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    Loves Error

    Deep Pivot, Episode 28

    ― Pasa is currently on the 7th and 8th floors. Moving. Partial collapse of the 7th-floor ceiling.

    “Everyone, listen up.”

    After receiving the Blinker’s radio message, Cheong-oh looked around and gestured lightly.

    “Our objective is to kill that Pasa inside before it makes it underground. If you don’t want to spend the whole night running after it, we’ll finish everything inside the shopping center.”

    “Yes!”

    The gathered guides on the first floor lined up and listened to Cheong-oh intently. The crisp, disciplined responses came mostly from the new guides.

    “Of course, the Espers will handle the Pasa. Our guides will deal with any other strange species. The gate won’t just spit out the Pasa and then stop. Do you all understand?”

    “Yes!”

    “As you know, the Pasa is sensitive. Starting now, grenades and firearms are prohibited. If it starts rampaging from the noise, we’ll all be screwed, so stay alert and make sure that doesn’t happen.”

    “Yes!”

    “To your positions.”

    “To your positions!”

    The teams, grouped in pairs or trios, quickly dispersed.

    “Hey, baby, over here.”

    Min-gun gestured for Yeon-woo to join him. The longer they worked together, the better their teamwork. Since the Hyoseok-dong mission, Min-gun had looked after Yeon-woo so much that it had become a habit.

    ― Blinker and Blood Bomber have arrived on the 6th floor, standing by.

    ― Agnes moving from the 5th floor. Leaving remaining Ghouls. Handle them yourselves.

    “We’re heading up, baldy and the baby. We’ll take care of them.”

    Radio chatter crisscrossed the airwaves. As they climbed the emergency stairs, Min-gun patiently explained things.

    “The Pasa’s venom is in its middle head, so we have to take that out first. That’s why we’ve got the Binder and Blood Bomber coming in.”

    “Understood.”

    As he followed closely, idly fiddling with the combat knife in his hand, Yeon-woo asked, “But what mission is Lieutenant Ji Seo-joon assigned to?”

    “Ah, Seo-joon?” Min-gun made a subtle expression. “Seo-joon is… well, he’s there for emergency contingencies.”

    Out of the nine Espers in the SAU, only Seo-joon’s role remained undisclosed. The profile given to the new members was the same. While the other Espers’ basic roles were listed, Seo-joon’s section was a blank space.

    Even asking senior members didn’t yield clear answers, only ambiguous expressions. Min-gun paused before speaking.

    “You’ll find out soon enough, but you know what emergency contingency means, right? In other words, Seo-joon can handle any kind of sudden situation.”

    “….”

    “And if things actually do reach that point, you better be prepared too. Guiding won’t be easy.”

    Not easy? Was there some guiding theory Yeon-woo hadn’t learned yet? He had thought just touching was enough and couldn’t understand what Min-gun meant.

    Did it mean it would take a long time? That would be fine.

    If he could hold the lieutenant for as long as possible, that would actually be… good…

    Realizing where his thoughts were headed, Yeon-woo snapped out of it, shocked at himself.

    ‘What am I thinking?’

    If guiding had to last that long, it meant Seo-joon’s condition would be severe, and thinking about it this way was selfish and cruel.

    “I hope it doesn’t come to that.”

    “Haha, me too, man.”

    But deep down, desperate hopes are often unfulfilled.

    ― Damn, why is the Pasa so fast…?

    ― What the hell is this thing? A mutant?

    *Thud, thud, thud.* 

    The entire building shook violently. The ceiling collapsed, and debris rained down. Min-gun instinctively ducked, grabbed Yeon-woo’s arm, and led him out of the emergency stairs.

    ― Berserker, need backup.

    ― Where’s Salamander?

    ― This is Ringo Starr. Salamander is injured and receiving emergency guidance. It’ll take a while.

    ― Binder injured, Binder injured. Huggy Wuggy’s guide, respond.

    ― Kissy Missy is on standby on the 3rd floor.

    ― Ghost will handle the transport.”=

    ― Valkyrie is moving Ghouls from the 6th floor. Baldie, I need guiding.

    *Bang! Thud…!*

    “I’m coming, Baldie.”

    A loud thud echoed from the ceiling directly above them. Min-gun dodged the sound and ran. As he moved to a safer place where the ceiling hadn’t collapsed yet, he radioed in and then turned to Yeon-woo.

    “Hey, I need to head out for a bit. Go straight down. Listen to the radio and keep up with the situation, and kill any Ghouls you see. Got it? If you need help, call for it right away.”

    “Yes.”

    Several ghouls that responded to the vibration were leaping in all directions. Yeon-woo, who saw Mingeon disappearing from sight, spotted a ghoul attacking someone in a corner and ran toward it.

    “Argh. Damn it, damn it! Just! Die!”

    The man pinned under the ghoul was cursing and screaming as he wildly swung his knife. Eyes plastered all the way to the back of his head rolled in different directions. The moment one of those eyes spotted Yeon-woo, his knife pierced through it.

    It was good that he aimed for the vital spot as he had learned, but the knife that was thrust without finesse was harder to pull out than to push in. Yeon-woo barely managed to twist and pull out the knife, then kicked and pushed the falling ghoul’s body aside to help up the guide trapped underneath.

    “…”

    “Ah, shit… This sucks.”

    The man, cursing, grabbed Yeon-woo’s hand to stand up and scowled. The two recognized each other at a glance.

    Jang Hyun-soo. He was the one Yeon-woo had a dispute with on the first day of the initiation ceremony. A man who had a lot of complaints during the pre-matching test with Ji Seo-joon. To Yeon-woo, he was a man who shamelessly blabbered words that one might expect from a rapist.

    Just as Yeon-woo was about to ask if he was okay, he let go upon recognizing who it was. He was a disagreeable person he didn’t want to deal with. Jang Hyun-soo also seemed to have his pride hurt by receiving help from Yeon-woo.

    “Heek…!”

    Jang Hyun-soo gasped, looking behind Yeon-woo. Reflexively, Yeon-woo turned his head as a ghoul charged at him. As he swung his knife backward, a chunk of the ceiling fell right in front of him.

    Screech!

    The ghoul crushed by the ceiling let out a death rattle. Yeon-woo, stepping on its head with his military boots, burst it and grabbed Jang Hyun-soo’s arm, running as heavy pieces of cement rained down from above.

    Crack, boom—!

    However, something blocked their path not far ahead. Yeon-woo gasped.

    “…”

    The mottled scales on the skin shimmered slightly. It was the body of a fallen Pasa, which had broken through the ceiling due to its unbearable weight.

    It was so huge it couldn’t be fully seen. The diameter of Pasa, surpassing Yeon-woo’s height, seemed to be at least 8 meters around. Although it was only a part of it, it was Yeon-woo’s first time seeing the Pasa he had only heard about through the radio.

    “Shit, Shit!”

    Meaningless curses continued to be heard from the side. That was when, without a moment for Yeon-woo to stop him, Jang Hyun-soo pulled out a revolver from his back and fired wildly. Bang! Bang, bang!

    “What are you doing…!”

    Yeon-woo gasped as he grabbed his arm. Bang! Bang! Even caught, the bullets fired wildly did not scratch Pasa’s skin.

    —Who just shot the gun!

    “Let go! Damn, let me go!”

    Bang! Fortunately, the small revolver didn’t have many bullets. Jang Hyun-soo fired all six shots in one go and frantically pulled the trigger of the empty gun.

    Slide, shhshsh… Creeeak. The scales that had been moving slowly began to ripple quickly. Simultaneously, the sound of the ceiling collapsing all at once was heard.

    “Don’t do it!”

    “Goddamn it, don’t tell me to stop! Who do you think you are? Aagh!”

    “Just shut up!”

    Yeon-woo forcefully subdued the panicked madman with his whole body, dragging him toward the opposite direction of the noise. It was terrifying not knowing which way the Pasa was facing, even as it moved right in front of them.

    —Where’s the berserker?

    —Requesting support for the berserker #@^$ @#^@$^%!

    —Hey, you bastard! Which son of a #%&$^ shot the gun?

    With the collapsing ceiling and someone yelling loudly nearby, the radio was barely audible.

    “Pasa has fallen to the fifth floor. It’s moving. Requesting support, Pasa on the fifth floor, requesting suppor…”

    Yeon-woo’s urgent message into the radio was cut off. Something in the darkness beyond the night vision began slithering closer.

    “……”

    He remembered once seeing a cobra on an internet video, raising its head and tilting it to the sound of someone’s flute. That was the only cobra he’d ever seen in his life.

    Now, three forms resembling that cobra but magnified a thousand times were coming toward them, side by side. The Pasa’s enormous fangs glistened as it opened its huge mouth.

    “Run, run. Escape…”

    Instinctively stepping backward, Yeon-woo pulled Jang Hyun-soo, mumbling blankly.

    Click. At that moment, a small metallic sound came from Jang Hyun-soo’s pocket. It took a moment before Yeon-woo realized it was the sound of pulling the safety pin on a special emergency grenade made from the byproducts of monstrous creatures.

    Yeon-woo reflexively reached out to stop him, but it was too late.

    “What are you doing…”

    The grenade left Jang Hyun-soo’s hand, drawing an arc through the air. The grenade fell helplessly in front of the Pasa’s gaping mouth and rolled away.

    Thump. The round grenade hit the tip of someone’s military boot.

    —Agnes has arrived.

    A silhouette stood in front of the Pasa. Yeon-woo desperately shook his head and ran forward.

    “No! No, no, Lieutenant, don’t, wa…”

    Boom!

    A tremendous explosion engulfed them. Yeon-woo, flung by the overwhelming shockwave, crashed onto the ground.

    “Oof…”

    Clutching his side and groaning, Yeon-woo desperately scanned the dust-covered surroundings.

    “Lieutenant, ugh… Lieutenant! Lieutenant!”

    Everything was a mess of bright red blood. Yeon-woo’s gaze followed the scattered flesh and entrails until it froze.

    There was Ji Seo-joon, with only his mangled upper body left.

    The Pasa, temporarily pushed back by the shockwave, slowly crept closer again. But Yeon-woo no longer cared about that.

    “Lieu, Lieutenant… No…”

    His trembling hands wildly swept the blood-soaked ground. When a person reaches the limits of extreme situations, panic sets in. Yeon-woo, oblivious to the Pasa right in front of him, crawled desperately toward Seo-joon.

    His tear-streaked vision blurred instantly with tears, and the few seconds it took to reach Seo-joon felt like an eternity.

    Because I’m stupid. If only I hadn’t saved Jang Hyun-soo. I should have let him die to the ghoul. Without realizing what he was doing with my arm, like an idiot. I couldn’t stop him…

    Every wretched thought and self-reproach imaginable swelled up like nausea.

    “Lieutenant, ugh, oh, Lieutenant.”

    Without noticing whose blood soaked his uniform, Yeon-woo frantically swept up the scattered debris as he reached for Seo-joon.

    In just a few seconds, something strange happened.

    Tl/N: Guys I didnt say this in last episodes but they all call Yeon-woo Kid/Baby = Ae-gi “애기”  But I kept using kid now in this chap and onways Ill use baby. Im so sorry

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