To Hell With Being a Hero!

로유진 - Ro Yu-jin

Chapter 148

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Chapter 148. A Disputed Area (3)

Ru Amuh decided to gather more information for now. Anything was fine, as long as they didn’t overexert themselves. And even if it was something small, it could be an important clue.

“Our enemies don’t know we’re here. And it must stay that way,” Ru Amuh warned, and the heroes scattered away. Then, like a boomerang, they soon returned to the same spot.

“It’s better if you don’t go left. Unlike where we are, it is full of evil and dark energy.”

“We found traces in the front that went through the same place several times; it seems to be the enemy forces’ scouting routes.”

“We also wandered toward the right and found a long burrow that appeared to be a trench. There were also several places that looked like temporary bunkers, but we couldn’t check the interior for fear of getting caught.”

The more they searched, the more their speculation seemed to be proven right.

“We have to get in and check the city out,” Nangnang said. “That’s a must if we are to search for the eighth recruits. First we have to find out what’s going on inside the city.” To do this, they needed to secure a way in. The best method was to share information with the eighth recruits through their devices.

Ru Amuh had brought Shahnaz’s statue just in case, but for them to send messages to another person, they needed to add each other as friends. In the current situation, they didn’t even know who had come to Liber. It seemed the only viable option in the end was for them to go inside the city and check out the situation in person. However, that left the meeting area quiet. It was understandable since they were sandwiched between two giants who were superior to them both in numbers and power. Furthermore, they couldn’t even enter from the side, but had to penetrate through the center. It seemed like an impossible mission.

“How about the sky?” It was then one person stepped up to the center; it was the hero who had spotted the city by scouting in the sky. “I’m Eckt from the third recruits. I think I can easily find out the situation inside the city.” The hero named Eckt then stretched out the wings on his back. Some of the heroes responded positively to this; flying in the air and running on land had enormous differences. However, Nangnang and Ru Amuh didn’t look convinced.

“You aren’t saying that you will go check the area by yourself, right?”

“Don’t even joke about that. Even if I’m greedy for merits, I won’t throw away my life.” Eckt shook his hands. “I’m just going to look down at the city from the air, especially its central area. I’m sure that will be of help.”

“Hm…” Nangnang glanced at Ru Amuh. Ru Amuh seemed deep in thought.

“Our enemies might find out about us though.”

“Even if our enemies see me, they won’t know our exact situation. And they will find out about us sooner or later anyway.”

“Still.”

“Did you think we won’t get found out though? With these many members?”

“That’s not what I think, but it’s still dangerous. You could be attacked in the air.”

“At most, they will shoot at me with an arrow or magic,” Eckt laughed. “Then I can just go higher.” Then, Eckt said confidently that even if their enemies were within range, he could simply evade their attacks.

“If you go too high, will you be able to see…”

“Ha! Try to find someone who has better eyesight than me.” Eckt’s eagle eyes flashed. But as Ru Amuh hesitated, he raised one eyebrow slightly.

“What is it? Do you have any other alternatives?”

“…”

“What is it? Is our oh-so-great team leader displeased by the fact that I might get some merits for myself?”

Ru Amuh sighed. With the way Eckt was talking, he couldn’t say anything else; and it was true that there was no alternative.

“Hold back your pointless provocations and wait a bit before setting out. You won’t be as noticeable in the nighttime. And I bet you can fly in the dark too with your good eyesight?” Nangnang asked.

“I was already planning to do that,” Eckt answered.

“I also suggest you start and return at different points just in case.”

“I know. I know. Don’t treat me like a kid. I’m also a hero. I have experienced worse situations many times before.” Eckt acted like he found Nangnang bothersome, but he did follow the suggestions thoroughly. The sun was already setting slowly, and dusk came and went quickly until night painted the entire area black.

“Good. Should I go to collect some merits now?” Eckt moved with ease. Chi-Woo was worried, but decided to believe in the hero. After coming back from the Academy, he realized that he was in no position to worry about anyone else. Heroes were far more outstanding than he gave them credit for. Like how Philip said, being at ease was the privilege of the strong, Eckt’s confidence must have come from his experiences as a hero. And soon, the hero flew far away into the night sky.

Everyone looked up. There wasn’t a single cloud in sight, and Eckt quickly streaked through the sky. He flew past large landscapes that would have been difficult to cross over on land easily, and surprisingly, the enemies showed no response. Thus, Eckt arrived at the center of the city safely and circled around while looking down.

“Good, good…. Just like that…?”Nangnang, who was focusing on Eckt with his clairvoyance, suddenly frowned. After flying straight, Eck suddenly changed trajectories and drew an S in the air, rising sharply heavenward. A foreboding feeling came to Nangnang. Now that he took a closer look, something was flas.h.i.+ng around Eckt.

“He was discovered. He got caught and is now getting attacked,” Nangnang quickly reported.

Eckt didn’t get defeated easily though. He zigzagged in an irregular route upward, making the attacks move with him. Soon, he quickly flew away from the city’s vicinity; but in consideration of the rescue team, he escaped to the opposite direction from where they were at. It seemed he was planning to fly as far away as possible and reunite with the rescue team after shaking off his pursuers. Nangnang felt slightly relieved seeing Eckt’s skillful retreat when he suddenly heard a series of explosions.

Bam, bam!

One after another, the explosions rang. Boom, boom, boom, boom!

The flashes embroidered the night sky like a carpet and temporarily illuminated the dark.

“Ah—” Nangnang gasped. There was a spectacular crossfire, and before the sky darkened again, he saw the final result: the remains of a body scattered downwards. Eckt was dead. Nangnang closed his eyes.

“…A cannon.” They were able to gain one piece of information thanks to Eckt’s death. “There’s…a canon.”

Ru Amuh made the order to retreat back into the forest. This new piece of information meant that it was dangerous for them to even stay in this area. Once they reached the forest, the rescue team fell into silence. No one spoke. They had all witnessed what would happen should they enter from the sky, and it was clear that approaching on land would be impossible as well. And now that they found out that their enemy had a cannon, it seemed obvious that they would be annihilated in an instant if they got hit by it.

‘What should we do?’ Chi-Woo wondered to himself, and his die came to his mind. The cooldown had long ended, and he had recovered some of his ‘blessed luck’ some time ago. The World’s Milestone would definitely pave a path for him in such a despairing situation. If he was lucky and got the number 7, things could become easier to resolve than he thought possible. However, Chi-Woo couldn’t make himself reach into his pocket.

‘It’s true it can’t be helped, but…” The situation was so hopeless he needed to grasp for any straw, but they also couldn’t afford having anything go wrong. The die was a double-edged sword. He could roll as seven, or he could roll a one. If things went wrong, they might all die without even being able to initiate any plans.

“…I think.” Chi-Woo heard Ru Amuh’s voice break the silence. “Some people should return to the capital.”

They needed to inform the other heroes in the capital of the situation here. Those in the capital would also make a decision.

“Is there anyone here who would like to volunteer?”

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Swoosh— Many people raised their hands like moles popping out of the ground. Their att.i.tude was completely different from when they first left the capital; this was how hopeless the heroes who partic.i.p.ated in the rescue team thought of the situation here.

“Senior…” In the end, they all looked to one person.

“Hey, leader. No—ex-leader, perhaps…” Nangnang also tapped on Chi-Woo’s shoulder.

However, Chi-Woo didn't react. While the heroes continued to criticize Ru Amuh nonstop, Ru Amuh turned to look at Chi-Woo as well. ‘….Teacher.’ The hero he respected was quiet. He didn’t show any reaction, and was just watching him while standing still. As Ru Amuh quietly met his gaze without moving, he suddenly recalled what Shahnaz had told him.

[Be acknowledged.]

[Don’t forget, my child.]

[You’ve been given another test…]

In all honesty, Ru Amuh had wondered how his teacher would act. Since Chi-Woo had successfully completed tasks that people thought were impossible without failing even once, Ru Amuh was sure that Chi-Woo had already thought of a solution even in a difficult and arduous situation like now. He wanted to ask Chi-Woo for help, but he didn’t dare to because Chi-Woo was staying still without saying a single word. If he intended to step forward, he would have spoken up already, yet he remained silent. Unlike the other heroes, his teacher was quietly waiting for him to speak—as if he was testing Ru Amuh’s capabilities. Ru Amuh needed to prove himself and repay his trust.

[…I’ll work harder. If you wait a bit more, I’ll be able to share at least a bit of the burden on your shoulder…]

He needed to keep his promise. But how? Ru Amuh closed his eyes.

Suddenly, he felt a strange sense of déjà vu. He didn’t know why, but this situation felt strangely familiar. It felt as if he had experienced the same thing before. Something they had gone through back then had felt equally impossible—no, it had been even worse than now.

The clash between the Sernitas and Abyss had been a serious threat to the fortress. Moreover, the number of heroes on their side amounted to only a few dozen, and only three or four people had recovered a bit of their powers. However, his teacher had used whatever they had to turn things around and grow their forces.

Of course, the level of difficulty had been h.e.l.lish—in exchange for the cooperation of the Abyss, Chi-Woo had to face the strongest of the four factions, the Sernitas. They also had to recapture the capital while the growth system was still deactivated. Even though they had succeeded in the end, Ru Amuh clearly remembered the heroes’ reactions. It was similar to how the heroes were reacting right now; most were full of complaints. The way Chi-Woo led the meeting back then had left a deep impression on him. Even when the heroes spoke words that went out of the line, Chi-Woo had listened to them without getting angry.

[…What is it?]

[…Then, what do you think?]

He remained patient as he listened to their opinions, and even asked about other people’s thoughts and accepted some of their requests.

[You should be able to do that much by yourselves.]

However, he also knew when to draw the line. In the end, he had been successful in convincing everyone. Ru Amuh tried to recall how Chi-Woo had acted back then.

‘What would teacher do in this situation?’ Ru Amuh closed his eyes and thought deeply. It was then a notification rang in Chi-Woo’s head, and he looked up.

[User Choi Chi-Woo’s first star, Ru Amuh’s disposition has changed from Lawful Good to…]

[Neutral Good.]

‘…What?’

At the same time, Ru Amuh opened his eyes. “I’ll explain.” He began talking with an unwavering voice, his gaze determined.

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