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When I said Lee Chang-wee, Cha Ji-hye and Marie stopped what they were doing.
“Why are you calling me?”
He spoke informally first so I replied in kind.
“Me meet you?” `
“I don’t want to.”
-Even if you don’t want to I have many ways of making you. Don’t you think it best if you meet me when I ask?
Does he mean he can take a hostage to force me? The Korean Arena Research Agency is on the Chinese side so I’m sure he could quickly find out my family’s whereabouts.
-Today will just be conversation.
“Then you come here.”
“Come to my house. If we’re just going to talk, so what. If we meet outside, I’ll just be cold and cost money.”
Then Lee Chang-wee laughed.
-Fine. I’ll head over.
“Use the intercom. We’re no solicitors.”
Lee Chang-wee hung up without a reply.
I said to Cha Ji-hye.
“He’s coming here. What will you do?”
“See him together.”
“Will you be alright? The other person is the asshole that killed you. And you still have to hide your identity….”
“I can’t hide myself forever anyway. If they are monitoring you, sooner or later my identity will be found. They might already know even.”
“And Miss Marie?”
“I want to see!”
Marie energetically shouted.
She’s sure good to have around during times like these.
With the three of us together, I think we have a chance at standing up to him.
But still, we prepared for the worst.
I took out three synthetic muscle suits from the space bag.
We changed into the suits.
Then I gave Sylph and Kasa the AW50F and told them to prepare to shoot from the rooftop on the building across from us.
When all the preparations were done, Lee Chang-wee arrived.
I undid the locks on my door and quickly stepped back to give him space. Just in case he tries to suddenly attack.
Keek – (creaking noise)
Lee Chang-wee opened the door and appeared.
Lee Chang-wee looked straight at me, sized me up, and smirked.
“You really don’t know how to treat guests. You should have properly opened the door and welcomed me.”
“Depends on the guest.”
Lee Chang-wee walked inside and was flustered when he saw Cha Ji-hye in the hall.
Cha Ji-hye didn’t say a word to Lee Chang-wee, she just stared at him.
She stood up to the man that murdered her.
Despite that, I couldn’t see fear or rage, she maintained her neutral face and her calm amazed me.
“Ha ha ha! Did you become an examinee because I killed you? What incredible coincidence!”
“You threw my body into the sea.”
Said Cha Ji-hye placidly. Lee Chang-wee gave a refreshing laugh.
“Ha ha, I did, I did! My underlings tied a rock to you and threw you in. When you returned from your exam, were you not in the ocean?”
“It was the seashore. And my wallet and car keys had been taken.”
“Tsk tsk, they’re rather vulgar fellows. I’m sorry about that. I’ll pay you back for it.”
Lee Chang-wee randomly summoned his item bag and from within, withdrew a bar of gold.
“This should be enough.”
Then in silence, Cha Ji-hye took the gold bar.
Whether Lee Chang-wee having all this fun or Cha Ji-hye as if it’s nothing at all, it couldn’t be stranger.
Lee Chang-wee, brazen as he was, sat himself comfortably on the sofa.
Right about now, Sylph should be aiming at his head.
“You came because you had something to say?”
“Just this morning I was thinking whether I should just kill you or half kill you and take you with me.”
He sure says it without trouble in front of the person he means that about. He’s saying he’s the stronger one.
“Want to give it a go?”
“Haha, I kind of want to but I had a change of thought.”
“You’re a 7th turn examinee now?”
“For a mere 7th turn examinee, you’ve become too strong. Your progress is so fast its kind of weird. And I get the sense that the Nordic exam group is protecting you.”
“Odin basically gave me a warning call to protect you, which makes me think its not just because of your treatment skill.”
Lee Chang-wee’s snake-like eyes stared at me.
The virtual space.
If he knew of my ability to store electronics, what kind of reaction would he have?
Of course, I have no intention of telling him.
“So, what are you saying you’ll do?”
“I’ll give you an offer.”
Since he can’t solve it with strength, he’s trying to make a play with something and reconcile with good words.
Lee Chang-wee looked at Cha Ji-hye and Marie contentiously.
“Can we talk in private, just the two of us?”
“We can. Sylph!”
From the opposite building’s rooftop, Sylph is now in front of me.
“Put up a sound barrier so just the two of us can talk.”
Sylph used her power. A strand of wind encompassed me and Lee Chang-wee.
Lee Chang-wee looked at Sylph. Sylph yawned atop my shoulder.
“Let’s work together.”
I was instantly flustered. What now? Work together?
“You don’t think we’ve come too far for that?”
“I don’t think we’ve come far at all. The only ones who lost are us Chinese, I don’t think you’ve lost anything.”
“You killed Cha Ji-hye!”
I said in anger.
How can they treat human life so lightly?
“But in the end, she’s still alive. And you’ve gained a lot of karma and grown stronger. Haven’t you raised your spirit summon to superior by now? I think you must have.”
“So let’s stop arguing about the past and think about how we can benefit one another.”
“I don’t trust China.”
They tried to kidnap me.
They do all sorts of horrible things in the Arena to make money, I can’t forgive such.
“China? When did I ask you to work with China?”
“What do you mean?”
“Not China. Work with ME.”
I was surprised, I looked at Lee Chang-wee.
Lee Chang-wee laughed coldly.
“Have you not thought about it this way before? How can you be so strong and still take orders from others? If you just made up your mind, you could kill the most powerful person in this country any second.”
“That’s different. I’m just saying, let’s change the power ladder so it’s a true reflection of strength.”
“An examinee always risks his life to return from the Arena. Despite that, they get orders from those in power and the capitalist class and are used to make money. Isn’t that crazier?”
“So? You want to hold hands and crumble a nation?”
“It’s not that grand an idea.”
Lee Chang-wee continued talking.
“The Chinese communist party leaders see us examinees as a valuable income source, but they also fear us.”
Examinees, if they want, could kill hundreds and thousands. They’re beasts.
In the eyes of the powerful that shape nations, controlling examinees is as important as anything.
To try and block the kinds of guys like Lee Chang-wee who have these thoughts.
“They have made me the one responsible for all the examinees, and as another examinee to contest with other examinees.”
“They’re making two groups of examinees so that they keep each other in check, so nobody has time to try anything else.”
“There is the method of kidnapping family members that we use, and that is the most used way we control them.”
“So, you’re asking me to get rid of the opposing faction of yours?”
“You understand quick.”
“And what is it I’ll gain from this?”
“I’ll give you lots of information so that you can kill them easily in the Arena. Most of them are corrupt examinees so the more you kill, the stronger you’ll become.”
“I’ll make it so you are no longer threatened by the Chinese examinees. If you want, I’ll get rid of Chief Kim Joong-tae too.”
That one does entice me.
But my answer was decided from the beginning.
“What do you mean?”
“So I get rid of the faction that opposes you and you assume power. After that, what are you going to do.”
“Well, what else? Word hard making money, basically living as I do now.”
I smiled cynically at his answer.
“I knew you’d say that. Of course, I reject your proposal.”
“That’s a dumb decision. It’ll be a huge benefit to you and you’re going to refuse it? Purely based on the fact we have different values?”
“No. Its based on a completely realistic reason.”
I continued to speak at Lee Chang-wee, who was surprised at my response.
“I’m sure you guys will try everything to prevent the clearing of the exams. Like last time if I try to complete my missions, you guys will definitely come at me again.”
I continued to speak.
“Thankfully, right now, you guys are torn amongst yourselves and your heads are leaders that don’t really know anything about the Arena. But if I let everyone be under your sole command, how much stronger will you get? And……”
I grit my teeth and said.
“Does it seem stupid to you that I could refuse an offer over different values? I don’t want to associate myself with people like you who do shitty things.”
I don’t want to be linked with people who kill for money. There is a certain respect you must have for others as a human.
“…. So you are saying you will not work with me?”
Lee Chang-wee’s voice turned dreary.
I tried my hardest not to get scared.
“Then our conversation is over.”
That moment, an immense aura emanated from Lee Chang-wee’s body. The speed with which he raised his aura was super-fast.
I too quickly shouted out.
Sylph jumped into my body.
Lee Chang-wee jumped up from the sofa and extended the knife in his hand at me. Surprisingly the aura was in the knife too.
But I didn’t stay still.
“Divine Protection of the Wind!”
After releasing the Divine Protection of the Wind, I raised a whirlwind and wrapped it around myself.
The wind countered his daggers.
With loud crashing sounds, Lee Chang-wee was thrown backwards.
Spirit summons superior level 1. And the mastered Divine Protection of the Wind, a whirlwind that was three times stronger than before.
He may be Lee Chang-wee, but he attacked with his bare body so no way he didn’t get flung away.
But Lee Chang-wee wasn’t some average guy.
He stepped on the sofa and regained his balance, and I had no idea when he summoned that thing but in Lee Chang-wee’s right hand there was a long sword!
Pa a at!
And from that long sword, an aura blade extended out!
Marie and Cha Ji-hye had approached and were now on either side of me.
Lee Chang-wee and the three of us, we all looked at each other in our confrontation.
Lee Chang-wee, whose eyes seemed as if they were without feeling, moved his gaze past each of us.
Holding his aura blade down at his side, Lee Chang-wee walked over to the door.
We made way for him.
“I’ll see you in the Arena. I think that’ll be best.”
“It doesn’t matter when or where.”
Lee Chang-wee smirked and with scarily predatory eyes, stared at me.
He got rid of his aura blade as he opened the door and left.
Only now did I get rid of the fusion and send Sylph back and breathed a sigh of relief.
“I’m sure he didn’t intend to fight today from the get go.”
Said Cha Ji-hye.
“If examinees fight in a heavily populated building and cause a situation, even though the Korean Arena Research Agency is friendly with the Chinese, there is a limit to what they will accept.”
“So he just wanted to instill fear.”
“He wanted to see how you’d react.”
At Cha Ji-hye’s opinion, I nodded my head.
He wanted to see if I’d be scared or if I would stand against him. That’s why I stood.
But honestly, I was really scared.
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