[You have completed the map of the Sword Grave!]
Grid had expected to take at least a fortnight to complete the map, but the schedule quickened thanks to the emergence of the war god follower who had learned two secret techniques. An unexpected crisis turned out to be good luck.
“It is thanks to the increase in my good luck stat. Huhu. I should be renamed as the king of luck.”
Grid smiled as he was reminded of his good luck stat soaring thanks to the elixirs. He ignored the Overgeared Skeletons who were making wistful expressions on the side.
‘Additionally, I was also lucky when falling into Garam’s trap. If this luck keeps up, I can reach the Sword Grave and clear the hidden quest before the National Competition.’
The excited Grid forgot something for a moment. This place was the Galgunos Temple. It wasn’t a safe zone.
“You destroyed my created soldiers! It is hateful!” Galgunos’ roar came from underground, and it shook the whole temple. Grid’s group was alert since they had consumed all their resources while facing the war god follower. Judging that another war god follower was going to appear, they prepared to run.
Grid’s party gulped and took potions while checking the status of their items and skills. Nevertheless, they were meaningless actions. The party didn’t need to be so vigilant. That was because this time, Galgunos’ action...
[Your relationship with Lich Galgunos, subordinate of a great demon, has become hostile.]
[‘Galgunos Imprint’ is engraved on your heart.]
[The first imprint effect has occurred. The imprint is filled with the essence of magic power. You have failed to resist the imprint effect.]
[The first imprint effect has caused death. The imprint has disappeared.]
[Resistance to the first imprint effect has increased.]
[36.7% experience has been lost.]
[The +8 Ideal Dagger has been lost.]
He used his power instead of dispatching soldiers, and Grid’s party died. They were inevitable deaths. Grid’s party gained new information that raiding the intermediate boss of the first floor of the temple would mean ‘unconditional death.’
“Are you okay?”
In the garden of Reinhardt Castle, Grid opened his eyes at the resurrection point and worried about his colleagues first. Death was fatal to Grid, but it wasn’t big enough to cause him despair. Grid’s hunting speed was several times faster than that of other people, so he didn’t need to work as hard to recover the lost experience. The lost item was also easily recoverable unless it was legendary or above.
The Ideal Dagger—it was the item he had made when he first met Euphemina. It wasn’t a big deal for Grid to lose it because he had been using it for 10 years already in Satisfy time, and the +8 enhancement wasn’t that huge. He still had many enhancement scrolls from various rewards on the East Continent. It would be easy for him to enhance an item to +8 as long as it wasn’t a myth item.
However, Chris, Pon, and Regas were different. After dying, they felt desperate. From their experience, the lost experience and items would be difficult to recover. Grid was worried about them.
“Why are you making a fuss? There’s nothing to worry about.”
“Dying is natural while hunting.”
The three men spoke like it was just a trivial thing. Of course, their actual thoughts were different. ‘It will be difficult to reach our goal of gaining one level before the National Competition.’
‘I dropped Lensia. Dammit. I need a new secondary weapon.’
‘Death... My pride...’
However, they didn’t express it. They didn’t want to burden Grid.
In the first place, it was funny to complain after losing items and experience. It had already happened, and wasn’t it caused by their negligence?
Pon patted Grid’s shoulder. “Didn’t you gain good results? You completed the dungeon map, and we confirmed the dungeon characteristics. We didn’t die in vain. Grid, you might be upset but don’t worry too much. It isn’t good to be shaken.”
Chris nodded in agreement. “I should go report to Lauel. I have to tell him that we will receive great damage if we intend to attack the Galgunos Temple.”
Those who killed the intermediate boss would receive an imprint, and the first imprint effect was to cause death unconditionally. Apart from Grid’s group who already developed resistance to the imprint, everyone else who attacked the Galgunos Temple must be prepared to die.
“Lauel will hold his tongue. His nature means he will never suggest attacking the Galgunos Temple.”
“I have the same thought. Instruct the guild members not to raid the intermediate boss and only hunt the mobs on the first floor.”
The reason players sought dungeons was to level up and gain a profit. It was enough to grab the respawned mobs in the dungeon to level up. Raiding the boss would give bigger rewards, but they was no need to risk it if the difficulty was too high. They would only receive harm while seeking uncertain rewards.
Chris, Pon, and Regas judged that the Galgunos Temple was a dungeon that shouldn’t be attacked.
“Let’s attack the temple after the National Competition,” the silent Grid spoke ridiculous words and then grinned at his baffled colleagues. “At the very least, we won’t die from the imprint.”
“That’s right. However, the imprint is secondary. The Galgunos Temple itself is very difficult. Grid, it will be difficult to challenge the dungeon with just the four of us.”
“If you get two or three gold medals in the National Competition, won’t it be easier than you think? Won’t you become stronger from the gold medal compensation?”
“Ah. Right. There is such a simple method.”
Grid was the only person in the world who would speak so easily about the gold medals. The party members could only laugh.
The video started from the sky above the clouds—a sky that humans couldn’t reach. The camera angle stayed there for two seconds before starting to fall rapidly. It fell from above the clouds through the clouds and toward the land. There was an explosion, and the camera angle shook. Then silence followed. After a few seconds, the trembling returned again. A broken sword appeared.
-It seems to be Kraugel.
-Right. It is expressing the fallen sky.
-It is rough... We are being hit with the former sky above the sky from the opening video? ;;;
-The S.A Group is cruel. Killing a person twice.
-I feel sorry for Kraugel oppa. ㅠㅠ I don’t want his pretty face to wrinkle. ㅠㅠㅠ
The pre-opening video for the 4th National Competition was short and intense. The video depicted the fall of Kraugel, who had kept his status until last year. Some people cheered, some were displeased, and others were sympathetic. The common feeling they all shared was ‘regret’.
A hand grabbed the broken sword (from Kraugel’s point of view) and then tried to climb back onto the throne. The rusty throne was abandoned by its master. It was an empty throne. This symbolized Grid’s absence. People couldn’t help feeling regretful.
-Ha... The video shows that Grid won’t appear in this National Competition.
-It is empty, empty. There is no fun watching this National Competition.
-Honestly, this year’s National Competition is meaningless. It is a fight between foxes in a forest free of a tiger.
-Tiger? Bullshit. Don’t you know that Grid ran away? He didn’t play this year because Kraugel will win. What type of tiger is that? He is just a piece of junk.
-You must be American.
-Is it wrong? What other reason is there for Grid giving up the gold medal compensation? Grid ran away because he was afraid of losing his title.
-You must be American.
-There is no Grid, so South Korea won’t be able to win many medals this year. They will be edged out of the rankings.ㅎㅎ
-You must be Japanese.
-Taiwan number one!
-The foreigners are scared. Somebody go and get Peak Sword.
The communities all over the world were talking about the National Competition. In particular, the atmosphere of the Korean communities was boiling over. The foreign netizens, who wanted to ridicule South Korea in Grid’s absence, flocked together like a tsunami every day. It meant there were many foreigners who were jealous of the Koreans, who had enjoyed the honey every time thanks to Grid.
Regardless of Grid’s absence, the public’s interest in the National Competition was still hot. After all, it was an event that only occurred once a year. Then a full version of the opening video was released a few days later, making people all over the world more excited.
Kraugel was staring at the empty throne. Then players from the US team gathered around him. One of them approached the empty throne. He sat on it and laughed wildly. His identity...
-Amazing ㅋ ㅋ Zibal is coming back at this time.
Before removing himself from the rankings, Zibal had maintained the second place in the overall rankings and had a rivalry with Kraugel. After two years, Zibal finally showed himself again. In particular, the Americans were excited about this. In the US team, there were more people to pay attention to.
-Doesn’t that look like Haster standing beside Lauel?
-The FPS Emperor? Aish, it can’t be. Why is the Emperor in Satisfy?
-Doesn’t that look like Haster?
-It is real. He is Haster.
-Isn’t this crazy? Haster is returning in Satisfy?
-He is going to be the emperor again.
-A legend is returning... This year’s National Competition will be full of legends...
-Kraugel, Zibal, Haster, Lauel, Skull, Zephyr... It will be abnormal if the United States doesn’t take first place this year.
There were 125 countries participating in the 4th National Competition. The five minute opening video didn’t introduce all the countries. It only introduced the 13 countries that were treated as superpowers in Satisfy and played significant roles. The high rankers from weaker countries also appeared for a short time in the video. A typical example was Jishuka.
The spectacular sight made many people look forward to the National Competition. The most talked about scene...
There was a single hand gesture. In the darkness, against the backdrop of a castle, one hand beckoned toward the camera. This was an obvious provocation. It was telling people to come.
‘Come and face me,’ it seemed to say.
-Who is that? Why aren’t they showing his face?
-Is it a ranker participating for the first time in the National Competition?
-The person is arrogant. Who is one of the top rankers who haven’t appeared in the National Competition??
-Russia’s Knight? Is it North Korea’s Jang Mihwan? Israel’s Jacob?
-I don’t know about Knight, but Jang Mihwan and Jacob aren’t verified.
-Isn’t it Jacob? Starting from the ID, his arrogance matches well with the video ㅋㅋ
-I don’t think it is him... It looks like someone from Europe. Isn’t it GZ?
-How is it GZ? In my opinion, it seems like Faker.
-Faker...? Faker! Right, that’s right!
-Wow. The force of the flow seems right.
-It is really Faker.
-Indeed. There is no one with a higher profile than Faker. Faker is decorating the video.
People started to be convinced that the main character of the video was Faker. The Death God Faker was one of the most accomplished high rankers who had never been in the public eye. He was also one of the strongest in the world and part of the strongest guild. There was a rumor that he was the person Grid trusted the most.
“Ohh~ It came out quite nicely? Is it because your face didn’t come out?”
Shin Youngwoo and Shin Sehee—the two siblings sat next to each other on the couch and watched the opening video midnight. They had conflicting reactions. Sehee was excited about her brother’s appearance while Youngwoo had a regretful expression.
‘My lines were cut.’
There is no time, so bring it on all at once.
This was the line Youngwoo had spoken to the camera during the filming of the opening video. However, it had been edited out. He was angry and sad.
‘They erased it?’
Was the line too childish and bad? Youngwoo sighed and glanced at his sister Sehee. He let out another sigh at the sight of her old and fluffy sweatshirt.
“Last time it was the school uniform, and now it’s the school’s gym clothes? You have already graduated from high school. Why are you still wearing the school uniform and gym clothes?”
“Didn’t I tell you? I wear the clothes I used in high school so that I can concentrate more when studying.”
“Why is an S University student studying at home? Shouldn’t you only study at school?”
“I have to study to graduate.”
“You are still a freshman. You should take it easy. Join school clubs like Yerim. Find a boyfriend. Although you will get a curfew.”
“I’m too busy studying and playing the game.”
Sehee had received too much from her brother and enjoyed too much thanks to him. She also wanted to succeed. At least economically, she wanted to be independent from her brother and relieve her brother’s burden. Now she wanted to help her brother. Thus, she became more and more immersed in the game. She knew the potential of a Saintess.
Youngwoo had no idea of Sehee’s feelings and rose from his spot.
“I’m going to sleep.”
‘I need enough sleep to get a new start tomorrow. What is waiting for me at the Sword Grave?’
It was a place which contained the works from Pagma’s last years and where Braham’s body was buried. Youngwoo was looking forward to it for a number of reasons.