A Monster Who Levels Up - chapter-174
His height and even the face, as well as the ‘atmosphere’ of the
person were different from Kim Sae-Jin, although there were also some
similar points as well.
However, he did say his physique and facial appearance had changed a good
deal due to his Trait’s effects. Truly, the first impression of his
face I got, which was getting very faint in my memories nowadays, did
gradually change as the days went by.
Right. The unexplainable mystery called Trait had disappeared from this
world, hadn’t it?
Of course, just because Traits had disappeared, that didn’t equate to
everything built up by them also disappearing as well. The clear example
of this was my own body, changed with my Trait’s help.
But, no matter how hard I thought about it, that man’s face was
remarkably similar to Kim Sae-Jin’s ‘first impression’ still
faintly remaining in my mind. It might be nothing more than my baseless
hope cooking up some nonsense, but he just felt way too familiar to me.
It was then, Yi Hye-Rin was asking me with her head tilting slightly.
“Sae-Jung?” (Yi Hye-Rin)
“What are you looking at?” (Yi Hye-Rin)
“I…. It’s nothing, really….”
I couldn’t concentrate on the party anymore. I tried to lighten up the
air around me, but I kept on glancing back towards where he was. Watching
him smile brightly while looking at another woman made my chest tighten.
All these men approaching me with smiles were getting annoying now. Even
the wonderful tunes beautifully draping over the party was getting on my
In the end, I had to make up my mind. Except, I couldn’t muster up
enough courage, so I poured the whole glass of champagne down the throat.
Even that wasn’t enough, so I downed another one. And then, another.
People around me were showing confusion at my sudden drinking spree, but
I didn’t care.
After all, the only existence that mattered to me right now was that man.
(TL: Back to third person perspective.)
“Oppa. Did something happen with Yu Sae-Jung Unni somehow?” (Yu-Ah)
Yu-Ah ended up questioning the manager. She could no longer ignore Yu
Sae-Jung continuously glancing at her direction.
However, the manager, Kim Yun-Jeh, simply shook his head disinterestedly.
“No, nothing happened. First time meeting her today.” (Kim Yun-Jeh)
Of course, Yu-Ah didn’t find this easy to accept. How could she be
convinced that there had been no incident of any kind, when Yu Sae-Jung
was repeatedly glancing over at their direction for some time now?
Obviously, one of them did something wrong here….
“Maybe you did something wrong?” (Yu-Ah)
“I’m telling you, there’s nothing…. Ah. Was it because me only
nodding my head once when greeting her just now?” (Kim Yun-Jeh)
“Ah?! You only nodded once? That’s so arrogant, you know!” (Yu-Ah)
Yu-Ah jumped up in surprise and tugged at Kim Yun-Jeh’s arm even harder.
Almost instantly, Yu Sae-Jung’s stares became sharper by a level. It
even felt like her stares were stabbing into their skin.
“Okay then – what should I have done? Bend over backwards 90 degrees
or something?” (Kim Yun-Jeh)
“No, hang on…. maybe not 90, but you could’ve done a 60 instead,
you know!” (Yu-Ah)
“Oh, really? ….No, wait minute here. I’m sure Yu Sae-Jung isn’t
such a narrow-minded woman.” (Kim Yun-Jeh)
“H, hey?! Look at this guy here, blurting out whatever he wants…!!”
Yu-Ah hurriedly covered up his mouth. And then, worried about being
she quickly surveyed the surroundings.
And as expected, Yu Sae-Jung was glaring with terrifying eyes at her
direction – heck, with teeth gritting, no less.
“…..Let’s just get out of here first.” (Yu-Ah)
“What? But why?” (Kim Yun-Jeh)
“I can’t afford to lose Oppa just yet.” (Yu-Ah)
“No, hang on. What are you even on about….” (Kim Yun-Jeh)
In the end, Yu-Ah dragged Kim Yun-Jeh and hurriedly ran out from the
Yu Sae-Jung could do nothing but to helplessly chase after the departing
backs of the duo with her eyes. And there she was, hoping that drinking
four more glasses of the bubbly stuff would finally give her the
necessary courage, too.
She spat out a long sigh, while resenting her aching innards that
didn’t want her to get drunk at all.
Escaping from the party venue alone, Yu Sae-Jung went to find Lillia with
a resolute determination. She could no longer endure it anymore.
She had been waiting until now, fearing that if she learned of his
passing, then the last strand of hope she’d been carrying around all
this time might be gone too. But then, she encountered a man who
resembled Kim Sae-Jin so, so much tonight. So, how could she be expected
to remain calm now?
Lillia found it very difficult to deal with Yu Sae-Jung and her
Although she knew the details, Lillia kept mum because she thought she
was following Kim Sae-Jin’s will. But even she decided to break the
silence after listening to Yu Sae-Jung’s tearful recount of the earlier
Because, Lillia became even more convinced that he indeed got ‘saved by
the Earth’ from Yu Sae-Jung’s testimony.
So, Lillia told her everything, leaving nothing out.
All the ‘worlds’ he had to live through, all the weight of pain and
suffering he was burdened with and had to endure, in order to protect
everyone, and even the reason that made all of that possible.
Pressured by the enormous truth of the matter, which was more than enough
to refer him as a saintly figure, Yu Sae-Jung felt like being crushed to
the floor, and she couldn’t even utter a single word out.
“If that man was really Mister Sae-Jin, then it’s most likely that
the planet has given its thanks and rewarded him. Not only taking away
his Trait, but also his memory as well, allowing him to live happily like
an ordinary person.” (Lillia)
Lillia also tried to search for Sae-Jin’s whereabouts on her own as
well. But, according to the reports of the intelligence operatives, they
couldn’t find anyone resembling him. However, the story changed if he
reverted back to his old appearance before the Trait manifested, just as
Yu Sae-Jung had posited.
No, it was still too early to discard the possibility that the Earth
created a brand new body and revived him.
“In that case, what should we do? What if he really is Kim Sae-Jin?
I….” (Yu Sae-Jung)
“Even if that person really turns out to be Mister Sae-Jin, and even if
he’s not… It’ll be very difficult.” (Lillia)
“No, what the hell are you saying? Are those words or farts? Please,
speak properly so I can understand you!” (Yu Sae-Jung)
Yu Sae-Jung just couldn’t maintain her calm, and Lillia could only look
at her with pitying eyes, before carrying on.
“If he’s not Mister Sae-Jin, then that’s that, but if he is, then
that presents a lot of problems. If a person who had been living for 600
years regains his memories, do you honestly believe he’d be able to
maintain the same personality anymore? Also, in his previous life, his
entire being evolved into the legendary Bahamut. In other words, he had
become a being that’s no different from an actual deity.” (Lillia)
Lillia then added, wouldn’t we look like ants to him once he regains
Yu Sae-Jung couldn’t reply. She wanted to argue about something
nonsensical, sure. But her throat had clammed up and she couldn’t
summon up her own voice anymore.
Her head was full of stinging pain, causing her to think that this truly
unbelievable story sounded far more real than reality, all the while
Lillia’s words stabbing into her heart was making her scared. Terrified.
Finally, she couldn’t withstand the tide of emotions wanting to drown
her and plopped down on the floor. And then, for a long time she cried
while emitting pained moans.
(TL: Back to Yu Sae-Jung’s perspective.)
At first, I was full of despair. However, I somehow regained enough of my
senses and observed him for a long time. It felt like a year had passed,
but in reality, it was only for a month.
If someone saw my obsessed behaviour, I’d be labelled as a stalker, but
every passing day felt like blood was draining from me, so I couldn’t
Every night when I fell asleep, I dreamed a dream and a nightmare at the
same time, the former about him coming back and smiling at me like how he
did before, and the latter about losing him to a girl named Yu-Ah before
he could regain his memories.
And today – I could no longer endure this torture and had decided to
proactively try something. That was today.
I requested Mister Hahn-Sung to schedule a private meeting with the man.
This was possible because he worked in the entertainment industry, while
I was the majority shareholder of The Monster Entertainment.
August 19, 17:47.
Only 13 minutes remained until six in the evening, the scheduled hour for
I soothed my nervousness by chewing on my nails, and I resolved my
worries, albeit only by a small amount, with my legs trembling all the
And as the phone’s screen indicated 18:00…
The door to my office was pushed open.
Stunned silly, I shot right up before I even realised it.
“Hello, there.” (Kim Yun-Jeh)
“Ah, yes, h, helloooOOOW!!”
Oops, I got too loud there, didn’t I? My consciousness dimmed for a bit
thanks to that stupid mistake of mine. But, I couldn’t black out here,
no matter what…. I desperately held on and pointed at the couch.
“P, please have a seat. Hurry.” (Yu Sae-Jung)
He tilted his head slightly, but still managed to sit down. Soon enough,
a silence descended in the office for the next three seconds, but as I
couldn’t endure it, I hastily walked over to the desk where tea and
snacks had been arranged.
“Would you like some tea?” (Yu Sae-Jung)
“Eh? No, I’m….”
“Drink.” (Yu Sae-Jung)
I obstinately put the tea cup down on the coffee table. I couldn’t help
it – my heart was beating so wildly, it was nigh-on impossible to act
normally right now.
“Oh… uh, sure.” (Kim Yun-Jeh)
I carefully studied the way he glanced at the tea and the prepared
refreshments. The cold sweat slowly pooling behind my neck began dripping
down my backside.
Actually, this arrangement was a ruse to try and discern the truth.
A person’s habits ingrained into one’s body would never change, even
if he had lost all his memories. And I could remember all of his habits
clearly, since I had lived with him for a such long time….
And in that moment, electricity zapped my back.
The way he held the tea cup, the way he ate refreshments…
I was sure now.
This man here, he was Kim Sae-Jin.
“May I ask for your name again?” (Yu Sae-Jung)
“…..My name is Kim Yun-Jeh.”
Of course, the name was different. But, this man was, without a doubt,
Kim Sae-Jin. That sitting posture, his waist slightly turned away when
facing me; that habit of rubbing the left thumbnail when nervous; even
the actions of sweeping his hair away.
Seeing him like this, I got buoyed by my emotions and ended up asking him
an unexpected question.
“Don’t you recognise me?” (Yu Sae-Jung)
His face showed how confused he was. He looked so adorable then, I was
tempted to embrace him tightly. But I knew better than anyone that I
should not do that.
“Don’t you recognise me? Me, I’m Yu Sae-Jung.”
“…..Ahh. Of course, I recognise you. I’ve seen you on TV quite
often.” (Kim Yun-Jeh)
“….Besides that?” (Yu Sae-Jung)
My sights were blurring. Seemed like tears were blocking up my view but I
couldn’t wipe them away. I lost all strength in my arms, that was why.
Afterwards, it was like several screws came loose in my head. I
couldn’t remember what we talked about at all. I could only suspect
that I might have tearfully repeated the question ‘don’t you
recognise me’ over and over like a mad fool.
Whatever the case might have been, when I came to, he was no longer in
the office. That felt even worse than before, and I ended up crying
alone. I really sobbed at the top of my lungs.
(TL: Told from the third person perspective. C’mon, Author, just stick
with one perspective for the whole chapter already!!!!)
With a swollen pair of eyes, Yu Sae-Jung called for an urgent meeting of
The Monster Guild members. Well, the only people she could openly discuss
this matter was with other Guild members, after all.
“What a complicated situation this is…. So, you’re really sure that
guy is Mister Sae-Jin?” (Kim Yu-Rin)
“Yes, I’m almost definitely sure. Well, I still need to look up what
had happened here, though.” (Yu Sae-Jung)
At Kim Yu-Rin’s question, Yu Sae-Jung replied in a calm manner. It was
as if she had regained some peace of mind after sobbing her eyes out.
“Okay, so? What’s the problem? You just have to go at it nonstop, no?
I mean, Sae-Jung-ah, you can pretty much seduce any guy if you wanted to,
right? So, you wrap him around your fingers first and be in love
together, whatever, then wouldn’t his memories slowly return in
time?” (Yi Hye-Rin)
Yi Hye-Rin’s solution was the most brilliant one considering the
situation. However, the sole problem with this suggestion was that it
wasn’t only Yu Sae-Jung who had realised something important from it.
Both Kim Yu-Rin and Hazeline carried serious expressions as if deep in
thought and meaningfully rubbed their chins.
Seeing this, Yu Sae-Jung hastily pounded on the table. Her entire body
trembled from the shock of this sudden betrayal.
“You guys better not think of something funny. I’m warning you!!”
“W, why are you saying I’m thinking of funny things now…?”
Hazeline sneakily avoided Yu Sae-Jung’s gaze and pulled out her phone.
Since this action was very suspicious, Yu Sae-Jung quickly snatched it
“I was just thinking about how to restore Mister Sae-Jin’s memories,
that’s all.” (Kim Yu-Rin)
Even though Kim Yu-Rin spoke thus, there were droplets of perspiration
clearly visible on the back of her hands.
Yu Sae-Jung frowned deeply and glared at them.
It was then.
“Hey, everyone, I found him!!!”
Bathory literally kicked the door down and entered the venue.
“I said, I found him!!!” (Bathory)
“….What the heck.”
As soon as the gazes gathered on her, Bathory triumphantly declared to
“I just so happened to catch a Mah-in with a funny ability, you see?
This b*stard can sense the flow of Mana signature even if it’s gone out
of our dimension….” (Bathory)
“Oh, you mean Kim Yun-Jeh? The man working as a manager at the
Suddenly, Bathory’s face froze up like a stone statue.
“…..And just how the hell you idiots know that?” (Bathory)
Everyone gathered in the conference room giggled softly, while Yu
Sae-Jung approached and gently held Bathory’s hand.
“Thank you, for the confirmation.” (Yu Sae-Jung)
Kim Yun-Jeh was on his way back from the convenience store after buying a
Western-style takeaway, then his steps came to a halt after seeing many
stuffs belonging to a new tenant moving in piled up on the apartment
For some reason, quite a few unbelievable people started becoming his
neighbours lately. He had no idea why, but Hazeline and Kim Yu-Rin, Joo
Ji-Hyuk and Yi Hye-Rin, Kim Sun-Ho and Rhosrahdel, as well as other
members of The Monster had moved into this apartment building.
Of course, he wasn’t discontent or some crap like that. Actually, he
was really happy at the fact that the price of the place he bought with
borrowed money had shot up through the roof, and that he was sitting on
the proverbial gold mine as a result. That was why he could carry a huge
Kim Yun-Jeh stared at the tall height of the stuff belonging to the new
tenant, and eventually, his eyes met the blue sky above.
The blue Summer sky with not one cloud on sight, it sure looked pretty.
And to think, such a clear sky was covered in darkness and on the brink
of apocalypse a few years ago, or so he heard.
“To protect that sky, the Bahamut had sacrificed itself, you know.”
It was then, a rather sexy voice tickled his earbuds.
He turned around to find Yu Sae-Jung. Only then, he remembered that she
too had moved to this apartment as well. The media was shouting about her
presence being the ‘finishing touch’ or some such.
“The Bahamut, you say?” (Kim Yun-Jeh)
“Yes.” (Yu Sae-Jung)
“…..Ha, haha…” (Kim Yun-Jeh)
Kim Yun-Jeh just chuckled. Well, he couldn’t remember any of that,
anyways. He probably did see it back then, no, without a doubt, he lost
his memory after getting entangled in that somehow, and now, the inside
of his head was as empty as a sheet of blank paper. It was such a
frustrating and rather lonely feeling, this.
Yu Sae-Jung carefully approached him as he chuckled bitterly to himself.
“Mister Yun-Jeh, do you live around here?” (Yu Sae-Jung)
“Oh, uh, yes, I do.” (Kim Yun-Jeh)
“What a coincidence, then. I just moved here, too.” (Yu Sae-Jung)
Yu Sae-Jung pointed at the stuff behind her and grinned refreshingly.
“…..Oh, really?” (Kim Yun-Jeh)
While seeing Kim Yun-Jeh’s uninterested eyes looking back at her –
no, seeing Kim Sae-Jin like that, she firmly resolved herself once more.
And that was – even if he had lost all the memories created with her
and thus no longer was Kim Sae-Jin, she would still not give up. She
would do anything possible to get him back. No matter what.
And so, for her very first operation (?) today, she even resorted to
borrowing the power of “mother”. With the justification that the
mother was to be her in-law soon enough, she searched around and finally
located a certain charnel house, and located the only photo the
mother-in-law and the ‘husband’ took together all those years ago.
While apologising furiously inside her mind, Yu Sae-Jung walked past him
and dropped the photoframe ‘accidentally’. Hearing the thud, her
chest jumped a bit, hoping that the glass didn’t shatter from the fall.
And as she pretended to not notice for the next three seconds or so, he
started talking to her first, as planned.
“Excuse me, this….” (Kim Yun-Jeh)
He picked the photoframe off the ground and stared at it for a long time.
At that very moment, her heart stopped beating. Please, please…
However, the meaningful glint in his eyes only lasted for a short while.
He just tilted his head slightly and handed over the frame to her.
But Yu Sae-Jung was satisfied by this. The signs of confusion and deja vu
written large on his face for a brief moment, those were enough. The
possibility definitely existed now.
“….Looks like you were heading in as well? Would you like to
accompany me along the way?” (Yu Sae-Jung)
“Yes? Ah, sure.” (Kim Yun-Jeh)
He nodded his head.
Although it was only ten seconds from there to the elevator, she still
felt unbelievably happy inside.
She even wanted to hold his hand, but decided not to get too greedy. Just
walk alongside, for now.
“By the way, is it okay to leave your stuff back there like that?”
Hearing him, Yu Sae-Jung pointed at the photoframe, or more correctly, a
boy smiling inside the photo.
“I only… need this one, you see.” (Yu Sae-Jung)
It didn’t matter to her even if he had no memories of the past.
In that case, all she had to do was to create new, fun memories with him,
and to replace the old one that was filled with only the lonesome,
Although her efforts might be cheaper and worth nothing compared to what
he had experienced, she was still prepared to wait and pour every fibre
of her being to make her resolutions a reality.
“See you around~.” (Yu Sae-Jung)
“…..Ah, sure thing.” (Kim Yun-Jeh)
She stared at the side of his face somewhat shyly while her fists
She wasn’t worried, nor did she feel scared. No, she simply imagined
the bright future with him once more and smiled.
The sky had cleared up wonderfully now.
And surely, the brightly smiling sun floating in that blue clarity would
continue to shine with warmth on them, hopefully without the darkness
trying to dye the world again.
And after some time would flow by…
‘Someday, that happiness we’ve been wishing for will be ours.’
Yu Sae-Jung gazed at him, and smiled radiantly like the sun.
[The author, Jee Gab Song’s postscript.]
Everyone, thank you for reading until the end. I love you, my readers.
Even to my own belief, all my words seemed really lacking, but still….
I can only thank you again and again.
While writing this, I had a few regrets and felt bad about missed
chances. Since I lacked the gift of gab, I can’t seem to explain myself
To summarise in three sentences:
Even though this work was lacking, regretful and somewhat incomplete even
from the author’s point of view, I still like to thank every one of you
for reading it regardless. I’m sure there were times when you thought
you didn’t get your money’s worth – you have endured well. I’d
like to return with even better work next time! Everyone, I’ll see you
all later. Goodbye!