“The biggest danger to any adventurer is surprise. You can be holding the greatest of shields, forged by the Dwarves of the strongest and most legendary of metals! But it won’t protect your face from an errant arrow if you’re not holding it up.

  Adventurers of course know this, and make sure to always stay alert, bring a plethora of potions and emergency gear, and perform research into the creatures and geography of wherever their adventures take them. This might be enough when exploring the wilds, but it does not make up for the sheer chaos of a dungeon.

  When entering a Dungeon, be ready to throw away all preconceptions of monsters and cave exploration both. The first of which is enemy behavior. Many of even the most vicious monsters won’t attack unless they see an obvious threat to their livelihood or property. Simply entering their territory won’t trigger this defense mechanism for the most part, but staying there for an active time despite warnings will. But then, why do the monsters on the first floor all immediately attack those who enter a dungeon?

  One might say that the first floor is filled with weaker creatures that can be taken out by a stronger adventurer, or avoided by entering as soon as they complete attacking a previous intruder, but that is besides the point. Why do so many monsters, who are usually at odds with each other, immediately team up to take on a new presence that hasn’t even proved itself to be a threat?

  The leading theory is new instincts brought forth by living in enclosed spaces, or by Dungeon energies. That a lack of these Dungeon energies that are also responsible for Dungeon Ossium attract anger and violence.

  But do those instincts also explain other strange phenomena? Monsters gaining Skills and levels mid-combat, or new monsters populating a dungeon even after every last one of their members has been wiped out?

  There is a lot of research yet to be done on these dangerous caverns, but one thing is for certain. The answers will definitely come as a surprise, so don’t get caught flatfooted when you face them yourself.”

  -Excerpt from “Dungeoneering: A Primer” by Almidus Goldring, dungeon scholar and one-time adventurer

  The newborn spiders tried to enclose the [Juvenile Dungeon Hounds] and get a bite in before retreating, like the waves of the ocean ebbing and flowing. The strategy was sound, however there was one major problem.

  Despite the newborn spiders each having a decently advanced evolution, with enough Skills and abilities, they didn’t get the chance to properly level up their Skills. Easy fights gave them the experience points to raise their attributes, but those weren’t what made the spiders so strong. At least not at this stage. It was the Skills that gave them venom, that gave them mobility, and other attacking options. These [Juvenile Dungeon Hunter Spiders] and [Juvenile Dungeon Web Spiders] had a pittance of levels in what they needed for a proper fight!

  There was a second problem on the periphery, that the [Shadow Spiders] who could make up for the lack of firepower couldn’t really get into range. The hounds might have been poisoned enough to not think about retreat, but they had the senses to keep the real threat in their view.

  But thankfully, Click had a solution. The lead spider sent out a command to the [Shadow Spiders] to step back. At first they were confused, angry even, that they were being told to retreat from a fight they knew they could win, a fight they wanted to win! But the next part of the command had them happily comply.

Step back into the ranks of spiders.

You’re smaller than them, hide amongst them, hide in their shadows.

Go in with the next wave of them and score a bite on your quarry.

  They followed through, and within a few seconds, a new series of yelps echoed out throughout the cavern. The [Juvenile Dungeon Hounds] took another hit, and Click was ecstatic! The battle would definitely be over now and the tribe would have its first taste of proper revenge. They would be the ones to control the caverns!

  But, as Click was starting to learn, to taunt the universe was to invite disaster. Even in the most nonsensical of ways.

  The swarm of spiders surrounding the second hound quickly spread out, thrown back and then forced to give the predator more distance.

  The creature began to morph, its legs and torso elongated as its mouth grew bigger. Its eyes lost their previous hungry and fearful innocence and took on an older look, one that held true hunger. The predator howled deeply and ran at the next wave of spiders, only to scoop up several into its mouth.

  What?! [Observation]!

Dungeon Hound (Level 1)

Name: N/A

Soul Link: Rockfort Hamlet Dungeon Core Ṁ̶̡̄̒͜o̷͚͍̊͒̃̓̿ǰ̵̧̢̭̫̪a̷͇̋̿̿̽͘ ̵̨̛̥͎͉́̋̈͘D̵̝̭͇̓̎̅ȋ̷̯͔̤̑͋̑t̴̛͉͈̟̽̑͑h̸̪̲̩̗̀̉̃͝͠ä̵͕̼̠́̊̓̕b̴̗͕̏͊̂̓̚ä̷̡̰̱͕̒̌̋

Classes: N/A




Juvenile Dungeon Hound



Health Points








Skill Name



Iron Fangs


Teeth are reinforced to be harder and sharper

Pack Tactics


Instinctively understand the desires of the rest of the pack

Prey Detection


Instinctually sense the location of prey, and its movements.

  What was going on?! Click screamed to themselves. Where did it get the experience to evolve like that?! It killed maybe five of the newborn spiders, and it was a newborn itself! There were Juveniles who killed way more spiders than that and still didn’t get an evolution!

  The [Spider Army Commander] shook off their fear and utter bewilderment at the enemy’s sudden growth spurt, and focused their attention on the ensuing battle. Their troops needed their full attention, after all.

  Can’t let it keep eating everyone, they don’t stand a chance! The lead spider vowed to do something incredibly foolish.

  Bored, charge that thing!

  The [Adult Alpha Dungeon Spider] shook itself in glee as it began to rush over to meet the much larger creature.

  You, [Webslinger Spider], grab me and bring me atop that stalagmite!

  A hanging spider shot a stream of webbing and grabbed Click, pulling them to a safe spot above. It gave Click a better view of the battle below, while allowing their “mount” to focus entirely on the battle.

  The other spiders needed it.

  Bored slammed into the adult predator and temporarily knocked it off balance. The hound, which was about to bite down on another half a dozen arachnids, turned its attention away from the easy meal and focused itself more on the new challenge.

  Click still knew that Bored wouldn’t win. At least, not by itself. While being pulled up to safety, Click was worried that they’d be dropped and fall onto the predator, or into its jaws, but that gave the lead spider a brilliant idea.

  [Command Subordinates]! [Webslinger Spiders], grab the [Shadow Spiders] and whatever newborns after them, pull them up, and drop them on top of that adult predator!

  It seemed that they understood the order and immediately followed. With the prolonged damage that they’d dealt to the [Juvenile Dungeon Hounds], the [Shadow Spiders] weren’t needed to complete the fight against them. So instead, they bared their venom-stained fangs and brought them down on the [Adult Dungeon Hound] from above.

  The creature snarled in pain, and tried its best to fling the spiders off. At one point, it even tried rolling over to crush them, but that just gave the other newborns an opportunity to climb on and begin biting themselves. It didn’t help that Bored interfered with the roll and kept the hound pinned for several seconds.

  After several more bites, and a little bit of time for the newly introduced poison to truly take effect, the [Dungeon Hounds] succumbed to their injuries and collapsed onto the Dungeon floor, dead.

  The spiders cheered for their victory, and the swath of experience points being doled out to each of them. As massive as the haul of points was, it wasn’t enough to grant anyone an additional evolution. It took Click about a week of constantly feeding on smaller insects to get theirs, and that was all about consistency over a long period of time, rather than riding a single moderate windfall.

  Still, this was only the first experience point windfall of many.

  As Click began to lead the other spiders back to their home, revenge finally taken, they passed by a rock.

  None of the other spiders happened to be looking at it, as it was quite far away and not where they were headed, but Click was looking right at it. At first, there was nothing behind it. Yet, as they rounded a corner, a [Juvenile Dungeon Hound] walked out from behind it. From out of nowhere.

  Click quickly called on the troops to take care of it. It thankfully didn’t evolve mid-fight, but two things worried the lead spider. First, after a thorough investigation of the rock, its surrounding area, and the space underneath it, they found that there were no predator mothers, eggs, or hiding spaces. And second, that [Juvenile Dungeon Hound] was level one. Newborn.


About the author



Log in to comment
Log In

Log in to comment
Log In