Helou everyone! Last chapter I kind of messed up stat window (specifically Advanced Class and Strength) since I made the table before Eon actually advanced. It’s already fixed, but anyway, my apologies! It’s only a minor mistake anyway xD High time some action happened, so expect next chapter to finally explain that ‘Action’ tag I keep repeating!
CHAPTER VIII – THE RADIANCE (PART 5)
“I am not a lover for I do not love; I am adorer for I adore.” – Unknown
Delighted at the prospect of finally advancing, Yarrn raced round his room, unable to contain his joy. One damned year! I’ve waited for this moment for one, damned year!, he thought rapidly. Those damned NPC’s have stood in my way for far too long! This class advancement bullshit is too complicated! – indeed, just like Eon, Yarrn, previously known as Jay, was transported to this world when he started playing VRMMORPG ‘The Gods of Lyn’. However, unlike Eon, he was transported here just a little bit over a year ago, and since then hadn’t even bothered looking for a way back. He had a rather simple personality: all he desired was power. Back in the previous world, he was a bartender ever since he was sixteen. By many considered underachiever, he simply lacked desire to work diligently to climb ranks. So, ever since he was transported here and realized that he’s way more powerful than the majority of regular folk, he had abandoned the dream of going back to the modern world. After all, could he become Dark Magus in the modern world?
Unlike Eon’s special race, he had recklessly picked Human as his starting race, because he thought to just test the game and decide on the min-maxing later on. To this day that was the most regretful thing he had done in his life. Base stats of Human race, after all, were crap, without sugarcoating it. He had to work recklessly to get his intelligence into hundreds, and even now, if compared to someone from Demon race, he was like a child. That was the reason he decided to go the route of Black Magic. Unlike Elementalist or Arcanist or great majority of other Magus subclasses, Black Magus and, in extension, Dark Magus, didn’t rely heavily on stats to output the damage. Their damage was directly related to their study of Black Magic; the more insight you had in it, the greater the damage. The largest drawback, though, was that Black Magus had to always prepare before the fight – write down inscriptions, set the traps around the battlefield, and practically stand in one place and chant the entire fight if he wanted to do anything. His lifelong (one year) dream of finally removing the shackles and flying upwards like a bird are just around the corner. Although he never met any other player-like character, Yarrn wasn’t an idiot – he firmly believed there were others. That’s why he kept low profile. Since his race is Human, majority of other races would stomp him in a duel – especially because he was Black Magus. However, as he ascends to the Legendary Class, all that was part of the past. He heard the knocking sound on his doors and quickly stiffened his temper, bringing back his stoic face.
“Come on in.” he said in a low voice.
“Forgive me for disturbing you, Leader,” young man, in his bare teens, knelt before him; his name was Gizmo and he was third in-command of the Black Magic Sect. For an NPC, Yarrn had often thought he was ridiculously overpowered since his stats were nearly as good as Yarrn’s. “The last pieces of the city-wide inscription block have been laid. Everything is ready.”
“Good,” Yarrn said, barely holding back a smile. “You will be handsomely rewarded once this ordeal is done with.”
“The greatest reward for someone as lowly as I is to be able to stand by your side, Leader,” young man humbly said. “Everything else is just a small bonus.”
“Take a few low level scouts and have them spread around the Capital,” Yarrn said; however excited he was, he still wasn’t an idiot. Everything had to go flawlessly. “Perhaps someone new and powerful had arrived these past few days.”
“What rank should we look for?”
“Gold and up, obviously,” since majority of NPC’s, at least in Yarrn’s eyes, had terrible talents in discerning stats, the best he could ask for were the ranks. “Ignore the Nobility.”
“At once, Leader.”
Gizmo departed as quickly as he came, and as soon as he thumped the doors closed, Yarrn released a childlike smile of innocence. Finally! These damned NPC’s will finally see true greatness!
PHOENIX TRAINING GROUNDS
Eon was leisurely observing training of the soldiers when Elain sat beside him. Her mood for these past few days had been quite bad, and although Eon’ hadn’t said it out loud, he firmly believed it was lady’s issue of the month. Because of this, he held back his teasing nature and merely answered her questions without any sub-context to it. They sat in silence, observing the soldiers who struggled to even connect three swings properly; Eon nearly wanted to rush over there and properly educate them, but figured it was best he didn’t – after all, the trainers here were all Nobility. He had already had enough politics in his life, with the first prince and everything. Alstar still hadn’t retaliated for the shame Eon brought upon him, but Eon was certain that, sooner rather than later, the ugly snake will veer its head someplace, so he was always cautious. Even though you were able to revive in the game with some penalties, he didn’t want to test whether that part of the game’s mechanics translated into this world.
“When are we leaving?” Elain suddenly asked; in truth, she hadn’t suffered from ‘lady’s issue’. She was just bored out of her mind. She was still stuck at peak of the Bronze stage, and hadn’t done any purposeful training in so long she felt she had forgotten how to swing her sword and raise her shield.
“In a couple of days,” Eon replied honestly; he was much like her. If he wanted to sit around and do nothing, he wouldn’t have bought the damned game in the first place. “We’ll go back to that dungeon and help you break through the bottleneck.” these words slightly stunned Elain, but she already suspected that Clay and Lye merely lied when they said that the hardest monster in the entire dungeon was already cleared by someone. There wasn’t anyone in the vicinity who could do that.
“You broke through already?” Elain sighed, wishing she wasn’t as stubborn back when they entered the cave. She already knew that Clay was far stronger than anyone she ever met, even the highest ranked Knights, so why did she have to hold back?
“Yeah, it’s pretty exciting,” Eon smiled. “What do you want to become in the future?”
“Guardian, obviously,” Eon concluded that the Advanced and Legendary classes were still present in the game, and that most other people were aware of them as well. “What about you?”
“I’m already Berserker,” he replied honestly. “Suits my personality.”
“Not really,” Elain said, sneering. “Vulgar Filthy Animal suits you best.”
“Is there such a path?”
“Of course there is. Go roll in the mud and start barking profanities. There you go.”
Eon quickly shifted through his memory; besides doubling his strength, choosing the Advanced class also granted him some basic abilities. From what he figured, the was to get the abilities was either to self-create them or to learn from someone in the world, similar to the mechanics of the game. Only small amount of the abilities were given upon advancing classes or sometimes by completing quests or finding appropriate items.
The most exciting one was Roaring Grip. It’s a passive ability that increases damage by 2% per level when using two-handed weapons. Ability automatically levels up every five levels, but that’s just the minor part – upon maximizing ability, at level fifteen, he’ll be able to equip two-handed weapons in one hand, effectively being able to dual-wield two-handed weapons! Of course, maxing out the ability was long ways off, but it still excited him.
Besides Roaring Grip, he gained one active and two more passive abilities. Active one was Blood-soaked Strike. By sacrificing some HP, his next attack was tremendously empowered; not only did it do 30% more damage, but it also inflicted ‘Bleed’ to everyone hit, dealing additional damage depending on the ability’s level. It wasn’t anything monumental, and Eon was certain that he’d rarely use it, but it was still nice to know he has it. Other two passive abilities were rather basic: Way of the Berserker increased his damage by 1% for each 10% missing. Maximum level of ability was five, and it increased every ten levels, increasing damage by 2/3/4 and at maximum 5% for each 10% missing HP. The last one was Boulder’s Strength. For each 200 points of strength, he gained bonus attack speed. On lower levels it was basically neglectful, but the higher it went, it seemed that by the time he is able to use two-handed weapons in one hand, he’ll practically be assassin. Thinking about it briefly, Eon didn’t have any earth-shaking abilities. Although his stats were pretty huge, especially his strength at 436, it was pointless if he couldn’t use it properly. He was still confident in just using basic sword techniques and brute forcing the fight, but if he ever encounters a powerful enemy, especially if that enemy uses long range magic, he’ll be at terrible disadvantage, as he has no means of closing their gap. His only hope was of building grappling hook of sorts, but despite his attempts he still wasn’t able to. So he had hoped to find either the ability or the item of similar use outside the Capital.
Lyon approached them suddenly, sundered look on his face, bent like a question mark, obviously weeping like a child. Elain grunted and quickly ran away, but Eon noticed it too late and was stuck with him. Eon was never good at comforting people – ever since he could remember, he’d merely add fuel to already burning fire.
“W-w-what’s wrong Lyon?” he barely managed to get it out.
“I-I-I-” as much as he tried to speak, it seemed as if the words were stuck in his throat.
“J-just take it slowly, okay?” Why me?! Why ME?!
“My father!” he suddenly exclaimed and started crying again.
“Of cour—se…?” Did his father slap him or something?
“W-when I went,” he finally managed to slip out some words through insufferable sobs. “To ask him about … about Noble Race, he – he said that it – it was too late! He said that I can never be King!” Are you a freaking idiot!? Eon nearly exploded, but managed to smile instead.
“Did he say … khm … why?”
“I q-q-quote: ‘Any Magus who purposefully chooses to be Cleric can never rule the Kingdom!’.” Then change your damned class! Eon still held it in.
“Oh, you’re a healer?”
“Doesn’t that showcase my care for people?!” he suddenly turned towards Eon and shouted; he had snot coming down from his nose and his eyes were bloodshot red, lips trembling. From a man who looked handsome even after burying his face into the dirt, to a man who suddenly resembled the ugliest goblin possible. Wow … “I mean, I chose to help people instead of f-fight them! Damn you father!”
“It-it just wasn’t destined! Yeah!” That was brilliant!
“Destined my ass! What does destiny have to do with my father’s stupidity?” Or not. Lyon’s anger was suddenly focused on Eon, as it was obvious he had no courage to stand up to his father. “You wouldn’t understand you mindless, forward-charging beast!” Oh my God I’m gonna kill him. He still managed to hold a smile, but it was slowly breaking. “The only thing you think about is going into the wild and fighting, like a true beast! Idiots like you could never understand the delicacy of my situation!” *Whack* Eon finally had enough and smacked Lyon’s head with full force of his fist. Lyon’s surprised look quickly vanished as fist tore through the air and met his cheek; he was sent flying several meters backwards, landing butt-first, shocked. He suddenly stopped crying and instead had trouble processing what just happened.
“If you’re gonna be a damned whiny brat, go back to your mother and cry!” Eon puffed, his face red with anger. “Why the hell did I team up with this brat?” he muttered. “He isn’t smart. He’s a freaking kid. Why do terrible things keep happening to me? What did I do …” he kept on muttering as he left Lyon’s sight.
Elain and Lye observed this from the safe distance and, as much as they felt sorry of Lyon, they were also quite grateful that Eon did that. More so because they’d have jumped out any second now and do it themselves.
“You two,” Eon suddenly appeared before them, forcing them to suddenly flinch backwards. “Get up. We need to talk.”
“T-t-talk about what my Lord?” Lye said, barely managing to smile. “Oh, did I mention how strong and manly your Lordship looks today? And every day? And how it looks like you could flick a finger and the entire mountain would crumble? Oh, and how handsome your Lordship is? Elain, isn’t Lord Clay the most handsomest of handsome men you ever met?”
“Y-y-yes,” Elain suddenly muttered, feeling slightly angry to have been dragged into the pointless charade. “If-if I wasn’t a Knight-to-be, I’d have definitely married you, Lord Clay!” it was the first time Elain called him ‘Lord’; Eon felt slight bit of satisfaction despite the fact that it was act.
“Are you five?” Eon sighed. “Go comfort that bastard.” he flipped his thumb backwards, using his other hand to cover his face, shaking it.
“Uhm, we’d rather you just beat us,” Lye bluntly replied, deadpan look on his face. “Then resurrect us, and beat us again.”
“He’ll probably want to join us when we leave,” Eon said. “Then, every night, he’ll cry how he let the chance of becoming a King slip away,” Eon slowly inched on the two who started sweating. “Whine and whine and whine. Every night. Just as you’re about to fall asleep, he’ll start crying. And asking for Elain to comfort his sorrows with her body. Then Elain will whack him. And he’ll cry even louder. And night after night, we won’t be able to sleep because his whining will attract every damned thing within fifty kilometers because he’ll whine as if his life depended on it!”
“Just what kind of a person do you think I am?” Lyon suddenly appeared besides Eon, completely recovered. Aside from the growing bruise on his cheek. “I’ll seriously throw you out of my house.”
“But you can’t throw us out of the Kingdom,” Lye said, innocent smile on his face. “Because you’ll never be a King!”
“And you’ll never marry a woman. So what’s your point?” Lyon bluntly said, seemingly unaffected by Lye’s tease; on the other hand, Lye’s face grew dim as he suddenly crouched lowered his head.
“I’m not that ugly, stupid Lyon. I hope you become a King and then get assassinated by your harem, stupid, stupid, stupid Lyon …”
“But, I will be joining you guys,” Lyon said, sighing and ignoring Lye as everyone else did. “After all, there’s no reason for me to stay here.”
“Shouldn’t you ask us to join us?” Elain grimly said.
“Think of it as an apology for all the slander my ‘oh so whiny self’ suffered.”
“We leave tomorrow,” Eon said. “Go pack.”
“Go beg for some gold,” Eon bluntly said. “That’s your only use for now.”
“One day you’ll need me to heal you,” Lyon said, red in face from anger. “And I’ll instead laugh. Mark. My. Words.”
“Oh ~ noooooo…”
Just as they were about to enter mansion to make the final preparations, sudden burst of explosions resonated throughout the entire Capital. From both sides, in the distance, and then towards them. As the explosions closed in, they could see the bright flashes of explosions covering the horizon, quickly turning into rising smoke. Suddenly, streets caught on fire, as if dosed by flammable oil. Screams shrieked throughout and panic ensued. The bright Capital was suddenly turned into hell, as fire burned everywhere you looked, engulfing anything it touched, seemingly unstoppable. As everyone began fleeing for their lives, Eon suddenly smiled excitingly. Finally! Finally! Something interesting happened! Just as his thoughts emerged, so did a black figure fly out from the flames and began hovering in the air. He wore completely black robe and had red mask, his arms spread.
“Filthy, lowly NPCs! It’s high time you bowed your heads to the true King!” NPCs? Eon thought as his excitement dropped. Oh no. Another idiot appeared.