Chapter 359: The Dragon’s Roost
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Author's Corner: Just a heads up, I've finally finished Volume 5 of World Keeper. There are still over two weeks of chapters in the queue on Patreon, during which time I will be working on the side story to accompany this volume. If it takes longer than that, there will be a brief pause in releases.

 

Sadly, taming the dragon all at once was not enough to get me all the way to level one hundred as a monster tamer. Not even close, in fact. However, it did seem to be worth quite a lot, still. My level in that class increased all the way up to fifty in one go before stopping. By the time it was done, I hesitated for a moment, before taking a good, long look at my information page.

Name

Dale Mitchell

Race

Lycan(Keeper)

Health

18755/18755 (3639981/3639981)

Mana

35926/35926 (1634724/1634724)

Strength

59(1308)

Ki

15322/15322 (2036520/2036520)

Stamina

80(1364)

Intelligence

121(1210)

Dexterity

93(1252)

Wisdom

126(1748)

Luck

42(654)

Charm

54(681)

Class List

Alchemist 1(236)

Archer 13(245)

Architect 0(149)

Archmage 8(149)

Armorer 0(199)

Artisan 0(149)

Assassin 26(152)

Bard 0(184)

Berserker 0(173)

Black Knight 0(48)

Blacksmith 5(199)

Carpenter 1(154)

Chef 0(149)

Cleric 0(168)

Crusader 0(132)

Druid 31(199)

Enchanter 12(203)

Engineer 0(299)

Fallen Priest 0(13)

Farmer 0(199)

Gambler 0(152)

Guard 0(201)

Herbalist 15(243)

Hero 7(159)

Hunter 0(199)

Jeweler 0(142)

Knight 0(203)

Leader 1(193)

Leatherworker 0(211)

Mage 114(268)

Martial Artist 15(249)

Merchant 0(149)

Miner 0(149)

Monk 24(231)

Monster Tamer 50(199)

Ninja 54(199)

Noble 1(99)

Painter 0(149)

Paladin 0(149)

Pirate 10(149)

Priest 16(232)

Rogue 7(209)

Scholar 8(232)

Scout 27(199)

Sculptor 0(199)

Shaman 12(199)

Spirit Hunter 21(149)

Spirit Tamer 28(149)

Swordsman 6(203)

Tailor 0(199)

Templar 0(149)

Warrior 21(274)

Weaponmaster 0(211)

Advanced Classes

Elementalist 23(157)

Elemental Monk 19(134)

Martial Spirit 0(258)

Perfect Self 0(218)

Saint of Five Lights 21(21)

Summoner 11(161)

World Spirit 1(291)


While my own level growth hadn’t been too extreme before this jump, I had to say that it looked like Tsubaki’s training of the invasion forces seemed to be apparent. Assuming that some of those level jumps could be attributed to that training. It would be pretty easy to find out, if the levels dropped back down after they were sent away.

“We’re heading back, Dale.” Terra called out to tell me. “Most of us can’t stay down here too long without draining our energy.”

I gave a small nod towards the deities, smiling towards them. As they left, I turned to face the dragon which had now become bonded to me. So… I don’t suppose you have a name?

I probably should have expected its response, if I was to be totally honest with myself. What is a name? Sadly, I knew that it wasn’t just trying to be poetic.

A name is… something people use to verbally identify one another. I’m called Dale, for instance.

The dragon paused for several long moments, simply staring at me. Following that… well, we got into a brief debate over why verbal identification was important, when you could tell people apart by their appearance. Let’s just say… we were there for a while.

In the end, we decided to settle on the name Fafnir. Meaning that neither of us could really come up with a name, so I just thought of the first dragon that came to mind. He didn’t have any objections with the name, so it ended up sticking.

Are you okay to fly? I asked once the naming ‘ceremony’ had been finished.

You did not injure my wings, so I should be able to fly. His response earned a faint nod from me, before I sent him a brief command to follow. To be honest, I considered riding atop him, but… first of all, he doesn’t know where we’re going, and secondly I wanted to work up to that. No point making him uncomfortable so early on.

After Leowynn returned to my own soul, I took off back towards the Sky Citadel. As we drew nearer and nearer, I was able to make out a figure standing upon the edge of the cliff. Tsubaki, her scythe fully drawn. Her legs were shaky, her expression pale as she stared at me. Or rather, past me, her eyes tracking the dragon.

Someone, quickly please let Tsubaki know that Fafnir isn’t chasing me! I urgently sent the message towards the others, worried that Tsubaki might use the last of her strength for a desperate attack if she thought that I was fleeing for my life from the ‘great dragon’.

Sure enough, I could see her hesitate, blinking in confusion. Her scythe vanished, the smallest bit of color returning to her expression. She took a couple of steps back, away from the ledge, and simply waited. As soon as I landed, Fafnir flapping his wings heavily in the air to hover just beyond the barrier, she offered a polite bow.

“I apologise for my rudeness, my Keeper. I did not expect you to bring it home with you.”

I shook my head, waving my hand dismissively. “It’s fine… neither did I. But, one thing led to another… and I guess you could say that I’ve tamed him. We’ve just got to find him a suitable hunting ground, since… I really don’t think that anyone could be expected to properly cook the level of meals that he would need.”

She gave a simple nod at that, standing up straight again to glance towards the dragon over my shoulder. After asking for his level, she sank into thought. “No monster in the discovered territories of Fyor could feed it. Similarly, there aren’t enough large creatures in Desbar, and most of the large monsters of Deckan would not provide enough nutrients.”

“I would suggest taking him to Earth. There is a human island off the coast of their continent known as Rokindrol. A number of large sea creatures tend to live in the surroundings of that island. More than one disaster has even appeared there in the past.”

“Thank you. Thank you, very much.” I expressed my sincere gratitude. For Fafnir, the biggest concern really was food. Everything else could be handled over time, including training him to use all of the powers at his disposal.

Aurivy, is there an area near Rokindrol that would be suitable for him to build a nest?

Moments after I sent that message off, I got a surprisingly eager response. Yup! It’s a heavily mountainous island, so there are lots of places to put your new dragon! Want me to give him a lift?

I gave a small nod, briefly warning Fafnir that we were about to move. I could see him ready to shift his flight again, before the golden mists surrounded us. When it dispersed, darkness clouded my vision. It was night-time in this part of Earth, causing my eyes to take a moment to adjust.

Aurivy had placed us directly above the mountain range that she had mentioned. Scattered peaks could be seen below, as well as the lights of several cities in the distance. Pointing down towards the mountains, I sent a message to Fafnir, letting him know that he could make his home there. Are you comfortable with hunting creatures in the water?

As long as they are not too deep, I believe? His response seemed a bit uncertain, making me mentally add aquatic techniques to the list of things that we would have to teach him. Still, it was better than nothing, so I told him simply not to hunt anything around my own size. It wouldn’t offer much in the way of nutrition for him, and would keep him from accidentally hunting people.

As Fafnir descended towards the mountains, I let out a long sigh, moving to head into the citadel. Naturally, Tsubaki followed along, barely a step behind me. “You seem like you could use some rest, my Keeper. Do you wish for me to prepare a meal?”

I shook my head, denying that. “No, I’m not hungry, just tired. And, I think that you need the rest far more than I do, Tsubaki.” I turned my head to look at her in concern, only to see her lowering her head. “It’s fine. You get some rest. Or did you think that you’d be able to resume our regular training if you can barely hold your weapon?”

Tsubaki’s head shot up, her eyes going wide as she processed that for a moment. Eventually, she nodded, giving another polite bow. “Then, I will excuse myself for the evening, my Keeper.” After she said that, she began walking at a hurried pace inside, clearly choosing to take her imposed break seriously.

As for me… I chose to go to my own room. After using my divine technique twice like that, I could already feel my soul growing weaker. I had to get some proper rest myself, or I wouldn’t be any good to anyone.

So… is this a bad time? Udona spoke up into my mind as I moved through the halls, heading towards my bedroom.

What is it, Udona? I did my best to keep my tone gentle, worried that she might be coming with bad news, given how she had asked that.

Well, I was just wondering… what do you want me to tell the guild? It took me a moment to realize that she meant her guild from Vision Expanse. They’ve started convincing themselves that Tebor is you. I can just make up a story and tell them that I met you in a different game, but I wanted to check before I lied to them like that.

As I moved into my room, falling back onto my bed, I let out a long sigh. Can they be trusted?

In my opinion, absolutely. Even with my own identity, none of them have done anything. They’re the first mortal group that I can honestly say I’ve been able to get so close to.

Her response brought a small smile to my face, before I closed my eyes and gave the idea some serious consideration. Okay, you can tell them the truth. But make sure that they know that they can’t tell anyone. And I don’t want any special treatment in the game or anything… I probably won’t even log in for a couple of days. It depends on how long it takes me to recover my soul.

There was a touch of concern to Udona’s tone after she heard that. Are you alright, Dale? Injuries to the soul should never be taken lightly.

I’m fine, Udona. It’s not an injury. I just have to recover after the use of that technique. I should be good as new before too long. Assuming Fafnir doesn’t eat somebody’s dog.

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