Michael walked over to the pile of Sarah’s equipment, and used ‘Scan’ on the various items, which revealed “Crude Leather Armor: Grants the wearer one Defense Rating. Made to fit a female Goblin. Poor Quality, no level requirement.” It was so low-end, that the entire suit could be placed in bag-slot eleven: If it had been Uncommon, then each piece would have required a separate spot.
Then he moved onto the five knives on the ground, each of which were about the same length and shape. Channeling Mana into his eyes, the information window popped-up: “Rusty Iron Dagger(Poisoned): Grants the user five Attack Rating. Dull, chipped, warped, rusted, and created with very little skill, but coated in a deadly neurotoxin. Poor Quality, low durability, no level requirement.”
Jonathan sighed, and said “If you walk into Carrabelle City completely naked, the guards will probably arrest you for public indecency… even if you are Human. Unfortunately, I don’t really have anything that would fit you.”
As he shoved the five tiny weapons into bag-slot twelve, Michael snickered and told the Hobgoblin “Well, I’ll figure something out… No offense, but I really don’t want to spend another night in this shitty village. Hmmm, I should probably collect a few thousand gallons of water before I leave though.”
Leaving the hut, the naked man casually walked towards the white, sandy beach, ignoring the various spearfishing Goblins, and wading into the water until it was up to his chest. Unlike the little stream, the river was moving a lot slower, so he wasn’t too worried about getting carried away; in fact, there were even small waves that crashed against the shore.
Suddenly, a huge whirlpool developed with his right hand as the center, and he lazily watched as the numbers rapidly increased in his seventh bag-slot. The speed was dozens of times faster than he could achieve in that tiny inlet he was using the first time.
When it passed ten-thousand gallons, he muttered “Well, if I ever need to build a pool… Hmmm, but there might be some weird situation. Maybe I’ll encounter some kinda fire-demon and need to use copious amounts of water to weaken it. A hundred-thousand should be enough…”
However, when he reached fifty-thousand, he received a notice: “Bag-slot seven has reached maximum capacity.” Which made him realize that if he really wanted to fill all sixteen, it was possible for him to carry eight-hundred thousand gallons of water.
Michael was tempted to keep going, but then he noticed Inari swimming over to him while barking. He smiled at her and asked “What’s wrong girl?” as he felt a sharp pain in his left thigh, and then remembered something fairly important: There were crocodiles in the river.
A ‘-9’ appeared, along with a ‘bleeding’ debuff, but surprisingly, the ten-foot long brown-scaled reptile wasn’t able to tear his leg off. His four points of Endurance gave his body two points of Defense Rating, which was actually pretty significant against the attacks of unranked animals.
Before he even had a chance to do anything, Inari dove underwater and used her relatively small fangs and claws to gouge out the crocodile’s eyes, before biting into its thick skull and delivering a series of large critical strikes for ‘-8,’ ‘-11,’ ‘-7,’ and finally over-killing it with a ‘-13’ deadly strike.
Unfortunately, even though the beast was level-four, and had a max health of fifty-five, Michael still didn’t get any experience when it died. Only rankless beasts could gain experience and levels from killing and eating each-other.
Michael’s touched the corpse with his left hand and sent it into bag-slot thirteen, while muttering “Even if it wasn’t a magical-beast, it was still a level-four crocodile… I should be able to sell it for a few coppers, probably. Anyway, according to the map, Carrabelle City is… fuck my life, fifty-miles to the northwest. Ugh, if I actually walk there barefoot, nope, not gonna do it. Hmmm, Inari’s way too small and weak to carry me, so I should probably find a horse… or something like that.”
With four points in Agility, his weight was only two-hundred and ten pounds, so most large magical-beasts would be able to easily carry him. However, he immediately remembered something rather important, “Oh yea, I definitely don’t know how to ride a horse… and even if I did, I’d probably just get motion-sickness. Hell, I can’t even drive five miles in a car… sigh, well, at least I can use my wisp form and make everything speed-up a bit.”
Of course, he couldn’t actually alter time, but merely his perception of it. Thus, he embarked on the longest walk in his entire life: up until that point at least.
Carrabelle City was located along the Archeus River, so he decided to stay near the beach… until the third crocodile attack, where he nearly lost his right leg. After his injuries recovered, he continued along a slightly safer path, through the grassy plains.
On the first day, he ended up sharing a level-one core-less magical rabbit with Inari. He discovered that with his twenty stamina, he became exhausted after five hours of nonstop walking, but the vixen still had a bit of energy left: Even though her maximum stamina was only ten.
That was the difference between bipedal and quadrupedal movement, combined with ratios of Agility to Strength, Stamina, Endurance and physical size. It required a lot less power for the little fox to run, jump, hunt, and play all day long, than for the immortal Human to simply hike at a slow, comfortable pace.
They only managed to travel fifteen miles on that first day, and the two of them casually slept in a grass-less, stony field that night. Upon encountering the huge area, covered in monolithic pillars and broken statues, Michael mentioned “Hmmm, this doesn’t look suspicious at all… ‘Cain’s Refuge’ kinda sounds like a vampire thing, so maybe there’s some secret dungeon entrance around here? Well, whatever, I’m definitely way too low leveled to get involved in that kinda shit.” before picking out a smooth and flat stone slab to lay on.
Aside from the overall zones like ‘Carrabelle Plains’ or ‘Ariel’s Meadow,’ locations such as cities, towns, villages, and other significant places were also marked on his map: when he discovered them, or a quest told him to travel there. In fact, he did think it was strange how Jonathan didn’t even mention the direction that he needed to travel in, he wondered if even NPCs had access to that feature.
As he nonchalantly slept on that mysterious stone, he noticed a few Goblin-shaped spirits floating around his body occasionally. They didn’t particularly do anything, but a ‘haunted’ debuff appeared above his unconscious head.
He fast-forwarded and snickered, as he watched the scabs, bruises, gashes and other injuries on his legs rapidly regenerate. His Mana was nearly empty the whole time, but since he was sleeping anyway, it didn’t really make a difference.
However, aside from the outward, obvious injuries that were completely recovered in two hours, even the internal ones were healed. In the morning, when he woke up with full Mana, Stamina, and Health, Michael stretched while smiling, and muttered “So overpowered… ugh, how did I live my whole life until now without this ‘Superior Regeneration’ nonsense? Hell, it’s still only at level one… Sigh, I can’t believe I can actually breathe out of my nose as well. Hmm, plus I don’t have to worry about getting sick, from any diseases under level two…”
After taking a cold shower, by spraying a few gallons of water over his skin and hair, he complained “If I was brought into this world a few seconds earlier, I could have had a whole bottle of shampoo and conditioner, a little later, and I would at least have some body-wash. Please have soap in Carrabelle City… or at least some lye; not that I have any idea what proportions to use, but it would be worth the effort, as long as I don’t have to be filthy forever.”
Inari was still sleeping, so he sat back down on the stone slab, next to her, and began experimenting with his bag. When he had taken out the blood-worm’s mana-core, it was actually the first time he had every tried removing just a part of the animals that were in his inventory.
Michael thought it was possible, because when he originally killed it, the little red bead had to be picked up separately from the rest of the carcass, yet when he stored them, it registered as a single item. The same thing happened when he stored the vomit-covered black-pearl, with his corpse: they merged in his bag-slot.
However, since he had nothing better to do, he decided to play around with the possibilities. With a decent amount of concentration, he imagined removing a level-one rabbit out of his inventory; he still had twenty-three of the core-less carcasses left, so they seemed like the least valuable to him.
As Michael closed his eyes, he envisioned only the ‘meat,’ and the moment that the blob of bloody muscle-tissue he grumbled “Uch, eww, I don’t even… oh God, why is it moving?” Since he stored most of the creatures immediately after their Health was reduced to zero, their bodies were still slightly functional.
Then he finally realized the truly terrifying aspect of that particular ability, and asked himself “Holy shit! Wait, wait, doesn’t that mean I can shove an unranked, living animal or person inside of my inventory… Then take them out again, but missing all their skin or bones?”