Solo Swordmaster

Chapter 12
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Chapter 12: Forgiveness

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“Don’t you agree there’s no reason for me to go when I know that there’s several tons of TNT rigged to explode as soon as I hold your hand?”

It was the last thing he remembered before going back in time.

Being teleported into the basement filled with explosives after holding Yoo Na-kyung’s hand. Barely managing to escape the collapsing building, only to be met with countless guns after.

“…TNT? A trap? What are you talking about?”

Yoo Na-kyung blinked blankly.

Her clueless, even foolish, expression didn’t seem like she’d be the very person who would bring Limon to his death.

But Limon completely ignored her words. His golden eyes only settled bitterly as he quietly lamented.

“I was foolish. So many things were suspicious.”

There was no way a minor PAB employee could have found the main base of the Liberation Brigade when not even the National Intelligence Agency could.

And Na-kyung wasn’t someone interested in money or fame. She wouldn’t have actively suggested going after the Liberation Brigade. 

And considering the sudden raid, the Liberation Brigade was armed a bit too well.

He should have noticed sooner.

Blinded from the trust he had towards Yoo Na-kyung, he wasn’t aware how out of place everything was.

“There’s no way you’d be in danger when you’re with me.”

Another important sign was that feeling that Yoo Na-kyung would be in danger the moment he saw her Constellation.

It didn’t make any sense if he thought about it. 

A million troops.

The most elaborate trap ever conceived.

Even a Monarch .

Limon could still get away while keeping at least one person safe.

Especially if that person was a high-level player like Yoo Na-kyung.

The only way Yoo Na-kyung could be in danger…

“……Unless I kill you, that is.”

The bitterness crept into the back of his throat. 

But he didn’t let go of his sword.

Being swayed by simple emotions… Limon was a swordsman who’d been alive too long to be so naive. He pointed his sword at his enemy, coldly asking her.

 “Why, Na-kyung?”

“Uhm… boss? You’re starting to scare me. Could you stop joking around now? I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

Her eyes were wide and unwavering. As expected, a clever subordinate. Not many people could actually play dumb even if they knew it was their best option. 

Alas, a bit too clever. She was acting way too calm. It was clearer than any words she could say.

If she really didn’t have a clue what he was talking about, her eyes would have shook with anxiety.

“Is it because of the hostages?”

“……!”

Yoo Na-kyung tried to keep calm. But the Swordmaster’s accursed sharp senses did not miss her frantic heartbeat. Her mask started to crack.

“Parents or family would be meaningless since you’re an orphan. They must have threatened you with the orphanage children’s lives. “

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Limon knew why Yoo Na-kyung was always bright and chirpy. 

She was starved of affection. Most of the money from her paychecks went to caring for the children at the orphanage. He knew how much she adored them.

He didn’t feel anger. He simply voiced his disapproval.

“I understand your decision.”

She couldn’t hold it in any longer, it seemed. 

Her mask shattered to pieces.

Revealing her distorted face on the verge of tears, she mumbled with a trembling voice.

“……How did you know?”

“You wouldn’t betray me for something like money or simply because you were ordered to.”

“You really are clever.”

Regret, astonishment, resentment, disappointment. All sorts of emotions laid in those four words.

Looking straight into her eyes that were holding in more emotion than her voice, Limon questioned.

“Is there no other way?”

“Do you think there is?”

“No.”

“You’re right. At least one of us has to die here”.

“Probably.”

He knew before he asked.

She was a clever girl who wouldn’t have taken this path if there was another way out. 

There probably really was no other way, considering how she couldn’t let him know of her situation and ask for help. 

Just then, the memories of the future came to his mind. Yoo Na-kyung’s sad expression while igniting the explosives after teleporting to the building basement with him proved everything to be true. 

It wasn’t anything new.

A long time ago, when he was going against the Seven Dragons that ruled the world. 

When he fought the dark mages that caused the descent of the Demon God.

Even when he stopped the Seven Dragons Association that swept over Asia.

Those who couldn’t handle Limon would try to use those around him via threats or hostages. 

Even back when the Swordmaster was the Absolute Ruler, it was impossible to stop all of it. And so whenever these things happened, Limon had one solution.

“Let me ask you one last question.”

Limon swallowed the bitterness. He calmly looked at Yoo Na-kyung with his golden eyes.

“Those children, do they mean more to you than your life?”

It wasn’t a question, but a confirmation. He was trying to take responsibility as a boss who couldn’t look after his subordinates.

Yoo Na-kyung didn’t break his eye contact and firmly answered him.

“Yes.”

“…At least hesitate. I’m ashamed just asking.”

“Sorry.”

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“You should be very sorry. You stabbed your divine boss in the back and now you’re asking him to deal with the consequences.”

Limon chuckled.

There was no way she didn’t understand the intent behind his question. 

And yet, her answer stood firm. 

Even Limon, who had lived a long life, was certain. Yoo Na-kyung was an incredible prodigy. And so, he could come to a decision with more ease than usual.

“But I forgive you.”

Her pupils widened as if she heard something she couldn’t believe.

He took a step forward even before Yoo Na-kyung could unfreeze herself from the shock.

One step to her blind spot.

One step to slightly pull back his sword.

One step to gently pierce the sword into her heart.

“So… rest in peace.”

It was as if time stopped. Yoo Na-kyung froze in place with Limon’s sword impaled in her heart. 

Only after quite some time had passed did Limon catch her gently falling body.

There wasn’t any pain. She probably didn’t even know she was dying.

And yet the smile lingering on her lips was so soft and clear that it showed she had accepted her death.

With a cold expression Limon closed the eyes of his subordinate, who was much too smart and joyful, yet foolish.

 

***

Reaper Scans

Translator – woni

Proofreader – sharlottle

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***

 

The world faded to black, and he could see things others couldn’t.

He finally took out the fangs in Yoo Na-kyung’s neck and locked eyes with the snake, which sounded like it was sneering as it flicked its tongue.

Limon took hold of the snake’s neck, taking back the faintly glowing bead that the snake had taken from her. 

“Hand it over.”

Maybe it was surprised that it was captured, or enraged that its bead got stolen.

But Limon didn’t bat an eye at the frantically wriggling snake.

He only stated coldly,

“This isn’t something you can covet.

Limon didn’t know what this glowing bead was, but he was sure of one thing.

It was something that belonged to Yoo Na-kyung.

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And that was reason enough for Limon to take away the bead from the snake.

Of course, the snake didn’t think so as it fiercely drew out its fangs and tried to attack Limon, snapping its tail like a lightning bolt.

Unfortunately, the snake wasn’t faster than Limon.

“Now fuck off.”

Crack—

The snake’s neck snapped perpendicularly and its remains faded away like an illusion.

Limon didn’t pay any more attention to the insignificant snake.

He only stared at the glowing bead that radiated an oddly familiar aura, putting it back on Yoo Na-kyung’s chest as if he was expecting some sort of change.

But even after the glowing bead faded back into Yoo Na-kyung’s body, there was no miracle of the dead coming back to life.

An obvious but bitter truth. 

 With the roar of the heavens falling, a massive heat wave from the basement swept away the entire building, and Limon with it.

‘……Looks like it’s finally over.’

The Liberation Brigade’s main base had a sign saying Haechung C&T Corporation (Inc.).

He let out a sigh as he watched the building that stood like a lighthouse in the moonlight just moments ago, get engulfed in flames.

‘I’m tired.’

There were 144 tons of TNT buried in there.

On top of that, there were buff items in place that increased the power of the explosion, as well as barrier items that prevented Limon from making an escape.

If Yoo Na-kyung had taken Limon to the basement as planned, even a Monarch wouldn’t be able to get out alive.

Many had called his plan excessive. But he didn’t have to be on edge anymore.

As long as humanity’s last Swordmaster was gone, there was no need for him to suffer insomnia, stomach pains, and hair loss anymore.

That’s what he thought.

“Fucking hell.”

That is, until he heard a low voice call out from inside the dense dust cloud that was the remains of the destroyed building.

“How many sins does one have to commit in their past life to go through this shit twice?”

“……!”

Without even realizing it, his breathing paused. 

This can’t be.

He must be hearing things.

The owner of that voice should be dead.

A sudden strong gust of wind sweeps away the dust cloud. A white-haired man appears from the ruins holding a woman in his arms, against the backdrop of a blazing inferno.

It made his mind go blank.

He wasn’t the only one who was taken aback by the sight.

Everyone who was stationed around the building just in case were holding their breath in shock. ‘Just in case’, they were told.

They never expected it to really happen.

Everyone was thinking the same thing.

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‘How?’

The fact a human could escape that awful explosion alive went far beyond their scope of imagination and understanding.

“<Freeze, Limon Asphelder!>”

Fortunately, there were exceptions to that. Maybe it was because they had a stronger will. Or because their desire for success transcended their judgements.

While everyone was frozen dumbfounded, one man stepped forward and held up the loudspeaker.

He confidently cried out according to the manual.

“<For the murder of a PAB agent, terr—>”

“Terrorism and treason against the nation, I’m under immediate arrest and I should get on my knees and surreder, right?”

“<Th-that’s right. If yo—>”

“Don’t comply, you’re gonna take me by force?”

“<……Yes.>”

‘How did he know what I was going to say?!’

Did he read the manual?

Having his lines stolen by Limon, the man’s face reddened. He stepped forward out of the crowd, trying to make himself more significant.

In that moment, Limon’s sword brushed past the ground, lifting a grain of sand. 

And the man’s head was smashed open like a watermelon.

“Go ahead and try.”

“……!”

A precipitation of fresh, crimson blood. The piece of meat collapsed, along with the loudspeaker caked in brain matter. 

He absentmindedly watched the scene unfold, frozen in place. 

In fact, the hundreds of people watching Limon were frozen, stuck in place.

Not just because what Limon did was so fast it looked like the man’s head exploded by itself. 

“Anyone else want to come forward?”

Limon was looking around emotionlessly after just killing a man.

His golden eyes were telling — anyone who came for Limon at that moment would meet the same fate as that man.

As to mock the group now silent as a mouse, Limon let out an ice cold laugh.

Slowly turning his head, he stared straight into one side of the human barricade that was pointing their guns at him.

“Seems like none of these guys wants to be your shield. What now?”

He felt his heart drop. Limon was looking in his exact direction.

Rationally, that should’ve been impossible. Even a Monarch wouldn’t be able to find him at this distance immediately when he was concealing his presence with a distortion item.

“You gonna come out yourself? Or do you want me to drag you out?”

But any false hope he had left was extinguished. 

“Kang Jungsoo.”

 


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