Sat at the bar stool Jason looks at the letter in his hand. Rosha’s letter gave him a hint of what was to come but he just didn’t want to look. They hadn’t been a team for long or done much together but Jason liked to believe that facing troubles together could create lifelong friends. However the letter was already written and so he didn’t put it off any longer.


Our time as a team was interesting. It proved all that my family had taught me. You common folk are so disgusting, hiding out in the forest overnight? Why even bother with such primitive things when a word from my family would have gotten that cur to plead my forgiveness? What court of law would bother questioning me if they knew who I actually was? My word would be law. If we meet again, my sword whip will be around your throat.

James Pyrebeard

“Well, that wasn’t as bad as I expected. He had a good time with us at least. Still would be nice to meet him again. In a controlled and combat free environment. Brainwashing from childhood is a hard handicap to beat. Rosha had it worse as she was there when he stopped acting. If his family was there to pick him up, it was probably worse because of their expectations of how he should act.”

Jason puts down the letter. As he sits there a System message blinks off to the side but he ignores it. He sighs before he picks himself up and closes the message without a single look at it. Jason already knows it was to alert him to his teams change in status. Why the Devs decided they would only change team status when you get the info has always been a mystery. Sure, don’t update stuff like health when you're apart but if someone leaves a team, the others should know.

As Jason leaves the Guild, he tosses the letter out. It is time for him to head off to the checkerboard like forest area. There are monsters to hunt and a bottleneck to breakthrough. As he leaves most people step out of his way and the gate is soon in front of him. A quick check in with the guards and they let him out onto a dry grassland. The land looks almost like a mix of the wasteland and plains he had just left only days ago. Boulders stuck up at random everywhere in sight. The grass was brown and brittle while the soil was loose and closer to sand. Jason can’t even see any trees with the biggest plants being some shrubs. Those don’t even reach his knees. Overall and infertile dust-bowl of a land. Jason however smiles after observing this all. A perfect land to work on his movement technique. Though after that thought he looks a little sick.

“Eh, maybe today I will just run. Now that I think about it the last week has been working on Desolate Traversal non-stop. At least with my cultivation part of it is letting my mind free under the repetitive task of having my energy cycle. It might be fun to hop around on the stones but eugh. Analyzing how much force I use, the angle I jump from, and all that to perfect it. I want to run without thought. Bound across the land. Probably that will come around Journeymen rank in the skill. However by that time I might have upgraded, changed, or switched away from Desolate Traversal. It is only an Uncommon skill to begin with and impossible to reach Master rank without doing something anyway. If I upgrade it, then the rank will go down to match the higher requirements. A change will make the skill progress much slower because I have to forge ahead on my own. The skill fits what I want from a movement skill so for now there is nothing to do. Still doesn’t make the grind any less sickening at the moment though.”

A deep forlorn sigh escapes from Jason as he takes off at a jog. His skill obvious to the other nearby travelers. Each step he takes a muted thud. His foot lifts from the ground without a grain of sand flying off to give away his path. Before any of the observers even noticed it he was off in the distance. Whispers spread out about the expert who just left. Someone questions the tight-lipped guards on who he was but they stay silent. Not that they don’t want to talk about it but who would believe someone not even past the second bottleneck would be that talented. Jason had looked down on his skill being Uncommon because that is the base rarity for most people. However he missed that was the standard for those already past level 10. They call Beginner skills that for a reason. Below Common they are what most people learn first. They get stuck at Initiate rank. Some skills just upgrade to Common rank with help of a trainer or just automatically. An example of this is his Farming skill. He skipped a few steps by getting it at Normal rank. People start with a skill like the Beginner skill “Farmhand”. This would change into the Common rank skill “Farmer” if you worked under another Farmer at any point. Farming is an upgrade from Farmer and the biggest change is it allows for Sub-skills. Jason already having an Uncommon skill shows how much work he put into training before entering the game. While not all lower rarity skills capped out at a certain level that was the norm. With how some bottlenecks could be surpassed with high enough ranked skills we can see clearly the importance of rarer skills. Why bother capping out on a Common skill when you can get just as much benefits from a lower level of a Normal skill while still having room to expand. Besides that so few people in this realm even touch the edge of the rank past Master the only way to improve for some is with better skills.


A note from akhier the dragon hearted

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About the author

akhier the dragon hearted


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