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Published at 12th of March 2016 10:11:44 PM

Chapter 3

The Forest of Milete was situated near the national borders of the Kingdom of Arkite . And on a meadow inside the forest, a huge pyre was burning . The knights there made sure to fuel it with the remains of the countless goblins killed; at the same time, a dark and thick smoke steadily raised from the fire, as if it were some kind of hellish miasma trying to find its way to heaven .


“Lady Mira… alright, I’ll remember it! But I never thought you’d be someone this talented… a Summoning Expert, huh…”

“Being on that level should be expected, no?”

Mira, the Sage, had left the job of massacring the goblins to her Summoned Knight . Likewise, Graia, Captain of the Magic Clothed Knights, ordered his subordinates to do the cleanup afterwards . They continued their talk, not paying attention to the hard-working knights .

“We may be talking about goblins, but annihilating a group of that size in just a few moments? You must’ve had a pretty amazing teacher to learn magic of this level at your age . ”

So said Graia, while fixing his gaze on the sword being held by the Dark Knight, who seemed like it was waiting for further orders from its master .

“Hmm, well, it is like you said . ”

That wasn’t the case, but she chose to go with his conjecture . It would be too tiresome to fabricate an explanation, so Mira quickly gave a confirmation while seeming quite pleased with herself .

Then, at that time, one of the knights hurried over to Graia .

“Sir, reports are back . The escaped monster has yet to be found . For the time being, our pursuit group will stay here and wait for information from the ongoing search party . ”

“Understood . I’m a bit worried about it, though . It was a species we’ve never seen before… right now we can’t do anything but wait . Well, excluding the search party, I guess we should all return to base . ”

After receiving the news, Graia called for a messenger to transmit his orders . The knight who came to give the reports timidly observed the Dark Knight .

“Curious? That’s a Summoned Armor Spirit, the Dark Knight . ”

Brimming with confidence, and as if trying to sound like Mira, Graia talked with his companion .


“A summon? First we find that weird monster and now this, how unusual… I’ve heard about Armor Spirits but… I never thought they would be this intimidating . ”

“Right? I was surprised too!”

While the two were having this back and forth, Mira was focusing on something weird she heard from them . Why would they treat Summoning as something unusual? Certainly, it wasn’t a class that many people chose to play with . And by the way, even less people played with the Blessings Expert class . But its users were really popular amongst other players, considering its main function of casting healing and supportive spells, something essential to a party . That said, Summoning wasn’t what you would call “unusual to see” .

When this was still a game, each of the expert classes had at least one skill available for use right after being selected . All Summoning Experts started with the 【Contract Seal】 skill . It was the ability to form a contract with a defeated spirit and use it as one of the player’s Summoned Spirit . However, on its own, the skill didn’t hold any offensive power, so the problem was dealing with a spirit first . This fact was the reason the class had a slow start and was considered fit only for experienced players .

Simply defeating an Armor Spirit didn’t pose much of a problem . A player could ask his friends for help or even hire a mercenary to do the job . But after some trial and error, they found out that in order to summon it, the Summoning Expert must personally defeat the Armor Spirit .

Mira, or better, Dunbalf, obviously went through this process too . After stocking up with a large amount of bombs and healing items, he went to the 『Ancient Battlefield of Hubeladius』 . There, Dunbalf fought a fierce battle that lasted two hours and, in the end, resulted in his contract with the Armor Spirit, or the Dark Knight . While considered a very useful summon, it was mostly due to the knight being his first Summoned Spirit that he grew really fond of this great companion .

However, that wasn’t something anyone could do . Those who merely had some basic knowledge of the game, obtained through bulletin boards, tended to avoid going into the Summoning Expert class . The degree of difficulty was too high for them . Nonetheless, that didn’t mean there were no Summoning Experts out there . Rather, the class had received a boost of popularity and members after the boards were filled with information from the heroic deeds of Dunbalf . Many players picked up the class in order to follow his steps .

But after hearing the conversation between the two knights, the situation seemed serious . Somehow, the Summoning Expert class had lost its popularity again . It wouldn’t be a stretch to think as such after considering that thirty years had passed .

Thirty years . By no means it was a short amount of time . Just how much happened during those three decades?

“Do you have a minute? I want to ask you something . ”

Before the knights were finished with their preparations to return, Mira kept asking Graia one question after the other, in order to gather as much as possible information about those years .

———–

“Well then, be careful on your way back . ”


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“I would like to say the same, but I know that Lady Mira’s strength is the real deal . Let’s just leave it like that . ”

Graia replied and laughed heartily while offering his right hand .

“This time I felt greatly at ease, thanks to you . I hope that when we meet again, you continue to use your abilities and help me make my subordinates to work even harder . “

“I see, that is fine . If I find myself with time to spare, I will make sure to attend your request . ”

Mira shook hands with the half-joking Graia and smiled happily .

“Yeah, and I’ll be waiting!”

After saying that, Graia and his knights departed, without making any effort to stop their boastful voices from echoing in the distance .

———–

In the middle of the meadow, only burn marks could be seen where once existed a huge pile of goblin corpses being burned . Mira stood nearby, trying to organize the information she had collected .

Graia thoroughly answered every question she asked . They were mostly focused on the current state of affairs of the Kingdom of Arkite .

Eight of the nine Elders, sages that serve as cornerstones for the kingdom’s safety, were absent . That void in the country’s defenses is being fulfilled temporarily by each one of the towers . In short, Dunbalf wasn’t the only one who disappeared thirty years ago . Less than one year after his disappearance, the same thing happened to all other elders and the Silver Linked Towers were left without their masters .

Fortunately, ten years later, one of them suddenly returned . It was the Master Wizard, 『Luminaria the Calamity』 . Originally, the Kingdom’s top brass had decided to keep in secret the disappearance incident, but it was by Luminaria’s suggestion that the case was revealed to the public .

Even now, particularly talented individuals amongst the Elders’ assistants and researchers were working in their master’s stead . However, the difference in ability and experience was still too big and it seemed they were nearing their limits dealing with the duties of a sage .


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Elder Luminaria . It was a very familiar name for Mira . That person had also an expert class and, ever since the official service began, both of them had been playing together, forming a close bond with each other . She had a long and vibrant crimson hair, almost like it was made of roses . Her strong will could be clearly felt just by looking at her face . Moreover, her tall, model-like build was coupled with a voluptuous chest . It was an appearance that would instantly charm anyone who happened to throw even a single glance at it . This was the Luminaria that Mira knew, the embodiment of men’s desires .

And the person behind that character was a man . Not only that, he didn’t have any problem talking about indecent stuff with his fellow male friends . The feeling of discomfort that somehow arose during that kind of talk was still fresh in Mira’s memories .

Just like Dunbalf, she disappeared thirty years ago . They both went through the same problem, at around the same time . And she also returned . Even if it was twenty years earlier than Mira, the process was nearly the same . Well, excluding the fact that Dunbalf’s normal appearance was no more .

Finally, Mira decided on where to go next . The Luminaria that went through the same thing as Dunbalf was, most probably, the acquaintance that had always played behind that avatar . Talking with each other might even help them find something new about their current situation . In short, Mira’s destination was Arkite Kingdom’s Heavenly Magic City of 『Silver Horn』, the land where all skill users gathered .

———–

Mira walked through the forest, following a road that led directly to Silver Horn . The small gaps from the treetops revealed a faint tone of red being mixed with the blue sky . Checking the current time in floating menu, she confirmed it was already past 5 p . m .

Considering what she knew from the game, it would take about one hour of walking to clear the distance from the meadow to Silver Horn, but she’s not even halfway there . That was mostly because Mira made a few stops on her way . She made sure to observe, without hiding her enthusiasm, things like a butterfly sucking nectar from a flower, earthworms emerging from the ground, and so on . It was a level of realism she had never experienced there when it was still a game, so everything tickled her curiosity .

When Mira was about to close the menu from her bracelet, she remembered there was an apple pie left inside the item box . Feeling hungry for some time already, it was something perfect for the moment . With her fingertip, Mira touched the item’s icon and, like some magic trick, it appeared on the palm of her hand .

She carefully observed it . That apple pie had been inside the item box for one week already . No, more precisely, it was something she bought thirty years ago . But strangely enough, the item’s appearance was perfectly fine . Hesitating a bit, she tried bringing it close to her petite nose and then, when it registered the sweet fragrance of vanilla, her stomach started to growl .

With resolve, Mira opened her mouth as much as she could and bit into the apple pie . Immediately, her mouth was filled with the crispy texture of the crust, combined with the sweet and sour taste of the apple . Mira’s taste buds were thoroughly stimulated .

Feeling confident, she opened the item box once again and, this time, took out an “Apple au Lait” . Without any exaggeration, it was a supply item that everyone from the Expert classes always had with them . This simple drink made of milk and apple had the properties of boosting the user’s mana recovery rate . After smelling the faint, but sweet aroma of apple, Mira took a sip of the cream-colored drink .

“Delicious…”

The thought escaped her lips . Both items she tasted were in pristine condition, the flavor and feeling of them going down her throat couldn’t be better . It was the first time that Mira ate an apple pie, but she had never expected to be so impressed by its taste . The Apple au Lait, similarly, was something she had never seen before in the real world but also perfectly pleased her tongue with its sweetness .


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Mira took a deep breath and let it go . While looking at the clouds slowly drifting through the sky, she used everything to feel the world she was in . There was the sensation of the wind that made her hair flutter, the pleasing scent of flowers brought to her nose, even the fatigue she felt, proportional to the distance she covered . Finally, there was the deliciousness of an apple pie and Apple au Lait spreading inside her mouth . A sense of reality was transmitted to Mira through a wide variety of stimuli . Taking into account those facts and carefully thinking about them, no matter how hard she tried, Mira couldn’t find anything to deny it . That world was real .

For now, that was what she chose to work with, treating this place as reality . Even if that premise were wrong, it wouldn’t be any problem to just consider it as some funny story she thought of . On the contrary, thinking that this was still a game could result in something irreversible happening . What if she died and stayed dead? Mira might never be able to respawn after dying . Being abandoned while in a pinch could lead to a really bad ending .

Luminaria seemed to know how to live as someone from this world, so hurrying up and meeting with her friend should be the priority now . With that in mind, Mira looked at the road ahead and moved forward .

———–

After a while, something appeared right in front of Mira . It had a gray body and ferocious eyes . Its sharp and protruding canines were dripping with saliva . Releasing a sharp growl, it slowly approached its prey . Mira already knew that monster .

It was called “Saber Dog”, the first obstacle for beginner players . This area was that monster’s territory . And there she was, a little girl who wandered outside the city and ended up far away, entering the forest completely alone . It was something so foolish one could think she wanted to kill herself .

That’s what anyone would think after looking at this situation and judging Mira just by her appearance . At most, they would guess that her robed figure meant she was an expert . However,  she also looked like a little girl still in her growing stage . If any adventurer happened to see Mira there, most probably they would jump in to her rescue . It seemed like the Saber Dog thought the same . Reflected in the monster’s eyes was just a frail and weak girl .

The Saber Dog’s length easily exceeded one meter and even an unprepared adult would have problem dealing with it . The hunter, thirsting for blood, slowly approached the prey who apparently had given up on fleeing .

Mira pointed her right hand to her foe . And, as she felt the usual sensation of casting an ability, the monster’s face was instantly covered in fear . However, the next moment, the Saber Dog’s body was destroyed as if something crashed into it . Red flower-like smudges appeared on the trees that were directly behind the target .

In the game, the Saber Dog was one of the strongest lower class monsters, but a single one was easier to deal than an entire group of goblins . What Mira used was a Xian Expert basic ability, the second-class spell named 【Heavenly Xian:Shock Wave】 . It was a simple ability that launched a shock wave forward to deal damage but, when used by someone of Mira’s level, it would easily obliterate small fry .

“No problems, I think…”

Mira could use summoning spells, but wanted to check if the Xian abilities were available too . With the experiment, she confirmed that the way to use them was the same as when she was still in a game .

Finally, after going overboard against her enemy, Mira rushed back to her destination .

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