「May luck be with you.」
Are you kidding me?! What do you mean may luck be with me?! I'm a damned RAT!
[The Materialization and Synchronization Process has reached 100%]
「You will now be reborn.」
My consciousness started to wane as the system finished its sentence. My soul was now being transferred into the body of a rat. A RAT!
Damn you, God of Chances... I uttered my last thought as everything went numb.
GASP! I inhaled deeply, breathing in the air as my body came to being. It felt as if I held my breath underwater for a long time and gasped for dear life. My body actually feels like it's wet right now—what a coincidence. Wait a minute...
I could hear the sound of rushing water beside me, I glanced to where the sound was coming from, and I spotted a river that contained a dark-colored substance instead of water, with random junk being swept by its current. I could see a trail of wet ground that led to where I was currently lying down. Seriously?! I wasn't even awake yet, and I almost drowned?!
I observed my surroundings, and I noticed something blocking a portion of my view as I looked down.
A snout... I tried to grab it with my hands, and I started to fall forward, and the realization hit me again. I looked down and observed my hands; instead of having five fingers, I had four instead, and each was armed with tiny claws. The claws were glimmering a crimson hue, and a weird rose-like smell emanated from it. What a bizarre feature...
I stood on my hind legs and continued to observe my new body. I had a thick coat of fur that covered my entire body. It was colored grey with some weird faded red markings around the sides of my body. The fur around my neck area was a bit thicker than the rest of my body, and It was a lighter shade of grey with darker hints at the edges.
I have a mane...that's...so...cool...wait, No, I'm still a rat what's so cool about that? I sighed.
The fur around my belly was another shade of grey, very close to white. I looked behind me, and there it was; it would be weird if I didn't have a tail. I went on all fours and measured my tail by moving it to the side of my body, and it was about the same length as me. At the tip of my tail was something sharp, a spike? It had the same color as my claws, and it was longer in comparison. How peculiar...
Huh? Who's that?
Other than the flowing ambiance emanating from the dark river, It was eerily quiet. I scanned my surroundings. I found the rushing river a few meters to my left, and to my right was a... massive...wall...
I stare at it in awe. Its sheer size was captivating. I stood on my hind legs and looked straight up. That's when I noticed I couldn't see clearly more than a few meters away from me. Anything further, I could only recognize shape and color.
My mind was used to seeing the world in the eyes of a human, and I was having a hard time adjusting to this new body. This is going to pose a big problem. I sighed
Was the sound coming from me all this time? The sudden realization of being a rat hit me again. How cruel! The God of Chances! Have you no pity?! How the hell am I supposed to live as a rat!
Squeak! Squeak! Squeak! Squeaaaaaaaaaaaak! I cursed at the God who put me in this situation. Hearing myself squealing and not uttering words confuses me, even though I understand what I'm squeaking about. Sigh...
What the hell am I supposed to do now? How would a former human know how to live as a damned rat. I have no idea what rats even eat except garbage!
I would throw my hands in the air in frustration right now, but I am physically incapable of doing so. Sigh...
I sat unnaturally for a rat for a few minutes, contemplating what I should do and internally whining why I even had the luck to roll a rat as my second life. I sighed in defeat and accepted that I'd be a rat from now on. I stood back on all fours.
Alright! I pumped myself up. I was always fond of going on adventures anyway. To experience is to learn! I motivated myself.
First, let's properly assess the area. Wall to my right, water to my left. Now, what's in front of me and what's found behind me. The discovery of new things excited and scared me simultaneously; it was a thrilling sensation.
Forward! I urged myself. My poor vision made it hard for me to look at things from a distance. I needed to get close to get a proper assessment. Even with my blurry eyesight, I could still recognize the shape of things from a distance. Sadly there wasn't anything that big for my eye to catch in front of me.
I kept on walking and walking, and the same scenery kept greeting and greeting me. Massive wall to the right, the same flowing water to the left, and an endless empty ground path in front of me.
A low growl emanated from my stomach. Hunger.
There was nothing around me that I was able to eat, unless? A very dumb thought occurred to me. I shook my head in disagreement with myself. Drinking from the river might probably kill me. But, I almost drowned from it? I'm pretty sure I did drank some of it before I was conscious. I pondered but ended up not test drinking the water.
Calm down, will you?! There's nothing but dirt, rocks, and weird flowing river juice here! Although the dirt is looking pretty appetizing right now, not going to lie. My instincts are telling me specifically to chow down on this patch of dirt right here. I shook my head. I must be delusional, right? The impact of being starved is worse when you're a rat. I might go crazy!
I couldn't resist the urge. With hunger and instinct fueling me, I confidently shoved my face on the ground and bit a mouthful of dirt off of it. I started chewing, and I instantly regret my decision. The dirt tasted like grounded-up wet sand that would spread in your mouth; it had a salty taste which did not make it more appetizing. I quickly spat it out of my mouth and stuck my tongue out in disgust.
Why the hell did I do that? I questioned my stupidity. I really am delusional! Why would my instincts tell me to eat dirt, if I wasn't?!
My stomach started aching. I was so focused on exploring; I forgot the first thing I should be looking for was food. One couldn't go on an adventure with an empty stomach. I looked down at the spit-covered dirt I spat on the ground, and beside it was the hole that my bite left on the floor. Hmmm? What's this?
A tip of a root protruded from the shallow hole that my bite caused. Roots are usually edible, right? I'm a rat, and I should be able to eat that, right? I was too hungry to think straight. I started digging with my claws, and the root became more and more prominent.
The root was reasonably thick, and I exposed enough for two bites. I quickly bit at the tip. I couldn't wait anymore. The hunger was making me more impatient, and as I laid my eyes on the root, the craving to eat intensified. It was like I instinctually knew this was food for me.
I knew it! I wasn't delusional! Just dumb!
I chewed on the root, and unlike dirt, it had a somehow sweet flavor that was a bit starchy in texture. The fluids inside the root spread inside my mouth with each bite, adding a slightly sour taste to it. Energy started to well up within my body. I didn't notice I was this tired already.
「Food Source Identified: Agrixidar Roots」
「You have consumed a new food source. Basic Profile Acquired」
A mechanical voice rang inside my head as I swallowed the root. I stopped chewing to read the floating dialogue that magically appeared in front of me. Basic Profile...?
「Opening Agrixidar Roots' Basic Profile...」
「Agrixidar Roots: A magical herb commonly found in dungeons, they are feasted upon by weak monsters. Extremely toxic to humans due to concentrated amounts of magicules.]
「Consume 599 more to gain the Intermediate Profile.」
I stared at the floating bunch of texts in front of me for a moment. I now understood why I instinctively knew the root was a food source for me. Guess I'm considered as a weak 'monster,' how insulting. Why can't I just be labeled an average rat and live a peaceful life eating cheese? I sighed.
I continued to munch on the remaining root as I organized what I would do from now on.
Let's be smart, I say to myself, remembering myself attempting to swallow dirt a few minutes ago. Food is the top priority, and I probably dug these roots up by pure coincidence. There was still a sinking feeling present in my stomach, albeit not as much as before. The roots I found weren't enough to fully sate my hunger.
The current situation I am in right now is a predicament. I was reborn, tired, and wet because I almost drowned before I even became aware for some unknown reason. I was also hungry and noticed it too late. I am currently lost without knowledge of anything in this world, and I only have the system to help me, which I'm not even sure how it works.
I should keep moving if the system considered me as a monster, a weak one even. Then that would mean I'm currently at the bottom of the food chain. I am not safe from the dangers of this world, but I must brave onwards. With steeled resolve, I decided to keep moving forward. The scenery is bound to change at some point.
The ground's so close. I think inwardly as my mind wandered astray, being a rat walking on all fours doesn't seem that bad. I get to see things from a new perspective, literally.
Huh? I felt something get crushed under my left hind leg. I quickly lifted my leg up and rotated my body to see what it was.
A semi-curved, elongated, and slender stick-like object that was partially buried in the ground was snapped in half as I stepped on it unknowingly. I didn't notice it due to its color. It was the same brown dirt-like hue as the ground. I'm assuming it's a piece of wood? Finally! It meant that a tree was probably near. I was close to arriving somewhere different from where I was!
I further observed the object to better analyze what it was because of my damned eyesight. It's hard to see proper detail without getting very close.
「Organic Material Found. Analyzing...」
Huh? so you had this function? If my guess is correct, this should be some type of wood from this world. It has a barky texture from what I can feel.
Sharp, I thought inwardly. My claws accidentally scraped the stick, and the rosy aroma that emanated from my claws filled the air. The part where I scraped it was starting to partially melt and fizzle while drops of crimson liquid started oozing out of the scrape. Well, it couldn't even be called a scrape now. I'd consider it a shallow hole. Sheesh.
「Analyzation Complete. Showing Results...」
「Analysis shows that [Unknown Bone Fragment] was removed from its owner two hours, three minutes, and thirty-four seconds ago. It is too damaged to extract accurate information about which species it came from. Gain access to more for a full report.」
So it was a bone, not a stick, and two hours ago? It was very recent. My entire body tensed up. This discovery meant that whatever this bone came from is nearby.
「Would you like to know the possibilities?」
I nodded my head as the dialogue appeared in front of me.
「There are three species that the [Unknown Bone Fragment] might belong to.」
「• Unknown Species.
-Profile not found.
-Location: Noxilum Tenebraea (First Strata)
-Authority: Tenth Sequence」
「• Unknown Species.
-Profile not found.
-Location: Noxilum Tenebraea (Second Strata)
-Authority: Seventh Sequence」
「• Unknown Species.
-Profile not found.
-Location: Great Aeloreum Empire
-Authority: Third Sequence」
Well, that certainly helped a lot, I sighed. I expected the system to show me what it would look like, but I got useless information instead. The location is given, but how the hell am I supposed to know where that is when I don't even have a damned clue on where I am!
What the hell even is authori—
Oh, dear. That doesn't sound good.