Urged on by Master, I climbed up the hill.
But even on the top of the hill, the trees blocked the view of my surroundings.
I recalled Jericho and summoned Helix. Helix would help me look around.
I couldn’t see anything except a cloudy sky above.
I was moved by all the rich nature around us.
There was always at least one bird singing somewhere.
No monsters either.
Although the trees were tall, the forest floor wasn’t that dark.
Sometimes I could even see a rodent scurrying across the leafy ground.
「Looks like it will be a while before we can see any monsters…」
「Definitely looks like it.」
I tried using【Call Monster】.
But nothing happened.
There weren’t any monsters around us.
I took the risk and got Helix to fly high up among the clouds.
Even from down here, I could tell the sun was getting lower.
Evening was closing in.
「Keith. Well done, you have grown so much.」
「I’m proud to have you as my pupil. I won’t be ashamed anymore to introduce you as such.」
「Keep training as hard as always. You may use my house as you please.」
「Yes, Master. Thank you.」
Master’s expression took on one of complete satisfaction.
Looked like he really did finally accept me.
《You have acquired the Title【Old Summoner’s Pupil】!》
An info screen appeared in front of me.
I lost the “temporary” part of the title.
I focused my gaze on different parts of the info screen.
But nothing happened.
I had finally become a full-fledged pupil.
A magic circle appeared on the top of the hill.
Master was trying to summon something.
Roc Bird appeared in the magic circle.
「Keith. I must go now.」
「You should go back the way you came. Good luck.」
「Well then, I suppose this is farewell.」
Huh? You’re joking, right?
Master quickly climbed onto Roc Bird’s back.
Demon Fox gracefully hopped beside him.
「Umm… Would it be alright for you to take me back with you?」
「You’ll be alright.」
Master gave me one last bright smile before flying away on Roc Birds back.
A gust of wind patted my dumbstruck face.
After Roc Bird was long gone, Helix came down onto my shoulder.
What I should do to fix this situation?
No, that’s not all.
What I should do from now on?
I didn’t know if I could log out, and things could get more dangerous if I kept going.
I had no choice. I decided to head back.
I recalled Helix and summoned Jericho again.
I started tracing back my steps.
I was feeling a bit bummed out, but when I reached the cave, I was filled with new energy.
I decided to use the dark spell【Night Vision】instead of the light spell【Flashlight】that time.
It was to dodge as many Skeletons as I could.
Even with【Night Vision】, by the time I reached the forest maze I had run into seven groups of them.
Looked like【Flashlight】and【Night Vision】didn’t make much a difference in the cave.
I actually felt like there were more of them when I used【Night Vision】.
Although I couldn’t really count all of them, there were far too many.
I didn’t encounter any more Skeleton Dogs.
Looked like it wasn’t a standard enemy.
Although I wouldn’t have minded fighting them again, they weren’t that strong.
Two Magic Stones.
Honestly, the cave was just a really strange place.
When I arrived at the forest maze I went straight for the central hall.
I took out any mushrooms and Branch Golems I ran into, while trying to conserve as much MP as I could.
I went to the blue hall to go home.
But when I arrived, I saw something rather unexpected.
No, thinking about it further, I suppose it was to be expected.
Two parties came out of the green corridor and into the hall.
They all had green markers.
I thought of the long battles and struggles it took me to clear this place. I whispered them a word of encouragement inside my head.
I took out three more mushrooms before arriving at the forest.
Mushroom hunting was fun.
《【Dark Magic】Level Up!》
《You have acquired the【Dark Magic】spell【Resist Dark】!》
《You have acquired the【Dark Magic】spell【Dark Heal】!》
《You have acquired the【Dark Magic】spell【Dark Stare】!》
My【Dark Magic】leveled up.
The number of skills I could use had gone up by quite a bit in just one day.
There were quite a few new spells I wanted to test out, but I decided to leave that for another time.
I didn’t get a lot of items, but the level-ups made up for that. I was satisfied.
When I arrived in the forest I recalled Jericho and summoned Obsidian.
The amount of MP I lost was a lot lower due to my level-ups.
But nevertheless, it went down by as much as it would have had I used a Lv.3 attack magic spell.
I’d been changing Summon Monsters a lot though, so it was starting to become a serious issue.
We arrived in Legias.
I immediately headed for Yuka’s and Rick’s place.
Looked like my timing was bad though. They were dealing with a lot of NPC customers.
They didn’t have the time to make small talk.
Well, I had time. I decided to wait.
I lined up and bought some rabbit meat and vegetable stew, along with some bread.
【Food】Rabbit Meat and Vegetable Stew Satiety +25% Grade C+ Rarity 1 Weight 0+
Roasted rabbit, nutmeg, and thyme stewed along with vegetables.
The broth is thick and rich.
The seasoning was a little too much, but with the bread it was perfect.
Nicely done, Yuka.
《Your friend has sent you a message.》
It was from Irina.
A moment later, another message came from Adele.
『We’re starting training at Gelta’s place. We’re a little uneasy, but I’m sure it’ll work out somehow』
『I found some new fluffies!』
Included in Irina’s message was a photo of them at the Alchemist’s Guild.
Adele included a picture of a wolf, a tiger, and a fox too, lining up in a neat line.
The fox looked different from Master’s Demon Fox. It only had one tail.
There was another picture, this one was just of Adele and the fox.
Adele looked ecstatic.
Ah, that’s bad.
That was the face of addiction right there.
An infectious addiction.
I was in real danger of feeling the same way.
Deep down, I was just glad she was happy in her new environment.
「Sorry to keep you waiting.」
「No worries, business is more important.」
「Well, talking to you counts as business too, you know.」
Rick sat down in front of me and moved his gaze to behind me. Shinohara was there.
「Sorry, I’m late.」
「That’s alright, just help me out here.」
Rick, Fudo, Yuka, and Len-Len didn’t really have anything to apologise for.
「Huh? Ah, yeah that’s right.」
Oh yeah, I came here to sell things.
The food was so good I forgot what I was doing for a while.
I lined up my haul on the table.
The usual charcoal and logs, along with a variety of mushrooms.
The Snow Ape Skin and Snow Ape Bones.
A stone axe using a Snow Ape Bone as a handle.
On top of all those items, I added the Snow Leopard Skin and the Snow Leopard Claws.
「What a bountiful harvest.」
「Sorry, I didn’t get to bring as much today.」
「No, no, that’s not what I meant. The two Snow Ape Bones aren’t anything to sneeze at.」
「Wow… I’ve never seen that item before.」
Since business was slowing down, Fudo and Len-Len joined us at the table.
Their gazes were overwhelming.
Their eyes were like those of a predator sizing up its prey.
「If you had a little more of that Snow Leopard Skin I bet you could make a jacket.」
「Unfortunately, our guild Leather Workers aren’t here.」
「Ah… I really want some leather working skills.」
「Before that, let’s talk about the Snow Ape Bones, those actually have a practical use in fighting.」
The three of them were getting pretty excited.
No, Rick was still relatively calm.
「What do you use these Snow Leopard Claws for? Weapons?」
「Something to stick on your gloves? One of those wolverine-like weapons?」
「Yeah, I guess weapons are all its good for…」
「I can’t think of anything else…」
Rick’s face and eyes took on a calm colour. He was clearly deep in thought.
「Keith. This is just my personal opinion, but I think it’s better you don’t sell the Snow Leopard Skin and the Snow Leopard Claws.」
「Huh? Why’s that?」
「We don’t know how to use them. I think it’s better you keep them on you and ask around until you find someone who does.」
「Ah, is that so…」
「Yes. It was the same with the Snow Ape Bones, after all.」
What Rick was saying sounded really reasonable.
「Sorry, could you show us a screenshot and the【Appraise】result please?」
I had no reason to hide it from them.
I showed them what they wanted to see.
「What about the other items?」
「I’ll sell them.」
「By the way, Rick, I’ll message Fiona about the items alright?」
「Oh, and I’ll post it in the forums too.」
「Great. I’ll leave the rest to Fudo.」
Rick started doing the maths for everything while Len-Len and Fudo started collecting the items.
I decided to help out.
When Rick was done, he gave me a pouch of 20 100 Dyn coins.
It was a nice amount.
「Well then, thanks.」
「I’ll be in your care next time too.」
We exchanged our biggest business smiles.
I got up to continue my day.
I thought about how I should spend the rest of the day on the way to Master’s house.
The forest around me was already giving me hints.
Oh yeah, I had to learn to climb a giant ivy to explore what was after the forest maze.
I got Obsidian to look for pheasant nests while I climbed the trees and stole the eggs.
I was pretty much a thief, but that couldn’t be helped.
I had no choice.
It’s for my【Climb】Support Skill, please forgive me.
Sorry, that was a lie.
I was pretty excited, robbing the pheasant nests.
The female Wild Pheasants weren’t that much of a threat, so I wasn’t worried about them.
What I was worried about were the males.
Although I had gotten a lot stronger, I still didn’t want to underestimate them.
In fact, Volff had taken quite a bit of damage fighting them earlier.
They tended to get more riled up at night.
Although I knew it was just a natural response to protect their eggs.
Well in the end of the day, they were just monsters.
I lost count of how many eggs I harvested.
I tried to count at first, but my concentration was broken by Evil Ants.
I forgot how many Wild Pheasants I defeated too.
But I remembered the number of male Wild Pheasants I killed.
I defeated six of them.
And after defeating the sixth male Wild Pheasant, the reason I was doing all this came back to me.
But looking back, I may have gotten a little too into it.
When I arrived at Master’s house and entered my room, it was already late at night.
Well, it was good to be passionate about something.
I got a lot of items while I was at it too.
I wanted to test out some skills, but I decided to leave that for the next day.
I had a promise to meet with the Guild Leader too.
Although I would love for it to be anything but another troublesome request.
While thinking of those things, I got into bed and logged out.
The next morning.
I got some new information from the GMs when I logged in.
《You have received two pieces of new information from the GMs. Do you wish to read them?》
I read both of their subject lines first.
《Notice of Implementation: The clock function is now in its public test phase!》
《Battle Tournament Announcement: A tournament will be held at the Adventurer’s Guild’s training ground!》
Leaving the second one for later, I decided to read through the one about the clock function.
It seemed like a pretty essential feature, strange that it’s only being rolled out now.
Believe it or not, people like myself, who could play a game for more than 24 hours at a time, were pretty rare.
If I had to guess, I’d say they got complaints from a lot of people losing track of time playing this game.
Now you could display the time in a virtual window, and set that window in a dedicated corner of your vision. Looked pretty normal.
You could change its size and position at will.
There were two methods of display too, a traditional clock, or a digital clock display.
You could represent the numbers using Arabic numerals, Roman numerals, or even kanji.
I decided to set mine right away.
When prompted, I chose Roman numerals.
I set the background to white, and the numbers to black.
That wasn’t all.
Looked like there were a lot of variations in the designs, and you could add your own three-hand clock if none of those matched your tastes.
There was a stopwatch, calendar, even moon phases and the time in different parts of the world.
They seemed pretty useful, so I added the stopwatch and the moon phase calendar too.
I looked around to test it out.
A very simple but effective design.
A very welcome addition.
There was a temporary warning text, indicating that the clock feature was still in its test phase, and a feedback prompt too, but that was alright.
It definitely felt a little strange, having a personal watch in a fantasy world.
Even one of those old-fashioned pocket watches would feel strange.
I summoned Zangetsu, Helix, and Obsidian before heading to Remut.
The weather was perfect all morning.
Yesterday’s weather wasn’t as nice, and I didn’t get to meet too many players.
I ran into a lot of red and green markers on the way to Remut.
A lot of players were eagerly going for a morning hunt.
There weren’t that many monsters to kill around Remut anymore though.
I only encountered and took out two rabbits on the way.
I arrived in Remut.
It was a lot more crowded than usual.
Was something going on?
I looked for Mio’s stall, but it looked like it wasn’t there anymore.
No, Mio and the others were folding up the tent in a corner of the street.
I saw Fiona and Mio, along with Reina.
「Hey everyone, good morning.」
「Oh, good morning.」
「Are you moving today?」
「Yeah, we’re just waiting for Saki now.」
Looking around, it looked like their preparations were complete.
It was too bad, I was looking forward to eating Mio’s cooking for breakfast too.
「I heard you brought a lot of stuff again yesterday.」
「The blacksmiths were really excited about the Snow Ape Bones you know?」
「Yeah, there’s that tournament coming up, after all.」
「Did you read the GM info this morning?」
「I read the one about the clock.」
「What about the tournament?」
I couldn’t turn my eyes away from her prying gaze.
It made me feel a strange pressure.
「I’ll be honest. I haven’t seen it.」
「I thought so!」
Mio and Reina jumped on the opportunity.
In my defence, the clock feature was really interesting.
「The tournament starts in five days. With a deadline to level up their skills, a lot of players are becoming really active now.」
「Hmm, is that so…」
「Have you seen the outskirts of Remut? So many players are running around right now trying to clear the doppelganger event.」
It wasn’t just my imagination.
There was a reason behind why the town was getting a lot livelier.
「Hey Fiona, are you guys going to participate in the tournament?」
「No way, there’s no way I would match up against any of the top players.」
「But it definitely looks interesting!」
「We’re planning on training deep in the forest for a while too.」
「What? But I wanted to watch…」
「I don’t care about the preliminary round, but at least let us see the real tournament!」
「Well, if the schedule allows us to make it back in time…」
「Well change the schedule then! We can’t change when the tournament starts!」
「I’m sure looking at other players’ fighting styles will be good for us too.」
「Hmm… Alright but we’ll be seriously busy if we watch the preliminary matches too. Just settle for the real tournament, alright?」
「A compromise, but OK!」
「Oh, and also only if Saki is okay with it.」
What a fine display of unity.
Hmm… A tournament, huh.
Of course, I was interested in how other players fought.
And not to steal from Mio, but it would be good to watch and learn from other players’ fighting styles.
「Hey Keith, what are you going to do?」
「I don’t know, but for now I’ll focus on doing quests.」
「Yeah, I think that’s the better course of action.」
「Oh? Why’s that?」
「The tournament is a series of one-on-one fights. In other words, no Summon Monsters allowed.」
「What!? That completely removes elves from the equation doesn’t it? If they can’t summon spirits, you can’t even call them elves anymore.」
「That can’t be helped Keith, the fights would be extremely one-sided if you could summon a whole army to fight for you.」
「But why would they ban Summoners from using Summon Monsters!? What is this? At least have a team fight tournament!」
I reminded myself a little of how Reina lashed out against the GMs last time.
It might’ve been just a temporary fit of anger though.
It would be really disadvantageous for me to participate.
Guess I’ll ignore the tournament this time…
「Oh, Reina, there’s something I wanted to talk to you about.」
「It’s about this.」
I pulled out my broken Kaya Rod from an《Item Box》.
I bowed deeply at Reina.
「I’m sorry. You went through such great lengths to make it for me too. I was careless and, well, you can see the results of that here.」
「Wow! How’d you manage to break it?」
「It was a Snow Ape. I used the rod to block a body slam.」
「All this damage from just a single attack…」
「Yeah. The further you go, the scarier the monsters get. Sorry.」
「No! Don’t worry about it, I understand!」
「Would a repair be too much to ask?」
「It would be a lot faster and cheaper to just get a new one!」
「Well then, I’m putting in a request for another one of these.」
「Alright. I’ll be working on it but since we’re moving to Legias and training in the forest, it might take a while until it’s ready!」
「That’s a pity.」
「Hey, if you really need it earlier you could go to an NPC store? Or a carpenter’s workshop, there’s definitely going to be another Wood Worker there!」
「You think so? No, I guess you’re right…」
「If you have plenty of money, why don’t you put it to getting full leather armour? It looks like a better investment than another rod.」
「Yeah… There’s some still some parts not fortified with Evil Ant Shells.」
That was definitely something I wanted to fix too.
I had quite a few of them from all the Evil Ants I killed last night too.
Oh, that reminds me.
「Fiona, could I ask you to take some more items off of me?」
「Well, as long as it’s not too much. And also, no logs please.」
「Just some Evil Ant Stings and Pheasant Eggs.」
「Well that should be alright.」
Mio latched onto the word “egg”.
But even she was amazed at the number.
We counted a total of 32 eggs.
It wasn’t a lot, but I decided to sell the Wild Rabbit Skin and Wild Rabbit Meat too.
I’d stayed for too long.
After finishing everything, I quickly left the place.
「Thanks. See you guys later.」
「Give our best regards to Saki too.」
「Let’s protect each other in case of any PK incidents.」
With a single bow, I walked away from their folded-up tent.
There was something I absolutely had to take care of.
I looked around for another nice place to eat.
Race Human Male Racial Lv6
Job Summoner Lv5
Bonus Points Remaining: 19
Staff Lv5 Punch Lv3 Kick Lv3 Joint Lock Lv3 Throw Lv3 Evade Lv3 Block Lv3 Summon Magic Lv6
Light Magic Lv3 Wind Magic Lv4 Earth Magic Lv3 Water Magic Lv3 Fire Magic Lv3 Dark Magic Lv3（↑1）
Alchemy Lv3 Pharmacy Lv3 Glassmaking Lv3
Cooperation Lv5 Appraise Lv5 Identify Lv5 Discern Lv1 Cold Resistance Lv2 Grab Lv5 Horsemanship Lv4 Precise Manipulation Lv5 Jump Lv1 Heat Resistance Lv3 Climb Lv2（↑1）
Kaya Wood Rod (Broken) Wild Rabbit Breastplate+ Series Snow Ape Armguard Wild Horse Boots+ Snow Ape Leather Helmet Rucksack Item Box x2
Old Summoner’s Pupil（New!）
Guardian of the Forest
Man of the Middle Path
Volff Wolf Lv5 (Asleep)
Zangetsu Horse Lv3
Helix Hawk Lv3
Obsidian Owl Lv3
Jean Bat Lv3 (Asleep)
Jericho Wood Golem Lv3 (Asleep)