Shovels In Spades



Book 2 Chapter 81: System's Description Blockade and Bob's Growth


A note from Lone

First guaranteed chapter of the week.

Harriot held her chin for a moment. "Why would you want to know that? I mean, don't you already know everything about yourself?" She was more than willing to help, but she couldn't avoid wondering why Daz wanted this when it seemed like a waste of time.

"You've seen it yourself. A person's description can tell you things about them that they themselves are unaware of like with your curse," Daz explained. He then looked at Harriot with a serious expression. "I want to know what the system knows about me via my description since you can't view your own one for whatever damned reason. Also, I expect you not to tell anyone about what you see. I can tell when someone's lying, so I'll know if you leak my description to anyone."

Harriot sucked in a breath of cold air. The atmosphere around Daz right now sent chills up the woman's spine. In the heat of the moment, she had forgotten that this man was a murderer and a schemer, despite his years. She nodded very slowly. "I-I won't tell anyone."

'Ah, shit. Back to square one. Oh well. Rome wasn't built in a day,' Daz sighed internally. "Please, go ahead."

Harriot readjusted her glasses and muttered, "Lower Identification." Either she didn't possess the skill, System Integration - which allowed one to chant skills in their mind - or she just wasn't bothering to use it. Daz felt like it was the first one. She didn't seem like the type to waste five-thousand points on a skill that wouldn't help her much in her unique position as Edward's assistant or Daz's citizen.


Warning! A host has attempted to use the skill, [Lower Identification (C-Rank Higher Tier)], on your status. How much of your status - if any - would you like the reveal to the host [Harriot Parker]? 


'Just my description will do, system. Thank you.' As always, Daz kept his manners around the powerful entity that was treating him and Earth like mere chess pieces.

Harriot displayed an immediate reaction. "That's weird. All it says is 'This description cannot be viewed by anyone bar the system.'"

"What? But I gave you permission," Daz protested.

Harriot shook her head. "I don't know what to say. It's not that I can't see your description. That literally is your description."

Daz could tell that she was being entirely truthful, which only served to confuse the young man even more. 'The only thing that makes sense is that the system can't hide the fact that it's interested in me on my description, so it's opted to obscure the whole fucking thing.'

Daz was angry. He wanted to know more about himself, but the system was standing in his way. Harriot witnessed Daz's expression darken and she let out a quiet yelp before cowering back at his intimidating aura. She was really starting to regret not leaving as soon as she was done with her pie.

Daz calmed his rage upon seeing the woman's somewhat... strong reaction. "Sorry. I was lost in thought." He got off of the stool he was on and softly placed his hand on Harriot's shoulder. "Thank you. It was nice talking to you today."

"Y-Yeah... likewise..." Harriot avoided eye-contact as she replied.

Daz smiled weakly and left the kitchen. Harriot stayed there for a short while before she suddenly realised something. "Ah! I forgot to thank him for the merit points!"

Daz was now on his throne. The female advisor that he had rudely ignored before was standing beside him with a peaceful expression on her face.

The young reaper stroked his chin thoughtfully for some time. It was very quickly approaching seven in the morning now. He had ended up spending quite a lot of time in the kitchen eating and talking with Harriot.

A long sigh escaped his lips. He waved his hand and used some of his death energy. The keep advisor watching in awe as two clones of Daz were created, each possessing power equal to three-fifths of his own.

Pointing at one of them, Daz ordered, "You, head to the mines. Tell Robert that I want to speak with him. Call him 'Bob'. He goes by that name now, apparently. I'm fairly sure he's already paid back his community service from his overtime, but if anyone asks, just brush them off. This is more important."

Nodding its head slightly, the first clone replied, "I'll do so, Original." He then spun on his heels and left the throne room.

Daz's finger now founds itself to be pointing at the other clone. "You, try to create some skills in the training dojo. I want to see if I can gain skills from my clones. If anyone approaches you thinking you're me, just tell them you're a clone and resume your training."

"Of course, Original." Bowing his head lightly, the clone wandered off in the direction of the training dojo.

Daz put his attention on the advisor now. "Hey."

"Yes, Your Grace?" she replied with a sweet smile on her lips.

"Are any of you advisors any good at writing up speeches? That isn't one of my strong suits," Daz asked.

"Yes, Your Grace. Every single one of us is skilled in making speeches. What might the topic be? I'll write something up for you right this instant," the woman said gleefully as she pulled a notepad and an inked quill out of seemingly nowhere.

A snort coming from the throne room's entrance filled the air. "Hah! No true leader should rely on another person to speak on their behalf." Lyle walked forwards and looked at the keep advisor with disdain before he cast his gaze on Daz. "My Lord, with all due respect, I would recommend talking from your heart with your own words. You have the skills needed to entrance the people so long as you don't say anything outrageous."

Daz nodded. "I know. I'm just thinking about the future. I wasn't planning on speaking someone else's words today."

Lyle flashed an embarrassed smile. "Of course, My Lord. How silly of me."

He and the keep advisor were staring daggers at each other, which interested the young reaper. 'So him and Crosius wasn't a one-off case? I suppose he takes his job as my personal advisor very seriously. Enough so for it to get in the way of the keep advisors, and vice versa. Great. Another thing to add to my growing pile of concerns.'

"You're awake early," Daz noted very sternly in an obvious tone. He was warning both Lyle and the keep advisor to stop their petty squabble right now.

Lyle instantly began ignoring the keep advisor's existence in its entirety and replied, "Yes, My Lord. Six hours of rest is more than enough for me."

Daz frowned. "You're still recovering. Take it easy, yeah? To be frank, you don't really need to do anything as my advisor right now. Of course, I fully expect your workload to substantially increase as the days tick by."

"Yes, My Lord." Lyle bowed his head slightly. He really did fit in with this world a lot and had changed himself an incredible amount. Almost suspiciously so. "However, when I woke up early to go to the bathroom, I couldn't bring myself to return to bed after seeing the system message about the points. I have a brief idea of what you must have done, and I can only express how thankful and how equally amazed I am at your abilities, My Lord."

"I see." The fact that Lyle wasn't lying at all only served to increase Daz's suspicions. 'I wish Ger was still here. I should have asked him what kind of person Lyle was before the apocalypse.'

He got up and cracked his neck. "Well, I have some stuff I need to do before my speech. Lyle, can I trust you to get the word to everyone that I want to see them at Fiona's stage by ten?"

Lyle smiled from ear to ear, "Of course, My Lord. Consider it done."

Daz's mind was filled with paranoia as he left the keep and made his way to his personal workshop. 'Lyle is definitely hiding something. I get that I saved his life, but he's almost too loyal. I need to watch myself around him, but for now, he's a useful guy.'

Daz felt his insides churn at these thoughts, but while he was willing to change himself to become a nicer person, he wasn't willing to forsake his cautious and borderline-insane levels of suspicion for everyone and everything. It hardly helped that his instincts agreed with him on the topic of Lyle.

It wasn't long before the young reaper found himself to be in his workshop. He was planning to spend the next two and a half hours here creating simple figures and signboards to help him with his speech.

He could have used the workshop in the keep, but for some reason, Daz felt like he'd be more productive in his hand-build one. It possessed a special connection to him, after all.

Twenty minutes ticked by as the man worked and toiled away. Thankfully, his first clone was aware of his plans to be here, so it arrived with Robert in tow.

The ex-mayor looked around with wonder at the collection of wooden and metal trinkets that littered the place. This was his first time being here. His face was covered in soot and his white tank-top was littered with black stains. Clearly, the man had been hard at work already by the time the clone had collected him.

Daz put down his tools and spoke to the clone. "Good job. Can you help me craft this stuff and shuttle it to the stage?"

"Sure. I'll do so, Original," the clone replied without complaint and found a stool before it rolled up its sleeves and got to work.

Daz leaned back in his chair and rubbed his neck. "You're looking healthy, Robert."

Smiling a bit wryly, the ex-mayor replied, "Please, call me Bob, Lord. I'm not fond of the man known as Robert. And thank you. I think I've gained some weight since we last met. Muscle, of course."

"The system does like to reward hard work, it would seem," Daz noted as he gestured to a chair opposite himself, the one that Sandy usually sat on whenever he came here to talk and smoke with Daz.

Taking the offered seat, Robert pulled a handkerchief out from his pocket and wiped his dirty face. "That's definitely true." He looked around a bit more before asking, "Your clone said that you wanted to see me? I hope I'm not in trouble. I've been trying really hard to keep my head down and work hard."

Daz chuckled softly. "You've been doing perfectly. A shining example of a recovering convict."

"I'm glad." A sad look flashed across the middle-aged man's face. "Since I can't apologise to him anymore, the least that I can do to make up for my crime against Ger is to better myself as a person."

'Ah... I didn't expect that. It was Ger's gun that he tried to steal, but he feels guilty? No, regretful. I guess that makes sense. The dead can't offer forgiveness...' Daz now had something new to contemplate over when he had some free time.

"I wanted to ask a favour from you, Bob," Daz said in a friendly voice.

Bob raised an eyebrow. "If I can help, I'm more than willing considering what you've done for me and my daughter. I owe you far too much. Ah, I wanted to thank you for the points as well. I'm not using any of my merit points since I don't need them right now, but I'm thankful regardless."

Daz really had to hand it to him. Bob had changed so incredibly much since he had come here. "I'd like you to tell me what you saw on my description when I let you see my status if you still remember it. Also, if you don't mind me asking, how many merit points do you have saved up in total?"

Surprise flashed across the man's face. He wasn't scared nor worried, simply shocked. "I don't particularly mind. On the topic of points, I have just over a million. I'm thinking about investing them into Fiona, to be honest. Either that or giving them all to the base once you eventually set up some sort of system to do that."

"That's very kind of you, Bob," Daz said with admiration.

Bob smiled. "I'm perfectly happy working in the mine with Chris and Miss Kabatay. I might buy a better pick and some mining gear, but it's not really necessary."

"You should. Treat yourself. You deserve it." Daz didn't press on the topic of his description. He knew that Robert wouldn't just ignore it if he knew what was good for him.

"Maybe." Bob sat there in silence for a few moments before he finally sighed. "Are you certain you want to hear your description? I'm sure you noticed it at the time, but it frightened me quite a bit. Some of the things on there... were disturbing."

"I'm sure," Daz replied instantly.

Bob simply nodded before his eyes were filled with pity and a few traces of fear. He began to recount what he had read that day on Daz's status screen.

A note from Lone

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  • The Scottish Slothy Sloth

Bio: Hey there, nice to see you. I'm just an ordinary man who enjoys writing, which is great since it's my full-time job now thanks to the support from you guys over on Patreon! I hope you enjoy my novels if you read them, and if not, I hope you enjoy looking at my profile.

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