I Obtained a mythic Item Chapter 213

I Obtained a Mythic Item

Episode 212: Nastrond (2)

“The Nastrond you see here houses those who have committed three vile sins, making it the largest prison in Niflheim. The first is reserved for those who committed adultery, a hell where poison drips. That place is the first gate.”

Hela’s explanation was concise and clear.

Jae-hyun closely observed his surroundings as he walked through the first gate.

True to her words, the theme of this hell was poison.

Apart from those bound in chains, the sight of numerous sinners caught his attention.

As he passed by the sinners, the wails of the dead reached his ears.

[Ahhh… grant me freedom… please….]

[I did… nothing wrong….]

Jae-hyun looked at the sinners screaming in agony while chained.

Their grotesque forms, parts rotting away, would challenge even the strongest stomach to witness, and the noxious odor stung the nose.

A typical person’s concept of hell.

Perhaps, a poignant end for those who committed major sins.

Jae-hyun frowned, obviously displeased, as he asked,

“Hela, Nidhogg mentioned earlier that we must pass through three gates to reach the end, correct?”

“That’s right. To reach Hvergelmir, one must pass through all three gates.”

“And what are the conditions for passing through each gate?”

At Jae-hyun’s query, Hela paused to organize her thoughts, then began to speak.

“With each gate, you confess your sins. Of course, that’s if you’ve actually sinned.”

Confession of sins.

Hela explained that the purpose of each gate was to confess if one had committed the corresponding sin.

In that regard, Jae-hyun had nothing to worry about at this first gate.

The major sin dealt with by the first gate was adultery.

But Jae-hyun hadn’t even married, let alone commit adultery. He hadn’t even had a proper relationship before regressing, so there was no corner for sin.

‘I feel strangely sad, for some reason….’

With those wistful feelings, Jae-hyun approached the keeper of the first gate.

A large man with skin dyed an excessively purple hue.

Hela explained that he was one of the Nastrond’s triplet brothers, known as ‘The Covetous One,’ assigned as a gatekeeper.

A figure fearsome to anyone who had sinned.

However, Jae-hyun had nothing to fear. He walked confidently to the gatekeeper.

‘The Covetous One’ looked Jae-hyun up and down, then nodded and spoke,

[You bear no sin. Proceed to the next gate.]

Groan!

Alongside Papi, who toddled after him, Jae-hyun stepped towards the door leading to the next stage.

Inside the door, a rather long corridor awaited; the walls adorned with the preserved faces of sinners seemed to him a perverse fancy.

As he walked through the empty, elongated space,

Suddenly, Hela whispered with a snicker,

“It’s a good thing you don’t have a spouse.

To begin with, you don’t even have a girlfriend.”

“…You seem quite chipper?”

Jae-hyun bristled at her teasing tone, but Hela did not stop.

Jae-hyun sighed deeply and continued walking deeper into hell.

Soon, the second gate appeared, and here, Jae-hyun hesitated.

“What’s this? What are these?”

* * *

Immediately upon arriving at Nastrond’s second gate, the first thing that caught his eye was a snake.

Countless snakes biting sinners, and a fountain of blood erupted amidst them.

[Please… get these things off me! I beg of you!]

[Stop… Get away! Let me be!]

The shrieking cries of the dead pierced the air.

Watching with a somber expression, Jae-hyun listened as Hela spoke.

“The second gate is a hell where those who broke their oaths suffer as snakes bite them, spilling their blood in agony.”

“Oathbreakers, huh…”

Jae-hyun pondered whether he bore such a sin.

He had not lived perfectly from before his regression to now. Along the way, he made mistakes and reflected on them to reach this point.

There may have been times he broke oaths and promises.

Swallowing hard, Jae-hyun asked Hela,

“What happens to me if the gatekeeper judges that I have sinned?”

He couldn’t recall any grievous sins,

But the worst-case scenario—being detained or even dying here—was not an impossibility.

“You must confront your sin.”

“Confront my sin?”

“Yes. You’ll need to see the sin deep within you. You must truly realize it.

Then the gatekeeper will let you pass.”

Hela said those who could not pass through the gates of Nastrond failed to confront their sins.

Because they did not admit their mistakes, or because their egregious sins were inescapable, they were imprisoned here, suffering day by day.

She explained this to him.

“I get it. There’s nothing I can do. Let’s hope I turn out to be innocent.”

With those words, Jae-hyun passed by more respectful dead honoring Hela, approaching the end of the gate.

There stood a man, likely the gatekeeper, tall in stature, with skin a normal hue.

Slightly different from the one at the first gate but with the peculiar appearance of a snake coiling around his waist and legs.

[I am the second gate’s keeper, ‘The Oathbreaker’]. Will you pass?]

“Yes.”

[Show me your sin.]

With an imperious tone, the gatekeeper began to scrutinize Jae-hyun.

Assessing the sinners and questioning their guilt was the keeper’s duty.

After a brief moment,

The gatekeeper spoke to Jae-hyun.

[You’re not without sin. You’ve broken promises to others many times.]

“Is that so? That’s unfortunate.”

Jae-hyun replied with a sardonic smile.

He was prepared for the worst—in a fight with ‘The Oathbreaker,’ if necessary, to meet Nidhogg.

Equipment enhancement. It would be significant power to contest even the Aesir.

There was no thought of turning back.

[However.]

At that moment, when Jae-hyun was ready to fight,

The gatekeeper interrupted abruptly,

[But you are also qualified to pass.]

“…Huh?”

What did that mean?

Why would the very creature that declared his sin suddenly admit his right to pass?

Blinking in sudden confusion, Jae-hyun looked at ‘The Oathbreaker’ before him,

And at that moment,

[But being qualified, it does not mean your sins go unjudged. I will impose a punishment on you.]

“What do you mean by…?”

Before Jae-hyun could finish, ‘The Oathbreaker’ continued,

[From now, I will show you fragments of your past.

Return here after viewing those memories and confess any oaths you’ve broken.]

Suddenly, snakes poured out from beneath him, biting and tearing at Jae-hyun’s limbs.

“Argh…! What’s all this!”

Amidst the erupting fountains of his own blood, Jae-hyun felt as if his consciousness briefly blacked out.

Then, quickly emerging voices and scenes grasped his senses.

The memories narrowed Jae-hyun’s eyes, his body starting to shiver.

Before him unfolded memories slowly reviving.

They were all too familiar to him.

* * *

“Run!”

The voice that came to him as his consciousness faded belonged to someone familiar.

Jae-hyun saw the youthful faces of the two before him.

He took his time reliving the memories.

This place was a dungeon. And the two presently were Kim Jin-ah and Park Sung-woo.

They were now… prepared to sacrifice themselves for him.

His body tingled with goosebumps, and he felt his mind growing faint with recognition.

Jae-hyun intuitively knew.

This was ‘The Oathbreaker’s’ illusion, a past memory, his sin.

‘The mock dungeon back then… it’s when the two sacrificed themselves.’

Before his regression, on that mock dungeon day, Kim Jin-ah and Park Sung-woo sacrificed themselves for Jae-hyun.

These good-hearted individuals risked their lives during the mock dungeon due to Koo Ja-in’s threat, realizing too late to save themselves and urging Jae-hyun to survive by pushing him away.

Upon hearing that, Jae-hyun fled without a second thought. He had no chance to feel thankful.

He had to live.

He had to survive.

That sole focus drove him forwards back then.

Only days after the incident did Jae-hyun reflect on that day, realizing the folly of his decision.

He hadn’t saved them and had fled.

He wasn’t the only one weak.

Yet he escaped alone.

Jae-hyun pondered.

Could this truly be considered a grave sin?

* * *

The scene abruptly shifted, and the memory fragments continued.

The setting remained a dungeon, but the atmosphere was completely different.

Furthermore, this was the very last memory Jae-hyun had before his regression.

‘The dungeon raid with the Uiseong Guild… that day, I obtained Odin’s lost eye and regressed.’

Jae-hyun surveyed the area.

Countless members of the Uiseong Guild and freelancing raiders all around.

Amidst them, a purple mist encroached.

The poison fog.

Finally, Jae-hyun realized what ‘The Oathbreaker’ meant by the broken oath.

The bond shared with another.

It was a history built with others.

However, unable to trust others, he had broken it.

In the worst way imaginable.

Jae-hyun watched his memory without turning away.

The thick purple fog settled, people cried out, forming screams and groans filled the air, and one by one, they started to fall.

The frozen victims groaned as well; their distress thickened the fog.

Among them, Jae-hyun saw one person.

A face dearly missed.

‘…Myeong-ho hyung.’

Lee Myeong-ho.

A martial arts raider, kind-hearted, someone who helped Jae-hyun when he struggled to find work.

In the last moments, Jae-hyun betrayed him.

He had said,

[Jung Woo-min. I’ll act as if today never happened. So…]

That declaration was clear betrayal, a breach of faith.

Jung Woo-min was Lee Myeong-ho’s killer.

Nonetheless, Jae-hyun begged for his life. For his very existence.

My sin.

Tasting the bitterness of blood on his tongue, Jae-hyun continued to watch the unfolding memory.

Voices of panic reached him, and the fog persisted in its encroachments.

Amidst the booming noises and the clamorous surroundings,

Jae-hyun impassively watched as the blade pierced through Lee Myeong-ho’s chest.

He thought again.

My sin. What is it?

Desperate desire to live? Is that what I call my sin?

‘No.’

It was then, watching Lee Myeong-ho’s final moments fall, Jae-hyun truly understood.

‘My sin,’ declared by ‘The Oathbreaker.’

Ultimately…

Cling.

In an instant, the engulfing illusion shattered.

With that, the voice biting into Jae-hyun’s ears spoke,

[So, what is your sin?]

Then the voice of Jae-hyun, who had returned from the memories, was heard, solemn and steady,

“My sin. It’s ‘fleeing while leaving my comrades behind.’”

And that was also the guilt lodged deep within Jae-hyun’s heart.

At Jae-hyun’s words, the corners of ‘The Oathbreaker’s’ mouth rose.

As he spread his arms, the door to the second gate swung wide open.

[Pass on through. Oh adversary of prophecy.]



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