Hunter Academy's Battle God - Chapter 1
Our peaceful world changed after the Outbreak released monsters into it.
All sorts of unthinkable foes like dungeons, gates, towers, monsters, and others threatened all of mankind and birthed many casualties.
Of course, that didn’t mean that this was the end of humanity. Humans were given special powers.
“That’s what they call Traits, blessings given to hunters. However!”
With a fire lit in his eyes, Yu WonHak—a master with white hair—spit out his words and hit the ground with his fist.
The ground split with the tremors Yu WonHak’s punch created. Baring his yellowed teeth, he grinned at the mere five-year-old Shin YuSung with a scary expression.
“Hunters these days are hopeless! They screw around by relying on those Traits and then die off in dungeons!”
Shin YuSung kept his mouth shut and nodded in lieu of an answer. Seeing the expression on his face, Yu WonHak gave a pleased smile.
“And what does a hunter need to not die a gruesome death in a dungeon?”
At the Fist King Yu WonHak’s question, the only five years old Shin YuSung hurriedly scoured his head for a response, then carefully raised his hand.
Yu WonHak laughed like a maniac at Shin YuSung’s response, then lifted him up.
“Yes, strength! A hunter should rely solely on their body! Traditionally, a hunter should use their overwhelming strength to crack open the opponent with one punch, whether it’s a villain or a monster!”
He placed Shin YuSung on the ground and continued talking with a cool voice.
“That’s why I brought you here from the orphanage—because you were born with the perfect body.”
Yu WonHak’s words were right. Shin YuSung had an innate constitution that was blessed by the gods.
First was the nine blocked yin pathways.
Yu WonHak started his explanation while staring at Shin YuSung in a profound manner.
“Your blocked pathways give you an overabundance of mana, an exceptional mind, and god-like looks! But you also pass away before coming of age…”
At his words, Shin YuSung hid the surprised expression on his mouth. Then, with wide eyes, he asked:
“Am I gonna die?”
“How impatient! If that was the end of it, you probably would have! But you were born with another constitution—that is, an abundance of bodily yang!”
As Yu WonHak said, Shin YuSung had blocked yin pathways at the same time as an abundance of yang. Yu WonHak grabbed the other’s shoulders and laughed.
“Your body is overflowing with the energy that can cure your nine blocked yin pathways!”
Shin YuSung was born with two rare constitutions when it was incredibly unlikely for a single person on Earth to have even one. As a result, he ended up having overflowing mana, an extraordinary mind, stunning beauty from the nine blocked yin pathways, and a tough body from an abundance of bodily yang.
“This is the kind of talent that will never again appear in human history! And I am the only one who can make it bloom!”
As Yu WonHak clenched his fist, Shin YuSung hugged the man’s leg.
“I like flowers!”
“Great! Train with me, and let’s give those Trait-reliant hunters that are running around a shock! You will be born as the strongest hunter in this Martial Deity’s Dwelling!”
The white-haired old man Yu WonHak laughed like a madman. Even at the age of 60, he had an unbelievably muscular body.
Of course, Shin YuSung, with no idea about what would be coming in his future, gave a bright smile with his nine-yin looks.
“Heh, the strongest hunter? I like that!”
Seven years old.
Yu WonHak shook his head as he looked at Shin YuSung, who had knocked down a wild boar.
“Tut tut! My rival, the Sword God, defeated a rank 2 monster when he was seven years old! You were born with such a cheat-like physique, yet that’s all that you can do?”
Eight years old.
Yu WonHak shook his head again when Shin YuSung destroyed a log with his bare hands.
“Hey! With your body, you should’ve destroyed three logs!”
Nine years old.
Yu WonHak shook his head yet again when Shin YuSung exploded the rank 2 monster, Sickle Mantis, with one blow.
“Tut tut! How will you become a hunter if your growth is this slow? With this amount of skill, you won’t last long as a hunter in active duty, let alone as a student in the Academy!”
“A-are they that strong?”
Shin YuSung looked at Yu WonHak with a sincere expression. As Shin YuSung was growing up, his looks were also blossoming because of the nine blocked yin pathways.
“Of course! Any of them at nine years old can kill a rank 3 monster with one blow!”
More time passed, and he became 13 years old.
Shin YuSung crossed his arms and blocked the Fist King, Yu WonHak’s fist. Even when Yu WonHak took care to limit his strength as much as possible, Shin YuSung flew back for a good while.
Shin YuSung hit the wall, lightly landed on the floor, then harshly kicked at the ground.
Catching up to Yu WonHak, Shin YuSung put himself into the position for a proper punch.
He transferred his weight to his legs to erase any unsteadiness and channeled the strength that started from his feet to his legs, then to his waist.
Shin YuSung twisted his waist and threw the punch. It was definitely not one of those shallow blows where one only moved their arm. Shin YuSung’s proper punch had a miraculous quality to it that an ordinary 13-year-old could never hope to achieve.
Shin YuSung’s fist made an impact directly on Yu WonHak. But, his teacher had blocked that punch with one thumb. Yu WonHak was definitely one of the strongest hunters in the world.
“Too slow! I can’t believe your punch at 13 years old is only at this level! If I had been born with a body like yours, I would’ve planted myself in the wall with that same blow!”
A sense of horror was slowly growing in Shin YuSung. How strong were hunters that he couldn’t catch up to them even with this much training?
‘They can’t be only monstrously strong.’
It was like so even when he was looking at his own teacher. If he wanted to, Yu WonHak could dominate someone at Shin YuSung’s level with one finger.
‘If I go outside of the tower, I have to… fight monsters like Teacher…’
The scared Shin YuSung clenched his fist. Even if he couldn’t be the strongest hunter, he still wanted to be a powerful one.
To repay the Fist King who believed in him and prove himself to the Shin family that had abandoned him. Shin YuSung happened to have an outstanding physique that could succeed in doing both.
“I’ll work harder!”
As he energetically yelled that statement, Yu WonHak laughed vigorously.
“Kuhuhhuh! That’s right, work harder! To become the strongest hunter!”
* * * *
And it went on like that for four years.
17-year-old Shin YuSung was sitting under a waterfall with his legs twisted in the lotus position.
Shin YuSung focused on his breathing as the water constantly battered his body. When he breathed in, he could feel the mana in the air, and when he breathed out, he pushed away his worldly thoughts.
The current Shin YuSung wasn’t simply focused on the strengthening of his body but also in tune with many other things.
Deep into his meditation, Shin YuSung opened his mouth.
Because of his blocked yin pathways, his voice rang clear and deep. It was a beautiful timbre that put the powerful roar of the waterfall to shame.
But Yu WonHak’s boisterous voice completely buried the sound of the water in the valley.
“Tut tut! To think that today is our last day together! What a shame, what a shame!”
Yu WonHak still boasted a muscular body— actually, on the outside, he somehow looked like he grew younger.
“I’m also feeling regret… To think that I need to go out into the world despite still desperately needing your teachings.”
Shin YuSung opened his eyes.
Youthful features were completely gone from 17-year-old Shin YuSung—he had completely matured in his looks, especially his well-toned muscles and his chiseled features. Yu WonHak still had an obvious look of displeasure.
“You sure do! When I think about the time when the Dark Witch, the Sword God, and I were 17… Hoo, I still need more time to cultivate your strength!”
Shin YuSung liked the man’s teachings. He spent almost all of his 12 years at the Martial Deity’s Manor with Yu WonHak. He couldn’t believe that he had to leave them both. Yu WonHak looked at Shin YuSung and made a request.
“Do not let your guard down! The world of hunters is cruel!”
Yu WonHak had emphasized the strength of hunters to Shin YuSung during his training until his mouth had worn down. The cheat-like attribute the Dark Witch had, the sixth sense the Sword God had that had surpassed human limits, the physique of the Fist King Yu WonHak; Shin YuSung became disheartened as he heard their stories as well as the other stories of legendary hunters.
“I’m still afraid. Can I graduate from the Academy when I’m facing off against hunters of that caliber…?”
“I’ll say this to you until you enroll, but graduating is completely done through your effort!”
With a serious expression, Yu WonHak tacked on an empty threat.
“Don’t even think about hunters if you are expelled! If you lose this chance, you’ll have to live the life of a civilian!”
Like he said: even after getting specialized teachings, if one does not graduate the Academy and receive a certificate, they cannot try to become a hunter—even with a Trait.
Of course, to be a hunter, one has to receive early education before enrolling in the Academy. Yu WonHak’s influence was what made it possible for Shin YuSung to ignore the entire process.
One of the strongest hunters that ruled over the era—Fist King Yu WonHak.
He threatened the principal of Gaon Academy, which was called Korea’s greatest Academy.
“I explained everything to the Academy… Well, they gave some conditions, too. You pass the enrollment exam on your own.”
Yu WonHak bitterly said that while digging a finger into his ear. Shin YuSung slowly got up and put on his clothes.
“Am I finally leaving after 12 years?”
At his answer, Shin YuSung tied his long, wet hair, then wrapped bandages around his hands. Without a word, he stared at the Martial Deity’s Manor and the Martial Deity’s Mountain that he had lived in for 12 years.
Instead of training his Trait or abilities, Shin YuSung was a hunter who only strengthened his body. With his mental fortitude and the strength of his physique, he silently endured training that a normal hunter couldn’t even imagine doing.
He did that for 12 years.
As a matter of fact, Yu WonHak had held a press conference the day before and had made a declaration with his title of Fist King on the line.
—I’ll finally reveal my disciple, who you’ve been waiting for!
It was a world where popular hunters pulled in no less popularity than celebrities. The explosive declaration of a reclusive legend had the world already abuzz. Shin YuSung gave a quiet goodbye without knowing this fact.
“…Thank you for everything, Teacher.”
He left the Martial Deity’s Mountain with those parting words. In fact, Shin YuSung was more unique than anyone else; he was the only one on Earth born with both the nine blocked yin pathways and an abundance of bodily yang—he had trained his body without even learning the name of his Trait.
And, as someone who had grown up in the Martial Deity’s Mountain, the outside world was completely unknown to him. His existence itself was a natural monument. Even then, Shin YuSung was harboring a lot of worries.
‘…How strong are the Academy students?’
The one thing that was certain was that this was the appearance of a hunter that had never existed before.