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Galfus growled at Joonbum as he continued to display his annoyance.
Joonbum attempted to fight back, but the pressure exerted by Galfus made him stop. It was futile. He spun around and turned on the faucet to fill up the water. Galfus slowly rose, drank all of the water, then started munching on a dead orc body that was piled up on the side. Sounds of crushing bones and something being ripped apart echoed throughout the fortress.
“I am not weak. It’s just a smart choice not to resist that kind of monster.”
Joonbum self-justified his own actions as he finished filling up the water and moved toward the basket. His frowning face instantly brightened. The basket had four cubs and a baby, all tangled with each other, sleeping peacefully.
“Oooh, you guys are so cute. Don’t be like that Galfus, OK? Baekgu, Heukgu, Gumdong, Urlook, and mysterious baby.”
The cubs already had names, casually named after their colors. He did not name the baby since it might already have been named. There were also name tags on each of the cubs to let the viewers recognize their names. The sole reason for these simple names was because they were easy to say.
Joonbum watched the cubs with a smile for a moment then walked to the truck and started unloading. The truck had a full load of goods as if he was moving out.
“I shouldn’t have received all the sponsored goods at once.”
Joonbum gazed at the stuff piled on the truck. There was a variety of goods that had been given to him under the commercial contracts that Joonbum signed. Most of their requirements were that their brands had to be displayed at least three times a week. As his popularity grew, there were no more absurd commercial offers like asking him to wear a chicken hat or do a fried chicken commercial himself.
[We can provide all the chickens you feed to your wolf. You just need to put on our chicken suit and do a commercial. We can pay you five million won per month.]
[You sure know how to drink. We can provide you all the beer you want, plus a payment of two million per month if you feature our commercial. How about it?]
Joonbum remembered them making proud offers as if they were doing him a favor.
“I was right not to accept that.”
He smiled at his past decisions and started to unload. First, he unloaded all the food items. Boxes full of chicken, ducks, and pigs were unloaded and were moved to the used commercial refrigerator. Next was food for himself. There were a lot of canned goods and preserved food together with the fresh meat and veggies. There were also sauces and spices — these were all for his eating broadcasts.
“Today’s lunch is Otherworldly Pasta! Recipe made by me.”
He muttered as he kept on working. All the tools had been moved to his newly-constructed tool rack. Then he stopped at the sounds of crying coming from the basket.
“Are they awake?”
Joonbum wiped away the sweat from his forehead, glanced at the time, and quickly walked to the basket, sniffing it.
“I don’t smell anything. Are they hungry?”
Joonbum eyed them for a second and started rummaging through another basket and took out milk bottles, which he gave to the cubs.
Joonbum shivered at the cute sight of the cubs drinking away from the milk bottles.
“Aww, am I in heaven? It feels like I am healed.”
Then he heard the baby crying.
“Okay, it’s your turn now.”
Joonbum took up the baby in his arms and gave it another milk bottle. The baby’s small hands moved towards the bottle.
It was just a touch. Just a touch was all the baby did, but it was enough for Joonbum to be struck by the cuteness. As the baby’s small cheeks moved, milk leaked out through its small mouth, and he heard its shallow breathing. Joonbum couldn’t resist its deadly cuteness.
Joonbum sighed out loud. He felt the tiny living thing’s warmth transferring to him and felt its small heartbeat. It was a breathtaking experience.
“Is this why you need a baby? Ohh, you’re drinking well.”
The mysterious baby was drinking away at the milk. Joonbum was in awe at this precious life. Soon, the baby started slowed down, showing that the baby had enough. Joonbum remembered his mother’s advice that the baby would push the bottle away when full and sure enough, it did. Joonbum removed the bottle and caressed the baby.
He started to rub the baby’s back as it opened its small mouth and let out a really small burp. It was hard to tell, but there was a slight smell that proved it.
Joonbum’s face brightened with a smile. The baby burped few more times as Joonbum moved his hand up and down its back. After a while, the baby fell asleep and so did the cubs.
‘Yikes, I need to eat too.’
It was a little bit after that Joonbum realized that he had not eaten anything yet. Just watching them made him forget the time.
“I must have looked so dumb. Ugh, that Galfus…”
Joonbum grumbled as he moved away from the basket. Galfus was avoiding eye contact as if she was pretending not to have seen anything. But in a moment, Galfus turned her head again, watched Joonbum briefly, then trotted out of the fortress.
“Hah, we’ll see!”
Joonbum shook his fist at the leaving Galfus and moved to the fridge. It was packed with food items that had been prepared for his videos. After he looked into the fridge, he pondered for a bit and then started taking out what he needed.
“Today is pasta day.”
He first took out tomato sauce, onions, paprika, and a few mushrooms.
“This should do.”
He also took out a chunk of meat from a black plastic bag. There was famous saying in Korea that if you leave food in a black plastic bag, it will stay there forever and turn into something fearful.
“It’s better to get rid of it before it becomes something else.”
It was a part of beef that he had used to make seaweed soup a while ago.
“Oh, I had shrimp too.”
He took out another bag which was full of frozen shrimp. He also took out the leftover shrimp from before.
After that, he moved to the cooler to take out the cherry tomatoes and started cooking. He cleaned and cut the onions and paprika. It was flawless. He did not have a cooking license or prior lessons, but his life experiences and all his eating broadcasts taught him everything he needed to know. All of the veggies and meat were cut into bite-size pieces.
Joonbum lit the stove and started boiling water in a pot, not forgetting to season it with a bit of salt. He also took out a wok and started frying the onions, paprika, and meat together. The sound of the stir-fry echoed. The thick aroma of food started permeating the area as he added seasoning into the wok.
Joonbum grinned. The videos did not have any dialogue, but all other sounds, including the cooking, was audible.
‘They must be getting hungry.’
The best part about eating broadcasts was that they made viewers hungry.
The smell of sizzling oil and cooked beef spread out. Joonbum dilated his nostrils at the smell, not minding the complaints he would receive about looking disgusting. He was so used to such comments that he thought of them as a lullaby.
“This is crazy!”
The mushrooms, shrimp, and beef seemed to have been cooked well.
“Shrimp is a must.”
The addition of shrimp gave the dish that special something. Joonbum poured an entire tomato sauce bottle into the wok and poured some water into the bottle to wash out the remaining sauce into the wok.
The water inside boiled away, becoming a thick sauce. The pot with salted water began to boil also.
“Hmmph. I think I can eat all of this.”
Joonbum ripped apart the noodle packaging that had servings for five people and poured them into the boiling salt water.
“I need to boil it for eight minutes. It has to be fully cooked so that it won’t be hard.”
The usual method for cooking pasta noodles was to boil it for five minutes, but Joonbum liked to boil it for longer. He lowered the fire under the wok as he set the time for eight minutes.
Preparing pasta was simple if you had all the ingredients. It was also a good way to take care of any leftover ingredients just by dumping them into the sauce.
Joonbum smiled with happiness. Eating time was one of his favorites, especially when he cooked and ate in the wild like this. It seemed that the viewers shared that special feeling and loved his eating broadcasts.
Eight minutes quickly passed by and Joonbum picked out a single noodle to taste test. He grinned and fished out all the noodles and moved them to the wok. He mixed the noodles with the sauce for a second on the stove and brought it to the table.
There were cans of beer and pickles ready on the table. He used his chopsticks to pick up the pasta.
“This will be delicious! Time to eat.”
His nostrils flared and his mouth salivated at the sight of the finished food. When he blew on the pasta before shoveling it into his mouth, he heard a blunt sound and stopped.
The pasta was still in front of him, but he froze. Joonbum blinked his eyes a few times and looked over to his pasta at the other end of the table. There was a long stick, decorated with feathers sticking out from the table.
Joonbum stared at the shaking stick after the blunt sound of it embedded itself in the table and realized what it was.
He was too slow. He was too slow to realize that it was an arrow or he just couldn’t comprehend due to it being such an unexpected sight.
The pasta fell through his weakened chopsticks grip. The aroma of food was still there, but he couldn’t even smell it anymore. Joonbum’s eyes widened with fear as he glanced around and then found the source.
Joonbum reached out for his rifle as soon as he found the shooter, but he couldn’t do anything else. The shooter was already aiming his bow at Joonbum. He glanced between the arrow on the table and the arrow nocked on the bow.
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