Daz and Ellie made their way to the exterior of Fort Skip and the two separated. Ellie had to focus on using her merit points since she had been too worried about Daz to spend the majority of them until now, and with his encouragement, she was planning to repair and upgrade the Makrov Mark V Automaton that she now possessed as much as her points would allow her.
Daz spent a total of two thousand and five-hundred merit points along with two-hundred and fifty base points to repair both ramparts. Thankfully, a repair job was far cheaper than the actual purchase itself.
After that, he found an empty plain of grass between the outer and inner walls and inspected it a bit before nodding his head. 'This place will do. It's far away enough from the cabins to not be a bother but close enough to the outer gate to be helpful in a pinch.'
'System, show me the Little Barracks again, please,' Daz asked the system politely.
|Confirmed. Displaying desired base upgrade.|
|Attack Base Upgrade|
|Ah, barracks. What lord is complete without his armies? Now, you won't be able to command a grand force powerful enough to conquer the world, however, you will be able to protect your base from hostile forces far more easily with the infantry units that these barracks offer, so I highly recommend purchasing this particular upgrade.|
|Passively hires C-Rank soldiers.|
|Limit of 50 Soldiers.|
|200 merit points must be consumed to rehire a soldier if they are killed.|
|Passively hires a B-Rank general.|
|Limit of 1 General.|
|50,000 merit points must be consumed to rehire the general if they are killed.|
|May be used as a workplace for citizens to learn how to be soldiers.|
|100,000(25,000) Merit Points or 1,000(250) [Wood] units, 500(125) steel units, 100(25) iron units and 60(15) [Human Sacrifices].|
|10,000 Base Points.|
'Human sacrifices? That's pretty scary. Use my merit points and the base points to confirm the purchase, system, please,' Daz asked.
As cheap as the price was, were he to sacrifice a fifth of his citizens, he'd lose a lot of trust and potential base points and Daz wasn't stupid enough to do that. Every base point he could acquire was needed and the passively taxed merit points were also very favourable in Daz's opinion.
|Confirmed. The total merit balance of the host is now 135,553.|
|The total balance of the base is now 32,400.|
A large structure of iron, wood and stone erupted from the grass and made itself known to Fort Skip. It was grand and medieval in design. The barracks were clearly the size of roughly six living cabins and included a small training ground that was slightly bigger than Daz's one and the iron fences that surrounded the building gave Daz a feeling of security.
"Very impressive," Daz mumbled as he held his chin. He walked forwards and pushed open the large doors of the barracks. What greeted him was fifty-one soldiers, all clad in chainmail, kneeling in his direction.
Daz looked around the large hall and admired the tapestries that adorned its walls. In particular, the steel and iron weapons that were mounted on ornamental shelves caught his attention.
"Those are nothing more than decorations, My Lord," the tall and lion-like man who was kneeling at the forefront of the soldiers claimed with a booming voice.
Daz ignored him and walked towards a fixed swordspear. As the name suggested, it was a weapon with a small handle in its centre and a long blade made up almost two-thirds of the weapon's body while the remaining end was the home of a well-decorated blade that seemed to belong to a shortsword of some sort. 'Higher Identification.'
|Ornamental Steel Swordspear [F-Rank (Lower Tier)]|
|A weapon never designed for combat. At most, it can be used for training, but too much force will snap the blades. It was created by a blacksmith of no particular talent in the magical world of Grunda.|
The state or quality of being worthy of honour or respect.
|Effect and Limit|
|Increases the likelihood of respect and faith being placed in the user by 0.5% per stat point.|
Daz stood and thought for a moment before he turned and walked towards the infantry units who resembled medieval soldiers. 'Higher Identification,' Daz activated his skill as he looked at his new general.
|William Retford's Status|
|Class:||Sword Knight||Affinity:||Lawful Neutral|
|Once a lower general of King McCullen's army, now a slave to the system after failing to adapt to his world's tests. He and his troops are now bound to serve the system until it deems their services worthy of their release.|
"He's strong... Or at least the system says he is," Daz thought.
"William." The general and his men were shocked at their new lord calling out their general's name without having even spoken to him yet, but they kept their attention focused on the ghastly, and frankly, evil-looking man as he continued to speak. "Do you have a weapon? Let's spar. I want to test your abilities."
William didn't hesitate for a second and he rose to his feet and then uttered a phrase in an unfamiliar and alien-sounding language. A longsword with several engravings appeared out of thin air and the general grasped it with both hands before he took a stance.
'Interesting. They aren't classified as citizens, so I suppose they, or at least William, have some sort of inventory skill that's independent of Fort Skip's one?' Daz thought.
Taking Hamson off of his back and assuming no particular stance since he had yet to learn one, Daz motioned with his free hand for William to approach.
The general lacked agility, but he more than made up for it with the years of fighting experience and technique that had been drilling into his head ever since he was but a boy. William's movements confused Daz and he was barely able to raise Hamson to parry the sword that was being swung towards his chest.
Daz got pushed back a few paces and his arm felt slightly numb. 'Amazing... I've seen Maddy's swordsmanship before, but this... This is on a whole other level. Buying this barrack was definitely worth the money.'
"I'm impressed, My Lord. Not many can receive a blow from me when I'm using my full power. I thought I'd been contracted to a useless fresh adapter, but perhaps my initial judgement was incorrect," William had a smile strewn across his face. This smile had many emotions mixed within it. Pleasure, excitement, worry, and most noticeable as far as Daz was concerned, mass regret.
"I don't care about your feelings or thoughts," Daz replied coldly. 'These people, they're failures that couldn't adapt and who have to serve me whole-heartedly. Unlike Rimmy, I don't need to be considerate of these soldiers.'
Willian laughed self-mockingly. "Indeed."
"However, work hard enough and serve me well and you'll have nothing but my respect," Daz said with a small grin.
"I will try my best, My Lord," William replied with no expectation clear in his voice.
This time, Daz took the initiative. Making full use of his stats, he lunged towards Willam's right flank which was quite clearly open. Unsure as to why an experienced warrior would have such a hole in his Defenses, Daz cautiously elbowed the man's side with his ethereal arm.
"Good. So your eyes aren't blind," William commented after he took Daz's blow as if it were nothing. he then swung his sword down, fully intent on chopping Daz's arm off.
The young Reaper nimbly dodged and retreated several more paces back. He raised his arm and looked at his now missing hand. 'That was unexpected. Technique really does have a lot of value.'
Daz recreated his hand with Death Energy and waited for William to make his move.
'Such evil energy... This lord will surely lead to the corruption of me and my men if I fail to be careful...' William's thoughts clearly indicated towards his assumption that Daz was a practitioner of some form of dark arts, and to be honest, he wasn't completely wrong. Reapers were classified as evil beings across a wide range of worlds, particularly magical ones like the general's home.
Suddenly, a strange look crossed Daz's face. He straightened out his body and stored Hamson. "We're done here. That was a very informative spar. Your orders are as follows: Station your men on the outer ramparts that surround this fort of mine and stop anyone from entering, and don't let anyone leave without informing me first. If you need anything like food or clothing, find a man by the name of Lyle Middleton, he'll assist you. I have some business to attend to."
"... Of course, My Lord," William's sword disappeared and was returned to wherever he had obtained it after he mumbled in that alien language once more. William then lightly bowed towards Daz and placed and fist on his chest.
"Good." With that, Daz left the barracks and immediately headed towards the steel portcullis that led outside. The system had just informed him that a new citizen had entered his base without permission, however, this survivor held no ill-will, so the lightning tower hadn't evaporated them.
Two people entered Daz's vision. "Welcome back, Crusher, Dorian."
Daz immediately sent Dorian a new request to become one of his citizens since he was forced to become a citizen of Camp Waterford by his father. Dorian weakly smiled. He accepted the request, but clearly, he was worn out physically and emotionally by the journey back. His mind was still filled with the brutal scene of Crusher's treatment towards him.
"So you evolved?" Daz said, acting like this was the first time he'd seen Crusher since she had woken up in Camp Waterford's containment unit.
"Yup," she replied as she scratched the back of her head. "I see you had a make-over too," she added while looking at Daz's half-burnt face and astral arm.
"Well," Daz stretched his see-through arm and continued, "I could hardly continue on as a cripple, now could I?"
"Speaking of which," Daz said before he took out an item from his inventory and threw it at Dorian. The bespectacled man fumbled about with it and it fell to the floor. "It shouldn't be too hard to fix your arm depending on if you can evolve or not. I did a little bit of research, but without evolving, it'll cost you two-hundred and fifty-thousand points to restore your arm normally."
Dorian bent over and carefully picked up the dropped item. "My umbrella..."
"It was found when they collected the body of day four's boss monster. You must have a few points at least. Try your best to get as strong as you can so you can buy back your arm or get an upgrade like I did," Daz said as he gestured to his new limbs. "It'd be far too expensive to get Crusher or me to fix it for you."
"I-I... I understand..." Dorian replied with uncertainty.
Crusher lightly slapped his shoulder and laughed. "Chin up, Captain. We won't let you get kidnapped like that again, right, Lord?"
"Of course," Daz replied immediately. "in fact, we might be able to ally with your father and his forces soon," Daz added with a smile.
"Er, Lord, I don't think that's possible... I kind of got Dorian back a little bit... forcefully. Hahaha..." Crusher chuckled with embarrassment.
'A little bit?' Dorian thought with resentment.
Daz ignored Crusher and turned around. "Oh, right. If you see a bunch of guys going around in armour, don't worry about them. They're soldiers I hired from the system to protect Fort Skip."
After saying that, Daz made his way back to the barracks again and chose a spot fifty or so feet away from it to build the final physical upgrade for the base that he was planning to get today.
|Physical Base Upgrade|
|A staple of any castle-owning lord. It would be very easy to laugh at a lord who owned land and soldiers, but didn't have a smithy in his possession to arm and maintain those soldiers. It's simply a must-have building for any lord that respects themselves.|
|Passively hires C-Rank blacksmiths.|
|Limit of 5 blacksmiths.|
|1,000 merit points must be consumed to hire a blacksmith if any of the initial ones are killed.|
|Passively hires a B-Rank master blacksmith.|
|Limit of 1 Master Blacksmith.|
|50,000 merit points must be consumed to hire a master blacksmith if the initial one is killed.|
|May be used as a workplace for citizens to train how to be blacksmiths.|
|100,000(25,000) Merit Points or 1,000(250) Wood units, 500(125) stone units, 300(75) steel units, 200(50) iron units and 15(4) Human Sacrifices.|
|10,000 Base Points.|
Daz read over the details and confirmed the purchase. Naturally, he chose to spend the merit points since he lacked the resources and he was against offering up his citizens' lives.
|Confirmed. The total merit balance of the host is now 110,553.|
|The total balance of the base is now 22,400.|
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