CH 23

Ilyia’s short sword swiftly soared through the air and landed near the Ogre Warrior’s heart.
Although the blade penetrated the ogre’s skin, it was not able to reach the ogre’s heart, as the mob’s inner qi was reinforcing and protecting its body.
However, the short sword was not a normal weapon.
It had been enchanted with flames.

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In pain, the ogre tried to remove the short sword.
Unfortunately for the monster, the extreme heat emanating from the blade wasn’t something it could overlook.
However, at that moment, someone appeared in front of it.

“Hey, I can’t let you pull that out.”

With a Bam, Hanma punched the handle of the short sword and drove it into the ogre’s heart.
With its heart pierced and aflame due to the fiery nature of the short sword, the ogre couldn’t help but stop in its tracks.
And then… Sss…


“Woah! We passed without losing that much health.
You guys are great!”

“The experience points we gained were pretty good, too! Even if I were to fail the level test, I probably wouldn’t have trouble making another attempt.
If the level test itself could be taken through joint warfare, I’d be willing to grind it out and get as many experience points as possible.”

“I agree.”

“Well, at least this should allow us to pass the level-up test without much difficulty, right?”

After Adol spoke, Ilyia nodded her head in confirmation.

Once I gain the 100 experience points after leveling up, I can raise my chakra to the third step.
Then, I’ll be able to open consecutive Giant Gates, in addition to being able to combine two different Giant Gates.
So, my power will be able to make a significant leap.” 

The third step of chakra was roughly equivalent to 300 points in spiritual power and about five cycles in terms of internal energy.
The fact that an eighth-level user possessed 300 points in spiritual power was incredible.
This level of spiritual power was extremely high compared to the average eighth-level user.
This meant that Ilyia had done some serious hardcore training or…

“Ah, you’ve put all your level-up points into spiritual power.
Your health points are only in the double digits, huh? If you’re unfortunate and have no choice but to take an attack, you’d probably die on the spot.”

“Well, I see that you’ve put everything into strength and health points.
I bet your resistance is in the double digits.
You want to have a go? Since your health points and regeneration are high, you’ll probably burn for a while.”

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Having gone down two polar opposite paths, the two started making verbal jabs at each other.
As they did this, Adol ignored their petty argument and focused on the item he received from the successful raid. 

“Nice, a mid-level magic stone, and a 120-point one at that.
I didn’t expect such an outstanding reward from completing a joint warfare raid and defeating a single master-level monster.”

As a martial artist who focused on internal energy, Adol was unable to use the magic stone.
If it were a qi core, he would have been able to consume the energy held within, but a magic stone’s property was not qi but a form of worldly magic power.
Of course, he could visit a magic shop and ask an NPC to convert the mid-level magic stone into a qi core.
Yet, Adol just shook his head.

“Consuming something like that would only hurt me in the long run, as using anything that doesn’t match my affinity or my attributes will just be detrimental later.
This magic stone has about one cycle (sixty years) and ten years, but if I consume it, it will probably only give me about half a cycle.”

Even if they weren’t consumed, there were many uses for magic stones and qi cores.
For lesser users who either didn’t want to reach the upper echelons of the game or lacked the capability to do so, consuming magic stones or qi cores was a viable option.
However, Adol had grander plans.

“What about you, Adol? You’ll put your points into internal force and reach four cycles once you pass the level test, right?”

“I’ve only just reached three cycles and five years, so even if I put all 100 points into internal force, I probably wouldn’t reach four cycles.”

“Oh? Then, in comparison, that woman’s chakra level is really high, no?”

“That’s right.
If she put all her points into only spiritual power, she could reach 300 points by the sixth level, but since she needs to raise resistance as well, being on the third step already is remarkable.
Moreover, once the stat in any category goes beyond 200 points, one needs to use three points to improve that category by one point.
She probably hasn’t reached that level just by obtaining points.
It’s likely that she’s put a lot of grueling training in as well.”

Knowing that Adol’s words were correct, Hanma nodded.
As his health and muscle strength stats rose, Hanma also noticed that it was getting harder for him to raise those two stat categories. 

“Anyway, what item did you get?”

“Me? Some silver and an item that’ll probably rot away in my inventory.”

“An item that’ll rot away in your inventory?”

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Confused by Hanma’s description, Adol looked to Hanma’s side and saw a great hammer.
He couldn’t help but chuckle.
The great hammer was about three meters in length and had a hexagonal head that was the size of a modern refrigerator from Earth.
Was it even possible for a human to use this type of weapon? However, Adol’s eyes grew wide as he further inspected the great hammer.

“Woah! A second-tier item?! Dude, you lucked out! I haven’t even seen or heard of a third-tier item!”

“What good will that do for me? I can’t even use it.”

“But if you sell it.…”

“To whom?”


It was only then that Adol realized that the great hammer was most likely utterly useless.
Despite the fact that it was a second-tier item, if it couldn’t be used by anyone, it was essentially worthless.

“Ah, shit.
It’s so heavy that it won’t even go into my inventory.
My luck must suck to get this type of drop.”

“Are you going to throw it away?”

“Well… no.
It still is, after all, a second-tier item.”

It was a waste to just give up on it.
Still, Adol thought that it was fortunate that Hanma received the great hammer.
Since the item wouldn’t have fit into any of their inventories, it would have to be carried.
Among the four, only Hanma had the physical strength necessary to transport such an item. 

“Well, nice working with you all.
I’m going to head out and finish the level test.”

Ilyia was the first to say her goodbyes.
You could enter the testing room from any location, so as soon as she left this field, she would be able to enter the level testing room.
In addition, every one of them would be placed in separate testing rooms, so it was improbable that they’d bump into each other again anytime soon, if ever. 

“I’ll send you a friend request, so don’t decline it.”

If they did happen to meet again, it wouldn’t be for a while.
However, within the world of DIO, there weren’t many high-level users, so if they wanted to communicate with each other for any reason, they could communicate through the system’s whisper function (a form of text thread with a specific user).
Though there were rumors that a user had reached master level, people like these four knew how drastically the difficulty rose to level up as one progressed, and they didn’t believe the rumors.

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“I’m going to take off as well.
Let me know if you guys want to team up for something later.”

Since we haven’t sustained any injuries, we’ll probably all take the level test as soon as possible.”

Even though he sustained a direct hit from the Ogre Warrior, Hanma seemed unaffected, and he carried the great hammer on his shoulders as he waved goodbye.
The weapon weighed half a ton, which was actually less than what one would assume if they looked at it, but that weight was more than enough to squash any normal human being. 


After hearing and seeing each of his group members disappear, Adol turned around and left the field.
His surroundings suddenly changed as he was brought back to the testing room.

“So, what shall I choose?”

After some contemplation, Adol chose to conduct a one-on-one battle with a guard. 


Adol’s eyes widened in surprise as his surroundings transformed into the forest area where he had just conducted the joint warfare with his group members.
It seemed that he had been placed in the same forest template setting.
Before him, Adol saw a magic formation a short distance away.


Expecting an attack, Adol easily parried the oncoming ogre’s strike.
The ogre was actually pushed back about five meters from their clash.
It seemed that the rebound from their collision had injured the ogre’s shoulder, as the monster grabbed its shoulder and growled loudly.
Unlike the Ogre Warrior, this ogre didn’t carry a weapon or seemed to know how to utilize internal energy.
Still, the ogre possessed skin that was tough enough to block any arrow, immense strength, and fortitude that prevented any singular attack from easily killing it.


When they clashed again, it was the ogre that was pushed back once more.
With the magic ‘function’ that his shield possessed, as well as the substantial internal force within himself, Adol was able to show off a considerable level of stopping power.

“Sorry, but you’re too weak.
You won’t be able to defeat me with your attacks.
My shield-wielding ability isn’t just for show, you know.”

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The ogre realized that it wouldn’t be able to overcome the shield that covered the human in front of it.
And so, it started looking around at its surroundings, growling.
Seeing this, Adol sighed.
He had expected this.
Many of his opponents would stop attacking after hitting his shield a few times.
This was because they'd quickly realized that his shield wasn’t being damaged, and in fact, they were being injured instead.
However, the problem for Adol was…

“My offense is crap.”

This was Adol’s reality, his main problem.
Although he had continued to train his sword arts, he was only in the sixth tier.
He showed promise in his cultivation method and had accumulated a tremendous amount of internal energy, but his improvements in the way of the sword art were lackluster.
This made it so that his effectiveness in battle was relatively low.
In order to defeat the ogre in front of him, Adol would have to conduct tens of successful attacks. 

“This’ll probably take a while.”

With a sigh of resignation, Adol angled his shield slightly and sent a boulder glancing off, the rock having been thrown by the ogre.


The Seadragon’s Temple.

The monsters in this dungeon had an average level of thirteen, which signified that it was an advanced-level dungeon.
Furthermore, the environment was a hindrance for most users as the entire dungeon was located underwater.
And to top it off, the monsters were all experts in underwater combat. 

Though most users were unaware of it, the Seadragon’s Temple was considered the highest-level dungeon in the game.
It had a special class, and the average level of the mobs within it was at least five levels higher than anywhere else.
No one had cleared the dungeon yet, and it didn’t seem as though it would be cleared anytime soon.

Despite all these factors, Yongno swam leisurely and comfortably through the dungeon.

“There’s nothing here? What’s going on?”

Confused as to what was going on, Yongno continued to move forward.
The dungeon was originally supposed to be a succession of hallways and rooms.
In each room, monsters would appear, and once the users cleared them, another hallway would show itself, leading to another room.
Yet, Yongno had bypassed all of this as he swam in what seemed like the long hallway's upper crawl space.
In truth, he was starting to get frustrated and bored by the length of the hallway.

“Hmm, these kinds of places show up every once in a while… is it a resting area?”

Yongno got out of the water and entered a large room.
On the wall, there was a shelf where food was present; there were roughly sixteen servings worth of food.
It seemed that the dungeon required sixteen users to clear it.
In addition, there was some firewood as well.
It looked like the resting area and provisions were provided for users who were uncomfortable in water environments, something Yongno had no issue with.

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