📢Try To Re-load or Re Log-in to Show Loves

    Loves Error

    1. The Depths of the Ocean [4]

    There’s a monster living in the house. It hides in dark and damp places like closets or under the bed during the day, but at night, it crawls out and climbs onto Yeonsoo’s sleeping body.

    The monster’s eyeballs held magical power. Once caught in that magic, Yeonsoo couldn’t move a finger.

    The monster strangles him. Its yellow flashing eyeballs and moist breath get closer and closer. It extends its long tongue like a tentacle and licks his face. His forehead, his nose, and finally his lips. A trembling and limp hand, as if all the finger bones were broken, digs into his throat.

    Yeonsoo struggles to shout.

    Save me. Save me. Save me.

    ‘I’m going to kill you.’

    The monster whispered.

    ‘If you speak, I’ll kill you.’

    The screams due to his crushed and torn organs never come out.

    It was taken away. His voice.

    The monster opened its mouth wide. Its big red mouth started tearing and eating Yeonsoo.

    Crunch, crunch, crunch, crunch.

    The sound of it eating messily could be heard. A chilling sensation, as if scraping bones permeates. Pale darkness filled everywhere. The scent of an old corpse wafted from somewhere.

    “Huff, huff, huff.”

    He woke up, gasping for breath, breaking free from his sleep.

    He blinked his eyes slowly. The low ceiling blurred and gradually became clear. He wiped the cold sweat off his sweaty neck with his hand. It was an overly vivid dream. As if there would still be handprints left from his strangled neck.

    Damn it.

    He cursed as he got up from his seat. He took off his soaked t-shirt and grabbed a bottle of water from the refrigerator, chugging it down.

    His whole body was damp, and the air felt sticky. The air conditioner seemed to have been turned off while he was sleeping. He found the remote control and turned it on. The air conditioner breeze that made his head ache had always been unpleasant, but there was no other choice. Opening the window and feeling the wind was something no one could do anymore.

    Outside was engulfed in a relentless heatwave with not a single breeze. The next six months will be a relentless one.  After 90% of the inland areas were submerged in the sea, the four seasons disappeared from the earth. All that remained were scorching heat and extreme cold.

    After the climate change, the heat became unbearable. The never-ending tropical nights made nightmares even darker.

    It all began with strange wildfires spreading across the Earth. With no rain falling and the land gradually drying up, there seemed to be no end to the fires despite the erratic changes in the weather. The sky turned crimson, and people found daily life nearly impossible amidst the raining gray ashes. Various apocalyptic theories spread, claiming that the second judgment made of fire had arrived.

    What followed was the rapid rise of sea levels. The sea level, which initially showed minimal changes, began to rise like dramatically starting in 2025. Islands in the low-lying areas such as Fiji and the Solomon Islands were the first to be submerged. Overnight, countries would disappear one by one at a rapid pace. The sea swallowed everything, leaving only small patches of land where a small population could barely survive.

    People called this event the ‘Great Shift’. After the Great Shift, the ecosystem completely collapsed, and the climate changed drastically. Now, there are no forests left on Earth. All wild animals, except for fish, have disappeared. The seasons of scorching heat and extreme cold were also the result of the Great Shift.

    For some reason, the rapid rise of the sea level suddenly slowed down. Of course, it didn’t completely stop. Like a psychopathic killer who takes his time to torment his victims before killing them, the sea surrounding the inland areas is slowly but surely rising even at this moment. Even supercomputers couldn’t predict how much time is left for humanity.

    Yeonsoo went to the window and opened the curtains. It was filled with hot air, and the pitch-black night was boiling like the day.

    Whether it was due to the aftermath of a nightmare or due to the scorching heat that made him sick, his vision became blurry.


    At that time, a vibration rang out. He ignored it, but it persistently continued to ring. He moved his weakened legs and picked up the mobile phone that was placed on the table. There is only one place where a call can come at this time. Yeonsoo answered the phone with a face that had lost its expression.


    [- Why? Do you always have to answer Mom’s calls so rudely?]

    Sigh. He swallowed his words as he ran his hand down his face. He was so exhausted. He didn’t want to waste his energy on unnecessary reactions.

    “I’m tired. It’s eleven o’clock at night, Mother. Just tell me what you need.”

    [- Don’t talk so rudely. Just send some money. I have something I need to buy.]

    “How much were the living expenses I gave you recently?”

    [- Are you making a fuss just because you gave me a few pennies?]


    [- I raised you as much as that. You know how much I suffered because of you. No. You probably don’t know. You’ll never know in your lifetime. You, you’ll never know. A chilling child. A child who devours their parents. Someone like you, someone like you, should have been discarded. I should have thrown you into the sea back then…]

    As always, the sudden verbal abuse begins. He realized belatedly that his mother, Han Jung-ae, has a slightly slurred pronunciation.

    “Did you drink alcohol? You heard from the hospital last time, never drink alcohol….”

    [- Even though you took everything away from me, I didn’t abandon you. You know? No, you don’t. So I’m going to take everything from you. I’m going to take everything from you!]

    It’s unbearable, really.

    Yeonsoo forced a dry laugh. Even though he heard those words every time, he never got used to them. It always felt like his heart was continuously being stabbed. Why? People eventually adapt to everything and become indifferent to repetition. Why is it that only his mother’s harsh words always make his heart ache?

    “I got it. Take it. Take everything. Scrape everything until I hit rock bottom.”

    [-You shameless child. Even though you don’t give me anything. Do you think I don’t know that you’re secretly scheming behind my back?]

    “But even if I give you everything, it’s not much. You know exactly how much a civil servant’s salary is. I’ll deposit it tomorrow morning. Just stop bothering me.”

    He hung up. He also turned off his cell phone.

    He looked out the window again. It felt suffocating to be trapped because of the window that couldn’t be opened. As soon as he realized that, he felt short of breath.

    Dizzy. His fingers and toes started to twitch. He suddenly became afraid that his neurotic symptoms might resurface again.

    He took a deep breath as he swept his chest. It’s okay. It’s okay. It’s okay.

    He repeated it like a mantra. He barely calmed down the dizziness and led his heavy legs towards the door. When he cautiously opened the door, pitch-black darkness seeped out. Yeonsoo slowly slipped inside.


    He closed the door behind him and a white light mass that noticed the sound approached. Yeonsoo’s deep-sea fish, Glow.

    He crouched in front of the tank and hugged his knees with both arms. When he leaned his head against the glass tank, Glow approached. It circled around near his forehead as if pecking at it. He couldn’t help but let out a small laugh at its intentionally cute appearance.

    He closed his eyes and listened to the darkness. His nerves which stood up like scales gradually subsided. The cold darkness was cozy.

    It was always comfortable to be locked in here with Glow. The darkness swallowed everything and didn’t spit anything out, always remaining silent.

    “It’s strange. When I see you, my heart calms.”

    While listening to the sound of deep-sea fish floating in space, Yeonsoo felt the floor with his hand. He picked up something that his hand caught.

    He brought it closer to Glow and finally, its identity was revealed in his sight. It was a small Rubik’s Cube.

    “My senior, who became my colleague today, told me that if I meet a demon in the desert at midnight, my body will become weak and drowsy. So if I get possessed by the demon, I will not be able to escape the desert and end up dying. You’re also called the ‘sea devil,’ right?”

    Thump, thump.

    Without taking his head off the tank, he only moved his hands to solve the cube.

    “Did I also get possessed by you? Is that why I feel like this when I’m with you? The feeling of wanting to sink forever like this…”

    The variously tangled colored cubes quickly aligned in his hands.

    “Actually, I wanted to send you back to the sea. I didn’t want to keep you in a place like this. But the deep sea is a place I can’t go. I brought you to my room as temporary protection. If I hadn’t, you would have been disposed of in the lab. So don’t resent me too much.”

    Click. The last cube found its place.

    “Today, I met your colleague. They were a beautiful existence like you. Maybe a long time ago, you might have crossed paths with them.”

    He stood up. Glow swam up to his eye level, which had become higher.

    To reach the entrance of the tank higher than his own height, he brought a footstool and climbed up. His hand holding the cube reached out.

    “He was inside an incredibly huge tank, but even that seemed insufficient. He’s very big. I can’t imagine how suffocating it must have been. I hope someday I can send both you and him back to the sea.”

    He let go of his hand. Splash… the sound of water spreads.

    “When that time comes, I want to ask him a favor.”

    Looking at the cube slowly sinking to the bottom, accompanied by faint water flows, Yeonsoo murmured.

    “Take me with you too.”

    ⊹˚. ♡.𖥔 ݁ ˖ ⊹˚. ♡.𖥔 ݁ ˖

    It took a week for Yeonsoo to become acquainted with Jun.

    Jun. His full name was Watanabe Junichi, but everyone just called him Jun. He was a very shy person. For the first two days of work, he stayed in his seat and couldn’t be seen at all, and it was impossible to have lunch together until the third day when Alex forcibly dragged him out.

    When he first saw Jun’s face, he was surprised. He looked like a young boy because of his delicate face. Jun just blushed and giggled without saying a word even at the restaurant. When their eyes accidentally met and Yeonsoo slightly bowed and greeted first, his face turned even redder.

    It took a while for him to realize that Jun stutters. It was when he overheard him whispering something to Kei. He don’t know if that’s why he hardly speaks.

    Yeonsoo liked Jun. He was small and thin, but his face was quite chubby. His plump white cheeks were fluffy, and his eyes sparkled pitch black, reminding him of the hamster he used to raise. A white hamster with pink ears.

    “Dr. Han. His face looks pale gray like a sand dune, but damn, he’s good, isn’t he? A genius is a genius.”

    Alex looked at the screen of the stopwatch she was holding and said something that could be interpreted as either a compliment or sarcasm. The frozen timer showed 4.23 seconds. It was the time it took Yeonsoo to solve the Rubik’s Cube.

    “It’s, it’s, it feels like magic.”

    The small Jun next to him murmured softly.

    It truly felt like magic. The man’s slender fingers moved so quickly and seamlessly under the thin fingers that 27 shuffled cubes were not visible, and in an instant, they returned to their original positions.

    Alex’s record was 27 seconds, while Jun’s record was 29 seconds.

    “Even if there’s a difference, it should be within a reasonable range.”

    Alex, who had first suggested betting on drinks as a way to show off her skills in her own way, clicked her tongue.

    It wasn’t just the Rubik’s Cube. There were also the Lumi Cube, Quackle, Set, Blockers, and more. The three of them only played indoor games in the whole afternoon, but Alex lost to Yeonsoo every time. After numerous defeats, Alex became frustrated and said that if this was the case, he might as well be a brain game master instead of a marine biologist.

    “4.22 seconds, it feels like a world record.”

    “No, the world record is 3.47 seconds set by Du Weixing of China in 2018.”

    “Ah, I see. So you’re a Rubik’s Cube enthusiast. You know the world record too? You said the Marine Biology Department is a honey trap, but you’re just playing games and not doing any work, right?”

    “The honey trap isn’t on their side, it’s in our department.”

    Kei, who had been sitting alone at his desk, suddenly approached and squeezed in. He stood with his arms crossed and let out a deep sigh at the sight before him.

    In the center of the office floor, the three of them sat on cushions in a circle. Alex was lying down with her stomach attached to the cushion. Various game tools such as cards, cubes, puzzle pieces, and beads were scattered on the floor.

    “This looks like a college student MT scene. We hired a new staff because only the ones who don’t work were left, but what are we going to do if even Doctor Han plays around?”

    Kei said as he flicked the scattered items with his toe. Yeonsoo got up from his seat with a puzzled look on his face, and Jun hurriedly found a seat. Alex pretended not to hear anything. She just lay down and fiddled with her phone. It seemed like he was looking up the Rubik’s Cube world record.

    “I’m sorry. I didn’t realize lunchtime was over.”

    “It’s been over two hours ago.”

    Yeonsoo was so surprised that he turned his head and checked the wall clock. He thought time had passed, but he didn’t realize it had been this long. It had been a long time since he had been so engrossed in something with someone for such a long time. And in such a frantic state.

    “I hope Doctor Han’s work ability is better than their gaming ability.”

    Kei, who had disappeared for a moment, came back with a thick file. He handed the pile of documents to Yeonsoo as if it were a gift.

    “Read and summarize everything before you leave work. It’s the Beresht’s characteristics report that you’ve been working on.”

    Yeonsoo nodded. He had been planning to request the materials because there hadn’t been much progress in his work for a week.

    “It took some time to retrieve the confidential information. Read it by today and return it. And this…”

    Kei took out a USB device with only his fingernail from inside his jacket.

    “All the video data is here. The password is the same as before, and the video will be destroyed automatically after one play.”

    He kindly inserted it into Yeonsoo’s back pocket with the pile of documents and returned to his seat.

    Yeonsoo put the documents down and turned on the computer. It seemed like he would need to work overtime to read and summarize all the reports Kei had given him.

    Before starting his actual work, he habitually opened his email.

    He stopped scrolling the mouse wheel abruptly. Yeonsoo’s eyes widened. He clicked on the email and the cursor stopped.

    You can support the author on

    This content is protected.