[RoTL] Chapter 2. Self-Defense(1)

Author: Flatter
The Author of this story, Flatter, has full rights over this story, and I am translating this work with his permission.

—–

Today was the 72nd time.
This morning, a strange occurrence where people were transported to a new world happened once again.
Strangely enough, they were all Korean.
And they all had a strange terminal strapped to their wrist.
The terminal’s initial message was this.

[Only the person who kills the Demon Emperor may return.]

No one knew what the Demon Emperor was, or who it was.
But, these people now had an objective.
Level up, take up a powerful class, kill the Demon Emperor, and return to their world.
But this new world did not take them up in open arms.
On the first day, a being with a cow’s head and a giant warhammer, the minotaur, appeared and slaughtered people.
Many died, and those who survived were separated from each other.

“Where is this?”
“Fuck, why were we here in the first place?”

The survivors were sitting down in the desolate land with a troubled face.
There were up to 20 people here, but in truth, several tens of thousands of people had been transported to this place.
The night was dark.

“Let’s go over what happened so far, first.”

The middle-aged man who sat in front of the fire calmed everyone down.

“My name is Hwang Yongho. I am thankful that you all decided to follow me. I’d like to know everyone’s names, but I believe it would be better for us to come to terms with what just happened to us.”

Hwang Yongho was a man with a physique that resembled a bear. He had a rough, unkempt beard on him, and he was the oldest person in the group.

“This all happened this afternoon. As soon as we came here, I gathered teammates, and scouted the area. There was a giant forest filled with plants I had never seen before. When I saw this, I immediately knew that we weren’t in Korea.”

The ones who were with Hwang Yongho at the time all nodded.
Hwang Yongho slowly continued talking.

“We kept climbing up. We were trying to find some food, and we wanted to reach the peak to survey our surroundings. But while we were doing this, we encountered something unbelievable.”

People were beginning to pay attention to Hwang Yongho’s words.
Hwang Yongho spoke with a low voice, as if he was telling a secret to everyone.

“It seemed to be a person who was in the same situation as us. A lone man was climbing the mountain. Perhaps he was trying to find some food. We were about to ask him to work with us, then……. A giant orc came out of the bush next to him.”
“Orc? Orc as in green-skinned creatures with large canines?”

A man with glasses spoke with a surprised expression.
The others made a similar face.
Hwang Yongho nodded with a serious face.

“Yes. It was that orc. It was big enough to make us believe that just 5 of us wouldn’t be able to take it out. It was holding a big club, and it used its club to beat the man. The man’s body ripped in two, and fell down. The orc beat the man into a mush of meat, and ate it.”

A bead of cold sweat ran down everyone’s backs.
To think there would be such a monster in the forest.
This really was a violent, lawless place.
And to think there was an orc.
This place might actually be a medieval fantasy world that only existed in books.

“That wasn’t all.”

There was more?
The people looked at Hwang Yongho with a face filled with curiosity and concern.
Hwang Yongho, at this moment, had more attention than any storyteller.
Hwang Yongho tapped on the terminal strapped to his wrist.

“You must all know that there is a special system in this device.”

Everyone nodded.

When they got transported to this world, they were all given a unique tool.
Tools such as a small poisonous knife, or some spiked leggings.
When they equipped, or held the item on their hand, the terminal displayed the information of the tool.
When they tapped on a certain switch, a display of experience points, and level appeared.
No one knew who gave it to them, but the terminal was something essential for those who were in a foreign world.

“As you know, we can earn experience and advance as we kill things. It is also possible to take on a certain class, although we don’t know how this works yet. The problem is, this privilege also applies to ‘monsters’ like orcs.”

At that moment, a few people paled. Someone quickly asked a question.

“What do you mean? What do you mean that this applies to monsters as well? This wasn’t something given exclusively to us?”
“Unfortunately, it’s not. When the orc killed someone, the terminal displayed a clear message. [Wandering Orc Ashrem has levelled up.] Anyone could see that the orc had levelled up.”

The people made a face of despair when they heard Hwang Yongho’s calm voice.
Even monsters could level up?
This was different from normal games.
This meant that the players would become the hunted.
One woman, unable to take this all in, sobbed, and asked a question.

“Then…… what shall we do?”
“It’s simple. We just have to level up. We just have to get strong enough to let no one kill us.”
“But how? We’re weak. We’ll get hunted down before we even manage to do anything.”

When a man said this with a worn out voice, Hwang Yongho smirked.
Everyone envied how Hwang Yongho was able to smile in this situation.
But his smile seemed to be strangely twisted in some way.

“We just have to hunt the weak, in that case.”
“What?”
“If the monsters are too strong, we just have to get the humans.”

At that moment, everyone became silent.
Someone asked a question.

“We’re going to commit murder?”
“This is the best way to survive here.”

Everyone looked at each other, but didn’t say anything.
Strangely enough, no one talked about morals in this situation. They all saw people die in the hands of monsters. They did not wish to end up the same way.
Hwang Yongho expected this, and brought seemingly weak people with him.
Seeing how no one really tried to refute him, it was easy to see how skilled Hwang Yongho was when it came to choosing the right people.
A man swallowed a wad of spit, and asked a question.

“Then……. How shall we kill?”
“We’ll act at dawn, and we’ll have to aim someone who is acting alone. In order to find out how we gain experience with multiple people acting out against a single being, we’ll tie up the person, and attack him all at once. The one who did best in the battle shall be the one to get the prey’s items.”

Hwang Yongho gave them a set of rules, and as simple as it may be, it still made the people feel a little safer. They managed to get an objective for once. A woman, who seemed to have become a little excited, spoke.

“Who shall we target?”
“I already had someone in mind, actually.”

Hwang Yongho pointed to a small wooden building in the distance.
It was an old workshop.
A small light could be seen from the inside, indicating that someone was inside.

“I peeked in, since I heard something break, and I managed to find a lone man inside. He didn’t seem that cautious, and he seemed like someone who gave up on his life. How about we kill that man first?”

The survivors nodded in agreement.

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