Translator: SaltyTank Editor: SaltyTank
Soran opened his eyes slowly.
For the past month or so, torrents of 0’s and 1’s would flash through his mind whenever he tried to lift his eyelids and cause intense pain as if his brain had exploded. His senses of feeling and consciousness were hazy, and his body was numb, like he was being constantly electrocuted. Soran could vaguely hear and sense his surroundings, but there was nothing he could do when even something as simple as lifting a finger was beyond his reach.
_I have to wake up._
_No, I must wake up soon!_
Even though he had no idea why he was suddenly reincarnated into this mysterious world, Soran knew the little girl near him was in danger.
The little girl, who had been taking good care of him, was in grave danger!
Her name was Vivian, an eight-year-old girl with long, blonde hair. She had two cute dimples on her cheeks whenever she smiled.
She was also Soran’s half-sister.
A lot of slave dealers were aiming for her, as they were sure that the young girl would grow up to become a splendid beauty. They only had to keep her alive for a few years before she could be sold for a good price. An orphan who relied on her unconscious brother; there could not have been an easier target.
This was an evil world. Soran could tell that the dealers had repeatedly tried to break into the house during the past month, even though his senses were fuzzy. They were wary of the dog named Heath, thus their attempts all ended in failure, but Vivian was in danger nonetheless. She would be kidnapped the moment Heath was no longer by her side.
_This can’t go on. I must get up now!_
Soran howled with rage in his mind. His memories of his previous life began to fade, and the memories of the entity named ‘Soran’ in his mind were gradually dwindling as well. The only thing on his mind was waking up from his coma—waking up to protect the poor little girl beside him.
She could not last forever like this; the slums were not a place for a beautiful young girl like her.
As far as he could tell, two of the evil-doers were discussing a plan in which they would poison the dog named Heath and sell Vivian to Sofia the slave dealer.
It would happen very soon; it was only a matter of time.
If he could not wake up in time, the young girl would face an unbearable fate!
A void of endless darkness.
Soran’s head was still filled with countless 0’s and 1’s, while weak electric currents surged through every part of his body. He could vaguely remember things about his previous life, and a muddy memory was forcefully implanted into his mind soon after.
It was a painful process.
Enduring the pain that seemed to have torn his soul apart, Soran gradually remembered the incident in the revitalization pod. His consciousness was in the virtual world at that time, and the silhouette of a wizard in a black cloak flashed through his mind. Bolts of lightning—the wizard released bolts of lightning from his fingertips, and the attack was so powerful that it might just have broken his soul.
Inside his fuzzy consciousness.
A teenager with black eyes and ashy blonde hair appeared.
With a slightly immature look on his face, the teenager held out his arms and reached out to Soran. “Please protect her!
“Don’t let anything harm her!”
Soran’s mind turned cloudy once again as if he just had a lengthy dream. A dream in which a lot of things had happened. A dream which was actually the memories of another person named ‘Soran.’
‘He’ was completely gone.
The entity had vanished without a trace, leaving behind only the name ‘Soran,’ because the current Soran felt that he should at least keep the name of the body’s previous owner.
After all, it seemed that the teenager had willingly let go of his ego, as it was the only way the current Soran could take control of the body and bring an end to the lengthy coma.
‘His’ name was Soran.
Thus he was also named Soran.
The past no longer mattered.
The only thing that mattered right now was waking up from his dreams and protecting the child named Vivian before she ended up being captured.
Countless electric currents passed through his body, shocking him.
The seemingly infinite 0’s and 1’s finally came to an end, and it was at that very moment that Soran felt that his soul was once again full of vigor. He forcefully suppressed the rampaging currents and numbers in his mind with the extra spiritual energy. Great pain wracked his brain like a bolt of lightning, cracking his brain to bits.
All of a sudden, Soran opened his eyes, and a nostalgic view appeared in front of him.
Attributes: Strength 12, Dexterity 19 (+1), Constitution 15, Intelligence 18 (+1), Wisdom 15, Charisma 16
Alignment: Lawful Evil
Profession: Level 5 Commoner/Level 1 Rogue 【Grade 1】
Health Points (HP): 12/12
Experience Points (EXP): 150 【Unassigned】
Skill Points: None
Attribute Points: None
Status: Weak (Soul Rebirth)
Profession Skills: Sneak 20, Steal 35, Pick Lock 45, Snare 15
Legendary Skills: Omnipotent Hands 【Sealed】(Weakened Soul)
Personal Abilities: Nimble Left Hand, Eidetic Memory
Soran slowly regained his consciousness and stared at the screen floating in the air. He finally recalled the important details; he was in a virtual game world when the revitalization pod accident occurred. The 0’s and 1’s that filled his mind for the past month were most likely from the backflow of data from the game that ended up in his mind. During that period, all he could see were numbers, and it was only now that the data had finally integrated into his brain.
He was startled.
Soon, Soran regained his composure and focused his mind.
_Did the data really integrate completely? If so, does that mean my brain is now a biological computer?!_
_Let’s try this…_
_Assign 150 EXP to the profession Commoner!_
A torrent of warmth flowed through his torso.
Soran was shocked that he could now feel his four limbs. The numbness had finally faded, and he could now feel the energy and strength in his body.
“Profession Commoner is now Level 10. Base Class has reached its maximum level!”
“Obtained 25 Skill Points!”
The list of familiar text appeared in front of his eyes.
Soran was overwhelmed with joy, as everything was just the same as the virtual game he was playing before.
Before the incident occurred, he was inside a virtual world playing the game <<Clash of the Titans>>. It was an extremely popular game at the time, as the company that had released it announced that they had made a technological breakthrough, granting the game a fidelity rate of one hundred percent while other games were still at around seventy-five percent.
The news caused a massive uproar in the Earth Federation as everyone swarmed to obtain a copy of the game for themselves.
The new feature attracted numerous players from other games, Soran included. Not only was the game amazing, the game pods the company sold were also first-rate goods with incredible design. The fantasy-themed pods were decorated with delicate glowing magic formations Soran couldn’t help but be impressed by.
The virtual world was a crucial realm in the world Soran came from. The age of interstellar travel required a lot of talented people who could learn and pass on the complicated knowledge necessary to develop various new technologies. These all required people to have extraordinary memory and calculation skills.
The beginning of the virtual world was nothing too fancy. It originated from a study that proved that by stimulating the right half of the brain with weak electric currents, people could enhance their memorization and calculation skills, unleashing three to ten percent of the true potential of the right half of the brain.
In a sense, it was a study that aimed at achieving a biological computer; some people even had computer chips implanted into their heads.
The downside of this method was that the effects would only appear after a long period of time, and the process was rather costly.
In order to tackle the disadvantages of the original method, people came up with the idea of virtual gaming worlds, and it soon became a sector and industry of paramount importance.
“Games are virtual activities simulating the real world created for the sake of the growth of children (humans and animals alike).” —Summary of Plato’s definition of playing and games.
Games were important before beginning systematic learning even in ancient times.
The boring feeling people got from systematic learning mostly stimulated the left brain only, and those memories would fade over time, which was why the knowledge people learned during secondary schooling was often forgotten after a few years.
Stimulation of the right brain required strong emotions. Studies and research showed that the right brain had much more processing power than the left brain, and people could even remember everything they had seen before if they could utilize the memory space of the right brain. This was a revolutionary discovery, as the right half of the brain was said to have more than a million times the latent potential of the left half of the brain.
Even though the abilities of the right half of the brain were yet to be completely utilized, the difference could still easily reach a hundred thousand times.
As people had to memorize complicated equations and technological details for their work, a lot of jobs required their employees to have awakened a minimum of twelve percent of their brain potential. This allowed people to quickly absorb the professional knowledge and confidential information they would be granted after officially becoming an employee. The use of machinery and robots had rendered a lot of people jobless, as physical jobs were basically non-existent. At the same time, the need for talented people in technological research and machinery skyrocketed, as machinery required maintenance and further development.
The lower class of society had nothing to do, thus they turned to the realm of gaming, as it was cheap. The humongous number of players further propelled the development of the gaming industry.
A research study stated that people could effectively stimulate their brain power to up to three hundred percent of their current level when situated in disastrous environments in virtual worlds.
This had a significant impact on the development of utilizing the potential of the human brain. Even though people would subconsciously remind themselves that it was not real, the intense stimulation to the right brain was still several times more than in conventional methods.
The higher the fidelity of the game, the more effective the game would be in stimulating brain development, which would, in turn, raise the chances of awakening one’s potential.
It was only increasing the odds from 1 to 3%, but it was already groundbreaking at the time, as the highest stimulation rate in the real world was 1.5%.
This was the reason a lot of people indulged in the virtual world for lengthy periods of time before they could be employed.
It was a seemingly endless process which was also sort of unfair, because the only thing that mattered was your brainpower and nothing else.
Before the accident, Soran was controlling his avatar, which had the profession of Legendary Rogue, and was about to enter the Shadow Temple to obtain a piece of Epic-grade equipment, which would make him semi-divine. He had already noticed the limitations of the Rogue profession and knew that he would be at a disadvantage during the battle of the gods in the future if he did not have the status of semi-divine.
Soran had already reached Level 20 in his advanced profession. The special skill he had chosen was Omnipotent __ Hands.
“Omnipotent Hands 【Legendary Skill】: Legendary Rogues have skillful and agile hands, granting them a +5 rating when using a profession-related skill. Furthermore, the user will automatically have a rating of Master User when using any type of weapon in combat.”
Theoretically speaking, Omnipotent Hands granted Soran the ability to use all sorts of tools and weapons. It didn’t matter whether it was the treasure of the gods or weapons and armor with peculiar restrictions; he could equip them all without any problems.
It was the most well-known skill of the Rogue Class, and it was also a shamelessly overpowered skill, which made a lot of players jealous.
If not for the lack of combat prowess after entering the realm of legends, most players would have revolted already. After all, rogues could use a wide variety of equipment after obtaining the skill; let alone advanced wizard spell scrolls, they could even equip divine equipment, which tended to have harsh requirements, with almost no drawbacks.
<<Clash of the Titans>>
It was a game with a strict profession system that made further advancement in a profession ridiculously difficult. Raising the level of Commoner did not grant any attribute points and did not even raise the base HP of the player.
The only thing players would get from levelling up Commoner was 25 skill points.
Players would only earn one attribute point for every two levels when they leveled up an advanced profession.
By now, his senses had mostly recovered.
When Soran opened his eyes again, it was already morning.
Vivian’s petite body was lying next to him. Ever since he showed signs of waking up, the little girl was so glad that she did not sleep at all. She busily took care of various things before she finally gave in to fatigue and fell asleep.
A sense of numbness and pain.
Soran felt like he had been electrocuted by a lightning bolt when he tried to lift his fingers.
There were still remnants of the electric currents in his body, and numbers still flashed through his mind even though he was conscious. Soran could not help but wonder if he had become a living biological computer. In his previous world, a first-rate scientist who once made countless breakthroughs contributed his own brain to biological computer development after his death. Human brains were then proven to be powerful components for constructing supercomputers.
Brain chips were also developed based on that very research.
Soran regained control over his body when the shocking pain subsided. Sluggishly, he sat up and looked at Vivian.
“Bro… Big brother!”
Vivian’s eyes snapped open as she tightly held his arms while crying.
“You’re finally awake! Vivian was so worried…!
“There were a lot of bad guys! They wanted to sell me to the slave dealers!
“Tha…Thankfully Heath was there to protect me. If not, I would have been sold already!
Vivian glanced at the door and suddenly trembled. She freed her arms, tottered to the dog’s side, and held him in her arms.
“Heath?! What’s wrong!” she anxiously shouted.
“Don’t scare me!
“Please don’t scare Vivian like this!
“Heath, wake up please… Please bark! I beg you!”
Drops of tears dripped to the floor.
Vivian held the dark-yellowish dog in her arms as she wailed bitterly.
The body of the old dog was already icy.
He lay quietly near the door and slept peacefully.
His name was Heath, a glaz hound; a ferocious yet kind dog which could kill a leopard during his prime.
But he was already old.
He had been closely following the little lady named Vivian around, protecting her ever since her brother Soran fell into a coma.
He had not properly rested in half a month, as only he could fend off the bad guys and protect Vivian.
He was exhausted, tired, and starving.
Even Vivian was starving herself as there was no food left; Heath could only turn toward mice, which he had once labelled ‘cheap and unworthy’ food.
Unfortunately, he was weak due to the irreversible and unstoppable process of aging.
Heath was hungry and lacked energy, but due to his instinct to protect his master, the elderly dog was able to make it through the difficult times.
Soran had finally awakened from his sleep.
Heath had completed his final mission.
He was too old to endure the harsh life any longer; thus, he lay quietly near the door and slept peacefully.
He slept peacefully for all eternity, never to awake again.
*[advantage]: by having their erection in contact with her
*[ cent bills]: China has cents in bills called jiao
*[Guoshu]: Guo here means country and shu means technique
*[ 190 centimeters]: Over 6ft tall
*[Lake Cui]: Cui Hu, also means Green Lake
*[hundred dyuan bills]: 100yuan is their biggest bill
*[Daoist Fierce Tiger]: The author of this novel
*[Noodles]: made of wheat
*[Rice Noodles]: made of rice
*[Zhang Tian Tian]: Tian means sweet
*[Bajiquan]: Also known as Eight Extremities Fist, but Bajiquan sounds nicer to me
*[Long Taos]: side characters in Chinese operas who perform acrobatics and fight scenes
*[12.47 to 13.07]: don’t ask me about the tree sap