To Hell With Being a Hero!

로유진 - Ro Yu-jin

Chapter 144

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Chapter 144. Pointing to One Thing (3)

Clack. The door closed. After guiding Noel Freya out the door, Chi-Woo fell into deep thought.

‘Prepare…I have to make preparations…’

According to Noel, Chi-Hyun had an ability of ‘astrology’. But of course, the ability wasn’t absolute, and his predictions always had room for change—case in point, a light had lit up the north again contrary to his expectations. But back to the situation at hand, Chi-Hyun had recently read signs of abnormalities in the sky. He didn’t know exactly what the phenomenon was, but it was definite that something would happen soon, and they needed to make preparations for it in advance. Noel said Chi-Hyun must have immediately gone to check out the Demon Empire’s movements for that reason too.

However, since Chi-Hyun couldn’t be sure that was really the source of the abnormalities he read, he gave a separate warning to Noel. What other explanations could there be, though? Noel thought hard and came to the speculation that it might have something to do with the recruits. It was about time for the eighth recruits to come, and the Celestial Realm must have finished their selection process and transported the new team by now. The prophecy tended to use recruit teams as strategic tools under the name of ‘missions’, as clearly shown by how it sent the fifth recruit to the north and the sixth and seventh recruit teams respectively to the center and a location far-off from the previous recruits. It was likely going to be the same for eight recruits.

But there were still circ.u.mstances that made one wonder. For example, although the fifth recruits had received the mission to become pioneers in the north, they were transported to the central region first, seemingly to give them time to adjust to Liber. Thus, it made one more curious why the eighth recruits were dropped straight into a dangerous region when there was a comparatively safe hub like the former Salem capital.

[The prophecy must have judged that the eighth recruits have the power to make it viable.]

Noel said in a confident voice.

[It’s just my guess, but I’m sure at least two or three of the 12 families who light up the Celestial Realm have partic.i.p.ated in the eighth selection process.]

[You can’t ignore the merits each family has acc.u.mulated over the generations.]

[Using those merits, they may come to Liber through their own tunnels with special back-ups that would put them at an advantage. Just like Sir Choi Chi-Hyun.]

Noel said she was certain of this, and Chi-Woo agreed. He had foiled one of the Demon Empire’s schemes recently, and even if they had something else up their sleeves…

‘It’s complicated.’ Many possibilities popped into his mind. To put it bluntly, the human race here was in great danger of becoming extinct any time if one of the four major forces on Liber tried to invade them. In the end, the only thing they could do in preparation for a problem that could rear its head any moment was: train and train some more.

Noel immediately acted. She gathered all the heroes in the capital and requested them to search for the eighth recruits in addition to their original task when they went outside; she also told them to spread the word by message or in person as soon as possible. Surprisingly, the heroes followed this command without reluctance. It was the result of Noel bringing up Chi-Hyun.

“Choi Chi-Hyun? If it’s coming from him, we should follow what he says.”

“I have to grow more, but…finding the eighth recruits takes priority.”

The heroes weren’t idiots, and they knew how much burden Chi-Hyun was shouldering by himself for the human race. Besides, Chi-Hyun was out uncovering the Demon Empire’s scheme on his own; going around looking for the eighth recruits seemed like nothing in comparison. Chi-Woo also ran in the mountains to look for the new recruits while training. And as the day went on, he received good news: Ru Hiana messaged him that Ru Amuh had returned.

Chi-Woo was on his way back when he got the message. He quickly sent a reply, asking to meet up with them at the capital, before walking to Ru Amuh and Ru Hiana’s house. The two’s house was noisy today after being empty for a long time. It seemed Ru Amuh had gotten close to the members he went out with and invited them to his place. Chi-Woo momentarily wondered whether or not he should go in, but then the door opened, and out came Ru Hiana, who was kicking the ground while looking greatly irritated. She b.u.mped into Chi-Woo while walking with her eyes on the ground.

“Ah… Huh?” Ru Hiana raised her head, and her eyes opened wide.

“Senior!”

“h.e.l.lo?” Chi-Woo smiled brightly. After a brief greeting, Chi-Woo asked cautiously, “Did something bad happen?” He had noticed that Ru Hiana’s lower lip was protruding far out as soon as she came out of the door.

“Noooo.” Ru Hiana drawled in a whiny voice and turned to look over her shoulder. Curious, Chi-Woo approached the door and peeked inside.

—What! I’m so jealous of him!

Like Philip said, it was a pretty enviable sight. Ru Amuh appeared troubled while surrounded by a group of beautiful heroes.

—He truly is the living embodiment of what a hero should be. He makes me think of the old times.

Philip raised both of his thumbs and shook his head enviously.

—d.a.m.n it. That guy is in a flower field, but I am stuck with an idiot who only cares about training… Ah! My fate!

Philip plopped to the ground and lamented his fate. Chi-Woo rolled his eyes at Philip and looked back to Ru Hiana, who still had a sour look on her face.

“Hmm…are you jealous?” Chi-Woo asked jokingly, but Ru Hiana appeared disgusted.

“That's not it, senior! But they keep saying nonsense.”

“Nonsense?”

“Even though you contributed most among the seventh recruits, they think Ru Amuh is the one who did all the work and keeps fawning all over him…”

“Hm…But Ru Amuh was one of the top contributors among the seventh recruits.”

“That’s true! But—” Ru Hiana trailed off, her eyes widening threateningly. It was still noisy inside, and one hero even wrapped her arms around Ru Amuh. Ru Hiana gritted her teeth.

“…No matter how much Ru Amuh denies it, they keep pestering him and asking him why he was being so humble—ah, I’m going to stop. I don’t care anymore. It doesn’t have anything to do with me, and he should take care of it by himself.” Ru Hiana turned away with a ‘hmph’ and appeared to be sulking. Fortunately, Chi-Woo had the perfect weapon to brighten Ru Hiana’s mood—a literal weapon.

“By the way, what’s that, senior?” Ru Hiana showed interest in what Chi-Woo had when another voice called out.

“Teacher!” It was Ru Amuh. It seemed he had removed himself from the others’ clutches and ran to Chi-Woo as soon as he saw Chi-Woo.

“Why didn’t you tell me you were here…” Ru Amuh said, and he looked relieved like he was saved by Chi-Woo’s entrance.

Chi-Woo smiled. “It looked like you were having a good time.”

“N-No,” Ru Amuh said while looking back.

The women who had been giggling around Ru Amuh were looking at Chi-Woo like they were wondering who he was.

“Anyways, it’s been a while.”

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“Yes, teacher. I came back today.”

For some reason, Philip swore again.

* * *

The vicinity of the capital had been quite stable recently. After the growth system was activated, many of the heroes had formed teams to earn merits and began moving outside. Thanks to their efforts, not a trace of monsters could be found near the city. Even the natives were able to safely go out and forage edible plants in the wild nearby.

“I’m glad to hear that it was delicious,” said a middle-aged woman.

“Yes, it was so good that it made me want to live again,” the native woman she was talking to replied brightly.

“Yeah, at the end of the day, heroes are humans just like us. We all need to eat to live, right?” The middle-aged lady looked at the woman with a relieved expression. “You made me so worried… Do you know how surprised I was when you came out of nowhere and asked for a chunk of meat? Even more so when you brought out a bunch of precious metals.”

The woman’s face slightly reddened. “It’s all thanks to Sir Hero.” She was the native woman who recently received a considerable amount of precious metals from Chi-Woo. Thanks to his gifts, her life had become significantly better.

She still had a lot of precious metal left even after giving it out according to his wishes. As a result, she was able to go to the middle-aged woman doing prep work for her restaurant and buy meat with her head held high.

“I thought that Choi Chi-Hyun was the only true hero, but I guess that’s not the case after hearing from the others.”

“Yes, I think so too. Those who were in the forest spoke well of Sir Hero as well.” Originally, Sir Hero was a t.i.tle exclusively used to address Chi-Hyun, but now, they were addressing Chi-Woo in the same way. Even though it was only among the natives, it could be considered a significant change, especially if Noel Freya overheard them.

“Do you know which G.o.d Sir Hero serves?”

“No, why?”

“Why would you have to ask? Our living standard has gotten a tiny bit better, so I was planning to make at least a small offering and pray to his G.o.d. Isn’t that the most we can do?”

G.o.ds usually fed on and lived through prayer, and their influence grew bigger depending on the number of followers they had. It went without saying that as the G.o.d’s influence increased, the heroes that served them received greater benefits.

“Oh, I found a good one. It seems like my luck is better when I come out here with you.” The middle-aged lady found mushrooms under a tree mid-conversation and approached it while humming along. However, when she was about to crouch down and dig it up—

Pus.h.!.+ A shadow suddenly jumped out of the bushes.

“Oh my gos.h.!.+” The middle-aged lady fell backward in shock. The woman’s heart also plummeted, and they held onto each other while trembling.

However, their reaction changed when they heard a hoa.r.s.e voice. “Hu…man?”

It was a man. They had thought the person was a monster, but now that they got a better look, it was a man who had been severely injured. He was missing an arm, and his remaining hand was pressing into his torn abdomen.

“Ah…finally…hu…” But most of all, he knew how to speak. The person looked relieved to finally find other humans. However, after the tension was released, he stumbled and fell to the ground, splattering blood all around him.

The middle-aged lady froze while watching him twitch on the ground, but she quickly regained her senses and shouted, “Hey! Wake up!” Then the woman quickly left the middle-aged lady behind and ran to the capital where the heroes were.

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