LWTG (Novel) Chapter 120

                        

C120

His consciousness was faint.

In the darkness behind his eyes, one faint message could be heard.

[You have passed the test of the 21st Floor.]

[You are now able to move to the next floor.]

[Your level…]

The faint message felt like a hallucination.

Drip—

He felt something wet on his cheek, and his eyes naturally opened.

The first thing he saw was the black ceiling of the cave. It was the same place as the area of the 21st Floor’s test.

‘What… happened to the test?’

The man slowly opened his eyes more and looked around without moving his head. It didn’t take long for his mind to wake as well.

“You awake?”

“Uwak!”

Because he could see YuWon’s face right next to his. The real Kim YuWon was right in front of his eyes.

There was no way he wouldn’t be surprised since he just took the test while impersonating him.

“K-Kim Yu…”

He couldn’t bare to say his name.

“Name,” YuWon said.

“Wh-What?”

“What’s your name?”

“M-Mamos.”

Fwooosh—

Staring into YuWon’s eyes that were like roiling flames, Mamos flinched.

It happened last time as well, but oddly, whenever he saw those eyes, he felt as if he was being seen through.

“Since the test is finished now, it doesn’t look like you’re a Doppelganger…” YuWon furrowed his brow. “But it’s not like you’re not a Doppelganger… What are you?”

“I… am a Doppelganger.”

“You are?”

“Yes. But it’s true that I’m a player as well.”

An existence that was both a player and a Doppelganger. Hearing his answer, YuWon could only make a certain conclusion.

“You have demonic blood in you.”

“…Yes.”

A demon player.

He knew something was off. His identity was definitely that of a Doppelganger when seen through [Cinder Eyes,] but he felt different than the other Doppelgangers.

He looked more tricky to figure out, and his intelligence also seemed to be higher. On top of that, the Doppelganger had transformed into a player who was already taking the test, and from what YuWon knew, this had never happened before.

“Which bloodline are you from? You don’t look like a normal Doppelganger.”

The guy’s disguise was nearly perfect. Including his voice and outer appearance, he even had an incredible level of a transformation skill that even [Cinder Eyes] couldn’t perfectly see through. This wasn’t the skill level a player on the 21st Floor could have.

“My father… is him.”

“‘Him’?”

“Belial… King of Doppelgangers.”

Belial. It was a name he knew. No, it was a name he couldn’t not have known.

‘High-Ranker Belial. The King of Doppelgangers and the Monarch of Lies. One of the “Seven Demon Kings” of the major guild Demon Kings.’

A pretty big demon, bigger than expected, was behind Mamos. Just the strength of the guild, the Demon Kings, were comparable to Olympus. And if this guy was from Belial’s bloodline, his existence was no different than Hargaan’s.

Of course, unlike Olympus, there were many monarchs in Demon Kings.

“Why is a guy like you doing something like this here?”

“It’s hard to explain.”

Mamos scratched his head, seemingly finding it difficult to explain.

Pale and clear skin on top of a baby face. He looked like a child in their mid-teens. It was difficult to imagine that this guy was the bloodthirsty being that intended to kill all those players just earlier.

‘He’s not lying.’

If he was lying, there would have been no way to explain Mamos’s Doppelganger skills and his proficiency with them.

“Um, I know I shouldn’t really be saying this in this situation…” Mamos hesitated for a second, checking YuWon’s reaction. “But I’m a fan. Really.”

“A fan?”

“Yes. From even before the Grand Martial Arts Tournament, I became a fan from seeing your rankings. After seeing you fight in the Tournament, I became a true fan.”

“…?”

The sparkle in Mamos’s eyes said enough for him.

It was an unexpected story, but he didn’t seem to be lying either.

[Cinder Eyes reveals the truth.]

YuWon was still maintaining [Cinder Eyes.] It had the ability to deduce the truth from a target’s words even if they intended to lie from the start.

But Mamos had spoken so transparently about this.

‘This was quite unexpected.’

The thought appeared in YuWon’s mind that maybe the reason this guy impersonated him wasn’t just to have an advantage during the test. Mamos certainly had the skills to pass the test of the 21st Floor easily without having to necessarily impersonate him. He, who was born from a royal demonic bloodline, was strong enough to compare against most players in the higher floors.

“ I’m not saying to go easy on me because I’m your fan. I know what I did was wrong…” Mamos scratched his head in shame and bowed his head with a wry smile. “I’m sorry. I really won’t do it again. I’ll reflect on it.”

YuWon narrowed his eyes and said in a heavy, intimidating tone, “Did you not think that I might kill you for this?”

“If you were going to do that, you wouldn’t have waited for me to wake up.”

YuWon smiled slightly.

The guy at least had some wits. Even if this guy was a young child, blood never lied. He didn’t know why a Demon King’s offspring was running around in a place like this, but it was worth waiting for him to wake up.

“You owe me your life now.”

“…?”

Mamos had a doubtful expression as he watched YuWon stand up. He thought that since YuWon let him live, he would want something from him.

It was then…

“Give me your number.”

“Huh?”

Number?

YuWon handed the baffled Mamos his player kit.

“I’ll spare you, so help me with one thing.”

* * *

* * *

It had now been a month since he received Mamos’s player kit number.

The world received the news that Kim YuWon had resumed his climb of the Tower.

After waking from sleep, YuWon opened his eyes.

Vwooong—

His player kit vibrated.

[Mamos: I also registered for the next test! Salute!]

A message sent by Mamos. The ‘Salute!’ at the end felt a little awkward.

YuWon felt that he may not have just said that he was a fan to save his life.

“He’s kinda annoying.”

YuWon let out a deep sigh, poured out a glass of water, and drank it. He flipped to the next page on the player kit’s screen.

Flick, click—

He had searched the remaining test schedules.

The 22nd, 23rd, and 24th Floors. The tests remaining to get to the 25th Floor were these ones.

‘If I don’t fail any of them, I should be able to finish all three tests in the next ten days.’

Although he said that, YuWon naturally wasn't thinking of what to do if he failed.

They were still only tests on the floors in the 20s. Unless a Ranker at the level of Theseus interfered, the tests themselves weren’t really that hard.

The test schedule wasn’t bad at all.

Since Olympus wasn’t run by idiots, they would have no choice but to be more wary of the Administrators. And about this time, Zeus and Poseidon’s battle of wits would be in full swing.

‘There’s one more thing.’

YuWon discovered another message that arrived in his player kit.

It was a name he hadn’t seen in a while.

[Hargaan]

He who had sent messages pretty regularly up until the Grand Martial Arts Tournament had just sent a message for the first time in a long time.

[Hargaan: I’ve come down to the 22nd Floor. Let’s meet up.]

“…?”

It was an invitation out of the blue.

Hargaan had increased the speed at which he was climbing the Tower. Unlike YuWon who put effort into each and every one of his floor tests to get the best grades, Hargaan was aiming to become a Ranker as fast as possible.

Coming down to the 22nd Floor was a long way down for Hargaan.

‘Did something happen?’

There were a few days before he could take the tests, and he also had nothing special to do before arriving in Britain.

YuWon replied to Hargaan’s message.

[YuWon: You buy the coffee.]

[Hargaan: Come to the beach club in the middle area. That place is decent.]

Since he had already climbed past the 22nd Floor, Hargaan seemed to be pretty knowledgeable about the lay of the land.

If it was a beach club, YuWon had a few that he had in mind as well. It was a spot on the 22nd Floor famous for their coffee.

After quickly washing himself, YuWon immediately went to the meeting place.

On the terrace that was situated on the outside, Hargaan had already ordered a drink and was waiting for him.

“You’re here?”

The coffee that looked to be YuWon’s had steam gently coming off the top. In comparison, Hargaan’s looked to be quite mellow and also nearly empty.

YuWon sat opposite Hargaan and asked him, “When did you get here?”

“A little while ago.”

“Why alone?”

“I didn’t have anything to do, so it’s just for a change of pace.”

Hargaan spoke as he pulled out a cigar from his pocket. A thick cigar. It was the first time YuWon had seen him with one.

“Did you smoke before?”

“I did. Although, it was only one or two a year.”

“Then why now?”

“Just ’cause. I remembered.”

Bzzt, crackle—

As Hargaan flicked his finger, the end of the cigar caught on fire. A thick smoke was produced, and Hargaan awkwardly spat out the smoke that had accumulated in his mouth.

“How far did you climb?”

“Me? The 34th Floor.”

“You’re fast.”

“It’s a problem from here on out. It’s getting more difficult to climb.”

He was complaining out loud, but being able to get to the 34th Floor already was incredibly fast. There probably wasn't a High-Ranker in history who was able to have climbed as fast as him.

“Being excessively humble isn’t good.”

“I’m not really humble. I know that I’m good. And is that something you should be saying?”

“True.”

It was a trivial thing.

YuWon took another sip of coffee to refresh his mind and asked, “But what are you doing on such a low floor? It doesn’t look like you’re just here to see me either.”

“The Stone of the Sea. I heard you have it?”

YuWon nodded.

It was something those that should know already knew. Especially for someone like Hargaan, who had some influence within Olympus, there was no way he wouldn’t know. That was why there was no reason to deny or hide it.

“I don’t know if you knew, but thanks to you, Olympus is in a mess right now.”

“A mess?”

“The relationship between my father and uncle is destroyed. Because of that, the mood these days is a bit restless.”

Although he said it in a joking tone, it couldn’t be taken lightly. The ones Hargaan was talking about were Zeus and Poseidon, and those two had enough power and authority to shake the Tower itself. But if the relationship between them had broken, it was practically an omen that great chaos would sweep through the Tower.

“Well, because of that, you’ll be safe for a bit. But that’s fleeting as well.”

“I know.”

“You… You might really die.”

Hearing Hargaan’s words, YuWon put down his cup.

Hargaan continued, “Make a choice now at least. Bring the Stone to Olympus and lower your head or find a place that can protect you, like Asgard or the Heavenly Realm.”

“Are you done?”

“What?”

“If you’re done talking, I’m leaving. It’s not something I want to hear either.”

“That’s not what I’m… Haah…” Hearing YuWon’s stern response, Hargaan scratched his head hard and asked while throwing a fit, “Hey, are you really gonna do this?”

“I feel like I’ve said the same thing multiple times. Then have you made your choice as well?”

“I wouldn’t even be saying this if I didn’t.”

Although Hargaan spoke in a grumbling tone, he wasn’t wrong. From the start, just for the fact that he was close to YuWon, it couldn’t be helped that Hargaan’s position within Olympus was becoming shaky.

He had made up his mind to stand on the side completely opposite to Zeus.

“The 25th Floor.”

YuWon’s brows twitched.

Again…

“In there, be especially careful of Britain’s heart.”

Again, Britain was mentioned.

“Because that place is a giant ‘net’ made to catch you.”


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