Life of an Adventurer in a Harsh World – Part 05

It was a simple errand, but doing various tests on the way consumed quite a lot of time. The sun was already setting; the sky was turning dark red.

When Hikaru returned to the guild, there weren’t a lot of adventurers around. There wasn’t anyone back when he delivered the poisonous herbs too, but that was because it was already closing time. Right now, there was still a little less than an hour before sunset. Yet there were only a few adventurers present.


Hikaru learned the reason immediately.

“There you go. All done. You should head home early and get some rest, okay?”

“Are you free after this? How about din–”

“You should head home early and get some rest, okay?”

“No, wait. Let’s go out for din–”

“You should head home early and get some rest, okay?”


Gloria kept repeating the exact same words with a radiant smile. The adventurers didn’t feel like staying after going through that kind of exchange, so they quickly dispersed. It was impressive how she made it seem like she cared about them.

Adventurers were returning from their commissions, and Gloria processed them all skilfully and efficiently. She was quick in assessing materials as well. Hikaru made it to the front of the line in no time at all.

“Next. Huh?”

As soon as Gloria saw Hikaru, her eyes grew wide.

It was getting dark outside, and the Adventurers’ Guild was closing for the day. Gloria was pulling down the shutters, deep in thought.

Kelbeck is a big shot in the Thieves’ Guild. He’s like the head of the Pond branch. There’s no way he could get to him that easily. Even if he was there for an errand from the Adventurers’ Guild, the moment he stepped into the sewers, Kelbeck’s men would’ve taken him into custody.

Once Hikaru was detained, the Thieves Guild would inquire with the Adventurers’ Guild for information. Enter: Gloria. In the Adventurers’ Guild’s Pond branch, a guild receptionist could act as a representative in negotiations.

After being saved by Gloria from the Thieves Guild, Hikaru would owe her a debt of gratitude. Then she could get all sorts of information out of him. That was her plan.

How did he meet Kelbeck? When I ask him, he just gives me vague answers.

He simply said, “I just met him normally.”

I’m getting more and more curious.

Gloria’s mouth secretly curved into a smile.

A dark one.

The reward for the delivery to Kelbeck was 200 gilans. A reasonable amount, considering it would’ve only taken thirty minutes to get there and back


That was Hikaru’s conclusion.

Even in RPGs, it was normal for delivery quests to have awful rewards. You could earn more coin efficiently by taking recurring commissions and Boss Kill quests.

Now the question is: what do I do once I earn more?

Hikaru flopped down on the floor of the same inn he stayed at last night. He could’ve forked out more and stayed in a better inn, but he wanted to save. He currently had 4,890 gilans left.

First, I need to save a huge sum so I can live a comfortable life in this world. Second, look for ways to return to my world. Third, immerse myself in a hobby. But I don’t really have one…

Hikaru loved reading books. He played video games as well and liked studying. He wasn’t bad at sports, but he didn’t care much for it. Try as he might, he didn’t have the ability to become the best. So he thought it was inefficient to bust his chops for clubs that required some level of tenacity.

There’s more to the world than just efficiency. Then again, there’s really nothing else I want to do… That’s it. I just have to find something I want to do. I should see what they have here in this world.

See the world, and then decide what to do. The thought of going on a journey of self-discovery made him uncharacteristically excited. This was not a world where you could easily find out what was sold in stores on the other side of the world via the Internet. The idea of touring such a world was thrilling.

And for that, I need money! Funds! It’s all about efficiency!

From going on an epic adventure back to efficiency.

If I want to be efficient, I need to make better use of the Soul Board.

His experiments with Stealth concluded today. He had a better grasp of its utility now. Although nerve-wracking, his infiltration into Kelbeck’s office was a success. Though he failed to notice the lookouts. Put in another way, he could hide, but couldn’t detect.

Detection Skill, huh… There was something like a Perception on the Board’s first window.

He summoned his Soul Board.

【Natural Recovery】0

Hikaru surmised that unlocking Perception would reveal Smell or Hearing fields. Although, just one point on Imperceptibility applied to all the senses.

Well, you can improve your sense of skill for other purposes besides just detecting people. I can understand why just one point in Imperceptibility applies to all senses. Its only use is to not get detected by others, after all.

Hikaru assumed that every point was equal all across the board.

Therefore, improving my perception would be inefficient.

He had four points available. He used the Soul Board to study each stat. Immunity and Perception, fields that needed to be unlocked first, both had the same description.

【Immunity】Unlock Skills related to Immunity.

【Perception】Unlock Skills related to Perception.

So first, he checked every item with the number 0—Skills he could already allocate points on.

【Natural Recovery】Enhances the ability to heal external wounds. Max: 20.
【Stamina】Enhance ability to sustain prolonged physical effort and recover from fatigue. Max: 20.
【Mana Capacity】Increases total mana—the resource expended when casting a magic spell. Max: 30
【Muscle Strength】Increase strength of the muscles. Max: 30.
【Power Burst】Enhance ability to exert strength in an instant. Max: 15.
【Flexibility】Make the body, especially the joints, more flexible. Max: 10
【Balance】Improve sensation of the torso. Max: 20.

What surprised Hikaru was the maximum points allowed. Skills under Stealth required five points max. Assassination only required three. But the ones he checked now required ten or thirty points to get maxed.

So what, they’re divided into primary attributes and the actual applications?

The stats that didn’t need to be unlocked required more points to max. They all had something to do with basic attributes of a living being.

What would happen if I put 30 points in Strength? Maybe I can crush a boulder with my bare hands or lift a whole house. Yeah, right…

Hikaru paused.

It’s certainly possible.

He already witnessed the effects of his Stealth. What kind of power would he obtain if he poured thirty whole points to an attribute?

Let’s forget that for now. There are three boards left unlocked.

The pentagon, hexagon, and the unlabeled one. So far, he had unlocked Vitality, Magical Power, Strength, and Agility.

If we go by game mechanics, I guess next would be Willpower, Faith, Charisma, and Dexterity? If I want to be efficient, first I have to know. I can’t achieve efficiency without information. But if I unlocked all three, I’d be left with one point. It’s inefficient to have only one point to allocate. I should unlock only one.

He chose the unlabeled board.

I really wanna know what’s in this unlabeled board. My curiosity is killing me!

“Unlock Soul Board? Consume 1 point.”


What emerged on the screen was…


Instinct! It’s instinct!

【Instinct】Heighten one’s senses to obtain revelation close to foresight. Max: 20

【Memory】Improves the function of the part of the brain that governs memories. Max: 10.

And there’s Detection as expected. I don’t like how I have to unlock it first. Now what? I have three points left. Let’s think about this.

Hikaru stared at the Soul Board for a while, then lay down and closed his eyes.

Sleep came fast.

I bet people call you arrogant.

The light of the bright afternoon was blinding even behind the white curtains. A girl, one year older than Hikaru, stood there with her back against the light, smiling.

Life will be rough for you. You may be clever, but you’re also reckless. Someday, somewhere, you might just suddenly die.

She was beautiful and intelligent, with long black hair.

I appreciate the disturbing divination.

He wouldn’t listen to the words of adults or his other seniors, but Hikaru readily paid attention to what she had to say.

The name of the girl was…


Hikaru put on a cynical smile—one that ended up childish.

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