage Lee Sungmin and Abel rode, stopped at the outskirts of Germane. There were quite a lot of people gathered outside the Necropolis’ outskirts, preparing to wage war.
At first glance, the numbers of humans reached thousands. It was more than both Abel and Lee Sungmin had expected to gather.
The massacre and rise of an entire large city had scared many people away, but not everyone had turned their backs to run away in fear.
Those who were prepared to risk their lives in order to stop the mad reign of Kim Jonghyun had gathered with resolve.
Abel and Lee Sungmin sat on the carriage and looked outside. They could see several Holy Knights, Priests and even a few of the Paladins gathered from groups outside of Teresa’s expedition force. In addition to them, there were several mercenaries and indigenous members of the local tribes gathered as well.
(T/N : So Paladins are basically the eite holy knights from what I can tell)
[There’s even some monsters too.]
Heoju muttered as he noticed that it was not just the humans and tribes folk that had gathered.
‘Did they come to stop Kim Jonghyun?’
[That’s a very optimistic idea. The reason why the monsters came here may be just to pick up the remnants of fear and consume it to grow stronger like picking cherries. This level of carnage is unprecedented. That City has already become the epitome of hell on earth. If you’re a monster that is desperate for power, there’s no way this kind of thing would not attract you.]
[Do you understand what this means?]
Heoju clicked his tongue.
[It won’t be a very good battlefield for you. Even if it’s sealed, breathing in the air of the city that is densely populated with the remnants of fear, will stimulate those suppressed urges.]
‘But I can’t run away.’
[You don’t want to run away here because of what? Your pride? Like this old man said last time, you’re different from your former master, Sima Ryunju…….]
‘That’s not why.’
Heoju stopped talking at Lee Sungmin’s words.
‘If I was my master, I wouldn’t have run away. But yes, I also know I am not my master. I can run away if I choose to…. But I don’t want to. I wouldn’t have done that if I were a.It’s not pride or anything like that. I don’t have a choice. If Kim Jonghyun is one of the Catastrophes that brings forth the Apocalypse, then I have to stop him.’
[You think that’s your role? Since you brought forth the Apocalypse ahead of its designated time, you are thinking of taking responsibility for it? Is that what it is?]
‘No, I’m not that selfless. It’s simple. It’s because I just don’t want to die, duh.’
Heoju grinned at the answer.
‘So what if I’m different and have gained power- more power than I could have possibly imagined in my previous life? What’s the difference, if in the end, I just die? I’m not going to just go fuck off in a corner, I want to live.’
[I’m glad you’re honest with yourself…. huhuhu!]
Heoju’s laughter grew louder.
“What about the friend you’re supposed to meet?”
“He’ll be here soon.”
Abel replied, caressing the crystal ball on his lap.
As for the identity of this ‘friend’, Abel didn’t say much on the matter. All he said. was that they would be helpful.
Someone approached the carriage. Abel grumbled and put the crystal ball back into his pocket space.
Lee Sungmin’s eyes widened as he looked out the window at the person approaching.
There was a woman who was walking towards them with a face full of irritation and a man following behind her with his head down.
Both of these people were people Lee Sungmin had already met.
It was Frau and Aladdur.
In the past, when Lee Sungmin came down south to solve the problem of Wijihoyeon’s curse, he had met Aladdur, who was the guide to the party from the Five Great Families.
Somehow, after saving Aladdur’s life, he had also introduced Lee Sungmin to his teacher, Frau.
The door of the carriage opened violently. Frau, who banged the door open as if she was trying to rip it off of its hinges, peeked her head inside and stepped in.
Frau’s gaze immediately settled on Abel, who was sitting on one side of the carriage.
“You son of a bitch.”
Frau couldn’t stand the sight of him for some reason and uttered abusive language. After shooting an intense glare at Abel, Frau’s eyes naturally turned towards Lee Sungmin.
“……why are you here?”
“Long time no see.”
After the death of the Crazy Heavenly Demon, Lee Sungmin left the South and had not talked or seen Frau since. It had been about two years since then.
It may not have been a short amount of time, but Frau remembered Lee Sungmin.
“If I knew you’d be here, I would have told Yana.”
Frau sat next to Lee Sungmin, muttering to herself. Aladdur stood in front of the entrance of the carriage with his shoulders drooping.
As Aladdur tried to come in, Frau spat at him and yelled in annoyance.
“Why do you think you are going, you son of a bitch? Stand in front of the carriage!”
Aladdur replied in a depressed voice. Lee Sungmin felt a little pity for Aladdur’s appearance, but he could not even say hello to him because the door of the carriage was slammed shut.
“Was that friend of yours, Frau?”
“I didn’t know you knew each other.”
“Friends? Friends are a dumb fucking term to describe our relationship. Do you think friends are just people who come out on a whim like this to hear you invite them to a death trap?
“If you didn’t like it, you would have just rejected my call.”
“I’m crazy. Why did I ever make an oath with you in the first place?”
Frau gritted her teeth as Abel chuckledl. There must have been some kind of agreement or deal prior to now that made the circumstances as such, Lee Sungmin thought. An Oath sworn to contract as mana was held collateral, was no different than offering your life as it could not be revoked.
“I can’t force you to do anything here, but if you want to get rid of that Oath, then of course it would make sense for you to listen to my request. With the Saint of the Holy Church and both the Holy Knights and Paladins on the move this time, we should stand a good chance. That’s because with your skills as an Arch-Sorcerer, and my skills as a Wizard… there’s not much left to be desired. And of course we can’t forget him here.”
Abel turned his gaze and nodded to Lee Sungmin as Frau followed.
“He’s one of the strongest martial artists in the entire world right now.”
At Abel’s words, Frau suddenly shouted out Aladdur’s name in the spur of the moment. Then the door of the carriage opened gently and Aladdur quietly stepped inside with complete servility.
“What’s the matter, ma’am?…AGH!”
Aladdur’s words could not be finished as Frau immediately spit in Aladdur’s face out of anger.
“That’s enough. Get out again.”
Aladdur wiped the spit off his face and cried. Abel was dumbfounded at Frau’s actions, as was Lee Sungmin, so he asked.
“What are you doing?”
“He is taking his punishment obviously.”
“So you treat your only disciple… like shit?”
“He’s the one who ran away because he didn’t want to follow my orders and then begged me to take him back in. He’s good for letting me vent my anger.”
Frau grumbled and fixed the positions of the bracelets on her wrist.
Frau’s eyes narrowed.
“I don’t know what’s going on in that city, but it’s anything but normal. I think it would just be better if I took my disciple and left before things get messy, don’t you think?”
“No, you can’t do that.”
Abel immediately cut off Frau’s suggestive comments. He put his hand on the Weiss and continued.
“Kim Jonghyun is the First Catastrophe to the End.”
“Oh goddamn it.”
At Abel’s words, Frau smacked her hand against her forehead in frustration.
Chapter 308 – Fin
T/N : Sorry for the lack of updates, school is starting on monday for me again- but I did request today tmrw and wednesday off and I did get them off so I can upload more chapters for this novel and star of annihilation 🙂
I know the discord button disappeared on the main page, but that’s because I’m going to be working on the site as well for the next three days because I am going to try implementing a new plugin to the wordpress called elementor which should be even better than the current website 🙂 enjoy!