The World after the Fall - Chapter 179 - Rupture (14)[Updated at: 2021-01-11 07:16:40]
Chapter 179: Rupture (14)
Yoonhwan became desperate as he saw the city being destroyed. He should have come faster because he needed to give the information he knew…
Yet his efforts seemed to have been in vain. He then felt people approaching from the surroundings. They were the people who attacked Yoonhwan before.
Swords were unleashed as they charged against him. Yoonhwan quickly turned.
“Why, why do you have to do this!”
Enemies appeared from the darkness. They were from Rupture. Yoonhwan even knew some of them.
“Let me go! Please!”
Nobody cared about Yoonhwan’s words. There was no sense of sympathy in their eyes. They too had overcome the <Great Disappearance Simulation> and some of them had been in Rupture longer than Yoonhwan.
Yoonhwan realized these people will not back off and readied himself. He couldn’t just back down yet.
[Sea of Blood, Mountain of Corpses]
The unique world spread out form Yoonhwan along with the world power. The power was one of the reasons why Rupture was after Yoonhwan. Rupture never allowed their unique world to be leaked out.
Powerful energy swept through some of the Awakeners, pushing them back with a scream.
Yoonhwan quickly turned, but he couldn’t go.
A cold voice came with the world power that was attacking him. Yoonhwan barely was able to defend himself by using a huge amount of his power.
His wrist became painful from the force. The energy was that powerful. A Captain? No, it wasn’t that strong. Then it was…
“Yoonhwan. Stop this and let’s go back.”
Han Seoyul was standing there. Yoonhwan couldn’t say anything. He understood why Seoyul was stopping him and why Rupture had sent Seoyul to track him down.
However, he had to say something, even if he couldn’t go back.
“It’s not right.”
He wasn’t sure where he was and why he was standing here, but he had to say something. He had to speak for himself so he could exist.
“This is not right…”
There were many emotions behind his words, but Yoonhwan wasn’t hopeful. That wasn’t enough to persuade or make one understand.
Seoyul answered, “I know.”
It was their first time communicating like this after they had come to <Depth>. Their first exchange was when they had overcome the trauma from the past. Yoonhwan realized that Seoyul was telling the truth. She seemed to feel something. She continued, “I know, and that’s why I’m here.”
Yoonhwan became hopeful. Maybe things were going to end well. Maybe the question was going to be answered in the right way. The world was fairer than he thought…
“Let’s return to Rupture.”
And with the voice, Yoonhwan’s dream shattered.
“I heard from the Captains that you have dangerous ideas.”
“I’m sure they have spoken to you already, but they know and I know it too. What is wrong and right. We all know.”
Seoyul ignored him and continued to persuade him, “Listen to me, Yoonhwan. Did you forget what happened back in the tower? There’s nothing you can do from where you are trying to go. It’s just like how we could never clear the tower no matter how hard we tried.”
That word was painful. She also thought the same way. Yoonhwan remembered her death in the tower. She died on the 76th floor.
“There’s something that can’t be done.”
There was the memory of climbing up the tower with only the two of them, him and Jaehwan. It was the dream that he never achieved. Yoonhwan felt a severe headache. Seoyul spoke again.
“Justice without power is pointless. A dream without possibility is just an illusion. You know this. How do you not see this?”
No. Yoonhwan did not know this. But there was one thing he knew.
“Do you know up to what floor I climbed up to?”
“I got up to the 98th floor.”
Seoyul seemed to surprised, but she turned cold in the next moment.
“Doesn’t matter. You still…”
“And Jaehwan went up to the 99th floor.”
And with that, Seoyul was shocked for the first time. It was the first time she changed her expression ever since they had arrived at <Depth>. Yoonhwan continued, “You must remember how hard we tried and how many trials we fought against. And, how much time we put into it.”
“Are you going to say that it was all pointless? Are you really trying to say that? All of that was just nothing?”
Seoyul bit her lips.
“I know what you are talking about! But…!”
“No, you don’t know,” Yoonhwan declared. “You don’t know. And that’s why you are still standing there.”
Seoyoul became silent. Her shaking lips were proof that she was shaken by the word, ‘Jaehwan’. Yoonhwan thought maybe there was still hope in there.
“Kill me. If you want to take me back to Rupture, just kill me instead.”
It was a gamble, hoping that she still had some humanity within her. Seoyul became quiet. And then…
“You think I can’t do it?”
Yoonhwan’s gamble was moving toward failure. Seoyul raised her sword and wielded world power. Seoyul icily said, “How many times do you think I’ve killed you?”
Yoonhwan felt a chill running down his spine. This woman was no longer the Han Seoyul he knew. He knew this, but it never came to his mind until now. She was the woman who succeeded in clearing everything 518 times out of 520 simulations. She threw away everything and killed all of her memories to become strong. She then stood on top of all the new recruits in Rupture.
That was the current day Seoyul. She laughed at Yoonhwan.
“I’m sure you have killed me too.”
It was true. Yoonhwan did kill Seoyul in the simulation.
“You are a hypocrite.”
Her sword began to explode with red world power, or the unique world of Rupture. It was as if a rain of blood was pouring down. Yoonhwan deflected the world power being unleashed against him, but it was too much.
“I heard from the 5th Captain. That you did not kill ‘one man’ until the end of the simulation.”
“So what? You killed everyone else anyway. You’re the same. You’re still an Awakener of Rupture. So don’t think you are just. Don’t think you are different!”
Her sword cut out a chunk of Yoonhwan’s thigh and waist.
She was right. Maybe he did not have the right to discuss what was right or wrong. But… even if he gave up on everything… and gave up on being human, then what would happen next?
Where was ‘Yoonhwan’?
Yoonhwan’s body was destroyed against Seoyul’s world power. And as his conscious was fading away, he kept on looking for something.
He remembered a name in his fading sights. Then, a back of a certain someone appeared. An illusion. Yoonhwan mumbled to himself.
‘I see… so I still couldn’t move ahead of you.’
The only person Yoonhwan looked towards when he gave up on everything. The only one who kept him human.
‘I wanted to be like you…’
And the illusion was destroyed and then came Seoyul’s sword — a cold, final blow to end his life.
Silence fell. Yoonhwan felt his life being sucked away inside pitch black. Blood poured out from his waist, taking away his life. Death was near.
It was long but terrible. And then it was finally over. The silence fell around them.
Then, the sound of a sword dropping onto the ground was heard.
“How… but how…”
The woman was baffled.
Yoonhwan was still alive. He opened his eyes and saw Seoyul who was backing away in fear. It was something she had never seen. He never thought Seoyul would make such a face even if the world was about to fall. Who was it that made her make such a face?
With a fierce voice, the other fighters charged toward Yoonhwan. Tens of Awakeners charged in with their unique worlds. And in next moment…
The world was ripped apart. It was destroyed. Awakeners were thrown away as dark world power covered the area from behind. It felt strange. Why was this sight a relief to him?
Yoonhwan then dropped back. As he dropped, he saw someone in his eyes. There was pain in his shoulder as someone grabbed it. Yoonhwan laughed.
This is an illusion. It’s a dream. Or else…
Else… how can…
How can Jaehwan be here?
If it’s not an illusion, it is the world of the dead. Or…
And with the voice, Yoonhwan realized that it wasn’t an illusion or a dream. Nor was Yoonhwan dead. It was real.
Yoonhwan couldn’t speak. He couldn’t find the words to speak, nor did he have the energy to voice it out.
“You’ve done a good job.”
It was a short praise, but Yoonhwan understood him, a best friend with whom he had spent years together with. He was telling Yoonhwan that he had done a great job, that he wasn’t wrong.
Yoonhwan tried to speak with his last bit of energy. And Jaehwan listened.
“Jaehwan. I… I saw your back a thousand times… but I never… I never… I…”
“Yeah, I know.”
Yoonhwan was then relieved. It was the voice he had been waiting for all along. The voice that understood everything.
I am here.
Yoonhwan was then welcomed into the world. His finger touched Jaehwan’s face and Yoonhwan closed his eyes.