Chapter 30: Man whose name strikes fear (1)
When Lee Gun saw the photos, he burst out laughing. Everyone praised the Saintess so much that he had thought someone amazing had appeared in the past twenty years. “Ah! Shes the Saintess”
The appraiser was puzzled by Lee Guns sneer. “Thats odd! I heard that even Lee Gun fanatic Sungjae fancies her a bit.”
“Is that so”
“All men become fools in front of a beautiful woman.”
The words made Lee Gun burst out in a loud laugh once again.
The appraiser tried to change the topic. “Ah! Of course, there is one other Saint that others consider the fairest of them all.”
The appraiser was saying that one should respect other peoples tastes. Lee Gun found it all absurd. ‘At this point, it could be considered a disguise.
Of course, Sophie looked different from twenty years ago. Her buckteeth and snaggletooth were gone. It was true that she had become very beautiful. If Lee Gun were being objective, her original appearance wasnt that bad at all either.
‘She cant hide her nature.
In the first place, Lee Gun hated every member of the twelve Saints excluding Hugo. There were degrees to his hatred, and he classified the twelve Saints as fishbone, pests, and waste. Sophie was on the same level as a pest. Lee Gun couldnt treat the Saints as humans or categorize the eleven of them under normal categories.
He couldnt believe Sophie was the Saintess. ‘She prioritized her skin-care appointment over saving the lives of people.
That wasnt all.
‘When the hell did she heal me
Sophie was a fraudulent healer and also a half-wit. As if that wasnt enough, she had treated lee Gun as a creature lower than human.
She routinely told him that she didnt want to touch him because he was a monster. She threatened to sue him every chance she got. This was the reason Lee Gun had learned about herbal medicine to heal himself. It seemed she hadnt even bothered to mention that.
‘Well, it allowed me to expand my knowledge about miscellaneous subjects, and I did benefit greatly from all that knowledge.
It seemed the appraiser knew the truth about the Saintess and Lee Gun as he continued to praise the latter. “Everyone claims that the Saintess used to heal Lee Gun. If so, why was Lee Gun-nim so well-versed in herbal medicine”
Lee Gun cackled. The appraiser was speaking the truth.
“He used to gather ingredients using a meat cleaver. It was an awesome sight. You havent levied until youve seen him work.”
‘Yes, yes. A person should be remembered for their exploits…
“I especially loved it when Lee Gun-nim grabbed the Saintesss hair and made her cry. That was so refreshing.”
‘Uh Did I do that Lee Gun seriously mulled over it, but in the end, it didnt matter.
He had forgotten why he had done it; probably, she had gaslighted him.
The appraiser badmouthed the Aquarius Saint. “I have no idea why the world knows her as the saintess of sacrifice and compassion.”
It seemed he had noticed Sophies personality when she commissioned him.
“This is all because she was Lee Gun-nims doctor. Shes using that as an excuse to claim the money that has been growing underneath Lee Gun-nims name.”
The appraiser felt very aggrieved, but Lee Gun just laughed in response. “There is money accumulating under Lee Guns name”
“Yes! He had quite a lot of money and items twenty years ago.”
The twelve Saints had fought for his wealth and caused too big of a commotion. Therefore, the government had taken Lee Guns estate under their stewardship.
“I heard the Saintess recently tried to claim his estate as compensation for healing him.”
“Is that so” Lee Gun felt contempt as he watched an interview with Sophie.
The appraiser gazed at him with an odd look in his eyes. “Do you know the Saintess”
He wasnt a veteran appraiser for nothing; he had a sharp eye. Unlike before, suspicion appeared in the appraisers eyes as he looked at Lee Gun.
Lee Gun took out his phone. “Im just glad to see her.”
“You are glad to see her”
At the end of the day, she was a healing type Saint, so Lee Gun used to see her often. “Shes a friend. Of course, Im glad to see her.”
Lee Gun ferociously got to his feet. In his eyes was a look that belonged to someone chasing their prey.
* * *
Lee Gun was the only one glad for the reunion.
Sophie had walked to an empty emergency staircase. She shook as she grabbed at the railing. Her guard was flustered by this scene. The Saintess was acting as though she were suffering from trauma.
‘Ive never seen her act like this.
This place was full of Cardinal-rank Users. There was a chance that Sophie could be attacked or kidnapped. It was a precarious place to be, but Sophie didnt care about that. Something much scarier than that was here.
“Have you ever faced a situation where you would prefer to die than lose consciousness” Sophie asked the guard.
It seemed Sophie wanted to say something, but she could only shake as she thought.
‘Why now Why am I reminded of that incident with that man… She had merely visited the appraiser, so why In the end, Sophie bit her bluish lips and grabbed her guard. “Hurry up and get in there. Find out who that other man is.”
“Understood! How should I handle the appraiser”
Sophie reacted in anger. “Why are you asking me that question You have to make him give a higher valuation to our item even if you have to kill him!”
“The appraiser works directly under the Virgo. It might lead to a direct conflict…”
“He put a valuation of one dollar on my item! Also, you should take care of the other man if possible. Do you understand what Im saying”
The guard understood the meaning behind her words. At the same time, Sophie used her ability.
[Replication Mirror (S)]
Something amazing happened. Water started to rise around her.
“Uh What the hell Is there a leak somewhere”
The nearby Users were flustered as they watched the rising water. When Sophie started laughing, amorphous blobs of water rose in front of her. Each blob of liquid changed into a person. They took on the shapes of Rank A and above Users who had stepped on the water.
It was a replication skill. Anyone reflected on the water would be copied. Then, the minions Sophie created rushed toward the pawnshop, accompanied by the guard named Isabel.
Chun Sungjae and the people inside the shop were surprised when unfamiliar men breached the shop.
‘I feel murderous intent.
The door was instantly shut, and Isabel drew the sign of the cross.
[Earth Chalice, Bringer of Oblivion]
Light erupted. Strange symbols appeared on the floor of the shop, and water started to rise from the floor. Since the store had been sealed, it was like a large container being filled with water.
When the water reached their waist level, people started to fall over as if their souls had been stolen. The only ones not to fall over were Chun Sungjae and his companion.
“This is a neutral zone…” Chun Sungjae, who had become wet, tried to evaporate the water using his flame.
His words made the guard of the Saintess coldly laugh as she stood on top of the water. “We have no business with the disciples of the Gemini.”
As soon as her words ended, a scream rang out. The copied Users shot out of the water to drag Chun Sungjae into the water. The guard of the Saintess was long gone by then, her next destination the appraisers workshop.
The appraiser, who was with Lee Gun, reacted in surprise. Users had appeared from beyond the wall.
‘Murderous intent. The flustered appraiser reached beneath the desk to bring out an item. It was an offensive weapon.
Suddenly, a white stem knocked the offensive weapon out of the appraisers hand.
“Koohk!” The white stem immobilized the appraiser.
The guard of the Saintess laughed. She pointed her sword toward Lee Guns neck as Lee Gun was about to head out of the room. “You dont want to see people die inside your store, right” she asked the appraiser.
The appraiser was appalled when the guard threatened Lee Gun. It was an understandable reaction. Lee Gun was a Maker. If he were on the same level as Chun Sungjae, the situation might have been different. However, a typical Maker wouldnt stand a chance against these Users. ‘Hes going to die if he crosses them.
Lee Gun just snorted. “It seems countries now tolerate you using your blade in public. Is that how it is”
“She acted so sanctimoniously when I used my weapons in public places. She tried to take them away!”
Isabel was surprised. Lee Gun was unperturbed as he tapped on the blade pointed at his neck. Isabel wasnt the only one to be surprised. For a moment, the appraiser was in disbelief about what he had just heard. He had heard Lee Guns low voice, and there was the oddly familiar way of speaking. Then there was the confident smirk.
“If you want to be paid for damages, you should take it up with them. Dont look for me.”
The appraisers eyes widened as Lee Guns eyes flashed. Isabel raised her eyebrows in anger.
“What the hell… Uh uh” She kept putting more strength into her blade, but her blade was being pushed back. Then, her mind turned blank for a moment.
Pieces of metal were sent flying as the sound of her blade breaking rang out.
The copied awakened beings and other underlings attacked Lee Gun. However, it was futile. The arms and legs of any underling who attacked Lee Gun were broken.
“Ahhhhhk!” The copies were ruthlessly cut into pieces.
Isabel felt a chill run up her spine when she saw the mans merciless eyes. “Who the hell…”
It was as the Saintess had said.
[This is my intuition as the Saintess. That man is dangerous.]
Isabel broke out of her reverie and used a pattern Sophie had given to her. The pattern summoned beasts.
This development pleased Lee Gun. He looked toward the appraiser. “You said I can take anything I want, right”
Lee Gun kicked a wooden box containing an item into the air. A hunting knife spun in the air. The knife was small, but it was a fairly high-rank item. Lee Gun caught the knife out of the air and vanished the next moment. Then, the slaughter began.
The screams of the carnivorous beasts and the appraiser filled the room. Lee Gun was ruthless, but he wasnt done after killing the beasts. “As expected of beasts grown by that bed-wetter, the ingredients are above rank A.”
He cut off the beasts heads. He then ripped away their leather and expertly pulled out their horns and teeth. Lee Gun was a master at extracting ingredients. “Good! These will be very useful as weapon ingredients.”
He had gotten them for free. It was nice since he had come to this exchange to acquire weapon ingredients. This was pure profit for Lee Gun.
Lee Gun changed the arc of his blade. He even killed the carnivorous beasts that were trying to run away and ruthlessly extracted ingredients from them.
He was like the devil himself.
[You have acquired data]
– Fragments of Earth Chalice, Bringer of Oblivion
[You have acquired data]
– Fragment of Replication Mirror
[You have acquired data]
– Nocturnal, Dont need sleep (Stop the desire to sleep)
[You have acquired data]
– Obsessed with prey (Cat-like mentality)
[You have acquired data]
– Powerful Grip (Strength increased by 5%)
[You have acquired the Saints EXP.]
[You have acquired the Saints EXP.]
It was unclear as to how much time had passed, but a mountainous amount of ingredients were stacked in front of Lee Gun.
When the appraiser called out to him, Lee Gun realized his mistake. He had forgotten about his presence in front of these high-quality ingredients. In the end, he approached the appraiser. He cut away the white stem binding him.
“Hyung! Ahjussi! Are you guys ok”
Chun Sungjae and his guard had suffered outside as they arrived drenched in water. It seemed they were somehow able to break the skill used on them. However, as soon as they entered the workshop, they started screaming.
“This is a slaughterhouse…”
They looked at Lee Gun in fright.
Of course, they knew these beasts were summons brought forth by the Saintess.
Lee Gun extracted a bone as he tilted his head. “If you release such beings against a Maker, you are begging the Maker to use them as ingredients. What about it”
It was clear that he didnt see the problem with what he had done. The guard gripped his head. “We have to leave before the Saintess finds out!”
The two of them tried to quickly usher Lee Gun out of the shop. Lee Gun was going to leave eventually, so he went along with it.
However, the appraiser grabbed him before he could leave. “E… Excuse me!” There was desperation in his actions.
Chun Sungjae yelled at the appraiser when he stopped Lee Gun from leaving. “Ahjussi! Hyung is in danger right now! Please clean up after yourself!”
The look in the appraisers eyes as he looked at Lee Gun was different than before. It was to be expected. He had followed Lee Gun in China twenty years ago and witnessed how the man went about creating his items. He had witnessed how Lee Gun skinned the monsters. He had seen how Lee Gun gathered his ingredients.
That was why he knew. He was about to grab and yell out Lee Guns name. “Lee Gun-n—”
However, the appraiser became surprised.
Instead of answering him, Lee Gun laughed and brought his forefinger to his lips. This meant he wanted the appraiser to act ignorant for now. It would cause too much of a commotion otherwise.
The appraiser shook from the shock that he felt. He wondered whether this was real or not. Of course, his reaction confused Chun Sungjae. “Whats wrong, Ahjussi”
The appraiser glared at Chun Sungjae for being so slow at picking up the clues. It looked like he wanted to say something, but Chun Sungjae ignored him. “You must have lost your mind, Ahjussi.”
“Haha! He might be too shell-shocked by what happened.” Lee Gun hid his flashing eyes as he exited the store.
As he did so, he felt a familiar energy outside. “Ill come back later for the ingredients. Store them for me. Also, I have some questions I want to ask you.”
The door closed. The appraiser lost the strength in his legs and fell to his knees. Then, he screamed in disbelief.