Chapter 85 - 5th Floor, Psychiatric Ward (1)

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[A gift from the Caladium Kingdom has arrived.]
[Do you accept?]

A blinking golden status window.

‘If it is the Caladium Kingdom…’

Jin-hyuk was a bit shocked. This was a nation belonging to the ‘Empire’, which was hostile to the Murim.

And one of them was Caladium.

‘Did they finally move?’

He thought that a connection would be tried to be established one day, but this was too fast. Well, new variables have emerged, so they couldn’t help but feel greedy.

At the same time, it also meant that the situation was turning urgent enough that even the Empire of nobles had begun to put their pride aside.

‘Both Murim and the Empire. To change the power composition of the tower, they are trying to pre-emptively recruit players who seem skilled.’

So they’re coming out with presents? Weren’t they being cute?

Jin-hyuk smiled while looking at the list.

It was time to see what those who dominated the middle floors had sent him.

Tring!

[You have acquired the skill 'Hazy Body Odor.'
Acquisition Difficulty: F
Description: It is a skill that can erase not just your odor but also your breath and any slight vibration in the air. When used, even wild animals cannot notice your presence. (Time limit: 3 seconds, 3 uses, 24-hour cooldown)]
[The system's deterrence is partially relaxed due to the patronage of a higher power.]

If it had been another floor…

This skill would have been helpful. That was because the activation time was short, but the number of times it could be used was limited.

However, this was different in a situation where they had to escape through crazy patients and named monsters.

‘As long as unique abilities and skills are sealed. Skills which are F-rank are more valuable than S.’

It was like earning extra lives through them.

And if it was given as a gift, then this was something that didn’t violate the rules of the floor….

It seemed like those upper-floor dwellers were quite greedy.

‘Let’s use the skill.’

There was no reason to refuse something freely given to him to curry his favor. There was no reason to feel burdened either.

‘Just walking around a tightrope among various factions, I will suck up all the honey they have to offer.’

This was the classic story of push and pull, which messed with the opponent’s sense of longing.

That was the best position to take for the future.

Nice.

Now that he acquired the skill, this consideration can be stopped. Jin-hyuk then opened the gate to the psychiatric ward.

At that moment.

Woong!

[You have selected the 5th-floor 'Psychiatric Ward'!]
[Unique abilities and skills are sealed.]
[There is only one rule, escape the ward alive.]

A status window appeared that indicated the start of a new floor. Jin-hyuk’s vision then blurred.


Damp air.

A foul smell of blood and waste. The limited vision didn’t allow him to see an inch ahead.

All of this indicated that the chances of his survival here were the worst.

Tring!

[Ancient Dragon, Macedrian's Magic Book has unlocked one of the skills!]
[You can use Eye of Gluttony!]

And a status window appeared. However, the eye was something that could work without limitations.

‘This is why I picked this book.’

But…

‘Things are messy. No matter how much I smell this, I cannot get used to it.’

Jin-hyuk frowned and shook his head. At that moment…

“Uhh…”

“Terrible darkness. Uh! This is the starting point?”

“Damn it, why such a place?’

Jin-hyuk could hear the voice of other people.

“Anyone who can light a fire?’

“We cannot use the abilities because they are sealed. This is like heading back to the stone age.”

These players, who had gotten used to access all kinds of abilities, were suddenly deprived of them. They must feel like modern people being ripped away from electricity.

“Uh? I have something in my pocket!”

“Pocket?”

“Yes. This feels…”

Clack!

Wheik!

A small flame appeared in the dark room with a lighter’s sound. There were five men and women inside that could barely recognize each other.

A pair of western-looking man and woman, an Asian woman, and, finally, a black woman.

‘And me.’

A total of 5 people.

“Phew. I might live now. I would have chosen a different place if I had known that this is how the place is.”

“Um? Do I have something in my pocket?”

“Me too.”

“Same here, a key.”

Survival items were given out at random.

Everyone in the room checked their pockets, Jin-hyuk being the first among them.

‘A ballpoint pen…’

This was a pen commonly found in offices.

If it had been someone else, they would probably be cursing the system for giving them this. Jin-hyuk simply looked at the tip and nodded.

‘Not bad.’

A true veteran doesn’t blame the situation.

They would just use what was there and make the most out of it.

And…

‘We only have newbies gathered here.’

Everything was clumsy from the first coping reaction to arriving in this place. This meant that they had no experience in clearing the psychiatric ward.

In the past, he would have taken them along to enjoy how they would shiver through the situation, but there was no reason to do that now.

Because this wasn’t a game to smile and enjoy oneself in.

“I think we will have to get through it on our own. Has anyone ever been here?”

A large western man asked.

“I did try it once, but it was a long time back…”

“In the start, I heard that the experience of playing on the 5th floor was meaningless because the structure and items changed.”

“That is why I chose this. The mine was so popular that it closed quickly.”

Everyone came here for their own reasons. It was difficult for Jin-hyuk to understand any of these reasons.

“We hit a goal.”

“First, let’s slowly talk and then move.”

The other people were constantly talking among themselves, but Jin-hyuk’s eyes were on the door.

‘Since the light was turned on, it is time for them to come…’

When you turned on the light, it wasn’t just you alone that was granted vision. As soon as the players looked for a fire, those who dwelled in the ward would notice their presence.

And at that moment.

Step.

He could hear a faint sound. The rest of the people spoke so loudly that they didn’t realize this.

Everyone was just expressing their opinions on how to survive.

Step! Step!

The footsteps became louder, and now everyone noticed it.

“W-what is that sound?”

“Lock the door first! Lock the door!’

“Kuak!”

They attempted to close the wooden door, while at the same time…

Bang! Bang! Bang!

The door swung frantically as those outside made their way in.

“It is here! In here!”

“Kuak!”

“Burn everything! Burn them all and purify them!”

“Blood of the heathen!”

“Tear them apart and kill them!”

Voices tinged with madness rang out through the room.

“Eik!”

“Damn it! Are they already here?”

“We need to get out of here right now. I cannot hold onto the door!”

They were people who were once patients here and had lost their minds. After that, they sacrificed themselves to an unknown god and spent their time filled with madness.

Now there were two options left.

Fight or run. One of them had to be chosen.

But the people here couldn’t fight. How do you fight when you cannot use your abilities?

They had to run.

Hurry before their bodies were shredded, and the rest were burned alive!

“W-we need to get out right away!

The big man looked around the room.

Ba-dump!

Jin-hyuk’s heart began to pound faster as the voices of the madmen became louder.

Bang! Bang!

The wooden door began slowly breaking down as pieces were thrown in all directions.

A blade covered with flesh and blood could be seen through the cracks.

There was no time.

A little more, and the door would be smashed.

At the same time…

“Here! This way!”

The black woman pointed to the ceiling and shouted.

A vent.

If they moved up, they would live. At least they wouldn’t be cornered in here.

“Hurry!”

“Damn it, hurry!…. hurry!”

The rest of the people ripped off the vent cover and began to climb up in a hurry.

Kwang! Pop!

Now there was a gap the size of a child’s fist through the door. Through it, a red eye could be seen.

“Pull me up! I will come up too!”

The people supported each other by pushing from below and pulling from above. The occupants of the room left one after another, but…

“What are you doing? You! Come up!”

Jin-hyuk was the last one remaining below. It didn’t seem like he wanted to go up.

“Shit! Abandon him! We cannot take care of everyone!’

“Right! Come on!”

“Tch.”

The man clicked his tongue as he looked at Jin-hyuk in frustration.

Clack!

The vent’s lid was closed behind him.


The seal on skills and unique abilities.

With these two realities alone, the players’ fear peaked to the extreme.

But…

‘I don’t know what you’ll be able to do in the future if you are so afraid of not having an ability.’

Skill competence only served an auxiliary role.

How many other hellish things would happen in the future? Did it mean the end of your life because your abilities were sealed?

‘That is only for the fanatics.’

He did get a gift from the Caladium Kingdom, but it didn’t seem like one which should be used here.

Jin-hyuk held the pen.

Click!

The pen’s tip came out with a familiar sound, and at that moment.

Kwang!

The door was smashed as a group of half-naked men, numbering around 30, came through it.

They were a quite grotesque sight with their misshapen body and bloody eyes.

“Kill him!”

“Cut the limbs off!”

“God wants his blood!”

Rusty sickles and kitchen knives flew towards Jin-hyuk.

“I have been quite curious about it for a long time.”

There was one question that he couldn’t ask the AI.

“I wonder if mad people feel fear?”

Human nature was hidden in front of madness. How long would that mask last?

He wanted to test it.

With those words, Jin-hyuk’s body disappeared like smoke.

Puak!

“Kuak?”

The ballpoint pen dug into the man’s temple in front of him, and a thin stream of blood spurted out from the wound.

“If you want to take advantage of this, you shouldn’t be coming in from a narrow entrance.”

What if there were more people? Two could go through the door at one time.

In addition, a sickle and a kitchen knife were difficult weapons to use in such a narrow place.

Jin-hyuk pulled out the pen and went for the second target.

Puak! Uh!

Eyes, below the chin, uvula.

He aimed for the many vital points which weren’t protected by bones.

“Kuak!”

“Ack!”

Terrible screams rang out.

Each blow was delivered coldly from his hands.

In an instant, more than half of them were just cooling corpses.

“…”

“…”

The ferocious momentum of the mad people was broken.

It couldn’t be helped.

The difference in power between the two sides was too different.

The mad ones who had come here to kill were instead the ones being killed.

“What are you doing? Is it done?”

Jin-hyuk held the ballpoint pen that was dripping with blood.

And at that moment.

Kwang!

With a roar, a wall collapsed.

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