Novel Name : The Novel's Villain

The Novel's Villain - Chapter 207

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60. Spring Day (1)
One-Handed Swordsman and the Underworld Conquerors wandered in the Tower of the Great Emperor, finding many warriors staying in its vast interior. Some of them were well-renowned heroes of legends, but even they were just mere prey for the New World players.
They destroyed everyone in their path, living up to their group’s name.
Battered and beaten, their victims began following them, acknowledging their strength. They were creating quite the crowd.
In return, the Underworld Conquerors taught them how to become stronger.
“Your body will always be your most powerful weapon.”
One-Handed Swordsman brought out green underwear from his subspace and handed it to their new allies.
They initially felt awkward wearing it, but they soon got used to it. They couldn’t even imagine themselves wearing anything else now.
“Remember! Green is the symbol of warriors!”
“This sense of freedom… It’s making me feel like I’m bursting with power!”
There was one warrior who particularly followed One-Handed Swordsman.
His name was Pomeus, a warrior chosen by Athena, the goddess of wisdom and war.
Unlike the others, he wasn’t just a soul. He was alive.
Athena cared for him since he was supposed to battle the soldiers of Ares. However, still lacking a lot as a combatant, she sent him to the underworld, tasking him to learn from the countless heroes in it.
Using one of her abilities, she gazed upon him. Athena couldn’t look into the underworld when Hades was still ruling it, but she now had plenty of time to do so. That was also how she was able to send Pomeus down.
It had been a long time since she last saw him, but she didn’t expect him to change this much.
He was only wearing green underwear.
[T-that outfit…]
“This is part of becoming the strongest.”
[Even if so…]
It wasn’t just Pomeus. Many of the underworld’s warriors were all dressed like him or in strange but different ways.
[Who did you learn that from? Radius? No, that can’t be.]
“I learned what it truly meant to be a warrior from One-Handed Swordsman, and Strawberry Underwear bestowed his martial arts upon me!”
[One-Handed Swordsman and… Strawberry Underwear?]
“Yes, they are just as great as Hercules! Because of them, I’m a lot stronger now than when I learned from Chiron!”
Pomeus’s eyes twinkled, preventing Athena from speaking up against his current appearance.
She decided to find who did this to him instead.
[My warrior Pomeus! I want to see your master through your eyes.]
“As you command!”
He went to where the Underworld Conquerors were staying. When he arrived, he found One-Handed Swordsman and Strawberry Underwear in the middle of a duel. Numerous warriors had gathered around them to watch their bout.
One-Handed Swordsman’s muscles twitched. Athena couldn’t take her eyes off him. When he swung his sword, it released a shockwave so powerful the floor cracked and shattered.
He was certainly strong.
Strawberry Underwear’s expression wrinkled as he raised his hands, blocking the attack.
“You truly can’t be beaten using normal means.” He said, stepping back. Crossing his hands, he unleashed his ultimate technique, causing his body to heat up.
The Realm of Destruction had been unleashed.
“One-Handed Swordsman! Do you know why I’m called the Archmage?” White vapor covered his surroundings, preventing everyone from even seeing an inch ahead. The temperature began to drop sharply. “That’s because I have powerful magic in my arsenal.”
[This is…]
It was the perfect smokescreen.
Moreover, since it contained a lot of moisture, it caused their perimeter’s temperature to drop so low ordinary warriors might freeze.
The vapor did, turning them into innumerable mirrors and Strawberry Underwear afterimages.
Athena’s jaw dropped. She didn’t know how to describe what was happening.
Strawberry Underwear whispered, “A burning comet amid a gelid field. This is the Realm of Destruction’s truest form.”
“There’s no mistaking it! You truly are worthy of being called the Archmage!”
His clones attacked simultaneously.
One-Handed Swordsman didn’t bother dodging them. The ground crumbled, and explosions erupted amid the smokescreen, but he stood tall and unmoving.
[He’s perfect!]
Athena exclaimed in admiration!
His steel-like muscles were certainly without flaws. When Strawberry Underwear’s onslaught finished, he spoke up.
“Have you ever felt the heat of a star, Strawberry Underwear?”
“While you most likely modified your body to resist heat, it has always been a part of me.”
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He began to glow, releasing illumination so bright that looking at him felt like staring directly at the sun. The heat he exuded far exceeded the output of beam swords equipped with mana engines.
A beam of light erupted with a swing of his sword, sweeping away all the smoke.
Strawberry Underwear raised his arms to defend himself, heavily tanning them upon contact.
He lowered his hands in silence. Despite sustaining major burns, he looked like he couldn’t care less.
“Amazing. As expected of our vice-captain.”
“You were great too.”
The two exchanged a warm handshake.
Athena stared blankly at One-Handed Swordsman, whose body was still releasing intense heat.
[One-Handed Swordsman…]
A mere mortal who wielded the power of the sun. He was just a human, but his beauty had gone beyond the capacity of his race.
She wanted to make him her warrior.
No, she wanted to bring him to Olympus and have him sit next to him!
She swore to the River Styx she’d protect her maidenhood, but One-Handed Swordsman’s ferocity was more than enough to evaporate that sacred body of water.
Spring had finally arrived for Athena.
* * *
For four weeks, Jin-woo did nothing but remodel the underworld since Persephone broke every part of it under her rule.
Her desire to get Hades’s attention prevented him from operating and maintaining it properly. Hades did his best to repair it until he had reached his limit but to no avail. Fortunately, Jin-woo took over all the work that had to be done when he gained its operating rights.
After Jin-woo connected the tower to Darky, he applied the system he had established previously to it, creating yet another opportunity for Heaven and the Demon Realm to grow rapidly.
He did the same for the Middle-World, ensuring they could be reincarnated in it or other dimensions with their actual levels by adjusting the system.
There were so many members of the Cockroach clan that they could handle the entire dimension. Moreover, some souls were turned into NPCs as well, getting rid of their sins at the cost of making them serve Jin-woo for quite a long time.
Of course, it initially caused problems, but everything stabilized after a while.
‘This place has gotten a lot better now.
Jin-woo looked at the giant mechanical satellite known as Darky floating around the tower. Using the tall infrastructure as its orbit, it processed all the calculations in the underworld.
Thanks to this, he could easily check this dimension’s situation and provide them with instructions through his smartphone. It wasn’t that Hades didn’t think of such a system. He simply couldn’t do it due to a lack of budget.
Such problems were irrelevant for Jin-woo, however. He had more than enough money to know what to do with.
Yoo-na walked over to him.
“It’s been four weeks already. We’re finally reaching the final stages of the plans we made for the tower.”
“That’s great to hear.”
“However, a lot of its space is still being wasted. Let’s find a way to put it to good use.”
Jin-woo judged all the warriors in the Tower of the Great Emperor. Among them, some lived in comfort simply because they were strong.
After assessing them properly, those who didn’t meet his qualifications were either sent to the Demon Realm or reincarnated in the Middle-World or another planet.
Some were connected to Olympus, but it didn’t matter. In the World of Gods or anywhere else, death meant becoming part of the underworld.
Jinwoo’s management over this dimension was equal to everyone, except for himself and those he loved.
“How’s the World Tree Land?”
“Its sales continue to grow. In particular, the customers seem especially fond of the Greek and Roman mythology theme Prof. Kim Dae-jin introduced.”
“Go on.”
“Hercules and the other testers work there.”
Yoo-na showed a video on her tablet of Hercules, Radius, and the other warriors performing along with other staff members.
Their show was named Hercules and the Twelve Labors.
Of course, Hercules’s role was himself fighting off against monsters Kim Dae-jin deployed.
As a result, I was filled with excitement.
“That isn’t acting, isn’t it? He’s actually fighting.”
“Yes, Prof. Kim Dae-jin and the researchers said this is the only way it would feel real and sincere.”
They did this simply because of their sales competition with my subordinates from other dimensions.
Their team was ranked second, and the Demons were first.
“He asked me to bring him mythical characters alive. Monsters as well, which they’ll use for the Greco-Roman Mythology Zoo.”
“That should be a good addition, especially since the underworld’s operating funds come from the World Tree Land.”
“Yeah. As for gods, they’re pretty much immortal. Treating them the same way we treat Hercules shouldn’t be a problem.”
“That’s a great idea.” Jin-woo agreed.
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Peace was indeed nice.
He moved to the arena to check up on Hades and Persephone. Four weeks had passed, after all. However, the wreckage was strangely quiet. Only when he knocked on it did he hear startled sounds inside.
Clearing the rubble, he found enough space inside for two people to sit. It seemed Persephone had used her strength to remove some of the wreckage. Being the son of Zeus, it was only natural for her to be physically strong.
Hades seemed to be in pretty good shape.
Jin-woo looked at him.
“Okay, have you two talked?”
“Y-yes.” Hades nodded. “I misunderstood her.”
“Everything went well, then?”
He hesitated, which made Persephone seem quite angry and somewhat embarrassed. Jin-woo expected their relationship to improve once they talked their problems over, but its effects appeared to be a bit too subtle.
She looked at Jin-woo. Taking deep breaths, she cleared her expression and politely bowed to him.
“Thank you for helping us despite my rudeness.”
“Sure. Is something wrong?”
“… It seems Hades already has another woman.”
She slammed her fist on the floor in rage, sending debris flying in all directions.
Hades looked into her eyes, trembling.
“Violence is bad…”
“O-oh! I made a mistake. I do not like violence!” She exclaimed, puzzled by his words.
He had become even weaker after giving all of his powers to Jin-woo.
‘Persephone is beautiful and has a great personality…’
Yet he found a much better woman than her?
Jin-woo doubted it.
Hades had never told him such a story. Even so, he looked determined, his appearance worthy of being called one of the three major gods of Olympus along with Zeus and Poseidon.
The way he carried himself right now made Persephone blush, but that only made her feel even worse. She sighed deeply.
“What kind of woman is she?”
“About that… Jin-woo knows her too.”
Hades stood up resolutely.
Her broken gaze fell on him.
Jin-woo blinked vacantly.
“From Thumping Harem Town 3?”
The notion was so ridiculous it left him at a momentary loss for words. How could a 2D character defeat a goddess?
“Hades, she’s not real.”
“You’re wrong! Her beautiful soul lives in my heart! I intend to create her with my power.”
“But your power no longer exists, right?”
His pupils shook, finally realizing he was now just an ordinary god with only the power of immortality.
“Our love will overcome this trial. Even if she can’t talk to me right now, I’m willing to wait for eternity.”
His words showed how pure he was, but it made Persephone’s fists tremble.
It took only a week to clear up the misunderstandings they had accumulated. For the remaining three weeks, she did nothing but appeal to him.
But all she received in return for her efforts was the revelation of his love for that damn ‘Yuki.’
‘I-I’m one of the most beautiful goddesses out there! Even Aphrodite acknowledges my charm!’
‘Yuki is way prettier than Aphrodite. Her timid smile is like wildflowers blooming amid a vast field of green. She’s a simple girl, but her beauty is unmatched.’
‘Ugh! I’m smart! I’ve been helping my mother fertilize the land since I was young!’
‘Yuki’s grades in school are always perfect, placing her at the top. She’s also good at sports, has great friends, and was even elected the Student Council president.’
‘What even is going on?’
‘Well, if I were to compare it to Olympus’s hierarchy, she’d be in the same league as Zeus.’
Persephone felt defeated.
According to the information she gathered, Yuki was modest, beautiful, and charming. She was also smart and was in a rank comparable to that of Zeus’s.
Which dimension was that goddess even from?
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Amid their conversation, Hades suddenly bowed deeply to Jin-woo.
“Talking to Persephone made me realize anew what true love is. Thank you for introducing me to Yuki.”
“No, I didn’t do anything…”
He just showed him the game, but he didn’t expect it to turn into something like this.
Persephone slowly raised her head and looked at him, her eyes watery.
“This is too much… I don’t know anymore…”
She had fallen into despair.
“Well, I did lose, so I have to do what you want me to. What exactly do you want, though?”
Now that he thought about it, she did propose that when she challenged Hades to the Great War.
Desperation lingered in each word she uttered.
“Well, I want to go to the World of Gods.”
He could just forcibly pierce through the temple’s devices, but that would likely cause some damage. It would be annoying to visit it on his own.
Persephone nodded and stretched her hand forward. A golden key appeared on her palm.
The key to the World of Gods.
Jin-woo used the power of dominance to establish control over it.
[The Great Emperor now rules over the Key of Zeus.]
[The Great Emperor can now open a portal to the World of Gods anytime, anywhere through the Sanctuary.]
[The gods have noticed the Great Emperor’s existence.]
With this, his work in the underworld was finished.
Hades staggered back to the palace, seemingly in a good mood since he’d be able to see Yuki again. Persephone could only depressingly watch his back retreat away from her.
After a while, she fell to her knees.
She and Jin-woo were the only ones left in the ruined stadium.
For a moment, silence enveloped them.
“I wish I could just turn into stone and stay like this forever.”
“When flowers bloom from me… Name them Persephone’s Despair. They’ll sprout with poisons specifically tailored to kill couples.”
Her body actually began to undergo petrification.
She was a step away from becoming no more than a myth. Jin-woo would have much to gain from her assuming such a state, but he’d feel bad just leaving them like this.
He thought for a moment, then spoke up.
“Wouldn’t it be better if you became better than Yuki?”
Persephone twisted and turned. The despair that had devoured her completely disappeared, allowing hope to bloom within her once more.
“You’re right. I am the most normal god among Zeus’s children. I shouldn’t let that poor goddess defeat me. Can you help me?”
“Well, I know an expert in that area.”
His words deeply moved her.
“I will always be by your side from now on!”
“There’s no need for that…”
“No! This is my resolution.”
Light erupted from her body, almost as if she went through another awakening.
[Persephone has reawakened as a new god.]
*[S] Goddess of Jealousy
Persephone desires to win Hades’ love, and she’s pledged not to give up until she does.
The expert he spoke of was Se-yeon.
Wouldn’t she be able to solve Persephone’s problem somehow?
Jin-woo introduced them to each other.
After that, when he met Persephone again, she was cosplaying, which was apparently a task Se-yeon gave.
[A new fashion trend is becoming popular in the World of Gods.]
[“This outfit makes their wearer look even younger!” Hera shows interest in school uniforms!]
[“If warriors wore feline tails and ears, will they become as slender as a cat?” Athena asks, troubled.]
[“The tail moves! That’s so cool!” Hermes exclaims, having predicted this new trend.]
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[“Unbelievable…” Zeus scoffs.]
Jin-woo turned his gaze away after reading the system messages.
‘It’ll be okay.’
He already played his hand, which should ensure the two deities would end up with each other. What they were going through right now should be treated as no more than a simple married couple’s fight.
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