As we made a run for Dondegarm, we came up with a plan to take back the city taken hostage. Like Ren begged us to do from the beginning, we’d rescue her slave merchant and friends currently being held captive. The merchant, Ms. Carmen Todoka, actually told Ren to run off and find help just as things were starting to get crazy, knowing how she’s the fastest runner of all her slaves. There are guards and adventurers in the city currently fending off the cult, but the invaders used some tactics to take down some of the city’s defenses before they started going after its citizens. All of Ms. Carmen’s slaves are capable, strong fighters registered as adventurers just in case there are customers who seek to rent backup for their quests and dungeon crawling. There’s especially one, in particular, an Ogre who goes by Erizora (another name I heard earlier today, or ‘Eri’ by her friends). While her adventurer rank is marked blue, she’s not only Ren’s closest friend, but she’s the strongest slave out of everyone for carrying the Savage class. To keep note, Ren’s apparently a green-ranked adventurer.
“We’d especially need her brute strength and capabilities in crowd control to make an upset in taking back the city,” Ren explains as we run. “Being a regular visitor, Mistress Carmen has established a good enough relationship with her customers here to want to help out in times of trouble. Once we set them free, we’ll become the resistance to take back Dondegarm and capture the White Rapture for questioning.”
“Saving an army to fight another army. Sounds like a good deal,” I say.
“If I may ask, Mr. Jinma, what is your adventurer’s rank?”
“I don’t know, I’m not even registered as one.”
“You’re kidding! To be able to pull that off back there and subjugate an evolved Troll, I thought you’d be a red, or even a purple by now.”
“Are those ranks good?”
“Yes! They’re one and two ranks above Eri’s, respectively!”
“About that, while I do admit that you smelled pretty bad, did you really subjugate an evolved Troll before getting ensnared by my trap?” Lili asks while quirking her brow.
“That’s right. I was honestly surprised Ren even knew I did.”
“When I saw you two passing by earlier today, while it was faint, I picked up the scent of an evolved Troll’s blood and body odor on top of Mr. Jinma’s. I had to confirm it with some of the other slaves in case I wasn’t smelling things. Most evolved Trolls are strong monsters that only a few blue-ranked adventurers or a small party of green-ranks on average to be able to handle them.”
For a girl to point out some guy’s body odor on me … it must’ve been when he stomped on me so many times on top of that ghastly breath. That’s a little embarrassing.
“What had me concerned, however, was that while you had that scent of an evolved Troll on you, please pardon my rudeness, but I gagged from how … toxic, it smelled. Like I might’ve gotten poisoned if I didn’t back off a little …” Ren trails off as if she noticed something.
“… Jinma, what was that evolved Troll like? Were you alone when you fought it?” Lili asks.
“Well, I certainly was alone, I wound up sleeping in his cave without realizing it and he thought I was there to take his stuff. He was as brutal as he looked with that purplish color on him, the poisonous plants and fungi threw off that intimidation though, and I managed to kill him off. Still, that awful breath of his was something I couldn’t forget even if I wanted to since I could still kind of tasted it. I still couldn’t believe how much of my HP he took down with that.”
“Did he … happen to speak at the time?”
“Barely. He screamed ‘Glock, kiiill’ after I tried reasoning with him first.”
Lili and Ren suddenly halt to a stop before I slow down to do the same a few meters ahead of them. I look back to see them stare at me wide-eyed.
“… What? Did I say something weird?”
“Um … was he a Toxic Troll, by any chance?” Lili asks.
“Jinma … that Toxic Troll was gaining a rep in this city as a dangerous adversary, especially with his breath that could kill victims within minutes. It kills anyone that comes within his sights before taking their weapons and belongings—wait, is that where you got all those weapons?!”
“Last I heard from the adventurer’s guild, they issued a wanted poster and marked Glock, The Putrid, a purple-ranked Special Monster,” Ren says.
“To be able to kill him all by yourself …” Lili trails off.
“Let’s not worry about the details right now. We got some slaves and a merchant to break out, right?” I ask. While they nodded in agreement and Ren continued to lead the way, there was only the awkward silence between us.
If I showed Glock, The Putrid’s corpse to the adventurer’s guild, I’ll probably make some good money out of it. Maybe that can also help me establish where I should stand to start as an adventurer if I want to find a source of good income.
We approach two tents, one large and one small, that one might see for a circus when we got to the city. Four armed cultists are outside of the larger one while keeping watch for any intruders, with two stationed at the front while the other half are patrolling the backside. Ren explained to me how the smaller tent is not only her slave merchant’s room/office but also a storage area for weaponry the slaves are specialized in, which explains why there are three cultists guarding it in a triangle formation.
Using Lili’s skill in webbing, she snatches away one of the cultists in the back of the large tent for her and Ren to incapacitate without making a sound. As soon as the other back guard notices his partner missing and run off to where he once was, I quickly and quietly sneak right behind him to try a move I wondered would work in this world. Once I get close …
I grab his head and crack his neck, making him fall to the ground without even uttering a word.
The victory and level-up tracks sound in my head. I put two fingers on the guard’s neck and could still read a pulse.
Nice, looks like I can put guys in KO this way, too. He may be paralyzed for the rest of his life, but it could’ve been worse for him; however, this also means it could apply to me as well, even with my high DEF. I’d have to be extra careful.
[Conditions met. The skill, ‘Stealth’ LV 5 is now visible.]
Wait, what? What do you mean it’s now visible? Actually, Ms. Obina said there are other skills of mine that will come later if I put them into practice. So, it was there all along, but something just needs to switch it on? That means I’ve had this level of ‘Stealth’ back on Earth for some time?
I mean, it makes sense. For someone who’s just starting out in a new world, one can only handle so much info at once, and we usually use so many ‘skills’ that we practiced on Earth. It’s like if ‘Swimming’ was a skill. I don’t need it right now, but once I do it in some water, I’m sure the status will show what level of mastery it’s already in.
That just leaves the question: what did I do to get such a high level of ‘Stealth?’ I’ve often had to hide in some places when I overheard something I probably shouldn’t hear while growing up. I could’ve also subconsciously tried to blend in with the crowd to not get called out into fights. The biggest contribution though might be the times when I found Hyo-chan by herself that I either distanced myself from or follow her until she meets up with someone else.
I wasn’t stalking her, mind you. She was just prone to attract the wrong crowd, and when I observed enough to know that things were going to get ugly with a shady guy or group, I’d intervene and pretend we were around the same place by coincidence while I tried to get them to back off. I’d get pulled into another fight soon after that, win it, and get away before other people may suspect I’m associated with Hyo-chan in some manner.
Why I was avoiding Hyo-chan was complicated, but I still cared for her and tried to provide the best protection I could offer from the sidelines. I wasn’t one of those obsessive, cowardly assholes. The same ones who’d send love letters and try to take advantage of any opportunity just to get close to her because of how she’s pretty, intelligent, hardworking, and friendly back in high school.
At least, that what I’ve thought of her, but I’m not a stalker if I’m protecting her from obvious thugs while watching from the side, right? Well, that’s beside the point. I was apparently good enough then to have my ‘Stealth’ recognized to be LV 5. I’m not saying I’m proud of being good at hiding from her to get at this level, okay?
“I don’t know what the heck you just did, but that noise didn’t sound pleasant,” Lili says in a whisper as she and Ren approach me after taking care of their guy.
“Something I learned from home,” I answer as Lili takes my guy’s unconscious body and hangs him cocooned on a sturdy tree branch next to theirs, of which I could see a red stain showing through the webbing.
Well, better them than me, speaking as someone who was hung in a similar position not too long ago.
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Hello and welcome. You may call me Orange Rain, and I looooove orange soda.
I not only like to read novels of many kinds, but I also like to write them. The stories published here will be in webnovel.com as well, so if you can, I'd appreciate it if you could support me on both platforms. I also like to read any professional critiques people may have on my works in order for me to become a better writer.
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