Max Talent Player
[Translator – Lei ]
[Proofreader – Ash ]
An extremely unpleasant feeling surged into Hyukjin like the rising tide.
‘What is… this?’
Several scenes played in his head. A quick look was enough to tell him that they were all disgusting scenes. To put it in keywords, ‘domestic rape and family homicide’, ‘imprisonment and slavery’, ‘forced castration’, ‘genocide of a minority group’, and so on. One horrific scene after another flooded in.
He remembered the notice from before.
[Observer’s Eye is analyzing the ‘corrupted stigma’.]
Then there was only one answer. These scenes playing in his head were connected to Xu Xin’s ‘stigma’.
‘Stigmata are achievements engraved in one’s body.’
Did anyone here truly lack achievements? Hyukjin looked around. Everyone he saw was a Ranker or a megamillionaire. There wasn’t a single person who had no achievements to their name. It was just that he couldn’t read their achievements, at least not yet.
‘It must mean Xu Xin has accumulated so much achievement… that even a proficiency 3 Observer’s Eye can interpret it.’
Although it was questionable if these gruesome actions could really be called achievements.
‘If he can be analyzed to this extent by me…’
Then just how despicably had this man lived his life? It made Hyukjin think that all the unsubstantiated stories that had gone around on the Internet in the past were true.
Hyukjin looked away. Xu Xin also turned away. Both of them looked towards the stage, where the auction was starting.
‘Even if his stigma is dirty…’
There was no reason for him to care about that. Hyukjin was no apostle of justice, nor did he have the right to bring down judgment on Xu Xin.
‘I have a feeling we’ll butt heads.’
If he messed with Hyukjin, that would change things. Hyukjin was enraged. Not as a Player, but as a person. What he was feeling was a normal emotion anyone with the heart and soul of a human would feel and sympathize with.
Hyukjin’s Eye of Perception could feel that Xu Xin’s gaze had been less than friendly. His eyes had been bristling with the thought, ‘You dare to look straight at me?’
And before long, Hyukjin’s hunch was proven. Xu Xin began to bid on every item Song Kiyeol went for.
“Xu Xin keeps interfering.”
“Yes. It seems intentional.”
“Why is he doing this?”
“I think it’s because we met eyes.”
It was an utterly trivial reason, but there was no doubt about it.
“Don’t fight Xu Xin with money.”
Even if the current Song Kiyeol fought Xu Xin with money, there was no chance he would win, a fact Kiyeol knew as well.
“If Xu Xin places a bid, I will give up on the item.”
Song Kiyeol was a little dubious. ‘Even Guildmaster Kim is afraid of China’s capital?’
No, it didn’t seem like that. Kim Hyukjin looked perfectly at ease.
‘I think he’s got some kind of plot in mind.’
Song Kiyeol felt it, too. The way Hyukjin looked at Xu Xin was far from kind. A shiver ran down Kiyeol’s body. He had seen Hyukjin’s expressionless face many times. That was when he was most terrifying, because this man was someone whose thoughts were utterly inscrutable.
‘He’s scheming something.’
What that was, Kiyeol didn’t know. But he felt slight anticipation rise within him.
‘A mega-conglomerate of China…’
How would Kim Hyukjin cook up the leader of a Chinese conglomerate? Xu Xin had interfered with Sungshin’s entry into China. Kiyeol didn’t like the man, either.
The auction continued.
“The next auction item is the [Infinite Pouch].”
It was one of the items on the purchase list Hyukjin had given him. Kiyeol put in a bid, which Xu Xin once again countered. The moment Xu Xin stepped in, everyone else also gave up on bidding. Apparently, they were also aware of Xu Xin’s fanatical hoarding.
“Once again, the item goes to Customer #33!”
Kiyeol felt a small spike of urgency.
“Is it really going to be okay? Grandfather boasted that we would get a big profit out of this auction.”
They had purchased just three items and used a total of $4.5 million, less than anticipated.
“You will earn at least $7 million even with what you’ve already purchased.”
A $2.5 million profit with an investment of $4.5 million. It was a tremendous return rate. But seen from the viewpoint of a giant corporation like Sungshin, it wasn’t all that impressive. The return rate might be high, but the earned amount itself was low.
“The next item is the [Fountain Pen of Freedom]!”
“That’s the item you said you absolutely wanted…”
“Let’s just see if Xu Xin bids on it.”
The item was called the ‘Fountain Pen of Freedom’.
[Fountain Pen of Freedom]
Only the destroyer of the Gray Ring can activate the item description.
Several Rankers put in bids. Its current price was $600k.
“I will bid as well.”
Song Kiyeol offered $700k. But Xu Xin came in once again.
“There it is! Customer #33 has bid once again!”
The auctioneer’s voice echoed loudly through the hall. Kiyeol whispered, “This is totally intentional. Shall we give up this time as well?”
Song Kiyeol gave up on the item, like all the others. However, Kim Hyukjin spoke under his breath, so quietly no one could hear.
“Darong. Go steal them all.”
A [?] popped up over Darongi’s head. The little squirrel seemed surprised. From his experience, his master wasn’t the type of person to rob other people’s items without good reason. But he just gave a command to steal them all? Darongi followed his master’s gaze.
He saw a certain man, a man attired in a tiger pattern suit.
The question mark turned into exclamation points. Darongi had also watched the auction from start to finish. That was the jerk who kept interfering with his master.
Darongi went into Stealth mode.
The genius of theft went on the prowl. He moved far faster and more stealthily than usual, his eyes gleaming with greed.
* * *
Translator - Lei
Proofreader - Ash
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* * *
The Chinese billionaire, Xu Xin, felt his mood lift.
That youngster had looked him straight in the eye, scouring him with an impolite gaze. What’s more, the scum appeared to be the Taeguk Shield Song Kiyeol’s subordinate. Xu Xin would feel displeasure from getting stared at by Song Kiyeol, but that man’s subordinate dared to meet his eyes? It was utterly unpleasant. So he taught him a lesson. He showed that brat there was money above money, power above power.
“The auction is nearly over.”
“Indeed. Those Taeguk Shield bastards were immediately tucking their tails when I bid, right?”
“Yes, they certainly were. I think they realized the difference in power.”
Xu Xin nodded. “But it’s quite cute that they recognized that and didn’t bite back like rabid dogs.” His lips curled into a grin. “If they had failed to realize their place, I would have put them six feet under without a soul knowing.”
This wasn’t Korea. It might be hard to lay a hand on them in Korea, but this was the US. Burying them alive in the US wasn’t at all difficult, and the evidence could be fabricated.
“It’s good that they knew their place. The great tolerance and kindness you showed them is immeasurable.”
“Of course, of course.”
Xu Xin truly thought that was true. Those bastards were living right now because Xu Xin had permitted it.
But just then—
Something was off. The items were transferred to him, there was no mistake about it. And yet…
Every single item he had received was gone. His Inventory had been completely emptied.
‘And what is that?’
In one of his Inventory slots was… a piece of half-eaten fried chicken. All of his items were gone, leaving just that one chunk of leftover chicken.
“THIS GODDAMN FUCKING—!” Xu Xin surged to his feet and screamed, “WHO THE HELL WAS IT?!”
Every head in the hall swiveled towards him.
“COME OUT RIGHT THIS INSTANT!”
Xu Xin saw red. He had no idea which piece of shit had stolen his precious collectibles, his lovable items. In his rage, his innate ability was deployed.
[Using the innate ability Hunt Down the Thief.]
The entirety of the auction house instantly turned gray. Kim Hyukjin observed Xu Xin in amusement.
‘Hunt Down the Thief, is it.’
Xu Xin was an excellent offering for Observer’s Eye.
[Observer’s Eye is at proficiency 3.]
[A newfound innate ability has manifested.]
[An unknown innate ability has been discovered.]
Observer’s Eye went up in proficiency, and a ‘new innate ability’ just happened to manifest right afterwards.
[You have fulfilled a hidden condition.]
[An innate ability of Observer’s Eye has been unlocked.]
A condition was fulfilled, unlocking yet another ability of Observer’s Eye for the first time in a while.
4) Innate abilities:
Unique Ability Fusion
Authority Analysis joined the ranks of Unique Ability Fusion. Hyukjin tested it immediately, because in front of him was an excellent guinea pig, Xu Xin. Not only had the man given him an opportunity to advance, but he was even acting as a lab rat.
[Using the innate ability Authority Analysis.]
Very detailed information about the Thief Tracking Xu Xin was using started taking shape in his head, almost like the ability description window was activated and absorbed into his mind.
[Hunt Down the Thief]
An authority that is activated when the Player suspects something of theirs or an item in their Inventory has been stolen. The range of Hunt Down the Thief changes depending on the type, grade, and number of stolen items. When the Player does not just suspect theft and is instead certain of theft, Hunt Down the Thief will be even more powerful.
Right now, the ability user was certain that his items had been stolen.
“Darongi. You hold onto them.”
Hyukjin trusted that Darongi was skilled enough to not get caught by Hunt Down the Thief. It was an amusing innate ability. Just like how there were classes that were strong in front of gates, there were classes that were strong when their items were stolen.
Guns materialized all over the gray field. They took the shape of guns, but Hyukjin could feel powerful mana flow from them. They were guns made of mana that shot mana bullets.
Michelle stepped forward.
“Mr. Xu Xin, this is my place of business.”
“If this is your place of business, then you should manage it as such!”
Xu Xin’s face had turned red with rage. He was extremely worked up and saw nothing but red.
“What do you mean?”
“There’s a rat hiding in this crowd, a rat I must catch.”
“Do you mean to say you were hit with item theft?”
“That’s right! Outta my way!”
Xu Xin shoved Michelle in irritation. Michelle could have dodged, but she chose not to in order to secure a self-defense justification.
“If you turn yourself in right this instant, I will spare your life.”
That was, of course, a lie. He would let them live here and kill them outside. He would throw them into a vat of acid and relish their screams. They had committed the ultimate crime of messing with his items.
“If you don’t show yourself right now…”
The guns floating in the air moved, fixing themselves on a single target.
“Know that someone’s head will be blasted off.”
Xu Xin looked like he had lost all reason, but that wasn’t entirely the case. He didn’t point his guns at any of the top Rankers. He took aim at the nameless ones, the people with the least weight out of all the people here, or the non-combat class Players.
And representing those unlucky nobodies was Kim Hyukjin, the attendant and subordinate of Taeguk Shield’s guildmaster.
“Starting with him.”
Numerous crosshairs appeared over Hyukjin’s heart and forehead.
“I’ll give you ten seconds.”
The numbers appeared in the field itself. Everyone could see the countdown.
The numbers ticked down.
“If you don’t come out, I’ll start by shredding that bastard’s head.”
Hyukjin wasn’t at all ruffled. He knew exactly where they were. This was Michelle’s place of business. In other words, it was essentially the domain of the Herdsman of Las Vegas.
With a smirk, he raised his voice so everyone could hear.
“Mr. Xu Xin. Would you like to have a bet with me?”
A plan to turn the countless items he had stolen unlawfully from Xu Xin into items he had stolen lawfully took form in his mind.
A plan using the prominent Guardian called the Herdsman of Las Vegas.
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