The Three-Eyed Valley—it was the best hunting ground after the Boundary Forest (World Tree’s Forest) which Kraugel had recommended to Grid. Kraugel had been fighting the three-eyed giants inside it for a few months and finally achieved his goal.
[Your level has risen.]
[Congratulations! You have reached level 300 and achieved the third stats awakening!]
[For every point of stamina, health will increase by 25 and defense will increase by 0.9.]
[For every point of strength, health will increase by 7 and attack will increase by 0.6.]
[For every point of intelligence...]
He felt strength boiling inside him. It was a sensation that was completely different from a while ago. This was an accomplishment that he achieved for the second time, so Kraugel closed his eyes with a calm expression.
The past was drawn out in his mind. In order to get one of the three passive attack skills, Quick Command, Kraugel had been on a quest involving the seven malignant saints and had visited the deep mountain where the Red Sage was located. Then he’d met an unexpected person in front of the small cabin. It had been Haster, the protagonist of old.
Kraugel hadn’t listened to Haster’s advice, that the Red Sage was sick and weary, and hadn’t retreated. Instead, he had insisted on meeting with the Red Sage and confronted Haster with his sword. The result was devastating. Yes, Kraugel was defeated during the days when he was still called the sky above the sky. Back then, Kraugel had become a Sword Saint and just passed level 200. He hadn’t been able to defeat Haster.
Haster’s battle style was unique and creative as he used all sorts of weapons and could summon an ice curtain. His unpredictability and speed had disrupted Kraugel’s innate insight and super sensitivity several times. On the other hand, Kraugel’s erratic nature hadn’t worked with Haster, who relied on ‘sound’ to read the direction of attack and respond immediately. It allowed Kraugel to understand why Haster had been called the king of the gaming world in the past.
Kraugel wanted to confirm it. Now that he had reached level 300 and achieved his third stats awakening, could he fight against Haster?
“...” Kraugel closed his eyes and the cabin deep in the mountains appeared in his mind. Haster was blocking his way. Kraugel fought him and was once again defeated.
“...He is the peak of the old gaming age.”
Haster was confronting the peak of the new age in order to win back his legacy, but could he steal the title from Grid who had already taken it? Kraugel closed his eyes again, and this time Grid appeared. The struggle lasted a long time until he opened his eyes again.
‘I can’t get used to defeat.’
Haster, Grid, and likely Agnus as well—they were the three people he couldn’t overcome at present. Despite that, Kraugel’s heart was filled with motivation instead of frustration.
“Tie up all those who resist! Don’t threaten them and don’t kill them! Remember that your opponents are civilians who can’t harm us.”
Oasis’ unit entered a small village at the foothills. It was a village but it was no different from a hamlet. Oasis frowned. All the villagers seemed hungry because of the cold season. In fact, there was almost no food in the village storehouse. There were only small amounts of dried meat and boiled animal skins.
With the help of the Overgeared Kingdom, Valhalla had prevented an invasion from the empire and had raised its military strength for a year. In spite of this, it was inevitable that they would have to face the empire’s invasion again, making Valhalla greatly poor. It was impossible for the internal economy to maintain at this level.
‘We have to conquer other countries to live.’
The Ultina Kingdom bordering the Valhalla Kingdom was a potential threat. If Ultina joined with the empire for the invasion, Valhalla would have to fight in isolation. The purpose of Valhalla’s conquest war was to absorb Ultina’s economy while eliminating a rear threat.
Still, was it necessary to plunder them in the process? Even a small village like this? Should they incite the hatred of the people when they were planning to devour the whole kingdom? Oasis had doubts but it was answered by the power of Ares’ Plundering skill.
[The Oasis Squad has succeeded in looting the food of Ren Village!]
[The effect of ‘War King’s Generosity has been activated!]
[War King Ares has made a proposal to the inhabitants of the village that has been looted! The residents of the village will be able to find more food than what was stolen! The inhabitants of the looted village have developed a deep respect for King Ares!]
[The morale of the Oasis Squad has risen sharply! All stats will increase by 5% while the morale is maintained. Stamina consumption will slow by 50%. The ‘Courage’ effect will be obtained. The squad won’t shrink back even when meeting a strong enemy.]
“Uwaaaaahhhhh!” Oasis and the soldiers cheered with excitement. The power of Ares’ growth type hidden class ‘War King’, which was currently at the unique rating, was the most special and unique amongst all the classes. Oasis had a deep faith in Ares. He had seen and learn many things under Ares and believed that Ares would help him become the Undefeated King’s Descendant.
‘I will also be a protagonist like Ares and Grid...’
One year—no, five years… No, it would be good even after ten years. Oasis was confident that his days of glory would come one day. He boasted a perseverance and determination that was beyond the ordinary.
“Who are you?” Oasis was directing the soldiers carrying food when two men suddenly appeared. The two men had their faces and names obscured by military helmets. At first, Oasis thought they were neighborhood youths, but their outfits were unusual. The sets of armor they wore underneath the cloaks were luxurious and excellent.
The mysterious men answered:
“I am a soldier.”
“....? M-Me too.”
How were they soldiers? One was wearing shabby leather armor while the other was dressed like a mountain hunter.
Oasis frowned and sent a signal to his soldiers, who surrounded the two men. “You are a wandering knight passing by who has paired up with a village youth who burns with a sense of justice. Valhalla’s troops aren’t something that small fries like you can deal with. I will let you keep your swords if you leave right now.”
Currently, Oasis was one of the faces of Valhalla. There was a need for him to act dignified so that the Valhalla army wouldn’t be despised by others.
“Acting strong while robbing a small village? Your Valhalla is a complete group of thugs!” One of the men shouted at Oasis who was warning them. It was the man in leather armor.
“Thugs? Take that back.”
“It seems to be true based on your reaction?”
Then Oasis gave a signal. To think the great Valhalla that Ares founded was being compared to thugs? The furious soldiers simultaneously attacked the two men. After their morale boost, the attacks of the soldiers were threatening. These soldiers who trained under Ares were as firm as rocks, and it was hard to find a gap in their defenses. Moreover, their spears were sharp.
“Hoh.” Asmophel was impressed. He didn’t know that ‘real’ soldiers could be trained to this level. Nevertheless, he didn’t panic. After all, Asmophel nurtured the Overgeared soldiers who were armed with items, so he saw Valhalla’s soldiers as below the Overgeared soldiers.
Asmophel avoided five spears which came at him from different orbits, and he caught one of them by hand. As Asmophel swung the spear he now held, the soldier on the other end flew and broke his allies’ formation. Meanwhile, Haster blocked the attacks with a curtain of ice, firing magic like bullets through the cracking ice curtain. The soldiers had their armor pierced by the ice bullets and collapsed with loud screams, “Kuaaaack!”
Oasis felt astonished as the soldiers’ formation broke in the blink of an eye.
‘Where did these talented people come from?’
Was it because the soldiers were relatively weak, highlighting the skills of the two men? The mysterious men masquerading as soldiers were reminiscent of Grid. Originally, Oasis would’ve run away once he sensed how strong these people were. However, Oasis was now part of Valhalla, so he couldn’t just leave the soldiers and retreat. Additionally, he had lost his fear because of the ‘Courage’ effect.
“You!” Oasis pulled out a sword and rushed toward Haster. Thanks to his ‘Charge’ skill, Oasis’ speed was very fast and his momentum was fierce. Still, it wasn’t enough to threaten Haster. He fired his horn bow and shot the front leg of the approaching horse.
“What?” Oasis’ vision spun. Then Haster’s sword aimed at Oasis as he fell.
The Undefeated King’s sheath scoffed, -You aren’t a threat to anyone now. You aren’t qualified to handle my great power. I think the relationship between you and I will end here today.
“That…” Oasis gritted his teeth and twisted his waist. Did he want to take evasive action while falling in the air? It was a control that the usual Oasis would’ve never been able to achieve with his concentration and physical ability.
“I don’t want to!” Oasis avoided Haster’s attack in a breathtaking manner. He rolled across the ground and jumped back up. “I don’t want to lose anymore!”
Oasis wanted to become the main character. He wanted to let everyone know that ordinary people like him could also come up to the big stage. The expression on Oasis’ face wasn’t ordinary as he raised his sword. Unfortunately, his opponent was too strong. No, his natural talent was bad. The level of skills he built up wasn’t enough. The world wasn’t that easy. Not everyone could become a protagonist.
[You have suffered serious damage!]
A notification window popped up as he heard the screams of the soldiers. The pain came late.
“...?” Oasis’ eyes trembled as he couldn’t understand the present situation. What was this spear through his abdomen? When did this happen and who did it? Oasis slowly turned his head and saw a soldier in a military helmet. It was Haster. Haster had moved behind Oasis and stabbed him. He pulled out a sword and stabbed Oasis again without removing the spear, causing Oasis’ body to slowly turn to gray.
[You have died.]
[This is considered a defeat.]
[You have lost your qualification to become the Undefeated King’s descendant.]
[The voice of the Undefeated King can vaguely be heard.]
-I like your heart.
[The hidden class quest ‘Undefeated King’s Descendant’ has changed to the ‘100,000 Army Swordsmanship’ skill acquisition quest.]
-A loser also has his own oath. Shall we try a bit more?
The conditions for acquiring a legendary class were very tricky. It wasn’t something that could be obtained by deliberately targeting it. Still, the S.A Group wasn’t unreasonable enough to make the opportunity disappear after a single failure. There were new opportunities. No, in fact, Oasis received a more realistic opportunity as he died.
Meanwhile, Haster faced Asmophel. “I am thankful for your help. Aren’t you looking for the old generation of Red Knights? I will help you.”
There were loud roars from the distant capital. Valhalla’s conquest war was in full swing.
Simultaneously, in the Overgeared Kingdom...
“I want to learn how to make jiangshi.”
“Why do you want to learn?”
“I want to be qualified to be next to the benefactor who gave me a new opportunity. I... I want a friend. I am tired of the relationship where you only use each other.”
“You did well to come,” Grid greeted a welcome guest.