Chapter 23: Kingdoms
After buying the map, Alex immediately used it through his system.
His minimap was blank without any useful information. He had just one route revealed: the path he used from the forest maze to the province’s capital. But after the map disappeared from his inventory, Alex’s minimap flashed bright colors.
Those colors filled his map with new information.
“Alright. I have a first province checked,” Alex whispered with a smile.
Olivia smiled, “Good job.”
[Berden Kingdom’s Map – 3% Completed.]
Although Alex saw the whole province on his minimap, the map he used was common. It didn’t contain all routes and information. He wouldn’t find any rare stuff through this map.
Olivia also told him that some NPCs openly scammed players. They exploited the game system and hid the map’s grade, making players believe they were buying a treasure.
That was why Alex didn’t bother negotiating. He just bought a normal map and left exploration to his party.
And it was indeed a time for exploration.
Not only did others look at Alex and Olivia weirdly, but Alex’s girlfriend also wanted to fight and see Alex’s skills. She wished to see if his high level was adequate to his skills!
She was just level ten, which was not a bad achievement. However, those hardcore gamers and players with great luck had already reached great heights. They were near level twenty, so Alex was indeed one of the players with high level.
But even worse, Olivia and her friends had suffered death blows. They couldn’t level up for one or even two days!
Compared to her and other players, Alex had it much easier. He hadn’t died yet, and he also had good support from his class. He never had to fight for monsters, nor did he lack them around his castle.
In fact, his enemies gave him much more EXP than common monsters. Then, Alex had a pretty easy path backed by his talent.
Olivia herself was strong, and she possessed sharp instincts. However, she never went for a solo route. She always played with her friends.
Some of them held her back, which Olivia didn’t mind as she was not unfamiliar with baby steps.
Then, their EXP was split between them all, regardless of who did the most damage or work.
“Their reactions to the forest fairies was weird, though,” On their way toward the leveling zone, Alex recalled the NPCs that he had talked with.
Besides buying a map, he also asked a few NPCs about the forest fairies. His goal was to check on Remia and whether her kingdom searched for Elias Deathwill. That was his second goal after spending time with Olivia.
Olivia chuckled, “We ended up in the Berden Kingdom. They don’t mind demi-humans, but in the past, they were all about human supremacy.”
“I should’ve figured it out,” Alex sighed.
He didn’t like such discrimination. In his eyes, the Berden Kingdom lost a lot of value. Of course, he was glad that they took a turn for the better. The question was whether they took that turn out of their will.
If not, and if demi-humans’ strength forced them to do so, then Alex suspected that their hearts harbored evil intent toward demi-humans.
‘I should pay attention to other kingdoms. Not just because the Deathwill Sisters are demi-humans, but also because I am the Deathwill Castle’s master. At some point, that castle and their lands will be exposed to other kingdoms.’ Alex inwardly inferred.
He didn’t know where the Deathwill Castle exactly was.
From what Sara told him, they were in a land with demons and undead. Even wolves that Alex used to try various playstyles on were some kind of demonic breed. His minimap also didn’t help him find the exact location.
“At least we learned some clues about them, right?” Olivia spoke, unaware of her boyfriend’s thoughts.
Alex smiled at her, “Since they are far away, we can only focus on each other. For the rest of the day, we will hunt some monsters.”
“Hell yeah!” Olivia clenched her hands and made a victory pose!
[Rain Mush Mushrooms House(Recommended Lv: 20-25)]
Olivia chose a pretty hardcore leveling ground for their first couple leveling up. Its recommended level was two times hers, but that was what Olivia liked. She liked to risk and face hardships head-on.
Alex followed her with a broad smile, letting her chose their destination.
And at last, they had arrived.
Before them, a vast forest spread its arms.
At first glance, this place didn’t look anything special. Trees stood in harmony, not letting anything affect their mood. Compared to the forest maze, this land was also not dense, and one could probably go through it without any problem.
Alas, on a closer look, Alex and Olivia found a few problems!
“Is it really rain?” Alex asked.
That rain was heavy. It sounded like water bullets dropped onto the ground! Once close, Alex and Olivia felt like that rain was like a water formation.
Olivia nodded, “It doesn’t do any damage…” She looked at her hand soaked in the forest’s rain. It didn’t damage her body but made her forearm feel heavier.
[You have been affected by Mush Rain.]
“This will be a challenge, Alex!” Olivia retracted her hand and said with sparkling eyes.
Alex threw her a glance, then pushed his hand in, “What’s the effect of this rain?”
[You have been affected by Mush Rain.]
[Your agility and stamina stats have been halved.]
That rain soaked their clothes and invaded their bodies. It was peculiar defensive mechanisms that defended the monsters’ lives within the forest.
And speaking of those monsters, one of them reared his head.
It was a mushroom monster. 𝒊𝒏𝒏𝙧𝗲𝓪𝙙. c𝒐𝙢
Looking like a monster from chanterelle mushroom, the beast seemed pretty docile and cute. His eyes blinked as he stared at the couple…
Out of nowhere, an acid hit Alex!
It sank into his eyes, affecting his vision.
Alex and Olivia took a few steps back.
“I didn’t see anything… Was it because of the rain?” Alex covered his eye.
He took out a potion from his inventory then gulped it down in one go. Soon, his vision returned, and he was all fine.
Of course, simply drinking a potion wouldn’t be sufficient if it were a battle. In fact, reaching full HP also wouldn’t mend his wound. However, Alex stepped out of the leveling zone, losing the monster’s attention.
Then, he drank HP Potion and waited for the wound to mend.
But if that mushroom monster was boss or one of the unique NPCs, Alex wouldn’t have such an easy time. He would have to go back to the city and get proper treatment.
Or, he could return and fight with just one eye.
Those mechanics made Alex remember that he was in the game.
Olivia nodded, “That rain halved our stats, then the monster used its density to hide his attack. We have to be decisive with them. Let’s try this leveling ground properly, Alex.”
That leveling ground required a proper party and preparation. However, Olivia wanted to pay back the monster for what he did to her boyfriend. Besides, she would never take a step back from the challenge. Now that she was here, she wouldn’t return without trying them out.
As for Alex, he also didn’t want to return empty-handed. Naturally, he also wanted to sink his sword in those mushroom monsters!
He chuckled, “Stay behind me. We are charging in.”
“I got your back covered, handsome!” Olivia laughed.
*Author’s note: Dear readers… Your presence here is a gift itself….*
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