Randidly was glad that he went to Sam first, because he had good news. He had created boots from the cat fur and claws Randidly had given him previously, and they seemed to be of decent quality.
Unfortunately, his Equip level still was too low to take advantage of the bonuses. For now, he didn’t even bother looking at them, refusing to allow himself to be excited over nothing.
He put them on and left Sam with the bodies, heading back up towards the village. As he walked passed his cabin, he once more gave the men tending his fields long looks. But ultimately, they seemed to mean well, as they at least had a basic grasp of harvesting the fruit without destroying the plant, so he once more held his tongue.
In the area between the cabin and the village, around a dozen lean-tos, of a much lower quality than Sam’s had sprung up. Much more official looking was the wall that was being erected around the village. At this point it was made of stacked logs and mud, chest height. Apparently one of the new arrivals had some ideas about construction, because there was also a shoddy looking gate.
There were even a few people hanging around the gate, as if they were guards, making this seem like a much more official village. They all hurried out of Randidly’s way, however, as he approached.
Even he wasn’t prepared for what was awaiting him within the wall. His initial guess had put the people around the village at 100, but there were more than 300 people sitting around, crouched in groups, whispering to each other.
Daniel, who was talking to a large group of people, saw Randidly arrive and hurried over to him. “Thank god you are here. Big news, Bad news, apparently the mayor over at the town went crazy after obtaining his class, and is driving a bunch of people away. Donny is just letting everyone get a class if they wish, but…”
Daniel looked at the ground, and then finally said. “...are you really not going to help at all tonight…?”
“No, I’m not.” Randidly confirmed, eyeing the people around him critically. So there had been some sort of shift in power over at the nearby base, huh? Going tomorrow to investigate and see about the glass containers was even more important.
But for now…
Randidly turned back to Daniel. “I didn’t want to do this, but talk to Donny and get him to purchase the miscellaneous shop, and buy vials for potions. I won’t participate, but that doesn’t mean I won’t help prepare you.”
Decklan narrowed his eyes, looking at the tide of monsters rushing towards the village. There were a lot of people, dead weight, in Decklan’s opinion, who didn’t choose to take a class and attempt to grow stronger. These people were just here for a place to rest, so the final count of individuals with classes was 77. There were even several newcomers with rather interesting classes.
But Decklan didn’t give them much attention, even the pretty girls who came over. After all, without the Ghousthound, this would be a long night. It was hard to tell how many of the 77 would remain in the morning. A monster wouldn’t check how pretty you were before it ripped your face off and munched on your organs.
As instructed by the Ghosthound, they had spent most of today sorting themselves into groups based on how they would build. The results were skewed. 34, most of which were people who survived the earlier days, were going a strength build and were under Dozer’s lead. They were a rough looking group, but honestly, everyone was, after several days of killing monsters without showers.
Decklan had 27 men under him, focusing on speed, scouting, hiding, and of course killing. It wasn’t true that stats had to follow body type, so it was slightly surprising how many huge men had chosen to build speed, their bodies now rushing around with an unnatural grace.
10 had chosen, or been pressured into, the roles of damage soaks, most of their points going into Vitality and Endurance. They followed Donny, and were standing rather nervously with their shields made by Sam, standing behind the gate.
The remaining 6 were “Mage” types, with a rare useful individual who had a rare Blue Mage class. She was a woman in her 40’s that had apparently been a rather avid Dungeons and Dragons player at the local library, and had surprisingly embraced the new world quite quickly, chopping at the bit to get herself a class. Two of the other mages were Ptolemy and an individual who got the class Herbalist, which meant they would mostly focus on healing.
Ultimately, their long range fire power amounted to three dunces throwing Mana Bolts and the Blue Mage tossing icicles. It was a far cry from the devastation that the Ghosthound could cause.
The one bright spot was that the Ghosthound had provided potions. A lot of them. Decklan reached down and felt the 10 at his belt: 5 stamina, 4 health, 1 mana.
But then someone on the wall began beating a drum, signalling that they were coming.
“First group to the front!” Donny shouted, leading a group of 8 people, including Dozer, to the front. These were the veterans, who could take the brunt of the damage, while the 20 or so people behind them would rotate in to give the village’s ringers a breather.
Behind them, the rest of the class individuals waited in reserve, with Daniel, in case monsters scaled the walls. The “NCCs” or non-class characters, as they had been jokingly referred to, huddled around the central building and the two strange shops that Donny had purchased.
But Decklan shook his head and gave a hand signal to the 20 men with him. As a unit, they scaled the wall, which was rather easy from the inside, and crouched low on the outside of the wall, waiting. Once the fighting started, Decklan’s job was to sweep the stragglers who couldn’t make it to the fighting at the gate, ones that tried to surround the village.
Although the term used was stragglers, Decklan was under no impressions that his job would be easy. If anything, it would be the hardest. But he just grinned. That’s how he wanted it.
He heard it, the moment that fighting started. There was a slam, and defiant shouts from the defenders, and growls and hisses from the monsters.
A golden glow exploded from the gate, Donny using his skill Aegis to boost the health and stamina of those around him. Decklan didn’t like the punk, but had to admit that his class was incredibly useful. Especially in larger fights like this.
After a few minutes, Decklan heard the sounds of approaching monsters. Smiling slightly, he drew his daggers and gestured to his subordinates. They had work to do.
Donny couldn’t breathe, and hadn’t been able to for a long time. He also didn’t have time to check his status, he just kept his shield up with one arm, downing mana potions with the other and activating Aegis.
Three wolverines and a lizard rushed into the man to Donny’s left, sending him stumbling back.
‘I can’t…’ Donny thought to himself, just wanting to drop and let it all go, but instead he found himself stepping forward. The step was unwilling, and he could practically feel Randidly’s foot against his back, shoving him forward. And the question that had kept Donny up these past two days rang incessantly in the back of his mind.
‘What will you do, Donny?’
His shield bash took the lizard in the side of the head, stunning it, his sword whipping out to stab into its shoulder. Stab and retreat, sidestepping and stabbing again. The man behind the guy who was knocked back had been blocked by the displaced person, but the individual behind Donny had not.
Grecko had been one of the first people to get a class, and was a grizzled man just south of forty. When Donny shifted over to the left, Grecko shifted up, his huge axe smashing down towards an unsuspecting Wolverine.
It was Daniel’s idea, originally. Following a front line strategy similar to roman legions. No one had been an expert in history, but they had muddled their way through to a working concept. And it had been working well enough for the first 20 minutes or so. But now everyone was losing their edge as the battle dragged on longer than they had anticipated.
Donny felt three taps on his back and stepped back gratefully, two people moving forward to take his place. After about 10 feet, Donny felt confident enough to turn around, looking at the resting warriors. Dozer was there, his chest heaving, throwing back two stamina potions at once.
Seeing him do so, Donny blinked, then considered his own status screen.
Health(/R per hour): 92/358 (63.25)
Mana(/R per hour): 8/75 (3)
Stam(/R per min): 11/211 (22)
Skills: Newbie Village Chieftain Lvl 84, Hiding Lvl 7, Running Lvl 9, Grappling Lvl 7, Club Wielding Lvl 2, WoodWorking Lvl 2, Construction Lvl 3, Labor Lvl 11, Heavy Blow Lvl 15, Mana Bolt Lvl 1, Ride Lvl 1, Honorable Charge Lvl 5, Stalwart Defense Lvl 13, (1) Sword Master Lvl 8, (2) Shield Mastery Lvl 16, (3) Shield Bash Lvl 9, (4) Aegis Lvl 9, (5) Legion Thrust Lvl 4, (6) Sidestep Lvl 5
Donny blinked slowly, looking at his status. No wonder he felt completely wiped, he had almost used up all of his stamina. He slowly removed his last three stamina potions and drank them all. Ptolemy trotted up to thim and looked at him in askance, but Donny just waved him away. One of the new recruits was vomitting off to the side.
Everyone’s eyes looked dead. The way Donny felt on the inside.
‘What will you do, Donny?’
But still, for some strange reason, he found his feet moving, and he was walking over towards Dozer. A notification popped up, but Donny largely ignored it, aside from an annoyed grunt that another one of his skill slots was taken.
Congratulations! You have learned the passive skill “Leadership Lvl 1”.
“It’s either this or death. And I refuse to die a virgin.” Donny said awkwardly, patting Dozer on the back. Dozer’s body stilled. The other veterans, barely catching their breath without the aid of the huge supply of stamina potions Donny and Dozer had been given, stilled.
Then they all began to laugh.
Your skill Leadership has grown to Lvl 2!
“Do not worry, I’ll have my girl personally suck your dick if we live through the night,” Dozer said, slapping his knee and guffawing. The surrounding men chuckled. Even the few women seemed slightly amused.
“Uh…” Donny said, wondering if it really worked like that. Would girlfriends suck the dick of other people if their boyfriend asked them to…?
Then he shook his head and accepted a non-cracked shield from another NCC who was hanging around, as well as a health and stamina potion.
“This is the last of it,” The NCC said, his expression nervous. But Donny just smiled and turned to Dozer.
“Ready to get back to work?”
Randidly returned to camp with a heavy heart, heedless of the wanton celebration around them. From what he gathered, the Newbie Village had done well, with less than 10 people dying. For a system enhanced world, that was worthy of celebration. People were already cutting down more trees and carrying bodies away, even though it was barely dawn.
But Randidly ignored them. Over the course of the night, he had gained two levels in Equip, a level in Sneak and Eyes of the Spear Phantom, and 3 in Pollen of the Rafflesia. He had stood among the monster horde heading towards the nearby town, letting his pollen passively fall, curious on how the nearby town would handle the monster wave. Based on the number of monsters, they had let at least 180 people get classes.
But they didn’t use their people. They used guns.
They had two heavy mounted machine guns blasting the entire time. Although it seemed reasonable, based on Sam getting the Driving skill, there were probably shooting skills. But guns required bullets. Unless something very weird happened with the geography, there shouldn’t be a facility to produce more bullets near here.
But still, Randidly supposed that was a possibility. So they either had bases very near a person who could mass produce bullets, or…
A person who didn’t care that they would soon run out.
Either way it was a worrisome sign for the future. Randidly returned to his cabin, but once again, was stopped before he could retire for his night training.
A tall man stood in front of his cabin, leaning on the door. He was wearing one of Sam’s sewed together cloaks, but it looked like this one was of much higher quality than most. Randidly could tell that some of the cat fur he had brought back had been used around the throat
Perhaps the most distinctive feature about the man was his face. He had deep, brooding eyes and a chiseled jawline. He also seemed oddly familiar, but Randidly set that aside for now.
“Yes?” Randidly asked, annoyed.
The man chuckled, and it was a warm and attractive sound. Inwardly, Randidly’s dislike grew. “Maybe it’s my vanity, but… I’m surprised… well, nevermind. The world really has changed. I’m Kal Drake, I was wondering if you could do me a favor.”
A small lightbulb went on in Randidly’s head at the name. He dimly remembered that Kal Drake was a rather famous action star in…
….there definitely was a movie….
Seeing Randidly’s confused expression, Kal smiled helplessly. “...Seems that doesn’t mean anything to you. Well that’s fine. It’s simple: Sam seems to like staying with your group, but the rest of us aren’t so comfortable. I would like for you to take us to the other village in the morning.”
After Kal had left, Randidly sat down for meditation and pondered it in the dark. So this famous action star was one of the hooded figures that Randidly had seen. It also explained why both Lyra and Ellaine were so attractive, they were probably all actresses.
And the fact that he came himself, without using Sam, probably meant they were leaving without telling Sam.
Should Randidly let it happen like this…?
His meditation skill level increased, distracting him, and he sighed.
The whole point of letting Donny be Village Chieftain was to avoid dumb problems like this. How did it end up happening anyway…?
Why did people not just leave him alone…?
In a few hours, the 4th day would dawn. Over halfway towards the end of the Newbie Zone. Although he would likely be able to survive, he had less hopes for the rest of the group. Perhaps this village was doomed to fail. Perhaps this whole world was a death trap.