Chapter 16 – Clan Establishment (2)
It wasn’t long before the flames on the mud troll’s body died down.
After the flames completely died down, all that was left was a hardened clump of clay.
It was futile to try and understand what had happened.
Who would have thought that a monster that had devoured nearly a hundred soldiers was weak to flames and had ultimately died to gasoline fire.
But on top of that, it was also very frightening.
The mud troll was a sign. If you were ignorant of the age of monsters that the world had entered, you would die.
“Ahn Sun Mi, go and try using the Mud Troll’s Flesh on the wounded soldiers.”
Kim Tae Hoon was an early inductee of this new age.
So Kim Tae Hoon’s response was to try and slough off the shackles of ignorance.
”But won’t the gasoline residue cause problems?”
“Most of the gasoline would have went up with the fire.”
“But if problems occur…..”
“Look, it’s better to test the Mud Troll’s Flesh right now on those who are heavily, but not fatally, injured instead of waiting to try it on a mangled human who could succumb to a loss of blood or an infection within minutes. “
Afterall, he had read the information on the Mud Troll’s Flesh that said it could help heal injuries and improve one’s recovery.
So no questions needed to be asked when it came to validating the information.
As was said earlier, ignorance was akin to death. One needed to have knowledge in this new age.
So in that sense, Kim Tae Hoon’s instructions made sense.
Considering how reasonable his instructions were, Ahn Sun Mi didn’t question him anymore.
“Second Lieutenant Kim Su Ji.”
Right as Ahn Sun Mi acknowledged his orders, Kim Tae Hoon called for Kim Su Ji who had been standing upright and out of sight.
She stepped towards Kim Tae Hoon as though she had been waiting.
“Start treatment on the wounded and give Ahn Sun Mi three soldiers.. “
Kim Su Ji immediately called out towards three good soldiers and gave them their orders.
Having heard about the treatment to be given to the wounded, the three soldiers were very compliant.
“I need that monster’s body. “
They were compliant up to the point where Ahn Sun Mi told them to retrieve pieces of the now hardened and crumbly flesh of the mud troll.
“Are you crazy? Suddenly telling us to retrieve that monster’s flesh? Why?”
“Is it even dead for sure? What if we got near it and it suddenly came to life again? “
” ….. Just do as you’re told. There’s probably something there.”
So as Ahn Sun Mi and the three soldiers went to take care of business, Kim Su Ji opened her mouth and spoke.
“Can I ask a question sir?”
“I’ll allow it for now.”
“Did you perhaps recognize me from headquarters five years ago?”
It was an unexpected question.
But still, Kim Tae Hoon thought about it.
“Are you Brigadier General Kim Jae Ryong’s granddaughter?”
“You were the person who accompanied Major General Jang Young Sung at the time. “
Kim Tae Hoon’s expression hardened.
There were two reasons.
“It seems like your memory is very good.”
One of the reasons was the name Jang Young Sung.
The other one was.
‘Brigadier General Kim Jae Ryong……. ‘
It was his history with Brigadier General Kim Jae Ryong.
‘He was the division commander of the 60th division of the Capital Defense Command.’
Division Commander of the 60th division under the Capital Defense Command.
It wasn’t a regular position.
He could have easily sent a detachment to Bucheon where his granddaughter was stationed in order to save her.
Although Kim Jae Ryong had retired three years ago, his influence was not so easily ignored.
‘A big shot’s granddaughter. ‘
Brigadier General Kim Jae Ryong wasn’t someone who would cross the line. The position of 60th division commander was one that did not allow for misconduct.
However, Kim Su Ji had survived on her own until now.
‘It seems Seoul was also hit. ‘
It meant that Seoul’s Capital Defense Command had failed.
‘The worst case scenario has become reality. ‘
It was as expected.
When he say that the dragon had come from Seoul’s direction and was heading over to Incheon through Bucheon, he no longer held any expectations that help would come from the capital.
However, it’s a different story when trying to predict what was happening when making inferences off of uncertain conclusions.
”This incident, do you perhaps know what happened to the army?”
Unaware of Kim Tae Hoon’s mind, Kim Su Ji asked a question.
“If I knew what was going on, I wouldn’t have come here. If the army knew what was happening, wouldn’t Second Lieutenant Kim Su Ji’s grandfather have already made a call?”
Kim Su Ji shut her mouth.
She had also felt that that was the case.
Her grandfather’s halo wasn’t something she could escape.
”But then……. “
“Monsters have appeared all over the nation. If things have played out everywhere else like it has here, then Bucheon isn’t the only paralyzed city, but rather, Seoul and Incheon should be frozen as well. All of the various cities have probably done the same thing, and the military has probably ceased to function.”
“Oh my God.”
Kim Su Ji unknowingly let out a loud scream.
Survival had been her primary goal for a long time, and having just accomplished the goal, the truth and the reality of the situation terrified her.
Kim Tae Hoon looked at her figure.
‘Quite frankly, I don’t know exactly what’s happened with the army.’
But there were certain things that he expected the army to do.
It was the expectation that the army would play a minimal role in this situation.
But it didn’t matter now.
In this situation, the army would be of no help.
To survive, they could only do so with their own hands.
Looking at his right hand, Kim Tae Hoon had a crazy idea. He looked at the mark of awakening.
He recalled something. A dragon, a monster that defies all logic.
‘I don’t need more soldiers right now, what I need is a monster that’ll hunt other monsters. The monster must choose to eat other monsters over us. ‘
It was at this time Kim Tae Hoon finalized organizing his head.
“Second Lieutenant Kim Su Hi.”
“Collect all the corpses and arrange them in one spot, then bring all the soldiers and other survivors here. “
[Mud Troll Crystal]
– When ingested, Strength increases.
– When ingested, the rank of Physical Defense increases.
– When ingested, you may acquire the [Troll’s Vitality] ability.
Kim Tae Hoon looked at the photo of the orange gem that was on his smart phone, then the orange gem he held out on his palm.
“Everyone has arrived sir.”
In front of them stood Kim Su Ji as though she had always been standing there.
As she said, the twenty three survivors of the 1121 unit had gathered together.
Holding the orange gem in his hand, Kim Tae Hoon spoke to the crowd.
He told them about what had happened at the mall, about the mark of awakening, and about the Monster Stones and the dragon.
“This is the reality now. “
Everyone who heard his tale fell silent.
‘ …… Is he telling the truth? ‘Am I dreaming?’
‘Are my mother and father alright?’
‘Damn it, I was only a month away from being discharged! One month! But why did this have to happen to me ‘
The current situation did not even give them the chance to panic.
“I have given you all the information that I have. I will now give my tell my own personal story. ”
With that, Kim Tae Hoon did not give them the time to think.
”I am going to monopolize all of the monster stones from the monsters on this stage. “
All of the soldiers had a blank expression on their face.
‘What did he just say?’
‘If it’s monster stones, then is that item that can increase an Awakened’s abilities?’
Kim Tae Hoon had previously mentioned the importance of the monster stones.
He had even dissected a goblin’s body and extracted a monster stone from its heart, and then taken a photo of it with his smartphone and shown the crowd.
In future conflicts, the importance of monster stones will exceed that of gunpowder.
But Kim Tae Hoon had suddenly said that he would monopolize all of the monster stones from the goblins that the 1121th unit had been battling.
After telling them the importance of the gem, he was going to take all of it.
“W, wait a second…… !”
“S, surely the Monster Stones are incredibly valuable right?”
“Do you mean to eat all of them by monopolizing them? We’re the ones that killed all of them after all….. “
She had instictively retorted back.
”Payment for your lives. ”
With a few short words, Kim Tae Hoon silenced them all.
The crowd calmed down.
Keeping his gaze on the crowd, Kim Tae Hoon continued.
“In addition to the price of the information. If any of you have any thing more to say, raise your hand now.”
Nobody dared to raise their hands.
The value of information and one’s life would not be cheap. In fact, the price they paid could be considered cheap.
“Should I give you more time to raise your hands?”
More importantly, all of that was in Kim Tae Hoon’s possession.
Kim Tae Hoon was like an umbrella.
If you disagreed with him, then you would have to leave from under him and go face the monsters yourself.
If you were to face a monster like the mud troll the moment you left, then you would surely perish.
“I see there are no objections to what I’ve said. “
More than anything, there were a grand total of two survivors amongst the soldiers who were Awakened, including Kim Su Ji.
For the remaining twenty two, it would be like a pearl necklace on a pig’s next.
If a pig with a pearl necklace were caught outside in the real world, then those who covet the pearl necklace would slaughter the pig.
“Then with this all debts are resolved.”
Having finalized what he wanted to say, he promptly swallowed the orange gem that had come out of the mud troll.
”Ah….. .. “
“The Monster Stone….”
It was a gesture indicating that the transaction was over.
He was now the owner of hundreds of Monster Stones. Whether it was eat or sell the Monster Stones, it was all up to Kim Tae Hoon’s discretion.
From now on, the surviving soldiers no longer owed Kim Tae Hoon anything.
“Now that that’s over, I have a new proposal. “
Regardless, the fact that they needed Kim Tae Hoon to act as an umbrella had not changed.
”I am going to create a clan. What I want are volunteers who will serve as my clan members, not as soldiers in the military. “
Everyone was surprised at the proposal.
‘You said it’s a clan? ‘
Second Lieutenant Kim Su Ji was the same.
‘Th, that, what! ‘
She thought that Kim Tae Hoon would take control as a commander of the military.
But Kim Tae Hoon chose to make a private organization just like that?
Second Lieutenant Kim Su Ji was shaking.
Five years ago when she had graduated from the military academy, she had visited headquarters and talked with her grandfather.
‘The person who had greeted me earlier was Director Jang Young Sung. If you decide to become a soldier after graduating, whether it’s in private or public, you must avoid getting tangled in his affairs no matter what. Nothing good can come of dealing with him.’
That was the first time that Brigadier General Kim Jae Ryong had ever warned her about anything having to do with being a soldier.
“Let me ask. What would a clan signify?”
“It would be a private organization that would move under my commands, not the military’s.”
“Then…… are you saying that you would use military resources for your own good?”
“You can see it as a frantic effort for the sake of our own personal survival. ”
Although she had survived, Kim Su Ji had to stay quiet.
Seeing that she had closed her mouth, nobody else dared to say anything.
They all fell silent, a troubled expression on their faces.
‘Leave the army and join a private organization? A private army that ignores the official army’s ordinances? How many crimes would I commit? Desertion? Rebellion?’
‘I can’t die like this. If I have to die, I would rather die with a gun or a grenade in my hand.’
‘But if I get caught……. ‘
Accepting Kim Tae Hoon’s proposal would be a criminal offense.
It was an egregious criminal offense that the courts would not judge lightly.
She couldn’t help but agonize over it.
However, Kim Tae Hoon following words stopped them from thinking more about the choice.
“For those of you who are dissatisfied with my proposal, feel free to leave and survive on your own.”
Hearing that, they were no longer worried about their choice.
And thus, the first Korean clan consisting of 26 people was created.