There was a lot of dust on it, the boy muttered while rubbing it off and pressing it lightly in his hands.
I did a lot of preparations.
…If only that damn bastard didn’t find out.”
Do you mean the damned bastard that I beat up earlier? I remembered the face of the fainted man who was hanging from an energy pole.
“Do you have anything else to prepare before you go in?”
“Originally, I was planning to pretend that I was a miner who comes and goes, and so, I was looking for a party to join and do it but… I don’t need any more since I have this.”
Chung-ha put on the mask himself and took out a small badge from his pocket.
It was a seamless metal badge decorated with a crow.
“If you carry this, you will pass all the checkpoints.”
“If you show what the executive had, won’t you be more suspicious?”
“No, I won’t.
We’re supposed to exchange it often.
An errand boy, the mistress, aides, and all kinds of people carry it.”
This part was just like any other gangster-like loose security system.
I wondered if it was a reference to something like a mafia movie.
Jin-hee shrugged her shoulders, telling him to take care of it.
She said he knew more about this place than her anyway.
Chung-ha rubbed his tense shoulder a few times and signaled Jin-hee to follow him.
After crossing the Black Curtain, a market-like landscape in a large dome unfolded.
Perhaps it was a market in the past.
The ceiling was covered with plastic domes, but the lights were not lit properly on the road, so people could be seen passing by in the dark alley.
It was quite different from the market near Sillim Station.
That place was without order but was lively, and in contrast, everyone here was walking down the street with dark faces.
It was hard to find liveliness or laughter.
“Most of them are miners.”
As Chung-ha walked forward, he said softly.
It was said that the entrance part of District 2 is where the miners live, and unlike the station area of Sillim Station, it is a place where all kinds of people live.
“The area near the station is a place where well-to-do people gather.
It’s the exact opposite here.”
This is a place where miners with no dwelling or low ranked hunters live, and most of them are subordinates of the Crows.
Chung-ha skillfully avoided people and went deep into the alley.
Jin-hee followed him without saying a word.
She wanted to take a look around, but she clicked her tongue and turned her head, seeing that their eyes were filled only with dirty desire, despair, and anger.
“This is it.”
“Is it smaller than what I expected?”
“There is a basement.”
The building of the Crows was a four-story building that looked like a community center in the past.
There were two guards standing at the entrance, but no other signs of presence were felt inside the building.
“…What is it?”
He swallowed saliva, and then calmly approached the guard.
And after a brief conversation with the guard, he took out a badge from his arms and showed it.
The guard nodded, “Aha,” and then opened the door.
“Because they have confidence in their skills.”
The Crows are the strongest of the four organizations in Sillim Station.
All of the executives, starting with their boss, had the skills of a high-level hunter, and the violence they wielded was the driving force that made all the hunters around them bow their heads.
With such a basis, the poor security preparations they had were understandable.
Since there are no hunters around who can stand against them, they might become arrogant.
“My sister is down here… Are you still going with me?”
I wore a mask and there was no way to identify me, the conditions were just perfect to cause a mess.
Of course, she never thought that the lowly culture of this place would change in a single fight like this.
This was just an act of fighting off annoying people and doing rehabilitation exercises.
It wasn’t something to be thankful for.
She didn’t have that big sense of duty in her to clean up Sillim Station, and she didn’t have much sympathy to help an unlucky boy named Chung-ha.
‘It’s not like there is none.’
If you ignore it, it will come to your mind tonight, that’s all.
Both Bazette and Jin-hee were the same in regards to preferring comfortable relationships.
After he said, “We’ll go in,” she moved her feet to the basement of the building where he wanted to go.
It was a well-finished staircase at first, but as they went down, the roughly dug-up bumpy stairs welcomed them.
Well, you dug a basement in the middle of a city like this.
Jin-hee couldn’t help but admire the size of the area that was similar to a subway station’s underground shopping mall.
The ceilings were high, and the systematically divided hallways and dwellings were the first to be seen.
“…The Crow leader is a wizard.
He is also a magician who manipulates land and water.
This is the hideout that the boss made.”
“You know a lot, don’t you?”
Chung-ha murmured softly as he entered the huge hallway where all kinds of lights were illuminating the ceiling and the underground base where people with violent expressions came and went.
“…Because I worked here.”
Now that we have come this far, did he think he could trust her, or did he decide that there was no need to hide it anymore?
Chung-ha straightened his back and walked forward so as not to cause suspicion around them.
Occasionally, there were eyes looking at them, but as soon as they saw her attire and mask, they laughed at her, but no one spoke to them.
It was like the eyes of aristocrats looking at the lower classes.
Chung-ha said, walking close to Jin-hee, so as not to be heard by them.
“I am not a member of the organization, but I worked here.
I served as a subordinate under an executive.”
“…Because I thought it was cool.”
He said while covering the mouth over his mask, whether he was ashamed even thinking about it.
When he was younger than now, Chung-ha said that he admired the Crows who helped rebuild the orphanage.
The influence of the media was strong.
While watching movies and cartoons where Yakuza, Mafia, and gangsters do justice, Chung-ha also had the idea that there could be good gangsters at the time.
Because of that, he also dreamed that he would be a righteous gangster in a gang full of brotherly love.
It was silly, but at the same time, it was a delusion of his young age.
But he didn’t know then that delusions and fantasies were beautiful when they were just that, illusions.
Chung-ha’s dream collapsed just after discovering the “prison” in the basement.
“This is it.”
Chung-ha stood in front of the prison sighing.
A large steel window stood between the bumpy but wide corridors.
Somehow, there was no one around.
After looking inside, Chung-ha threw away the romantic concept of a gangster.
“The door’s locked?”
He put his hand on the key chain.
Then he closed his eyes for a moment and took a deep breath.
“…I joined the Crows and worked under one executive because of this ability from the beginning.”
At that time, a click was heard as if the lock was being released.
“It’s not magic, is it?”
“Yes, I didn’t use Mana.
Soon, when all the holes were clicked, the locks were unlocked and the bars opened.
Chung-ha raised his palm and showed it to Jin-hee.
An opaque but unformed air current swirled on the palm of his hand.
The ability was neither magic, nor a technique using mana, but a unique skill.
“It doesn’t use much physical strength.
It’s just enough power to lift things in front of me.
But it’s quite useful.”
It was a good skill to handle even the smallest detail, such as opening a lock or breaking or repairing a circuit in an electronic device.
An executive who thought it was a pretty fun skill took Chung-ha to work, saying, “I will raise it myself.”
Chung-ha breathed heavily as he opened the cage.
“Be prepared, this is a dump.”
And he led Jin-hee to the vicious place where he was disillusioned about the gangsters.
The inside was damp and dirty.
The smell of blood mixed with the smell of vomiting and defecation was so bad that if you didn’t wear a mask, you had to cover your nose, but even a mask with a broken filter was better than nothing.
What was unusual was that there were large crows perched in the middle of the hallway.
The crows were making their nests in the corners of the ceiling or running around on the floor.
When Chung-ha and Jin-hee appeared, they flapped their wings and disappeared to the end of the hallway.
The prison had a long hallway in the middle, and the rooms covered with iron bars were lined up on either side of it.
In a small prison where there would be no room for three or four people lying down sparsely, people were hanging from the ceiling.
It was hanging
“Whoever hangs by the neck is the one who will be ‘removed’ tomorrow morning.
The person that hung from the legs is the one who will continue to do so.”
There were two people hanging from the ceiling.
Dead bodies hanging from their necks, and those with ankles hanging on, vomiting or drooling.
“If they hang people, crows will appear and eat the flesh.
It’s a place where you don’t have to torture a person to see results.”
It was the reason why many crows were raised.
“Those who hang from their heads are those who have nothing more to dig up or are useless.
Crows like thin flesh, so they are particularly good at nibbling at necks.
After a while, the crow devours the entire neck, and the body and head of the corpse separate and fall, so the gang members retrieve it.
When another person comes in again, they are tied by their feet and hanged.
At first, they try to resist the crow’s attack, but soon they lose strength and are slowly devoured from the thigh.”
And it’s grotesque.
Even modern humans can be this cruel.
It was so cruel and ugly that it reminded me of the torture methods I saw when I was Bazette.
There are no human rights here.
I grinded my teeth.
“The fear of the Crows comes from this.
Rumors of the brutal treatment spread, and no one could resist.”
Chung-ha went forward without looking at the prison.
Each prison door was enchanted.
It was simple magic that made an alarm sound when it was forcibly opened, but it could not be ignored.
The moment I opened the door out of compassion, it was obvious that the gang members out there would run to this location in no time.
Eventually, Chung-ha and Jin-hee arrived at the end of the prison, in front of a neat “room” that was incomparable with the prison cells they had seen before.
It was the same with the bars, but things were different inside.
A neat wallpaper, bed, sofa, and table seemed to make it look like a shabby inn.
Chung-ha murmured, holding the bars in his hand.
There was a girl asleep.
The girl, whose ankle was tied to a chain with a huge iron ball on the end, laid on the sofa asleep.
Although she had never seen Chung-ha’s face properly due to bruises and swelling, Jin-hee could tell at a glance that the two were brother and sister.
Because she had the same dark blue hair as Chung-ha.
But what caught Jin-hee’s eye more than anything else.
They were two wings hanging from Min-ha’s back.
Transparent wings with a tinge of yellow light.
Two pairs of small wings hung on the girl’s back.
There’s no way I wouldn’t recognize that.
Jin-hee murmured quietly.
It was the same fairy wings that I saw when I was a Bazette.
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