A Monster Who Levels Up
(This extra chapter is brought to you by these following Kings and Queens of Promise: Misraim V, Anon, Keneth P, Evelyn K. W., Peter S, Markus S, Kevin H, Daniel T, Jan B, Rigo G, Dale B, Zain Z, Erik Å, and Zofia L. Thank you for your donations!!)
(Also, 30 Seconds to Mars reference FTW!!!)
"That, that, please do something!!"
Chaos unfolded below the Griffin flying around in an aloof manner.
The crew member with his arm cut off was sobbing while grabbing hold of the missing limb and the rest of the film crew, unable to even think about running away, simply nagged incessantly at the Knights present.
"Just stand behind us and don’t move!!"
Unfortunately for them, even the Knights were helpless here.
Now normally, in order to hunt down Griffins, services of Hunters specialising in long-range sniping or those Knights capable of exerting delicate control over Mana were needed. But these guys were just a group of escorts consisting of two Mid Tier and another two low Mid Tier Knights.
No one could have imagined that a Griffin might make an appearance in the Low Tier hunting ground today, of all things.
‘It can’t be helped, huh.’
Kim Sae-Jin finally made his decision - to help them out. If he let them be like that, then the Knights might be fine but the film crew would no doubt get 100% wiped out.
So for now, he readied several warning shots. He extracted all the moisture in the ground into his body, before moving them to his mouth.
There was still one more step to go through, though.
Since Griffins feared fire, he thought of converting the water in his mouth into flames and then, shoot.
He wasn’t making that sound deliberately - it was just that, they came out when he ejected water out of his mouth.
But quite unlike what the enthusiasm-draining sound effects suggested, the destructive force behind the streams of flame coming out of his mouth was something else entirely. The flames shot out superfast in a dead-straight line and seriously threatened the Griffin.
The Monster showed an indication of panic at the flames flying at it like lightning and twisted its body this way and that while trying to take evasive actions.
And the Knights as well as the film crew gazed at the flame-spewing unidentified lifeform with a bunch of dazed eyes.
Just what was the identity of this cute creature shooting jets of flame that threatened the Griffin, all the while making the phew, phew sound?
This scene was, honestly speaking, something a person may or may not get to see in ten, no, fifty years or some such. All those present desperately burned this sight into their retinas.
"*rough, angry screeching wail*"
The Griffin let out a coarse roar. At that moment, everyone tensed up.
The Knights moved to protect the horned seal (?) aiding them, from the sudden descent of the Griffin.
But fortunately enough, the airborne creature just circled around once in the sky before flying off to elsewhere.
The Knights could only look on at the sight of the retreating Monster in a daze.
"…It’s coming here."
One of the film crew members muttered out and that jolted the Knights out of their stupor; they got ready for another battle quickly.
But when they saw the figure crawling on the ground towards them, they ended up slowly lowering their weapons.
"Why is it approaching us?"
A Knight murmured audibly.
This strange creature used its two arms to drag itself across the ground and approached the group, until stopping before the crew member who had lost the arm and was currently unconscious from the shock.
Only then, the rest of the film crew and the Knights broke out from the firm grips of this dream-like event and hurriedly got closer to the person with the horrific inj
"…What is it doing?"
But they paused where they stood once more.
This seal (?) was busy spitting out what seemed to be saliva on top of the fainted crew member.
‘The effects of a healing potion, this should be enough, right?’
Sae-Jin had made numerous potions so far, and this body of the Leviathan understood these liquids’ properties well enough already.
A Leviathan could sense the flow of Mana with its body. Even though he could not explain it, this body already knew how to reconfigure Mana present in water to match the properties of a potion.
When the liquid that seemed like the Monster’s saliva landed on the area of the missing limb, a blue haze began rising up from there quite suddenly.
"Uh, this is… Hey man. Hey, where is the severed arm? Is it still usable?"
The Knight who looked like the one in charge shouted out, and another Knight hurriedly went into the thicket to locate the arm and brought it out.
The surface of the wound was horrifically shredded. However, the Knight still brought the limb closer to the bleeding stump of the fainted crew member.
The rest of the film crew had no idea what was going on and it showed on their confused expressions, but all the Knights remained rather very serious.
Because, that blue haze thing was quite similar to what would happen when a potion was used. So, just maybe…
The mountains reverberated with the sounds of people’s exclamations.
The hideously torn arm began to reattach itself.
However, they did not have the luxury to dazedly admire this amazing scene.
There was still one more crew member with the leg torn off at the moment, after all.
"H, hey, can you go over ther… Oh, it’s already going over there."
A Knight let out a hollow chuckle as he spoke.
Even without anyone requesting it, the cute creature was busy crawling towards the wounded person.
"Can you find the leg?"
The tensed up atmosphere became more relaxed at the sudden entrance of a healer. A film crew member pointed towards the base of a tree, where the torn leg from below the knee was located at.
And without any orders, a Knight walked up to it, picked it up and brought it to where the grievously injured was.
The same treatment process occurred once more. When the creature spat out its saliva, the severed limb was reattached back to its place.
"…How the heck is this possible… Ah! Hey, man! Did you get this on film?"
The producer who was watching this scene in a daze belatedly shouted out in a hurry.
Fortunately for him, the cameraman with over ten years of experience was a type of a person who was much more at home looking at things through a camera lens rather than his own eyes.
The producer let out a sigh of relief. They said that in life, a misfortune could be an omen to a lucky event, and so it proved to be true here. From this horrific incident, he ended up getting a huge scoop…
"Let’s get the hell out of this place. Since a Griffin appeared here, we have no time to waste."
A Knight picked up one of the still-fainted crew members over his shoulder and spoke.
"…What about that little guy?"
The female crew member pointed with an unwilling expression at the seal that was laboriously crawling towards a destination unknown. Since it had saved them, wasn’t there some sort of obligation for them to ensure that little creature’s own survival?
"That Monster can easily chase away a Griffin, so you don’t have to worry about its life. But besides that, hurry up, please!! The atmosphere in this place is taking a turn for the worse!!"
The Knights were not moved by her plea. So, the film crew had no choice but to follow them and quickly evacuate from here.
Arriving back home safe and sound, Sae-Jin received a call from Hazeline right away.
– "It’s regarding our Athany doll. The testing of its effects are finished. And the patent registration has been completed as well."
"In only ten days??"
– "Yep. They tested the effects and found that the weakening of the wavelength during the period of ten days was almost zero. And taking into account the differences in the surrounding environment, it was deemed to be zero, so we ended up getting the result of ‘perpetual effect’ really quickly. But seriously, how did you make this doll? A doll type artifact that can restore energy and Mana… Just how were you able to add those magic effects to a doll?"
"Ah… well, I used a variety of methods, you see."
It seemed that the Athany doll’s final classification was decided as an artifact for real now.
Scratching his cheek, he turned on the TV.
– "Did you already figure out a way to sell it?"
"Eh? Oh, that…"
He did think of a way.
No matter how great the effects of the Athany doll was, they could not be determined by one’s eyes alone.
So, if he set the price way too high, then no one would buy it regardless of the product’s rating.
The doll’s main ingredients, a low Mid grade recovery potion and a medium quality Mana Crystal, would cost upwards of $900 grand together. So, if he set the price too low, then not only there wouldn’t be much profit to be made, he might even run into problems in the future when he wanted to raise it.
"I am going to gift one each to the Raven and the Dawn Knights Orders."
So he decided to gift - as a bait - the first two to the most influential Knights Orders out there.
And since the Knights affiliated with famous Orders possessed keener senses, they should be able to realise the benefits within a month or so, which then would lead to rumours spreading around. Especially so with the Dawn’s people, who were already well known to be loose-lipped when it came to posting stuff on SNS.
– "Ahhhh. That might be a good plan as well."
Hazeline easily saw through Sae-Jin’s schemes. His ideas weren’t all that shocking, though. Lately, as the Knights’ influence in the world at large increased, there had been a concurrent increase in the number of private corporations sponsoring Knights Orders while asking them to use their wares in public and what not.
– "If so, would you like me to send one over to the Dawn Order?"
"Yes. Please do."
The conversation ended with that exchange. Sae-Jin turned his attention back to the TV.
Right on cue, it was showing a news broadcast reporting on the disturbance at the Monster field today.
The news was saying that the origin of the disturbance was a Fissure opening up on the ocean floor in the East Coast.
A deluge of powerful Monsters poured out from a Fissure measuring 5.0 in magnitude that had opened there. The resident Monsters in the Mid Tier hunting ground sensed the dangers first and in panic, they tried to distance themselves away from the ocean, resulting in the rushing Monsters, the Disturbance.
The broadcast then said, currently Knights and Wizards had responded speedily, and after freezing the ocean’s surface right above the Fissure, they started the operation to clean out the Monsters.
– However, there was a case of receiving an unexpected aid during all this chaos.
– And that aid was from this mysterious, previously undiscovered and arguably the cutest Monster there is.
Sae-Jin watched the news with a puzzled expression. He sure as hell wasn’t expecting the reveal this soon.
Since they treated it as a huge scoop, he thought the producers would hold it back until their programme was ready to air, but…
– Today, a production team shooting a documentary called ‘The Ecosystem of Monsters’ was attacked by a Griffin…
‘Oh. It’s just an advertisement…’
Sae-Jin understood right away after listening to the anchor’s words. It was likely that they would only show a short clip first, and then tell the viewers to check the rest out when the documentary goes on air.
– Let us take look.
The footage was edited to be as short as humanly possible. It showed a horned creature that looked somewhat like a baby harp seal chasing away a Griffin while phew-phewing flames out of its mouth. After that, it waddled closer to those grievously injured crew members and spat out its saliva which then healed the serious wounds.
– Wasn’t that the most amazing thing ever? Nowadays, stories of Monsters helping people out seem to have increased. There have been witness testimonials of a certain Werewolf rescuing several Knights in the Mid Tier hunting ground as well. And now, the attentions of the public will be captured by this adorable creature for a foreseeable future, I believe.
And with that comment, the segment on Athany had ended.
‘… That was a nice advertisement, that.’
A great timing, it was - the unveiling of the Athany doll coinciding with this news. Feeling utterly satisfied, he was about to turn the TV off, when…
– And this is the next item. A crime attributed to the Mercenary, Lycan, has occurred again. This time, it was in Goseong area of Gangwon Province…
…With those words of the anchor, Sae-Jin did not.
– A cutie that’s also kind…. Such a great little thing. I wanna hug it tightly. [Upvoted 1038] [Downvoted 31]
– But what is its identity? A unicorn seal?! [Upvoted 559] [Downvoted 108]
└ That’s the mascot of The Monster. You can see one when visiting the Yoseon Alchemy House or the Orc’s Forge. It’s such a cutie pie whenever I see it, but it was an actual Monster;;
└ ㅇ ㅇ A reporter already did an interview. Kim Sae-Jin saw it by accident and based the doll on it.
– Our Knights Order has the doll of Athany. ㅋ ㅋ It’s supposedly an artifact, with effects of energy and Mana recovery. But it came in yesterday so can’t tell if it’s true or not. [Upvoted 339] [Downvoted 182]
└ ㅋ ㅋ of course it’s bullsh*t. A doll is an artifact? OOO It’s still ten years too early, looking at how Wizards act nowadays. Seems like your Order is also made up of a bunch of losers.
└;; Do you even have any idea which one I’m affiliated to when running your mouth off?
└ Why should I care. Probably a bottom barrel trashy Order anyway.
The comment sections of news websites were inundated with the story of Athany. But Sae-Jin was getting rather physically uncomfortable with all of this. Because of Athany and the Fissure developing on the ocean floor, the stories most important to him, the Lycan, became buried deep in the pile and showed no sign of emerging at all.
Sighing out grandly, Sae-Jin fell on the couch.
Was it a copycat? There was a distinct possibility of that, but maybe…
‘A full moon?!’
He definitely possessed a special passive buff effect only applicable during the full moon. Called the ‘Night of the Wolf’, all his stats would rise by 15%, and his aggressiveness also became stronger as well.
On top of this, he always went to bed in the Wolf Form, so… it could be a plausible theory.
‘…What the hell is going on?!’
Sae-Jin roughly tousled his hair up as the frustration overwhelmed him.
Why? What is happening to me?
Questions continued to inundate his head.
< 15. A Doubt, An Endeavor (1) > Fin.