The Imperial Hunter Chapter 20 - Beast Hunt (8)

Author: Dawn

Last night, I loaded eleven rounds into my pistol in the hotel room. Ten rounds in the magazine, one in the chamber. And now, on this afternoon when the day has changed, not a single round remains in my pistol.

The first round was used by Karen Williams. Nine rounds were used for the ear-popping torture. And the last remaining round was my mercy to Fraser.

Thuud! Thud!

The pig boss, tied to the chair, leaned forward, tears of thin blood flowing from one eye. To give this goldfish a painless death, I carefully adjusted the angle while holding his head and fired at point-blank range. The bullet that entered his eye socket bounced off in multiple directions, trapped in his skull. If the bullet had been stronger, it would have pierced through the back of his head.

I turned to face Jay’s errand boy, still bound to an extra chair, and swapped out the magazine.


The errand boy, newly bound to a spare chair, twitched in his seat, his eyes glaring wildly. His eyes were filled with a lot of bloodshot veins, like a prey easily caught in a $10,000 trap. What I didn’t like was his complacency, as he had received a call in the morning and only showed up in the afternoon.

I looked at the frightened guy and grabbed my pistol.

“Don’t get greedy. There’s no mercy for you.”

Then, I turned my gaze to Kyung-tae.

“Did you find anything?”

Kyung-tae raised his thumb with one hand.

“I’ve confirmed Jay’s real name and phone number.”


“Yes. His Facebook page as well. He’s been actively liking posts.”

Jay’s errand boy had two phones: a prepaid phone and a regular contract phone. It would have been safer to leave one behind when coming to a place like this, but this guy brought both. Maybe he thought something might happen? I wondered.

“What’s his real name?”

“Calvin Kenneth Braimlow.”


“I’m cross-referencing it with the remote navigation memory at headquarters, but wouldn’t it be quicker to use truth serum rather than going through all the other clues?”

“Prepare it.”


Unless the statement was about complex facts, confirming simple information like an address with truth serum was considered a credible statement. As long as there was no room for lying, as long as you didn’t give them the power to kill, make them tell the truth. This dosage control was a tricky thing, even for experts. My subordinates were less likely to make mistakes, as they’d practiced killing people with it occasionally.

‘In the end, I’m giving the guy we can’t kill a peaceful death.’

One of my subordinates carefully injected a mixture of scopolamine into the errand boy’s vein. The effect appeared before the full dose was even reached. All truth serums were essentially anesthetics. A gynecologist was the first to propose the possibility of a truth serum to the U.S. government. The reason? Because pregnant women in anesthesia were answering their questions accurately. Of course, the United States didn’t just use it for the purpose of revealing perjury. (+) [1]

When the anesthetic effect set in, the two subordinates who had been restraining the errand boy let go and stepped back. The drugged guy’s hazy eyes roamed through the empty air. Kyung-tae put his hand on the errand boy’s shoulder and spoke to him affectionately.

“Hey, listen.”


“Do you know Calvin Braimlow?”


“Where does he live?”

“…Lombard… Street.”

“Where’s that?”

“Russian Hill…”

Kyung-tae repeated these questions for verification several times, but the errand boy couldn’t remember the exact address. That was understandable; however, even this incomplete information would help narrow down the search area. Kyung-tae sent a message to the field support team, and since we were using a truth serum, he added more questions while we were at it. About his usual activities, personal relationships, family, and daily routines.

Shortly after that,


Kyung-tae looked at his phone and made a sound with his mouth.

“We’ve confirmed the address. It’s 950 Lombard Street, San Francisco, right?”

“Share it.”

“As you wish.”

Looking at the address and photos sent to my device, it was an unusually large mansion right in the heart of downtown. Selling just the house would make you a millionaire, but well, there were plenty of people who got lost even when they had nowhere else to go.

While I was looking at the photos, a call came on my business phone. It was from the White Chief. My subordinate had edited and sent the video that they had filmed to him about three hours ago, but it seemed he had only checked it now.

‘Either he was busy with his work, or he had a lot on his mind.’

At the point when he had identified Fraser as a target for the “White Guard,” he must have had at least some idea of what he looked like. So, as soon as he saw the video I sent, he would have known it was genuine. I received a call a short distance away from the pigs, and without formalities, I started with my questions.

“Chief, did you watch the video?”

[…I didn’t expect to see the results so quickly.]

“To be precise, the results haven’t been determined yet. Their lives are still intact, and the main target was in the process of confirming their location.”

[My point is, anyway, the speed is astonishing.]

“I appreciate the compliment.”

[It is a compliment. Did you personally handle this?]

“Our company did. I tend to take care of truly important matters myself.”

[…I see.]

“Chief, I hope you accept my sincere intentions.”

[Well… Thank you. I didn’t expect you to take it this far.]

It seemed like Chief White was genuinely surprised. After all, how often do you get the opportunity to kidnap someone at a casino? Even if they did it, they usually did it individually and, at most, engaged in a defensive struggle. Furthermore, just like any other black market, the contract industry was full of amateurs, fraudsters, and thieves.

‘Come to think of it, those idiots who subcontracted to the point of absurdity were there too.’

Although that had happened in China, it wasn’t any better in other countries’ contract industries. After all, the black market was ultimately a completely free market that avoided the surveillance of public authority, and there was no system for verifying experience or guaranteeing credit. That’s why large criminal organizations tried to create something similar to market order in their own way because there were so many landmines.

“Give me your instructions.”


“Why do you think I spared all of them? There’s no need to interrogate all of them.”

[… ]

“Once the contract is made, me and my company become a knife in your hands. How to use the knife depends on the person holding it. We can be a dull knife or a sharp one.”

Materials cut from a dull knife would undoubtedly turn into a mess.

The chief’s hesitation didn’t last long.

[I’d prefer it to be as painful as possible.]

“Understood. You’ll receive the results as before.”

Let’s talk again later. With this statement, I hung up the phone.

Inside the warehouse, sunlight streamed in through high windows, and there was a faint smell of urine. The reason was the guys who had been tied up for too long. Some of them might have been scared to the point where their bladders were shrinking. That’s why the slaughter was better when it was quick.

Kyung-tae asked, 

“Is that the Chief?”


“I thought so.”

Yes, it was a predictable situation. But we couldn’t proceed without asking. If he saw me as a sadistic killer or a schizophrenic maniac, it would be problematic. The horrific results should be what the chief himself wanted. I nodded to Kyung-tae and the others.



Although I received an order to make it as painful as possible, I had no intention of spending a long time on it.

[The most effective method is probably still electric shock…]

However, that wasn’t something that could be done easily, as Milgram had falsely staged in his experiments. It was a time-consuming and resource-intensive process, and, above all, it didn’t provide much visual satisfaction. It ended with a scream, a little burning, and a little increase in fear.

Similarly, the poison didn’t provide strong visual stimulation. Using an electric saw to dismember the target would be more beneficial for customer satisfaction.


My subordinates, wearing sealed protective suits and face shields, started the circular saw. Other subordinates set up tables. The screams of the pigs, blocked by the blade, were buried again in the sound of the motor. I watched the first pig being dismantled on the table without much excitement. Technically, it was delicate sawing, despite appearances. The noise was highest when the steel cut through the bone. Except for the fact that the subject was a person and alive, it was no different from a normal butchering process.

After watching only the first dismemberment, I left for outside the warehouse. The subordinates standing outside were unmasked and had concealed their weapons. No matter how remote the alley was, they couldn’t walk around in their robber gear in broad daylight.

Across the street, our parked cars were playing music loudly. Yet, no one from the nearby residential areas had opened their windows to protest. If anyone in this neighborhood had intact limbs, they would have gone to work by now, and this warehouse would likely serve as the workplace for some of these people.

In this neighborhood, living conditions were probably the same everywhere. In a city with poor public safety, especially. Cheap houses were cheap for a reason.

In front of the warehouse, a few oil drums were lit. Normally, gangsters would gather around them to chat and warm their hands, but now it was the fire lit by the guys on alert to burn what needed to be burned. I took out a handkerchief from my pocket and tossed it into the smoky fire.

The sawing process for dismembering a person took three hours. The fragmented bodies were thrown into tanks of sodium hydroxide brought by two trucks, and the blood was drained through the floor into the drainpipe, covered with plastic that we had laid out.

“Good job, everyone.”

I encouraged the subordinates who had finished cleaning up the scene.

“When this is all over, take turns getting a day of free time.”

Now, I had to deal with “Jay,” whose real name was Calvin Braimlow, and tomorrow morning, send the bodies dissolved in sodium hydroxide back to this warehouse to be flushed into the sewer. After that, I’d collect the remaining unburned bones, break them down further, and throw them into the sea. Then, it would truly be over.

Using something like perchloric acid would be faster, but sodium hydroxide was easier to obtain.

As we got into the car, Kyung-tae inquired, 

“Do you think Karen Williams might need some additional measures? She saw your face, sir.”

“It’s fine.”

I dismissed Kyung-tae’s concerns.

“Even if that woman decides to spill the money after a conflict, by the time she makes up her mind, she won’t even remember what I look like.”

“Well, that’s true, but…”

Human memory was easily contaminated. Unabomber montage, arguably the most famous montage of the 20th century, was actually the face of an unrelated third party. While the witness did encounter Unabomber, the face of another person they encountered afterward was superimposed on their memory. (+) [2]

‘Moreover, there’s a racial barrier between that woman and me.’

People often say that all other races look alike, don’t they? After today, every time Karen saw a face similar to mine, she would be startled and surprised, and those faces would become part of her memory of me. Such distortions were heavily influenced by emotional states and stereotypes about other races. Age and height information were relatively accurate, though.

That’s why in modern forensic science, the reliability of a montage was at the level of “better than nothing.”


After some more thought, I decided to be cautious.

“No, let’s keep her under surveillance for another two or three days.”

Kyung-tae’s complexion brightened.

“Good thinking, sir.”

If we watched how she reacted after receiving the casino coin, it would become clear. If she acted cautiously, there would be nothing more to see.

  • 1. TLN: Scopolamine is used to prevent nausea and vomiting caused by motion sickness or medications used during surgery. A gynecologist diagnoses and treats issues with female reproductive organs.
  • 2. TLN: Theodore John Kaczynski, also known as the Unabomber, was an American mathematician and domestic terrorist. He was a mathematics prodigy but abandoned his academic career to pursue a primitive lifestyle. Between 1978 and 1995, Kaczynski murdered three individuals and injured 23 others in a nationwide mail bombing campaign against people he believed to be advancing modern technology and the destruction of the natural environment.
Author's Thoughts

This novel is a work of fiction! While it may incorporate elements inspired by our "real" historical world, including historical events, settings, and cultures, it is important to note that the story and characters are entirely products of the author's imagination. Any resemblance to real persons, living or deceased, or actual events is purely coincidental. This work should be enjoyed and interpreted as a work of fiction and not as a representation of historical facts or reality.
Also, if you find some error in translation please do let me know by tagging me (@_dawn24) in our Discord server. Since this series is kinda hard to translate. But I'll try my best to make it at least readable :)
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