Chapter 462 - Central Bureau (4)

Second Life Ranker

“I’m saying we should beat that bastard up this instant!”

“Hmph. Even though you’ve already reached this age, your suggestions are always ‘let’s beat him up’ or ‘let’s kill him’. That’s why they say you’re ignorant.”

“What? Are you saying I’m ignorant?”

“Is there anyone else here spouting horseshit like you?”

“You bitch…!”

“Shut up!”


The Bureau was no stranger to incidents involving players, but the uproar today was unprecedented because of the player causing trouble on the fifty-first floor: the Shadow King. Because his name was blurred out, even the Guardians called him Cain, and he had recently been marked as an SSS-ranked troublemaker by the Bureau.

He’d lived up to his reputation and blown up the entire fifty-first floor.  

“Hm.” For the entire meeting, Klus rubbed his temples as his headache grew. ‘This is why I made a fuss and refused to be director…damn it!’

The Zodiacs, the eleven high Guardians—formerly twelve—shouted at each other during their meeting as they discussed what to do with Yeon-woo. Each Zodiac was assertive, and their personalities so different that they rarely got together like this. However, the severity of the situation demanded an urgent meeting.

However, the joy of gathering for the first time in thirty-odd years was not in evidence among them. In one corner, some growled as they gripped each other’s collars, some bastard was yawning in another corner, one was falling asleep somewhere else, and one was crying. Klus had no idea how to keep them in check.

‘Fuck, should I just…” Klus hesitated for a moment. It didn’t matter if the conference stretched out for an entire year. They wouldn’t be able to get anything done. Klus’ code name was Yin. He was a tiger. When he’d been a player, he crushed anything he disliked without a second thought, but now that he was older and in the director position, he was a lot more patient. But if they kept this up, even Buddha wouldn’t be able to stay calm.

A sharp look flashed in his eyes, and he was about to tighten his grip on the table when Yvlke suddenly clapped his hands together. Clap!

The chaos stopped.

“Ohyohyo. Since we’ve already expressed our opinions, how about we listen to the director’s?”

The High Guardians coughed and turned their heads. No one dared to look at Yvlke in the eye.

Claude couldn’t help scoffing. Even though they were all roughnecks, they walked on eggshells around Yvlke.

Yvlke understood why; he and the dragon, Diablo, had the upper hand when it came to strength. However, Yvlke also had an aura that overwhelmed those around him, as though there were an invisible barrier around him that made him unapproachable. He could make you shrink if you stood next to him. As such, people always treated him with respect. He didn’t have friends, but he didn’t have enemies either.

That was the reason Yvlke was the first person to serve four consecutive terms as the Bureau’s director. If he hadn’t said he wanted to rest this time, he would have easily served a fifth. He had also stayed in a High Guardian position longer than anyone else.

No one knew how a goblin, the lowest of the lowly species, managed to climb to such a prominent position, but Klus didn’t mind, as he respected the strong and the wise. ‘The only catch is that it’s hard to tell what he’s thinking.’

The High Guardians usually took care of the Bureau’s blacklisted players. Yvlke was in charge of the player at the top of the list, the Shadow King. Nevertheless, Yvlke never imposed any significant constraints on the Shadow King. This was the only exception, although he clearly had his reasons. However, since he always efficiently took care of all his assignments, there wasn’t anything to scold him about.

In fact, Klus was grateful that Yvlke settled everyone down. He nodded, and Yvlke smiled understandingly.

“First, our probation of the Shadow King.”Klus slowly spoke up as the eyes of all the High Guardians shot to him. Because he input magic power in his words and didn’t allow anyone else to act up anymore, he could feel the atmosphere tremble. “I think we should do the same thing we did to the Martial King a long time ago; does anyone have any objections?”

* * *

Plod. Plod.

Yeon-woo was being escorted by five Guardians along a narrow, lightless path. Handcuffs were clasped tight around his wrists. They all watched Yeon-woo carefully in case he suddenly tried to attack them, but Yeon-woo didn’t have any interest in them at all. Instead, he looked around in a relaxed manner as they walked and examined the handcuffs that were sealing his magic power away.

It definitely wasn’t divine iron. What was it? If only he knew, he’d have various uses for it. He also checked the messages that popped up in his vision.

[You have made an achievement that is not easily accomplished. Additional karma will be provided.]

[You have acquired 100,000 karma.]

[You have acquired 150,000 additional karma.]

[Your reward…]

[All trials have been completed.]

[You have set a new record on this floor. Will you register your name in the Hall of Fame?]

[Will you move to the 52nd floor?]

Fortunately, the bothersome trial of the fifty-first floor was over, and he’d once more broken all records overwhelmingly.

‘Climbing the mountains was the trial, but since I broke the mountains and stood on top of the pieces, the Tower must’ve judged that it was the same thing.’

The Tower’s system was sometimes extremely picky, but it also overlooked loopholes at other times. There was probably a rule to this, but Yeon-woo didn’t know what it was exactly. He wasn’t concerned about anything since he’d taken care of the tricky trial and contacted the Bureau as he wished. What was more, he was especially satisfied with the new ultimate technique he created.

[Meteor Sword Art]

[Number: ??? (Calculating)]

[Proficiency: 2.5%]

[Description: A sword art based on ‘Wave of Fire’ and combines Heaven Bracket, traits of Demonic Draconic Divine Body, the holiness of the Throne of Death, the Black King’s power, thousands of Channels, and other powers to create large amount of sword qi clusters.

Depending on how it’s used, it can be applied to various situations. All gods and demons are paying attention to its explosive power and potential. However, there is space for improvement because of its uncontrollable nature.]

[*Cluster Creation

As long as you have control and magic power, you can create a large amount of sword qi clusters. The clusters will rotate on their own, maintaining their form, and will grow bigger depending on their rotation speed. Other effects are the same as the options of ‘Wave of Fire.’]

[*Stellar System Emergence

The clusters will orbit around you. The light and heat that follow will influence other clusters and amplify its power. The greater the number of clusters, the greater the amplification effects. You can control the sword qi clusters, and the moment they stop orbiting, they’ll explode.]



**This is a legendary skill. You are the only one who can use it, and it cannot be passed on or taught to another player.

**This is still an incomplete skill. It may be upgraded to a power or divine authority. Complete the skill to make a superior skill of your own.]

[***Applicable Uses (2/???)

Stellar Systems: Protect your body with a large number of clusters.

Downpour: A large number of clusters will bombard a designated location.]

A legendary skill! Yeon-woo clenched his fists as soon as he saw the words. It was a skill that could never be shared or taught, so it was like his trademark.

Allforone’s Shukuchi and Thousand Li Eyes, the Martial King’s Martial Extremes, and the Summer Queen’s Blue Summer were all legendary skills. Of course, he still had a long way to go to reach their level, but it was an amazing feat in itself to have the same base. It meant the Tower’s system acknowledged him.

Additionally, legendary skills could be called something else: powers and divine authorities. They were the strengths that symbolized the holiness of the transcendent gods and demons. Once Yeon-woo completed exuviation and gained transcendence, this skill would naturally become his own power and divine authority and help him establish his position.

It was an incredible accomplishment. He had become that much closer to exuviation. The level of his soul had probably increased too. However, it wasn’t just the type of skill that excited him. He was now assured that this skill would work against the other transcendents he’d face in the future. If he refined it well, it would be enough to stand against Allforone as well. ‘Of course, I have to mess up Master’s face before that.’

As he organized his thoughts, he stopped when the Guardian in front of him paused. “This is it.” The Guardian looked at him ferociously with a vicious air that could compare to many of the Nine Kings. Even if Yeon-woo fought with his full strength, he couldn’t guarantee a victory. ‘I heard he’s a mid-level Guardian. Amazing.’

The Bureau doesn’t usually involve itself with specific events. Their purpose is to watch over each floor and trial to ensure that everything runs smoothly, and they guide the players and carry out what the system can’t manage. They’re like the spirits of the Tower.

Maybe that was why some players think of the Guardians as NPCs protected by the system. In my view, they’re idiots. Being blessed by the Tower and becoming a spirit of the Tower—if they thought about it just a little more deeply, they would see the implications.

Not much was known about the identities of the Guardians. Most of them used nicknames or code names. However, Jeong-woo had managed to discover most of their identities. In fact, once you became a high ranker, you frequently crossed paths with Guardians, so a lot of them caught on to who they were.

High rankers who suddenly disappeared a long time ago—those who are believed dead or off the grid, or those with desperate wishes or goals but never had the ability to reach the top and died without peace. Or those who’ve become slaves bound to the system because they were filled with lingering feelings and anguish they couldn’t abandon.

They’re pitiful beings who silently watch over the following waves of players, reminded of their own past as they clean up after them. That’s what the Guardians are.

They were once renowned for their brilliant abilities and talent but everything stopped there. They climbed the Tower to reach the top. But due to clashes with other rankers, lack of forces, talent limits, a shortage of skills, Allforone’s discouragement, and other walls, they were forced to put their swords down.

But because they couldn’t let go of the goal of the Tower, they became bound to it and trapped in their pasts. They could never reveal themselves or spread their names. They were fated to remain as shadows.

The one who brought Yeon-woo here was one of them. The man who had once been known as the King of Mythical Creatures and had even been a challenging opponent for Allforone. Now, he was a nameless, mid-level Guardian.

If they know, those who claimed to be his descendants would fall over from shock. However, Hanabi continued in an indifferent tone, as if he didn’t care about his situation. “You’ve been sentenced with a suspension. A new person will lead you inside, so don’t think about causing more trouble. Take this time to reflect.”

Hanabi pointed to a pitch-black path without a single ray of light. A cell and tasks that had to be completed waited for Yeon-woo at the end, and he would stay there until his sentence was complete. That was what being sentenced with a suspension meant.

With his magic power and senses all sealed by the handcuffs, he would feel choked with frustration. The system that had been assisting him would be blocked, which would make him feel like he’d lost all his power. There was no worse punishment for players who had vigorous physical abilities.

It was the reason why players sentenced to a suspension had a hard time taking it after a few days and struggled to get out. However, they would only be stopped by Guardians called “bridgeheads”—skilled people like Hanabi.

Yeon-woo glanced at Hanabi and entered the prison without saying much. Hanabi looked surprised, as though he’d been expecting Yeon-woo to resist. However, Yeon-woo ignored him. He actually wanted to enter this prison. He’d done his best to get the Guardians’ attention only so that he could get into contact with her: the Vampiric Lord.

She was the being who’d terrified everyone in the Tower with all her familiars, only to disappear without a trace, the true owner of Bathory’s Vampiric Sword that Yeon-woo had used well.

Erzsebet Bathory was inside the prison.

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