Chapter 83 - Magic Library (1)

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[The central theme of the 5th floor is 'Escape']

The male person on TV spoke.

[Escape, are you saying it is about being trapped?]
[Yes. There isn't much information because all the videos and records from the past have disappeared. We were able to reconstruct the up to the 8th floor based on the memories of players who played the game.]
[Ah. That much?]
[Haha. It is all thanks to the veterans.]

“It’s funny that people who only managed to go up to the 8th floor are being considered great when they’re actually just stagnant. We had people who went up to the 15th floor and left too.”

Lee Taemin clicked his tongue while watching TV.

“I know. But what can we do? Most people had left the game before the 8th floor. It’s amazing they got information till the 8th floor at all.”

Yoo Yeon-hwa chimed in.

“But. By our standards, the hurdles are too much for other people.”

“If we look at it that way, I think having information is a big deal.”

“Isn’t that a natural thing?”

Everyone joined in the conversation.

On everyone’s faces was the pride of reaching up until at least the 15th floor.

Um…

Jin-hyuk, who was looking at them, scratched his cheek.

‘Should I not say anything?’

To those who considered their own last floor the highest, if he told them that he had seen the end of the Tower, then they might just die.

And these people were his colleagues. He cannot hurt them.

Especially Chun Yuseong would be the first to walk away if he knew he would get teased for stopping near the 20th floor.

‘Really. I should think about the mentality of the team members. Even if I think about myself, I feel like a bastard.’

As Jin-hyuk was nodding his head.

[… if so, then what kind of escape is it?]
[The purpose of the 5th floor is to choose one of the deadliest places to survive: a mental hospital, a gladiator area, a mine, or an uninhabited island and then escape from it.]
[It cannot be as difficult as I think, right? If the location is known in advance, can't the escape be prepared?]

Information was necessary for any escape plan.

What characters would be there, what type of terrain, what would be seen, and what other information?

This meant they would need to know everything in advance and prepare for it.

[Haha, thinking about it is quite easy. But no. On the 5th floor, the location and the composition inside change every time, so the advantage of having information fades fast. Nerfs are also applied on top of magic being sealed. Instead, this will be the most difficult one.]
[Magic is sealed?]
[Yes. Players are meant to clear it with just their own strength.]

A nerf that sealed unique abilities and skills. The 5th floor’s start was already the worst.

“This floor is so annoying.”

“Phew. I need to relax a little more.”

“Ah, for real, it was a floor I hated to even look at…’

Sighs came from all around as everyone stared at the floor. Everyone was probably thinking the same thing, but…

Jin-hyuk was smiling.

He knew.

How to easily get past this floor.

And what preparation had to be made.


The next afternoon.

Jin-hyuk, who recovered from the fatigue at a hotel, laid out the rewards he had received.

‘A-rank random box.’

‘Advanced Skill Enhancement Book.’

‘10% discount coupon for coin exchange.’

‘Magic Library Admission Ticket.’

Four items.

He had collected all of them and wanted to check them out right away, but…

“Status Window.”

Jin-hyuk opened his personal status window instead. This was because he needed to distribute the stat points he had gained.

Name: Kang Jin-hyuk
Gender: Male
Age: 27
Level: 34
Strength 16 Agility 16 Stamina 16 Magic 62 Rift 100 Luck 10 Adaptive 10
Stat Points: 21
Coins: 235,341
Unique Abilities: Fusion, Sword Grave, Blessing of the Stars…
Skills: Lv6' Element of Fire', Lv4' Eye of Gluttony', Lv3 'Communion', Lv3' Stigma on Soul', Lv4' Shallow Breath', Lv5' Glacier Formation'…

He had gone up seven levels in one go, and his status window was insane.

Ba-dump!

His heart began to beat quickly.

‘In the past, I thought I had to grow up with one perfect growth…’

But that was an illusion.

It was because his current growth speed was incomparable to the past.

‘Haha. This is insane.’

The real Tower of Trials had a level of difficulty that differed from the game.

But with that increased difficulty.

‘I have more room to grow.’

The past experiences that he had accumulated, as well as his collected skills, were proof of how strong he had become.

Feeling nice about this, he distributed the 21 stat points he had.

[Strength from 16 to 19]
[Agility from 16 to 19]
[Stamina from 16 to 19]
[Magic from 62 to 74]

Magic was always important.

As he had raised it by 12 points at once, he found the magic flowing around his body moving more smoothly.

Nice.

And then…

Jin-hyuk picked up the ‘Advanced Skill Enhancement Book’.

An item that raised any skill above Lv 10 by 1 level and any below Lv 10 by 3 levels.

Considering that it was difficult to raise skill levels, this book was not something that could be easily exchanged for coins. Jin-hyuk already knew where to invest this time.

‘Glacier Formation is the most important thing to grow, not only for the 5th floor but for the future.’

It was a versatile skill that could be used in various situations for attack and defense.

If he had to choose just one thing, that would be at the top of the list.

Woong.

The book vanished with a bright light and…

[Glacier Formation has been upgraded to Lv8]

Psss….!

A cool breeze spread through the hotel.

“What? Don’t you think it suddenly got cold? Did they turn on the air conditioner?”

“What kind of idiots turn on air conditioning in late autumn? Shit! Besides, it isn’t even like air conditioning. This is freezing temperature.”

“I think there is something wrong with the central air conditioner…”

“Resolve it quickly so that the customers don’t feel uncomfortable if a complaint comes in saying someone got a cold because of this, we will die!’

Jin-hyuk didn’t realize that the hotel staff was scrambling to find the cause of this sudden issue. Meanwhile, he was picking up a golden box lying on the bed after strengthening his skill.

An A-rank random box.

As the name suggests, anything was possible from this box, making it similar to roulette.

Wooong!

A large golden roulette appeared in the room with numerous Rank-A items engraved.

‘Let’s see.’

As he lowered the lever on the side, the roulette wheel began to spin.

One, two.

Tring!

[Please press the red button in the center.]

When the button was pressed, an item would be selected from the roulette.

But.

Jin-hyuk waited patiently with his arms crossed. He looked at the button as if he didn’t care.

[Time has been exceeded]
[Time has been exceeded]

A red status window kept flashing a warning at him. However, even though the message appeared, the roulette didn’t disappear.

‘Cheap threats.’

Jin-hyuk checked the status window and lowered the level again.

However, this time, too, he didn’t push it, and there was a reason for doing this.

A bug? A manipulation?

Jin-hyuk had discovered a loophole within the system that was rigged to fuck with the players.

‘If the roulette is given up 36 times, then the speed of it will decrease by 99.99% on the 37th spin.’

It was like playing in slow motion. After that, he could wait and get what he wanted.

Actually, last night, he used this method to pick the item that Chun Yuseong wanted.

But just one issue with this method.

The downside was that an item gained from this method could only be used for one week. A playful smile hung on Jin-hyuk’s lips.

Chun Yuseong’s new elemental sword would break down in a week.

‘I am a bit sorry, but I didn’t lie.’

He had promised him the items he needed and provided them to him. He never promised the sword would last forever.

Above all, he could enjoy the elemental sword for at least a week.

As he nodded, the 37th turn came, and the roulette’s spin became unbearably slow.

Now was the time.

Jin-hyuk pressed the red button for the first time.

[You have chosen the A-rank Three Colored Orbs!]

Red, white and black.

Three pills with different abilities appeared.

If he planned to use these within one week, he would need to attack the next floor soon.

Jin-hyuk put the orbs into his subspace.

‘A coupon that gives a discount on coin exchange. I can use it later when the video gets a lot of views.’

One last thing.

The Magic Library.

Advanced versions of skills, ancient magic, and barrier skills which only appeared in the middle to higher floors.

A library of other dimensional knowledge that allowed a player to learn magic-related skills that others could not access. The idea would give any ambitious player excitement.

However, Jin-hyuk’s face held some tension. The manager of the library was quite a menacing character.

‘After a while, I will be meeting him again.’

Rick Hennessy, the librarian who managed the library.

He also owned the largest pawn shop in the Tower.

Jin-hyuk had often traded there in the past and had given Rick the nickname of Thanos.

This was because any item brought by another party would be purchased at half price and sold for double the original price.

Indeed a miracle transaction.

Leisure that only those with large amounts of money could enjoy and do.

But…

This time things will be different.

‘This will be your first time meeting me now.’

‘And not my first time meeting you.’

This was different from the past when he knew nothing of how things worked. This time he knew everything about the opponent.

Jin-hyuk bought some items from the Coin Exchange.

He then held onto the most important ticket from his rewards.

[Magic Library is opened]

Kukuku!

A green gate appeared.

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