After the community became a mess, all they talked about that day was the Nightmare stage.
However, it calmed down after that day.
It’s because the people that did normal mode didn’t have any information about it.
I gave up on finding out what the Nightmare stage was about.
That place was nothing more than a mode that was more difficult than the normal mode.
Instead, I decided to invest my time in researching things that I thought would be helpful to me.
Like potions that had gave me a buff or an item that had the ability to increase the stat of a weapon.
I was having fun looking through a live online auction website that posted items.
“How well does it perform?”
He talked as if he was asking himself.
The potions had different effects and they all had different colors and below them, there were information written about them.
There were basic effects like offensive effects and defensive effects. There were also potions that increased the resistance effects.
There was another potion that provided both effects, but that was pretty expensive.
“I’ll first pick out a couple.”
Money wasn’t the only payment method.
They also accept Geny, which can be obtained from the stage.
However, in this case, they require both sides to meet in order to process the transaction.
After sending a purchase request, the seller contacts me through my cellphone.
The message that I received within minutes said that they wanted to meet at the subway entrance.
After wearing the clothes that were scattered on the floor, I exited the motel.
“I’m currently creating a weapon. Once I’m done with it, I’ll send you a picture of it.”
The manager from the appraisal office sent me a message every day to reassure me.
According to him, everything was going as planned and said that I would be able to receive my pay within 15 days.
I had to live without a place for 15 days.
I arrived on time.
We sent another text to each other to make sure that we both arrived.
I didn’t bother trying to hide my face, but the alchemist was trying to hide theirs.
They were also very cautious when handing over the item.
“Where’s the Geny?”
I opened my inventory and took out the Geny.
A money that contained Geny appeared.
After the alchemist received the bag, they placed it in their inventory and checked the amount.
They nodded to confirm.
“There’s a lot of scammers these days. There are those that even ask for a discount after meeting.”
I didn’t even ask, but the alchemist started explaining.
They hide their faces because of the alchemy skill that they have.
It seemed like they’ve been bothered by clans and management because they wanted to recruit them.
There’s a good amount that kidnaps them.
“If we stay here any longer, they might follow us. Thank you for purchasing. Please let me know if you would like to purchase again.”
After saying that, the alchemist quickly walked away.
I checked the remaining Geny in my inventory.
I exchanged the Geny for money and used it to buy a potion today so I didn’t have much left.
“I’m pretty sure I’ve killed a good amount of monsters.”
I couldn’t even count how many I’ve killed.
However, even if you kill a monster within the stage, it didn’t mean that you obtain Geny every time.
You can sell the item that you obtain from the monster or get paid by taking up quests on the request board.
After I left the fifth stage, I didn’t take care of the items that I obtained from there.
I have never checked the request board either.
“I think selling the green quartz was the most fun.”
It was a simple trade, but the first stage left the best impression.
In the end, after realizing that I was the only one that survived after that stage, a frown appeared on my face.
“…No. I wonder if Byung Chul is alive as well.”
During the first stage, Kim Byung Chul wasn’t part of the Undead group that I killed.
There was hope that he was still alive.
I even remembered his clan’s name, which was Wounded Ones.
I decided to look into it later.
My next location was a building that a group of blacksmiths borrowed in order to do business.
Since I already made reservations, I walked past the lobby on the first floor and immediately headed to the second floor.
The second floor had many rooms and I walked into the room that had number three written on it.
When I walked in, a blacksmith was waiting for me.
A very healthy male in his late-20’s greeted me.
A bandana was tied around his head and he was only wearing his work pants.
The sweat that rolled down his body made him look manly.
I also greeted him by bowing.
I looked around the room.
It was so large that it was a waste for one person to use it all.
I had an idea of how blacksmiths were actually treated in the real world.
“You’re here to strengthen a Rank Five weapon, correct?”
“Wow, it must mean that you’re strong if you’re able to wield a Rank Five weapon. I’m jealous.”
“…Is that so?”
“There are many high-ranked survivors that wield Rank Four weapons and there’s no reason for them to make any requests to us. Rank Five weapons are very rare.”
As I was listening to their explanation, I took out the Adamantium Sword.
As soon as they saw the sword, the small amount of doubt that was in their eyes disappeared.
They kept on staring at the tip as if they couldn’t believe it.
“Ha ha ha. This is awesome. Wow, where did you get this? I’ve never seen a sword shaped like this before.”
“Someone gave it to me. As a present.”
When I mentioned that I got it as a gift, they were at a loss for word and remained silent.
They inspected my expression and scratched their cheek.
“You must be pretty rich…receiving something like this as a gift.”
The blacksmith’s mischievous voice turned into a whisper.
“I made a mistake. It’s a quest reward.”
“I…I knew it. Ha ha.”
He was so curious about it that I explained again on how I obtained the sword.
Thankfully, it seemed like he calmed down a bit, but he treated me more cautiously than before.
“I’ll give you a strengthening stone.”
“I…it’s fine. It’s better to use what we have, so we’ll just use that.”
“But the stone is pretty expensive so.”
“I’m thankful with just being able to touch a Rank Five weapon.”
Blacksmiths train their skills by strengthening an item.
The more they strengthen, the value of the item increases.
Instead of paying him for his work, they strengthened the weapon for free.
Through this, they were able to train themselves.
Even though he was beating it hard with a hammer, the sword didn’t look any different.
During the process, the blacksmith wiped his sweat with a towel and resumed.
“It’ll increase by eight points. If it goes over 10, it’s possible that it may break. What would you like to do?”
“Make it to the point where it won’t break.”
After 10 minutes, the blacksmith put on a satisfied smile and returned the sword to me.
The strengthening effect didn’t make much of a difference, but the performance definitely increased.
“I’ll stop again next time.”
“Oh, are you leaving already? You can stay for a while.”
I declined his offer to stay longer and walked out of the room.
In the current condition, I’ve finished the necessary inspection.
The next location that I headed to was the tunnel.
I could’ve enjoyed the time that I had in the real world, but in the end, I came back here.
I was only on the sixth stage.
There are rumors that those doing the Normal mode are already going for the 23rd stage.
“Please select between Normal and Nightmare.”
What I said to the Manager must’ve helped because they asked me to choose the level of difficulty.
I picked Nightmare without any hesitation.
After experiencing the fifth stage, doing the Normal mode was way too easy for me.
On top of that, I had a bit of information regarding the sixth stage’s Nightmare mode.
Choi In Hyuk.
The student that I met at the warehouse shared his information to everyone without any hesitation.
It included information regarding the sixth stage.
“It’s the same type before fighting the boss. However, you cannot clear it just by taking down your opponent and enduring it. Since the boss didn’t really have the will to fight, enduring it wasn’t such a big issue.”
It didn’t seem like they were lying.
On top of that, others commented on it, so the information was pretty reliable.
“Ha ha ha, even after their chains have been broken, they didn’t wield their sword.”
“Are there still people that haven’t cleared that stage yet? It’s a stage you can clear just by sucking on your thumb.”
Their comments served as a confirmation to prove that their information was real.
I chose Nightmare mode.
“You’ll be entering the sixth stage’s Nightmare mode.”
I arrived at a coliseum that was placed in a desolate desert.
Other than that, nothing else existed within that place.
While enduring the grains of sand that was flying in the air, I entered the coliseum.
“A place to seal the enemy that the human race will eventually encounter. In order to survive in the future, you must endure the battle with this opponent.”
After drinking the potion that I purchased, I walked through the entrance.
As I passed through the door, a giant with chains all over its body was tied down.
Their armor was so weak that with one touch, all of it might fall apart.
Their body was so frail that I couldn’t tell which was their bone and which was their skin.
There was a large sword next to them, but it didn’t look like they had the strength to wield it.
The injuries that they got from the war still haven’t healed.
They let out a sigh.
They managed to raise their head and look my way.
Their eyes looked so pure that it was hard to believe that they were the one that would destroy the human race.
They continued looking my way without saying anything.
They were just observing to see when the battle was going to start.
They gathered up their energy and managed to say branch.
It was odd how their hands and feet were trembling.
Even though they didn’t do anything, their breathing was heavy.
“…I waited a long time. Over 100…no, I’ve waited over 1000 years. It’s been so long that I’ve forgotten who I was waiting for.”
The giant spoke really sadly.
It was so sad that my heart was aching.
“You’re the one that’s going to kill mankind. Meeting you means that my battle with you is approaching.”
Clank!! Clank!! Clank!!
The giant purposely pulled the chain that was on its body.
I just stood there and watched them break the chain.
“Nothing lasts forever in a world that’s been created, so we’ll be destroying that. Even if we lose, we won’t stop.”
After breaking the chain, they stood up.
Black smoke rose between the openings of the armor they were wearing.
The giant grabbed the sword that was beside them.
“The King of the Giants, Groll. I’ll show my respect to the one that will become the king of everyone one day.”
Even though I saw them cutting the ground with their large sword, I couldn’t react.
It was as if what they said had some sort of spell on it, because I couldn’t move away from my current position.
My limbs were cut off.
It happened so suddenly that I couldn’t feel any pain.
[Remaining HP: 1]
“Since you haven’t endured it for 10 minutes, you’ll be moved to the outside of the coliseum.”
<Life After Returning #5, Stage Six> End.