Jang Man Soo could only respond in one way to Kim Rok Soo’s comment.
“Y, you’re lying……!”
He then quickly added on.
“N, no! Rok Soo, I’m not saying you’re lying about having an ability! It’s great if you got an ability! You’re qualified to get one! But, that-”
He could not speak properly. He then continued to speak after seeing Kim Rok Soo’s firm gaze.
“…Knowing people’s abilities and the future…it’s hard to believe that such an ability exists.”
Jang Man Soo said that and then lowered his head for a moment.
He then raised it back, looked at Kim Rok Soo’s gaze, and sighed.
“…You’re being serious.”
Kim Rok Soo’s gaze did not seem as if he was lying.
“I guess that you aren’t the type to lie.”
Jang Man Soo didn’t know what else to say. Of course, there were a lot of things he wanted to say.
In fact, he had too many things he wanted to say.
‘He figured out my ability? Did he awaken an ability that lets him know other people’s abilities? No.’
That would not explain everything.
‘He also prophesized the future.’
He said that the central shelter would be destroyed soon.
‘He guessed my ability correctly, so there’s a good chance he’s telling the truth about the central shelter too.’
He was living life day by day without thinking much about it, but that was why Jang Man Soo had been able to observe the people in this shelter while sitting off to one side.
‘Kim Rok Soo is not the type of person to lie about something that involves people’s lives.’
If he was to do something like that, then it would have to be someone else wearing Kim Rok Soo’s skin.
“…Are you really Kim Rok Soo?”
“Hey mister, do you want me to say the things you say when you sleep? Or maybe you want me to imitate your snoring?”
“Ahem. I guess you really are Kim Rok Soo based on how you are nagging me like that.”
Jang Man Soo continued to sigh in disbelief.
He looked toward Cale with a complicated expression.
Jang Man Soo stopped midsentence and looked around. Everybody seemed to be doing their work as nobody was paying any attention to them.
He continued to speak quieter and stealthier than Kim Rok Soo had done.
“The central shelters are really going to end up like that?”
The response was simple.
Jang Man Soo’s lips started to shake.
He was thinking about the terrible scene that would play out if the central shelter was destroyed.
Cale then put a hand on Jang Man Soo’s shoulder.
“Hey, mister. Please help me.”
Jang Man Soo was necessary for this task.
“…I probably won’t be much help-”
“That’s not true. Mister, you still don’t know the strength of your ability.”
As Cale mentioned, Jang Man Soo knew that his ability had awakened but had never used it before.
He was thinking that a shield was useless for someone like him who couldn’t even walk.
‘…More than that… I just didn’t want to live a fierce life.’
Jang Man Soo did not want to say this thought out loud.
His mind started to become complicated.
‘Everybody here might die.’
He didn’t care if he died alone. But to watch someone die again?
Especially people who had helped him even when he couldn’t walk properly?
He then recalled something Kim Rok Soo had just said.
‘I plan on letting everybody here move to the new central shelter without dying.’
Without anybody dying.
Those words struck deep inside Jang Man Soo’s mind.
He thought of his dead daughter. His daughter would have started college and showed the world everything she had if the world didn’t end up like this.
That daughter and Kim Rok Soo were the same age.
That was why he wanted to give even one thing extra to Kim Rok Soo who was trying his best to survive after having already lived a difficult life.
He asked Rok Soo a question.
“Will I be of any help?”
He could see Rok Soo smiling at his question.
He truly seemed to be happy.
“Yes, sir. I definitely need your help.”
Jang Man Soo.
Cale really needed this man.
‘The mister doesn’t know yet.’
He didn’t know the strength of his ability.
“…It’ll be hard for me to even move properly if a battle breaks out……”
“That’s not important.”
Jang Man Soo could feel Kim Rok Soo’s hand that was on his shoulder pushing down. Kim Rok Soo’s hand seemed to be cheering him on while his voice was full of certainty.
“Shields are only cool if they stand firm without moving.”
Jang Man Soo suddenly felt his mind start to fluctuate.
His mind that had been still without any movement was causing small waves every time Rok Soo said something.
“And don’t worry, I’ll carry you around, mister.”
Jang Man Soo chuckled at that and joked back.
“Bad! How can a stick like you carry a husky person like me?”
“I guess that is true.”
Jang Man Soo could see Rok Soo chuckling as well.
“Hey, Rok Soo.”
“I will also help you.”
“Thank you very much.”
“No, thank you.”
Jang Man Soo truly meant that.
He finally realized it.
‘My time is finally starting to move again.’
The time that had stopped on the day of the cataclysm, no, the moment he got home and saw the terrible state of his family members, was starting to move again.
‘I will create a different result this time.’
He had made up his mind.
Cale started to think while looking at Jang Man Soo.
Jang Man Soo didn’t know about his ability yet.
Cale was going to make it so that he could use his power effectively and efficiently.
If that could happen…
‘Then I’ll definitely be able to save over half of the people.’
Jang Man Soo working with Cale meant over half of the people here could live.
“Hey, mister. I will give you a detailed explanation now.”
“Hmm? Yes, yes. I should listen.”
“Yes, sir. So, let’s go talk outside the back door.”
There were no monsters there because it was right by the shelter, but more importantly, there were no people there. It was a perfect spot to have a secret discussion.
“Okay. I’m going to need you to help me though.”
Cale carried Jang Man Soo on his back and walked out the back door.
Of course, Cale’s body staggered a bit.
“…No. You know I’ve always been weak.”
“…I guess that is true.”
He staggered at first, but they were quickly able to get outside as their spots were by the door. Thankfully, nobody seemed to be paying attention to the two of them.
Cale put Jang Man Soo down on a flat area of the destroyed building next to the back door.
The old back door was closed and Cale started to speak.
“You must listen carefully to everything I’m about to tell you.”
Jang Man Soo looked at Cale with both nervousness and determination.
Cale started to speak at that moment.
“The central shelter will be destroyed tomorrow.”
Jang Man Soo’s eyes opened wide.
“Tomorrow? It’s happening tomorrow?”
“T, This! It’s going to suddenly happen like that?!”
“I did say it would be soon, didn’t I?”
Jang Man Soo patted his thigh with his hand over and over as if he didn’t know what to do.
“Oh, and the new central shelter will not open until 24 hours after this central shelter is destroyed.”
Cale looked at the blankly staring Jang Man Soo and calmly continued to speak.
“Basically, to put it in the simplest of terms…a maximum of 24 hours. That’s how long we need to survive in this building that will no longer be a shelter.
“Wait, what kind of-”
“That also means we need to spend one night.”
Jang Man Soo was at a loss for words.
His eyes looked at Cale who seemed completely calm.
That calmness made Jang Man Soo barely able to speak.
“…W, what is the plan?”
“The first goal is achieved since you said you will help me out, mister.”
“…What is the second goal?”
The second goal was simple.
“It’s the same as the first goal.”
Cale looked toward the third floor of the building.
“I need to convince other people.”
“…Are you planning on meeting with Park Jin Tae? Do you think that bastard will believe you?”
Cale looked back toward Jang Man Soo.
He then started to smile.
Jang Man Soo realized that Kim Rok Soo had changed after seeing this smile every so often.
It made him think that this punk really might have gotten an ability.
“Yes, sir. He will believe me.”
Jang Man Soo could not help but nod his head after hearing this voice that was full of confidence.
* * *
A drop of blood flowed down to his chin and fell to the ground.
The man took a deep breath before looking down at the person blocking his path.
“What do you want?”
Park Jin Tae who had returned from hunting was looking at Kim Rok Soo.
“I have something to say.”
Lee Chul Min, one of Park Jin Tae’s subordinates, started to frown.
“Hey! You mindless bastard! Can’t you see that we just got back from hunting? Hmm? Can’t you see our conditions?”
Cale slowly looked around at the people who had gone hunting.
All of them looked like messes.
There were many injured people as well.
That was why he could tell that this hunt was neither a game nor predators hunting easy prey.
It was a desperate hunt to find food for survival.
Cale could see a few bags in their hands.
They probably went to a mart or grocery store to gather the food that was still edible. It was usually canned food or ramen, but those were very precious as well.
Cale responded to Lee Chul Min who was glaring at him as if he wanted to pierce a hole through his head.
“I can clearly see it. That’s why I’m thankful.”
Park Jin Tae’s eyes clouded over.
But Lee Chul Min’s face turned red.
“Wow. Did this bastard speak informally to me?”
He seemed to have gotten angry at the fact that Kim Rok Soo who was two or three years younger than him spoke informally to him.
But Cale’s gaze was cold as he looked at him.
‘Lee Chul Min, this bastard was the first to run away.’
He had run away while Park Jin Tae was helping the weak and useless people escape first.
The weak who were being led by Lee Chul Min became frantic when Lee Chul Min ran away and the situation turned even more chaotic.
Cale had made up his mind as he clearly remembered that moment.
‘You won’t be able to run away this time, you bastard.’
Lee Chul Min had the third strongest attacking ability in this place.
Shouldn’t he properly use such a precious asset?
The corners of Cale’s lips started to go up.
“Please and thank you.”
“What? Did this bastard go crazy?”
Lee Chul Min’s face viciously scrunched up.
Seeing a normally vicious bastard’s face becoming vicious made him seem very heinous.
Park Jin Tae raised his hand at that moment.
Lee Chul Min shut his mouth. Of course, Cale didn’t.
“I have something I need to tell you, sir.”
Park Jin Tae carefully looked at Kim Rok Soo.
He was very tired after coming back from the hunt, but…
“You said something you ‘need’ to tell me?”
“Yes, sir. Something I must tell you.”
Park Jin Tae nodded his head.
“Fine. Let’s go to my room.”
Lee Chul Min was shocked at this response, but Park Jin Tae started to walk toward his room on the third floor as if he said everything he needed to say.
He heard Kim Rok Soo’s voice behind him at that moment.
“We need to call a few other people over as well.”
Park Jin Tae looked back toward Rok Soo.
Park Jin Tae started to walk again in a few seconds as he responded.
“Call them all over.”
“Yes, sir. I will be up shortly.”
Cale turned away from Park Jin Tae and motioned to Grandma Kim and the Lee siblings who were anxiously watching him chat with Park Jin Tae.
“Let’s go up.”
They needed to hear as well.
He needed them to be with him as well.
* * *
“So, what is it you need to tell me?”
Park Jin Tae sat down on a couch that was extremely rare in this world and looked at Cale.
Lee Chul Min, Grandma Kim, Lee Jin Joo, and Lee Seung Won were in Park Jin Tae’s room.
Grandma Kim sat down on the chair to Park Jin Tae’s right, but everybody else was standing as they looked at Cale.
Their gazes were all full of questions.
However, Cale paid no attention to the gazes focused on him and just made eye contact with Park Jin Tae.
“I awakened my ability.”
Park Jin Tae’s eyes opened wide almost instantly.
He then started to smile.
“…That is completely unexpected.”
Even Lee Chul Min looked at Kim Rok Soo up and down in shock.
‘This bastard got an ability?’
However, Grandma Kim’s face was glowing. It was the same for the siblings as well.
“My goodness, Rok Soo! That’s wonderful!”
“Wow, Kim Rok Soo!”
Cale started to speak again.
“That is why I am able to see the future.”
Silence almost immediately filled the area again.
“Ah, of course, I’m also able to see a few pieces of information other people are not able to see.”
Lee Chul Min mouth opened without him thinking about it.
Cale walked toward Park Jin Tae at that moment.
Lee Chul Min tried to keep Cale away, but Park Jin Tae raised his hand to stop him.
Cale walked right up to Park Jin Tae without any hesitation.
“…Kim Rok Soo.”
Cale lowered his body and whispered quietly so that only Park Jin Tae could hear as Park Jin Tae quietly said his name.
“You’re an ability user with multiple abilities, right?”
Until Park Jin Tae died…
This was his secret that nobody else in the world knew about.
Park Jin Tae’s pupils started to shake.
Cale took one step back at that moment.
He then continued to speak in a calm voice.
“Tomorrow at noon. There will be a moment when the sun is covered by a shadow.”
The room was chaotic because of Cale’s revealed ability and his interaction with Park Jin Tae.
“It will last one minute.”
Cale was the only calm person here.
“After that one minute, all central shelters around the world would become ineffective.”
His voice stabbed into everyone else’s ears.
“The nearby monsters will all start to attack the central shelters that are no longer useful.”
Cale was the only one speaking in this terrible silence with all eyes focused on him.
“The monsters will come charging forth like a tsunami.”
A suffocating silence filled the room.