A Dream About Hazuki
The reward for the delivery of the letter to Kelbeck was 200 gilans. It would only take thirty minutes to get there and back, so the amount was appropriate.
That was Hikaru’s conclusion. Even in RPGs, it was normal for delivery quests to have mediocre rewards. It seemed that was also the case in a different world. You could earn money efficiently by taking recurring and Boss Kill quests.
…Now what would I do when I earn more…
Hikaru flopped down on the floor. He was in the same inn he stayed in last night. He could’ve forked out more and stay in a better inn, but he decided to do that after he thought about plans for his future here.
First, I need to save enough so I can live my life in satisfaction. Second, look for ways to return to my world. Third, immerse myself in a hobby. But I don’t really have one…
Hikaru loved reading books. He played video games as well and liked studying. But sports were something he couldn’t bring himself to enjoy. Try as he might, he didn’t have the ability to become the best. So he thought it was inefficient to bust his chops for clubs that required some level of tenacity.
The world is inefficient. Be that as it may, there’s really nothing else I can do… That’s it. I just have to find something I want to do. I should see what they have here in this world.
First I’ll go see the world. Then I’ll think about what I must do.
Abruptly, he got up on his feet.
And for that, I need money! Funds! It’s all about efficiency!
Standing and feeling confident, Hikaru fell over just as quickly as well. Even with the ruckus, the others didn’t notice him with his Stealth on. He didn’t think it was wise to use the Skill out on the streets. It would only cause trouble if people found out about it. His experiments had concluded with his infiltration into Kelbeck’s room.
He was nervous back then, but the experiment was a huge success. He didn’t notice the watchers, though. But that made him realize that while he could hide himself, he couldn’t actually detect others.
Detection Skill, huh… There was something like a Perception on the first window of my Soul Board.
He summoned his Soul Board.
Hikaru surmised that perhaps things like “Smell” or “Hearing” would show up. Although, just one point on Imperceptibility applied to all the senses.
Well, there are lots of uses for improving my sense of smell than just detecting people. I can understand why just one point in Imperceptibility applied to all senses. Its only use is to not get detected by others, after all.
Hikaru assumed that every point was equal all across the board.
Therefore, improving my Perception would be inefficient.
He had four points available. It felt like such a waste to use them right away, but he was already aware of the incredible power the Soul Board held. So it was better to use them.
He’d examined the Soul Board before. Next was to check each item. The unlockable fields “Immunity” and “Perception”’s descriptions read like this:
【Immunity】Unlock Skills related to Immunity.
【Perception】Unlock Skills related to Perception.
That was all. So first, he checked every item with the number 0 – Skills he could already allocate points on.
..【Natural Recovery】Enhance ability to heal external wounds. Max: 20.
..【Stamina】Enhance ability to sustain prolonged physical effort and recover from fatigue. Max: 20.
..【Mana】Increases total mana – the resource one uses when activating a spell. Max: 30.
..【Strength】Increase strength. Max: 30.
..【Instantaneous Power Burst】 Enhance ability to exert strength in an instant. Max: 15.
..【Flexibility】Make the body, especially the joints, more flexible. Max: 10
..【Balance】Improve sensation of the torso. Max: 20.
What surprised Hikaru was the maximum points allowed. Skills under Stealth required five points max. Assassination and Snipe only required three. But the ones he checked now required ten or thirty points to get maxed.
So what, they’re divided into fundamentals and the actual applications?
The ones that didn’t need to be unlocked further required more points to max. They all had something to do with the basic attributes of a living being.
What would happen if I allocated 30 points to Strength? Maybe I can crush a boulder with my bare hands or lift a whole house. Yeah, right…
It’s certainly possible.
He already witnessed the effects of his Stealth. What kind of power would he get if he poured in thirty whole points to an attribute?
Let’s forget that for now. There are three boards left unlocked.
The pentagon, hexagon, and the unlabelled one. So far, he had unlocked Vitality, Magical Power, Physical Strength, and Agility…
If we go by game mechanics, I guess next would be Willpower, Faith, Charisma, and Dexterity? If I want to be efficient, first I have to know. I can’t achieve efficiency without information.
Hikaru got up.
But if I unlocked all three, I’d be left with one point. It’s inefficient to have only one point to allocate. If I have to unlock only one first…
He chose the unlabelled board.
I really wanna know what’s in this unlabelled board! My curiosity is killing me!
【Unlock Soul Board? 1 point required.】
What emerged on the screen was…
Instinct! It’s instinct!
【Instinct】Heighten one’s senses to achieve great foresight similar to clairvoyance. Max: 20
【Memory】Improves the function of the part of the brain that governs memories. Max: 10.
And there’s Detection as expected. I don’t like how I have to unlock it first. Now what? I have three points left.
Hikaru stared at the Soul Board for a while, then lied down and closed his eyes. Sleep came right away.
Money left: 4,890 gilans.
——xx-kun, people say you’re arrogant, don’t they?
The light of the bright afternoon was blinding even behind the white curtains. A girl, one year older than Hikaru, stood there with her back against the light, smiling.
——Life will be rough for you. You may be clever, but you’re also reckless. Someday, somewhere, you might just die unexpectedly.
She was beautiful with long, black hair.
——I appreciate the disturbing divination.
He wouldn’t listen to the words of grown-ups or his other seniors, but Hikaru readily paid attention to what she had to say. Her name was…
The next morning.
Hikaru silently woke up in the corner of the inn’s large room. The sun was beginning to climb in the sky.
…Was that… a dream?
He let out one, long breath. He hadn’t had a dream ever since coming to this world. And when he finally did, it wasn’t about his parents or the high school he went to. It was a dream about his senior who he had not seen for two years.
Hikaru didn’t bother reminiscing about his parents. It was not like they were on bad terms, but when his parents’ relationship had gone completely cold, Hikaru became indifferent about them.
As a kid grows up, they get more difficult to handle. And Hikaru matured early. It got to the point where he treated them like strangers even though they lived under the same roof.
That was the reason why Hikaru’s guild card didn’t show his family name. He hadn’t considered that, of course. His only comment on the fact his card didn’t have his family name was a “Hmm”.
Why’d I have that dream?
After mulling it over a bit, he understood why. It was because Jill called him “arrogant”.
Hikaru was indeed arrogant. He thought he was cleverer than the rest of the students at his school and he didn’t try to hide it. Skilled at avoiding danger, though, he was never bullied nor ran into any sort of conflict. The cheerful ones don’t come near the shadows.
He was aware that his arrogance was being fueled when he came to this world. Roland’s memories were affecting him. Roland was a noble. His parents were wise, but they didn’t forget their pride as members of the nobility.
“Don’t yield to anyone.” “Don’t let anyone look down on you.” These words formed the foundation of how Roland lived his life.
They may not be his own memories, but inheriting them all would surely have some effect on Hikaru. He was harsh on Jill and was able to perform rash experiments against Kelbeck because of it.
…Someday, somewhere, you might just die unexpectedly, huh…
In an ironic twist of fate, Hikaru died just like how Hazuki described it. It was only sheer chance that he came back to life. Just extremely lucky.
There’s no guarantee something like that won’t happen in this world.
Hikaru summoned his Soul Board, opened the Intuition window, and unlocked Detection.
Two points left.
【Life Detection】Detect life in the vicinity. Max: 5.
【Mana Detection】Detect beings through their mana. Max: 5.
Hikaru allocated one point to each and was now down to zero points. At the moment, he had acquired the following Skills:
There wasn’t any explanation as to how to activate his detection Skills. But he felt a new sense in his body – like a mix of his hearing, sense of smell and touch.
By focusing on it, he felt the effect of Detection all around him. He could sense the life coming from the young adventurer sleeping in the center of the room. It was like a soft, orange light.
He switched to Mana Detection – the switch was intuitive – and he felt soft, blue light instead.
Hikaru felt some kind of energy from a warrior-looking man when he used his Life Detection. But now that he switched to Mana Detection, he couldn’t feel it anymore.
Does that mean he doesn’t have much mana? Wait a second. I don’t detect “life force” but “life”.
Then he realized. With Life Detection, size didn’t matter. As long as it had mass, he could even sense a small insect if he really focused. The only downside was that it functioned just like the human eye. That is to say, he could see large living things, but he couldn’t see those that were too tiny, like microbes. On the other hand, Mana Detection was affected by the amount of mana one had. He could feel even the smallest bug if it had plenty of mana.
What would happen if I added more points to them? Maybe the range increases and the ability to pierce Obfuscation Skills is also enhanced.
The max range of his Detection at the moment was ten meters. He couldn’t allocate any more points but he concluded that adding more would increase the detection range and he could pierce the abilities of those who used Skills to conceal their presence.
Now this is efficient… Well, not really. But I have to prioritize not dying.
After getting ready, Hikaru left the room. A random thought crossed his mind.
Does Hazuki-senpai know I died?