[Translator – woni]
[Proofreader – sharlottle]
Chapter 26. The Infinite Monarch
Pillars of blue fire cover the landscape as fireballs rain down from the sky like meteorite.
Each flame was powerful enough to turn an entire building into mere ashes.
It was quite literally…
Hell on Earth.
Even with a body of metal, one would melt into dust in this hellscape.
And yet, not even a single hair on Limon's body was burnt.
He'd already escaped the range of the meteor shower.
No matter how powerful it was, Limon wasn't one to freeze in fear and take such an obvious attack.
Although, Lee Chun-gi was just getting started.
He lightly snapped his finger again.
Any skeptic would've been convinced that the fire was alive if they witnessed the scene.
The flames engulfing the area squirmed by itself. It stopped spreading outwards randomly like a regular fire, rushing towards Limon instead. It looked like a living organism, with a mind of its own.
"Didn't your mother ever teach you not to play with fire?"
There was barely any reaction out of Limon at such a sight.
He lightly scoffed and planted his sword into the ground — stopping the living flame dead in its tracks.
Such an action should have only scattered a bit of dirt.
Instead, with the technique of a Swordmaster, such a simple motion turned Limon into a human catapult.
A massive mound of dirt the size of a house rose above and penetrated the sea of flames, swallowing Lee Chun-gi whole.
It was rather unsightly compared to the grace of modern weaponry, but it possessed a primitive ferocity.
Fortunately, the development of Civilization was not in vain.
A self-propelled gun rolled up behind Lee Chun-gi, shooting a fireball which imploded the primitive cannonball.
The satisfying nature of blowing the dirt monster apart was a feat that fire glorifiers, scientists, and military maniacs would all join hands to express admiration for.
It seemed Lee Chun-gi had brought some oil to fuel his fire.
Tanks, cannons, missiles, heavy machine guns, and all sorts of weapons.
With a snap of his finger, the Monarch had brought in enough firepower to completely decimate entire armies of countries.
“「Calibrate Bullseye」, 「Cursed Demon Bullets」, 「Defense Penetration」, 「Enhance Destruction」, 「Accelerate Projection」.”
With each casted skill, the guns lit up in different colors.
And at the end of it, each weapon was radiating the colors of the rainbow.
Lee Chun-gi raised his hands, as if preparing to conduct an orchestra.
Taking a breath, he moved his hands in a downward motion.
In concert with one another, the different weapons supported each other as they shot at their target with pinpoint accuracy.
It could be regarded as Lee Chun-gi's 5th Symphony.
The precision was something even the Aegis System* could learn from!
*t/n: this is referring to the real life American Aegis Combat System.
With multiple skills boosting their destructive power, each and every weapon far exceeded the standard capabilities of modern artillery.
Limon stood defiantly in the face of death, calmly observing the barrage heading straight at him.
In three repetitive motions, his blade slid across 3 bullets individually.
Swinging the sword in a circular motion, he redirected the bullets back where they came.
Like a mantis' attempt at stopping a carriage.
Just three meager bullets against countless explosive armaments.
Although, the idiom was not used to mock one's imprudence.
It was an ancient saying, originating from a mantis that once charged at a carriage, whose courage drove the heavens to turn the carriage around.
And in this moment,
Singling out a missile from the pile, the three bullets recreated the miracle of the mantis.
While it normally would have been an advantage, the increased destructive power of that one single missile turned the bombardment into a hornet's nest.
The more complex a machine, the likelier it was to break down from a single loose screw.
And like so, the single missile caused a chain reaction. The sky was embroidered with flames.
The moment an opening appeared,
Limon threw himself through the gap.
However, Limon's attack only stopped half of the gunfire.
And yet, there wasn't an ounce of hesitation or fear in his golden eyes — only the tenacity of a predator charging at its prey.
Lee Chun-gi did not avoid his predator's gaze.
Snapping his fingers once again,
The gravity pulling on Limon increases tenfold.
Rain that froze everything it touched came pouring down.
A curse trapping all life in a dream was unfurled.
An eight-sided dome barrier sturdier than a bunker appeared.
Each of the four skills were advanced skills that a high-level player could use as their main skill.
It wasn't just a marvel to see Lee Chun-gi cast all of those skills in one breath — it went beyond what should've been humanly possible.
A series of sublime skills that only the Infinite Monarch could execute one after another, because no one would dare to match him.
And still, Limon remained unfazed.
He kept his gaze on Lee Chun-gi, taking three steps forward.
Walking towards what could be considered certain death instead of turning around and running away was an act of ultimate stupidity.
However, what Limon pulled off was rather shocking.
Step one: he dodged the gravitational pull and downpour.
Step two: he leapt over the barrier and the confines of the curse.
Step three: he stabbed the Infinite Monarch.
It was a sight that went against the natural order of the world.
If he hadn't known beforehand and prepared for it, he would have been fatally pierced.
“「Spacial Metastasis」. 「Free Flight」.”
Limon's blade only pierced the air.
As if Lee Chun-gi had seen it coming, he had quickly disappeared through the air before Limon even took his first step.
He reappeared far above in the sky, where Limon's sword could not reach him.
He looked at Limon, clicking his tongue in frustration.
"What a surprise. To be able to do that without skills… How?" he asked Limon stoically.
"Who knows, jackass."
Limon wasn't exceptionally fast.
He couldn't stop time, nor could he teleport.
So how did he penetrate all those skills in just three steps to get in front of him?
Limon was staring at Lee Chun-gi curtly.
"That ought to be my line. How did you see that coming? That wasn't something that could be dodged when you're seeing it for the first time."
"…Heh. So it's 「Foresight」."
Considered the best in combat among the countless prophetic skills, it was rare and difficult to use.
"How many more flags are you gonna pull out of your ass, you damn clown?"
Lee Chun-gi had already used dozens of skills since the start of the fight.
In addition to that, any single one of the skills he used could turn anyone into a high-level player.
And he had already used several of those.
His ability to freely control dozens of fantastical skills was a complete oddity.
"I'm not too sure myself."
Lee Chun-gi replied to Limon's sarcasm with nonchalance, and met his eyes.
Why was Lee Chun-gi called the Infinite Monarch — the most unbounded of the Ten Great Monarchs?
"I stopped counting after I went past 3,000 skills with「Technique Replication」.
Translator - woni
Proofreader - sharlottle
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It was often said:
"Common skills were a convenience.
Rare skills were miracles.
And unique skills transcended reality."
Of course, that wasn't arbitrary.
It's true that the better a skill, the rarer it was — but a rare skill didn't always mean it was powerful.
However, no one doubted that saying. At least, not the Ten Great Monarchs.
And so, even players with similar unique skills gave them special names.
Absolute, or cheat skills.
The skills the ten Monarchs possessed were so special they went beyond transcending reality, into the realm of Gods.
And among the ten Monarchs, the most god-like of their skills was the Infinite Monarch's unique skill:「Technique Replication」.
In truth, Lee Chun-gi was incredibly devalued when he first became a player.
That was because at the time, 「Technique Replication」 could only replicate one mediocre skill every ten days.
Many laughed at him for getting such a landmine of a skill after making a deal with a Monarch-rank Constellation.
But Lee Chun-gi rose above it all.
He frequented the dungeon with the skills he replicated and gradually leveled up.
Once he learnt more than ten skills, Lee Chun-gi had distinguished himself from others.
By the time he learnt over 50, no one was laughing at him anymore.
And as the number of skills went over 100 and the cooldown time for 「Skill Replication」 disappeared, he established the Infinity Guild.
Upon surpassing 1,000 skills, Lee Chun-gi was given the title of Monarch. At this point, he was even able to replicate rare skills.
That was how artful 「Technique Replication」 was.
Now, even Lee Chun-gi himself didn't know how many skills he had.
It was also often said:
"The day Lee Chun-gi learns to replicate unique skills, is the day the sole Absolute Ruler will rise."
Having the most potential among the Monarchs for his ability to control an infinite number of skills, he was the Infinite Monarch.
The most powerful player.
And at this moment,
Lee Chun-gi wasn’t holding back his infinite potential against Limon.
“「Bounding Chains」. 「Wave Blast」. 「Venomous Pest Summoning」. 「Spatial Separation」.”
An intangible force swept over Limon after he cut off the chains that suddenly appeared on his ankles, and the space around him split in its entirety as he avoided the swarm of venomous insects.
Narrowly skirting all of the skills, Limon shouted, "Oi, take a breath some time, ya damn alien."
“Did you not know? I don’t need to breathe if I use 「Skin respiration」 and 「Oxygeneration」 together.”
"And… how the fuck would I know that…?"
Limon clicked his tongue.
He’d dealt with all kinds of skills as a PAB agent.
And yet, he was experiencing more skills than he’d ever seen before in such a short period of time.
‘How many skills is this bitch using at the same time?’
It wasn’t just the attack skills.
From the cognitive skills such as 「Parallel Cognition」 and 「Accelerated Cognition」, to support skills like 「Free Flight」, there were dozens of skills Limon could confirm he was using.
He was using all those skills at the same time, alongside attack skills.
Even Limon, who considered himself to be quite far from human, found himself wondering if that son of a bitch used to be a human, too.
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