Rainbow City Chapter 13

Author: nicotine

Pointing at the screen, Major Jang even applauded. There seemed an intent to say, ‘There’s no one stronger or safer than this guy.’

As the training stopped due to Kwak Soohwan’s victory, he glanced at the surveillance camera among the scattered soldiers. Although their eyes didn’t meet, Seokhwa clenched his fist again. If it weren’t an emergency drill but reality, he would have been haunted by guilt, seeing him transform into Adam before her eyes. That’s why he was angry. His powerlessness made him bitter.

“Even if it were a real emergency drill, there wouldn’t have been any issues.”

Major Jang seemed to understand Seokhwa’s inner thoughts and smiled wryly. Seokhwa, who hadn’t even finished half of the nuts, crumpled the wrapper and put it back in his pocket.

“I’m not sure what you’re referring to.”

“As I mentioned, didn’t I say he could handle a Red Zone alone? Even if Adam had stormed our shelter for real, he would have been unscathed. Doctor, it’s been a while since you’ve been to Seoul, but Kwak Soohwan’s invincible unit isn’t just a name. They’ve never lost on the field. Although he has a mischievous side…”

“I understand what you mean. Please consider our conversation nonexistent.”

Major Jang felt relieved that Seokhwa didn’t act stubbornly. There was no point in being obstinate. In a world where everyone was holding hands and lacking solutions, causing inconvenience to others with unnecessary pride was futile. Seokhwa bowed to Major Jang and started walking towards his research lab.

Since coming to Seoul, unlike the protected zone of Jeju Island, he’d been unintentionally tense. Looking back, during the emergency drill, neither the research team nor other shelter staff had been visible. They likely waited in the refuge rooms on each floor.

[Access granted.]

As we entered the research lab, Dr. Kim widened his eyes.

“You were in the room earlier during the emergency drill. Where were you?”

“I was in my room. I apologize for being late.”

“I suspected as much. I wanted to talk about the training but forgot.”

Dr. Kim scratched his cheek nonchalantly.

“During an emergency drill, the doctors move to the emergency elevator at the end of the 34th-floor corridor. Only doctors and researchers can use it. Then they wait at the top until the end of the training. I forgot to mention that since I’m not fully used to this.”

“Is this for preparing for real emergencies?”

“Well, sort of. In the end, it’s not just about the soldiers’ lives being on the line, right? Conversely, the soldiers’ lives also depend on us.”

The development of the 7th variant vaccine for Adam. That was why the researchers in this shelter were safely protected. Dr. Kim wheeled his chair closer to Seokhwa. After glancing around and unsettlingly eyeing the surveillance cameras hanging at the corners, he whispered quietly.

“Do you know why there’s been poor communication with our overseas branches lately? Research exchange with overseas branches was feasible, right?”


When Seokhwa was in the research facility, he had exchanged ideas with researchers from overseas branches several times.

“I managed to contact a friend in our China branch today. He said Adam is still in the 7th variant stage. It’s strange how all of a sudden, communication with overseas branches ceased… Are you aware that it’s only our Rainbow City that’s isolated?”

Normally, he thought his conversations lacked substance, but today he delivered rather shocking news.

“You mean there’s no communication with the overseas branches at all?”

“Yes, that’s how we confirmed our isolation this time.”

The global internet communication network had collapsed long ago. With a significant portion of the population gone, there was a scarcity of personnel to maintain the communication infrastructure. Adams severing the lines added to the multitude of problems. Several oil refineries, cut off from human intervention, had burned down over a few months. The alert systems in shelters like Yeouido were barely sustaining operations by drawing in all available power. Communication with overseas branches was through calls, letters, or direct visits. But all three were cut off right after signs of Adam’s 7th variant appeared.

“But Doctor, I’ve been curious, what’s with that stone?”

Seokhwa was absentmindedly rolling a small stone in his hand, a habit that surfaced during contemplation, and the coolness of the stone brought a sense of relief.

“It’s just a charm, like an amulet.”

“Haha, hearing ‘amulet’ from Doctor Seokhwa is odd. By the way, you had collected stones before.”

There were stones collected in the supply room. Due to the chaos after arriving in Seoul, he hadn’t explored yet but had planned to do so soon. However, Dr. Kim’s sudden change in tone was unsettling.

“What about the stones?”

“Dr. Oh Cheong-woon threw them all into the Han River, claiming they were superstitious. That was before the rumor of Adam’s transformation.”

Dr. Kim suddenly seemed flustered. Seokhwa, who was usually stoic and was mockingly referred to as ‘Doctor Stone’ because of his expressionless face, wrinkled his forehead noticeably.

“Is that so?”

He had taken some small stones with her to Jeju Island, leaving the heavier ones here. It was regrettable to leave them behind, but it was his fault for leaving them, not the fault of the person who discarded them. Seokhwa had an attachment to stones, even if everything else was unclear.

“Oh, don’t worry too much. If I find a pretty-looking stone, I’ll give it to you, Doctor.”

“Thank you. But I don’t necessarily need a pretty stone. I prefer stones with sparkling crystals or a gritty texture, like a basalt. Pieces from cement won’t do.”

Seokhwa displayed the stone he held in his hand. It was just a casual remark, but Dr. Kim seemed flustered at first, then nodded.

“Alright, I’ll keep that in mind. If I find something like that, I’ll make sure to collect it for you.”

Seokhwa put the stone in his gown pocket and rose from his seat. Walking unsteadily to the lab on the opposite side, he revisited Dr. Oh’s journal in his mind.

Adam’s abnormal behavior and the peculiar mutation by Oh Cheong-woon.

Certainly, Dr. Oh must have conducted some experiment on his son. Perhaps trying to revert him to a human. However, there was no record of this in the journal.

From the 1st to the 3rd vaccine, the Adam virus was cultured continuously in eggs to weaken its toxicity. Injecting this vaccine into the body generated immunity to prevent infection, akin to a flu shot. But the 4th Adam virus became stronger, and despite the weakened vaccine, infections occurred. The Adam virus had become immune to the body’s memory immune cells.

Seokhwa himself knew very little about this 7th mutation. That’s why he had planned to visit the place they referred to as the zoo, but the emergency training changed everything.

Observing the 7th Adam virus again through the microscope, it behaved quite differently from what was observed earlier. Cells that remained motionless as if dead without external stimuli would become wildly active with slight triggers, like rampaging lunatics.

While watching this, Kwak Soohwan from the video suddenly came to mind. Despite Major Jang’s praise, he seemed uncontrollable like this virus. Still, he had pushed himself into the closing door, thinking it was just training. Initially angry, Seokhwa now considered it fortunate. Since it wasn’t really life-threatening, even if the training was severe. However, his grip on the stone in his pocket tightened.


“You seemed angry.”

Kwak Soohwan, who only left the training room late at night, looked the same as usual but emitted an inexplicable intensity.

“How did you know I was here?”

Seokhwa looked down from the inactive Sky Lounge. It used to have a fantastic night view, now it was pitch black.

“Just curious?”

Meeting his gaze, Kwak Soohwan’s intense energy seemed to cut through. He touched his wound upon sensing her gaze, then withdrew his hand.

“You asked for a change in security too.”

“That’s been reconsidered.” 

“Then, I assume you’ll be going to the zoo tomorrow.” 

As Kwak Soohwan relayed what he had to say, he turned away first. While leaving the way he came in, he ran his hand over the grand piano covered in thick dust. He exhaled and blew away the accumulated dust on his hand.

“Dr. Seok, do you know the criteria for the safe zones on the upper floors in Rainbow City?” 

Seokhwa chose to remain silent, not wanting to respond.

“It’s about how many musical instruments you can handle.” 

Being able to handle musical instruments meant living in a safe zone. Playing music where there were sensitive Adams was suicidal, as people in danger zones were all busy fleeing.

Kwak Soohwan casually pressed a low note on the piano. Moving his fingers a few times, a plausible chord was produced, and Seokhwa stood straight towards him. It was somewhat surprising and seemed mismatched with a military uniform and a piano. Just as he seemed about to play more, he withdrew his hand and merely raised an eyebrow.

“Drop your biases.” 

And off he went. Seokhwa slightly raised her voice as Kwak Soohwan was leaving the lounge this time without hesitation.

“Major Kwak Soohwan.”

“Why? Didn’t you want to mix words with me?”

“As Major Jang said.”

Seokhwa spoke, rummaging through her pocket, retrieving the nuts he had left half-eaten. He leisurely nibbled on them, then rinsed his mouth with water from the lounge. How slow his actions were, and he wondered if he couldn’t remember what he said.

“Major said you could have arrived on the 48th floor within the time Mother counted today.” 

“That’s when I was alone.”

“He said it could have been possible even if you were carrying me.” 

Kwak Soohwan crossed his arms, gazing at Seokhwa.

“Right. Even if three of us were carrying Dr. Seok, it might have been possible.” 

“Given I’m the only one in the world, we don’t need those assumptions.”


Table of Contents
Reader Settings
Font Size
Line Height

hope you enjoy my translations. please do not share on SNS otherwise all of my translations will be taken down. thank you!

Comments (0)