Season 2 Chapter 5: (Season 2) – Chapter 5
The more Min Ha-rin heard Rutan’s introduction, the more disgusted she felt. She felt terrible, as though she was a piece of premium meat about to be sold.
Apart from that, she felt her chest become tighter and her body become covered in cold sweat.
Was she nervous?
‘This is natural.’
At that moment, the curtain was lifted and the cage floated up to the stage.
She was presented in a way the Demons would appreciate.
“Such a good product.”
“It’s S class for sure.”
When Min Ha-rin was revealed, the Demons did not hide their admiration. On the other hand, Min Ha-rin just felt more sick.
Demon Nobles filled the hall. Many of them were Counts, who could be considered as high ranking nobility, with some being even higher ranked.
There were not one, two, or even a dozen. There were close to a hundred of these monsters who could each dye a small region with blood.
Just the demonic energy that they constantly omitted created a poisonous atmosphere for humans. An ordinary human might vomit blood just from inhaling the air in this room.
Min Ha-rin’s resistance had been reduced by the collar. Nevertheless, the poisonous air only made her face look a bit more haggard.
She was about to sit down because of the sudden dizziness that she felt when her body suddenly froze.
She felt a sting in her neck. Then, her entire body became stiff. Her senses blurred as though she’d been put under anesthesia.
This was one of the functions of the collar.
She didn’t know the principle behind it, but she’d lost control of her body.
Then, her body began posing against her will.
Min Ha-rin’s face burned red with shame.
It was as though she was anxious to get herself sold.
Min Ha-rin had never experienced something so humiliating and terrible in her life.
“The White Flower.”
Rutan laughed as he said those words.
“Customers who are interested in enslaving humans should have heard about her at least once. This hunter has killed three Viscounts, one Baron, and hundreds more of our kind. Surprisingly, this product is only in its early twenties. So depending on how you raise it, you can cultivate its youth and beauty. You can even keep it for a long time if you maintain it properly.”
‘This is crazy.’
Min Ha-rin wanted to bite her lip, but even that was impossible.
It was completely insane.
As Rutan had said, Min Ha-rin had hunted three Viscounts, one Baron, and hundreds of other demons.
From the perspective of humans, these were certainly achievements deserving of praise. But it shouldn’t have been for them.
Weren’t they the same kind?
Min Ha-rin should have been treated as a mass murderer to be executed with extreme prejudice.
But she wasn’t.
Instead, the eyes of these Demons were flashing with disgusting greed.
The fact that Min Ha-rin had killed hundreds of their kind was just one of the achievements that raised her product value. It was just another reason for them to desire adding her to their collection.
How could intelligent creatures be so disgusting?
She finally understood why they were given that name.
They were smart, wore clothing, were capable of trade, and spoke in an old fashioned manner.
But could they really be called an intelligent race?
In Min Ha-rin’s eyes, they were just ugly monsters made of instinct and pleasure who only feigned intelligence.
“Then let us begin the bidding.”
Some of the Demon Nobles lifted their hands, and Demons who had been waiting at the sides approached them.
These nobles then told their offers in soft voices to the Demons who then passed them onto Rutan, who was standing on the stage.
The corners of Rutan’s lips curled upwards.
“It seems there is a hot reaction in the first wave. Haha. Everyone has good eyes.”
There seemed to be a gentle heat of emotion in his calm voice.
At that moment, Min Ha-rin looked like a large gold nugget in his eyes.
No, precious metals had no value in the eyes of the Demons. To Rutan, Min Ha-rin was a treasure in itself.
“The highest bid is 100,000, and the bidder is Duke Sandro.”
These words caused another ripple to spread throughout the room.
Min Ha-rin’s value was already obvious to everyone there, but they didn’t expect to see a price like 100,000 from the first wave.
The higher the product’s value, the more waves it would have.
For a product like Min Ha-rin, there would certainly be a second and third wave after the first. And every time they proceeded to the next wave, the price would be 1.5 times higher than the previous highest bid.
In other words, this meant that at least 150,000 had to be bid in the next wave.
“I’ll let this one pass.”
Some of the nobles who knew Duke Sandro’s financial capabilities directly gave up the bid after seeing his interest in Min Ha-rin.
He was one of the Chester Company’s biggest customers, and he was well-known for his collection and obsession in that he could only be satisfied by products he liked.
However, some nobles who still thought it was worth it did not back down so easily.
It was then.
“Is that the next product beside you?”
A noble pointed towards Lukas.
Rutan glanced at this blonde man before smiling.
“No. He’s a bonus.”
“This is a product whose mind has already been broken. But other than that, he is in good condition. As you can see, his face is good and he has a surprisingly durable body. If nothing else, he would still be useful for experiments. Of course, if you don’t want him, you don’t have to take him.”
Sandro looked at Lukas after hearing that.
This was the second time he was seeing him. The first time, he had been focused on Min Ha-rin, so he hadn’t paid much attention to him, but as Rutan said, his appearance wasn’t bad.
Although he looked a bit sullen, his face wasn’t bad-looking for a male, and if he was washed and taken care of properly, it might be possible to raise his looks to another level.
Duke Sandro’s wrinkled face stretched with a child-like smile.
“Then let’s start the second wave.”
Sandro lifted his hand and beckoned towards a Demon before whispering in their ear.
After hearing the bid, the Demon’s body shook slightly. He looked at Sandro as if to confirm that he’d heard correctly, to which Sandro simply nodded with a relaxed expression.
The Demon immediately headed over to inform Rutan of the bid. Rutan also trembled slightly when he heard it.
‘As expected of Duke Sandro.’
Was he saying that he didn’t want to waste any more time?
In any case, this wasn’t a bad thing for the company.
Rutan had to forcibly stop himself from laughing out loud.
“The highest bid is 1 million, and the bidder is Duke Sandro.”
The nobles froze in shock when they heard this announcement.
“This is too much, even for a titled hunter.”
“Duke Sandro must really like this one.”
The bid rose by ten times in an instant, causing the other nobles to lose their fighting spirit.
Rutan laughed once again.
There was still one wave left, but it would be a waste of time to proceed with it at this point.
The reason that Sandro had increased the bid to such a ridiculous amount was to bypass the annoying process.
“It seems the owner for this product has been decided.”
Min Ha-rin lowered her head.
She’d thought she’d already given up, but she was scared when the reality truly hit her.
Looking at Duke Sandro’s wrinkled face, she couldn’t help but feel like she’d done something stupid and regretted it.
Then, in the next moment, she bit her lip in disgust at herself.
She pretended to be fine and calm, that everything was okay, but she was regretting it not long after?
She felt like crying because she was laughable and pathetic.
Holding back her resentment, she lifted her head.
If someone asked her just ‘what was okay’, she wouldn’t have been able to answer.
Nevertheless, Min Ha-rin desperately tried to steel her resolve. After all, there was no one there to comfort her but herself.
“That will be all for today’s event. I would like to say thank you to all the customers for joining us.”
Rutan smiled before adding.
“If you managed to successfully obtain a product, please give your payment to the guides present in each row.”
When she heard this word, Min Ha-rin couldn’t help but wonder.
The Demons also had the concept of currency, but few of them actually used it. They also had no interest in gold or other material treasures.
So what were the demons using to conduct the auction?
Min Ha-rin couldn’t help but become speechless when she saw what the ‘payment’ was.
A black crystal, as black as ink, was taken out of a nobles pocket before being handed to a Demon at the side.
As a hunter, Min Ha-rin naturally knew what this black crystal was.
A gem that could contain a human soul.
No, it was more accurate to call it a prison. Once trapped, the soul would never be able to escape on its own. It would have to struggle in pain for an eternity unless the crystal was broken or the crystal’s owner released it.
Min Ha-rin stumbled as she was overcome by a sudden wave of dizziness.
She felt that she could hear screams.
That was the number Sandro had called while bidding for her.
The number had been too big for her to connect to anything. But in truth, if she had thought about it, the answer would not have been hard to think of.
After all, the Demons had no interest in gold or other treasures. For these beings, the thing they obsessed over and coveted to most was none other than the human soul.
The more souls they absorbed, the higher the Demons’ level became. She’d heard that the only way for them to obtain a title was to absorb a certain amount of souls.
The Soul Crystals were items that made the absorption process easier.
All of the nobles here were participating in the auction. In other words, each and every one of them had Soul Crystals in their possession.
If that was the case…
There were about one hundred Demon Nobles in this hall.
She wondered just how many human souls, which were suffering without even being able to die properly, were in their possession.
* * *
The highlight of the event. That was what Rutan had called her. In other words, that was the end of the auction.
Min Ha-rin was the last item.
She had been released from the iron cage, but what awaited her was a life far from freedom.
It might have been better to remain locked in the cage.
Lukas also stepped out of his cage. His face was still the same, without even a sliver of tension.
That was all he said. He didn’t forcibly drag them along.
Their feet and hands were in restraints, but if they were really determined, these chains would not be able to stop them from escaping.
Nevertheless, the Demon acted like there was no possibility that they would escape.
‘There’s nowhere to run anyway.’
This place was in the center of the Demon’s territory. Moreover, unless they did something about the collar, then it would not make a difference even if they ran to the other side of the world.
They had no choice but to follow the Demon to Duke Sandro, who bought them.
‘I will wait for the opportunity to kill the Demon who bought me.’
Lee Jong-hak’s words suddenly appeared in her mind.
Could she do it?
Min Ha-rin asked herself this question before shaking her head. She didn’t have the confidence.
The opponent was a Duke who ranked at the top amongst the Demon nobility.
Even if she was in her peak condition, he was a monster whom she would have difficulty scratching. So now that she’d been weakened by the collar, it was safe to say that she had almost no chance of winning.
Nevertheless… She didn’t want to give up.
You could call it stubbornness. But she knew that the moment she gave up, her chances of winning would no longer be slim; they would disappear altogether.
‘I think I can do it.’
While she had this thought, the Demon leading them stopped at a door.
Then, he knocked politely and waited.
“Who is it?”
“I’m from the Chester Company. I brought the products you won, Duke Sandro.”
The moment the door opened, Min Ha-rin’s face became pale.