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Chapter 701

The next morning, I walked outside to see my tiger eagerly awaiting me. My charm must be fairly strong if I was able to do this without some of the more aggressive Monster Tamer skills. I got on his back, and we started heading for the first place on the Map I had indicated. I lost a bit of sleep last night, but I had mapped out a course for us to follow. I also made sure to keep track of the day as well. You could never be too careful.

The next anomaly on my Map grew sharper as I grew closer. It was at this point I was able to realize that it appeared to be some kind of abandoned fort. Since this dungeon was battlefield themed, I supposed it made sense for there to be forts on the battlefield. As I approached it, I moved off to a hidden area and tried to get as close as I could.

In the past, I might have sent one of the girls to do reconnaissance. Even Celeste could fly pretty close without being seen. Being able to change your size at will was pretty useful. However, I didn’t have those abilities. All I had was my status and my wits.

“Is this a challenge?” I muttered to myself.

I began to see movement on the walls. Looking a little longer, I began to see soldiers. However, these weren’t normal soldiers. These were skeletons and undead. I felt a bit of excitement at first. After all, a White Mage was at his strongest against these creatures. If I had to fight anything on my own, these would be the easiest.

However, my hand went up to my neck. I couldn’t cast anything on them. The binding that Lord Aberis had put on me kept me from being able to cast anything externally. I could still use skills internally. One example was that I could cast lLght, which emitted a shroud of light around me that seemingly only went one way, affecting my party and not aiding my enemies in seeing any better. While I could cast that ability, an orb which allowed me to create an external light source seen by everyone could not be cast at all.

In that respect, I was pretty sure I could cast Heal on myself, but if I needed to cast it on someone else, such as an enemy, I didn’t have the ability. It was the same for any aggressive spells. I wondered why this was the case, but I think it had to do with the restriction of mana. I did have a theory that using a skill powered by external mana, like God Eye, could go around this block since I wasn’t providing all of the mana myself, but I only had limited resources and I didn’t want to waste it unless I needed it.

While I was thinking about what I could and could not do about the fort, the front gate began to open. A lone man on a skeletal horse came trotting out. I wasn’t that knowledgeable about army ranks, but he seemed to be pretty high ranking. He started to head out into the forest beyond. At that moment, a thought came to me, and I cautiously mounted the tiger and began to stalk him.

Chapter 702

Compared to a horse, a tiger was definitely much better at stalking. Of course, he wasn’t the easiest animal to ride, but I had no attachment or skill with horses in the first place, so it wasn’t like I had habits I needed to break or anything.

I could see the rider leisurely moving down the trail. It looked like he was heading to another fort. He had a rolled-up document in his hand which he gripped tightly. It was strange to follow him. I always saw the creatures in dungeons as just mindless monsters, but they were probably much like the dungeon bosses. The longer they existed, the more they’d start to express their individuality. I didn’t want to think about it too hard though, or I might find myself unable to kill them when I needed to.

At the end of the day, no matter how much they acted like real people, they were just shadows and curses. Elaya, at least, was based on the soul of a real person. She had been brought to life by my Resurrection spell, and she had some semblance of her prior self.

As for this guy, he seemed to have returned to his role in the army. He was delivering messages as if they were still in the middle of a war. I had the tiger stalk closer and closer to him. I desired to knock him out and determine just what he was there for. Just as I was ready to release an attack, a group of men leaped out from a hiding place in front of the messenger.

“Insolent dogs!” He screamed, drawing his sword.

A group of seven men charged the man on horseback. Another shot an arrow, striking the skeletal horse. Although the arrow went right through it, the horse reared, tossing the messenger off his back. The seven soldiers descended on the man quickly, but he seemed to have some formidable skill while fighting back. Did dungeon monsters fight each other? I guess, in an approximation of a battlefield, they would.

I decided to sit back and watch. I was happy with a one on one fight, but I didn’t want to have to take on a group of ten. As if fate wanted to spit on my thoughts, the tiger suddenly leaped to the side. An arrow had flown right where I had been sitting. My Danger Sense had triggered, but the tiger was able to move much quicker than me. That leap suddenly took me onto the path, right in the middle of the battle.

An arrow pierced the tiger’s side. He let out a roar, and any control I had ofr him was lost immediately. I leaped off his back as he went leaping into the crowd of enemies, scratching and biting at anything he could reach. Now that I was closer, I could see that the men in front of me weren’t skeletons. They were demons! It was an entire army of demons versus an army of undead.

I realized where I landed, I was standing right next to the lone skeleton. My sword was pointed to the demons though. He glanced over at me.

“I don’t know who you are, fleshling, but it seems like life-or-death situations make interesting allies. We can fight as partners, or die as strangers, your choice!”

Chapter 703

I didn’t have much of a chance to answer, let alone refuse. The tiger was pelted with several arrows, and three of the men were finishing him off. The remaining four came running at the pair of us. Meanwhile, there were still at least two demons with bows who were trying to pelt us with arrows. It was a dangerous situation all around. I pulled out the starsword and began my attack.

Two of them went after the skeleton, while two of them went after me. As soon as I raised my sword and blocked one of the enemy’s swords, there was the familiar flash. He immediately backed up, grabbing at his eyes. The sword must have caused temporary blindness. The other demon had been expecting his attack to be supported by the first. He ended up hesitating as a result. I used True Strike, hitting and killing him in a single blow.

{Demon Knight had increased to level 2.} 

{You have unlocked Shadow Step.}

Shadow Step? Was that similar to what Shao could do where she was able to run through shadows? I instantly tried it out, only to find that it was only part of that. It was an ability that allowed me to dodge, using my shadow to blur where I was and making it very easy to miss.

“That’s a demon ability!” One of the soldiers cried out. “What side are you on?”

“My own!” I shouted, killing the second soldier.

These guys weren’t that strong. If I compared them to the Knights I had ambushed in Widow’s Dungeon so long ago, they were much inferior to them even. However, I had gotten those guys by surprise and had the full list of my skills. Here, I could only use skills that effected my internal magic, and these guys were prepared and ready for me coming. That didn’t mean I couldn’t win. It just meant that it was complicated.

{Your Sabertooth Feral has died!}

The message came just as I killed the second guy. I looked where the tiger had been fighting. The three who had ganged up on him had finally killed him, although two of them were wounded and the third was dead. Feeling just an ounce of rage, I parried an incoming arrow out of the air and then leaped at the two remaining men. Covered in damage as they were, they fell nearly as quickly as the first. I finally turned to the bowman, but after one look at me, he lowered his arrow and turned to run.

“I miss having wind magic.” I lamented.

Those arrows were dangerous to me.

“Tell me about it.” The skeleton spoke from behind, causing me to turn.

I let out a noise as I saw him. He was on the floor. He had taken nearly a dozen arrows. He was a skeleton, so most of those arrows went right through him. They were pelted into the ground where his skeleton was lying and didn’t seem to damage him at all. As for the two demons, he had managed to kill them both.

“You’re a strong fighter.” The skeleton said. “Stronger than me, perhaps.”

“What do you want?” I asked.

“Hehe… am I so see-through?” I raised my eyebrow and he laughed again. “Sorry… a little undead humor. Please, take this message. You must bring it to our troops. The princess’s life depends on it.”

“This is merely a dungeon. You are all puppets to an age-old curse.” I said harshly. “Whatever battle you fought ended ages ago. My only interest is getting into that castle.”

“I see…” He responded, “If this is a dungeon, then you are a Dungeon Diver, correct?”

I raised my eyebrow. I either expected him to ignore my words, or meet them with disbelief. I didn’t think he’d actually know about dungeons and even accept he was in one. I supposed, most dungeon bosses knew they were in dungeons as well.”

“I am.”

“You will never defeat this dungeon unless you can single-handedly defeat the entire demon army. I do not know the world you come from, but we are the dead who fought against the Demon Lord Aberon, and if you wish to make it to the castle, you’ll need an army!”

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