-I am challenging you to a duel!
If Grid were a Hollywood movie character, it was the time to shout ‘WTF!’ Grid doubted his ears for a moment before his brain started working again.
Hadn’t he invested a lot of money and care into building a temple? A duel...? Why couldn’t Hexetia just say thank you?
‘Didn’t affinity increase by 50?’
Then Hexetia changed his attitude, doubted Grid’s goodwill, decreased affinity to -10, and applied for a duel...?
‘Hexetia is completely...’
He was a maniac with inconsistent actions. Grid’s money and efforts were in vain thanks to this frivolous guy. Yet Grid didn’t think this, nor did he feel angry. At this moment, Grid was feeling sympathetic toward Hexetia. He understood what Hexetia was feeling.
It could be seen from Hexetia’s attitude of not being able to accept a person’s goodwill and questioning them. Hexetia’s self-esteem was much lower than Grid had expected.
How long had Hexetia lived without receiving love and expectations? To think that a god had ended up in this situation… It was regretful. Grid felt that he and Hexetia were turning out to be more and more alike.
-What are you doing? I am challenging you to a duel! Respond! Hexetia’s furious voice rang out again. He was obviously angry. Why was he always furious? A normal person wouldn’t be able to understand Hexetia’s sudden mood swing, but Grid was different.
‘...He thinks I am ignoring him.’
Grid thought of his middle school days. It had been his second year. One day, he had suddenly felt that he shouldn’t be alone and vowed to try making friends. The Grid of that day had been filled with courage, unlike how he had been usually. He had gone to school in the morning and spoken words of greetings to his classmates who didn’t even look at him. It was a simple morning greeting. For most people, it was an ordinary act. It was a normal routine, but it had been a special challenge for Grid. He had gathered his courage and barely managed to do it, yet his classmates’ reactions had been cold.
‘Just saying hello to them?’
Grid still remembered the dozens of cold eyes and the silence. That’s right. The weak Grid had been looked down upon by others, but he had been mostly ignored. He knew that pain.
‘I’m sure you feel the same.’ Grid’s expression distorted as he looked up at the blue sky.
Then Hexetia spoke again, -Not even answering me! You really are ignoring me! All of you! You humans are always...!! Never showing respect to a god!!
“No,” the silent Grid finally opened his mouth. He looked up to where Hexetia was staying and spoke in a determined voice, “Ignoring you? How can I refuse the request of the greatest god who has contributed to the development of humanity?”
There was no response. Hexetia was silent due to his surprise. The tens of thousands of people gathered in front of the temple started buzzing with chatter. Grid, who was on the stage, hadn’t spoken since the announcement about the temple. He just silently looked up at the sky.
“Grid?” Lauel approached slowly and examined Grid’s condition. “What is it all of a sudden? If you don’t feel well, then just say hello and step back. I will direct Huroi to give a speech.”
“No.” Grid raised a hand to stop Lauel. He didn’t pay attention to the reaction of the public and faced Hexetia. There were tens of thousands of players and soldiers paying attention to Grid. There were also reporters from all over the world with cameras.
While everyone watched, Grid shouted, “The blacksmith god, Hexetia, is a god who taught humanity how to use fire and iron. Thanks to Hexetia, humanity was able to develop, blacksmiths were born, and I was eventually able to exist. As a result, I was able to establish the Overgeared Kingdom. If you are a human, blacksmith, or Overgeared citizen, it is appropriate for you to appreciate and respect Hexetia.”
‘What is this severe leap in logic?’ The majority of players were dumbfounded. Satisfy was a game. The gods that existed in Satisfy were just imaginary gods, so the players couldn’t respect them. It was hard for them to understand Grid’s praise of Hexetia. However, a small number of players took into account Grid’s position.
‘There are benefits to getting the favor of the blacksmith god. That’s why he made a temple and gave a speech praising the blacksmith god...’
‘He is probably doing a quest.’
Benefits occurred when serving the god corresponding to their class. Maybe one day they would also experience it? By using Grid as a lighthouse, many people looked forward to what would happen in the future.
Flash! Suddenly, there was a lightning strike in the clear sky. It was a lightning strike that precisely aimed at Grid on the stage.
“The camera! Don’t miss this!”
They were scared out of their wits! The people who witnessed the king being attacked in real time were frightened and confused. The soldiers tried to calm the people, while the knights ran around the stage, wary of the unknown threat.
“Are you okay?”
The Overgeared members ran to the stage and looked around for Grid.
“Remove that camera!”
Pon, Vantner, and Peak Sword threatened the reporters of each country.
Grid had disappeared from the podium.
[You have been abducted to Asgard, the world of the gods!]
[You are the first player to visit Asgard: First World.]
[Your location in Asgard can’t be identified. The map has failed to open.]
[As a reward for being the first to visit Asgard: First World, you have received the interest of the angels!]
[The title ‘Dipped your Feet into the World of the Gods’ has been acquired.]
[Dipped your Feet into the World of the Gods]
[* Health +10,000
* Altitude adaptability +70%
You have visited the world that exists beyond the sky. It feels like you can live for a long time because of the clear air.]
This was beyond the sky...?
Grid had blinked and found himself above the clouds. They were clouds that were as light and fluffy as the Italian bed he had bought his parents after becoming successful! Grid wanted to stretch out and sleep, but he then came to his senses.
“What is this all of a sudden?”
What had happened?
“Ack?” Grid’s breathing became blocked the moment he was unable to grasp the situation. When he raised his body, his hands and feet felt heavy.
[You are far up in the sky. The altitude penalty causes all stats to drop by 100%!]
[The effect of the Dipped your Feet into the World of the Gods title has increased your altitude adaptability by 70%. The altitude penalty is reduced to 30%. All stats are reduced by 30%.]
“Ah...” His mind cleared as he overcame the discomfort of his body and grasped the situation. Grid reminded himself that he had accepted Hexetia’s duel request!
‘I was kidnapped straight away.’
The first player to visit the world of the gods... It would’ve been nice if the form of the visit was something better than being kidnapped.
‘Hexetia’s nature is too hasty.’
Where should Grid go? Under a golden sunset and dozens of rainbows, the lone Grid scratched his head. There were no mountains, rivers, seas, or buildings, just clouds and the sky. This was the world of the gods...? While he was bewildered, Grid heard something. “...?”
He could hear faint voices. Grid listened carefully and determined that the sounds were coming from 50 meters behind him.
“Look! There are no wings or rings! It is a human, right?”
“D-Don’t tell me...? The gods allowed a human to visit...”
There were voices of boys and girls. It was easy to deduce they weren’t human based on the contents of the conversation. Grid was reminded of the ‘interest of the angels’ that he received as a reward for being the first to visit Asgard: First World and deliberately spoke loudly to himself, “Oh, my! This...! I am a human, and it is my first time in the world of the gods! I don't know where to go! Where should I go to find God Hexetia?”
Shortly after his words finished...
“It really is a human?”
“H-How is a human here?”
Four boys and girls flew around Grid. They had platinum hair and skin that was as white as milk. Additionally, they had pure white wings and a ring-shaped object floating above their heads. Their glowing green eyes seemed more valuable than any jewelry in the world. It was the image of angels that Grid had often imagined!
‘Pretty.’ No other word could come to mind. Not a single bit of evil could be seen from the blend of innocence and beauty. While Grid was stunned, a quest popped up.
[Interest of the Young Angels (1)]
[You are the first human that the young angels have seen. They feel a great interest in you. Please answer their questions.
Quest Clear Conditions: Answer the angels’ questions appropriately (3 times in total).
Quest Clear Rewards: +1 affinity with the young angels. Link to the Interest of the Young Angels (2) quest.
Quest Failure: The young angels will lose their interest in you.]
It was a typical savings system in Satisfy. The more interest that was accumulated, the higher the interest would be. Even if the target was a great demon, accumulating affinity would give rewards such as quests. Grid couldn’t miss the opportunity to build up an affinity with the angels.
‘In the first place, I can’t do anything alone.’
The cloud field was as wide as the sea. It reminded him of the Red Sea that he had seen on the first day he assimilated with Braham. Grid needed the help of these young angels.
“Yes, I’m a human. I came here was because I was kidnapped by God Hexetia... No, I received an invitation from him.”
“Did you hear? God Hexetia invited a human!”
“No way! God Hexetia hates humans!”
“I heard that humans are good at lying! Don’t be fooled!”
“It isn’t a lie! The only people who can visit here without a god’s permission are the seven malignant saints!”
“...Kids? Do you have any more questions?”
The angels were excited and agitated. Grid was irritated because he wanted to answer the questions and receive the next quest. It would be upsetting if the angels lost their interest. It was a groundless worry though as the angels were fortunately still interested in Grid.
“Can you bear the heat?”
“Yes! You can’t be invited by God Hexetia! God Hexetia is so hot that no one wants to go near him!”
“Right, right! His fire nipples are too much! The heat is hard for the angels to bear!”
Alone in the world of the gods, Grid just nodded with a bitter expression. “I can endure it.”
[The quest has succeeded!]
[Affinity with the young angels has increased by 1. It has led to the Interest of the Young Angels (2) quest.]
[Interest of the Young Angels (2)]
[You are the first human that the young angels have seen. They have a great interest in you. Please answer their questions.
Quest Clear Conditions: Answer the angels’ questions appropriately (6 times in total).
Quest Clear Rewards: +1 affinity with the young angels. Link to the Interest of the Young Angels (3) quest.
Quest Failure: The young angels will lose their interest in you.]
The next quest was no different from the preceding one. The angels asked Grid various questions. They went from trivial questions like what humans ate and whether they really died in less than 100 years to questions which indirectly gave Grid a glimpse of Hexetia’s situation...
It was a small help. The Interest of the Young Angels quests continued to the fifth one. Then after clearing the fifth quest...
[The young angels are starting to like you. They will guide you to Hexetia according to your request.]
Grid was able to find a path. He followed the guidance of the angels and arrived in front of a shabby cabin at the end of the sea of clouds. The huge chimney of the cabin was impressive.
“Hot... I will go.”
“Me too~~ I don’t like God Hexetia~~”
Sometimes naivety could be a knife. The frankness of the young angels deeply wounded someone.
[The temperature of the area is very high.]
[The legendary blacksmith doesn’t succumb to the heat.]
As if waiting for the young angels to disappear, the door of the cabin opened only after the angels disappeared. The name ‘Blacksmith God: Hexetia’ floated in an orange color on top of the half-naked man’s head. Hexetia’s burning nipples looked lonely. They seemed to be shouting that he didn’t emit this heat because he wanted to.
Grid greeted Hexetia politely, “It is an honor to meet the blacksmith god who contributed to the development of humanity. I will duel you out of a sense of respect toward you.”
“You are a mere human in front of a god. The fact that you aren’t afraid of me shows that your respect is certainly false...! You are someone who sold the name of a god for the sake of your fame. I will give you a taste of hell!”
[★Hidden Quest ★ ‘Win a Blacksmithing Competition with a God’ has started!]
[Win a Blacksmithing Competition with a God]
[★ Hidden Quest ★
God Hexetia is the creator of most of the tools that exist in this world.
It won’t be easy to win against God Hexetia!
Quest Clear Conditions: Create a better item than God Hexetia.
Quest Clear Rewards: The acknowledgment of God Hexetia and enlightenment. The disappearance of God Hexetia’s envy. Affinity with God Hexetia will increase, and the curse on the First Holy Sword will be released.
Quest Failure: A new divine punishment.
* The divine punishment will cause a strong penalty such as a drop in character level, a drop in skill level, or a permanent loss of acquired goods and experience.]