The Caring Dungeon

by Laevo

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 whenever I can find the energy and desire to write.

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Table of Contents
Chapter Name Release Date
Chapter 1 - Edited 2/10/21 ago
Chapter 1.5 -edited 2/10/21 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
B2 C5 ago
B2 C6 ago
B2 C7 ago
B2 C8 ago
B2 C9 ago
B2 C10 ago
B2 C11 ago

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(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. 



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.


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.

brandy w.

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


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.


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.


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. 

Spoiler: Spoiler



A new breed of dungeon story [ch 32]

This is a well written story with interesting and unique aspects introduced to the standard dungeon theme. 

Style: the author does a great job in jumping between different viewpoints, both internal and external to the dungeon itself. This satisfies a need to read how the dungeon is viewed, and also to get an idea of what is happening in the surrounding areas, and allow for more world building. Speed of progression is neither too fast nor too slow. 


Story : having two very different types /personalities of dungeons living "together" and being interconnected introduces an interesting new aspect to this story. I can also see how philosophical and moral divergence between these two characters can lead to conflict, and also the depths of cooperation that can be developed. Very cool aspect. 

Introducing regular characters from the local town allow us to return again to an external viewpoint, and watching the town develop, and the administrative aspects of a dungeon - based economy will be very interesting to me! 

Grammer : not much to say here  Generally very well written, especially compared to a lot of other stories. Good job  

Character : a nice slow build of the backstory stemming from interludes and flashbacks means that we need to remember and piece this together ourselves - this keeps it interesting! 

Introducing named characters from town is nice as well, and I look forward to reading about their personalities and how they interact with the dungeon(s) and the new arrivals. 

I would like to see more depth of the characters introduced, flaws and personal interests (the dungeons seem to be developing these well, but the townsfolk have some room to grow, ha ha)   


Great story so far  and I'm looking forward to many many many many many more chapters in the future, right?! 


Spoiler: Spoiler


Style: I'm not entirely sure how to evaluate this part but I think the author has an original and good style of writing. The two main characters are unique from each other and not just an edit or direct opposition of the other. I like that each chapter specifies who's pic we'll see in the beginning as it allows me to immerse myself into the correct mindset faster. I especially love the lack of tables. Too many stories add systems and stats, I like having a number to a power and organized lists but some places just add one when it isn't necessary. 

I'm not saying "No tables", just that I don't need one every chapter in every novel.

Story: While there is no detailed overarching story, the dungeon building and world building is spot on. I'm never given information that will not be relevant for another 20 chapters, just hints at what may exist just a bit out of sight. There are no holes except how they became the core.

Grammar: There spelling is perfect and the punctuation and stuff are almost perfect. Just a few misplaced comma's or sentences that could be better worded.

Character: The characters are amazing. Each one feels like a real person and I can enjoy the chapters outside of the MCs'. Each character has sensible motivations and abilities and have reasonable powers.

Overall 5/5