Everything in Asgard is special.
Its residents are mostly undefeated champions from their own worlds. Even trees are monster trees with levels over 100. Vagrant Goblins, which are treated as peanuts, are powerful monsters with levels over 90.
It was the same with items. The legendary or renowned swords from ordinary dimensions paled in comparison to axes carried by ordinary Orcs here, which have better quality and sturdiness. Also, even these incredible weapons had to settle for titles such as ‘superior’ or ‘grand.’
However, a legendary weapon appeared in front of Vulcan.
It was a weapon that was treated as the best even in Asgard’s strict and hefty standard.
It was understandable why Vulcan couldn’t get a hold of himself from the excitement.
Vulcan was completely mesmerized by the incredible beauty of the blade. He carefully read the description about the blade on the window.
[Legendary Weapon – Heavenly Lightning Blade]
[Level Limit: 470Lv]
[Mastery Limit: Lightning Mastery Rank S or Above]
Attack Power + 690
Attack Speed + 20%
Movement Speed + 5%
Lightning Type Skill’s Damage + 30%
Lightning Type Training’s Efficiency + 20%
*A lightning type blade bestowed by a Thunder God of an ancient legend to a brave warrior who saved the humanity. Substantially increases the damage of lightning type skills.
The blade possessed attack power and additional attributes that were simply jaw dropping.
Vulcan opened his inventory and brought out a level 450 blade he rented from Jake.
It was a grand weapon, ‘Arming Sword of Thunder Spirit,’ which was exuding a mysterious blue light. Its attack power was 478. The vast difference made Vulcan almost sorry for even comparing the two.
Vulcan shouted out loud,
“I HIT THE JACKPOT!”
It was the first taste of finding a real treasure since he came to Asgard. It melted away all of the hardships Vulcan endured until now.
To begin with, Vulcan never had any luck with items from slaying monsters in the past, so he was not hoping to reap huge benefits from items found from slaying monsters.
In conclusion, it was extremely difficult to obtain a desired item from simply slaying a monster. It was harder than picking a star from the sky.
“My life had been full of only hardships… Now, it seems like things are going to work out…”
After viewing the exquisite beauty of the Heavenly Lightning Blade for a long time, Vulcan finally opened his inventory.
It felt like he would never get bored of looking at the blade, but still, he had one more thing left to do.
‘Actually, this was supposed to be the main goal.’
Because of an item that was way beyond Vulcan’s expectations, he completely forgot about the quest’s reward.
Having remembered his main objective, with his heart pounding out of excitement and anticipation, Vulcan checked the reward. In search of a big score, his eyes were rapidly scanning the list.
Four items and one skill.
The items included a spear, a mace, and an ax. They were the types Vulcan had no use for.
The last item was just an ordinary level 400 grand shoulder armor.
It was better than the armors from Jake, but it was lacking as a reward from completing a quest.
Since that was the case, there was only one viable choice left, which was the skill.
Since Vulcan was intending on choosing the skill over everything else from the start, he just had to pick the skill without giving it a second thought. However, after looking at the skill’s description, Vulcan’s face was not looking happy.
[Legendary Skill – Beast Transformation (Feline-Type Beast)]
[Level Limit: None]
*Transform in to a Beastman possessing the special attributes of a feline-type beast. Vastly increases movement and attack speeds. The caster falls into the berserk mode. Has a 10 minutes limit. Has a 24 hours cooling-down time.
Health and physical power: 20% increase
Mana and magic power: 20% decrease
Movement speed and attack speed: 15% increase
Super Armor activated when health decreases below 50%
Cannot equip weapons
The caster falls into the berserk mode
*Super Armor – Invulnerable to all status abnormality
The skill had advantages and disadvantages that were too distinct and obvious.
The improvements in physical stats towered above what could be expected from Mythical level skills.
However, because Vulcan heavily relied on magic, the skill was about as useless as turkey guts for a Thanksgiving meal.
Of course, there are all sorts of monsters out there, and there would be all sorts of situations to face as well, therefore the Beast Transformation skill could be chosen for the sole purpose of increasing Vulcan’s versatility. However… There was one penalty that was pressing down hard on Vulcan’s mind.
‘Once transformed… You can’t wield any weapons!’
Vulcan, who is a mage and a swordsman, using the skill was like voluntarily tying both of his arms to his back.
Vulcan started to agonize over the decision that needed to be made.
Vulcan’s gaze went back and forth between the shoulder armor and the Beast Transformation.
As if he suddenly developed a disability of indecisiveness, Vulcan was stomping around because he was not able to decide. Eventually, he closed his eyes hard and made his choice.
[Legendary Skill – Beast Transformation (Feline-Type Beast) was selected.]
No matter how hard he thought about it, Vulcan felt that it would be a waste to get an armor that he would use only for a while before switching to something else.
The Beast Transformation was a skill with many penalties, but still, even this one could have its use depending on situations.
Vulcan immediately activated the skill for a test drive.
Unlike his expectations, the transformation didn’t take long. At a blink of an eye, Vulcan was transformed into a form similar to a Cheetahman. Vulcan observed his hands.
“These are not hands. They are frontal feet.”
At will, Vulcan was able to extend and retract claws. It was obvious now. Holding and swinging any weapon was physically impossible with these features.
Vulcan left the boss’s room.
He could see a corridor that was completely clear of obstacles. Vulcan’s full body was submerged in mysterious excitement and anticipations.
After channeling the energy from the Thunder God’s Might, Vulcan dashed forward with all of his strength.
Vulcan was thrilled by the exhilarating speed that he had never experienced before.
It was a first for Vulcan to feel such a joy from the act of running alone. It felt like he was the owner of an exotic super car on a test drive on the Autobahn. He wanted to run for hours.
After the time limit, the transformation was undone and Vulcan came to a stop. His head, which felt like it was burning up, cooled back down to normal, and his mind calmed to his old self as well.
Vulcan tried moving his hands and feet to check the condition of his body and said,
“This will be perfect when I need to make a run for my life.”
With the skill, Vulcan thought that even a level 600 martial artist would have a hard time catching him.
* * *
As usual, the main plaza of Beloong City was crowded with people looking to find party members.
Horune and Carfield near by the fountain were looking to find party members as well. Looking at other people shouting, Horune said,
“Are you sure the association sent out the words? Nobody is coming.”
“There were two that said they will come…”
“Is it possible that they are both dead?”
“Still, they are all at the higher end of First-Rate rank… Hm…”
In light of Carfield’s wishy-washy response, Horune was about to say something, but then,
“Oh, it is a return magic.”
An intense blue light appeared in midair, and a man came through the light.
Having landed on the ground, the man quickly left the main plaza. It appeared that he was headed to the merchants district.
Watching the man leaving, Carfield murmured,
“That’s the guy that Jake is investing on.”
“What are you talking about? Tell me more. I’m bored.”
“This is why I have been telling you to look up the ‘Wiki Crystal’ more often.”
“I don’t like drinking.”
“Of all the newbies that came here in past 10 years, I heard that he is one of the two strongest people. Because of his rapid growth, Jake saw a potential in him, so it appears Jake decided to invest on that guy.”
Horune opened his eyes wide.
“Wasn’t Dokgo Hoo the best? There was another guy that is similar?”
“No, no way. This one is probably not as good as him. Still, I heard that he is incomparable among all newbies. Of all rookies, he is ranked as the second most powerful one.”
Horune stood up and extended his neck out. He could see Vulcan walking away in the distance.
“He doesn’t look all that strong.”
“That’s the guy that crushed Uruo half a year ago.”
“Ah, that guy who is a Player. If he did that, then he certainly deserves the high ranking.”
Horune was thinking that giving Vulcan the rank of number-one among all rookies would have been just as fine at this point.
Although Uruo is a Player, Horune knew Uruo's Amplification Glass Marble is quite useful. Not only does it have a superb destructive power, it is also versatile with various possible applications. Because of this, even those from Powel or Murim didn’t dare to take Uruo lightly.
Since Dokgo Hoo, the man currently holding the number-one spot in the rookie ranking, was too powerful to be considered a rookie, Horune was saying that technically, Vulcan was the number-one among all rookies.
“Uruo must be frustrated. He wants to have his revenge, but because of Jake’s influence, he can’t do anything about this guy.”
Because Jake continuously supplied quality weapons to people, his influence was bigger than Uruo. Because Jake had connections with people from both Powel and Murim, the Players Alliance had no choice but to keep quiet in fear of repercussion.
“There is Jake, but still, it won’t be easy to beat this guy even if the entire Players Alliance went after him all at once.”
“What are you talking about? Even if they are low-levelers, if they combined their forces together, they could be quite fearsome.”
Ofcourse, having just earned the title of Zenith-Rate, Horune was thinking he could beat them all by himself, but he figured it would be still difficult for a newbie who had been in Asgard for less than 10 years.
‘If he is a Player, he can’t join Murim’s Order of Virtue or Powel’s Holy Denomination either.’
“That runt, I heard that he is on the higher end of the First-Rate.”
In light of Carfield’s words, Horune’s head turned rapidly towards him.
“There are rumors about him being on the starting end of the Zenith-Rate too. Well… I think rumor is exaggerated a bit. Anyway, I get the feeling that he is certainly at least near the high end of the First-Rate.”
Horune could not believe it. He asked,
“Does that make any sense to you? He is a Player. Even Uruo is considered as a freak, but a newbie Player is approaching the higher end of the First-Rate? Possibly just obtained Zenith-Rate? Wow. You must be only hearing some garbage rumors from the pub.”
“If you are so curious, go connect to the Wiki Crystal. There is quite a debate going on, but most of the people are saying the same thing. That guy is not at a Player’s level.”
Upon hearing Carfield’s explanations, Horune fell in to a deep thought.
He just stood there like a solid stone statue without any movement. Carfield chose to let Horune be, and he just watched the people passing by at the main plaza.
Horune , when he was not eating or taking a dump, was the kind that only thought about battles.
If Powel, the god of war, picked five most diligent followers, Horune would most definitely be counted among them. He was an extremely committed one.
‘A hard working guy like this one should move on to Act 2.’
However, the reality was not that understanding or generous.
Having had done hard work through blood and sweat, Horune certainly was a high achiever and commanded as one of the best in Beloong City. However, when it came to overcoming a gigantic wall called Sarantis and then moving forward, only an extreme few with devil’s talent have managed to do so.
Even though both Horune and Carfield possessed talents that could be seen in a hundred years or more, compared to the greatest of prodigies that cleared Act 1, even these two had shortcomings.
“Hey. It looks like nobody is going to come no matter how long we wait. Let’s just go find someone else. Or we could go to a safer place.”
Carfield said as he stretched big. It was because he figured that there was no point in waiting around any longer.
However, Horune was still standing there like a statue.
Carfield called him several times, but Horune was not responding, and that annoyed Carfield a little. He just took a deep breath so he could shout at Horune , but then, Horune ’s mouth, which was shut for a long time, finally opened.
Having lost his chance to yell at Horune , Carfield responded awkwardly.
“I am not going to hunt today. You go by yourself.”
“What are you talking about? You rascal.”
Horune didn’t respond to Carfield’s words. He merely stepped away.
Horune was headed to where all the merchants were.
Surprised, Carfield shouted toward Horune .
“Hey! Where are you going all of sudden, you rascal!”
“I’m going to the shopping district.”
“Why there now?”
“To see the guy we just saw.”
Surprised again, Carfield said to Horune ,
“Oh man. What are you going to do when you get there? Are you going to confirm for yourself if he really is as powerful as the rumors say? So, what are you going to do even if he really is?!”
Horune suddenly stopped and turned his head back toward Carfield. Carfield looked like he was caught off-guard by all this. Horune looked at Carfield and said in a serious tone,
Buy us some coffee!