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It was the time for victory. I started making huge, flashy movements.
I raised both guns and adjusted their aim.
One at Heising’s head. This tactic was to draw Heising’s attention.
The other was aimed at the top portion of the aura net encompassing Heising.
Heising moved how I wanted him to. Reflexively, he just moved his head to the side and dodged while keeping his body in place.
But yet another bullet broke the top portion of his aura net.
And at the same time, Sylph shot the AW50F.
The aura net ripped from the bullet I shot and, through that gap, dove in the 12.7mm bullet.
Heising’s appalling scream rang out.
I got a thrilling pleasure.
Heising collapsed. From his back, red blood poured out spilling everywhere. A fatal injury.
‘Normally, the attack is so powerful that getting shot like that would cause someone to go flying. But maybe because he’s an aura master his body is heavier than a normal human’s?’
The fact he didn’t die instantly proved how amazing Heising’s body was.
But with this, my victory was confirmed.
While aiming both my guns at Heising, I cautiously approached.
I kicked away the healing potion Heising was holding.
As the agony was overwhelming him, Heising simply grit his teeth.
Barely having turned his body, looking up at the sky, Heising blatantly stared at the gun I was holding.
“So I’ve lost……”
“I didn’t know I would die so soon……”
Heising let out a quiet sigh.
“Rather, you’re accepting your death a bit too easily.”
“During the fight….. I knew…. I had a feeling I’d lose.”
I had a feeling while we were fighting that I would end up as the winner.
Exactly when was when I realized I had the shooting power to rip through his aura net.
From that moment on I felt confident. So far, the skills and training I had experienced, it was the perfect culmination for this fight.
On the other hand, Heising running into someone like me for the first time caused him to lose his composure.
“Let me ask…… one thing.”
“What you said earlier… Kul luk (cough)!”
In the middle of talking, Heising vomited blood.
He grit his teeth hard and continued speaking.
“Martial artist…… did you say his name was Kang Chun-sung?”
“Is he not Chang Tian Seong?”
“I don’t know. I didn’t ever hear it in Chinese. Anyway, he was from Shanghai and trained in the fānziquán and Bāguà Zhǎng (eight trigrams) style.”
“Bāguà Zhǎng …. Then it is……”
As if shocked from absurdity, Heising laughed.
“When I was young, he was a neighborhood Hyung I knew well…… we learned martial arts together…… he was skilled enough to be a teacher.”
Heising’s voice kept softening.
“He was a really strong person…… someone like him is on the other side. Haha…… I guess I’ll see everyone there. Sure…… everyone eventually meets there again……”
Then his voice stopped.
I put my hand to his neck. I couldn’t get a pulse.
It was a surprise that he knew Kang Chun-seong.
There was that connection.
A guy like this, thinking about his childhood right before death. I can’t even describe my feelings at the thought.
But just like that, I got rid of Heising.
Let alone be burned to the ground, the hill we were on was only half of its original height. Standing atop it, I stared blankly into the distance.
I don’t know how long I’ll have to fight like this for.
‘I should have just killed him quickly. I had to listen to useless banter for no reason.’
I feel disgusted and sad.
But I have to keep fighting. Because we haven’t won yet.
I called out to Sylph who was up in the sky.
Then I laid down and prepared to shoot.
Any pirate I could see that was standing out, I shot no matter what.
Especially with dark hair and yellow skin, I killed them without hesitation. It was because they had a high chance of being corrupt examinees from the Chinese examinee group.
How many did I kill in this fashion?
At the shooting started again, the pirates seemed to have realized that Heising had been defeated.
The pirates who invaded the harbor with confidence began to retreat like a low tide.
I didn’t stop shooting until the bastards were on their boats and retreating.
I thought of destroying all the ships so they couldn’t leave the harbor but I decided not to.
My energy was almost at rock bottom.
If the Chinese, who had lost their path to escape, decided to relentlessly counter my attack, I would have no choice but to suffer.
Deng deng deng-! Deng deng deng-! Deng deng deng-!
The bells rang consecutively.
With that, loud yelling from the harbor could be heard.
Right next to me, the exam door appears. The exams been cleared.
The transponder rang.
I picked it up and it was Cha Ji-hye.
-Are you safe?
“Yes, are you safe as well?”
-Yes, the exam door has appeared next to me. But did you get rid of Heising?
“Yes, barely. My door has appeared too.”
-Before we return, we need to return the radios and synthetic muscle suits.
“Then first of all I’ll meet you at the inn.”
I raced towards the Deport harbor.
The harbor was crowded.
The people that had evacuated outside of the city had heard the sounds of victory and were coming back in.
In order to blend in, I darted between them and quietly made my way into the harbor.
But as soon as I appeared, the soldiers pointed to me and shouted.
“It’s our hero!”
“He led us to victory!”
“He is a disciple? Of the count of Wolfenbrooke!”
And then the people started to gather around me.
“Hurry for the hero!!”
People looked at me and rejoiced and clapped.
With all the sudden attention, I feel embarrassed and scratched my head before escaping the scene.
People on both sides made way for me but didn’t’ forget to clap and rejoice for me.
Like that, feeling as if I was a general returning from war, I returned to the inn.
Cha Ji-hye must already have changed all her clothes because she handed me her synthetic muscle suit and radio.
I think her scent was slightly embedded in the synthetic muscle suit and it made me embarrassed.
“What is the matter?”
“Huh? Oh, it’s nothing.’
“Is it because it smells?”
“Ku huk! Um, no! It’s not a bad smell……!”
Only after saying that much did I realize I’ve dug my own grave.
“That’s a relief that at least it doesn’t smell bad.”
Her businesslike tone made me more embarrassed.
I felt like she laughed a little, but there was no way to verify if it was my own delusion.
“I’ll wait outside, you change too.”
While Cha Ji-hye waited outside, I sighed at myself while taking off the synthetic muscle suit.
After I put all the suits and radios into the virtual space bag, I called Cha Ji-hye back in.
Cha ji-hye summoned her board and said.
“I will end the exam.”
And then the exam door appeared.
We opened the door and in turn, headed through it.
Welcomed the baby angel, obnoxiously blowing his trumpet.
“Your repertoire is too predictable, can you do anything else?”
I asked and the baby angel said.
“Then next time I’ll blow some fireworks.
“Do what you want.”
“Anyway, examinee Kim Hyun-ho. Wow, this time too you had a big role, no?”
“You keep giving me exams I can’t pass unless I go big.”
“So did that make it impossible?”
“….. It was possible which is why I’m alive.”
“See. How many times have I said we don’t give impossible exams.”
I suddenly got a bad feeling.
“By any chance.”
“That maybe that you are thinking of…that’s right.”
The baby angel read my mind and replied first.
I felt I had a long way to go.
The question I wanted to ask was this.
I’ve become must stronger from this exam. Does that mean the next exam’s difficultly will be increased by how much stronger I’ve become?
The answer was apparently yes.
This wicked exam system predicted how much I’ll grow and gave me an exam I would barely be able to pass.
“On top of that, examinee Cha Ji-hye has also gathered quite a large sum of karma, that will probably be included (in the next exam grading) as well. Get the wrong amount of karma and you’re in trouble.”
I got an urge to shoot the annoyingly smiling baby angel.
“Now now, go home and rest comfortably. Regrettably, I’ll see you again in 100 days!”
I guess the rest period will be 100 days again.
We’re back in reality.
Having awoken in the Nordic exam group headquarters basement, I felt a sense of safety.
‘Should I see how much I got?’
I killed a lot of corrupt examinees, I perfectly cleared the exam too and looked forward to seeing how much karma I got.
It was when I was about to summon my board.
Kwang Kwang Kwang!
Someone outside was roughly banging on the door.
“Hyun-ho! Open the door Hyun-ho!”
It was Marie Johanna.
As soon as I opened the door,
Like a protective charm she hugged me.
“I missed you!”
Marie was hanging around my neck like a sloth and wrapped her legs around my waist and lightly moved towards my back even.
“How are you Marie? Did you clear your exam?”
“Yup! But it was tiring having to be by Odin the whole time.”
Marie’s mission was to personally protect Odin. If Odin returned safe and sound, Marie would clear her exam.
“Mr. Kim Hyun-ho!”
Odin’s lively voice rang out.
Also cleared the exam, Odin welcomed me.
“Did you eradicate the pirates?”
“Yes, and I got rid of Heising. Have you heard of Heising?”
Then Odin’s face was overcome with shock.
“Heising, ranked 13th in the world for having the most karma?”
“Yes. According to the records released by the Chinese exam group last year. He became a corrupt examinee and afterwards was not able to gain karma so his rank fell, but at one point he was ranked 8th in the world.”
I had no idea he was such big fish.
Then again, he must have been which is why he was rivals with Lee Chang-wee.
“Amongst the Chinese examinees, he was the viable rival for Lee Chang-wee, I had no idea you would get rid of someone as big as him!”
Odin looked at me with surprise.
I’m now an 8th turn examinee.
That I could fight and win over a top 10 ranked publicized person, it was interesting enough.
‘So Heising was ranked 13th in the world?’
I gained confidence.
In a full on combat battle against Heising, without resorting to any trickery, I was able to win.
Now, I don’t have to be conscientious of others’ gaze and I can say I’m a strong person!
“If Heising is dead, the Chinese examinees are now under the sole control of Lee Chang-wee.”
I thought the same.
Not on purpose but I have helped Lee Chang-wee achieve the situation he wanted.
For me, I just did my best to clear my exam but eventually, the benefits would be returned to Lee Chang-wee.
‘But for me too, my situation has improved quite a bit compared to before.’
I killed Heising.
Even for Lee Chang-wee who couldn’t belittle a strong person Heising, killing him cemented my own strength.
Meaning Lee Chang-wee could no longer think so little of me either.
From the position of Lee Chang-wee, who has achieved his goal, there was no reason to have me as an enemy anymore.
Following that, when Lee Chang-wee has complete control of the Chinese examinees they won’t come after me anymore.
‘Anyway, let’s see how much karma I got.’
I summoned my board.
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