Sorry for such a late update. The translation wasn’t satisfactory. It still isn’t, but I’ll have to edit it in the future. Can’t keep the readers waiting forever.
Chapter 1. I didn’t know back then (1)
Normally, when you look into a fantasy light novel,
The main character would either get a special weapon, a special skill, or in some cases, the main character would even drag a goddess with him (doesn’t seem all that useful, though).
Or in sometimes, the main character already happened to be learning magic, and would get transported into a world that had a very primitive form of magic. In some other cases, the main character would actually reincarnate as a monster like a slime or a goblin, and still manage to wreck shit.
But, my dear readers, this is all fiction! It ain’t real!
It works quite a lot like fiction in kdramas. You don’t meet rich-ass sons of bitches just by bumping shoulders with them on the street. We all know this is all just bull. No way these rich kids would be eating shit oden in a random food cart, or eat out at a hole-in-the-wall restaurant. Nope, that kind of stuff never happens in real life.
I don’t know specifically what kind of steak they eat, and in which 5-star hotel they eat it at, but I know for sure that these people don’t go around food carts eating cheap food. Ah well, I suppose the part of the dramas that’s actually fictional is the main heroine being some sort of a legendary creature that was an orphaned beauty who went through all kinds of hardships in life. Well, whatever. Back to our talk about the bs in fantasy stories. Take a look at this load of bull. In a lot of light novels, main characters are able to understand the languages of the world they reincarnate in. Hell, even in our world, there are hundreds of different languages that get spoken in one continent. Why would the people in a different dimension of all things all universally speak Korean? Well, in reality, they don’t. Because of this, I had to spend five years of my life learning how to speak. Normally in this world, kids would speak by the age of three, and learn how to write by the age of five.
I became able to write properly by the age of ten. My parents almost decided that I was hopelessly stupid by that time. Thankfully, I managed to change their minds with my math skills.
But this was a world that recognized kids as a math whiz as long as they could add and subtract pretty well. People in my village almost thought I was a genius at math because I was able to multiply and divide. And as for the knowledge I had other than math… all useless. There were no computers, so my knowledge in computers were all gone to shit. I spent half of my life in a place called school, but in the end, the only thing that became useful was knowing how to add and subtract… Truly, the Korean education system was total trash. And once again, I was reminded that fiction, in the end, was fiction.
Yeah, modern knowledge. It’s pretty useful. But so what? Knowing what a chair looks like, and knowing how to make a chair are two totally different things. The specialized tools to make a chair are nigh impossible to recreate in this world. If making just a chair is this hard, how much effort do you think goes into making a gun? Even if you know what guns look like, how would you create the parts of the guns? If you don’t have the skills, all you have are dreams. Even if you know about something that already exists, it just ends up becoming a part of your imagination!
In the end, I decided to inherit my parent’s farm. The knowledge I accumulated in school was useless, but the skills I accumulated in the military weren’t! As expected of Korea’s brutal military training! Korea’s most advanced form of weaponry, the shovel, applied in just about any situation!
My skills in using the shovel almost made my father say “you truly were a child born to shovel!” Really, all my talents lay in farming!
…I used to have those moments in life.
When I was thirteen, my parents passed away.
The reason? An evil wizard’s experiment! …that wasn’t it.
The whims of a corrupt noble! …that wasn’t it either.
The demons that wrecked havoc during the demon season! …Nope.
Their true cause of death was electrocution. An evil wizard blocked a magic spell from the hero, and the remnants of it happened to bounce off to my parents.
Just like the innocent cars that randomly hit each other and explode in action movies during a car chase, my parents died while trying to pay taxes and sell their crops in the city.
To think I’d be this unlucky… I wondered for a bit how I should lead my life as the new family head, but in the end, I decided to farm. After all, the country still paid me some reparations for the damages, right? I still have land and crops to back me up!
…There was a time when I thought that, too.
I could only laugh as I watched my crops burn. It’s been a year since my parents died. It’s been only a year, and our feudal lord just decided to give me a big fuck you… rather, he gave the country a big fuck you.
A gold mine was found on the borders between our nation and some other nation, and that place happened to be close to our fief.
Our lord, after getting several suggestions from his subordinates, decided to conquer the mines. He defeated the troops stationed there by a fief lord from a different country.
Right. So far, this seems to be all good. But the fief lord became overexcited by taking over the gold mines, and charged into the country across the border!
The fact of the matter was, that country across the border happened to be the empire, the strongest nation in the continent. Our fief lord, who had believed that his army had been blessed by the gods, got got pathetically killed by the enemy. At the same time, the empire took this as a declaration of war, and attacked the nation the very next day. They managed to topple the capital in two months.
Ah, by the way, the sea of flames in front of me was caused by the empire, who decided to make an example out of those who acted out against the empire. They set fire to the lands of our fief, and my land happened to be in it. That’s right. Farming just went to shit! Fall was still quite far away, but I couldn’t farm using just ashes!
That’s why, that’s why the reason why I became a gangster was because of the world! I wanted peace, but the world didn’t let me have it!
Ah, and by the way, I’m not one of those loan sharks or anything. I just mug people.
I have no idea if this is really a good thing or not, but the nation I lived in ended up getting split into seven pieces. Originally, the empire took only a fourth of the nation, but the king ended up getting into a coma from shock, and the princes ended up fighting for the throne. A count even managed to join the battle for power at some point. In any case, at a time like this, a lot of people decided to either turn into bandits or thieves. I had pretty decent sword skills, so I decided to earn cash from that. I was thinking of going to the empire once I had enough cash.
I teamed up with one or two people, and sometimes collaborated with other groups I shared info with to raid some villages. Sometimes I got together with some old bandits and a noble to beat up some nobles as well.
Once I earned enough money like this, and began searching for a smuggler to get me into the empire, someone came to meet me.
“How is it?”
I was being scouted. Hoho, I remember working myself to the bone, close to the point where I actually died in the past. Even then, I wasn’t scouted because I had no talent at what I did. I do some bad things, and whazam, someone comes to get me in a red carpet. From the biggest evil organization in the empire at that.
“The pay is pretty good.”
“Incentives are nice as well.”
“Seems pretty dangerous.”
“Well, it’s similar to what you’re doing now.”
“Do I have to kill myself if they tell me to do so?”
“Yes. You just need to be careful, though.”
I need to really put my life on the line. But unlike my previous life in hellish Korea, the pay was actually good. Enough to make me want to risk my life.
“I’ll do it.”
Like this, I, a to-be fifteen year old, joined an evil organization.