Seeing the arrow lodged just a hairwidth’s distance from his head, the big guy started to sweat as he slowly backed away. Then he made a mad dash for a car that had been on standby.
“Everyone run! Shit!”
But I couldn’t let them get away like that.
I hit the ground hard and sprinted.
It didn’t matter how fast he ran.
My focus was at 250.
My reflexes at 300.
Instant acceleration and speedI had already surpassed that of a normal human beings’ ability in these areas long ago.
I instantly ran in front of them all and cut them off from their vehicles. I still held the shield in my left hand and the Honcheon sword in my right. I lowered my stance in battle position.
“Shit! Shit! Kill him!”
Five of them, with their swords drawn, ran toward me. Even the archers pulled their swords free. Arrows were no use in close combat.
But with my back to the vehicle, only two of them could attack me at one time.
I slammed my shield against one opponent’s sword to knock him off balance while I used the explosive attack of my Honcheon sword against another.
As the man flew back from the small explosion, his weapon shattered into smithereens and hit him all over. Hm. That could kill him if he didn’t get it looked at.
Even though I had retired two of them in mere seconds, it seemed to only kindle the fire in the rest of them.
Because they had over 1,000 to deal with behind them.
They probably felt that if they didn’t get rid of me and run away, they’d be goners for sure there would be a mob lynching.
But their equipment levels were only 1 and 2s.
I was careful to keep an eye on the guy with the level 3 bow while I dropped each of them one by one.
This was too easy. The thought came to me that I would probably be able to fight against them even if I were barehanded.
Even those that had level 2 items, at most they would raise their abilities by 30 percent.
Compared to that, I had almost a 300 buff on all my abilities.
And I also had Sooah’s buff on top of that.
Even if I were to go against 30 of these guys, they would not be able to beat me.
“Crap! What the hell is this!”
Big guy started to yell out in frustration. Bro. I feel you. It must be frustrating that you can’t get through just one guy like me.
I blocked an attack to my shoulder with the shield and stabbed back.
He probably thought I would only block because he was knocked back completely.
He was so shocked my the attack that he looked as if he would drop his sword any second.
And then he did.
I rolled on the ground, picked up the sword, and immediately put it in my manual’s storage.
The guy who dropped his sword dumbly started to look around for his weapon.
To think he was looking around for his sword when I was right in front of him.
Wellit was a 200,000 dollar item. I’d look for it too.
I smacked him with my shield to knock him out. Goodnight.
Two men on either side of the now unconscious guy ran at me.
I swiped my Honcheon sword horizontally.
Each explosive hit from my sword violently smacked my opponents’ weapons into the air. But since they were level 2 items, they didn’t shatter from the impact.
I jumped up, grabbed both swords, and stored them in my manual as I landed back to the ground.
“What, what the hell?”
“Is this a spell or magic?”
Magic my ass.
Just then, Manager Kim cast his sleep spell over the enemies’ heads.
As soon as the golden light cascaded down, 3 of them fell unconscious in a heap.
Out of the 5 who had not fallen asleep, only 3 still had their weapons.
Big guy shot out his arrow, and it flew at me fast. But I slightly moved my body at an angle so it would graze my armor and bounce off harmlessly.
“What the hell! That makes no sense! This is a level 3 bow!”
Big guy started stomping around and yelling. He looked like he would have a heart attack any second now. I’m sorry but my armor’s level 3 too. There’s no way that it would cause any damage especially just from glancing off my armor at an angle.
“Sorry we’re late.”
Cho Youngoo and Jong Sawon ran to my side. It wasn’t that they were late, I was just too quick.
“I’m here too.”
Park Hanbum. And behind him, 20 some other hunters had followed past the barricade.
No, there were more.
Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap Tap.
Hunters kept climbing over the barricade in great numbers.
“Shi, shit. What the hell…?”
“Are you guys asking to die! GO BACK BEHIND THE BARRICADE!”
Big guy kept yelling and yelling. Jeez.
But the men who had climbed over the barricades were only more emboldened and walked ever closer.
“Pieces of shits. Selfish pieces of shits.”
“I’ve always wanted to choke the life out of you Ezekiel bastards.”
“Yeh, you guys have been a menace for too long.”
Hm. Guess no one was a fan of these guys.
I put the shield and sword back into storage.
I had half a mind to just leave them to the mob to deal with, but I had something I needed to do.
The bow big guy had in his possession was worth 800,000 dollars.
Might as well take that right?
I cracked my neck to one side before I pushed everyone back.
I outstretched an open palm to him.
He swung at me with his bow like a sword.
I grabbed it with my hands.
“If you hand over your weapon, I’ll let you leave with your life.”
“Shut the hell up!”
“Hm. Why are you being stubborn when I’m giving you the chance to live.”
We started to wrestle with the bow.
The bow began to bend under the strain.
Surely it won’t break right? I meanit’s a level 3 item.
“Keuk. To think you’d try and wrestle with me.”
“You think I look that weak?”
His arm began to shake. Looked like he was putting his all into it.
But I didn’t give even an inch.
“What were you saying?”
He yelled out on the top of his lungs and pulled on the bow even harder.
He was pulling on the bow as if his life depended on it, but I still didn’t budge.
Then I let one of my hands go.
I was holding it with one hand now, while he was using both arms to pull with all his might.
But he was still unable to wrestle the bow away from me.
Not only was his face a bright red, but his whole body had turned that alarming shade. It looked like his eyes would pop right out of his sockets any second now.
“Hey hey. You might just take a shit if you keep at it.”
“I’m going to kill you!”
“HmAnd here I was trying to give you an out.”
I pulled the bow. Hard.
And he was jolted toward me.
As soon as his face came right in front of mine, I socked him a good one with my free fist.
I heard something snap as he dropped to his knees and threw up everything in his stomach.
Everyone around us started to cheer like crazy.
And amidst all of happy roars, I took the bow and put it in my manual.
After taking what I came for, I slipped out of the large crowd.
They started to take every member of team Ezekiel and tied them all up onto the vehicles that were forming the barricade.
I was half surprised and relieved they didn’t kill the lot of them.
“Hmit’s a shame we couldn’t take their weapons.”
Han Joonseok muttered. Little did he know, I was the one who had taken almost every single one of them and put them into my manual.
Jung Sooah came up to me and hit me lightly on the back.
“You should have said something instead of just running ahead like that. We were all surprised.”
“Ah, I just saw an opportunity and went for it. And I thought everything would fall apart and everyone behind us would leave if we didn’t make the first move. I needed to show them that team Ezekiel wasn’t all that tough so that they wouldn’t be afraid to cross over the barricade.”
The entire crowd of some thousand people were looking my way.
We were able to overcome this small team but it was a different story if reinforcements came.
Depending on whether or not they stick with me at that timethe tide could go either way.
“Even if reinforcements were to come and attack, if we just hold our ground and refuse to turn away, they would have no choice to give up. Too many casualties would cause the government to step inand no one on either side wanted that to happen.”
“You were thinking that far ahead? That’s our party head.”
Cho Youngoo said as he gave me a thumbs up sign.
We started to move the barricade made up of vehicles.
It wasn’t hard all we had to do was release the side brake and push.
I motioned for everyone to pass.
I don’t know how it happened, but there were now almost 300 cars waiting behind us and almost 2000 hunters.
There was no way anyone could chase us all away.
“Thank you. It’s thanks to you we can now try to make some kind of living.”
The hunters driving past in their cars kept yelling out to us. It was getting a bit embarrassing.
“Sunbeh Oppa, it looks like you might get really famous now!”
It was a great opportunity for hunters to become famous.
Because fame always came hand in hand with money.
This could help to catapult team Delta into being a real pro hunter team.
But I didn’t want to get my hopes up just yet.
After letting all the other hunters go first, it was our turn.
I double checked all the items I had taken.
8 Level 2 items, 10 Level 1 items, and 1 Level 3 item.
That translated into roughly 3.5 million dollars.
Among my haul, the Grassland Horn Bow was a really useful item. It was much better to give to Bae Yeonkyoung or Han Joonseokk to use than to sell.
I brought out the bow from my manual.
“Uh? What is that?”
“Level 3 Grassland Horn Bow. You can accurately shoot at something while moving with this.”
I looked at Bae Yeonkyoung and Han Joonseok.
Both of them were equipped with level 2 items.
It was a bit of a shame that neither of them were a match with the bow’s extra option.
“Hm….Don’t you think that the bow will be a better fit for Ms. Bae Yeonkyoung? Since I have the stalker….”
“I think that I am not qualified to use a Level 3 bow just yet. I think it would be better for Joonseok oppa to use it.”
Jesus. They were now doing a polite fight of who should take a level 3 item.
As a hunter, I’m sure they both secretly coveted the bow.
But they were also putting the needs of the team over their own selfish desires. I really like my team.
It may have been just a little bit at a time, but I could feel us trusting one another more and more each day.
“Hmwhat to do…?”
“I’ll buy it.”
Park Hanbum raised his hand and spoke up.
“Do you know how much something like this is?”
“I don’t know how much it is, but I’ll buy it for 1 million dollars.”
I started laughing at Park Hanbum’s response.
There was no need to pay 1 million for something worth only 800,000. Because then he could just go and buy it at the market instead.
There was only one reason for this offer.
“But how about I pay 800,000 in cash and 200,000 in future distribution?”
“That’s sure a roundabout way of asking to put you in our team.”
“It seemed you wouldn’t let me in otherwise.”
“Do you have that kind of money?”
“I think I can scrape up that much from the money I’ve saved up.”
“If you have a level 3 weapon, I’m sure that there will be plenty of other teams who would welcome you with open arms. What’s the real reason you’re trying to include yourself in our team at the expense of 200,000 dollars…?”
“There aren’t many people you can meet in this neck of the woods.”
I thought he would say something more along the lines of higher pay probability or because we had better skills.
But to say we were trustworthy…
It was an answer I honestly liked.
I turned around and looked at my party members.
“How do the rest of you feel about this offer?”
Everyone agreed and accepted Parkk Hanbum to our party.
A thought came to my head that maybe I should draft a contract or something.
“Since we even have a team name now, I think it would be a good idea to create a formal contract.”
“Just leave that to us.”
Han Joonseok raised his hand and said.
“Do you have experience making something like this?”
“He worked as a planner so he’ll do just fine.”
Cho Youngoo said while pointing to Joonseok.
“Planner? What kind of planner?”
“In the hunter management area. It wasn’t long but I’m familiar with the gist of contracts so you don’t have to worry too much.”
I think I mentioned this before but hunters had the ability to earn a very nice income besides what they could make from ores and items.
Popular and famous hunters could earn money from advertising, appearances, sponsorships, and a bunch of other ways.
And all of this was handled by hunter management.
“Everything else could be drafted according to a general contract. The more difficult part is the distributions. But we can put in a clause that says the party head can make changes to distributions of needed. “
Distributions was always a point of contention with all teams.
There are two sides to distributions. Keeping more for the team and distributing less to the members helped overall team growth but keeping less for the team and distributing more to each individual member helped personal growth.
I preferred going the route of personal growth.
Just because the team’s finances increased didn’t mean that the team’s overall power would increase. All it would do is attract more hunters.
You could say this was how team Ezekiel worked.
“Let’s get started on the formal contract when we get back after finishing this round of hunting.”
“So we’re on our way to becoming a real raid teamit feels weird. This wasn’t something I even dreamed of happening.”
Bae Yeonkyoung said.
She had been just a level 1 archer and a crappy one at that so I wasn’t surprised this was far and apart from where she expected to be.
“That kind of stuff isn’t important. Just because we create an official raid team and name doesn’t mean we’re anything if our skills and abilities are not up to par.”
“Yes! We’ll make sure to work hard so as not to drag you down!”
Sooah yelled out as she waved her sword back and forth.
“Now, let’s get going.”
“I’ll follow close behind while riding this.”
“You won’t get too tired?”
“Just because I’ll get tired doesn’t mean I can just throw it away. This thing’s pretty expensive.”
Park Hanbum lightly tapped his offroad bike. I put my hand to the bike. I wondered if I could store this thing in my manual too.
-No information on item.
I guess not. It seemed that only items could be stored in the manual.
The Marsh in the South was a vast land stretching out for over 100 kilometers.
It should have been big enough to accommodate a few thousand hunting parties.
Of course, without regeneration, the monsters here will soon dry up too.
So before that happens, we had to hurry up and hunt what we could.
We followed a particularly better looking road in our car, and Park Hanbum followed us close behind.
We could already see cars that had stopped so parties could begin their hunting. As I looked through my explorer map, Han Joonseok said.
“It says that there are more Level 2 monsters in this area so we best be more careful.”
“Whether it’s level 1 or level 2 monsters, they’re pretty much the same.”
Manager Kim replied.
Currently, Cho Youngoo, Jong Sawon, Park Hanbum, and I had level 3 equipment.
Of course Cho Youngoo’s weapon was still a level 2 but he could safely cover our rear with that.
It was understandable why Manager Kim was being so laissez faire about everything.
“We still need to be careful. Because it’s from this point that we might cross paths with monsters like that toad. If they just jump, they could easily move from our front to the side or back.”
“You have me for that.”
Sooah took out her sword and started posing wildly.
I shook my head.
I couldn’t deny it, however, that she did improve her swordsmanship in a short time.
You didn’t need to be an amazing swordsman to fight against a low level monster.
All you needed to take care of yourself was the basic slash and stab and she had that down.
We kept on the road in this same manner until we saw a new scene unfolding.
There were dozens of people who had gotten off heavy trucks fighting against another group of dozen.
When I rolled down the window to listen in, it seemed some of them were from team Ezekiel.
It seemed they had tried to block the sudden onslaught of people coming into the new land, but were not too successful.
“What? Huh? Say it again!”
“This place is team Ezekiel’s land….keuk?”
The moment he grasped his opponent’s neck with one large hand, team Ezekiel’s hunter was immediately lifted off the ground.
“Are you kidding? Who says? Do you see just how many people we have? We can take you on!”
“Keuk….ah, what I meant was…”
“Move that hand immediately!”
As soon as the men on team Ezekiel’s side drew their sword, everyone on the other side did the same.
Things were getting a bitdangerous again.
“It looks like it’s about to get real.”
Sooah mumbled. I agreed. Even if it was the West Sea, killing people in broad daylight in front of witnesses was asking for trouble.
We slowed our car and got out to approach them.
It felt as if blood would be spilled if one person on either side moved an inch.