Desire (Mogma) - Chapter 14
It’s boring repetitive work.
He sees a wolf, approaches it then stabs it but he doesn’t kill it. Just drains its energy and pulls out the teeth.
Ajin repeated it over and over again. Since it is a monster with a higher level than him, the black wolf gave a considerable amount of experience. But that wasn’t enough as Ajin’s level reached 12 when he gathered about 170 teeth, he thought there was no reason to be here anymore. Just in time, the inventory was full, so he decided to go back to town without hesitation.
The level of energy drain is 14, mental strength is at level 6, MP is 3,500 and stamina is at 5300. The beginner level potions were already finished. The growth of magic attacks was slow without the major stream, but the number of experience points was enormous thanks to the continuous use of the energy drain. Ajin came out of the forest, smacking his lips. It had already been four hours since he entered the wild forest.
While hunting in earnest, he came to realize many things. First, this game’s monster hunt was quite different from the ones he last played. Previous games used to drop items with a certain probability when catching a monster. Weapons, money, whatever. But the beta is different. The only thing he can get from the monster of the beta is the body parts. If he catches a black wolf, all he can get are its teeth, leather, and its bones. Also, it’s not like items get into his inventory he has to manually skin and pull the teeth out.
‘It’s just like reality.’
The way to catch black wolves over and over again, and pulling out its teeth, Ajin thought. It is no different from reality. This is just a plain“RAW” experience. At least in this game, he thought it wasn’t only that the avatar is so real but also the inventory, skills, stats, login, and logout. Except for Avatar, which includes all that, this virtual world is too faithfully reflecting reality.
‘Usually, with this many items, I’d make a lot of money from it.’
But no, Ajin had already killed countless wolves in the last four hours but he still didn’t make a penny out of it. As for the items, he couldn’t even get a miscellaneous item. He doesn’t know why they gave this realism; they don’t have the simple drop system, but Ajin thought it was not a bad system. This is the first game that has such great realism.
‘If I had enough time, I could have skinned bones, and meat.’
Ajin clicked his tongue. The problem was time. He had taken way too much time. He didn’t regret it, but in order to benefit the most during the month-long beta testing, he has to fill that wasted time quickly. So Ajin boldly gave up the items. He just pulled out the teeth to proceed with the quest.
‘Next is the blue wolf. And the collection of Hanemos.’
Originally, he had to hunt black wolves and collect Hanemos at the same time. But the amount of Hanemos that could be collected from the black wolf’s region was too small. And as he thought he would get a lot more if he went deeper into the forest, and so Ajin had put the collection of Hanemos on hold.
As soon as he came back to the village, Ajin immediately visited the blacksmith’s shop. The owner was smoking and looked at Ajin approaching him.
“Oh, have you collected the teeth of the black wolf I asked for?”
“Yes, I got 170 of them.”
As Ajin said so, he took all the wolf teeth out of his inventory and put them on the table. The owner said in a glad voice, looking at the figure.
“Hey, you got a lot on your hands. A few days ago, there were many people to whom I requested to collect the wolf’s teeth, but today, I’m afraid to say but I wouldn’t have to anymore, thanks to you.”
Ajin smiled at the remark but frowned within his heart. If that’s true, Ajin is the only player here who is absorbed in the quest to collect wolf teeth. The rest have already leveled up.
“Well, it’s a lot, so I’m going to give you a tip. What would you like? I can give you some money or the equipment of your choice.”
At this point, Ajin glanced over the weapons on display in the store. Sword, spear, axe… From dagger to bow to crossbow, there were a variety of weapons with different levels. Armor is about plate armor, chain armor, and Red armor. Ajin, who was looking through it, shook his head.
“No, I don’t need equipment.”
There is no reason to use the equipment. In battle, his own body is enough to use without the use of weapons. But getting armor isn’t very satisfying either. If he wore one, he’d get that much defense, but it doesn’t fit Ajin’s style of fighting.
“Is that so? Then what about money?”
Money, Ajin was silent. There is no harm in having money. I’m sure it will. However, there is no place for Ajin to spend money now. You can buy such a thing as a potion, but now that his mental strength has increased considerably, potions aren’t required. If you are mentally challenged, it would be a good idea to stop hunting, breathe fresh air, and conduct blood poisoning.
“Is there anything else other than money and equipment?”
Ajin asked, still smiling at the NPC. Although it is called ana NPC, the AI is no different from humans. In other words, they don’t just provide a set amount of compensation as is set in the box.
The owner tilted his head, scratching his beard. Looking at Ajin for a moment, he asked, who was not wearing any basic clothes and equipment.
“Are you a Martial Artist?”
“For now, yes.”
His current job is a fighter. He didn’t even learn taekwondo or karate. But that doesn’t mean he uses weapons, he simply amplifies his strength through blood & heart technique. The blacksmith thought for a moment about Ajin’s reply, then nodded his head.
“Well, then I’ll write you a letter of recommendation to Raconda. What do you say?”
“Ms. Raconda…who is that?”
Ajin whispered, and the blacksmith answered the question as if it was alright to ask.
“Raconda is one of the town’s officials. She used to be quite famous as a martial artist, but this village is so rural and has little interaction with other places, I don’t know much about that, but she’s good at it. Look, all of the instructors who teach as a vigilante in this village: they all have been educated by Raconda.”
With that information, Ajin thought for a moment. Money or letter of recommendation. What is more profitable? There was nothing to think about. To be honest, it’s nothing but a gamble, so Ajin nodded.
“Yes, I’d appreciate it if you could write me a letter of recommendation.”
“Well, that’s good. I like it because this option saves me money.”
The owner grinned and brought a pen and wrote him a letter of recommendation on the spot. He then sealed it in an envelope.
“Raconda is probably at home. Ask around and see if there is anyone in this town that can take you to her place.”
Ajin bowed his head when he received the letter. There’s nothing wrong with being polite. Although he is an NPC whom he will never encounter in the future, it is a matter of choice. At Ajin’s greeting, the blacksmith nodded his head with a pleased face.
Ajin, who turned around, asked the NPC for directions and went towards Raconda’s house. Her house was located in a remote part of the village, she was a so-called village official, and here she lived shabbily?!. He was looking at the house, thinking that it might collapse anytime, questioning whether he had been fooled or not. Of course, if he were, for sure he would kill the smithy’s owner.
“Is there anyone here?”
But that’s something he hadn’t confirmed yet. Standing in front of the door across the fence, Ajin knocked. After a while, the door opened.
“Who is it?”
She was a woman who was reminiscent of a well-kept blade. The dark gray hair tied up tightly, a diagonal scar on the cheek and; the eyes. The moment Ajin saw the look in her eyes, he unwittingly stepped back. She had an eye patch around her left eye, but her only eye looked so deep that the end was unknown. And there was a blue blade inside it, which seemed to aim at Ajin.
“I’ve never seen you before. Are you a player?”
Raconda asked, glaring at Ajin. The question made Ajin feel as if he had been hit with a hammer on the head. Player? Lucelle didn’t understand what the word “player” meant neither the owner of the blacksmith nor the vigilante or the wizard whom Ajin met. They didn’t use the word player, but only called Ajin as “mister.”
NPC in this world doesn’t know what players are. They don’t even know that their world is a virtual reality game called “Beta,” and they don’t know that their thoughts are generated by a well-made AI.
But the woman in front of her. Raconda brought up the exact word “player” to Ajin.
Ajin answered in a stuttering voice. His mind has become complicated. What the hell is this woman? NPC? Or a player? Maybe it’s NPC like Acacia. NPC that knows about a player’s existence and that they are just NPCs.
“Oh, no way I’ve got a player coming to me. That’s a good sign. Who are you, Caroline? Primrose? Chrysanthemum?”
Unable to understand the question, Ajin was silent. He looked confusingly at Raconda’s expression. She frowned and spat out as if Ajin’s silence was annoying.
“I’m asking who your helper was. Did you even forget the name of your helper NPC?”
Ajin replied, stuttering, his thoughts were messed up right now. I can’t believe that I’m talking to an NPC. Is this woman really an NPC of the same type as acacia? No, maybe it’s an operator.
“Ah, yes, there was Acacia. Acacia must have picked a pretty good card. Well, that doesn’t matter. So what’s the matter? If you’ve reached this village while exploring then there is nothing to do, go back.”
“…The blacksmith master wrote me a letter of recommendation.”
“A recommendation letter?”
Raconda frowned and asked back. Looking at her expression, Ajin took out the letter he had put in his arms and handed it to Raconda. Upon receiving it, Raconda opened the envelope on the spot, took out the letter inside, and read it.
“Hmmm. I was wondering why you put me here, did you mean to do this? Fucking bastards…”
Raconda muttered an unknown word, then turned around and went back into the house. She turned her head and shouted at Ajin, who was standing there in a daze, not knowing what to do.
Though he had a polite manner on his face, Ajin closed the door without showing any sign of unusual expression. There were still many questions about Raconda, but for now, the letter seems to have worked to some extent. If it helped him any further, Ajin would be grateful for it.
The inside of the house was as dirty just like the exterior. There was little furniture, and it was too old to use. Raconda seemed to live alone, however, even though it was definitely a house where someone lived, her house was completely messed up. The walls were dirty and the floors were rolling with trash, and dust was piled up on the furniture.
“Give me your hand.”
Raconda, who sat roughly with her back pulled out, reached out her hand towards Ajin. At that time, he reached out his hand without a word and gave it to her, she grabbed it by the wrist, closed her eyes quietly. At that moment, Ajin’s body flinched. Something flowed through his wrist and roughly explored Ajin’s body, and the end flowed into his body. A sharp piece of glass in the blood vessel seemed to rip off. Ajin chewed his lips with a cold sweat, but Raconda smiled.
“Okay. You have quite a lot of work to do. Besides, it’s… It’s a strengthening technique, isn’t it?”
Raconda asked as she let go of Ajin’s hand, and as the power of searching within his body was lifted, he took a deep breath and nodded his head.
“Your growth is overwhelmingly fast to build for a beginner. But even if you take that into consideration, your inner body skill is way too much. Is this absorbent skill? No, no. I don’t feel impure for a collection of energy absorbent. Did Acacia give you any special skill?”
“…no. Energy Drain…”
“Pwahaha! Energy Drain? Don’t be ridiculous. No matter how much energy drain you did, your inner workings are abnormally high. What’s your level?”
“That’s more abnormal. But I think I know a little bit. At your level, no matter how many monsters you drain, it would be hard to collect this much energy. Unless Acacia helped.”
At Raconda’s words, Ajin thought deeply. When Ajin had sex with Acacia, he was able to develop his body built and mental strength explosively. Raconda smiled strangely at Ajin’s subtly changed face.
“Huh, I see. Acacia, she’s pretty smart. It’s a strange coincidence, though.”
Raconda, who was giggling, picked up a pipe off the table and bit it in her mouth. Lightly taped it with the tip of her finger, and smoke started to rise. A heavy exhale from her red lips; smoke started to clear up, and Raconda opened her eyes slightly.
“You, get down.”
Raconda shouted loudly as if she would not accept Ajin’s question. Clang! Ajin knelt because of that. The pressure on the shoulders was enormous and heavy! Raconda crossed her legs and looked down at Ajin, who knelt down.
“If you’ve seen the earth, it’s polite to kneel down. Even if you don’t know what the magic is, if you’ve learned how to do it, show it to the world.”
It was fast! His bones were pressed. Pressed is not the appropriate word, but he is rather crushed. Ajin couldn’t lift his head. With his lips barely open, he shouted in a suppressed voice. Raconda laughed loudly with his uproar.
“My name is Heuk Seol Hyang.”
Raconda then pulled her chair back and raised herself. She approached with light steps towards Ajin, who was kneeling. She then reached out and put her hand on Ajin’s head.
“I am Heuk Seol Hyang, the 43rd leader of the White Heavenly Magistrate. Of course, you don’t know this name.”
Raconda, no. Heuk Seol Hyang giggled and slapped Ajin’s hand on the head. Then the pressure on his body disappeared as if it was washed away. Ajin raised his head and looked up at Heuk Seol Hyang that was looking down at him.
“If you don’t know who I was, then now you know who I am.”
As he smirked with his lips, Heuk Seol Hyang laughed.