Chapter 21 - My Profession, Moonlight Sculptor
Baran village was bustling at the seems with the drastically increased number of users visiting.
“Selling sculptures! Food for sale! Repairing low durability armor or weapons for a cheap price!”
“That sculpture, how much is it?”
“20 silver per piece! Is it expensive? Art is usually as expensive as it is pretty.”
Weed was the focus of explosive interest from female users! Each of the sculptures he made appeared almost alive. Most sculptures, especially the stone sculptures, were too large and couldn’t be sold. So, in order to draw crowds, smaller models were produced. These were cute and extremely adorable, receiving the majority of attention from the female users.
Weed simultaneously cooked while selling sculptures. People gathered, attracted by the smell of the food being stirred and fried. People who came to buy sculptures were also enamoured by the smell of the cuisine.
“What are you cooking?”
“Eek, poison? You’re making poison? Even though it’s emitting this delicious scent…”
“Yes, it’s poisonous because it’s so delicious that it’s worth dying twice for! Here’s a sample dish. Try a little bit!”
The users tasted Weed’s stew. He gave each a small spoonful.
First of all, the smell! The stew was made from boiling wild edible greens which were good for the body and it emitted a sweet fragrance. As soon as the stew entered the mouth, the eyes of the female users widened at the gently unraveling sweet flavor.
“Wow, it’s delicious! Oppa, can’t you buy me some?”
(PR: ‘Oppa’ is the respectful term used by females to call older males such as older male brother or friends in Korea)
“Yeah! Eat as much as you want. Since my Sena wants it so much… Mister, how much is it?”
“15 silvers.” Weed replied.
“Far too expensive for one dish, isn’t it?”
Many of the faces from the male users became distorted when they heard this. This was because 15 silvers was a significantly high price. However, Weed never compromised when it came to price. There was no room to compromise when it came to money.
“The reason I cook is to allow many people to eat more delicious food. But I feel that this road is not so easy. It seems maybe the dishes are too expensive since everyone seems to complain about it.”
“Well, of course it is!”
“I would like to sell it really cheap; however, the cost of ingredients for this is nearly 14 silvers. When you consider the cooking tools and all the effort I put in, I’m selling it for next to nothing. *Sniffle*. Should I give up my dream of cooking delicious food and use cheap ingredients to cook cheap food? It’s really a dilemma for me. *Sniffle*”
Weed cried contemptibly, it was all an act of course. Even if he was stabbed and bled, Weed wouldn’t shed a tear. This was an investment. An investment in ingredients for no cost!
“Oppa!” The investment paid off, the female user vehemently cried out.
“Let’s just buy his food! I mean, come on! He’s someone who cooks really well… After all, mom would say that cooking comes from the heart. Someone who makes food as delicious as this must be a really good person.”
“Yeah, yeah, I got it. Sorry about that Chef, I hope you sell a lot.”
The duo went and surprisingly paid 20 silvers. Neither of them asked for change. Weed’s expression changed to a smile of satisfaction.
‘Anything tastes good if you don’t know what good food is. Once again, money has been earned.’
Weed skillfully sold sculptures and food. In fact, the all up, the materials barely even cost 1 silver.
The wild greens were the cheapest ingredients from the market and the other ingredients weren’t that much more expensive. Since the market was in a mountain village and they didn’t have many things to sell, the prices for materials regarding food were very cheap. Even though the market didn’t have ingredients that the markets in the larger towns or cities had, with the large variety of ingredients, all kinds of dishes could be made.
“Mister! One bowl please.”
“Kimbab for us.”
(T/N: Kimbap: sushi like, but it uses different ingredients inside and the rice is mixed with sesame oil instead of vinegar)
“I came back again, hehe.”
There was no end to the customers. Due to Weed’s cooking skills and sculpting skills being at the intermediate level, he was drawing in huge crowds. With the crowds growing by the hour, even his exaggeration grew, but Weed was someone who thought lies weren’t lies if they were for business. Weed also made customers feel better with his thorough service. However, from time to time, there were of course customers that troubled him.
“Excuse me, I think I’ve seen you on television.”
Two women approached him, trying to view every aspect of Weed’s face, and then they asked,
“You’re the Princess Knight, aren’t you?”
It was the nickname that he’d received after taking an active role in an event at Dein High School to get the top prize. Probably due to the news spreading rapidly throughout the internet, there were a lot of people who recognized him. Some may like to be really popular, but in Weed’s case, it was different. Of the many nicknames he had, the nickname of Princess Knight was enormously embarrassing for him.
“Well, you see, I think you’ve got the wrong person.”
Weed turned his eyes away to avoid their attention. Weed’s cooking was not only delicious, when eaten, it gave a significant boost to the user’s health and mana. Due to this reason, many people came to eat his cooking. The boost was so significant, to the extent that even hunting parties came and ate as a group.
“The price is 15 silvers. The price for the special nourishing meal for hunting is 30 silvers. Thank you. Have a pleasant hunt!”
Even though the price of the food and sculptures were high, Weed did offer to repair their low durability items for free as an extra service, so the price wasn’t really a problem. Even though it was 30 silvers, for users who hunted in Baran village, it was an amount they could easily pay.
Food that raised health and mana was more than worth the amount they had to pay when hunting. Of course, there really were expensive dishes on the menu. There was a dish made by using an egg of the Avians and a fruit of heaven, that left a taste so delicious that you wouldn’t even notice if someone had upped and died beside you.
Just counting the cost of ingredients, the fruit of heaven was 15 silvers and the egg of the Avians cost a whopping 95 silvers. However, the dish wasn’t just an expensive dish, it was also difficult to cook. Health foods are not made with one main ingredient. A health food dish needed to neutralize the strong potency, while doubling the effect.
Just like when making ginseng chicken soup (samgyetang), ginseng, dates and other various medicinal herbs are used. The dish needs to bring out the flavour and maximize the effect of all its ingredients. These are the difficulties and hardships of a chef.
Thus, after several attempts and failures, the names of the dishes made with the egg of the Avians and the fruit of heaven were,
Wellbeing Royal Bud of the Day!
Sweet Nut & Bay Leaf.
The dish made using both of those ingredients had this name,
Main Nut on the Bird.
This dish brings out the effects of both the egg of the Avians and the fruit of heaven, which means it gives a significant boost to strength, intellect, luck, mana and health.
When Mapan joined Weed in Baran village, he had high expectations.
“Finally, my time as a tired and exhausted merchant will end! Now, it’s should be smooth sailing from here on out.”
One can say a merchant’s road is difficult. In Mapan’s mind, the memories of suffering flashed by.
“Whew, those were tough times...”
When he initially chose to be a merchant, he was filled with hopes and dreams. The Merchant class really struck Mapan’s fancy because, Money! Money was power! Money was fame!
The world, in the end, was dominated by money. He majored in economics, and he firmly believed that capitalism was not an ideology, but economics itself. To earn capital, he was prepared to endure some hardships.
It felt like all the money in the Versailles continent became his, and with it, he wanted to construct a large trading company to obtain a large amount of fame. In some kingdoms, it was said that peerage as a noble could be bought with enough money. In a word, he chose the road as a merchant to earn lots of money.
But what was this! From the beginning, the road to becoming a merchant was rough without equal. Since he was not allowed out of the city for four weeks, he ran errands. He worked diligently in hotels, weapon stores, and exchanges, to save a small sum of money. Everything was for the Merchant class quest. Mapan jumped, ran and rolled!
“Since I’ve seen all the effort you’ve put in, I think you have the talent to become a merchant. If you don’t have a greed for money, you are not a merchant. I urgently need 300 pieces of rabbit pelt. I’ll give you one gold, so can you get them for me? If you do, I will formally accept you as a merchant of Rosenheim kingdom! However, get it done as quickly as possible. I need them within 3 days.”
Quest: The Exchange Owner who needs Rabbit Pelts:
The owner of the Exchange requires a large quantity of rabbit leather. There is no need to know why he needs it, but it seems that doing it as quickly as possible would be good.
If you fail, the Exchange owner’s confidence in you will decline and you will not receive a commission for one month.
‘Hooray, I’ve earned money!’ Singing with delight, Mapan accepted the request.
“He even gave me one gold, as expected of a merchant quest, even from the beginning, they give a lot of money.”
Rabbits were common beginner monsters that spawned in front of the castle. One rabbit leather sold for 10 coppers in a general store, so the total purchase price should have been 3000 coppers. Therefore, he calculated that 30 silver should have been sufficient.
Of course, the other party needed to have some benefits. In a proper business transaction, both sides needed to profit.
“Buying Rabbit Pelts! I’m willing to pay 11 coppers each!”
Mapan cried out with a loud voice in front of the castle. He was hoping that massive amounts of users hunting rabbits would come running. Nearby, another merchant shouted even louder.
“Buying Rabbit Pelts for 30 coppers!”
A person who was sewing next to them yelled, “Buying Rabbit Pelts for 50 coppers!”
“Damn! How could this have happened…”
The rabbit pelts that should have cost only 10 coppers were being purchased at ridiculously high prices.
“What is happening?” The perplexed Mapan asked, but the answer drove him to despair.
“You didn’t know? You’re not the only person who is collecting rabbit pelts to become a merchant. Also, the people who want to learn sewing need rabbit pelts, so the price for them skyrocketed!”
Mapan was in tears. The prices were bringing beginner merchants to tears. The merchant occupation had a three day time limit. Without a choice, he had to use up all the money he had earned and barely obtained 300 rabbit pelts after hunting all day and night. Because of that, he became flat broke.
“Thank you, now you are a merchant!”
The owner of the exchange gave him a pat on the shoulder for a job well done; little did he know that Mapan’s shoulders were drooping. That had only been the beginning. It was the beginning of the harsh road of a merchant.
To raise his level and skills, he had to purchase loot from users at a costly price. Due to being weak, he was ignored during combat. But in order to purchase loot, he had to fight a torturous war of blood and sweat. Mapan, who had traveled far to Baran village, had experienced many joys and sorrows that he could not even begin to speak about.
Waiting for someone, who might or might not even come to his stall to sell loot, was really difficult, but there was an abundance of people who came and asked for unreasonable prices.
“My hardships are over!”
Ever since Mapan had formed a partnership with Weed, all of his anxiety and fears had disappeared. All he had to do was trust and follow Weed.
“I will follow him anywhere. All I have to do is trust him!”
Mapan made a firm resolution. A great warrior! An adventurer! A master of battle! Mapan, who only knew this side of Weed, had immense confidence in him. That emotion persisted until they reached Baran Village.
“How can this be?”
Mapan wanted to scream. Even when he rubbed his eyes to look again, Weed was making food and selling sculptures. To make matters worse, he was repairing things!
While Weed was cheerfully cooking, someone was secretly weeping. That someone was Mapan. The Weed he knew as the great warrior was now selling food and sculptures.
“Isn’t that the worst case of a Japkae (Jack of Trades)?”
(T/N: ‘Japkae’ roughly means: jack of all trades but what it really means is someone who doesn’t stick to one skill tree and puts points in all of them and never specializing)
This was not something he could figure out with a guess. He needed to be sure, but Mapan was hesitant. He was afraid to know the answer. However, It wasn’t something he could not go without knowing, he had to ask.
“Um, Weed-nim, what is your profession?”
“Me? As you can see, I’m a sculptor.”
Mapan’s head hurt as if he was struck on the back of his head with a blunt object.
‘The sculptor class is just as unpopular as the artist and the cleaner classes!’
Melancholy took a hold of Mapan; he pointed at the boiling cauldron with a trembling hand.
“Then, what about those dishes?”
“It’s a side job.”
“What about repairs…”
“It’s one of the skills I’m diligently learning. To learn the blacksmithing skill to make weapons and armor, I need to get the repair skill to at least the intermediate level.”
Mapan, who thought forming a team with Weed was destiny, couldn’t be any more disappointed.
“Well, yeah. This guy who is terribly unlucky… but how can there be such a jack of all trades?”
In his mind, the character called Weed was terrible in a worthless sense. His skill set was so haphazard that it was enough to go down in history as the lousiest character! Weed had diligently learned miscellaneous skills that were unappreciated by others. If it was Mapan, he would have given up and made a new character.
‘How sloppily leveled is his character that you’d get something like this!?’
However, Mapan was making a huge misconception. It was Weed’s painstaking struggle! He grew stronger little by little by continuously hitting the scarecrow at the beginner class training center, all the while eating the instructor’s meals.
He had made sculptures until his eyes were red in order to increase his art stat by at least 1 point. To raise his cooking skills, he became a cook for a troop of NPC soldiers who were part of a punitive group.
He cooked tens of thousands of dishes, created thousands of sculptures, and barely raised the character called Weed, but in Mapan’s eyes, all he saw was a sloppily made character that had learned all kinds of skills. Mapan could be here now because even when he tripped or broke things, he learned something new and picked himself up.
‘This man is even more commercial-minded than me. Confucius had once said: “When there are three people walking, a teacher is bound to be among them.” Even from a jack of trades, I can learn something from him.’
Mapan decided to not regret his choice of forming a partnership with Weed. He enthusiastically bought loot beside Weed and opened up his own stall. Anyhow, he couldn’t just sit and do nothing. While watching Weed selling food and sculptures during Mapan’s spare moments, he was enlightened on being a merchant meant.
“What a wretched liar…!” There were moments where he was astonished greatly.
“He is making such unreasonable profits with such lousy ingredients!”
Other times, he got angry. For Mapan, who prided in being an upright merchant, it felt as if he had no room to compete.
“Isn’t he just a daylight robber and a fraud?”
Weed had a gift of brilliant eloquence that gently suited the buyer’s taste. With just a few words, a sculpture that was being sold for ten silver coins sold for fifteen silver coins, making Mapan boil with anger as he watched. After two days, Weed finally placed the sculptures that were on the display stand slowly into his bag.
“They sold a lot better than expected.”
The sculptures had been carved in his spare time in Lavias. More than half of them had been sold. The thing about sculptures, is that people don’t return to buy another one. An average person would buy one as a souvenir, unless he met a collector.
Even if the production cost of the sculpture is low at 10 silver coins, 30 silver coins can be obtained at best. Therefore 10 sculptures need to be sold to barely earn 3 gold. This had been quite useful in the early days, when Weed had been poor, but considering his current level, the profit from his wood carvings amounted to chump change.
Among the users in Baran Village, most people who would have purchased sculptures had already bought one. If Weed stayed any longer, all he would be able to sell would be his cooking. After raising his repair and cooking skills to 40%, Weed took down his stall. He glanced at Mapan who was beside him, purchasing loot steadily.
“It’s time for us to depart.” Weed said.
“Huh? Depart to where?”
“We’ll be traveling to the Bar Khu mountain range that I already told you about in advance.”
Weed had to return Hera’s Cup to the Church of Freya within three months, so he had already planned to leave Baran Village. Furthermore, a lot of knowledge and experience was required to become a magnificent sculptor. Although Weed had become strong by using several methods, he did not forget the fact that his job was a sculptor. Weed visited the general stores and shops, and quickly prepared for the trip.
“Take care!” Ghandilva, the Village Chief, said warmly to Weed outside the gate.
The three Denarion soldiers, Dale, Becker, and Hosram, also said their goodbyes along with the village chief.
“I’ll come back and visit sometime.” Weed promised.
“Of course. We’ll not forget all the help you’ve given us!”
“See you later.”
“Yes, sir! After our duty is complete here, we’ll be returning back home. So, the next time we meet will probably be back at the Citadel.”
Weed and Mapan bought the local specialties of the big cities as they traveled south of Rosenheim Kingdom. Pearls and jade, white wine, cheese, olive oil, mithril and more, were all specialties in the southern cities.
The Kingdom of Rosenheim did not have a high technological or commercial prowess. Probably due to this reason, jewelry, food, and unrefined ores were being actively traded. Among the kingdoms in the center of the continent, there were some cities and countries that specialized in producing weapons and armor.
Naturally, these country’s weapons were more durable and had excellent attack and defense stats, in comparison to other countries. Thus, users who started in the center of the continent had that much of an advantage. However, in terms of adventure and opportunity, the kingdom of Rosenheim was not a bad choice.
“40 pieces of Jade please.”
The task of buying jewels was left to Mapan. With the accounting skill, it was possible to purchase merchandise at a more reasonable price. However, if you attempted to drop the price down too excessively, the trade could be canceled.
When that happened, the exchange owner would not do any business transactions with you for a maximum of ten days, so it was necessary to be cautious. Mapan, who had just finished bargaining, turned around to look at Weed.
“The price for the jade is 760 gold. Should I buy it?”
“Uhm…Can’t you cut the price further?”
“This is the limit with my skills.”
Weed’s hands trembled as they entered his pockets. Then 800 in gold coins came out. Mapan gave the money for the jewels to the seller and passed the change and jewels back to Weed.
“Where do we go now?”
“To Falcon village to get some pearls.”
50 pearls were purchased for 690 gold, and then 3 kg worth of mithril was purchased after arriving at the coal mining village. The wallet that only knew how to accept money was opened up, and in the end, even the small change was spent, leaving only 50 gold.
Soon enough, the fortune that he had amassed had dwindled, and his innocent money bag lost the fight. At the end of the ordeal, 50 gold was all that was left. Weed’s former total fortune had been 1700 gold. The money which Weed had painstakingly earned and conserved was spent in an instant.
In the Britten Alliance, beyond the mountains of Bar Khu, the price for jewels was at least 25% higher than on this side of the mountain range. Even if one wasn’t a merchant, marginal profit from market price and fame could be gained, so as many goods that could be purchased were bought.
“But, what is he doing?”
Every time Weed moved to a town to buy the local commodities, Mapan’s eyes had a puzzling look. Even when Weed was walking down the road, he was always doing something. One of them was uprooting plants. Then, he diligently put them in his bag. Every now and then, he smiled delightedly.
“Weed-nim, might I ask what you are doing?” Mapan could not resist his curiosity, and Weed’s answer was simple.
“You mean this? I’m uprooting herbs.”
“If it’s a herb…”
“I learned Herbal Medicine; the terrain here is rugged, so that might be why there are a lot of medicinal plants.” Mapan swallowed his breath.
“Oh!” Weed, who had looked like an idol to Mapan, finally took shape as the worst jack of all trades ever!
“I judged this person too hastily!”
To think that I had deluded myself into thinking that the one who had hunted Death Knights and the undead was him just because he had their loot! It might be that he got lucky and found them somewhere. Of course, the chance of that happening was really slim, but Mapan, whose confidence in Weed had utterly dropped, thought of it as a possibility.
However, Mapan was still a man. He was a man who believed in justice and providence! Thanks to Weed, he had gained many benefits so far. Through the trading of loot, he had obtained a lot of skills and money. He also purchased the jewels for Weed at a reasonable price, and this also greatly raised his skills. This situation was not bad at all, so there was no need to go back on his decision to partner with Weed.
‘As a man, you cannot go back on your word!’ Mapan thought to himself.
Mapan earnestly purchased these special commodities for Weed. Mapan, unlike Weed, did not have a lot of capital, so his own purchases centered on food, such as olive oil or cheese. These items did not have high profit margins, but prices were stable, so the advantage was that there were no risks.
Mapan also had additional skills with trading food commodities, so he bought a large quantity of food products at a cheap price, and bought a cart to carry them. Since the cost of a horse was over 100 gold, he purchased a mule at the end of its life, and the preparations for leaving were done.
Weed disposed of the multiple bags he had been carrying this whole time. Instead, he got help from Mapan to purchase a backpack from the general store to put his herbs in, which could hold 20 times its own volume, as well as reduce the weight by a quarter. By now, Mapan saw Weed as a full-fledged peddler.
Bar Khu Mountain Range.
The mountain range was located between the southern part of Rosenheim kingdom, and the eastern part of the Britten Alliance. Both countries bordered the range, but it was called the paradise for monsters.
Overflowing with monsters! Rugged terrain!
Both nations had armies of rangers stationed here to clear the area of monsters periodically. If not for that, the Kingdom of Rosenheim and the Britten Alliance would have suffered from fatigue because of all the monsters.
As they climbed the mountain range, the horrifying sounds resonated. It was the roar of a fierce animal. It was the sound of rampaging animals. Breaking branches and rough screams were audible. As expected of its reputation, it really was the paradise for monsters.
For a place that’s not a dungeon but a field, it was rare to have this many monsters. Finally, the monsters appeared in front of the wagon Weed and Mapan rode in. Lycanthropes. They were werewolves, monsters around level 100.
The Lycanthrope variant was known to be around level 150. Of course, in these mountains, they were the lowest on the food chain. Because of this, they were pushed out of the heart of the mountain range and infested places like the ones Weed and Mapan were currently traveling through.
Unfortunately, Lycanthropes often traveled in packs and currently, over 10 of them had appeared at once. The roar a while back that sounded like the howling of wolves was perhaps the crying sound of these Lycanthropes. The reason for the howl was that prey had been found and that it was in their hunting ground. Mapan, who was sitting on the box seat of the wagon, was restless and nervous.
“The-they’ve finally appeared, and more importantly, what do we do!? Weed-nim, you did say that you will handle this!”
Even then, Weed was diligently using the carving knife in the assistant driver’s seat. Zahab’s carving knife. This unique item was something any sculptor could only wish for in their dreams. The carving knife was moving according to the flow of the grain of the wood, and creating a sculpture.
The Lycanthropes approached slowly. When they appeared, they resembled humans, with the exception of the head, which was that of a wolf. On their body, gray fur started growing all over. They were evil beings that could transform into wild dogs.
Handicraft skill proficiency has increased.
Level Up: Handcraft (Intermediate Lv: 4 | 0%):
Ability to use tools and hands increase by 5%
It affects many skills and stats.
When the Intermediate level in the handicraft skill rose by 1, stats increased by 5%. At the beginner level, a 3% increase was given per increase in level. When you think about it, the effect was now greater; however, it became more difficult to raise the skill level.
“That was quite fortunate.”
Just then, Weed was carving the shape of the tree he had passed by in great detail, so he was able to increase sculpture mastery by 1.5%. After all, there had been plenty of branches and foliage. It was difficult to carve a tree that had survived many years and had many rings. It was said that drawing a tree that lived over 1000 years was very painstaking and hard.
Weed had carved a very lifelike tree sculpture, which looked very similar to a real tree. It wasn’t good enough to be proud of, but it was a pretty good sculpture nevertheless. There were times when the sculpting skill rose significantly that it was almost surprising, but then, there were times when he was stuck in a rut and the skill would barely increase.
Considering Weed’s skill level of intermediate level 4, an increase of 1.5% was a large increase. Weed’s skill level had increased just in the nick of time, and raised his stats.
As soon as Mapan was about to cry, Weed put away the carving knife. Then he took the sword out of the scabbard. The clay sword with the cold attribute!
“As a matter of fact, I’ve been sitting down for too long and was feeling sluggish, maybe it’s time for me to loosen up my muscles? It’s a pity that I missed seeing the transformation process, but that’s fine. Since these guys aren’t the only Lycanthropes living in the Bar Khu Mountain range.”
Weed mumbled as he watched the Lycanthropes. To make Lycanthrope-shaped sculptures, it is better to see the transformation process. Since they change in appearance as they transform, it was possible to make multiple sculptures showing the process in steps and increase his sculpting level by a good amount.
While Weed was getting off the wagon and holding his clay sword, Mapan let out a scream from behind him, “Surely you are not planning to fight with that sword?!”
Mapan was shocked when he saw the clay sword. The sword had chips and dents everywhere! Due to the intense hunting in Lavias, the durability of the clay sword had dropped to almost nothing.
Even though Weed had obtained lots of equipment from the undead monsters, the sword Weed used was still the clay sword. Dullahans only dropped hefty weapons such as iron maces and axes and Ghouls only dropped nails.
The Death Knight’s weapons couldn’t be used unless you were of a Knight class or had a level of at least 200, so Weed didn’t have much of a choice in terms of weapons. Since he hunted alone and in isolated places, he had to at least bear this much. Every time the sword broke, he replaced them, the number of times this had happened was in the dozens.
In the meantime, the number of Lycanthropes increased by ones and twos, and now, the number of Lycanthropes in the group exceeded 20. Weed saw Mapan’s face had turned deathly pale, so Weed put the sword away.
As expected of the descendants of wolves, the Lycanthropes attacked courageously. They kicked hard at the ground, springing up, and roared wildly.
The Lycanthropes let out a bestial roar! The sound dominated the battlefield, the old mule was terrified and bucked, while Mapan prepared for death. Lycanthropes were monsters with fast movement speed, so there was no way to escape.
It was at that moment...
Exploding out of Weed’s mouth burst forth an intensive war cry. It raised a cloud of dust, the dry leaves piled on the ground cracked and crumbled. Even the branches on nearby tree’s seemed to tremble, as if they were about to break.
The roar overwhelmingly swept away those who heard it.
Skill: You have used Lion’s Roar:
The proficiency of the Lion’s roar kill rise by 1%!
Lion’s Roar current skill: level 1, at 1%.
As the skill level rises, the power increases.
The Lycanthropes hesitated, turning their heads away from feeling troubled after the roar. Weed did not miss the opening and ran at them, beating them down with his fists.
“Rapid Shadow Fist!” (Yon-hwan-kwon).
Weed lashed out at the Lycanthropes with his fists! For Weed, who had mainly hunted Death Knights in Lavias, the Lycanthropes, who were barely level 100, were no problem for Weed.
Even if they had numbers, for them to become a problem, they first had to be able to do some damage to Weed. The Lycanthropes rushed ferociously towards Weed.
“Seven celestial steps!”
Kicking off the ground, they flew at him, clawing and biting with their nails and teeth, Weed avoided them all by using his footwork skill. By battling them, Weed had once more rediscovered his footwork prowess. Until now, Weed had only used the footwork that had ability to avoid attacks, but the footwork skills in Royal Road also had unique abilities.
In the midst of sprinting forward and then taking a sharp turn in a 90-degree direction while running would be impossible in reality. That was due to the law of inertia. However, with footwork skill, you could achieve the impossible. During a sprint, you could switch to the opposite direction, and the instant rate of acceleration to reach that speed was almost invisible to the naked eye.
As the name implied, it consisted of 7 steps, instantly twisting in any direction while running, or appearing abruptly as if coming out of thin air. It was a skill that demonstrated remarkable value, and was as expected of a first rate martial arts skill.
“Seven Celestial Steps!”
Although the Lycanthropes came in from all directions, Weed twisted his body a few times to break through the enemies’ encirclement. As he changed directions instantaneously, like connecting the lines of the Big Dipper, Weed created vague afterimages.
As the Lycanthropes attacked the illusions, Weed escaped the encirclement, and he began his attack. Each time Weed’s fist landed, an Lycanthropes became grey and one by one, they disappeared.
The Bar Khu mountain range was filled with monsters. It was a place that was the antonym of the word peaceful. However, at the moment, something extraordinary was happening.
(PR: antonym, a word opposite in meaning to another, e.g. bad and good )
The tremendous sound of a roar could be heard from the each end of the mountain range. Weed had just used Lion’s Roar again. This was in order to improve his proficiency with his Lion’s Roar skill, and Weed used this skill without regard whenever a monster appeared. Day, night, it didn’t matter, and the shouting echoed throughout the mountain range was making quite a din.
The Bar Khu Mountain range was filled with enough monsters for someone to become fed up with. However the mountain range held, experience, money and items! For Weed, who liked to fight without limit, this place that was filled with monsters, was like second home to him.
“There’s got to be an undiscovered dungeon somewhere!”
The unexplored southwestern part of the mountains. Since there weren’t any proper towns or villages around, it was a possibility. Weed didn’t intentionally seek out monsters. Rather than that, he focused more on improving his sculpting skill. It was the ‘Sculpting Blade’ skill that Zahab had left, this skill had greatly enhanced Weed’s damage. The skill was an attack technique that ignored enemy defense and resistance; so it definitely was going to be a skill that was going to be more effective later on.
The skill Emperor Geihar left behind was to give life to sculptures, ‘Sculptural Life Bestowal’! The sculptures carved with passion would fight for their creator and master.
The sculptures that were made with higher art stat would be stronger, and they also grew in level after coming to life. This was the skill that allowed Emperor Geihar to conquer the continent. If life could be given to sculptures, in any situation, Weed would have subordinates that would follow him unconditionally.
“Skill Check: Sculptural Life Bestowal”
Skill: Sculptural Life Bestowal:
The skill that Emperor Geihar left behind for his successor, a sculptor’s skill that is unknown to others.
Can only be used with Advanced Sculpture mastery.
Art Stat 10 (permanent consumption).
Level decreased by 2 (permanent consumption).
Sculptures have strong sense of individuality and pride. When they see another sculpture identical to them, they will fight that sculpture with hostility.
In order to use this skill, you first needed to get to advanced skill level in sculpture mastery, which was still very distant to Weed. On top of that, the consequence of giving life to a sculpture was losing art stat and levels, and was something you could not infinitely repeat.
“While it’s a ridiculous skill, it’s certainly still a useful technique!”
The Sculpting Blade and the Sculpture Life Bestowal, the two techniques left by Master Sculptors were this powerful. Weed couldn’t imagine how powerful the remaining three skills would be. In addition, he thought, what is at the end of sculpting after obtaining all 5 skills?
Weed had had the opportunity to become a Weapon Master in martial arts previously; however, he had given up the chance and had remained a legendary moonlight sculptor, which had left him with worries.
Other than being able to level up handicraft faster and having the Sculpting Blade, there wasn’t really much of a benefit. Even then, all he could do was to catch up to the knights and swordsmen. Sculptors had the path of a sculptor, there was a chance. One had to make the utmost use of that chance.
‘Sculptural Destruction, Sculpture Life Bestowal, and even the Sculpting Blade! While using them to the best of my abilities, I need to find the remaining skills. And finally, I need the basis of all sculpting.’
The rise of sculpting skills would affect everything. When no monsters appeared, Weed sat on the cart and sculpted. He made sculptures of the fighting scenes with monsters, or the surreal landscapes and its trees!
Level Up: Sculpture (Intermediate Lv: 3 | 0%):
Sculptures become more delicate and detailed.
Eventually, intermediate sculpting skill level rose to level 3. After this, Weed took out the emeralds, pearls and jade that he had purchased from the Rosenheim kingdom when he was traveling around.
“What are you doing?”
Halfway through the mountain range, Weed had abruptly pulled out a jewel, and Mapan’s face showed his confusion. There was no reason to boast about his wealth, and it’s not like he was going to give the jewels to the monsters either.
‘Is he taking a good look at the gems?’
However, Mapan was completely shocked at Weed’s next action. He had started carving the gem with his sculpting knife.
Mapan unwittingly felt like screaming. Since he had personally purchased the jewels, he knew full well their worth. He knew it far too well. Those were some absurdly valuable jewels! Although the gemstones haven’t been processed, the price was high enough to make one faint. But, without hesitation Weed continued to carve the jewels surface with his carving knife.
“What…what have you…?”
Just before he attempted to stop Weed’s actions, Mapan’s eyes widened in surprise, because the gemstone was gradually being shaped, little by little. The degree of the etching wasn’t even visible unless you looked at it very carefully. As the gemstone was carved down, the emanating radiance of the jewel shined brighter.
Mapan stared blankly as Weed’s hands continued to move.
Mapan’s eyes were filled with wonder, as Zahab’s carving knife carved the jewel and took shape. Each dull side of the jewel changed steadily, and the gem radiated more brightly.
“How can a gem be this beautiful?”
Weed’s intermediate sculpture level had risen, making it possible to work with gems. To work with gems, one needed basic skills and handicraft skills. For Weed, who had intermediate level, he wasn’t lacking in handicraft. He also had Zahab’s sculpting knife, which was a unique item worthy of being called a sculptor’s treasure!
However, basic skills and handicraft were only requirements; the thing that truly made the gems beautiful was the art stat. Weed’s art stat was currently near 300. The occupation of legendary moonlight sculptor gave a +100 to the art stat, and the rest came from the masterpieces and other sculptures he had made. Because his art stat was astonishingly high, all kinds of effects were given to the gems.
“For it to be this dazzling….!”
Mapan’s body trembled all over. This was because he imagined what would happen afterwards. Buying and selling the raw gems from the Rosenheim kingdom to the Britten Alliance would yield a large profit.
However, what would happen if Weed faceted those gems and sold them? Also, if the jewel was worked with the heart and soul of the greatest sculptor, what would the price be…?
‘I can’t even guess!’
Mapan fell into deep thought. He drove the wagon more carefully, so as to not interfere with the work of the faceting. Due to the ridiculously high handicraft skill and the sculpting knife, beautiful works of art were produced, even though it looked like he was working sloppily.
The food Weed cooked not only looked good, but it tasted good. Overall, it was due to Weed’s handicraft, cooking and sculpting skill being intermediate level. Those skills were exhibited by the jewels Weed carved.