Quick note – I changed the Title [Irregular] to [Coldhearted] because it is a more accurate translation.
“Wait, I can smell some sulfur” said Gwyn. I wasn’t able to detect any smells but I had my suspicions that there was an abundance of sulfuric gas. The smoke in the air had a distinct color, there were mushrooms growing along the way and the moss which was originally light green was turning yellow. After what felt like two hours of walking along the same road, I had yet to meet a single living creature.
“Huh? I can hear the sound of water!” Gwyn shouted excitedly.
The sound of water flowing down a waterfall could be heard in the distance.
“Common Chompy! Giddy up!”
It had been a long time since I had heard some sound, so I ran forth excitedly.
After another dozen or so minutes we finally arrived to the end of the tunnel, there was a large pit, about 40 to 50 meters high with clouds in the air and sunlight shining down from above. It looked like a huge garden, roughly 500~600 meters wide. I could hear the birds chirping, and a waterfall running down the cave wall to finally form a lake in the middle.
The mouth of the tunnel in which I was standing was roughly 15 meters from the floor, it must have been the passage the dragon used to travel back and forth.
A lush and vibrant rainforest existed here and the sounds of various animals could be heard.
“No way! This is great~! Woooow! I can’t believe there’s a forest here, Can I maybe meet some of my kin? So cool!”
The moment I stepped out of the cave my bones were exposed to the burning sunlight.
[You have learned Sunlight resistance Lv1]
Although I didn’t feel any pain there was a certain unpleasantness. I carefully covered all my bones with robes and stepped into the light. Fortunately I learned that if there was no direct contact with sunlight I was fine.
Gwyn forced her way out from within me and rushed towards the forest.
Gwyn immediately came running back almost three times a fast, she was being chased by 3 large albino white ant-like insects the size of a child. They looked somewhat similar to the food I encountered within the dragon’s stomach.
As they were approaching I quickly used my new Identification skill to view their Status Page.
Type: Giant Termite
✧ Unique Skills
[Magic Resistance Lv2]
‘Magic resist… this is going to be hard.’
I didn’t expect a monster which looked like a giant ant to possess magic resistance let alone level 2.
“Slow! Slow! Slow!”
I quickly casted a slow spell for each but surprisingly one was able to resist its effects. I calmly sent out another slow as I kited them back towards the tunnel I just arrived from.
Fireball was both a high damage and area of effect spell so it was ideal for this kind of situation with several opponents but it would consume so much of my mana.
‘Uggh so annoying!’
Because of the termite’s high magic resist my fireball only did about 30 damage and my MP could only sustain 10 fireballs.
[Fireball level 6 ➢ 7]
With it being at Level 7 the damage each fireball caused them was now 35. Perhaps I could level it up more it would somewhat offset their ridiculous magic resistance.
I casted some more slows and then took a break to let my MP regenerate. Although I was a bit slower now that I was carrying the egg, I was still able to outrun these termites. When my MP was back up to about half, I once again started dishing out the pain.
[+144 experience points]
[+288 experience points]
[+576 experience points]
[Level increased 8 ➢ 12]
[Acquired knowledge of Giant Termites]
[New spells selection]
[Acquired ｟Title: Exterminator Lv1｠]
I didn’t like the sound of the new title but I was receiving a tremendous amount of experience points through this slaughter.
I had heard that termites get around and mark trails with their pheromones which explain why countless of them were rushing towards my position. Gwyn who was flying in the air alerted me of the incoming trouble.
“Chompy! There are more and more termites coming up.”
As expected they swarmed together but they weren’t quite all in the AoE of a fireball so I cast slow on the ones in the front, to group them together.
“What are you going to do? There are already at least 20 of them”
I was chanting magic and clacking my teeth.
My slows soon wore off and I was glad to see that they achieved the desired effect. The termites were now running in a tight, huddled formation chomping their mandibles as they hurried along.
‘Great they’re all running at the same pace, time to move on to phase two!’
I turned around and sprinted along the tunnel until I reached the area with the strange yellow smoke. Looking back every once in awhile I was able to confirm that that they were still chasing me down.
‘Perfect they’re still behind me.’
I took out the bottle from my bag and pointed to Gwyn.
“You want me to go inside?”
I nodded and Gwyn went in, We had developed a sense of trust over the last few adventures so she didn’t doubt my intentions.
Their mandibles seemed to be chomping down in anticipation.
I look back once more to verify that they are still following me before finding a small corner where the smoke didn’t reach. When the termites rushed in to the designated area, I didn’t hesitate and immediately spammed my spell.
[Fireball level 7 ➢ 8]
The yellow smoke immediately combusted upon contact with my fireballs creating a series of deafening explosion. The flames enveloped the insects, charring their exoskeletons black.
Gwyn was rolling around in the bottle, evidently dizzy but otherwise unhurt.
[+144 experience points]
[+288 experience points]
[+576 experience points]
[+1152 experience points]
. . .
[+147,456 experience points]
[Level increased 12 ➢ 50]
[Level has reached Max]
[Evolution is now possible]
[You can now learn new magic]
[｟Title: Ant Exterminator｠ 1 ➢ 2]
[｟Title: Coldhearted｠ 1 ➢ 2]
Dozens of messages appeared before me.
‘Great! This is what I aiming for, killing several monsters at the time is so rewarding!’
I quickly open my Status window to indulge in my beautiful stats.
Type: Skeleton/ Undead
Attack: 24 (+9)
Defense: 12 (+2)
✧ Unique Skills
[Resurrection Lv 1] [Night Vision Lv1] [Falling resistance Lv1] [Magic Chanting Max] [Fire Shock Max] [Lesser Slow Max] [Fireball Lv8] [Acid Resistance Lv1]
[Identification Lv1] [
Sage’s Wisdom Lv1] [Weapon Enchant Lv3] [Armor Enchant Lv3] [Sunlight Resistance Lv1]
[Rat Trapper] [Hit-and-Run] [Savior Lv2] [ColdheartedLv2] [Dragon Slayer Lv1]
[Ant Exterminator Lv2]
✧ Skill Selection (2)
[Inferno Lv1] [Intermediate slow Lv1] [Poison Lv1] [Water Sphere Lv1]
[Necromancy Lv1] [Lesser Swiftness]
[Lich] [Skeleton Shaman] [Skeleton Tamer]
‘With so many rewards I’ll definitely thrive here.’
Making up my mind I decided on the two skills; Inferno and Water Sphere. The latter was to make sure my baby dragon wouldn’t die of dehydration if I couldn’t find a water source and Inferno was simply to increase my dps. My evolution choice was of course, the Lich. I was already walking along the path of a mage so it felt like the natural next step. When I confirmed my selection ,my bones went from the previous red to a dark black.
[You have learned Necromancy Lv1]
[You have learned (Passive) Lifesteal Lv1]
[You have learned (Passive) MP regeneration Lv1]
[You have learned Physical resistance Lv2]
It was a good thing I hadn’t selected Necromancy previously or I would have missed out on an extra skill. Unfortunately, there was also an unexpected side-effect of my evolution.
‘Oh right …. I forgot what being a Lich meant.’
With a passive like Lifesteal, I would be constantly absorbing life force from creatures within a certain radius, looks like it’s time for Gwyn and I to part ways.
Despite it being burnt, I separated the insect meat from its shell and stored it in my bag. I then grabbed the bottle holding Gwyn and headed back towards the small forest, still carrying the egg on my back. Gwyn was asking why I didn’t let her out now but I could already notice that the bright light she emitted was dimming. It hurt my heart knowing I’d lose my companion but we had to split up.
I looked around carefully for signs of monsters, finally choosing a safer part of the forest. There was a small stream and the running water was crystal clear, nearby colorful flowers were blooming creating a utopian vibe.
I opened the bottle letting Gwyn out.
“Chompy! What are you doing? Do you intend to leave me here?”
I nodded heavily.
‘Why? Why do we have to separate?”
I pointed at myself and then Gwyn while moving my thumb across my neck.
“I will die because of you?”
I nodded again.
“I can’t die!”
I shook my head, although a pixie is a spirit which enjoys long life it will still die if exposed to a Lich’s lifesteal over long periods of time. I could already feel Gwyn’s life force draining and the plants around me had begun to wilt. She also seemed to understand the situation and had a resigned look on her face. Taking the egg with me I began walking away, unable to look back.
“Chompy! I’ll just wait here! When you get a chance come and visit! I’ll always be waiting to see you!”
Gwyn’s voice began to fade in the distance, I had lost my great smiling companion who’d always stay inside my skull.
After a few hours of walking, I had come back to the dragon’s nest. I was returning the egg to its proper place. I didn’t have much of choice because I worried it would also die due to the lifesteal.
‘Come on, break out!’
‘Hm, are you awake in there?’
Although I did have to leave it behind I had the selfish desire to want to see it born.
The little guy was struggling to get out and finally breathed a lungful of fresh air. It was about as large as a mid-sized dog at 40 centimeters high. Sticking it’s head out, it looked around before its gaze settled on me.
‘Don’t come near me!’
I tried waving it off but it kept approaching enthusiastically.
While running back I try to check its status.
‘Oh nice, he has that!’
[Lifesteal Resistance Lv1]
After just a short time it had naturally developed a resistance to my lifesteal passive. Unable to contain my happiness I gave it a big hug.
While hugging it was licking me vigorously, seemingly it recognized me as its parent. I had been sad since separating from Gwyn but I was lucky to quickly find a companion I could be close to.
I began to think of the weak mage, lying alone in the cave. She would probably have a much better chance at survival in the lush forest. I carried the little guy on my back and because it looked hungry I threw it a piece of burnt termite meat from my bag. It tore at the meat with such gusto one might believe it actually tasted good. It was cute to hear it’s snoring sound as it immediately lay down to sleep, satisfied with the meal.
I went back to the Catacombs to check on the mage’s condition. It had been nearly 4 days and she seemed to have recovered considerably during that time.
“Thank you for the meat you left me.”
Maybe the dragon’s meat contained special properties which helped her heal quickly. She tried to approach me to express her gratitude, but I held my hand out signalling her to keep her distance.
I had determined that my passive lifesteal had a radius of about 5 meters so if she came any closer she could be in danger. I began walking the same way I came, turning around and signalling her with my hand to follow.
She quickly picked up her bags and came along, at least she was smart enough to keep her distance. When we arrived to the small forest several hours later she couldn’t contain her joy.
“Wow! This is simply incredible! I’ve never seen such a beautiful scenery!”
She was clearly unable to recognize the dangers present. If only she knew how dangerous this place was she wouldn’t have such a blissful look. I pointed out a relatively safe spot, indicating her to go and wait there.
‘Is this a good spot?’
The baby dragon on my back finally woke up and was stretching innocently, not a care in the world. I placed him down gently and stretched my hand out to grab a nearby sapling.