Point of Return
The First Quest
When my eyes opened, I was back in Mythos Online. My hands were in front of me as I lay on the mattress of my private room in the guild hall inn. My red hair was messily thrown about the sheets. Without wasting any time, I used [Retrieval] to pick up all my equipment and items scattered throughout the room one at a time and left the room, and headed towards the northern gate of Levendale.
Nightingale told me to follow the road north from Levendale and head toward Freila. There wasn any kind of map interface that I could pull up in front of me so I was more or less stuck with just following my instincts and his vague instructions.
The bright grassy plains transitioned into a deep dark forest which eventually turned into a tundra. The dark green environment of the forest started to turn drab and gray as the trees I passed by became increasingly withered. The temperature drop was immediate and drastic. The temperature continued to drop to right below freezing. The armor that I purchased from Levendale came with a [Cold Resistance I] attribute on it. The player running the armory seemed to know his market well.
I ran instead of walking to make the most of my time. The thick snow began to swallow my boots whole as brilliant white snow fell softly on me. The road was nearly invisible at this point but I could faintly follow footprints left behind by other players.
Unexpectedly, there weren too many footsteps headed in this direction. I wondered why I didn come across too many other players during my journey north. While running, I came across several new monster types. There were frost goblins, icewind bats, frostbite slimes, frigidstone elementals.
Most of these were monster archetypes I came to expect from other fantasy RPGs but the frigidstone elementals were rather unique. They were floating masses of stone and ice held together by a deep blue magic stone engraved with illegible scriptures. The monsters were rated at level 10 so they were just barely within my ability to one-shot them.
Monster levels were good indicators of how intimidating they can be but this was my first encounter with status ailments. These monsters inflicted [Frostbite] so I made sure to keep my distance when fighting them. I wasn sure what happened when you were inflicted with [Frostbite] but I was not about to find out.
I let loose arrows in rapid succession towards a swarm of frostbite slimes. I abused my newfound exploitation of the skill [Retrieval] from the night before by immediately pulling back arrows to my hand one after another as soon as they pierced my targets. This allowed me to deal two instances of damage with a single arrow.
Chunks of slime flew and made splattering sounds on the nearby tree trunks and ice. Five, ten, twenty, the slimes fell in a matter of seconds as I got used to my new combat capabilities. When I thought it was over, a frost goblin scout attempted to ambush me by lunging at me from behind. I was able to detect him before I took any damage as [Perception] allowed me to sense his attack as he got close. I quickly took out my dagger with a flip of my wrist immediately casting [Enhance] on it throwing it straight between the goblins eyes.
The goblin fell a meter away from me. Its body continued to squirm as blood gushed out painting the snow-white ground blood-red. I called the dagger back to my hands with [Retrieval] violently stopping the goblins movement.
[YOU REACHED LEVEL 10]
[Congratulations, your basic skills have advanced to Tier II]
[The range and effectiveness of your basic skills have increased]
[Your skills will advance to Tier III upon reaching level 25]
[Perception II] – Increase the awareness of nearby surroundings.
[Proficiency II] – Increases your proficiency at wielding most weapons and tools.
[Enhance II] – Focus your mana to apply a strengthening effect to an object of your choosing within a short radius.
This was the moment when I learned that each classs basic skills evolve with certain level milestones. There were so many more systems to discover as the developers kept quiet about the game even up to its release.
I didn worry about these systems at the time as I got used to relying on Nightingale to discover all of a new games secrets within two days of its release. Nightingale hasn ever taken this long to crack the code before. Mythos Online was more complicated than both of us thought.
I spent my newly acquired skill point on [Retrieval]; maxing it out.
[Savant Skill Tree]
[Swift Strike LEVEL: 1/5] – Dash a short distance forward and attack enemies with your equipped weapon with 110%/150%/190%/230%/300% of your attack power.
[Retrieval LEVEL: 5/5] – While your equipped weapon is not currently held by you, call the weapon back to your hand so long as its within 3/7/12/18/25 meters of you.
[Efficiency LEVEL: 1/5] – When consuming a resource or ammunition, there is a 15%/20%/25%/30%/35% chance that the cost will be refunded back to you.
Standing atop a hill, I looked down to see Freila.
Freila was a northern city hidden in a valley between two mountain ranges sitting on a hill. The city shined brightly even in the morning with its large sprawling streets riddled with street lamps and large buildings. The lamps and lights in the buildings were on as the sky was completely deprived of sunlight due to heavy clouds and unrelenting snowfall. In the center, at the citys high point, stood an elaborate castle. Surrounding the city was a large castle wall about 20 meters high. All along the outside of the city walls was an unending chasm of ice and darkness as a sheer cliff of a ravine. Inside the ravine, small lights could be seen moving about.
As I got to the edge of the ravine, I saw moving wagons and carts along the side of the ravine. There were miners shoveling chunks of ice and stone and carting them to an elevator connected to the inside of the city from an alcove protruding from the castle walls.
Across from me was an expansive stone bridge large enough to fit two full-sized carriages. The bridge served as the only entrance to the Freila as it spanned across the ravine surrounding the city. Players in carriages and horses rode by me as I made my way to the city gates.
”Halt! Do you have permission to enter Freila? ” a guard NPC suddenly stopped me with a spear pointed directly at my chest.
As he said this, a prompt opened up in front of me obscuring my vision.
[Level Requirement: 10]
The prompt glowed blue before shattering.
”You may pass. ”
The NPC lowered his spear back to his side breaking eye contact with me and the large steel gates slowly swung open.
Immediately in front of me was a pedestrian walkway beside a road meant for carriages. Conversations with between players and NPCs could be heard all around me as the city was far more lively than Levendale ever was. I followed down the walkway with what seemed to be residential two-story buildings on each side of the road. Eventually, the road opened up to a large town square with a fountain three times as large as the one in Levendale. Lining the sides of the fountain were stalls of merchants and various NPCs.
[Freila Commercial District]
The prompt briefly appeared at the center top of my vision before fading away.
I decided my next course was to get in touch with Nightingale. I sent him a message asking him to meet up with me in the commercial district. Before long, he responded.
”Shin! I see you made it to Freila, I went offline for a while to do some research on the game so Im still level 11. I figured this was good anyway so the gap between us is lower. ”
”Ill meet you by the fountain in a few minutes. I got some spicy news to share with you. ” he continued.
While waiting, I took a look through my item pouch to take inventory of what I collected. There wasn anything notable aside from bits and pieces of generic monster loot and a few amber lustres. I took my loot to a nearby merchant stall and sold them for silver coins.
An armory shop across the road caught my attention so I took a look inside.
The layout was almost identical to the one in Levendale. This time, an NPC stood manning the front desk. I browsed their wares along the back wall and a piece of armor caught my attention. It was far more expensive than all the other armor pieces but well within my budget due to the amber lustre exploitation the other day.
It was a heavy black coat with cut open sleeves for the users arms. The length was about down to right below my waist if I were to guess. The coat came with a black fur hood. I inspected the coats stats.
[Ominous Fur Coat]
Strength: 58 | Agility: 70 | Intelligence: 42
Attack: 32 | Magic Attack: 32
DEF: 152 | MDEF: 260
[Life Regeneration I] – Slowly recover your health over time while in combat.
[Cold Resistance III] – Become immune to cold temperatures above -15°C
(?) – Offensive attributes of this equipment are reduced by 30% when equipped by a Savant
These stats were far higher than anything I was currently wearing and it didn replace any of my existing equipment as this was an overcoat. It wasn even enhanced. The stats were incredibly high for a piece of equipment with no required attributes. I figured that was the reason for the extremely high price tag. Whoever crafted this must be lucky or talented.
It seemed like [Proficiency II] decreased the stat reduction from wearing equipment as a Savant. I can only assume that this number will continue to go down as I reach higher tiers. This motivated me to strive for even more levels.
I spent almost all of my silver purchasing the coat and immediately put it on before heading back to the central fountain in the commercial district.
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