[Now, now. Calm down. This will all come back to help you later...]
[Madness, really... This is madness...]
[Welcome to Tutorial Floor 2, Hell Difficulty.]
The 2nd floor was quite similar as the 1st floor in terms of looks.
A straight, dark corridor made of stone.
Only diffference would be, that the ceiling is slightly lower than the 1st floor.
Unlike the similarity between the 1st and 2nd floor, I have become quite different.
It's not just the change in stats and skills, but my looks aswell.
I no longer wear the t-shirt I wore at home, but a leather armour which I bought using the points from the 1st floor.
It was a light armour, so that it won't weigh me down.
Ofcourse, I can't rely much on this armour in terms of defense.
My reaction to the traps are still evasion and parrying with sword and shield.
I believe it would be unwise to rely on the ability of my equipments so soon.
Thanks to the points from the additional reward, I could have been able to buy a full plated heavy armour if I wanted to.
But, relying on the armour's defense would hamper the growth of my skills.
Therefore, I purposely chose the thin, light armour.
It was reinforced with a steel plate on the chest, to prevent any accidents which may injure my heart.
Other equipments would be the thick leather bands around my wrists and ankles.
After the increase in my stats, I was unable to adjust to the changes, resulting in injuring my wrists and feet from running or swinging the sword too fast.
It was to protect my muscles from these situations.
Lastly, I checked the numbers and variety of potions which were bought with Kirikiri's advices.
Now, let's start.
I walked at a moderate pace.
Forcing fast progress was dangerous.
An unexpected attack from an unexpected source was what made Hell difficulty truly a nightmare in the Tutorial.
But it wasn't necessary to progress slowly either.
It wasn't the same as when I made it through the 1st floor with tensions high, guards up all the time.
I was different now from back then.
I could take tension better now.
My physical capabilities and my reflexes have increased dramatically aswell.
This wasn't just for boast, or saying I could let my guard down.
I've assessed my strengths and weaknesses and subsequently am confident on making statements like these.
That wasn't all.
There was support from the Sprint skill and the Wind Spirit's blessing.
I found out that there were two buffs from the Wind Spirit's blessings.
First, +10 to Dexterity.
And the wind spirit's blessing itself.
I was able to find out what these effects were during the time I waited for the 2nd attempt in the waiting room.
To explain simply, it was similar to the Sprint skill.
When my movement speed exceeds a certain threshhold, my body becomes faster and lighter.
It was difficult to notice because of the similarity with my sprint skill and the increase in dexterity.
But, as I kept on with my training, I have felt something different.
It wasn't just the strength and speed of the run, but the weight of the body lightened aswell.
It was as if a mysterious magic was aiding my movement.
Allowing movements that would normally seem impossible, like the movements seen from an elf in a fantasy book or movie.
That was the effect that the Wind Spirit's blessing had.
And it's performance was quite astonishing.
I may not have the exact details of it's effect unlike in a game, but as long as this skill was in effect, my ability to dodge would increase substantially.
The freedom of movement it allowed was out of this world, even if it didn't increase the speed by much.
Therefore, for the last few days I have tried to find the minimum speed at which this skill activates.
I wasn't sure of the exact speed, but it's alittle faster than a brisk walk.
As long as I maintained this speed when travelling, most traps wouldn't pose a problem.
Especially if it's the normal arrow traps like the ones on the 1st floor.
I don't even need Battle Concentration for that.
As if reading my mind, I could hear an arrow being released.
It was coming from the ceiling straight ahead.
I blocked it with my shield cleanly.
I rolled forward as I lower my back to dodge the two arrows from ahead.
The two arrows that came after the first did not make any noises.
I continued to dodge the arrows as I watch them fly by with my eyes.
Arrows of this speed could never hit me, as long as I watch out for the ones from my blind spots.
I decided to parry one of the oncoming arrows with my sword, as dodging them was child's play at this point.
It would be dangerous if I were to fail, but whenever there was a chance, I tried to improve my swordsmanship skill.
A loud sound came with the arrows that were just fired.
And it happened to be coming at the very same path of the arrow I just parried.
The centre of my balance was currently shifted because of the sword strike I just made.
The arrows seemed to travel slowly, as my conciousness accelerated greatly from my skill.
First I dodged the arrow that was coming toward my ankle and let through the arrow which was flying past my cheek.
Then I looked ahead again.
That arrow was too big.
And it's too fast aswell.
Among all the arrows in this slow world, that arrow flew towards me with considerable speed.
Damn it. I couldn't dodge this.
It's difficult to let it slide past my shield too.
This wasn't the time to have an adventure.
If I failed to parry that arrow, my life would be in danger.
In the slow world created by Battle Concentration, the arrows weren't the only thing that's slowed.
Even my body cannot keep up with my conciousness, and move at a snail's pace.
The only thing which it enhanced were my conciousness and awareness.
Thankfully, I was able to raise my shield and recover into a proper stance to receive it.
That arrow was too weird.
I adjusted the placement of my shield.
Even though I managed to block the arrow, the shock from the impact was significant.
I rolled backward in order to absorb the impact as much as possible.
But, the arrow managed to pierce my left arm, not to mention the shield, completely.
Uaaaaaaah! Damn it.
It seemed like the arrow shattered through my bone aswell.
If the arrow wasn't blocked by my arm, it would definitely have gone through the shield and into my chest.
It was a good decision to place my arm in it's path.
If I didn't have much knowledge on how to block aswell, it's possible that the arrow would have gone through my arm aswell and hit me in the chest.
I mean, how was this considered an arrow?
It's more like a ballista's bolt.
Shit, that wasn't the end.
I could hear the noises from behind me.
It seems the Battle Concentration skill was canceled when I got hit by that arrow.
I tried to dodge by rolling in the air, but managed to get hit in the ankle.
It stung pretty badly.
Thankfully, there weren't any more which was coming toward me.
First, I checked my ankle.
It seemed like what was on it wasn't an arrow, but a needle.
I quickly reminded myself of Kirikiri's advices.
There must be something on the needle which causes some sort of status effect.
That must be for certain.
First, I carefully pulled the needle out of my ankle.
Then I checked my body for any reaction.
Since it's a needle, I would assume that it was dipped in poison...
But I can't be certain.
I can't drink the potion with just an assumption aswell.
I simply sit next to the wall, with my inventory open.
The arrow in my left arm was bothering me.
The left arm's in a critical state aswell.
The tip of the arrow shattered right through the muscle and bone of my arm.
I wasn't even sure if I would even be able to tell the what the symptoms with this pain coming from my arm.
I was getting worried.
I tried to focus on the ankle, trying my best to ignore the pain from the arm.
I could feel myself sweating now.
I'm not sure if it's because of the intense exercise I hade, or the arrow in my arm, or because of the sting I had on the ankle.
After a while, I could feel pulsating pain on my ankle.
The pain radiated slowly, then began to feel hot as if it was burned.
I think it was poison.
It's not going to instantly kill me right?
As I waited alittle longer, I could feel my ankle becoming paralysed.
Let's wait, just a little more.
The paralysis began to come up my leg, the head started to feel hot, and headache was starting.
Afterward it was a stomachache.
It was poison for sure.
I took out an antidote from my inventory.
There should be many types of poison out there...
I was curious as to whether there was only 1 type of poison in the Tutorial or whether the antidote potion removed all different types of poison.
Let's ask Kirikiri about that one day.
Trying to open the potion with one arm was quite the struggle.
I barely managed to take the cork out, and put the potion next to my mouth.
There was a rotten smell inside the potion.
Was this really a potion?
This better not actually be poison that was slyly written as an antidote.
This being the first time I was poisoned, I was getting quite startled.
I could feel pain from throughout my body, not to mention the heat and paralysis as well.
All these symptoms...
Wait a minute...
It's not so bad actually.
Shall we wait alittle more?