PS V1, Chapter 41: Rolling the Dice

*Author’s Note*

I’m just gonna put this here ahead of time because I know that there will be people, like me, who got annoyed when I used Dice for singular and plural… However, I do use Die sometimes for singular too, it’s just that Dice works better in certain situations. It kind of pissed me off at first, but technically, modern use of Dice can be for singular and plural. And sometimes it’s the best way for people to understand that you’re talking about dice instead of death… Anyway, enjoy 😛

****

[Summoner: Matthew Leblanc
ID Code: Trashmob-707
Rank: Unranked
Level: 8
Experience: 2/10
Mana: 8/8
Cards: 38
Description: A Player with zero skill, but a decent amount of luck. The kind of Summoner who makes other Players want to go out of their way to kill him.]

Although the battle was extremely one-sided, it was in the end, still a battle. Those three men had assault rifles and it was possible that they might have been able to get lucky, injuring or killing Matthew. Thus, he received experience for their deaths.

Such rules existed in Old Earth Online, so that new Players wouldn’t be motivated to start randomly bombing people to gain experience rapidly. Of course, for the Ranked Players, NPCs gave no experience at all. There were a lot of Achievements though, so it still had competitive incentives.

“Hey Matt, you still alive?” Michael walked over to the man who was on the verge of heatstroke and also had a pretty severe infection in his eye socket. Yes, Matthew was most certainly dying. Unless he drew the Alpha Healing Nanites card or recieved an even more effective healing Spell from his new packs, then he would die.

“I’m… Alive… Kinda. Ugh…” The severely injured man rolled over and unsteadily stood up. Then he whispered “Providence… Arcana’s Games.”

[Achievement Earned: “Arcana’s Mistake”. You chose the Arcana’s Games card pack three times in a row. You have earned a new card!]

[Creature: Michael Cinagra
ID Code: MC-777
Type: Hero
Rarity: Rare
Mana Cost: 7
Description: Summons a human empowered by Arcane, Light and Chaotic Mana. Michael Cinagra was an author and shut-in on Earth for a few years. However, he randomly had an aneurysm while taking a shower and his Soul was Summoned to a planet called Arcana, by the Arcane Goddess. He has six Companions: Inari, Sarah Carelia, Elina Jacobs, Jasmine Jade, Alice Flameborn and Talia Aeris Ramirez. When he is with them, unique abilities and synergistic effects will come into play. He can be Equipped with Arcane, Light or Chaotic Spells, but only has limited access to his own spellbook otherwise. As the Summoner becomes more powerful, Michael’s physical and magical abilities will improve drastically. Unfortunately, he is also extremely volatile and dangerous. Responds positively to females, not necessarily human females, but females in general. If he feels threatened or annoyed, he usually kills without hesitation. He can be summoned with Equipment Cards, but will otherwise be completely nude. Of course, he can also utilize a great variety of magical weapons and tools in the field, so long as they match his affinities.]

“You’ve gotta be fucking… kidding me…” Matt started laughing and feebly fell back onto the sand. The man in the picture looked very similar to the one who was hovering over him, except much taller and with hair down to his shoulders. They both had essentially the same original personality, except one was significantly younger and each of them experienced drastically different scenarios.

However, when Michael saw that card, he snickered and explained “Yeah, I totally wrote like twenty or thirty books about that dude. ‘Hardcore OP-ness’, ‘Hardcore Legacies’, and ‘OP-ness Returns’ were the first three series… I was gonna write more, but meh, the world ended before I had the chance. I was also working on a dozen other stories at the same time though. It says that he only has three magical affinities, so I guess this is him at around the end of the first series. If that’s the case, then he should be like Rank-D or almost Rank-C. If the Player Ranks are similar, then you’ve got a long way to go before you can use his full power… However, if you’re lucky enough to Summon him before you die, he might have a few ways to save your life.”

“How… Do you know so much?” Matt asked, then coughed from the dry air.

“Oh, well, if you’re right and this is just a VR simulation or whatever, then there was probably an original me on the actual Earth. I figure he was probably a relatively unknown writer until shit hit the fan and the world nearly ended. Then once technology entered the virtual stage, he most likely became a famous gamer. Through that, he got money and fame, then started to fund movies, games and other stuff based on his stories. It’s also possible that he was directly related to the people who created the first full-immersion VR. The odds aren’t as low as you’d think. Anyway, the moral of the story is that I was obviously programmed with tons of secret information about stuff.”

As the dying man sighed, he got rid of the Steel Katana Collection card and drew a new one: Alpha Healing Nanites. He would’ve shouted “Yes!” If he could have.

Unfortunately for him, fate is never quite so forgiving. No matter how much he struggled to survive, it was inevitably useless. Three tan attack helicopters flew out from beyond the giant sand dune, followed by a heavy tank, two armored personnel carriers and a dozen jeeps. For some odd reason, an entire battalion was coming straight towards the two men.

Michael sighed, complaining “Isn’t this a kinda rushed ending? I mean seriously, whoever wrote this scenario is a fucking asshole.”

However, Matt didn’t give up just yet. Afterall, while he was riding on Michael’s back, he did receive a card that might be able to save them. Although it was also one of the cards that he never wanted to have to play.

[Spell: Arcana’s Blessing of Retribution
Type: Offensive
Rarity: Epic
Mana Cost: 6
Description: Summons a 6-sided Arcane Dice. When the Summoner casts the die, it will automatically roll a random number between 1 and 6. If the number is 1, a lightning storm will be generated and for the next 24 hours, all enemies will be repeatedly targeted by the lightning bolts. If the number is 2, a powerful earthquake will be created directly beneath the Summoner. If the number is 3, meteors will fall from the skies and target all enemies. If the number is 4, all enemies will be teleported to the Summoner. If the number is 5, the Summoner will be teleported to the most distant enemy. If the number is 6, the Summoner will instantly die, along with all of their enemies. Results may vary greatly depending on the location and how powerful the enemies of the Summoner are.]

“If I die… I’m taking all of them… With me!” Matt stood up and shouted as a small crystalline die appeared above his right hand. Then it flew out and smacked against the sand, immediately stopping and then exploding into a burst of blinding light. Time seemed to freeze and it felt as if the ‘game’ was going to crash.

“Holy mother of chicken fuckers! What did you do?!” Michael shouted, before both of them were crushed into the sand by a tank, then a couple jeeps, some more tanks, fifty helicopters, a dozen giant Coast Guard cruisers, hundreds of entire buildings and nearly a million people. Yes, a million humans were teleported mid-air, before falling to their deaths.

Matthew Leblanc died, but at least he took all his enemies with him. Even Andrew Jackson and Abel Lincoln were unable to escape from his kamikaze maneuver. The two of them might have been extremely High-Ranked Players, but they couldn’t play Old Earth Online with any Mods enabled because of that. In other words, they were only ordinary humans for the most part. Thus, they perished after falling several hundred meters into the concrete roof of a crumbling office building, right next to each other. Then thousands of other helpless people landed on top of them.

Ironically, the deaths of Andrew Jackson, Abel Lincoln and all of their constituents had managed to swiftly bring about an end to the Civil War in America. However, after so many Players in the government and high military positions had suddenly died, there was a power vacuum left behind. NPCs tried to fill it, but ultimately, true power could only ever belong to Players.

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