Desire (Mogma) - Chapter 9
Editor: killme (Krish)
Is it a monster, or a player or NPC instead? The moment he heard the rustle, Ajin’s head spun fast. Either way, it didn’t matter, he just wished that it wasn’t a monster. As he won’t be able to ask the monster.
Fortunately, it wasn’t a monster. So is it an NPC or a player instead? Ajin thought, as he watched the girl carefully coming out of the bushes. It wasn’t until the day before Ajin realized that in this fucking game, there’s no way to tell NPC from players with the naked eye. It is useless to distinguish between NPC and players in online games for single player games, but it was difficult in many ways to distinguish both of them in an online game like this.
“…who are you?”
The girl asked with a nervous face, looking at Ajin who was standing absentmindedly. She asked quite calmly, but the backstabbing feet and the startled face seemed a little scared. Ajin did try for a moment to consider how it was necessary to act. Is she an original character? No. He didn’t know who that girl was. Then what the hell is she?
“Oh, I’m sorry to surprise you.”
She raised her lips and smiled, he relaxed his eyes and raised his chin. Her voice was somnolent and the coldness in her voice was not visible and she acted familiar with Ajin. If it was a classic game that had a low level AI and a fixed story and conversation, all of the Single player games nowadays are fully free-form AI and NPC is being implemented. Of course, single games have set goals and endings, so even if they are freestyle AI, they can develop the conversation and story they want through keywords. Like for example,
The weather is nice today.
Yes, I’m telling you.
While this conversation was going on between the player and the NPC,
‘The sun is so hot that I’m going to get ripen.’
When he spit out that sentence, which was designated as a keyword, the story unfolds in the way that NPC recites certain major lines.
But Ajin was never content to reach that target with only those keywords. According to a reporter on virtual reality games, Ajin is famous for his hardcore style. The story, which was aimed only at keywords, lacks the quality of fun. He wanted a perfect AI that was no different from a human being, so he thought, why insist on a simple keyword-based conversation over such an attractive play? So Ajin played and attacked games in all sorts of ways. Since the keyword was for the sake of play, it was possible to attack without having to insist on the keyword. So Ajin tried all sorts of things by digging a game, an NPC, and a situation.
For him, acting was quite simple. He wants perfect AI that can be just like humans. He thought that favorability comes after the first impression, and then it is the face, expression, voice, height, speech that makes it perfect. To have a face that is likable to someone you’ve never seen before
It was easy for Ajin.
“Oh, no. I’m just a little surprised. I never imagined I’d run into anyone else in a place like this.”
The girl shook her hand in amazement at Ajin’s apology and said what he intended to say, seemed to have worked, so Ajin decided to continue the acting he chose just now.
“Who are you looking for?”
Ajin asked, recalling the name the girl called as she came out of the bushes, and the girl nodded her head. She gazed at Ajin with careful eyes as she caught hold of the robe she was wearing.
“Yes, he’s my colleague. I don’t see where he went.”
Ajin took a closer look at the girl. Brown hair tied back, white face with some freckles. The overall assessment was that she has a pretty cute face, but what he wanted to see now was not a face. Ajin looked at the long wooden stick hanging behind the girl’s back. Is that a spear or a stick? No. That’s a staff.
After a brief look at the girl, Ajin couldn’t tell if she was an NPC or a player yet. If she had a colleague, then is she a player? Is she hunting with a party?
“…Oh, I’m late to introduce myself. My name is Ajin.”
“My name is Lucelle.”
Lucelle smiled awkwardly. Ajin slightly clasped his hand and asked again, blooming.
“…Are you a player?”
“What? What do you mean?”
Lucelle asked back, tilting her head, and Ajin was silent for a moment. Doesn’t she know? Is she an NPC, then? There was no reason for a player to hide. He didn’t know if she had a plan in her mind, but Ajin put off his speculation about it for now. Let’s just say she is an NPC. An NPC in this world who seemed to not know a player’s existence.
“Oh, no. May I help you find your colleague, if you don’t mind?”
Frankly, hee wanted to ask first where he was, but if that happens, the NPC, which doesn’t know about the player’s existence, would find it strange. He didn’t want to be treated like that, so Ajin decided to talk to Lucelle to some extent.
“Yes, thank you. May I ask you a favor?” Smiling and speaking softly over and over again seemed to be quite effective. Lucelle’s smiling face seemed a little tense, but it was much better than it was at first.
” Could you explain what’s going on about your colleague?”
“Yes, Carl’s a prosecutor and is my age. He’s got a long-sourced waistband. He has a short haircut. He’s not that big. He’s…”
“Okay. Shall we look for him together or separately?”
“Oh, yeah. Let’s do it together. If we do it separately, it’ll be hard for us.”
Lucelle spoke hesitatingly, and Ajin nodded at the remark. Lucelle thought for a moment to look at Ajin, then turned around and went back into the bushes that she had come out. He said, “Together,” so he just followed. Ajin slightly clenched his fist, then bloomed and followed Lucelle.
“It’s quite late, why are you in this forest?”
“It’s full moon today, so I’m here to hunt for the full moon in this forest.”
Ajin’s eyes narrowed at her reply.
“Full moon? What is it?”
It wouldn’t be so strange to ask about that. Indeed, Lucelle explained without much doubt.
“Full moon herb is an herb that blooms only in the Forest of Silence which we are situated now. It only blooms on full moon nights, and when the sun rises, it sets. It’s not very rare, but we have a lot of use for it, so I and Carl usually come to pick it up regularly.”
There was something Ajin was curious about in the words that Lucelle explained. It seemed that the name of this forest was. the Forest of Silence.
“Are you living nearby?”
“Yes. I live in a city outside this forest.”
Ajin nodded as she memorized Lucelle’s explanation. So, this forest is the Forest of Silence and there is a city near it.
“Looking at the staff in the back, you must be a magician. Which school do you belong to?”
“Ahh. I’m working in Callias.”
As if pleased to say she is a magician, Lucelle blushed and laughed. The Callias School. When he searched through the magic library, he had certainly seen it. It’s blurry, but… he was sure that the Callias she just mentioned specializes in flame magic and elemental magic. Being a student is not yet a member of the Callias school, and if so, it means that your skills will not be much.
“How did you get separated from your colleague?”
“Carls said it’s faster to find them separately, so we tried it… He’s such an idiot. If anything happens to him…”
While saying so, Lucelle smiled cheerfully.
“Well, there’s nothing bad that is going to happen. Because there are no monsters living in this quiet forest. By the way, what have you been doing here?”
It would be convenient if she answered only the questions she was vaguely asked, but she’s asking for nothing. Ajin thought inwardly but didn’t reveal it with expression. He smiled, reciting the answer he had thought of beforehand.
“I’m a traveler. I accidentally came into this forest and got lost.”
“Wow, a traveler? Are you a mercenary or something?”
“Not a mercenary, but… I’m just wandering around here and there.”
At Ajin’s words, Lucelle glistened her eyes and looked at Ajin’s face.
“That’s cool. Carl and I want to go on a trip together someday. Uh-huh, I’m still hesitant because I’m not good enough.”
“Haha, I’m not that good at traveling.”
Before finishing his words, Ajin shut up. He checked the boy walking far away, looking around, and opened his mouth.
“I’m afraid that’s Carls.”
Although it was called a full moon day, the moonlight was not very bright because the trees were high and thick. It was dark, neither Luchel saw Carl nor any full moon herb. But Ajin could see Carl. It was the power of pyrolysis and intubation. The darkness was dimly visible at night and was far away. Improving one’s physical ability is one of the benefits of mastering military prowess.
As she stared into the darkness far away with Ajin’s murmur, Lucelle called him loudly to see if she had really found Carls. Ajin’s eyes saw Carl turn his head, and run towards Lucelle. Carls is a boy with a short body, just as Lucelle had said, and with his usual frame. Seeing him panting and running, the little boy seemed to be in poor shape.
“Lucel! Where have you been…”
Carls, who was about to shout, stopped in amazement at the sight of Ajin standing behind Lucelle’s back. Carls asked, hurriedly lifting the sword.
“Who… who are you?!”
“Hey! What are you doing to the man who helped me find you? This is Ajin. He said he was a traveler.”
Lucelle swelled her cheek, approached him and patted Carls on the shoulder. Carls was wearing an old ladder armor. Carls groaned a short groan as the hand of Lucelle fell on him, who had not put much strength.
“Yes. He got lost in the Silent Forest, right, Ajin?”
Lucelle asked with a smile, and Ajin nodded, smiling face to face. As Lucelle said, Carls gradually relaxed his guard and lowered the sword he had drawn.
“I’m… sorry. I was so surprised that I didn’t know…”
“No, it’s all right. I heard you were going to search for Full moon herb, did you get as much as you wanted?”
When Ajin asked with a faint smile, Carl hesitated and nodded his head. He handed over the small bundle he was holding to Lucelle, who exclaimed, as she opened it.
“Wow! You’ve brought a lot! We can go home now!” With a big smile, Lucelle, who embraced the bundle, turned her head and looked at Ajin. She asked him with her crescent smile.
“Ajin, come with us. We’ll take you to the city.”
“Thank you for that. Then I won’t decline.”
Ajin nodded his head. A forest where monsters don’t come out. Then I don’t have to stay here. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to explore, but it would be better to go to the city first. Maybe there’s a player like Ajin in the city, or maybe even a quest.
The quest for the Silent Forest, once he has a grasp of the city, it won’t be late. Ajin clasped his hands and unfolded them as he followed Carls and Lucelle, who were chatting.
“Well, what shall I do with those two?”
As soon as they leave the forest, they become useless to Ajin. If he reaches the city, he’ll have plenty of people to tell him what he needs. Then… just kill them ? Ajin thought of his energy drain. Thanks to sucking in quite a lot of energy from Acacia, the level of skill, strength, and inner workings rose considerably. So it wouldn’t be a bad idea to use those two as a sacrifice to build skill levels.
‘Monster or NPC.’
Ajin clenched his hands with determination.
‘If killing helps, then there’s nothing he can’t kill.’