As Thomas moved through the dungeon he tried his best to avoid other people. Fortunately, there weren't many players left in the dungeon. Even the players who couldn't put in as much time as he could had graduated from the starter city. The groups he came across were either comprised entirely of locals or only had a single player within them. Anytime he sensed a player he would store his Peace Maker into his inventory and use an alternate weapon if they stayed close by.
Together with Snowlily, he spent about three hours inside of the dungeon. Once he found the stairs leading down to the second floor he went down them and used the teleportation formation to exit the dungeon. During their three hour run, Thomas had used up half of his ammunition and used various spells to kill just over a hundred of the little goblins. For Thomas, the experience wasn't all that great. It was a fairly good amount for Snowlily though. She'd either spent or automatically had it assigned to increase her attributes. There was no sign of any outside changes to her body from the increases though.
After leaving the dungeon, Thomas also bumped his Power, Endurance, and Agility by one point each. A few hours work to get a small boost in power was pretty nice. He had one other thing to do before he made his way to Hekrin's shop to get some work done. He went straight towards the Adventurer's Guild. He had a quest that had been overdue for a very long time. He'd meant to turn it in the day before, but one thing led to another and he ended up with a bundle of fur and momentarily forgetting the quest.
The guild wasn't very busy at all since it was a couple of hours past the morning rush hour. There were just a handful of people hanging out at the guild and chatting. Regrettably, one of those people happened to be the crazy woman from the day before. Thomas did his best to pretend she didn't exist while he made his way to the receptionist counter. No one was in line so he was seen to right away. He dug out fifteen flowers, five white and ten orange, to set them and his guild card on the counter, "Turning in a quest."
The receptionist went about his work quickly and efficiently. It didn't take long for the man to set the ten gold coins on the counter.
|System Notice: Quest Complete!|
|You have accepted a quest to gather 5 White Tullin flowers and 10 Orange Bloom flowers which can be found near bushes and trees in the wood south of Ulvstad.
Rewards: 150 exp, 10 gold
Time Limit: None
|System Notice: You have gained 150 experience.|
As he picked up the ten coins he heard an annoying and haughty laugh behind him. He suppressed the urge to groan but his self-control didn't extend to Snowlily. The little wolf immediately began growling at the woman behind him. Thomas slowly turned around to face the woman from the previous day.
He hadn't paid all that much attention to her before as he'd done his best to ignore her. She was an excellent example of outer beauty not matching inner beauty. A beautiful shell with a rotten core. She was rather attractive with shoulder length blonde hair, bright green eyes, an angelic looking face, and a body that would make most men drool. Sadly, her beautiful face was currently marred by the look of disgust she was giving Thomas at the moment. She continued to look down on him as she said, "I don't know how a noob like you got so chummy with that ugly ass dwarf but thanks to him I'm now banned from almost all of the shops in the city! Not that it really matters. There's only trash available here anyway. Nothing elites like me and my friends need."
When she mentioned friends she looked to her left at a group of three guys. They all snickered like a pack of groupies. Thomas couldn't help but sigh. There would always be people like this no matter where you went. He knew the woman was an entitled brat from how she behaved yesterday. Now he could see that she used her beauty to attract followers or minions to do her bidding. Why was it that he seemed to attract people like this? As for her thinking he was a 'noob', it was likely because he'd just turned in a beginner quest. How could she possibly know that he'd had that quest for nearly two months?
Thomas wanted nothing to do with these people so he ignored the woman and walked around her to make his way toward the exit. The woman turned to follow him while calling out, "You're going to pay for yesterday."
Thomas suppressed another groan and just left the guild building. He hoped to never see that woman or her minions again. He couldn't shake the feeling that he would though. He just put it in the back of his mind and made his way toward Hekrin's shop. He still had plenty of iron, coal, and the Elder Lizardman hide to work with to make items.
When he stepped into Hekrin's place the old dwarf looked at him and frowned, "That woman from yesterday is a royal pain in the ass. She's been causin' a lot of problems for everyone since she got banned from the shops."
Thomas sighed as he made his way deeper into the shop, "I seem to be a magnet for people like her. It's like I'm some cliche hero in a novel."
Hekrin laughed at that, "If only kid! Wouldn't that make me some super powerful hidden master training you to become the hero?"
Thomas laughed in return, then stopped and eyed Hekrin closely, "Isn't that exactly what you are? I mean you did serve the kingdom for three different kings as the Grandmaster of the Magitech Engineers."
Snowlily peeked up from over his shoulder and looked at the two men. The two men looked at each other for a moment before shaking their heads dismissively. Hekrin crossed his arms over his chest, "So what are ya here for today kid?"
Thomas stepped up to the counter and leaned on it, "I planned to make some gear and some replacement ammunition."
Hekrin stroked his beard, "How did yur weapon perform?"
Thomas retrieved the Peace Maker from his inventory and showed it to Hekrin. Thanks to the material the weapon was made of and the enhancement provided by his mana, the gun looked like it hadn't even been fired. Hekrin picked it up to examine it while Thomas explained, "It's working rather well. Though shooting Goblins with it isn't a great measure of the power it has, it still devastated them. It didn't perform exactly like the weapon from my world though. In my world, the projectile was capable of piercing through the target and possibly damaging a second one. The shots fired from the Peace Maker all seem to detonate when hitting a target. This causes a lot of damage but makes it impossible for me to shoot two targets at once."
Hekrin examined the gun for a bit and then shrugged his thick shoulders, "Sorry kid. I don't know enough about this thing ta give ya any kind of advice on it."
When Hekrin held the gun out to Thomas he accepted it and stored it back inside of his inventory while Hekrin asked, "What's yur next plan?"
Thomas thought for a bit, "Next I want to try and make a real Magitech version of this weapon. I've got a few ideas but I'm not sure what will work and what won't. There's only one way to find out for sure though. What do you know about magnetism?"
"Ya mean Magnetic magic? It's pretty good for parlor tricks an' pickin' stuff up. But it only works on some metals and not all so it's limited in its usefulness.", Hekrin lifted his hand as he spoke.
A hammer laying on the counter a little distance away floated into the air and made its way over to Hekrin's hand. He caught and held onto it, "I tried usin' magnetic magic on one of my Magitech tubes but I found that it didn't give enough force. Wind works better and works on all projectiles, not just some."
Thomas nodded along as he listened. Magnetism only worked on ferromagnetic metals, metals containing at least some iron in them worked best. If metals like Mithril and Adamantine were non-magnetic then magnetic propulsion would be useless for them. Until he got to that point though, Magnetism seemed like his best bet for getting more power out of his weapon without needing to use something unstable like Firestone powder. He could worry about higher tier metals when he got to that point.
Thomas started walking around the counter to head to the back of the shop to the workroom, "I'm going to make some gear and start working on the design for my next weapon."
Hekrin nodded and leaned back on his counter to relax. Thomas glanced at Hekrin and asked, "What do you do all day just standing there like that?"
Hekrin smirked and said nothing. Thomas shrugged his shoulders and stepped into the workroom. He pulled the sling around and gently lifted Snowlily out of it, "I'm going to do some work so try to be a good girl and not knock anything over okay?"
Snowlily just dangled in his hands while tilting her head to the side curiously. Thomas couldn't help smiling before he set her down and pulled a snack out of his inventory. He quickly reheated it and offered it to her, "You can have this while I do some work."
Snowlily snatched the warm meat from his hand and started gnawing on it with her small sharp teeth. He hadn't cut it into small bite sized pieces so she got to enjoy it a bit longer. With her occupied by the food, he made his way over to the forge. He tossed some coal into it and ignited it with a small burst of fire magic. While the coals took their time igniting he grabbed the crucible and tossed a few ingots into it. Once he had the crucible hung over the forge, he went to work the bellows and raise the temperature of the fire.
His first order of business? Finally making a damned fan to do this work for him. Once he brought the temperature of the iron up enough to liquify it he used a ladle to scoop out the slag and discard it. He grabbed an ingot mold from one of the shelves and poured some of the molten metal into it. He grabbed another mold and repeated the process. By the time he was done he had five molds filled with glowing orange liquid iron.
Although the ingots cooled faster in the game than they did in reality, it still wasn't fast enough for him. He lifted his right hand and aimed it at the molds. A gentle cool breeze issued from his palm and flowed over the ingots cooling them down even faster. With a naturally fast cooling speed and the breeze, the iron quickly stopped glowing and began to solidify into nice iron ingots.
Once they were cool to the touch, Thomas picked them up and began channeling his 'Transmutation' to turn it all into heart iron. He knew from experience that the higher the purity of the iron, the more heart iron he got from it. Otherwise, he could simply skip the entire smelting process. Technically he still could, but the more material he had to work with the better.
After creating as much heart iron as he could with the ingots he'd made, he tossed more into the crucible and started melting them. He also took the time to convert several pieces of coal into hearts of carbon. He wanted to make more heart steel. The more he thought about it the less he liked referring to everything as 'heart of this' and 'heart of that'. Maybe he needed to come up with his own term for it. He had no idea what term to use off the top of his head though.
Dismissing the extra thoughts he spent the next little while purifying iron in the crucible and then using his 'Transmutation' to purify it further. Once he had a fair amount of both the pure iron and carbon he started using his 'Transmutation' to turn it all into as much steel as he could manage. It took him a few hours but in that time he managed to make a dozen ingots of the purest steel. This would give him a very large amount of material to work with thanks to not wasting much material through the use of 'Transmutation'.
Now... what should he make first?