The quest was scheduled to start in 3 hours, so Damien still had a bit of time. He naturally had a plan for how to spend it. He was already on his way to Vormec’s shop to pick up his new blade.
His anticipation was through the roof. Simply practicing the 3rd step of his sword art for a week was enough to start dulling the edge on the A rank sword he was borrowing.
He also knew that the SS rank sword he was about to get would have a special effect.
His excitement was only natural. This sort of situation was basically like getting a game item but in real life. Damien walked to the shop this time since he was wasting time, and soon he reached his destination. Upon entry, he was greeted with the same smell of smoke and molten metal as last time.
However, this time Damien went straight to the back room without any decorum. This was what Vormec had told him to do from now on, as it was how he treated his regulars.
Damien immediately spotted Virmec sitting at his forge. He was staring intently at a sheathed blade that looked similar to a katana. Damien rushed over, catching Vormec’s attention.
“Ah, yer finally here, boy!” He said as he looked at Damien. “First gimme back that blade you borrowed. Let’s just make a trade-off.”
Damien promptly pulled out the slightly dull blade and exchanged it with the blacksmith, who handed him the sheathed sword he was staring at earlier.
When Damien first laid his hands on it, he immediately felt a connection. It was like the blade itself resonated with his entire being, becoming one with his desires. With shaking hands, Damien pulled it out of its scabbard.
It was a single-edged sword with a small hilt. The entire thing was black from the blade to the handle, while the blade had purple designs spiraling along its surface. As he admired the blade, a system window appeared in front of him.
[A sword made by a talented blacksmith to embody the traits of its wielder. It is bestial and ferocious but carries its own brand of elegance. This sword was made for the sole purpose of devouring its enemies. During its creation, it birthed the special effect, [Amplification] to aid its owner.]
Although he was startled, he wasn’t too surprised. The system could record his achievements, so it would naturally record artifacts as well, as they were the achievements of their creators and would take part in the legends of their wielders.
Damien raised his eyebrow. “Amplification? What exactly does it amplify?”
Vormec, who had a smug grin on his face the whole time, answered. “Everything. Mana output, destruction, attack power, elements, everything run through the sword is amplified. Honestly, it might be one of the best SS rank weapons I’ve ever made.”
Damien’s eyes widened as he thought of the prospects such a weapon held.
Holding the sword that seemed to perfectly suit him in his hands, Damien felt he couldn’t wait anymore. He gave a quick thank you to Vormec before teleporting back to the area in the plains where he had been practicing for the past week.
An hour later, Damien could be seen in what now looked more like a wasteland than a grassy plain with a smile on his face. Countless gashes that were tens of meters deep ran through the terrain and surrounding Damien was a huge crater.
Sheathing the sword, Damien adjusted it on his hip. Even the sheath of the sword was ornately designed, and since Damien didn’t have to do any intense movement for the next little while, he decided he’d carry the sword on his body rather than in his inventory.
While the latter was more logical, there was a certain nuance to the former that he enjoyed. Taking a quick look, Damien realized he still had an hour left before the specified meetup time, so he spent the next hour refining his vector control.
He realized that he had been too lax in his training ever since he escaped the dungeon.
The environment there that was filled with death in every direction stimulated his growth, and he felt a little out of place in such a relaxing atmosphere. He hoped that he could have another great fight soon to get his blood pumping.
During this hour, Damien focused mainly on creating an impregnable defense. He attempted to control multiple points in space to affect the corresponding vectors, rather than a single point of deflection.
This way, once he’d mastered the technique, he could form a barrier that deflects or teleports all incoming attacks.
He was also attempting to control the ‘Force’ aspect of vectors so he could redirect attacks back at their senders with amplified strength.
Although an hour wasn’t enough for him to make insane progress, he was able to take steps in the right direction. All he needed was constant practice to perfect it. At that point, the technique he was creating might even be registered by the system as a skill.
Skills were an interesting concept, as they were like the crystallization of certain factors pertaining to their users. As such, skill books or easy cheats towards gaining skills didn’t usually exist.
The only way to create something like this was through a good amount of sacrifice, and usually wouldn’t be done by someone unless they were on death’s door and wanted to leave something behind for their descendants.
The natural way to earn skills was through hard work, practice, and experience.
An example was how Damien had to do intense training with the sword to receive the [Sword Mastery] skill but achieved regeneration through constant injury and healing. The former was through practice and the latter through experiences.
If Damien wanted a Fire Resistance skill, then logically he could bathe in fire constantly to gain it, though he was far from being a masochist and wasn’t willing to do that.
While pondering on what skill he’d earn through his perfection of vector control, Damien arrived at the meetup spot. He noticed that there was already a group of 5 men and women waiting and he promptly joined them.
They did a quick introduction but Damien honestly didn’t care enough to remember their names. He doubted he would ever see them again after this quest.
After waiting another half hour, a carriage arrived in front of them. From the outside, it looked completely normal, but for some reason, it carried a regal aura.
The door opened and a young woman stepped out. She had long black hair and brown eyes, with a relatively ordinary face, and her aura suggested that she wasn’t someone weak.
But Damien wasn’t fooled in the slightest. Accompanied by a slight throbbing in his eyes, her appearance completely changed.
Now, what Damien saw was a beautiful girl with pink hair and ruby red eyes. Her aura was like a sheathed sword just waiting to be unveiled.
For the first time since he left the dungeon, Damien met someone who could give him a great fight. By what his eyes were telling him, she was only slightly weaker than him.
The color of the mana he saw around her was peculiar as well. There was the light green color of wind mana that he was used to, but also a faint grey hue that seemed illusory.
As he looked at her, Damien almost couldn’t control himself. He almost started a fight right then and there. His bloodlust subtly leaked out of his body, alerting the woman to his current state.
While she was evaluating the adventurers that had been hired as her escort, the girl suddenly felt a predatory gaze on her.
It wasn’t lustful or envious like the ones she was used to, rather it was one she often felt coming from herself. It was the gaze of someone hungry for a blood-boiling battle.
Surprised, she looked over at its source. Seeing the handsome man who could barely control his bloodlust, she couldn’t help but smile as her gaze slowly adopted the same battle-hungry glint.