Chapter 12: The Regressor is Quite Strong (3)
I admit it.
I was careless.
She is such a sensitive woman; She's kind enough to share food with people in the vacant lot, it would have been reasonable to consider the possibility of her running out of the clearing at the sound of a scream.
If I had known this would happen, I wouldn't have hesitated and would have come out right away, buying some time.
I could have gained both – a favorable impression from Choi Ji-won and information from the collapsed woman.
I missed a golden opportunity.
“…It's okay, it's okay.”
But it's okay.
Why am I saying it's okay?
Because I'm a regressor, that's why it's okay.
Why wouldn't it be?
If I can endure three days of inconvenience…
I can reproduce the same situation again.
I'm already getting annoyed at the thought of going through the hassle of cutting the grass again, but who can I blame?
I regressed because of my mistake.
Oh, now that I think about it, there was something I planned to do when I returned.
Name: Kim Jun-ho [LV: 3]
– Regression [EX]
It's right after returning, and my level is 3.
This proves my hypothesis that even after returning, the level remains…
“Why is it 3 though?”
I couldn't understand why it was 3 and not 2.
The last time I checked, it was level 2.
And I haven't killed any goblins since then.
So why did my level increase? There's no reason for it to go up.
Was the experience bar about to be filled? Perhaps it was on the brink of reaching level 3.
But somehow, intuitively, I felt that wasn't the case.
There must be another reason.
But what can I do even if I'm curious?
I guess I have to grind again, damn it.
In the past, the enlightened Sage gained one realization after enduring long and severe physical pain.
‘Causing physical pain holds no meaning at all.’
Indeed, he realized that the very act of enduring was nothing more than an arbitrary torment.
Please cut the grass for me instead.
You have experienced plenty of hardships, so you should be familiar with it.
I've never done anything like this before.
As someone who already disliked repetitive tasks, the act of cutting grass itself was so boring that I was driven to madness.
At first, I thought, ‘Maybe I'll get used to it and it will become easier?’ But in the end, I reached the same conclusion as Sage.
This is nothing but meaningless torment.
I can feel my mental strength being drained in real-time.
“…Is today the third day?”
Since I slept twice, it must be the third day.
From my memory, I remember cutting all the grass around the afternoon of the third day and hearing the scream…
If I cut it for another three hours or so, it should be, but…
Why can I already see the end?
Feeling something strange, I swung the sword a few more times and finally, I could step on solid ground after a long time.
It's not that I can see the end; it's that the end has really come.
I've finally escaped the thicket.
I'm faster than the previous time.
Is this the power of leveling up? Even though there might not be any visible differences…
It seems that various aspects such as strength and endurance have definitely improved.
Well, even so, does it make sense to just toss me the ability to return and expect me to overcome everything?
In my current state, even if I become a master swordsman, I can't defeat Choi Ji-won.
There's a difference of several tens of times in terms of strength and agility from the start.
Will there come a time when, after grinding levels like crazy, I'll be able to defeat Choi Ji-won?
Name: Kim Jun-ho [LV: 3]
– Regression [EX]
Unfortunately, my level didn't increase.
I still don't know what I need to do to level up.
The status window should be more helpful.
Well, I escaped the thicket…
Now, if I hear a scream, I should go there…
Come to think of it, I shouldn't hear any screams.
The time has been shifted by about three hours.
At this point, the probability is high that instead of screaming, they'll be happily playing.
Is this the privilege of a returnee?
My heart trembles for no reason.
Now is the time to change the future.
I soon arrived at the place where I’d heard the woman's scream.
I cautiously searched the surroundings, conscious of the goblin lying in ambush with a spear, but I couldn't see any goblins.
It seems that there are no goblins here at this point.
Did I come too early? Timing is not easy to coordinate.
I roughly crouched nearby and waited for something to happen.
A gentle, cool breeze blew at my face.
I forcefully resisted the urge to close my eyes.
If I fall asleep like this, Choi Ji-won will come and chop off my head.
I didn't want to cut grass for days again.
So, I resisted, pinching my thighs as a form of resistance.
“… Can’t I just see once?”
“Hyung, we agreed.”
“Do you not trust me? I said I'll just see.”
I regained my focus as I heard voices nearby.
It was coming from a group of four men and one woman.
I couldn't see their faces since all the men were covered in blood, but I remembered the woman's face.
It was the woman who almost died at the hands of the goblins.
“Oh, come on…
Hyung, let's not do this.
I want to trust you too.”
“But I can't trust you anymore.
How can I believe that you didn't sneak them off somewhere?”
As I observed quietly, it seemed like a confrontation between a blond troublemaker and a man wearing glasses.
“Hyung! We agreed to gather five beads and eat them all at once.
We've collected two so far, so we just need three more.
Please bear with it a little longer, okay?”
From the conversation, it seemed like they had agreed to swallow the five beads at once.
Actually, that seemed like the most reasonable option.
If they swallow the beads as they find them, the group's combat power will weaken in real time.
Eventually, the last person left would be in a position where they have to find the bead alone.
But if everyone gathers several beads that allow them to escape, they can preserve their full strength and cope with the threats of the next stage.
Because right after swallowing the beads, dozens of goblins could attack.
I just want to make sure they’re fine.
Okay? I'll just look at it.”
The blond troublemaker said he would only look at the beads without any objections or excuses.
Although he said he would just look, anyone could see through his intentions.
That guy just wants to steal them and run away.
“Hyung, do you want to use the telekinesis ability?”
The troublemaker kicked the dirt floor with his foot.
After pondering something, he eventually spoke.
“Yeah, maybe I was a bit sensitive.
I'm sorry for not trusting you.”
“Thank you for understanding.”
“I'll smoke a cigarette with Jun-woo and cool my head.
Let's take a break and start again.”
The troublemaker rested his arm on the bony shoulder of the scrawny man standing beside him and walked towards me.
Thankfully, the troublemaker and the scrawny man didn't seem to notice me as they lit their cigarettes.
Being a non-smoker, I had to make an effort to endure the coughs.
Ugh, the smell.
The troublemaker whispered in a low voice while smoking.
“Do we have to carry those useless guys with us?”
“Well, the others aside, didn't we agree to bring Min-ji along?”
But the scrawny man didn't seem convinced.
The troublemaker glanced at the man with glasses waiting behind them.
“Hey, we barely managed to gather just two beads in three days.
I almost died several times.
No food, plenty of injuries, and many mouths to feed.
I've been saving cigarettes like crazy, and this is the limit.
How long do you think I can hold on with this pace?”
“There are plenty of women in the world.
Do you think you'll die without Min-ji? No, let's survive for now.
The troublemaker tried to persuade the scrawny man.
From their conversation, it seemed like 'Min-ji' was probably the woman who almost got killed by goblins.
“Let's get rid of them now.
You saw that guy doubting me, right? We might not have another chance.”
These guys were planning a surprise attack.
Only two beads.
If you weren’t someone like Choi Ji-won, things would indeed be unstable.
From the perspective of ordinary people, betrayal may be inevitable.
“Hurry up and go.
I'll buy you some time.”
The scrawny man headed somewhere, and the troublemaker returned to the group with a smile.
“Where is Jun-woo going?”
“He needs to use the restroom.
Hey, more importantly…”
The troublemaker deflected the conversation casually.
Although I got a rough estimate of the incident, there was still one unresolved question.
Where on earth did the goblins come from?
No matter how much I searched, there were no goblins nearby.
However, the last time, the three of them were nearly killed by goblins.
I didn't actually do anything to change the future either.
I just watched.
This isn't Schrödinger's cat, and my observation won't alter the outcome.
there's something more…
While pondering over these thoughts, I heard the sound of the scrawny man’s footsteps.
When I cautiously turned my head, I saw him slowly approaching with an anxious look.
“…What the hell.”
If there was a problem, it was that behind him were ten goblins silently following, spears resting on their shoulders.
It was a strange sight as if observing an officer followed by soldiers.
Of course, it made no sense…
“…Is it his special trait? To control monsters?”
I had momentarily forgotten.
In the Tower where a regressor exists, nothing should be impossible.
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