Some time ago. In the past.
Hyun-seok decided to focus on increasing his stamina. Stamina was a stat that had an overall impact on his abilities, and even though it wasn’t necessarily a stat, he was feeling the absence of physical energy – which was slightly different from exercise stamina – in his body. Therefore, he decided to do something good for his body, like having a regular lifestyle and drinking Buckminster’s liquid juice.
“A regular lifestyle and Buckminster’s liquid juice… should do the trick for now.”
He knew that his stamina had decreased due to excessive sexual activities. So, he decided to abstain from sex for a while and adopt a regular lifestyle while taking Buckminster’s, which was known to be good for the body. Of course, he also exercised hard.
“I wonder if increasing my stamina points is really possible with this.”
He had read online that exercising could increase his strength stat by 1 point. However, it wasn’t a definite fact. Since there were so many rumors on the internet, he had to experiment and see for himself. It was a harmless business as it wasn’t bad for the body and was, in fact, a good habit.
“Still, seeing the points increase in specific numbers is a real motivation.”
Seeing the points displayed in concrete numbers was definitely a motivation. His regular lifestyle and healthy eating habits definitely helped his stamina stat. Exercising hard also increased his strength. He easily gained about 40 points. Hyun-seok developed a habit of sleeping early and waking up early. He started ordering Buckminster’s online and eating it regularly. On the third day, something changed.
[Your stamina stat has increased by 1.]
[You feel energetic. Your physical activity rate is 57%. Your recovery speed has increased.]
[All other stats are affected except for stamina.]
[Your physical age is determined to be 26 based on the stats except for stamina. Your recovery speed has increased.]
Something felt good for him. His physical age is 26. He has been working out hard and living his life with lots of noise for a while now. Looking towards his soon-to-be-30s, the feeling of his late 20s and mid-20s were different. At least, that was the case for Hyun-seok.
In the end, Hyun-seok raised his points to 100 and was forced to switch from tutorial mode to easy mode, and three months have passed like that.
Jong-won opened the door and came in. There were times when he came in without permission, knowing the house password. Every time he did, Hyun-seok would nag him about it, but he never changed the house password. So, it meant that he didn’t hate Jong-won coming in like this, even though it’s not ideal.
Jong-won’s face was already swollen from drinking as he spoke.
“Hey. You little brat. I’ve earned a fair amount of income this time.”
“Is this your house?”
“Don’t worry about those little things.”
As Hyun-seok listened to him, he explained that his guild had caught a tiger monster and obtained a magical stone – I’ll explain about the guild below. This magical stone seemed to be worth quite a bit of money.
“Hey, Jong-won. Have a seat.”
Hyun-seok sat down on the couch.
“Let’s have a drink. It’s on me today.”
“That’s not it.”
“Are you going to start talking nonsense again about your points being 100 or something?”
Jong-won laughed out loud. Sometimes, he would throw unrealistic questions like “What if my points were 100?” as if he envied Hyun-seok for being a slayer. Today, it seemed like he was going to say something like that again.
“To put it in detail, thanks to maxing out his Strength stat at 100, I gained a business title and three bonus stats. And because I was the first person to reach 100 in other stats, I also gained nine additional stats. So, do you understand what happened?”
Jong-won smirked. This was an unbelievable story.
“Did you at least make some money out of it?”
Hyun-seok shook his head nervously. While he purposely kept himself hidden and raised his energy and stat points to observe the situation, the world had changed drastically. Government-sponsored Slayers had emerged, and private companies had also started to appear.
These private companies began hunting monsters because of the items and magic stones (or monster stones) that they dropped when killed, which were traded at incredibly high prices. Magic stones were treasures with boundless value, and the drop rate was not bad either. The uses of magic stones will be explained later, but anyway, these companies that started hunting monsters professionally were called guilds, a phenomenon that was occurring not only in Korea but also worldwide.
It is a natural occurrence in modern society that people move to where the profits are. Already, guilds with considerable size and power had emerged, and governments had shown quick response by amending tax and legal provisions to address them.
Jong-won was a close-combat Slayer with a focus on strength and was currently active in I’UET, an elite guild that could be counted on one hand domestically.
“Jong-won, I’m serious. And I’m telling you because it’s you. I have no desire to reveal my strength recklessly. It’s difficult to control, and I don’t even want to be a Slayer.”
“What? Write a novel. Everything is maxed out at 100? Did you really eat something wrong? Is this a prank?”
Jong-won still couldn’t believe it. Hyun-seok explained.
“If I had such power, there would be a high possibility of trouble. Starting with how this happened, there would be numerous attempts to recruit or restrain me. If I had an overwhelmingly strong power that could overpower everyone, it would be different, but if not, having strong power just leads to trouble. Even if it’s not like this… as I said earlier, being a Slayer has little merit for me.”
Jong-won still grimaced with a hint of skepticism. Yeah, he could understand it. Although he couldn’t know exactly how much power all of his stats at 100 gave Hyun-seok, it was clear that he couldn’t overcome every obstacle alone. Even with such an incredible amount of power, there were still organizations that might secretly try to lure or even kidnap Hyun-seok, assuming he felt threatened by someone jealous of his abilities. Even without such problems, it was reasonable to think that there could be some annoying issues to deal with. After all, having all of his stats at 100 was a remarkable feat, and it was understandable that someone would want to hide their power and avoid troublesome situations. There were also plenty of predictions that there were still people who were hiding their powers and hadn’t revealed themselves yet.
However, such problems aside, “Well… not everyone has to be necessarily a slayer.” Currently, compared to the income of a slayer, Hyun-seok’s income was not falling behind. He had a stable and comfortable office job and was also earning extra income through translation work. He was in a state where he didn’t need to risk his life to fight as a slayer, with an uncertain future ahead.
“But having all of the stats at 100? That’s a load of bull. It’s not as easy as it sounds, is it?”
Jong-won laughed for a moment, but then his face turned serious. His body flinched. The alcohol had suddenly lost its effect.
“But can’t you believe this?”
The battlefield could be spread out when there were monsters nearby. Within this battlefield, a slayer could demonstrate the power they possessed as a slayer. Yeah. That was good. The ability to spread out the battlefield was a way of revealing that they were a slayer, and it was an ability that any slayer could use.
“But there aren’t any monsters here. This can’t be…true!”
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