Chapter 18 Act 3: Adaptation

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Author: Starving Wind Original Source: Joara Word Count: 4125 characters
Translator: Anonymouss English Source: Re:Library Word Count: 2354 words
Editor(s): Silva

And so, ‘Artoria went out to hunt monsters along with Merlin’, which sounded like a scene straight out of a movie actually became reality for me1.

Of course, this was all in a video game where it didn’t have anything to do with written history, but the fact that the number 1 and 2 top-ranked players of the server were actually co-operating together rather than competing against each other was something that probably wasn’t seen in any other server.

And so this unprecedented two-people hunting party chose the Red Plains as their hunting area.

It’s also one of the top 5 places least recommended for going out hunting monsters. Why was this area called forbidden when the location is so convenient, being just north of Liverpool, which is one of the capital cities of England?

The first reason lies within the Red Orcs that inhabit the Red Plains. The Red Orcs are not like regular Orcs, being on a master grade monsters, and even though their stats are lower than Death Knights, they respawn twice as fast, and they’re three times more likely to attack in a group, coming down on players quickly.

If you think about it in another way, it may sound like a great place for classes that have lots of AOE skills to maximize their efficiency when hunting, but Red Orcs could spawn as a long-range mage as well as a healer. It meant that it was one of the worst groups of enemies you could face like the Death Knights and Liches. If you weren’t careful, mages with lower than average health would end up dying to the Orcs without even landing a proper hit2, even if they were to round up a large amount of them.

The second reason is that the location of the teleportation circle is in a terrible place. For monster-hunting fields, most teleportation circles are located outside of the actual area where the monsters spawn, with the exception of dungeons.

However, the teleportation circle for this particular field was located right in the middle of the Red Plains, making it understandable why players often rate it as the worst place to go monster hunting. If you weren’t careful, you would be surrounded by monsters the second you teleport in. Only the players with classes that have high dexterity or a minority of high ranking players could survive in that field where monsters constantly surround them.

Finally, this location was also under the control of the giant guild “Volcano” who calls Liverpool their hometown. Control of a hunting field by a guild in Blue Sky means that they set up a rotation of guards around the field so that no one outside of their guild could make use of the field, which was a rule set by the guild members themselves instead of any system rule3.

It was difficult to make up a clear case against making up such restrictions because both sides have their own reasons to do so, and to argue against a large guild was a hassle.

There’s also gossip, saying that restricting the entrance of the place from others didn’t really matter in the end because it was already deemed a terrible place to go hunt and farm monsters. But there was actually one reason why the guild leader of Volcano, Katalina chose this area to hunt.

Her goal was more aligned with making sure that other guilds would not make use of such a convenient location to plan assassinations or terrorism against the Volcano Guild. It was a preventative measure that was considered reasonable as the guild had many enemies.

“We call it control, but people don’t like coming here anyways. So who would criticize me for making use of a hunting ground that had been cast aside as the worst place to go?”

Even though she was the main culprit for putting the place under lockdown, she was still way too confident about it.

After arriving at the teleport circle while chatting with me, Katalina and I met two members of the Volcano guild that was standing around the teleportation circle.

“Thanks for standing guard for me today.”
“We heard that you were going hunting today, I see that you’re going with this young lady next to you.”
“Ah, you’re here, guild master. Who is that next to you?”

I’m not sure whether those two members are close to her, but they still looked like they were pretty comfortable with each other. Of course, as a guild master, you’d likely have to be friendly and close with everyone as much as you can, but to see these two clearly high-level players stand around guarding for the guild master made me realize just how powerful she is.

“Ahh! Yeah. I told you about her before. That I’m close with Artoria.”
“”You did.””

The two answered at the same time.

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“You both remember saying that I was lying back then, right?”
“Of course. You said that you were close with her, yet you never introduced her to the guild members even once. Is that really a close relationship?”
“Yeah, yeah. I may have believed you if you at least had her greet us even once.”

I had a hunch about what kind of situation this was. Of course for Katalina, no matter how much she argued, people wouldn’t believe her since Elizabeth was so introverted.

The original Elizabeth didn’t want to ever go out into the public out of fear that her real identity would be found out. Now, it feels like she was using this as a chance to regain the authority she deserves.

“So. That’s why I’m trying to show you all this undeniable proof right here!”
“Can I really trust your words?”
“It’s starting to get hard to believe anything you say.”

Hearing the jeer from the two players, Katalina turns around to face me. She made an expression as if asking if it was all right to reveal my identity, and since I didn’t have any reason to hide anymore, I nodded.

Then, she turned back to the two players with a meaningful expression still on her face.
“First, I’ll introduce these two rude guild members to you.”

The two had a sour expression at being introduced as rude people but didn’t say anything because of me standing right there.

“First of all is this assassin with the black outfit, he goes by his nickname, ‘Joker’4, and is the leader of our lousy assassin team. He’s thirty years old. Simply put, he’s a married man with a child and always tries to show his serious side to everyone but is pretty sloppy inside.5
“… Sorry for leading a lousy team as well as being sloppy, G-u-i-l-d M-a-s-t-e-r. In any case, you can call me ‘Joker’, young lady. It’s nice to meet you.”
“Yes, nice to meet you.”

Hearing his greeting, I courteously greeted back.

“And the mage next to him… The man who says he’s the 2nd best mage in the guild, ‘Anubis’. He’s twenty years old and has a very fitting name, so it’s best for you to not get close to him very much.”
“You’re really giving an insane introduction. If you weren’t the guild master, I would have immediately requested a duel with our character’s life on the line!”
“… You wanna go right now?”
“Haha… Of course not, guild master.”

Seeing how Anubis calmed Joker down the moment he saw Katalina make a terrifying smile, I realized that their introductions were perfect in describing their personalities.

“Anyhow, it’s an honor to greet an acquaintance of the great guild master. My name is ‘Anubis’!”
“It’s nice to meet you as well.”

I greeted him while thinking that they probably aren’t bad people at all since they’re happy to take the jokes that she made at their expense. Looking at me greet them back, Katalina looked as if that should be enough and started to speak while pointing at me.

“And! This knight user here is ‘Artoria’. Well, I’m sure you know who she is without me telling you both about her, right?”
“… Please don’t joke around like that…”
“Guild master, you really think I’ll believe that?”

Katalina knew that their reactions would be like that, and turned to me.

“Could you disable your Real Mode for a moment?”

I nodded and disabled my Real Mode. With that, my character’s ID is revealed to them.

“Whoa!!!”
“O…omg6…!”

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The two were even rubbing their eyes in disbelief, and their mouths were agape in shock.

“It’s nice to meet you. I’m ‘Artoria’.”
“Wow. It’s an honor to meet you. Artoria. I may be just a lowly player but could you give me the honor of adding me to your friend’s list…”
“M… Me too! Please!!”
“Joker. Anubis. If you don’t want the news of having two unknown bodies showing up tomorrow, I suggest you stop pestering my acquaintance.”

Katalina stepped between me and the two men, who were coming over to my side with a gleam in their eyes. She snapped at them coldly, stopping them in their tracks.

“Ugh…! What an evil guild master, stopping us simple guild members from trying to get to know your friend…”

Joker bemoaned his misfortune while making fun of Katalina.

“When will her egomaniacal tyranny end…”

As Anubis continued mocking her, Katalina’s eyes became even narrower. She then jerked her staff forward and snapped at them.

“If you don’t like it, then how about the both of you go against me at the same time?”
“Guild master. I swear my loyalty to you.”
“We would never do something so unfaithful…”

It made me think that the main reason for the cohesiveness of the Volcano guild was in major part thanks to Katalina’s violent personality.

“Keep watch then!”
“Yes ma’am!”
“We’ll put our lives on stake.”

After Katalina made the rebellious two sound like cute obedient puppies in an instant, she lightly stretched her neck and stepped towards me.

“Ellie!7 Let’s just go and hunt.”
“Y… Yeah.”

Seeing her with the same powerful imagery of a gum-chewing8 b̲a̲d̲a̲s̲s̲, I couldn’t help but nod and agree in fear.

As I unsheathed Excalibur from my scabbard, I checked my skill slots and organized my remaining potions. Since this was not a solo hunt, I had trouble trying to figure out the best line up of skills I should use, but in the end, we went with a plan where Katalina will take care of most enemies with her AOE skills while I focus on enemy mages and healers.

“Hmm. Ellie, your skills are more tailored to AOE ones since you’re using a two-handed sword. How about we go in turns in using AOE skills? You will be acting as the main tanker while I boost your defense, and although I may not be great in terms of healing power, I can at least give several different support buffs which should be just as good9. We’ll keep switching around the role of lead DPS to the enemies.”

That certainly seemed very effective.

“Then what about kiting10 the monsters?”

I asked Katalina.

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“Hm… Well, I’ll take that role. I can do double casting, and my casting delay has been reduced quite a lot thanks to this staff as well. I’ll be able to kite monsters using a quick fireball spell which has virtually no cooldown, so I’ll be more effective in kiting the monsters. Since your fast, you can just take out Orc mages in their midst.”

In the end, the plan wasn’t too different than what I was thinking, but hearing her go into detail, I nodded in agreement.

The hunt went smoothly. It was the first time the two of us were fighting in a two-people party, but our co-operation went perfectly, enough so that it seems unbelievable that it’s our first time hunting together.

I’m not too sure about how the original Elizabeth used to play, but since I am proficient in using high damage skills to take out singular enemies, I was able to make sure that the Orc mages were taken out before they could hurt either of us.

Katalina would take care of monsters in large numbers, while I would aim at smaller groups of enemies with my spells and skills, helping us clear the whole hunting field pretty quickly. Even if the respawn time of the Orcs was pretty quick, there still existed a delay between their death and the time they respawn, so we would continuously move as we hunted the Orcs, keeping us both busy with no downtime in between fights.

It was doubly thrilling and risky as we were pulling in large numbers of enemies, meaning that one mistake could end up with either of us dying. Due to the laser focus we were both putting in the hunt, we were able to keep hunting for a while without even talking to each other.

“Phew! It’s been so long since I focused on hunting monsters for so long.”

After massacring the monsters and finally taking a breather, Katalina spoke first.

“The efficiency was quite high and we were pretty fast as well…!”

Even though it wasn’t as much as I gained the day before, I was still surprised at the amount of experience I’ve gained and filled the bar.

Whenever players hunt in a party, experience points are always given in equal fractions regardless of what level the players are11. Of course, there is a penalty once there are about 50 levels difference between the party members12, but the difference between me and Katalina was only around 40. Considering that lower-leveled characters require fewer experience points than the higher leveled players, partying up like this to farm experience was quite effective for the lower leveled ones.

“Hehe. I’ll have to stick with you from now on, Ellie.”

I couldn’t refute Katalina’s words, even though there was more than one meaning in those words. In the corner of my heart, I also wanted to say the same thing to Katalina.

Our hunts once again continued after our short break until all of my potions were used up13.14



References

  1. Robinxen: Happens all the time on my FGO account though…
  2. Robinxen: RIP there goes my chances of farming
  3. Lilith: Isn’t this one of those **** moves that solo players are usually against?
    Anonymouss: Yep, but it’s also explained here
    – no one really wants to go there in the first place
    – guarded and owned by one of the biggest guilds
    – is actually an illegal thing to do, not built into the system, but the developers / GMs don’t police it, I think.
  4. Robinxen: NO DON’T DO IT! THE SMT FANS CAN SMELL BLOOD FROM OVER THE INTERNET!
  5. Robinxen: Crisis averted
  6. Silva: Oh my gawd!
    Robinxen: Ah yes…
  7. Robinxen: Casually uses her real name…
  8. Lilith: Aren’t you all out of gum?
    Robinxen: I’m here to kick names and take ***!
  9. Robinxen: Merlin is a buster steroid even in this game huh…..
  10. Silva: If you’re like me and didn’t know what kiting means until a few months ago, here is the definition:

    1. (verb) A term in video gaming and elsewhere to describe when a ranged fighter skirmishes with a hand-to-hand fighter by running and shooting. This can have 2 purposes: a) to damage the enemy while staying outside of hand-to-hand range, or b) to make the enemy follow you so you can lead them to a specific location

    Robinxen: Kiting is sort of like training but usually less because of wanting to score lots of mobs and more like “squishy”

  11. Silva: Eh, isn’t that easy to abuse? Imagine a level 1 partying up with level 900…
    Lilith: I’d imagine the penalty that people get get’s higher as the difference increases
    Robinxen: POWER LEVEL!
  12. Silva: Of course…
  13. Silva: RIP potions… I wonder how much all those potions cost? I could probably buy a house with those money?
    Lilith: Just enough to be considered abuse of money
    Robinxen: NOT THE GACHA FUNDS!
  14. Robinxen: SO MANY FOOTNOTES!
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