Jana stood high above the clouds, her eyes sweeping over the landscape. Presently, she was back in her own world, though she had taken the chance to leave her people. They were safe, she knew, and she needed to gain more experience. Both practical experience, and…
Monk has increased to 534!
Elemental Monk has increased to 219!
Beneath Jana’s feet lay a mountain of flesh and bone, riddled with holes. An Ancestor level star beast known as the Mountain King. For a normal Ancestor level cultivator, she expected that it would take a lot more effort to slay such a creature. In fact, the very thought of it had terrified her years ago.
She recently learned, however, that the current generation of cultivators were blessed. The appearance of this ‘system’ offered a massive boost to their power, compared to any that would start training later. As she trained her ki, her level had initially skyrocketed, and with it her energy rose explosively. In her estimation, she should rank a step above the Ancestor level, and had in fact felt herself at a bottleneck in her training.
Unfortunately for her, she had not yet found the method to break through to the next level yet. Her inner sky had become saturated with dense stars, threatening to break free of her control every time her strength increased again.
As her eyes scanned the horizon, there was a small flicker in her gaze. Thanks to their union with the world of Spica, she had learned new techniques to amplify her abilities, even when it came to the use of her ki. She stepped out, her feet landing on air as if it were solid land. A moment later, a dense cloud appeared beneath her feet, and carried her off into the distance.
“Maybe you’ll have what I need.” She muttered, seeing a larger city on the horizon. Judging from its rundown appearance, she could tell that this city had not yet been inhabited.
By now, Jana had already made her way back to the ancient mainland of the dwarves, crossing the ocean by walking over the clouds. Aside from finding the next step in cultivation, she did in fact have another goal, one that was bringing her closer and closer to the home that they had left so long ago.
Jana felt that it was time to bring the rest of the dwarves out of the dark. She still remembered the day that they had been forced to leave their home, setting out into a life of wandering through the wild. She remembered living in fear, day and night of the roaming star beasts. Yet now, as she learned of just how much there was to see in the world, she felt as if they deserved a second chance.
Part of her wasn’t sure why she was doing this. Maybe it was some lingering sentiment for her people, wanting them to see the wider world. Maybe she thought that it was simply her duty as the Champion of Tubrock.
“Haah… haah…” A young felyn man with red hair stood across from an elven girl. The former’s breath was ragged, his hair dishevelled, while the girl appeared completely fine with barely a wrinkle in her clothes.
“That was fun!” She spoke in a bright tone, taking a step forward. The felyn naturally flinched backwards, seeing her approaching. It may have been him that picked this fight, but… he didn’t expect her to be such a monster.
“Enough… that’s enough.” He said with a long sigh, shaking his head as he stood upright. The two of them were within the world of Vision Expanse, standing within an empty meadow. In truth, the young man was unsure which planet they were on. He was fairly certain that neither of the current player worlds had three moons, one of which was half-shattered with fragments floating slowly around it.
“Hmm?” The girl tilted her head in confusion. “I thought you said you wanted to fight? If you wanna go back to a player city, well… there’s really only one way to get there quickly.”
The felyn’s eye twitched as he heard that, realizing that the ‘shortcut’ was for him to die. In a way, he had asked for this. She had performed a summoning spell, and it had somehow locked onto him instead of the being she meant to call. “Where are we?”
“We haven’t named this one, yet.” The elven girl shook her head. “We were just stopping here to grab materials. It’ll probably be a couple of days before we leave, but… you could stick around if you wanted?” She tilted her head slightly in thought. “Our scans did show some intelligent life in this world.”
He thought about that for a moment, nodding his head. If he did remain in this area, then it would be a simple matter to get back to a world that he knew, so long as he did not set a new spawn point. He would be cut off from the other players for a while, but this was unexplored territory. “Do you know what kind of race lives on this planet?”
“Nope! But, lemme check real quick!” Saying that, the elven girl closed her eyes, focusing.
Big sis Crystal! Can you check the scans to see what kind of people live here?
It took a moment before any response came. Dana? Sure… give me just a second. Are you planning to make contact with them before we go?
Nope! Another player’s here, and he was asking!
What?! Crystal’s response was transmitted over right away. How is there another player here already!? This isn’t even the same solar system! Wait… is it that halfling kid? No, well, he’s not a kid anymore…
Nope! A felyn, I summoned him here by mistake, so he’s kinda sorta stuck and doesn’t wanna take the shortcut back.
There was a troubled sigh that came back over the private message. Well, let me check… looks like this planet hosts a wide level range of monsters, and the dominant species is… a dark-skinned elf.
Thanks! Dana thanked her mentally before opening her eyes. “Looks like there’s a different kind of elf that lives here.”
“Elves?” The felyn blinked in confusion, before nodding his head. “Can you point me in the right direction?”
After another moment of focus, Dana looked around for a moment. Turning, she pointed off towards the west. “Should just be a few hours that way!”
The young man nodded his head, thanking her before walking off. After he was well out of earshot, Dana closed her eyes. “Okay, big sis, it’s taken care of.” Unlike before, when she was sending a message to Crystal, she was now speaking out loud.
Understood. Good work, Dana. This time, the message that came back to her was far more monotone, not being transmitted by any player in the game.
“You sure that he’ll find it?” Her tone was uncertain when she asked that, opening her eyes to glance in the direction that the felyn had left.
As long as he doesn’t die too soon. Reaching the city should be enough to unlock this area as a new starting zone. Even if he doesn’t find it, someone else should.
“Okay!” Dana nodded her head heavily, satisfied with those answers. “Aunt Rivy should be really happy when she hears that.” As she spoke, she turned around, beginning to walk. With every step, a silver mist spread out around her feet, gradually rising to cover her entire body. Once it did so, the mist vanished, along with Dana.
When she reappeared, she was now standing in the garden of the citadel, humming to herself while walking inside. Crystal offered her a small smile from the throne. “Find what you were looking for?”
“Yup!” Dana nodded her head happily. She held out her hand, which contained a smooth, black rock. “I can feel a powerful shadow mana from this. It should be a fragment of the Mad King after he crashed into one of this world’s moons. As long as we have this, I can perform a summoning whenever I want!”
Crystal’s eyes practically shined as she heard that, nodding her head. “Now we just need to make sure that we’re properly equipped… What more do you need to finish upgrading the citadel’s weapon system?”
Dana brought one hand up to her chin, stroking it gently. “We want to use light-attribute attacks for the raid. Thankfully, we already have most of what we need. I can use this stone to reinforce the shield against darkness, but for the weapons… the main component that I’m missing should be a high level chaos gem attuned to light. Or something with similar properties.”
As she thought about that, her eyes suddenly went wide. “Oh! We passed that supernova a few months ago, right?! If we double back, there should be a ton of materials we can grab there that have powerful light and fire mana!”
Crystal’s lips tugged upwards, and she gave another nod. “Okay, I’ll set a course. Have you made any progress with the warp drive schematics?” The two of them had been lucky enough to obtain more astral lottery tickets during their prolonged journey, one of which had granted them the schematics for a large warp drive.
Unfortunately… Dana let out a long sigh. “None. The technology behind it is really just not my thing. If we could find a ready-made workshop, we could just have it made automatically, but nothing in the citadel is big enough.”
Crystal nodded her head, a resigned look in her eyes. She hadn’t been expecting much, but Dana had proved herself time and again to always exceed expectations. She had become a genius over the last several years, magical theories and enchantments learned fast enough that it had put Crystal to shame.
Yet still, the younger elf had always insisted on following Crystal. She said it was fun, and that they were like family. And for some reason, that had always been enough to make Crystal happy. Besides, who wouldn’t like the idea to hunt a goddess in the world’s most epic game of ninja’s shadow ever?
Crystal closed her eyes, setting the course for the citadel. There was a brief shaking as it rose higher into the air, the two of them gradually moving further and further away from the planet.
Dana, meanwhile, turned and looked out the window, a small smile rising over her lips. She bid farewell to this new world. The world of the unknown goddess, the daughter of the stars.
While Crystal hadn’t been made aware of it, Aurivy had led them to one of the worlds that worshiped Leowynn. Realizing that fact, naturally Tsubaki and Dana could not just sit by. Once they had learned the significance of this world, they enacted their plan to ensure that the players would learn this knowledge as well.
In truth, the hardest part was the summoning. Summoning magic ignored the distance between two objects, but there were other criteria that had to be fulfilled. For one, she had to attune herself to the creature that she was summoning. In this case, attuning herself to someone that she had never met before.
The ritual was difficult to prepare, but thankfully they were not aiming for any specific player. They just needed someone that would be able to uncover the truths of this world.
Unknown to Dana, however, there was indeed a link between herself and the man she had summoned. Dana, the Queen of Hell, summoning Sirin, the Champion of Irena. A connection that went down to their very souls, and perhaps the only reason the ritual had been performed successfully in the first place.