Solo Leveling Novel, Chapter 112
Solo Levelingi 112
The video was shocking. It had been recorded by a security camera pointed towards the road. It was a quiet street – so quiet, in fact, that the recording showed no cars passing through even when sped up. The video was almost certainly of a rural area, far from any towns or cities.
As the video was returned to a normal playback speed, a car appeared at one end of the screen. The car tore down the road, its speed greatly contrasting the recording’s previous tranquility.
Suddenly, in the blink of an eye, a dark silhouette landed in front of the car. Despite standing on two feet, the creature was clearly inhuman.
The creature’s unexpected appearance gave the driver no chance to slow down, but the car never crashed into the creature in front of it. Instead, the car was violently tossed into the air by the creature.
The black creature approached the mid-sized sedan that it had flung with one limb, pulled an unconscious passenger out of the overturned vehicle, and started eating the passenger’s head.
At this point, the video cut off.
Jinwoo couldn’t help but imagine what kinds of sounds he would have heard, had the surveillance camera recorded the audio.
Jinwoo averted his eyes from the large TV that occupied the entire wall of the association president’s office, and looked at Go Gun-hee.
Go Gun-hee quietly put the remote control down on the table.
Unlike most Koreans, he did not speak lightly of the misfortunes of their neighboring country.
“That’s the number of people killed by that ant.”
“Wasn’t Japan’s response fast enough?”
“It was extremely fast, but still not fast enough.”
Gun-hee shook his head.
“They say it took less than 30 minutes for their Hunters to arrive at the site. But that short window of time was enough for an entire village to disappear.”
Japan had developed the most efficient Hunter system in the entirety of Asia. If that same Japan suffered such heavy casualties, what would have happened had the ant flown to Korea instead?
Even after watching the video several times over, Go Gun-hee still felt dizzy each time.
‘We have to exterminate the ants before it’s too late.’
The operation was set to launch in four days.
Japan had been requesting South Korea for a final list of the hunters participating in the operation. However, Go Gun-hee was using his authority as the South Korean Hunter Association representative to delay the announcement of the final list, for one simple reason.
It was because, before now, he had not been able to contact Jinwoo.
And now, with Jinwoo in front of him, he would finally be able to confirm the participant list.
With a trembling heart, Go Gun-hee started speaking.
“We will go to Jeju Island and exterminate the ants…”
Then, he said with yearning eyes,
“…and for that, we need your help.”
The tension of the moment turned Go Gun-hee’s complexion pale.
If Jinwoo refused, there was nothing that could be done.
As Jinwoo did not belong to any guild—and therefore didn’t receive any benefits from the association—he was not obligated to obey the association’s mobilization orders.
The decision was entirely up to Jinwoo.
After much thought, Jinwoo opened his mouth.
After finishing his meeting with the association’s president, Jinwoo prepared to get up and leave—when he sensed something that made him turn his head.
‘What is that?’
There was a magic clash in the nearby area.
At first, Jinwoo thought there was a dungeon, but he immediately dismissed the idea because he couldn’t feel the magic signature typical of monsters—only the type of magic released by hunters.
“What‘s going on?”
Go Gunhee was already at the door to see him out, when he noticed that Jinwoo wasn’t moving.
“It’s nothing big, but… it seems like some Hunters are fighting nearby.”
Gunhee burst into laughter. Could there be a Hunter daring enough to fight near the Hunter Association headquarters?
It was absolutely impossible.
‘Wait… the direction Hunter Sung Jinwoo’s facing is…?’
A thought flashed in his mind.
“There are some S-rank hunters doing light training in the gym right now. Are you talking about that?”
If that was truly the case, it would explain the continuous collisions of magic power.
Jinwoo was surprised by Gun-hee‘s gaze.
‘He can sense those magic undulations from all the way here?’
The association’s gym had been designed to minimize the amount of magic power that leaked out. The design was so good that not even Gun-hee himself could sense anything. But despite that, Jinwoo’s ability to not only feel the magic power coming from the gym, but to discern that they were clashing, filled the association’s president with awe.
‘Just how incredible are you…’
It was hard to guess.
“Do you want to try it out?”
Gun-hee tentatively suggested.
It wasn’t a common occurrence for multiple S-rank hunters to meet in one place, which meant that this would be a great opportunity for Sung Jin-woo to directly test the abilities of other S-rank hunters.
“And Ryuji is also there at the moment.”
With a certain glimmer in his eyes, Jinwoo asked to confirm.
“Is it Ryuji Goto…?”
Ryuji Goto was an exceptionally famous hunter. He was renowned as the strongest man in Japan—there was no one who wouldn’t have heard of him, even among those who weren’t involved in the hunter business.
“Yes, that Ryuji Goto. He is currently staying in Korea to coordinate the activities between the Korean and Japanese Hunters. Since he is scheduled to leave tomorrow, you won’t have another chance to meet him.”
Not only were the best hunters in South Korea gathered together, but also the strongest man in Japan?
‘I can‘t miss this opportunity.’
With excitement on his face, Jinwoo agreed to Go Gun-hee‘s suggestion.
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‘Is this all the best hunters of Korea amount to?’
It was terrible.
No, it was pathetic.
The evaluation that their performance was terrible was objective—the fact that it was pathetic was the result of Goto adding his personal opinion to the evaluation. If Korea had to rely on those weaklings alone for their safety, wouldn’t it have been better if they had directly asked Japan for protection?
Goto looked around at those fancy, useless Korean Hunters with a wry smile. Among all of them, only one looked useful.
‘Her name was Cha Hae-in?’
She was the only hunter at a level comparable to Japan’s best, while the rest of Korea’s hunters paled in comparison to his country’s forces.
‘They are utterly hopeless.’
Korea was just a small, sparsely populated country. It was unfortunate that the person who had the strongest awakening in this place was an old man who barely had any time left to live, and couldn’t even fight because of it.
‘As for Go Gun-hee, he probably wouldn’t be any worse than the best members of my own team, but…’
From Korea’s standpoint, it definitely wasn’t a good thing that such a huge amount of power lay in the hands of a dying man.
Goto’s real objective in coming to Korea had ended. He had just finished assessing and evaluating all the Korean hunters’ capabilities.
‘When we withdraw from the fight, they won’t even last 5 minutes.’
After deciding that there wasn’t anything else worth seeing, Goto turned around, when he happened to see someone just walking in through the entrance.
Goto raised an eyebrow. He hadn’t realized that someone was coming—and even while he was directly looking at him, he still couldn’t feel that person’s presence.
‘Is he an assassin-class hunter, perhaps?’
“Who is that?”
His interest piqued, Goto spoke to a Hunter Association staff member through the interpreter beside him.
Fiddling with his glasses, the staff member stared at the person for a long time, then smiled as he was finally able to recognize the person’s face.
“Ah, that is the S-rank hunter that was registered recently.”
That was the reawakened one, about which hardly anything was known. One of Goto’s other objectives in coming to Korea was to dig up information about this hunter. Unfortunately, up until now, he hadn’t been very successful—so when this situation presented itself, Goto couldn’t help but smile.
“He must be quite the outstanding assassin?”
Goto, puzzled, looked back at what the staff member was saying.
“Did I make a mistake?”
“No, that’s not it.”
The employee turned to the entrance and pointed to Jinwoo.
“He’s a Mage-class.”
With an incredulous expression, Goto logged onto the Hunter Association’s website and checked the list of S-rank hunters. Thanks to the translation program installed on his device, he was able to instantly read the Korean web page on S-rankers.
[Sung Jinwoo, S-rank, Mage-class.]
It was true.
The profile picture and the face of the person in front of him were a perfect match.
‘Is he seriously just a mage?’
When Goto lifted his bewildered face, that person had already approached him.
‘So this is Ryuji Goto?’
Jinwoo recognized the strongest hunter in Japan at a glance.
A tall person with a sharp sense of style. A neatly-trimmed beard. At a glance, the man perfectly fit the image of a Japanese actor.
‘But why is he staring at me?’
Just when the piercing gaze Jinwoo was receiving started to grow unpleasant, the tall man greeted him with a nod. Jinwoo attributed the gaze to the fact that it was the first time they were seeing each other. Without thinking further on it, Jinwoo nodded back slightly before taking a look around.
In the center of the room, a bare-chested Baek Yoon-ho was sparring with a huge middle-aged man. Except for Japan’s number-one, Goto, everyone’s attention was focused on their match.
In an instant, after pushing aside the older man’s palm attack, Baek twisted his lower body to deliver a strong low kick.
However, contrary to expectations, Baek Yoon-Ho was the one who ended up wincing in pain after the exchange.
Their actions couldn’t escape Jinwoo’s eyes. In the instant before the blow, the huge old man had used a strengthening skill to increase his leg’s defense. By taking into consideration his massive size and the skill shown, that hunter could easily be considered a tank-class—but his movements were clearly more nimble and agile than a tank-class hunter. As as one would expect from an S-rank.
The massive-sized man grinned.
“Master Baek! A young man such as you shouldn’t have such weak kicks.”
“I’m not your master, Mr. Ma.”
The super-giant, Ma, laughed loudly as he fixed his Judogi at the waist. It was a peculiar sight, because it was like watching sumo wrestler in a judo uniform. Then…
After briefly adjusting his collar, the human-mountain quickly charged forward again, and Baek Yoon-ho began to release his magic power and counterattack.
Despite the heated match, their happy faces revealed the excitement of both combatants. Since it wasn’t very often that S-ranks could meet each other, they enjoyed releasing the power they usually kept suppressed.
“If Mr. Baek Yoon-Ho fought with all his strength, Mr. Ma Dong-Wook wouldn’t be able to match him.”
Choi Jong-in’s voice came from the side. Jinwoo turned, and after an exchange of pleasantries, they began talking.
“The man in the uniform is Ma Dong-wook of Fame.”
Jinwoo was wondering where he had heard the name “Ma” before. As it turned out, that person was the Guildmaster of the Fame Guild. After figuring out his identity, Jinwoo nodded in agreement before commenting:
“I don’t believe that Baek Yoon-Ho is as weak as he appears to be. Why is he hiding his strength?”
“There are a lot of eyes here—it’s never a good idea to reveal your true power. If the need arises, Baek will turn into a monster when he has to truly fight.”
Hearing that, Jinwoo remembered seeing Baek Yoon-ho’s “Beast Eyes” during the Red Gate incident.
‘I guess it isn’t just the eyes that change.’
It wasn’t unusual for high-rank hunters to possess unique abilities and characteristics. Baek Yoon-ho’s transformation ability was just one example.
Sheer monstrous power.
To others, Baek Yoon-ho’s ability would look the same as a monster’s power.
A person who turns into a monster, and someone who calls on monsters.’
He smiled at the thought that other might be as amazed at him [Jinwoo] just as he was amazed [at Baek]
Of the whole situation: only the idea that Baek Yoon-ho could turn into a monster was exciting, in contrast, the current sparring match between him and Ma Dong-wook left much to be desired.
Even without paying close attention, Jinwoo was able to completely grasp the flow of the clash between the two fighters.
All of a sudden:
As if he had noticed something, Baek Yoon-Ho stopped moving. Ma Dong-Wook stopped at the same time. As if they had planned it beforehand, the two men turned towards Jinwoo as one, inducing everyone else to do the same.
Had he made it too obvious that he thought the fight was slow?
Too many people were looking at him for that to be the case. It didn’t take long for Jinwoo to understand what was really happening.
‘Not at me, but behind me…’
Jinwoo turned his head to see Ryuji Goto standing right behind him, sizing him up with an unusual gaze.
Goto’s interpreter started speaking on his behalf.
“Hunter-nim, Mr. Goto has something to ask you.”
Jinwoo had already noticed Goto approaching, but hadn’t realized the man was coming to talk to him. Jinwoo shot Goto a curious glance.
‘This person has been looking at me strangely this whole time …’
While wondering if he had done something to displease the Japanese high-ranker, Goto asked in a quiet voice:
“Will you fight me one on one?”
Discord Link: https://discord.gg/77FQuB5
Translated/Transcribed by peghius, Notalk and Null
Proofread/Edited by Slimicee, Aster0x, SeijiSoldier, peghius
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Solo Leveling Novel Chapter 112
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