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Ch127-Win Some Lose Some

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Sylver took a very long and very deep breath, as wave upon wave of mana forced itself through Sylver’s meager mana channels and tore them apart, before instantly being replaced with bigger, wider, and tougher mana channels.

But as with all things that the system did, the integration was perfect. Sylver felt absolutely fine the moment the expansion was over, he could have stood up from the floor and been on his merry way, in complete and total control of his “new” mana channels.

Even Sylver’s recently attached arm felt more foreign to him than his mana channels did.

If you chose to ignore the method through which Sylver had been given this massive boost, which he was currently trying very hard to do, he would have been overjoyed at his power-up.

His mana was nearing 10,000 and he regenerated nearly a third of it in a single minute.

Not to mention all his newly added traits.

[Trait: Arcane Growth]
-For every level gained, INT and WIS will increase by 1.
-50% experience increase for [Mage] related skills.
-5% of any experience gained will be taken.

[Trait: Advanced Water Manipulation]
-Manipulate water.
-The caster will be able to sense any water within 50 meters.
*Degree of manipulation dependent on proximity, mass, skill and knowledge of the user.

[Trait: Advanced Earth Manipulation]
-Manipulate earth.
-The caster will be able to sense any earth within 50 meters.
*Degree of manipulation dependent on proximity, mass, skill and knowledge of the user.

[Trait: Poison Immunity]
-The user is immune to poisons ranked A or lower.

[Trait: Chloromancy]
-User is able to cultivate and manipulate plant matter.
-User is able to cast 1st tier Chloromancy spells.

And the perk that had replaced [Reaper’s Reward].

[Perk: Genocider’s Gift]
-Increase MP by 250%.
-Increase MP Regeneration by 100%.

The name’s a little too on the nose, but apparently, that’s what the Silver Lich is known for.

Not for saving Carenso, not for destroying the cursed spring, not for defeating Gersey the Giant, not for being the mentor of Noir, according to those fucks all I’m good for is being the source of one of Eira’s greatest tragedies.

Sylver took another deep breath, and very slowly and gradually stood up from the floor and brushed himself off.

“Are you alright?” Spring whispered into Sylver’s ear.

“I’m fine, but I don’t want to talk about it,” Sylver tapped out the reply against his leg as he closed his eyes and concentrated on his mouth and throat.

With the heart he ate he had enough materials in his system to fix his vocal cords and grow himself a new tongue.

Except Sylver realized straight away he was far too angry to concentrate enough to work on something this fragile. In his current state, he didn’t trust himself not to fuck it up.

Sylver had been insulted and disrespected in a way he couldn’t help but take personally.

Granted, the Mage changed his tune the moment he learned who Sylver was, but still…

They treated me like I was a child.

“You are but on the first step of discovering the truth,” I have a good third of Eira’s forbidden knowledge in my head, first step of the truth my fucking ass…

Why did they undress me before bringing me in?

Was it to disarm me, or is there a limit to what they can bring over to their realm?

If it was to disarm, that means they have at least a tiny amount of fear of me bringing something with me… And if there’s a limit to what they can bring, could I force them into using too much power and kill them while they’re weakened?

Sylver calmed down a tiny amount as he sorted through all the information he had gained about those…

Not gods.

Or at least Sylver didn’t think they were gods…

They could be agents of a god?

The fact that the Mage thought he needed to put me in my place, implies I’m not the only person they’ve talked to or dealt with…

They took my form or my potential forms…

If I carve an anti-magic sigil into my skull, would all three of them have it as well?

If their forms are made from using past information, it might work.

But if they’re using some sort of divination to look into my future, I’d just show up even more handicapped, while they would all have forms that had removed the sigil.

Sylver took another deep and long breath and tried to find his calmness and smother the burning rage inside of him.

The calmness melted on his bonfire of anger like a marshmallow, and the fact that Sylver had to calm himself, infuriated and enraged him even further.

With a tap of the foot, Sylver stored away all three bodies into his [Bound Bones] storage and had his robe very gently wrap itself around the guns and had them floating near his back and out of the way.

Since they used lead, even if Sylver removed the bullets, there were still enough specks and lead scratches in the barrel that Sylver couldn’t store the gun in his [Bound Bones].

He’d lost his bag of supplies at some point, although Sylver couldn’t even remember when or where he forgot about it. It didn’t really matter given that he had food in his bones and didn’t need much else.

On the bright side, if it can be called that, the system isn’t just a thing that exists. The Mage manipulated my skills like it was nothing.

Or it could be they are to the system, what I am to mana.

In the same way a martial artist can use Ki, or a mage can use mana, those three can use the energy of the system to manipulate it?

It would certainly explain why I could tell they’re powerful, but couldn’t understand how or why. And how they have a say in what happens to me when I reached level 100…

The “system” is some kind of new energy that those three gave form to?

If that’s the case, what can I do about it?

My mana comes from their power; I would need to find a way to reset everything I have right now to rebuild all my mana channels without their help.

But even if I somehow manage to do that, then what?

That would take centuries, and that’s without anything or anyone getting in the way.

Even if I do kill them, that wouldn’t bring anyone from the Ibis back.

Sylver took a very long and very deep breath and got his priorities in order.

On a purely rational level, where Sylver’s anger at being disrespected wasn’t part of the consideration, these system gods weren’t important.

They knew about him, but there wasn’t a single moment where they sounded like they had anything to do with the Ibis being destroyed. They could have just pretended not to know to throw Sylver off…

But even if they were directly responsible, finding Edmund and the others still came first.

Revenge was important, and if there is revenge to be had, Sylver would have it.

But right now, at this very moment in time, Sylver’s number one priority was Edmund.

It did occur to Sylver that these system gods could be influencing him to not think or worry about them, but it wasn’t like he was wrong in his thinking.

There was nothing to be done about them, not yet, and not now, at least.

Sylver unclenched his jaw, relaxed his shoulders, and released his white-knuckled fists.

Sylver looked around the empty room and crouched down to touch the pool of blood that had spread out all over the floor. Sylver touched it with the tip of his finger and watched as the blood quickly turned a sickly black-green color as if Sylver had thrown tea leaves into a boiling pot.

[Necrotic Mutilation] felt a lot different from [Coat Of Carrion] even if the way Sylver controlled it was the same. It was faster, tighter, and where [Coat Of Carrion] had a sort of blunt “weight” behind its movements, [Necrotic Mutilation] felt light and sharp.

Like a dagger compared to a sword.

Sylver extended his hand out towards the dark green liquid, and it flung itself towards his hand and formed a gauntlet around it.

[Coat Of Carrion] always had a heft to it, for lack of a better word, but this [Necrotic Mutilation] gauntlet was so thin and flexible it felt closer to a glove than a gauntlet. And yet despite that, Sylver could tell this would handle a lot more than even the thickest [Coat Of Carrion] armor could.

Not to mention the claws it produced… They weren’t quite as long as the ones [Coat Of Carrion] had, but they just felt so much stronger and sharper.

Sylver continued playing around with the liquid gore as he walked through the corridor his copy had disappeared into. He walked alone through the empty passage, while he discovered what exactly was so different about [Necrotic Mutilation] that it deserved its own skill.

And the answer was that [Necrotic Mutilation] was alive.

Not “alive” alive, but it moved on its own without Sylver’s input. Not to the extent that it would be able to kill something without him directing it, but to put it simply, the whole thing was essentially a liquefied zombie.

If Sylver told it to get on the ceiling and slash anything that tried to walk beneath it, it did just that.

But the same way instantly raised soulless zombies could only follow very simple commands, so could the [Necrotic Mutilation]. Sylver could control it directly when he was touching it, but any further than that and it would simply continue doing the last thing he told it to do.

In regards to [Advanced Water Manipulation] and [Advanced Earth Manipulation], the traits did exactly what the name implied. Sylver didn’t have a whole lot of earth around, but he condensed some water for himself to test with easily enough.

Sadly, the 50-meter sensing range didn’t apply to Sylver’s ability to manipulate the small sphere of water. Past 20 meters anything that fell into Sylver’s definition of “precise” was out. There was a delay between him enacting his will on the liquid, and the sphere changing shape or floating where he directed it.

He doubted anyone would be quick enough to notice the delay, but Sylver would need time to get used to manipulating water like this.

Not to mention he struggled to heat or freeze water once it was outside his 50-meter range. He could make icicles float around easily enough, but shattering them took a considerable amount of effort, down to the point Sylver was actively sweating from his attempt to make a few bits of snow form into a snowball 100 meters away from him.

Proximity seemed to make things exponentially easier. Which was the norm for this kind of elemental magic, but at least now Sylver wouldn’t have to go through the process of casting a spell to move water around and dig through dirt.

Now it was a simple conversion of mana directly into water moving, or turning into ice.

[Chloromancy] was a bit of an odd one.

Sylver knew intuitively he needed a piece of plant matter to do anything with it, and luckily for him, he had a can of some sort of fruit in his storage.

Using the floating water Sylver found that he could force the seed to grow into a sapling, but the plant grew far too slowly. Sylver attempted to force moss, lichen, even mushrooms to grow, but apparently, the magic required something to grow from. And unlike the musty upstairs corridors, the corridors down here were dry and squeaky clean.

Although there was a chance this was simply the fact that Sylver was a pure dark, getting in the trait’s way.

Regardless of what the reason was, this was something Sylver would work on at a later date when he had some dirt under his feet and wasn’t trapped in a giant metal box.

With little else to do, Sylver walked through the maze-like corridor and condensed more and more water for himself to use.

He considered looking through the 2 perks he had from when he reached level 100 in [Necromancer], but Sylver wasn’t in the right state of mind to make a good choice right now. And he wanted to wait until the dungeon was over, in case he might earn more perks that were better than what he would have now.

The same went for assigning his attribute points, which he had 55 of.

CON: 125
DEX: 100
STR: 41
INT: 226
WIS: 161
AP: 55

If the way Sylver felt his very recently healed leg strain under his weight and movement, he needed to get his strength to 100 before doing anything else.

A lot calmer than he had been a few minutes ago, Sylver pressed both of his right hands up against his throat and concentrated on it as he walked. The vocal cords had grown on their own a fair amount, Sylver didn’t need to do a whole lot to make them whole again.

As for his tongue…

The various taste buds growing back created such an intense concoction of flavors after nearly a month of nearly nothing that Sylver threw up on the spot and had to waste most of the water he had accumulated washing the bile out of his mouth.

“My tham is Thod. I tham a-” Sylver shut his mouth as he could both feel and hear Spring giggling to himself in his shadow.

“Thith ith harther than ith lookths,” Sylver said, which only caused Spring to giggle even harder.

*

*

*

“She sells seashells down by the sea thor… She sells seashells down by the sea thor… She sells seashells down by the-”

Sylver jumped as the door on his left opened up, while a wall appeared out of nowhere in front of him. The room turned out to be another hallway, which Sylver entered and continued walking through.

Just like last time, Sylver was led into a relatively large room and had the door shut itself behind him the moment he stepped into it.

So as not to embarrass himself, Sylver kept his mouth shut and spoke only through [Mirage].

“I’m going to guess you’re not here to negotiate and talk things out?” Sylver asked.

[Solid Sam (Warrior+Warrior+Shatterer) – 186]
[HP-17,770]
[MP-N/A]

“Before we start, quick question. Are the three men who came with me still alive?” Sylver asked, as he leaned his head to the side and cracked his neck.

The creature had the body of a very fat humanoid. Unlike the previous variants Sylver had seen, this one appeared, as the name implied, solid. From the way, there were barely any worms visible in the few pieces of skin that Sylver could make out, to the way it just had a presence that the previous monsters Sylver had seen hadn’t.

From underneath a hanging belly-like thing, two wide and stubby legs poked out. Its chest on the other hand was so extended and rippling with muscles, it almost made it look like it had breasts. The reason for the huge pectoral muscles was very likely the two giant arms hanging on either side of it.

If there were fingers somewhere in that giant pile of scab and twitching muscle, Sylver couldn’t make them out. Rock-like growths with sharp spike-like edges were wrapped around the end of the creature’s arms, giving it the appearance of having a giant flat mace in place of hands.

An odd crackling sound came from the creature before a tooth-filled mouth appeared on top of its bald head and roared with an annoying low pitch.

“I’m going to choose to take that as a yes,” Sylver said, as the creature slammed both of its fists on the ground, and somehow made them bounce off the hard metal, and made itself fly through the air, dragging the rest of its body behind the two fists.

Sylver leaped into the air, towards the creature, and using his robe to stabilize him, landed on the left fist, flicked a bomb towards its face, and jumped back into the air, and landed on the ceiling, upside down.

Sylver brushed invisible dust off his shimmering robe, as he heard the explosion caused by Lola’s bomb.

He turned around to look at the creature, to see into how many pieces it had divided itself…

Except it looked absolutely fine. There wasn’t even any soot on it.

[Solid Sam (Warrior+Warrior+Shatterer) – 186]
[HP-17,750]
[MP-N/A]

Sylver stared at the creature, and it stared back at him.

One down below with two giant fists that would crush Sylver if it managed to hit him, and the other up high on the ceiling with apparently not enough damage to seriously hurt it.

[Solid Sam (Warrior+Warrior+Shatterer) – 186]
[HP-17,770]
[MP-N/A]

Sylver looked around for a door or something to get out of here, but apparently, the dungeon had decided that locking him in here with this thing would be enough to kill him.

The creature once again smashed both of its fists on the floor and used the resulting bounce to throw itself into the air. It was fast, very fast, but the weight difference between Sylver’s seemingly malnourished and muscle-bound 100 something kilos, couldn’t be compared to the monster’s 4 or 5 tons of solid rock-like growths.

Sylver practically walked out of the creature’s way and watched it land back down on the floor.

“This can’t be it,” Sylver shouted at the creature, as it took the stance it had taken the last 2 times when it “jumped” into the air.

“There’s a trick somewhere isn’t there. Unless you plan to bore me to death, in which case-”

The creature missed Sylver by several meters and landed on the floor again. Except this time, giant spikes poked out of its fists, and when it landed and the fists hit the ground, the spikes exploded out of the fists and very nearly impaled Sylver through the stomach.

“That’s a little better, but you’ll need much more…” Sylver stopped talking as he looked at the spikes and saw that they were melting.

More than that, the melted liquid was spreading out from the spikes and was covering more and more of the ceiling.

“Alright, I see your game, but I raise you this!” Sylver said with a careful triumph, as he raised his hand towards the spike and the spreading goop, and used [Draining Blight] on it.

And although Sylver could see the goop spreading out and moving, and he could see the worms sticking their heads out of the hole-filled spike, according to his magic, there wasn’t anything there. Sylver, and by extension his skill, wasn’t working on the worms or the goop.

“Fair play, but how about a little bit of fire?” Sylver asked, as he snapped his fingers and produced a small ball of fire in his open hand. He flicked it towards the spike nearest to him, and the goop, and to Sylver’s surprise…

Nothing.

It was [Draining Blight] proof and fireproof.

Sylver was so distracted by the spike that was slowly reducing the amount of ceiling he had to work with, that it was only Spring’s warning that gave him enough time to jump out of the way of the creature’s fists.

As it landed on the floor, it once again shot spikes up towards the ceiling. It missed Sylver, but as with the prior ones, the spikes started to spread outwards.

“I’ll give you a chance to peacefully surrender before I get serious,” Sylver offered.

This was more intuition-based, but the way the creature raised its fist towards him felt like the equivalent of a middle finger.

Sylver turned at the sound of a door being opened and watched as 6 black-robed individuals ran into the room.

[??? (Mage+Mage) – 104]
[HP-N/A]
[MP-N/A]

“More spare parts! Fantastic! I’ll be with you gents in a minute,” Sylver called out to his copies.

He briefly wondered what the fuck his robe was doing as it pushed him off the ceiling and down towards the floor. Sylver’s best guess was that it was so the barely visible blade attack didn’t slice him into two halves. He saw the wall he had been standing nearby light up from the sparks the creature’s attacks had created.

[Solid Sam (Rogue+Rogue+Slicer) – 161]
[HP-6,951]
[MP-N/A]

Still midair, Sylver’s robe turned him around and shoved him towards the wall.

He was grateful for his shitty aim as his 6 copies started firing on him with their guns, and were almost comically off-target. Even then, Sylver still had to scurry down towards the floor like a cockroach to avoid the bullets, just in case one of them got lucky.

He placed himself behind the armored creature so that it was between him and his gun-wielding copies, but his position of safety was very short-lived, as the fast one from the ceiling lunged down at him, and only his robe’s quick reaction saved him from losing his left foot again.

The creature was very similar to the one with the fist and armor, save for the fact that its armor looked significantly lighter and closer to scales than the crab-like plates the fat one wore. Its left arm was tiny and had a few blunted claws, while the right arm was a massive blade, curved, and bendy, and locked in place and ready to fire at a moment’s notice.

It had something close to a sleek dog’s body, but with more muscles in the upper half, while the legs looked like they should belong to a frog from how strong and tense they appeared to be.

“You’re outmatched and outnumbered!” one of Sylver’s copies shouted.

Sylver backflipped away from the one with the giant blade and attached himself to the wall for a moment.

“Outmatched?” Sylver asked, as he jumped upwards and avoided another attack that scored the wall. “I doubt it,” Sylver shouted as the creature with the fist missed him and landed on the other side of the room, and sent more spikes up into the ceiling.

He used [Mirage] to make copies of himself and had them jump in various directions to take some of the bullets for him.

Sylver landed on the ceiling and watched the creature wielding the giant blade in place of an arm crawl after him.

Ulvic fell out of Sylver’s shadow and with an ear-piercing snarl hurled his brightly glowing fanged mouth at the bladed creature. Sylver’s copies started shouting and screaming as the various shades came out of their shadows and started stabbing and slicing them to pieces.

“Outnumbered?” Sylver asked, as he left Spring and Fen to deal with the bladed creature, and jumped towards the armored one, “definitely not.”

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KingKennit

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