“Are you listening?”
A sharp voice rang out in the office.
The grey haired man inwardly sighed while looking through his papers. And he looked up towards a woman sitting down on the couch. The woman was the embodiment of money as she wore expensive clothes and jewellery. She was his daughter.
The man stroked his face with his hand and asked.
“What did you want to talk about?”
“I told you! I was insulted by Min-sun. In front of my man! Doesn’t Dad understand? Park Eun-chan is the youngest son of Central Hotel. Yet she dare do such things in front of Eun-chan!”
“What did Min-sun do?”
“I was blindsided by the man she was with and his two friends.”
“Man? Min-sin was with a man?”
The man’s eyes finally showed the first signs of interest. And Cho Mi-ra clamoured even more enthusiastically.
“Yes, he was a dumb looking man. And a complete bully. I accidentally spilled some water on Min-sun but he couldn’t let it go and threatened me. There were also a lot of people in the dining room. He might be a real criminal. No, he must be one. He has that look in his eyes. Why else would he go for a girl like Min-sun?”
“So, what specifically did they do?”
“Is that important?”
Cho Mi-ra frowned while looking at her father.
“Me! Father’s daughter! They humiliated me in front of all those people!”
“Min-sun is also my daughter. And your younger sister.”
“I don’t have a younger sister!”
“You are my daughter but you can’t change that fact. You’re 25 years old so shouldn’t you know that by now? Don’t visit your father’s workplace and tell me about a quarrel between sisters. I don’t have the time to listen to such talk.”
Cho Mi-ra cooled down at her father’s words. She bit her lip and muttered in a cold voice.
“…..Are you saying I’m troublesome?”
“That isn’t what I’m saying.”
“Yes, you do that. I understand. Then I’ll disappear.”
Cho Mi-ra stood up and grabbed her handbag before crying out.
“And I’m 27!”
Moon So-ri heard her rough voice.
However, his face didn’t change as he looked at the thick pile of paperwork. His eyes just mechanically looked over another form. But after a moment, he hit the button on his intercom and said.
“Secretary Choi, are you there?”
–Yes, President-nim. Please say your request.
“There is a man who met with Min-sun. Find out about that guy.”
Ark was baffled. Right now Ark was surrounded by darkness. His eyes were open but it was so dark that he questioned whether they were really open. The silence even made him doubt his eardrums. In other words, he couldn’t see or hear anything.
A person who knew would understand. How much this made a person choked up. However the darkness and silence wasn’t what confused Ark. Rather, it was that he couldn’t understand where this place was and why he was here. In this world, there was no effect without a cause!
‘Yes, something unexpected might’ve happened but there is a reason for it. If I think calmly then I might be able to obtain some hints or information. So let’s go through my memory step by step. Then…..’
Ark pressed the ‘▷’ button and played the memory in his head. The situation floated before him.
–Now there is no time. The key to a surprise attack is speed! Don’t give them time to think! Each team will enter the passage and exterminate the enemy! If there is danger then use the communicator! Advance!”
Shortly after the investigation team landed on the grey planet. Hawk had separated the team and ordered them to advance into the underground base.
…..He had gone too far.
‘No! The necessary scene isn’t here!’
Ark pressed the ‘▷▷’ and his memory accelerated forward. The underground facility passed like a kaleidoscope.
Ferguson slaughtered the herd of frogs and they managed to arrive at the centre of the facility. Then Ark heard some shocking words from Irina. The self-destruct device had already been activated when Ark arrived at the centre and Hawk knew but bullied Ark by only escaped with the other team members. No, it wasn’t just bullying. The packed the entrance with explosives in order to trap Ark’s group in the control room.
‘Hawk, that damn bastard!’
He couldn’t even curse right now.
Anyway, Hawk’s plan was stopped by Ark’s superior judgement. In his desperate moment, Ark was able to find a secret passage in the control room and escape just before the base exploded. But the situation didn’t end there. The base’s self-destruct device was connected to the core of the Castle and the grey planet started to collapse and form a black hole.
Ark was caught up in the black hole’s gravity. However Ark had a hidden move.
Kwa kwak! Kwa kwak! Kwa kwak! Kwa kwak!
He launched an anchor into Hawk’s ship and held on! It was the anchor launcher installed when the Silver Star was being repaired on E-2036.
–You bastard! What are you doing?
‘Hawk’s expression then was so confused…..’
Just imagining the scene again caused endorphins to rush. However there was also Ferguson.
Kwa kwak! Kwa kwak! Kwa kwak! Kwa kwak!
A special anchor!
–Ark! You bastard, you relaxed all day at the base only to strand me here? I have a 2nd grade ship so my engine output is weak! Look! I won’t be able to live if another ship is destroyed! Save me!
This time Ferguson anchored himself to Ark’s ship. Ferguson…..he really had the intelligence of an ape.
Needless to say, Ark had anchored himself to Hawk in order to live. If he grabbed onto Hawk’s Death Knight then Ark would’ve surely escaped from the black hole’s gravity. He was convinced about it and didn’t look for another way.
But Ferguson wasn’t thinking at all. Just like a drowning man would catch anything, he grabbed onto Ark and wouldn’t let go. In the end, everyone would die because he wanted to live.
‘Damn! I hope he is hit by a garbage truck and dies!’
Ark and Hawk’s detailed plans for each other were crushed by Ferguson who the IQ of a monkey. And then the worst situation occurred.
–I can’t control the Silver Star!
–3D coordinates calculation error! Balance systems error! On-board gravity generator error! Thanks to the collision with the gravity and magnetic fields, all engine systems have errors! It is impossible to control!
–There is no way to escape the gravitational field!
-Ugh! I don’t want to die!
Hegel and Tori screamed from the bridge!
However the opponent was the strongest predator in the universe, a black hole. Even with the scientific power of the 24th century, it was impossible to unravel all its mysteries. Now it had captured Ark. And the Silver Star was finally swallowed by the black hole.
–You have died.
That message popped in front of him.
No, that message should’ve popped in front of him. That’s why Ark was confused. He had been swallowed by darkness and waited for the message to appear.
‘The black hole is an existence that sucks in everything. Not even light can be seen here. If I’m stuck in a black hole and my soul wasn’t returned to a Fairy…..’
A sinister thought entered his head. However Ark shook his head.
‘It is impossible. Either way, this is still a game. There shouldn’t be any bugs to lock a user’s resurrection. So what is this situation? Perhaps….I haven’t died yet…..’
“……Character Information Window.”
Ark muttered dubiously.
|Character Information Window|
|Strength||330 (+20)||Agility||375 (+20)|
Cleaning Foreman (Agility + 3)
Ignorant Destroyer (Wisdom -10, Strength +7, Stamina +7)
Beltana’s Hero (Strength, Agility, Stamina, Wisdom, Intelligence, Luck +3)
Athamas’ Hero (Strength, Agility, Stamina, Wisdom, Intelligence, Luck +5)
Mediator (Wisdom, Intelligence +15)
|* Contribution: Galactic Federation 19,520, Aschulat 500
* Affiliation: Dark Eden (CEO)
|*Body Coating: Survivor
+ Environmental adaptation increases by 50% due to the Survivor coating.
+ The Survivor coating reduces the drop rate of Satiety by 30%.
+ The Survivor coating will reduce fall damage by 50%.
+The ‘Clairvoyance’ effect of the Survivor coating is applied.
Ark’s eyes were shocked. The character information window he hoped for had surfaced.
He was still level 137. It was the same level from before he was sucked into the black hole. He had been level 133 when he registered at the Fairy so it meant he hadn’t died!
However, Ark soon sensed something strange.
His level and stats were clearly the same from before he was sucked into the black hole. However, the character information window didn’t just display his level and stats. It also showed his equipment in the form of stat (+α). Yet that wasn’t there anymore.
Aside from the +20 attached to strength and agility, the other effects of his equipment had disappeared.
‘Don’t tell me? Huk! W-what is this?’
|-Equipment Information Window-
Weapons: <Heir’s Sword>
Armour: <Elim’s Helmet>
‘My accessories are gone?’
Ark’s face paled after seeing the equipment information window.
His armour, boots, the unique Belphegor’s pants he just obtained and even the Baius Shield was gone? The only things remaining were his Heir’s Sword and Elim’s Helmet! It was worst then when he started Galaxian because he was completely exposed. No, his appearance didn’t matter.
What about his accessories? He had been collecting his equipment one by one over the past few months with much difficulty. They were worth at least 1,000 gold and the Baius Sword was necessary to change class as Elim’s Heir. Compared to the value of those equipment, he would rather die and revive 100 times. But the equipment more precious than life were gone.
That wasn’t all that disappeared. Even the basic japtem stored in his backpack and Nymphe were gone.
‘Oh my god! This is ridiculous! My backpack full of items and Nymphe have disappeared as well? I’d rather die! Bug! Yes, this is obviously a bug! Damn, is there really a bug this ridiculous? I’m going to protest to the game publisher! If they don’t restore my items then I’ll sue!’
While he was thinking…..
‘Wait? This might surprisingly be a chance!’
Ark’s eyes glistened after a moment.
In fact, one of the reasons Ark despaired when sucked into the black hole wasn’t because of his death. The death penalty for a user wasn’t that much. Of course, his level would drop and maybe even an item depending on the damage but it wasn’t cause for despair.
The pioneer NPCs could also be resurrected like users. However, it was different when talking about non-pioneer NPCs. If they died it was the end. The subordinate he raised with hard work would be lost once they died. Two such employees were riding on the Silver Star.
Tori and Ellain.
‘If we’re sucked into a black hole then it is over for Tori and Ellain. I will also lose the Silver Star.’
Of course, the Silver Star was insured.
However, he could only get back 80% of the price with the insurance. If a 10,000 gold spaceship was lost then he would only receive 8,000 gold compensation. The user would lose the remaining 2,000 gold.
There was also the ship’s lost cargo, upgrades and additional equipment that wasn’t covered. Once someone lost a ship, there would be thousands of gold lost despite the insurance.
‘…..But if it is caused by a bug?’
He could bring this situation to the publisher.
It was Ark’s fault that he was sucked into the black hole but the current trouble was due to a bug. He might be able to recover the Silver Star as well as his team members. No, he would do it. Ark worked for a virtual reality game publisher so he knew the details. If he persisted tenaciously then he could receive compensation for the bug.
“Yes! This is great! I will press this!”
Ark had just made his decision.
Something was heard in the darkness. Ark flinched and raised his head. He had forgotten the current situation while lost in memories.
Ark wasn’t the only one sucked in the black hole. Not only was there Hawk and Ferguson’s ship, there were the team members on his ship like Rapid, Kaya, Tori, Hegel etc. If the bug dropped Ark into this place then it was likely that the Silver Star and his team members were scattered around here somewhere.
‘If the other team members also bring up the bug then it will be easier to receive compensation.’
“Hey! Anyone there? I am Ark.”
He shouted with a loud voice.
Tu tu tu tu! Tu tu tu tu! Tu tu tu tu!
Gunshots suddenly rang out! Three or four bullets went through his side and thighs.
|-You were shot in a defenceless state and suffered a critical blow!|
A red message popped up with the throbbing pain!
“Ugh! What, what the?”
Ark cried out at the unexpected circumstances and cried out. At the same time, an idea crossed his head.
‘I clearly said my name. My team wouldn’t shoot blindly away after hearing that. And I’m convinced this space was made by a bug so it can’t be monsters. The only person who might shoot me in this place…..’
They were drawn into the black hole together. There were one among them who would shoot when hearing Ark’s name!
“Hawk’s group! Is that you?”
Tu tu tu tu! Tu tu tu tu! Tu tu tu tu!
Bullets came flying over again instead of a reply. In fact, he hadn’t expected an answer to his questions. It didn’t matter if they were Hawk or Hawk’s subordinates. The second shooting made it clear they had a partner. It wasn’t just one bastard. Projectiles were flying from three different directions!
‘I can’t just die in this bugged space!’
Ark rolled his body and avoided the bullets. He automatically raised his body in an attack stance but just turned around in vain.
He didn’t realize it until now but his body felt incredibly heavy when he moved. It felt like dozens of iron nuggets worth a few kilograms were hanging all over his body. Ark moved as slow as a slug for a few metres and was already breathing like he ran a marathon.
‘Huk! What, what the? This weight?’
Tu tu tu tu! Tu tu tu tu! Tu tu tu tu!
But the opponents just mercilessly poured out bullets. Ark rolled on the ground again but avoiding all the bullets was impossible. Unless it was a critical hit, the damage from a bullet was less than that of a sword. That’s because by default, all armour in Galaxian had a bulletproof feature attached to them. However, that was when the armour was equipped. Unfortunately Ark was naked so he had X and XX parts exposed.
He was being shot at from three directions so he quickly lost 1,000 health. That wasn’t the only damage. Without armour the bullets were three or four times stronger. It was enough to cause a tingling pain every time the bullet hit him. If the bullets hit a sensitive area like his neck or XX then he would scream!
“Awook! Awook! Holy shit! Armour armament!”
Ark immediately called his battle suit. But the expected battle suit didn’t come out.
‘Dammit! My battle suit is also gone? Indeed, it isn’t strange for my battle suit to disappear along with the other items but…..no, now isn’t the time to think about this. If I can’t use the battle suit then I really will die!’
He didn’t know why his body suddenly felt so heavy. But there was one obvious thing. In this state he couldn’t move his body to avoid the projectiles! And he had no shields to stop the bullets!
Ark said as he readied his lightsaber. The blue light separated the darkness and bullets scattered everywhere. Sword Defense was the technique that used the electromagnetic energy of the lightsaber to deflect projectiles!
‘Most of my items disappeared but my skills are still intact.’
However he couldn’t be relieved just yet. Sword Defense wasn’t enough to change the situation. Attacks were coming from three different directions while the range of Sword Defense was limited. If was difficult to stop the bullets with Sword Defense in the darkness.
‘If only it was possible to secure some sight.’
His Survivor coating gave him the Clairvoyance ability that allowed him to see through the darkness. It allowed him to see 20 metres in the darkness. But right now Ark couldn’t see anything.
In fact, that was the reason Ark first thought he was dead. He couldn’t even see the bottom when using Clairvoyance.
He thought there had been a problem with his skills but Sword Defense worked properly. Yet the lightsaber was clearly visible to the enemy. He didn’t understand the reason but it meant that Clairvoyance was sealed. Thanks to that, Ark couldn’t even confirm the form of the opponent.
‘Dammit, if Clairvoyance doesn’t work then it will keep on staying dark. Is this an effect of the bugged space? Anyway, he was using Sword Defense but it was just like painting a target on him. But how can those guys see in order to fire…..?’
Then something popped into his head.
‘Wait? They can see? Then those guys? Can I use this?’
At first he thought the problem with Clairvoyance was due to the bug. But his other skills could be used normally. This meant the space itself might be impervious to Clairvoyance. It was likely that Ark couldn’t see even if he loaded an infrared scope.
‘I don’t know. Those guys only started to attack after I was here for a long time. Then those guys were in the same room but unaware of my presence. They started to attack after I talked. I called out for my team and they started shooting. There is a high possibility that their view is restricted like me. I have to check it first!’
He thought up to there. Ark switched his lightsaber to OFF. Once the sword turned off, he felt pain as the bullet penetrated his body.
‘If I don’t prepare myself then I’ll die!’
Ark stopped his moans of pain from emerging. He firmed up his mental strength and move his legs. The feet used Swamp Walking to move! There were two reasons why Ark used Swamp Walking.
The first was to make it easier to walk with his increase weight and the second was to make no noise. If his feet glided on the ground then it wouldn’t make any sound.
That was the reason to turn the lightsaber to OFF! He stopped any light and sound.
‘If those guys can figure out my location from any noise or the light from the lightsaber then…..’
The sound of gunfire stopped. A smile of satisfaction spread on Ark’s face. Once he stopped the lightsaber and any noise, the enemy immediately lost Ark’s location.
It had become clear. The fact that they didn’t shoot meant they couldn’t hear Ark. But it still wasn’t a fair fight. Ark’s only weapon was a lightsaber while they used machine guns. And the advantages of machine guns…..
Tu tu tu tu! Tu tu tu tu! Tu tu tu tu!
Shortly after it stopped, the shooting started again. But they weren’t fired directly at Ark. The projectiles were just blindly shot all over the place!
The strong point of a machine gun was that it was capable of random firing. Even a blindly shot bullet would be able to deal 100% damage. However if he used Sword Defense then he would become a target again.
At that moment, Ark stretched out his hands and fired a skill.
‘Take this! Psychokinesis! Psychokinesis!’
After a while.
Tak! Tak tak tak! Tak tak tak!
The sound of something rolling could be heard a few metres away. Ark had fired Psychokinesis blindly until he heard a sound. At the same time, he headed towards the noise while bullets were fired. And dozens of bullets showered down on him! Ark’s body flew across the darkness. He glided forward towards the source of the noise.
And the lightsaber switched ON!
“The fight is now on! Khafra Fencing 3rd style, Galaxy Sword!”
The light of the sword turned on and dozens of swords spread out like a fan. A chain explosion occurred in the darkness. Dozens of lights had spread out from one point! The storm of light revealed the shape of the enemy.
‘What, what the? This guy…..?’
Confusion spread on Ark’s face. It wasn’t Hawk like he expected. These guys also weren’t Hawk’s subordinates.
A monster with bandages wrapped around it and gun muzzles for hands appeared.
But now wasn’t the time to be surprised.
The monster with an egg like head shrieked and swung its arms. And bullets were fired from its hands! But this situation was different from before. He was now in a close combat fight with it.
“You’re screwed now that I can see you!”
Wiing! Buuuuong! Wiing! Wiing!
The blue light formed a complex pattern across the body of the mummy.
Ark had many skills to deal with people using firearms including Sword Defense. In addition, he rushed in while the enemy was off guard so they were now in a close combat fight. He could deflect the trajectory of the bullets even when it was pouring right in front of me.
In order words, he could redirect the enemy’s muzzle towards another direction. Of course, he couldn’t redirect all of the bullets……
Ping! Ping! Ping!
The bullets scattered but blood flowed from various places on his body. But they were just grazes.
On the other hand, Ark’s sword was driven into the mummy’s vital spots without any errors. The explosion of light decreased its health and the mummy didn’t last for even 1 minute. And it broke down into small particles like sand and disappeared.
‘Eh? This feeling…..?’
Ark’s forehead wrinkled. He felt a sense of deja vu as he saw the mummy disappear. But he couldn’t afford to think too deeply about it.
There were still 2 mummies remaining in the darkness. Of course, those two hadn’t just been watching while Ark was fighting.
While Ark was fighting in close combat with one mummy, he was also blocking the other two enemies from hitting any vital spots. After the mummy fell, he was exposed to the enemy’s gunfire but that was only for a short moment.
‘It is impossible with three but that changes when talking about two enemies.’
Ark rotated his body like a spin top and swung his sword. The bullets flew in the opposite direction back to the mummies. The bullets were reversed!
When only two enemies were shooting, he could use Sword Defense to direct the trajectory of the bullets. It was a technique that he learnt after dying many times in the training centre!
The mummies shrieked and stumbled.
“Take this! Sonic Sword!”
At the same time, a blue vortex flew forward. The blue sword moved in a flashy pattern and the mummy’s body exploded. Now he only needed to dispose of one more mummy.
He had dealt with the first two easily.
Wiiing! Wiing! Buoong!
His lightsaber turned the final mummy into small bandage pieces.
“Phew, now that is taken care of.”
Ark sighed and looked around.
“What are earth are these guys? Why are there monsters in the bugged space that occurred when I fell in a black hole? I don’t have a Nymphe so I can’t communicate with my other team members…..it isn’t possible. If I can’t even use the battle suit then clearly I can complain to the publisher. But isn’t Galaxian’s publisher a foreign company? Do I have to file the complaint in English? No, first I should check if there is any loot. There is no guarantee that monsters in a bugged space will drop loot. It is ridiculous that loot would drop in a bugged space. The publishers wouldn’t put loot in an accidental place like this.’
But he couldn’t see anything in the darkness. Ark lay face down on the ground and tried to find something. No, while he was trying to do that.
Ku ku ku ku! Ku ku ku ku!
Suddenly the space divided and split in half. At the same time, a man ran in and shouted while a bright light shone behind him.
“Hyung-nim, where are you? Are you okay?”