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A note from MelasD

It's the holidays! Got time to read some new stories? Ever heard of /r/redditserials? It's a subreddit hosting various web serials which you can read there! It isn't too big relative to RoyalRoad, but due to the niche of it, the quality of stories there are quite high if I have to say so myself. Here are some you should definitely check out:

This Quest is Bullshit! (Comedy, litrpg) Yep. You read that right. One of the best comedies on RoyalRoad by Nixia is also being crossposted on redditserials, so if that doesn't attest to the sub's quality, I don't know what will.

The Extramundane Emancipation of Geela, Evil Sorceress at Large (Comedy, fantasy). Speaking of comedies, here's a really good one by OpheliaCyanide you can find there! It's also available on RoyalRoad, and again, it's rather highly rated here. 

Sparks of Divinity (Isekai, Reincarnation) or The Library (Isekai, Fantasy) or anything by Inorai, really. She writes good stuff.

There are tons of other good stories there. Hallowed by Rosefae. A Fractured Song by Vren. Dragon's Scion or anything by Hydrael. Magpie Wizard by DB Fassbinder. Runes and Brews by Congra. And many more!

And of course, you can read Salvos on there too, if that tickles your fancy. 

Otherwise, take a look around the subreddit. All the stories there are high quality, except maybe mine!

 


16. Not Rocks

I wandered the forest as the colors in the sky changed; I was getting used to such a sight now. I had been fascinated by this day-night cycle at first, but now I realized how predictable it was. If there had been any variances between the amount of time it took for day or night to change— it was too minute for me to notice.

Also, I was rather preoccupied.

 

Defeated [Green Stag - Lvl. 24]!

Less experience is awarded for defeating an enemy with the help of others!

 

Subspecies [Zelus Imp] Level Up!

[Zelus Imp - Lvl. 20] -> [Zelus Imp - Lvl. 21]

Gained 5 Stat Points and 3 Skill Points!

 

I retracted my claw from the monster’s back, letting go of his horns as I limply rolled away from his corpse. I lay on the grassy floor, spreading my arms wide as I started my [Rest].

This wasn’t the first monster I had killed— if he was, I wouldn’t have leveled just from defeating him. No— there was an entire herd of them which tossed me around and charged me no matter what I did. Fire? Why would they be scared of that? They ran straight through it and rammed me no matter what I did.

They were relentless. So eventually, I resorted to jumping on their backs to make them hit each other. It worked out to my favor somehow; they were not apprehensive about killing their own at all to get to me. I gained less experience from doing that, but I managed to survive and even level.

I sat up, evaluating my Skills and Stats.

 

Stats:

[Available Stat Points: 5]

[Vitality]: 21

[Strength]: 16

[Endurance]: 26

[Wisdom]: 33

[Agility]: 48

Skills:

[Available Skill Points: 5]

[Basic Fire Creation] - Lvl. 11

[Double Step] - Lvl. 8

[Fire Strike] - Lvl. 10 (Maxed)

[Fire Blast] - Lvl. 7

[Passive - General Tool Proficiency] - Lvl. 3

[Unused Skill Slot] x2

 

I had thought about it for a while: distributing different Skill and Stat Points every single time became a hassle when it wasn’t absolutely necessary. So for my next few levels, all I would raise was [Endurance] by 2 Stat Points, [Wisdom] by 2 Stat Points, and [Agility] by 1 Stat Points. And as for my Skills, I would evenly split all 3 Skill Points I gained from leveling between [Basic Fire Creation], [Double Step], and [Fire Blast].

I would keep doing this until my Stat and Skill Points were needed elsewhere or for some other reason. For now, I did just that before resuming my leveling session. It wasn’t progressing as quickly as I hoped; I would have to defeat dozens of monsters around my level to even gain a single level. And if that was the only issue, I wouldn’t have cared as much, because the real problem wasn’t the danger but—

My head snapped to the side as I heard a crunch. I stared at the deer as she stepped over some twigs and fallen tree branches, breaking them with her hooves. I felt my lips drawing to a frown.

The real problem is that there’s no monsters!

When I had been in the Netherworld, wild Demons were all over the place. Wherever I went, I would eventually encounter a wild Demon or a group of them. Even when I was searching for wild Demons in the Demon King’s Doman— they were far more rare there, but still more plentiful than the monsters here.

I narrowed my eyes as I watched the deer— or [Deer]— hop over some rocks and into a thicket. Maybe I could gain experience from… But no. She had no levels, which I found to be incredibly odd. She was almost like a rock: no levels or interest to gain levels. I wondered why that was— maybe animals are just moving rocks. I paused, then looked at a tree to my left. Are trees like rocks too?

I walked up the tree, carefully inspecting it for a moment, until I felt a light drip of cold liquid fall on my back. I glanced around trying to find the source of what I thought was blood. Then I blinked as something splashed on my face, before placing a clawed finger to wipe the clear liquid away. This is… water?

Suddenly there was more water falling down on me. At first, it was only a few drops, but it quickly doubled and tripled as the sky darkened above my head, shadowed over by clouds. It was raining— water was falling at me like the wind!

At first, I tried to get closer to the source of this, curious at how water was just coming from nowhere. Then I started to find the light tapping feeling all over my body annoying, trying to find a way to get out of it. And finally, I got used to it.

I trudged through the muddying ground of the forest, searching for more monsters to fight. It was strange— once the rain started, it was almost like the forest became a different place. I didn’t see the same animals I did scurrying about when there had been no water, nor did I see the fluttering birds or skittering insects on the sky or earth before the rain had fallen.

I watched a rabbit hastily hop its way through some bushes, dancing around rocks and navigating around trees before he dove into a hole on the ground. Is he trying to get away from the rain? I decided to follow him and tried to stick my head into the hole.

I failed.

So instead, I decided to find holes that were large enough to fit me to shelter me from this rain. I did not think the rain was dangerous— I had been under it for quite a while and took no damage. But I thought that if everything in the forest was trying to hide from the rain, then monsters might have been doing the same too.

I found a cave shortly after as the downpour began to worsen; I entered the dank, dark environment and created a ball of fire to see as I called out.

“Hello? Is anyone there? If you’re Human, can you tell me where the Netherworld is? And if you're a monster, can you fight me please?”

I cast the fire light along the cavern wall, revealing a lichen stained surface that stretched out to the end of the cave; I could still hear the muffled patter of rain behind me as I saw all there was to see.

“Huh.”

It was completely empty— not only was the cave shallow, but it was devoid of any kind of animal or life beyond the moss growing on the walls. The only thing that stood out in here were the glistening gray rocks that lay lifeless, haphazardly scattered around me. I turned around to leave when I heard a single drop of water fall behind me.

I glanced back, cocking my head.

“Did… did the rocks just move?”

I doubled back into the cave, confused at what I had just seen. Rocks couldn’t move— not unless someone else picked them up and moved them. But I was fairly certain that rock over there had not been there just earlier. If these rocks could move— if something really made them different— I wanted to know. So I used [Identification] on them.

[Golem - Lvl. 25]

“Golem…? No— a monster.”

I jumped back as the pile of rocks suddenly shifted. It picked itself up and swung at me. I stared at the four limbed creature as it stood now— its two arms long enough to reach down its sides, halfway past its legs. It turned a single, glowing eye to me.

“You’re a monster, right?”

I asked one last time, just to make sure I was right; I had thought it was a rock, after all. But it didn’t really matter to me. If you were a monster, a Human, an animal, or even a rock— as long as you attacked me, I would attack you back!

The [Golem] brought its large arms over me. I rushed forward, dodging past the attack and slashed at its face. [Fire Strike]! My claws were wrapped in fire as it drew close to it and—

I stumbled back and grasped my claw in pain. That hurt! I stared up at the light scratch on the [Golem]’s face.

“Wait, are you actually a rock?”

It didn’t respond, choosing to simply swing once again at me. I ducked under the swing, this time creating a fire dagger and slashed at its body. The weapon bounced off, leaving a mark where it struck but doing no apparent damage to it.

I frowned as I backed up. I’m not hurting it. I sent a [Fire Blast] at the [Golem], knocking it away as it tried to charge me. The force from the magical attack sent it stumbling, yet it was still unhurt. Maybe if I try create a sharper dagger—

My thoughts were interrupted as I caught a glimpse of another rocky hand swinging at me. I went under the attack, spinning around with a kick that swept the second [Golem] of its feet. I held my fire dagger up and paused.

[Golem - Lvl. 21]

[Golem - Lvl. 26]

[Golem - Lvl. 18]

[Golem - Lvl. 25]

...

“Huh. There’s a lot of you.”

[Golems] surrounded me in all directions, coming from the end of the cave as well as barring the cave exit. I threw the fire dagger at one of the [Golems] and watched it leave nothing more than a small crack on its stone body. They outnumbered me. They were strong— unable to be damaged. And they lumbered forward, encroaching on me slowly.

Slowly, I thought, grinning. They were moving slowly, so even if I wasn’t able to hurt them, they weren’t able to hurt me either. So all I had to do was figure out how I was going to be able to defeat them before I tired out.

I threw fire spikes at the [Golems] as they came. I dodged their attacks and sent [Fire Blasts] their way. I made them hit each other, breaking themselves down so I could finish them off later.

I observed how their limbs would break first, discerning that the stone at the joints were thin to allow for better movement. So I targeted those. I tore their arms off with my claws; I kicked at them knees with [Fire Strike]. I made them fall and I made them break as my stamina drained.

 

Defeated [Stone Golem - Lvl. 19]!

Less experience is awarded for defeating an enemy with the help of others!

 

 

Defeated [Stone Golem - Lvl. 22]!

Experience is awarded for defeating an enemy!

 

Subspecies [Zelus Imp] Level Up!

[Zelus Imp - Lvl. 21] -> [Zelus Imp - Lvl. 22]

Gained 5 Stat Points and 3 Skill Points!

 

I tried striking at a [Golem]’s shoulder with a dagger. It took multiple hits, but eventually I shattered the joint. But that was too inefficient. So instead, I created a hard ball of fire and struck at them with that.

I lowered the fire ball I had created, instead picking up a broken limb from one of the [Golems]. I waved it at the [Golem] nearest to me, taunting it.

“This... this is a much better weapon than I can create right now.”

I swung at the [Golem] hard. Rock smashed against rock and rock broke apart. I picked up more rocks and continued swinging rocks at more rocks. More rocks fell and more rocks broke. And I had more rocks to swing and to throw.

 

Defeated [Stone Golem - Lvl. 26]!

Experience is awarded for defeating an enemy!

 

...

 

Defeated [Stone Golem - Lvl. 15]!

Experience is awarded for defeating an enemy!

 

Subspecies [Zelus Imp] Level Up!

[Zelus Imp - Lvl. 22] -> [Zelus Imp - Lvl. 23]

Gained 5 Stat Points and 3 Skill Points!

 

I glanced out the cave, noting that the rain had finally stopped, after I finished off the last of the [Golems]. They now lay dead, scattered haphazardly around me. I threw aside my impromptu weapon, seeing that it was nothing more than a crumbling piece of stone now, and sat on the rubble.

I had barely taken damage the entire fight— I was both tired physically and magically, but relatively unharmed. But I still needed [Rest]. It did not just heal my health, but it increased the regeneration of my mana and stamina too.

It was not long after the General Skill began to take effect and I had already distributed my Skill and Stat Points when I saw a shadow coming in from the cave exit. It stopped right at the front of the cave, looking over the dead [Golems] for a moment.

“I thought I heard some loud noises coming from in here—”

The figure suddenly stopped, turning to me with a wary look. He hurriedly drew a sword on his side and pointed it at me.

“Demon!”

I stood up, suddenly on guard as I used [Identification] on him.

[??? - Lvl. ???]

...uh oh.

 

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A note from MelasD

Here's an experiment I want to try over my two weeks of break. There's no guarantee, so I won't change my schedule in my synopsis, however I will try to post a chapter 5 days a week for the next two weeks before my Classes resumes. I can't promise I'll stick to this schedule, but I'd like to test myself and see if it's possible. 

As always, you can read up to 12 chapters ahead on my patreon here.


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MelasD

Bio: For business enquiries contact me on via PMs.

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