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Ch007-Everybody Loves Large Chests

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“You guys really look like shit. I know it’s the ogres with the amazing regeneration, but this is just pathetic.” Sylver said, easily dodging the sleepy swipe from the largest giant.

The remaining two giants were just barely conscious right now. The infection had spread rather slowly, but the wounds were already gangrenous and all the extra wounds Sylver was giving them, really weren’t helping. Sadly, they were both too awake to give him time to drain their health and mana.

He had summoned Tom using the giant’s mana, and with all the extra stamina, struggled not to start doing backflips. Luckily, simply putting more power behind his cuts, drained the excess quite quickly.

So right now, he and Tom, were both dancing around the giants, dodging their slow attacks and stabbing them with their daggers when possible. If you forgot about the fact that even getting hit once, would completely kill either of them, then this was quite fun. Thankfully the giants didn’t try to run away or even move from the cave.

Which meant there was something they were protecting inside. Which in turn just got Sylver more excited to see what it was. From his past experiences, Sylver knew that whatever was inside could range from a box full of dead human carrion, to magically enchanted armor. Or something even better.

The giant on the left was the first to give out. It missed Tom completely and was now too weak to even lift up its club again. With only a few steps, Tom managed to get in close to the giant and made a deep cut sideways on its stomach. The beast dropped to its knees, as its internal organs spilled out.

With shaking and numbing hands, it made an effort to pull everything back inside but simply fell down forwards onto them.

[Vleborian Giant (Warrior) Defeated!]
[Due to defeating an enemy 20 levels above you, additional experience will be awarded!]

[Necromancer] has reached level 6!
+5AP

[Necromancer] has reached level 7!
+5AP

Ah shit… I was planning on draining it.

With only one giant remaining, both Tom and Sylver were now attacking it. The overly large creature had to keep turning around, as the two small humanoids constantly circled around it, striking at any available surface.

After a few seconds, Tom managed to get the giant in its Achilles tendon. With its face momentarily lowered, it received a mana enhanced kick to the face from Sylver. Tom got the next hit in, and ran his dagger through the giant’s shoulder, severing the muscle in its arm.

Kicking the creature in the face again, Sylver ran behind it and climbed onto its back. As before it took a couple of seconds for his mana to permeate the creature’s meager resistance, but he managed well before the giant could gather its bearings.

Draining every drop of mana, health, and stamina, Sylver felt a rush of power, and couldn’t help but laugh at the feeling. It felt a whole lot different, then when he did this before he had died. Before it felt like adding a drop to a pond of power. But now it was like someone was trying to pour a bucket into a shot glass.

[Vleborian Giant (None) Defeated!]
[Due to defeating an enemy 10 levels above you, additional experience will be awarded!]

[Necromancer] has reached level 8!
+5AP

[Draining Touch (I) Proficiency Increased to 26%!]

Sylver didn’t waste any time, as the excess mana would soon start deteriorating, and began to raise the giants.

Size didn’t particularly matter in cases like this, especially when he had no intention of taking something so massive along with him. Carving a crude enchantment onto the dead giant’s heart, and a very quick framework onto its skull, the giant began to rise from the ground in only a couple of seconds.

[Zombie (Lesser) Raised!]

[Skill: Raise Zombie (I)]
Skill level can be increased by raising zombies. (Repeat raising of the same zombie will not increase skill level)
I - Turn a corpse into a zombie.
*Quality dependent on the corpse.
*Quality dependent on the soul.
*Possibility of failure is dependent on the skills of the castor.

It really does have a skill for everything. I’ll try raising a skeleton when I get the chance.

Looking at his MP, Sylver was pleased to see that raising this thing only cost about 20% of his reserves. That was of course including the extra he had taken, but he felt that this was enough for another one at least.

Walking over to the second largest one, he repeated the process.

[Zombie (Lesser) Raised!]

[Raise Zombie (I) Proficiency increased to 11%!]

“Alright. You two are temporary, so get your clubs and follow me.” Sylver said to his two new giant zombies. Unlike Tom, these two didn’t react immediately to what he had said. They just stood there staring at Sylver.

Granted this was a very low effort and crude framework, but Sylver believed this was more to do with how stupid giants are. And not a reflection of his skills or effort.

Clapping his hands made them jump a little. “Look, I know you two can barely understand me, so go get your clubs,” Sylver gestured towards the dropped pieces of wood and made a picking up and swinging motion, “and go inside!” Sylver said, walking in place and pointing into the cave.

In comparison to these two, Tom was damn near regal. He had already gathered up the sword and daggers and was now just standing near Sylver looking around the place.

After they picked up their clubs, the fearless undead jogged inside the dark cave, followed behind by Sylver and Tom. The pale yellow stone made up the wall and ceiling, with dark brown dirt making up the flooring. The cave went on for a while, and at some point, the giant zombies’ long steps, overtook Sylver’s level 1 dexterity running speed, and they disappeared behind the corner. Even boosting his legs with the excess stamina, they were still far too short to match the long awkward strides of his minions.

[Vleborian Giant (Warrior) Defeated!]
[Due to defeating an enemy 40 levels above you, additional experience will be awarded!]

[Necromancer] has reached level 9!
+5AP

[Necromancer] has reached level 10!
+5AP

[Necromancer] has reached level 11!
+5AP

1 perk available for [Necromancer!]

By the time Sylver and Tom got to the end of the cave, they were greeted by one of the giants standing on top of a much, much, larger one, and holding a blood and brain covered club. The other giant zombie was off in the corner, in pieces, and splattered against the wall. Its torso was mostly intact, and it was slipping in its own blood, trying to get up without any legs or arms.

There was a certain dark humor in the image, that Sylver right now just wasn’t in the mood to laugh at. Giant’s were, by and large, pun intended, relatively peaceful creatures. Relatively. If they had enough wild animals to hunt, they didn’t bother with humans.

It’s the face, Nyx had told him on one of his first combat practices. They look human enough, that you get tricked into thinking of them as human. Just big ugly humans.

Luckily, the very first pack of giants Sylver had to hunt were using a chewed-up torso as a ball in a game. Which tore away any shred of empathy he might have had for them.

How lucky that this giant, didn’t know what a zombie was. They probably walked right up to him and bashed his head in. I almost feel bad for earning so much experience with so little effort.

Looking around there was no one else here. Save a largeish chest, sitting against the wall, behind the dead giant.

“Alright. Seems like this was your boss, or your elder, or something. Either way, great jobs guys. Thanks for the good work.” Sylver said, raising his hand up at the standing giant zombie, and making a gesture, causing it to topple to the floor. Gesturing at the other one, made the various body parts stop moving.

“Tom?” Sylver said, pointing at the chest. It only took one chest exploding in your face and nearly killing you, to learn to leave opening it to someone else.

Somewhat cautiously Tom walked over to the chest and opened it a little. After not getting stabbed, incinerated, or eaten, he flipped the top completely and gave Sylver the thumbs up.

Walking over to the chest, Sylver glanced inside and had to close his nose to stop himself from throwing up, and ran away from the chest.

“Take,” he dry heaved for a second, but thankfully nothing came out, “take anything valuable, and leave the rest alone. Look for identification tags if you can.” Sylver instructed.

It pissed him off to no end that something as simple as a dead and rotting mutilated corpse was doing this to him. But he still had pieces of Ciege’s body working against him, so this was all temporary. Unlike being in love with Yeva, this wasn’t an emotion he could force himself to ignore. But it wasn’t anywhere near as powerful as when he had killed Tom, so it was clearly wearing off.

After Tom was done digging out everything, and given the state and age of the bodies, he was actually digging at some point, Sylver was left with 2 pouches full of silver and copper coins, a golden ring, a silver ring with a white stone embedded in it, a bent longsword, that he made Tom throw away, and 4 iron identification tags. Other things included cheap, and heavily damaged leather armor, broken bottles that used to house potions, and some sort of giant wheel of cheese, wrapped tightly in cloth. Obviously, he left it in the chest full of carrion.

“John Stone, Brita Stone, Edward Erikson, Martha De’Liana.” Sylver read out loud. Despite the fact that Tom had cleaned these as best as he could, there were still pieces of… stuff, stuck between the carvings on the iron plates.

“I kind of see why Shera was so against me coming here. I’m not entirely sure what your religions were, but the most common one considers burning to be the best. I’m a strong believer in burning bodies too, so it’s a lucky thing everything works out so well. I would love to offer you to join me, but all four of your souls have moved on. Not to mention, finding your hearts and heads would be more trouble than it’s worth.” Sylver said to the chest. Around him, it was dead silent, with only Tom being around for company.

“I’ll be taking the coins as payment, for taking care of your corpses. I hope wherever it is you went to, that it’s warm and everything you hoped it would be.” Sylver said to the chest. Focusing his mana into his hand, he let a wild-looking red flame form.

The fire jumped out of his palm and towards the chest, and with a soft crackling noise, completely engulfed it. Unsurprisingly, the spell that he shouldn’t be able to use, didn’t get registered in the system. He even felt a fair bit of resistance when casting it. Once he got a little more mana under his belt, he would have to see what tier of magic he could use, outside of his class. It could just be level related. Or something else entirely.

While waiting for the fire to finish its work, he looked through his status, and what perks he had available.

Dead’s Delight.
Death’s Favor.
Song of the Fevering.
Sturdy Bones.
Wavering Flesh.
Kiss of Death.
Crimson Fever.

The list of perks continued for 3 more pages. And by the time Sylver was done looking through all of them, the chest was nothing more than ash and glowing coals.

All of these are worthless. Increase casting time by 30%, but increase spell power by 5%? What kind of bullshit is that? Almost all of these have a negative effect attached to them. I can see the purpose of this, in the sense of balancing things out, but why would I ever accept anything negative, if my magic is already at peak power and peak efficiency?

In the end, after narrowing it down to 3 perks, and bouncing his reasoning off Tom for a while, Sylver decided on Dead’s Dogma.

[Perk: Dead’s Dogma]
-Any creature under the caster’s command, will instinctively distinguish friend from foe and have at least a vague sense of what it should be doing.
*May not work on non-humanoid creatures.
*May not work on creatures who can’t distinguish creatures of a different race apart.

It’s not exactly a huge boost, but it’ll help out in the long run. Once I get a little more mana under my control, I’ll be able to raise things instantly. Speaking of which…

Total Level: 13
[Koschei-2]
[Necromancer-11]

CON: 11
DEX: 1
STR: 1
INT: 36
WIS: 21
AP: 40

Health: 144/110
Stamina: 51/55
MP: 497/360

Health Regen: 1.65/M
Stamina Regen: 0.825/M
MP Regen: 7.56/M

I’ll bump constitution up to 20 for the stamina increase. That leaves 31 points. So, 19 to intelligence and 12 into wisdom?

I really need to work on my dexterity and strength at some point. But more mana is the priority right now. I’ll have summons to make up for my lack of strength or speed.

CON: 20
DEX: 1
STR: 1
INT: 55
WIS: 33
AP: 0

Health: 200/200
Stamina: 98/100
MP: 441/550

Health Regen: 3/M
Stamina Regen: 1.5/M
MP Regen: 18.15/M

So now I only have to wait exactly half an hour for my mana to completely fill up. If I can get wisdom up to 1000, it’ll take only a single minute. I’d only have to be level 215 for that and invest every single point into wisdom. I’d be a walking powerhouse if I do that... Immortal army, and just blasting everything around me 24/7… A walking god… I’ll add that to the list of things to look up.

Walking up to the giant giant the zombies had killed, Sylver tapped his copper plate against it. It made a soft ‘ping’ sound and glowed green for a second. Tapping the other giants, he got more pings and green lights, until finally getting a red light on the smallest giant’s body. The magic in this cheap piece of metal was actually really impressive.

Back in Sylver’s time, he had to do this with quest papers, or some other tool to keep track. But now they are somehow able to mass produce this piece of magic tech.

The daggers were all relatively clean, minus a few chips from cutting bone, and Sylver gave all but one of them to Tom. He, in turn, carried only the rings, and the coin pouch.

*

It was midday by the time he had returned to Arda. The guards this time didn’t ask him any questions, and simply accepted his copper adventurer’s guild tag and ID card, and allowed him inside.

Walking through the city, it was a whole lot livelier. Since Tom was covered up, no one paid any attention to him, and Sylver had no issues getting to the adventurer’s guild.

Inside it was full of noise and activity. People shouted, laughed, spoke in hushed tones and a few sat around singing. Overall Sylver enjoyed the lively atmosphere. But decided that he wouldn’t be coming here during the day again if he could help it. Standing in line for almost half an hour solidified his stance on the matter.

Finally, he made it to the reception desk and was pleasantly surprised Shera was still working.

“Good. You haven’t left yet. I found someone willing to take you in. I know you said no holy attributes, but every other party I asked, denied you on the… on the fact that you’re a necromancer.” Shera said, looking down. “Even if it’s a rare class, there are still more people scared of it, then ones willing to take advantage of it.” Shera continued rummaging through the mountains of papers stacked on her desk.

“Hold off on the party for now. I’ll find someone myself. But how come you’re so comfortable with my being a necromancer in that case? I was under the impression necromancers were universally feared and hated.” Sylver asked, taking the giant clearing quest out of his pocket.

“Firstly, because I’m a professional. Secondly, because I have a skill that gives me a rough understanding of people. And thirdly, because I know what it’s like to be judged based on stupid stereotypes and false stories.” Shera said, touching one of her horns briefly.

“What does your skill say about me?” Sylver asked, unfolding the piece of paper onto the desk.

“I can’t tell you,” Shera said, turning ever so slightly red and sitting up to look at the glowing red badge on top of the quest paper. “You’re fucking joking.”

“5 giants, in total, one being an elder. I also found this while I was there.” Sylver said, taking the 4 iron tags out of his pocket and placing them onto the table one by one.

Shera took one look at the iron tags, before quickly taking them off the table and hiding them. She hid the tags in her closed hands and stood up and walked into the backroom.

She came out a moment later with a man Sylver hadn’t seen before, wearing a similar styled green uniform and a gold-plated name tag with no name. Without saying anything, he grabbed Sylver on the arm and led him upstairs to a small room. The walls, floor, and ceiling were covered in spell frameworks Sylver didn’t recognize. But they felt very powerful.

Inside was a very long and wide table, with chairs of various heights and widths standing around them. The man sat down on one end of the table and gestured for Sylver to sit on the other.

“Did you see their bodies?” The man asked. He had short blond hair, a little stubble around his mouth, and a long-jagged scar, down the side of his face. His voice was surprisingly soft, given how stern his face looked.

“They were in a chest full of body parts. I don’t know what they were like when they were alive, but going by the amount of flesh and bones in there, I’m assuming there were pieces missing. All four tags were inside the chest.” Sylver answered calmly. Despite the fact that the smell had made his body vomit and shake, Sylver himself was very used to the smell and look of heavily decayed bodies. It kind of came part and parcel with working with corpses. You don’t always get to use the best materials.

“Did you find anything else in there?” The man asked. Remembering the lie-detecting device from this morning, Sylver decided to be safe and be honest. And there was no real point lying over a few silver coins, and potentially getting in trouble.

“I found 2 pouches full of silver coins, a silver ring with a white stone, a gold ring, and a bent longsword I threw away,” Sylver said, taking the rings out of his pocket.

“Have you told anyone else about this?”

“I told Shera I found the tags while clearing the giant’s cave, I didn’t say I found any bodies. But other than her, I haven’t told anyone else.”

“What about the guy who was with you?”

“He’s not a guy. He’s a shade I created. He can’t talk or tell anyone anything.” Sylver said, crossing his arms over his chest.

The man picked up the silver ring and inspected it for a while. “I’m going to pay you 2 gold for this ring. And another 5 gold, for you to forget you ever found it or the bodies.” The man said, making the ring disappear in his hand.

“In that case, I accept. On the condition, you forget about me as well. I’m not here to start meddling in local politics, or whatever this is, and I would very much prefer if I never had to get involved with them.” Sylver responded. The man looked him in the eye for a few seconds, appraising him, like one would a sword they were considering buying.

“I can agree to that. The extra payment will be added to your reward. Are their bodies still there?”

“I burned them. I thought it would be better than leaving them to continue to rot or get eaten by something.”

“Good. Alright. Great. That’s fine then. That will be all. Thank you for your time, and obviously, this conversation never happened.” The man said.

After a few seconds of silence, Sylver got off the chair and left. Tom was waiting outside for him, and the two of them went downstairs to the reception desk.

Shera was in the middle of talking to another adventurer, arguing with him over how much the heavily damaged mandibles he brought are worth, and getting stuck in a circular argument. After almost ten minutes of both of them repeating the same exact thing, the man took the pile of silver coins and walked away with a huff.

“So that’s 4 gold coins for the level 30 giants, a total of 16, and 10 gold coins for the level 50 giant. Which brings the grand total to 33.” Shera said. She gave Sylver a look, to make sure he understood not to question her maths right now.

“I see,” Sylver said. “I’d like to withdraw the 10 gold coins for now in that case.”

Counting out 9 gold coins, and 100 silver ones, she expertly made them float into a pouch and handed them to Sylver.

“I’ll keep looking for a party for you to join,” Shera said, sounding strangely disappointed.

“Be sure to mention the necromancer part.”

Shera glared at Sylver for a few seconds. He in turn just looked at her with his completely black and lifeless eyes, with a smile on his face.

Walking out of the guild building, he made a mental checklist of what he would be needing to buy.

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