However, before the two could start their riveting battle, an old man stepped out of the carriage.
“Hello everyone. My name is Douglas and this is my young lady, who you will be escorting today. I hope we can all cooperate on our journey to the capital.”
Damien’s bloodlust quickly receded as he snapped back into reality. He could have a friendly battle with this lady later. For now, he just needed to complete his mission. The girl felt the same sentiment as she looked away and introduced herself.
“I’m Katherine Hart. It’s nice to meet all of you.” Her curt attitude and indifference got on some of the adventurers’ nerves, but they knew they were escorting someone of high-status today, so they forced their annoyance down and made friendly introductions. Excluding Damien of course.
When his turn came, he simply matched Katherine’s gaze and uttered, “Void.” And went back to minding his own business.
Damien’s blatant disregard for status once again caused some people to be incensed, but they didn’t say anything. It wasn’t their place to punish him. However, to their surprise, Katherine did nothing.
“It’ll take us at least a month to get to the capital. There’s a separate carriage for you guys to rest in whenever you want to.”
With these words, she entered her carriage. When Douglas was about to follow her in, Damien raised a question.
“Hey, do you mind if I just sit on the roof of your carriage? I won’t move much so you don’t have to worry about disruptions.”
Douglas hesitated, but receiving a positive response from inside the carriage, he reluctantly nodded. Damien then vanished and reappeared on top of the carriage without a sound.
Looking at the other adventurers, Damien continued. “I’ll stay here the whole time so you guys can figure out the rest among yourselves.”
Damien went back to ignoring everyone. Truthfully, he was slightly embarrassed by his behavior. He didn’t expect that his conversational skills were so low. Every word that came out of his mouth sounded snappy and indifferent. But this was to be expected.
In the first place, when he was on Earth Damien was constantly looked down on for 6 years. Then, he spent 2 years in a dungeon where he didn’t talk to anyone except Zara, and even that was only for his last 6 months.
Frankly, he was never a good conversationalist. His witty side only came out when he was with Elena or Zara, while he never really cared about anyone else. This behavior had only been amplified. He knew people would have a bad impression of him, but he couldn’t do anything about it.
So, he decided that he’d accept his calm and indifferent facade and make it a part of his personality. A lot of his favorite characters were calm and indifferent, and mimicking them was the only way he knew how to develop his personality.
The first week of their journey passed swiftly. During this time, there weren’t any major disruptions. Every once in a while, bandit groups would attack the carriage, but they couldn’t do anything.
The carriage itself had two 2nd classes in it and was being guarded by 10 more 2nd classes. There were only 5 adventurers including Damien, but he knew otherwise.
His eyes wouldn’t be deceived by any concealment or illusions. He could clearly see the 5 guards hidden in the shadows. He simply neglected to mention them because he didn’t care.
Plus, these bandit attacks were perfect target practice for him. They would always start their attacks by surrounding their group and launching ranged skills and attacks, so Damien had the perfect opportunity to refine his vector control.
Within this week, they had already been attacked 5 times, and none of these bandits’ attacks could touch the carriage he was sitting on, even if they had a 2nd class in their midst. This past week marked one month since he had achieved 2nd class, and although his level hadn’t risen, his power had been greatly advanced.
He was now able to create a deflection barrier using countless vectors as its base, while he could retain complete control over all factors related to a single vector.
He mused that he could theoretically cause atoms to collide within this single point and create a natural nuke, but it’d explode directly in front of him, so he had no thoughts of attempting this until his range increased.
Another factor he was focusing on was gravity control. Gravity was intrinsically linked to space, and in certain interpretations could be considered as space bending.
For this reason, Damien had always had a slight amount of control over gravity, and it was even subconsciously in use when he first created his distortion technique, but he had only started consciously focusing on it after gaining his 2nd class.
Being able to control vectors gave him a clearer medium to affect gravity.
On the 10th day since the start of his quest, Damien lay on top of the carriage relaxing as he spoke to Zara, who hadn’t yet exited his shadow in a while. Although she was fine within the city or when they were alone, now that they were supposed to be protecting someone, Zara had stayed concealed for safety.
She liked to think of herself as Damien’s trump card. She was the one who would land a fatal attack when their enemies were distracted. She was never someone who enjoyed direct fights.
Zara was now equivalent to someone around level 70, but she didn’t possess the ability to see the system windows. Beasts, as beings who developed intelligence as they grew stronger, weren’t beings who could inherently see their status, as they wouldn’t even be able to understand it.
Instead, they’d gain this ability when they reached 4th class and obtained their human forms. Before this, beasts instinctively knew their power level and skills. Since they were naturally stronger than most humanoid species’ at the same level, this was a sort of balance mechanism.
However, not seeing the system didn’t detriment the development of their intelligence, and a beast like Zara who had a mental connection with a human while also being naturally intelligent would grow extremely fast.
The emotions she transmitted through their link were becoming closer and closer to full-on thoughts and it seemed like she wasn’t far from learning how to speak.
Damien was naturally excited by this prospect. Zara was like his best friend, why wouldn’t he be excited for her to obtain the ability to communicate more thoroughly?
He mused that he should quickly help her reach 3rd class since at that point she’d reach that goal. As he was having this thought, Damien’s danger sense started ringing like crazy.
Without another thought, he held onto the carriage and teleported a whole kilometer backwards. Feeling the fluctuations and rapid movement, the two inside the carriage quickly came out.
However, before they could question Damien, the area where the carriage once stood exploded.
Dust flew, the ground cracked and shook, and a huge mushroom cloud rose into the sky. In the center of the damage stood a single man. He was around 1.8 meters tall and was fully covered in a black robe, except his face which was covered by a black horned mask.
Out of the woods, 30 black robes figures emerged. The only difference between them and the man was that their masks lacked horns.
Sensing the man’s billowing aura, one of the adventurers yelled in a panic. “T-t-third class!”
The man was naturally Adrian who had been sent by that mysterious organization. All of the lackeys around him were 2nd class as well.
“Well then,” he said with a maniacal smile, “we’ll be taking that young lady off your hands for you.”