The Caring Dungeon

by Laevo

Original HIATUS Action Adventure Fantasy Dungeon High Fantasy LitRPG Magic Male Lead Multiple Lead Characters Non-Human lead Slice of Life Strong Lead
Warning This fiction contains:
  • Gore
  • Profanity
  • Traumatising content

Not everything in this world is natural, and it's only natural to fear the unnatural.

Fortunately for Manning, he was natural. 

Unfortunately, he found himself to be in a very unnatural state.

Manning was trapped inside of a gemstone, called a dungeon core.

Luckily for Manning, he found himself capable of using his newly found unnatural power to make a nature filled forest. With the help of Cara, his unnatural roommate, and Ash, his nature spirit companion, Manning dreams of covering the continent with the most beautiful and dangerous forest it has ever seen. His only other goals are to protect himself and Cara, and if he could ever remember, recover his memories.

This is my first time attempting to write anything.


Updates on Saturdays, or as it is written over on Patreon (Not much faster, usually).

  • Overall Score
  • Style Score
  • Story Score
  • Grammar Score
  • Character Score
  • Total Views :
  • 564,397
  • Average Views :
  • 8,300
  • Followers :
  • 1,920
  • Favorites :
  • 571
  • Ratings :
  • 524
  • Pages :
  • 436
Go to Table of Contents
Rate it
Fiction breaking rules? Report


Undead Advocate

Word Count (13)
20 Review Upvotes
1st Anniversary
Writathon Royal Road 2018 winner
Countdown Short Story Event participant
Finding the Key
Top List #100
Table of Contents
Chapter Name Release Date
Chapter 1 // Questions ago
Chapter 2 // Ash ago
Chapter 3 // Brick ago
Chapter 4 // Schism ago
Chapter 5 // Ants go marching ago
Chapter 6 // One by One ago
Chapter 7 // Level up ago
Chapter 8 // Return ago
Chapter 9 // Trouble Brewing ago
Chapter 10 // Deci ago
Chapter 11 // Date Night ago
Chapter 12 // Rough Start ago
Chapter 13 // Poor Decisions ago
Chapter 14 // Skills ago
Chapter 15 // Pig out ago
Chapter 16 // Magic Lesson ago
Chapter 17 // Demolitionist ago
Chapter 18 // Annahmia ago
Chapter 19 // Mutations ago
Chapter 20 // Self Aware ago
Chapter 21 // Enchanted Forest ago
Chapter 22 // That is Mahogany! ago
Chapter 23 // Tribal overhaul ago
Chapter 24 // Challengers Approaching ago
Chapter 25 // Challengers Approaching pt II ago
Chapter 26 // Challengers Approaching pt III ago
Chapter 27 // Challengers Approaching pt IV ago
Interlude // Civilization ago
Chapter 28 // Manannán's Tree ago
Chapter 29 // Revelations ago
Chapter 30 // Subterranean Terror ago
Chapter 31 // Influx ago
Chapter 32 // Pig Roast ago
Chapter 33 // Another boaring day ago
Chapter 34 // Blooming ago
Chapter 35 // A forest stroll ago
Chapter 36 // The First Trial ago
Chapter 37 // Desperation ago
Chapter 38 // Spicy ago
Chapter 39 // really short chapter (sorry) ago
Chapter 40 // Of spawning, and respawning ago
Chapter 41 // Jivy Ivy ago
Chapter 42 // Dryad ago
Interlude // Ralph ago
Chapter 43 // Dark ago
Chapter 44 // Midnight Stroll ago
Chapter 45 // Preparation ago
Chapter 46 // Skills ago
Chapter 47 // Sabbath ago
Chapter 48 // Invasion ago
Chapter 49 // Invasion II ago
Chapter 50 // Invasion III ago
Chapter 51 // A decision to make ago
Chapter 52 // Guests ago
Chapter 53 // Moonlit Glade ago
Chapter 54 // It's Quiet ago
Chapter 55 // Gift of the Gods ago
Chapter 56 // Swan Song ago
Chapter 57 // Descent ago
Chapter 58 // Warren ago
Chapter 59 // Ess Ka Pay ago
Chapter 60 // Gains ago
Chapter 61 // Gains II ago
Chapter 62 // Book I Fin ago
B2 Chap 1 // Book I Recap ago
B2 Chap 2 // Migration ago
B2 Chap 3 // Isaac Nomin ago
B2 Chap 4 // Marcello ago

Leave a review

Sort by:
  • Overall Score
  • Style Score
  • Story Score
  • Grammar Score
  • Character Score

(Ch10) Well written, intriguing setting

Very well written with intriguing setting thats rapidly becoming more fleshed out. Has a lot more nuance and depth than the typical "I'm overpowered and everyone is amazed by it" fiction you seen on this site. 

The dual main characters are what makes it. Having two relatable leads that have a slightly rocky relationship lets the author add an outside perspective to each character, helping develop them further. This lets him show that the slightly stereotypical male leads "All I think about is progress and it all comes naturally to me" attitude is slightly abrasive to others, a more realistic approach rhan everyone worshiping the lead in awe as with the self insert wish fulfilment fictions on this site. I hope that the author continues to develop these characters further, either through their interactions with adventurers or by deepening their relationship with each other.

The setting is large and has the potential to be very diverse. The author has a lot of room to play with and can simply add additional detail to generic areas instead of forcing expansion to improve the dungeons. He can also take the story in a large number of directions through the sub plots he is establishing at this stage. 

I look forward to reading more from you in general, especially as you grow as a writer. Your phrasing, imagery and grammar are fantastic so I'd recommend refining your narrative techniques to develop yourself. 


  • Overall Score
  • Style Score
  • Story Score
  • Grammar Score
  • Character Score

A Slow Burn Dungeon Story With A Twist

Don't let the amateurish cover dissuade you from reading this nicely written entry to the dungeon genre. With a decent grammar and a fun twist, this story will surely entertain. The main characters have an interesting dynamic and the direction of the plot shows a glimpse at it's potential.

  • Overall Score
  • Style Score
  • Story Score
  • Grammar Score
  • Character Score

Vanilla Dungeon Core -- May Turn Out Great

Chapter 27: The writing is really good: spelling, grammar, compsition, and the other marks of prose writing are good. The Prose Style is easy and pleasant to read. 

PRO: The Dungeon having two Main Character Cores is an interesting twist as is the need for them to avoid being "too powerful". The rest of the Worldbuilding is vanilla but comes across as very plausible -- this is a world of patchwork kingdoms and petty wars.

CON: As of Chapter 27 the story has only finished the "Introductory Arc". Many of the Stock Characters have been introduced and the local politics have only just been introduced. How the Author further develops the Dungeon/World Interaction will make or break the story. The Worldbuilding is vanilla (standard Races, Magic, etc.) so Politics and Player Interaction will need to shine.

PROSPECTS: Moderately Optimistic. The Author seems to be going someplace and it will be interesting to read where that place is.

brandy w.
  • Overall Score

I like the concept of this dungeon core story. It allows for a likable dungeon that can still be a deadly dungeon.

  • Overall Score

A unique and compelling take

This is a story that I think anyone, whether they read litrpg or not, can enjoy. It’s a unique take on the genre by including two main characters in a core which I appreciate. This characterization is in its early stages but good. Manning is an all around good guy and hero, while Cara is troubled and almost an anti-hero. She, at times, both helps and hinders Manning. She however does seem to care. They are multidimensional and I can’t wait to see the rest of the adventure they go on, and I find myself truly caring (hah) that everything turns out okay for them; which to me is a sign of a skilled author. Keep it up.

I will admit, I am biased as I am married to the author. That doesn’t change anything stated before though. Give this a read, it’s worth your time.

  • Overall Score

With the title "The Caring Dungeon" I expected an exceptionally sappy dungeon story and put off reading it. Imagine my surprise when it turns out that the name is literally a mashup of the two main characters, Cara and Manning. Progressing from there, the dungeon develops in a satisfying direction with Cara building a classical dungeon full of traps, danger, and death, where Manning builds an "Enchanted Forest" on the surface above. Overall, this delivers both the darkness and terror that one would expect of a dungeon, as well as the majesty and wonder that a supreme architect could coax out of nature. Not that the forest is without danger or the dungeon without positivity.


Ultimately, I enjoy the blending and interplay of the two and hope the author continues to expand the story. Poorly written dungeon core stories are a dime a dozen, but this is one of the stories that I think deserves a chance to shine.

  • Overall Score
  • Style Score
  • Story Score
  • Grammar Score
  • Character Score

nicely-written dungeon core story

(as of chapter 27)

'The Caring Dungeon' is a Dungeon Core story but this dungeon core consists of two involuntarily connected entities with different personalities and magic affinities. So far, the story mostly focuses on the friendliness-inclined-nature-magic Manning (controlling the forest on the surface) as opposed to the more troubled-personality-darkness-magic Cara (controlling the underground dungeon). Some humanoid non-dungeon characters were introduced that will probable take an important part in the future. In these first chapters the double dungeon was established and the first small difficulties were survived.

Style: Told in third character from different points-of-view (the dungeon cores but also other characters). Quite pleasant writing, not too dialogue-heavy like many other stories are.

Story: Many of the basics of dungeon core stories but with the twist of being a double-dungeon. So far no world-changing new developments but a nice story. The developments seen come from logical sources.

Grammar: Mostly fine. Some typos but they are quickly corrected when pointed out.

Characters: The two dungeon core entities sharing a life is a nice change from other stories and their personalities are clearly different. There is also a bit of focus on other characters that seem to have their own characterization, they seem to have depth to them but it's too early to say much about them. Thankfully I found no unlogical character flaws yet.

Sorry I can't heap too much glowing praise on this story but I'm a bit jaded after all those years reading and the story is not very long yet. I like it and will follow it closely though, that's not a given.

  • Overall Score

Enjoyed book one - hope author continues

Reviewed at: Chapter 1 // Questions

This is one of my favorite stories so far. I like to above ground, forest based dungeon balanced out with the one underground. I read all the published chapters in one day and I hope the the author will publish it as a book and finish book two. The story has done rough parts but nothing an editor could not help smooth out. Solid story and hope for more. 

  • Overall Score

I like it. Why? *Shrugs*

Though I hate most of the characters.


  • Overall Score
  • Style Score
  • Story Score
  • Grammar Score
  • Character Score

A great story with interesting dichotomy between a number of varying view points. 

Picking starting points and creatures that arnt often addressed allows for a fun time learning with the characters.