'Magic bullet' was a bullet made up of tempered steel and condensed magic power. The destructive force of a single magic bullet—sold by Essential Armory for 100 million won—was equivalent to that of a steel sword wielded by a low-intermediate-rank Hero.
I could further strengthen it to the level of high-intermediate-rank grade-1 ~ a low-high-rank by enhancing the bullet with Random Consolidation System and combining it with the Desert Eagle and Aether.
But not Jin Sahyuk.
Because Jin Sahyuk's attacks relied on 'magic power', she couldn't inflict any 'physical damage' on her opponents. Though, she could always alter the physical laws, for example by overturning the ground with her magic power.
[Basilisk's Skin — Reduce physical damage by 90% and magic damage by 99%.]
[Basilisk's Fang — Shatter magic by directly 'biting' it]
[Basilisk's Mystic Eyes — Gaze of Deceleration. Slows down the speed of magic power circulating in the target's blood.]
Now, take a look at these magnificent effects that completely nullify magic and magic power.
Another name for the Basilisk was the 'Scourge of Magicians'.
This mystical beast was created specifically to counter people like Jin Sahyuk. She could never win against a Basilisk alone.
But I thought I could win easily.
As I said before, as long as I continued to hit him on his vital point, I believed he would eventually collapse.
…Of course, it turned out to be harder than I thought.
Again, this was all because of the co-author.
"Can't believe I wasted 3 whole days in this shithole!"
Currently, we were hiding in a cave to escape the Basilisk.
Jin Sahyuk's cry struck my ear.
Without a word, I leaned against the cave wall and turned my gaze to her. Jin Sahyuk continued to yell but occasionally shuddered in fear that the Basilisk might have heard her.
As evidenced by our current situation, the Basilisk wasn't as easy of a target as I thought.
In fact, he was off the charts on the difficulty scale.
His 'recovery' ability was much more overwhelming than in my original setting.
[Stage Effect — the Basilisk has been blessed with Stage Effect. His recovery rate is increased by 300%.]
The Basilisk itself hadn't changed. The problem was this strange setting called 'Stage Effect'. No matter how many times I shot him with Magic Bullets, Basilisk instantly recovered from his wounds.
What was even worse was that the only way to clear this dungeon was to defeat the Basilisk. In other words, we were stuck here until we killed it, and running away wasn't an option.
"Why don't you say something?"
Jin Sahyuk hissed.
"This is actually good."
My voice sounded surprisingly calm.
Speechless, Jin Sahyuk looked at me in a daze.
"What the hell do you mean by… no, wait, why do you only use that weapon? Go and beat that snake up like you did with me!"
Jin Sahyuk demanded.
…She was overestimating my physical strength because of Fate. Contrary to her belief, I couldn't just go around beating everyone up at my will.
Certain conditions had to be met before I could register a new target for [Fate]. With Jin Sahyuk, the condition was 'exchanging dialogues at least 30 times'. But as expected of such a powerful Unique Skill, the condition became harder to meet the more it was used. The condition for registering a second target was 'exchange dialogues at least 50 times, including self introductions'.
Obviously there was no way for me to achieve that.
"…I'm your 'trainer', not someone who clears dungeons for you."
So I just offered her an excuse.
"What the fuck…."
A look of despair crossed Jin Sahyuk's face.
With a sigh, she dropped to the ground.
Time continued to pass.
There was nothing much to do in the dark, silent cave.
I began searching for ways to clear this stage with [Observation and Reading].
Suddenly, I heard the rumbling of an empty stomach. I raised my head and looked at Jin Sahyuk. She had her eyes closed, deep in thought.
"…Hey. Are you hungry?"
Jin Sahyuk opened her eyes slowly.
"Oh, but I think you are."
Having sensed the faint sarcasm in my voice, Jin Sahyuk frowned discontentedly.
"Don't underestimate me. Hunger used to be my best friend. Have you ever survived only by eating grass roots?"
She was righteously enraged.
Slightly embarrassed, I nodded and turned my gaze to the outside.
There, the Basilisk was giving orders to a couple of spiders. He was probably saying something like, 'Find those two imbeciles and bring them to me! Hissss—!'.
I watched the Basilisk for a while. Then I suddenly remembered the 'mini-game' and pulled it up.
「…'Extra's Knight' Litrain became the youngest high-intermediate-rank knight in history.
But things haven't been going well for her recently. She borrowed money to build a temple for 'Extrnim' that failed to capture people's attention. She also ran out of DP. But what is currently troubling her the most is the feeling that her growth stopped.
She wants to become a high-rank knight as quickly as possible, so she can repay 'Extra' for his kindness…. Ever since she stopped receiving donations, other knights insisted that her sponsor abandoned her. But Litrain still believes that if she tries hard enough, 'Extra' would reach out to her one day and tell her 'you did well', 'keep it up'.
She feels like she could do anything to hear those words….」
"What the. Why is she so nice?"
I had been so busy that I left her alone for almost two months, which equaled two years in her world. Yet she built a temple in my name.
I checked the amount of DP Litrain made me so far.
It was 53,271 DP in total.
I added 46,729 DP to it and donated a grand total of 100,000 DP to her.
[You donated 100,000 DP!]
[You left a message — 'You did well. Keep it up.']
[Litrain is surprised. Hard times are past her and she's moved to tears….]
"Hey, what are you doing?"
Suddenly, Jin Sahyuk leaned towards me.
"Huh? Oh. I'm thinking of ways to kill the Basilisk."
I did have a 9-star card in my card pocket.
[Story of a Legend on the Mural] [Individual] [9-star] ＊Effective Good＊
●Part of a legend manifests to assist you.
I could easily defeat the Basilisk with this card. But it would be a huge waste to use this right now. I'd been saving it for the very last fight: the battle against Baal.
"And how are you going to do that?"
"Well, I'm thinking I could play around with attributes."
The Basilisk's attribute was poison. To counter poison, I needed an even stronger poison. So I would have to apply poison-attribute to my bullets, then….
"…Wait a minute."
Suddenly a brilliant idea crossed my mind.
'What if I could extract the Basilisk's poison and 'crystalize' it?'
Of course, the Basilisk's poison was too strong even for Aether to handle. If it got anywhere near me, there was a good enough chance that it would not only melt Aether but also my entire body.
But right now, I had Jin Sahyuk.
If Jin Sahyuk could use Reality Manipulation and allow only a small part of the Basilisk's poisonous breath to pass through, then I could crystalize the breath with [Extraction and Permanent Materialization].
"…Hey. Jin Sahyuk."
The Basilisk could become our gateway to the mass production of poisonous bullets.
"Just do as I say."
And the bullet made from the Basilisk's poison would surely be lethal to all monsters, humanoid monsters, and Djinns.
[Gwanghwamun, Korea — Tower of Hero, Upper Floor]
"The current situation in Lupiton is complicated."
On the highest floor of the Tower of Hero, where the most important meetings were held, Yi Gongmyung was giving a briefing of the mission to three important people.
"After the death of General Tigris, Orden's rage spread to Lupiton. He's making life difficult for not only humans but also humanoid monsters. The harsh living conditions have freed some of the humans from Orden's brainwashing. It seems that some of the monsters are also turning against Orden. The Resistance is rescuing the de-brainwashed residents from Lupiton and helping them escape Africa."
Chae Joochul, Heynckes, and Yoo Yeonha listened attentively to Yi Gongmyung.
"We have decided to take advantage of the confusion and rage to prepare a second attack. Over 100,000 of our soldiers are currently out in the fields of Africa. Surely, Orden's elite soldiers would gather there to confront us."
Orden's Palace would be empty, and Chae Joochul and Heynckes would proceed to assassinate Orden.
It was a simple yet systematic plan.
"…I see. That sounds fun."
Heynckes nodded with a smile but Chae Joochul remained expressionless.
Yi Gongmyung handed the two men velvet pouches.
"Inside are pinnacle-grade medicine and magic scrolls. I wanted to prepare some cards for you, but only Players can use them."
When Kim Suho cleared the Tower of Wish, the conditions for card use were adjusted. Originally, only Players who reached the 21st floor of the Tower of Wish could use the cards. But now, any Player could use them.
"Anyways, O Queen of Seoul."
Suddenly, with a smirk, Heynckes looked back at Yoo Yeonha.
"…Please stop the joke."
"Haha, but it's no joke. That's what the media calls you: The Queen of Seoul…. Anyways, I heard Oh Jaejin ran away?"
Yoo Yeonha nodded with a long face.
"Yes, I delivered him the medical pill for curing his side effect. And afterwards…"
However, Heynckes did not think lowly of Oh Jaejin.
"There's nothing scarier than losing yourself."
'Death' would've been a better side effect.
To lose oneself and to forget all the values and beliefs that one has kept for an entire lifetime—
What could be more tragic than such an end?
"Well then, Joochul."
Heynckes called Chae Joochul.
Despite Heynckes's friendly demeanor, Chae Joochul remained nonchalant.
"Let us get ready."
The folding fan was all Chae Joochul needed.
But Heynckes was different.
Heynckes took out his armor for the first time in forever.
With a single word from Heynckes, his armor came to him.
The breastplate stretched across his chest and the gaiters encompassed his legs. The chain mail, the gauntlets, and other parts of the armor surrounded his body, and lastly, the helmet concealed Heynckes's face.
Just like that, each part of the armor was precisely put together.
It was not the old fashioned, heavy and crude kind of armor.
You could only see armor like this in games. The harmonious combination of silver armor and red cape was very classy.
[Steel Spirit Resistance — Increase resistance to all attributes by 80%]
[Steel Spirit Rigidity — Reduce damage by 80%]
[Steel Spirit Regeneration — Constant recovery rivaling time-reversal]
[Steel Spirit Sword — Sword sturdier than any metal]
[Steel Spirit Intuition — The collective intelligence of 23 invincible 'Steel Spirits'.]
[Steel Will — No 'metal' in the world can defy Heynckes.]
Yoo Yeonha stared at Heynckes in a daze.
"I see your armor is still needlessly garish."
Chae Joochul remarked flatly.
"Really? Now, let's turn that frown upside down, Joochul. You're on your way to see your granddaughter, after all."
"Why do you care about my granddaughter?"
"She's a memorable one, that granddaughter of yours."
"Let's play another game of chess later. Unlike you, your granddaughter is terrible at chess."
Heynckes continued to talk, and over time, Chae Joochul's expressionless face turned into a small frown.
Heynckes liked the change in his friend's expression.
[Underground Fortress in Africa]
Amidst a tense atmosphere, all 177 members of the Special Task Force gathered in the plaza of the fortress.
"…Everyone, the entire coalition's forces have gathered here in Africa."
The final operation they had been waiting for was about to commence.
"I believe we're ready."
Aileen stood on the podium and began her short speech.
"The mission starts tomorrow morning, before sunrise. But don't be too nervous."
The anxiety, the agitation and the fear that they all felt began to fade slowly before Aileen's Spirit Speech.
Shin Jonghak approached Kim Suho in the middle of the speech. He was carrying [Xiang Yu's Conqueror Spear] that he purchased for 200 billion won.
It was a legendary artifact, second only to [Longinus] among spears.
"Wow, that spear, it's…."
"Haha. That's right. This is the spear wielded by the strongest warrior of ancient times. It even has two use effects, 'World-Covering Qi' and 'Conqueror's Farewell', named after his famous anecdotes. Lü Bu is nothing compared to him. Hahaha. Hahahahaha. Hahahaha."
Shin Jonghak burst into laughter. It was unclear whether he wanted to relieve his own nervousness or simply show off his new weapon.
"This spear is beautiful inside and out. It captures the supremacy of a king."
It was worth all the boasting in the world, indeed.
The artifact originally belonged to none other than Xiang Yu, one of the most prominent warlords of the ancient times. In fact, all the nearby Heroes, including Chae Nayun and Yun Seung-Ah, threw awestruck glances at the Conqueror Spear.
"Congratulations. I'm jealous."
"…Enough with the formalities. Do you wanna make a bet?"
With a chuckle, Shin Jonghak tightened his grip around the spear.
"On who'll be the one to kill Orden."
Kim Suho stared at Shin Jonghak.
Shin Jonghak was beaming with confidence, and the magic power surrounding his Conqueror Spear was equally as confident and courageous as its owner.
Kim Suho gave a small smile.
"Let's make a bet."
The negative feelings that they once harbored for each other had already disappeared.
Shin Jonghak was no longer the cowardly and narrow-minded teenager he once was, and Kim Suho no longer considered him an 'arrogant noble'.
This was the butterfly effect caused by a man who wasn't here.
Aileen suddenly raised her hand and shouted.
"Don't die! We'll fight and win!"
Her words were imbued with powerful Spirit Speech.
They turned into snow that piled up in the hearts of the Heroes in the form of determination.
I continued the extraction process with Jin Sahyuk.
In 12 hours we created 55,000 [Basilisk's Poison Crystal].
Yoo Yeonha could make tens of thousands of bullets out of this.
Or I could just shoot the raw crystals. Though, in order to do that, I would first have to add an 'anti-poison' attribute to the Desert Eagle.
"…When does this end?"
Jin Sahyuk asked with a sigh. She was clearly worn out from the overuse of Reality Manipulation.
"This is enough for now. The Orden Annihilation Operation will begin soon."
I put all the crystals in my spatial pouch and got up. Woong— My spatial pouch began to suck the crystals up like a vacuum cleaner.
"…Can we leave now?"
A little while ago I realized how to defeat the Basilisk.
The Basilisk's resiliency, which we found to be troublesome, was due to the [Stage Effect] attached to his skin that faintly glimmered in green.
But this effect could easily be nullified with the [Mystic Key].
"All I need is this."
I took out the [Mystic Key].
The only problem was getting near the Basilisk, but this could be solved with Jin Sahyuk's help.
After I get rid of the Stage Effect with this key, I could simply blast the monster with my bullets. Or I could synthesize and condense some Basilisk's poison, enhance it with [Random Consolidation System], and shoot it at him.
Poison could be countered with even stronger poison, after all.
"Hey, Jin Sahyuk."
However, in order to do that….
"You go distract him."
First, I had to get rid of the [Stage Effect] attached to the Basilisk's skin.
To my surprise, Jin Sahyuk stepped forward without putting up a fight.
…Three hours later.
Along with the body of a Basilisk, we obtained two amazing artifacts.
Even Jin Sahyuk exclaimed in surprise at the sight of them.