Edit: spacing get's lost when i paste the chapter to this place.
"Hmm why not, the skill originally belongs to me so there's no need to worry about my name being made known."
Zaran chose to disclose his name. A worldwide anouncement was made.
|Congratulations Zaran Karaz for creating the S-Rank custom skill Flutter!|
The bystanders, Sylphie, Irina, Ed, the ratman and snakeman all yelled out in surprise.
"No wonder he was able to beat that guy, he already had a custom skill!" said one user.
"See i told you he was a great martial artist!" said another.
Ed whispered to his companions "Fuck that guy, using a custom skill to beat me, that's basically cheating! Let's mob up on him now, see if he can still act as high and mighty! Zed use dark sphere, Freddy you backstab him, while i distract him through using slash!" Ed raised his greataxe and ran towards Zaran again, who didn't notice him.
"Watch out behind you!!" A bystander shouted. Zaran immediatly turned around and tried to dodge the greataxe but he reacted too late and instantly lost 20HP. Zaran immediatly entered a battle stance and noticed the foul aura that came from Zed, the ratman. A dark, sinister orb gathered on top of his staff.
"Take this!" Zed pointed the staff towards Zaran and the dark sphere shot out with incredible speed, as Zaran was still under the effect of the attack with the greataxe he was unable to dodge and he lost another 30 health. Before he could react he felt two daggers penetrating his back. He was backstabbed by Freddy, the Snakeman, without being able to react. Zaran's eyes widened as he saw his hp drop to 10. One more hit and he would be dead. Ed raised his greataxe to deliver the finishing blow. As he brought his greataxe down, vines shot up from beneat Zaran, Ed, Zed and Freddy. This was the druid skill cocoon. It firmly locked the four users in place.
"HALT! Who dares disturb the peace in Virul!" A seemingly young man dressed in grey shorts and a grey worn down tank-top walked out of the crowd as he bellowed this. He had an unshaven and stern looking face, with two grey eyes that almost seemed soulless. Both his hands were opened and a glimmer of mana could be seen around them. The mana had the same aura as the cocoons'. "Guards take these four into custody!" Even though he seemed like a beggar, going by his clothes, the druid had quite some status as every guard in the market plaza moved the moment he gave the order.
"Wait!" Said one of the bystanders as the guards started to lead Zaran away. "Sir, that Zuno is innocent! He had a fair and honorable duel with the Orc, but the Orc lost and then tried to take revenge while he wasn't paying attention. They almost succeeded too if you didn't make in time sir!"
"Is this true everyone?" The druid asked. The bystanders all nodded or agreed in unison. "Fine, guards release the Zuno he's innocent. These others... four days in jail!"
"NOO! Zaran don't think this is the end! If i see you again you'll wish you were dead for real!" Ed roared and spat flew out of his mouth with every word. One of the guards glanced at Ed and smashed the Orc with his mace instantly knocking him out.
The druid glanced at Zaran before looking at the bystanders and saying in anger "What are you still doing here, what are you looking at? Begone!" The bystanders instantly dispersed after hearing the druid's words. The druid cast a simple heal on Zaran, restoring him to full health. "So young man, could you tell me why this Orc and his henchmen attacked you?" The druid asked in a polite tone.
"He was harassing these two young women over there, and as a man i couldn't just let this happen so i stepped up for them. I then defeated the Orc in a duel, but afterwards they still attacked me." Zaran said as he pointed towards Sylphie and Irina.
The druid laughed and said "That's what a real man ought to do! But don't you think the better option in this scenario would've been to call for the guards? Surely they would've solved the situation better than how you... handled it just now."
Zaran blushed, once he saw that it was his sister and her friend being harassed he got too hotheaded and forgot about the guards. If he had just relied on the guards to solve the situation he would not have made an enemy out of Ed, Zed and Freddy. On top of that while it would've taken him longer to get the skill but not as many people would have seen his face. Because people knew his face now he surely would be harassed by other users all over this town. Zaran sighed and looked at the druid. "I completely forgot about the guards sir, apologies for causing trouble for you".
"What's done is done, at least you have made me laugh and made this day a little eventful. I'm Razak by the way, I run the herbalist guild in this town as well as being a counselor for the major. Since the situation is solved here and because there is business i have to attend to i will take my leave. However if in the future you need anything of the herbalist guild feel free to use this token." Razak said as he walked closer to Zaran and extended his hand wherein lied a small green-colored bead. "This serves as an indication that you are free to enter the herbalist guild. Normally you'd have to take some exams and prove that you're not someone who would use herblore for evil deeds, but your chivalrous spirit already warants that you will not do such things. Therefore you can have this in advance."
Zaran deeply bowed as he received the small bead. "Thank you sir. If i may be so inpolite to keep you of your duties a little while longer, there is another question i would like to ask."
Razak nodded. "I am sure i could spare a few more minutes."
"Thanks sir, do the other guilds also have exams that have to be completed before you can enter them?"
"Generally most guilds don't. However the magic guild and the witchcraft guild both do require you to prove your worth and affinity. For crafting guilds most don't."
"Thank you for your answer sir, and i pray we may meet again in better circumstances next time." Zaran politely said as he bade Razak farewell.
"I shall look forward to that." Razak said as he walked away.
"Sylphie, Irina, let's go aswell." Zaran said as they left for the craftsmen district.
In Elaria, the country of elementals players were in an uproar as they watched the system-wide announcement.
"Damnit! Of all people why Zaran! I even lost count to how many times i died because of him. FUCK!" A red-coloured golem roared as flames bursted out of him. The red-coloured golem was an Ignar a species of lava elementals. This one was huge and bulky and carried an earthern greatsword.
"But this is a game, it will be different this time! You'll see Durak, we'll bring him to his knees this time." an average-looking earth golem answered. He had chosen all the default settings for a golem, so you would barely be able to recognize him apart from npc. If he wanted it he would blend right in with them.
Durak grumbled "Argh, fine, let's go level like madmen now. When we see that little shit, this it will be him that dies."
Durak and his party quickly left to go grinding with ignited spirits, the rage of seeing the name Zaran Karaz in this lifetime aswell brought them endless fury. How many times had they met him now, to lose their lives in the process every time they met.
On the way to the herblore guild Zaran was questioned by Irina and Sylphie about how he created that custom skill. Zaran just waved it off as being good luck and that he just tried a technique he thought could work. At first the girls didn't believe it but after repeating his story a few times the girls decided to just accept it. If there really was a secret to it, Zaran surely would tell Sylphie about it sooner or later.
Zaran arrived at the herblore guild together with Irina and Sylphie. The herblore guild was housed in a large pavilion and various medicinal fragrances escaped to the outside from within. As the party tried to enter, they were stopped by a chubby little Panda.
"Hello, what business do you have at the herbalist guild?" the chubby little panda asked.
"I would like to learn more about the arts of an herbalist." Zaran said as he showed the green bead.
"I see, please follow me inside young man! However if your friends want to enter they will have to take the test first." The panda said.
"We'll wait outside for you Zaran. We're not really interested in picking herbs and making potions..." Sylphie said. Zaran nodded and the panda led him towards the back of the pavilion where a few players and instructors were already busy brewing potions. Zaran looked around and saw a large variety of herbs, beads and other items needed for herblore stacked away in display cases and cabins. The chubby little panda wobbled over towards one of the still free cauldrons. "Wait here, i'll send an instructor over in a moment."
A minute or so later a three meter long oak ent walked over towards him. "So you are the youn'un that needs my guidance?" the ent whispered with a hoarse voice as she sized Zaran up "Very well, listen carefully for i will only instruct you once. For a herbalist the most important thing is to be able to distinguish various ingredients from one another. This is not always easy because some may seem exactly the same but have very very different effects. For example the common Rigo flower and wolfsbane both look very similar but while one has a healing effect the other WILL kill you. Therefore i will now explain you the correct ways to identify the different kinds of herbs, mushrooms and other ingredients that you will need. For starters ..."
The oak's lecture continued for some time until Zaran finally got confirmation that a skill was learned.
|Herb identification lvl 1|
|You are now able to identify most basic herbs.|
|Herb gathering lvl 1|
|You have learned the correct way to gather most basic herbs.|
The oak ent, didn't stop and simply continued her endless speech. "Once you gathered the herbs you can make potions, however you first need the potion recipe. Technically speaking you could create your own potions from the get go... but without the recipes you wouldn't know the results. And those could be... quite nasty. We've once had a guy who's limbs started falling of from one of his own creations." Zaran couldn't figure out if she was joking or not. Not like he was planning on experimenting anyway. In the following hour the oak ent slowly thought him various beginner recipes. After suffering for an hour Zaran was rewarded with the confirmation that the skill was learned.
|Herblore lvl 1|
|You have gained the ability to make basic potions.|
Zaran thanked the instructor and quickly escaped to the outside of the herbalist guild. God i hope i never have to listen to that woman again! Listening to that voice almost drove me insane. Once outside Zaran noticed that Irina and Sylphie were still waiting for him. "Sorry girls but this instructor... i think i've learned more in this single hour than in all my life together!"
Sylphie and Irina giggled. "That bad?" Sylphie asked.
"Please go in and see for yourself if you don't believe me" Zaran grumbled.
"I believe you, i believe you!" Sylphie quickly said. "Don't want to be stuck inside a building learning about plants for an hour straight, i'll leave that boring stuff up to you!"
"So what have you ladies been doing in the meantime? Hopefully not just waiting for me this whole time right?"
"Sylphie went out to get a quest from the church earlier while i stayed her to wait for you. After she got back i got a quest from the assassin's guild." Irina explained. "So i guess we'll have to go and get you a quest now?"
"Yeah, so let's get going right away. I wasted way too much time already." Zaran sighed.
Zaran, Sylphie and Irina made their way over to one of the sword schools. Zaran quickly went inside and received a quest.
|Recently the population of flygaan has been growing beyond acceptable limits. Our sword school has been contracted but doesn't have any hands free to complete the contract. Kill flygaan to prove your worth to our sword school.
Request: Kill 10 flygaan.
Reward: Accepted as a disciple of the sword school.
Zaran excited again and formed a party with the girls. He also finally remembered to register them as friends. "So what quests do you guys have? I have to kill 10 flygaan. I asked the instructor and their habitat lies to the west of the town."
Sylphie replied: "Eh, so we all got the same quest? Well that makes it easier to decide where to go though!"
The group went to the western exit of the town and quickly arrived at the hunting ground where the flygaan resided. Because Zaran had wasted so much time at the herblore guild the hunting ground was already filled with players, yet the players were still vastly outnumbered by the flygaan. The flygaan looked like enormous flies and they too had the habbit to rub their limbs together, which made them look like smug little shits. They were a passive mob as Zaran could see groups of players fight a single one without the others joining in. The flygaan that was the closes to the group was rubbing it's limbs together, so Zaran ran up to it and slashed at it. The flygaan noticed the incoming attack and swiftly jumped backwards. It opened it wings and sent a burst of air towards Zaran.
Zaran circled around the flygaan so it would turn it's back towards Sylphie and Irina. Through party chat Zaran informed the two of his plan. He would make it face them with its back, then he would attack so the flygaan would jump back and they would then attack it. Zaran ran up to the flygaan, jumping and slashing vertically at it's face. The flygaan jumped back again but this time not as quickly and the slash beautifully connected. It landed right in front of the girls through the jump, Sylphie quickly bashed it with her shield causing it to be temporarily stunned, then attacked it with her lance while irina backstabbed it and Zaran delivered another slash to it's face. The flygaan dropped to the ground and it's body dissapeared leaving a small pouch behind.
"These things are surprisingly easy." Irina said as she happily walked forwards to pick up the small pouch. She checked it's contents and threw 2 copper coins each to to Zaran and Sylphie "Che only 6 copper."
"What did you expect? These are level one monsters, did you expect them to be impossible to kill?"
Irina pouted. "No! But i just thought they'd be harder to kill..."
"How about you fight one by yourself then?" Sylphie said.
Irina's eyes brightened "Ooh! that's a great idea Syl!"
Irina instantly ran towards the nearest flygaan and attacked it. The flygaan easily dodged and started kiting irina. After Irina dropped to half health Sylphie and Zaran joined the fray again using the same strategy as before to easily kill it.
"Not so easy on your own huh?" Zaran patted Irina on her shoulder as she was kicking the flygaan's corpse before it started to dissapear.
"Puh, i would've killed it if it didn't flee the whole time!"
Zaran smiled. "Let's just kill eight more now okay?"
In the next ten minutes the group easily dispatched of the flygaan with the same method as the first one. After they left the hunting ground many other groups with only melee classes started to follow their method as killing one flygaan was taking them tens of minutes.
While Zaran and the girls walked back to the market square. As they got closer to it the girls got closer to Zaran, afraid to get harassed again. Seeing this, other players glared at Zaran out of pure jealousy. They walked towards the south of the market square, heading straight for their respective guilds. "Let's meet up at the training field once we are done handing in the quests?" Zaran said as he escaped the girl's grip.
"Sure..." the girls said dejectedly in unison.
Zaran walked over to the sword school. I wonder what i will get as a reward...