The three of us had amassed quite a bit of money, so we decided to go shopping for an enchanted weapon. After four hours four Battery charges, we hadn’t found anything that cost less than 100,000 leet except lunch. Between the three of us, however, one hour generated 275 MP. We had amassed nearly enough to try using Recall Moment, but what was the rush? I assumed it would take me back in time… but to where? To where I set Anchored Moment to? I tried casting that on my first day and nothing happened.
After our rather fruitless endeavors, we considered moving on to the sixth floor but we still didn’t know what type of monsters to expect. Lola didn’t know off the top of her head, so we went to an information broker located near the Gateway. For the rather steep cost of 400 leet, we found out the sixth floor has Snowman monsters, and the seventh floor has Buffpigs. I imagined macho bi-pedal pigs with fists, but was told they were half buffalo, half boar.
Armed with a fireball slinging healer holding a pitchfork, Reena and I made our way to the Gateway to nuke some snowmen. Guppy’s cold resistance would have come in handy, except that the fireballs became the only thing we needed to take them down. After clearing to the exit, three ‘Ice Sickle’ items had dropped, working Guppy 3/10 of the way to learning ‘Ice Lance’. The boss blew up with three shots, earning another ‘Ice Sickle’. The boss was worth 220 exp and 550 leet by themselves. We went back and fought another 21 of the snowmen before we got enough of the drops to teach Guppy the new ability. Guppy turned blue and fired a three-foot-long pointed cone of ice at around 50 miles per hour, using 10 of my MP. If the snowmen could use this ability… we never saw it. They blew apart from the fireballs before they could even react to us. However, since we didn’t want to waste any more of the Slime Battery’s charge, we decided to just move on.
The Buffpigs were bigger than we were expecting, but with Reena’s AGI sitting at 43 she could easily move around the enemies and get into a position for a hit at their vitals, and with STR sitting at 27 she was still able to cut right through them. Even in sets of two, they never had a chance to use whatever special abilities they might have had. They just died too quickly. Eight Buffpigs fell leading us to boss room. They dropped a ham on a bone called ‘Buffham’ that apparently sells pretty well as an ingredient. Guppy refused to eat it. We assumed he wouldn’t learn a skill from it.
We’re way over leveled for this area now. I guess it’s the same as doing every quest in the starter town before moving on to the next area in an RPG. If you do that, the second town is easy. If you do that in the second town too, the third area becomes trivial. It’s a mindless way to break a game and make it unfun. These enemies had hit that stage. If they were level seven, we were 12 and 13.
<Kyuu> “I feel like I’m playing a JRPG with an auto-battle feature.”
I comment casually, waving my hands.
<Reena> “Then freaking do something!”
Reena called as she gutted the boss. It dropped a second ham. Since the hams looked tasty, we decided arbitrarily to clear this floor too instead of moving on. We got 11 more of the hams. When we later sold twelve of them, planning to keep one to eat, and they were worth 75 leet a piece for a total of 900. We split that three ways.
Sigh… and now I feel like I’m playing an accounting game. Hit auto battle, collect money, move to next location on the map. Why did I always assume living in an RPG would be exciting? What a sobering dream.
I charged the Slime Battery by myself that evening, getting three more full dumps of MP in before going to sleep. I was sitting at 2996/5000, so I waited a minute and a half and put four more MP in. Then I realized I was about to give Ian too much money, so I used 20 of the stored MP to summon the Time Vault, depositing all my leet except for 300.
The next morning was rinse and repeat. Information broker tells us that levels eight, nine, and ten have treants, bats, and hellcats. We slaughter them all by dinner time. Since I didn’t have to do much, I spent almost all my MP charging the Battery.
15 (Treants) + 17 (Bats) + 19 (Hellcats) = 51 exp times 50 (enemies per floor) equals 2550. Also 300 (Treant General) + 340 (Bat General) + 380 (Hellcat General) equals 1020 exp. That’s 3570 exp just for today. We also got 13,800 leet, 14 ‘Apples’, 13 ‘Bat Wings’, and 15 ‘Fire Claw’. Guppy learned ‘Attract Enemy’, ‘Flight’, and ‘Flame body’ using 10 of each of the drops.
Despite not being useful, I had acquired some pretty high stats and a new spell called Time Cottage.
Class: Level 16 Time Wizard
EXP : 6931/7100
Age: 15 (30)
HP: 85 MP: 270 STR: 26 AGI: 27 VIT: 24 INT: 56 MND: 56
Spells: Anchor Moment (10 MP), Recall Moment (3000 MP), Time Vault (20 MP/Minute), Time Cottage (1000 MP), Summon Slime (Level 1 Guppy, 15 MP + 3 MP/Minute)
Equipment: Chipped Gladius (+4 stabbing/slashing), Slime Battery (3260/5000 MP)
[Name: Lola of Kyuu’s Party
Class: Level 17 Star Priest
HP: 20 MP: 120 STR: 23 AGI: 24 VIT: 35 INT: 47 MND: 47
Equipment: Imp’s Revenge(+10 Piercing, Imbue: Fireball), Hachigane (+5 VIT for blows against the head)
Skills: Minor Heal (10 MP), Remove Poison(20 MP), Fireball (Imp’s Revenge, 15 MP)], Star Fall (20 MP)]
[Name: Reena of Kyuu’s Party
Class: Level 17 Thief
HP: 75 MP: 55 STR: 38 AGI: 55 VIT: 27 INT: 17 MND: 26
Equipment: Quality Janbiya (+8 stabbing/slicing) x2 critical damage, Hachigane (+5 VIT for blows against the head)
Skills: Pilfer (Increase leet dropped, 10 MP), Plunder (Increase items dropped, 25 MP)], Pillage (Passive: Recover MP on strike)]
Since I had plenty of MP charged up in the Battery, I went ahead and activated the spell after dinner. An ornate looking door appeared on the wall of our room at the inn. Inside was a house with a kitchen, bathroom, master bedroom with a comfortable looking bed, a guest room with two bunk beds, and storeroom with various drawers and chests. Peering outside the windows, the house didn’t seem to sit on anything. It was floating in a sky with no ground below or space above. Just consistently light blue sky with various clouds floating around.
<Reena> “Dibs on the big bedroom.”
Yelled Reena as she ran and dove on the mattress. It looked far more comfortable than the beds at the inn we had been using.
<Lola> “No way! I want the nice looking bed too!”
<Reena> “We can share tonight, but tomorrow I want it all to myself. You can have it every other day. Kyuu snores, so I don’t want to have to share a room with him anymore.”
We could have paid for a separate room you know…
<Kyuu> “We ran a lot today, so I’m actually going to go ahead and go to sleep. Hopefully this place isn’t dangerous.”
Like my convenient power in my dream would be dangerous.
I went to bed. I only gave Ian 200 leet tonight. After I rested as long as I wanted, I got up and went to the kitchen. Lola was trying to cook the ‘Buffham’, but she just ended up ruining it.
<Lola> “Oh! I’m so sorry! It didn’t cook at all like a regular honey ham you get from the super market!”
<Reena> “Sure it didn’t, Lola. This has nothing to do with you burning everything you’ve ever tried to cook.”
The trite ‘terrible cook’ event, huh?
<Kyuu> “Well, I’m strangely not hungry at all, but I’m going to go see about getting breakfast at the inn. I don’t know what happens to this place after I leave, so let’s pack up.”
The girls did so, and we head back out into our room. It was morning.
I ate breakfast and went back upstairs to our room. The cottage door was still there, so hopefully it could be summoned again elsewhere instead of forever being stuck in the inn’s guest room. Ian’s 200 leet was still in my possession, so apparently the Cottage is outside the bounds of whatever forces the payment. I need to make sure to avoid him today in case he notices I made no money. You know, except for all the money I made.
<Kyuu> “Okay ladies… how about a new plan… Let’s just rush through as many floors as we can today. Avoid all the fighting, and just go straight for the boss. We’ll only stick around if Guppy can get a new skill. If we move to the fifteenth floor, we’ll still be over leveled for them, but we’ll get getting 145 leet and 29 exp per kill.”
<Lola> “I’m actually maxed out for Star Priest. I can’t get any more skills, so I was thinking of evolving my class. Do you think offense, defense, or support is better?”
<Kyuu> “To be honest, I’m not sure it matters that much when we’re this over powered. If I’m thinking long term, though, it is hard to gauge since we’re not a full party. If enemies get bigger and badder like you hope in a game, we’ll need more of all three of those things.”
<Reena> “I’m also maxed out, but there are no evolved classes I qualify for.”
Enigma! Your game sucks! Fix her arm so she stops acting like you kicked her puppy!
<Kyuu> “Perhaps not… well, I started with an evolved class, so there is no upgrading for me either.”
Stupid! That isn’t going to make her feel better. You moron.
<Lola> “So I’m going to spend the afternoon at the trainer. You two do whatever you want.”
<Kyuu> “Leave me the Imp’s Revenge? We might go to the labyrinth.”
<Lola> “That’s a good idea. Here you go!”
I put the chipped gladius back in Ian’s warehouse. I’d rather buy my own weapon than carry his around anymore anyway. Reena had planned to go to the labyrinth with me as well, so we didn’t need to debate it. We went straight for the eleventh floor.
The monsters were pigmen-type monsters with axes. They were possibly orcs? Regardless, they were pretty big and Reena seemed to be working off some aggression on the poor things. For the first encounter, she dove under the swinging axe and between the orc’s legs. She spun around, her blade flashing in the dark, and cut the tendons behind the orc’s knees. Stumbling, she darted back to it’s front and calmly parried a blow from the axe and lunged knee first at the orc’s chest. She stabbed her blade into the orc’s neck and used it as a handhold as she fell to the ground with the dying monster. It tried to hit her with the axe again, but she just kicked its elbow hard into the ground. It dropped the weapon and laid on the ground bleeding from the neck for nearly ten seconds before disappearing in light. Reena just watched it while sitting on its chest.
The second encounter was much the same.
The third encounter involved far more superficial cuts.
<Kyuu> “Reena… dear… are you okay?”
To be honest, watching a little girl doing things like this is making me uncomfortable.
Reena stood up from where the monster was a moment before and turned to me with a smile.
<Reena> “Of course! Like these weaklings could hurt me.”
That’s not what I meant…
<Reena> “These guys are too pathetic. I want to fight a strong monster. Let’s build up some Revenge and go fight the boss!”
<Kyuu> “I don’t think that is such a good idea. Maybe if we had Lola here we could do it…”
Which was the wrong thing to say. I only meant if Reena had a healer backing her up instead of a Guppy, she’d be fine. She seemed to interpret it as ‘You’re useless… but Lola can do it!’
<Reena> “Screw you, old man! Either help me find more enemies or get the hell out of here.”
Perhaps… I should help her vent some of this frustration. Apparently, Lola going off to evolve her class has Reena in quite the foul mood. Does she need to prove to herself she’s strong? Or maybe that she’s fine without her left arm? For now, let’s just go along with her plan.
<Kyuu> “Fine fine. You win. We’ll hunt more from this floor. You want… maybe 25 before taking on the boss?”
<Reena> “Huh? No. I need a real fight. Fifty.”
<Kyuu> “Let’s… just start with 25… maybe I’ll talk you into starting small as we go.”
We cleared first to the exit Gateway, and then made our way around the floor. Reena scowled the whole time except when we encountered a group of three. She recklessly dove into the fray and started fighting. When I pointed Imp’s Revenge to launch a fireball, she screamed at me to leave it to her. She finally got scratched.
Maybe with this damage she’ll calm down a bit.
<Reena> “YOU THINK YOU PIG BASTARDS CAN HURT ME?!”
She became enraged. She didn’t toy with them anymore. She cut them down. End of story.
In the end, I couldn’t convince her to ease up on the Revenge gathering, and the best I could hope for was to ask if we could wait for Lola before taking on the fully powered General. But I ran out of time. She killed all fifty monsters on the floor. Reena remembered where the Gateway was, too, so I couldn’t just not take her. I even tried, wrongly of course, to convince her that maybe we should wait for Lola just in case… It didn’t work. She raced back to the Gateway and jumped through without hesitation. I followed her. I was an idiot to allow it to come this far… but hopefully I wasn’t an idiot for trying to see it through.