I Alone Level-Up Chapter 34
Soon, Jinwoo came upon what he was looking for.
"Mmph! mMM! Mph!"
One of the prisoners was struggling on the ground. The man's hands and feet were tied-up, and his mouth was gagged. Before he died, Kang Taeshik's whispers had sent Jinwoo here,
"I left the rapist tied-up somewhere nearby. The girl's father asked me to kill him in the most painful way, so I had saved him for last."
And those were the B-rank Hunter's final words.
The prisoner saw Jinwoo approaching and struggled harder. It was as if he was telling Jinwoo to untie him quickly.
"Mph! Mmmph! mmM!"
Looking closer, Jinwoo realized it was the prisoner who had winked at Juhee. He knelt down and removed the gag from the man's mouth; the criminal opened his eyes wide in relief and took in a deep breath.
"pant, pant, pant! Kang Taeshik, that crazy fucker, he killed them all. All of them! Where did he go? What's with the blood? Did he get you too?"
Jinwoo did not reply and instead, raised his head and looked straight ahead. It was the direction of the boss room. The prisoner's voice became more urgent,
"Hurry up and get me out of these. We gotta get out of here before Kang Taeshik comes back. Fuck, if only these ropes weren't filled with magic power! You got something to cut these with, right? Why aren't you saying anything? Are you not listening to me?!"
As the lowly Association-affiliated Hunter ignored him, the prisoner forgot the situation he was in and became angry. The emotionless Jinwoo finally opened his mouth,
"The boss is straight up ahead."
"He's stronger than an average D-rank Dungeon's boss. I'm curious what his attack pattern is like."
The prisoner lost all patience,
"Who the fuck cares?! Fuck!"
Jinwoo continued calmly,
"Before that, I want to ask one thing. Do you remember the girl you raped?"
"Huh? Which one? Are you related to one of the victims or something?!"
Jinwoo's eyes twitched. "Which one"… he had guessed correctly. The man's crime was not limited to just one victim. Possessing a great strength, a Hunter can easily become a monster before an ordinary human. And this man had used that strength to violate women. This solidified what Jinwoo planned to do.
He looked down on the prisoner and coldly spoke,
"Well, thank you for confirming."
"What? mmM! Mmph!"
Before the prisoner could continue, Jinwoo gagged him again. Then, he grabbed the man by his ankle and started dragging him forward.
"mMM! Mph! Mmph!!!"
The prisoner struggled with all his might, veins popping up on his face. Ignoring the man thrashing about, Jinwoo calmly dragged him all the way before the entrance of the boss room.
Inside, there were hobgoblins, known for their love of human organs.
"MMM!!! MPH!!! MMPH!!!"
The prisoner realized what Jinwoo was about to do. He saw the hobgoblins and shook his head fiercely, tears trailing from his eyes. The front of his pants became wet.
Jinwoo took a deep breath, then threw the prisoner into the middle of the hobgoblins.
Smelling fresh meat, the hobgoblins leaped upon the prisoner as one and started tearing into his stomach.
"MMM!!! MM!!! MMPH!!!"
The thrashing prisoner moved so violently that a blood vessel burst in his head, turning his eyes red.
"Mmmph! Mmm… mph…"
Even as the man lost consciousness, the hobgoblins continued ripping and eating. Could an ordinary human watch this violent spectacle of a man being eaten alive while keeping their lunch?
Jinwoo scanned the room with narrowed eyes, looking for the boss.
'There he is.'
A large hobgoblin was sitting arrogantly in a faraway spot in the room. His subordinates distracted by the bait, the boss was left unguarded. This was Jinwoo's opportunity.
Jinwoo flashed past the hobgoblins and appeared before the boss hobgoblin.
The boss tried to rise in surprise, but his head was rolling on the ground before he was fully up.
roll roll roll
You've defeated the boss of the Dungeon.
You've leveled up!
'Ah, I forgot.'
Looking at the hobgoblin boss' head on the ground, Jinwoo remembered the Runestone he had gotten moments earlier.
'If I used 'Stealth', I probably didn't need to use a bait to get to the boss.'
Jinwoo clicked his tongue at the mangled remains of the prisoner. The body could not be recognized as human anymore. Still, Jinwoo did not feel any sense of compassion towards the man.
The plan had worked after all.
It was easy to take care of the remaining hobgoblins that had lost their leader.
The hobgoblins tried to run from Jinwoo but were taken down in an instant.
When the last hobgoblin went down, a rather joyous sight appeared before Jinwoo's eyes.
You've leveled up!
Jinwoo's face brightened at the unexpected growth. He wiped the blood from Casaka's Poisoned Fang and collected the magic cores from the magic beasts' corpses. After depositing the cores into his inventory, he called up his status screen.
Name: Sung Jinwoo
Title: Wolf Slayer
(Available stat points: 5)
Physical Damage Reduction: 20%
-(Unknown) (Lv. Max)
-Unyielding Spirit (Lv. 1)
-Sprint (Lv. 1)
-Bloodlust (Lv. 1)
Gatekeeper's Necklace (A)
In no time, he had almost reached level 30. He was disappointed at first in the beginning of the Raid, but having taken down the hobgoblin boss and its subordinates, he had unexpectedly gained 2 levels. It was lucky that all the strong magic beasts were gathered in the boss room.
'Wait, is it lucky?'
Jinwoo thought about the three different paths and the difficulty of the boss room. If low-level Hunters spent the entire Raid taking down the weak goblins, they might've carelessly entered the boss room with confidence. Then, the sudden leap in strength of the hobgoblins might've resulted in a terrible end for the Hunters. The difference between the goblins and the hobgoblins were that big.
'I know that appearance of hobgoblins are not uncommon in Dungeons with goblins, but still…'
It was unusual for hobgoblins to make a nest at the boss room like just now. It truly was impossible to predict what could happen in a Dungeon. One person's luck just might be a disaster for others.
Only a strong power could protect someone in the chaos of the unknown that plagued this world. Because of that, Jinwoo wanted to become stronger. Surviving in a Dungeon was one thing, but what if a Dungeon Break occurred near his mother's hospital? What if he was attacked by magic beasts in the middle of the road? No, magic beasts were not the only thing to fear. The Hunters had already become an existence as dangerous as magic beasts. Even if they were being held back by society's rules, there were limits. Jinwoo had to obtain the power to protect himself.
'There are limits to a Hunter's strength.'
He had no such limits.
Increasing his attributes and obtaining new items, his power would rise infinitely beyond any logic. And today, he had obtained another method to become stronger.
Jinwoo took out the Runestone from his pockets. Just like other items, floating holographic letters formed the information box on the Runestone.
Break the Runestone to absorb the skill.
To an ignorant individual, this was just a small rock with strange markings on it. To a Hunter, it would make anyone drool with greed, regardless of their rank. A high-ranker could use the skill, while a low-ranker could sell it. Especially a Runestone with the skill, 'Stealth'. What Jinwoo held in his palms could probably fetch a price of several billions on the public market. Ten times that amount at a black market.
The reason why a sale at a black market was more profitable was simple. It was because such sales would not leave any records of who had purchased the Runestone. Having a skill that no one else knew about was the same as holding a hidden trump card or a secret weapon.
'Just like Kang Taeshik was hiding the 'Stealth' skill.'
If Jinwoo's sense stat was not high, his back would've been exposed just like that. He shuddered at the thought.
'For now, I'll use this. I can always earn more money.'
Jinwoo was not going to let an immediate profit cloud the long-term benefit. The priority right now was becoming stronger. The usefulness of the 'Stealth' skill could not be understated.
'To think that this little pebble is worth several houses…'
Jinwoo put into action what he had only dreamed about in the past. He clenched his fists around the Runestone.
From the cracked Runestone, a subtle red light started to slowly surround his body. The phenomenon was similar to receiving healing magic, except the light was red instead of blue. It was not a bad feeling. The red aura whirled around his body, then entered his lungs through his nose, and a strange power began to fill Jinwoo's body. A familiar electronic tone rang in his head.
You've learned 'Stealth' (Lv. 1)
He had successfully absorbed the skill. Since he had never used a Runestone before, he felt nervous on how the process would go, but it was quicker and easier than he thought.
'So I can use 'Stealth' now?'
At the thought of obtaining a rare skill, his heart began to race excitedly. Jinwoo tried the skill out,
The skill responded to his thoughts immediately, and his body began to fade. From the tip of his feet to the top of his head, his body became invisible. It was a strange feeling to not be able to see his own hands in front of him.
'Would this work?'
Jinwoo took out his dagger. He felt the weapon in his hands but could not see it.
Just like the knife that Kang Taeshik wielded, Casaka's Poisoned Fang also had 'Stealth' applied to it. As he thought, it wasn't a special function of Kang Taeshik's weapon but the power of the skill.
'What else can this be applied to?'