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Volume 8 / Chapter 222
Editor: Hungry Panda
[Energy barrier 100% deployed. The battlesuit's functions have been brought down 20.8% because of water pressure. Movement will feel a little unnatural.]
Level S battlesuit.
Even though it has been configured according to the environment, he is 2000m into the water. Cha Jun Sung isn't a fish. Of course there are restrictions.
The only proper thing Cha Jun Sung purchased in the level S store is his battlesuit. He only looked at the level S support gear in awe because he didn't have enough points.
He lost what he had, so the only difference from other Rankers is his battlesuit.
That was the first feeling Cha Jun Sung had when he left Albatrus.
His energy was consumed faster than normal as well.
It's because he's maintaining the energy barrier at 100%.
This is the only way to resolve the issue of water pressure. 20% was taken off, so he can only show 80% of his true abilities.
[You can last 1 hour with the air from your oxygen tank.]
[It is a compressed oxygen tank, but it was measured on the standard of normal breathing volume. So as an aftermath of battle, he will run out of breath more quickly.]
"1 hour? It won't take even 30 minutes. Don't worry and just watch."
Penomina detected Cha Jun Sung's presence.
However, it did not approach him.
Rather, it kept watching the Albatrus behind him and kept getting further away.
[View radius! Sound wave mode!]
Because it is inside the ocean, his heat detection and infrared ray detection don't pick up Penomina's movement easily.
[Overload, are you okay?]
[Other than my body feeling a little heavy, it's generally pretty okay.]
Penomina is swimming 2km outside.
That is definitely an invitation.
It is an invitation to come and try catching it.
[I'll follow it.]
[It's too dangerous. It could be a trap. If we focus an attack of hydraulic guns and hydraulic impact guns, even the Penomina wouldn't be able to withstand it.]
He collected basic information about Penomina.
He can kill it now.
[It's okay. Even if it's a trap, it won't be like I can't get out of it. An opponent like that is perfect to start my exploration of the underwater world in.]
Cha Jun Sung had underwater battle in mind when he first boarded the Albatrus. He hadn't interfered until now because the opponent had been too weak.
Underwater battle is only doable if it is up to standard. He can't open the hatch and go out for lower level mutants.
[The Penomina will completely run away if the Albatrus moves, so we will leave the hydraulic guns loaded.]
Cha Jun Sung turned the Overbooster on.
His body shoots through the ocean.
The Penomina must have thought it succeeded in luring him because it stopped once the Albatrus was only slightly visible.
It thought that this was a distance it could run away in.
Cha Jun Sung threw his body into the mouth. He jabbed Hades forward and adjusted the Overbooster to speed ahead.
It was so intense seawater around him whirled and became a tornado.
The stupid Penomina swallowed the tornado.
Penomina's flesh ripped up and Cha Jun Sung got out.
He went in through the mouth, but he's not sure whether he came out through its neck or the back of its head. The configuration of its body is very different from not just humans but ordinary mutants as well.
But there must be damage when seeing the blood come out.
It is a scream full of pain.
Attacking first is important in a battle.
The win could be determined with that first hit if the enemy is caught off guard.
The Penomina struggles and dozens of thin and thick tentacles wave around. He can't tell whether they're trying to wrap around him, hit him, or go through him.
He brought Hades up.
Is it because they are underwater?
A clear vacuum with a blue light cuts the tentacle coming at him from the front in half.
Cha Jun Sung used the time while the tentacle was being cut to try and attack, but the Penomina isn't just watching.
A pillar thicker than the battlesuit hit Cha Jun Sung's back.
It collided with a repulsive force everywhere because of the water.
Cha Jun Sung fell onto a rock with bizarre coral reef and clams stuck everywhere. As soon as he fell, he moved his body to the side.
He doesn't know when it followed him, but the Penomina threw its tentacles down on him. The hard rock was destroyed with one hit, and momentarily made the water white.
Stealthy Cha Jun Sung shoots his reinforced rifle from amongst the debris.
He can't see, but he's using the sonic mode to see the Penomina. It is the same for the Penomina as well.
Marine life have different senses from land creatures.
The two of them went back and forth with attacks from inside the white debris.
'Other than the water pressure, it's similar to fighting in the air. It's important to get tips.'
He could even feel a single finger moving.
There isn't anywhere to put his feet down, so he needs to depend on the booster for balance.
'It's slow and frustrating.'
He needs to get used to this environment quickly.
The restriction on his battlesuit is 20%, but it isn't the kind of thing that can be decided with a simple figure.
This is a level 7.
It seems that he will have to use all his power when fighting a level 8.
It is an environment in which he gets weaker and his opponent gets stronger.
'It looks like I won't get to even lay a hand on Levadan even after killing all the Disasters on land. It'd be a problem even finding it without the Albatrus or some other level S weapon.'
He saw Black Demon, White Empress, and Cruel King in person.
Black Demon in particular showed power that really made him feel that he is a level 9.
He should be given an advantage while fighting a monster like that, but to have a handicap?
He could see his death just thinking about it.
Cha Jun Sung stepped on the ground and soared up.
A tentacle follows behind him. As he progresses, he grows more accustomed to the environment.
The Penomina's pattern is extremely simple.
It uses its tentacles or occasionally sprays a strange liquid.
It seems like the poison that Sea General was talking about. The Penomina does what it wants, wiping it and spraying it.
[I was just watching without saying anything, but he hasn't been able to kill it even after 30 minutes.]
"I was playing."
He is going to end it. About half of it really was play.
Killing it is one thing, but this kind of opponent will help him for the real fight.
'Level B advancement… 50 million.'
Cha Jun Sung goes toward the Penomina's face.
Jellyfish and octopus have vitality. They live for some amount of time even after they have been cut up into pieces.
If the Penomina is in that category, it is better for him to be careful to the end.
When Cha Jun Sung was ripping up the Penomina's face, he could hear a sound similar to something dying from his side.
Cha Jun Sung turned his head.
A tentacle filled his view.
"Of course. It didn't make sense that one of these was worth 50 million."
An attack of something like a spear goes at Cha Jun Sung's body.
He used the Overbooster and avoided it with minimal movement.
He had been expecting that this might happen.
[You have 25 minutes left.]
Oxygen for him to breathe.
He hasn't used the oxygen at a faster rate because the opponent isn't too difficult and his breath didn't get shorter.
"Alright. I'll eat it gratefully."
The points would have been divided up 1/n if he had been on the Albatrus, but he had come out.
If he kills them, he can take all the points for a level 7 for himself.
And that's two of them.
He won't be able to do this too often because it would be a disservice to the others.
He'll do it whenever he can. Including this time.
Volume 8 / Chapter 223
Editor: Hungry Panda
A 3m diameter transparent bead is wrapped in armor like a tank. So from the sides and the top, it looked like a half sphere. It looks heavy to the naked eye, but it was a machine created with an incredible metal that is light, hard, and strong.
It isn't small - about half the size of a bus - but it weighs less than 1 ton.
The 300 small combat submersibles on the Albatrus.
Boom boom boom!
These 300 small submersibles have all been ejected and are fighting with tens of thousands of mutants. The Albatrus is doing its part from the rear as well. 100 hydraulic guns and 10 hydraulic impact guns are launching water cannons and water bombs without stopping. This is war.
High level cyborgs are inside the small submersibles. They work together and keep attacking the outside wall of mutants.
The middle is left to the Albatrus.
They are less in number, but allies can be hit by allies because the battle is chaotic.
Each of the small submersibles have abilities that match level 6 underwater mutants. To be more precise, they are low level 6.
They don't amount to even 1/1000 of the enemy's numbers, but they hit and retreated with group strategies and individual roles.
"Please, please go away."
"Why are there so many of them? They're like roaches!"
"Don't make such a fuss. There's a lot of them, but they're just levels 3 and 4."
"Yeah. The combination of the Albatrus and submersibles is doing well and if we get pushed back, we'll win if we get involved. If you make a big deal out of something like this, how are you going to take on level 8?"
The Lifer listened to his colleague and wanted to say, 'We'll probably win, but someone will die and that could be you and me!' but didn't.
"I wouldn't say anything if there were only lower levels! Look at them! Do you want to get into an underwater battle with those guys? The moment we get involved, so will they."
Behind the tens of thousands of level 3 and 4 mutants, two large creatures are standing as the final defense line to the Turtle Babies. They watch the Albatrus.
They are evolved from turtles, hence the name.
Turtles do not normally live in groups unless they are in mating season, but Turtle Babies move together in hordes. Turtle Babies have hard sh.e.l.ls so the bullets bounce off of them and they use their heavy bodies to keep hitting in a simple attack.
The problem is that there are so many of them.
They have been at sea for 4 months.
As they got closer to where the Deep-Sea Teeth live, they had come face-to-face with a swarm of Turtle Babies.
This is the largest number of mutants they have come across with until now, so the battle is that much more fierce.
It is a situation that is enough to worry the Lifers.
The Turtle Captains guarding the final defense line have been receiving the protection of the Turtle Babies, and their 60m diameter st.u.r.dy bodies wriggle.
They have horrible scars all over their bodies and give off the air of veterans who have experienced all sorts of hardships. If these strong guys even have experience, they will really be tricky.
The Turtle Captains sent their underlings out and felt that the unnecessary consumption would last. They were thinking of getting directly involved and ending it themselves.
"They're acting so arrogant. So much bravado."
"Don't talk so much."
Cha Jun Sung stopped Park Jin Hyuk from joking around.
Kyoko put her head down and sighed as though she were the one embarra.s.sed.
"There are too many of them. The Turtle Babies are more of a problem than the Turtle Captains are."
The Turtle Captains can act so arrogant because of the Turtle Babies.
To get caught up here.
[All Lifers, please prepare to eject. I will send the signal.]
They can hear Strategist's radio come in.
At the end, they have been put in a situation where the Lifers need to get involved in the battle. Not one of the 1000 people stayed back.
Cha Jun Sung's group naturally needs to go out as well.
After Cha Jun Sung took down two Penominas, the Lifers learned about fighting underwater whenever they could.
As he said, it is better for them to learn while they can. Over the past few months, they all got better at using their boosters. The environment itself is one in which they can't help but get better in. They lived with water pressure on top of that, so the limits of their mental ability and withstanding physical pressure were all raised.
[Overload, we will create a path for you. We'll leave the Turtle Captains to you.]
The Rankers provide support. Hitting the head, the arms and legs will die on their own.
Albatrus and the small submersibles tried to kill the Turtle Captains, but they lack the ability. The Turtle Babies protected them even if they had to throw their bodies to do so. With the flow quickly changing every hour, it is something only Lifers like Cha Jun Sung's group who can make fluid decisions, can do.
The bottom of Albatrus opens and 1000 Lifers pour out.
They all have compressed oxygen tanks on their backs. Without these, their battlesuits cannot even last 5 minutes. That means these tanks are a necessity.
Boom boom boom!
Lifers turn on their boosters and fly away.
A waiting stream forms in their advance. They refrain from solitary action and act as a force.
Turtle Captains watch the Lifers approaching them and open their mouths wide. Then they take as large a breath as they can.
[Turtle Babies! We don't know where they'll go, so you have to stay alert!]
Sea General moves his body in a zig zag.
Lifers follow his body movement. Turtle Babies are water cannons comparable to hydraulic guns.
A level A Lifer's battlesuit could withstand it, but it is too much with level B.
Two big water cannons large enough to cover two or three Lifers go out in a straight line.
Lifers scatter everywhere.
There are those who are not going in the direction they are coming in, so there is no need for them to avoid it. There are those who avoid it because they are coming in the direction they are going in. And of course there are those who weren't able to avoid it.
Cha Jun Sung blocks the front of one of the two water cannons. Hades is pulled out of the scabbard, it leaves a sharp trace, and splits the water cannon in two.
He can't block the other side, so 4 or 5 Lifers get swept away.
Battlesuits of Lifers who get hit full on by the water cannon, get crushed.
They didn't making lasting damage on the outside, but it is different for the inside.
Blood keeps coming out because of the heightened water pressure.
[10 force, take the injured and get on half-wave submersibles and return to the ship!]
The last of the 10 forces, 10 force has a supporting role.
They have split up their roles.
They need to recover not just the dead and injured, but also the submersibles stuck to the bottom of the sea. Those are all points too. Each submersible is over 1 million points. And that's not even mentioning the cyborgs.
The advanced rank has lower performance than the top and special ranks.
They cannot be militant thousands of meters deep into the sea in their bare bodies without the submersibles.
There's still use for it. They can steer the submersibles.
A limited store.
Currently, they cannot replenish even useless 1 point items. They need to sc.r.a.pe together even a single piece of iron.
[Snipers, distance support! Opening up a path to the target in the shortest time!]
Snipers including Park Jin Hyuk get on their stomachs on top of Albatrus. It is a sphere, but it is so wide that they do not slip.
Boom boom boom boom!
Sniper rifle bullets penetrate the Turtle Babies coming at Cha Jun Sung and the Rankers. The sniper rifle is like a cannon so its range is over 10km, but because they are in the ocean, the range and power is reduced to less than half.
However, it is nothing to kill a couple slow turtles.
Rankers create a wall near Cha Jun Sung.
Level B Lifers have already joined the submersibles and are battling with the Turtle Babies.
It is a strenuous effort, but according to a simple calculation, he needs to handle hundreds of them alone.
Even if they don't get pushed easily, the number of dead and injured will increase if they get hit by volume. The key is to catch the four Turtle Captains in a timely manner.
"It's a blitz!"
He digs in among the Turtle Captains with Ranker support as a background. He needs to settle it before mutants smell blood.
Volume 8 / Chapter 224
Editor: Hungry Panda
A smooth and slick outstretched caudal fin lightly strikes the walls of the underwater cave. The entire cave shakes.
Clear, b.u.mpy muscles wave and follow movement.
A huge form glares and focuses on smell of the sensory organs. A vague and subtle smell bothers him.
It is the smell of blood.
It was pretty familiar, too.
It seems like it is coming from far away, but a lot of blood must have been lost if it flowed all the way down to here.
Smelling it over and over again, it can guess what kind of creature it is.
It is similar to the turtles acting as the king in its corner of the sea. They are lower subjects, but they swarm together annoyingly!
It lets them live however, because they provide ample nutrients.
Are they fighting over territory or something?
It looked to the side.
A female similar to itself in size and her baby, a fourth of her size, are looking at each other.
The female smelled it. It is a being on the same level in the first place.
'Will you go?'
The female wants to know what is going on out of curiosity, but she cannot leave the baby and go. Taking the baby is even worse.
Before, she would have gone alone but she does not want to now. They were born recently, so she felt what death is for the first time.
If they are the ones ruling this area, those animals are the ones that rule the entire ocean. They might still be wandering this area. What that one said is still in his mind.
'I'll let you live because of the baby.'
It had been sincere.
If it hadn't been for the baby, it would have killed her. She won't go outside if she doesn't need to because they could run into each other again.
The male must have recalled the memory of that time, because it left the smell and just decided to keep sleeping. Thinking of the one that is more than twice as large as they are combined, it is easy to stop being curious.
[A submersible and 95 advanced have been destroyed, but they can be recovered.]
Strategist made a sound of pain when Uranos told him about the damages.
⅓ have been destroyed.
Almost 100 Lifers have been killed or injured as well. It would have been worse if Cha Jun Sung hadn't been able to kill the Turtle Captains on time.
"So these are the kinds of issues we get from choosing the default Albatrus."
The lowest armed status.
If they had followed the level S drawings, they could have armed it more heavily by 5 times. There is a lot of other technology too.
The armor is close to level S, but other functions - offensive power in particular - are level A. That is why the balance is tilting to one side.
If the Albatrus had been a complete level S battle weapon, it would have been able to kill the Turtle Babies without the help of Lifers and submersibles.
'We need to advance Overload no matter what. For him and for us.'
If that happens, they can purchase more of the materials they need for Albatrus.
The level S energy core is priority.
With items like hydraulic guns and hydraulic impact guns, they need to increase the fire power and destructive power in the Albatrus' energy. All circ.u.mstances are in Strategist's mind.
Bang bang bang!
There is still a battle going on outside.
The smell of blood is that of more than what would be in hundreds of trucks. Albatrus' porthole didn't close. The submersibles didn't go back either.
A majority of low level guys are like this, so it is fortunate that Lifers are going back and forth and fighting.
"We're getting out."
Strategist gives Uranos an order.
Mutants swarm in with no end. It seems it would be better for them to get out than to keep staying here.
Lifers and submersibles retreat to the Albatrus.
The mutants manically ripped up the Turtle Captains and Babies' corpses amongst themselves. It is hundreds and thousands of tons of flesh. Different kinds of mutants are having a party. It is an amount that allows them to feast even without fighting.
"Uranos, search for a place where we can anchor nearby. We need to rest."
[Wide scan activated.]
It is a large battle, so the Albatrus' energy has been reduced to less than half.
They need to fix the submersibles and cyborgs, and they need to take care of the injured.
For the dead, they took care of the corpses, spraying antiseptic and freezing them>
"Is it 150km…"
There are still 150km left until the location where Sea General said he found Deep-Sea Teeth. From now on, they need to place more importance in their radar than other functions.
They search a radius of 50km with 10% energy.
They can't do 500km just because they use 100% energy. A maximum of 200km is the limit.
It is certain as they get closer, and uncertain as they get farther away.
If they check 200km outside with maximum output radar, they can know 'there's something there.'
They can only determine what something is if it is within 100km. They can't just look out like it is their palm because it is such a wide range.
"It's making me nervous."
Two level 8s.
They cannot even imagine how many underlings there are. It is uncertain whether they can take one on even if Cha Jun Sung gets involved.
Discovering first and delivering the first blow is the shortcut to lessening the damage and increasing the odds. They need to stay alert.
They are 2500m deep in the ocean. The Albatrus is seated on an adjacent coral reef bigger than a person with some of the features turned on, reorganizing.
Reorganizing doesn't mean anything tremendous. They are just on board, repairing broken or damaged submersibles and advanced cyborgs. A majority of high level or special cyborgs are put into repair work. Unless the Albatrus doesn't operate, they are basically unemployed.
Even if the material items are finite, they packed enough so they wouldn't run out before going out.
If the water barrier is broken through and the Albatrus itself was. .h.i.t, it would hurt but there is no issue with the parts.
They can take this kind of damage even if they do it a few more times. Their battle against the Turtle Captains and Turtle Babies consumed almost 65% of the Albatrus' energy. It is the result of fighting for nearly half a day.
Energy being consumed at a high speed. Strategist left level A energy cores gathered during battle, a general charging device plugged in the energy room. The speed of charging is several hundred times slower compared to a rapid charging device, but they cannot use rapid charging devices in fighting mere turtles.
They need to save it until the end and use while fighting level 8s. Albatrus needs to be holding more than 30% energy no matter what. 10% radar, 10% water barrier, 10% engine.
Uranos managed the rest of the hydraulic guns efficiently with the leftover 70% of the remaining energy. Since he is artificial intelligence, he is meticulous and computational.
The Albatrus currently consumes at least 40% of the energy. The figure went up a little because the water barrier used 20%.
If the water barrier is taken away, the enemy's attack will hit the main body. If the radar goes off, there's no way to know where anything is. If the engine is turned off, they will plummet to the ocean floor. This is how they get to 30%.
If the energy goes down below this, they need to give up on functions in order. Of the three, plummeting seems to be the most dangerous. If they hadn't plugged in the general charging device, they would have gone down below that. That's how fierce the battle against tens of thousands of Turtle Babies is.
"How long will it take?"
[10 to 12 days with natural charging, 2 days with the general charging device. We have 900 to 950 general charging devices.]
General charging devices are different in quality and quant.i.ty according to store level. The average of what they prepared for this mission is level B. With this much energy, they could fill up the energy of level B battlesuits all the way seven times and have some left.
"It takes too long… But let's try it since we have some time."
If they add a few more days, natural charging takes about 2 weeks. They brought 5000 general charging devices with them. They've used about 400, so they have 4600 left. They also have 500 rapid charging devices, so there's no need to worry about energy. They will use what the Lifers possess when the Albatrus is in danger.
Special cyborgs take out general charging devices and plug them into the level A energy room. This energy flows into level B and C energy rooms as well.
"We'll finish up our search as soon as it's completely charged."