Chapter 42 The Ranch (Part 2)
I really was prepared to do all kinds of terrible things to the chief.
There’s nothing to hold me back from a wicked man who serves up humans as food to monsters. He’s a man a hundred times more wicked than Park Go-chan.
But that kind of conviction of mine was unnecessary.
“I, I will. Whatever it is, I will oblige. What do I need to do?”
At the chief’s reply, I smile.
‘I knew you would.’
The outsiders that came upon this village and when needed, even the same village people, he offered them up as food to lycanthropes.
Basically, he is the lycanthropes’ agent.
There is no way a person like this has any altruism.
“When are the lycanthropes coming to this village?”
“They are coming tonight. They will probably be here shortly.”
“Usually they come in pairs.”
“Do they come to the village entrance?”
“Tell me everything you know about the lycanthropes.”
At my words, the chief paused momentarily and then began his explanation.
“The lycanthropes that control this district have silver fur and they are known as the Silver Clan, and to my knowledge, their numbers are over a hundred now.”
According to the Korean Arena Research Center, at most, the lycanthrope group was a few tens.
But a hundred?
“They weren’t so numerous to begin with. Just twenty years ago they barely numbered 20.”
Following the information from the research center, lycanthropes live in family groups.
The father became the leader and lived with a group of his wives and children. According to the father’s ability, he would be able to gather more wives and his offspring would increase.
The size of the group is determined by the amount of land they control.
It is because the number of offspring is determined by how much prey can be gathered from the hunting.
The group is formed from family units and they survive through hunting, so the scale of the group always stays consistent.
But the Silver Clan, these lycanthropes succeeded in increasing their group’s numbers by a new survival method.
‘An incredible revolution!’
I find the Silver Clan’s leader to be great.
It can be compared to the way prehistoric humans exploded in population due to farming.
The bastards moved from getting food from hunting to ‘ranching!’
It’s a despicable phrase.
By chance, as humans trickled into their territory, the Silver Clan’s leader picked up a new opportunity.
Let the humans develop their village, and run this village like a ranch, periodically getting supplied with food.
As they safely gathered quantities of food, they quickly propagated and succeeded in growing a clan to a hundred members.
Growing the family group fives time in twenty years signified that the Silver Clan’s leader has big ambitions. To succeed in his ambitions, he is growing his clan’s power.
‘Damn it. The research center’s opinion was wrong. We should’ve chosen to pass through the troll’s territory!’
If this enemy lycanthrope group were normal, our group’s abilities would have been more than adequate to defeat them.
But the enemy is a lycanthrope clan of one hundred that is led by a leader that is smart enough to innovate.
It would have been better to go through the troll territory.
No matter how strong trolls are, they don’t behave in group actions so we could have evaded and passed through.
‘In this case, if we don’t’ use this village, there is no way we will clear this mission!’
It may turn out that I have to make a cruel decision far worse than the things the drastic chief has done.
That night, I use the chief to tell the village people not to come out of their homes.
Then I go out with my teammates to the village street and stakeout the entrance. The plan is to take out the lycanthropes all at once when they reach the village.
A little while later, Sylph returns from scouting and draws a number 4.
It means 4 lycanthropes are headed our way.
I speak to Kang Chun-seong.
“When I give you the signal, go out first and get their attention so they look towards you momentarily. Because I’m going to use that moment to snipe them. And we have to leave one alive to return.”
Finally, the lycanthropes appear. The bastards just confidently walk straight through the front entrance.
And now, this is the beginning.
“Okay, now go.”
I tap the chief in the shoulder.
The chief is so stricken by fear that initially, he could not move forward.
I get close to the chief’s ear and whisper.
“If you try anything, Sylph will slit your throat.”
“I, I understand.”
The chief looked like he was about to cry and gets pushed out by me.
The chief approached the lycanthropes that have come to the village. The chief that was stricken in fear, as if he never was, bowed his head and greeted them.
“Oh my, welcome. We have been eagerly awaiting your arrival.”
It’s not a greeting, he’s practically receiving them.
“Where are they?”
Asked one lycanthrope from amongst them. The chief pointed them towards our lodgings.
“Like always, we fed them sleeping agents and have put them to sleep. Those fellows, they suspected nothing and passed right out.”
“Yes, yes. Follow me.”
The chief took the lead and started to walk. It’s some amazing acting. The secret to that acting is brazenness. Up to now, just like this, he has offered up his own, people, as food to these monsters, and the thought of all of this is simply contemptible.
At my word, Kang Chun-seong nodded his head, then runs out.
At the same time, I implement another intervention.
The Mosin-Nagant rifle appeared in my right hand. I hand over the rifle to Sylph.
The lycanthropes look at the suddenly racing Kang Chun-seong with suspicion. To them, it is strange to have a meal (human) come at them in this village that is the same as a pantry.
But they quickly become flustered.
With a gunshot, one of their heads explodes.
Without knowing the cause, a fellow lycanthrope that had come with them died instantly and it threw the lycanthropes into chaos.
“Uhik! Save, save…!”
With petrified screaming, the chief ran away.
Without losing that moment, Kang Chun-seong boldly ran in and did a midair spin kick.
But maybe the move was too big of an attack. The lycanthropes promptly scatter.
Kang Chun-seong lands and immediately heads for the lycanthrope to his right.
“How dare a human!”
The angered lycanthrope slashed around his heinously long and sharp claws.
Kang Chun-seong whipped his left arm and eliminated the attack. At the same time, with his right hand, grabbed and pulled on his knee. At that critical juncture, the lycanthrope loses his balance and falls down.
Kang Chun-seong has attained the superior position and landed punches like rapid fire.
Kang Chun-seong turned the lycanthrope into rice cakes with his amazingly fast paced consecutive strikes.
In that time, Sylph has pulled the bolt and got rid of the empty cartridge and targeted again.
This time, a lycanthrope has been shot in the heart. Holding the hole in his chest and with a blank stare, his dead appearance makes an impression.
Now, there is only two remaining. No,
Kang Chun-seong’s punch crushed a lycanthropes neck. Now there’s only one left.
“How, how could this be! They tricked us!”
The one remaining lycanthrope glared with rage at the chief that is in the distance. The chief doesn’t know what to do and shakes.
“Just you wait! We’ll punish you all!”
The lycanthrope turned around and begin to run.
“It would be strange just to let him return unharmed. Sylph, shoot its left leg.”
At my words, Sylph pulled the trigger without hesitation.
A sad noise can be heard and a limp running lycanthrope’s silhouette soon disappeared into the darkness.
Well, 4 lycanthropes is an easy victory. Not to mention, it wasn’t a success from a direct confrontation, but a one-sided ambush.
But the chief who contributed greatly to this success is about to burst into tears.
“But now, what is to come of our village…”
You’re all doomed by the lycanthropes.
The chief who contributed to the attack will no doubt wish for all the lycanthropes to die. That way, it won’t be found out that he cooperated with us.
But I purposely left one alive to return. Now, soon, the Silver Clan will know that the chief sided with us and led them to a trap.
This village has become an enemy of the Silver Clan.
I approach the chief and speak.
“Now the bastards will take this incidence as a sign that this village has joined us to defy the Silver Clan.”
“Now you and your people have no choice. You have to join forces with us and fight them.”
“You say such impossible things…!”
“Did you not just clearly see with your own two eyes? How easily we eliminated them, I mean.”
“Well, even so, the Silver Clan numbers over a hundred! Even with how strong you guys are, even if we all join forces to defy them, there is no chance for victory!”
“So? You’re going to try now to lower your tail? Will you try to explain that it was all a misunderstanding, that you were threatened by us and had no choice?”
The chief is at a loss for words. I laugh coldly.
“Of course, if you plead like that, the village may continue to exist, but do you think you, the chief, will be able to keep your life?”
“Even if you were threatened, you contributed in killing their kind, they probably won’t let you live. I think they’ll make an example of you and kill you quite grotesquely?”
“Then, then, what am I to do now?”
“Like I said. Fight with us. Shouldn’t you have to desperately convince the village people to fight against the lycanthropes in order to save your own life?”
The village citizens, who have for a long time been under the rule of the lycanthropes, will not have the courage to pick up weapons and fight, not now.
But if the citizens say they will not fight, out of fear, the chief is a dead man. He has to pay for having cooperated with us.
In order for the chief to save just his one life, he has to instigate the village to fight.
“The Silver Clan leader is an incredible beast. R-really, are you confident you can win?”
“You saw the weapon I have, right? With that, no matter how strong the bastard is, he’ll die in an instant.”
I said confidently.
The chief, with his shaky body, nodded his head.
“I understand. I will convince the village people and have them fight.”
“You made the right choice. Let’s think of this positively. Isn’t this a good opportunity to escape the pitiful lives of being the livestock supply?”
The chief had been made to carry a heavy burden and with his head hung low, he disappeared to somewhere.
“Hyung, you’re amazing! Was this your plan from the beginning?”
Joon-ho raced towards me, fanatic.
I nodded my head.
“The chief is a selfish man, it was easy to manipulate him.”
It’s probably because of that, that the lycanthropes made the chief their agent.
“If we fight with the village people, that should be enough for fighting the lycanthropes.”
Hye-su is happy too.
But I shook my head.
“That won’t work.”
“Forgot? We only have a few days left. Our mission is not to eliminate the lycanthropes, it is to escape this forest.”
“Oh! Then what are you going to do?”
At that question, I replied in a cold tone.
“We pit this village and the lycanthropes in a fight, and we use that to run away.”