Hunter Academy’s Battle God
[Translator – Bob ]
[Proofreader – ilafy]
– Unbelie… ble! The portal was forcibly closed!
The broadcast station’s speakers were loud.
Feeling still hadn’t come back to his ears.
A slight headache…
The voices of the crowd going wild…
YuSung slowly opened his eyes.
The lights in the stadium were shining solely on him and Adela.
“To repeat ourselves, this is unprecedented! Just how much mana was released inside the portal? The abilities these two contestants showed in the finals were incredible!”
Mei Lin nodded at the fuss Yu HanNah was making with her commentary.
“We apologize. We failed to properly account for the mana capacity of the two finalists. It’s the complete fault of us, the hosts.”
But no one in the audience put Mei Lin or the Association at fault for the oversight. In fact, the mood in the stadium was much like one at a festival—they had gotten a proper look at Korea’s capabilities.
Shin YuSung, who was a new face that had arrived just that year, was especially the focus of attention.
‘…The feeling in my body is starting to come back.’
After coming back to his senses, YuSung began slowly scanning the stadium. He could clearly hear the shouts and cheers of countless audience members in his ears.
– So cool!
– You’re Korea’s representative!
– I bet you’ll win with these skills!
YuSung clenched his fist.
Such a large number of people were cheering him on.
He felt strange.
YuSung still couldn’t forget the words his parents had told him back when they had abandoned him.
[You won’t be able to survive in the Shin-oh family with an F-rank Trait, anyways.]
—His father, when he had learned of his Trait, whose eyes were cold as he looked at YuSung, as if he was a stranger.
[Give up on becoming a hunter and live a normal life. That wouldn’t be too bad.]
—His mother, who said those words and then turned around, leaving him.
To YuSung back then, when he was only five years old, he thought that it was his fault that had happened.
Because his Trait was F-rank…
Because he couldn’t live up to the expectations of his parents…
—That’s why he had been abandoned.
‘Not anymore, though.’
YuSung, who had grown properly under the care of Yu WonHak, knew then that he was not the one in the wrong. The ones who were in the wrong were the Shin-oh family and its head, who had judged their children based on their talent and had abandoned them based on what qualities they had.
YuSung had proven his worth to not just them but to the rest of the world.
The crowd went wild as he smiled and waved his hand.
Adela, the other person on the stage who was the focus, did nothing but look at YuSung.
“…I have something I’m curious about.”
The boy turned his head towards her. Adela’s stare was boring a hole through his head.
“Someone like you could have definitely avoided my attack.”
It was plenty possible for his body, imbued with the Black Dragon’s Body Armor, to do so.
“But why did you meet my attack head-on?” she asked, voice softer than usual.
YuSung answered her bashfully. “I… just wanted to.”
The fervor he felt during the battle…
His body that had been on the verge of collapse…
His mana that was used to his limits…
When YuSung clashed against Adela, he felt his hunter’s instinct rear its head—the one that made him want to attack someone with everything he had.
Adela wasn’t the only one who was happy to fight an opponent who could match her in strength. That was the first time YuSung had ever fought someone using all of his power since he had left the mountain.
The girl nodded after hearing his answer, then threw another question at him.
“…Are you planning to win in the International Competition?”
“Yes,” he replied, nodding.
The International Competition was where nations put their own strength and fame on the line. It was the best chance he had to fight fellow students who were also powerful.
Adela fell into deep thought.
“ I’m looking forward to it,” she finally said, closing her eyes and nodding her head.
“I’ve changed my mind, thanks to you. It seems like… we’ll be seeing each other again.”
And she ended the conversation with those meaningful words.
The discussion the judges in the VIP seats were having ended. Mei Lin, Academy City’s manager, acted as both commentator and judge during the Selection.
“Now, before the voting begins, I will evaluate both students using my authority as a judge.”
The stadium quieted down at her words. The perspective she had on the match as a rank 6 hunter, was different than that of an ordinary citizen’s. What she would say was sure to have an effect on the voting.
“The Competition is an event held between nations. Many rounds and tests will take place during it, which is why I place great importance on balance and endurance.”
Mei Lin glanced towards Adela with the impartial eyes of an evaluator.
“Student Adela’s Trait and Skills are both quite adept at creating many variables. It’s also useful in challenging large numbers of opponents, and her outstanding potential is a given.”
The girl had too many strengths to her to count. Her position as the strongest among the first years in her school was not for show.
But of course, she had her faults.
“But her combat ability relies entirely on her Trait. Due to this, she doesn’t have much endurance. After all, the more destructive the Skill, the more extreme its mana usage.”
Yu HanNah, who had been listening in with rapt attention, threw in a question. “Then, how about balance…”
Mei Lin shook her head. “She’ll be in a pinch if her Trait is incapacitated in some way or if she fights someone who’s a bad match-up against her. Of course, that doesn’t mean her strength doesn’t dominate over her fellow students.”
The criticisms Mei Lin had given were actually rather tacked on. They weren’t critical ones by any measure.
Her mana consumption was large…
She relied heavily on her Trait…
If it was incapacitated, she would be in danger…
Those were not weaknesses exclusive to Adela, but to hunters with strong Traits in general.
The problem was YuSung’s existence.
“On the other hand, Student Shin YuSung’s exceptional physical abilities means that he won out in perseverance during the fight. In the case of a match where he and his opponent have equal combat ability, his reliance on his Trait is low, so there’s no danger of him being incapacitated through it.”
* * *
Translator - Bob
Proofreader - ilafy
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* * *
Mei Lin ended her evaluation there. Next was Shoichi, another member of the VIP wearing a black eyepatch. Called the Mind’s Eye, he was a rank 6 hunter whose expertise had already been well proven.
“I think differently. There’s plenty of time until the International Competition, and if you take into account the constant growth potential of an S-rank Trait…”
Shoichi threw a glance at Yu WonHak before declaring his belief out loud.
“…I think Adela is the correct choice.”
Next was Ju Him Chan.
“Greetings! I am Ju HimChan! I won’t be able to give any commentary based on logic like the ones who spoke before me, but…”
Next was Kang YuChan.
“Haha! To everyone, as the Association president, my assessment is…”
The twenty judges finished their evaluations with the result being 10 versus 10. It seemed like they had already discussed between each other to leave the decision up to the voters.
“Amazing! The judges are evenly split! It must be from the incredible showing both students made during the match, no? But no problem!”
Yu HanNah wagged her finger. As she did so, the screen lit up with the voting percentages again.
[1 – Shin YuSung 0%]
[2 – Adela Ortensia 0%]
“The votes are tallied! And now…! We will display…! The results!”
The numbers on the screen began rising up at incredible speeds in time with a cutesy sound effect.
YuSung and Adela’s vote percentages broke through 10%.
Finally, unbelievably, they both reached 50.
[1 – Shin YuSung 50%]
[2 – Adela Ortensia 50%]
Both participants had an equal number of votes.
“Th-the results of the vote is a 50-50 tie… a-a tie!”
Even Yu HanNah, a pro, tripped over her words in shock at the results.
Right then, Adela slowly raised her hand.
All eyes in the nation focused solely on her as she did so, but she had to speak. She couldn’t just let the results go.
‘…If the portal hadn’t forcibly shut down, it would have been my loss.’
Only Adela, who had faced YuSung’s Savage Dragon's Boulder Crushing Fist head-on, knew this.
In fact, she already knew who would win and who would lose after using most of her mana in her [Snow Opera] skill but still failing to seize victory through it.
The reason why Adela participated in the Selection was not to become the representative for Korea. Nor was it for fame or wealth.
All she wanted was a strong opponent to fight against, and YuSung had more than satisfied her thirst to do so.
Of course, she still had some regrets. Adela wanted to fight against YuSung once again. To do so, it was especially important that she didn’t become Korea’s representative.
‘Since I don’t have the right to.’
Adela began whispering into the nervous energy that hung in the air.
Her words were carried by the speakers and rang throughout the stadium.
All that was left was a brief, calm silence.
Yu HanNah gripped her microphone.
“F-forfeit! Student Adela has forfeited!! Does she think that Student Shin YuSung is more fit to be the winner?”
Mei Lin let out a sigh of relief. As the results of the vote ended up with both getting 50% of the votes, the Association was put into a position where they had to re-check the count—down to the very last vote if needed.
“The winner is decided! The one who will represent Korea, and the one who won the Selection…! Is…! Shin YuSung!”
Yu HanNah herself was simply happy about the results.
The ceiling opened as a flurry of fanciful cannons shot into the sky. The entire stadium was covered in the raucous sounds of the cannons and applause.
Adela didn’t pay her surroundings any mind and instead slowly approached YuSung.
“The next time we meet… I’ll win.”
That wasn’t a bluff. Her entire life, Adela had never hard to do anything on her own. Her talent had been overwhelming and oppressive ever since she had been born.
But that day, she had met YuSung and had lost against him. For the first time ever, she had a goal to chase.
That was possibly the reason as to why she seemed to look happy even when she had lost.
—People changed people.
Whether that was a person’s intention or not, the experiences and relationships one made with others were bound to have an influence over them, and YuSung had certainly influenced Adela with that match.
She stared at the other boy.
Her silver locks swayed beautifully in the air. She grinned.
“Arrivederci (Until we meet again).”
A smile that no one had ever seen before was on her face.
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