‘Ah, it’s fun.’ Hyeonu thought that shooting Masked Fighting King today was very interesting.
He was comparing his skill against others who had the same specifications. It was a much more enjoyable experience than he expected.
‘It’s sad that it is the last one.’
Then he felt regretful. This was the last match.
‘Because I am going to win...’
He had no intention of losing just because he felt regretful. If it wasn’t for his pro gamer debut, he might’ve enjoyed it more by abstaining or doing nothing like the last time. However, he was now a pro gamer. It was time for Hyeonu to coolly manage his image and carry out some career management. Just then, MC Yeongchan shouted, “If you want to stop Emperor’s five consecutive victories, please come onto the stage!”
‘Who will it be this time?’
The moment Hyeonu heard these words, he turned his head and glanced below the stage. There were seven masked fighters, and four of them had already been defeated. It was possible for them to take up the challenge again, but it was unlikely any of them would do so as they only had one chance left.
They were too cautious because it might really be their last match. Just then, a masked fighter quietly climbed onto the stage. It was a man in baggy cotton shorts and worn-out shoes. The man’s left arm wasn’t a human arm but that of a machine.
“Veteran Cyborg has come up. He is challenging Emperor, who has four straight victories!” Yeongchan announced.
It was Veteran Cyborg, and he was unarmed. Cyborg was a fighter, so his modified body itself was a weapon.
‘Is it a fist-against-fist fight?’ Yeongchan noticed it and was looking forward to this match. A fight between swordsmen was fun, but a punching match was still the best. It was the most primitive and heated confrontation.
“This might be the last match. Emperor of an Ancient Empire and Veteran Cyborg will face off against each other!” Yeongchan disappeared from the stage with these words. He had just returned to his seat when his eyes widened. It was because Emperor’s behavior was strange.
‘What is this?!’ Yeongchan wondered.
Then he exclaimed in a dismayed manner, “Why pull out the sword?!”
It was a high pitched voice that was hard to hear, but he was forced to make such a sound. Emperor, who got four consecutive victories with his fist, drew the sword that was thought to only be a decoration.
“Why that...” Cyborg was also flustered.
No, everyone present was surprised, and it was the same for the viewers watching the stream.
“I should do it formally at the end. I can’t just swing my fists,” Emperor responded calmly.
He seemed to be wondering what the problem was.
“So why on my turn...?” Cyborg asked.
“Because it’s the last match, of course.”
Cyborg bit his lip.
He also had a rough guess about Emperor’s identity. All the people gathered here were talented people who could be called the very best.
‘Alley Leader drew his sword...’
This was a man who won to the extent that the battles could be called absolutely one-sided, without giving his opponents a single advantage. It could only be Alley Leader. The difference in skill between active players wasn’t that great. There was a factor called ‘opposing natures’, but even that wasn’t a perfect explanation as to the drastic difference in skill.
‘Regardless, I have to do my best.’ Cyborg left his nervousness behind and curled his hands into fists.
It was still better to fight here than in the actual arena. At least they were fighting with the same specs here. Cyborg carefully approached Emperor. One step followed by another step… Cyborg moved steadily with great focus. He was so focused that he wondered if he had ever focused harder than this.
‘...Avoid it!’ An alarm rang in Cyborg’s head the moment the distance between him and Emperor narrowed.
Believing in his intuition, Cyborg quickly stepped back. It was an exceptionally smart decision as it prevented Cyborg from losing. Emperor’s sword passed right before Cyborg’s eyes.
“Phew...” Cyborg sighed with relief and looked at Emperor.
Emperor returned to his original position, acting as if he had not wielded the sword at all. Cyborg took another breath before moving more carefully than before. He had no choice but to move cautiously since passing the previous crisis of impending defeat.
‘Again!’ His instincts once again sent a signal. Yet he didn’t back down this time.
‘It’s the head.’
Sensing Emperor’s attack, Cyborg bent his knees, lowered his posture, and bowed his waist. A sword filled with sharp momentum passed over his head. Sweat flowed down his back, and he got goosebumps all over. This wasn’t like fighting someone with the same stats. It was more like a boss monster raid. He couldn’t understand it, but he couldn’t afford to pause and think about it. It felt like he would be cut by the emperor’s sword if he stopped at all.
Cyborg took a hard step. Then there was a flash of gold before his eyes. The golden pure energy destroyed the floor of the stage, leaving Cyborg just lying on the ground.
To be precise, he was rolling toward the far side of Emperor.
“This avoidance... is like that of a dog,” Emperor muttered in a low voice when he saw it.
However, the sound rang through the venue. It was because everyone was holding their breath as they watched the battle. When Cyborg heard Emperor’s words, he just stood up like nothing happened. Rather, he shamelessly dusted off his body before taking up a fighting stance again and charging toward the Emperor.
-By the way, why do I feel like there is a stat difference?
-Is this a hidden camera? Are these really the same stats?
-Did he put most of the points in magic power and agility? How can there be such a big difference?
The viewers questioned it, but it was a secret that no one knew. No one would know for sure unless the Emperor himself stated it, so they could only guess.
‘What is it? Strength? Agility? Magic power?’
The masked fighters were also curious. In particular, those who had competed with Emperor were much more curious. Emperor was fast and strong, and he even used pure energy. He had no shortage in any aspect. Thus, they were even more curious. They didn’t know if they could be like this even if they found out Emperor’s secret.
Unlike them, Hyeonu simply enjoyed the situation and thought, ‘This is interesting.’
Returning what he had suffered to the other party… he hadn’t known doing it would be so fun.
‘Should I say it is the emperor’s game?’
Hyeonu was doing to Cyborg what he had suffered in the last stage of Senu. He just switched the roles and was now really enjoying it.
“Let’s finish it. It looks hard, so I should take care of you as a fellow strong person.” Hyeonu felt his magic power running out and judged it was time to stop playing around.
‘This style is also good.’
Hyeonu’s stats distribution was simple. Excluding his physique stat, the remaining stats such as strength, agility, and magic power were distributed in a ratio of 2:3:4. It was a very extreme style. He might die if he were hit by even a passing attack. Nevertheless, Hyeonu could do it because he had the confidence that he wouldn’t be hit.
‘It isn’t a formal professional stage. It is something I can do because it is Masked Fighting King.’
Hyeonu gave some strength to his hand that held the sword. Then he took a step for the first time since the start of the match. It was in order to end Masked Fighting King.
‘Why do I feel so anxious?’ Cyborg’s eyes suddenly trembled from anxiety.
Emperor was merely walking, but it placed great pressure on Cyborg.
‘If I’m going to lose, I should do it coolly,’ Cyborg thought.
Like Hyeonu in the past, Cyborg decided to accept defeat and do his best. If there was one difference, it was that Cyborg wasn’t Hyeonu. Hyeonu’s sword moved from top to bottom. Cyborg naturally swerved to avoid the attack. He didn’t move much—just one step to the left. If he moved too much, it would provide an opportunity for additional attacks.
The problem was that Hyeonu had anticipated it. Hyeonu’s sword followed Cyborg’s path as if that was the original route. Seeing it, Cyborg became frightened. The sword was coming after him like it had a homing device.
‘Crazy!’ Cyborg hurriedly turned his body.
He had to avoid this attack at all costs. It seemed that desperate determination worked miracles as Cyborg’s magic power moved quickly to both of his feet. His magic power erupted, quickly pushing at his body. In an instant, his body accelerated away from Hyeonu’s sword like an arrow.
‘This is it!’ Cyborg thought in relief.
Then it happened right at this moment. He felt something disgusting. Simultaneously, his chest was really hot. Cyborg looked down slowly and confirmed the identity of the foreign feeling. His chest was pierced by a golden object.
‘How...?’ He questioned it inwardly.
It was obvious that there was the miracle of his magic power control popping out. So why did this pierce his heart? Nonetheless, his thoughts lasted up to there. They couldn’t continue any longer as Cyborg’s body had collapsed.
Yeongchan came up onto the stage and announced, “The winner of this match is Emperor of an Ancient Empire. His record is five victories. Emperor of an Ancient Empire has become today’s Masked Fighting King. Everyone applaud to congratulate him.”
This episode of Masked Fighting King ended sooner than expected.
It was a result that no one had predicted—ending in just eight matches, with five consecutive victories.
Moreover, this was an episode when the best players had gathered together.
‘The good thing is that everyone has fought,’ Yeongchan remarked inwardly.
Feeling relieved, he continued to talk, “Everyone, please come up to the stage. Don’t you have to disclose your identity?”
At Yeongchan’s words, the six masked fighters—apart from Cyborg and Emperor—went onto the stage. Yeongchan lined up seven people, except for Emperor who was by his side. On the far left was Cyborg.
“Then let’s start from Cyborg, the last loser. You will take off your mask and reveal your identity,” Yeongchan said.
Cyborg took off the mask that covered his face.
-This level of skill isn’t common.
-It is truly Mascherano.
-He lost, but he fought well. It was really a shame at the end.
He turned out to be Red Bull America’s Mascherano.
Yeongchan stated, “Veteran Cyborg’s identity is Red Bull America’s Mascherano. Mascherano, please tell us how you feel.”
Mascherano received the microphone from Yeongchan and gave a brief statement: “Hello, this is Mascherano. Uh... I really wanted to win today. It’s a pity. Some people wanted me to win, so I want to say sorry to them.”
Then he fell back, and now the masked fighter next to Yeongchan was Warrior. Warrior was the one who suffered his first defeat due to Emperor.
“The second one to reveal his identity is Otherworld Warrior,” Yeongchan said.
Warrior also took off his mask without hesitation.
“Someone said it...”
The masked fighters who saw Warrior’s face let out murmurs. It was amazing.
-Have his skills improved so much?
-I am looking forward to the Winter League.
The viewers were also surprised by Warrior’s true identity. The face of a person they hadn’t even thought of had actually been hiding behind that mask.