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Chapter 57 - End (7)

Second Life Ranker
     Chapter 57. End (7)

    “…!”

    “…!”

    The new tutorial ranking left the players with their minds blown. Because there was a crazy score right in front of their eyes.

    Had there ever been a player who had collected that much Karma in the tutorial?

    From the moment Yeon-woo defeated Phante and Vyram and made all the other players kneel down, the result had already been decided.

    A predator.

    In the eyes of the players, Yeon-woo was nothing but an insatiable beast.

    Even if Yeon-woo didn't take away Edora's gold crystal, the top spot would still be his.

    Just then, Yeon-woo’s body started to fade away. He was using Shunpo to scram.

    "Wait..."

    Edora tried to catch Yeon-woo belatedly. But when she reached out with her hand, Yeon-woo had already vanished from his spot.

    "Ah!"

    Failing to catch Yeon-woo, Edora let out a regretful moan. And she stood aghast for a little while.

    The shock Yeon-woo gave her was too great. The image of Yeon-woo was lingering in her mind.

    An indescribable feeling overcame her mind.

    This was their first time suffering defeat since joining the tutorial. Moreover, it was a complete defeat.

    Feeling defeated, Edora’s body trembled, but she soon mumbled to herself with a slightly flushed face.

    "That was… splendid."

    * * *

    [00:00.00_05]

    [00:00:00_04]

    ···

    [00:00:00_00]

    Yeon-woo was currently sitting in a deserted place lost in meditation. He was slowly recovering himself from the severe side effects caused by the use of his skills.

    And when the tutorial timer reached zero, Yeon-woo opened his eyes.

    [The tutorial has ended.]

    [All remaining players will be teleported to the waiting area. Beware of impact.]

    The stage surrounding Yeon-woo and the other players started to shake and fade away as if they were inside a television screen being blurred out with noise.

    And when things became clear, they were standing in a vast open space along with thousands of other players. The players who had participated in this round of the tutorial.

    Some of them looked startled after being summoned to a place full of other players. But once they realized that the tutorial had ended, they breathed a sigh of relief. And when they noticed that Yeon-woo was standing among them, they began to talk in whispers.

    "Is that him…?"

    "Yup. That’s him. The number one in the rankings, the Hoarder."

    "I heard he beat the One-horned tribe siblings and the Marcusian swordsman. That's ridiculous."

    "I wonder who he is."

    The Hoarder.

    It was the name people started to call Yeon-woo with since the rumors about what happened in Section G spread among the players.

    There was nothing known about the name or identity of the character, and he had suddenly made a spectacular appearance.

    All they knew was that he wore a white mask and that he was acquainted with Kahn and Doyle.

    Even that was known only because a player happened to see Yeon-woo grouped up with Kahn and Doyle when heading to Hargan’s Lair.

    So people were very curious about who Yeon-woo was. But no one had the guts to approach Yeon-woo and strike up a conversation. The only thing they could do was to watch him from afar. And that was also comfortable for Yeon-woo as no one was coming to bother him.

    But still, Yeon-woo wasn’t used to having this kind of attention on him.

    ‘Maybe I shouldn’t have gone to Section G. If I didn’t, I wouldn't have received this much attention.’

    Of course, it was only a figure of speech. Even if he had to go back in time, he would have done the same thing. Because he needed the hidden reward given only to the first ranker in the tutorial.

    ‘Zeus’ Key. This is the only way I can get it.'

    Yeon-woo had two places he had tot visit once he entered The Tower. One was Arthia’s clan house.

    And the other one was,

    "Olympus’ Treasury."

    The place where the gods of the past kept their sacred relics.

    Zeus' key was one of the twelve keys for opening the door to the treasury.

    Therefore, Yeon-woo had to be the first at any cost in order to acquire the key.

    But the problem was that if he were to be the first, it was most likely that other players in The Tower would start to hinder him.

    ‘It’s already too late to carry on with the revenge in covert. If so, I will have to use ‘Cain’ to hide ‘Yeon-woo’ as much as possible.'

    And he was beginning to think that perhaps the path he would be walking in the future would not be much different from the one Arthia had walked.

    So he had to get used to this kind of attention, even if he didn't like it.

    ‘By the way….'

    Yeon-woo glanced around.

    ‘Kahn and Doyle, are they really gone?'

    They did say they were going to give up, but to think that he couldn’t see them around any more, he felt lacking in some sense.

    At that moment,

    "Hyung! It was really you!"

    A young man appeared among the other players.

    A very familiar voice and face. It was Yul.

    "Yul?"

    Yeon-woo opened his eyes wide in surprise.

    He had thought that Yul had given up on this tutorial round, just like Kahn and Doyle did.

    Yul spoke while panting, as if he had rushed his way there. But his face was showing a brilliant smile.

    "I heard that a new rookie had appeared in the tutorial. And when they said he was wearing a mask, I immediately thought of you. And... it was really you."

    Yeon-woo looked at Yul. He could no longer see any worry or spite in Yul’s eyes. The gloomy mood Yul used to carry had changed completely.

    "So, it seems you’ve found the Freesia Garden."

    "Yes. I found it hidden in Section B’s waiting room. I got really lucky though."

    The Freesia Garden was actually one of the hidden pieces. It was just that Yeon-woo didn’t care to find it because it didn't mean much to him.

    In the Freesia Garden, it was possible to make a contract with elemental spirits.

    In Yeon-woo's view, Yul had an outstanding quality as an Enchanter. So if he could learn elemental spells, based on his aptitudes, he would be able to achieve remarkable growth.

    And his prediction seemed to have been proven correct.

    Yeon-woo cast Draconic Eyes and examined Yul.

    Under the complex intertwined lines of flaws, there was only an empty space beneath.

    The person in front of him was Yul, but also not Yul.

    "And you’ve made quite a big achievement. Did you happen to find another hidden piece?"

    It was a thought entity Yul had created using his elemental spell.

    "It’s similar. I’ve met a great teacher."

    “A teacher?"

    "Yes. Oh, you don't have to worry about me. He's not like Kaen. He's taught me a lot of things."

    Yeon-woo had a vague idea of who his ‘teacher’ might be. If it were ‘him', he surely wouldn't let a talent like Yul to go to waste.

    ‘Well, I did intend for that to happen.'

    Yul thanked Yeon-woo with a bow.

    "So, I wanted to come here and say thank you before you leave the tutorial. Because I owe you a lot, you know? Anyway, thank you very, very much. It’s all thanks to you that I was able to find something I’m good at, and even meet a great teacher."

    When Yeon-woo looked at Yul’s eyes, they were now filled with determination.

    "And one day, I'll go find you in The Tower."

    Yeon-woo nodded his head in silence.

    Yul's face was brighter than ever.

    And

    *Paaa*

    The flaws that composed the thought entity dispersed, disappearing into thin air.

    And as Yeon-woo watched Yul leave, he started to ponder. Perhaps he was already getting more involved with The Tower than he had originally thought.

    The Tower is that kind of place, where the laws of causality entwine and bind themselves around the existence of ‘oneself' like chains, but again, that’s what makes one ‘oneself’.

    And maybe being a ‘god’ means to break free of those chains and from the very being of ‘oneself’.

    For a moment, Yeon-woo remembered a fragmentary idea his brother had left in his diary, but soon shook his head and erased the thoughts of his mind.

    While in the middle of his thoughts, a portal appeared in the air. And shortly after, a familiar figure dropped down from the portal.

    "Ohyohyo. It makes me so emotional to have you all back after a whole month."

    A small-statured Goblin wearing a tuxedo and a monocle bowed politely.

    "Hello again, my dearest players. I, Yvlke, the guardian of the tutorial, greet you with all the love in my heart."

    Yvlke looked around at the players as he straightened his back. Beyond his monocle, his eyes were drawn into curves.

    "Thank you all for your hard work. Unlike other rounds of the tutorial, many of you have shown wonderful wits and skills passing the trials all throughout the seven sections. I sincerely hope you will be able to keep up the great work even after you enter The Tower. Now, then."

    Yvlke smiled as he adjusted his monocle.

    "Shall we check the results?"

    [Tutorial Ranking]

    1. Unknown (510,590 Points)

    2. Edora (60,000 Points)

    3. Phante (20,200 Points)

    4. Vyram (11,000 Points)

    ···

    Yeon-woo heard several gasps from here and there.

    "Wait a second, is that five hundred thousand?"

    "What the fuck? How is that even possible?"

    "I've heard the high rankers in The Tower scored only fifty to a hundred thousand points when they were in the tutorial."

    "What the hell happened in Section G…?"

    The waiting room started to buzz with conversations as the players saw the ranking board. That was how shocking the number was.

    But Yeon-woo was also surprised when he saw the ranking board.

    ‘Phante and Vyram? They must have gone hunting after I was gone.’

    It was quite amazing how they were able to amass that many points with what little time they had.

    Then Yeon-woo felt a strong presence looking his way, so he turned to look at that side.

    It was Edora.

    She was looking directly at Yeon-woo, holding her sword tightly in her arms.

    When Yeon-woo met Edora’s eyes, there was a moment of silence. Then Edora suddenly broke into a faint smile. She opened her mouth and said something silently.

    ‘Congratulations…?’

    Yeon-woo narrowed his eyes because he had no idea what Edora was thinking.

    Looking at her with Draconic Eyes, she wasn’t speaking a lie. She was truly celebrating Yeon-woo’s victory.

    ‘But why?'

    He couldn’t think of any reason as to why Edora might have a favorable impression towards himself, if anything, it would be hostility.

    He thought that he had mistaken another person for Edora. But the one who was staring at him with blazing eyes next to her was definitely Phante.

    However, Yeon-woo's thoughts didn't continue for much longer.

    Yvlke turned towards Yeon-woo as he put on a pleasant smile on his face.

    "Ohyohyo. #### has ranked number one with 510,590 points. This is the highest points scored by a player not just in this round, but also in the history of the tutorial. Therefore, he will be given rewards according to this achievement."

    Thankfully, Yeon-woo's name was covered by some kind of noise, making it impossible to ‘recognize’.

    Just then, a message popped up in front of Yeon-woo.

    [Will you register your name in the Hall of Fame?]