Evolution Theory of the Hunter (ETH)
Volume 1 Chapter 16
After we finished the contribution split, my final pay came out to a total of 1,510 dollars. After taxes and stuff, it did go down a bit but compared to my porter days…this was easily several times more than what I used to earn. I went confirmed that it went into my account and we all headed to a small restaurant.
After we all had dinner and we all started to drink a bit, Eum Hyunjoon called me outside.
“You did well. This is your porter fee.”
He said to me as he pushed a thick envelope in my direction. I had been wondering when I would get this.
When I checked inside, I saw there was 500 dollars.
“…This is a bit much.”
“That means you were just that valuable.”
“Even still, 500 is…did you by any chance take from some of your contribution money to pay me this?”
Eum Hyunjoon had taken 30% of the contribution fee. That means he had taken about 6,000 for himself. There were some grumblings from everyone but no one said anything because they did acknowledge that he did a good job as the party head.
“Ho ho. You’re pretty sharp, aren’t you?”
“Well, I did think that you took a pretty big percentage for yourself. But I didn’t even suspect that you were doing it to pay me this much in porter fee.”
“I did it to cater to manager Kim’s pride. I knew he would say something when we were doing the contribution split. I wanted to avoid any unnecessary confrontation.”
“Is he someone you know?”
“Not personally, but I we needed a mage pretty quickly and I met him through an introduction. He’s someone who would create trouble if we don’t do things the way he likes it. I heard some rumors. But he was a last resort so we had to use him.”
“So that’s why you ranked him as number two.”
“You know this is all hush hush right?”
“Of course. Thank you. But what are we going to do about everyone else then?”
“I took care of them all. Don’t worry.”
Eum Hyunjoon laughed as he lightly patted my back. Manager Kim was wasted and bragging about his sleep skill the whole time and didn’t even know this was happening right under his nose. In that time, Eun Hyunjoon called everyone one by one and gave them a little more of the contribution fee.
Thanks to Eum Hyunjoon’s quick-thinking and consideration, the night ended on a light note. Everyone received more than they expected and general Kim was pretty happy at being ranked at number two. I was actually curious about how he would have reacted if he only knew that he was almost neck and neck with glasses girl for last place.
The day after the raid. As soon as I woke up, I headed on over to the neighborhood gym. This is somewhere I go everyday to train, but I was going there for a different reason today.
The gym was packed with housewives. Because it was in a residential neighborhood and had a swimming pool as well, it had somehow become a meeting place for married women. I greeted a trainer with my chin before making a beeline to the dumbbells.
I started off with a dumbbell weighing 30kb.
Light. He he. So light.
The extra strength was still active even after a full day had passed. I put the dumbbell back down and picked up the heaviest one at this gym – a 40kg dumbbell.
This was light too. I started doing some reps. I would usually have a difficult time with a weight this heavy but I breezed through 3 sets and still had energy to spare.
The trainer was watching me with arms crossed behind me. We were at least on a “hello” basis since I’ve been coming here for a few years. Though his arms were way bigger than mine, he was pretty much only able to do about 3 sets of 35 kg weights.
He stared at me for a bit longer before saying.
“Aren’t you trying to do too much?”
“I guess I’m in good condition today. Do you have anything a bit heavier?”
“You don’t want to get hurt.”
“Ha ha. You know what I do for a living.”
People who work out a lot are overly cautious about not getting injured. But porters are even more careful.
“Are you using drugs or something?”
“No, nothing like that.”
The trainer shrugged his shoulders and pointed to an iron bar. I guess he was telling me there wasn’t any heavier dumbbells so I should use weights instead.
I popped in 50kg weights on both sides. Including the weight of the bar, it was 110kg. I held it with both hands and raised it up. It was a bit hard but it was just heavy enough to exercise the muscles.
I didn’t plan on trying to get stronger right now so I just did a few more reps and lowered the bar. When I got up to leave, I saw another man come in and groan while trying to pick up the same bar. I couldn’t help but let out a small snicker.
I went through a few more machines to gauge my strength level before hitting the treadmill. I wanted to test my endurance this time.
Beep. Beep. Beep. Beep. Beep.
I put in 18km and started running. After running for an hour, I finally came to a point when it felt like I was about to die.
But even an hour was a record for me. I would usually only be able to do about 30 minutes normally. But even the sweat that had been pouring out like rain stopped at some point. It was usually dangerous to work out to this degree. Not only does it throw off your balance for the workout, but it could also cause some long term damages to your body.
Haa. haa. Haa. haa.
My breathing rung out loudly throughout the whole gym. Even those who usually kept attention to their own workout had begun sneaking glances at me every so often.
“Why is that guy working out so crazy today?”
“I dont know. Maybe he’s training to do a marathon…?”
I’m about to die. I had become fixated on the stop button for a while now. I wanted to press it so bad right this second.
But if I stop right now, I have to start from the beginning all over again. Hell no. Not doing it.
I let out a yell to hype myself up so I can keep doing this. The old ladies behind me gasped in surprise and began fanning themselves. This wasn’t really something I should be doing in the neighborhood gym but …whatever.
Shit. This was hard. I feel like I could pass out any second now. Then out of nowhere, I felt like my chest was expanding.
A feeling like a huge flow of oxygen running into my lungs overwhelmed me and running became easier. I hurriedly closed my left eye.
500 points had been deducted. My endurance had gone up.
I slowly regained my breathing and ran faster. I was able to run for 30 more minutes. 🙂
“Are you going to run a triathalon?”
I was sitting inside a convenience store sharing a cold drink with the trainer.
“No. I just wanted to check something.”
“I thought you said you were a porter…I thought things were tough in the job area for you guys these days.”
“Yeah. How did you know?”
“The news is always talking about it. That there were some weird happenings at the dungeons.”
“Ha. It seems it’s still a somewhat newsworthy topic even after a month has passed.”
“Well because there were so many casualties. And there are still a lot of families suing the government demanding reparations and payouts. You know that most of the victims were from rich families so they’re probably asking for a lot of money.”
I think I’d read something like that somewhere before too.
“Honestly it was the government that promoted leisure parties to begin with so…they can’t really say it wasn’t their fault.
“Well I heard that the government eventually put up a white flag and they’re now in negotiations.”
“How about the insurance agencies? Aren’t they in trouble too?”
“Yep. Basically all the stocks for the insurance companies with any raid related products have been plummeting. It’s just bad for everyone all around right now. I heard there were a bunch of companies that just went under. It’s really affecting the economy. And because we basically lost our main supply for rare ores, all the electronics have been coming from China and is getting difficult to procure.”
“You seem to know a lot.”
When I stared at him in surprise, he started laughing.
“I have a lot of interest in things like this. Being a hunter was also a dream of mine one time.”
“So that’s why you started exercising.”
“Yeah. But it was too high of a goal for me to reach. I never knew that hunter gear was that expensive.”
“Ha ha…that is true.”
Even now every elementary kid’s dream occupation is a hunter. That was how popular and well-paying it was. Famous hunters appear on tv quite often. And hunters with double slot skills were pretty much top celebrities.