~ Chapter 8: The cat's out of the bag! ~
Once again, morning greeted me with a dark sky outside, but for the first time in two days, I felt a terrible pain rushing through my body. It wasn’t too bad, more like the feeling I got after pushing myself too hard at the gym. My muscles were rejoicing when I moved, but at the same time, they were cursing me for daring to move. The good ol’ muscle fever was a paradoxical sensation, which felt rather good.
Getting up from my simple bed, a blanket spread across a patch of grass, I crawled out of the tent and stretched my arms and legs a bit. The refreshing feeling rushed over me immediately and then was followed by pain. I groaned a bit and shook my hands and legs, hoping to get rid of it, no chance though.
It wasn’t to the point where I was allowed to complain about it, but it was a bit annoying. It might have had something to do with my stats rising drastically or the fact that I walked for such a long distance. There was no sign of injury on my feet though, no scars or blisters as one would expect, which made this pain even more strange.
I decided to ask Seryanna about it, but it was then when I noticed that I was alone in the camp. There was no sign to be seen of the beautiful dragoness.
Looking around, I blinked surprised and wondered Where could she be? Nature called? I shrugged and walked over to the burning fire. Using a stick, I stoked it a bit and waited patiently for her return.
Another five minutes passed, and there was still no sign of her. The thought that she abandoned me here crossed my mind, however, her chest armor, leather gloves, arm guards, and shin guards were still there. If she left, there was no reason for her to abandon her armor like that. What I thought next was that something might have happened to her. A chill ran down my spine while I thought about it.
No way! That can’t be! I thought as I looked around and then called out to her “SERYANNA?!”
I waited… and waited, but no answer came back.
Gulping, I clenched my fists and prayed to whatever god was out there and listened to me to help me find her and that she was safe and sound. Without a second thought and half afraid for my own life, I rushed into the forest.
“SERYANNA?!” I shouted again.
There was no sign of her in that direction, so I turned left. I couldn’t run too far away from the warding crystal, otherwise the monsters would attack me. By then, I had forgotten about the pain in my legs, I just wanted to find her safe and sound.
“SERYANNA?!” I shouted again as I jumped through a bush.
My pulse kept going up alongside my fears. My thoughts quickly went into the dark side of my imagination as I thought about what could have happened to her, and what might happen to me if she happened to be dead or heavily injured. The boost I got from becoming her friend might have been great, but it was still only 25% of her total stats. I wasn’t an idiot, I realized that for a level 1 that was something incredible and probably none of the humans from Earth could reach these sort of values without another cheat-like ability. Even so, was it enough for me to face the monsters lurking in this forest? I doubted it. I highly doubted it.
“SERYAN… Omph!” I shouted, but then I bumped into something.
I was knocked back and landed on my behind. My hands hurt for some reason, but it was too dark to realize what was going on. If I hit something sharp, it was a good thing I was running with my hands up and protected my face from danger, but my chest also hurt a bit.
“Ouch!” I said as I moved my hand over my arm.
Color left my cheeks upon realizing that I had something stuck in me. Wherever it hurt and stung, I had something sharp like a needle or spike impaled into my flesh. Blood poured out of my freshly made wounds, and the realization that I got injured rushed to my mind. I was frightened. I was terrified.
The sound sent a chill down my spine and forced me to look up. What I saw wasn’t a snake or a slithering critter, but an eight legged shadow. It was quite dark, but even with the little light I had, I could tell it was a spider.
You have got to be kidding me! I was looking for a hot dragoness not a freakish-looking, eight-legged monster! Hm? Wait a sec… It can’t be, right? I thought and then after gulping, I asked “Seryanna? Is that you?”
The monster hissed and raised its front legs up. It was the sign that told me it would attack. I remembered it from a documentary show I watched once on a TV streaming website. It was the first warning every arachnid gave off. Some even raised their bodies on their back legs to appear bigger to a potential enemy.
“I’m dead…” I thought and right then, I saw another shadow jumping at the spider, and one of its giant legs fell off.
The spider hissed and attacked the other shadow. I tried to follow it, but it moved too fast. Even with my increased stats, I was not yet used to controlling my power. There were moments when I felt like I recognized the one fighting, but there were others when I saw nothing but a blur. In the end, the battle was won in darkness, and only the later shadow came out victorious. At that time, I only stood there like a statue, not daring to move nor cry for help.
“Are you alright?” Seryanna’s voice came from the shadow.
I blinked and realized it was her. The beautiful dragoness saved me again.
“Seryanna! Praise the Heavens!” I cried as I jumped towards her and hugged her tightly. “You’re alive! You’re alive! I saw you were gone and then… I thought you died and this thing… it jumped out and…” I said while pressing my face onto her chest.
“Alkelios! I’m alright, now please… let me go! This is embarrassing…” she said as she looked away.
I blinked surprised and looked up at her.
“What is?” I asked like a dolt.
“Are you blind? I’m…” she tried to say, but her voice sounded strange.
That darkness was keeping me from seeing too well, however, I realized through touch alone what she meant. My cheeks weren’t touching cloth, but skin. I wasn’t embracing a lightly dressed woman, but a half naked one. Seryanna wasn’t wearing anything on her top, and her hair was wet too.
“Huh?” I said surprised, but didn’t jump back immediately.
“I was taking a shower, then I heard you screaming like a frightened little girl and came rushing to your help. I saw the white spider aiming for your life, and I killed it… Now, please… can you let go of me? If you don’t, I’ll hit you!” she warned me.
“Ah! Sorry, it felt a bit too good to hug you like that.” I said bluntly.
“Stupid…” she blushed and looked away. Or at least, I thought she did.
“Don’t worry, I can barely see anything! Aaand now I remembered that I got stabbed by needles… YOUCH!” I screamed as my brain finally started to process the pain of those needles moving around in me, especially when I hugged Seryanna.
“Sigh… Let me finish up, and I’ll take them out for you. Meanwhile, go in that direction. You will find the camp.” she told me as she pushed me in the right way.
“Thank you…” I said as I looked back.
She wasn’t covering her top, but thanks to dim light and dark shadows, I could barely see the beauty of those treasures. Even so, it would have been bad if I kept staying there like that, but I had to admit, she really did scare me. Her being gone scared me more than that spider did, but if I had to guess why, it was probably because I felt like we were closer now as friends. Even though I was the weaker one, I worried for her.
After I got back to the camp, I realized the horror of my current state. I had white, chitinous, sharp needles sticking out of me like spikes on the back of a porcupine. Some were buried in my flesh rather deeply and hurt bad. I feared the possibility of an internal bleeding, but it was surprising that it hurt only so little.
Gulping, I grabbed hold of one of the impaled needles in my right side and pulled. The razor-sharp pain climbed fast on my nerves and bombarded my brain. I grimaced and cringed my teeth, but the struggle was not over yet. There were more, and I had to get them all out one by one.
When it was all over, my body was aching all over both from the pain of my injuries and that of my muscle fever. The bleeding wasn’t bad, but I had to stop it somehow, however, before I got the chance to look around for something to use as a temporary bandage, I heard a rustle behind me.
Turning around, I saw Seryanna coming out of the dark forest, carrying behind her what could only be described as a white, giant, harry tarantula. It was dead, and a white substance was oozing out of its wounds. As for the beautiful dragoness, with just one glance, she made me gulp. Her long, red hair was soaked in water, her body a bit wet, allowing her thin blouse to stick to her skin, giving a perfect contour to her big chest. Instead of a bra, she was wearing a piece of cloth tightly wrapped up around her breasts, squeezing them a bit, but at the same time hiding more of her natural beauty. On thing was certain, I still could remember the soft, pleasant touch of her bare skin when I hugged her earlier. At that moment, there was no cloth to hide her away, and my imagination could only make me wonder if her bottom was also left uncovered. I probably caught her right when she was in the middle of bathing.
“You are staring.” she told me squinting her eyes and covering her chest with the hand she held her sword with.
I was drooling a bit too, but that was only man’s natural instinct, there was no fault in that!
“Sorry… you just… you are very beautiful.” I said and turned around to hide my blushing cheeks.
“Thank you…” she said softly and then proceeded to drag the carcass of the spider closer to the fire.
I kept still and waited for her to be finish up or cover herself some more, but what she did was walk over to me. Taking my hand, she began to look at my injuries and glanced over at the spikes on the ground. Meanwhile, I was trying to focus my eyes on something else but her chest. For someone of my age, I had quite a bit of restraint, but the one thing that probably kept me from acting like a fool was the following thought I kept repeating in my mind: Don’t look, don’t dare, don’t try. She hates humans, remember that! Don’t be a jerk! Don’t be an idiot! Don’t do something to lose her friendship! If she’s gone, you die. If she hates you and the friendship is dissolved, you lose the massive boost of stats! Remember: you are in the friend zone! You are in the friend zone!
“Drink this.” she suddenly told me.
Looking back at her, I saw her holding an opened small bottle with a red substance inside of it. There was no doubt about it, that was the well-known healing potion I saw in plenty of games before.
With a bit of hesitation, I brought the red liquid to my lips and drank the whole thing in one gulp. It was bitter as Hell! The games were wrong, they were so wrong! Potions didn’t taste good, they tasted so bad I wished I didn’t have a tongue!
“Ugh… the taste…” I groaned as I handed the bottle back.
The injuries inflicted upon me by the needles began to heal rather quickly. The pain was gone too, and by the looks of things, I was going to be all better in just a couple of minutes from now.
“Of course it tastes bad, it’s made out of Blood Cow Pee.” she said.
“Huh?” I blinked surprised.
Say what now? I thought.
“PEE?” I asked raising the tone of my voice a bit.
Furrowing her brow, she looked at me as though she didn’t understand what was wrong.
“You made me drink cow pee?” I asked baffled and immediately felt like gagging up.
“Yes…” she squinted her eyes at me. “Wait, not pee, but pea.” she explained.
“Huh?” I didn’t understand.
Letting out a sigh, she opened her purse and took out something from there, it was a small, red seed. I looked at it curiously.
“This is a Blood Cow Pea.” she told me.
“Huh? Oh! PEA!” I said and then laughed.
She giggled and placed the seed back in her purse.
“You are funny. Why would you even believe I would let you drink something as disgusting as that?” she asked me while taking a seat next to the fire.
I sat down next to her, crossing my legs and throwing away a pesky pebble.
“The two sound so similar, it was an honest mistake!” I defended myself, but I had to wonder though, why was that actually so? I thought in Romanian and spoke in Romanian, but the language she was speaking sounded completely different. Technically speaking, I wasn’t supposed to make such a mistake, the two words sounded completely different.
I did find it a bit funny that I noticed it only until now.
“Hey, Seryanna, what language are we speaking in right now?” I asked her.
“Eastern Draconic, why?” she replied and squinted her eyes at me.
“Really?” I asked.
“Yes, and I have to say, I’m surprised a human like you can actually speak it so well, that’s why I didn’t really believe at first that you were a human.” she explained.
“Oh, true, true. You didn’t actually believe me at first that I was a human.” I said with a smile as I remembered he incident.
“Indeed. You speak perfect draconian, and it’s not so unusual to meet other dragons who in their sealed form, or when they are young, they look exactly like humans do.” she explained.
“So, most dragons actually look similar to humans? How can you usually tell yourself apart?” I asked.
“Hm, before I answer to that, tell me why a human like you can speak my language so well. You even seem surprised by this as well. Also, I’m starting to doubt you actually came here because of a teleportation accident. Your skill and your ability to understand my language so perfectly aren’t something you gain from something like that, it doesn’t make sense!” she explained shaking her head.
“I see… The cat’s out of the bag. Well, you were bound to find out sooner or later, you are my very first friend in this world, after all. I do have to say though, you are a very beautiful and very powerful first friend!” I smiled and pushed in a compliment just to make her feel better and not decide to cut me into pieces for lying.
“Thank you, but please… the truth.” she told me, but I did notice the small blush changing the color of her cheeks. My compliment worked.
“Well then, I am indeed a human, but I’m not from this world. I was brought her by a God-like entity. Don’t ask me his name ’cause I don’t know it… Well, ten million of us were brought here to be exact.” I began to explain.
“T-Ten million? That’s an invasion! The king has to know about this!” she said as she got up.
“Wait a second! Wait! I’m probably the only idiot who landed here! Most of them are probably deep within the human continent fighting weak monsters.” I told her.
“What do you mean?” she asked furrowing her brow.
“The God-like entity offered us some unique abilities, but each has a different one. I have no idea what sort of abilities they have or if there are individuals stronger than me or not. Honestly speaking, I think I got quite the boost thanks to you. Also, just you alone could probably defeat them before they got a chance to even use a single spell.” I explained and shrugged.
“I see… so they are all a bunch of weaklings.” she said and sat back down next to me.
“Compared to you, quite so. The God-like did warn us not to step on the dragon continent though. I’m guessing it’s because of this war between our species.”
“That might be so. The relationship between the dragon kingdoms and the human ones is quite tense at the moment. Although we are in a cease fire, a war could break out at any given moment.” she explained.
“Yes, so… my abilities, if I can call them that… are a maxed out Luck stat and a skill called Dragon Tamer.” I told her, and she immediately squinted her eyes at me.
“What is a stat?” she asked.
Blinking surprised, I told her “Erm, stat points? From leveling? You know, when you kill something, you gain experience and then you level up and get stat points and skill points?” I told her.
“I don’t understand.” she shook her head once “When we kill something, their life force and some of their Magic Energy is absorbed by us, but experience is something earned through battle. We grow strong by fighting. Life force makes us powerful and the more we absorb, the more powerful we are. I never heard of anyone having these levels and skill points.” she explained.
“What?” I looked at her confused and then thought back at what the God-like told us. I couldn’t remember him mentioning anything about the inhabitants of this world not having skill points or levels. “Hm?” It was then when I remembered. The God-like did say something about that, but he kept it short.
No wonder I couldn’t remember it right away… That idiot God-like! I thought and then sighed.
“I think it’s something available only to us, since we don’t have this life force and Magic Energy thing, or maybe we do but aren’t aware of it yet. Sigh, well… I’m guessing for me it’s that life force thing you mentioned. But how should I explain points… erm… Let’s just say 1 point is a very small quantity of life force, maybe?” I tried to explain, but it was quite hard to speak of video game mechanics to someone who had no idea what a game was.
“Then let’s just presume that what you call leveling is what I call getting stronger. What does maxed out Luck mean? Also, what are the details of this Dragon Tamer skill? It doesn’t sound very… honorable.” she told me and gave me a suspicious look.
Thinking about it, ‘tamer’ did sound a bit fishy.
“Maxed out Luck means that I have the best Luck out there. I guess it’s the reason why we haven’t encountered dangerous monsters that often and also found so many Bloody Mushrooms. Deep inside, I prayed and wished we found many of them so you wouldn’t need to make so many trips weekly. The same goes for the other plants as well, that’s why my backpack is nearly full right now. As for the Dragon Tamer, it sounds sketchy, but it actually says that I need to have a friendly relationship with a dragon, not actually tame one like you would a pet. If you become my enemy, the bonus in power I get from you and the buff you get from me will vanish as well. In other words, thanks to this skill, I’m guaranteed to be on your side from this day forwards!” I explained to her as best as I could from what I knew so far.
She looked at me for a moment, but didn’t reply right away. What I had just told her might have come as a shock to her, but I hoped she got the hint that through my naive honesty and specifics of the skills, I had no intent on becoming her enemy, ever.
“In other words, if one were to become your friend and join you in your party, then they would only have benefits to gain…” she said at one point.
“Yes, but it can also be quite dangerous for me. If I didn’t know you were a kind and good dragoness, I might have hesitated to say all of these things. I’m not a naive fool, but I do believe that as friends, one of the most important things we need to have is trust. If I can’t trust you with something like this, I don’t really have the right to say that I’m your friend, right?” I explained with a smile.
Once more, Seryanna kept quiet and looked at me straight in the eyes, trying to spot the truth from the lie. I was honest to her though, for more than the reasons I mentioned in my words. First off, she was a knight. If that part was true, then honesty, justice, and loyalty held a great value to her. Lying or trying to be dishonest would only lead me to the pointy end of her sword. At the same time, it was a terrible gamble. Saying all of that also revealed my weakness. Without dragons, I had no way of getting stronger. Without getting stronger, I had no way of defending myself or going on the journey to defeat the Demon King or whatever baddie was out there and tried to make everyone’s lives harsh. Before trying to make the world a better place, I had to become stronger, and Seryanna was my perfect opportunity and ticket for that, plus she was a beautiful, hot woman with an hourglass shape.
“I believe you.” she said, and I let out a sigh. “That’s why I swear upon my honor as a knight that unless you wish to or the king himself requests this of me, I shall not let a single word about your abilities leave my lips! Nonetheless, it would be wise if you didn’t randomly spread this knowledge around. You truly are lucky you met me and not a bandit or something the like, otherwise, it would have been another outcome to this conversation.” she spoke with a firm tone of voice to let me know that she was serious in her words.
“I understand. Then, I won’t reveal this information to anyone else unless you agree to it!” I told her with a smile.
Yes! I did it! Lifeline secured! Banzai for me! I thought at that time.
“But tell me, why were you sent here?” she asked me.
“The God-like told us it was a test to save our original world from an invasion.” I shrugged “Well, it was also to make this world a better place, some way or another. If by the time we die in this world, we did something to improve it, then we helped tip the scale a bit in our homeworld’s favor. If not, well, that’s just bad for the people back there.” I shrugged again.
“That sounds like a hero’s job. You don’t look like a hero.”
I shrugged. “We do what we can. Besides, who knows what the future has in store for me?” I smiled.
Letting out a sigh, she said “True… I guess I should tell you now how we are able to tell our kind apart. In general, we have wings or draconic eyes. Some even have a tail, but that’s available only for those who have awakened their Flame. Despite being a knight, I have yet to awaken mine and still look quite similarly to a human, but because I lived around the Seculiar Forest, I’m much stronger than even some awakened dragons. The only difference between me and you is the row of scales on my back and on the side of my thighs…” she then blushed a bit.
“Scales? Hm, earlier I didn’t… erm… What I want to say is… erm… sorry.” I said and looked down.
“It’s alright. I am not ashamed of my body, and it was too dark for a human to see, although, I would have rather you didn’t hug me like that… it was a bit embarrassing.” she said and looked away with a pink blush on her cheeks.
“Sorry, I panicked. I really thought for a moment that something really bad happened to you and even though I am actually quite weak when compared to you, I wanted to at least try and help you…” I told her and looked down at the fire.
It felt a bit bad to realize that I acted o foolishly, but also because I may have disconsidered her own strength by thinking I could actually do something to help.
“It’s alright, thank you for thinking about me. Even among dragons, there aren’t that many out there who would risk venturing into this forest at night, especially if they are much weaker than me. They would rather wait and try their luck when the sun is up.” she showed me a soft smile.
Her words made me feel a bit better.
“So, you really have scales on your back?” I asked after a moment.
“Yes, but I will not show them to you.” she threw me a sharp look.
“Of course, I wasn’t asking to.” I quickly defended myself and showed her a foolish smile.
Note from the author: Thank you for reading this chapter, I hope you enjoyed it! Oh, and be sure to check out my other stories too!
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